And That Happened: Monday's scores and highlights

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Giants 9, Rockies 1: Lincecum comes back after missing a start
and looks pretty good. He’s been sharper — he gave up six hits and
walked four — but he struck out 11 and gave up a single run in seven
innings. San Francisco climbs to three and a half of back of the

Cubs 2, Brewers 0: How many people looked at the schedule last
spring and figured this series would matter? If it had mattered, we
would all be marveling at Ryan Dempster’s clutch September performance
(8 IP, 4 H — all singles — 0 ER). But it doesn’t matter, not by damn
sight, so I’ll use this opportunity to rate the top 5 Swayzes:

(1) Red Dawn: “I never HEARD of it!” Tell me you didn’t
see this movie as a kid and then wish, if only for a few moments, that
the Russians and Cubans really would invade. I had an emergency
backpack full of supplies in my closet and everything;

(2) Road House: “Pain don’t hurt”;

(3) Point Break: Where have you gone Johnny Utah, Buckeye Nation turns its lonely eyes to you;

(4) Next of Kin: This one was more ridiculous that Road House and Red
Dawn put together, yet no one ever mentions it. Greatly, greatly
underrated flick;

(5) Dirty Dancing: I really don’t like this one, but if you were 14
years-old in 1987 and you pretended you liked it, some girl somewhere
was gonna make out with you, and for that dorks like me thank you, Mr.
Swayze, wherever you are.

Yankees 5, Angels 3: Mark Teixeira hit a triple that made Torii Hunter lose his shoe (amazing pic of it here).
Brett Gardner scored the go-ahead run on a double steal + throwing
error extravaganza. With this makeup game, the Angels have three games
in three days in three cities (Chicago, New York and Boston). Later in
the evening as they lied awake in bed, with the echo from the
amplifiers ringing in their head, they smoked the day’s last cigarette,
remembering what she said, etc.

Reds 3, Astros 1: Jay Bruce makes his return after two months on
the shelf and hits the go-ahead single. Outside of that time he told
everyone that he doesn’t care what supplements he takes, I don’t
believe I’ve given Bronson Arroyo a moment’s thought in the second
half. So color me shocked that he now has 13 wins and is threatening to
send his ERA under 4.00.

Athletics 9, Rangers 0: Brett Tomko (CG SHO 5 H) has underwear
older than all of the A’s other starters, but he’s a been a better
pitcher than just about all of them this year too.

Tigers 6, Blue Jays 5: Nobody puts Aubrey in a corner! Down
three in the bottom of the ninth, Huff hits a three-run homer and the
Tigers go on to win it in 10. OK, sorry about that. I’m taking this
Swayze thing a bit harder than I thought I would.

Rays 8, Orioles 4: The losing streak ends in Baltimore, with the
Rays scoring as many runs last night as they did in their previous
seven games combined.

Twins 6, Indians 3: Jeremy Sowers leaves with a 3-0 lead after
seven innings and then watches the bullpen give up six runs in the
eighth. My Cleveland friends are so fed up with this garbage that
they’re actually wanting baseball season to end so they can turn their
full attention to the Browns. Think about that for a few minutes.

Cardinals 11, Marlins 6: St. Louis survives an emergency Todd
Wellemeyer start by blasting the living hell out of Ricky Nolasco, Matt
Lindstrom and three other Marlin pitchers. Matt Holliday = this year’s
Manny Ramirez: he’s batting .371 with 48 RBIs in 47 games since the
July 24th trade. In that time the Cardinals are 33-14.

Dodgers 6, Pirates 2: To the extent anyone was really worried
about L.A., know that 10 of their last 18 games are against Pittsburgh
and Washington, and many of them will likely go like this one.

Diamondbacls 4, Padres 2: Arizona pulls within two games of San
Diego in the battle to avoid last place. Given the absence of any real
pennant races this year, this is worth following.

Starts times of postseason games announced


Every year the playoff schedule is announced, every year people complain. And it’s understandable why they do. After six months of games starting at around 7pm — bam! — the playoffs come and you’re either staying up late or tuning in early to watch your local nine.

Of course, the reason for this is that Major League Baseball has two fundamental problems to deal with when the playoffs come around (a) the country is big; and (b) baseball is local and two-thirds and more of the fans don’t have a local team to root for in the playoffs. As such, baseball has to make a schedule that somehow deals with teams — like the Mets and Dodgers — who have big time differences between their home fan bases while trying to rope in as many national viewers as possible.

This means compromises and weirdness like, say, the first couple of Mets-Dodgers games starting after 9pm Eastern time on Friday and Saturday. Or the Texas Rangers starting a game at what, back home in Texas, will be 11:45AM. Which, admittedly, aren’t great start times, but do we expect Dodgers fans in L.A. to fight Friday rush hour traffic and be home in time to watch a game featuring the local team any earlier than 6pm? Seems like a tall order.

Anyway, the early round schedule was just released and you can see it below. If you are so inclined you can find all manner of inconveniences here. Sure, if you don’t have a job — or if being online and watching baseball all day is your job — Friday’s back-to-back-to-back-to-back playoff games are pretty sweet. But otherwise, just plan accordingly and do the best you can.

And remember: no one gives a rip about these schedule issues about ten minutes after the games start:

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Wild Card, Division series umpires announced

Angel Hernandez

Major League Baseball just released the umpire assignments for the Wild Card Game and the Division Series. As always, the basis for these assignments is a proprietary, scientific calculation undertaken by Major League Baseball, mixing in (a) skill; (b) seniority; and (c) trolling of baseball bloggers who, unlike 99% of the rest of the world actually know the names and track records of various umpires and who are easily riled.

Which is to say that, while we have no Joe West in the early playoff rounds this year — too obvious, perhaps? — we do get an Angel Hernandez.

Here are the assignments. The asterisks represent the crew chief of each unit. Guys with little up arrows next to their names are regular season crew chiefs in their own right. Print this out and keep it near your television so you know who to yell about before the broadcasters tell you who to yell at:

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