Spring training is in full swing, and with some regularity, we're seeing some actual baseball again. Box scores, game recaps, and player assessments are running afoul, and in less than a month now, we have real, meaningful baseball again. I'll be honest; ST trips don't intrigue me as much as regular, or dare I say it, post season trips do, which is why I've made such little effort to make my way down to Florida. But with all the excitement in the air, the stories and happenings all around the baseball world, and some of you folks having fun down in Florida, I have to admit that I'm enviously wishing I had the means to jet off to Orlando and just drive around and absorb as much baseball as I can, so that being said, maybe in future year I'll do such.
Now if it would just stop thunderstorming, I would say that this is a wonderful time of the year to be a baseball fan, but regardless, it's not going to stop Things Read in Other Moms' Basements, your look at links from the other teams in the National League East division, from happening every Saturday as we have it.
Jose Reyes does indeed have thyroid problem - MLB.com
This is unfortunate news for Reyes, the Mets, and their fans. Until further notice, Reyes is on the shelf until doctors can find out the best way to handle his overactive thyroid. It's one of those scenarios where he feels fine, and is itching to get back onto the field, but it's not until he exerts a lot of physical activity in which it could begin to hamper him. I was hoping that this wasn't the case, because regardless of whom he plays for, he's always a fun player to watch. But alas, since this is the Mets, it's never this simple - Jose Reyes claims he doesn't have a problem. Sigh. Admission is the first step to recovery. He'll be out anywhere from 2-8 weeks, and likely miss the opener.
Not a Rookie - Daniel Murphy - Minor League Ball
This is kind of why I like doing TRIOMB, because I'm genuinely learning more about other players. Based on pretty much my exposure to Murphy being only when the Braves play the Mets, I often just thought how overrated he was. He was often times an easy out, and his defense has led to at least two come-from-behind victories for Atlanta to my recent knowledge, but apparently, he's not bad when playing everyone else, according to John Sickels who points out his adequate career line, plus fielding, and positive UZR rating.
Goose Gossage calls K-Rod a clown - NY Daily News
Ahh, New York. In this link, is a brief mention of how HOF Goose Gossage calls K-Rod a clown for all his excessive celebration after he converts a save:
"I don't think there is any place for it in the game. You respect that other team."
"I have no idea who he is,"
K-Rod likely to go back to wearing glasses - MLB.com
Due to the pinkeye, contact lenses are currently not an option for Mr. Celebration. That being said, it looks like Rodriguez is going to have to go back to the Kareem Abdul-Jabbar glasses, like the ones he wore with the Anaheim Angels all those years ago.
Kyle Snyder signs with the Mets - Mack's Mets
(via Amazin Avenue)
Typical journeyman four-A pitcher (who has a ring) signs with the Mets to fill out potential arm space. He can start or relieve, and has done plenty of both throughout his tenures with the Royals, Red Sox, and most recently, the AAA Buffalo Bisons.
Sandy Koufax can't even help Oliver Perez - Metstradamus
Despite the advice given to him by the legend, and being ITBSOHL, Perez still gets shelled. Sure, it's just ST, but it's still amusing to cry foul so early, as it pertains to the Mets.
The Weakest Link - MetsBlog
All that off-season training out in Arizona, the ITBSOHL, and advice from Sandy Koufax, and people are still saying this kind of stuff. The sky is also blue, and human beings need oxygen to live.
Who's running the show? - FanGraphs
(via Amazin Avenue)
As it stands, nobody is necessarly sure where prospect Jenrry Mejia is going to start, whether it's going to be in Double-A as a starter, or on the big-league club, as a reliever. The decision is apparently Jerry Manual's, with Omar Minaya kind of nodding his head in the background, when it should kind of be the other way around, like most baseball clubs operate. Lots of comparisons to Neftali Feliz, David Price, and Joba Chamberlain as examples of ways to and not to bounce to and from the minors in different roles.
Double Standard? - Section 518
(via Amazin Avenue)
Mets fan gripes about the double standard of Jesus Sucre's walkoff blast and subsequently getting mugged at first base in a Spring Training game, compared to the excessive celebration flag that was thrown when Robin Ventura was mugged at first base after winning the 1999 NLCS in extras innings with a grand slam single. There's a pretty huge difference between pre- and post-season...
Catcher Omir Santos hits inside-the-park grand slam against Nationals - MLB.com
I'm not sure who should be laughing at this more - the Nationals, laughing disgustedly, at Willy Taveras arguing with an umpire over a ball being a ground-rule double which allowed for this to happen, or the Mets, giddily giggling at the fact that a backup catcher just hit an inside-the-park slam.
Omir Santos drawing interest from Orioles and Rangers - Mets Blog
And speaking of Santos, two teams are reportedly interested in him. Likely for a backup role, since the Rangers have both Jarrod Saltalamacchia (remember him?) and Taylor Teagarden, and the O's have one of the many Jesuses in baseball, in Matt Wieters where is your god now.
One good outing prompts Jerry Manual to consider A-baller to 25-man roster - MLB.com
Sure, he got Hanley Ramirez and Dan Uggla retired in the process, and I'm pretty sure this is more one of those confidence-building power plays, but it doesn't change the fact that it's still just an ST game, and it sounds silly to us basement dwellers.
Are they really "Los" Mets anymore? - Mets360
(via Amazin Avenue)
When I made my veiled comment last week, I was aware of the ethnic tide gradually changing over in Flushing, but here's an article stating it officially.
Jesus only needs 27 pitches to complete two perfect innings in ST debut - MLB.com
Two hits, four groundballs, two strikeouts, one of which was Miguel Cabrera, for Stephen Strasburg's first encounter with live ML opposition. Set him up like a wind-up toy, with two off-speed pitches, followed by a heater he couldn't catch up to. Cabrera describe's Jesus's fastball:
I haven't seen this many cameras at a ST game since Daisuke Matsuzaka - Nats320
Naturally Jesus's debut was bound to garner a lot of attention, as pretty much anyone and every with a camera was around to try and snap a shot. Interestingly though, forgotten in the hype was the fact that Rick Porcello was quietly grounding everybody out for three scoreless innings.
Doesn't change the fact that he's going to pull a Tommy Hanson - MLB.com
Regardless of his holy performance, GM Mike Rizzo insinuates that his plans for Strasburg aren't going to change, which means, he's probably going to start the season in the Minors.
The differences between fastballs from 96-100mph - Red Reporter
(hat tip: Federal Baseball)
Nothing to do with any particular team, but since FB found it, it goes with them - RR shows us the differences between fastball ranging from 96mph to the rare 100mph pitch, and how drastic a 1mph difference between two speeds changes the numbers.
Hey-soos Flores, sent to Dr. James Andrews - Federal Baseball
Anyone who pays any attention to baseball knows what that name means, but the good news is that it's not for Tommy John, but there's no such thing as a trip to DJA without some extensive DL time. But very unfortunate for Flores, who was really blossoming into a good hitting catcher before all these shoulder woes kept popping up on him.
Desmond's ST case makes Guzman's future a little blurrier - MLBlogs
If Guzman starts the season in a bench role, Stanley King, his agent, will seek a trade. Which will be a little difficult, considering Guzman is owed $8M for the 2010 season.
"Everyday" Eddie Guadardo, among others, first round of Nats cuts - Federal Baseball
As we all know, cuts happen, and nobody is more surprised and disappointed by his release than long-time veteran, Eddie Guadardo, who was only given two innings, where he gave up four runs on seven hits, and threw only a total of twenty pitches, before being given the axe.
Nyjer Morgan having a tough time sliding - MLBlogs
Morgan once injured himself sliding head-first a long time ago, and Jim Riggleman wants him to start sliding feet first. It's hard to break old habits, and during ST, Morgan had a mental slip, and slid head-first again. But like a good employee, he quickly apologized to the skipper for the slip up.
Jim Riggleman "talks" about pitching - Fire Jim Bowden
(via Amazin Avenue)
I counted six "you know's" in the quote alone. This doesn't deter my opinion that the Nationals will be better than the last two years, and I'm going to chalk it up as Riggleman just not being a good speaker in general.
Nats fans talk about Tim Dierkes, Tim Dierkes shows up - Washington Nationals Fan Forum
FYI, Tim Dierkes is the guy that runs/maintains MLBTradeRumors.com - his opinions on the Nationals' offseason are being discussed, and naturally not everything is well received, and in the midst of the snowballing, Dierkes himself shows up to address the fans in person, and does so pretty tastefully, too.
Chien-Ming Wang schedule to have bullpen session next week - MLBlogs
The road to NL Comeback Player of the Year begins next week as Chien-Ming Wang is scheduled to be taking his first bullpen session off a mound. This will be the first time he has pitched off a mound since July 4th, 2009.
"Harper is now batting a team-leading .408/.500/.831 with six homers and 20 RBI in a total of 20 games."
At the age of 17, no less.
Former Nationals closer trying to start-over with the Mariners - Examiner
My former drinking buddy, Chad Cordero, is trying to find a job again, currently working out in Mariners camp. Between 2005 and 2007 he converted 113 saves, made one all-star team, and won a DHL Delivery Man award, but in 2008, his right arm, for lack of a better term, fell off (torn side, labrum, bicep). But he's had surgery, and has been on the slow road to recovery, and I'm hoping he can find a spot out in Seattle, with Chris Woodward.
I know what I'm doing next time I go to Disney - Nats320
In Downtown Disney, there's apparently a Rawlings display where you can watch official employees hand-stitch together an official MLB baseball. Anyone down there for ST should check this out, I certainly would if I were down there.
Buzz Killington chimes in on the 2010 Phillies - The Good Phight
Every team has a Buzz Killington - the fan that points out every fault possible about their team, with the old adage "I'm only being realistic." Nah, it's all good, though. This story points out a lot of the factors why the Phillies might not be the juggernaut everyone expects them to be, from Rollins gradual slide since being MVP, the age gap between Polanco and Feliz, Howard's ineptitude against lefties, and so on, and so on, but as far as I'm concerned, they are still, the team to beat.
To Arms! Why Phillies Pitching Should Surge in 2010 - The Good Phight
I like this look at a baseball season - take out extra innings, and the bottom of the 9th on the road while losing, and there are 1458 innings in a season. A rational look at the probables and just how efficient the projected starting Phillies rotation should be at eating a giant chunk of all those innings, with obviously, the more innings eaten, the less the bullpen has to eat, and the more efficient a rotation should be in comparison to their opponents.
Make up your mind! Kendrick or Moyer? - MLB.com
Every week, Ruben Amaro, Rich Dubee, and Charlie Manuel contract one another about whom is going to be the 5th starter. Amaro says Moyer. Manuel says it's a toss. And now Dubee says it's Moyer's position to lose. The reality is that Kendrick is young, and has the potential to be better, but Moyer has experience, and a completely unrelated large salary. Screw 'em both - give it to Ryan Vogelsong.
J.C. Romero's delay gives Phillies a little breathing room on 5th starter - Beerleaguer
Romero's hit a little speedbump on the road to recovery, but that's not such a bad thing - it allows the Phils to hold off on the battle for the 5th starter, since whomever doesn't get it can be put in the bullpen until Romero returns. It's hard to say who will face that reality, but Kendrick has been pitching well this ST, having been obsessed with following in Roy Halladay's footsteps all March thusfar.
Moratoria - Clichés that need to go - Phillies Nation
The link is to part 2, which applies to mostly all baseball fans, but the first part is definitely geared more towards Phillies fans in general. But it's a pretty good list of some excessively overused terms, sayings and cliches that I honestly wouldn't mind seeing go away.
PSA to the Detroit Tigers - speak with your players - MLB.com
I'm not really complaining here, because I like Polanco at 3B instead of Feliz (for us) - but in hindsight, Polanco was allagedly likely to accept arbitration had it been offered to him in Detroit, but was allowed to leave instead, because the Tigers didn't want him to reject it and sign elsewhere, forfeitng the draft pick in the process.
Brian Schneider happy to be on the Phillies - MLB.com (video)
The former resident of Lehigh Valley, Schneider talks about how happy he is to bring his McCann-beating defense to the Phillies, and his bouncing around the NL East. I hope he faces the Braves often, because he's rocking some numbers against Atlanta, that McCann probably won't be able to achieve against Philadelphia: .197/.280/.289
Phillies sign another Hawaiian - Beerleaguer
Four-A caliber infielder, Keoni DeRenee, who spent 10 years in the minor leagues of the Braves, Yankees, Diamondbacks and Red Sox, before heading to the Independent Leagues signs with the Phillies. He's typically a light-hitting speedster, but given his likely age, he's gotta be grasping at straws. I wonder how much of this is in relation to Shane Victorino's Hawaiian roots?
Hank Blalock signs with the cross state Rays instead of Fish - Marlin Maniac
Considering Blalock would have likely gotten a ton more playing time in Miami as opposed to Tampa, one has to believe that Blalock's motivations were one of wanting to either stay in the American League, or thinking the Rays have a better shot than the Marlins, but bottom line, a little gravy train-ing has to be involved here.
Brett Carroll working with Chris Coghlan - Fish Stripes
Brett Carroll, a not very good hitter, has been working out with Chris Coghlan, a very good hitter this offseason. Coghlan now claims that Carroll's swing looks better, is more fluid, and could be a better hitter in 2010. I wonder if Carroll is now allowing the voices in his head tell him when to swing or not?
Groin injuries plaguing Marlin outfielders - MLB.com
Maybe it's the cold weather? Cameron Maybin and the Devil suffered "tweaks" in their groins this week; Maybin while running the bases, and Ross, while taking batting practice. Sure, both of them are acting as if nothing is wrong, but groin injuries are the ones that typically nag and nag and nag all throughout the season if proper rest is not given to them.
Burke Badenop likes to write screenplays - Fish Stripes
Good to see players with aspirations other than baseball, because as we all know, baseball careers sure don't last forever. But he's going to have a long way to go to get any film accolades, unlike his teammate, catcher John Baker's excellent rendition of Braveheart.