Missed this over the weekend, but Pat the Bat said goodbye to Philadelphia on Saturday, throwing out the first pitch a day after officially retiring.
CSNPhilly.com has a nice story about his farewell. Burrell was clearly appreciative of the honor. And even got misty when he saw the granddaughters of the late John Vukovich there to greet him. And the reception from the fans was warm too. I bet even these guys cheered for him.
Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times reports that the Rays will start a reliever in each of the three games of the club’s weekend series at home against the Orioles. Sergio Romo will start Friday, Ryne Stanek will start Saturday, and Romo will start again Sunday. The Orioles’ starters are TBA at the moment.
This continues the trend that drew attention last weekend, resulting in Angels third baseman calling the strategy “bad for baseball.” I wrote about the potential labor impacts of this strategy as well. The Rays did it against the Angels because they had a right-hander-heavy top of the lineup and didn’t want lefty Ryan Yarbrough to have to face that top of the lineup three times.
The O’s have a righty-heavy top of the lineup as well, as various combinations of Trey Mancini, Adam Jones, Manny Machado, and Jonathan Schoop have batted 1-2-3-4 for most of the season. Romo has limited right-handers to a .702 OPS this season.