SHAWN CHACON Makes Houston’s Rotation!
“Chacon pitched five innings, allowing three hits and one run with four strikeouts in Houston’s 8-7 win over Atlanta.
“Astros general manager Cecil Cooper said after the game that the right-hander has ‘got to be 1 of the guys’ who will join ace Roy Oswalt in the rotation.” KLTV 7 (East Texas) 3-20-08“Chacon’s work in win over Braves earns spot in Astros’ rotation” (AP) http://www.kltv.com/Global/story.asp?S=8044019&nav=1TjF
“‘Chacon retired nine of his first 10 batters before allowing three hits in the fourth, and overall, he held the Braves to one run. After giving up five runs over three innings in his previous outing and rating it ‘G,’ for ‘garbage,’ the right-hander was considerably happier with this showing.
“‘That’s a lot better,’ Chacon said. ‘I just pounded the strike zone from the first inning. That’s the difference. I had a good changeup tonight, threw the breaking ball for strikes. I didn’t get as many ground balls as I’d like, but I’m not complaining at all.'” “Chacon throws himself into the rotation: Cooper says righty practically a lock after Wednesday’s outing” by Allyson Footer, MLB.com 3-19- 08 http://houston.astros.mlb.com/news/article.jsp?ymd=20080319&content_id=2445882&vkey=spt2008news&fext=.jsp&c_id=hou
ZACK GREINKE Is Back, Shuts Down White Sox A-Team!
“The Royals…built leads of 5-1 and 6-2 behind Zack Greinke, who limited the White Sox to two runs and four hits in six innings. Greinke struck out six and walked one…
Greinke got stronger in each of his five spring starts. In all, he gave up 12 runs and 18 hits in 20 innings but just three runs and seven hits in his last 11 innings.
“‘I was a little worried at the start of spring training,’ he said. ‘I started off way worse than I ever imagined. The first game was horrible. I had no idea where anything was going or what it was going to do. I just felt lost out there.'”
“‘The last two outings, I’ve been really happy with how they’ve been.'” “Royals’ Day in Camp” by Bob Dutton 3-23-2008 http://www.kansascity.com/baseball/story/543682.html
SHAWN ESTES Wins in Relief!
- 2 scoreless hitless innings of 10, ending 3-2 over KC on 3-22!
Lefty tosses two scoreless, hitless innings with two K’s by Alan Esquew Special to MLB.com March 22, 2007 http://mlb.mlb.com/news/article.jsp?ymd=20080322&content_id=2452369&vkey=spt2008news&fext=.jsp&c_id=sd
- + 2 SO’s and 3 groundball outs! one walk.
- Was in Minors last year from 2006 Tommy John surgery
- “‘I’m getting more comfortable on the mound,’ Estes said. ‘I felt like I was going in the right direction today. My breaking ball was coming around. It’s hard to gauge after two innings, but I felt like I was throwing the ball a little bit better today.
“‘That was the hope all spring that I gradually got better. I didn’t feel like I would struggle this bad with my command, but I’m improving, making progress.'”
- “Padres manager Buddy Black liked what he saw of Estes against the Royals.
“‘Shawn threw well,’ Black said. ‘I liked Shawn’s sink on the fastball. He had some good running action and got some grounders. He ran it in on some lefties and away from righties. He looked good.’
“Black noted Estes hasn’t missed his turn in a game or throwing bullpen sessions. ‘So that’s a great sign for Shawn that he’s coming around physically,’ Black said.”
“‘It’s just a matter of fine-tuning some things, finding my release point more consistently, being more consistent with my mechanics, being more fluid,’ Estes said. ‘Now that I’m full strength, it’s like the first time I’ve picked up a baseball. When I get on the mound, I feel great at 80 to 85 percent, but when I get that extra 10 to 15 percent effort, things have been falling out of whack a little bit.
“I’t’s a matter of being able to throw and compete at full-strength again, mentally knowing that everything is fine, now throwing strikes. It’s just been different. It’s been difficult.'”
It even goes beyond retiring as a Yankee. Did you know that Ron Guidry was his idol growing up! Uh, huh! Wait ’til you hear this — in his first MLB start, his opposing pitcher WAS Guidry. Take a look at the symmetry — closing out his career with Guidry as pitching coach?!
And, wasn’t David (David Wells, for those of you whose needs I have rudely ignored) undefeated as a Dodger until this week, when he took care to take LA out of contention himself, in plenty of time to sneak onto our roster?
You know he’ll pitch wherever he’s needed — as a starter, out of the bullpen, whatever. He and Clem could combine for a game. Now that’s symmetry.
Let’s make nice. OK? Please? So little is going well, even in my baseball social life. This bone would make so many dogs happy.
- It’s our last chance to let DAVID WELLS retire as a Yankee!
- And do we need another long man in the bullpen? YES! Someone who can make spot starts? YES! Remember, yesterday Karstens wasn’t available to replace Wang in his hard-hit early innings — because he was starting TODAY!
- You’ve let Brian do his thing.
- Look how much we are paying Clemens for a partial season with one or 2 partial starts himself.
- We kind of owe him, and he owes us — He pitched just one perfect playoff inning, but we didn’t exactly make it easy for him to stay (and I understand why).
- Let Wells make a public statement about his mouth, and how he will keep
quiet and tactful, for him. He can acknowledge he wasn’t acting right
at the end last time around.
- Let him rest his back and lose weight for August on the DL. And promise to throw on his throwing day. Then…
- It’s SHOW time in the POSTSEASON!
LET THE PRODIGAL SON RETURN!
Great day for baseball. Some suggestions below.
Check out the ERA’s in the first 2 games. Indeed, Redding (Nat’ls) is the man who surrendered 6 runs to Boston in 1 inning for the Yanks back in 2005. He has a more interesting history than that, however. Now, about this Saunders fellow (Angels)….
Times – ET
12.10 Nationals @ Mets
Probables: Redding (1-2, 2.92) @ Hernandez (6-4, 3.14)
03.55 Tigers @ Angels
Probables: Miller (5-3, 3.78) @ Saunders (4-0, 2.89)
03.55 Padres @ Houston
Probables: Maddux (7-7, 4.19) @ Oswalt (9-6, 3.80)
07.10 Yankees @ Orioles Yeah, yeah, yeah, I know.
It’s Clemens, & he’s been great, mostly & lately. Yawn.
Probables: Clemens (3-4, 3.72) @ Burres (4-4, 4.33)
07.10 Blue Jays @ Right Sox Now THIS is a match-up.
Probables: Halladay (11-4, 4.15) @ Buehrle (7-6, 3.23)
07.10 Cubs @ Reds 2 oddball teams w/ interesting pitchers
Probables: Marshall (4-4, 3.25) @ Harang (10-2, 3.45)
09.10 Marlins @ Giants 2 good pitchers having off-years?
Probables: Willis (7-10, 5.15) @ Cain (3-12, 4.02)
David Wells Loses His Win Again 6IP, 1ER. June 26, 2007
San Diego beat the Giants 2-1, but a blown save by, of all people, the very reliever whose retention he had championed offseason (Scott Linebrink) took away his W. A tightly-pitched game overall, though Wells gave up an unusually high number of walks (3), for him. Maybe it is more accurate to describe it as a tightly-managed pitching game, at least by the Padres, who used 6 pitchers to keep the Giants from scoring more than 1 run in 10 innings The 6th was Trevor Hoffman, who earned his 20th save. Only Zito — who went 8 innings — and Meredith pitched for the Giants, and they kept the Pads to 2 runs in 10. Not bad, eh?
Ever wonder what it’s like being Doug Balsley, the pitching coach for Padres’ manager Bud Black? As pitching coach for the Angels in his previous job, he looked intense and hands-on, if you know what I mean.
**SPECIAL NOTE** I have a bad feeling that Andy Pettitte is going to win the YEAH, YEAH, YEAH Award of the year. Today fit the bill, and I haven’t the heart to explain. If you can stand it, listen to the game, bad umpire calls and all. Calls that favored the Yankees, mind you.
And, yes, I was a little startled at Bruney’s performance, but I trust him for the future. Do we know what went wrong?
Wow. What a Weekend. Well, at least it’s the Right Sox tonight. A breather, even if they do win, which is how it’s looking right now. Roger the Rocket looked pretty fat at Pinstripes on the Park last Thursday. Hate to but I must tell you that the audience — just like at the Stadium the Saturday prior — was definitely not swayed by his charms or promise. His promises, on the other hand, were inspiring. He said we’d take the Series this weekend, and we did. We could use a cheerleader from Texas. One who’s on OUR payroll.
I hear from Floraine Kay that we might take Runyldys Hernandez off the hands of the Red Sox. We might have saved some money and the risk of a double agent (ala Ramiro Mendoza working for us in in their clubhouse in 2003 — and then back with us in the minors last year — where is he now?) had someone LISTENED TO ME and bought him straight from Kansas City. It’s hardly a secret that I have a soft spot for oversized lefties like David Wells (San Diego — HELLO, anybody LISTENING?), CC Sabathia (Cleveland), and, yes, Runyldys, who definitely needed some guidance while he was with the Royals. It will be interesting to see where he is.
So we need a fielder who doesn’t have to hit, eh? Um, anybody look at our bench? MIGUEL CAIRO? And, does anyone remember that he makes things happen? Why hasn’t he been working? He worked in April during some shortages, then NOTHING. Even a DH needs SOME time on the field, and he is a good fielder when he gets a chance to play.
Besides Miggy, there’s Super Joe McEwing, former Met, beloved by fans in Kansas City, and now somewhere else, I will have to check. I loved watching him field. Like David Dellucci as a Yankee, Super Joe was everywhere before you knew where to look. Then, there’s Jeff Keppinger, another former Met, though he may have found a home, as I know Ty Wigginton has as a Devil Ray. Wiggington is a bat more than a fielder, anyway. I’ll always remember the story Floraine told me about how, when he was playing 3rd base for the Mets, knowing he was prone to errors, he wrote E-5 on the inside of his visor.
More on umpires, especially regarding this last weekend, to come.
5th TIME EVER IN BASEBALL HISTORY,
4 CONSECUTIVE HR’s were hit
(by Boston, off Chase Wright).
WHAT ARE THE ODDS
that Boston could figure the Yankee pitcher out so fast?
- SCORELESS before the 4 consecutive HR’s. (3-0 Yankees).
- 1963: Last time 4 consecutive HR’s occured in the AL.
…but in the end it’s all the same anyway. Or is it?
By the time I came in from O’Hare on Monday April 2, the anticipation of Opening Day had ended, with the Northsiders’ loss to the Reds in Cincinnati with Zambrano falling to Harang and the Southsiders’ self-defeating home opener in which Contreras finally left the mound with a 63.00 ERA, leaving Cleveland’s starter Sabathia to win handily if shakily. (Yankee fan that I am, I have always said with goodwill, God bless the White Sox if you can get Contreras to pitch for you. And, you did. Once in awhile, in moments like this, deja vu floods all over again, and I have to remind myself that he’s not mine any more. Don’t worry. He always seems to come out of it for you. Sigh. I was so glad to get Loaiza in return. Wish we still had him.)
Sports radio was mourning the joint losses and that’s about all it was doing. I got no serious recaps, and even heard nothing about Sabathia — who had given his team an injury scare in the last game of spring training, leaving everyone wondering if like last season he like Loaiza (Oakland) would be spending an early portion of the season on the DL. (Right- Photo of Loaiza by Jeff Chiu/AP)
In fact, I would have heard little about either game without settling in for the late night with The Score, WSCR, and even they were covering college football — while acting cute — when I tuned in.
I avoid contrasting cities because it smacks of measuring siblings against each other and I hear that’s bad. Not having any, I wouldn’t know, but I do not want to step on toes, so I will say no more than this:
In NYC, even left-leaning news & talk radio AIR AMERICA (1600 AM) gives better baseball detail about important games (Opening Day, games against Boston, post-season games) than I heard about the Cubs or the Right Sox on sports talk radio here. I’m sure there were the usual postgame shows, but really!
Thank goodness for MLB.com Radio and TV! I subscribe to the premium package and I recommend it. Years ago, I started with the audio alone, and stayed with that for a couple years. It’s a terrific deal, and when I had access only to my home dial-up connection, it was the wisest deal, too. Can you believe that we can watch or listen to Vin Scully any time we want? If it’s just on audio, it’s $14.95 for the whole season!! No, I’m not being paid by MLB.com! I was just so glad to have it when I couldn’t find any late night baseball talk radio!
Well, we should be fair. The Mets and Cardinals opened the Season. But today is the Yankees’ opener, and PAVANO is starting. Our year will be um interesting! I am hopeful of course yet I sense some inanity in our roster. Perhaps Miguel Cairo will learn a new position or two. I close this brief entry with the last 2 paragraphs of George King’s article in today’s New York POST:
A 61-64 career pitcher, Pavano signed a four-year, $40 million dealafter the 2004 season and has pitched in 17 games (4-6; 4.77 ERA) for
"He has the ability to certainly have the fans
embrace him," Torre said. "He is a good guy. I know some bad things
have happened around him and probably he is responsible for most of
them. But hopefully, with the understanding that the priority is
baseball, I think he is in a pretty good place right now. He has to go
out and pitch. If he stays healthy, I am very confident he will do
PLAY BALL!! Let’s go Yankees!