Buy me some peanuts and rat feces, I don’t care if I violently get ill….
The number of critical health violations keeps going up at food stands at Kauffman Stadium & Arrowhead Stadium.
Critical violations at Kauffman this season (as of early May) have nearly surpassed the numbers for the entire 2012 season
“That should be a message to the managing company that we’re still doing inspections, we’re still citing violations, and probably they need to change some of their practices,” said Naser Jouhari, manager at the Kansas City Health Department.
“As previously discussed, and the Kansas City Health Department has affirmed, the food at Kauffman Stadium is safe to eat and enjoy. Aramark manages over 70 individually licensed locations at the stadium, which is equivalent to operating 70 different restaurants under one roof during each home game. It’s a highly complex operation with 700 dedicated employees working incredibly hard to serve 38,000 fans a huge amount of food as fast as possible in a small window of time. We take food safety very seriously everywhere we operate and welcome the Health Department’s inspections of our operations, because we want fans to be assured the food they purchase is prepared and served in the safest environment.” - Carl Mittleman, President, Aramark, Sports & Entertainment
Before getting to baseball’s dependence on the health of major cable companies, here is a brief look at some early season numbers. The first month of the season has seen big increases in viewership for national games on Fox Sports 1 and MLB Network, including double the amount of viewers aged 18 to 34 watching game on Fox Sports 1. The Chicago Cubs have doubled their ratings after their increased commitment in the offseason as well as the arrival of Kris Bryant. The Kansas City Royals have done the same coming off their World Series appearance. The Houston Astros have seen an increase in viewership after finally resolving their local disputes, at least as far as getting their games on all the local cable packages. The Arizona Diamondbacks have seen their highest ratings in a decade while the games of the Cleveland Indians, Detroit Tigers, Kansas City Royals, St. Louis Cardinals, and San Diego Padres rank first in their broadcast territories among all shows. A recent article by Maury Brown at Forbes showed that baseball games beat playoff games from the NHL and NBA in many markets across the country.
The ratings so far this season are a great indicator of baseball’s popularity. Not only is baseball beating playoffs in other sports, it is also beating first-run shows on networks.
More broadly, Hosmer is hitting the ball harder and killing worms less often than ever before: His ground ball rate sits at 46.8 percent, and he’s on pace to hit into fewer double plays than in any previous season. Meanwhile, he’s been a line-drive machine, whacking liners at a career-high rate of 26.1 percent.3 Not coincidentally, he’s hitting the ball harder than he has in three years,4 and he’s pulling the ball more than ever before (38.5 percent of the time).
Even though Hosmer is tearing the cover off the ball and pitchers are scared to pitch to him, we still can’t quite assume he’s turned the corner for good and become the perennial All-Star everyone expected when the Royals drafted him seven years ago. For one thing, he’s homered on 23.3 percent of the fly balls he’s hit this year. While a stronger, more experienced, more disciplined hitter would be expected to convert more fly balls into homers, that figure is so far above Hosmer’s career average of 11.8 percent5 that we should probably expect some pullback there.
Still, given all the progress in Hosmer’s skill set, you can start to get at least a little excited.
The coolest, most ingenious, realest reason to believe in the future of an irreplaceable and often endangered crown of Kansas City is a pressed suit, sharp tie and matching pocket square.
It is an idea that started a short time ago with a guy and his roommate, and already is an official Royals promotion with thousands of fans wearing suits and ties and even some red dresses for fun and to pay respect to the Negro Leagues and the baseball museum at 18th and Vine.
They call it Dressed to the Nines, and you can see it and even take part at the Royals game on Sunday, a 1:10 p.m. start against the Yankees. This is the fourth year that Brad Belden and a buddy have done this, the second with official partnership from the Royals, and there is a growing hope that this might go national.
MLB can also look at the National Hockey League, which has a rule that’s always enforced regardless of intent. The NHL gives a player a two-minute delay of game penalty if he shoots the puck over the glass out of his own end. It’s irrelevant if the delay of game occurred because the player was trying to stave off an offensive rush, or if he just ran into some bad luck.
MLB can follow the same process, though it would be far more controversial: automatic ejections of any pitcher who hits a batter above the waist. Doing so removes umpires’ inability to measure intent from the equation. Hit a batter above the waist, hit the showers early, no exceptions. Ask Giancarlo Stanton’s jaw if it mattered that Mike Fiers wasn’t aiming at his head—the injury is the same. An ejection isn’t the same as a suspension—the team would only be without its pitcher for the duration of the game in which the hit-by-pitch occurred. A subsequent suspension would still be under the purview of the league office; it would still determine intent when assessing whether a longer punishment was necessary.
To be sure, this would have a profound impact on the game. Many pitchers rely on pitching inside—sometimes high and inside—to remain effective. Were automatic ejections the rule, offense would increase, as batters would no longer need to fear the inside pitch. Yet that might prove a blessing in disguise, as the new MLB commissioner Rob Manfred has stated that he’s looking for ways to increase offense in the sport. Severely penalizing dangerous pitching will improve offense while at the same time mitigating the risk of a gruesome or fatal injury. The sport has survived profound changes to offense over the last two decades; a player’s career may not survive a fastball profoundly changing the structure of his skull.
Kyle Farnsworth is ... listen, there are a lot of descriptions that walk a fine line between libelous and accurate, so let’s just say that he’s different. He could take your nose off with one well-placed karate chop, and then he would probably do something weird with the nose.
So it’s completely bizarre and perfectly logical that 321 days after throwing his last major league pitch, the 39-year-old Farnsworth is leading his Florida Football Alliance team in sacks and tackles.
We’re talking real, minor league, tackle football with with big dudes. Of course Farnsworth is thriving. Of course he is.
The major change for Moustakas has been his approach. He’s been going the other way a lot more this season. It’s tough to see in the the chart but if you look at the hit location for his line drives you should see the pattern. This is one of those things, however, that clearly stand out when you watch him hit.
Detroit Tigers legend and former Michigan State two-sport star Kirk Gibson has been diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease.
Gibson, in his first year back as an analyst with Fox Sports Detroit, has been absent from the FSD broadcast booth since the Opening Day telecast.
“I have faced many different obstacles in my life, and have always maintained a strong belief that no matter the circumstances, I could overcome those obstacles,” Gibson, 57, said in a released statement. “While this diagnosis poses a new kind of challenge for me, I intend to stay true to my beliefs. With the support of my family and friends, I will meet this challenge with the same determination and unwavering intensity that I have displayed in all of my endeavors in life. I look forward to being back at the ballpark as soon as possible.”
Parkinson’s disease is a progressive disorder of the nervous system that affects one’s movement. Well-known patients include Muhammad Ali and Michael J. Fox.
The following players have been disciplined for their actions leading up to and/or during the incident:
Royals pitcher Yordano Ventura has received a seven-game suspension;
Royals pitcher Edinson Volquez has received a five-game suspension;
Royals outfielder Lorenzo Cain has received a two-game suspension;
Royals pitcher Kelvin Herrera has received a two-game suspension;
White Sox pitcher Chris Sale has received a five-game suspension;
White Sox pitcher Jeff Samardzija has received a five-game suspension.
[Paulo] Orlando tripled Monday night against the Twins, giving him five triples through his first seven career games. No other hitter in MLB history has more than three triples through seven career games.
Orlando has played just seven games and logged just 29 plate appearances, yet by himself he’d be tied for the most triples by any team this season…
Orlando is very fast and doesn’t hit many homers, so he did rack up a lot of triples in the minors. He totaled 14 triples in 286 games at Triple-A and 18 triples in 282 games at Double-A. But what the Brazilian rookie is doing now is crazy.
The gesture was broadcast on the television screen inside Ned Yost’s office. Ejected from Sunday’s game, Yost witnessed Kelvin Herrera point to his head after throwing a pitch behind the back of Oakland third baseman Brett Lawrie. As a spectator, Yost experienced a reaction common to viewers across the country.
“You look at it, and you’re like ‘God, what’s he doing that for?’” Yost said.
Herrera received an ejection of his own, as one of five Royals tossed from Sunday’s fracas. After the game, he insisted he lost his grip on the baseball, even if it was the second pitch he threw inside to Lawrie, the antagonist for Kansas City all weekend. When asked the meaning of his gesture, Herrera said he was saying to Lawrie, “Think about it.”
Read more here: http://www.kansascity.com/sports/mlb/kansas-city-royals/article19097880.html#storylink=cpy
Lawrie said first-base umpire Greg Gibson commended him on how he handled himself, and Lawrie said, with a little grin, “He hits you with one, and there’s two things I can do. I can blow up right here, or I can just take it and walk to first base and let him get in trouble and let it get the better of him.
“What’s the crowd want me to do right there? They want me to blow up and create a huge scene, but why fuel the fire? Why dump another thing of gasoline on it when I can just put a smile on. I was on first base, got to be on first base, and we won the game.”
The Royals have called up outfielder Terrance Gore from AA Northwest Arkansas, according to 610 Sports, to replace outfielder Alex Rios on the roster. Rios will be placed on the 15-day disabled list and will likely miss at least a month with a broken left pinky finger.
Wilmington could be the home of a Double-A Eastern League franchise as early as 2016, a possibility revealed earlier this month because of a legal matter involving the potential sale of the Binghamton Mets.
The late Matt Minker, who founded the Blue Rocks and built Frawley Stadium for their 1993 rebirth, long envisioned Wilmington’s location and metropolitan population as ideal for an Eastern League franchise. He nearly secured one for a move several years before his death in 2007.
Now his son Clark, who is Blue Rocks managing partner and minority owner, along with majority owner Main Street Baseball, seems poised to make that move.
According to an injunction filed earlier this month in U.S. District Court in New York citing breach of contract, Minker and Main Street Baseball’s David Heller had an agreement with Binghamton Mets president Michael Urda to buy that franchise for $8.5 million. They then planned to move the team to Wilmington while selling their Carolina League franchise for $12.5 million to the Texas Rangers, who would relocate it.
The sale of the Carolina League franchise to Texas is conditional upon the purchase of the Binghamton club, so Wilmington will not be left without a team.
Fireballing starter Yordano Ventura and the Kansas City Royals are deep into discussions on a five-year contract extension with a club option for a sixth season that would guarantee him more than $20 million, sources with knowledge of the talks told Yahoo Sports.
On Saturday, the schedule called for a Major League Soccer matchup between the home-standing NYCFC squad — which is actually co-owned by the New York Yankees — and Sporting Kansas City. With the stadium clear of fans and presumably only a few stadium workers on hand, three players from the Kansas City team took the field to reenact one of baseball’s most famous — or infamous — scenes: the George Brett pine tar incident from July 24, 1983.
Worst Offseason Move: None. Seriously, the Pale Hose didn’t put a foot wrong this winter. Although, when we spoke a few weeks ago, Hahn getting fired up about a minor league deal for 36-year-old Brad Penny might’ve been a bit much.
I think it would have been fair to place the David Robertson deal here.
In today’s Pipeline Perspectives, Jonathan and I debate which farm system has been the most productive since the end of the 2009 season. My choice was the Nationals, who have developed three budding superstars in Stephen Strasburg, Bryce Harper and Anthony Rendon, two more All-Stars in Ian Desmond and Derek Norris, plus a bunch of complementary players and trade fodder….
Kansas City nearly rode its system to a World Series championship last year, building the second-most homegrown playoff team in 2014—behind only St. Louis. The Royals’ in-house highlights included Kelvin Herrera, Greg Holland, Eric Hosmer, Mike Moustakas, Wil Myers and Jake Odorizzi (the key pieces in the James Shields trade), Salvador Perez and Yordano Ventura.
Cincinnati has harvested a nice combination of blue-chip talent (Aroldis Chapman, Todd Frazier, Billy Hamilton, Devin Mesoraco) and solid contributors (most notably, Yonder Alonso, Brad Boxberger, Zack Cozart, Didi Gregorius, Yasmani Grandal and Mike Leake), though it has traded most of the latter group.
I know this play has been beaten to death, but Kurkjian does a nice job breaking the play down and getting quotes from all the players involved.
Juan Perez: “When I got to the ball, I tried to pick it up with my bare hand instead of using my glove. That was another mistake. Then I kind of kicked the ball and I thought, ‘Oh my God, he might score!’ I wasn’t sure how fast he really was, and I thought there was a chance he would score.”
Jirschele: “I know Gordo is going to get to third, and I’m thinking, ‘Holy mackerel, we might have a shot here.’”
Blanco: “But when he misplayed it, I thought, ‘Oh my God, he’s going to score!’ All I could think was, ‘Oh my God, throw it back in, please!!!’”
Bochy: “When Perez had some trouble with it, and I’m thinking, ‘Just get it back in [the infield]. Just get it back in.’”
Posey: “When we kicked it around a little, I thought, ‘I had better get back behind the plate because there might be a play at the plate.’”
Crawford: “When I saw Perez not picking up the ball, that’s when I had my, ‘Oh (——) moment.’ I thought, ‘Are we really going to have a play at the plate with two outs in the bottom of the ninth in the seventh game of the World Series?’”