All posts by TheNaturalMevs

And Dee Gordon definitely made me cry, again

This is another reason why baseball is the greatest sport on earth. It really makes you feel. Was this the biggest moment of the season? Emotionally, it had to be.

Consider it was Dee Gordon who hit his first home run of the season in the Marlins’ emotional win tonight. Gordon said it best after the game.

The unprecedented loss of Jose Fernandez is never going to go away, and the Marlins probably never recover as an organization. But this was clearly their night for their fallen teammate. And damn if I wasn’t happy for them inside.

You can watch the end of the toughest night in Marlins franchise history here. It’s an amazing tribute to their friend.

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Marlins Retire Jose Fernandez’s No. 16

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In a move that we love, the Miami Marlins will retire Jose Fernandez’s number 16 after tonight’s game – a game in which all the Marlins players wore the Fernandez jersey.

I’m excited for two other things aside from this: I want to see baseball name an award after Jose Fernandez, and I hope that the Marlins build a statue outside their park of the Hall of Fame talent who wore only their uniform.

I am confident that both of these things will happen in the short future.

Vin Scully’s send off at Dodger stadium was magical

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I am so numb right now.

It’s been a tough day. Between the death of Jose Fernandez (and Arnold Palmer also passed), and the goodbye to Vin Scully; I am just emotionally spent.

The Dodgers had an incredible walk-off win today for Vin Scully’s final game at Chavez. Dodgers trailing 3-2 in the ninth, and there’s two down. But Corey Seager was at the plate, and of all the greats that Scully has seen play, you better believe it’s special that Seager did this to tie the game and “pull the sun back up in the sky” just a few more moments with Scully in the booth:

Charlie Culberson would of course homer in extras to give the Dodgers the 4-3 win. But there were no fireworks.

For the first time that I can ever remember, I sat and had a good cry over something to do with sports. And the reason I cried is because Vin Scully addressed the crowd one final time, and then sang “Wind Beneath My Wings” to them.

And my wife saw it all. For all in this world that is ugly, and patronizing, and backwards; and it’s everywhere right now…. there’s a prince like Vin Scully. Something that is the real article. That’s what I said to my wife. And then I told her that I hope they win it all as I might have wiped a tear out of my eye. And I do.

I have been listening to this guy for as long as I can remember. The truth is, I wasn’t ready for this. I would have never been ready for this.

Jose Fernandez (1992-2016)

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This is unbelievable news to wake up to – that Jose Fernandez has died at age 24 – in a boating accident.

There just aren’t many pitchers I really enjoy anymore. There aren’t that many I would consider good. I knew the first time Fernandez pitched that we had a bad ass on the mound and one that was going to be good for a very long time.

Things like this should never happen, but they do. When they do there just really aren’t words. This is so incredibly saddening.

I had a horrible dream back in Spring Training that a player had died, and I won’t name the player. I’m not sure why I had the dream. It was horrifying enough I woke myself up in a panic. This is like living that nightmare. Again, I can count on two hands the pitchers I really enjoy in baseball. Fernandez was on that short list.

His final start five days ago was a work of art. A 1-0 victory in which he had 12 strikeouts and no walks.

Thoughts and prayers are with everyone affected by the horrible loss of this young man and immense talent.

Your Saturday Baseball Post

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It’s the second to last Saturday in the regular season. It’s a sad time. It still feels like July outside here. The baseball games don’t really start until after the primetime slot. If you’re in the mix for a fantasy baseball title or two, you’ve got just over a week to hang on. No slip up’s.

If you read this blog, or stumble across it; you’re presumably a pretty big baseball fan. It’s almost your duty to tune in to a couple innings of Vin Scully tonight to pay tribute. And College football did everyone a favor by not scheduling any great games.

As always, the oldies song of the week that should be played on a ballpark loudspeaker near you:

Enjoy your Saturday, everyone. Thank you for your continued support of Diamond Hoggers!

Throwing it Around

Two more days of Vin Scully at Dodger Stadium after tonight. It’s heartbreaking. This might as well be “Vin Scully Weekend” here on the blog, because we’re going to pay homage to him in as many ways as we can.

-A Statistical trip through Vin Scully’s career. [Baseball-Reference]
-Helluva tribute at Dodger Stadium tonight for the man. [SB Nation]
-Vin Scully wrote a heartfelt letter to Dodger Fans. [MLB.com]
-The Cubbies have homefield through the NLCS thanks to a dominating performance this afternoon by Jake Arrieta. [Baseball Musings]
-It’s OK to feel this way, Steve Clevenger. You just can’t tweet that you feel this way. [Hardball Talk]
-How to judge the Atlanta Braves’ rebuild. [Fangraphs]
-The case for Corey Seager to win NL MVP. [Fangraphs, again]
-More Scully retirement ceremony. [Deadspin]

In-Depth on Corey Seager’s Record Season

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After Tuesday’s game, Seager is now hitting .316 with 185 hits, 25 home runs and 40 doubles. The only rookies in Major League history, according to Baseball Reference, to hit at least .300 with 25 homers, 40 doubles and 185 hits as a rookie are: Albert Pujols (2001), Nomar Garciaparra (1997), Tony Oliva (1964), Ted Williams (1939), Joe DiMaggio (1936), Hal Trosky (1934) and Dale Alexander (1929).

He is on track to having the greatest OPS+ by a rookie shortstop all time. Chicago Cub Charlie Hollocher (1918) is the current record holder at 134. [Dodgers Insider]

Yasiel Puig, Madison Bumgarner, and Vin Scully describing the Scene

Just when you thought you had seen the last of Yasiel Puig, Dodgers outfielder. The Bums win another wild one last night, 2-1 at Chavez.

This was too good not to get on the site, somewhere. Seriously though: eff Madison Bumgarner. Guy is an asshole.

h/t: Deadspin for the video.

Carlos Correa’s 20th Home Run of 2016

Everyone was watching football today when just past the 4:00 hour on the east coast, Carlos Correa hit his 20th home run of the season at Safeco Field, a moonshot to dead center in the Astros loss.

The Astros’ season is probably over, barring a two-week miracle. You step back and look at Correa’s season: 20 home runs, 92 RBI, 13 steals, 70+ runs, .270ish; and he’s really done fine. Huge things coming for both him, and the loaded Astros in 2017. I can’t wait already. They simply ran out of pitching in 2016. They’ve been throwing Larry, Curly, and Moe for the last three weeks.

It’s been plenty of fun watching this team, and more specifically this player develop this season. Two more weeks and it’s winter for most.

Leicester City’s secret weapon in the last season

Over the years, athletes and sports teams have always been searching for new methods to improve their performance. In dire situations they would risk their careers or reputation and turned to the help of doping not knowing there are other perfectly legitimate aids that can significantly enhance training result.  Nowadays top sports teams across the world are deploying smart devices strapped inside their jerseys, which collect data on their every move.

Leicester City is a part of this movement. They won English Premier League title despite being a write-off team – making a “fairy-tale” that shocked football pundit and betting house alike. They had the fewest injuries out of any team this season, used the fewest players and scored the most counter-attacking goals.

The Foxes’ secret weapon is a smart device named OptimEye S5. It was engineered by Catapult sports from Australia. If you think your FitBits counting steps and sweat is advanced technology, then meet the S5. Its precise GPS technology tracks a player’s movement in real time. Dozens of sensors are also on board – accelerometers, gyroscopes, magnetometers, heart rate monitors – which, combined, output more than 900 data points per second.

The data from the devices is then processed and analysed in a proprietary software package, called Openfield, a combination of Google and Salesforce and Bloomberg, for elite sport. It monitors players’ physical load to determine probability of injury. The technology helps greatly with betting and other similar entertainment product, according to ty le bong da.

Coaches can use the information to tailor training programs for each player, enable them to push for the best of their ability without running into risk of injury. Then during play, real-time data from software allows them to make strategic decisions on player rotation. In this fashion, players always stay fresh and up for challenge, giving them huge advantage over opponents. This is how big data can empower sports team and it is happening now.

Your Saturday Baseball Post

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There are just two more Saturdays after this one in the MLB 2016 regular season. That’s extremely sad.

But we won’t lie, we’re worn out. We’re ready for the home stretch, and the postseason. Set your fantasy lineups, grind this out, and enjoy the last two weeks of all teams in play. I can’t believe another season is almost in the books.

Your Saturday Baseball Post

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Welcome to Saturday, the best day of the week for a baseball fan; and for guys in general.

There’s college football on sure, but week two in that game always sucks. No one really wants to see Clemson play Troy do they? The Damn Yankees are just one game out of the American League Wildcard. We’re at that point in the season where some major drama is going to start happening on a nightly basis. It will be bedlam. It will be lunacy. It will be insanity. The week before the postseason starts is arguably as good as the postseason. And everyday starting right about now, another domino falls for someone.

Today’s song of the week that should be played on a ballpark loudspeaker near you is a Monster Ballad.

So enjoy your Saturday. Continue to set your fantasy lineups. Grill out and put on a few innings. Thank you for your continued support of Diamond Hoggers.