I’m relieving Grey this morning. I’ve been in triple A for a while now. Alex Gordon and I have struck up a pretty good friendship and on the bus rides we sing 99 bottles of beer on the wall, so I’m hoping I’ll just be in the majors for a little while. I think we were going to have smores tomorrow!
While I’m on the team bus I have been keeping up with Razzball Football so make sure you stop on over. NFL training camp is only three weeks away. I just wet myself a little when I typed that. Oh, so here are some baseball tidbits —
Joey Votto could be the first player to win the triple crown and not be voted to the All-Star game and be named after a baby kangaroo. After finding out that Charlie Manuel’s senility had caused him to check off Ryan Howard’s name for the All Star game instead of his, he decided to misplace his anger and question the umpire’s sexuality, his virility and his knowledge of the strike zone, which got him tossed in the first inning at Wrigley on a day that a home run hitter, or any player with arms larger than SpongeBob’s, would want to take a crack at the fences. The ejection also ended his on base streak at 41 games. Not the greatest day for Joey, but I think he’ll trudge on through.
Ricky Nolasco — His breakout season hasn’t quite broken out yet, but he struck out 11 Braves and got his 7th win. He’s put together a couple of good starts in a row and I see a good second half in his future.
Shin-Soo Choo — Choo had been chugga chugga chuggin along during a good stretch of hitting before he hurt his thumb and now what was thought to not be serious, is the opposite, which is serious. He sprained it and will be out 6-8 weeks. Michael Brantley was called up and should get plenty of work, maybe enough for an extra helping of SAGNOF.
Alexei Ramirez — His home run yesterday was in Texas, but he has been playing a little better. If you own him you are hoping for his patented second half to keep its patent.
Sean Rodriguez — SeanRod is 12 for his last 28 and hit a home run yesterday. He’s a free swingin’ Studio 54 type, so start him while he’s hot, and see if he has any extra blow.
Corey Hart — I just missed grabbing Hart off of waivers early in the season and I’ve cried myself to sleep every night since. Hart hit another home run to raise his total to 19 and he’s now hit in 19 in a row. And I played I Wear My Sunglasses At Night 19 times in a row in reverence.
Cliff Lee — Lee failed in his attempt for his 4th consecutive complete game. He still ended up going 8 innings, striking out 11 and securing his 8th win. The dude has an odd career arch.
Drew Stubbs — The Cubs were Stubbed, Janished, Millered, Philliped and Gomed by the Reds, but Stubbs did the most last-named damage with three home runs. Wrigley was a bandbox, whatever that is, with the wind blowing straight out and the temps around 90. Votto had to be extra pissed. I wouldn’t put too much into this outburst by Stubbs. He ain’t horrible, but you won’t be seeing another 3 donker anytime soon.
Tyler Colvin — He also hit a couple into the Wrigley-stream, but I’m pretty sure Eddie Gaedel could have hit one out yesterday. Colvin should continue to see at bats, but not everyday. You’ll need to find a deep or NL league to roster him.
Pedro Alvarez — He’s hit a home run in his last two games. That’s 2 total for all you math wizzes. He may have figured something out or he may have gotten a bit lucky in his free swinging ways, but if you’ve got room I don’t see any reason not to make a small wager on him having figured something out.
Yovani Gallardo — He left the game with an oblique strain. An oblique strain of what exactly, I’m not sure. Just cross your fingers that it’s not ebola. These kinds of injuries can linger for a pitcher so if you own him, hope he gets a bunch of rest.
Ubaldo Jimenez — He’s given up 17 runs in his last 17 innings pitched. He’ll turn things around, but he’s a pitcher and if you traded him for an elite hitter before this slump, you are feeling pretty good right now. If it was the other way around, stop your blubbering.
Dexter Fowler — Our serial killer of barnyard bird serial killers is back on track after being called up from AAA. He got on base 7 times, which is more than a lot. If he continues to lead off there is no reason to think he can’t be useful and by useful I mean, Rickey Henderson meets a young Alfonso Soriano.
Matt Joyce — On Saturday he hit a dramatic pinch-hit grand slam, which I have done many times in whiffle ball with ghost runners on. Joyce is worth a roster spot in AL leagues and if he can get playing time he might be more than that.
Jim Thome — Mr. Incredible passed Harmon Killebrew for 10th on the all time home run list when he hit 2 home runs against the Rays on Saturday. That’s 574 total. He’ll be able to hit a pinch hit home run at 50.