MVPs of Labor Day Weekend 2014 (8-29 to 9-1)

The MVPs of this long weekend were: Buster Posey (Friday), Drew Hutchison (Saturday), Clay Buchholz (Sunday), and (since I can’t give it to all four Phillies no-hit pitchers) Miguel Cabrera (Monday).

Standings, as always, after the jump:

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2014 Rochester Red Wings in Review, Part 1, AKA “The IL North is Tough”

If there is one lesson to be learned from the 2014 Rochester Red Wings, it is that minor league baseball is perhaps even more cruel than Major League Baseball, and perhaps even more unforgiving, at least to teams.

If you want to know what I mean, take a look at the standings of the International League this year. You’ll see on them a horrible unbalanced league, where one division clearly was better than the other two. That division was the IL North. Take a look at the near-final (there were one or two games still going on when I posted this) standings here:

Screen Shot 2014-09-01 at 4.04.16 PMNow, as you can see, the North simply owned the other divisions. The four teams with the best records in the league were in it (meaning the playoffs will consist of the first, second, fifth, and sixth best teams), and it’s two worst teams (Scranton and Lehigh Valley) would have been in a three-way fight with Gwinnett for second in another division (the South).

Sadly for the Red Wings, they were in the North. And, sadly, they were unable to win the Wild Card. To be sure, there were times this season where it could be said they blew their chance at the postseason: a horrible 0-for-Ohio road trip, a few blown games by the bullpen here and there, and some games where they got plenty of men on base but never got enough of them home. But, ultimately, the Red Wings were just unlucky victims of geography, stuck in what may have been the best division in all of baseball (relative to the rest of it’s league).

That said, despite the disappointing ending, it was a ton of fun, so on Wednesday, I’ll have a second part, a retrospective on the 2014 Red Wings season, complete with photos!


Bizarre Baseball Culture: Simpsons Comics #120

In Bizarre Baseball Culture, I take a look at some of the more unusual places where baseball has reared it’s head in pop culture and fiction.

As I write this, America is in the grasp of the Every Simpsons Ever Marathon on FXX. To be more exact, we’re currently on Day 10 of 12. Maybe Day 11 of 12. Depends on when this goes up (probably Day 11). But, don’t let FXX lie to you: They don’t have every Simpsons ever. No, they are lacking the original Tracey Ullman Show shorts, the Butterfingers commercials, at least one other short, at least two music videos, and, of course, countless comics.

The Simpsons has long been a staple of Bongo Comics, the publishing group co-founded by Matt Groening to produce comics based on his TV shows, and this time on Bizarre Baseball Culture, I look at Bongo Comics’ Simpsons Comics #120, which tells the tale of Homer, Bart, and a record-setting baseball.

So, it’s time to get up and…. D’OH!

Screen Shot 2014-08-30 at 1.43.32 PMGO BELOW THE JUMP FOR MORE:

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MVP of Yesterday (August 28, 2014): Yusmeiro Petit

While Yusmeiro Petit did have a good start yesterday for the Giants, going 6 innings and giving up only 4 hits and a earned run with 9 Ks, part of the reason is because he, early in the game, broke the record for consecutive batters retired.

Standings, as always, after the jump:

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MVP of Yesterday (August 27, 2014): Clayton Kershaw

Clayton Kershaw was awesome yesterday. Yaaawwwwwwnnnnn. 8 innings, no earned runs, 10 Ks….

Just another day in the life of the greatest pitcher since Pedro Martinez was in Boston.

Standings after the jump:

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