The Bandbox: Do We Care?

Good ole’ Wally Matthews chimes in with his take on the New Yankee Stadium:

Whatever it is, the franchise that took ownership of the home run, whose players have hit some of the most famous home runs in baseball history – The Babe’s called shot, Reggie’s three on three consecutive World Series pitches, The Mick’s blast off the façade – has turned the game’s most impressive individual accomplishment into something just about anyone can do.

This cannot have been the intention of architects who designed this launching pad or team executives who approved its design. The original Stadium had a short rightfield line to accommodate Babe Ruth’s lefthanded uppercut, but the place was Death Valley just about everywhere else.

You hit a home run there, you earned it. Now they can’t keep the ball in the ballpark.

Firstly, I want to point out that the Stadium has not allowed that many home runs to center or left. It is only a “bandbox” in right, where it has always been short but is now 9 feet shorter than the old park in some places and has lower fences.… Click here to read the rest

The Steal of Home And ESPN

Dan Turkenkopf posted an article on stealing home at The Hardball Times today, and his findings were too juicy to ignore. He found 25 instances of an attempted straight steal of home since 2000, with 15 successful and 10 failing. There was one particular team that was victimized four times, and one pitcher that was embarrassed three times. That team, of course, is the Yankees, and the pitcher is Andy Pettitte. Pettitte has been on the losing end of a straight steal of home three times: once by Jacoby Ellsbury, once by lightning quick Aaron Hill, and once by world class sprinter Mike Sweeney. The author concludes:

And if you really want to be successful stealing home, be sure to go when Andy Pettitte is on the mound.

Why do I bring this up? Because Jacoby Ellsbury’s steal of home is now part of every single ESPN MLB broadcast, as if it were the greatest play of all time. I am certain that it will at least be nominated for an ESPY, and Red Sox fans here in Boston have been referring to it as the gutsiest move of all time.… Click here to read the rest

Peavy: scared or smart?

  1. He loves SD too much to leave / His family does not want to leave

Honestly, I couldn’t agree with this idea more. Having family out in SD, I can completely and utterly understand a desire to stay out West. The climate is flat-out fantastic, unless you hate 73 degrees and sun every day. Spare me your “oh, I’ll miss the seasons” or “isn’t that boring?” crap. NO! Perfect weather is NOT boring. You know what sucks: Snow, cold rain in the Fall, sleet, black ice, days straight of rain. You know what doesn’t suck? San Diego weather. Because of the weather, kids are outside more and so are adults, biking, playing ball and simply enjoying life. Why? Because they are not shuttered in due to the */+$%$^&* weather!!! Is this clear?

  • He really likes to bat 3-6 times a week

    I call BS. It’s a convenient excuse. You know who else likes to bat? Sabathia and he let it go because the price was right.
  • Click here to read the rest

    Wang Called Back

    Chien-Ming Wang was expected to start for SWB tonight, as the Yankees were hoping to see his improved sinker manifest itself in a game after he had displayed it in a bullpen session before team officials. However, with Joba Chamberlain bruising his knee and the bullpen going 8.2 innings last night, those plans have changed. From Mark Feinsand:

    Chien-Ming Wang will be back with the Yankees for Friday night’s game against the Phillies.
    After Joba Chamberlain’s first-inning knee injury drained the bullpen on Thursday night, the Yankees ordered Wang – who was on his way to Pawtucket to pitch Friday night for Triple-A Scranton – to turn around and head back to New York, according to a source.
    The Yankees will have Wang in the bullpen Friday night as a long reliever, the source said, though the plans beyond that haven’t been determined.
    Wang could be on standby in case Chamberlain’s bruised right knee prevents him from making his next scheduled start on Tuesday in Texas.

    Click here to read the rest

    Minors Recap, 5/21

    Scranton pounds Pawtucket, 14-1

    • George Kontos started, giving up just 2 hits and 2 walks in 6 scoreless innings, with 1 strikeout.  He lowered his ERA to 2.45 with this outing.
    • Romulo Sanchez, recently acquired, gave up a solo homer in 1 inning of work.
    • Edwar Ramirez, recently demoted, struck out 2 and allowed 2 hits in 2 shutout innings.
    • Austin Jackson was 1 for 4 with a double and 2 walks.
    • Todd Linden was 2 for 6 with 2 doubles.
    • Shelley Duncan was 1 for 4 with his 12th home run and a walk.
    • Juan Miranda was 2 for 3 with a homer and 2 walks.
    • Eric Duncan was 1 for 3 with 2 walks.

    Trenton blanked by Akron, 3-0

    • Akron’s Jeanmar Gomez hurled a perfect game, striking out 8.
    • Zach McAllister, pitching against perfection, didn’t do so badly himself, giving up 2 runs (1 earned) on 6 hits and a walk, while striking out 5.  His ERA on the season is now 2.25.
    Click here to read the rest

    Joba leaves game in 1st inning with injury

    After retiring Brian Roberts, Joba was hit in the knee on a liner up the middle by Adam Jones. While Joba was able to record the out, he appeared to be in pain and was limping. After surrendering singles to Nick Markakis and Aubrey Huff, Girardi pulled Joba, replacing him with Alfredo Aceves.

    I’ll update as I find out more about the injury, but to me it doesn’t look like he broke a bone. It’s most likely a bruise, which could cause swelling and stiffness.

    Update: Joba’s X-Ray was negative, so it appears that it is just a bruised knee.  I doubt he misses a start, but if the Yankees want to be cautious maybe they will skip him.… Click here to read the rest

    Rick Reilly: Commissioner From Hell

    Rick Reilly wrote a column this week about what he might do were he commissioner of baseball. Being that this is the worst column ever, I figured we would rip it to shreds, FJM style:

    I personally find baseball so crushingly boring I would happily plunge knitting needles into my eyes to avoid another snap zoom of Joe Torre’s nostril hairs.

    But my buddies like it, so I sit and watch with them. And bitch.

    Ahh, the old “tell the reader that I hate the thing I am writing about so they will take my critique seriously” move. Rick, you think the sport is boring because you do not understand it. I find every at-bat interesting, because there is a mental tug of war going on between batter and pitcher that is fascinating. If all you see is some guy throwing a ball and another swinging a stick, that is your problem. Instead of complaining, why not learn about the sport?… Click here to read the rest