Hi, everyone! And welcome to Write-Up For Yesterday, BttP’s guide to what the heck happened yesterday in baseball. We’re not gonna just hand you some scores here, because we trust you know how to type the letters E-S-P-N into your internet machine. Instead, we hope to give you a fuller and richer understanding of important goings on from yesterday in baseball. The big stories, and the noteworthy performances-good and bad.
STORY LINES AND NEWS CYCLE EPHEMERA
Hanley Ramirez’s red-hot start in Boston was abruptly curtailed in the first inning last night, when he crashed into a wall in the corner of left field in an attempt to catch a James Loney fly ball. Ramirez’s left shoulder, twice surgically repaired, bore the brunt of the damage, and the former shortstop left the field shortly afterwards in obvious pain. Boston is still in the process of evaluating the injury but the team sounded hopeful rather than confident that the 31-year-old would be back in the near future. Of course, with Rusney Castillo, Jackie Bradley Jr., Allen Craig, and the multi-talented Brock Holt all in reserve, as well as Shane Victorino likely to head out on a rehab assignment soon, you could be forgiven for thinking that the Red Sox may have been preparing for the odd injury or two in the outfield. To add insult to literal injury, Hanley did have the ball in his glove, but it was ruled a non-catch as it popped out immediately.
The Milwaukee Brewers blamed their terrible start, as well as last year’s terrible finish, on Ron Roenicke, whose wobbly chair fell over before Ben and Sam even had a chance to discuss it. GM Doug Melvin replaced him with Craig Counsell in a move that someone has probably already said was vindicated by his 100% record after their improbable 4-3 victory over the juggernaut that is the Clayton Kershaw-led Dodgers on Monday night. Counsell declared confidently that the Brewers “have good players” and then, somewhat less confidently and in a turn of phrase that suggested Monday may have been the first time he watched Milwaukee this season, added “I hear it from other teams that we have good players.”
Felix Hernandez both stopped the Mariners’ slide and became the all-time leader in strikeouts amongst Venezuelan pitchers. With no-one active close to King Felix or second-placed Johan Santana it seems unlikely that anyone is going to pass him, although he still needs another nine to pass Andres Galarraga to be the Venezuelan with most strikeouts on either side of the ball, as Galarraga struck out 2003 times at the plate.
Chewbacca threw out the first pitch at Fenway Park and is now the leading candidate for Boston’s third starter job. There were far too many Star Wars references yesterday to fit in one recap, but fortunately SB Nation put together their own May the Fourth post of the best ones.
TWEETS WE LIKED
George Springer, baseball fans. https://t.co/0fJ1aWp5eC
— Ryan Thibs (@NotMrTibbs) May 5, 2015
Flyout to the warning track, huge dinger, sharp lineout, walk, and a caught stealing. FERNANDO RODNEY SURE SAVED THAT GAME! — Cespedes Family BBQ (@CespedesBBQ) May 5, 2015
Kyle Kendrick has allowed as many home runs this year as Adam Wainwright did last year — Sam Miller (@SamMillerBP) May 5, 2015
ARTICLES WE LIKED
At Fangraphs, Chris Mitchell pondered what minor league contact rates can tell us about a player’s transition to the major leagues.
At Grantland, Michael Baumann asked how the Yankees have somehow managed to turn history’s greatest monster/guy who took some drugs to maybe be a bit better at baseball (delete as appropriate) into a sympathetic figure.
In honour of it being some day that has something to do with Star Wars, The Cespedes Family BBQ team hunted down the best Star Wars-related baseball names so you don’t have to.
BP started a brand new prospect podcast so all of the Up & In fans can do something other than listen to old episodes on repeat.
Ryan Sullivan welcomed agent Joshua Kusnick back to the NatsGM Show to talk autograph hunters, work/life balance and that Brady Anderson footrace.
TODAY’S BEST PITCHING MATCHUPS
(Deserved Run Average included in brackets)
Shane Greene (DET, 3.61) vs. Jeff Samardzija (CHW, 4.85) (8:10 ET)
Everyone’s favourite preseason pitching sleeper will try to right the ship after getting torched for fifteen earned runs over his last two starts, fourteen more than he had given up in his previous three. He’ll get the benefit of facing the lowest-scoring offense in the league. The Shark, meanwhile, was at least spared the taunts of Orioles fans as he surrendered eight earned in an empty Camden Yards last week. He’ll hope this outing in front of an infinite number more fans goes much better.
James Paxton (SEA, 5.36) vs. Garrett Richards (LAA, 3.44) (10:05 ET)
Neither starter has managed to recapture last season’s excellent form just yet, although Richards has the better results despite worse peripherals. Both will get a good chance to improve in a big ballpark with two of the AL’s lowest-scoring lineups.
Kyle Hendricks (CHC, 4.47) vs. Tyler Lyons (STL, N/A) (8:15 ET)
Not the flashiest pitching matchup on paper, but this is a battle of first against second in the NL Central. Hendricks has also markedly improved his strikeout rate following his surprising 2.46 ERA last year, while Lyons possesses a slider that, per Fangraphs, was worth almost 3 runs above average per 100 pitches last season, albeit with no other pitches with positive value to complement it.Next post: Baseball’s Next Injury Frontier: Concussions
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