“Once it went through the lights, I lost it. There’s
really nothing else you can do. I mean, it’s not like I took my eye off
of if. People were saying they’ve seen many, many balls lost here. It’s
not the first. It’s not going to be the last.”
– The Metrodome isn’t going away without a fight, and neither are the Twins. Don Kelly lost an Orlando Cabrera flyball in the lights
during the seventh inning of Saturday’s game. Due to the misplay,
Denard Span was able to advance to third base and Cabrera reached
second. Both runners came in to score on a Jason Kubel single, as the
Twins cut the Tigers lead to two games with a dramatic 6-2 win.
”I felt two hits. One was me catching it, and the second one was me
hitting the fence. And I knew when I looked up after I hit
the fence and didn’t see the ball, it was going to be bad.”
– In a play that is sure to be included on blooper reels between innings at baseball stadiums from now until the end of time, Bobby Scales gave Brendan Ryan an assist on his fifth-inning home run on Saturday afternoon.
”I see why he won a Cy Young. I like the attitude he has. He’ll help
this club. The people playing behind him better be ready. Guys should
learn from him. He prepares himself and expects his teammates to do it.
You have to prepare and back him up.”
– Ozzie Guillen reflects on Jake Peavy’s successful debut
against the Royals on Saturday night. Peavy allowed three runs over
five innings while walking two and striking out five in a 13-3 victory.
“That’s just a number. If you didn’t tell me today, I
wouldn’t realize. I would just go home, try to get some sleep and a
muscle relaxer, and forget about it. To lose 100 games in the big leagues is a great honor, to be honest.
Many people don’t have the opportunity to lose three games, two games,
or maybe none. I’m a very blessed man.”
– Pedro Martinez, upon learning that he took his 100th career loss
against the Braves on Saturday night. He gave the first-place Phillies
a bit of a scare when he tweaked his neck during an at-bat in the second inning, leaving after just three innings, but he should be on track for his next start.
Ten days ago Nationals ace Max Scherzer said he’d be ready for the start of the regular season. “I’m gonna do it,” Scherzer said.
[Ron Howard from “Arrested Development” voice] — No, he’s not:
Nationals manager Dusty Baker said that Max Scherzer is not on track to be the team’s opening day starter, and will most likely open the season as the third pitcher in the rotation.
He’s still projected to make it to the opening rotation, taking the hill, most likely, on Thursday April 6 against the Marlins. At least if the schedule doesn’t slip any more.
Scherzer, as you probably know, has a stress fracture in the knuckle of his right ring finger, which has messed with his preparation and has caused him to alter his grip a bit. As of now Stephen Strasburg will get the Opening Day nod.
Fortune Magazine has put out a list of The World’s Greatest Leaders. Not the greatest business leaders, not the greatest leaders in a given industry, but the Greatest Leaders, full stop. The greatest according to Fortune: The Cubs’ Theo Epstein.
For some context, Pope Francis was third. Angela Merkel was 10th. Lebron James was the next greatest sports leader, ranked 11th. Take Fortune’s methodology with a grain of salt, however, given that it has John McCain above Merkel — what, exactly, does he lead now? — and Samantha Bee in the top 20.
So what makes Theo the world’s best leader according to Fortune?
The Cubs owe their success to a five-year rebuilding program that featured a concatenation of different leadership styles. The team thrived under the affable patience of owner Tom Ricketts, and, later, under the innovative eccentricity of manager Joe Maddon. But most important of all was the evolution of the club’s president for baseball operations, Theo Epstein, the wunderkind executive who realized he would need to grow as a leader in order to replicate in Chicago the success he’d had with the Boston Red Sox.
I don’t want to take anything away from what Theo has done — he’s a Hall of Fame executive already in my view — but I feel like maybe one needs to adjust for the fact that this is a baseball team we’re talking about. They’re the whole world to us and their brands are nationally and even world famous, but as an organization, sports teams are rather small. There are guys who run reasonably-sized HVAC companies with more employees than a baseball team and they don’t get the benefit of an antitrust exemption and a rule which allows them to get their pick of the best new employees if they had a bad year the year before.
Really, not trying to throw shade here, just thinking that being the spiritual father for 1.2 billion Catholics or running a foundation that serves 55 million needy children — like the woman who comes in at number 14 — is a bit of a tougher trick.
But this will make a great framed magazine article on Theo’s wall in Wrigley Field.