Craig Calcaterra

Billy Hamilton, Josh Harrison

Billy Hamilton to have season-ending shoulder surgery

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C. Trent Rosecrans of the Cincinnati Enquirer reports that Reds center fielder Billy Hamilton will undergo right shoulder surgery on Friday. The injury: a sprained capsule which has caused him problems for a while now and recently sent him to the DL. There is no structural damage, the Reds say, and he should be ready to go for spring training, but his season is over.

Hamilton has been something less than a complete player in his two full seasons in the bigs, showing off all kinds of speed, of course, but not showing that he can get on base or hit for anything approaching the sort of authority required of a major leaguer. He actually took a step back this year, putting up a line of .226/.274/.289 and only 15 extra base hits in 114 games. He does have 57 stolen bases in 65 attempts, of course.

All of which is to say that it’s good that his shoulder is gonna get fixed, but he needs a lot more than a good shoulder, it seems, to be an everyday major leaguer. Here’s hoping he figures it out, because he’s fun to watch otherwise.

And That Happened: Monday’s scores and highlights

Jeff Samardzija
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White Sox 2, Tigers 0White Sox 3, Tigers 2:  Hats off to Jeff Samardzija for dominating with his one-hit shutout in game one of this doubleheader, but he had some help here. That help came from a Tigers team that has clearly given up, as they saw only 88 pitches from Samardzija on the afternoon. We call a complete game requiring fewer than 100 pitches a “Maddux.” Given how thorough a surrender the Tigers showed here we should call one that requires fewer than 90 pitches an Appomattox.

Blue Jays 4, Yankees 2: David Price was dominant in seven innings of shutout ball. Price got the hell beat out of him by the Yankees back on April 22, allowing eight runs in less than three innings of work back when he played for the Tigers. Since then he’s allowed five runs in 26 and a third innings against them in four starts. That’s a pretty good performance from a midseason pickup against the team you’re fighting for the division.

Red Sox 8, Rays 7Xander Bogaerts grand slam in the eighth inning lifted Boston past the Rays in this game and in the division. The Red Sox, by the way, just as close to a playoff slot as the San Francisco Giants are and only a half game farther away than are the Washington Nationals. While it also says something about parity in the American League overall, it also shows you how much better a second half team the Sox have been than you’ve probably noticed.

Mets 4, Braves 0: Jon Niese combined with Addison Reed, Tyler Clippard and Jeurys Familia for a five-hit shutout. Shelby Miller lost his seventh straight start and is winless in 23 straight outings. This despite allowing only two runs over six. He is dead last among all major league pitchers in run support with 2.45 an outing.

Cubs 9, Brewers 5Anthony Rizzo had three hits, reached base in all five plate appearances and scored three runs and Jorge Soler hit a pinch-hit, 3-run homer as the Cubs’ magic number for clinching a playoff spot fell to four. They’ve won six of seven.

Astros 6, Angels 3: Last week I said — not quite believing if I was being sincere or not and I still don’t know — that it was gut check time for the Astros. They appear to have checked and have found, well, whatever one finds when one checks one’s gut in such situations. Evan Gattis and Carlos Correa each hit two-run homers and Dallas Keuchel allowed one run while pitching into the eighth. They’re now winners of three in a row, are back to a three-game lead in the wild card and remain within striking distance of the Rangers.

Cardinals 2, Reds 1Stephen Piscotty and Tommy Pham have been little baby sparkplugs of late. The fomer doubled in the go-ahead run just after Pham scored the tying run following his leadoff triple in a two-run eighth inning rally. The kids are alright.

Pirates 9, Rockies 3: Jordy Mercer had four hits and drove in two and Starling Marte fell [all together now] a triple short of a cycle. The Pirates’ playoff magic number is now two and they’re the second team to reach 90 wins on the year. That the Cardinals were the first is why Pittsburgh is looking to clinch a wild card and not a division.

Diamondbacks 8, Dodgers 4Paul Goldschmidt Yasmany Tomas and Aaron Hill all homered. It was something of a moral victory for Arizona too, as the Dodgers cannot now clinch the division during this series, preventing them from installing a pool in Dodger Stadium, painting the words “Property of the Arizona Diamondbacks” on it and jumping in. I suppose they could’ve gone to whatever hotel the Dbacks are staying in in Los Angeles and jumping in THAT pool but that would probably the folks at the Marriott or whatever it is.

Orioles vs. Nationals: POSTPONED: Rain came pouring down when I was drowning
That’s when I could finally breathe
And by morning gone was any trace of you,
I think I am finally clean

Wanna turn your phone into a radar gun?

radar gun
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Wanna know how fast that speedball your old friend from high school threw by you and made you look like a fool? Then support this kickstarter from Scoutee, which is developing a device and an app that will turn your smart phone into a radar gun and scouting tool.

It’s a device plus an app. The device fits in the palm of your hand and it’s what actually measures and tracks the pitches. It then communicates with your phone via Bluetooth, and an app makes sense of the data for you. It’ll give you speed, location, type of pitch and allow you to make notes and stuff.

I imagine a lot of us have no real use for it as most ballparks, even minor league parks, have visible radar readouts now. But hey, maybe you wanna live the glamours life of a scout, putting way too many miles on your car, eating food that does no favor for your heart and gut and sitting in the hot sun on the off chance that the kid you’re watching has some potential. Except you’re not being paid for it by a major league club. You’re just doing it for the yuks.

Which isn’t to say this thing isn’t neat. It kind of is. I just wonder what the market is for it. Youth coaches maybe, although focusing on gun readings for kids is probably the opposite of what coaches should be doing given all of the arm problems there are. Pitchers who think they’re amazing, aren’t being scouted for some reason and who want to promote themselves, perhaps. Or, more likely, their dads. Anyone else who needs this information is being supplied with an actual professional grade gun, I’d reckon.

Still: technology is fun, right?

(via Engadget)