Thursday, September 27, 2018

Notes, quotes and comment

A generous gesture from the manager of the Chicago White Sox:

It's been a trying season for Renteria. The White Sox weren't expected to be good, and they haven't. They were expected to start seeing some progress from a collection of prospects from whom much is expected -- the Sox made a bunch of trades last year, dealing off quality players such as Chris Sale, David Robertson and Adam Eaton -- and those guys have largely spun their wheels.

With the pitchers -- guys like Michael Kopech, Lucas Giolito. Carlos Rodon and Dylan Covey -- that's more or less expected. I note with frequency that many star pitchers struggle in their first 30 big league starts. And Kopech, of course, blew out his elbow in his fourth start.

More concerning, I think, is  Yoan Moncada's struggles. He's hitting in the .230s and leads baseball in strikeouts. They had to expect more from him, and maybe better is coming. He is just 23.


I somehow missed entirely the Juan Graterol addition to the Twins, not that he's a big deal.

The Twins signed the journeyman as catching insurance in June after the Angels released him, and he spent much of the season in Triple A sharing time behind the dish with Willians Astudillo and a collection of who-dats. He got a belated September callup last week, with Ervin Santana going on the 60-day DL to make roster space, when it became obvious that Mitch Garver (concussion) wasn't going to catch again this year.

So the Twins have three catchers on their roster. Astudillo is by far the most interesting.


The Twins' win Wednesday was greatly aided by an odd umpiring ruling. Runners on first and second, no outs, and Paul Molitor put on the hit-and-run with Astudillo, who figures to be really good at this. But he lined out to the second baseman for what should have been a triple play.

Except that the shortstop was nowhere near the bag at second for the throw, and Niko Goodrum muffed the throw at first. The second base ump called Robbie Grossman out at second, and Grossman, who never tried to return, went to the dugout. But the Twins appealed the call, and it was overturned. The umps put Grossman back at second, and the Twins wound up scoring five runs.

As I see it, Grossman conceded the out when he left the field. I think the umps -- in Minneapolis and New York -- messed up.


Trevor May has an idea:

May apparently is quite taken by the atmosphere at Oakland and Cleveland. I'm not sure how well the notion will play in staid Minnesota.

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