The MLB Network is going to name three production studios after Ernie Harwell, Mel Allen and Vin Scully. A classy move by the network that, one hopes anyway, will provide some inspiration for all who work there. Maybe it’s just wishful thinking on my part, but I’d like to think broadcasters who see these luminaries’ names on the door each day will try harder and work smarter than they otherwise would.
And even if the inspiration doesn’t work, maybe having their names on the studios will inspire some cosmic justice. Sadly, someday Harwell and Scully will join Mel Allen in broadcater Valhalla, and who’s to say their ghosts won’t drop a stage light on someone who goes on and on about how someone needs to give “110%?”
Not that they need to stop with Harwell, Allen and Scully. There has to be a lounge there, so how about naming it after Harry and Skip Caray? How about naming that visitor’s office way down at the end of the hall for Bob Uecker? The possibilities are endless.
And it doesn’t just have to be great announcers like those guys. After all, it’s a big building, and I’m sure someone can find some rooms to name after Joe Morgan, John Sterling, Rick Sutcliffe and Steve Phillips . . .
Mets manager Terry Collins said on Wednesday, “It’s unlikely that [Steven Matz] will start the season with us.” The final spot in the Mets’ starting rotation will go to either Zack Wheeler or Seth Lugo, Newsday’s Marc Carig reports.
On Wheeler’s innings limit, assistant GM John Ricco said, “There’s going to be some number but we don’t exactly know what that is.” Wheeler missed the last two seasons after undergoing Tommy John surgery.
Neither Wheeler nor Lugo have had terrific springs as each carries a 5.11 and 5.56 Grapefruit League ERA, respectively. However, Carig notes that Wheeler has impressed simply by appearing healthy and brandishing a fastball that once again sits in the mid- to high-90’s. Lugo, meanwhile, proved crucial to the Mets last year, posting a 2.67 ERA across eight starts and nine relief appearances.
Nick Groke of the Denver Post reports that the Rockies agreed to a $200 million, 30-year lease with the Metropolitan Baseball Stadium District, which is the state division that owns Coors Field. As part of the deal, the Rockies will lease and develop a plot of land south of the stadium, which will cost the team $125 million for 99 years.
As Groke points out, had the Rockies not reached a deal by Thursday, March 30, the lease would have rolled over for five more years.
Rockies owner Dick Monfort issued a statement, saying, “We are proud that Coors Field will continue to be a vital part of a vibrant city, drawing fans from near and far and making our Colorado residents proud.”
The Rockies moved into Coors Field in 1995. It is the National League’s third oldest stadium. In that span of time, the Rockies have made the playoffs three times, the last coming in 2009 when they lost in the NLDS to the Phillies. The Rockies were swept in the 2007 World Series by the Red Sox.