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Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 4-23-2013

Pittsburgh Gazette Times, April 23, 1913:

Characterizing organized baseball as “the most audacious and autocratic trust in the country,” Representative Gallagher of Illinois today introduced a resolution for an exhaustive inquiry into the operations of the National Commission…and [which] would also direct the attorney general to investigate the baseball contract system with a view to instituting prosecutions for violation of the Sherman anti-trust law.

And then Representative Gallagher broke out the Sledge-O-Matic.

Jefferson Manship (Dan Lee) Posted: April 23, 2013 at 05:59 AM | 10 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: dugout, history

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   1. Jefferson Manship (Dan Lee) Posted: April 23, 2013 at 06:15 AM (#4423004)
Today's Birthday Team features the rarely seen "Hall of Famer on the bench". Neither Bottomley nor Camilli ever made an appearance in the outfield. Bottomley did make one appearance at second base, but putting him there seemed to violate the spirit of what I'm trying to do.

C: Darryl Cias
1B: Dolph Camilli
2B: Sammy Meeks
3B: Chuck Harmon
SS: Emilio Bonifacio
LF: Jason Tyner
CF: Andruw Jones
RF: Bob Ganley

SP: Warren Spahn
SP: Jim Scott
SP: Harry Coveleski
SP: Elam Vangilder
SP: Carlos Silva
RP: Rheal Cormier

Owner: Joseph Lannin
Hall of Famer, stuck on the bench: Jim Bottomley
Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame inductee: Lester B. Pearson
   2. BochysFingers Posted: April 23, 2013 at 08:05 AM (#4423030)
I suspect that with Tyner being in LF, Bottomley would soon learn.
   3. Mike Webber Posted: April 23, 2013 at 10:52 AM (#4423166)
Wow, even in the minors Camilli and Bottomley played no other positions, other than one game started as a pitcher in 1945 by Camilli when he was the manager of the Oakland Oaks.
   4. Jefferson Manship (Dan Lee) Posted: April 23, 2013 at 04:59 PM (#4423704)
Birthday League IV (March 26-April 22) is underway.

April 4 (Tris Speaker, Scott Rolen, Gil Hodges, Tommy Herr) leads the way at 27-15 in the early going. March 29 is 24-17, as Denny McLain and Cy Young have gone a combined 9-2.

Jack Cummings (.341/.400/.530 in 151 real-life PA from 1926-29) has ridden his freakazoid card and a bunch of playing time to a .421 batting average, tops in the league. Nate Colbert leads the way with 11 home runs. Other batters off to a hot start include the guys you'd expect: Paul Waner, Tris Speaker, Sam Crawford, John McGraw.

Woodie Fryman leads the league with a 0.99 ERA, two-thirds of a run better than runner-up Don Sutton. Jesse Orosco has already appeared in 24 games, because he's Jesse Orosco.

Rosters, stats, standings, box scores, and leaderboards are here.
   5. Der-K: downgraded to lurker Posted: April 23, 2013 at 05:17 PM (#4423728)
Pickoff gone wrong
Make it three seconds shorter and it would justify the existence of Vine
   6. Eric J can SABER all he wants to Posted: April 23, 2013 at 05:47 PM (#4423760)
Despite three relatively drama-free games out of the 11 that were played, yesterday was still quite a nice day of baseball on the whole. And yet, sadly, nothing came close to this one:

Game of the day (yesterday): Reds 5, Cubs 4 (13). I'll do my best to control my gag reflex while composing this post. No promises.

The game got off to the best possible start for the Cubs, as David DeJesus hit a leadoff homer against Mike Leake. The good news continued to pile up in the early going, as Travis Wood worked two perfect innings against his old team and Chicago added another run in the third, as Darwin Barney singled, took second on Wood's sacrifice, and scored on Starlin Castro's single. Anthony Rizzo and Alfonso Soriano were retired with runners on the corners, but the Cubs still led 2-0.

Devin Mesoraco broke up Wood's no-hitter with one out in the third, and advanced to second on Leake's bunt; Shin-Soo Choo followed with a walk, but Zack Cozart struck out to leave both men on. Nate Schierholtz led off the fourth with a single, and Luis Valbuena singled as well one batter later - but the one batter was Welington Castillo, who hit into a double play. Both teams kept up a steady stream of runners on base for the next few innings - Joey Votto walked leading off the fourth and Wood did the same in the fifth, Mesoraco singled in the bottom of the fifth but was caught stealing, Schierholtz and Castillo singled with two away in the sixth, Choo was hit by a pitch in the seventh (for the 10th time this year - he's on pace for 81!), and DeJesus singled and stole second in the seventh, but no runs scored in any of those innings.

That changed promptly in the bottom of the seventh, when Jay Bruce hit Wood's second pitch of the inning for a solo homer. Todd Frazier grounded out, but Chris Heisey singled, prompting Wood's removal in favor of Shawn Camp. Camp immediately balked Heisey to second, then got Mesoraco to fly out. James Russell then took over to face pinch hitter Jack Hannahan, who whacked a game-tying triple to right. Russell at least managed to salvage the tie, as Choo struck out to leave the go-ahead run at third.

Schierholtz singled with two out in the eighth, but Jonathan Broxton gave up nothing else; Russell worked around a leadoff walk to Cozart in the bottom of the inning. Aroldis Chapman struck out the side in the top of the ninth, which may be the least surprising baseball event of the year; Carlos Marmol also worked a perfect inning, which is somewhat more unusual, sending the game to extras.

The Reds made not one but two errors in the top of the tenth behind Sam LeCure, one each by Votto and Cozart, putting Rizzo and Soriano on with two outs; Schierholtz then proceeded to make his first out of the game to leave both runners on. Marmol walked Derrick Robinson, then intentionally walked Choo after Robinson stole second; a Cozart groundout advanced the runners to second and third with two outs, and Marmol then fanned Votto to leave them there. (Why they intentionally walked Choo and not Votto, I'm not entirely sure, although I can see not wanting to load the bases with one of the league's wildest pitchers on the mound. Anyway, it worked.)

LeCure pitched a vintage Marmol inning in the eleventh. He struck out the first two hitters, then allowed a single to Barney and walked both Julio Borbon and DeJesus to load the bases. JJ Hoover then relieved him and got Castro to line out and leave all three runners. Kevin Gregg walked Bruce in the bottom of the inning, but worked around it; Hoover was perfect in the top of the twelfth, and Michael Bowden matched his effort in the bottom of the inning.

Alfredo Simon took over pitching duties in the top of the thirteenth. Castillo started the inning by reaching on an error by Frazier, and Luis Valbuena followed with a go-ahead two-run homer. Simon recovered to retire the next three Cubs, but surely two runs would be enough, right?

Of course not. Xavier Paul led off with a single. Votto lined out, but Brandon Phillips doubled, putting the tying runs in scoring position. Bruce followed with a double of his own to even the score at 4; Frazier grounded out, moving Bruce to third, and Cesar Izturis singled to bring him home with the winning run.

It's a comeback win in the 13th inning. My brain reluctantly agrees with the system in saying this is one of the best games of the year (it grades out at #3). My heart disagrees emphatically. But that agony is what makes it such a good game in the first place.
   7. Eric J can SABER all he wants to Posted: April 23, 2013 at 07:08 PM (#4423823)
Game of the day (1977): Braves 6, Dodgers 5. You must be at least this tall to watch this baseball game. Do not watch this baseball game if you have a chronic heart condition or are pregnant.

Pitching matchup of Phil Niekro having a pretty average Phil Niekro season and Doug Rau having his second- or third-best year; that’s actually pretty even.

Davey Lopes led off the top of the first with a single, stole second, and moved to third on a passed ball by Vic Correll. Bill Russell flied out, and Reggie Smith walked to put runners on the corners. Ron Cey then struck out, but just when it looked like Niekro would escape the inning, Correll let another knuckleball escape and Lopes scampered home with the game’s first run. The Braves wasted no time in getting the run back, and with interest. Rowland Office, Jerry Royster, and Willie Montanez started the inning with consecutive singles to tie the game, and Jeff Burroughs followed with a double, giving Atlanta a 3-1 lead. Rau rallied to retire the next three hitters, leaving Burroughs at second.

Rick Monday led off the second with a single, and Steve Yeager walked one out later, but Rau then bunted into an inning-ending double play. After a perfect second from Rau, the Dodgers scored again in the third, with one-out singles from Russell and Smith and an RBI double from Cey. Steve Garvey and Monday both made outs after that, however, leaving the tying run at third.

A Royster single was countered by a Burroughs double play in the bottom of the third. In the top of the fourth, Dusty Baker and Yeager hit consecutive singles to start the inning. Rau struck out, but Lopes walked to load the bases. Russell, however, hit into a 1-2-3 double play to waste yet another tying run at third, one out chance. His performance was no better in the bottom of the inning, as his error put Gary Matthews on second base with none out, but Rau rallied to strand the runner. Niekro was perfect in the fifth, while Rau worked around an Office single in the bottom of the inning, stranding him at second as well.

Biff Pocoroba replaced Correll behind the plate in the sixth; it’s not clear whether it was a straight defensive switch, although if so, you’d think they’d have waited until Correll’s spot in the order cleared. Anyway, Niekro started having trouble immediately after the change, walking both Monday and Baker. Baker was replaced by pinch runner John Hale and Yeager bunted the runners over, setting the stage for another one of those disorienting cameo appearances that keep popping up: Did you know that Boog Powell played his last season with the Dodgers? It was almost pure pinch hitting duty; he played 15 innings of first base while amassing 53 plate appearances in 50 games. He didn’t have an extra-base hit all year, but he didn’t need one here; his single plated both runners and gave LA the lead.

Niekro was relieved by Mike Marshall (yes, that one – it was the 28th and final appearance of his not-quite-one-full-season Braves career), who struck out Lopes and got Russell to ground out. The Dodgers, not ready for the game to be knuckler-free, relieved Rau with Charlie Hough; the Braves picked up two-out singles by Pocoroba and Rod Gilbreath, but couldn’t bring the tying run home from second.

In the top of the seventh, Marshall allowed three straight hits to Smith, Cey, and Garvey, which may explain why this was his last outing as a Brave. Jamie Easterly came on to face Monday, and walked him to load the bases with nobody out; Buzz Capra then relieved Easterly and struck out Lee Lacy and Yeager before Hough popped up to end the inning with three of his teammates on base. (In case you’re wondering, Easterly, while left-handed, was not exactly a pioneering LOOGY; his seasonal line was 22 games, 58.2 innings, and many, many runs allowed.)

Pinch hitting for Capra, Junior Moore led off the bottom of the inning with a walk. One out later, Royster’s single moved him to second; after another out, Burroughs hit into Russell’s second error of the game, allowing Moore to score and cutting Atlanta’s deficit to one. Matthews then grounded back to the mound, leaving the tying run at third. The Braves put Rick Camp on the mound for the eighth, and he worked around a two-out Smith walk to keep the game close; Pocoroba led off the bottom of the inning with a double, but Hough evaded the threat by retiring three of the next four Atlanta hitters, walking the other. Camp worked a 1-2-3 ninth on grounders to third, second, and short.

That brought the game into its final half-inning. Hough walked Royster and was replaced by Stan Wall. Wall gave up a single to Montanez, putting the tying run at third and bringing Mike Garman to the mound. Garman got Burroughs to ground to third, keeping Royster from scoring while also getting a force at second. Joe Nolan hit for Camp and singled, tying the game and putting the winning run at second. Pocoroba walked to load the bases. Gilbreath grounded to short, and Burroughs was cut down at home. That brought up Craig Robinson, who’d just entered the game at shortstop in the top of the ninth. Naturally, he singled, bringing Nolan around with the winning run.

The linescore of this game reads like it’s a good one, even very good. It does not necessarily read like the linescore of a game that’s better than any 9-inning game of 2011, for instance, and better than all but one in 2012. Yet that’s how it grades out.

Why? The three lead changes are a nice start, especially with one of them coming in the bottom of the ninth. The consistent presence of runners on base in a close game, with the teams combining to strand 23. The Dodgers had a healthy 14 at bats with men in scoring position; the Braves scoff at that effort, as they had a ridiculous 20. Eleven of the seventeen completed half-innings ended with runners left in scoring position; five of those eleven times, it was the tying run.

It’s not necessarily a game that you’ll see any epic poems written about. But if you were at the park and you left your seat for even half an inning, there was a far better than normal chance you’d have regretted that decision.
   8. Misirlou doesn't live in the restaurant Posted: April 23, 2013 at 08:21 PM (#4423893)
So, I saw "42" today and I have a question. Late in the movie, probably the Pirates game, Red Barber is sort of recapping Jackie's season, and mentions that he has 27 SB and hasn't been caught once. So I just went to BBREF, and sure enough, Jackie doesn't have any CS in 1947, no entry at all in fact. I know there was a time when the NL didn't track CS, and presumably 1947 was one of those years, as the entire Dodgers team has a no entry for CS. Does anyone know if Jackie did indeed have 27 straight SB, or did the screenwriter get caught in an historic anomaly he didn't understand?
   9. Monty Posted: April 23, 2013 at 08:28 PM (#4423899)
According to Rob Neyer (using data from Retrosheet), Jackie Robinson was caught stealing 11 times in 1947.
   10. Misirlou doesn't live in the restaurant Posted: April 23, 2013 at 08:39 PM (#4423911)
Thanks. So the writer, or his researcher, goofed, interpreting a no entry for a "0".

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