Showing posts with label Jackie Robinson. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Jackie Robinson. Show all posts

Saturday, August 29, 2020

Saturday Morning Hot Links

Lance McCullers took the mound without having thrown a warm-up pitch. The Astros got in their defensive positions behind him. The dugouts emptied, and Martin Maldonado and Marcus Semien placed a 42 jersey in the opposing batter's box, a Black Lives Matter shirt resting on home plate. Then they walked off the field after a 42-second moment of silence. After 72 hours off the Astros took a stand with the Oakland Athletics and decided not to play last night on Jackie Robinson Day, in an effort to make a statement of civil disobedience and stand with others who are trying to reiterate that Black people's lives matter. I am incredibly proud of this team and this organization. I respect Oakland as a city in the historical record of protesting injustice, and I respect the Oakland Athletics as an organization that could field 25 Eddie Gaedels and still win 90 games. There will be a double-header today. The Astros and the Athletics didn't say a word on the field, and they didn't play. Listen to Robert Ford's call.

Michael Brantley:

If we can change one person's mind, have a conversation that changes one person's thought process that saves a life, this was worth it to us. As a group, as a community, we're doing a great job of talking about it. But these situations that keep coming up have to stop. I think we all feel the same way, and the more times we can talk about it and educate ourselves, the better off we're going to be.

More Brantley:

I think this is bigger than baseball. We talked about it in our meeting that this is just not about baseball. This is about life. 

Josh Reddick:

We felt like this message was bigger than missing another game, to show support for our brothers not only on our team but across the league as well, to let them know that we have their backs every day no matter what goes on. 

Dusty Baker, one of two (2) Black managers in MLB:

For a while there, it had gotten away from being America's game. This brought it back full circle...This is definitely America's game. America belongs to all of us, no matter if you got here early or late. We're all Americans and we've all had a hand in building this country, and we've probably all had a hand in tearing some of it down. Now it's time to rebuild it back again.

I am extremely proud of this organization. 

From Sharon Robinson, Jackie's wife:

I'm so excited about these young people. My generation, we're getting old, and very tired. We're activists, but we went through all kinds of things - from civil rights, to women's movements, to the war. We protested everything. Now these young people need to come forward, and they're doing it. There's black and white and brown, and that's very exciting. 

*The Dynamo and Dash are collecting bottled water and non-perishables for Southwestern Louisiana at BBVA Stadium today from 9am-3pm. 

*Meat Wagon Updates from McTaggart: Bregman is in Corpus, running. Aledmys Diaz could rejoin the team today. Devenski and Peacock are throwing. Urquidy is maybe ten days away from joining the Astros.

*I'll let you try to unpack this Dusty quote, on Verlander, because I legitimately don't know what it means:

Verlander is a little further away than we would like, but he's closer to reality than it appeared like when he first went down.

*Yordan Alvarez had surgery on *both* of his knees on Wednesday, to repair the patella tendon on his right knee and then to clean up his left one. He should be ready for Spring Training 2021, if we're all still here by then. Thoughts and prayers to his wife, who now has a baby and a husband who probably cannot walk right now aka another baby. 

*The Trade Deadline is Monday and Brian McTaggart says the Astros are looking for arms. 

Related: SI's Stephanie Apstein on the awkward reality of being traded in a global pandemic. 

*If you have 4:17 available to drink someone's tears, you can watch Jomboy and some of his crew cry about how Gerrit Cole "isn't as good as he was last year."

Gerrit Cole, 2019: 20-5, 2.50 ERA/0.895 WHIP (2.64 FIP), 13.8 K/9, 2.0 BB/9, 1.2 HR/9

Gerrit Cole, 2020: 4-1, 3.51 ERA/0.951 WHIP (4.40 FIP), 11.6 K/9, 1.8 BB/9, 2.2 HR/9

Oh, and the Yankees are sitting on a 7-game losing streak. 

*Freakin' Chadwick Boseman - 43 years old - who played Jackie Robinson in 42 - died...on 2020's Jackie Robinson Day. RIP. 

*The Athletic's Britt Ghiroli: What MLB's data-sharing network might tell us about teams making trades.

*Mookie Betts narrated a really great video in honor of Jackie Robinson.

*The New York Mess.

*It's two weeks today until Leeds United announces their presence in the Premier League with authority and beats Liverpool at Anfield, 2-1. The Roggits play at 5:30pm today.

*There are now over 100 confirmed COVID-19 cases related to a Smash Mouth concert at a South Dakota motorcycle rally. These are decisions that were made. 

*InFocus: Pictures of the aftermath of Hurricane Laura.

*A note about this morning's Musical Selection:

About ten years ago The Wife and I went to see one of our favorite musicians - Joe Firstman - play The Basement in Nashville. We like to see who opens, so we showed up early, and heard this dude Jay Buchanan. It was us and about 10 other people, and he - completely by himself - KILLED it. If you ever had a chance to go to The Basement, "intimate" is a generous word for the venue. We bought an EP of his and it kills me that I can't find it. Anyway, this was one of his songs:


We didn't hear anything about him again. It was a topic of conversation: how in the world did Jay Buchanan not become famous, at least in some under-the-radar indie singer-songwriter sense. And then we went down a musical rabbit hole two nights ago, and found that he had, in face, made it, at least in a little bit of an under-the-radar sense. May I present to you, Rival Sons, whose lead singer is Jay Buchanan:


Wednesday, April 15, 2020

(Mostly) 'Rona-Free Hot Links, Vol. 7

Took a break because...well, I felt like it.

*Dusty Baker's new routine is basically making wine and watching cowboy movies. Dusty:
It's kind of like Groundhog Day every day.

*Dusty talked to Tags about Jackie Robinson and the potential return of baseball.

*Jackie Robinson coached college basketball in Austin.

*'s complete guide to Jackie Robinson Day.

*Alex Bregman has raised almost $850,000 for the Houston Food Bank.

2017 ALCS Game 7:

*Jim Crane is shipping $3m worth of supplies to Puerto Rico.

*MLB is participating in a COVID-19 study.

*Tom Verducci: How a 43-game regular season could work.

*Wright Thompson, on Clayton Kershaw.

*The Quarantine Backyard Ultra is perfectly insane.

*Might have said this already, but I highly suggest you watch Icarus on Netflix.

*We've also really been into McMillion$, which is on Hulu and HBOGo.

*The Spies Who Came in from the Continent.

*Stereogum: An oral history of MySpace Music.

*Outside: The true story of the White Island eruption.

*I've read about half of The Partner in the last 24 hours. It's a pretty great quick read.

Tuesday, April 16, 2019

Tuesday Morning Hot Links

The Astros were off last night and start a three-game series in Oakland tonight. They're still 11-5.

*Since the beginning of 2015, the Astros are 23-15 at Oakland. They're 27-14 against Oakland in general since the beginning of 2017.

*Other notable stats during this 9-game winning streak:
-The Astros are 4-0 in one-run games.
-Six of the nine wins have been decided by 1-2 runs.
-Astros pitchers have walked 4+ batters in five of these wins, including an 8BB game on April 7 (the Altuve Walk-Off Walk game). The last time the Astros won a game in which they walked 8+ batters was on June 9, 2018 against the Rangers. They're 4-6 when they walk 8+ batters since the beginning of 2015. I thought that number would be more drastic than it is. How the hell do you win four out of ten when you issue eight walks? This team is witchcraft.
-The last time that Ryan Pressly allowed a run in the regular season: August 10, 2018. That's a 27-record 27 regular season appearances without allowing a run. That's 25.2IP, 11H/0ER, 35K:3BB.

*Richard Justice notes that Altuve and Correa are healthy and happy.

*The Astros don't use an opener, but SI's Tom Verducci writes about Houston's ultra-modern pitching staff. Verducci:
Some people may still need reminding, but the 1990s are over. Starting pitching no longer requires the volume it did two decades ago. The latest example: Baseball's best team is doing quite well after losing three pitchers who started more than half their games last year.

*Buster Olney and Tim Kurkjian talked about the Astros' winning streak on yesterday's Baseball Tonight podcast.

*Aledmys Diaz and Yuli Gurriel talked to Chandler Rome about the Cuba/MLB deal that was recently scuttled by the White House.

*Five years ago the Dodgers acquired Former Astros Great Enrique Hernandez. Here's The Athletic's Pedro Moura on how Hernandez went from $327 paychecks to sleeping in closets to the Dodgers' starting 2B.

*Jonah Keri has the Astros at #2 in his excellent Power Rankings rundown, and Collin McHugh is the reason.

*On the centennial celebration of Jackie Robinson, MLB is trying to figure out how to appeal to more African-Americans.

Check out some of Sports Illustrated's best stories on Jackie Robinson:
"The Breakthrough" by William Nack.
"A Home Run For the Ages" by Brad Herzog
"Recalling Jackie Robinson Through the Eyes of a Teammate" by Nicholas Dawidoff.
"And Then the Barrier Broke" by Jay Jaffe.
"Robinson Was Safe" - 1955.
"What Jackie Robinson Means To Me" by Jimmy Rollins

*Literally no one asked for this #OnHere but here's how things shake out in the race for the 2nd Automatic Promotion race in the Championship, with my beloved Leeds United:

2. Leeds (82 points)
Friday: vs. #21 Wigan (Leeds won 2-1, previous matchup)
April 22: @ #14 Brentford (1-1 draw, previous matchup)
April 28: vs. #5 Aston Villa (Leeds won 3-2, previous matchup)

3. Sheffield United (79 points)
Friday: vs. #11 Nottingham Forest (Forest won 1-0, previous matchup)
April 22: @ #9 Hull City (Sheffield won 1-0, previous matchup)
April 27: vs. #24 Ipswich Town (1-1 draw, previous matchup)

You get three points for a win and one point for a draw. If Sheffield United slips up in one of the next two games, that huge matchup between Leeds United and Aston Villa might not matter. I'm going to die.

*Fire gutted Notre Dame de Paris yesterday, but some of it was saved.

*BBC: The Footballer, the Saudi Prince, and the Proposition.

*A Musical Selection:

Wednesday, August 29, 2018

Wednesday Morning Hot Links

Folks, I have some bad news. The Astros dropped a game to the A's last night 4-3. And it was bad. Running on Laureano, watching pitches right down the middle when it matters most, walking players. So much bad. I'm not a huge fan of writing my own recap. There are a lot of writers better than I who know what they are doing. I am here to provide you some piping hot links! So on that note, if you would like a very detailed and well-written recap on what went wrong in the 9th, Chandler Rome has you covered. If you would like the full recap of the game, Tags has you covered on that front (with videos that you can click and watch too!)
ESPN Senior Writer David Schoenfield talks about the Astros recent surge and why it's "bad news" for the rest of the AL.

Alex Bregman might have a new and home run celebration idea and I am here to tell you that I do not want it and I would like more dugout stares please. Stop trying to ruin such a great thing. My favorite part of the video in the link above is the dedication of Tyler White to still do the stare and not participate in this new lame celebration even though no one else joined him. He is a boss and a legend. Absolute unit. 

It is my extremely professional opinion that you probably should not expect Jeff Luhnow to make a waiver deadline deal.

People are digging up old J.D. Martinez posts now.

Here is an old yet very intriguing read about using advanced statistics to determine 2018 awards.

You might want to listen to the Executive Access Podcast this week.

Speaking of podcasts, Lima Time Time Episode 79 is up if you haven't listened to that yet.

Oh my word. Look at Scott Servais' hair. (and this is why)

On This Day in Baseball History

In 1966, The Beatles played their last gig at Candlestick Park citing poor lighting and acoustics.

In 2006, Willy Taveras snapped his 30 game hitting streak for the Astros, a franchise record. 

In 2008, the Rays are guaranteed their first winning season in franchise history.

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Wednesday Morning Link Dump

Happy Jackie Robinson Day. This is my favorite Jackie Robinson story ever.

*The Astros drop another one, getting shut out by the A's 4-0, to fall to 3-5 on the young albeit painful season. As a team they're "hitting" .197/.277/.320 with 79 strikeouts (but 29 walks!) in eight games.

*Chris Carter and Evan Gattis are a combined 4x54 with no extra-base hits, 23K:3BB.

*Jason Castro, however, is 6x20 with 4K:5BB.

On to the links...

*A.J. Hinch summed up the loss to the A's:
We just weren't able to get that hit that catapulted us. Some good at-bats; some bad at-bats. And then ultimately no runs. That's not a good combo.

*Jonathan Villar was shooting for no errors in 2015. And then, uh, Monday happened.
I'm going to try to leave it there and not make any more errors. 

*FanGraphs posted a good article on Dallas Keuchel, and whether 2014 was a fluke

*It's the anniversary of the best tweet ever by yours truly:

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Notes: Meet LaTroy Hawkins, Resident Contrarian

Interesting viewpoint from LaHawk on wearing Jackie's #42:
"It loses its luster when everybody does it. I think everybody has a certain level of respect for Jackie, and it’s not like anybody now shouldn’t know who he is and what he’s done for the game. I’d hate to see if there is a professional baseball player that doesn’t know his legacy in the game. Shame on him if there is.”

I agree with the shaming of ignorance, but I don't think it loses its luster. Baseball players are identified by their numbers. The fact that all of the Major Leaguers wear one number for one day on the anniversary of the day baseball integrated makes it more special.

In other Newts:
Backe threw 60 pitches off the mound...
"I feel pretty good. I was pretty cautious out there today. The mound is pretty reminiscent of the game I got hurt. It would have been stupid of me to throw the ball hard and test it out with the mound the way it was."

And the leadoff spot will belong to Michael Bourn, at least for today, with Matsui out until tomorrow. Bourn did not record a hit, but did get a leadoff walk and scored later that inning. Interesting note: in games Bourn was the leadoff hitter in 2008, he only recorded two game-starting walks.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009


It's Jackie Robinson Day. Jackie Robinson is my Favorite Player of All Time (which brings up a valid question: Who is your FPoAT?)

I can't tell you how much I love Jackie Robinson. More than Nolan Ryan. More than Jeff Bagwell. More than Craig Biggio. That's how much.

So today, on Jackie Robinson Day, Baseball Tonight did one of their asinine Jackie Robinson tributes, where they counted down, from 42 (to make it as obnoxious as possible), Jackie's stats. Here's the problem:

ESPN said that Jackie debuted on September 15, 1947. What day is this? April 15. Think that's a coincidence?

Karl Ravech also said that Jackie perished in a plane crash helping earthquake victims in Nicaragua. What's the problem here? That was Roberto Clemente. I'm so infuriated, it has ruined my appreciation of an Astros win, and of Jackie Robinson Day.

UPDATE: I'm not the only one who noticed this: