It appears that Tebowing is dead but fortunately the progressive folks in Seattle have come up with, well, a perfect substitute.
Seattle Mariners Felix Hernandez tossed a perfect game against the Tampa Bay Rays last week and at the decisive moment Hernandez to pose with his back turned to the cameras. Loosely termed, Felixing involves balancing on one leg while raising both arms skyward.
Even Pearl Jams Eddie Vedder’s has been caught doing it.
There have only been 23 perfect games pitched in the history of Major League Baseball, so it goes without saying that witnessing one of these feats is quite rare. Don’t tell nine-month old Bode Dockal that. The little man has had the pleasure of witnessing two baseball games in his career, both perfect games.
Paul Dockal decided to bring his 9-month-old son, Bode, to Safeco Field for his first baseball game on April 21. Paul treated his son and his wife, Jennifer, to first-row seats behind the opposing dugout.
And that’s when the good luck started for Bode. The family witnessed Phil Humber’s perfect game for the Chicago White Sox in Bode’s first-ever baseball game.
“It’s one of those things that, I don’t think he could understand how important it was for me to be with him until he has a son of his own,” Paul told MLB.com. “The first thing I said to my wife was, ‘This is the best day I’ve ever had with my son.’”
Paul took Bode to another game when his uncle wanted to catch a game on Aug. 15 since Felix Hernandez was pitching. And just like that, Hernandez threw a perfect game and Bode witnessed history AGAIN. You can’t make these things up.
Just like that, Bode has already seen more in his nine months on earth than most die-hard baseball fans have in a lifetime.
Every pitch to the New York Yankees Robinson Cano in Monday night’s Home Run Derby was preceded by a chorus of boos. For Kansas City fans, it was 10 minutes of satisfaction after Cano, the American League’s captain for the derby, bypassed local favorite Billy Butler in setting his four-man lineup. Jose Bautista, Prince Fielder, Mark Trumbo with no Butler.
Bill-eee But-ler, the fans chanted in advance of Cano’s turn at bat. Then, they really had their fun.
Cano, who won the event a year ago with 32 home runs, including a finals-record 12 homers, never came close to clearing the wall.
David Ortiz and Felix Hernandez approached Cano for some encouragement as he took a break after failing to hit a homer in his first five swings. Then Yankees teammates C.C. Sabathia and Curtis Granderson tried to lighten the moment, running out before Cano’s father before he tossed the last handful of pitches to his son.
To no avail. Cano completed an 0-for-10 night.
Afterwards, Cano tweeted:
“I can’t believe I have so many fans in KC lol smh can’t win them all *kanye shrug*”
Prior to the contest, a plane was seen above Kauffman Stadium towing a sign that read: “Congrats Billy! You blew it Cano – 81O WHB.”
It was apparently bought by a local sports radio station.
Butler is tied for 16th in the American League in home runs.
Zack Greinke is the definition of a Diamond Stud and he proved it again by winning the American League Cy Young Award and he did it in a landslide.
The Royals’ right-hander received a rousing 25 of 28 first-place votes and had 134 total points in the Baseball Writers’ Association of America voting. Runner-up Felix Hernandez of the Mariners had 80 points, with two first-place votes.
Greinke emerged from the shadow of a social anxiety disorder that took him away from the game for two months in 2006. He worked his way back to the Royals with a tour in the Minors that year and spent most of 2007 laboring in the KC bullpen. Back full force in 2008, he made 32 starts with a 13-10, 3.47 season that set the stage for this thunderous year.
But the 2009 season on the mound belong to Greinke, who posted a 16-8 record which was modest total for a Cy Young winner but no one could match his Major League-best ERA of 2.16. He was one of the most dominating pitchers of 2009 in either league especially being on a team that hardly backed him with run support and a bullpen that blew four of his leads.
Greinke becomes the third Cy Young winner in club history. Bret Saberhagen won in 1985 and 1989; David Cone won in 1994. Cone was the only other starter to win the AL award with as few as 16 wins, and he did it in a strike-shortened season. Brandon Webb (2006) was the last starter to win the National League award with so few.
Among other accomplishments, Greinke struck out 15 batters and threw a one-hitter in back-to-back outings in August as he headed toward a strong finish. He was 6-1 with a 1.75 ERA in his final 11 starts.
Greinke’s has three devastating pitches in a changeup (which was the best in 2009), a sizzling fastball and killer slider. Greinke’s 242 strikeouts, second in the AL to Jason Verlander’s 269, included the club-record 15 on Aug. 25 against the Indians. Then, in his next start at Seattle, came a one-hitter flawed only by a second-inning single. Greinke mowed down the last 22 Mariners he faced. That made him just the fourth pitcher in history to follow a 15-strikeout game with a one-hitter, matching Pedro Martinez (1999), Randy Johnson (1998) and Vida Blue (1971).
His ability to command his pitches, moving the ball in and out, up and down with pinpoint accuracy, and to vary his speeds is phenomenal.
Oh it’s postseason time in baseball and that means it’s time to hand out some awards on the baseball diamond here at Sports Grind Entertainment.
Starting off with the senior circuit, the National League MVP couldn’t have been any easier. Don’t get it twisted that since Albert Pujols plays for the only professional sports origination in all of sports that I truly care about, that this vote wasn’t hands down his. Yes, if the race was close and I went with Pujols I could understand your concern but the 2009 season produce no one within a mile.
- NL MVP Award: The Cardinals first baseman leads his league in on-base percentage and slugging percentage plus homers, runs scored, total bases, grand slams and extra-base hits. He’s second in batting average with men in scoring position. Third overall in batting average and in RBI’s. Crazy as it sounds Pujols lead the Cardinals in stolen bases. Pujols also has an NL-record 184 assists from first base.
- NL Cy Young Award: There was a three-way choice between San Francisco’s Tim Lincecum and St. Louis teammates Chris Carpenter and Adam Wainwright. They’re 1-2-3 in ERA and 1-2-4 in wins.
- Carpenter has been the most brilliant and dominant, but he’s not in the top 10 in the NL in innings pitched because of early-season health issues. Lincecum has the lowest OPS allowed, but he plays in a great pitcher’s park. Wainwright leads the league the league in wins.
- Carpenter still took the ball against the other team aces so he gets it by a hair over Wainwright.
- NL Rookie of the Year: Was loaded with fresh new propest that made a mark in the 2009 season, with Philadelphia’s J.A. Happ, Atlanta’s Tommy Hanson, Randy Wells of the Cubs, Milwaukee’s Casey McGehee, Florida’s Chris Coghlan, Colorado’s Dexter Fowler and Pittsburgh’s Garrett Jones and Andrew McCutchen.
- As far as position player Coghlan (229 total bases, 82 runs scored and .319 average) is as good of a choice as any but it came down to the two pitchers that came to show earlier and never fell off all season. Happ (12-4, 2.85 ERA) vs. Hanson (11-4, 2.89 ERA).
- While Hanson is a terrific prospect, Happ threw 164 innings and the Phillies would have been in big trouble without him.
- NL Manager of the Year: There are a few good candidates. Fredi Gonzalez kept the Marlins in contention for 25 weeks. Tony La Russa had little in his lineup other than Pujols for the first three months. Charlie Manuel got the Phillies back on top, as did Joe Torre with the Dodgers.
- But this award is a no brainier for Colorado Jim Tracy, they have gone 74-41 since he took over for Clint Hurdle. That’s the equivalent of a 104-win season.
- AL Cy Young Award: When the Cy Young is discussed many see a losing team and figure there is no way a pitcher from such team would win the award over someone on a contending team, but that’s not what the Cy Young is about. On any squad the best pitcher is not responsible on how well or bad the team plays on his days off.
- And that makes Kansas City’s Zack Greinke is the best pitcher in the AL. Period. He lead the league with a 2.16 ERA on a bad defensive team. He had 6 complete games, 3 shutouts and was second in strikeouts with 242. Greinke had a 15 strikout performance and on his next outing threw a one hitter. He was the best pitcher in both leagues. Period.
- Felix Hernandez, Justin Verlander and CC Sabathia are great. And if Greinke wasn’t around, it would be a three-way debate. But this year, that debate is about second place.
- AL MVP Award: Joe Mauer leads the American League in batting, on-base percentage and slugging percentage. And he’s a catcher. Mauer leads the AL in batting average at home, on the road, against right-handers and in night games. He is second in average with runners in scoring position, third in average in day games and fourth in average vs. lefties.
- If Mauer was playing in New York, he’d be everywhere. He would be on every billboard, every magazine cover.
- Derek Jeter, Mark Teixeira, Kendry Morales had very nice years. Very nice.
- Considering the lack of protection in his lineup as compared to the others in the debate, it Mauer as the choice. Also since the only protection he had in teamamte and former MVP Justin Morneau is sidelined for the year. That forced Mauer to put the team on his back as they got back into contention of the AL Central Divison to force a one game playoff with the Detriot Tigers.
- AL Rookie of the Year: What a great season for rookie talent, in both leagues. The White Sox third baseman Gordon Beckham, who has hit well. Baltimore outfielder Nolan Reimold who leads Beckham in on-base percentage, slugging percentage and homers. Texas’ Elvis Andrus, meanwhile, has played all season excelling at shortstop with acceptable production at the plate for a 20-year-old.
- Comparing position players against pitchers is comparing apples to oranges. Oakland’s Andrew Bailey with his .168 opponents’ average, Detroit’s Rick Porcello, Toronto’s Ricky Romero.
- Tough call, but Porcello is 20, and he made 30 starts while pitching in a pennant race to the finish and he went 14-9 with a 4.04 ERA.
- AL Manager of the Year: Great job by Ron Washington to help make the Rangers relevant. But Mike Scioscia didn’t just guide the Angels to another division title. He kept the team from falling apart through a rough first few months, not only because of a rash of pitching injuries but also because of the death of Nick Adenhart. Managing a team is about managing people, and Scioscia did a great job this year. Joe Girardi managed his team to 103 wins and probably wont get a sniff at the award is tough but that how things play out sometimes.