David Lesky at Inside the Crown looks at players that were lucky and unlucky at the plate, like Michael Massey.
Okay, first glance is that the expected stats aren’t world-beating by any stretch. But for a guy who was an above average defender at second base and seems to have great chemistry up the middle with Witt, those stats certainly play. The improvement as the season went on came down largely to swing decisions. He chased 39.4 percent of the time during those first 17 games and then 35.4 percent of the time after that. That’s still not great, but it’s much better. He saw his swinging strike rate drop from 14.2 percent to 10 percent.
Even his .245/.296/.415 line from April 22 to the end of the year was much more in line with those expected stats. The reality is that if Massey is counted on in the top half of the order, the lineup likely has a problem. But if he can hit, say, seventh, the lineup should be pretty solid up and down.
Ball Nine interviews former Royals pitcher Jimmy Gobble.
Your first two starts you went 12.1 innings and allowed just one earned run and your second win put the Royals back in first place. It seems like you got things figured out pretty quick!
Brian Sanches, my roommate in 2003 and a fabulous human, told me then when I stepped on the mound, I should just take it all in. That Sunday, the umpire said, “Play ball,” and I stepped off and took it all in. I’m not gonna tell you the exact words I said to myself because there are some expletives involved, but it was basically like, “Come on, let’s go!” Then I just went out and competed. It was just a mindset. In AA, I had been pitching pretty well and logged a lot of innings. I had been pretty successful in minimizing damage that year, so I just stayed with what I was doing and didn’t change anything. Brent Mayne was the catcher. My gosh, what an unbelievable receiver. I didn’t have to do anything except shut up and follow his lead.
Jacob Milham at Kings of Kauffman reviews Dylan Coleman’s season.
Benches clear in a Game 5 Astros win over the Rangers.
How Astros’ Jose Abreu rebounded from a career-worst start in the playoffs.
Why aren’t players stealing bases in the post-season?
MLB playoff ratings have been steady in the LCS after declines in wild-card and division rounds.
The Giants are interested in Padres skipper Bob Melvin as their manager.
The Red Sox interview former Giants manager Gabe Kapler for the open GM position.
The Cardinals have interest in bringing back Yadier Molina as a coach.
Alex Rodriguez says he would have taken a 50 percent pay cut to play for the Mets.
Rangers coach Will Venable won’t be a candidate for the Guardians managerial job.
Beautiful barns tell the history of the United States.
Concert tour films are having a moment.
Your song of the day is The Zombies with Time of the Season.