You’ve heard me blather for two days now — my favorite hate comment so far was one calling me “calcaterr-ible” — so this is more of a links thing. Two good ones.
First: Tom Haudricourt of the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel talking about the decision making, such as he can determine it, into the length of Ryan Braun’s suspension. It puts to rest the notion — floated by some scribes on Twitter yesterday — that Braun was suspended “50 games for the violation, 15 games for being an a**hole.” Which is hilarious if it were true, but sadly isn’t.
But the notion that it was 65 days because “it just happened to be 65 games left [in the season]. If he had gotten back to them a day later, it would have been 64 games” is a bit curious. If A-Rod delays a week, does he get less of a suspension? Is MLB just trying to put an end-cap on all discipline happening this season?
The other worthy link is from Tim Marchman over at Deadspin, who actually put the question of where the 65 games came from to both MLB and MLBPA. The answers are … less than illuminating.
None of which makes the discipline bad policy or bad form in any way. It just would be nice to know what standards the league is applying and how it’s coming to these decisions. Maybe that’s for after all of the Biogenesis discipline is done. But it should come at some point.
After letting rumors of the deal percolate for the last week, the Athletics officially announced their two-year, $11 million contract with right-hander Santiago Casilla on Friday (and threw a little bit of shade at the Giants, too). As previously reported, the contract includes an extra $3 million in performance bonuses.
Casilla, 36, got his major league start with Oakland back in 2004, racking up a 5.11 ERA and four saves over six seasons in the A’s bullpen. After picking up a minor league deal with the Giants in 2010, the righty flitted in and out of the closing role with varying degrees of success. Notwithstanding a slight downturn in his production rate during the 2016 season, he earned 123 saves and a 2.42 ERA during the past seven years in San Francisco. Securing another closing role might be a little tougher across the Bay, however, with a bullpen that includes fellow closers Ryan Madson, Ryan Dull and Sean Doolittle.
Why is this man smiling? Man, I wouldn’t be smiling if I read what I just read.
This is the week when ESPN’s Keith Law releases his prospect and farm system rankings. He kicks off his content this week with a top-to-bottom ranking of all 30 farm systems. As a rule he limits his analysis to players who are currently in the minors and who have not yet exhausted their rookie of the year eligibility.
For the second straight year, Law ranks the Braves as the best system in baseball. Number two — making a big leap from last year’s number 13 ranking – is the New York Yankees. Dead last: the Arizona Diamondbacks, which Law says “Dave Stewart ritually disemboweled” over the past two years. That’s gotta hurt.
If you want to know the reasons and the rankings of everyone in between you’ll have to get an ESPN Insider subscription. Sorry, I know everyone hates to pay for content on the Internet, but Keith and others who do this kind of work put a lot of damn work into it and this is what pays their bills. I typically don’t like to pay for content myself, but I do pay for an ESPN Insider subscription. It’s worth it for Law’s work alone.