They are trying again today. Maybe even like, literally trying to get a whole deal done and do the 162-game thing. Am I gonna track it all day again and beat myself up with the extreme emotional peaks and valleys, only to be crushed again tonight? Well, I mean, I’ll tell you that I’m not going to do it. But humans … we are frail and faulty. So I’ll probably do it again, and I’ll hate myself for it.
DANG IT, now they just agreed on the international draft component as I typed these Bullets. So now I HAVE to follow today again. (Just finish this thing. Please.)
Let’s talk about OTHER stuff for a minute …
• Not that we’re starting off happy. Cubs reliever Codi Heuer is going to miss the year after Tommy John surgery, and the Tribune has the story of what happened. Unfortunately, it’s a familiar tale this time of year: Heuer started his throwing progression in January, it didn’t feel quite right, he rested, it didn’t get better, he got the MRI, and that was that. And, just like so many of those stories, it’s not as if the UCL just all of a sudden popped out of nowhere – it’s possible that the velocity decline he was seeing late last year was a symptom of something that was already underway (a note that was explicitly included in the Tribune piece as a possibility, so I’m thinking that is the collective suspicion). WHAT DID THE WHITE SOX KNOW AND WHEN DID THEY KNOW IT?!?!?!? (I kid. Mostly. Here’s hoping Heuer recovers well, and is back to kicking ass by mid-2023.)
• Speaking of Heuer’s absence, we’ve mentioned that it will provide an opportunity for more of those late innings – and a job in the bullpen – to go to some other guys who might not have otherwise gotten a chance. That doesn’t make the injury a GOOD thing, as it obviously isn’t. It’s just a reality. I thought of that again when I saw these clips:
Here’s righty Ben Leeper from live BP today. Signed as an undrafted free-agent in 2020. Posted a 1.29 ERA with 13.6 K/9 and 4.1 K:BB between Double-A and Triple-A last season. pic.twitter.com/vb19S24H6g
— Jordan Bastian (@MLBastian) March 9, 2022
— Meghan Montemurro (@M_Montemurro) March 9, 2022
• Leeper ROCKETED up the system last year, and is firmly on the radar for the big league team this season. Not necessarily for Opening Day, but he was so darn good last year – with legit stuff – it’s hard to see him not making a big league appearance at some point. If he stays healthy. If the stuff didn’t back up. So on and so on.
• New friends meeting old friends, and none of them in a Cubs jersey because they can’t be:
— John Antonoff (@baseballinfocus) March 9, 2022
• If the 12-ish games that have been chopped off the schedule stay chopped off – and no more are chopped off (neither proposition is guaranteed) – then FanGraphs did the math on how the playoff odds would change. As you might expect, a shorter schedule introduces more variance, and therefore a team that projects poorly, like the Cubs, sees a bump in playoff odds, from about 10.9% to 12.5%. That’s one of the biggest bumps in the league, though obviously the end number is still rather small, AND it’s not like we WANT a shorter season.
• Decent point here on the impact of the Apple deal (the Peacock deal is not exclusive):
The Apple games amount to just 2% of the entire season schedule, and slightly less than that for viewers when you factor in MLB. TV blackouts that will still be enforced. A decent response would be to drop MLB sub fee by three to five bucks, which would beat that percentage. https://t.co/mUs0oFI8sp
— Eric Fisher (@EricFisherSBG) March 9, 2022
• The Rockies continue to be the Rockies:
Sources said there were significant disagreements between the club and Van Lenten. https://t.co/kSCMiM12hb
— The Athletic MLB (@TheAthleticMLB) March 9, 2022
• The craziest thing is that this guy ANTICIPATED potential issues with the Rockies EVEN WHEN he took the job! Here’s what he told MLB.com when he was hired away from the Nationals in the fall: “It was a really small group [in Washington], which is in a lot of ways similar to what it is now in Colorado. When the Rockies reached out and were interested in talking to me, I was excited but I wanted to make sure what I was getting into. I wanted to make sure they were going to provide the resources, make sure they were going to be supportive and have a real vision and are going to have the resources to do it the right way. They were very supportive.” Apparently that … didn’t actually happen. Most folks do not have other options if they want a job in MLB and/or to rise in the ranks, but man, if you have ANY other options besides the Rockies right now, you should take it.
• Weighted blankets (love them), massagers, and more are your Deals of the Day at Amazon today. #ad
• He threw three scoreless innings for the Cubs last season, and I could probably count on one hand the folks who remember:
#BlueJays have signed Joe Biagini to a minor league deal.
— Jamie Campbell (@SNETCampbell) March 10, 2022
• If there’s ever another offseason, please bring this man back:
What do y’all think of my latest shirt idea!? Haha pic.twitter.com/90ydu0TfO8
— andrew chafin (@BigCountry1739) March 9, 2022
• Well this is just delightful:
— Tennessee Smokies (@smokiesbaseball) March 9, 2022
• I’m biased because they are an ad partner of ours, but this sure seems like a good deal:
Heads up! The DeMar City Edition is in stock AND on sale at Fanatics right now. Not sure how long these will last, so if you're interested, here you go: https://t.co/SXOh792DRV pic.twitter.com/wRCCVtjQdx
— Bleacher Nation Bulls (@BN_Bulls) March 10, 2022