Today is a special day as every player in baseball will be wearing the number 42 as a tribute to Jackie Robinson, the man who broke the color barrier in major league baseball. A year ago I wrote my thoughts down about Jackie Robinson – how special a person he was, and what his lasting legacy would be. It’s still as poignant today as it was then. Here is the link to Here’s to You Mr. Robinson.
Jacoby Ellsbury can’t take deep breaths without having a sharp pain in his side. I’m no doctor, but that sounds like a serious issue with his rib cage. That return date of Friday isn’t going to happen. Ellsbury will go for more tests on Friday to determine what’s going on and if a DL stint is needed.
Jose Guillen is a man on a mission. Whether that mission is to return to relevance on the ball field, to work his way out of Kansas City, or just to be healthy again, Guillen is making noise. He has certainly placed his stamp on the season having gong deep in each of the past four games with a total of five homers and eight RBI. Don’t forget that Guillen has gone deep at least 20 times in each of his last five healthy seasons during which time he has averaged 92 RBI a season (he had only 241 at-bats in 2006 and just 281 last season). As for the last part, he obviously seems healthy, a fact that he no longer takes for granted after he literally feared for his life this offseason because of blood clots. “The doctor started talking about dying,” he said. “I didn’t even know what a blood clot was. It was so bad that I couldn’t feel my legs.” You can read more about the harrowing experience at Guillen Almost Died.
Francisco Liriano looked like the “old” Liriano today. He threw seven shutout innings against the Red Sox striking out eight. If he throws strikes this season, he could have a ton of success given that he has rediscovered about three mph on his fastball and some bite on that once nasty slider.
Bud Norris – that’s a young arm I really like. He may struggle at times since he really doesn’t have a third pitch, but when he is on, he can dominate batters. He did just that on Thursday allowing the Cardinals only a single unearned run in five innings. He whiffed nine in the victory.
I was pleasantly surprised today watching Scott Olsen pitch today. I know he gave up four runs in 5.2 innings to the Phillies, but he actually pitched much better than that – though I still wouldn’t count on him to be effective enough to be a weekly option in NL-only league. At the same time, I wasn’t at all impressed by J.A. Happ who continues to work with a massive rabbit’s foot in his pocket. Somehow he didn’t allow an earned runs despite walking six batters in 5.1 innings. He’s walked eight guys in 10.1 innings this season yet he owns a 1.65 ERA. Just like I said last year, a correction is a coming.
David Ortiz is hitting .154 with 13 Ks in 26 at-bats, and all you hear about is the fact that he could be the worst hitter in the history of baseball, which makes me wonder – why is it that J.D. Drew is basically getting a pass despite being just as awful (.143 with 13 Ks in 28 at-bats)?
I’m totally shocked that Jeff Suppan gave up four runs in five innings in his season debut. Actually the only shock is that it was only four runs.
Carlos Zambrano threw 123 pitches today — and only lasted five innings. Besides the stupidity of allowing anyone to throw that many pitches in just five innings, how could anyone let someone do that in the second week of the regular season? And people say that Dusty Baker abuses his pitchers.
By Ray Flowers