Big League Stew
- Mark Townsend at Big League Stew3 hrs ago
Welcome to The Walk Off, the nightly MLB recap from Big League Stew. Here we'll look at the top performers of the night, show you a must-see highlight and rundown the scoreboard. First, we start with a game you need to know about.
The New York Mets are facing a conundrum of epic proportions thanks to the struggles of Matt Harvey. For now, the Mets say he's staying in the rotation, but there has been no shortage of debate concerning what the Mets are doing or should do to get Harvey back on track.
Fortunately for the Mets, a situation that's become a five-alarm fire in the media is producing more smoke than actual fire in terms of their starting rotation. That's because they not only have Noah Syndergaard and Jacob deGrom serving as legit aces every five days, but also because Steven Matz has essentially stepped right into the position everyone expected Harvey to occupy.
- Mark Townsend at Big League Stew3 hrs ago
Your browser does not support iframes. After missing three weeks with a hamstring injury, Alex Rodriguez is poised to rejoin the New York Yankees on Thursday after completing a successful rehab stint with the Double-A Trenton Thunder.
Rodriguez, 40, went 3-for-6 during his brief two-game stop, including launching a monster home run over the 407 sign in center field at ARM & HAMMER Park on Wednesday night. Rodriguez punctuated that home run against New Hampshire Fisher Cats hurler Casey Lawrence with a pretty exuberant bat flip, which many saw as his final proclamation that he's ready to return.
"Whether you're playing in high school or playing in the Major Leagues, a home run feels good," Rodriguez told the assembled media. "The ball came off of the bat nicely; you have to walk before you run. That was a good start today."Thu, May 264:05 PM EDTToronto at NY YankeesPreview Game
- Mark Townsend at Big League Stew5 hrs ago
For the first time in professional baseball history, a female will manage a men's team.
It will happen this Sunday, May 29, when the Bridgeport Bluefish of the independent Atlantic League officially welcome softball legend Jennie Finch as their guest manager for one game when they take on the Southern Maryland Blue Crabs at The Ballpark at Harbor Yard.
According to a press release from March, Finch will also be involved in pregame activities, such as throwing out the ceremonial first pitch and participating in a pre-game meet-and-greet with fans. The attraction though is having a chance to witness history, as Finch will be in charge of managing the Bluefish from the dugout for the entire game.
- Mark Townsend at Big League Stew7 hrs ago
Cleveland Indians slugger Mike Napoli is not the fastest guy around, nor is he the most graceful. But he can sure hit the baseball.
He proved that to Chicago White Sox ace Chris Sale on Tuesday when he split the outfielders for a two-run triple. The triple was Napoli's first since April 15 of last season, and it couldn't have come at a better time as it helped Cleveland knock Sale from the ranks of the undefeated with a 6-2 victory.
Unfortunately for Napoli, the triple also highlighted those two previously mentioned facts: He's not fast, and he's not graceful. That led to one of the most awkward and embarrassing slides we've seen in a long time as he arrived to third base only somewhat safely.
Better: Mike Napoli's triple or his slide? pic.twitter.com/4YmRtMdrZ8Thu, May 268:15 PM EDTChi White Sox at Kansas CityPreview Game
- Chris Cwik at Big League Stew8 hrs ago
Like many baseball players who grew up in the 90s, Los Angeles Dodgers outfielder Joc Pederson looked up to San Francisco Giants slugger Barry Bonds. It's easy to see why. Bonds put up tremendous numbers on the field. It also helps that, like Pederson, he was a lefty with excellent power and plate discipline.
So, when Pederson had a chance to finally meet one of baseball idols, he was pretty excited. During a series against the Miami Marlins, Pederson introduced himself to Bonds and told him how much he enjoyed watching him play.
What should have been a joyous occasion for Pederson quickly became awkward after the outfielder asked Bonds for a picture. According to Pederson, Bonds just turned away from him and didn't answer the question.
- Israel Fehr at Big League Stew8 hrs ago
When the powers that be at Major League Baseball came up with the idea to alter the strike zone they didn't ask Adam Wainwright for his input.
There aren't many pitchers in baseball with a better grasp of the strike zone than the St. Louis Cardinals right-hander, who is best known for his pinpoint command and his ability to keep the ball down.
Given Wainwright's bona fides, it isn't all that surprising he isn't in favor of the bottom of the strike zone being raised to the top of a batter's knees.Thu, May 267:05 PM EDTSt. Louis at WashingtonPreview Game
- Mark Townsend at Big League Stew9 hrs ago
There's no such thing as an automatic win in baseball, but Jake Arrieta Day has essentially become that for the Chicago Cubs.
That continued to be true on Wednesday, despite the fact that Arrieta posted his worst outing in over one year.
Arrieta allowed four runs (all earned) on seven hits over five innings, but extended two remarkable streaks as the Cubs ultimately outslugged the Cardinals 9-8.
Arrieta won his 20th straight decision, which in its own right is very impressive. Beyond that, the Cubs have now won the last 23 regular season games started by Arrieta, which ties the MLB record set by the Braves and Kris Medlen.
- Big League Stew staff at Big League Stew11 hrs ago
The New York Mets have reached the point where they have a Matt Harvey problem again. And the 2016 version of the Matt Harvey problem is unlike any the Mets have faced with their ace thus far in his career.
It's not like last season when they were arguing about how many innings he'd pitch coming off Tommy John surgery. Or like when they clashed with him about his rehab plans after surgery. Nope, this one is all the way on the other side of the baseball spectrum. Matt Harvey is a mess and, so far, he hasn't been able to fix himself.
- Chris Cwik at Big League Stew12 hrs ago
Talk about a long shot. If the Major League Baseball season ended today, Texas Rangers rookie Nomar Mazara would finish the year with the longest home run of the season.
Mazara accomplished the feat Wednesday against the Los Angeles Angels. In the top of the second inning, Mazara belted an 83 mph cutter from Angels starter Hector Santiago deep into the upper deck in right field for a solo shot. The ball traveled an incredible 491 feet, making Mazara's blast the longest hit this season.
It's early, of course, and Mazara could eventually lose this accomplishment. That said, hitting a ball 491 feet is no easy task. And while Mazara has proven himself to be a tremendous player thus far, the odds that he would hit the longest home run of the season had to be astronomical.
- Israel Fehr at Big League Stew12 hrs ago
To the chagrin of baseball fans everywhere, the Vin Scully farewell tour will not include the All-Star game.
Richard Deitsch of Sports Illustrated writes that Scully, who is in his 67th and final season calling Dodgers games, has declined an invitation from Fox to take part in their broadcast of the upcoming Midsummer Classic. The network made it clear to Scully they were willing to accommodate him and proposed a number of options to get him in the booth.
With the game in San Diego, there was some hope Scully would be willing to come down from Los Angeles, but even a short trip wasn't enough to get him to change his answer.
Scully's reasoning lines up with his principles: he doesn't want to take any attention away from the players who will take the field July 12 at Petco Park representing their respective leagues.