And That Happened: Tuesday's scores and highlights

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Red Sox 4, Angels 1: Say what you want about the guy, but Dice-K
has always done well on 89 days rest (6 IP 3 H, 0 ER). I’m not sold
yet. Even Dontrelle Willis had a good game his first time back this
year.

Blue Jays 10, Yankees 4: Fisticuffsmanship! Jorge Posada and
Jesse Carlson threw down in front of the Yankee dugout in the eighth.
Unlike most baseball fights, however, someone connected.
Girardi got popped once too. Even an umpire was taken out, with crew
chief Derryl Cousins leaving the game after the fight. Either Cousins
got a case of the vapors or else someone is going to be suspended for
about a decade for roughing up an ump. UPDATE: according to the game
story he was hit in the knee with a bottle of soda thrown from the
stands. So basically everyone was misbehaving.

Giants 10, Rockies 2: Barry Zito struck out nine and the Giants pull to two and a half back. Nervous Jim Tracy?

“Here’s the deal. Here’s our situation. It’s very simple.
It’s black and white. There’s no gray. There’s no middle area. We’ve
got an opportunity to win a game in this series, which is something
that we’re obviously striving for, and you move on and you’re 3½ ahead.
Or you lose and you’re 1½ ahead and then everything’s up for grabs. I’m
not sitting here saying to anybody that we’re trailing. We’re not going
to trail. We’ve still got a lead. But the opportunity of having a
cushion versus giving it back — that’s what tomorrow is all about.”

With quotes like that, I give it greater than even odds that that man is sitting in a broadcast studio someday.

Dodgers 5, Pirates 4: Andre Eithier gets his fourth walkoff home run of the year. He’s the first Dodger to hit 30 home runs since 2004.

Braves 6, Mets 0: The Mets had absolutely no answers for Tommy
Hanson. Couldn’t even get a man past second base on him during his
seven innings of shutout ball (his second straight start without
allowing a run). Adam LaRoche homered twice and drove in three, doing
nothing to harm his second-half-stud reputation. Too little too late
for Atlanta, but it’s nice to see them play out the schedule on a high
note.

Phillies 5, Nationals 0: After three lackluster starts, Cliff
Lee returns to being Superman (CG SHO 6 H, 9 K). Lee is an Adam LaRoche
All-Star himself, improving to 20-3 after the break over the past two
seasons.

Royals 11, Tigers 1: Good thing Detroit doesn’t have to play
Kansas City in the playoffs, because KC has their number, taking their
fifth straight from the Tigers. Magglio hit an $18 million groundout in
the fifth. Play was delayed briefly in the top of the seventh when a
shirtless fan ran onto the field. I have some nogoodnik kin up in
Detroit who don’t do much all summer besides drink beer with their
shirts off, so I’m expecting the call for help with bail any moment
now.

Orioles 10, Rays 5: After lulling the American League into a
false sense of security, Matt Weiters finally decides to strike: 3-5, 5
RBI. It begins.

Marlins 2, Cardinals 1: Wainwright pitched well, but got the
loss because Sean West and the Marlins’ bullpen pitched better.
Wainwright stays at 18 wins. Unless La Russa decides to give him extra
rest heading into the playoffs, he probably has three starts to go. I’m
going to assume at this point that if he wins 20, he’s a lock for the
Cy Young.

Reds 5, Astros 4: I’m not going to say that it’s hard to find
something interesting to talk about in a late-season, no-hope
Astros-Reds series, but here are two of the “game notes” from the game
story: “Janish became the first Reds batter with three doubles in one
game since Jorge Cantu on Sept. 21, 2007, at San Francisco” and “ESPN
college basketball announcer Dick Vitale watched the game with Reds
owner Bob Castellini.” Feel the magic.

Cubs 13, Brewers 7: The Brewers walked 12 guys and hit three
more, so this wasn’t exactly a crisp one. Carlos Zambrano kind of
melted down after four good innings. I’m sure this has absolutely nothing
to do with him being rattled at the “we’re gonna trade you” talk from
earlier in the day, because Carlos is totally composed and cool when
he’s out there and let’s no emotions intrude on the task at hand. Total
iceman.

Athletics 6, Rangers 1: That sound you hear is the Rangers’
playoff hopes being stuffed into a burlap sack and thrown into a river.
The sack’s technically still floating, but it’s about to go under any
minute now. Michael Young came back as a DH after missing two weeks,
but he pulled himself from the lineup because he tweaked the hamstring
again. It’s been a nice season for the Rangers and the future is
bright, but it’s just not happening.

Twins 5, Indians 4: The game stories still talk about the Twins
having a chance to make a run at Detroit, but then you read something
like this: “Along with Morneau, third-baseman Joe Crede is likely out
for the season with back problems, and recent call-up Justin Huber is
day to day with a strained oblique. But Gardenhire said his desire to
call up reinforcements was “squelched” by the front office.” Has the
front office thrown in the towel, or is Gardenhire asking for
unrealistic things? And why is he telling reporters about that kind of
family business? Stange.

Diamondbacks 4, Padres 2: Mark Reynolds hit what proved to be
the game winning homer in the 9th. Nick Hundley made a pretty spiffy
defensive play, acrobatically pursuing an overthrown ball into the
dugout (he went in, not the ball) and throwing out Eric Byrnes at the
plate, who was tagged out by Ardian Gonzalez, who was sliding/diving
for the throw. I’m guessing video does that play better justice than
that description did.

White Sox 6, Mariners 3: The White Sox have gone back and fourth between wins and losses for nine games. One more and they have a Dutch 200, right?

Miguel Sano criticized by his manager for dogging it on a defensive play

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Sal Perez of the Royals had a nice night last night, going 5-for-5. One of those five hits was a triple. But it maybe didn’t have to be a triple, as Perez’s hit to right field went over the head of Miguel Sano and off the wall, bouncing back toward the infield.

Sano is no one’s idea of a gold glover so getting on him for not catching a ball at the wall is only going to have so much of an effect. But Twins manager Paul Molitor was rightly upset, it would seem, for how Sano reacted after the ball bounced off the wall. Specifically: he basically just stopped and watched it roll away as center fielder Danny Santana had to spring over and field it as the slow Perez lumbered around the bases. Molitor:

“I think maybe he assumed that [second baseman Eduardo] Nunez or Danny were going to be in better position after he positioned himself close to the wall to make the catch,” Molitor said. “But you want him to go for the ball even if you think there’s somebody else to help you out. Sometimes you get caught assuming out there and it doesn’t look too good.”

You can watch the play below. It starts at around the :37 second mark and is Perez’s third hit in the sequence:

Red Sox reliever Carson Smith to have Tommy John surgery

BOSTON, MA - MAY 09:  Carson Smith #39 of the Boston Red Sox looks on in the seventh inning during the game against the Oakland Athletics at Fenway Park on May 9, 2016 in Boston, Massachusetts.  (Photo by Adam Glanzman/Getty Images)
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Last season Carson Smith was an effective and durable relief pitcher for the Seattle Mariners, appearing in 70 games. In the offseason the Red Sox traded for him and Roenis Elias in exchange for Jonathan Aro and Wade Miley. This year Smith has appeared in just three games. And he will appear in no more as the Red Sox just announced that he will undergo season-ending Tommy John surgery today.

Smith last appeared in a game ten days ago and, until today, it was believed that his injury was minor, like the flexor strain injury he sustained in spring training. Sadly, the news was much worse.

Bill “Spaceman” Lee is running for governor of Vermont

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Bill Lee pitched for the Boston Red Sox from 1969 through 1978 and for the Montreal Expos from 1979 through 1982. He’s far better known, however, for being a weirdo, in the best sense of the term. He was outspoken and controversial and funny and aggravating and above all else his own dude.

His most famous comment as a player was when he said that he sprinkled marijuana on his pancakes in order to immunize him from Boston bus fumes as he jogged to Fenway Park. Which is patently silly, as everyone knowns you can’t just sprinkle it. You gotta make butter out of the stuff and spread it on the pancakes. Or so I’m told.

In recent years Lee has alternated gimmicky and celebrity baseball appearances with political aspirations. His political aspirations, of course, have never been conventional either. In 1987, for example, he had announced plans to run for President of the United States for the Rhinoceros Party. Which would’ve been a neat trick as it was a Canadian political party. Still, we could’ve used it here, as its platform was fairly intriguing. The Rhinoceroses advocated, among other things, repealing the law of gravity, legalizing all drugs, privatizing Tim Hortons and giving a rhinoceros for every Canadian Citizen.

That campaign didn’t work out for Lee, sadly, but he is undeterred. And now he plans to run for office again. Governor of Vermont, to be specific. And he plans to soak the rich:

Now, he’s throwing his hat into the race to be Vermont’s next governor shaking off campaign contributions and decrying wealth inequality.

“You get what you pay for, if you want change, you vote for Sanders or me. I’m Bernie-heavy, I’m not Bernie-lite. My ideas were before Bernie,” said Lee. “If you want to see money come down from the 2 percent, we’re going to need umbrellas when I’m elected, because it’s going to be raining dollars,” he said.

This is no Rhinoceros Party joke, though. He’s a member of the Liberty Union party, which is where Bernie Sanders got his start. And his platform — legalization and taxation of pot in Vermont, single-payer health care, paid family leave — are all things which have no small constituency in a liberal state like Vermont.

Oh, he has one other platform plank: bringing the Expos back to Montreal. That may be a bit tougher for the governor of Vermont to do, but we’ll probably see some form of New Expos in Montreal in the next decade or so, and Lee will be proven to be on the right side of history. And that’s better than a lot of our politicians can say, right?

The Marlins have sued at least nine season ticket holders and vendors

MIAMI, FL - MAY 04: Miami Marlins owner Jeffery Loria looks on during the game between the Miami Marlins and the Arizona Diamondbacks at Marlins Park on May 4, 2016 in Miami, Florida. (Photo by Rob Foldy/Getty Images
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Earlier this month we reported that the Miami Marlins had sued a season ticket holder, Mickey Axelband, alleging that he reneged on the second year of a two-year season ticket agreement. Axelband, who had been a season ticket holder with the Marlins since their inaugural season in 1993, claimed that the Marlins reneged first, eliminating amenities which they promised upon the move to Marlins Park and failing to deliver on others.

In that post we observed that it is uncommon for teams to sue ticket holders. It’s bad form to begin with as season ticket holders are a club’s most valuable and dedicated customers. But it’s also dumb in that there are virtually limitless options available to a club to resolve disputes with ticket holders short of litigation. Why would the Marlins sue in this situation? Maybe there was more to it than we knew? Maybe this was just an extreme outlier of a case?

Nope. The Miami New Times reports today that this seems to be pretty par for the course for Jeff Loria’s Marlins. The Marlins, in fact, have sued at least nine season ticketholders and luxury suite owners since 2013. They are also locked in litigation with two stadium vendors. The concessioners claim that the Marlins induced them to pay big rights fees in order to set up business inside Marlins Park by promising big, big crowds, only to fail to deliver on those promises and to see the vendors go out of business or be unable or unwilling to pay what the Marlins demanded.

The story goes deep on Axelband’s dispute with Miami and that of a pizza vendor. Overall it paints a portrait of a Marlins club which doesn’t seem to give a crap about fans or its business partners, only the bottom line. Unless, of course, it’s trying to pose as a civic institution so it can get tax dollars to pay for its big stadium and rights fees from potential vendors. Now that they have the stadium, however, and now that the ink is dry on those deals, they’re portraying themselves like any other company, entitled to enforce their business deals in any way necessary.

And, legally speaking, they are. But they’re certainly approaching things differently than most ball clubs do. And in a way that puts lie to the notion that sports teams should be given any extra leeway when it comes to giving them all of the things they ask for.