Mets give away Johan Santana's plan

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Mets pitching coach Dan Warthen told the New York Daily News on Monday that Johan Santana is racking up high pitch counts early in games because of a plan that calls for him throw mostly inside fastballs the first time through the lineup.
The plan is designed to make his changeup more effective as the game goes on, and it’s probably a decent strategy, as long as he mixes it up from time to time.
But why is Warthen telling the whole world that such a plan exists? Is he or the organization so insecure that there’s a need to justify one bad outing from the game’s highest-paid pitcher?
Sure, any team with an advance scout worth his paycheck has already figured it out, but that doesn’t mean you give it away. Now every hitter in the league knows for sure. Now every scout watching the Mets is going to looking extra hard at similar patterns for the rest of the team’s starters.
Before you know it, the rest of the league will catch on to the fact that if you’re facing Oliver Perez and you stand in the box with the bat on your shoulder, you’re more likely than not to walk.
I’m as bored by generic answers from players and coaches as anyone, but Warthen should take a lesson. Unless he’s actually designing some new masterplan for Santana to be unveiled in the left-hander’s next start and this is just some grand misdirection, then he’s done the Mets a disservice.

Zack Greinke named the Dbacks’ Opening Day starter

SCOTTSDALE, AZ - FEBRUARY 21:  Pitcher Zack Greinke #21 of the Arizona Diamondbacks poses for a portrait during photo day at Salt River Fields at Talking Stick on February 21, 2017 in Scottsdale, Arizona.  (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
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Not a surprise, but a news item on a slow news day is a news item on a slow news day: Diamondbacks manager Torey Lovullo has named Zack Greinke as the club’s Opening Day starter.

Greinke’s first season with the Diamondbacks is not exactly what the club hoped for when he signed a six-year, $206.5 million deal in December of 2015. He dealt with oblique and shoulder issues while struggling to a 4.37 ERA over 26 starts. Greinke hasn’t pitched yet this spring, but will make his spring debut on Friday. He and the club are obviously hoping for a quiet March and a strong beginning to the season.

Either for its own sake or to increase the trade value of a player who was acquired by the previous front office regime.

“La Vida Baseball,” celebrating Latino baseball, launches

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A new website has launched. It’s called “La Vida Baseball,” and it’s all about celebrating the past, present and future of Latino baseball from a Latino perspective.

The site, produced in partnership with the Hall of Fame, has four general areas of focus:

  • Who’s Now: Focusing on current Latino players;
  • Who’s Next: Focusing on top prospects here, in the Caribbean and in Central and South America;
  • Our Life: Off-the-Field stuff, including player’s lives, lifestyles and hobbies; and
  • Our Legends: Focusing on Latino baseball history, Hall of Famers and overlooked players.

As the site has just launched there aren’t yet a ton of stories up there, but there is one about Roberto Clemente, another about Felix Hernandez and some other stuff.

The site is much-needed. Baseball reporters for American outlets are overwhelmingly white, non-Spanish speakers. Reporters, who, generally, gravitate to the players who are the most like they are. Which is understandable on some level. When you’re writing stories about people you need to be able to communicate with them and relate to them on more than a mere perfunctory level. As such, no matter how good the intentions of baseball media, we tend to see the clubhouse and the culture of baseball from a distinctly American perspective. And we tend to paint Latino players with a broad, broad brush.

La Vida Baseball will, hopefully, remedy all of that and will, hopefully, give us a fresh and insightful depiction Latino players and their culture.