Tag Archives: nationals

The Morning Edition (July 29, 2013)

over Clip art illustration of a Cartoon Tiger with a Missing Tooth

 

From Last Night:

  • Fernandez goes 8, K’s 13, walks none to lead the Fish past Cole
  • Ross narrowly out pitches Corbin to win in AZ
  • Cingrani and Capuano pitch to a draw before Puig sends everybody home
  • Wood shuts down the Giants, who waste a nice start from Lincecum
  • Gordon’s 12th inning bomb lifts the Royals
  • The Nats unload on the Mets, win 14-1
  • Lester leads the Sox to a 5-0 win
  • Toronto walks off on Houston
  • Jeter homers in his return, Soriano leads the Yanks to victory

What I’m Watching Today:

  • David Price tries to stay hot versus the Sox (6p Eastern)
  • Weaver faces Garza (7p Eastern)
  • Beachy makes his 2013 debut (7p Eastern)
  • Jacob Turner goes against the Mets (7p Eastern)

The Big Question:

  • Are the BioGenesis suspensions coming today?

Reports have the suspensions coming down this week, likely all at once. We’ll see which players are actually affected, which rumors were wrong, and which players have kept their names out of the press. The impact on the pennant race will be real, but likely not substantial because a given player can only have so much impacted over 55 games. Teams will scramble to find replacements, but the impact will be unpredictable. We’ve had months of speculation that was absolutely unnecessary, now we’re actually going to see something happen. Stay tuned.

The Morning Edition (July 28, 2013)

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From Last Night:

  • Sale goes the distances, allows 1 R, and loses to the Royals (#KillTheWin) as Davis, Coleman, and Holland blank the Sox
  • Bourn hits a leadoff HR against Darvish, no one else scores as Masterson out duels Yu
  • Nova goes 7, gives up 1 R, but Archer outshines with a CGSO
  • The Braves win a close one against the Cards with 2 in the 8th
  • 3 Nats HR back Haren over the Mets

What I’m Watching Today:

  • Rays try to stay hot behind Moore (1p Eastern)
  • Cole and Fernandez hook up in Miami (1p Eastern)
  • Corbin welcomes the Padres to Chase (4p Eastern)
  • Miller and Medlen on ESPN (8p Eastern)

The Big Question:

  • Are there going to be any deadline deals?

Despite what Heyman, Rosenthal, Olney, and Morosi are telling you there doesn’t seem to be any traffic on the trade market. We’ve had some low profile deals including Feldman and Nolasco and the Cubs did move Garza, but it doesn’t look like a flurry of deals are coming because the teams that are due to sell aren’t budging. The Jays, Royals, Phils, Angels, and Mariners are out of it but not ready to commit. Once that happens we could have some deals, but the second wild card is keeping a lot of teams in it. Peavy’s probably going to move, but now that we’re five days from the deadline I’m actually willing to talk about trades. Trade speculation is boring, but real trades are interesting and if we’re going to get a few, they’ll be coming soon. It’s important to remember that trades can only have a small impact on a team’s chances because there are only 50-55 games left after the deadline comes. You have to replace a terrible player with a great one to gain more than a win or two.

The Morning Edition (July 27, 2013)

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From Last Night:

  • Tribe blows a big lead, but Ryan Raburn walks off to save them in the 11th
  • Minor out pitches Wainwright in a 4-1 win for the Braves
  • Rays shell CC, move into first place
  • The Royals finally cash in on a great start for Shields, beat the Sox
  • Huge 7th inning bails out Dickey in Toronto
  • Mets dominate the Nats in game one, but waster Harvey’s gem in game two as Zimmerman walks off
  • Chatwood strikes out 11 Brewers

What I’m Watching Today:

  • Darvish faces Masterson in Cleveland (7p Eastern)
  • Chris Sale faces the Royals (7p Eastern)
  • Bumgarner welcomes the Cubs to AT&T (10p Eastern)

The Big Question:

  • How do you feel about Ryan Raburn?

Raburn hit a big 3 run walk off homerun on Friday, improving his season numbers to .273/.371/.533, good for a 153 wRC+ in 186 PA. He is now the Indians second best position player with 2.0 WAR which ties his career high for an entire season. I’ve always loved Raburn because he has the biggest range of possible outcomes of any human being I’ve ever seen. It’s equally likely that he hits 3 HR in a game as it is that he falls down the dugout steps and injures Jason Kipnis. He hits huge homeruns and makes the more untimely mistakes. There’s something quite compelling about that in my book. He’s also playing above average defense and walking 11.8% of the time. This guy.

The Morning Edition (July 26, 2013)

Clip art illustration of a Cartoon Tiger with a Missing Tooth

 

From Last Night:

  • Buehrle gets a 2 H, 2 BB, CGSO against the Astros
  • Marlins win as Eovaldi and Nicasio combine for 13 shutout innings, but neither factor in the decision as both teams score late
  • Kuroda goes 7 scoreless to lead the Yanks past Holland and the Rangers
  • The Nationals cough one up to the Pirates, but Harper rallies back to walk off

What I’m Watching Today:

  • Jordan Zimmerman welcomes the Mets in Game 1, Harvey goes in Game 2 (130p/7p Eastern)
  • Newly minted ground ball machince John Lackey takes on the O’s (7p Eastern)
  • Wainwright faces Minor in ATL (7p Eastern)
  • Homer Bailey meets Clayton Kershaw (10p Eastern)
  • Felix gets the Twins (10p Eastern)

The Big Question:

  • What’s a good sign a player’s breakout is real?

Edwin Encarnacion has really improved his stock in the last couple of seasons with the power, but the K% is coming down really nicely. There aren’t many big power bats who don’t strikeout more often than this:

pic1

The Morning Edition (July 25, 2013)

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From Last Night:

  • Strasburg goes 8, allows 1 R on 2 H/0 BB/12 K, but loses despite a 4-2 final score…yeah…think about that…#KillTheWin
  • Price goes the distance on 97 pitches to lead the Rays over the Sox
  • Santana pitches well, but the Royals need a walk off to beat the O’s
  • Garza is superb in his Rangers debut, beats the Yanks 3-1
  • Braves beat the Mets but lose Hudson to a broken ankle
  • Dodgers get 5 in the 10th to beat the Jays
  • Kamzir helps the Indians pummel the M’s
  • The Angels blank the Twins, 1-0

What I’m Watching Today:

  • Wood and Wheeler in NY (1230p Eastern)
  • Burnett faces Gio (1230p Eastern)
  • Kuroda takes on Holland (2p Eastern)
  • Latos goes against Greinke (10p Eastern)

The Big Question:

  • Are the Royals even a self-aware entity at this point?

Apparently, the Royals who are 47-51, 8 GB, and have no reason to expect they will play better, are considering buying at the deadline despite it being a seller’s market. Additionally, they are considering upgrading in right field. I wonder if the Rays would part with Wil Myers? I legitimately feel pain for Royals fans. This is embarrassing.

The Morning Edition (July 24, 2013)

Clip art illustration of a Cartoon Tiger with a Missing Tooth

 

From Last Night:

  • Myers and Longoria homer, but the Rays finally lose to the Sox
  • Dodgers out slug the Jays, 10-9
  • Cole leads the Pirates over the Nats
  • Miller gives the Cards 6 scoreless in win over the Phils
  • Yanks get two in the 9th to top the Rangers
  • A fine start from Fernandez leads the Fish past the Rockies
  • Parker and Cosart pitch well in Houston

What I’m Watching Today:

  • Liriano and Strasburg face off in DC (7p Eastern)
  • Price goes against the Red Sox (7p Eastern)
  • Garza makes his Rangers debut in NY (7p Eastern)
  • Jacob Turner heads to Coors (830p Eastern)

The Big Question:

  • Which young NL pitcher, not named Harvey, do you like?

These numbers are fun. After last night, take a look:

Name IP K% BB% ERA- FIP- xFIP- WAR
Shelby Miller 110.2 26.50% 6.70% 76 81 88 2.3
Jose Fernandez 111.2 24.70% 9.30% 72 84 92 2.0

I was on the Miller bandwagon early, but Fernandez has really impressed me lately. Tough call.

The Morning Edition (July 23, 2013)

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From Last Night:

  • MLB suspends Ryan Braun for the remainder of the season
  • Rangers acquire Garza from the Cubs
  • Matt Moore gets the CGSO as the Rays beat the Sox, move to 18-2 in their last 20
  • Feldman’s solid start lifts the O’s over the Royals
  • Gee flirts with a no-no, but the Braves take the game in the 9th
  • Grilli hurt in win over the Nats

What I’m Watching Today:

  • Jarrod Parker and Jarred Cosart pitch in Houston (8p Eastern)
  • Miller pitches against the Phils (8p Eastern)
  • Jose Fernandez heads to Coors (830p Eastern)
  • Corbin gets the Cubs (930p Eastern)

The Big Question:

  • Thoughts on the Braun suspension?

Obviously the Braun news populated the headlines on Monday, and I have a lot of disjointed reactions I’d like to share. Recognize that these don’t all go together or in order:

  • I want MLB or MLBPA to lay out the evidence they have against him. I understand Braun accepted the punishment, which is a partial admission of wrongdoing, but the info that has been made public is not grounds for punishment. I want to know what it is they have on him before I make my final judgments about a person’s character. I see no reason to rush to judgment.
  • Braun broke the rules, it appears, and lied about it boldly. That was wrong, but let’s not act like this is such a terrible thing. He should be punished, but this is a sport that has no punishment for dangerous felonies like DUIs. Braun behaved badly, but this isn’t the worst thing an MLB player has done in the last two seasons. Perspective would be nice.
  • Also, most people break rules to get advantages in life. Braun is to blame and deserves punishment, but you’re not perfect either.
  • Braun being linked to BioGen doesn’t mean the failed test in 2011 was legitimate. The two may not be related. Again, I want to see some evidence. If they are related, my reaction will be different. Evidence is important, speculation is not.
  • People are going to town on Braun for tearing down the “sample transporter” person from 2011 and think he should apologize. That person didn’t do his job correctly, even if Braun was dirty. Braun’s guilt doesn’t make up for that guy’s failure. Braun might not have been nice to him, but Braun’s career was at stake. You might have done the same.
  • Finally, imagine how you would feel if it was you or a close family member. I’m not asking you to feel sorry for him, but I am asking you to temper your reaction accordingly. He’s a public figure and there are no consequences for anything you say behind a keyboard, so you probably feel okay spewing vitriol. But seriously, this is a person who made a bad choice. He didn’t kill anyone, he didn’t endanger others. The reaction to Braun is not properly weighted to the severity of the offense.
  • If he’s guilty, he should be punished. But that’s it. The focus should be on the field, not on the people who made choices to take themselves off of it. Instead of vilifying Braun, why don’t you celebrate the ones left in the game.

The Morning Edition (July 22, 2013)

Clip art illustration of a Cartoon Tiger with a Missing Tooth

From Last Night:

  • Harvey dominates the Phils over 7 innings, allows 3 H and 10 K as Lee struggles
  • Masterson flirts with a no-hitter in a 7-1 win over the Twins
  • Giants waste a great start from Bumgarner
  • Colon drops a CGSO on the Angels
  • Wainwright’s 8 strong innings lead the Cards over the Padres
  • Felix turns in 6 solid inning as the Mariners thrash the Astros
  • Peralta and Alvarez throw gems, but it takes a Gindl walk off in the 13th to finalize the Crew and Fish
  • Kershaw throws well, Zimmermann gets rocked in Dodgers win at Nats
  • Bailey K’s 12 but the Reds fall to the Bucs
  • Rays win…again

What I’m Watching Today:

  • Darvish comes to Yankee Stadium (7p Eastern)
  • Scherzer and Sale (8p Eastern)
  • Garza showcase continues against Skaggs in AZ (930p Eastern)
  • Lincecum returns to the mound for the first time since his no-hitter (10p Eastern)

The Big Question:

  • Should the Rays scare you?

The answer is yes under certain conditions. First, if you cheer for the Rays, no the Rays should not scare you. Also, if you’re team is wildly out of the race, then you should just enjoy baseball and not sweat the standings. But everyone else should be worried because the Rays are dangerous. They probably won’t sustain a 17-2 pace for the rest of the season but they are putting the East on notice. On May 7th, the Rays were 14-18 and looked like they weren’t going to be able to provide their usually excellent starting pitching. Since then, they are 44-23, which is a 106 win pace. This is a good team that just had their rough stretch early, which is often a nice way to lull your opponents into a false sense of security. I picked the Rays to win the East and haven’t wavered. They are baseball’s 3rd best offense and 11th best pitching staff and have one of baseball’s best managers and easily the best GM. This is a team that should scare you. They have one of the game’s best in Longoria, an excellent super utility guy in Zobrist, the underrated Jennings, the young Myers, and the lightning in a bottle Loney. Not to mention the pitching is back. They Rays are hot and are only going to cool off a little.

The Morning Edition (July 21, 2013)

Clip art illustration of a Cartoon Tiger with a Missing Tooth

From Last Night:

  • Mariners become the first team to ever score 4+ runs while getting just one hit as they beat the Astros in a game in which Bedard left the game without allowing a hit after 6.1 IP
  • Indians waste a solid start by Kluber, fall to the Twins
  • Kuroda shuts down the Sox, Yanks edge past Lackey
  • Rays stay hot against the Jays
  • Greinke and Gio pitch great, but the Nats take it in 10

What I’m Watching Today:

  • Lee, Harvey…Oswald? at Citi Field (1p Eastern)
  • Kershaw takes on Zimmermann in DC (130p Eastern)
  • Felix goes to Houston, strikeout warning in effect (2p Eastern)
  • Wainwright goes against the Padres (2p Eastern)

The Big Question:

  • Who’s regretting the offseason now?

Something I noticed last night was that 11:25pm, the Blue Jays, Royals, and Angels (the 3 AL teams that made big moves this offseason) all have the same number of wins as the Mariners. All at 45. The lesson here is that big moves don’t make a good team. I’m not knocking what the Blue Jays did, but the Angels and Royals made poor moves. To recap, the Angels gave $125 million to Josh Hamilton (which is risky in itself) instead of doing anything to improve their pitching staff and the Royals traded away a great young hitter for a starting pitcher who can’t help the team win because they don’t score any runs. Even if Shields and Myers were a good swap in terms of dollars and value, it certainly didn’t make sense to trade from a weakness to get more pitching when that new pitching was only enough to make you a .500 team. Setting that aside, my point is that the national media latched onto the big moves and called these teams the big winners in the offseason. That was silly. You have to look at the whole picture and the whole picture almost always favors the club that adds complimentary pieces instead of big names. The media chases stories, MLB teams should chase wins. Remember that next time you’re reading offseason winners and losers. Texas “had a terrible offseason” if you listened to the writers. Funny how that works out.

The Morning Edition (July 20, 2013)

Clip art illustration of a Cartoon Tiger with a Missing Tooth

 

From Last Night:

  • Brandon Barnes hits for the cycle in a loss to the Mariners
  • The Cards shell Marquis, but the Padres make it interesting
  • Holland goes 8, but gives up 3 runs in a loss to the O’s
  • The Phils pummel the Mets setting Kendrick up for a terrible start that still ends in a win
  • The Rays win an 8 HR slugfest with the Jays
  • Soriano coughs up a strong start for Strasburg

What I’m Watching Today:

  • Hamles versus Wheeler at Citi (1p Eastern)
  • Kuroda and Lackey (4p Eastern)
  • Burnett takes on Latos (4p Eastern)
  • Greinke goes against Gio (7p Eastern)

The Big Question:

  • Where does the cycle rank among cool baseball achievements?

Obviously the cycle is awesome for it’s value (at least four times on base) and it’s cool factor (getting each type of hit) but where does it rank among other cool things. No-hitters, perfect games, 4 HR games, CGSO? Let’s take a look at the numbers since 1916:

  • Perfect Games: 21
  • No-hitters: 204
  • Cycles: 240
  • Cycles w/a walk: 39
  • 4 HR: 14
  • 15 or more K: 232

If you asked me I’d most prefer to attend a perfect game, no question, but all of them would be a lot of fun. I’ve been to about 3-4 near no-hitters and a 14 K game.

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