Billy-Ball Daily: 2008-6-13

Billy-Ball Daily
Bill Chuck (Billy-Ball his own self)

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By Baseball Newstalgist, Bill Chuck

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The only spin here is on my screwball

Friday, June 13, 2008

Top of the 1st
By Baseball Newstalgist, Bill Chuck

Here’s a 25-fact roster for you.

Speaking of baseball…
1. The All-Star Game may actually mean something this year if the Red Sox and the Cubs get that far. The Sox have the best home record in the AL and the Cubs have the best home record in the NL.
2. Is it just me or don’t you think if David Ortiz is out for an extended period of time that Ken Griffey, Jr. would make a great addition to the Red Sox lineup?
3. The last time the Cubs were no-hit was Sept. 9, 1965 when the Dodgers’ Sandy Koufax threw a perfect game against them in what may have been the best pitched game of all-time. The Dodgers got only one hit in their 1-0 victory. Bob Hendley was the complete game loser giving up just one walk and an unearned run.
4. Speaking of the Cubs, Alfonso Soriano will miss 6 weeks plus with a broken hand. The Cubbies went 9-5 earlier this season when Alfonso was on the DL.
5. Since 1998, the AL West has been won by the Seattle Mariners once, Texas Rangers twice, the Oakland A’s three times, and the Los Angeles Angels four times.
6. Seven teams have an average age of under 28 years old, with Arizona and Florida, the homes for many retirees, the youngest in MLB at 27.6. There are six teams with an average age of 30.0 or older with the oldest being the Mets and Astros at 30.8.
7. The Twins have been carrying 13 pitchers forcing them to use starter Kevin Slowey as a pinch-runner. Is there a more inappropriate last name for a pinch-runner?
8. The Red Sox have been shut out five times already this season. They were blanked seven times in all of 2007.
9. A rookie is defined by MLB as a player who during a previous season or seasons, has (a) not exceeded 130 at-bats or 50 innings pitched in the major leagues; or (b) not accumulated more than 45 days on the active roster of a major league club or clubs during the period of a 25-player limit (excluding time in the military service). This is why the Orioles Adam Jones is not a rookie. In two visits with the Seattle Mariners in 2006 and 2007 he had 74 and 65 at bats, putting him nine over the limit.
10. Confirming what you already know, Alex Rodriguez is simply not a clutch hitter, through Thursday, with Runners In Scoring Position A-Rod is hitting .229, and with RISP and two outs, Rodriguez is a paltry .190.
11. Giants’ infielder Emmanuel Burriss who attended Wilson High, is believed to be the first graduate of a Washington, D.C., public high school to reach the major leagues in 38 years. The district has not produced a player of any prominence since Maury Wills graduated from Cardozo High School.
12. Speaking of the Giants, while I’m not a big fan of the Quality Start stat (devised by sportswriter John Lowe, in which a starting pitcher is credited with a quality start if he pitches at least six innings and allows three or fewer earned runs) you have to hand it to San Fran starter Tim Lincecum who has started 13 games this season and all 13 are of the QS variety. That accounts for his 8-1 record and 1.99 ERA. Interestingly enough, Daisuke Matsuzaka who is 8-0 with a 2.53 ERA only has five quality starts this season.
13. This past week, the Padres celebrated a “Groundhog Day” moment when they became the first major league team to win four consecutive games by a 2-1 score.
14. Speaking of the Padres, when Michael Barrett homered last Saturday night, it was the first homer by a Padres catcher in 233 at bats.
15. The Texas Rangers, led by their Triple crown candidate Josh Hamilton, lead the majors in runs, hits, doubles, total bases, RBI, batting average, slugging percentage and OPS. All of this is a good thing because they are dead last in ERA.
16. The Hall of Fame celebrated their 69th anniversary on June 12 and it should be noted that there has never been a unanimous choice for the Hall. (Tom Seaver came closest with 98.84 percent of the votes, not receiving the assent of five voters.) As amazing as that is, it is even more shocking that 11 of the first 226 voters did not vote for Babe Ruth or Honus Wagner and four did not vote for Ty Cobb.
17. Yankee relievers Mariano Rivera, Edwar Ram