- Tim Brown at Yahoo Sports1 day ago
Umpire Joe West could be fined for snatching up a handful of Jonathan Papelbon’s jersey – while Papelbon was still in it – so that West could rid himself of the puerile Phillies reliever and return to his position Sunday afternoon.
He will be criticized for ejecting Papelbon for what Papelbon claimed was a simple jockstrap adjustment and most suspect was not that at all, but rather a gesture that often comes with the phrase, “Yeah, I gotchure boos right here, pally.”
West could even be suspended, presumably, because there are rules against umpires putting their hands on players and other field personnel, no matter the level of the abuse.
He shouldn’t be fined and he shouldn’t be suspended, because good for Joe West.
He may wear this one in the wallet, but from the moment he trudged from his place near second base to the Phillies’ dugout, to his clear and unemotional ejection of Papelbon, to his efforts to disengage from the nuclear Papelbon and his heavy slog back to second base, he was right.Wed, Sep 177:10 PM PDTPhiladelphia at San DiegoPreview Game
- Tim Brown at Yahoo Sports2 days ago
SAN FRANCISCO – The Los Angeles Dodgers have their issues. This we know.
At their worst, they are preening, pouting, half-jog flowers who'd be far better players if they spent as much time in the batting cage as they did wishing they were better taken care of.
The rest of the time, they act as though they are Clayton Kershaw's team.
Give the ball to Kershaw (or, the night before, to Zack Greinke), be mildly focused on defense, extend a few counts, play for something, and what happens happened here for two days in September.
Saturday night: Dodgers 17, San Francisco Giants 0.
Sunday afternoon: Dodgers 4, Giants 2.
What comes of a three-game lead in the NL West with 13 games to play, the next seven against last-place teams in Colorado and Chicago, is, as always, left to the whims of Dodgers attention spans and tendency toward self preservation. (And, perhaps, what happens if/when Hyun-Jin Ryu is unable to pitch again.)
What matters is that Kershaw leads them, if they can allow it, and if they can play to his standards in between his starts. See, he shows up, and he works, and he executes, and he cares, and he delivers.Wed, Sep 1712:10 PM PDTLA Dodgers at ColoradoPreview Game
- Tim Brown at Yahoo Sports3 days ago
SAN FRANCISCO – The coach's kid had stubble on his face. He took the baseball from his dad, a decorated World Series champion who put his hand on his boy's shoulder, nodded and left him to his own.
For the first time in history, Saturday night at AT&T Park, a major league manager stood on a major league mound and gave the ball to his son, and returned to the dugout to watch his son pitch.
Brett Bochy is a 27-year-old right-hander. He was drafted by the San Francisco Giants in the 20th round four years ago, out of Kansas. His father, Bruce, played parts of nine big-league seasons, retired, and has won 1,612 games as a manager, 661 – with two World Series titles – for the Giants.
There have been seven manager-player combinations. Bruce and Brett became the first to manage and pitch for the same club, the moment arriving amidst the brutality of a 17-0 win by the Los Angeles Dodgers, but accompanied by cheers from a crowd seeking a softer moment.Wed, Sep 1712:40 PM PDTSan Francisco at ArizonaPreview Game
- Tim Brown at Yahoo Sports4 days ago
SAN FRANCISCO – Mid-September, sky the color of faded jeans, hoodies the color of your Aunt Sara's hair (this month), the Dodgers in town, and evenings don't get much better than that for the locals at AT&T Park.
The ballgame started, and within minutes the NL West race had tightened, about the time Hyun-Jin Ryu's left shoulder had, too, and in fact about the only thing that hadn't tightened by the end of Friday night was the Dodgers' defense.
Dodgers pitching coach Rick Honeycutt wore a dusty path to and from the mound, and reliever Chris Perez's first pitch of the second inning struck the plate umpire's right shoe, which was a good three feet from where anyone had expected that particular fastball to go, and all along left-hander Madison Bumgarner did his slow-ride routine, dangling opportunities, tugging them away, just enough to stir up another chorus of "Beat L.A."
They did, too, by 9-0. And now the Giants are a game back.
- Tim Brown at Yahoo Sports5 days ago
Survive enough days, make enough reasonable decisions, care enough, and one of those days you begin to see yourself in your children’s eyes. If you’re very lucky at the end of all that, you’ll like what you see. Or maybe not hate it entirely.
Pat Murphy is 55. He’s survived his share of days, many of which he is proud of, some of which he’d maybe take another shot at, given the opportunity. He’s cared plenty.
He has a daughter and a son. And these are those days.
Five years ago, Murphy resigned as baseball coach at Arizona State, after 15 seasons and 629 wins. There was drama. A lot of drama. Before that, he won 318 games in seven seasons at Notre Dame.
When he was no longer a college coach, he took employment with the San Diego Padres, managed two seasons in the Northwest League and the last two in the Pacific Coast League. He’s still winning. He’s still making good ballplayers better ones. He is big-league manager material, though nobody’s talking about that yet.
- Tim Brown at Yahoo Sports6 days ago
On the new No. 1 in town, why we didn’t see the O’s coming, Sal Perez’s favorite scent, and what Jesus Montero was really angry about:
The rankings (records through Wednesday):
1. Los Angeles Angels (90-55; Previous: 2) – Angels think Johnny Full-Staff needs a little work, but could make their rotation out of camp next spring.
2. Baltimore Orioles (86-59; Previous: 4) – We were very, very wrong about the Orioles. In our defense, we didn’t know they were going to win this much.
3. Washington Nationals (82-62; Previous: 3) – Several Nats ice-bucketed agent Scott Boras. They kept 5 percent, of course.
4. Los Angeles Dodgers (83-63; Previous: 5) – Vin Scully will cut back on schedule next season. Explains he’s running out of synonyms for “bat flip.”
5. Kansas City Royals (80-64; Previous: 6) – So Salvador Perez wears perfume behind the plate. Favorite is Eau-en-Two.
6. St. Louis Cardinals (80-66; Previous: 9) – Cards check pockets twice, search between couch pillows, know they left Brewers around here somewhere.
7. San Francisco Giants (80-65; Previous: 11) – Hunter Pence drinks out of the milk carton.Wed, Sep 177:05 PM PDTSeattle at LA AngelsPreview Game
- Tim Brown at Yahoo Sports7 days ago
No catchers were injured during this exercise. More than a few games, however, limped away.
Major League Baseball on Tuesday attempted to clarify its season-long rule concerning home-plate collisions, which for more than five months preserved the health of catchers yet too often left players, managers and umpires confused.
The language of Rule 7.13 has not changed. In a Tuesday morning email sent to the 30 teams, however, MLB provided photos of where catchers can and cannot set up on plays at the plate, explanations for each, and reaffirmed that the letter of the rule should not outweigh clear outcomes on those plays. Therefore, for example, a runner out by 20 feet should not expect to have the play overturned because of a technicality, including a catcher’s positioning.
The league, its general managers and the players’ union are expected to revisit the specifics of the rule this winter. Meantime, MLB hoped to address concerns of umpire interpretation and player confusion, and has asked managers to limit their review requests to plays for which there are clear violations.
- Tim Brown at Yahoo Sports11 days ago
Ron Washington rode the top step, ran his ball club and stood before us an apparently simple man.
There are winners and losers, that’s just a fact. And sometimes it seemed just that simple for Ron Washington, when all the gray was wiped away with the last pitch, the last game, every fall.
He was raised poor in New Orleans, but not wanting. He found the game, and it mostly loved him back. He bided his time, became a leader in his mid 50s, and twice nearly won that last game.
Washington seemed OK with that, with those rules and those outcomes, because there was always another day. There was always another season, win or lose.
But not anymore. The Texas Rangers lost again Thursday night. Washington resigned Friday.
He was manager of the Rangers for a few weeks shy of eight seasons, won more than he lost, won more than any Rangers manager ever had, and on Friday afternoon he walked away, out ahead of whatever might be chasing him.
He said he did not quit because the team was terrible. The team said he was not forced out. Neither was he persuaded to stay, however, and Washington packed up amidst questions about what would cause a man, at 62 years old, to quit a job he adored.
- Tim Brown at Yahoo Sports12 days ago
The patch is weird.
On the cap, on the uniform, the patch is weird because Derek Jeter will be wearing the cap and the uniform.
The man’s never had his name across the back of his home jersey, because that’s the way of the New York Yankees, and that fit Jeter, because no matter how good he became, no matter how he grew to represent that uniform, he stood pinstriped shoulder to pinstriped shoulder with the other 24.
Have a day for him. Have a whole season for him. Sell his name, his story, in the team stores. Retire his number while he’s still wearing it (which apparently isn’t happening). Hoist a plaque. Hell, bat him eighth, if you must.
But don’t make him wear his own patch.
It was weird with Mariano Rivera last year. It’s weird with Derek Jeter now.Wed, Sep 174:10 PM PDTNY Yankees at Tampa BayPreview Game
- Tim Brown at Yahoo Sports14 days ago
LOS ANGELES – A couple hours before, when Joc Pederson's first major-league hit fluttered to the grass in center field, that baseball found its way to the Dodgers' dugout and now was being presented to him in the clubhouse. Adrian Gonzalez did the honors, even sold it with a hug.
Pederson looked at the ball, smudged with grass and dirt from Dodger Stadium. This would go to his parents, he said. His family was at the ballpark on Tuesday night; father Stu, an outfielder for the Dodgers for a short while in 1985, mother Shelly, brothers Champ and Tyger.
He noted shyly his first name was not spelled correctly. He shrugged. No big deal.
"Oh," Gonzalez said. "That's not how you spell, 'Joc?'"
Pederson didn't want to complain. Still, he said, "You're oh for two. 'Pederson' is misspelled too."
"Sorry," Gonzalez said. "Spelling's not my thing. But congrats."
And he hit him with he hug.
"OK," Pederson said.
He rolled the ball in his fingers. There was an inscription.
"Fister off Fister," it said.
"Ha," Pederson said.