Getty Images

Diamondbacks bringing back bullpen cart


The Arizona Diamondbacks announced today that they are bringing back a thing that hasn’t existed since before their own franchise did: the bullpen cart.

Back in the 1960s, 70s and into the 80s a lot of teams experimented with motorized transportation to ferry relief pitchers into the game from the far reaches of the bullpen, which stood, uh, only a few hundred feet away at most. I didn’t necessarily understand the need for a bullpen cart and I still don’t really get the appeal on a personal level, but bullpen carts were kind of fun, right? Decorated golf carts at worst, near works of art when created with care. The Mariners had a bullpen boat, for cryin’ out loud. That was pretty neat. The last one in existence was a Harley-Davidson motorcycle with a relief pitcher side car used by the Milwaukee Brewers in 1995. Since then, they’ve been the stuff of nostalgia.

The Dbacks model is a modern variation on the theme, in that — like everything else these days — its got corporate sponsorship: it’ll be called the “OnTrac Bullpen Cart,” sponsored by the OnTrac parcel delivery company. Anything to get an announcer to read a plug, I suppose. Or a blog post to give a brand a shoutout.

Whatever, the thing looks like a bullpen cart:

I can’t imagine a super intimidating closer using one of those — “Enter Sandman” or “Hells Bells” lose a bit of their oompf when the pitcher climbs out of that little thing after put-putting to the mound — but maybe intimidation is overrated?

Daniel Murphy will miss the start of the season

Getty Images

Daniel Murphy said today that he will not be ready for Opening Day and will start the year on the disabled list.

Murphy had microfracture knee surgery last October. While he has been able to take batting practice and field ground balls, his lateral movement is still limited. In his absence — which is not expected to last past mid-April or so — Howie Kendrick will get the bulk of the playing time at second base.

Murphy hit .322/.384/.543, smacked 23 homers and knocked in 93 RBI in 2017.