Just got an email from reader Chris Bell, relating a cool story about Rays infielder Elliot Johnson, bro:
Prior to the Rays game last night, I was with a few buddies tailgating in the parking lot. Out of the blue I posted a tweet to Elliot Johnson that I was in the lot, and to come out and play catch. He comes out into the lot, in full game gear minus the jersey (with a glove and a ball) and plays catch with us … after the game we were behind the dugout, Elliot spots us and tosses us a few game balls. What a great experience, Elliot couldn’t have been a nicer guy.
The video can be seen here. Very, very cool on the part of Johnson.
The Cubs’ defense — or lack thereof this year — has been a topic of conversation as it could help explain why the team hasn’t played at the elite level it played at last year.
Manager Joe Maddon tried to go into detail about that but ended up channeling his inner Rex Ryan. Via CSN Chicago’s Patrick Mooney.
If, in the future, Joe Ross ever complains about a lack of run support, point to his first four starts of the 2017 season.
Ross started on April 19 in Atlanta against the Braves, on April 25 in Colorado against the Rockies, on April 30 at home against the Mets, and on May 23 at home against the Mariners. In those games, the Nats’ offense scored 14, 15, 23, and 10 runs respectively for a total of 62 runs, or an average of 15.5 per start. Ross was the pitcher of record for seven, eight, 10, and 10 runs for a total of 35 runs (8.75 runs per start), which would still make him the major league leader in run support by that restrictive standard.
Among qualified starters — Ross did not qualify — entering Tuesday’s action, the Rockies’ Antonio Senzatela led the way according to ESPN, averaging 7.11 runs of support in nine starts. The Rockies scored double-digit runs in only three of those starts, oddly enough.
Per the Nationals, the 62 runs of support for Ross is a major league record in a pitcher’s first four starts of a season.