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Snake Bytes: 05/31 - Veni Vidi Vici

Ketel Marte came, saw and conquered with a bat and a Peacock and silenced the House of Cards.

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MLB: St. Louis Cardinals at Arizona Diamondbacks Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports

Diamondbacks News

[Arizona Sports] Offensive explosion, strong pitching snaps Diamondbacks’ losing skid
[AZ Central] Ketel Marte ignites Diamondbacks’ offense, beat Cardinals to break 13-game losing streak
[] Bats break out as D-backs snap losing streak

Boom! Suddenly it all clicked. Peacock kept the Cards to just two runs and Riley Smith didn’t give up any at all (what?!). Every batter reached base at least once yesterday, with Ketel Marte having the best night of all with 3 RBIs and 2 runs on 2 hits. Enjoy! You never know how long it will take to see another victory (within two weeks would be cool though).

[AZ Central] Diamondbacks lefty Caleb Smith getting second crack at starting gig

Why not. At this point anyone who is able to give up less than 4 runs in 5 innings is a potential ace of the Diamondbacks’ rotation.

[CBS Sports] How the Orioles and Diamondbacks are establishing MLB’s race to the bottom with lengthy losing streaks

CBS Sports copied Jim’s questions of the round table and answered them themselves.

Around The MLB

[CBS Sports] Fernando Tatis Jr. hit a clutch homer vs. Astros; how he avoided being hit by a pitch was even more amazing

Everything Tatis does is amazing. Flip a burger, clean the house, mow the lawn or yawn: Tatis is better at it than you.

[USA Today] Theo Epstein wants baseball ‘back in the players’ hands’

Theo Epstein wants to change baseball in the coming years and takes his role as consultant to MLB pretty serious. Beginning in 2022, teams will have a maximum of 13 pitchers on their roster, writes Bob Nightengale. But Epstein has more ideas and Nightengale wrote an interesting piece on it: definitely worth a read.

[WBSC] Olympic Qualifiers to start on Monday

This Monday the long awaited (by me) American Olympic Qualifiers will start. The tournament will be live in 70 countries and in the US you can watch it all on ESPN+. The USA will start against Nicaragua. If there is anything worth mentioning, you will read it here first, but otherwise my next week’s Snake Bytes (if my colleagues don’t beat me to it) will tell you who advances to the Olympics and who gets another shot, because next Saturday this qualifier will wrap up.

The only current Diamondback in the tournament is Juniel Querecuto, playing for the Reno Aces. He might very well have a starting job at SS for Venezuela, one of the tournament favourites, led by Anibal Sanchez, Robert Chirinos and Hernan Perez.

Tough competition can be expected as well from the Dominican Republic with Melky Cabrera, Jose Bautista and Julio Rodriguez, who ranks #5 on MLB Pipeline’s Top 100. Jeter Downs, who takes spot 36 on the MLB Pipeline Top 100, is playing for outsider Colombia. Nevertheless, with 4 MLB Pipeline Top 100 prospects and veterans that were on MLB rosters just a few weeks ago, the USA surely is the team to beat.

[Miami Herald] Cuban baseball player defects after arriving in Florida

22 year old pitcher César Prieto took advantage and disappeared just a few hours after landing in Miami, “contrary to the commitment made to the people and the team”.

Across The Pacific

[Japan] On baseball and how to behave in Japan

Jim Allen has a blog on Japanese baseball and shares an interesting thought on Japanese baseball and Japanese culture while commenting on a player’s post-game comment after having hit a homerun, where the player, more or less, said that “hitting homeruns is not the way to win”. As the blogger mentions: “it’s OK to act contrary to orthodox behavior, as long as you publicly defend the orthodoxy at the same time”.

[Korea] KBO to make college sophomores eligible for annual draft

At the moment only youngsters in the final year of their education, being that university, high school or college, are draft eligible. From 2022 players in their second year of college or university will become draft eligible as well after much pressure from the universities themselves: right now most prospects prefer to opt for the draft straight out of high school so they do not have to wait four more years before becoming draft eligible again if they choose to go to the university, leaving the universities with a less talented pool of baseball players.

[Laos] Laos has 3 teams and became a member of WBSC in 2019

If you don’t mind living in Asia for a while (ask Jack for some advice), try your chances in Laos to play some international baseball.

Across The Wall

[Mexico] Final Olympics qualifier to be held in Mexico

The runner up and third placed team of the Olympics Qualifier that is held this week in Florida, will get another chance at a final tournament for the final spot. That tournament was just recently moved from Taiwan to Mexico, due to the restrictions the Taiwanese government imposed after a spike in COVID-cases. Taiwan’s participation in this final competition is in serious doubt, which would leave The Netherlands and Australia with even less rivals after China already pulled out, as we mentioned in our Bytes a week ago.

[Mexico] Mexican league has started

Biggest line of last week’s opening weekend was, without a doubt, the win 48-year old Bartolo Colón achieved in his Mexican debut for the Monclova Acereros.