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Sunday Notes: Carlos Santana and Andrew McCutchen Have Performed a Lot of Video games

12 min read

Three Sundays in the past, the reply to this column’s weekly quiz was Carlos Santana. The query was, “Which participant has appeared in probably the most regular-season video games over the previous 10 seasons?” and the now-Pittsburgh Pirates first baseman had performed in 1,440 — 13 greater than Paul Goldschmidt and 40 greater than Freddie Freeman and Anthony Rizzo.

Santana professed not to pay attention to the excellence once I talked about it to him earlier this week. He did appear happy to listen to it, and “humbly prideful” could be the easiest way to explain his response.

“I put together,” mentioned Santana, who celebrated his thirty seventh birthday yesterday. “I put together my physique. I put together mentally. I additionally attempt to benefit from the recreation every single day. That’s why I can play quite a bit. The sport is my ardour. That is my 14th yr and I wish to play two extra. Or perhaps three extra. No matter God tells me, and what my physique says I can do.”

Depend Andrew McCutchen amongst those that are impressed by his teammate’s reliability and sturdiness through the years.

“It’s actually good, to be sincere,” mentioned McCutchen, who was likewise unaware of Santana’s distinction. “To have the ability to do it how he’s executed it — he’s in [the lineup] extra instances than not —exhibits that he’s stayed wholesome, which is a key to doing that. It’s a must to be adequate to do it, too. You’ve received an entire lot of variables to have the ability to do what he’s executed.”

McCutchen has been each bit as sturdy. The 15-year-veteran has performed in 1,902 video games since breaking into the large leagues in 2009, the second highest complete over that span, behind solely Elvis Andrus (1,955). He’s likewise pleased with what he’s been in a position to accomplish.

“For me to have the ability to preserve doing it, and to nonetheless be on the market within the outfield… I imply, there aren’t too many 36-year-old outfielders within the recreation,” mentioned McCutchen. “To me, it speaks volumes. It’s a bit tougher for an individual my age to be an outfielder — there’s lots of working round on the market — so I positively don’t take it flippantly.”

McCutchen has performed in 150 or extra video games in eight completely different seasons. Santana has performed in 150 or extra in 10 completely different seasons. Each have appeared in all 9 video games the Pirates have performed this yr.

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The pitch clock impacts extra than simply the gamers on the sector. It additionally impacts broadcasters, who now have much less time to inform tales, and to in any other case present data, between pitches. That features giving out-of-town scores. Lengthy a staple of baseball broadcasts, notably on the radio, the observe is turning into much less handy — and it had already change into much less vital. In at the moment’s world, scores are available with a number of easy clicks on the smartphone, laptop computer, or pill that you just’re studying this on.

That mentioned, do followers nonetheless wish to periodically hear out-of-town scores on a radio broadcast? Based mostly on a Twitter poll I ran this week, the reply is a particular “sure.” Of the 1,436 individuals who contributed to the ballot, solely 9.9% voted “no.” An amazing 90.1% voted within the affirmative.

The handful of broadcasters I queried on the topic shared various views. Some choose to focus solely on the sport they’re calling and solely give out-of-town scores when one thing notable is happening, or if a pennant race is paramount in folks’s minds. Different consider that giving out-of-town scores stays a viable, if not precious, a part of the printed. Based mostly on the ballot outcomes, the latter group is on stable footing with that perception.

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RANDOM HITTER-PITCHER MATCHUPS

Don Zimmer went 18 for 39 in opposition to Curt Simmons.

George Hendrick went 17 for 33 in opposition to Mark Langston.

Lou Piniella went 10 for 19 in opposition to Tom Timmermann.

Dave Martinez went 7 for 12 in opposition to Mike Maddux.

Kevin Cash went 5 for 8 in opposition to Nate Robertson.

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The Miami Marlins made a pair of nice trades in 2017. In December, they dealt Marcell Ozuna to the St. Louis Cardinals in alternate for Sandy Alcantara, Zac Gallen, Magneuris Sierra, and Daniel Castano. Earlier that summer time, they’d acquired Pablo López and three different gamers from the Seattle Mariners in alternate for David Phelps.

In line with Marc DelPiano, who was Miami’s VP of Participant Growth on the time, Jim Cuthbert performed a key position in these acquisitions.

“Jim was working the professional [scouting] division for the Marlins,” recalled DelPiano, who’s now knowledgeable scout for the New York Yankees. “He was looking starter arm actions and deliveries — guys he felt might be one, two and three starters, who might be up-and-comers for the Marlins rotation — and that’s how Sandy Alcantara, Pablo Lopez, and Zac Gallen happened. To get these guys… I don’t know if I’ve seen offers like that in my lifetime: three starters that good for David Phelps and Marcel Ozuna in a [few months] time. These offers got here whereas Michael Hill was the President of Baseball Operations, and actually, Jim Cuthbert deserves lots of the credit score.”

Cuthbert is presently scouting for the Kansas Metropolis Royals.

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A quiz:

The Minnesota Twins franchise document for hits is held by Sam Rice, who had 2,889 with the Washington Senators from 1915-1933. Which participant has probably the most hits because the franchise moved to Minnesota in 1961?

The reply might be discovered beneath.

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NEWS NOTES

SABR introduced that White Sox broadcaster Jason Benetti will ship the keynote tackle at this yr’s annual conference, which will probably be held in Chicago from July 5-9. Extra data might be discovered here.

Fred Klages, a right-handed pitcher for the Chicago White Sox in 1966 and 1967, died on March 30 at age 79. A local of Ambridge, Pennsylvania, Klages appeared in 14 video games and went 5-4 with a 3.28 ERA over 60-and-a-third innings. His first strikeout sufferer was Frank “Hondo” Howard, and his first gopher got here off the bat of George “Boomer” Scott.

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The reply to the quiz is Kirby Puckett, with 2,304 hits. Joe Mauer is second with 2,123, adopted by Rod Carew (2,085), Harmon Killebrew (2.024), and Tony Oliva (1,917).

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The concept of getting a catcher arrange down the center has gained a certain quantity of traction. The reasoning is twofold. Extra strikes will probably be thrown — lengthy a recipe for achievement — and the motion, typically paired with plus velocity, will probably be sufficient to restrict stable contact. Given the ability arsenals that many pitchers now possess, it is smart that aggressively attacking the strike zone makes extra sense than making an attempt to dot corners.

Depend Chicago Cubs catcher Tucker Barnhart amongst these on board with the technique — albeit solely when a particular section of hurlers are on the bump.

“Every man is completely different; every man works nicely with seeing sure issues from the catcher behind the plate,” Barnhart replied once I broached the topic throughout spring coaching. “I do know Tampa is large on simply having the catcher sit down the center and letting the motion work. Organizations that I’ve personally been in have perhaps thought a bit bit otherwise — or they’ve considered it as a pitcher-to-pitcher factor, a pitcher-to-pitcher mindset — versus an organizational philosophy..

“I do assume our younger relievers would profit from that,” continued Barnhart. “There’s not essentially one man that involves thoughts, however I believe lots of youthful guys get to the large leagues and assume that they should pitch on the perimeters to have success. Fairly frankly, that’s not the case. Much more instances than not, it places them in conditions the place they get in hassle. That’s why it’s tremendous vital for guys to come back up and dominate the strike zone. Hitting is difficult. While you’re behind within the rely, as a hitter, it’s exponentially tougher. The one technique to make hitting simpler is to fall behind.”

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FOREIGN AFFAIRS

The Tokyo Yakult Swallows and Fukuoka Softbank Hawks have every gained 5 of their first six video games. The Hokkaido The Tokyo Yakult Swallows have gained six of their first eight video games and have NPB’s finest document. The Hokkaido Nippon Ham Fighters have misplaced six of their first eight video games and have NPB’s worst document.

Yoshinobu Yamamoto has thrown 13 scoreless innings whereas permitting simply 4 hits and a pair of walks over two begins. The 24-year-old Orix Buffaloes right-hander — NPB’s high pitcher in every of the previous two seasons — is rumored to be coming to MLB subsequent yr.

Roki Sasaki allowed two hits over six scoreless innings in his first begin of the season because the Chiba Lotte Marines beat the Nippon Ham Fighters 6-1. The 21-year-old right-hander walked none and fanned 11.

Yuki Matsui turned the youngest participant to document 200 saves in NPB. The 27-year-old Rakuten Eagles southpaw has allowed 399 hits and logged 792 strikeouts in 605-and-third innings.

Masahiro Tanaka recorded his 1,five hundredth NPB strikeout. The Rakuten right-hander had 991 Ok’s in MLB, plus 10 within the minors, giving him 2,507 as knowledgeable.

Erick Fedde has thrown 13 scoreless innings, with 16 strikeouts, over two begins for the KBO’s NC Dinos. The 30-year-old right-hander went 21-33 with a 5.41 ERA for the Washington Nationals from 2017-2022.

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Per Statcast, Drey Jameson has thrown 49 sliders out of 130 complete pitches thus far this season. On the floor. which means the Arizona Diamondbacks right-hander has delivered his most-prevelent pitch 37.7% of the time. Digging deeper — albeit with no numerical breakdown obtainable — there may be range inside that quantity. Because the proficient 25-year-old defined this spring, he throws three completely different sliders.

“It’s about conditions and places,” Jameson informed me. “If I set my slider up with a fastball down, it’s normally going to be extra horizontal, moderately than depth-y, so it stays on the backside of the zone. It’s nearly a freeze pitch. I even have the one which’s exhausting, for 0-2, 1-2, 2-2 [counts], which is my put-away. It’s fastball the entire approach, then it dives down. After which there are those for a strike. For those who hit it, you hit it; I’m not strolling you.”

Together with the depth with which he delivers the pitch, the position of his ring finger on the ball is what differentiates one from the opposite. Relying on the motion he desires, his finger is both — in his phrases — both “tucked extra, larger on the ball, or midway on the ball.”

The reasoning behind throwing three variations?

“The slider is my finest pitch,” mentioned Jameson. “I assumed that if I could make my finest pitch three completely different pitches, why wouldn’t I?”

Jameson has made three appearances out of the D-Backs bullpen and is 2-0 with one save and a 2.16 ERA over eight-and-a-third innings.

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FARM NOTES

The Chattanooga Lookouts beat the Rocket Metropolis Trash Pandas 7-5 yesterday regardless of being held with out a hit. Cincinnati’s Double-A affiliate scored all of its runs within the seventh inning on 5 walks, 4 HBPs, and an error.

Lookouts left-hander Andrew Abbott fanned 11 of the 15 batters he confronted on Thursday. The 23-year-old College of Virginia product is No. 15 on our Cincinnati Reds High Prospects record.

Osleivis Basabe is slashing .393/.393/.607 in 28 plate appearances with the Triple-A Durham Bulls. The 22-year-old infielder is No. 8 on our Tampa Bay Rays High Prospects record.

Maikel Garcia is slashing .400/.543/.640 in 35 plate appearances for the Triple-A Omaha Storm Chasers. The 23-year-old shortstop made his MLB debut with the Kansas Metropolis Royals final yr and logged seven hits in 22 at-bats.

Luis Mieses is 7-for-10 with a pair of doubles for the Double-A Birmingham Barons. The 23-year-old outfielder is No. 20 on our Chicago White Sox High Prospects record.

Samuel Basallo is 4-for-10 with a pair of house runs for the Low-A Delmarva Shorebirds. The 18-year-old catcher is No. 14 on our Baltimore Orioles High Prospects record.

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The Cincinnati Reds opened the season by successful two out of three video games in opposition to the Pittsburgh Pirates, a sequence wherein their starters mixed to fan 23 batters whereas permitting six runs over 15-and-a-third innings. Not surprisingly, the arms are what Derek Shelton cited once I requested him what stood out about his membership’s NL Central rival.

“Their pitching,” the Pittsburgh supervisor informed me this week in Boston. “The blokes we noticed are going to be actually, actually good pitchers. That’s in all probability about nearly as good of younger arms you’re going to see within the recreation. Yeah. All three are actually good. That’s what stood out.”

Hunter Greene (age 23), Nick Lodolo (25), and Graham Ashcraft (25) began for the Reds in opposition to Shelton’s Pirates.

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Many followers of baseball historical past know that Virgil Trucks threw two no-hitters for the Detroit Tigers in 1952, a season wherein the right-hander had a document of 5-19. Not as well-known is that he practically had a 3rd no-hitter. On July twenty second of that yr, Vehicles surrendered a single to the primary batter he confronted — Washington Senators third baseman Eddie Yost — however allowed no hits thereafter. The ultimate rating of all three video games was 1-0.

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LINKS YOU’LL LIKE

Longtime broadcaster Glenn Geffner’s View from the Bleachers supplies us with an in depth, inside look at big-league journey, from the planes to the buses to the accommodations, and extra.

The Rating’s Travis Sawchik wrote about how Jeffrey Springs realized to spin a sweeping slider — a pitch that has jumpstarted what had been an uninspiring profession — after becoming a member of the Tampa Bay Rays.

MLB is testing a brand new “enhanced-grip” baseball within the Double-A Southern League this season. Hannah Keyser shared the specifics at Yahoo Sports activities.

At MLB.com, the nice Sarah Langs gave us 10 great stats from the primary week of the 2023 season.

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RANDOM FACTS AND STATS

The Baltimore Orioles lead MLB with 13 stolen bases — they’ve been caught as soon as — whereas the Chicago White Sox are an ideal 9-for-9 in steal makes an attempt. The Los Angeles Dodgers and Washington Nationals have every gone 1-for-4. (Stats via Friday.)

The Tampa Bay Rays 18 house runs, probably the most of any staff. The Nationals and Chicago Cubs have 4 house runs, the fewest of any staff. (Stats via Friday.)

St. Louis Cardinals right-hander Miles Mikolas has allowed 19 hits and one stroll one stroll in two begins. Miami Marlins right-hander Edward Cabrera has allowed two hits and 13 walks in two begins.

Ike Boone had 323 hits, together with 55 house runs, and a .407 batting common for the Pacific Coast League’s Mission Reds in 1929. A defensively-challenged outfielder, Boone batted .321 with 372 hits in 356 big-league video games, and .370 with 2,311 hits in 1,691 minor-league video games.

Freddie Fitzsimmons hurled 4 shutouts in 1940 whereas going 16-2 for the Brooklyn Dodgers. 5 years earlier, he had thrown 4 shutouts whereas going 4-8 with the New York Giants. Fitzsimmons allowed 42 earned runs in every of these seasons.

On at the moment’s date in 1980, Mike Parrott was the successful pitcher on Opening Day because the Seattle Mariners outscored the Toronto Blue Jays 8-6. It was the right-hander’s solely W that yr. Parrott went on to complete with a document of 1-16.

The Cleveland Indians traded Sad Sam Jones and Fred Thomas to the Boston Crimson Sox in alternate for Tris Speaker on at the moment’s date in 1916. Speaker went on to slash .386/.470/.502 with a 182 wRC+ in his first Cleveland season.

Gamers born on at the moment’s date embody Ryan O’Malley, whose big-league profession comprised two outings for the Chicago Cubs in 2006. The lefty threw eight scoreless innings in a 1-0 win over the Houston Astros in his MLB debut, then allowed three runs over four-and-two-thirds innings in opposition to the Philadelphia Phillies six days later.

Additionally born on at the moment’s date was Dizzy Sutherland, who appeared in a single recreation and pitched one-plus inning for the Washington Senators in 1949. The southpaw issued six free passes, surrendered two hits and 5 runs, and was tagged with the loss. The St. Louis Browns gained 15-6 in entrance of 1,817 followers at Griffith Stadium.

Luke Easter made his MLB debut at age 34 with the Cleveland Indians in August 1949 — this after enjoying within the Negro Leagues — and proceeded to homer 55 instances whereas driving in 210 runs over the subsequent two seasons. His quick time in Cleveland — his final recreation was in Might 1954 — was then adopted by an extended stint within the minor leagues. Taking part in primarily with the Triple-A Rochester Crimson Wings, Easter lastly known as it a profession in 1964 at age 48.

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