And That Happened: Tuesday’s scores and highlights

55 Comments

Braves 6, Royals 3: I suppose the Braves will lose again at some point. I just don’t know when that point is. The team has 25 homers in 13 games.

Yankees 4, Diamondbacks 2: I wasn’t watching this, but as I was going to bed people on Twitter were noting that Mariano Rivera was coming into the game and saying stuff about the 2001 World Series. Which, sure, I guess I understand. But holy mother of heck, that was nearly 12 years ago. Think about your life 12 years ago and ask yourself how relevant anything that was happening to you then is now. Then ask yourself whether you honestly think someone like Rivera is really affected by the 2001 World Series in April 2013.

Rangers 4, Cubs 2: Craig Gentry made a diving catch with two outs in the ninth inning and the bases loaded on a Darwin Barney shot to left that would have at least tied it if it weren’t caught and would have likely won it if Gentry had dived and totally missed. Craigs are pretty clutch, though, so he had it the whole way.

Orioles 5, Rays 4: It wasn’t pretty but Jake Arrieta got his first win since last June. Tampa Bay has lost four in a row and seven of eight.

Rockies 8, Mets 4; Rockies 9, Mets 8: A freezing, snowy doubleheader? Mmm, sounds like a total blast. David Wright had two blasts in the opener in a losing cause. Jordan Pacheco had the game-winning hit in the 10th in the night cap. I’m going to guess that this is the most miserable pair of games the Mets have endured in ages, simply because of weather and crap.

Red Sox 7, Indians 2: Ubaldo Jimenez was, like, 15-1 to start the season a couple of years ago. It’s true. I remember it. If the Indians were smart he’d end this year 0-2, having never thrown another pitch. Because something ain’t right with this guy (1.2 IP, 2 H, 7 ER, 5 BB).

White Sox 4, Blue Jays 3: The White Sox rallied for two in the ninth then held off as the Jays tried to claw back in the bottom of the inning. After the game Paul Konerko said “It was a gritty win.” After which he was sued for copyright infringement by the Arizona Diamondbacks.

Marlins 8, Nationals 2: Ryan Zimmerman’s defensive problems continue, as his throwing error in the fourth led to four unearned Marlins runs. Those four runs were more than the Marlins had scored in all but one of their previous 13 games. Zimmerman has had four errors in the past five games.

Twins 8, Angels 6: Joe Mauer is 8 for 10 in this series so far after going 4 for 5 with three RBI in this one. Talk to some random Twins fans, though, and they’ll still say he’s a problem for some reason that eludes me entirely.

Brewers 10, Giants 8: Just when we finally get the Barry Zito bandwagon all booked up with passengers, gassed up and onto the on-ramp, it throws an engine rod. Two and two-thirds inning, eight hits, nine runs for Barry, including a grand slam to Yunieskey Betancourt for cryin’ out loud.

Athletics 4, Astros 3: Remember that stuff about how the NL Central teams are gonna miss having the Astros to kick around this season? The A’s here are the other side of that coin, as they’ve beaten Houston five times already. Meanwhile, AL East and AL Central teams have to face real baseball teams as they compete with AL West teams for the wild card. Because the unbalanced schedule is so fair.

Tigers 6, Mariners 2: Miguel Cabrera drove in four and Doug Fister gave the Mariners another reminder that, welp, maybe they shouldn’t have traded him away (7 IP, 4 H, 2 ER).

Padres 9, Dodger 2: Alexi Amarista drove in four and Jason Marquis tied the Dodgers up. Look, when you face that kind of star power, you’re just not gonna win often, Dodgers fans. On the bright side I suppose there’s a decent chance that Vin Scully got to fill time with more legends and tales from the ancient and classical canon, so there’s that.

Phillies 0, Reds 0: SUSPENDED: This game will be picked up where it left off, scoreless in the ninth inning. They should make all the players stay in uniform on the field in the exact positions they were sitting/standing when the game was called. That would be bitchin’.

Cardinals vs. Pirates: POSTPONED: Nothing that happened in the two innings they got in will actually count. It’s like it never happened. For example, if Andrew McCutchen had murdered Yadier Molina in the first inning, he would do no jail time for it and Molina would have been resurrected. THAT’S how this rule works.

Bonds, Clemens left out of Hall again; McGriff elected

John Hefti-USA TODAY Sports
9 Comments

SAN DIEGO – Moments after Fred McGriff was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame, almost two decades after his final game, he got the question.

Asked if Barry Bonds belonged in Cooperstown, a smiling McGriff responded: “Honestly, right now, I’m going to just enjoy this evening.”

A Hall of Fame committee delivered its answer Sunday, passing over Bonds, Roger Clemens and Curt Schilling while handing McGriff the biggest honor of his impressive big league career.

The lanky first baseman, nicknamed the “Crime Dog,” hit .284 with 493 homers and 1,550 RBIs over 19 seasons with six major league teams. The five-time All-Star helped Atlanta win the 1995 World Series.

McGriff got 169 votes (39.8%) in his final year on the Baseball Writers’ Association of America ballot in 2019. Now, he will be inducted into Cooperstown on July 23, along with anyone chosen in the writers’ vote, announced Jan. 24.

“It’s all good. It’s been well worth the wait,” said McGriff, who played his last big league game in 2004.

It was the first time that Bonds, Clemens and Schilling had faced a Hall committee since their 10th and final appearances on the Baseball Writers’ Association of America ballot. Bonds and Clemens have been accused of using performance-enhancing drugs, and support for Schilling dropped after he made hateful remarks toward Muslims, transgender people, reporters and others.

While the 59-year-old McGriff received unanimous support from the 16 members of the contemporary baseball era committee – comprised of Hall members, executives and writers – Schilling got seven votes, and Bonds and Clemens each received fewer than four.

The makeup of the committee likely will change over the years, but the vote was another indication that Bonds and Clemens might never make it to the Hall.

This year’s contemporary era panel included Greg Maddux, who played with McGriff on the Braves, along with Paul Beeston, who was an executive with Toronto when McGriff made his big league debut with the Blue Jays in 1986.

Another ex-Brave, Chipper Jones, was expected to be part of the committee, but he tested positive for COVID-19 and was replaced by Arizona Diamondbacks President Derrick Hall.

The contemporary era committee considers candidates whose careers were primarily from 1980 on. A player needs 75% to be elected.

“It’s tough deciding on who to vote for and who not to vote for and so forth,” McGriff said. “So it’s a great honor to be unanimously voted in.”

In addition to all his big hits and memorable plays, one of McGriff’s enduring legacies is his connection to a baseball skills video from youth coach Tom Emanski. The slugger appeared in a commercial for the product that aired regularly during the late 1990s and early 2000s – wearing a blue Baseball World shirt and hat.

McGriff said he has never seen the video.

“Come Cooperstown, I’ve got to wear my blue hat,” a grinning McGriff said. “My Tom Emanski hat in Cooperstown. See that video is going to make a revival now, it’s going to come back.”

Hall of Famers Jack Morris, Ryne Sandberg, Lee Smith, Frank Thomas and Alan Trammell also served on this year’s committee, which met in San Diego at baseball’s winter meetings.

Rafael Palmeiro, Albert Belle, Don Mattingly and Dale Murphy rounded out the eight-man ballot. Mattingly was next closest to election, with eight votes of 12 required. Murphy had six.

Bonds, Clemens and Schilling fell short in January in their final chances with the BBWAA. Bonds received 260 of 394 votes (66%), Clemens 257 (65.2%) and Schilling 231 (58.6%).

Palmeiro was dropped from the BBWAA ballot after receiving 25 votes (4.4%) in his fourth appearance in 2014, falling below the 5% minimum needed to stay on. His high was 72 votes (12.6%) in 2012.

Bonds has denied knowingly using performance-enhancing drugs, and Clemens maintains he never used PEDs. Palmeiro was suspended for 10 days in August 2005 following a positive test under the major league drug program.

A seven-time NL MVP, Bonds set the career home run record with 762 and the season record with 73 in 2001. A seven-time Cy Young Award winner, Clemens went 354-184 with a 3.12 ERA and 4,672 strikeouts, third behind Nolan Ryan (5,714) and Randy Johnson (4,875). Palmeiro had 3,020 hits and 568 homers.

Schilling fell 16 votes shy with 285 (71.1%) on the 2021 BBWAA ballot. The right-hander went 216-146 with a 3.46 ERA in 20 seasons, winning the World Series with Arizona in 2001 and Boston in 2004 and 2007.

Theo Epstein, who also served on the contemporary era committee, was the GM in Boston when the Red Sox acquired Schilling in a trade with the Diamondbacks in November 2003.

Players on Major League Baseball’s ineligible list cannot be considered, a rule that excludes Pete Rose.