John Steigerwald explains himself

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John Steigerwald — the guy who blamed Bryan Stow for his own beating in a recent column — took to his blog today to say that he did not blame Bryan Stow for his own beating.  The blog has been flooded with traffic so it’s been down much of the afternoon, but here’s a Google Cache version of it:

I don’t apologize for the column but I do apologize to the Stow family if this nonsense has reached them and in any way added to their pain. I don’t, for one second, blame Brian Stow for the beating he took. I do blame the ever increasing out of control, out of perspective behavior by fans, too many of whom are no longer satisfied with going to their stadiums and cheering for their teams. And I sure as hell don’t think –as some hysterical posters have claimed –that Brian “had it coming.”

Steigerwald also says “Nowhere did I imply that Stow deserved what happened to him. I thought that the difference between DESERVING a consequence and unwittingly contributing to one was implicit.”

I and tons of other people linked his first column and said our piece, so now we link his explanation and let him say his. I’ll leave it to you to decide if he sufficiently acquits himself. In the meantime, I’d suggest that Steigerwald look up the definition of the word “imply.”

Alex Wood to try pitching out of the stretch

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Pedro Moura of The Athletic reports that Dodgers starter Alex Wood plans to pitch out of the stretch throughout the 2018 season. Wood got the idea when he watched Nationals starter Stephen Strasburg pitch against the Dodgers.

Wood, 27, finished last season 16-3 with a 2.72 ERA and a 151/38 K/BB ratio in 152 1/3 innings. That’s a mighty fine season, one in which many pitchers would not dare to mess with something that isn’t broken.

Interestingly, Wood indeed has had better results with runners on base — when he would pitch out of the stretch — as opposed to the bases being empty, with a respective OPS allowed of .523 versus .684, respectively. Over his career, he has allowed a .617 OPS with runners on and .706 with the bases empty.

In response to Moura’s tweet about Wood, retired pitchers Dan Haren and Jered Weaver took the opportunity to burn themselves. Haren tweeted, “I pitched a few seasons completely out of the stretch actually, just not by choice.” Weaver responded, “Sometimes I would just step off and throw the ball in the gap myself because I knew the hitter would do it anyways.”