Posted on: October 21, 2011 7:30 pm
ARLINGTON, Tex. -- The World Series changes venues, and you know what that means: As the only sport that changes rules in its championship event, Game 3 here brings with it the designated hitter Saturday.
For the Cardinals, it's a chance to get Allen Craig into the lineup following his two RBI pinch-hits against Alexi Ogando in Games 1 and 2. Cardinals manager Tony La Russa said he will play Craig in right field and move veteran Lance Berkman to designated hitter.
"It really comes down to just respecting Lance," La Russa said. "He's a pivot on that, and talking to him, I think we'll play Allen in right field and Lance will DH and we'll go day-to-day with it."
Rangers manager Ron Washington did not publicly reveal his plans because, as he said, "we just arrived at the ballpark and I haven't had a chance to tell my guys yet."
But later in the day, he told the writers who cover the Rangers that Michael Young will be his DH, Mike Napoli will play first base and Yorvit Torrealba will catch.
Posted on: June 2, 2010 7:09 pm
The first-place San Diego Padres, who have been playing this week without one of their catchers, expect Yorvit Torrealba to rejoin them in Philadelphia in time for the beginning of Friday's series, manager Bud Black said Wednesday.
Torrealba was placed on the restricted list earlier this week to enable him to travel to his native Venezuela to testify -- or give a deposition -- against men who kidnapped his son last summer, sources close to the club confirmed. The news was first reported this week by Dan Hayes of the North County (Calif.) Times.
The Padres have not said why Torrealba left, calling it a personal matter. But this spring, he said two of his son's five kidnappers had been arrested.
Eduardo, his then-11-year-old son, was kidnapped by five men in Venezuela last summer and held for a $500,000 ransom over a 48-hour period. Torrealba, who took leave of the Colorado Rockies for roughly a month during the crisis, since has moved his family to Miami.
In Torrealba's absence, Nick Hundley, the other half of the Padres' regular catching tandem, has played every day and, entering Wednesday's series finale against the Mets, was hitting .750 (9 for 12) with one double, one triple, one home run, seven RBI and four runs scored over his past four games.
Torrealba, in his first season with the Padres, has been instrumental in San Diego's rousing start. He's hitting .287 with 14 RBI in 27 games and winning raves for his work behind the plate.
Posted on: April 19, 2008 12:00 am
Lots of baseball people have long stories.
Few can tell the tales of a 22-inning marathon such as the one Colorado and San Diego played Thursday night/Friday morning in Petco Park.
Then the Rockies flew to Houston for this weekend's series, landed a little after 8 a.m. ... and promptly got stuck in rush hour traffic on the way to check into their hotel.
Funny. Because as word boomeranged throughout baseball of the riveting/ridiculous/incredible goings-on in San Diego, the Seattle Mariners were spending some time in traffic, too.
"We were on the bus (Thursday night) leaving Oakland when we saw the score," Mariners manager John McLaren said, referring to the aftermath of his club's 8-1 victory at Whatever They're Calling the Oakland Coliseum Now. "We picked it back up when we landed here (in Southern California).
"I think it was in the 14th when we left Oakland and in the 20th when we landed."
Fortunately, Colorado manager Clint Hurdle and San Diego skipper Bud Black each were able to avoid being charged with inflicting cruel and unusual punishment Friday when they gave the men who caught the marathon game a night off.
Colorado's Yorvit Torrealba and San Diego's Josh Bard each caught the entire 22-inning affair, something Los Angeles Angels manager Mike Scioscia didn't even have to do back when he was playing in 1989 in either of the Dodgers' 22-inning games.
Yep, the Padres and Rockies think they had it rough? How about the Dodgers in '89? They lost in Houston 5-4 in a 22-inning game on June 3, '89 ... then beat Montreal 1-0 in 22 innings on Aug. 23, '89.
"We couldn't score," Scioscia said Friday, cringing at the memory. "We could pitch, we just couldn't score."
Rick Dempsey started behind the plate for the Dodgers in the June 3 game, and Scioscia entered in a sixth-inning double-switch. He played the rest of the way, going 0-for-5 with two walks.
And wanna know something funny? That was on Saturday night. The next day, the Dodgers and Astros played 13 innings -- Scioscia started as the Dodgers catcher, hit a grand slam in the first and played nearly the entire game before being removed in the bottom of the 13th.
In the Aug. 23 game, Scoscia started but left in the eighth inning when Billy Bean pinch-ran for him.
His memories are vague -- he thought the Montreal game went 16 or 17 innings, not 22 -- but Scioscia distinctly remembers that after one of those games, several players remained at the stadium and slept in the clubhouse because they had a day game the next day and had to be back in the park in six or seven hours.
"A game that long, some guys start with sore hamstrings and end up healthy," Scioscia cracked.
Nevertheless, just in case, Torrealba wasn't the only Colorado player who was given the night off in Houston on Friday. First baseman Todd Helton, second baseman Jayson Nix and outfielders Matt Holliday and Brad Hawpe also were awarded a night of rest. In Arizona, the Padres gave second baseman Tadahito Iguchi the night off.
Hurdle, who used eight pitchers -- Kip Wells got the win -- said he was close to using infielder Clint Barmes as his emergency pitcher. Padres manager Bud Black rode Bard behind the plate partly because his other catcher, Colt Morton, had pinch-hit in the 14th. Outfielder Paul McAnulty was Black's emergency catcher -- though the Padres skipper admitted Friday that McAnulty was blissfully unaware of that during Thursday's proceedings.
They staged a seventh-inning stretch at Petco Park in the seventh, 14th and 21st innings. And though they stopped selling beer in the seventh -- as is usually the case -- coffee and ice cream were big sellers late, Padres vice-president Richard Anderson said.
"I think that's the beauty of this game, it's unpredictability," McLaren, the Seattle skipper, said.
While talking about the Padres-Rockies game, McLaren, who grew up near Houston, recalled attending the Astros-New York Mets' 24-inning game on Monday night, April 15, 1968. He was in high school at the time, and you bet he stayed until the bitter end.
"My mom was waiting up for me, and when I got home she said, 'Don't think you're staying home -- you're going to school tomorrow,'" McLaren recalled, chuckling. "She thought we had gone someplace else after the game.
"When I got home from school the next day, she said, 'I should have known you'd stay until the final out.'"
Thursday's game was a record-setter for length, by innings, for both the Colorado and San Diego franchises. Black called it "incredible", adding that "everybody who was here will never forget it."
You would think that would be true.
Yet, Scioscia's memory on those two 22-inning games in 1989 is awfully fuzzy.
And, perhaps, there are those who were so exhausted they might even try to forget it. Detroit shortstop Edgar Renteria played in baseball's last 20-inning game, five years ago, and he even scored the winning run for St. Louis.
Yet, on Friday, as Detroit Tigers beat man Danny Knobler of the Booth (Mich.) Newspaper Group was putting together a note in the aftermath of the Padres-Rockies marathon, Renteria couldn't even recall it.
"I don't remember," Renteria said. "Not at all."
Thirty minutes later, Renteria still couldn't remember it.
"I'm serious, man," he told Knobler apologetically. "I don't remember."
Likes: Late-night baseball. I listened to the Padres' radio broadcast Thursday night, picking it up in about the 11th or 12th inning in my car when the Angels-Royals finished. Listened on radio until about the 15th inning, when I reached my house. Then I watched until the 20th inning on my family room television. Then I took the dog out for a quick walk between innings and caught the final two innings on my bedroom television. Padres broadcasters Ted Leitner and Andy Masur were very entertaining on the car radio and Matt Vasgersian -- one of the game's most underrated television play-by-play men -- and former pitcher Mark Grant were enjoyable as always on the tube. ... Springsteen's Hungry Heart, Fourth of July, Asbury Park (Sandy), Kitty's Back and You're Missing. Specifically, the organ parts.
Dislikes: Sad, sad day. Danny Federici, the E St. Band organist, passed away Thursday after battling melanoma for three years. Here's how you can help the cause, if you wish.
Rock 'N' Roll Lyric of the Day:
"Now the hardness of this world
-- Bruce Springsteen, Blood Brothers