Mike Oz

  • Shirtless Colby Rasmus is the early favorite for best postseason party dude

    Mike Oz at Big League Stew 24 mins ago

    It seems like every MLB postseason has its No. 1 party dude — the guy who celebrates the hardest when his team wins a series. In 2013, we all marveled at Mike Napoli. Last season, we counted how many beers Madison Bumgarner could chug.

    [Related:  Astros' ace Dallas Keuchel stymies Yankees' bats in AL wild card game.]

    We've only played one playoff game so far, but 2015 has already given us Shirtless Colby Rasmus and Shirtless Colby Rasmus is a postseason party God. He earned it too. His second-inning homer — a gigantic blast to right field off Masahiro Tanaka — was the first run in Houston's eventual 3-0 wild-card win on Tuesday night. 

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  • AL wild card: Dallas Keuchel and two home runs power Astros past Yankees

    Mike Oz at Big League Stew 2 hrs ago

     The Houston Astros live to play another day, beating the New York Yankees in the AL wild-card game and advancing to the ALDS to face the Kansas City Royals. The Yankees couldn't muster much offense against Astros starter Dallas Keuchel, and two Astros longballs off Masahiro Tanaka set the Yankees up to lose 3-0.

    • Colby Rasmus struck first for Houston, launching the first pitch of the second inning off Tanaka deep into the right-field seats. Rasmus hit three homers in the Astros' last three games, so he's been hot. The homer did seem to change the tone of the game, as Tanaka looked dangerously dominant in the first inning. He never seemed the same after Rasmus' blast.

    • Carlos Gomez, like Rasmus, took a big swing at the first pitch of an inning and, like Rasmus, deposited it into the stands. Gomez's homer came in the fourth inning and gave the Astros a 2-0 lead. 

    • And then there's Alex Rodriguez, but let's talk about him in the next section.

    And then there's this:

  • Colby Rasmus punctuates AL wild-card homer with a fun bat flip

    Mike Oz at Big League Stew 4 hrs ago

    The Houston Astros struck first in Tuesday night's AL wild-card game, when Colby Rasmus annihilated the first pitch of the second inning off New York Yankees starter Masahiro Tanaka. It was a looooong homer to right field that gave the Astros a 1-0 lead in the winner-take-all contest.

    Oh, and Rasmus punctuated it with his fun* bat flip:

    [Related: We ranked all 25 possible World Series matchups.]

    *Yes, we really mean fun .

    For good measure, teammate Carlos Gomez gave us a nice — albeit different — bat flip after his fourth-inning solo homer off Tanaka. 

    Carlos Gomez is the Martins Scorsese of bat flips pic.twitter.com/H5JvH0uIdV

    You hit a home run in a wild-card playoff game at Yankee Stadium, go ahead and flip that bat, son. Don't be surprised if you get a fastball to the back in the future — baseball unwritten rules being what they are — but, hey, flip that bat.

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  • MLB playoffs? There are emojis for that

    Mike Oz at Big League Stew 5 hrs ago

    If you're a sports fan of a certain age, having your emojis set up for the playoffs is as important as having a good spread of snacks.

    [Related: We ranked all 25 possible World Series matchups.]

    Thus, Twitter and MLB unveiled on Tuesday custom emojis for the baseball postseason. Each team in the playoffs gets it own emoji that fans can trigger by tweeting a specified hashtag. There are also emojis for the postseason and World Series. Here's a look:

    Just in time for October: #Postseason Twitter emojis! Tweet ‘em while your team makes its #WorldSeries run. pic.twitter.com/z9FNr7tJlM

    Here's the thing, though: The emojis only works as long as the teams are alive in the World Series hunt. So if you're a fan of one of the wild-card teams, you better get those thumbs moving and those hashtags flying.

    More MLB coverage from Yahoo Sports:

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  • This Royals fan made a fantastic video tallying every win and loss this season

    Mike Oz at Big League Stew 8 hrs ago

    We know the Kansas City Royals' record this season. It was an AL-best 95-67, giving them the AL Central title and home-field advantage throughout the playoffs. Even though we know how the Royals' season turned out, this fan-made video that tallied every Royals game is no less entertaining.

    [Related: We ranked all 25 possible World Series matchups.]

    Scott Jones (aka @KCSportsNerd) is the man who created and stars in the video. It's a simple concept but one that he executed to perfection. Each day he answered whether the Royals won in a different way. The results are quite amusing. Jones actually made these videos all season (talk about dedication!) and what you see above is a supercut of all 162 videos. Top-notch stuff.

    BLS H/N: @JimmyFaseler

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  • Ranking all 25 of the potential World Series matchups for 2015

    Mike Oz at Big League Stew 1 day ago

    Geography could give us a cool finale — like the St. Louis Cardinals vs. the Kansas City Royals. A clash of stars could make a righteous World Series — like Clayton Kershaw and Zack Greinke vs. Josh Donaldson and Jose Bautista.

    [ Related: The MLB postseason field is set! Here's the schedule for the opening rounds .]

    Excited? We are. So much so that our panel of Big League Stew bloggers ranked every possible World Series matchup. We put the results together, gave you a quip about each potential series (some more serious than others) and now you're left to debate which series you'd like to see most. Here's our list:

    1. Los Angeles Dodgers vs. Toronto Blue Jays: It’s the best offense in baseball vs. a team with two Cy Young candidates, what’s not to like there?

    2. St. Louis Cardinals vs. Kansas City Royals: Not only is it the Battle for Missouri, but it’s the team with the best record in the AL and best record in the NL.

    19. Pirates vs. Yankees: aka The Revenge of A.J. Burnett.

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  • Matt Williams fired as Washington Nationals manager

    Mike Oz at Big League Stew 1 day ago

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    GM Mike Rizzo talks about firing Matt Williams, state of the Nats

    The Washington Nationals were an utter disappointment this season, missing the playoffs when they were expected to win the World Series, so it's no surprise at all that Matt Williams won't be their manager anymore.

    The Nats made this one quick, making Williams the first MLB manager to lose his job on this Monday after the regular-season concluded. (The Padres canned interim manager Pat Murphy on Sunday). The Williams news was first reported by James Wagner of the Washington Post and later confirmed by the Nats, who not only fired Williams but his entire staff too:

    The #Nats have relieved Matt Williams and his coaching staff of their duties: pic.twitter.com/I9HP64Oar9

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  • The MLB postseason field is set! Here's the schedule for the opening rounds

    Mike Oz at Big League Stew 2 days ago

    Phew! Now that a fun day of Game 162s around Major League Baseball is over, we've got our 10 playoff teams and the schedule for the opening rounds of the postseason.

    A few things came down to the wire and baseball's plan to play to start all the final-day games at the same time proved entertaining, as the Texas Rangers won the AL West, the Houston Astros secured the second AL wild card while the New York Yankees and Pittsburgh Pirates both locked down home-field advantage for their play-in games. Here's the entire playoff field. 

    American League • Kansas City Royals (AL Central champs and No. 1 overall seed) • Toronto Blue Jays (AL East champs) • Texas Rangers (AL West champs) • New York Yankees (Wild Card No. 1) • Houston Astros. (Wild Card No. 2)

    TUESDAY, OCT. 6 AL wild card: Houston Astros at New York Yankees at 8 p.m. ET (TV coverage on ESPN)

    * = if necessary

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  • How the West was won: Rangers clinch division, Astros claim wild card

    Mike Oz at Big League Stew 2 days ago

    On Sunday's final day of the MLB regular season, where every game started at the same time and chaos looked possible, the result was what seemed most likely the past few weeks: The Rangers are going to the ALDS and the Astros are playing in the wild-card game.

    After a stunning ninth-inning collapse on Saturday, the Texas Rangers would have far less drama on Sunday against the Los Angeles Angels, who themselves were trying to keep their postseason hopes alive with a win. Butthe Rangers trounced them 9-2, clinching the division, giving the Astros the wild card and eliminating the Halos.

    [Related: Four things to watch on the final day of the MLB regular season]

    A few other MLB postseason tidbits were figured out Sunday as well: 

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  • MLB Live Blog: Follow all the drama on the final day of the regular season

    Mike Oz at Big League Stew 2 days ago

    Major League Baseball envisioned an exciting final day of the regular season when it scheduled all the Game 162s to start at the same time. That exciting final day is here. And we've got a live blog so you can follow all the meaningful action from baseball's final day.

    [Play a Daily Fantasy contest for cash today!]

    If you missed our rundown of what still needs to be decided, eight teams have something to play for (more on that below). You ready for a fun few hours, baseball fans? Strap in and keep this live blog going as your MLB second-screen experience. Opinions from our experts will be featured here, plus beat reporters for all eight teams with something on the line Sunday.

    More MLB coverage from Yahoo Sports:

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