Big League Stew
- Mark Townsend at Big League Stew2 hrs ago
After a roller coaster few weeks professionally, veteran outfielder Carlos Quentin has elected to walk away from baseball all together, according to FOX Sports Ken Rosenthal.
Quentin, who’s been playing at Triple-A for the Seattle Mariners after being traded from the San Diego Padres to the Atlanta Braves in the stunning Craig Kimbrel on April 5, and then subsquently released by the Braves, has decided to retire at age 32.
CBS Sports' Jon Heyman reported that Quentin left his team in Tacoma on Thursday after going 3-for-17 in five games. He was signed to the Seattle Mariners on a minor league deal and was immediately granted his release after making his request following Thursday's game. He's now in the process of making his retirement official.Sun, May 32:10 PM EDTSeattle at HoustonPreview Game
- Mark Townsend at Big League Stew3 hrs ago
Baseball is a strange game sometimes. You can go for what seems like forever without seeing a specific unusual ending, and then you can see it twice in one day.
For example, earlier on Saturday we wrote about the Los Angeles Angels painful loss in San Francisco, which ended when baserunner Taylor Featherston was struck by Matt Joyce's batted ball. Late Saturday night, the same finish happened in Los Angeles, where the Dodgers defeated the Arizona Diamondbacks 6-4.
There was a little more drama in San Francisco, where Joyce's ball would have tied the game had it advanced cleanly into the outfield. Here, it was still dramatic in Los Angeles as David Peralta represented the tying run. However, his smash ticketed for center field bounced off runner Jordan Pacheco to end the game.Sun, May 34:05 PM EDTLA Angels at San FranciscoPreview Game
- Mark Townsend at Big League Stew5 hrs ago
Minnesota Twins outfielder Torii Hunter has been known to share his opinion on a wide range of topics over the years — controversial, sensitive or otherwise — with little consideration for those who might be offended and hurt by their meaning.
Most notably, Hunter was quoted in late 2012 stating that it would be "difficult and uncomfortable" accepting a gay teammate into the clubhouse due to his religious beliefs. But there have been other instances as well involving race and sexuality, and many of those comments have struck nerves and stirred emotions that leave people uncomfortable.
Unfortunately, Hunter entered that delicate territory again on Saturday night prior to the highly anticipated boxing match between Floyd Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao.
- Mark Townsend at Big League Stew8 hrs ago
They are painful ways to lose baseball games, and then there are strange ways to lose baseball games that are literally quite painful.
We'd say both apply to the Los Angeles Angels 5-4 loss to the San Francisco Giants on Saturday, especially for pinch-runner Taylor Featherston, who was on the receiving end of teammate Matt Joyce's "walkoff" single.
As the rules state, if a runner is hit by a fair batted ball while he is on fair territory, he is immediately called out. There's no judgment in play, no intent to consider. The only exceptions come down to if the baseball was deflected or had already passed all infielders.
Unfortunately for Featherston, neither exception applied on Saturday. He was simply in the wrong place at the wrong time when Matt Joyce's line drive clipped him on the leg. He was called out, Joyce was credited with an unusual single, and the game was over on the spot.
Oh, the agony.
- Mark Townsend at Big League Stew10 hrs ago
What does it take to turn a harmless ground ball to shortstop into a free run for the opponents?
Never fear, baseball fans, the Chicago Cubs have the answer.
During Saturday's 6-1 loss to the Milwaukee Brewers, shortstop Starlin Castro, first baseman Anthony Rizzo and third baseman Kris Bryant teamed up for one of the most mind-boggling defensive sequences you'll ever see. The result of which saw Logan Schafer circle the bases without his batted ball actually leaving the infield.
It happened in the ninth inning with the game already well in hand for Milwaukee. Schafter hit a chopper to short, that should have been an easy second out. Only it wasn't, because Castro short-armed the throw and skipped it past Rizzo, who's usually pretty adept at covering for those mistakes.Sun, May 32:20 PM EDTMilwaukee at Chi CubsPreview Game
- Mark Townsend at Big League Stew11 hrs ago
Former major leaguer Humberto Quintero, who's now catching for the Boston Red Sox Triple-A affiliate in Pawtucket, made a strange and uncomfortable attempt to draw an interference call on Luke Maile of the Durham Bulls on Friday night.
At least we hope that's what he was trying to do.
With Maile in the batter's box, Quintero received the pitch and then turned toward third base in an apparent attempt to throw out Mikie Mahtook, who was attempting to steal the bag. However, instead of stepping around Maile to make his throw, Quintero fired it right at Maile's midsection, nailing him in the abdomen.
As seen in the video, Quintero immediately pleads his case for interference. Home plate umpire Chad Whitson disagreed, ruling that Maile held his ground and didn't attempt to interfere. It's a judgment call for the umpire to determine what the batter's intentions were, and here it's clear that Maile stayed put.Sun, May 38:05 PM EDTNY Yankees at BostonPreview Game
- Mark Townsend at Big League Stew13 hrs ago
As we expected all along, things are about to get very interesting between Alex Rodriguez and the New York Yankees on the heels of his 660th career home run.
A-Rod offiicially reached that mark in Friday's 3-2 win against the Boston Red Sox, which tied him with Willie Mays for fourth place on the all-time home run list. Once that ball landed in the hands of Mike Shuster, who was seated third row above Fenway Park's Green Monster, we officially moved on to perhaps the most interesting phase in the process, and that's whether or not he'll receive the $6 million "milestone" bonus included in the contract he signed in 2007.
The Yankees have said all along they don't intend to pay the bonus because his achievements lost their value once he was suspended for his connection to Biogensis. What would have been a major marketing tool for the ballclub had A-Rod stayed clean, was reduced to background fodder as the Yankees focus on competing in the AL East.
- Mark Townsend at Big League Stew15 hrs ago
Boston Red Sox catcher Ryan Hanigan had some pretty terrible luck on Friday night. The nine-year MLB veteran was forced to leave Friday's 3-2 loss to the Yankees after being on the wrong end of an unfortunate ricochet.
It happened on a sixth-inning pitch from Tommy Layne. The pitch actually hit Yankees' first baseman Mark Teixeira on his right hand and wrist area, and then ricocheted right off Hanigan's exposed throwing hand. Amazingly it still had enough force to break one of Hanigan's fingers, which according to the Red Sox will require surgery.
The team says he's expected to miss a substantial amount of time as a result, which will open up the door for an interesting debut in Boston.
First, here's a look at the injury.
Quite the unusual scene with two guys reacting to the same pitch the same way.
- Mark Townsend at Big League Stew17 hrs ago
Now that Alex Rodriguez's milestone 660th career home run is in the books and he's officially tied with the legendary Hall of Famer Willie Mays for fourth place on the all-time home run list, it's interesting to look back at the reaction.
Not of the fans in Boston, since they reacted exactly as you'd expect in greeting A-Rod with boos as he approached home plate and again as he rounded the bases. Not of his teammates either, because you got the sense they'd be supportive, especially if Rod was helping the team win. And not even of the Yankees themselves, as they reluctantly tweeted an acknowledgment after originally staying focused on the game itself.
How about the reaction of A-Rod himself? Would he be stoic in the face of history? Perhaps even defiant or arrogant knowing his place in history is now cemented?
- Mark Townsend at Big League Stew1 day ago
In a game started by Max Scherzer and Matt Harvey, chances are the scoring opportunities will be few and far between for the opposing offenses. That proved to be the case again on Friday night as the two aces met up in a classic battle at Citi Field in New York.
Unfortunately for the Washington Nationals, while Max Scherzer did his job, their lack of offense and overall struggles on defense — in this case, Jayson Werth's untimely stumble — proved to be their downfall again as they dropped the game 4-0.
Bad offense and really bad defense is a bad combination under any circumstances. That much shouldn't have to be explained. But it's especially bad in games where one play — whether it be a home run, a wild pitch, or a defensive miscue — can provide all the separation that's needed.Sun, May 31:10 PM EDTWashington at NY MetsPreview Game