Entries Tagged as 'General MLB'

Links to ponder or ignore

For a quick WTF, here’s a photo of John McGraw with a baby leopard in his arms.  Even more amazing, he’s actually smiling.

I collaborated a tiny bit with PitcherHit8th.   Yes, they’re a Cardinals blog and podcast but they do a good job over there and it’s worth a plug.  If you’re a Redbird fan, check them out.

Interesting bit of digging by Illinois Loyalty.  Seems that the firm that was hired by the University of Illinois to consult them on the search for a new Athletic Director (Parker Executive Search) was paid $90-105 grand by University of Tennessee to do the same job.  No word on how much the U of I is paying but I bet we’re not getting a discount.

Finally, some are pushing for the Pirates to be the lucky (?) ones to move to the American League.  What now, when they are having a winning season?  The Pirates haven’t had a winning record this late in the season since 1999. 

Hat Trick for Big Mac

Mark McGwire’s wife bore him triplets today.

The jokes have already started within my circle… even from Cardinals fans (shame).  But I won’t go there. 

I’ll just wish Mark a happy second fatherhood and hope he makes sure to get them into Little League as soon as possible.  Who knows they could turn out like Eri Yoshida (the Knuckle Princess) and play professionally. 

Baseball is baseball

I talked on the phone with a friend today.  In a nutshell, he is a Cubs fan who lives in Chicago proper.  After going round and round about the Cubs woes, I mentioned I’ve been going to see the Illini baseball team practice a couple times this week. 

“Wow, you go and watch and watch them PRACTICE?”

He seemed a bit incredulous. 

And yeah, from his point of view, it does seem a little hard to believe.  Living in Chicago, a few hundred feet from the Red line and boom! you’re at Wrigley Field. 

But I’m not in Chicago (or for that matter, St Louis) and haven’t been all summer.  I need my dose of real live baseball even if it’s a loosely played split squad practice game with the coaches hitting fungoes to the infielders in between pitches. 

The fact that Illinois Field is one block away from my workplace doesn’t hurt either. 

Meanwhile, the way I hear it from my friend, you can’t give away Cubs or Sox tickets these days.  From his perspective, fans aren’t interested in either team this late in the season especially considering how they’re doing.  Now that’s harsh. 

I’m hoping the situation isn’t near as bad as my friend is portraying it.  Baseball is baseball whether it’s college kids taking fungoes or two teams on the downswing. 

MLB Bits and Bites

Now that Juan Encarnacion is out of baseball since losing most of the vison in one eye because of an errant foul ball in 2007, he’s going political.  He’s running for a Senate seat in his home country of the Dominican Republic.  Here’s an even more detailed article provided you read Spanish.


  With the Brewers two games under .500 and 6 1/2 out, they’re ready to make changes.  They’ve demoted slumping JJ Hardy to Triple A and DFA’ed Bill Hall.  Not only that, they’ve fired pitching coach Bill Castro.  Castro had been with the organization as the bullpen coach for almost 20 years before getting upped to his new position this year.


Orlando Hudson will be missing a couple days with a groin injury according to Joe Torre.  He is currently on a 10 game hitting streak.  Torre says it “could have been worse”.  Ouch.


Finally, poor Jamie Moyer.  He’s having hard time of it.  But as I always tell my kids, you need to find appropriate ways to express your anger.  And in the context of Major League Baseball, this is not it. 

Couldn’t he just smash a water cooler like every other player??

Old Timer Moose


I know I’m getting up there when Mike Mussina is a guest at an Old-Timer’s Game.


Magglio Ordonez is off to a poor start this first half and his July isn’t improving (4 for 20).  With only 14 extra base hits so far this year, rumor has it they are calling him “Singlio”

Now there’s talk of platooning him with callup Clete Thomas.

Maybe he shouldn’t have cut his hair after all.

Kearns: former potential star

I had the idea that Austin Kearns was going to be the next superstar when he came up in 2002.

I remember when he was going to be the next Adam Dunn but much better.    He was going to be faster, hit for better average, would be able to field and wouldn’t strike out as much. I remember this because I drafted him as a rookie in my APBA league.

Well, I am lucky because I had the luxury of trading him.  The folks in DC aren’t so lucky.  I guess a few of the fans there are a little tired of him already. 

DC Pro Sports have their say.

New unis for the Orioles


The Orioles updated logo


Looks like the Baltimore Orioles will be wearing new uniforms next year.

“We’re always re-evaluating our brands and we’re proud to represent our local fans and area,” (Greg Bader, Baltimore’s director of communications) said of the changes, which include restoring the word Baltimore to the team’s road jersey. “And with these moves, we hope to connect to the community, to honor the 55-year history of our franchise and to also look to the future.”

Apparently, the changes “have been in the plans for almost year”. 

The uniforms were unveiled at a ceremony at which over 2500 people attended.  Jim Palmer, no stranger to modeling,  was on hand to model the uniform along with OF Nick Markakis.

Buck O’Neil & Black Baseball in Chicago

Last night while watching the Blackhawks win big over Calgary, I was flipping the channel to my TV, and what should I see, but baseball! Needless to say, I stopped flipping, and my eyes became transfixed on the images on the screen. Channel 20 in Chicago was airing the premiere of Buck O’Neil & Black Baseball in Chicago, an encore showing will air November 13th at 7:30 PM, again on channel 20.

The late, great, Buck O’Neil talked about his days in the Negro Leagues and becoming the first African American baseball coach in the major leagues with the Chicago Cubs. O’Neil said, he never really resented not being allowed to play in the big leagues, because the best ballplayers of the day were in the Negro Leagues. Bob Kendrick, the Director of the Negro Leagues Museum in Kansas City, stated how upset he was when Buck didn’t make it into the Hall of Fame in Cooperstown before his death. Seventeen former Negro Leaguers were inducted in the last induction before O’Neil’s death. Buck didn’t feel sorry for himself at not getting in, but rather was thrilled 17 others had made it, according to Kendrick.

The documentary brings the past to life. It talked about the Double Duty Classic, which features the best young high school African American ballplayers competing in this East/West Classic, named after Ted “Double Duty” Radcliffe. It also shows the statue of Buck O’Neil that resides in the HOF, and there’s a lifetime achievement award named after O’Neil. Buck was the first winner of this award. Back in the day, the East/West Classic was the Negro Leagues All Star Game, was played at Comiskey Park in Chicago, would draw 50,000 fans, and featured the best African American ballplayers playing all out.

The show talks about how O’Neil managed Ernie Banks for the Kansas City Monarchs and then coached Banks with the Cubs. Buck also talked Billy Williams out of quitting after experiencing racism in Texas before coming up to the Cubs. Jermaine Dye, of the Chicago White Sox, came up with the Kansas City Royals, commented how fortunate he was to have met Buck O’Neil, while coming up to the big leagues.

There is also mention of the Chicago Baseball Museum, a work in progress, that can be checked out at www.chicagobaseballmuseum.org Also, if you can, checkout Buck O’Neil & Black Baseball in Chicago when its encore performance airs on Thursday the 13th on channel 20.

100 Angels

This is for my buddy DonS, the most avid Angels fan I know. 

Halos Heaven is doing their Top 100 Angels.  They’re at #96 at this moment… Casey Kotchman.