There are few if any consensuses in baseball, but there’s a pretty strong near-consensus that criticizing anything related to Mariano Rivera is bad form. People just don’t want to hear that especially now, as he makes his final victory lap before he retires.
Someone didn’t tell that to Brett Myers who Cleveland.com points out tweeted this the other night:
Not surprisingly, his Twitter replies were overwhelmingly negative, with a view Phillies folks thanking him for helping them win the 2008 World Series thrown in for variety.
Being honest: I think one could make a reasonable case — if one actually cared about such things, which I decidedly do not — that Rivera was not the best choice for the All-Star Game MVP. I just don’t think that someone like Brett Myers will ever be listened to to make that case. And I don’t think that case can really be made on Twitter.
Nothing went right for the Blue Jays this weekend. The club was swept in a four-game series against the Athletics, including a 9-2 loss on Sunday. Not wanting to burn out his bullpen in a lopsided game — and perhaps thinking about the general entertainment value involved — Blue Jays manager John Gibbons decided to send designated hitter Kendrys Morales out to pitch the ninth inning. And in typical baseball fashion, he saw better results than some of the dudes who do this all the time.
Morales, who actually pitched in Cuba nearly 20 years ago, worked around a walk for a scoreless inning. He induced three fly outs and topped out at 87.4 mph on his fastball, per Brooks Baseball. He received a standing ovation on the way back to the dugout. Morales hasn’t been hearing that sort of thing for his contributions with the bat recently.
Morales, 34, is batting just .163/.248/.279 with three home runs through 32 games this season. There’s been some understandable clamoring for top prospect Vladmir Guerrero, Jr. to cut into his at-bats. For his part, Morales has been doing everything he can to break out of his slumber at the plate, including ditching the glasses he started wearing during spring training. Hey, whatever works. Morales also had two of Toronto’s four hits on Sunday.
On the heels of Morales’ first MLB appearance on the mound, it feels rather appropriate that the Blue Jays will get their first look at Angels sensation Shohei Ohtani — at least as a hitter — beginning on Tuesday.