Philadelphia Phillies v Atlanta Braves

Fun facts from the Braves’ 15-13 win over the Phillies

24 Comments

To put it mildly, the Braves and Phillies played a wild one on Wednesday, with Atlanta winning 15-13 on Chipper Jones’ walkoff homer in the 11th. It was the highest-scoring extra-inning game since 2006.

Here are a few things one doesn’t see everyday:

– Roy Halladay gave up eight runs, the most he had allowed since surrendering nine on May 5, 2007 against the Rangers.

– Halladay was working with a 6-0 lead when he gave up six runs in the fifth inning and then two more in the sixth. He was 107-0 in his career in starts in which he was given a four-run lead. The Phillies, though, let him off the hook by rallying in the seventh.

– Brian McCann hit just the fourth grand slam ever given up by Halladay (Evan Longoria hit the last in 2008). He was then poked in the eye by Michael Bourn on an errant high-five after crossing the plate.

– That was the first homer allowed by Halladay in six starts this season.

– Carlos Ruiz knocked in seven runs, besting his previous career high by two. He was the first Phillie to drive in so many runs since Jayson Werth had eight RBI against the Blue Jays on May 16, 2008. The Phillies had previously been 15-0 with Ruiz driving in at least three runs.

– Jones’s walkoff was his first since May 17, 2006 against the Marlins. It was the eighth of his career.

– 2011 NL Rookie of the Year Craig Kimbrel blew his first save in nine chances this season.

– The Phillies lost a game in which they scored 12 runs for the first time since Aug. 3, 1969.

– According to Fangraphs data, the Braves had a 2.3 percent of winning the game at one point in the fifth, saw that jump to 86.9 percent after taking an 8-6 lead in the sixth, dropped all the way back down to 2.7 percent after falling behind 12-8 in the eighth and jumped back up to 87.1 percent after taking a 13-12 lead in the ninth.

Mitt Romney’s sons are trying to buy a stake in the Yankees

TAMPA, FL - AUGUST 30:  Tagg Romney son of Republican presidential candidate, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney gives an interview during the final day of the Republican National Convention at the Tampa Bay Times Forum on August 30, 2012 in Tampa, Florida. Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney was nominated as the Republican presidential candidate during the RNC which will conclude today.  (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
Getty Images
5 Comments

Mitt Romney built his professional life in Massachusetts and was once the governor of the state. As such, it is not surprising that he has long identified as a Red Sox fan. So this has to be troubling to him from a fan’s perspective. From Jon Heyman:

The Romney family is bidding to buy a small stake in the Yankees months after their try for the Marlins stalled. If the deal goes through, it is expected to be $25 million to $30 million per percentage point and thought to be interested in one or two percentage points. The Yankees are valued around $3 billion or more.

The effort is being led by Mitt’s son Tagg, one of his brothers and their business partners. Mitt’s spokesman tells Jon Heyman that he has nothing to do with it personally. Tagg Romney is reported to have been planning a bid for controlling interest in the Marlins, but that has fallen through.

I find this interesting insofar as the M.O. for the Steinbrenners has, for years, been to buy out minority shareholders in the Yankees, not seek more. Indeed, when George Steinbrenner bought the Yankees back in 1973 he held just a bare controlling interest and there were a ton of silent partners, most of which were back in Ohio and knew Steinbrenner from his shipping business. I’ve personally gotten to know some of them over the years as there are a handful of them in Columbus and I crossed paths with them in my legal career. They have almost all been bought out in the past couple of decades. They still get season tickets and World Series rings and stuff. You can tell them by their personalized Yankees plates and the fact that, within the first ten minutes of meeting them, they will tell you that they once owned a piece of the Yankees but got pushed out.

In light of all of that it’s interesting that the Steinbrenners are once again accepting bids for small stakes in the team. Especially from someone whose interest in controlling the Marlins suggests that they do not consider it to be a mere vanity investment. Makes me wonder what the Steinbrenners’ long term plans are.

Max Scherzer still can’t throw fastballs

WASHINGTON, DC - OCTOBER 13: Max Scherzer #31 of the Washington Nationals works against the Los Angeles Dodgers in the fifth inning during game five of the National League Division Series at Nationals Park on October 13, 2016 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)
Getty Images
4 Comments

The Nationals will be many people’s favorites in the NL East this season. Not everything is looking great, however. For example, their ace — defending NL Cy Young winner Max Scherzer — can’t even throw fastballs right now.

The reason: the stress fracture he suffered last August is still causing him problems and Scherzer is unable to use his fastball grip without feeling pain in his right ring finger. He will throw a bullpen session tomorrow, but will only use his secondary stuff.

Scherzer has not been ruled out for Opening Day — the fact that he is throwing some means that his timetable isn’t totally on hold — but you have to figure, at some point, not being able to air things out and use his heater will lead to some problems in his spring training routine.