June 2014 archive

Jun 30

For Kyle Seager There’s No Place Like Home

Scan the fWAR leaders for third basemen sometime.  Go ahead.  I’ll wait.  Other than Yangervis Solarte somehow being the most valuable third basemen in New York this season, the sight of the Seattle Mariners’ Kyle Seager sitting third surprised me the most[i].  Sure, he’s a fine player, and I fully expected him to put up …

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Jun 25

Orioles Continued Struggles Closing Games

My favorite Orioles closer is Gregg Olson, which probably says more about when I grew up than any real affinity, but I always remember 1990 when he saved 37 games as being the year when he took his place amongst the elite.  Maybe it was because Bobby Thigpen saved 57 games that season, and for …

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Jun 21

Remembering Kevin Mitchell

Whenever I think of Kevin Mitchell, I think back to an excerpt from Jeff Pearlman’s book The Bad Guys Won: A Season of Brawling, Boozing, Bimbo Chasing, and Championship Baseball with Straw, Doc, Mookie, Nails, the Kid, and the Rest of the … Put on a New York Uniform–and Maybe the Best: [Mitchell] went to …

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Jun 19

Kershaw’s Almost Perfect Game

On Wednesday night, Clayton Kershaw pitched about as well as a human being can pitch.  Kershaw no-hit the Colorado Rockies, striking out 15 in the process while being one Hanley Ramirez throwing error away from the second perfect game in Dodgers’ history.  As it was, it was the 22nd no-hitter in Dodgers’ history, the second …

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Jun 18

In Search of Uncle Charlie

Sometimes I wonder if the days of the curveball have passed.  It seems like a pitched rooted in nostalgia, as if the great ones can only be witnessed on grainy celluloid made famous by Ken Burns.  When I think of monster hooks I envision Sandy Koufax, Bert Blyleven, and Dwight Gooden.  Big leg kicks, electric …

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Jun 13

Dallas Keuchel’s Slider Is Key

I doubt if anyone outside of Houston thought that the Astros would be 31-37 this late into the season, and while they’re still last in the AL West, the Astros have improved seven games upon 2013’s results through the first 68 (24-44) and currently sit a measly two games behind the injury-ravaged Texas Rangers.  This …

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Jun 11

Hit with Authority J.J. Hardy!

It’s a great shame that I don’t follow the Orioles closer than I do.  They have exciting, young foundational players like Manny Machado, Adam Jones, and Chris Davis.  They have a strong farm system filled with pitching quality and depth, the most precious commodity you can have in baseball these days.  Baltimore has/had Buck Showalter, …

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Jun 07

Remembering Edgardo Alfonzo

In my lifetime, there have been precisely two good Mets second basemen. One is Jeff Kent who stuck around for three seasons after the Mets traded David Cone for him, but the absolute best of the group was Edgardo Alfonzo. Sentimentally I want to add both Tim Teufel (a childhood favorite) and Wally Backman (if …

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Jun 03

Predicting No-Hitters: a Fool’s Errand?

I’ve written at length (here and here) about Josh Beckett’s no-hitter and its place in Los Angeles Dodgers history.  In researching those articles, I began to wonder if there was anything related to offensive trends, particularly league-wide, that would be predictive in determining potential no-hitters.  In other words, if I were to crunch some numbers, …

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Jun 01

Encarnacion, Home Runs, and May

We’ll take a slight siesta from examining every angle of no-hitters known to man (don’t worry, there’s more to come) to discuss the terror that Edwin Encarnacion has inflicted upon baseballs this May. Encarnacion finished the month hitting 16 home runs, which tied Mickey Mantle for the AL record for May. The NL and Major …

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