[Arizona Sports] Valley sports are a dumpster fire of disappointment - At least the Indians’ and Cubs’ fan bases have hope and the well wishes of an extended family of bandwagon fans. The Valley is suffering in near-silence when it comes to the national narrative. Phoenix-area sports are a dumpster fire of mediocrity, misstated expectations and outright misery, yet we are grieving alone.
[TKB[ D-Backs Short List For 2001 Included Terry Francona Joe Maddon - World Series managers Terry Francona and Joe Maddon have more in common than the reputation as a stinkin’ genius and a résumé to prove it. Each was a top candidate in Arizona when the Diamondbacks were looking for a manager to replace Buck Showalter after the 2000 season. Francona, Maddon, Clint Hurdle and eventual choice Bob Brenly were the four finalists for the Arizona job that winter, and each made a strong impression with the front office during the interview process.
[dbacks.com] Randy Johnson inducted into Arizona Sports HOF - Johnson sought the advice of Hall of Fame pitchers like Nolan Ryan and Warren Spahn. Any little way he could find to get better was something he pursued. Well, almost everything, that is. One thing Johnson didn't do was take a shot of whiskey before a start, like Spahn told him he did if he had a sore arm. "How cool would that have been?" Johnson said drawing laughs from the audience. "A 99-mph fastball and I take a shot of whiskey, and my teammates see that and then go tell the opponents that I took a shot of whiskey before I was warming up."
Prospect season is upon us... Sure Michael will be posting his list in due course, so to tide you until then:
[FanGraphs] Prospect Reports: Arizona Diamondbacks - This system is rather weak despite some depth in the middle infield and a few long-shot catching prospects who have a chance to be quite good if everything comes together. The system has obviously been gutted by the club’s previous leadership and its likely next year’s No. 7 overall pick will become the club’s best prospect as soon as his name is called.
[Inside the 'Zona] 2017 Diamondbacks Top Prospects: #21-31 - While this has been the most challenging crop of D-backs I’ve ever attempted to rank, it’s time to get the ball rolling on those rankings. This is a system that’s down and should rest squarely in the bottom third of baseball. Still, there are some intriguing guys to call out as the future of the franchise will need these players one way or another. And 2017 Diamondbacks Top Prospects: #11-20 - We’ll start seeing more upside in this installment, with a bit more impact potential on the board. But don’t get carried away, there’s still plenty of unknowns with this group.
The World Series returns to Cleveland, where the Indians have two chances to clinch the pennant. Someone has already called the result: [theScore.com] Bauer to Cubs fans: 'Thank me when you lose Game 6' - Bauer lost for the second time in the Series and more than a few Cubs fans weren't about to let him leave town without some postgame taunts. As Bauer stood near the Indians' dugout following the game, one fan waving a ''W'' flag screamed: ''Bauer, can you pitch Game 6? One more time.'' Another fan thanked Bauer for losing. This time, he fired back. ''Be sure to thank me when you lose Game 6,'' he hollered before heading to the Indians' cramped clubhouse.
Random factoids (mostly lifted shamelessly from Reddit!).
- Aroldis Chapman threw more pitches 100 MPH+ in Game 5 than the Twins, Brewers, D-backs, Indians and BlueJays have thrown since 2008 combined
- In World Series history, when a team has a 3-2 Series lead they have a record of 24-37 in Game 6 and a record of 18-19 in Game 7. But that still works out to a 69% likelihood of winning the Series.
- So far this postseason, Bauer has given up 3 homers (in 13 innings). The rest of Cleveland's pitchers combined have allowed 4 in 102 innings.
- The Indians have won the three games where Andrew Miller pitched more than Chapman, and lost both where Chapman pitched more than Miller...
- The last time the Indians won a World Series in Cleveland, Tris Speaker played 3B (1920).