The Detroit Tigers Had To Call In Reinforcements On Wednesday, After Their TV Broadcast Team Spent Tuesday Night Beating The Crap Out Of Each Other
TheAthletic- When Mickey York and Craig Monroe threw to the booth during Wednesday night’s broadcast of Fox Sports Detroit’s “Tigers Live” pregame show, an unexpected duo appeared on screen — that of Matt Shepard and Kirk Gibson.
Conspicuously absent from the show was the regular tandem of play-by-play announcer Mario Impemba and analyst Rod Allen.
Multiple sources told The Athletic that neither Impemba nor Allen were part of Wednesday’s broadcast due to a physical altercation between the two television personalities following Tuesday’s game in Chicago against the White Sox. It is not immediately clear what prompted the incident.
According to the accounts of those sources, there has been simmering tension between both Impemba and Allen and the clash of personalities ultimately boiled over on Tuesday night.
Both Shepard and Gibson had to be brought in to Chicago at last-minute’s notice, according to at least one source. Another source said that Impemba’s and Allen’s travel arrangements back to Detroit were booked separately to avoid further issues.
Not for nothing, but as much as this a hilarious story that paints quite the preposterous picture, isn't it also an indication that playing nice-nice while sharing otherwise dead airwaves with the same person, for hours on end, almost every damn day for six months out of the year can be inherently frustrating at times?
Like, which of the following is more surprising...
That, after 15 years of working together, the daily grind of another dreary season in Detroit had Mario Impemba and Rod Allen ready to rip each other's voice boxes out over qualities that soon became quibbles and quirks? Or that this is the first we're hearing of two people who work in the closest of quarters and need to censor their true feelings while on job finally going ahead and pummeling each other off of it?
I'm inclined to say it's the latter. After all, broadcasting duos aren't made up of lifelong friends with pre-existing chemistry, and - even if they were - that would probably only increase the likelihood of heated interactions and altercations that came to pass due to spending too much time with someone you know far too well.
I think I just convinced myself that every pair of announcers should use All-Star weekend to step in the ring and beat the (inconsistent pause) brakes off one another for the continued sanity of the team...and the peace of mind of the team that employs the team. I tend to think that enough feigned pleasantries will always lead to thrown punches, but that's just the opinion of someone that was never cut out for the business of family friend bullshitting.
Mets' Todd Frazier Managed To Dupe An Umpire With A Toy Ball He Stumbled Upon In the Stands After Dropping His Attempt At A Diving Catch
I don't want to say that Todd Frazier's ability to think on his feet while off his feet was a more impressive act than had he actually made a lunging catch just prior to tumbling into the stands, as I'm sure he'd much rather have added a web gem to his resume as opposed to the ever-so-rare found ball trick.
Unfortunately, if only because nothing of the like has ever been seen before, I kind of feel as though I have to. After all, having the wherewithal to immediately sell a glorified chew toy as a regulation baseball to a professional official after scrambling around on dirty cement steps for all of two seconds is easily the best acting job we've seen from a team that has spent all seen trying (and failing) to masquerade as a Major League ball club.
It's very fitting that one of the most re-watchable highlights of their season was actually just a dropped pop-up, but - on the bright side - they usually aren't anywhere near as good at covering up their mistakes. It was definitely enabled by some suspect awareness from the umpire, but Todd Frazier displayed coolness under pressure that you usually only see wafting from the Metropolitans' bats when they have runners in scoring position. That's got to count for something, even if it's just a second inning out in another lost season.
Dee Gordon Calmly Asked The Media To Leave The Clubhouse So The Mariners Could Beat The Crap Out Of Each Other Prior To Last Night's Loss To The Orioles
SeattleTimes- Sources indicated the incident was between Gordon and shortstop Jean Segura and stemmed from Gordon’s misplay on a ball in center field during Monday’s win over the Orioles.
When asked about it, multiple players refused to comment and offered up some version of “what happens in the clubhouse stays in the clubhouse.”
I'd go out on a limb and say that any amount of punches thrown between members of a very, very fringe playoff hopeful doesn't speak glowingly about their chemistry headed down the stretch. I know that personalities can clash over the course of a season that's far too long. However, in a relatively non-contact sport in which success is mostly undetermined by individual efforts, inter-team turmoil is a bigger indictment of a locker room than it would be in a workplace where job performances are more co-dependent than they are on a baseball diamond.
Of course, I hardly know the inner workings of the Seattle Mariners' clubhouse, but teammates brawling over one misplayed ball wouldn't be a positive sign of their collective headspace if it happened following a hard-fought loss. Never mind it happening before an embarrassing loss to a 41-win Orioles team a full day after the win in which the mistake that ultimately caused the melee took place. I'm not trying to play psychotherapist to a Major League ball club here, but if you want to sell the general public on a fight being a necessary release of frustrations then you can't immediately follow it up by bowing out to basement-dwelling Baltimore. I really don't think that's too much to ask of a team that already had all the motivation in the world to avoid the negative news cycle. Not every physical altercation between prideful professional athletes is symptomatic of a larger problem, but it's also not a non-story when it precedes the dropping of the biggest and fattest of stinkers during the last leg of a highly hopeless postseason race.
What I do like is the juxtaposition of Dee Gordon calmly escorting the media to safer grounds before returning with his eyes filled with the fire of a 1,000 suns, as it has a very "parents asking their children to go to their room nicely before screaming at each other like the whole house is soundproof" vibe to it. What I don't like is what it says about the fragile state of a team whose season had torpedoed nearly as fast as their demeanor when the cameras aren't present, since it's basically what you'd expect from teenagers when there is no teacher around.
Now we're getting somewhere! With the undeniable uptick in bullshit balls and strikes being called by umpires that have become frazzled by how close technology is to taking their jobs, we're probably pretty close to one ejection per game being the norm for most players. As I can personally think of nothing worse than watching the temper tantrums of grown men grow stale, I couldn't be more relieved to watch Mark Reynolds reinvent the practice of getting banished from baseball games.
I mean, two ejections? For the very same set of botched calls? That's even more revolutionary than the double glove throw! I'm not even sure I'll be able to take the frustrations of his peers seriously if they don't force blue to make more than one largely exaggerated motion to the parking lot going forward. As far as I'm concerned, if the players really want to make the officials pay for the two human fallacies in the middle of their face then they should bitch, moan, pout, stomp, and scream until every umpire is at risk of needing Tommy John surgery after repeatedly throwing them out of the game. It's about time we got that pitch count up on those haphazardly hurling around their authority complex. Mark Reynolds just raised the bar, so here's to hoping all MLB players follow suit in doing the baseball equivalent of drunkenly dancing on top of it until they are not-so-kindly "asked" to leave two or more times.
Let me tell you a little something about Butch Hobson. If absolutely nothing else, he's putting the "independent" in Independent League, because he's damn near singlehandedly responsible for all their online exposure right now. He's been aided by a couple questionable calls from underpaid umpires that couldn't care less about being there, of course, but the Manager of the Chicago Dogs has taken it upon himself to get the league that employs him their first official affiliation, which is quite obviously with hilarious ejections that are bound to go viral.
A grown adult man capping off his temper tantrum by smacking an imaginary (and the Independent League's most memorable) walk-off dinger and slowly strutting around the bases with Wieners screen-printed across his chest should easily be enough for him to win your clicks. On the off chance that Butch Hobson has yet to win your heart, however, here's a reminder that he's the same grown adult man that is a mere two weeks removed from literally stealing third base and giving it to one lucky fan...
That should be all the evidence you need that the pennies on the dollar that they are paying him to rally his team during relatively meaningless baseball games in front of dozens of fans should at least be increased to nickels. Butch Hobson certainly isn't a dime-a-dozen, so the next time he's getting a contract drawn up on the nearest napkin he better demand the inclusion of an entertainment value incentive. After all, if only for a must-watch middle school-esque minute at a time, he's putting both the Chicago Dogs and the Independent League on the map (aka internet).
Blue Jays Pitcher Aaron Sanchez Finally Admitted That The Injury That's Kept Him Out The Last Two Months Was Caused By His Own Luggage
LBS- Toronto Blue Jays pitcher Aaron Sanchez hasn’t pitched for two months with a bruised right index finger, and he’s admitting the real cause of the injury for the very first time.
Sanchez said his finger got stuck in a falling suitcase, but he didn’t want to admit it publicly out of embarrassment.
“It got stuck in my suitcase and it started falling,” Sanchez said, via ESPN. “It all happened in a span of about 30 seconds. I said ‘Ow,’ and my knuckle got super fat. I pitched that day, probably didn’t help, but it was the first time I was going to pitch in front of my family as a professional and I wanted to see what I could do.
“I didn’t want to say it then because I saw Salvador Perez go down with the same injury and I didn’t want to get laughed at.”
What are the odds?! So many incredibly stupid ways for a professional athlete to hurt themselves and Aaron Sanchez falls victim to one with recent precedence? He had to sit on the sidelines for two full months while replaying a single, solitary moment of clumsiness, and only now does he feel comfortable getting the truth off his chest because his idiotic injury wasn't even original?
That's a tough break, and I'm not talking about whatever is going on inside his index finger. I mean, misery typically loves company, but if you're going to be the guy that manages to compromise his availability in professional sports for a extended period of time by misplaying something that's built to be carried with convenience then you're going to want to be the first one to do it. At least then the shortsighted sports' world can laugh with you, as opposed to not-so-secretly resenting for forcing them to make the same jokes twice in the same season.
To be honest, now I kind of pity Aaron Sanchez for being so overly concerned with what the general public might think that he lived a lie for two full months, as I think the inability to laugh at yourself is a much worse look for a professional athlete than being laughed at on the internet for a day or two.
An Umpire In The LLWS Froze Up Directly In Front Of An Outfielder Just As He Was Trying To Throw Out The Winning Run At The Plate
I never thought I would be put in a position in which I was hopeful that a Little League umpire was gambling on the most high-staked youth games he was officiating, if only for it would be the one justification for his abject incompetence. Alas, here I am with my fingers crossed that blue earned himself a little extra green by looking like he turned his boxers brown with the game on the line.
I mean, that act of interference seemed so egregiously unnecessary that I just hope there was some reason, monetary or not, that the person who committed it ruined what could have been an all-time play at the plate during the bottom of the 9th inning. Unfortunately, there's not all that many ways to explain away the type of situational awareness you'd expect from someone walking across an active highway while texting with headphones in. Either way he should be sent back to the tee-ball fields from which he came, but I hope he returns with his wallet feeling a little fatter. For becoming Tim Donaghy's protege would be more understandable than popping a squat right in front of a pre-teen as he tried to put a stop to a walk-off in showing he's not the one to run on.
A's Pitcher Shawn Kelley Damn Near Through A Pitch Out Of The Stadium When A Timeout Was Called During His Delivery
First of all, let's take one second to acknowledge the hilarity of a baseball being flung from an MLB mound to the cheapest of seats in the Oakland Coliseum. If nothing else, it's another reminder that the beauty of sports are that they are liable to leave you saying "well, you don't see that everyday" on damn near a daily basis.
Okay, now that we've gotten that out of the way, let's take a second to admire the underlying takeaway from that clip, which is not-so-obviously that professional athletes are physically skilled in a way that's almost unfathomable to the average viewer. That might seem like an ironic conclusion to draw, as Shawn Kelley appeared to miss his spot by the length of the re-porposed football field he was playing on. However, the idea that attempting to launch a ball clear out of the stadium was both the safer and more instinctual option in comparison to stopping his pitching motion is proof of just how powerful said pitching motion is.
A lot of NFL players are upset about the new tackling rules not just because even the people enforcing them have a hard time defining them, but also because they are moving at such high speeds with such mutant-like momentum that doing anything other than what they've been trained to do since Pop Warner is unorthodox in a way that could lead to more injuries. The same concept applies here, as the only thing more inhuman than hurling projectiles at upwards of 100 MPH per hour is slamming the brakes on an arm as it's in the process of doing so.
So, in a weird way, the idea that throwing a baseball to a neighboring county on split-second notice was the optimal way for a pitcher to preserve his health should, oddly enough, reinforce our appreciation for the type of talent said pitcher, and all others like him, possesses. Your first reaction should be to laugh along with Shawn Kelley, but don't let that distract you from the fact that you've thrown in a couple pump fakes upon realizing the target of your pass was sipping his beer or talking to a friend and your average ass arm was made no worse for the wear...
After Homering In 5 Straight Games (Including 3 Straight While Leading Off), Ronald Acuña Was Beaned By Marlins' Pitcher José Ureña With The First Pitch He Saw
It's almost as if José Ureña took the mound last night with the intent to draw attention to everything that is wrong with baseball. I know he didn't, as his time in the Majors has taught him that winding up and hurling a high-speed projectile at the ribcage of a hitter is a reasonable way to show said hitter that his sustained success is not appreciated. That being said, you couldn't script a more scathing indictment of the unwritten rules of baseball than the Marlins' pitcher, who had yet to spend so much as one single pitch attempting to get out the red hot Ronald Acuña Jr., using his high-end heat to target a rookie whose biggest breach of etiquette was batting beyond his years...
They are very, very different crimes against common sense, but - the way I see - that scene last night should basically be looked at in the same vein as "Dez caught the ball". Of course, this particular play didn't alter anyone's playoff fate, but why wait until something similar does when it's an antiquated practice that isn't anywhere close to being outlined in print? This should be something that is repeatedly looked back on as one of the most radical examples of objective idiocy being so obviously detrimental to a sport in such an unforgettable way that it ultimately inspires change.
It more than likely won't be, as baseball touts its "tradition" over its talent in a way that makes you think their decisions makers have taken a few too many heaters to the head. However, for a league that blames Mike Trout for his failure to market himself, it doesn't get anymore astronomically stupid than an exciting, young prospect having his 5-game home run streak brought to an end by an injury that was inflicted for no other reason than his 5-game home run streak existing in the first place.
If only to send an unmistakable message to Major League ball clubs, José Ureña should have been instantly tossed for taking the most exciting player in the game out of it before it really began. The only reason it took both benches clearing, as well as minutes of screaming, yelling, and deliberation to do so, isn't even that baseball is broken, but rather that - pending the announcement of a suspension - it appears to have very little interest in fixing itself.
The Braves' Postgame Went Without A Hitch As A Security Guard Took A Big Time Spill In The Background
Professionalism, personified. Seriously, get these two on an Emmy ballot, for acting as if they didn't see the...umm...sizable security guard go heels-over-head in eating the steamiest of shits on-air required a unforeseen amount of focus.
People taking an unexpected spill is always worth a laugh regardless, but it being its own scene completely separate from the postgame show it served as the comic relief to made this one all the more hilarious. Honestly, if it weren't for the slightest of smirks from the guy on the right, you could have convinced me that a green screen was used to insert a viral clip into the background of the Braves' broadcast. It all just took place in such a matter-of-fact way that reminded us that sometimes life is better scripted by itself.
A special thanks to both the man looking for his five seconds of fame and the man who fell victim to some sort of obstacle in taking second place to his momentum in trying to deny those five seconds of fame, but the concentration of the hosts turned supporting actors was award-worthy as well. All in all, just a fantastically funny performance all around.
Ben Zobrist Received His First Career Ejection For Reminding An Umpire That Computers Are Coming For His Job
Bravo! Bravo! That might have been a first time dismissal for the 37 year old, but there was no beginner's luck behind that barb! I'd say that's the perfect thing to snap back in earning an ejection, as the feelings it hurt will still be sore long after the game in which Ben Zobrist's active participation was cut short, but the truth is that I'm not even sure I feel comfortable calling that ejection.
I mean, what else was the Cubs' veteran utility player going to do but leave the stage after dropping the mic on an umpire that was apparently pretty sensitive to his job security? Ben Zobrist knew damn well that line was going to get him tossed before he said it, so the end of that interaction was really more of an "I quit!" than a "you're fired!". Unfortunately, I'm not so sure the target of it will be so lucky to leave on his own accord if him and his peers keep making robotic officiating seem like an extremely viable option by backing up their bad calls with worse arguments.
Despite its obvious detriment, I also see the benefit of the human element to a sport that misrepresents its stubbornness as tradition. That, however, doesn't mean I can't encourage its victims to highlight its flaws in pouring fuel on the fire. If were going to keep umpires around then we might as well shame them into shaping up by threatening to ship them out in the same box in which their replacement is potentially being packaged. I don't know if it will make any tangible difference, but it should make the ejection process a hell of a lot funnier for the time being.
The Nationals Broadcast Went Completely Silent For A Full Minute After The Bat Cracked On What Ended Up Being Their Second Straight Loss On A Walk-Off Homer
You know, at this point, I'm sort of starting to feel bad that the Washington Nationals have to play out the rest of their schedule.
To be honest, I'm not sure if I'm more interested in seeing the players or those that are contractually obligated to both watch and talk about them every day put out of their misery first. You'd think it would be the former, considering the amount of on and off the field incidents that have plagued playoff hopes that are somehow still alive despite taking multiple kill shots between the eyes. However, after listening to two men who are paid to speak through the most trying of circumstances go dead silent for the broadcast equivalent of the running time of Titanic, I'm not so sure that it's not the latter. Suffering heartbreaking loss and heartbreaking loss is tough, but is it as tough as trying to be anything other than speechless while watching Bryce Harper's time in Washington tragically trickle to the darkest of depths?
If only because their commentators are apparently running low on words that can accurately describe their dramatic demise, I really hope the Nationals start losing both leads and games prior to the bottom of the 9th inning. It's pretty clear all invested parties would benefit most from letting go and enjoying the sweet release of complete irrelevance together instead of having to flip a coin to decide who's pulling whose plug.
Their heart might go on, but their collective soul has already been vanquished...
The Marlins' First Base Coach Wears Lettuce Under His Helmet To Stay Cool, And Dare I Say That He Sorta, Kinda Pulls It Off?
It's wouldn't necessarily consider it a secret that a little confidence goes a long way, but if you needed further proof of that than look no further than the Marlins' first base coach doing wonders for the social acceptability of wearing your food by candidly lining his helmet with lettuce in broad day light. I don't know that I too would give no fucks in using greens to keep myself fresh if I were in his position, but with how little hesitation he showed in doing so, I'd be a fool to not consider it. Every trend starts with a vast majority of society peering at it's pioneer as if he/she had...well...a whole ass leaf of lettuce on their head, so why should literally having a whole ass leaf of lettuce on your head be any different?
The truth is, I have no idea if lettuce helps in keeping the wearer of it cool in the summer sun. I do know that I no longer feel comfortable knocking it until l try it after the person who introduced it had "funny you should ask..."-type facts at his beck and call the second he was called out for it. I'm not about to get shunned from the produce section for testing cabbage for it's Under Armour-esque qualities. Therefore, from here on it Perry Hill is my foremost authority on all vegetative vestures and the use of salad for dress as opposed to dressing one's salad. If only because he's an incredibly convincing one, if I do say so myself.
Cesar Hernandez Of The Phillies Bunted A Home Run, And Somehow The D'Backs Weren't Responsible For The Worst Defensive Attempt On The Play
First and foremost, a quick shoutout has to go to the Arizona Diamondbacks. Nothing pays homage to those participating in the Little League World Series quite like making those participating in the Little League World Series appear more fundamentally sound than Major Leaguers. So good on them for making pre-teens look like actual professionals by haphazardly flinging a ball that was intentionally hit as close to home as possible around the diamond like it had cooties. I'd imagine that the memory of seeing their role models give away unearned runs will really give those that will be left crying in the dugout a reason to wipe their tears.
Now, the Arizona infield may have made complete asses of themselves with defense that was offensive in every sense of the work, but there's nothing like a timely reminder that it could always be worse. With that in mind, at least they can find peace in not being this guy...
In fairness, it's a rarity that you find a fan that's able to restrain himself from interfering with a play that's headed in his direction, but it would simply be disrespectful to the memory of the latest and greatest of fictional baseball Managers if we failed to mention his most notable piece of advice at a time like this...
I mean, that "ole' bullshit" stunk to such a high heaven that the soul of Lou Brown probably caught an unmistakable whiff of it, swallowed down another pack of cigarettes, and started coarsely cursing from his cloud. I'm not saying that kid was totally complicit in letting some innocent lady take one off the chin, but how is Roger Dorn's protege expect to find himself anywhere but the stands if he doesn't instinctually get in front of the damn ball?
Coming From The Series That Brought You The Trash Can "Homecoming", We Have An Independent League Manager Literally Stealing Third Base After Getting Tossed
ICYMI: This happened during the series between the Fargo-Moorhead RedHawks and Chicago Dogs on Monday...
I've got good news and bad news. The good news is that this one-upmanship of prop-aided conniptions from grown men on opposing teams is one borderline-to-bad call away from carrying on into tonight's series finale. The bad news, of course, is that tonight is the series finale.
Seriously, as anxious as the umpires must be for this three game set to end is exactly how much everyone that had no idea who these two teams were before it started wishes for it to continue on infinitely. After utilizing both a trash can and third base, I can't imagine where they'll turn next in their search for inanimate objects with which to project their anger, but I am already disappointed that it's hours away from reaching its conclusion.
Maybe it's better this way, as it would have become very awkward if they were to run out of creative ways in which to use their surroundings to disrespect officials, but I'm going to need a little time before looking back on this with a "don't emasculate an umpire because it's over, smile because it happened" mindset. Part three might soften the blow if it fails to live up to a maniacal Manager giving away equipment that is vital to the playing of the game while said game is still taking place, but if there are two teams that can wrap this trilogy of tantrums up on a tumultuous note then it's the Fargo-Moorhead RedHawks and the Chicago Dogs. May their early August mutiny against underpaid authority figures and all things that could possibly inconvenience them live on in Independent Baseball League lore.
Sidenote: With the small amount of fans these teams must draw, wouldn't they have been better off slapping down a parking cone at the hot corner as opposed to taking back the rarest of souvenirs from a lucky kid?
Think This Little League Umpire Felt Some Type Of Way About This Kid Who Didn't Wait Ten Minutes For Him To Make A Call?
There's a quite bit to be said about an umpire that clearly took offense to a child trusting his fully functioning eyeballs and overeagerly taking off down the line after the catcher caught what should have been ball four from a goddamn standing position. After all, as made evident by "strike two" (aka ball five), he's clearly an insecure, thin-skinned man with an authority complex. What he is not, however, is ready to let 10-13 year olds progress to the next stage of their baseball "careers" without knowing what to expect from the people officiating there.
Simply put, the integrity of a Little League game is a small price to pay for a lesson that will last a lifetime. That lesson, of course, being that you shouldn't make an umpire feel like less than the most important person on the field or he's liable to prioritize calling you out ahead of calling the game. It might not be nearly as egregiously at any other level, but sometimes you have to really have to spell it out for kids so they understand that the game isn't about them, but rather the adult men in masks behind the plate. That clearly befuddled kid that was looking around in bewilderment as if he were waiting for someone to explain to him what the hell was going on will never forget having to stand through six insanely inaccurate pitches to take one base, and thus he won't go damaging the fragile egos of any obnoxiously overbearing umpires in the future. What a relief.
We Have An All-Time Post-Ejection Freakout, Compliments Of Brennan Metzger From The Fargo-Moorhead RedHawks
As there isn't currently enough room for me in my garbage can, I would appreciate no one telling Brennan Metzger that I don't think that questionable strike three call was egregious enough to warrant the fuss he put up following it. I can't speak for how the first 6.5 innings were officiated, but if I'm taking that clip at face value than I'd say the amount of fuck's he flung in the direction of the umpire was disproportional to the disgracefulness of the call.
That being said, I do appreciate him earning every bit of his ejection. It's too often that booted players take their dismissal in stride, but - between the commitment shown in literally taking out the garbage and the hilarity of him telling an umpire to both get and live inside it - that can't possibly be said about Fargo-Moorhead's own Brennan Metzger. There will be no coulda, woulda, shoulda when he gets back to the clubhouse. When he hops in the showers there will be no retrospective over-analysis of his own battle cries in the war of words, as he left it all on the field in providing both a visual aid for his trash talk and a new workspace for the Oscar the Grouch of independently run Minor League Baseball. After managing his anger and watching it back, I speak from experience in saying he might have a regret or two about he reacted to a simple strikeout, but he won't be left thinking that he didn't milk that ejection for all it was worth and that's really all that matters after your evening officially gets ended prematurely.
Phillies' Carlos Santana Went Yard After Promising A Young Leukemia Patient In Attendance That He Would
Philly- Anthony Garcia, wearing the custom jersey that Gabe Kapler presented him a few minutes earlier, waited Saturday afternoon just outside the Phillies dugout hoping to meet Carlos Santana.
The 13-year-old baseball fanatic from Harrisburg said he favored Santana for his humble attitude. Kapler made sure Garcia’s custom-jersey with “Anthony” arched across the back also had Santana’s No. 41. It had been five months since Garcia’s leukemia was diagnosed, causing the teenager to miss his baseball season.
And then came Santana, who walked over from the batting cage to present Garcia with a bat and ball and pose for pictures. That would be enough for Garcia, who arrived at Citizens Bank Park after Go4TheGoal, a childhood cancer foundation based in Cherry Hill, reached out to Kapler. But Santana had something else.
“I promise to get a home run for you today,” Santana said.
Santana said he doesn’t often promise home runs, but he “was feeling something.” Santana returned to batting practice and Garcia and his family found their seats behind home plate, in Section 121.
Then Santana delivered. He homered in the fifth inning of the 8-3 win over the Marlins. He watched the ball land in the second deck of right field and thought back to his promise.
“I remembered, and I said, ‘Thank you, God,’ for letting me do that,” Santana said. “Everything I do, I do from my heart.”
The home run was the third the Phillies would hit as they routed the Marlins. Garcia had a perfect night. And Santana’s fulfilled promise was a moment to cherish.
“We got chills,” said his mother, Yisel Ramos-Marucci . “He almost cried. He had always dreamt about this day and it finally happened.”
This is quite obviously a great story of both the unseen hand that lends its help in clutch situations that are bigger than the game during which they take place far too often for its presence to be ignored, as well as the healing power (as temporary as it may be) of sports. I don't think there's a person on the planet that could read about a professional athlete delivering on the promise of a home run to the leukemia patient in attendance and be left with anything other than an ear-to-ear grin. Carlos Santana's premature dedication of a dinger that had yet to have been hit remmmminds me of a Westside Story in that it's a tale that has been told before, but still never fails in tugging on the heartstrings. Simply put, those chills were warranted, as I'm pretty sure I felt them through my computer screen as I read about the most uplifting of script coming to life.
That being said, scripts belong in movies, sports movies are typically insanely unrealistic, and sequels tend to massively underwhelm, so let's just be glad that all the counted chickens came to hatch and stop promising sick children things that are only mildly within our control. Anthony Garcia is probably old enough to know that a multitude of circumstances prevented his favorite player from fully guaranteeing a home run. However, as a general rule of thumb, I think it's best that we only make commitments to our suffering youth in which the math at least slightly favors our ability to uphold it. Maybe I'm just old fashioned in that way.
I couldn't be happier that it worked out to absolute, heart-warming perfection this time around, but all it takes is a rudimentary understanding of statistics to come to the conclusion that next time around that "feeling" is even more likely to belong to someone who ultimately ends up wishing they just offered an autograph, a photo-op, and a clubhouse visit. Even if they too are playing the lowly Marlins.
Astros' George Springer Did Shirtless Jumping Jacks In His Manager's Office To Prove His Shoulder Was Healthy Enough For Him To Play
I'd say there's definitely a "actions speak louder than words" aspect to this, as almost every professional athlete is overly prideful enough to say they are good to go, but a much smaller percentage are willing to do what it takes to prove it. In this case, the actions were basically that of Richard Simmons, but they still hinted at George Springer's shoulder being healthy enough to patrol the outfield more strongly than his mouth could have.
That being said, I can't help but think the timing of this "meeting" also helped the case of the person who chose to make it with his tits out. Much in the same way you would have said anything to get your mother or father out of the room when they'd stop at nothing to wake you up for school, I have to imagine that A.J. Hitch was unusually agreeable with the answer that would have cleared out his office the quickest.
Maybe I'm wrong, by the moments following a 3-4 hour game in which any one of dozens of difficult decisions could haven proven costly seem as though they'd be the managing equivalent of the type of me-time that usually includes the kicking off of one's shoes and the unbuckling of one's belt. Catch someone during that vulnerable period in which their peace and quiet is at a premium and they are almost guaranteed to tell you what's going to make you either sit down, shut up, or - apparently - put a shirt on, even if they don't mean it. But you don't have to take my word for it, because George Springer didn't play the day after greeting his coach with topless calisthenics. Not sayin', but just sayin'.
Adam Jones Strongly Defended His Right To Nix The Trade That The Orioles Had In Place To Send Him To The Phillies At The Deadline
I'm not going to lie, it seems like Adam Jones came on a little strong there. I don't know how ugly his mentions could have possibly gotten, considering he made a choice that's as rare as it is endearing in sticking by his team and going down with the ship. However, his response to them reads like someone who is following in the footsteps of the Civil Rights Movement, as opposed to referring to some collective bargained clause in his contract that allows him to ride out the remainder of a wasted season in the city he's called home for the last 11 years. I definitely appreciate the passion, but it does seem a bit disproportional to what I would imagine was a limited amount of skeptics.
The truth is, had he just come forward and said "moving sucks and I only want to do it at my own goddamn convenience" then I think we'd be looking at a unanimous showing of support for a player who, at the very least, loves the city of Baltimore more than enough to not want to go through the hassle of abruptly leaving it. Of course, continuing to ingratiate himself to all Orioles' fans wouldn't have afforded him the opportunity to tell a few of the more hypocritical variety to either pay his bills or shut the hell up, but it sure would have made his decision to actively avoid being part of a playoff run a whole lot less questionable. After all, there might have only been a couple dozen fans who would have tossed in their actual heart and soul if the return was as much as a mid-tier prospect, but there's even less people that can't relate to how excruciating an endeavor it is to pack up a bunch of your crap and find somewhere else to live at the drop of a hat.