Feb 18, 2013, 9:44 AM EDT
UPDATE: this topic tickled my fancy, so I did a post running down what I think is the alpha-sport in each major league city.
I have not heard the interview yet — and can’t find it — but apparently Josh Hamilton has upset a lot of Rangers fans by saying Dallas is not a baseball town. Or that “North Texas” is not a baseball area. Something to that effect:
— Chris Bullock (@sportsbull) February 18, 2013
Which, sure, I get why that upsets people, but is he wrong? If Dallas/North Texas isn’t football country there is no place on Earth that is football country. Out of the four major sports, the Cowboys have had less overall success over the past 15 years than the Stars, Mavs and Rangers, but they still suck up all of the oxygen. They still have that crazy stadium, fill it up and draw silly TV ratings. It has to be a football town, yes?
This isn’t a slight on the Rangers. I know they draw well and do well in the ratings themselves and that especially in the past few years they’ve really captured the hearts of people in Texas. Rangers fans really support their team. But there’s a difference between supporting one’s team and being a baseball town, isn’t there?
In my mind “baseball town” or “football town” is a zero sum game. You’re one or the other. Maybe the city shows for all of its sports teams, but if the town had to vote all but one of them off the island, which would it keep? In Dallas that has to be the Cowboys. And I think it may be more of a landslide there than anyplace else.
Thing is, there aren’t a ton of baseball towns these days. Off the top of my head I’d say Boston, New York, Cincinnati and St. Louis. Probably San Francisco, though that seems more recent (I’m mostly comparing how nuts the city seemed to go for the Giants in the World Series but not so much for the 49ers in the Super Bowl). Maybe Los Angeles, but my sense is that the Lakers are a bigger deal generally speaking.
Maybe I’m missing some. Occasionally I’ll hear Detroit mentioned, but while Detroit is a very good baseball city, I feel like the Red Wings hold more sway in some intangible way. There are probably people who will say that Boston is more of a Celtics place, but I don’t know. I’d be curious to hear what people from each town have to say. I’m obviously guessing to a large degree.
But I don’t think I’m guessing with Dallas. That’s Cowboys country. And even if Josh Hamilton saying it is more about him being somewhat dismissive to the city that will now boo him whenever he comes to town, he’s not wrong, is he?
May 23, 2013, 6:25 PM EDT
It’s been expected all along that the Mets would keep prospect right-hander Zack Wheeler in the minors until June, in part to delay his service time, but here we are. Mike Puma of the New York Post was told by a “high-ranking team official” that Wheeler is expected to make 2-3 starts with Triple-A Las…
May 23, 2013, 5:30 PM EDT
Rafael Perez, who was released by the Twins earlier this week, has agreed to a minor-league contract with the Red Sox. Not so long ago Perez was an underrated left-handed setup man for the Indians, posting a 3.64 ERA in 329 career innings, but he missed nearly all of last season with a shoulder injury…
May 23, 2013, 4:46 PM EDT
Kelvin Herrera was one of the best relievers in baseball last season as a 22-year-old rookie, throwing 84 innings with a 2.35 ERA and 77/21 K/BB ratio while leading MLB with an average fastball velocity of 98.5 miles per hour. He’s struggled this season, mostly due to serving up eight homers in 20 innings, but…
May 23, 2013, 4:30 PM EDT
I said this morning that I’m a bit uncomfortable with the legend-building surrounding Evan Gattis. I think I’m not alone in thinking that it’s starting to get a little ridiculous. From an Atlanta radio stadion: Unless that’s a straight-up homage and I’m just reading in the satire.
May 23, 2013, 4:19 PM EDT
While pitching at LSU and in the Orioles’ farm system 2012 fourth overall pick Kevin Gausman’s game-day routine involved eating one powdered mini donut before taking the mound and four powdered mini donuts between each inning. Apparently he gave that up recently on the advice of nutritionists, but here’s what was waiting in Gausman’s locker…
May 23, 2013, 4:00 PM EDT
Carlos Zambrano pitched an extended spring training game today and wasn’t half bad: Carlos Zambrano’s extended spring training line today vs PIT at Carpenter Complex: 4.0 IP, 4 H, 1 R, 0 ER, 1 BB, 4 SO, 64 pitches — Todd Zolecki (@ToddZolecki) May 23, 2013 When he was signed and I laughed about…
May 23, 2013, 3:45 PM EDT
Here’s a little twist to the news that the Mariners are going to send Jesus Montero back to Triple-A: Michael Pineda, whom the Yankees acquired for Montero only to watch him get hurt, is almost ready to begin a minor-league rehab assignment. General manager Brian Cashman told Andy McCullough of the Newark Star Ledger that…
May 23, 2013, 3:30 PM EDT
Been staring at this story all day. Thinking I wasn’t gonna link to it. Thinking I had higher standards. But then the crowd thinned out, the bartender said it was last call and the only two of us in the place was me and it, so … The Yankee shortstop was spotted yesterday leaving one…
May 23, 2013, 3:15 PM EDT
Remember all those offseason quotes from general manager Terry Ryan about how the Twins were focused on improving last season’s terrible starting rotation? Their actual moves didn’t quite match the talk, as they signed Kevin Corrreia (who’s been decent) and Mike Pelfrey (who’s been awful) and traded for Vance Worley (who went from Opening Day…
May 23, 2013, 1:50 PM EDT
Derek Lowe, who was designated for assignment by the Rangers earlier this week, has been released after passing through waivers unclaimed. This could be the end for Lowe, who hasn’t posted an ERA under 5.00 since 2010 and allowed 13 runs in 13 innings in a low-leverage relief role for the Rangers at age 40.…
May 23, 2013, 1:30 PM EDT
Craig Robinson lives in Mexico. And based on when he tweets, I get the sense that he stays up late nights after going to Mexican baseball games and stuff. And I’m guessing he also has a lot of conversations with friends that start with “so, like, what if — seriously, now, listen — what if…
May 23, 2013, 1:18 PM EDT
Earlier this week Adam Eaton suffered a setback in his recovery from a sprained elbow ligament, but Nick Piecoro of the Arizona Republic reports that an MRI exam revealed no structural damage. That’s obviously good news for the 24-year-old outfielder, although according to Piecoro he’ll still take 2-3 weeks off before resuming his rehab. Eaton…
May 23, 2013, 12:30 PM EDT
Not a ton going on today, so Kay and I talk about the pitchers in the mix.
May 23, 2013, 12:16 PM EDT
As you might expect considering he hasn’t played well for two years and is an impending free agent the Red Sox won’t try to negotiate a long-term deal with center fielder Jacoby Ellsbury before he hits the open market. General manager Ben Cherington revealed that on WEEI radio in Boston, saying: “We agreed before the…
May 23, 2013, 11:51 AM EDT
Jon Rauch passed through waivers unclaimed after being designated for assignment last week and the Marlins released the veteran reliever two months into a one-year, $1 million contract. Rauch was terrible for Miami, allowing 14 runs in 16.2 innings, but he had a 3.59 ERA with good secondary numbers for the Mets last season and…
May 23, 2013, 11:31 AM EDT
So, if Michael Pineda makes an appearance in New York in the second half, do all the folks who said the Mariners won that trade have to eat crow? From the Tacoma News-Tribune: On the heels of a six-game losing streak and a 2-7 road trip, the Seattle Mariners will make an expected and needed…
May 23, 2013, 11:19 AM EDT
Despite being less than impressive in four minor-league rehab starts John Danks will come off the disabled list and rejoin the White Sox’s rotation Friday. Danks had a terrible 15/13 K/BB ratio in 22.2 innings while rehabbing from August shoulder surgery and failed to make it out of the fifth inning in his final start…
May 23, 2013, 11:03 AM EDT
Last month Amanda Rykoff noted that the Yankees’ “craft beer” section at Yankee Stadium was anything but. They’re continuing to have problems with basic beer identification, however, as now Patrick Wall of DNAInfoNY spied Goose Island listed as an “import.” Which, no, it’s not. It’s a Chicago beer. Wait, no it’s not. It’s actually brewed in…
May 23, 2013, 10:47 AM EDT
Stop me if you’ve heard this one before: Angels reliever Ryan Madson was finally making some progress in his rehab from last season’s elbow surgery, but he’s suffered yet another setback. Madson felt soreness in his elbow after a one-inning rehab appearance at Single-A last week and hasn’t pitched since. As you’d expect Madson sounds…
May 23, 2013, 10:33 AM EDT
The Mets first baseman is having a train wreck of a season thus far. He’s hitting .147/.236/.245, which is horrible even on a horrible Mets offense. And his poor hitting seems to be infecting his fielding too. See, yesterday’s non-play on a ball he though was foul but which he turned into a game-killing double.…
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