13) Dodgers-Astros played in the World Series LY; Los Angeles is the 2nd-biggest city in the country, Houston is 4th-biggest. Lot of stars on both teams; you figure thats an easy choice for the Sunday night baseball game on ESPN.
Nope. New York @ Boston. Go figure.
12) Houston has a young nucleus of great players, yet MLB refuses to promote them. Hell, one of the Astros is married to Kate Upton— show her once an inning.
Nope. NY-Boston. No bueno.
11) Mike Schmidt works on Phillies’ TV on weekends; he was saying Sunday how Rob Manfred was talking about ideas to limit shifting defenses- he was talking to Manfred in Cooperstown last weekend, at the Hall of Fame ceremonies.
One idea was not allowing infielders to have both their feet on the outfield grass; another was making teams have two infielders on each side of second base.
My question is this: if infielders can’t be on the outfield grass, will teams have groundskeepers cut the infield differently, so there is more infield dirt and fielders can still play deeper?
10) Pro tip for watching baseball on DirecTV; if the weather knocks the game you’re watching off because of “weather interference” with your dish, try the Mix Channel (#720). Lot of times, all those games stay on channel #720, even when the game channels are off.
The one exception is Dodger games, which for some reason are never shown on the Mix Channel, no matter how the weather is.
9) Raiders surprisingly cut K Giorgio Tavecchio, will have a right-footed kicker for first time in a long time. Rookie Eddy Pineiro, veteran Mike Nugent will compete for the job— hard to believe Jon Gruden starts the season with a rookie kicker.
8) 31-year old Oliver Drake pitched in relief for the Twins Saturday night; he has also pitched for the Brewers, Indians, Angels and Blue Jays this season after beginning the year in the Orioles’ organization. He is the first player EVER to pitch for five big league teams in the same season.
7) In 2012, when the Oakland A’s made an unlikely run to the AL West title, a utility guy named Brandon Hicks hit two walk-off homers- he played in only 22 games that year.
At 1:40am Saturday morning, a 24-year old OF named Ramon Laureano hit a walk-off single to right-center, giving Oakland a 1-0 win over Detroit in 13 innings. It was Laureano’s first major league game, and his first big league hit. Unlikely moment.
Laureano was a 16th round pick out of NE Oklahoma A&M- he hit .227 in the hitter-friendly AA Texas League last year, but hit .290 in AAA ball this year, before getting the call to Oakland.
6) If the A’s make the playoffs and they make Moneyball 2, Stephen Piscotty will likely be a featured character; he is from the Bay Area, his mom passed away earlier this season, and he is playing his butt off— he made a diving catch in this game that saved at least one run.
5) A’s are 58-25 when they hit a home run, 9-21 when they do not.
4) For me, the coolest part of the Hall of Fame inductions in Canton is that inductees get to pick who introduces them. More and more, family members are being chosen.
3) Hall of Famer/former Eagle Brian Dawkins is only NFL player ever to recover a fumble, pick off a pass, get a sack and catch a touchdown pass, all in the same game.
2) Rumors were about this weekend that Angels’ skipper Mike Scioscia will step down after this season. Scioscia has managed the Angels since 2000.
1))This time last year, Washington Nationals led the NL East by 20 games; this year, they’re in third place, six games behind Philly- the Phils lead Atlanta by 1.5 games.
Also, say what you want about former commissioner Bud Selig; the Wild Card has made baseball pennant races way more interesting. NL Wild Card race will be fun to follow.