Monday, April 10, 2017

Cleaning out the inbox-Baseball Version

On a beautiful day for baseball (and the Giants home opener),it's time for an all baseball cleaning out the inbox!

ESPN discusses an opinion that Buster Posey is now the best defensive catcher in the game.
For years,the Cardinal backstop Yadier Molina had gotten that nod,but with the advent of the numbers crowd and their interest in catchers pitch framing abilities,I can see where Posey has risen to the top of the heap.
Between his offensive numbers and defensive capabilities,Posey is the best catcher in the game.

Two articles from the SABR Baseball Card Blog grabbed some attention.
The first dealt with former Pirate fireballing southpaw Bob Veale.
Veale was one of more overlooked pitchers of the 1960's with the Reds Jim Maloney and was one that few wanted to face due to his power arm and sometimes less than accurate control.
Veale also wore glasses and the article shows his various Topps cards and the different looks in the them....

The other article deals with the 1968 Topps baseball game insert set.
The game was built with Topps packs as one card was found in each 1968 pack.
I never played it as a game,but I did always like the cards and tried to collect them as much as I could.
In this years Topps Heritage set,there is a similar set available as short print inserts with the current players.
It's a nice touch and I'm going to try to get that set sometime...

The baseball hall of fame brings a pair of links to the party with one writing about well-traveled outfielder and designated hitter Rico Carty.
Carty had two interesting facts in 1970 as he won the batting title hitting .366 as an Atlanta Brave and as the first player to be voted as an All-Star game starter as a write-in candidate and only one of two ever (Steve Garvey 1974 was the other).
Carty was also a DH for the Indians and put together three strong years in Cleveland.
Carty's knees was the main reason that he became a DH and that wasn't uncommon for the first era of the hitting specialist that saw so many aging stars that could still hit,but not field or run keep a place in the game.

The second was really interesting as it took an in-depth look at the move that Bud Selig managed to buy the Seattle Pilots after just one season (1969) in Seattle and move the team to Milwaukee.
It discusses the Pilots problems,how Milwaukee filled their interim time after the loss of the Braves and all the maneuvering that landed the Pilots in Wisconsin.
One thought to ponder when you play the what if game is what would have happened had Selig never brought baseball back to Milwaukee.
How many of all of these changes to the game would have been different with someone other than Bud Selig as the commissioner?

Hardball Times writes about the career of the recently deceased Bill Hands and does so through his baseball cards.
Hands was an excellent number two starter for the Leo Durocher led Cubs of the late 60's and early 70's and it shows one of those awful Topps airbrushing jobs with Hands shown in a painted over Twins uniform,yet clearly pitching at Wrigley Field long before interleague play was in place.
Hands passed at the age of 76.

We wrap up with the Petaluma Press Democrat writing about their hometown resident and San Francisco Giant home game host Amy Gutierrez.
Gutierrez enters her tenth year doing Giants games and even though I'm not always a fan of sideline reporters,Gutierrez rarely enters the field during the game,stays on the outside for the most part for her new segments and then does the postgame interview.
She does an excellent game of blending into the AT&T Park experience and meshes well with Mike Krukow and Duane Kuiper as part of the best local broadcast crew in the game.
Gutierrez talked about her time with the Giants,her children's book series and the issues that come with the job with raising two children.

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