New Weekly Column: Socks Girl’s seven takeaways of the week!
So, this is new! Each week on Monday (I figure I can handle a small commitment to my blog, right?) I’m going to do a quick wrap up of the important things that have happened in MLB, and even some MiLB, events or matchups or whatever it was I would have loved to do an entire post on.
But let’s face it, there are 30 teams and no one person can cover them all or keep track of everything. I have a hard enough time covering the A’s at for FanRag Sports’ Today’s Knuckleball – which is where I work, just in case this is your first time reading my blog. You can learn more about me and my story here, if you’re curious about who’s talking to you right now.
This may change in format and structure – even name – because I haven’t come up with one just yet. But it’ll be my weekly wrap up. If you think of a good name – please leave your ideas below in a comment, the same goes for any event in any level of baseball that you think I missed (and there should be plenty of those) but for now, here’s my take on last week in baseball.
- Thrity-seven-year-old Adrian Beltre will now likely retire with the Texas Rangers. The two sides agreed on a two-year $36 million contract extension. Beltre is an almost certain first ballot Hall of Famer. He began his career 19 seasons ago at the age of 19 with the Los Angeles Dodgers and has also spent time in Boston and Seattle. His best years though have been the past five seasons with the Rangers. Not that Beltre has had a bad season. His lifetime batting slashline stands at .285/.337/.448. The four-time All-Star, Gold Glover and Silver Slugger has led the league at points in his career in home runs (48), doubles (49) and hits (199). Personally, to me he’s most memorable as a Ranger and he should retire as one. Now he will. For more on Beltre you can find my column on him here.
Boston Red Sox:
- The Boston Red Sox have placed Pablo Sandoval on the disabled list – without an MRI, according to Yahoo’s Jeff Passan. This is an unprecedented act. Sandoval, who has the third largest contract of any third-baseman and has under-performed since signing with Boston, complained of a mysterious shoulder pain and was immediately moved to the team’s disabled list. This never happens without an MRI to diagnose the severity of the injury – except in the event of obvious catastrophic injuries. Really it is more like a break for both Sandoval and the club. Sandoval lost his starting job to youngster Travis Shaw after the spring, most recently made headlines for literally breaking his belt while swinging the bat and there is no way that the Red Sox can unload him and his mega-salary on anyone. The two are stuck with each other and this appears to be one way for the Red Sox to perhaps not eat Sandoval’s entire contract by literally being almost forced to cut the overweight third baseman.
- Closer Brad Ziegler broke the franchise record for consecutive saves with 29. He also holds he the American League record for number of scoreless innings to begin a career with 22. He went on to break the MLB record of 25 innings to start a career that had been held since 1907. His rookie streak of scoreless innings ended at 39. By then he had broken the Oakland franchise record for consecutive scoreless innings at any point in a career and tied Christy Mathewson for second place for scoreless innings by a rookie – a record Mathewson first set in 1901. The all-time record is 41, recorded by Grover Alexander of the Philadelphia Athletics in 1911.
- Rookie shortstop Trevor Story, 23, made history on April 11th by hitting his seventh home run in his sixth ever big league game. For more on Story as well as other standout rookies such as the Houston Astros’ Tyler White and the St. Louis Cardinals’ Jeremy Hazelbaker click here.
Minnesota Twins & Atlanta Braves:
- Both teams started out their seasons win-less through nine games. Both won their first game on Friday April 15, 2016. As of Monday the Twins and the Braves have the same record of 3-9. Coincidence? Yes, it is. Still, it’s a bit of weird one, don’t you think??
- “King” Felix Hernandez is one of the best pitchers in baseball. He’ll end up in the Hall of Fame someday having come into the league at just 19 and dominated hitters for the past 11 seasons. He turned 30 on April 8. He’s held up under one of the hardest workloads of any pitcher in the majors and been put on the disabled list maybe once. King Felix tied the Mariners’ franchise record for strikeout with 2,162 K’s. It’s safe to say that he’ll break the record in his next start. Hernandez is currently tied with Hall of Famer Randy Johnson, better known as “The Big Unit.” He was one of baseball’s most prolific figures during his career. Unfortunately for King Felix he may enter the Hall of Fame having never been in the post season. The Mariners haven’t been to the postseason since their historic 116 win season in 2001, Felix wasn’t signed by Seattle until 2002. He’s a six-time All-Star and was the 2010 Cy Young Award winner but, sadly, his team has been the ones to fail him.
- Bryce Harper hit his 100th home run of his seemingly long but actually short career (so far). He debuted in the Majors just four years ago. His 100th home run wasn’t just your average run of the mill homer either. Harper did it in the way only a reigning MVP could – he hit a Grand Slam! It took him just 325 career games making him one of (but not the) youngest players to reach 100 home runs.
There are a million other things that happened in baseball this week but these are my seven takeaways for the week of April 10-16. Check back next Monday for more of the Socks Girl’s seven takeaways for week three of the 2016 season. 🙂