We’ve heard a lot of stuff from the Mets about maybe moving the fences in to make the park more “fair.” But at least one member of the San Francisco Giants feels that something should be done to AT&T Park. It’s Mark DeRosa, and here was his reaction when asked if the Giants’ home park should have some alternations:
“Without a doubt. Maybe you don’t move the fences in. But I think you saw maybe two balls go out to right-center this year. So they definitely should cut the corner. Have another wall go across. Maybe put something nice back there. I don’t know. Does San Francisco have a city tree?”
Giants brass says it’s been mentioned before, but that no one is seriously considering it. Bruce Bochy and Hensely Meulens don’t want to hear about it. Nothing is going to happen with that and DeRosa kind of comes off as a whiner.
There was a time when parks were what they were. Some were pitchers parks. Some were hitters parks. Yes, people messed around with dimensions — remember the time the Indians moved the fences way back to turn Alex Cole into the next Willie McGee? — but rarely was the gambit successful. The Yankees won the World Series eleventy billion times with an impossibly big left-center field and eleventy billion times with a more conventional fence. It’s about the players, not the park.
The Giants have a pitchers park. It’s worked out for them pretty good. They’re going to keep those dimensions much longer than they keep Mark DeRosa, that’s for sure.
The Mets had to scratch both Jose Reyes and Wilmer Flores an hour before Wednesday’s game against the Yankees due to ribcage injuries, so Travis d'Arnaud — normally a catcher — borrowed David Wright‘s glove and played third base for the first time in his career. He had played some third base in spring training, but as far as an official professional game goes, he’s never been there.
The first two batters the Yankees sent up to the plate in the first inning were left-handed. But when the right-handed Aaron Judge came up, manager Terry Collins swapped second baseman Asdrubal Cabrera with d’Arnaud. It became a thing. The two swapped once more in the first inning, three times in the second, once in the third, five times in the fourth, once in the fifth, three times in the sixth, four times in the seventh, once in the eighth, and twice in the ninth. It worked, as d’Arnaud didn’t have an opportunity to make a play until catching Todd Frazier‘s pop-up for the first out of the ninth inning — as a second baseman. Cabrera had a handful of opportunities, including immediately after having swapped with d’Arnaud.
The Mets lost 5-3. At the plate, d’Arnaud went 0-for-3 with a sacrifice fly. Cabrera was 1-for-4.
Matt Reynolds and Gavin Cecchini are being recalled from Triple-A Las Vegas so the Mets don’t have to do the “3B-2B shenanigans,” as MLB.com’s Anthony DiComo put it, again.
Cubs starter John Lackey stole the first base of his 15-year career on Wednesday against the Reds. Of course, he spent the first 11 and a half years of his career in the American League, where opportunities to bat, let alone attempt to steal a base, were rare. Lackey entered Wednesday having taken 250 plate appearances, reaching base just 31 times on 17 singles, seven doubles, and seven walks for a .134 on-base percentage. One can imagine the 38-year-old is not exactly the swiftest base runner.
Still, Lackey managed to swipe a bag in the fourth inning. He singled with two outs against Homer Bailey. Then, with an 0-1 count on Ben Zobrist, Lackey broke for second even before Bailey began his windup. Tucker Barnhart stood up to alert Bailey that Lackey was running, so Bailey wheeled around and threw to second base, but Lackey slid into the bag easily safe. It wasn’t a pretty slide, but it did the job.
Lackey, however, was picked off of second base by Barnhart later that inning. Bailey threw a 3-2 fastball wide of the strike zone, walking Zobrist. Lackey had wandered too far off of second base, so Barnhart threw behind Lackey and the tag was applied by Zack Cozart. Lackey was called safe initially. The play was reviewed and the ruling on the field was overturned, ending the fourth inning.
Base Ba’al giveth and Base Ba’al taketh away.