And That Happened

Pirates 3, Braves 2: Right after I graduated law school I traded in my 1990 Chevy Cavalier for a new Honda. The Cavy still looked good — clean, no rust, no dings — but it ran like hacking death. It would just stall the hell out for no reason, but not before convulsing in a violent, noisy rattle. It was so unpredictable, though. It would run fine for days and then — whammo — it just died. If you let it sit for ten minutes it would start right back up and run fine again. Totally bizarre. Anyway, as I turned over the keys to the thing at the Honda dealer, I was worried that someone from the used car department would start the thing up and and have it seize on them before I could sign on the dotted line for my new car, but no one bothered to try. I can’t tell you how happy I was that, if the Cavy did eventually die on them, I would be nowhere near the place when it did. The Braves were unable to avoid this kind of embarrassment when their trade-in — Charlie Morton — had to leave the game in the second inning with a bum hamstring. Caveat emptor, Pirate dudes.

Royals 9, Indians 0: Just when Carlo Pavano was starting to get the kudos for a career revival, the Royals of all teams lay an eleven-hit, nine-run smackdown on him. Alberto Callaspo was the offensive hero for Kansas City, going 4 for 4, including a grand slam. Worth noting that Kyle Farnsworth — a man who made the first couple weeks of the season so awful for Royals fans — hasn’t allowed a run over seventeen appearances since April 19th, and he’s only walked two dudes in that same span. Greinke will fill the bill this season, but the Royals have had way worse players than Farnsworth represent them at the All-Star game in recent years.

Mariners 4, Orioles 1: Two home runs from Jose Lopez and the eighth straight game in which the Mariners have allowed three runs or fewer = win.

Astros 2, Cubs 1: Nice pitchers duel between Wandy Rodriguez and Carlos Zambrano, even if neither of them figured into the decision.

Tigers 2, White Sox 1: Another spiffy pitchers duel, this one Verlander vs. Danks, with the former (CG, 6 H, 1 ER, 9K) dueling just a bit more skillfully than the latter. From the game story, it’s noted that the Tigers selected NCAA killer Andy Oliver in the draft. Given his mastery of Ohio courts, he should consider making his home in Toledo even after he makes the big club despite the long commute to Tiger Stadium. Dude could be bulletproof here.

Cardinals 13, Marlins 4: I’m less interested in the fact that Marlins’ pitchers gave up 13 runs than I am that they didn’t strike out a single Cardinal in the game.

Phillies 5, Mets 4: Yesterday I noted that the Phillies’ bullpen is doubling as the cast of a reality show. Given that six members of that pen were pressed into actual pitching duty to get last night’s win, there probably wasn’t a lot of opportunity for confession cams and the kind of manufactured drama you usually see in these shows. The producers must have been furious.

Red Sox 6, Yankees 5: Chien-Ming Wang still can’t find it so Phil Hughes had to come in. If I’m Joe Girardi, I just switch places with these two next Tuesday and see what happens. And while I didn’t watch most of this game, I did hear the bit where Sutcliffe was talking about some deal Terry Francona has with J.D. Drew where Francona pays Drew a couple hundred bucks each time he hits a ball off the Monster. At least I think that’s how it went. If so, is that even allowed?

Rays 9, Angels 5: John Lackey gets shelled. Jeff Niemann was no great shakes himself, but his bullpen bailed him out with one-hit, shutout relief over the final five and a third innings.

Rockies 4, Brewers 2: Brad Hawpe (2-4, 2B, HR 2 RBI) did the damage, as he has all year.

Reds 4, Nationals 2: Worst-timed rainstorm ever. The Reds get to the bottom of the ninth with a 2-0 lead, only then to have to sit for a two hour and ten minute rain delay, after which the Nats scored two sending it to extras. According to the game story there were only about 100 fans left after the delay. I’m shocked that there were that many.

Padres 3, Dodgers 1: Kevin Correia (6 IP, 3 H, 1 ER) pitched well on three days’ rest. Clayton Kershaw threw 83 pitches in less than three innings, which made it a long night for the bullpen.

Giants 6, Diamondbacks 4
: Feels like San Francisco has been on the road forever, but at least they’re ending it well. Barry Zito struggled, but his offense (and the Dbacks’ poor defense) picked him up.

Twins 6, Athletics 3: Bullpen failure. Someone should write a book someday compiling all of the subtly sarcastic or passive-aggressive things starting pitchers say when betrayed by their pen. This, from starter Dallas Braden, who was sick before the game, is one of the better ones: “I think I probably could have put the upset stomach and tired arm aside for one more inning, so I’ll wear this one for sure.” Translation: dudes, I’m sick, and I just gutted out seven strong innings. You gotta do better than that. Man.”

Blue Jays vs. Rangers: Postponed: Mt. Waialeale in Kauai, Hawaii, has up to 350 rainy days every year. This why they do not play baseball on Mt. Waialeale.

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  1. Rob² said...

    Even more amazing than the side-deal that Drew has with Francona is that his wall-ball went for a triple.  How does someone hit a ball to left field in Fenway Park and end up on third?

  2. Sara K said...

    re: “Bullpen failure”  I’ve often imagined the convo on the mound going something like:

    Pitching coach – “So, how you feelin’?”

    Pitcher – “That depends.  Who you bringin’ in?”

    Pitching coach – “(Craptastic journeyman middle reliever)”

    Pitcher – “I feel fantastic!!!”

  3. Adam said...

    Rob2, have you ever seen Johnny Damon throw?  I know I’m not allowed to say he throws like a girl, but he does.

  4. Rob² said...

    No where else to post this, but for all the roaring of terrible roars about how much Strasburg is going to ask for, and all the gnashing of terrible teeth when the Yankees signed Burnett, Sabathia, and Teixeira, and all the rolling of terrible eyes when the Red Sox paid $51.1M for Dice-K, the Real Madrid soccer team just offered $131M to sign Cristiano Ronaldo away from Manchester United.

    None of that $131M includes what they will actually pay the player.  That’s just what they will have to pay ManU for the right to negotiate a contract.

  5. themarksmith said...

    My favorite part of the post is you give Carl Pavano your son’s name. Not sure what that means, though. Is your son going to end up overpaid and frequently injured, or is there something you need to tell your wife?

  6. Craig Calcaterra said...

    Wow, that’s funny Mark. I hadn’t even noticed that.  The fingers tend to go on autopilot on occasion, don’t they?

    I think I’m going to leave it that way. Carlo is a way better name than Carl, and I’m guessing Pavano won’t mind.

  7. lar said...

    I thought the “Carlo” was on purpose, and when I saw you mention “Alberto”, I just assumed that you were going for an “All -O Suffix” synopsis. I was kind of disappointed when you didn’t write “Kylo Farnsworth”. That would’ve been fantastic.

  8. Travis M. Nelson said...

    Sounds like your Chevy had issues with the fuel pump.  My first car (in 1997) was an ‘86 Honda Accord hatchback that had been part of a recall because of an easily rusted fuel tank.  Even after the tank was replaced, the fuel filter and/or pump would clog occasionally, stalling the car, and need to be replaced, but it could run a little longer after it got a chance to settle down. 

    That’s what the previous owner told me, anyway.  I never got the chance to find out because I fell asleep at the wheel on my way to work three months after I got the car and wrapped it around a telephone pole.  Those mid ‘80’s Japanese imports just don’t run the same after you do that, it turns out.

  9. Alex K said...

    @ Brett and Drew: I know I just got burned, but I can’t figure out what it means.

    I feel like less of a person because of this….

  10. J.W. said...

    They could just build a roofed stadium on Mt. Waialeale. It would be interesting to see how the park plays, since it’s more or less the same elevation as Coors, but obviously without the issues about the dryness of the air. However, there might be concerns about attendance figures, since the population of Kauai is about 58,000. Probably still draw more fans than the Marlins. Team name possibilities: Mt. Waialeale Flood, Mt. Waialeale Torrent, Mt. Waialeale Volcanos.

  11. themarksmith said...


    Last year, the Rays used 9=8 as a slogan for their playoff run. 9 players on the field all working together = one of the 8 playoff spots (I think). Just Maddon being Maddon. I don’t think it was an insult toward you, just recognized brilliance and coincidence on Brett’s part.

  12. Loren said...

    I was watching the A’s game. Braden was being interviewed at the time the Twins hit a homer to tie the game. He managed to say something diplomatic “that’s how it goes sometimes” but his body language gave him away.

  13. APBA Guy said...

    After yesterday’s comment about Andrew Bailey being fun to watch, I should have made clear that he was fun for the A’s, not the Twins’ fans.

    Until last night. For some reason, he was down 5 mph on his fastball and could not control his slider. Result: 3 ER in the top of the 9th and a chance tow watch Joe Nathan school the youngtser on how it’s really done.

  14. Jake said...

    I like the ring of “Carlo Pavano”.  Maybe if he had had that name from the beginning, he’d have had a better career.

  15. Ron said...

    In case you missed it, Rick Ankiel went 3-4 with a 2B, 3B, and HR. It’s not often a player misses the cycle by a single.

    Dave Parker did that for me one year playing Strat-o-Matic.

    Pretty cool, in my book.

  16. Mark said...

    “If I’m Joe Girardi, I just switch places with these two next Tuesday and see what happens.”

    Heh. You mean, next Tuesday Girardi pitches, and Wang and Hughes manage the team?

  17. Matt Aux said...

    Does JD Drew have baseball’s first commissioned pay package?  Who knew that you needed to pay the guy to hit the ball.  I’m sure the Cardinals would have loved to know that all you had to do was cut a check everyday to get him to play some ball.

  18. Brett said...

    Thanks boys, I do what I can.
    Sadly, my best work yesterday was wasted when my wife didn’t know who Matt Stairs was…women…

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