Wait … did I just get … TOLD?
Everyone gets on the Philadelphia fans when they get mad. Look at how angry and aggressive they are! Please, give me a break. But, on the flipside, the media tries to keep them from being happy. Look no further than Craig Calcaterra. Who? Exactly. Calcaterra is the “Blogger-in-Chief” at Hardballtalk.com which is part of NBC Sports. Calcaterra tweeted last weekend that Philadelphia is “the most insecure fan base on the planet.”
Listen here Craig; let me explain something to you: one championship in 28 years in any sport. Two World Series titles in 128 years of Phillies baseball. We, as a fan base, have every right to be insecure. Have you ever heard of 1964? The MVP for the Cardinals’ World Series Championship team should be the entire 1964 Phillies team for blowing a 6.5 game lead with 12 games to play down the stretch. That alone gives us the right to be insecure. So before you criticize us, how about you spend 10 seconds in our shoes.
There you have it. I shall now walk a mile — or at least ten seconds — in the shoes of Philly fans before I say anything bad about them again. Or maybe not. These shoes feel so … so … insecure.
Seriously, though, the saddest thing about all of this is that the Philly fan commenters here are almost all pretty great. As are most of the Philly bloggers and stuff with whom I interact on Twitter. They appreciate the good run their team is on and are, with a few occasional exceptions, pretty realistic and gracious about life.
I don’t for a second think that guys like this one are representative of the fan base at large. But at the same time, I never see examples of this kind of thing from the fan bases of other teams. It’s just nuts.
Free agent right-hander Tim Lincecum isn’t ready to hang up his cleats just yet. At least, that’s the word from Lincecum’s agent, Rick Thurman, who says the 32-year-old is still “throwing and getting ready for the season” (via Andrew Baggarly of the San Jose Mercury News).
Lincecum may not be ready to enter retirement, but another quote from Thurman suggests that he’ll be picky about where he pitches next. He doesn’t appear open to pitching overseas, and despite not having a contract for 2017 (or even any serious suitors), the right-hander is set on pitching in the big leagues this year. Whether or not he’s willing to take a bullpen role to do so remains to be seen.
While Baggarly predicts some interest in the veteran righty, there’s not much in Lincecum’s recent history to inspire faith in him as a starter, or even a reliever. He picked up a one-year, $2.5 million contract with the Angels following his hip surgery in 2015, and went 2-6 in 2016 with a 9.16 ERA, 5.4 BB/9 and 7.5 SO/9 over 38 1/3 innings. At this point, a minor league contract seems like the surest path back to major league success, though he’s unlikely to find an open spot on the Giants’ or Angels’ rosters anytime soon.
Free agent right-hander Jeff Manship has reportedly signed with the NC Dinos of the Korea Baseball Organization, according to FanRag Sports’ Jon Heyman. The righty was non-tendered by the Indians in December.
Manship, 32, completed his second season with Cleveland in 2016. He delivered a 3.12 ERA, 4.6 BB/9 and 7.5 SO/9 rate over 43 1/3 innings, a slight decline after posting an 0.92 ERA with the club the year before. During eight years in the major leagues, Manship carries a 4.82 career ERA, 3.6 BB/9 and 6.4 SO/9 in multiple stints with the Twins, Rockies, Phillies and Indians.
The right-hander will be joined by fellow MLB transplants Eric Hacker and Xavier Scruggs, each of whom took one-year deals with the Dinos last month. Steve Adams of MLB Trade Rumors notes that each KBO team is allowed up to three foreign players, so Manship will round out the trio when he joins the roster. Any salary terms have yet to be disclosed.