Author: Craig Calcaterra

carlos martinez getty

Carlos Martinez will have a soft innings cap next season


Cardinals general manager John Mozeliak said that Carlos Martinez will have a “soft cap” on his innings next season if he wins a spot in the rotation. Currently, it’s expected that he’ll battle Marco Gonzales for the fifth starter’s job.

Martinez threw just 99 and two-thirds innings between the majors and minors last year. With St. Louis he started only seven of his 57 games in 2014. He also was primarily a reliever in 2013. While he was almost exclusively a starter in the minors, he has still never thrown more than 108 innings in a season as a pro, so the Cards are taking a better-safe-than-sorry approach.

What that “soft cap” might look like? Well, Mozeliak didn’t say. They’re just going to monitor him for fatigue and give him a lot of rest, one presumes, so they don’t have to pull a Strasburg and shut him down late.

Shane Victorino says he should be the Red Sox’ starting right fielder

Shane Victorino Getty

The Red Sox have a lot of outfielders. A WHOLE lot of outfielders. Including Mookie Betts, Rusney Castillo, Yoenis Cespedes, Hanley Ramirez, Daniel Nava, Allen Craig, Jackie Bradley, Jr. and Brock Holt. They also have Shane Victorino, coming back from back surgery. And as he tells Rob Bradford of WEEI, he thinks that he’s the man in right field:

“If you think there’s somebody better in right, be my guest,” he said. “Obviously health will dictate that. But if I’m healthy if there’s a better outfielder in right field then show me and go out there and do it. I’m not saying that in a cocky or arrogant way. It’s just how confident I am to know I should be the starting right fielder.”

That health is the key, of course. If he is healthy, yes, he should be the starter. He’s probably the best defensive option in right and if he’s close to where he was offensively in 2013 he’s one of the better bats too.

But there are a lot of ifs in all of that, including the if regarding who will be on the Sox’ roster come spring training. Because you have to figure they’ll be trading an outfielder or two.

Pedro Strop was involved in an accident in the Dominican Republic

Chicago Cubs v Cincinnati Reds

Cubs pitcher Pedro Strop was involved in an auto accident in the Dominican Republic. Jesse Rogers of ESPN reports that Strop is doing fine, but there are few details available.

Last month Cardinals outfielder Oscar Tavares was killed in an auto accident in the Dominican Republic. Earlier this week Rangers prospect Ronald Guzman was involved in a fatal accident. Guzman remains jailed in the case, as authorities determine whether or not charges are warranted.

Melky Cabrera prefers not to re-sign with the Blue Jays

Melky Cabrera

Buster Olney of ESPN reports that it is Melky Cabrera’s preference to not re-sign with the Blue Jays. Nothin’ personal, but he just doesn’t want to play on artificial turf.

It’s not clear that the Jays are willing to bring him back, actually, because they spent $85 million on Russell Martin and there’s only so much free agent dough to go around in Toronto.

In other news, Cabrera is correct that artificial turf sucks. So there’s that.

A.J. Hinch likes horrible and awful things for Thanksgiving dinner

Jell-O salad

Me? I pulled a Crazy Ivan and went with beef tenderloin and scallops for dinner yesterday. We called it Surf and Turfsgiving. It was most excellent:

Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday, so I was a bit hesitant to go non-traditional like this, but it turned out great and all of the things I love about Thanksgiving — too much food, booze and being with people I love — were still there, so it turns out that being different about it all was just fine.

But there are limits to what can be tolerated on Thanksgiving. And new Astros manager A.J. Hinch and his family have friggin’ pushed ’em. Get this, from an story about the favorite Thanksgiving dishes of several players, managers and broadcasters.

“I guess I would call it a Jell-O-pistachio salad that my mom made growing up and my wife has continued to keep in the tradition. It’s got a little bit of sweetness to it, it’s got marshmallows in it and a little bit of Jell-O flavor, pistachio flavor. It’s one of those weird dishes I only eat in November this time of year because it’s always been connected to Thanksgiving.”

He helpfully supplies the recipe. Reds broadcaster Jim Kelch eats that crap too. And I don’t even want to contemplate what that  . . . thing was that Padres broadcaster Mark Grant’s family eats. Seriously, go read it. It has Cool Whip, rice and pineapples in it.

You people are awful, really. Yeah, I said it.