Big League Stew
- Mike Oz at Big League Stew21 mins ago
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Los Angeles Angels pitcher Garrett Richards has been one of the breakout pitchers of the 2014 season, but as his matchup Thursday night against Max Scherzer and the Detroit Tigers showed us, there's a reason Scherzer is the reigning Cy Young winner and every pitcher in the AL is trying to dethrone him.
Scherzer bested Richards in a pitcher's duel between two of the AL's top teams. The Tigers beat the Angels 6-4, as Scherzer struck out 11 batters in seven innings. He allowed six hits and three runs, but when you're back by the Tigers offense, that's often OK. His record improved to 12-3.
Richards wasn't bad, but he wasn't as good as he has been this season. He gave up seven hits and four runs, as his record fell to 11-3. Richards hadn't given up four runs in a start since May.
Scherzer definitely knew he needed to step up with Richards on the mound:Fri, Jul 257:05 PM PDTDetroit at LA AngelsPreview Game
- Big League Stew47 mins ago
To be fair, outfielder Ryan Raburn of the Cleveland Indians made a terrific attempt on a fly ball to left hit by Mike Moustakas of the Kansas City Royals in the bottom of the eighth inning Thursday night. What happened after Raburn's dive was cruelly unfair.
Raburn dived in fair territory and, though he couldn't come up with the catch, kept the ball in front of him and appeared to contain Moustakas to a double. But, as you can see from the Vine above recorded by @MonteTheColorMan, Raburn's throw was a disaster, spiked into the ground about a body lenghth away on the warning track. It rolled into left field — where nobody else on the Indians was.
Alertly, Moustakas started running again and the Tribe was helpless to do anything about it. Score it a double and an error on Raburn. The brief shot of Indians right-hander Corey Kluber standing there, expressionless, was a perfect addition to the moment's composition. Kluber had taken a perfect game into the seventh, but had gotten no offensive support. And then this happened to break a scoreless tie.Fri, Jul 255:10 PM PDTCleveland at Kansas CityPreview Game
- Mike Oz at Big League Stew1 hr ago
Look at what Brandon Phillips has started!
Houston Astros pitcher Dallas Keuchel responded to a heckling fan in Oakland not with his mouth, but with a baseball. Keuchel tossed this to the heckler:
Well played, Dallas, well played.
Phillips, the Cincinnati Reds second baseman, gave a signed ball to a drunken heckler in Pittsburgh last month, telling him to "shut up." Keuchel's ball probably isn't as cool as Phillips' (there's no signature), but it's still a clever retort that's turned into a cool piece of memorabilia.Fri, Jul 254:10 PM PDTWashington at CincinnatiPreview Game
- Mike Oz at Big League Stew2 hrs ago
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Mark Reynolds was doing an interview for MLB Network's "Intentional Talk" on Thursday when someone in a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle costume appeared behind him and started dancing.
Leonardo the Videobomber, eh?
The guy in the Ninja Turtle costume eventually revealed himself. It was All-Star outfielder Carlos Gomez. While showing up in a teammate's nationally televised interview is amusing, the costume actually had a better purpose.
Gomez told Tom Haurdicourt of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel:
“That cartoon is my son’s favorite,” said Gomez, referring to 4-year-old Yandel. “He’s crazy about it. I ordered (the costume) and I will go home tonight dressed like a Ninja Turtle. I ordered it online like 20 days ago. That thing came from China."
Now there's a pretty cool dad. And it would be cool whether Gomez were a pro baseball player or a plumber. As it turned out, there was just one complication.
- Mike Oz at Big League Stew9 hrs ago
The Stew's Trade Talk Tracker follows the juiciest rumors in MLB until the non-waiver trade deadline on July 31. We'll give you the day's most important links about who may (or may not) be changing teams soon.
DONE DEAL: The Yankees acquired lefty Chris Capuano from the Rockies. [Yahoo Sports]
TAKE HIM, PLEASE: The Phillies are working hard to move Ryan Howard, and are even willing to pay "most or much of" his $70 million salary. [CBS Sports]
ICYMI: The Mariners traded for Kendrys Morales, who they had last year. [Yahoo Sports]
ALSO: The Mariners are pursuing Drew Stubbs from the Rockies. [@jonmorosi]Fri, Jul 257:10 PM PDTBaltimore at SeattlePreview Game
- Mike Oz at Big League Stew10 hrs ago
One Bash Brother wants to make amends. The other Bash Brother wants to bash that idea entirely.
Jose Canseco and Mark McGwire, two sluggers baseball history will link forever, aren't any closer to reconciling, despite recent attempts by Canseco. The two of them were the Bash Brothers for the Oakland Athletics in the late '80s, hitting homer after homer and bashing forearms as they crossed home plate. They also became the faces of baseball's steroid era. When Canseco named McGwire as a PED user in his 2005 book "Juiced," their friendship ended.
Canseco, high off the nostalgia from last weekend's 25th anniversary reunion of the 1989 A's World Series team, has been trying to apologize to McGwire. But McGwire, now the hitting coach for the Los Angeles Dodgers, is not hearing it. He told ESPN Los Angeles:
- Mike Oz at Big League Stew12 hrs ago
Ex-MLB All-Star Chuck Knoblauch was arrested Wednesday at his home near Houston for allegedly assaulting his wife, Cheri Knoblauch, who once appeared on the reality TV show "Baseball Wives."
There are obviously graver stakes involved in a case like this, but the upshot in the baseball world is that Knoblauch's former team, the Minnesota Twins, has canceled his scheduled induction into its Hall of Fameon Aug. 23.
News92FM in Houston reports that Knoblauch — a four-time All-Star and former Rookie of the Year — is out of jail on $10,000 bond and is due back in court on July 30. The station had more details on the arrest and Knoblauch's other legal troubles:Fri, Jul 255:10 PM PDTChi White Sox at MinnesotaPreview Game
- Mike Oz at Big League Stew14 hrs ago
Hope the Seattle Mariners kept Kendrys Morales' jerseys handy. He's on his way back.
Morales' weird 2014 just got weirder, as he's been traded from the Minnesota Twins back to the Mariners for pitcher Stephen Pryor. So ends Morales' oh-so-memorable 39-game stint with the Twins. He hit .234/.259/.325 in Minnesota with one homer and 18 RBIs after signing there on June 8. Twins fans will remember every single swing, obviously.
If you haven't followed the odd Kendrys Morales saga the past nine months:
• He rejected a $14.1 million qualifying offer from the Mariners, for whom he played in 2013 and hit .277 with 23 home runs and 80 RBIs in 2013.
• Morales didn't immediately sign with another team. He was linked to a number of teams, including the Mariners, but a deal didn't get by spring training, nor by season's start.
- David Brown at Big League Stew14 hrs ago
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This interview with Ken Griffey Sr. starts out horrendously; the inquisitors from TMZ ask him about how "baseball has changed — right? — as far as eatin' at the bawlpark," since he was in his prime in the 1970s. What? It has changed, lots, going from hot dogs, peanuts and Cracker Jack in Griffey's day to a $26 taco that's 2 feet long today. But what's that got to do with the price of beans? And why would that be the first question you ask Ken Griffey if you happen upon him? Was he a noted hot dog-swiper?
About 35 seconds in, whomever has the video camera backs into a topic germane to the Griffey family. Paraphrasing: "What's it like having a son who was a better player than you were?"
Griffey gave an honest and funny answer:
"You always want the best for your child. So, if he's better than me, that's fine. Just remember: He got all of the home runs, and I got all of the rings."
- Mike Oz at Big League Stew15 hrs ago
The Oakland Athletics brought Jim Johnson into the game Wednesday night against the Houston Astros with a seven-run lead in the top of the eighth inning. He had six outs to get and everybody could go home happy. Everybody, including the A's fans who had grown to despise him.
Six outs. Seven-run lead. Easy enough, right?
Well, nothing's been easy this season for Johnson, the reigning AL saves leader who was traded to Oakland last winter from the Baltimore Orioles and paid $10 million by the usually payroll-stingy A's. Oakland fans booed him his very first game. He lost his closer job soon after. Heck, fans have even booed his wife this season.Fri, Jul 255:05 PM PDTOakland at TexasPreview Game