Tuesday, August 8th, 2006
2:45 pm - You Gotta have Heart...  
Distractions of the baseball Sort...

Fausto Carmona of the Indians had a very bad week, becoming only the second pitcher in major league history to lose four games in relief in only seven days. He not only lost them, he lost them spectacularly.

July 30 versus the Mariners, Fausto started the ninth with the score tied, 3-3. Three hits, two walks, and a hit batsman later, the Mariners were up 7-4, and Fausto was heading for the showers.

The next night the Indians were up in Fenway with an 8-6 lead when Fausto was brought in to pitch the bottom of the ninth. A hit, a walk, and a David Ortiz home run later, and the Sox were walking off the field as winners.

Two nights later, Fausto was again brought in to protect a Cleveland lead. This time it was 5-4 in the bottom of the ninth, but again he blew the save. It started out promising, as he struck out the first two batters, but then he hit two guys in a row, followed that with a walk to load the bases, and then Mark Loretta doubles off the monster to bring in the tying and winning runs.

Fausto was then rested for a couple of days, but it didn't help. On August 5th, with the Indians up a run in the bottom of the ninth versus the Tigers, Fausto was called upon once again, and once again he blew it, giving up a single and a Pudge Rodriquez game-winning homer. Yikes!

One has to wonder whether Fausto badly misread the contract he seems to have made with Mr. Applegate.

Ken Arneson found a bunch of unmarked baseball photographs in a second-hand store, and has been posting them as challenges to see if they can be identified. For the first two he posted folks have not only been able to identify the players and ballparks, but even the game and the particular play in the game from the clues in the images. It's fascinating stuff. Photo #1 was particularly impressive to me, because it hinged on uniform color, and the shape of a corner in the outfield grass.

Photo #1 - Photo #2

Speaking of Arneson, he hasn't been able to post as often as he'd like over at Catfish Stew, so he's taken on an apprentice, Philip Michaels. Michaels's first post is very funny, taking Nick Swisher to task for forgetting a very old rule. There's even a little piece of Sondheim filk in the comments.

Finally, there's a clear, concise explanatory piece on baseball's sometimes arcane waiver rules over at McSweeneys.
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Jessejesseh on August 8th, 2006 - 09:03 pm
What's the trick with Photo #2? Is Fenway the only place with the scoreboard right behind the pitcher or something?
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DXMachinadxmachina on August 8th, 2006 - 09:17 pm
Fenway's scoreboard is distinctive, and yeah, most parks don't have the main scoreboard down at field level like that (although some recently built parks have copied the idea).

Anyway, the Fenway part was easy. I had more problems with the figuring out the score from the blurs. It helps that the guy in the picture only ever pitched 20 games total for the Yankees, which narrowed down the list of possible games.

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casperflea on August 8th, 2006 - 11:37 pm
SO IMPRESSED by the photo ID stuff. I couldn't even tell that the number in #2 was a 4.
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DXMachinadxmachina on August 9th, 2006 - 02:04 pm
It's the stub of the cross-stroke sticking out of the middle of the numeral that made the four recognizable as such.
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