Other than the announcement of the Boston Red Sox’s penalties for using technology to steal signs, there still isn’t much to report from the world of major league baseball. Fortunately, players and broadcasters are out there feeding us some much-needed content to feature on social media.
We’ve got Miguel Cabrera stories and a good interview with Casey Mize. We’ve got prospect hype videos. We’ve got a wholesome Michael Fulmer clip. Balance that against Trevor Bauer explaining his take on the business of baseball and how it plays into their decision making in the season of COVID-19, and fairly widespread skepticism of the league’s report on the the Red Sox’s crimes, and we should have the old gamut covered, as it were.
Niko Goodrum and Blake Snell talk Miggy
Few players in the game over the past decade have generated as many stories as Miguel Cabrera. While his time as an elite hitter has fallen victim to age and knee issues, the big man hasn’t lost his aura.
Last year we enjoyed Cleveland Indians pitcher, Mike Clevinger’s memory of Cabrera calling his shot against him. In this clip, 2018 American League Cy Young Award winner, Blake Snell, discusses the cost of acquiring a signed Cabrera jersey from the man himself.
Here’s a look at the grand slam in question.
En el día en el que muchos lo mandaron al retiro, Miguel Cabrera pegó Grand Slam. La pelota salió a 102.03 millas por hora. En el primer turno sonó doble. Otro dato? Las conexiones fueron ante el vigente Cy Young de la Liga Americana, Blake Snell pic.twitter.com/xFhdaSzYQv— César Sequera Ramos (@CesarSequera11) June 5, 2019
In a second clip, Goodrum talks about Cabrera’s leadership and the tone he sets for the younger Tigers players.
Finally, in Miggy being Miggy news, Tigers hitting coach Joe Vavra, who took over from Lloyd McClendon this offseason, kept tabs remotely on all his charges over the offseason, and again over the past six weeks, save one. Vavra tried repeatedly to get in touch with Miguel Cabrera over the offseason to check on his workouts and provide a sounding board for adjustments. However, he never got a reply to his messages. The reason emerged during the abbreviated spring camp, when Cabrera revealed that he’d given Vavra a fake number.
Granted, this is only funny because Miguel Cabrera needs no help beyond what conditioning and physical therapy can do for his knees. But since he definitely needs no help with his hitting, it’s pretty funny.
Casey Mize explains his pitch design process
Dan Dickerson, Tigers radio play-by-play man and analyst extraordinaire, has been conducting a series of nice short video chats with various Tigers. In his recent talk with top prospect Casey Mize, the young pitcher discussed staying sharp while quarantined, and went into a nice in-depth breakdown of his pitch design process and how he integrates data into all his practice sessions. You may learn a few things, and you’ll be impressed by the rigor and depth with which Mize engages the topic.
Trevor Bauer on the prospect of baseball in 2020
Cincinnati Reds’ starting pitcher Trevor Bauer always seems to be at the center of some controversy. However in his daily life, Bauer is also one of the smartest, most engaged players in the game, and his YouTube channel has developed into a wealth of knowledge available to young players and to fans generally.
In his last video, he and sports agent Rachel Luba took a long look at prospects for a partial season. The point made over and over is how valuable a property postseason baseball is to owners and the league, and the likelihood that they’ll do everything possible to get there. Players, however, may feel differently depending on how the pandemic develops over the next month.
Either way the video is worth the watch for the breakdown of how postseason shares work, and the process of divvying them up on a playoff team, alone.
The Red Sox got a slap on the wrist
Commissioner Rob Manfred and Major League Baseball finally released their report on the Boston Red Sox last week. The Red Sox were stripped of just their second round pick for the illegal use of technology to steal signs. The punishment is far lighter than that handed down to the Houston Astros, and it’s difficult to understand why the league pulled its punches in the Red Sox case. Meanwhile, despite the length of the report, what really went on in the Red Sox organization remains fairly mysterious. Ken Rosenthal and Evan Drellich of The Athletic tried to unpack the details.
Around the horn
Legendary lefty Steve Dalkowski, who never pitched in the major leagues but became a minor league legend due to his ferocious triple digit fastball and corresponding inability to locate it, died on April 19 at age 80. He was famously part of the inspiration for the Nuke LaLoosh character in the classic baseball film Bull Durham.
Baseball is well underway in Taiwan. Michael Baumann of The Ringer explores the Red Sox penalities, and why the report on their sign-stealing activities feels far too tidy to be believed. R.J. Anderson for CBS Sports reports on the three site proposal which would add Texas as the third hub of a potential MLB season.
Finally, Michael Fulmer has your feel good Tigers’ moment of the week.