Red Sox offering discounted concessions, beer for April games


Fenway Park has historically had sellouts and expensive beer. Perhaps because they’re worrying about the former, the Sox are about to do away with the latter, at least for a limited time:

Two-for-one hot dog deals, discounted hot chocolate and a free kids meal are a few of the deals Boston’s baseball team is offering in hopes of attracting more fans to Fenway. But the $2.50 off beer is probably the most effective ploy to get fans back following a 83-loss season in 2012.

Cold weather and a lot of less-than-exciting April home games (the Royals, A’s and Astros are coming to town) is the likely reason for this. So thanks to the Astros, Sox fans will get $5 12 ounce beers.

I suppose there will be some sneering at this, with people saying the Red Sox are desperate or whatever. If that’s your inclination, maybe you need to examine why in the heck you care about the Red Sox’ sellout streak and things like that and examine why you’d do anything about low beer prices other than embrace them wholeheartedly.

Mike Trout has yet to strike out this spring

Rob Tringali/Getty Images

Everyone is well aware of how good Angels outfielder Mike Trout is at the game of baseball. The 26-year-old is already an all-time great, having won two MVP awards — and arguably deserving of two others — and the 2012 Rookie of the Year Award. He has accrued 54.2 WAR, per Baseball Reference, which is right around the threshold for a Hall of Fame career. Trout does it all: he draws walks, he hits for average, he hits for power, he steals bases, he plays good defense.

But here’s an achievement that is amazing even for a player like Trout: he has yet to strike out this spring. In 41 Cactus League plate appearances, he has 10 hits (including a triple and two homers) and six walks with zero strikeouts. Across his career, Trout has a 21.5 percent strikeout rate, right around the league average. He isn’t usually such a stickler for avoiding the punch-out, but this spring he is.

To put this in perspective, 134 players this spring have struck out at least 10 times, according to 938 players have struck out at least once. The only other players to have taken at least 10 at-bats without striking out this spring are Humberto Arteaga (Royals, 23 AB), Tony Cruz (Reds, 18 AB), Oscar Hernandez (Red Sox, 10 AB), and Jacob Stallings (Pirates, 18 AB).

According to Angels assistant hitting coach Paul Sorrento, the lack of strikeouts hasn’t been a conscious effort from Trout, Jeff Fletcher of the Orange County Register reports. Ho hum. The best player in baseball is apparently getting even better.