Yesterday I linked a Ron Roenicke complaint — with which I agreed — about how having teams from the same division playing interleague schedules of differing strengths was unfair. And it is unfair in the plainest sense of the term in that, without questions, teams have to face challenges of varying strength while vying for the same prize.
But has it resulted in unjust results in practice? Not so much, says Wendy Thurm of Hanging Sliders who, last March, looked at the varying schedules in the interleague era and concluded thusly:
I have concluded that only two National League divisional races and only one National League wild card race between teams in the same division may have been affected by an unbalanced interleague schedule.
She then followed that up the next week and felt comfortable taking the “may” off of it, saying that “neither the unbalanced interleague schedules nor the unbalanced National League schedules tipped the scales in favor of the team that won each race.”
Check out Wendy’s work. And then let’s ask ourselves how many things we get worked up about — even if there’s a legitimate, theoretical reason to get worked up about them — actually don’t matter all that damn much.
Free agent right-hander Trevor Cahill reportedly has a one-year deal in place with the Athletics, according to MLB.com’s Jane Lee. The exact terms have yet to be disclosed, and as the agreement is still pending a physical, it has not been formally announced by the club.
Cahill, 30, is coming off of a decent, albeit underwhelming year with the Padres and Royals. He kicked off the 2017 season with a 4-3 record in 11 starts for the Padres, then split his time between the rotation and bullpen after a midseason trade to the Royals. By the end of the year, the righty led the league with 16 wild pitches and had racked up a 4.93 ERA, 4.8 BB/9 and 9.3 SO/9 in 84 innings for the two teams.
The A’s found themselves in desperate need of rotation depth this week after Jharel Cotton announced he’d miss the 2018 season to undergo Tommy John surgery. Right now, the team is considering some combination of Andrew Triggs, Daniel Gossett, Daniel Mengden and Paul Blackburn for the back end of the rotation — a mix that seems unlikely to change in the last two weeks before Opening Day, as Lee points out that Cahill won’t be ready to shoulder a full workload by then. Instead, he’s expected to begin the year in the bullpen and work his way up to a starting role, where the A’s hope he’ll replicate the All-Star numbers he produced with them back in 2010.