Thomas Tull, the chairman and CEO of Legendary Entertainment — which has produced countless movies including Pacific Rim, The Dark Knight, The Hangover movies, Watchmen, 300, Inception, Clash of the Titans, Man of Steel and The Town — has been elected to the Board of Directors for the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum, it was announced today.
Of course, Tull’s place on the board does not come by virtue of his work on “Pacific Rim.” It comes by virtue of a little baseball flick they put out last April called 42. It was quite a good one. His reverence for baseball history as shown in 42 — and his connections in the motion picture and entertainment world, obviously — will likely serve the Hall of Fame well.
The rest of the board: Chairman Jane Forbes Clark, whose grandfather, Stephen C. Clark, founded the Hall of Fame, Vice Chairman Joe Morgan; Hall of Fame players Phil Niekro, Brooks Robinson, Frank Robinson and Tom Seaver; Major League Baseball Commissioner Bud Selig; major league owners Bill DeWitt Jr. (St. Louis), David Glass (Kansas City) and Jerry Reinsdorf (Chicago White Sox); former MLB President Paul Beeston; minor league owner Bill Gladstone (Tri-City Valley Cats), long-time sports executivs Dr. Harvey Schiller, Kevin Moore, president of the Clark Estates, Inc. and former Hall of Fame Chairman Ed Stack.
With Tull on the board, however, I can now put my great two loves together — Batman and baseball — and ask him (a) why the BBWAA gets to vote for the Hall of Fame; and (b) what in the hell was everyone thinking when they made “Dark Knight Rises?”
The Yankees are facing a convoluted path to the postseason, and they didn’t do themselves any favors after Todd Frazier fell for Ryan Goins‘ hidden ball trick in the third inning of Friday’s series opener. With one out and Frazier on second base, Jacoby Ellsbury skied a deep fly ball to right field, where it was caught by Jose Bautista just shy of the warning track and tossed back to Goins at second. Goins faked the throw to Marco Estrada, then sneakily (or not so sneakily, depending on your vantage point) gloved the ball and caught Frazier off the bag for the third out.
Of course, it helped that Frazier’s back was turned during the throw, so Goins’ fake-out may not have been as obvious as it was when the Yankees reviewed the tape several minutes later.
Goins earned another spot on the highlight reel in the sixth inning, mashing his second grand slam of the season while Frazier — and the rest of the Yankees’ offense, sans one home-run-record-slaying Aaron Judge — scrambled to catch up. The Yankees currently trail the Blue Jays 8-1 in the bottom of the eighth inning, and will need to pull off a comeback (and hope the Astros and Athletics clinch their respective games) before they can lay claim to a playoff spot.
The Blue Jays have shut down left fielder Steve Pearce for the remainder of the season following a lingering case of lower back stiffness. Pearce has not appeared in a game since September 8, when he was forced to exit in the first inning after experiencing back pain during his at-bat. Per Ben Nicholson-Smith of Sportsnet.ca, he’s scheduled to return to Florida next week, where he’ll receive epidural injections to address the pain.
Pearce, 34, impressed in his first season with Toronto. He battled through a calf injury during the first half of the season and finished the year with a modest .252/.319/.438 batting line, 13 home runs and a .757 OPS through 348 PA. By September, the Blue Jays started testing the waters with outfield prospect Teoscar Hernandez, who shouldered the bulk of the starts in left field after Pearce was sidelined with back issues.
With the Blue Jays all but eliminated from playoff contention, however, there’s no rush to get Pearce back to the outfield. He should be in fine shape to compete for another starting role in spring, and could face stiff competition from Hernandez if the rookie continues building on his .278 average and three home runs this month. The veteran outfielder is slated to receive the remaining $6.25 million on his contract in 2018 and will be eligible for free agency in 2019.