Craig Calcaterra

Blogger at NBC's HardballTalk. Recovering litigator. Rake. Scoundrel. Notorious Man-About-Town.

Video: Adrian Beltre tries to deke an ump with a “catch” near the seats


They say that you miss 100% of the shots you don’t take. Which is to say that Adrian Beltre had absolutely nothing to lose by pretending that he actually caught the foul ball he snagged after it bounced into the seats and back out again in the Rangers game against the Mariners last night.

My favorite part of it was the reaction of the women in the front row behind him. It’s entirely possible they didn’t see the ball bounce and were genuinely cheering a good play by Beltre. But I really want to believe that they knew he was trying to deke the third base umpire and were being supporting actors in the drama.

The Daily News would like to remind you that Barry Bonds used PEDs


Today’s New York Daily News sports cover is teases a story about how Barry Bonds doesn’t think A-Rod will catch his home run record. Which is not exactly huge news given that he’d have to hit 75 homers in two seasons to break the record and the odds of that happening are really low. It’s also just the latest in the line of  “hey, now that Barry Bonds is back in baseball, let’s ask him about current players” stories. I suppose those are fun enough, but again, it’s not exactly front page news.

But hey, Bonds + A-Rod is a story, always. We certainly know that here, so I won’t begrudge the Daily News its story. The cover, though, is hilarious:

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I imagine, somewhere, there is a person who both knows and cares who Barry Bonds is AND has no idea that he took PEDs. It’s hard for me to imagine such a creature — the people who don’t care about him and the people who do know about his PED use are legion, of course — but I presume at least one or two of them exist in the wild. This cover and its asterisk and oh-so-clever pun must be for them.

Or it’s possible that the people at the Daily News who do Bonds and A-Rod stories are like Guy Pearce in “Memento” and they must constantly write about the PED connections or else it will totally fall out of their minds.

Madison Bumgarner some trouble finding the right sized shoes


This is a fun little story which, while in and of itself is kind of pointless, gives you a glimpse into what ballplayers think about and go through to do what they do.

It’s from Ken Rosenthal and it’s about Madison Bumgarner. Bumgarner has dealt with a couple little annoying health issues this spring, including a ribcage issue and some problems with his feet. Rosenthal’s story is about how he went about dealing with the foot problem, at least for a while: changing shoe sizes. He’s worn 13s forever, had a footwear guy tell him he needs 15s, tried the 15s and got relief but then went back to 13s. This information, by the way, was the subject of a media embargo. No, really. Read Rosenthal’s story to hear about it.

We hear all the time about mechanics and stuff and how many variables go into them. We hear about tweaks as well, and just how small they can be. Given that a guy who has pitched at the highest levels is still messing with things like shoe sizes, you have to figure that we only hear about a fraction of the tweaks and things, real or imagined, baseball players think about in going about their business. It’s gotta be a complicated business.

(h/t Jessica, who would probably let a major league team hire her as a footwear consultant).