Overall Billy Ripken was enjoyable during Saturday night Fox telecast, which Blog watched this morning after exiting no information zone.
[If you aren't familiar with "no information zone," it's zone out of town fans of Team must enter when Internet gets blacked out. In cases where Fox gets involved, it's even worse because you can't even go to bar and watch. Game was completely blacked out and could not be watched (legally) in New York for any reason or any sum. Incidentally no information zone also has its value - such as when you aren't able to watch game in real-time and don't want outcome to be ruined but that's another topic.]
Anyway Billy’s got a husky broadcast voice and something of a baseball man’s respect for game. He doesn’t like to talk about his successes, such as they were, and he doesn’t like to jinx no-hitters. He’s got some jokes and a decent eye for little stuff that takes place between lines.
But Blog doesn’t fully understand Billy’s concerns about interleague play and designated hitter. Here’s some what Billy had to say during last night’s telecast as Jason Hammel laid down a second, gorgeous sacrifice bunt in 7th inning:
“This is where the AL clubs are at a bit of a disadvantage,” Billy said. “[AL pitchers] just don’t [hit] enough to sit here and do it under these rules.”
With Hammel working a no-hit game at time, Ripken said Buck just wanted Jason to “get back in the dugout” as soon as possible and get rested for eighth inning. So, Billy reasoned, Hammel just wanted to lay down a bunt right away. Lay it down he did. His second sac bunt of game.
Broadcasters had no comment after Brian Robert’s subsequent single scored two runners Hammel had moved up. Couldn’t they have credited Hammel with job well done?
Along with booth-mate Kenny Albert, Ripken also expressed concern about next year’s expanded interleague schedule saying:
“The DH is not going away. [...] I just don’t understand how this thing, moving forward, is going to work very smoothly.”
Here’s Blog’s reply: What’s to understand? What’s to not go smoothly? What, exactly, is problem? It’s an interesting wrinkle in sport. AL Teams must adjust and so must NL teams. In parlance of Internet: PITCHERS NEEDS PRACTICE BUNTS. And, without naming names, pitchers needs avoid bloody noses in process.
Anyway. Hammel’s fantastic outing was fantastic. Jason looked just as strong in ninth as he did in first.
Hammel gets game ball from Mark Reynolds
after final out of one-hitter, image via
Rupert Murdoch’s rotten media empire
It’s still very early in Orioles-Hammel era but already this trade is such a massive fleece and that doesn’t even include Matt Lindstrom. Last Blog heard Jeremy Guthrie was up to his old tricks in NL, giving up bucketloads of home runs. Good guy though.
Friday night, meanwhile, Braves’ home-team Peachtree TV announcers — Chip Caray and Joe Simpson – were living in an alternate reality that became more and more divorced from actual reality as game went on.
They slapped fives, figuratively speaking, after Braves came up with a couple very lucky outcomes as Team was smashing hard-hit balls to no avail early on. Then they spent four straight innings whining about balls and strikes.
“You can’t hang it all on Derryl Cousins,” the announcers said after Tommy Hanson walked six and got pulled in fifth inning after a night where he was lucky not to give up eight runs instead of two.
Yeah no, really you can’t hang it all on umpire.
Anyway Friday night’s loss was unlucky.
In first and sixth innings Talkers of Chop also went on tangents about Team’s gear; at first critiquing color of Brian Roberts’ shoes (they’re orange, go figure) and then, later Team’s cartoony bird hats. Obviously it’s difficult to get worked up about this stuff — it even was pretty entertaining and funny after fashion — but it also was just a tad common.
Blog can see why Mets fans can’t stand that ballclub or that place.