Author Archives: meliswein

And The Ballgame Is Over!*

The Boston Red Sox have just won the 2013 World Series. While I’m slightly disappointed that the Cardinals (and Beltran) couldn’t get it done to push this to a Game 7, I’m most disappointed that the 2013 MLB season is now officially over. I sink into a strange depression-like state between November and late February that is only remedied by the start of spring training. 

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Beltran Stuns Fans, Players, and the Bullpen Cop

When Jerry Seinfeld joined Gary, Keith and Ron in the SNY broadcast booth in mid-September he made a wonderful point – “I do not understand why outfield walls are not padded in such a way that we don’t risk a guy’s entire career for the sake of a couch cushion. I mean, what is the point? We know they’re  gonna hit these walls. We’re paying these guys zillions of dollars, maybe it would be in our best interest to make sure they hit the wall and continue their careers.”

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Don’t Ruffle My Cardinal Feathers, LA

As most of you probably know, I live in Los Angeles. If you didn’t know that, I live in Los Angeles. At different times during the year I’m surrounded by Lakers and/or Clippers fans, Kings fans, Angels fans, and Dodgers fans. Even though the Kings season has begun it seems like people have forgotten about hockey all together so that they can support the Dodgers.

Dodgers fans are great. Some fans followed them to LA from their days in Brooklyn, others have just become involved this season. Regardless of how long you’ve been a fan, it’s fun to be in LA right now. Well, it would be a lot more fun if I were a Dodgers fan.

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Postseason and Dodger Blues

One of my favorite things about the post season is watching as a team celebrate a series win.  I love that the TV network has a camera on each player and each dugout, and after the initial pile-on on the field, we are able to watch every reaction of celebration (and of demise). But as the Dodgers clinched an NLCS spot on Monday and the Red Sox clinched an ALCS spot on Tuesday, I found myself a bit angry.

Don’t get me wrong – I was pulling for both of those teams, but I live for Game 5 (in the division series). The players might live for October, but I live for the overwhelming panic in a do-or-die game for both teams. (I thought I might feel differently if either the Mets or Orioles were in it, but remembered that the Mets last postseason went to a game 7 [2006 NLCS] and the Orioles last postseason went to a game 5 [2012 ALDS].) More so, I start to get a little depressed as the end looms. What will I do for the next months? Football doesn’t take up nearly as much time.

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It’s Not About The Money (Or Anything Else, Really)

So many factors are considered when speculating which teams will make the postseason – their record from the previous season, the team’s payroll, the experience of the team’s manager, etc.

My first post this season listed my post season predictions (both selfish and legitimate) and I didn’t consider any of the above when making my picks. While I’m pretty proud that some of my legitimate predictions were accurate (AL Central, NL Central, NL West, 1 NL Wildcard) a lot of “professionals” didn’t come as close.

post season 2013

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When All Else Fails, “Obstruction”

Last night when Carlos Gomez HRed in the first inning, he never crossed home plate. The benches clearing brawl started when Gomez was trotting down the third base line, and when Gomez was ejected, no pinch runner took his place. The umpire however, counted one run. (You can see it here.)

I looked through every section of the rule book, only to determine that “obstruction” is the ONLY explanation.
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Obscure Rules – Top of the Order

Last week Mariano Rivera received a win for a game he, by typical standards, saved, all because of Rule 10.17 (c) which states:

(c) The official scorer shall not credit as the winning pitcher a relief pitcher who is ineffective in a brief appearance, when at least one succeeding relief pitcher pitches effectively in helping his team maintain its lead. In such a case, the official scorer shall credit as the winning pitcher the succeeding relief pitcher who was most effective, in the judgment of the official scorer.

Rule 10.17(c) Comment: The official scorer generally should, but is not required to, consider the appearance of a relief pitcher to be ineffective and brief if such relief pitcher pitches less than one inning and allows two or more earned runs to score (even if such runs are charged to a previous pitcher).

This rule isn’t enacted often (in fact, I’ve only been able to find one other instance from recent years – May 7, 2009 Rays v. Yankees), but it made me want to find other obscure rules.  Read the rest of this entry

An Open Letter to Mr. Bob Costas

Dear Mr. Costas,

As a fellow Syracuse University graduate, I have always appreciated your work on a level that I feel is different from some other people. I respect and admire your career path and hard work that brought you to the level of greatness that you exhibit today.

As with all praise, there is always some degree of condemnation.

On June 16 you publicly shamed the New York Mets during your broadcast of the U.S. Open. In response, you were openly chastised by a number of Mets players, employees, and fans, and while that may have been good and well, I have not yet expressed my feelings on the subject.  “Better late than never,” I say. I did not feel as though my thoughts immediately after your comments would have been well articulated, nor did I feel then, or now, that the 140 characters allowed by Twitter could truly capture what I must tell you.

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Listology – Part 1

Pablo Sandoval hit 3 HRs in 9 innings and 5 at bats on Wednesday night against San Diego and it got me thinking — I know there have been other players with 3 HR games, but has any other

San Francisco Giants player accomplished this feat?

In fact, 25 other Giants have hit 3 HR in one game (of 9 innings or fewer) – 11 for SF, 14 for NY. The only Giant, of any kind, to hit more than that is Willie Mays – he hit 4 in 1961.

Well, now that I’m on one of my frequent (yet still strange) random fact binges, here are some useful(less) facts. Read the rest of this entry

It Could Be Worse

So the Mets have had a rough season – it’s no secret. But their bad 5 months have nothing on Miley’s bad 5 minutes at the VMAs last Sunday.

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It’s A Rebuilding Decade, but I Don’t Care!

Last week the Mets made their West Coast road trip. I know all the Easterners hate staying up late to watching the games, but this is the one time each season I can watch the games at home, without sneaking glimpses while at the office.

It’s great to attend any baseball game, but it’s much more fun when it’s a team you’ve followed for years. For the first time this season, I watched the Mets play in person. Finally, I was able to watch Matt Harvey pitch. photo 1

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Pick Your Seats

Every time I plan a trip to a ballpark I’ve never visited before, I scour the internet for a “best place to sit” website. I want my back to the sun, I want a great view of the action, I want to be close to the field, etc etc. It’s never easy and it’s different for every stadium, but according to the rulebook it shouldn’t be this way.

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Best Ballpark Food

Of the 30 current MLB ballparks, I’ve been lucky enough to take in a game at 10 of them. When I’m able to get to the stadium early enough to grab food before gluing myself to my seat for the coming hours, I’m thrilled. Baseball? Love. Food? Love. Baseball and food? Yes, please. I’m a total foodie and as much as I love eating delicious food, I love eating local specialties, or “stadium specialties”.

In honor of the new Waffle House at Turner Field, here are my food favorites from each park I’ve been to (sadly I have not yet been to Turner Field).

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Biogenesis, Betting, and Bans

I may not be the biggest A-Rod fan. Or Yankees fan. But I’m a huge fan of fair treatment. 

When reports surfaced yesterday that MLB was considering a lifetime ban from the game for Alex Rodriguez, I began searching for a list of people who have been banned for life and the reasons why. It’s not a long list, but it’s long enough that I’m only going to examine one very famous and controversial ban. Read the rest of this entry