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Baseball Insider: April 19, 2009 - April 25, 2009

The Wrap: AL

AL Quote of the Night "I don't know why there were so many people here today. I know it was fireworks night, and I guess there was a giveaway." -- Royals pitcher Zack Greinke's reasons for why Kansas City sold out Friday's game against Detroit. Perhaps it had something to...

By CJ Holley  |  April 25, 2009; 7:53 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (2)
Categories:  The Wrap: AL  
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The Wrap: NL

NL Quote of the Night: "We've got no bench. We've got to get somebody in here." -- Cubs Manager Lou Pinella, on his team's injury woes after losing Aramis Ramirez and Carlos Marmol on Friday. Mets 4, Nationals 3 Grant this to the woeful Nats: They do keep finding interesting...

By Cameron Smith  |  April 25, 2009; 7:51 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  The Wrap: NL  
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Talking Behind Their Back: White Sox

The Orioles claimed another series and even won their first finale to pull it off. Unlike the team's previous series victories, Baltimore was able to take two of three from the Chicago White Sox thanks in large part to strong starting pitching performances. Brad Bergesen made his major league debut...

By CJ Holley  |  April 24, 2009; 4:32 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  Orioles , Rangers , White Sox  
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Moment of Levity: The Big Picture

THE DEATH OF A NO-HITTER This is Brewers starter Matt Bush on the mound, grieving the one pitch that cost him a spot in pitching immortality during his aborted no-hitter in Philadelphia. That one pitch led to a home run by Phillies pinch hitter Matt Stairs, but it clearly...

By Cameron Smith  |  April 24, 2009; 3:21 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  Brewers  
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The Paul Byrd Watch Begins

After another trip deep into the playoffs, double-windup master Paul Byrd was expected to wait until the all-star break to pick a team in the playoff chase and return to action. Now it looks like he's going to be back a lot sooner than that. According to Yahoo!'s Tim Brown,...

By Cameron Smith  |  April 24, 2009; 1:57 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (1)
 
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Kason Gabbard Goes Full Circle

It's not every day that a Class AAA addition turns heads, but that's precisely what happened on Thursday, when the Red Sox acquired left-handed pitcher Kason Gabbard from the Rangers for straight cash considerations. As many may remember, Gabbard pitched for the Red Sox in 2007 before being a centerpiece...

By Cameron Smith  |  April 24, 2009; 11:55 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (2)
Categories:  Rangers , Red Sox  
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When It Clicked: White Sox LF Carlos Quentin

The obvious starting point for a conversation about when it clicked for Carlos Quentin would be the 2008 season, when -- following a trade from Arizona to Chicago -- he transformed himself from a part-time player with plenty of potential to an offensive monster who might have won the American...

By Dave Sheinin  |  April 24, 2009; 9:10 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (1)
 
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The Wrap: AL

AL Quote of the Night "Even now I'm afraid to sneeze." -- Toronto rookie pitcher Ricky Romero after learning that a sneeze led to a strained muscle on his right side that puts the starter who sports a 2-0 record and a 1.17 ERA on the 15-day disabled list. Baltimore...

By CJ Holley  |  April 24, 2009; 7:54 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  The Wrap: AL  
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The Wrap: NL

NL Quote of the Night: "I have a temporary tattoo of a baseball that will be going away. I'll be fine. I've been hit in much worse spots, spots where you really don't come back as fast. I'll be able to go out there and pitch in five days." --...

By Cameron Smith  |  April 24, 2009; 7:50 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  The Wrap: NL  
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It's About Time: First Dog Ejected From Game

If you've been looking for a sign that the apocalypse is nigh, well, here it is. According to the Greensboro, N.C. News-Record, Master Yogi Berra, a bat and ball carrying dog for the Greensboro Grasshoppers, became the first canine ejected from a baseball game when he was tossed by home...

By Cameron Smith  |  April 23, 2009; 4:45 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (3)
 
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Moment of Levity: The Big Picture

HEADSET, FROSTED TIPS, 10 EXTRA POUNDS Evidently it's become harder for Roger Clemens to get in a solid workout with all of the legal stress surrounding his steroid allegations. How else can you explain the 10-15 pounds it looks like he's put on in the face since last year...

By Cameron Smith  |  April 23, 2009; 3:21 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (1)
Categories:  Astros , Dodgers , Yankees  
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A Little Bit More on Darren O'Day's Day

In the AL Wrap, I dropped in this quote from Toronto's Kevin Millar: "Gabbard I thought was a left-handed pitcher and he came in throwing sinkerballs, side-armed right-handed, so I was a little confused at first." This was in reference to recent Rangers acquisition Darren O'Day. How recent an acquisition...

By CJ Holley  |  April 23, 2009; 2:17 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (4)
Categories:  Blue Jays , Rangers  
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Injury Updates on Some Orioles Pitchers

With Brad Bergesen pitching so well in his major league debut and hopes for the future of the Orioles' pitching staff flying high, Alfredo Simon and his injured arm may already be forgotten. Simon, of course, was the team's most consistent pitcher at the end of spring training, which earned...

By CJ Holley  |  April 23, 2009; 1:02 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  Orioles  
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Giants Making a Splash With Ethnic Marketing

You may have missed it, but the Giants unveiled a pretty unique bobblehead earlier this week at AT&T Park. A Willie Mays retro doll? Hardly. An Edgar Renteria career retrospective, with patches of a jersey from each team he'd played for? Nope. Instead, it was a doll of Filipino boxer...

By Cameron Smith  |  April 23, 2009; 11:57 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (3)
Categories:  Giants  
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The Wrap: AL

AL Quote of the Night "Gabbard I thought was a left-handed pitcher and he came in throwing sinkerballs, side-armed right-handed, so I was a little confused at first." -- Toronto's Kevin Millar on facing reliever Darren O'Day who, after being picked up Wednesday by Texas, didn't have his own jersey...

By CJ Holley  |  April 23, 2009; 7:56 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (3)
Categories:  The Wrap: AL  
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The Wrap: NL

NL Quote of the Night: "You don't want to go through the whole month of April and not win a game." Arizona starting pitcher Dan Haren, who finally won his first game last night, improving his record to 1-3 despite his miniscule 1.38 ERA. Braves 1, Nationals 0 At a...

By Cameron Smith  |  April 23, 2009; 7:50 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  The Wrap: NL  
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Pettitte and Rivera Tie Strange Statistical Mark

Last night, Mariano Rivera saved an Andy Pettitte start. It's an act we've all seen before, and, as the case may be, we've seen it more often than all but one other act in baseball history. By helping the Yankees hold on to the lead Pettitte helped them earn, Rivera...

By Cameron Smith  |  April 22, 2009; 4:49 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (3)
Categories:  Yankees  
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Time for the Orioles to Scrap 'The Plan'?

Brad Bergesen made quite the impression in his major league debut last night. The 23-year-old righty carried a no-hitter into the fourth, worked quickly (gaining a fan in Nick Markakis), left to a standing ovation and, more importantly, gave the Orioles a solid start and a chance to win. Bergesen,...

By CJ Holley  |  April 22, 2009; 3:40 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (6)
Categories:  Orioles  
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Moment of Levity: The Big Picture

BLEACHER CREATURES 1, SHIN-SOO CHOO 0 Guess who won this battle for Johnny Damon's deep drive at Yankee Stadium (can we stop calling it "New" Yankee Stadium yet)? Here's a hint: The guy who ended up with the ball was wearing a Hollister t-shirt, not a uniform. (Julie Jacobson/AP)...

By Cameron Smith  |  April 22, 2009; 3:21 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (1)
Categories:  Indians , Yankees  
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Doumit Injury a Huge Blow to Pirates

So, who's been the biggest injury blow through the first two weeks of the season? Is it Chris Carpenter? Daisuke Matsuzaka? What about a guy like Hideki Masui? Well, a compelling case can be made that it's none of those or other stars, but instead is the overlooked catcher for...

By Cameron Smith  |  April 22, 2009; 1:52 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (2)
Categories:  Pirates  
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The Next Prospect Hotbed: Brazil

Teams are always looking for the next promised land, whether its a new hot spot in the Dominican Republic, Taiwan or, in the case of the Tampa Bay Rays, South America. According to this article from MLB.com, the Rays are dumping a whopping $6.5 million over the next five years...

By Cameron Smith  |  April 22, 2009; 11:46 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  Rays  
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The List: Best Closers' Facial Hair

It's clear to us what's wrong with Joel Hanrahan, the Nationals closer who blew two saves over the weekend and tried to blow another one last night before rescuing himself. It's not the .353 batting average he is allowing to left-handed hitters, or the suspect pitch selection, or even the...

By Dave Sheinin  |  April 22, 2009; 10:00 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (9)
 
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The Wrap: AL

AL Quote of the Night "He is a different cat right now." -- Rays Manager Joe Maddon on resurgent Mariners starting pitcher Jarrod Washburn (3-0), whom Maddon used to coach in Anaheim. Seattle Mariners 4, Tampa Bay Rays 2 Seattle's Jarrod Washburn continued his early season dominance, striking out nine...

By CJ Holley  |  April 22, 2009; 7:58 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (1)
Categories:  The Wrap: AL  
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The Wrap: NL

NL Quote of the Night "Bro, no signs -- first-pitch slider, let's go. And he throws a 94-mph fastball." -- Nationals catcher Jesus Flores describing how closer Joel Hanrahan ignored the conversation the two had with the team's pitching coach before facing the game's final batter. Washington Nationals 4, Atlanta...

By CJ Holley  |  April 22, 2009; 7:46 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  The Wrap: NL  
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Talking Behind Their Back: Red Sox

So that happened... Baltimore entered a four-game series in Boston fresh off of three series victories and standing at 6-3 on the year. The Red Sox on the other hand checked in at 2-6 and had already absorbed two three-game losing streaks. The Orioles jumped out to a 7-0 lead...

By CJ Holley  |  April 21, 2009; 6:37 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  Orioles , Red Sox , White Sox  
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No, You Can't Buy an "Adenhart" Jersey

The tragic death of young Angels pitcher Nick Adenhart -- a suburban Md. native and devout Redskins fan -- led to makeshift memorials and tributes propped up outside Angels Stadium, near his high school field, at the site of his deadly crash and in the vicinity of just about every...

By Cameron Smith  |  April 21, 2009; 4:46 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (1)
Categories:  Angels  
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Moment of Levity: The Big Picture

IN TRIBUTE Regardless of how you feel about late Phillies announcer Harry Kalas -- and I think few would question that he's one of the game's great voices -- this is a pretty touching shot. Somehow I don't think Mike Schmidt minds having the condolences taped to his statue,...

By Cameron Smith  |  April 21, 2009; 3:21 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  Phillies  
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Now Represting U. of Wisc.: Wrigley-Field

There have been plenty of rare honorifics thrown in the direction of Wrigley Field, the Cubs antiquated and widely beloved ballpark, across the years. At this point it's practically a hallmark on the national registry of historic places, despite that fact that all the history there for the past century...

By Cameron Smith  |  April 21, 2009; 11:47 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (1)
Categories:  Cubs  
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The Super Wrap

With rain here on the East Coast washing out a couple games on an already light day I've decided to combine the AL and NL Wraps into one Super Wrap. Consider this the Voltron of baseball recaps. Quote of the Night "I don't even feel that good. But I'm just...

By CJ Holley  |  April 21, 2009; 7:44 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (1)
Categories:  The Wrap: AL , The Wrap: NL  
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Boston Smokes Baltimore to Complete Sweep

In a spot start for the ailing Daisuke Matsuzaka, Boston's Justin Masterson handcuffed the Baltimore hitters, allowing just one run and four hits in 5 1/3 innings in a 12-1 Red Sox victory. Masterson was making his first start of the season after having pitched six innings of relief but...

By CJ Holley  |  April 20, 2009; 4:09 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (1)
Categories:  Orioles , Red Sox  
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Moment of Levity: The Big Picture

AND AFTER THE GAME, YOU WATCH RUNNERS This is the exact scene from a prior Marathon Day Red Sox game, complete with packed crowd and (evidently) decent weather. The early start at Fenway Park was originally installed so the game would finish in time for fans to see some...

By Cameron Smith  |  April 20, 2009; 3:21 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  Red Sox  
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Baseball and Running: A Strange Boston Relationship

I'm writing this now because, well, I'm not actually writing it right now. Instead, I'm running somewhere between Hopkinton and Boston (hopefully a little closer to the latter), a trek which is made a bit more interesting in the final two miles when you pass by a particular ballpark, where...

By Cameron Smith  |  April 20, 2009; 12:15 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (6)
Categories:  Orioles , Red Sox  
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Brief Comment

What we are seeing here is the impact of Mike Rizzo and Stan Kasten making decisions. And a lot of them. With Jim Bowden gone. The collective wisdom of baseball humanity claims that this should be a significant improvement. Just anti-Jimbo bias? We'll see. Excellent that Ryan Zimmerman has signed....

By Thomas Boswell  |  April 20, 2009; 10:28 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (1)
 
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Three Up, Three Down

Zim's deal: Nats 3B R. Zimmerman inks five-year $45M extension. Deal was actually reached during team's 0-7 opening week, but he wanted to see progress before making it official. Zim's debut: Nats phenom RHP J. Zimmermann called up for ML debut tonight. Already looks like a smart cookie - he...

By Dave Sheinin  |  April 20, 2009; 10:20 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (2)
 
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The Wrap: AL

AL Quote of the Night "I didn't think it was gone." -- The Yankees' Jorge Posada on his pinch-hit home run in the seventh inning that was upheld thanks to the first use of instant replay this season. New York Yankees 7, Cleveland Indians 3 Former Yankees flameout and current...

By CJ Holley  |  April 20, 2009; 7:57 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  The Wrap: AL  
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The Wrap: NL

NL Quote of the Night "I wanted Prado to beat me, not Chipper. Turned out he did." -- Pirates pitcher Zach Duke on the three-run homer he gave up to the Braves' Martin Prado. Atlanta Braves 11, Pittsburgh Pirates 1 The Braves exacted a measure of revenge Sunday as Atlanta...

By CJ Holley  |  April 20, 2009; 7:48 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  The Wrap: NL  
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The Wrap: AL

AL Quote of the Night "I don't think I've ever been part of something like that." -- Cleveland's Ben Francisco on the 14-spot the Indians put up in the second inning against the Yankees. Cleveland Indians 22, New York Yankees 4 The Indians shineboxed the Yankees thanks to an astonishing...

By CJ Holley  |  April 19, 2009; 7:56 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  The Wrap: AL  
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The Wrap: NL

With Cam up in Boston this weekend doing something like this, I'll be guiding you through the NL Wrap. Consider me your huckleberry. NL Quote of the Night "It made me feel good when they were cheering, I'll be honest." -- Philadelphia closer Brad Lidge on the warm reception the...

By CJ Holley  |  April 19, 2009; 7:48 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  The Wrap: NL  
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