I think I may have been one of the only people on the planet who liked the fact that Ken Rosenthal wore bow ties while on camera for the FOX playoff broadcasts last fall. I thought it was dapper and rather charming. I’ve met Ken in person a couple of times and he totally fits the mold of a bow tie wearer. Nice guy. Fastidious. Dare I say it? Kind of cute.
So you can imagine my joy when I read this morning that, not only is Rosenthal going to keep wearing the bow ties on camera, but that he’s doing it for a good cause. Many good causes, actually, as each Rosenthal bow tie will be to raise consciousness of various charities, ranging from Livestrong to the Ronald McDonald House to the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation to Stand Up to Cancer:
Each Friday on FOXSports.com, we will display the bow tie I will wear on that week’s broadcast, along with a description of the charity and how to get involved. For the postseason, we plan to conduct polls on which bow tie I should wear for each game.
Funny how it all comes around. I didn’t want to wear a bow tie because I thought it would distract from my work. Jones’ mission, though, aligns perfectly with how I perceive my job.
I’m a blogger, so ties don’t happen here very often. Maybe I should do what Rosenthal is doing, however, and start wearing an article of clothing I never would otherwise wear in an effort to raise consciousness. You know, like pants or something.
Seriously, though: cool move Rosenthal. And I’d say that even if I didn’t think the ties looked good on their own terms.
MLB.com’s Jenifer Langosch reports that Cardinals’ shortstop Aledmys Diaz has been sporting a new look around Busch Stadium with a pair of “strobe glasses,” technology-enhanced specs designed to help athletes focus on the ball. Like a strobe light, the lenses of these glasses affect a player’s vision by rapidly changing opacity, giving its wearers the illusion that the objects they see are moving more slowly than normal. Once a player adjusts to the new speed of play, they gain a greater sense of control and are able to time their actions with more precision.
Diaz isn’t the first MLB player to utilize the technology, just the first Cardinals’ player to do so. It’s been tested by Bryce Harper, Corey Brown, Tommy Joseph, Austin Hedges and Joe Mauer, among others around the league, and has been used for everything from refining a catcher’s reflexes behind the plate to tweaking a hitter’s ability to track a pitch. Per Langosch, Diaz has been using the glasses to hone in on the ball during pregame drills, increasing both his confidence and response time on the field and improving his defense at short.
The shortstop has been the focus of some concern this season after seeing a sizable dip in his production at the plate, and his five fielding errors, 0.6 UZR and 0.6 fWAR haven’t helped matters, either. He sustained a minor thumb injury during an at-bat on Friday night, and was left off of the Cardinals’ starting lineup on Saturday, though manager Mike Matheny didn’t rule out his ability to pinch-hit during the series. While the strobe glasses are a good start, Diaz will need more than a pair of specs to match the spotlight-worthy performance he turned out during his rookie season in 2016.
Red Sox’ left-hander Eduardo Rodriguez may finally get a chance at cracking the rotation again, assuming all goes well in Double-A Portland first. Rodriguez took the field prior to the club’s afternoon session with the Angels, firing 68 pitches in a simulated game as he prepared for an upcoming rehab assignment in Portland on Thursday.
The 24-year-old southpaw suffered a right knee subluxation during pregame warmups on June 1, and it’s been a slow path to recovery ever since. It’s not the first time Rodriguez has had issues with his right knee — he sustained a similar injury during spring training last year — and this time around, the Red Sox weren’t about to gamble with their starter’s health. Ian Browne of MLB.com reports that Rodriguez was put in a knee brace and underwent exercises designed to help him regain some mobility and stability while he worked back up to full strength on the mound.
He’ll still need to prove he can throw a 75- to 80-pitch outing in Double-A, and barring any significant setbacks, will likely rejoin the Red Sox’ pitching staff when they visit the Rangers next month. In the meantime, the club will continue to cycle starters through the No. 5 spot, which has seen no fewer than three different pitchers since Rodriguez hit the disabled list. The lefty is 4-2 in 10 starts this season after logging a 3.54 ERA, 3.1 BB/9 and career-high 9.6 SO/9 through his first 61 innings.