For Wednesday’s WISE Sports Radio baseball segment, Pat Ryan and I focused largely on Major League Baseball’s new rule that mandates pitchers must face at least three batters (or pitch to the end of an inning) when they’re brought into a game.
How that could affect game strategy and roster construction were part of our conversation, in addition to trades that could still be made, Cleveland Indians manager Terry Francona getting back some treasured keepsakes, and the Detroit Tigers finally deciding to retire Lou Whitaker’s No. 1 jersey next year.
Unlike last year, MLB’s offseason is humming along in 2019. Maybe most of the big names will have been signed or traded before Christmas!
Anyway, the teams who didn’t want to pay for Gerrit Cole or Stephen Strasburg got less expensive aces for their starting rotation as Madison Bumgarner signed with the Arizona Diamondbacks and the Texas Rangers traded for Corey Kluber.
Also on Monday’s WISE Sports Radio baseball segment, Pat Ryan and I talk about MLB taking marijuana off its list of banned drugs.
The 2019-20 baseball offseason is already much more exciting and interesting than it was a year ago, when transactions and activity were virtually frozen until Bryce Harper and Manny Machado signed. And that didn’t happen until late February, when teams had already reported to spring training camps.
Meanwhile, the NFL and NBA make free agency an event which fans and media follow with excitement. MLB still isn’t there, but at least top free agents like Gerrit Cole and Stephen Strasburg are now signing in December as expected. Baseball’s winter meetings — essentially the sport’s signature offseason event — is meaningful again.
Cole’s nine-year, $324 million (!!) contract with the New York Yankees was the main topic for Wednesday’s WISE Sports Radio baseball segment with Pat Ryan:
Parents, raise your kids to play baseball — and play it well. There’s a whole lot of money being thrown around out there. The New York Yankees are trying to avoid paying Jacoby Ellsbury the $27 million they owe him for 2020, while the Seattle Mariners just agreed to pay $24 million to a 23-year-old prospect who hasn’t yet played above the Double-A minor league level.
Pat Ryan and I discuss that and more on Monday’s WISE Sports Radio baseball segment, including the Chicago White Sox making a push toward contending next season and the Atlanta Braves’ wasting no time in making additions for 2020.
Now that we’re into baseball’s offseason, a story that should be getting a lot more attention is getting noticed.
A month ago, Baseball America reported that Major League Baseball was considering a proposal to eliminate 42 teams from its minor leagues, presumably based on geography, attendance, and the condition of its facilities. The New York Times followed up with both reaction from some of the clubs that could be affected and, most importantly, a list of the teams that could have their major league affiliation taken away.
That took up a big chunk of my WISE Sports Radio baseball segment with Pat Ryan. We also discussed MLB commissioner Rob Manfred addressing the sign-stealing allegations against the Houston Astros and look at the 2020 Hall of Fame ballot.
The Houston Astros seem to be sinking deeper and deeper into their sign-stealing scandal. How far up did this go in 2017? Well, reports have the team’s special assistant to the general manager directing scouts to film signals from the opposing dugout. The exec in question also happens to be a former baseball writer, something I covered for Awful Announcing.
Also on WISE Sports Radio‘s Monday baseball segment, Pat Ryan and I discussed the future of the Washington Nationals and a very nice payday they’ll be getting, along with the Pittsburgh Pirates hiring a new general manager.
Stepping into controversy, sign-stealing, and life-stealing on The Podcass!
First, a brief response to an Awful Announcing article I wrote (02:41). Then, baseball talk on WISE Sports Radio with the Houston Astros’ sign-stealing scandal and MLB awards (09:18). We change it up with a review of Bong Joon-Ho’s new film, Parasite (24:39). And close it out with sports radio football chatter, digging into Colin Kaepernick’s workout and other Week 11 NFL headlines (31:34).