And That Happened: Monday's Scores and Highlights

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Dana Eveland.jpgRed Sox 13, Blue Jays 12: Just your standard 25 run, 34 hit, 4+ hour nine inning game. Lyle Overbay, Jose Bautista and Jason Varitek each had 4 RBI, Bill Hall, Jeremy Herminda and Travis Snider all had 0-fers, and the starting pitchers — Josh Beckett and Dana Eveland — were each tied up and were placed, sitting backwards, on the backs of donkeys while wearing giant carnival masks and then led out into some forbidding desert to die.

Brewers 17, Pirates 3: The Milwaukee Brewers! What a rotten name! We were trapped. There they stood,
between us and the alley. The Milwaukee Brewers staring out at us with their yellow
eyes. They had yellow eyes! So, help me, God! Yellow eyes!

Royals 3, Mariners 1Kyle Davies beats Felix Hernandez? OK, that’s unexpected, but weird things happen from time to time. Yuniesky Betancourt goes 2-4 and is now hitting close to .350 on the year? Well, that is a little peculiar. Bruce Chen gets a save? Screw it, I’m maxing out my credit cards and pulling the kids out of school, because the end is friggin’ nigh.

Marlins 10, Padres 1: Josh Johnson pitched a complete game, striking out 12 and giving up a lone earned run and he went 3-4 driving in three.  A guy who can do that on a regular basis is worth $25 million a year. Ryan Howard? Not so much.

Tigers 8, Rangers 6: Neftali Feliz gives up back-to-back homers to Miguel Cabrera and Brandon Inge in the ninth to lose the game. I hate to see Feliz struggle, but any little thing that may push him out of Certified Closer land and back into being a starting pitcher is fine by me.

Cubs 4, Nationals 3: The Nats battled back from 3-0 to send the game to extras, and then Brian Bruney comes in and allows a single, a walk, a single and a walk to end it. His former team, the World Champion New York Yankees, were in Washington yesterday meeting President Obama. There’s a reason he did not accompany them.

Cardinals 4, Braves 3: “Commonly, people believe that defeat is characterized by a general bustle and a feverish rush. Bustle and rush are the signs of victory, not of defeat. Victory is a thing of action. It is a house in the act of being built. Every participant in victory sweats and puffs, carrying the stones for the building of the house. But defeat is a thing of weariness, of incoherence, of boredom. And above all of futility” — Antoine de Saint-Exupery, noted observer of the Atlanta Braves.

Diamondbacks 5, Rockies 3: Dan Haren was on: 8 IP, 5 H, 2 ER, 10K. Adam LaRoche’s three-run homer in the first was a the big blast.

Giants 5, Phillies 1: Yes, of course it makes perfect sense that the Giants would score the most runs they had in a over week — 5 — on the night they face Roy Halladay. Wait, it actually does. Before last night Halladay had faced the Giants twice in his career and on each occasion they had scored . . . five runs.

Angels 5, Indians 2: The first several paragraphs of the game story are spent here comparing Jered Weaver to Jeff Weaver. Am I the only one who finds this odd? Hideki Matsui had his 1000th major league hit last night. I saw his performance. I would like to have a player like him in my lineup.
 
Mets vs. Dodgers: Postponed:  Remember that “Happy Days” episode where the Fonz performed in “The Rainmaker?” What the hell was up with that?

Mike Matheny tried to have his own son picked off at first base

PHOENIX, AZ - AUGUST 26: Manager Mike Matheny #26 of the St Louis Cardinals looks on from the dugout during the first inning of a MLB game against the Arizona Diamondbacks at Chase Field on August 26, 2015 in Phoenix, Arizona. The Cardinals defeated the Diamondbacks 3-1. (Photo by Ralph Freso/Getty Images)
Ralph Freso/Getty Images
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Cardinals manager Mike Matheny has a son, Tate, who was selected by the Red Sox in the fourth round of the 2015 draft out of Missouri State University. Tate, an outfielder, spent the 2015 season with Low-A Lowell and last year played at Single-A Greenville.

Now in spring camp with the Red Sox, Tate is trying to continue his ascent through the minor league system. On Monday afternoon in a game against his father’s Cardinals, Tate pinch-ran after Xander Bogaerts singled to center field to lead off the bottom of the fifth inning. Mike wasn’t about to let his son catch any breaks. Via Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch:

That’s right: Mike tried to have his own son picked off at first base. That’s just cold, man.

Tate was erased shortly thereafter when Mookie Betts grounded into a 6-4-3 double play. Tate got his first at-bat in the seventh and struck out.

Do we really need metal detectors at spring training facilities?

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Craig Calcaterra
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MESA, AZ — Over the past couple of seasons we’ve, more or less, gotten used to the sight of metal detectors at major league ballparks. And the sight of long lines outside of them, requiring us to get to the park a bit earlier or else risk missing some of the early inning action.

Like so much else over the past fifteen and a half years, we’re given assurances by people in charge that it’s for “security,” and we alter our lives and habits accordingly. This despite the fact that security experts have argued that it’s a mostly useless and empty exercise in security theater. More broadly, they’ve correctly noted that it’s a cynical and defeatist solution in search of a problem. But hey, welcome to 21st Century America.

And welcome metal detectors to spring training:

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Beginning this year, Major League Baseball is mandating that all spring training facilities use some form of metal detection, be it walkthrough detectors like the ones shown here at the Giants’ park in Scottsdale or wands like the one being used on the nice old lady above at the Cubs facility in Mesa.

I asked Major League Baseball why they are requiring them in Florida and Arizona. They said that the program was not implemented in response to any specific incident or threat at a baseball game, but are “precautionary measures.” They say that metal detection “has not posed significant inconvenience or taken away from the ballpark experience” since being required at big league parks in 2015 and believe it will work the same way at the spring training parks.They caution fans, however, that, as the program gets underway, they should allow for more time for entry.

And that certainly makes sense:

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I took this photo a few minutes after the home plate gate opened at Sloan Park yesterday afternoon. As I noted this morning, the Cubs sell out every game in their 15,000-seat park. That’s a lot of wanding and, as a result, it could lead to a lot of waiting.

But the crowds here all seemed to get through the line pretty quickly. Perhaps because the wanding is not exactly a time-consuming affair:

Not every security guard was as, well, efficient as this guy. But hardly anyone walking through the gate was given a particularly thorough go-over. I saw several hundred people go through the procedure soon after the gates opened and most of them weren’t scanned bellow the level of their hip pockets. I went back a little closer to game time when most people were already in the park and the lines were shorter. The procedure was a bit more deliberate then, though not dramatically so. This is all new for the security people too — spring training just started — and it’s fair to say that they are trying hard to balance the needs of their new precautionary measures against the need to keep the lines moving and the fans happy.

On this day at least it seemed that fan happiness was winning. I spoke with several fans after they got through the gates and none of them offered much in the way of complaint about being wanded. The clear consensus: it’s just what we do now. We have metal detectors and cameras at schools and places of work and security procedures have been ratcheted up dramatically across the board. That we now have them at ballparks is not surprising to anyone, really. It’s just not a thing anyone thinks to question.

And so they don’t.