The Mets escaped with a 7-5 victory over the Angels on Saturday. The Angels scored three times in the top of the ninth to cut the deficit from five to two runs. Reigning AL MVP Mike Trout even came to the plate with the bases loaded and a chance to tie the game or give his team the lead with a grand slam. Fortunately for the Mets, Addison Reed was able to limit Trout to a sacrifice fly.
Mets manager Terry Collins told the media after the game he briefly considered intentionally walking Trout with the bases loaded. Via Newsday’s Anthony Rieber:
The first thought is, ‘I’d rather almost walk this guy than give him a pitch to hit.’ Fortunately, Addy made some good pitches on him. That’s the kind of situation where you look back on the time when Buck Showalter walked [Barry] Bonds with the bases loaded rather than pitch to him and I had . . . the same feeling.
Indeed, the Diamondbacks intentionally walked Barry Bonds with the bases loaded in 1998.
On Sunday, Trout showed the Mets why they should fear him. He hit a two-run home run in the second inning and an RBI double in the third, helping the Angels jump out to a 9-0 lead. Entering Sunday’s action, Trout was hitting .343/.456/.730 with 13 home runs, 31 RBI, 29 runs scored, and eight stolen bases. FanGraphs once again lists him as the major league leader in Wins Above Replacement (2.9) just past the first-quarter mark of the season.
Though Tim Tebow got off to a hot start in his minor league debut with the Single-A Columbia Fireflies, homering in two of his first three games, the former NFL quarterback has not performed all that well. Through 32 games and 127 plate appearances, he is hitting .221/.307/.327 with just the two home runs, 11 RBI, and 16 runs scored.
Tebow playing in a major league game remains a far off fantasy and minor league teams are very thankful for that, actually. As CNBC’s Sarah Whitten reports, Tebow has substantially increased attendance at minor league games, both home and away. Home attendance in Columbia has increased by nearly 40 percent. Road attendance is up between 80 and 120 percent depending on the stadium in question. Citing Baseball America, Whitten notes that Tebow was responsible for $44,200 in additional sales per night at road stadiums.
Tebow may not be hitting, but as long as he keeps bringing fans to the ballpark, the Fireflies will find a spot in the lineup for him. Money talks.
News of musician Chris Cornell’s death sent shockwaves through the U.S. on Thursday. Cornell, the legendary frontman of Soundgarden, Temple of the Dog, and Audioslave, reportedly committed suicide in his hotel room in Detroit.
The Tigers honored Cornell by using song titles from his career in their media notes. The Detroit Free Press posted a picture:
The Mariners also honored Cornell with a pregame moment of silence on Thursday. Cornell was born and raised in Seattle and Soundgarden was part of the burgeoning grunge scene that started in Seattle.