Houston we have a problem
We talked about it earlier this year, about Houston’s meteroic start and wondered if it could last. It hasn’t, but it doesn’t mean that Houston is done. It just means they are still on schedule and for that, it means more of how the young-uns respond to the pressure of a pennant race – it will be a fun 3 weeks. Last Night, Mitch Moreland was the hero in Arlington, hitting a walk-off sacrifice fly in the bottom of the ninth inning as the Rangers defeated the Astros, 6-5. With the win, in its 144th game of the season, Texas moves into sole possession of first place in the AL West for the first time in 2015.
Over the last 30 years, there have been three other instances of a team standing alone in first place for the first time in a season in its 144th game or later. The 2006 Twins and 2012 Athletics both did this in their last game of the season, while the 2007 Phillies found themselves alone atop the NL East for the first time after their 160th game. These teams could not carry over that momentum into the playoffs, with each losing in the Divisional round (The Twins and Phillies were swept in three games, while the A’s lost in five games).
Strasburg lights up 14 and Harper jacks 2
It’s fun when you have Strasburg and Harper in your #DraftKings lineup to the tune of 85pts for the both of them – we did. As for Bryce Harper, he went 3-for-3 with two homers and four RBIs in the Nationals’ 4-0 victory over the Phillies. Harper is now batting .413 with 26 home runs and 63 RBIs in games in which Washington won this season (70 games). In Nats’ losses in 2015, Harper is sporting a .261 average with 13 homers and 27 runs batted in (67 games). Over the Nats’ last six wins (since September 4), Harper is hitting .600 (12-for-20) with six homers and nine RBIs.
Harper, who turns 23 years old on October 16, has 10 games with two or more homers in his major-league career. Only three other players have had as many games of this type at 22 years old or younger: Eddie Mathews (13 games), Bob Horner (10), and Mel Ott (10).
Oakland A’s scored more than the Raiders
Did anyone see this stack happen last night? The Athletics collected 16 runs and 15 hits (including three hits each by Billy Butler and Mark Canha) over the first four innings of their 17-6 triumph over the White Sox. The last time a team had at least 16 runs and 15 hits over the first four innings of a game was on April 20, 2013, when the Indians had 18 runs and 18 hits at Minute Maid Park against the Astros. Jason Giambi(five RBIs) and Mark Reynolds (four RBIs) drove in half of those runs.
There was only one other game in A’s history in which they totaled at least 16 runs and 15 hits over the first four innings. That was on June 18, 2000 against the Royals at Kauffman Stadium, when they had 17 runs and 15 hits in the first four frames of a 21-3 victory. Jason Giambi also played in that game, collecting two hits and two runs batted in over those four innings; his brother Jeremy went 3-for-4 with three RBIs in that same four-inning span.
Two position players, Leury Garcia and Alexei Ramirez, came into pitch for the White Sox on Tuesday. That marked just the second time in Sox history in which multiple position players pitched in one game. The first came in the second game of a doubleheader on September 28, 1902 against the St. Louis Browns (and the last game of the season for the White Sox). Frank Isbell, who played 133 games at first base in 1902, was the starting pitcher in the game and pitched one inning. Sam Mertes, who played 120 games in the outfield that season, replaced Isbell; he pitched the remainder of the game, allowing just two runs and earning the win.
Dee Gordon en fuego
Dee Gordon, who went 4-for-5 with a home run and two runs scored in the Marlins’ 9-3 victory at Citi Field on Tuesday, is 33-for-77 (.429) in 18 games against the Mets this season. Gordon’s 33 hits are the most for one player against a particular team this season as well as the most against the Mets in a single season. The previous high versus New York was Curt Flood’s 32 hits in 1963.
The last time a player had at least 33 hits against one team in a season was in 2011, when Jacoby Ellsbury (34 hits against Blue Jays) and Adrian Gonzalez (34 hits versus Orioles) accomplished this.
King Felix who?
David Murphy and Mike Trout each connected for home runs off Felix Hernandez in the Angels’ victory against the Mariners on Tuesday. It’s the fourth time that both Murphy and Trout have hit a homer against Hernandez; only Mark Teixeira (six) and Nelson Cruz (five) have hit more homers in their careers against King Felix.
Here’s last nights #DraftKings #Fantasybaseball perfect lineup:
I was sitting down at the ol’digital typewriter and I was transported back to college for a time because a Madonna tune came on the playlist, and it got me thinking about that girl that was obsessed with her. Calling Madonna the penultimate female embodiment and how much she respected her and felt that all women should look up to her and liberate themselves from their sexual slavery, yada-yada – I really wasn’t paying that close attention but if she was intent on practicing her sexual liberation, then I was more than willing to help her out – it’s the least I could do…
So my point is, I wonder if she still thinks of Madonna as the Goddess of Feminism? It seems kinda of odd picturing that girl, now in her 40’s strutting around with a pointy bra, rockin’ out to express yourself – or with an old pair of lace gloves crawling on the floor not wanting you to push her love over the borderline – it could happen…But it got me thinking about some other bat-sh!t-crazy things people still might do – like eat Cheez Whiz and go to Dinner Theater. Did someone really think that while they were watching RENT or WEST-SIDE STORY, that the only thing that was missing from the production was some pork chops? Cheez Whiz is what you’d see a doctor for, not eat. Speaking of crazy…
It is only Wednesday and there is no football for another day – so if you’re feeling a little squirelly and really have nothing better to do then let’s make a drinking game out of the 2nd GOP debate, with a little side-action on who mentions “Kim Davis” first – and if someone compares her to Rosa Parks, it’s a shot – if anyone mentions Indiana is the size of ISIS, it’s a shot – Matt Taibbi, has come up with some other fun rules – So let’s pretend we are the Lizard King and we’ll all tap into our inner-Kennedy, for #Murica!
- Drink THE FIRST TIME and the FIRST TIME only:
- 1. A candidate invokes the memory of Saint Reagan.
- 2. A candidate mentions Hillary’s emails.
- Drink EVERY TIME:
- 3. Hugh Hewitt hurls a douchey gotcha question at Trump.
- 4. Trump – or any of the other candidates – insults or threatens one of the moderators. Beer chaser if it’s Tapper or Bash, and the candidate rips liberal-ass CNN in the process.
- 5. Trump brags about his wealth or his poll numbers, or mocks the low poll numbers of an opponent.
- 6. A candidate pledges to stand with Israel.
- 7. Carly Fiorina makes a joke about her own face.
- 8. A candidate claims a positive relationship with a minority. We’re keeping this rule in every debate. (So far we’re one-for-one: Kasich said he had a gay friend in the first debate.)
- 9. Anyone mentions the “War on Christians.”
- 10. A candidate says he’ll stand up to Putin.
- 11. Trump derides someone for being a “lightweight” or having “low energy” or “low enthusiasm.”
- 12. Anyone mentions Tom Brady or Deflategate.
- 13. Anyone calls Black Lives Matter a “hate group,” argues that BLM or Barack Obama have endangered the lives of police, or pulls a “What about black-on-black crime?” line.
- 14. A candidate mentions the founders. Double shot if it’s Rand Paul.
- 15. Carson invokes the Bible as an authority for something that has nothing to do with the Bible, like tax policy.
- 16. A candidate says, “I’m the only person on this stage who…” Double shot if it’s Carson saying something like, “I’m the only candidate who’s had his hands inside a human thorax.”
- 17. Anyone mentions Hitler, Nazis or Neville Chamberlain. Includes related imagery, e.g. “ovens.”
- 18. Anyone mentions the Governator or makes a Terminator-themed joke, e.g. “To illegal immigrants, I say, Hasta La Vista.“
- Drink EVERY TIME you hear:
- 19. “Anchor babies.”
- 20. “Thug.”
- 21. “Leading from behind.”
- 22. “All lives matter.”
- 23. “Apologize for America.”
- Take a shot of JAGERMEISTER if:
- 24. Any candidate is seen wearing a Blue Lives Matter bracelet.
- 25. A candidate offers an insincere paean to departed Rick Perry. Double shot if someone references his “smart glasses.”