As a short-attention-span blogger, it makes my head hurt to think about travelling a couple thousand miles, talking to someone for hours and then spending several days writing several thousand insightful words about the experience. Really, I tend to lose interest in what I’m writing approximately two minutes after I think of the snarky punchline.
Thankfully not everyone else is like me or else we’d be in a journalistic wilderness. We need our nutrition as readers, and that nutrition comes in the form of long-form feature pieces on the people and events that shape the game we love. There isn’t anyone who does that better than ESPN’s Amy K. Nelson. She pretty much knocks every subject she chooses out of the park, and today is no exception: Jim Joyce: infamous umpire:
“I think about it still, almost every day,” Joyce says. “I don’t want to be known as Jim Joyce, the guy that blew the perfect game. But I think that’s inevitable.”
“Because I’m Jim Joyce,” he says, “the umpire who blew the perfect game.”
Take your early-afternoon coma off today and check out Nelson’s piece about the man who cost Armando Galarraga his perfect game and somehow came out better for it on the other end.
It was assumed already, but Mike Scioscia made it official during Monday’s press conference for new general manager Billy Eppler that he will return as Angels manager in 2016.
Scioscia, the longest-tenured manager in the majors, has been at the helm with the Angels since 2000. There was a clause in his contract which allowed him to opt out after the 2015 season, but he has decided to stay put. He still has three years and $15 million on his contract, which runs through 2018.
Jerry Dipoto resigned as Angels general manager in July amid tension with Scioscia, so there were naturally questions today about what to expect with first-time GM Eppler in the fold. According to David Adler of MLB.com, Scioscia isn’t concerned.
“I think we’re going to mesh very well,” Scioscia said. “If we adjust, or maybe he adjusts to some of the things, there’s going to be collaboration that’s going to make us better.”
Eppler is the fourth general manager during Scioscia’s tenure with the team.
After winning the AL West last season, the Angels finished 85-77 this season and narrowly missed the playoffs. The team hasn’t won a postseason game since 2009.
Astros center fielder Carlos Gomez sat out the final series of the regular season in order to rest a strained left intercostal muscle, but there was good news coming out of a workout today in advance of Tuesday’s Wild Card game vs. the Yankees.
This has been a lingering issue for Gomez, who missed 13 straight games with the injury last month. He aggravated the strain on a throw to home plate last Wednesday and was forced to sit while the Astros fought to keep their season alive. Astros manager A.J. Hinch told reporters last week that Gomez’s injury would typically take 45-50 days to recover from, so it’s fair to wonder how productive he can be during the postseason.
Gomez mostly struggled after coming over from the Brewers at the trade deadline, batting .242 with four home runs and a .670 OPS over 41 games.