Blogger at NBC Sport.com's HardballTalk. Recovering litigator. Rake. Scoundrel. Notorious Man-About-Town.
Pop quiz, hot shot!
Your team isn’t very good, your stadium situation is in flux for the umpteenth year in a row and you’re coming off a year in which your were 29th out of 30 in average attendance. What do you do? WHAT DO YOU DO?
You lower beer prices. From the Chronicle:
Opening day for the Oakland Athletics is less than a month away, and fans are already abuzz following team president Dave Kaval’s announcement that beer prices have been lowered at the Oakland Coliseum.
In a video posted to the A’s Facebook page, Kaval revealed that a 20-ounce serving of one of the 77 beers on tap will cost $10 for premium selections and $8 for domestic during the 2017 season.
Comparatively, a 12-ounce beer at the Coliseum cost $5 in 2016, or about $.43 an ounce, according to Team Marketing Report. The discounted domestic beer will cost three cents less per ounce.
There are also going to be a lot more food options, including multiple food trucks, at every A’s game.
A winning team is the best way to get butts in seats, but a pleasant and slightly-less expensive day at the ballpark will help matters.
Mexico was eliminated from the World Baseball Classic due to math and a tiebreaker. Mexico won its final game, against Venezuela, but it had a worse runs scored per defensive inning by virtue of losing in a walkoff to Italy a couple of days before. Even if they had still lost the game to Italy but had recorded an out in the final inning, they would’ve advanced because, with an out, there would’ve been a value in the denominator of the tiebreaking ratio.
Yes, Mexico could’ve advanced if it had, you know, won the game or not given up all of those runs, but it’s a pretty dumb tiebreaker rule if it comes down to mathematics that do not really reflect how baseball games are played. Even now, a few days later, confusion reigns over the tiebreaker procedure and Team Mexico continues to fume over the outcome. Or at least first baseman Adrian Gonzalez does:
Given that Gonzalez will be 38 the next time the WBC comes around there’s a good chance he wouldn’t be involved anyway, but this is not the kind of endorsement Major League Baseball and the WBC would like from Mexico’s highest-profile player. Especially one who is widely considered a leader and role model of other players.
The Washington Nationals announced that they have released catcher Derek Norris. Norris was placed on waivers over the weekend but Washington was unable to make a trade with anyone.
Norris, 28, hit only .186/.255/.328 with 14 home runs and a .528 OPS for the Padres in 2016 and with Matt Wieters, Jose Lobaton and Pedro Severino in camp, it’s not shocking that the Nats cut him loose, even if they did trade for him back in December.
Still, backup catchers never die, so it’s likely that Norris will find a job fairly soon.