Cool: the Atlanta Braves still use an organist at the ballpark.
Cooler: the Braves’ organist — Matt Kaminski — is a bit of a wiseacre, using mildly taunting little songs when opposing players come to bat.
Coolest: According to this radio feature, he crowd sources which songs to use via his Twitter account.
Yes, it’s a bit juvenile — the Rice-a-Roni theme song for Ben Francisco is a bit on the nose — but it’s harmless. I mean, as long as you’re not using “Billie Jean” for a player who just made the news because of a paternity suit or something, it’s all just fun, right? On second thought, that’s a pretty good idea. I’d totally use that. I think I’m going to go tweet that to him right now.
The only bad thing about this is that the Yankees won’t be playing the Braves this year, because it would be pretty darn awesome to hear Kaminski play “About a Girl” or “All Apologies” when Mark Teixeira comes to the plate.
Here are the Rangers and Blue Jays lineups for Game 1 of the ALDS in Toronto:
CF Delino DeShields
RF Shin-Soo Choo
3B Adrian Beltre
DH Prince Fielder
1B Mike Napoli
LF Josh Hamilton
SS Elvis Andrus
2B Rougned Odor
C Robinson Chirinos
SP Yovani Gallardo
With left-hander David Price on the mound for Toronto the Rangers are going with Mike Napoli at first base over Mitch Moreland. Beyond that it’s a pretty standard lineup for Texas, or at least standard for what manager Jeff Banister used down the stretch once Josh Hamilton was healthy enough to play left field.
LF Ben Revere
3B Josh Donaldson
RF Jose Bautista
DH Edwin Encarnacion
SS Troy Tulowitzki
1B Justin Smoak
C Russell Martin
2B Ryan Goins
CF Kevin Pillar
SP David Price
After returning from the disabled list for the final weekend of the regular season Troy Tulowitzki is in the lineup and batting fifth. That allows Ryan Goins to play second base in place of the injured Devon Travis. Justin Smoak gets the nod over Chris Colabello at first base against a right-hander.
Houston made one unexpected change to the roster for the ALDS, leaving off veteran reliever Chad Qualls.
Qualls warmed up but never appeared in the Wild Card game win over the Yankees and during the regular season the 36-year-old right-hander logged 49 innings with a 4.38 ERA and 46/9 K/BB ratio. Qualls was on the Astros’ last playoff team in 2005.
Utility man Jonathan Villar has been bumped off the roster in favor of outfielder Preston Tucker, as the Astros opted for a good left-handed bat off the bench versus the Royals rather than Villar’s speed.