Ballplayers think that little shiny bracelets improve their performance

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We live in a world in which PED hysterics say things like “ballplayers wouldn’t take HGH if it didn’t improve their performance.”  We also live in a world where ballplayers wear shiny little mylar bracelets that are “digitally encoded with a frequency that your body can tune into” and which are claimed to give you the same sort of alleged benefits that can be found in new age b.s. like crystal power:

At least a dozen Phillies were wearing them yesterday, among them
Placido Polanco, Ben Francisco, Ross Gload, John Mayberry, and Charlie
Manuel. There was even one proponent from the medical community: “Doc”
Halladay wore a band on his left wrist.

“I’m wearing it because it’s red,” reliever J.C. Romero, who always
wears something on his wrist as he warms up, said. “I’m not sure about
the rest of it. If you think it helps you, it probably helps you.”

Manuel said he took the strength and balance tests Monday. He’d been
wearing a white wristband ever since.

“It’s just some rubber and that little disc,” Manuel said. “I don’t feel
anything, no. But you never know. When I was a hitting coach, if a guy
thought he was having success because of something, I didn’t say
anything. Let him think it.”

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Sean Manaea pitches the first no-hitter of 2018

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Athletics southpaw Sean Manaea delivered his first career no-hitter against the Red Sox in a decisive 3-0 victory on Saturday night. Any thought of a perfect game was banished in the first at-bat, when Mookie Betts drew a leadoff six-pitch walk to open the first inning. From there, Manaea was nearly flawless, holding the Sox to four total baserunners and striking out 10 of 30 batters faced — a career record.

Manaea was gifted a three-run lead thanks to RBI doubles from Jed Lowrie and Stephen Piscotty and Marcus Semien‘s solo shot off of Chris Sale in the fifth inning. While the Red Sox managed to draw two walks off of Manaea, they didn’t come anywhere close to plating a run. Andrew Benintendi tried to break up the no-no in the sixth inning with an infield hit down the first base line, but strayed out of bounds and later saw his hit reversed on a call of batter interference.

Entering the ninth inning, the 26-year-old lefty was sitting at just 95 pitches through eight frames of no-hit ball. He quickly deposed Blake Swihart and Mookie Betts with a groundout and fly out, then walked Benintendi on seven pitches. Any threat the Red Sox might have posed was soon eliminated, however, as Hanley Ramirez ground into a force out to complete the no-hitter.

Manaea is the first A’s pitcher to toss a no-no since Dallas Braden’s perfect game against the Rays eight years ago. The last time the Red Sox were on the losing end of a no-hitter was also against an AL West rival, when the Mariners’ Chris Bosio clinched a 2-0 no-no on April 22, 1993. Manaea’s feat is even more outstanding given how dominant the Red Sox have looked this season: prior to Saturday’s defeat, they boasted a 17-2 record and had yet to be shut out during the regular season.