Jul 04

Game 85, 2016 and 4th of July historical revisionism

The guy who wrote the latest Ty Cobb biography explains why most of what we’ve been told of Cobb is a lie. For example, his family history would indicate he was no racist, despite what we’ve been told:

Ty Cobb was descended from a long line of abolitionists. His great-grandfather was a minister who preached against slavery and was run out of town for it. His grandfather refused to fight in the Confederate army because of the slavery issue. And his father was an educator and state senator who spoke up for his black constituents and is known to have once broken up a lynch mob.


Cobb himself was never asked about segregation until 1952, when the Texas League was integrating, and Sporting News asked him what he thought. “The Negro should be accepted wholeheartedly, and not grudgingly,” he said. “The Negro has the right to play professional baseball and whose [sic] to say he has not?”

I’ve read the biography, and it’s a good one. I give it 4 stars.

On to today’s game.

Orioles at Dodgers, 6:10PM PT, TV: MLBN (out-of-market only), MASN, SPNLA

The Dodgers have won four straight and the Orioles have lost four straight. Despite that the Orioles still lead the AL East by three games. Each streak could continue after this evening’s game with its early start time (fireworks afterward!). The Dodgers ask young Julio Urias (1-2, 4.09 ERA) to keep up his good work; he’s lowered his ERA from one game to the next in each of his 7 starts. He’s thrown 33 innings so far for the big leaguers in 2016 after throwing 41 in the minors this season. The most he’s ever thrown in a season is 87 2/3 in 2014, so he’s coming close to a shutdown point.

Urias will be opposed by Yovani Gallardo (3-1, 5.77 ERA). This is his fourth start after coming off the DL, where he’d been with shoulder tendinitis. His last start was his best since his return; he went six innings against the Padres and got the win.

Note: the Orioles hit a lot of home runs. They just set a major league record by hitting 56 in June, the most ever in that calendar month. They are on pace to hit 262 for the season, just two short of the all-time record of 264 set by the A-Rod-Griffey Jr.-Jay Buhner-E. Martinez Mariners in 1997.

Update: Hyun-Jin Ryu will start Thursday’s game for the Dodgers against the Padres.


Oct 08

ALDS opening games, 2015

Early game: Rangers at Jays, 12:30PM PT, TV: FS1

Texas asks Yovani Gallardo (13-11, 3.42 ERA) to start its first post-season game in three years. He’ll face the Blue Jays’ David Price (18-5, 2.45 ERA and an even more brilliant 9-1, 2.30 ERA since becoming a Jay mid-season).

Both these teams are hot. The Blue Jays went 40-18 (.690) over the final two months; the Rangers went 38-22 (.633) over the same period.

Is history any guide?

Toronto won each of its two three-game series against Texas this year, leading to a 4-2 advantage in the overall season series. The teams last matched up Aug. 25-27 in Texas, where Toronto won the first two games and lost the finale.

Late game: Astros at Royals, 4:30PM PT, TV: FS1

The Astros send out Collin McHugh, (19-7, 3.89 ERA, and who knew the Astros had a 19-game winner?) to face the Royals’ Yordano Ventura (13-8, 4.08 ERA). That record’s a little misleading: Ventura was sent to the minors in July and almost instantly recalled as an injury replacement; since that time he’s gone 9-1 with a 3.10 ERA.


The bottom-line offensive production of these two teams was virtually identical over 162 games. The Royals played in the tougher hitter’s park, but still it can’t get much closer than this. The Astros were sixth in the Majors in runs scored with 4.50 per game, while the Royals were seventh with an average of 4.47.

Aug 16

Game 125, 2014

Brewers at Dodgers, 6:10PM PT, TV: SPNLA, MLBN

Clayton Kershaw brings his 14-2, 1.78 ERA record to the hill to face Yovani Gallardo and his 7-6, 3.44 ERA record. Gallardo hasn’t pitched against the Dodgers this year. In his career he’s had seven starts and sports (?) a 5.98 ERA against them.

Hyun-Jin Ryu went on the DL with a Grade 1-2 strain in his hip. Kevin Correia will start in Ryu’s place on Tuesday against the Padres. Additionally, “the Dodgers acquired right-hander Justin Germano from the Rangers for future considerations on Friday. The Dodgers assigned German to Triple-A Albuquerque.”

Germano is a 31-year-old journeyman who’s pitched 7 innings in the big leagues in the last two years, spending most of his time in AAA Buffalo and Round Rock, where he was primarily a starter.

Update: Via ESPN: “Uribe is the seventh different Dodgers player to have gone on the DL this month, including Ramirez and pitchers Josh Beckett, Ryu, Paul Maholm, Chris Perez and Paco Rodriguez.”

Lineup when available.