Author Topic: Baseball ‘20 vs COVID-19  (Read 942 times)

FerriswheelBueller

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Baseball ‘20 vs COVID-19
« on: May 02, 2020, 09:34:27 PM »
I’m fucking jonesing for baseball. This thread will be my virtual outlet, because god knows the people in my apartment are sick of me talking about it.

Like all major sports, MLB has taken a holiday thanks to coronovirus. I am so privileged that this is unironically the biggest negative impact the pandemic has had on my life. I’m not complaining about that at all (I’m very lucky), but fuck I want to watch baseball again.

I started watching a game a day from the 2015 season, but the Jays’ ultimate failure to beat a pretty lacklustre Kansas City team in the ALCS was too much. Couldn’t hack the disappointment again. I still see that unusually bearded midwestern child cheating a game 5 dinger in my nightmares.

From now on, I’m going to post something baseball-related in here semi-regularly and you are welcome to follow along (even if only to point and laugh at an obsessive who has had their obsession taken away).

First up - here’s journeyman utility INF Andrew Romine playing all 9 positions in one game. Accommodated by the retiring Tigers manager (forget name...), this is only the 5th time in MLB history a player has achieved it. He technically has a perfect 0.00 ERA and recorded an out from 4 different positions which is an amazing achievement.

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=vpsrmKw1L2s

Re: Baseball ‘20 vs COVID-19
« Reply #1 on: May 02, 2020, 10:46:31 PM »
Is there a YouTube channel that has full MLB games from past years?
I'm thinking of getting stuck into a season from before I started watching, so any pre-2012 really.

Just done a similar thing with the USFL and it definitely helps satisfy the sport cravings.

Ted-Maul

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Re: Baseball ‘20 vs COVID-19
« Reply #2 on: May 03, 2020, 12:31:47 AM »
I love baseball but doesn't this Andrew Romine playing all 9 positions in one game prove that the sport is pointless and that even I could play an inning in LF?

And also
this is only the 5th time in MLB history a player has achieved it.

suggests that such a stupid thing had been done multiple times before simply because the coach and players are bored shitless and it usually doesnt matter if you win or lose a game. Imagine Nasser Hussein being England wicket keeper for a few balls or Villa putting Gabby Agbonlahor in goal for a bit just because.

That said, i look forward to the next vid. I assume they will just restart the season as surely seasonal weather doesnt really effect games?

FerriswheelBueller

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Re: Baseball ‘20 vs COVID-19
« Reply #3 on: May 03, 2020, 01:36:12 AM »
Is there a YouTube channel that has full MLB games from past years?
I'm thinking of getting stuck into a season from before I started watching, so any pre-2012 really.

Just done a similar thing with the USFL and it definitely helps satisfy the sport cravings.

Yessir! There’s a whole thing of how you do it, hang on.

https://www.reddit.com/r/baseball/comments/51ghh1/psa_how_to_watch_any_mlb_game_since_2009_for_free/

There you go. I’ll post a few games in here as I watch them (again, I’m an obsessive robbed of his obsession) but to be honest they will mainly be Blue Jays focussed and the Jays will probably win. I think 2009 is a good season, Doc Halliday is still pitching for the Jays (and what an absolute masterclass that is) and a skinny young outfielder named Jose Bautista (picked up from the pirates for a sack of baseballs) has set up in right field and is working out his swing...

FerriswheelBueller

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Re: Baseball ‘20 vs COVID-19
« Reply #4 on: May 03, 2020, 01:40:57 AM »
I love baseball but doesn't this Andrew Romine playing all 9 positions in one game prove that the sport is pointless and that even I could play an inning in LF?

And also
suggests that such a stupid thing had been done multiple times before simply because the coach and players are bored shitless and it usually doesnt matter if you win or lose a game. Imagine Nasser Hussein being England wicket keeper for a few balls or Villa putting Gabby Agbonlahor in goal for a bit just because.

That said, i look forward to the next vid. I assume they will just restart the season as surely seasonal weather doesnt really effect games?

I mean... potentially? But each position requires a lot of different skills so yeah you could stick anyone out there and hope for the best, but he had a decent fastball and recorded put outs from 4 different positions so he was hardly phoning it in.

Re: Baseball ‘20 vs COVID-19
« Reply #5 on: May 03, 2020, 06:27:53 AM »
I love baseball but doesn't this Andrew Romine playing all 9 positions in one game prove that the sport is pointless and that even I could play an inning in LF?

And also
suggests that such a stupid thing had been done multiple times before simply because the coach and players are bored shitless and it usually doesnt matter if you win or lose a game. Imagine Nasser Hussein being England wicket keeper for a few balls or Villa putting Gabby Agbonlahor in goal for a bit just because.

That said, i look forward to the next vid. I assume they will just restart the season as surely seasonal weather doesnt really effect games?

Valid point that putting players at other positions for a bit in meaningless games is pretty easy to do (although the positions in baseball are all very nuanced and different despite looking vaguely similar). But, in baseball terms, something only having been done 5 times before means it is extremely rare, since there are 2430 games per season (not including playoffs) and it's been going for over 150 years. A "perfect game" is considered the pinnacle of rare achievement and it's happened 23 times. But that's nothing in the context of about 220,000 games.

Trivia: the rarest thing to ever happen in baseball was a triple play not involving the batter, has only happened twice, in 1912 and 2018.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IgtTQh4K1FM (you'll just have the imagine the 1912 one)

Yessir! There’s a whole thing of how you do it, hang on.

https://www.reddit.com/r/baseball/comments/51ghh1/psa_how_to_watch_any_mlb_game_since_2009_for_free/



That's pretty fantastic. When I was a kid and it wasn't shown on British TV (aside from one live full game shown on Channel 4 between the Cubs and Expos for some International Arts weekend celebration in 1992), before Sky started broadcasting games and long before Channel 5 started doing it, I had to satisfy my craving by tuning into American Armed Forces Radio to catch live games, and I also would order VHS tapes through Anglo-American Sports for something like a tenner per game. A treasure trove like that would have been incredible.

Anyway, really missing it. Was hoping to go to the US for a couple of months this year and catch some games but guess that will have to wait...

FerriswheelBueller

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Re: Baseball ‘20 vs COVID-19
« Reply #6 on: May 03, 2020, 03:32:41 PM »
Yeah that’s part of the appeal for me - something incredibly unlikely will definitely happen just because of the volume of plays.

Here’s a mad one for you, Unicornio, a rarer occurrence than a no-hitter is an immaculate inning (9 pitches, 9 strikes, 3 strikeouts), rarer still is a 4-strikeout inning (where a batter strikes out and reaches base on catcher error), and rarest of all? A 3 pitch inning (so 3x 1 pitch popouts/groundouts in a row). Only happened something like 12 times in all of MLB history, which is bonkers when you think about it.

A so-so middle reliever (Tepera?) did a 4 K inning in 2017 or 2018, I didn’t even know it was a thing until I saw it happen. Russell Martin made an uncharacteristic error popping the ball into the foul netting if memory serves.

Edit: looked it up, it was Mike Bolsinger in 2017, a month before he got shelled to shit by that cheating Houston side and relegated to the minors which essentially ended his career. So many storylines in that.

Here’s the game I watched last night, just great great stuff. That TOR lineup is a thing of beauty (starting pitching aside...)
https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=0eetoJ9AhN4

My interesting baseball thing for today is the existence of the knuckleball. Pitching is all about generating spin on the ball. Topspin makes the ball “break” downwards (curveball), backspin makes the ball fly straighter. If you get more spin than the next pitcher, your fastballs are straighter (so batters hit under them and pop out or miss), your curves jump down faster, sliders/cutters/changeups move more from side to side etc.

The knuckleball is the exact opposite. If the ball doesn’t spin, the air pressure on the seams of the ball make it “wobble” on its flight path, and incredibly difficult to hit - to get some idea of how difficult that is to achieve, RA Dickey used to throw a ball 60 feet and 6 inches and (on a good day) the ball would turn maybe 1/4 to 1/2 of one revolution. Any more, and the spin would make it would fly straight, and it would be clobbered at the major league level. That’s incredible. He also did it at 86mph, 100 times in a row, every 5 days. It’s this mystical junkball pitch that relies on randomness. Modern pitching sabermetrics just can’t price that, so there are very few knuckleballers in the majors (in fact, I don’t think there are any at the moment). It becomes more effective on humid days and doesn’t work as well at high altitude - that’s fucking voodoo, man. I love it.

Here’s the great RA Dickey talking about it. He had an incredibly mad route to the majors (and a Cy Young!) which is worth reading about. He’s a bit of a hero of mine, used to watch him pitch whenever I could when he was with Toronto. Would love a signed RA Dickey baseball if anyone is reading and wants to get their Christmas shopping in early.
https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=m9_56rOq3kc

Re: Baseball ‘20 vs COVID-19
« Reply #7 on: May 03, 2020, 04:34:10 PM »
Knuckleballs are insane. I just can't fathom how someone can throw a baseball accurately 60 feet with this grip



I remember Tim Wakefield was a master of them, used to drive me crazy trying to hit them when I would play MLB The Show.

Hope you get to see some games soon, FerriswheelBueller! I'm planning a trip to Buffalo to visit friends there when travel is back on the cards and they said they'd take me to Toronto since it's only about 2 hours drive, would like to catch a Blue Jays game if I time it right.

FerriswheelBueller

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Re: Baseball ‘20 vs COVID-19
« Reply #8 on: May 03, 2020, 04:44:33 PM »
Yeah me too! Wakefield used to throw them mid-60s which is bananas at the major league level. I think his fastball topped out at like 72mph lol.

If you make it to Toronto, definitely take in a game on a warm day when the roof is open, section 527, row one. Watch the skyline and the tower light up as evening sets in. There’s nothing like it, it’s legit my happy place.

Dex Sawash

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Re: Baseball ‘20 vs COVID-19
« Reply #9 on: May 03, 2020, 07:45:13 PM »
Is there anything in baseball that has never happened?

(just getting that in before rfv shows up)

Re: Baseball ‘20 vs COVID-19
« Reply #10 on: May 03, 2020, 08:10:51 PM »
Seeing a MLB game is one of those things I'd like to do at some point - I thought I'd have the chance a few years ago when I visited Boston, but the Red Sox were on the road that week. Maybe just as well - it was baking hot and I'd probably have passed out from sunstroke.

My sisters-in-law live just South of LA, so if me and the wife ever get the chance to visit them, hopefully I can bob up to see the Angels or the Dodgers.

FerriswheelBueller

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Re: Baseball ‘20 vs COVID-19
« Reply #11 on: May 03, 2020, 08:16:15 PM »
I’d love to see a game at all 30 major league stadiums, maybe then work down to AAA. Only ever been to the SkyDome sadly :(

Re: Baseball ‘20 vs COVID-19
« Reply #12 on: May 03, 2020, 10:05:26 PM »
Is there anything in baseball that has never happened?

(just getting that in before rfv shows up)

I just get my queries in.

All 9 starting batters getting a home run in a game.
All 9 batters getting a hit in an inning.

FerriswheelBueller

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Re: Baseball ‘20 vs COVID-19
« Reply #13 on: May 03, 2020, 11:47:01 PM »
I reckon all 9 batters getting a bit must have happened. Teams bat around a few times a season, I reckon one of them managed it with hits (rather than walks or recording outs). I seem to remember being at a game where a player recorded the first and last out of an inning (want to say Devon Travis?)

9 home runs probably never been done.

Another one - no one has ever hit for 20 bases in one game.

Re: Baseball ‘20 vs COVID-19
« Reply #14 on: May 04, 2020, 01:08:25 AM »
All 9 starting batters getting a home run in a game.

Hasn't happened. The record for most players with a home run in a single game is 8 by the Cincinnati Reds

https://www.baseball-reference.com/boxes/PHI/PHI199909040.shtml

All 9 batters getting a hit in an inning.

This has probably happened a number of times. Here's the record for most hits in a single inning (including all 9 starters getting a hit):

https://www.baseball-reference.com/boxes/CIN/CIN198908030.shtml

Re: Baseball ‘20 vs COVID-19
« Reply #15 on: May 04, 2020, 11:16:37 AM »
Here's a very rare one: a batter hitting a home run both left handed and right handed in the same inning (for those who aren't familiar, some batters - "switch hitters" - will change from left to right depending on who is pitching). I clearly remember Carlos Baerga doing it in 1993, he was the first. It's been done twice since.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q6M6RnQ6aPk

Mark Belhorn of my team (the Cubs) doing it in 2002

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hb2YJGU9_Fw

Dex Sawash

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Re: Baseball ‘20 vs COVID-19
« Reply #16 on: May 04, 2020, 12:42:14 PM »
I’d love to see a game at all 30 major league stadiums, maybe then work down to AAA. Only ever been to the SkyDome sadly :(

I'll have a pint when you come to Durham but I'm not going to the Bulls game because it is too fucking hot.

Re: Baseball ‘20 vs COVID-19
« Reply #17 on: May 04, 2020, 01:48:26 PM »
I'll have a pint when you come to Durham but I'm not going to the Bulls game because it is too fucking hot.

I lived in Durham NC back in 2009/10, my office building was right next door to the old Bulls stadium. Wished I'd gone to a game at Athletic Park when I had the chance.

I passed through Durham (UK) recently and noticed they have a baseball team. They had one when I was a kid, the Durham Demons, which me and my mate went to train with. We realised after one afternoon with all these 6'3" 200lb American/Canadian ex-pats that we were out of our depth and never went back.


Dex Sawash

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Re: Baseball ‘20 vs COVID-19
« Reply #18 on: May 05, 2020, 01:26:50 AM »
I lived in Durham NC back in 2009/10, my office building was right next door to the old Bulls stadium. Wished I'd gone to a game at Athletic Park when I had the chance.



Did you work at Measurement Inc?

Warehouses all gone now and that whole area around DBAP is vibrant, avoid. Kind of sad it isn't all grim anymore.

Re: Baseball ‘20 vs COVID-19
« Reply #19 on: May 05, 2020, 12:34:15 PM »
Did you work at Measurement Inc?

Warehouses all gone now and that whole area around DBAP is vibrant, avoid. Kind of sad it isn't all grim anymore.

No but directly across the street from there, in this little run of offices. A company called Shoeboxed although they've moved to Duke & Fairfield since. Durham definitely had a rough edge when I was there, at least compared to Chapel Hill/Raleigh, but I remember the warehouse district setting it apart.


FerriswheelBueller

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Re: Baseball ‘20 vs COVID-19
« Reply #20 on: May 09, 2020, 03:38:56 PM »
This highlight video of Oh Jae-Won is doing the rounds in anticipation of the KBO starting soon (?)

https://v.redd.it/pnafrf4c6nx41

Watched it all the way through, then refreshed and watched it again. This is brilliant, and exactly the kind of player I got into the game for - gutsy, smart middle-infielder, creating value with his glove and steals*. I’d never heard of him til today.

The empty glove tricks are a bit mad - they’d never work in MLB, but he creates enough confusion in baserunners to save a lot of runs.

*and one of the reasons I have a real soft spot for second basemen. Never (usually) bat-forward guys, they have to hustle up and show their value by playing smart. Ryan Goins is a good example, always gave 100% for the Jays, great defender up the middle, and his 0.00 ERA for one inning in relief on Canada day are still talked about. Couldn’t hit well, but that wasn’t his thing and he still earned his roster spot

Re: Baseball ‘20 vs COVID-19
« Reply #21 on: May 13, 2020, 02:41:21 PM »
Just a heads up that you can watch all Korean League baseball games live in lovely 1080p HD for free here (proper legit streaming service)

https://tv.naver.com/l/livehome

Due to the time difference they're on from mid morning to early afternoon on weekdays and early morning on weekends

FerriswheelBueller

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Re: Baseball ‘20 vs COVID-19
« Reply #22 on: May 13, 2020, 03:10:51 PM »
Ooh! That’s cool, thank you!

Re: Baseball ‘20 vs COVID-19
« Reply #23 on: May 13, 2020, 03:18:44 PM »
No probs. I guess they'll be more like very early morning weekdays, and 1am to 4am ish weekends Canada time so awkward viewing hours, depending on when you're usually up! Memories of when Japan had those MLB games last season that a lot of North American fans missed due to the time difference...

FerriswheelBueller

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Re: Baseball ‘20 vs COVID-19
« Reply #24 on: May 13, 2020, 04:11:14 PM »
Yeah not ideal!

I’m assuming Cubs/Cards in the UK will be canceled this year which is a shame

Re: Baseball ‘20 vs COVID-19
« Reply #25 on: May 14, 2020, 01:38:32 PM »
Presumably, would have been up for that as well particularly as it's the Cubs.

FerriswheelBueller

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Re: Baseball ‘20 vs COVID-19
« Reply #26 on: May 14, 2020, 01:41:41 PM »
Presumably, would have been up for that as well particularly as it's the Cubs.

Yeah sorry that’s what I meant, then I felt like I was rubbing it in so I cut my post off there.

It seems like there’s a proposal from owners to the players union on playing a shortened season this year. Would really really love for that to happen

Re: Baseball ‘20 vs COVID-19
« Reply #27 on: May 14, 2020, 02:03:56 PM »
Yeah an 82-game season starting July 4th (naturally)

82-game regional schedule and universal DH
30-man active rosters with a 20-player taxi squad
14 teams in the postseason with games played in home cities in October
50/50 revenue split for players and owners

Not a big fan of the DH but I'd take that

FerriswheelBueller

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Re: Baseball ‘20 vs COVID-19
« Reply #28 on: May 14, 2020, 02:23:01 PM »
Manfred is using it to push through stuff he (wrongly) thinks will drive engagement, like NL DHs and pretty much 50% of all teams making it to post-season.

I like the NL/AL having different rules (and secretly prefer the NL ruleset but don’t tell anyone), and having every fucker turn up in post-season just robs it of being special. I’d expect to see some sub .500 teams in post season under this model, and that makes a mockery of the whole thing.

FerriswheelBueller

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Re: Baseball ‘20 vs COVID-19
« Reply #29 on: May 16, 2020, 04:06:06 PM »
Game of the day, the Yankees (*spit*) come to town back in 2009

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=YfTeD5eKiVk

Halladay of course a terrific pitcher, but this was an absolute gem. It’s great to watch a master in their prime go to work, I could watch him pitch all day - nice short windup and that tremendous cutter. A very smart player and courteous professional.

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