Big League Stew
- Chris Cwik at Big League Stew4 hrs ago
Since he's been in the majors, Los Angeles Angels reliever Huston Street has always been used as a closer. When the ninth inning comes around, he knows it's time to perform.
Traditionally, the best reliever in a team's bullpen gets designated the closer. In recent years, though, there's been an argument that using your best reliever in high-leverage situations is more valuable than saving your closer for a save opportunity that may never materialize.
Huston Street is not a fan of that thinking, according to David Alder of MLB.com.
"I'll retire if that ever happens," Street said. "If they ever tell me, 'Oh, we're gonna start using you in these high-leverage situations.' … All right, good. You now can go find someone else to do that, because I'm going home."
- Mike Oz at Big League Stew6 hrs ago
A change is coming to the Philadelphia Phillies, who are in last place, ready for a fire sale and without a long-term manager after Ryne Sandberg up and quit Friday because he was tired of losing.
Andy MacPhail was announced Monday as the team's president-to-be and he says he's brining a culture change with him when he takes the reigns. MacPhail — a former GM of the Minnesota Twins and president of the Chicago Cubs and Baltimore Orioles — will take over at team president after the season. He's joining the club immediately as a special assistant to team president Pat Gillick and will take the post when Gillick re-retires once the 2015 season takes mercy on the Phillies and ends.
- Chris Cwik at Big League Stew7 hrs ago
A few weeks ago, everything was coming up Kansas City Royals in the All-Star voting. Fast forward to the present, and things still look pretty favorable despite some slippage.
In the final American League voting update, the Royals still lead the charge.
The team's grasp on their starting spots, however, is slipping considerably. The Royals are down to just five starters now. A few weeks ago, they had eight players set to start the contest. Last week, the team still had seven starters.
Josh Donaldson and Nelson Cruz became the latest non-Royals to lead their positions in voting. Miguel Cabrera maintained his lead over Eric Hosmer, and Mike Trout continues to dominate in the outfield.
- Mike Oz at Big League Stew9 hrs ago
Mike Napoli was tossed in the second inning of Sunday's Boston Red Sox game in St. Pete against the Tampa Bay Rays, appearing to get livid about a third strike call from first-year umpire Tripp Gibson.
But before you sweep this away as another tough day for Napoli (who is hitting .203) or another sign of Red Sox frustration (the AL East cellar isn't fun), there's actually a more interesting story here than a called third strike and an angry K victim.
If you listen to Napoli and manager John Farrell they'll tell you Napoli wasn't sent to the showers because he wasn't happy with the call. He was actually tossed, they say, because he didn't pick up his bat. Here's Napoli's explanation of what happened, via The Boston Herald's Scott Lauber:
- Chris Cwik at Big League Stew9 hrs ago
I'm probably one of the few baseball fans who always watches the Home Run Derby. It stems from childhood, where my friends and I would each pick a player, and then watch to see which one of us came out on top.
Those traditions have carried over to today. I'll still text my friends to see who they like in the Derby, and I'll still watch the event.
While I enjoy seeing men bash a tiny ball as far as humanly possible, I admit that the old Home Run Derby format had its flaws. The event was long and repetitive. Watching guys hit bombs for an hour is fun. Watching guys hit bombs for three hours feels like a chore.
Because of that, I completely understand why Major League Baseball would want to revamp the event. But the new format the league came up with is lame, and makes it look like MLB is trying too hard.
- Mike Oz at Big League Stew10 hrs ago
With less than a week left in Major League Baseball's All-Star voting, we've reached peak campaign season. Toronto Blue Jays third baseman Josh Donaldson is a deserving selection who spent virtually all of All-Star voting season in second place because of the Kansas City Royals voting juggernaut that had Mike Moustakas leading.
But now Donaldson has a superhero on his side.Tue, Jun 307:07 PM EDTBoston at TorontoPreview Game
- Israel Fehr at Big League Stew11 hrs ago
There's no stopping Colorado Rockies third baseman Nolan Arenado these days.
Arenado smashed two more home runs Sunday, giving him 24 on the season. That puts him in a tie for third in the majors with the potentially super-human Bryce Harper. According to our friends at Roto Arcade, Arenado has been the best fantasy player in the game over the last month and they say it hasn't been particularly close. He was also named NL player of the week Monday.
Of course, there's always a healthy dose of skepticism when a Rockies player is putting up monster power numbers, but before labelling Arenado yet another product of the high-altitude environment at Coors Field in Denver, take a quick look at his splits.LiveColorado0 - 5OaklandFollow Game
- Israel Fehr at Big League Stew13 hrs ago
Remember when your Little League coach used to tell you over and over again why it was important to run out every fly ball because you never knew what could happen ?
Astros shortstop Carlos Correa showed us how the best case scenario would play out.
In the fourth inning of Houston's game against the Yankees on Sunday, Correa lifted a ball toward the gap in left-center field. Center fielder Brett Gardner and left fielder Garrett Jones converged on the ball with plenty of time for one of them to make a catch, only to watch it drop between the two of them as both players let up at the last possible moment, wary of a collision. Gardner tried to grab the ball off the ground, but slipped and kicked it all the way to the wall.
Running hard out of the box, Correa was credited with a double and scored on a two-base error charged to Gardner to tie the game 1-1.
- Chris Cwik at Big League Stew22 hrs ago
Take a look around the league with Big League Stew's daily wrap up. We'll hit on all of the biggest moments from the day that you may have missed, while providing highlights, photos and interesting stats.
Is there anything San Francisco Giants ace Madison Bumgarner can't do? After Sunday's 6-3 win over the Colorado Rockies, we're not sure anymore.
In the second inning, Bumgarner achieved yet another career milestone. With Brandon Barnes at the plate, Bumgarner recorded his 1,000th career strikeout.
That's Bumgarner's 1,000th strikeout and he gets a standing ovation at AT&T. And from his teammates in the dugout.
With the whiff, Bumgarner became the youngest player in Giants history to reach the milestone. The 25-year-old already has three World Series rings, and is a World Series MVP, so this pales in comparison to some of his other accomplishments. Still, it goes to show how great, and consistent, Bumgarner has been early in his career.Tue, Jun 307:10 PM EDTSan Francisco at MiamiPreview Game
- Chris Cwik at Big League Stew23 hrs ago
Seattle Mariners second baseman Robinson Cano left Saturday's game after being hit in the head by an errant warm-up throw as he sat in the dugout. If Sunday was any indication, he learned his lesson.
Prior to the start of Sunday's game against the Los Angeles Angels, Cano showed up in the dugout wearing a catcher's mask.
Your browser does not support iframes.
Cano got the attention of the Angels' players on the field during warm-ups, and laughed at himself as he removed the mask.
Cano had plenty of reason to laugh off Saturday's events. He escaped with just a knot on his head, and managed to avoid a concussion. Cano even returned to the starting lineup for Sunday's game.
We have to give Cano some credit here. He clearly realized Saturday's errant throw was a mistake, and even had a good sense of humor about the entire event.LiveNY Yankees1 - 3LA AngelsFollow Game