All-Purpose MLB Thread!

Well, it's fitting that this post-season ends on a BS strike call that would have loaded the bases. Add that to the Matt Olson homerun that Reddick robbed in the 4th inning and I'm going to say that the A's offense brought the tie-ing run to the plate in the bottom of the 9th. Yeah it's a bit of a stretch but the hitters did their job in this series. The best bullpen in baseball this season coughed up 17 runs in 4 games and the starters weren't much better so what are you going to do. The Astros don't even deserve to be here so I hope someone else manages to knock them out in embarrassing fashion.
I’m of the mind that this year hardly counts anyway. Was tough to feel confident when during “home” playoff games, I kept feeling the need to scan the dugout making sure Kirk Gibson wasn’t going to hobble out into the batter’s box.
 

Tetsujin

The Game Thread Dude
I’m of the mind that this year hardly counts anyway. Was tough to feel confident when during “home” playoff games, I kept feeling the need to scan the dugout making sure Kirk Gibson wasn’t going to hobble out into the batter’s box.
Especially when the A's pitching staff in particular has been built with the cavernous confines and thick marine layer of the Oakland Coliseum in mind and not the homer happy dimensions and dry SoCal heat of Dodgers Stadium.
 

Tetsujin

The Game Thread Dude
Fairly certain it would end up the lowest rated World Series in history but I'm rooting for an Atlanta-Tampa series.

(Also in true A's fashion, former A's closer and current Dodger Blake Treinen had a truly ghastly appearance that probably torpedoed LA's chances in this series. Once an A, always an A)
 
Can't blame a dude banging on garbage cans in the Astros' dugout this time.
Curveball pitchers always get blasted in the playoffs. If they can't get the strike call on the curveball then it's no longer a put away pitch which makes the hitter's job a whole lot easier -- sit and wait on the fastball because they have to throw it sooner or later. I watched this happen year after year with Barry Zito. He would throw gorgeous pitches that started up at eye level and landed right in the zone and the umpire wouldn't give him the call. And then it always went downhill from there.

Just like in basketball where the psychology of the refs seems to change from night to night (let them play, now call it tight) the whole tenor of a series can hinge on the subjective interpretation of the strike zone by the guy behind the plate. Over the course of a full season that averages out but when you just need to win one game, an unfavorable strike zone can make that game feel unwinnable. In that situation, a power pitcher with triple digit velocity is comparatively fool proof. Which is probably why league-wide pitching staffs have loaded up on power pitchers recently. Theoretically that will change when they make the change to robot umpires.
 
The Red Sox really gave the Dodgers Mookie Betts for nothing because they were afraid of paying him. Apparently the Babe Ruth thing taught them nothing.
I hate the Red Sox so much for this.

Special shout-out to the rest of the league for not stepping up and offering something better than the nothing Dodgers offer.
 

Capt. Factorial

This Is Why We Can't Have Nice Things
Staff member
I hate the Red Sox so much for this.

Special shout-out to the rest of the league for not stepping up and offering something better than the nothing Dodgers offer.
Let's not be hasty here. Jeter Downs was a top-5 Dodgers prospect (and they had a good farm system) and is now the Red Sox #1 infield prospect, and Alex Verdugo (former Dodgers #1 prospect before making MLB) only hit .308 with an OPS+ of 126 as a 24-year-old for the Sox this year. On top of that, the Dodgers ate $48M worth of David Price's contract (though they got bailed out of $16M of that with him opting out of the COVID season). And the Red Sox COULD have had Brusdar Graterol on top of that in the original three-way deal, but their doctors balked on his medical for some unknown reason. Nobody, absolutely nobody, was beating that deal for a guy with one year left on his contract. And the only reason the Dodgers did it was that they were pretty confident they could ink Betts to an extension.

The Red Sox got cheap, is all. They got cheap on January 5th 1920, and 100 years, one month and six days later they got cheap again. It'll probably bite them both times, but they got a damn sight better return the second time.
 
Let's not be hasty here. Jeter Downs was a top-5 Dodgers prospect (and they had a good farm system) and is now the Red Sox #1 infield prospect, and Alex Verdugo (former Dodgers #1 prospect before making MLB) only hit .308 with an OPS+ of 126 as a 24-year-old for the Sox this year. On top of that, the Dodgers ate $48M worth of David Price's contract (though they got bailed out of $16M of that with him opting out of the COVID season). And the Red Sox COULD have had Brusdar Graterol on top of that in the original three-way deal, but their doctors balked on his medical for some unknown reason. Nobody, absolutely nobody, was beating that deal for a guy with one year left on his contract. And the only reason the Dodgers did it was that they were pretty confident they could ink Betts to an extension.

The Red Sox got cheap, is all. They got cheap on January 5th 1920, and 100 years, one month and six days later they got cheap again. It'll probably bite them both times, but they got a damn sight better return the second time.
Alex Verdugo also had the best outfield arm in the minors the last couple years. He's not Mookie Betts, but he's a pretty good all-around player who they get to underpay for the next 6 years. I'm more upset about the Red Sox cheating their way to a World Series in 2018 and receiving the same punishment the Astros got -- zilch. It really seems like MLB was prepared to just let the sign stealing thing ride indefinitely until the press got a hold of it cause you know, offense sells or something. Just look how well 2 decades of ignoring steroids worked out for everyone, MLB is still the #1 professional sports league in Ameri.... oh wait.

If there's anything to be mad at the Dodgers about here it's that they have an unlimited bank account and they're smarter than most about how they spend it. Oakland is probably going to have to choose between Matt Chapman and Matt Olson in a couple years and the Dodgers are handing out triple digit contracts like they're discount Halloween candy. Normally I would not be rooting for an LA team, however, they got robbed in 2017 and they haven't won a World Series since 1988 so I don't care too much who wins at this point. If LA gets their revenge trophy, that's cool with me. Maybe they'll relax a bit next year if they finally win one and maybe history will repeat itself and Oakland will piggyback in 2021 and end their own 32 year drought. :cool:
 
@Capt. Factorial That makes it sound better. I’ll admit I was posting a little ignorantly, I didn’t realize the season Verdugo had, and just remembered him as the player with a bad back already. I also thought I remembered reading while Downs was good, he was outside the top-tier of the Dodgers never-ending list of elite prospects.

Of course the Dodgers also fall into keeping Graterol which is annoying, and the undone trade that let them keep Pederson, who’s flawed but a huge part of their team... they’re so damn good which just bothers the hell out of me.