I really didn’t expect to get into the World Series this year, what with the Cubs having gotten right on the doorstep and coming up short. But perhaps it was the way the Cubs were bounced (it was not close), or perhaps it’s the fact that these are just two really, really good teams … whatever it is, I’m into it. It’s been an exciting four games, and I’m looking forward to seeing how it shakes out.
- The Dodgers evened up the World Series last night with a late outburst, ensuring the series goes back to Los Angeles after tonight. Cody Bellinger finally got some hits, and Joc Pederson hit a massive three-run homer. Charlie Morton pitched really well as he approaches age 34, after two years ago posting a near-5 ERA for the Pirates and looking like he was on his way out. Baseball is fickle and fun.
- Pre-game was marked by the announcement that Yuli Gurriel would be suspended for mocking an Asian face and uttering a slur after homering off of Yu Darvish. But his suspension, five games, will not be until next season. I would have found it much more appropriate if Gurriel had been suspended for one game in this World Series – baseball’s biggest stage where the unacceptable action took place – but the appeals process would have caused a problem there.
- Manfred laid out four reasons for delaying the punishment until next year, per MLB.com:
“1. Manfred felt it was important that the suspension carry the penalty of lost salary, which would happen only during the regular season.
2. Manfred felt it was “unfair to punish the other 24 players on the Astros’ roster” during the World Series. “I wanted the burden of the discipline to fall primarily on the wrongdoer,” he said.
3. Impressed by Darvish’s desire to move forward, Manfred felt starting the suspension at the beginning of next season would help.
4. Delaying the suspension would allow Gurriel to exercise his rights under the grievance procedures negotiated between MLB and the MLB Players Association, if he so desired. In the time since Manfred made his decision, he has gotten the sense that Gurriel will not be appealing the suspension.”
- The one that seems to convince a lot of people is number two, but I find it wholly unmoving. So, if Gurriel was a terrible player, a suspension right now would have been more appropriate? So, Gurriel being suspended five games next year doesn’t hurt the other 24 innocent players on the team at that time? So, punishment is supposed to not be painful to those around the wrongdoer (should we not put people in prison, because, you know, that hurts their innocent family)? Number two just doesn’t make sense. Number three is nice, but again, if Darvish had been really pissed off, are you saying you would have suspended Gurriel right now? Numbers one and four should have been plenty explanation, and leave it at that. (Or suspend him now, because that’s the appropriate message to send. Whatever.)
- The World Series is rating quite well:
— FOX Sports PR (@FOXSportsPR) October 29, 2017
- Apparently the balls are different, though – the issue is not the juicing this time, it’s that the balls are much slicker, making it harder to throw breaking pitches:
Both World Series teams agree: The Fall Classic's special baseballs are impairing their pitchers (by Tom Verducci) https://t.co/DDuq26hkty
— Sports Illustrated (@SInow) October 29, 2017
- (Any chance that’s why Yu Darvish’s typically ridiculous slider wasn’t moving as well in Game Three?)
- Dave Martinez is reportedly headed to the Nationals, which means the Cubs have yet another coaching staff opening to fill. But before you immediately start thinking about the biggest names on the market, consider a couple things. David Ross hasn’t yet given any indication that he’s ready or interested in becoming a full-time coach, and also this on former Red Sox manager John Farrell:
Couldn't see Farrell signing in to be Maddon's bench coach https://t.co/g14poUNLjo
— Rob Bradford (@bradfo) October 27, 2017
- I would be fine with the Cubs going outside the organization if there’s someone Maddon is comfortable with – a number of great coaches are available, given all the turnover this year – but I’d also be fine if they keep some continuity, and let someone like Brandon Hyde slide into the role while bringing in a new first base coach. I’d suggest Mike Borzello, given his excellence, but I wonder if he’s pretty locked into the catching side of things. As for outside the org, there are too many capable and available coaches right now to even begin to intelligently speculate.
- Bruce Maxwell, the A’s catcher who kneeled during the National Anthem and brought that story to the baseball world, was reportedly arrested on a gun charge.
- The Wife and I were LITERALLY talking last night about how old our computers are and how pleased we are that we’ve made them last. So of course, one of the Deals of the Day today at Amazon is certified refurbished Macbooks. WHY YOU GOTTA TEMPT ME, AMAZON!?!?
- The Bears kick off today at noon against the Saints, and they’re working on a two-game winning streak! Seriously! So you should definitely follow on Twitter and Facebook. Smack those buttons. It’s easy:
— The Ten-Yard Line (@TheTenYardLine) October 29, 2017