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Tuesday, August 19, 2014
Yes, today is the 63rd anniversary of Eddie Gaedel’s appearance. WHAT ARE YOU IMPLYING.
The Houston Astros may be the most data-driven organization in baseball, or at least the one most willing to try new ideas. Yet there are no statistical models that would project the smallest player in the majors to be the game’s best hitter.
That is what Jose Altuve is, as measured by batting average. Before Tuesday’s game at Yankee Stadium, Altuve was leading the major leagues, at .339. He led the ...
When the Detroit Tigers traded Doug Fister to the Washington Nationals back in December for a a middling left-handed pitching prospect and some change, it was, well, baffling… There were explanations at the time… Now, with a a few months of clarity added to the picture, none of [them] makes sense.
1. [Making room for Drew] Smyly? No. The Tigers have already traded away Smyly to get David Price and make a desperate run for the playoffs with a wounded and uneven team.
2. An underappreciation of ...
Michael Kay: “And Derek Jeter no longer has a historic call for his record setting hit! Poor Derek.”
History has now even been changed in the name of Derek Jeter.
His infield single on Aug. 8 against the Indians that tied Honus Wagner for sixth-place on the all-time list was changed today to an error by Major League Baseball.
Fortunately for Jeter, he’s collected six hits since then — pushing his career total of 3,435 well past Wagner’s 3,430.
“So there’s no story,” Jeter ...
Posted: August 19, 2014 at 08:54 PM | 22 comment(s)
This always looked like a risky signing, and, well.
The Orioles have moved struggling starter Ubaldo Jimenez to the bullpen, manager Buck Showalter announced on Tuesday.
Signed to a four-year, $50 million deal this winter —the largest contact in club history for a free-agent pitcher— Jimenez has dealt with injury and ineffectiveness and gave up six earned runs over 4 1/3 innings this weekend in Cleveland. After that game, Showalter wouldn’t commit to whether Jimenez —4-9 with a 4.83 ...
Like a thunderbolt in your Cheerios, son… wake up and smell the toxic waste.
It would naturally seem strange to observers unused to the thin air and heavy gravity of Planet Wilpon that the [Mets] would go so egregiously and strangely out of its way to alienate [Matt] Harvey, who was most recently criticized by team officials and manager Terry Collins for expressing the apparently scandalous sentiment that he’d like to return to the mound this season… It’s not that all this is any less strange to ...
The season is over. It’s all behind them. (team shot pissing on monument)
I was recently branded all manner of moron — and, worse, a Mets fan – for putting postmortems on the pinstripes.
We New Yorkers fancy ourselves as the most educated and sophisticated sports devotees in the union. But in truth we’re just as provincial and petty as any other faction of flyover country.
WFAN host Mike Francesa dissected his beloved Bombers on Monday. And he made the reasonable assertion that the ...
Posted: August 19, 2014 at 03:51 PM | 84 comment(s)
Huh, I thought the prognosis was a lot worse. Pirates seem to need him in the lineup a tiny little bit.
Andrew McCutchen is off the disabled list and back in the Pirates’ lineup after missing the minimum 15 days with a fractured rib…
McCutchen was having another MVP-caliber season at the time of the injury, ranking among the NL’s top five in batting average (.311), on-base percentage (.411), slugging percentage (.536), and OPS (.947). Even after missing two weeks he still ranks second to ...
And keep your gushers sealed in tight with aluminum foil (foil).
The Royals’ walk rate (6.04 percent) is the lowest in the major leagues since the strike zone was redefined in 1969. They’re on pace for 99 homers, which would be the fewest by an AL team since 1994… while they’re last in the majors in walks, they’re also last in strikeouts… All of that contact has propelled the Royals to third in the majors in batting average, meaning that despite their historic lack of plate discipline ...
Suspended in time and space of the noodle-hitting 60’s for a moment, your introduction to Mr. Sam Miller, who lives in a very private world of darkness, a baseball universe whose home plate dimensions are no longer the size, thickness, length of a swath of bandages that cover his face.
I would never presume that I could convince Rob Neyer that those things I find appealing should be appealing to him, too. Matters of taste are matters of taste. It won’t matter to him that I love to watch a ...
Posted: August 19, 2014 at 01:13 PM | 3 comment(s)
1887 was a watershed year for both the International League and Organized Baseball, as it marked the origin of the color line. As the season opened, the black player had plenty of reasons to hope that he would be able to ply his trade in an atmosphere of relative tolerance; by the middle of the season, however, he would watch helplessly as the IL drew up a written color ban designed to deprive him of his livelihood; and by the time the league held its offseason meetings, it became obvious that ...
Just saw a headline about Kirk Gibson being back, so we’ll probably find out!
In 2006, 12 players were suspended multiple games for beanballs alone… This year, beyond bat-tossin’ Manny Machado, the only players to get multiple games for anything were Martin Maldonado, Carlos Gomez, and Travis Snider for their roles in that dumb Pirates-Brewers fight. Nobody has been suspended for the hit by pitches that have sparked cultural debates and, at times, have really hurt. Only once this year has it ...
Would a robot ump have vaporized him with its heat ray?
Joe Mikulik, the manager of the Single-A Myrtle Beach Pelicans is arguably the most fiery managers in all of Minor League Baseball.
On Sunday, the bombastic skipper lost his mind, and part of his uniform during an epic tirade with the home plate umpire during his team’s game against the Salem Red Sox.
With concerns about calcium, shouldn’t he think about heading to Milwaukee?
Praise has been far from faint for Rusney Castillo, who is considered to be the latest in a long string of impact players imported from Cuba. The highly regarded 27-year-old outfielder seems to be nearing a decision on where he will play, as Scott Lauber of the Boston Herald and ESPNBoston.com’s Gordon Edes report that Castillo is expected to “declare his intentions any day now.”...
Castillo should be in line for an ...
With Monday’s 4-1 victory over the New York Mets, Hendricks (5-1, 1.66 ERA) became the franchise’s first rookie to put together six consecutive quality starts since Kerry Wood in 1998.
“I reserve the right to (not) pigeonhole him or compare him to anybody,” Renteria said. “I think he’s establishing himself. I know it’s a short snippet, but he’s been very, very good. He is Maddux-like, a little bit, in his execution, his approach.”
Hendricks – who’s posted a 0.97 WHIP ...
Posted: August 19, 2014 at 09:49 AM | 36 comment(s)
rookie of the year
Washington Times, August 19, 1914:
Russell Ford, famous spitball artist and leading pitcher of the Federal League, may be permanently lost to baseball, owing to an injury to his spine. Bonesetter Reese has been unable to help Ford, and an operation may be undertaken later.
The injury to Ford’s spine was caused by diving into shallow water at Long Beach, California, in 1912. Recent pitching by Ford has irritated the old injury to such an extent that he has been unable to work through an entire ...
The Halos have sole possession of first place for the first time since May 11, 2011.
“Mike Trout and Albert Pujols hit consecutive RBI doubles, and the Los Angeles Angels extended their AL West lead with a 4-2 victory over the Red Sox on Monday night.
With two runners on and none out in the ninth, Jepsen threw a well-executed changeup to Ortiz that moved off the plate and got Big Papi to swing and miss wildly.
‘I wanted to give him a pitch he thinks he can drive, but it fades out of the ...
Monday, August 18, 2014
The Axe Bat is more than a Frankenstein-style meshing of an axe handle and a baseball bat barrel. The key lies in the bat’s final few inches near the handle. That’s where the design gracefully curves from the standard round shape to a asymmetrical oval before tapering to an angled knob at the end.
The results, as reported in a recent study (PDF) by UCLA engineering professor Dr. Vijay Gupta, show that the Axe Bat is more comfortable, delivers more power and speed, and reduces injuries when ...Read More...
Posted: August 18, 2014 at 03:26 PM | 18 comment(s)
The Red Sox announced that they have optioned Jackie Bradley Jr. to Triple-A Pawtucket and called up Mookie Betts from the PawSox. Bradley has struggled to get his head above water offensively this year, hitting .216 with a .288 OBP and .290 slugging mark in 112 games… In 45 games in Pawtucket, [Betts is] hitting .335/.417/.503…
In sending Bradley down now, it’s possible that the Sox could allow him to catch his breath in Triple-A before returning to the roster in September. ...
What if they gave a postseason and no team was good?
Baseball’s two richest teams find themselves at the opposite end of the scheduling spectrum. Presenting, then, a complete breakdown of the stretch schedules for all 19 – 19! – playoff contenders, going from hardest to easiest, and starting with the ...
1. New York Yankees… 2. Tampa Bay Rays… 3. Cincinnati Reds… 4. Miami Marlins… 5. Los Angeles Angels… 6. Toronto Blue Jays… 7. Seattle Mariners… 8. Milwaukee Brewers… . Washington Nationals… ...
Here you see an internal Time Inc. spreadsheet that was used to rank and evaluate “writer-editors” at SI.com… Most interesting is this ranking criteria: “Produces content that [is] beneficial to advertiser relationship.” These editorial employees were all ranked in this way, with their scores ranging from 2 to 10.
Anthony Napoli, a union representative with the Newspaper Guild, tells us: “Time Inc. actually laid off Sports Illustrated writers based on the criteria listed on that chart. Writers ...
[Jedd] Gyorko’s 31 homers as a second baseman in his Padres career is a franchise record. Total. For any second baseman’s entire Padres career. That’s a sad record.
But is it the saddest record? As in, what’s the lowest total for a franchise leader at every position? With the help of Baseball-Reference.com, we can find out…
C - Rays (Toby Hall, 44 home runs) and Pirates (Jason Kendall, 66)..
1B - Diamondbacks (Paul Goldschmidt, 82) and Angels (Wally Joyner, 116)...
SS - Astros (Adam Everett, ...
Get that dunce cap off your head and put it on Pedro Guerrero’s!
If I gave you a choice of any non-Kershaw major leaguer for the rest of the season, who would you choose?
Right: Mike Trout. Get that dunce cap off your head and move a little closer to my desk, right this minute.
And your second choice?
I’m not going to make you put the dunce cap back on if you don’t immediately think of Alex Gordon. But by this measure, he’s actually been the best player in the major leagues this season... ...
Hey, go back to 1891 and get 39-year-old Papi Anson also leading the league in RBI! (Don’t call him that to his face, though.)
[David] Ortiz leads the major leagues in RBIs on a team that ranks last in the American League and 24th in the majors in runs scored. He’s driven in 91 of the team’s 475 runs (19.2 percent), the highest percentage of any team’s runs driven in by a single player in the big leagues. He’s hit 28 of the team’s 92 homers (30.4 percent), accounting for the second-highest ...
And apparently 67% of the time, you’ll get hurt and look like making you that rich was a mistake…
I’m dubbing Nick Castellanos Kid Linea.
“Linea” is Spanish for line. More relevantly, it’s how you’ll hear line drives described in the dugout vernacular. Unless you’re facing Kershaw, an inning won’t pass on the bench without someone uttering, “That was an f’ing linea.”...
“A line drive won’t necessarily be the hardest balls in play, but they do end up being hits at a lofty ...
All fans want a team that might, somehow, win a World Series. But there is another baseball gift to a city, one that keeps giving cumulative pleasure, that competes with titles in its satisfaction. It’s the kind of sustainability that provides winning or contending teams for a decade, or in a few lucky cases, 20 years or more. Such marvels don’t just appear in New York or Los Angeles. Fans in St. Louis, Boston, San Francisco, Atlanta, Oakland, Baltimore and others can tell about it, even if ...
Posted: August 18, 2014 at 01:48 PM | 18 comment(s)
The Nationals have inked outfielder Nate Schierholtz to a minor league deal, the club announced on Twitter. The left-handed-swinging 30-year-old was recently released by the Cubs, who will owe him the remainder of his $5MM salary — less whatever he earns in Washington (presumably, at the league-minimum rate).
Schierholtz has had a tough year thus far, posting a meager .192/.240/.300 line with six home runs over 341 plate appearances. But he entered the offseason coming off a ...
Percy Helton having a visor is one thing…Todd Helton having an adviser is another.
Hall of Fame type numbers?
“Obviously, that would be a great honor, but there’s nothing I can do about that,” he said. “You have the vote.”
Just one, he was told.
“Well,” he said with a smile, “put in a good word for me.”
...And here’s something else to consider.
As dominant as he was at Coors Field, Helton outplayed the bulk of Hall of Famers on the road.
There are 116 position players in the Hall of Fame ...
Posted: August 18, 2014 at 11:12 AM | 63 comment(s)
Sax - Alvarez: Soul to Soul.
“There’s nothing wrong with Pedro Alvarez. There’s nothing wrong his arm, there’s nothing wrong with his mind. He does not have a mental block,” Sax said. “What it is, it’s a confidence issue. Once he gets over that and gains his confidence back, he’ll be 100 percent outstanding like he was before.”
Pompeani asked Sax how he was able to fix things.
“I made every ground ball in practice like it was a game. So what I did was essentially I ...
Posted: August 18, 2014 at 08:41 AM | 17 comment(s)
The season series finale was a 7-2 Brewers rout on a sun-splashed Sunday at Dodger Stadium, with Lucroy logging five RBIs in the first two innings and Peralta working six scoreless innings to tie for the Major League lead with his 15th victory.
The National League Central-leading Brewers defeated the NL West-leading Dodgers five times in six games over a span of 10 days, with Dodgers aces Clayton Kershaw and Zack Greinke starting four of the games for Los Angeles. The Brewers took two of three ...Read More...
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