Great Moments in stupid steroids grandstanding

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Newsday’s Wallace Matthews will not be out-crazied by anyone. After positing — against all evidence, really — that Bud Selig will be remembered as a worthless, failed, commissioner, he suggests one way for the Budster to rehabilitate his legacy:

The way he can do it is simple. All Bud Lite has to do is declare that – under the powers granted the commissioner to act in the best interests of the game – baseball will once again recognize Roger Maris as the all-time single-season home-run leader and Hank Arron [sic] as baseball’s career home-run king.

End of story, cue the crescendo, ring down the curtain on a transcendent commissionership.

Matthews says such a move would take “courage” and “integrity.”  If by courage and integrity he means “stupidity” and “ignorance,” sure, I’m totally with him. And that stupidity goes beyond Wallace’s seeming inability to spell Hank Aaron’s name.

Setting aside all of the chaos such a move would foment, when does Wallace propose that baseball start recognizing records again?  Now? Ten years from now?  Tell us, Wallace, when did the “steroid era” begin and end?  Also, given that one of the most high-profile steroids cheats of the era was a pitcher, what does Matthews propose to do about those records?

And while we’re asking questions, does Matthews even think that steroids are a problem apart form how they impact the big records?  Because as I sit here right now, I can’t recall him ever commenting on what steroids mean for, say, the borderline minor leaguer or the desperate veteran just trying to hang on. With Matthews, steroids only matter for one reason: records, records, records.  Though Matthews probably counts that as three reasons (using his fingers for the counting).

Here’s some advice, kids: whenever someone is peddling simplistic solutions to difficult problems, they’re almost always 100% full of it.  Steroids in baseball and how they impact the big records is a complicated issue. Matthews’ solution is so brainless, it gives the concept of simplicity a bad name.  You do the math.

Report: Pirates to convert JB Shuck into two-way player

JB Shuck
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Rob Biertempfel of The Athletic reports that the Pirates have decided to convert outfielder JB Shuck into a two-way player. Recent comments relayed from the club’s director of player development, Larry Broadway, indicated that the outfielder would be coached in developing his pitching skills while working at Triple-A Indianapolis.

Per Broadway, the change would be enacted to help the veteran outfielder develop some much-needed versatility in the majors, where he’s only ever been limited to outfield and DH responsibilities. Well, except for the two games in which he pitched an inning of relief: once, against the Nationals in a blowout 11-4 loss in 2016, then in a similarly painful loss to the Diamondbacks this past April. During the latter outing, he finished the game with a 13-pitch ninth inning after allowing just one hit and one walk.

Add to that one minor-league outing in 2012, and the 31-year-old Shuck has pitched just three times over the course of his 12-season career in pro ball. While he has three years of experience on the mound from his college days, he’ll need quite a bit of preparation to handle the kind of workload expected from a two-way outfielder/reliever: 20+ innings pitched over a season and 20+ games played as a designated hitter or position player.

Still, his lack of experience doesn’t seem to faze Broadway, at least not this early in the process. There’s no word yet on how soon Shuck would be expected to debut his new skillset on a major-league level.