Tuesday, May 20, 2008

And That Happened

Red Sox 7, Royals 0: It figures. The first night in what seems like forever where the national game isn't the frickin' Red Sox, and a no-hitter happens.

Nationals 4, Phillies 0: Query: is it more impressive to no-hit a punchless team like the Royals, or to simply shut out a more potent team like the Phillies? Does it help if you know that Tony Pena started for the Royals last night?

Cubs 7, Astros 2: While this doesn't make the Edmonds trade any better, it is probably worth noting that the Cubs are about the only team in the NL that has enough offense anyway that it can afford to carry his lack of a bat. The 2-5 hitters go 10-24 with 7 RBI.

Twins 7, Rangers 6: Ron Gardenhire pinch hits with a reliever and has Livan Hernandez on deck to bat when the game ended. In all, he used 22 players, all to beat the Rangers on some random Monday night. I can't decide if that's an example of someone giving their all or an example of someone mismanaging their roster.

Rockies 4, Giants 3: Troy who? Clint Barmes has been on fire since taking over at short. In the month of May he's hitting .440/.481/.640. As for the Giants, I know the Rowand signing was much maligned and that San Francisco is paying him far too much money, but it is worth noting that he's hitting quite well (.322/.390/.521).

Cardinals 8, Padres 2: San Diego is on pace to score 535 runs. No team in the NL has scored fewer than 600 in five years (the 2003 Dodgers) and no team in the NL has scored as a few as 535 in a full season since the 1976 Expos ran up 531. Hell, the Marlins only scored 55 fewer runs than that in the strike-shortened 1994 season. Quick! Somebody stop me before Jayson Stark hires me for his research team!

Rays 7, A's 6: The A's have now lost eight of ten.

Dodgers 6, Reds 5: The other day I suggested that, following a multi-run debacle in a non-traditional save situation, the Reds would cease using ace reliever Francisco Cordero in non-traditional save situations going forward. That approach held sway last night as David Weathers is called into a tie game in the ninth. Single-walk-walk-single-ballgame. Granted those walks were intentional to set up force outs, but using the guy who is arguably your fifth best relief pitcher in a tie game in the ninth inning strikes me as, well, odd.


Andy said...

I'm glad someone else is also annoyed at how often the Red Sox are the Fox/TBS game of the week. What's worse is how often Fox and TBS pick the same game on Saturday and Sunday. (I mean, why not Red Sox on Saturday and then Yankees on Sunday?)

Jason said...

Guys, I know everyone not from the NorthEast hates to see the Sox and/or Yanks on so often. This isn't new and the reason is simple: straight cash, homie. These teams draw legions of viewers and that translates into inflated advertising rates and that's the engine that drives the business of TV.

I know you non-NorthEasterners hate us and our teams and the incessant parade on TV. We get it. It's almost embarassing, too. But, if I am an exec at TBS or ESPN or Fox, I'm trying to get as many games with these teams as I can.

And the off-shoot of all this: Higher revenue-sharing for YOUR teams. MLB is better and healthier when the Sox and Yanks are doing well. It just is.

Hate the Sox and Yanks as competitors to your teams but you should thank them for the increased revenue flows which enable the spate of signings of the younger players.

But what do I know? I'm just a dumb NY'er.

Alex said...

This is cool: 4 of the last 5 no-hitters have been thrown by a guy under 25. Lester, 24; Bucholz, 24; Verlander, 24; Buehrle, 28; Sanchez, 22. Before Anibal's no-no in 2006, the last one was Randy Johnson's perfect game against the Braves in 2004. He was 40.

Peter said...

I understand what you're saying, Jason, and I agree. I don't mind seeing the Red Sox and Yankees on TV all the time (as a matter of fact, I'm usually interested) but I get annoyed with the focus on the angst of Boston fans.

They've had a damn good run of it lately, in every sport, but when the Celtics were on the ropes in these first two playoff series' we still had to read stories about the plight of their fans. Oh, the agony! Imagine only having the best franchise in two major sports and not all three!

Jason said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jason said...

Peter, we can toast the plight of the "troubled" Boston fan anytime you want.

I'm sick of it. They are on an amazing roll yet for some reason, they still think they are both lovable and losers.

Sorry Bostoners: You're now insufferable winners. Get used to it and get used to being hated by everyone else.

CC, sorry to capitalize your comment space with my ramblings.

If anyone wants to debate Boston's insufferability, c'mon over and let's chat: http://itsaboutthemoney.blogspot.com/2008/01/and-youre-more-insufferable-too.html

Jason said...

No-one in New England thinks we're long-suffering angsty types anymore - don't blame us if Fox/ESPN/etc. hasn't recognized the new reality yet.

Jay Seaver said...

And that last comment (mine) is a different Jason. Sorry for any confusion.

Kelly said...

Just for reference, Soto bats SIXTH in the Cubs lineup. (We can discuss anytime what someone with a .420 OBP is doing batting sixth.)

He had 3 of those RBIs on an inside-the-park homerun.

I'd say that was amazing but Prince Fielder had one last year, and that may just about be impossible to top.

Okay, continue discussing those other teams....

cf said...

If it makes ya'll feel better, the red sox are rarely shown on the west coast for the fox game of the week. It's always regional action. Great for those sick of BOS/NYY, not great for us red sox fans on the west coast. Just to clarify, though, i'm not complaining. I like listening to the radio anyways.

Daniel said...

To anyone who understands the MLB, it is obvious why they show Sox/Yanks games on TV. It makes good business sense for the entire league and for the network.

That doesn't mean we have to like it...

From my perspective (a lifelong Angels fan), it's annoying that those two franchises and their fans KNOW that they're on top. It's not that individual fans gloat about it (although as Dave Barry wrote, Boston fans carry 95% of the world's supply of smug), but they act like they root for premier franchises, because they do. And it rankles other teams' fans.

I would love for the Angels to get to that spot, but how do I do anything about it? Go on a door-to-door evangelistic mission? Moreno has done a great job marketing what was a mid-level suburban franchise into a team that draws 3 million+ each year and gets on ESPN's Sunday night game once in awhile, but there's only so far he can take it. So for me, the main problem is that it feels hopeless to ever think that another team will knock those guys off of their lofty perch, no matter how many World Series they win.

Anonymous said...


To amplify CF's comment, the West Coast Fox game on Saturday is almost always horrible. Usually two teams who can't play, almost never the LA Angels, just a snooze-fest from the word go. And then there are the D-list announcers...

As Shyster pointed out, the beloved A's are now 2-8 after spending a game in first. K Suzuki is now batting where he belongs (8th), but a cursory review of ESPN sortable stats reveals the depth of their offensive problems. Of 183 players who "qualify" ie, have sufficient plate appearances, the A's have 3 in the bottom 14 (where they should have 1): Daric Barton, Emil Brown, and K Suzuki.

The problem is compounded because Barton and Brown are corner position players, where normally a team's better hitters are to be found. Since the team is already comprised of a majority part of the Sacramento River Cats roster, plus Frank Thomas, there's no help on the horizon.

Thankfully the pitching is veteran, that should keep the team around .500 and playing a much better brand of baseball than the utterly futile Giants.

Andy said...

I understand why Red Sox/Yankees are on TV so often. They are great teams with huge fan bases. But there are two weekend national games Saturday on Fox, Sunday on TBS. The last two weeks I've gotten the same game both days: Yankees/Indians two weeks ago, Red Sox/Brewers this weekend. I wish they would coordinate so I got more variety. The afternoon weekend games are the ones I have most time to watch.