Utley collision 3

Dioner Navarro only has a bruise after his collision with Chase Utley


It looked scary and he had to go to the hospital for X-rays, but Dioner can consider himself lucky:


Following up on all of that, Patrick Mooney of CSNChicago.com asked Cubs players and manager Dale Sveum what they thought of the play. They’re pretty much of the opinion that “it’s baseball” and don’t think Chase Utley’s hit on Navarro was dirty.

These plays suck for everyone involved. Ideally catchers don’t block the plate before they have the ball. They’re technically not allowed to anyway, but that rule is ignored 100% of the time. But there’s a reason for that rule beyond mere fair play for the runner. Blocking the plate without the ball, by necessity, means you’re not looking at the runner and are probably not bracing for any kind of collision. You’re a sitting duck, basically, by your own design.

Joe Girardi is not a fan of Game 162 scheduling

Joe Girardi
Getty Images

The Yankees fell behind early to the Orioles on Sunday afternoon, a day after dropping both ends of Saturday’s doubleheader. Their game, as did every other game on Sunday with the exception of the Braves-Cardinals doubleheader, started at 3:05 or 3:10 EDT, a change Major League Baseball recently made to create fairness on the final day of the season.

Girardi is not a fan. Per the Associated Press:

It was cloudy at Camden Yards at 3:05 p.m., but late-afternoon games often make it difficult for batters to see pitches.

Girardi said, “Here’s the thing that bothers me: If it’s a sunny day you’re playing in shadows.”

He added, “If it’s the most important game of the year to get in, I don’t think that’s right.”

Understanding the idea is for every team to play at the same time, Girardi said, “Then play all night games.”

One wonders if MLB had scheduled Sunday’s slate of games for the night, if Girardi would have instead complained about batters losing fly balls in the stadium lights. Furthermore, both teams have to play in the same conditions.

Video: Ichiro Suzuki pitches an inning for the Marlins

Ichiro Suzuki
AP Photo

Marlins outfielder Ichiro Suzuki was given an opportunity to play a new position in Sunday’s series finale against the Phillies. After the Phillies rallied to take a 6-2 lead in the seventh, the Marlins let Suzuki take the hill in the eighth. And, in news that surprises no one, he was impressive.

Though Suzuki gave up a run on two hits, he flashed a fastball that hit the mid-80’s and a breaking ball with some bite.

Suzuki, who turns 42 years old later this month, is 65 hits of 3,000 in his major league career. The Marlins are interested in bringing him back in 2016.