May 23, 2013
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Monday, August 31, 2009
So sayeth Jon Heyman. He'll probably do well there, though pitching ain't exactly the Giants' biggest concern.
Always good to see merit being rewarded:
The Royals have reached a tentative agreement with general manager Dayton Moore on a four-year contract extension that runs through 2014. The new deal could be announced as soon as tonight. The move confirms owner David Glass’ belief that Moore has the organization pointed in the right direction despite this season’s disappointing play.
Ask yourself: if you, in your own profession, made a mistake equivalent to trading for Yuniesky Betancourt, would you expect to be fired, or given five years of lucrative job security?
Ask yourself something else: how is the guy who runs the most successful corporation on the planet capable of making a judgment like "Moore has the organization pointed in the right direction"?
I hit up the Miguel Tejada pitch-tipping thing at NBC over the weekend, but I didn't think too deeply about it. I stand by my initial thoughts on the matter though, which were (a) I don't know if he was doing it or not and I'm not sure anything in the article proved that he was; but (b) regardless of the merits of it all, it's at least better to see this kind of stuff with people's names attached than anonymously sourced a la Selena Roberts' charges against A-Rod.
Since then, readers have shot me two interesting observations. The first observation echoes Deadspin's take, with one reader voicing her frustration that baseball "seems to show its racism and bigotry more and more particularly with Latino players. The loyalty questions, the laziness complaints, etc." I'll grant that Johnny Damon's quote -- "it seemed like all the Dominican guys were killing us" -- was unfortunate and is worth probing a bit more, but I'm not sure that there's any more evidence here to suggest that people had it in for Tejada as a guy from the D.R. than there is to suggest that Tejada was, in fact, intentionally tipping. There were concrete examples of Tejada's play that his teammates took issue with at the time. I didn't get the sense that this was some high class version of the old "Latinos are all lazy and disloyal" rant, but I'm open to others' takes on the matter.
The second observation, from commenter Mike, was a bit lighter:
Tejada says he's innocent and I think we should give him the benefit of the doubt. The man is no liar. Er...well...he was charged with lying to Congress about PED usage in baseball. But, otherwise, the man is . . . no, actually, Tejada also lied to MLB about his age. Other than THAT, though, the man is no liar. So we should, you know, give him the benefit of the doubt. Maybe.
Via Pinto, The Detroit Tigers Weblog declares D-Train over:
The rocky Tigers career of Dontrelle Willis has been well documented. And the story just keeps getting sadder as Willis walked 8 hitters in his rehab start for Toledo. There is this rush in sports conversation today to be the first to declare someone “done” and to call for a release. Much of it is premature and reactionary (Armando Galarraga is the true ace of the staff and Brandon Lyon should be released were popular refrains in April). But we’re on 2 years of frustration with Willis. It’s time.
He never went full-blown Blass/Ankiel on us, but either his body or his mind just forgot how to pitch. Baffling. And sad too, because I liked having a guy with his kind of delivery and (pre-wilderness) character around. At times like these it's tempting to speculate whether Willis' was one of the worst contracts ever. I find myself, however, feeling happy that at least the guy got a big paycheck to set him up for life before the wheels fell off.
lar knows what I likes:
In fact, since 1908, when Eddie Cicotte made it to the major leagues for good, there has been at least one pitcher carrying the knuckleball banner in the big leagues every year - and that's even ignoring the pitchers who only lasted 3 or 4 years in the majors. The chain of "star" knucklers is quite interesting, actually. When you look closely at it, you see that everytime one knuckleballer would retire, the next one would almost immediately take his place. It's as if the baton was being passed from one grizzled, retiring veteran to a young, fresh-faced kid every two decades or so. And, depending on the years that you choose to demark the eras, you can even find a second chain, staggering the first. They're both quite interesting.
Trying to figure out if this is a "Highlander" "There can be only one" kind of thing, or if it's more of a one-old-mage-having-his-lifeforce-stolen-by-an-apprentice, Fistindantilus-Raistlin kind of thing, with the "staggering" lar refers to being akin to Dalamar's somewhat lesser ascendance (which makes Dalamar Tom Candiotti, I guess).
Don't look at me like that. I'm already married. I don't need to pretend I'm not a hopeless loser anymore.
Jason has way more interesting vacations than I do. Hell, even when I go to San Diego like he did, I just end up hanging out at the In-N-Out Burger where my brother works until his shift is up and then we go drink beers by the beach until the sun comes up.
Wait, come to think of it, my San Diego vacations are pretty good too.
As for Jason's trip, after looking at the pictures of Blanks, I am struggling to see how that much mass was accelerated to a point where it could hit an inside-the-park home run last week.
Also, it's cute how Matt Latos and Colby Rasmus were hitting on Jason's wife without him realizing it. No worries, though, Jason. Even though they're young and athletic and rich and stuff, I'm sure Mrs. IIATMS still pretty much loves you.
Giants 9, Rockies 5: What a difference a week makes. Heck, not even a week. Six days after the Rockies beat the Giants on a grand slam, the Giants do it to the Rockies, courtesy of Edgar Renteria. Given the Dodgers' relatively uninteresting play lately, I think I'm going to squint my eyes until the end of the season and pretend that this is a bonafide pennant race as opposed to a wild card race.
Red Sox 7, Blue Jays 0: Papa-oom-mow-mow, papa-ooma-mow-mow-mow, papa-oom-mow-mow, papa-ooma-mow-mow (6 IP, 3 H, 0 ER). Not that we should be surprised. Byrd has always done well on 340 days rest.
Royals 3, Mariners 0: More dominance from Zack Greinke (CG, SHO 1 H). We can only hope that the writers are smart enough to realize come awards voting time that Greinke's win total is a function of his team. Given the extremes involved here, I think they will. If he had won 15-16 wins for a middling team like the Twins or the Brewers, someone would be tempted to say that Greinke wasn't a "winner." That many wins with a profoundly terrible Royals team will be viewed as a positive rather than a negative. In other words, he'll get the Steve Carlton-in-72 vote.
Angels 9, Athletics 1: After the game, John Lackey talked about how this Angels team compares to the 2002 team which won the World Series and on which he made his debut: "Several guys on that '02 team will tell you we might not have been the best team, but we were hot . . . That '02 team was more of an offense-based team, for sure. We didn't pitch that well." That's so right. Except for the fact that the 2002 Angels were tied for the best ERA and allowed the fewest runs per game in the American League.
Brewers 4, Pirates 1: Jeff Suppan won on his bobblehead day. In other news, there's a Jeff Suppan bobblehead day.
Cardinals 2, Nationals 1: Adam Wainwright won on his bobblehead day. This is somewhat more defensible. Though to be honest, I'd rather have the Suppan, just for the sake of randomness.
Tigers 4, Rays 3: This is the kind of game the Rays were winning a year ago. There's not some magical explanation to it. The pendulum just swings, ya know?
Mets 4, Cubs 1: Nelson Figueroa (7 IP, 6 H, 1 ER, 10K, RBI) was a one man team. Really, it was just him, playing all nine positions like Bugs Bunny vs. the Gashouse Gorillas because the rest of the Mets are on the DL.
Twins 5, Rangers 3: The Twins scored three runs in the eighth via a variety of unconventional means, after which Ron Gardenhire said "We kind of knick-knacked them a little bit." I think that means that instead of being pummeled, the Rangers were Hummeld.
Yankees 8, White Sox 3: The Yankees keep winning, and because they're doing so well, they continue to mess with Joba Chamberlain, yanking him after 35 pitches despite there being nothing wrong with him. At the risk of sounding like one of those cranky old pitchers from the 60s and 70s, I can't help but think that Chamberlain is going to turn out like that kid you knew whose parents would never let leave the house growing up and then got alcohol poisoning the same week he went away to college because he had no perspective or life experience. Sure, you don't want to let him kill himself now, but there are worse things in the world than letting the boy pitch and get knocked around a bit.
Orioles 5, Indians 2: Brian Matusz has the best start of his very, very young career, and spends a lot of time in the game story talking about how he overcame his initial struggles with adjustments and video and all of that. The fact that he was facing the Indians didn't hurt either.
Marlins 6, Padres 4: "It was a tough weekend for us and today was nice to salvage the series," Cody Ross said after the game. The Padres took two of three. If they had lost the first one and won the second two, no one on the Marlins would be talking about how the win on Friday "salvaged the series." Likewise, if they had won Saturday's game but lost on the bookends, no one would feel too good about things. I use that phrase all the time, but games are games are games.
Dodgers 3, Reds 2: Dodgers pitchers combined to strike out 20 Reds. Nine of those Ks came in the 8th-12th innings, dooming Cincinnati's chances to get anything going. Clayton Kershaw still hasn't won a game since mid-July, despite the fact that he has a sub-3.00 ERA since then.
Diamondbacks 4, Astros 3: Arizona won the game, but closer Chad Qualls dislocated his kneecap on the last play of the game and will probably be done for the year. I'm one of the more squeamish people I know. Seriously, my daughter lost her first tooth a couple of weeks ago and was out of commission for hours. But nothing makes me cringe more than thinking about kneecap injuries. Really, it's taken me ten minutes to just write this individual recap out because I've been alternating between mild nausea and frantic rubbing of my own kneecaps in an effort to somehow make the horror of that kind of injury erase itself from my thoughts.
Phillies 3, Braves 2: Games like this don't make me feel too hot either. First Chipper throws away the bunt in the seventh, and then Garret Anderson just butchers the Carlos Ruiz "double" that put the Phillies ahead for good. Continued failure to support Jurrjens. Just -- further failure. At times like these I have to remember that, for most of the year anyway, I've been on the "2010 is the Braves' year" train, believing that the team brass was really thinking that too, even if they could never admit it. I still think that's right, but that little hot streak earlier this month is the kind of thing that makes you forget.