ACROSS THE PACIFIC
Japanese major-league baseball has a unique tradition: before the start of the season, each team’s management selects a slogan to indicate the style of baseball the team will play. With the realization that something may be lost in translation, here are the 2017 slogans of the Japanese major-league teams:
City Team Slogan
Hiroshima Hiroshima Toyo Carp “To Sell Out”
Nagoya Chunichi Dragons “Caring About”
Nishinomiya Hanshin Tigers “Tigers Change”
Tokyo Tokyo Yakult Swallows “Snap Out of It 2017”
Tokyo Yomiuri Giants “Giants Pride 2017”
Yokohama Yokohama DeNA BayStars “THIS IS MY ERA”
City Team Slogan
Chiba Chiba Lotte Marines “Feelings”
Fukuoka Fukuoka SoftBank Hawks “One Batting Form”
Kobe/Osaka ORIX Buffaloes “Eagerness 2017”
Sapporo Nippon-Ham Fighters “F-Ambitious”
Sendai Rakuten Golden Eagles “Smart & Spirit 2017 Dream Again”
Tokorozawa Saitama Seibu Lions “Catch the All”
AROUND THE HORN
… Since the start of the 2016 season through Thursday, Dodgers pitchers led all major-league teams with 596, 1-2-3 innings while Reds hurlers had the fewest such innings with 429; among individual pitchers, Chris Sale of the Red Sox led with 114, 1-2-3 frames and Max Scherzer of the Nationals led the N.L. with 104.
… The folks at SunTrust Park, the Braves’ new home outside Atlanta, are offering the Tomahawk PorkCHOP to celebrate the inaugural season at the ballpark; for $26, fans can chow down on the 16-ounce, cornmeal fried bone-in pork chop served on a bun with collard green slaw and Alabama white BBQ sauce.
… The grandson of former major-leaguer Lee May, rookie Jacob May of the White Sox, had yet to garner a hit this season going 0-for-24 through Thursday; over his 18-year career in the bigs, the elder May accumulated 2,031 knocks.
… Wei-Yin Chen became the first Taiwanese pitcher to have a no-hit start of any length in the bigs; on Tuesday, the Marlins starter did not allow a hit against the Mariners during his seven-inning stint on the mound.
… Drew Storen joined Hod Eller (1917), Rob Dibble (1989) and Carlos Contreras (2014) as the only Reds pitchers to use just nine pitches to notch three strikeouts in an inning when he struck out the side against the Orioles in the ninth on Tuesday.
… According to stat maven Doug Kern, the Red Sox have alternated wins and losses on Patriots Day since 2009, winning in odd years and losing in even years.
… Since September 5, 2016, Rockies pitchers lead the majors with three complete games, three complete-game shutouts and have the second-most combined shutouts with four.
… Cardinals catcher Yadier Molina, through Thursday, needed three RBIs to surpass his brother Bengie’s career total of 711 for 19th place among Puerto Rican-born major-leaguers; Carlos Beltran of the Astros tops the list with 1,541 ribbies.
… Dodgers shortstop Corey Seager joined Chuck Klein, Johnny Frederick, Orlando Cepeda, Albert Pujols and David Wright as the only N.L. players since 1920 to register at least 200 hits, 100 RBIs, 50 doubles and 30 homers in their first 200 games in the bigs when he recorded his 100th career ribbie on Wednesday.
… The only major-league teams that, through Thursday, had yet to lose a one-run game were the Rockies (6-0) and Astros (3-0).
… Thursday marked the 106th anniversary of Fenway Park’s opening in 1912, a span of 38,353 days.
… The Phillies will wear 11 different caps this season; aside from their standard, alternate and batting practice headwear, the team will wear special caps for Mother’s Day, Memorial Day, Father’s Day, Fourth of July, the Home Run Derby, the All-Star Game and 9/11 in addition to a throwback cap in July.
… The Rockies-Giants game on April 16 was the first this season in which neither team issued a walk.
… The Durham Bulls, the Rays’ Triple-A affiliate in the International League, set a franchise record for attendance in their first seven home games drawing 52,211 in their first homestand of the season; the team sold 20,000 hot dogs, 612 tater tot waffles, 3,012 caps and 2,215 shirts during the set.
… Cubs manager Joe Maddon, through Thursday, needed 12 wins to join Dusty Baker, Bruce Bochy, Terry Francona, Clint Hurdle, Mike Scioscia, Buck Showalter and Ned Yost as the only active managers with at least 1,000 wins.
… Through Thursday, only four big-league pitchers had thrown at least 16 innings this season without allowing a walk: Noah Syndergaard of the Mets (26 IP), Ivan Nova of the Pirates (20 IP), and J.A. Happ of the Jays (16 IP).
… Third baseman Yandy Diaz is the Indians’ first “true” rookie to start each of the club’s first 14 games in a season since Joe Charboneau in 1980.
… The Elias Sports Bureau reports that, when Freddie Freeman homered twice at SunTrust Park on Monday, he joined Rabbit Maranville (1919 at Braves Field in Boston), Eddie Mathews (1953 at Milwaukee County Stadium), Joe Torre (1966 at Atlanta Fulton County Stadium) and Michael Tucker (1997 at Turner Field in Atlanta) as the Braves players who hit two or more homers in a game for the first time at each of the team’s home ballparks.
… San Francisco Chronicle A’s beat writer Susan Slusser notes that A’s equipment manager Steve Vucinich has, at 50 seasons, achieved the second longest tenure with the team surpassed only by former owner and manager Connie Mack at 54 seasons.
… On Monday night, at the age of 40 years and 53 days, Bronson Arroyo became the first 40-year-old Reds pitcher to earn a win since Walter “Boom-Boom” Beck posted one at 40 years and 227 days of age on May 31, 1945.
… MLBShop.com equipment will not allow customers to order a custom jersey with the name “IMPEACH” and the number “45,” a reference to removing the 45th President of the United States, Donald Trump.
… Dunkin’ Donuts Park is the new home of the Hartford Yard Goats (a Rockies Double-A affiliate in the Eastern League) which opened at the start of this season extending the streak to 38 straight seasons with at least one new minor-league venue; the streak will continue next year when the Augusta Green Jackets (a Giants Class-A team in the South Atlantic League) move into a new ballpark.
… Rick Renteria, the manager of the White Sox, was drafted as the 20th pick in the first round of the 1980 draft; former major-league players drafted just after Renteria include Indians manager Terry Francona (22nd), A’s Executive Vice President for Baseball Operations Billy Beane (23rd) and Blue Jays manager John Gibbons (24th).
… USA Today columnist Bob Nightengale notes that 62 African-Americans were listed on Opening Day rosters: eight were starting pitchers, five were relievers, five were first basemen, six were second basemen, four were shortstops and 34 were outfielders.
… The measures instituted at the beginning of the season to speed up play in the majors have yet to show the desired effect; the average length of a nine-inning game over the first two weeks of 2017 was five minutes longer (3:05) than last year’s average (3:00).
… On Monday, the Mariners hit three homers against the Marlins giving them 402 in interleague play; they joined the Blue Jays (475 home runs), White Sox (448), Orioles (441), Rangers (440), Red Sox (436), Yankees (422) and Tigers (407) as the only clubs with 400 or more in mixed league contests.
… According to stat wiz Bill Chuck, through Thursday, the 21 walkoff hits this season were provided by 21 different batters off 21 different pitchers.
Other writers and sources contribute to Beyond the Box Score
Copyright 2017, Sports Features Group
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