New Rays outfielder Colby Rasmus is still smarting a bit from not winning the American League Gold Glove Award. Though his defensive numbers were outstanding — his 31.0 UZR/150 was best among outfielders (min. 800 defensive innings), according to FanGraphs — Brett Gardner, Mookie Betts, and Kevin Kiermaier took the hardware.
Rasmus attributes his empty trophy case to people in the show not liking “long hair and redneck folks,” and Tony La Russa conspiring against him. Via Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times:
You know how the game is. In the show they don’t necessarily like long hair and the redneck folks, that’s just the way it goes. My good old friend Tony La Russa he has a lot of pull in the game, so you never know. I just try to play the game how I play it. I play hard. I play the game kind of (all) out, and rough, so I’ve hurt myself along the way When it comes to back, injuries, they set you back for awards like that.
When Rasmus was 23 and with the Cardinals back in 2010, he went to GM John Mozeliak and demanded a trade due to reduced playing time, stemming from a strained relationship with then-manager La Russa. In a local interview the next summer, La Russa said that Rasmus “doesn’t listen” to his coaches. Rasmus was traded to the Blue Jays shortly thereafter. The day after the trade, Colby’s father Tony ripped La Russa in the media. So, there’s a bit of history here.
As far as Rasmus claiming that “they don’t necessarily like long hair and the redneck folks,” Madison Bumgarner is pretty well-liked and respected around the sport. Adam LaRoche won a Gold Glove back in 2012. Perchance Rasmus is suffering from a persecution complex.
Jaime Garcia has been at the center of trade talks for several days now, but on Friday night, he commanded center stage for an entirely different reason. The Braves’ southpaw went head-to-head with Dodgers’ lefty Alex Wood and mashed his first career grand slam: a two-out, 399-foot blast that cleared the wall in right field and put the Braves up 9-0 in the fifth inning.
The bases-loaded knock was the third career home run for Garcia, whose contributions at the plate have been few and far between over his nine-year track in the major leagues. Not only did the homer mark an impressive career first for the 30-year-old, but it was just the second pitcher grand slam in Braves’ history and the first since 1966.
Garcia looked almost as impressive on the mound during Friday’s series opener, issuing one run, four hits and three strikeouts through his first six innings. The Braves currently lead the Dodgers 12-1 in the top of the seventh inning.
As for whether the slam will affect negotiations between the Braves and Twins? MLB.com’s Mike Petriello put it best:
Athletics’ first baseman Ryon Healy had a scary moment during Friday’s loss to the Mets. Lucas Duda smacked a single to the first base side, where the ball took a high hop and caught Healy in the left temple. He crumpled to the ground after getting struck by the one-hopper, but was eventually able to stand and walk off the field with assistance from a trainer.
Prior to the injury, Healy went 2-for-3 at the plate with an RBI single in the first inning. He was replaced by Yonder Alonso, who finished off the rest of the night’s 7-5 loss with a walk in two plate appearances.
Following the game, manager Bob Melvin told reporters that Healy did not appear to have sustained a concussion as a result of the hit. Healy said he thinks he’ll be good to go for Saturday’s game, though a final decision likely won’t be made until tomorrow.