This is random, but I enjoyed it like crazy.
Edward Achorn wrote a book about Old Hoss Radbourn last year (the corporeal one, not his ghost, which haunts Twitter). I never did get around to reading it for some reason, but I’ll remedy that soon. In the meantime, I have greatly enjoyed his day-by-day diary of the 1884 Providence Grays baseball season — Old Hoss’ team — over at his website.
Today’s entry is a peach. It’s not about Radbourn, who was suspended when the Grays met the Phillies on July 22nd, but Charlie Sweeney, Hoss’ younger rival in the Grays’ rotation (a rotation which included only two men back then). You should read the story in its entirety, but know that it starts with Sweeney waking up late, realizing that he has missed the morning workout and may miss his start that afternoon. His explanation to his manager:
“If you want to know why I was not here this morning, I will tell you. I was drunk last night and did not get home,” Sweeney confesses.
The game gets even more interesting. And the game story ends better than any game story you’ve read in your life:
“At the conclusion of the game,” the Sporting Life reports, “the foolish pitcher left the grounds in the company of two women” — prostitutes, described as “very bad company,” whom he had escorted to the grounds in his half-drunk state — “and an hour later could have been seen staggering up the principal street of the city”
And people think Carlos Zambrano is trouble.
Tigers first baseman Miguel Cabrera didn’t play in the Tigers’ season finale against the White Sox, but he has officially clinched the AL batting title with a .338 average following Sunday’s action. It’s Cabrera’s fourth batting title in his last five seasons.
Marlins second baseman Dee Gordon entered Sunday’s season finale with a bit more pressure. He was in a tight race with Nationals outfielder Bryce Harper for the NL batting title, trailing only by rounding to the fourth place, .3307 to .3306. Gordon went 3-for-4 in a loss to the Phillies while Harper went 1-for-4 in a loss to the Mets. As a result, Gordon officially won the NL batting title with a .330 average. It’s the first batting title of Gordon’s brief career. Hanley Ramirez was the Marlins’ last batting champion, doing so in 2009.
Bill Shaikin of the Los Angeles Times reports that the Angels are expected to announce Billy Eppler as their new general manager on Monday. Eppler had been serving as the assistant general manager with the Yankees.
Jerry DiPoto had been the Angels’ GM but he stepped down on July 1. DiPoto later joined the Red Sox in an advisory role, then was named the Mariners’ new GM last week.
The Angels lost to the Rangers in Sunday’s season finale, which eliminated them from contention for the second AL Wild Card spot. They finished 85-77. Most of their regulars are under contract for the 2016 season, but Eppler will have to decide whether to tender contracts to seven arbitration-eligible players while filling in the rest of the roster.