MLBits: Happy Opening Day, Sunday Morning Baseball, Improved MiLB Conditions, Happy Birthday to The Sandlot, More
Happy Opening Day!
MLB-Peacock Strike a Deal for ‘Sunday Morning Baseball’
This is pretty cool! Major League Baseball has struck a deal with NBC’s streaming service Peacock TV to bring baseball back to NBC. The new agreement will bring baseball fans a ‘Sunday Morning Baseball’ offering that includes 18 consecutive Sundays with baseball. This mashup of the old NBC ‘Game of the Week’ intro and modern-day footage is pretty sweet.
Back like it never left. We're returning to the NBC family!
Sunday morning baseball is here, and it’ll be exclusively on @peacockTV. pic.twitter.com/czxjud32ic
— MLB (@MLB) April 6, 2022
Peacock’s ‘Sunday Morning Baseball’ will kick off on May 8 when the White Sox take on the Red Sox at Fenway Park at 10:30 am (ct). I don’t know about you guys, but FOX Saturday Baseball was a staple of my childhood. I loved catching a national broadcast at Noon on FOX and then heading out to the park to play baseball with my friends for the rest of the day. Saturdays were the best during that era (1996-2006).
Now I get to get up with my kids and catch a Sunday morning game before heading to their baseball and softball games. The length of the deal between MLB and NBC/Peacock isn’t known yet, but it is reportedly a multi-year agreement between the two sides. If you are an Xfinity customer, Peacock’s premium tier of their streaming service is included in your plan and can be accessed through the apps selection on your Xfinity box.
BATTER UP! You can officially catch @MLB Sundays on Peacock ⚾️ pic.twitter.com/7XEYoYlKh6
— Peacock (@peacockTV) April 6, 2022
Opening Day Trade!
When the MLB lockout ended last month, we knew that the offseason 2.0 would run throughout much of Spring Training, but now we’ve reached Opening Day and still see noteworthy trades happen. A.J. Preller (of course) is at it again, acquiring Minnesota reliever Taylor Rogers and outfielder Brent Rooker for Chris Paddack and Emilio Pagan.
Paddack has struggled the past two seasons (5.07 ERA in 2021 and 4.73 in 2020) but is just two years removed from a phenomenal 2019 rookie season where Paddack posted a 3.33 ERA over 26 starts for the Padres. The Twins are hoping that the step down from Rogers to Pagan in the bullpen isn’t too steep and that they can return Paddack to his 2019 form for a rotation that is littered with question marks to open the season.
Brett has more on the trade this morning:
Twins Acquiring Chris Paddack From The Padres in a Deal Involving Reliever Taylor Rogers – https://t.co/Q5Ro3XWhpl pic.twitter.com/99CySorklV
— Bleacher Nation (@BleacherNation) April 7, 2022
Top Prospects Making Opening Day Rosters
Opening Day will feature the MLB debuts of a handful of top prospects around baseball this season, including the No. 1 overall pick in the 2020 MLB Draft, Detroit’s Spencer Torkelson. Kansas City’s 2019 first-rounder Bobby Witt Jr. and Seattle’s Julio Rodriguez are among some of the biggest names to make the leap right out of Spring Training this season.
Spencer Torkelson. Bobby Witt Jr. Julio Rodríguez. Bryson Stott. Nick Lodolo. Josh Lowe.
It’s Opening Day, and multiple top prospects are active on @MLB rosters.
One of many reasons to celebrate. @MLBNetwork @MLBPipeline
— Jon Morosi (@jonmorosi) April 7, 2022
It’s nice to see teams valuing their prospects and letting them make their rise to the majors organically rather than holding them in the minors to extract an additional year of contract control out of them.
Improved Housing Conditions for MiLB Players
Speaking of improvements for minor leaguers and young players, Major League Baseball’s new housing policy is receiving rave reviews from players around the league. Orioles’ minor leaguer Cole Uvila recalls sleeping in a bathtub last summer to find some comfort during a heatwave that made their “budget” apartment unbearable to sleep in. Uvila’s roommate chose to sleep in his car with the vehicle running all night to have air conditioning. According to Uvila, who now has a comfortable and fully-furnished studio apartment for him, his wife, and their dog to live in, the days of sleeping in bathtubs are over for MiLB players.
After a season of speaking out, Minor Leaguers protested poor living conditions on September 18, 2021.
3 days later, MLB changed its decades-old housing policy.
Now we’re seeing the results.
Collective action works.#FairBallhttps://t.co/filYTRAJRY
— Advocates for Minor Leaguers (@MiLBAdvocates) April 7, 2022
Cubs farmhand Max Bain shared some photos of his new place in South Bend, where the Cubs’ High-A affiliate plays, on Twitter:
BIG shoutout to the @Cubs for taking the new @MiLB housing guidelines and absolutely crushing it for us, allowing us to have a place that feels like home! @MiLBAdvocates #ItsDifferentHere pic.twitter.com/v3yMQdYNHU
— Max Bain (@mbain_38) April 5, 2022
Happy Birthday to The Sandlot
One of the greatest baseball movies of all time, The Sandlot, was released in theaters 29 years ago today.
29 years ago today, The Sandlot came out in theaters ⚾️🎬
What’s your favorite quote from the movie? pic.twitter.com/MMxWz96Bly
— FOX Sports: MLB (@MLBONFOX) April 7, 2022
This is a reminder that The Sandlot gave us the greatest 4th of July scene of all time:
reminder that the sandlot made the best 4th of july scene in movie history pic.twitter.com/Qh0PyBh8B7
— trevor (@trev2times) July 4, 2019
Extra Innings …
• CC Sabathia is taking a job with Major League Baseball as a Special Assistant to the Commissioner:
After a 19-year career, @CC_Sabathia is the newest Special Assistant to the Commissioner. An advocate for amplifying diversity, strengthening the sport, and impacting the community, CC will bring a player's perspective as a liaison for decision making. Welcome, CC! #LegaCCy pic.twitter.com/M0QCMJhY1h
— MLB (@MLB) April 6, 2022
• A statement from Sabathia on his new role:
I love this game and the opportunity to bring about real change, diversity, developing the youth, and being a voice for the players. This new position with the @MLB Commissioner’s office is another step in that direction. Let’s get to work!!!
— CC Sabathia (@CC_Sabathia) April 6, 2022
• Way to make me feel old today, Jon.
Albert Pujols’ *first* Opening Day with the @Cardinals was 7,676 days ago — April 2, 2001.
The STL lineup that day: Viña 2B, Rentería SS, Edmonds CF, McGwire 1B, Polanco 3B, Pujols LF, Matheny C, Drew RF, Kile P. @MLB @MLBNetwork @MLBStats
— Jon Morosi (@jonmorosi) April 7, 2022
• Happy Opening Day, Cubs fans! Hopefully, Mother Nature cooperates this afternoon.
Today is Opening Day at Wrigley Field as the Cubs take on the Brewers (weather permitting) #mlb pic.twitter.com/xQNUEaK2fh
— Barry Butler Photography (@barrybutler9) April 7, 2022
• The Baltimore Orioles have changed the left field wall at Camden Yards, pushing back 26 1/2 feet into the seating area and raising it from 7 feet, 4 inches to an even 13 feet. The distance to the left-field foul pole will remain unchanged at 333 feet, but the distance to true left field will be pushed back to 384 feet. The new distance to left-center will be 400 feet; the distance to the visiting bullpen will remain unchanged at 380 feet, as will the rest of the park dimensions towards center and right field.