An MLB recap that takes you to unknown places
The starting line-up:
1. I’ll eat this one
Let me take a moment to admit how wrong I was about the Yankees. In my MLB season preview, I roasted the Yankees in every way possible. Turns out, the talent I claimed they hadn’t developed in the minors is performing just fine for the big squad, and although they are oft injured like I predicted, the ‘old’ guys are having career seasons so far. I like the story of this team, a synergistic mixture of youth and veterans put together by an analytical GM, Brian Cashman.
2. Price’s luck
No, I am not talking about his recent trip to the DL with tricep tightness. Price is getting incredibly unlucky when he takes the hill. Only hitting the 95mph mark once in 8 starts can probably be explained by the fact he is throwing way more cutters (a topic for another time). Other than velocity, the rest of Price’s game looks good. Rocking a 21.3 K% with a BB/9% at 5.8, Price continues to improve in these areas each season. His .338 Batting Average on Balls in Play (BABIP) so far this season is well above Price’s career average (.280), which is a further indication of bad luck, especially with the Rays’ solid defense.
3. Fu*k your shift
Surprisingly, this is the first time this issue has come about (at least publically) between a pitcher and his computer errr I mean manager, regarding a shift. After a few unlucky balls fell in a recent start by RHP Lucas Harris, Harris took to the media to express how he was hoping a few balls would be caught, but the defense was in a shift. I’ve always thought this dynamic could get interesting (think if Verlander came at Jim Leyland in the media) but in the long term, the statistics will play out in the pitcher’s favor.
4. Defensive catcher
The defensive catcher is more alive now that it has ever been. With pitching taking over the game, catchers who have the skill of superior pitch framing take a team pitching staff to the next level. Many catchers are told to not even worry about their offense, to just focus on pitching. Stats such as UZR and WAR are now widely used, and can be combined with receiving numbers to find the most effective catchers.
5. Belt and Pill
Here on the east coast we aren’t always aware of the west coast stories happening in baseball. We do remember Brandon Belt from last year’s World Series. Belt plays decent defense and definitely has the bat to be an impactful big leaguer. Problem is, many Giants fans and some in management believe Brett Pill, an 8-year minor leaguer is the better ball player. As the drama unfolds, the most likely scenario is a trade of Belt to an AL team in need of a DH.
6. Instant replay
I have had mixed feelings on this topic before. As a purist, any type of correction for human error in baseball kind of stings. But home runs are a big deal, especially in the playoffs, so I can accept replay on these. What really makes my blood boil is the possibility of replay expansion. It already feels so unnatural when the umpires stop the game to go take a look and the pitcher and fielders are just standing there. THAT’S NOT BASEBALL!! Baseball isn’t a game meant to be judged in slow motion, especially with a judgement call happening at least once everytime the ball is thrown.
7. Till the end of the month
This type of threat usually isn’t thrown at a top prospect such as Ike Davis, but enough is enough. A .160 average doesn’t go well with 46 strikeouts and only 4 bombs. His GM told him he has until the end of the month to figure it out, otherwise it is back to the minors, where players get buses and busteds rather than planes and pretties.
8. Someone got fired
In this weeks ‘I wouldn’t have done that’ moment, San Francisco reliever Jeremey Affeldt returned an optional $500,000 to the team after an accounting error. Along with recent news the Giants also owe hundreds of thousands in back wages to many clubhouse staff, heads are probably rolling their finance department.
9. There’s always money in the banana stand
As a loyal double cut reader, you may be subjected to my personal opinions and likes (which you WILL enjoy). Anyways, this week, the Bluth banana stand from the TV show Arrested Development made an appearance at Yankee Stadium to celebrate the show’s return for another season after a long hiatus. If you haven’t caught up on the first couple seasons of this show, you should. You will laugh your ass off.
Possible replacements for Baseball Commissioner Bud Selig. Since Bush did such a great job as President, let’s hand him over our national pastime O_0.
Most likely more, bats Yankees closer Mariano Rivera has broke this season in only 17 innings. No wonder he is tops amongst relievers in saves and ERA.
Joey Votto’s hitting line Sat against the Phillies. He was on base a total of six times with a double, a two-run homer, and two walks.
Pitches King Felix Hernandez has thrown in his starts so far this sesaon. The Mariners locked their ace up long term this offsesaon, and now they are babying him. This is for no apparant reason, since Felix has already been a proven dominant force in the league for many years now, extending himself deep into games to record shut outs and even no-hitters.
Hotdogs consumed at Indians Progressive field during a promotion. Good for a new park record.
Game winning streak the Baltimore Orioles were holding while leading the game after 7 innings. Snapped last week by the Rays.
Signed a minor league deal with the Phillies this week. I hope this guy makes it back the league so we can see him crush a few more water coolers with a bat.
Players like Overbay have made the Yankees into a team with identity. The single-minded approach of home runs from last year is gone in NY, especially thanks to Overbay who has shown commitment to striking out less and hitting to all fields. Now, the Yankees are getting Texeria and Youkolis back, this likely forces Overbay off the roster, through waivers, and to another team. Yankees fans hope two from last year, Tex and the recently returned Curtis Granderson don’t negatively infect the offense.
Good eye, kid
World Series 1960
Normally a trophy, this week a cool picture from Forbes Field.
3. Red Sox