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Friday, May 01, 2009
I'm told that some of you people actually follow non-baseball news. Not sure why you'd do that, but I guess it takes all kinds. Anyway, for those that care, among the names on President Obama's short list to fill Justice Souter's seat on the Supreme Court is Judge Sonia Sotomayor of the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit. If she's picked, I'm assuming that there will be a moderate amount of scrutiny of her judicial record, her philosophy, her political views and all of that stuff, but for our purposes, you should know that she's the judge who, on March 30, 1995, issued the preliminary injunction against Major League Baseball preventing the owners from unilaterally implementing a new Collective Bargaining Agreement and using replacement players, effectively ending the 1994 baseball strike.
Because of this, I think I would support her nomination. Not because it indicates how she would approach labor issues, but because by ruling as she did, she made it possible for the Braves to win the World Series that year.
(thanks to Mark Armour for the heads up)
Selena Roberts' allegations about A-Rod tipping pitches to the opposition hinge on the observations of his Ranger teammates. Interesting to note, however, that two of Alex Rodriguez's teammates with the Rangers are calling the allegations "ridiculous" and "b.s.":
Michael Young played just the other side of second from Alex Rodriguez, so he'd probably notice any funny business between A-Rod and opposing hitters.
Jeff Brantley is more emphatic:
Chris Russo: “It says here in the excerpts [of the book] today [in the New York Daily News], that the opposing team, in a blowout game, a friendly [player] would tell A-Rod what pitch was coming to help break him out of a slump. How about that?”
Maybe it's hard to see what A-Rod is doing when you're playing next to him and thus not watching him like Young, or when you're way out in the bullpen like Brantley was. But they're certainly on the record here. I eagerly anticipate hearing from Roberts' sources about this, assuming there are ever any names attached.
Sorry it's been so slow today. Lots of workin' for The Man. Anyway:
Ballpark Digest loves my hometown's new ballpark. And I mean really, really loves it:
With this stunning new facility, the Clippers have come close: Combining a strong sense of place with the latest in ballpark features and an outstanding site, the creators of Huntington Park got everything right, creating a deep sense of place in a facility that’s only been open a few weeks. It does provide the ultimate baseball experience, providing an amazing level of intimacy in a venue seating 10,000 . . .
I'll admit that, while I was certainly impressed, I didn't really grasp the coolness when I first visited the place a week ago. I'll chalk that up to chasing small children, however, because I really didn't get a chance to really take the place in. I'll make a return visit soon, making a point to visit the parts of the park I didn't see last week.
In the meantime, if you're near Columbus, it sounds like you have a road trip in your future.
(thanks, as always, to Pete Toms)
I've been happy writing for the NBC blog, but I'm reaching the point where my own principles are at risk of being sacrificed. It was 16 years ago that I vowed to one day track, hunt down, and, well, if not kill, seriously bother the person responsible for cancelling "Quantum Leap." I should be using my new association with NBC to collect intelligence for this mission, yet to date I have not. I have taken their money and provided them with my writing services as if they hadn't discarded one of my favorite shows of all time with nothing more than a hastily-put-together and ultimately unsatisfying series finale. "Dr. Sam Beckett never returned home." Ha! You may as well have told me that Santa Claus and the Easter Bunny were involved in a murder suicide. Jerks.
I say they should bring back "Quantum Leap" today. Bakula and everyone. Well, Dennis Wolfberg is dead, but I always thought it was funnier when Al talked to Gooshie offscreen anyway.
Marlins 6, Cubs 2: One wonders if the Cubs did much due diligence on Aaron Heilman prior to bringing him onboard. I mean, I watch a lot of baseball, so I certainly knew from Mets games of the past couple of years that he was not to be trusted in tight spots like extra innings, but maybe the Cubs don't watch as many as me since they're playing all of the time. Perhaps his tendency to blow up was simply unknown to them? Yeah, that's gotta be it. And the Cubs certainly need to DL somebody, because you can't win a division using Carlos Zambrano as your primary pinch hitter and playing Koyie Hill at third. Hey wait! If they had a really versatile guy -- a Mark DeRosa type -- and a good relief pitcher -- say, a Kerry Wood type -- maybe BOTH of these problems are solved!
Royals 8, Blue Jays 6: On Wednesday it was Bengie Molina hitting a triple. Yesterday it was John Buck, only he did it twice. Let's hear it for the portly among us! Six double plays by the Royals as well as they take three of four from the previously hot Jays.
Athletics 4, Rangers 2: Ryan Sweeney's robbery of Ian Kinsler at the wall was pretty freakin' sweet. Andruw Jones hit a home run. It was his third, which is the same number he hit all last year. It ain't exactly Babe Zaharias returning from colon cancer surgery to win the 1954 U.S. Open, but he is at .344/.523 /.781 and has to be the early leader for Comeback Player of the Year, right? I mean, he got fat and everything, which is practically dead, isn't it?
Yankees 7, Angels 4: Behold! A bullpen worse than the Yankees! In fact, it's the worst in baseball, and helped New York pull away in the eighth. Every Yankee starter got a hit, which is kind of fun to look at in a box score.
Cardinals 9, Nats 4: I guess that Julian Tavarez in the ninth inning thing didn't work out as well this time, did it? Here Tavarez entered the game, walked a guy, gave up a double, hit a guy, walked another guy, and gave up a single before Acta brought out the hook and brought in Hanrahan. Only two possible reasons for that: (1) Hanrahan wasn't warmed up and couldn't come in until the game was out of control; or (b) Acta actually thought Tavarez could get out of this jam once he was in it. If it was the latter, Acta isn't all that familiar with Julian Tavarez's body of work. Otherwise, it also strikes me that if the Nats are going to with a Frankenbullpen made up of guys like Tavarez, that they should always have two guys warmed up at the start of an inning.
Rays 13, Red Sox 0: The Rays basically ripped off the Red Sox' legs and beat them with 'em. Not much more you can say about that.
Brewers 4, Diamondbacks 1: Max Scherzer probably didn't buy Tom Gordon any beers after this one. Scherzer handed Gordon a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the seventh inning and Flash did this: walk-wild pitch-single-fielder's choice-wild pitch-single-walk. Four runs charged to Gordon.
Dodgers 8, Padres 5: Rookie James McDonald didn't have it, but luckily Jeff Weaver was around (how many people have ever said that before?). He came in and pitched four scoreless innings to keep the Padres at bay long enough for the offense to come and bail Big Blue out. The Dodgers are now 7-0 at home.