Friday, October 10, 2014
In an offseason in which baseball has committed itself to speeding up the pace of games, several players told ESPN.com this week that players want “a voice” in this process and they’re concerned that, so far at least, no one except the players’ union has asked them what they thought.
“Players are very interested in being involved in these discussions,” veteran pitcher Kevin Slowey said. “We just want to be part of a collaborative effort to address these issues. And we want to have a voice. We don’t want to overpower any other voices. We’d just like to have our voice heard.”
Posted: October 10, 2014 at 12:10 PM | 80 comment(s)
Wednesday, October 01, 2014
1. Hitters must keep at least one foot inside the batter’s box at all times, barring exceptions like foul balls, wild pitches, or if the umpire grants him time out.
2. Pitchers must throw a pitch within 20 seconds of receiving the ball. Clocks posted in each dugout will count down the 20 seconds.
3. There will be a maximum break between innings of 2:05, with a clock keeping track. Hitters must be in the batter’s box by 1:45. If the hitter’s not ready, the umpire can call a strike. If the pitcher doesn’t throw a pitch by 2:05, the umpire can call a ball.
4. Teams will have a maximum of 2:30 to change pitchers, with the clock starting as soon as the reliever enters the playing field.
5. Teams are limited to a maximum of three mound visits per game, not including pitching changes. This applies to trips to the mound by managers, coaches, and catchers.
6. Pitchers no longer have to deliver four balls for an intentional walk. The manager can simply signal to the umpire.
Joyful Calculus Instructor
Posted: October 01, 2014 at 04:00 PM | 127 comment(s)
Thursday, September 11, 2014
How that isn’t a plate block I have no idea. This was not one of those “the runner is out by 20 feet” plays the clarification is aimed at changing. This was going to be a close play if Drew had a chance to slide into the plate. But where was Stephen Drew supposed to go?
After the game, Joe Girardi said that, if the calls are going to be like that, his instructions to his base runners would be “Run him over. Bottom line: Run him over.”
I watched this a few times, I have no idea what the right call is anymore. Hanigan is blocking the plate. The throw beats him by a fair margin. “Clearly beaten”? Who knows. I can’t wait for this rule to decide a playoff game.
Robert in Manhattan Beach
Posted: September 11, 2014 at 03:37 AM | 31 comment(s)
Monday, September 08, 2014
Major League Baseball and the Players Association are nearing an agreement designed to “clarify” confusion over the new home plate collision rules, sources told ESPN on Monday, with an announcement possible as soon as Tuesday. [...]
Primarily, the clarification of Rule 7:13 would remind umpires that while the intent of the rule was to protect catchers from violent collisions at the plate, the wording was not intended to be interpreted so strictly that it would allow runners to be called safe on a technicality if the throw had beaten them to the plate by a substantial margin.
Posted: September 08, 2014 at 08:45 PM | 16 comment(s)
Friday, August 29, 2014
The really weird play was the one where Gordon Beckham got a hit.
The Angels beat the Athletics 4-3 in 10 innings Thursday night on a walk-off sacrifice fly by Howie Kendrick, giving the Halos a two-game lead over Oakland in the American League West. But the A’s played the game under protest thanks to a controversial obstruction call in the ninth inning… Angels shortstop Erick Aybar led off the ninth inning of a 3-3 tie with a bouncer up the first base line, then collided with A’s pitcher Dan Otero.
Friday, August 08, 2014
But Jeff Bagwell’s son won’t pass for a while…
... do you think that baseball is best served if Felix and Kershaw et al are there pitching the whole game, and if their bodies can’t handle it, then the structure of baseball should adapt to allow for it?...
... I think it would be desirable to have cleaner matchup. “Conceptual clarity” sounds like an esoteric concept, but it is fundamental to the success of any esthetic medium. You go to a movie, you want to know what the movie is about. If you the plot line is a mess, it diminishes the movie. If a work of music is all over the place, we regard it as a failed effort. A baseball game of constantly changing pitchers is like a movie with a convoluted plot line: you don’t know what it is ABOUT.
... I disagree slightly with your observation that “A baseball game of constantly changing pitchers is like a movie with a convoluted plot line: you don’t know what it is ABOUT.” Actually, I think we know what it is about—it’s about the cleverness of the two managers in trying to out-maneuver one another with pitching changes and pinch hitters. The problem is that this is a really boring thing to watch.
Thanks. I think I agree with that.
...what are your thoughts on George “High Pockets” Kelly being in the HOF?
Oh, I used to get regular hate mail from George Kelly’s son. No ####; I really did. Kelly’s selection to the Hall of Fame was absurd, farcical. Bob Watson would have been a better Hall of Fame selection that George Kelly. But after I wrote things like that a few times I used to get nasty letters from George Kelly’s son, who I think was named Walter. I assume that Walter has passed on, because I haven’t heard from him for ten years.
... What can you tell us about the decision to turn Papelbon into a starter? Was it just an experiment at first? Was there ever an announcement about it? Was it based on Boston’s needs or mainly just his skills? Was it something Jonathan was happy to do? Etc.
Jonathan kind of drove the train; Jonathan and need. We needed a closer, and he was pitching relief and doing really well, but the plans of the organization were to make him a starter. But it just got away from us; we had a good starting rotation, and Jon decided that he wanted to Close, and Terry wanted to keep him as the closer, so the front office would have had to use firearms to keep him in the rotation, more or less. And we just don’t operate that way.
Friday, July 04, 2014
Inside a minor league clubhouse this year, a player who had tested positive for marijuana a second time informed teammates of the 50-game suspension he would serve because of it. The player wasn’t concerned, according to a witness. He didn’t plan on curtailing his marijuana use, either.
“I’ll just smoke my way onto the 40-man,” he said.
In the annals of drug use, this might be a first: an employee trying to get a promotion by getting high.
Posted: July 04, 2014 at 09:11 AM | 5 comment(s)
Thursday, June 19, 2014
The bases were loaded—this was a force play. Bucs catcher Russell Martin received the throw, tapped home plate with his his foot, then got out of the way of the sliding Devin Mesoraco. Mesoraco was ruled out; Bryan Pryce argued, and after a lengthy chat with the replay office in New York, umpires overturned the call.
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