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TuesdoLinks: Cleveland bloodies Jays WS hopes.

The Cleveland Indians now have a 3 games to none lead on the Toronto Blue Jays, having held the Jays to 4 total runs over 27 innings to date. This after Cleveland had to run out 7 different pitchers once Trevor Bauer had exited with an open wound.

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John E. Sokolowski-USA TODAY Sports

Well that was a bloody good time. Trevor Bauer lasted all of two outs in the first inning before we got a sweet camera close-up of human blood pouring down his finger and dripping into the mound clay.

What that did was merely to send Bauer to the bench to sit and enjoy the front row seating and watch his teammates smash the Blue Jays to the brink of extinction. The Blue Jays would have to sweep , with 2 of those remaining games back in Cleveland. If that were to happen, it would end up being an amazing series. As it is, the Indians might be able to start thinking about how to get Bauer healthy for the WS.

I just want to point out that Mike Napoli, who once again was seen by all the baseball world terrorizing a playoff opponent last night, has more playoff experience as a player AFTER getting shipped out of Anaheim than anybody associated with the LAA franchise today not named Albert Pujols. And that goes for the LAA coaches and the LAA manager, as well.

Have some more Playoff Links:



American League Championship Series Game 4, Indians lead 2-0

Cleveland Indians @ Toronto Blue Jays - Rogers Centre, Toronto, ON., Ca.
Date Time Probable Pitchers TV

Tuesday, 10/18/2016

1:00PM PDT Mike Clevinger (3-3, 5.26 ERA) vs. Aaron Sanchez (15-2, 3.00 ERA) TBS

National League Championship Series Game 3,

Chicago Cubs @ Los Angeles Dodgers - Dodger Stadium, Los Angeles, Ca.
Date Time Probable Pitchers TV

Tuesday, 10/18/2016

5:00PM PDT Jake Arreita (18-8, 3.10 ERA) vs. Rich Hill (12-5, 2.12 ERA) FS-1
Everywhere In Baseball

Oh, Baldo. Maybe the thing about Baldoquin is that he just doesn't have the body to stand up to a full season. That would be totally sucky, but not quite as sucky as not having the skills at all. Surrendering $15 million and finding out that he is injury plagued is one thing. Surrendering that $15 million when he never had the talent is another thing altogether..........

Baseball ain't dying, people. The ratings for this post-season have been posting some significant upticks. "...up 32% from...ALDS coverage last year...and up 18% from...NLDS coverage in 2014". Since we are covering AL ratings, too, this isn't just the Cubs fans, but it is true that Game 2 of the NLCS and Game 4 of the NLDS have been the two most-watch events in FS1 history..........And check out the tweet in the linked article from Richard Deitsch. Better than 1 in 7 out of every living person in Canada was watching the AL Wild Card game..........

So Juan Bautista thinks the ALCS is rigged, because he and his Blue Jays are not getting the calls they want at the plate. Everybody wants to dive into this. Mike Gianella, from Baseball Prospectus, just throws ot some numbers trying to diffuse the notion. He should have done better. Our sister SBN site, Let's Go Tribe, takes a slightly more empirical stab. And FanGraphs did what is probably the more scientific study. In that FanGraphs article is this tidbit to be filed away: "The error is corrected by the at-bat where Francisco Lindor hit a homer right after the Kipnis walk, which fact provides either (a) greater doubt about the accuracy of the pitch-tracking system or b) less concern about an advantage for Cleveland, as it means the umpire didn’t miss a blatant call". Craig Edwards, doing the work here, doesn't need to guess. He could track down the exact pitch he has in question at Brooksbaseball if he wanted to work hard enough. I do it all the time .(I do find it amusing that Edwards would go to an off-angle broadcast video to try and validate PITCHf/x!) Anyway, everybody is on the case......For their part, the Indians are not still in all this. They fired up a social media tongue-in-cheek lashing on twitter starting on Sunday, and then took that to new heights yesterday. I love it when the social media intern at a pro sports franchise has a good sense of humor, and the freedom to use it..........Toronto Manager John Gibbons, knowing a losing cause when he see one, is moving on and taking the high road. Although, calling umpiring mistakes "...a part of the beauty of baseball" is a couple of bridges too far.........

Hey, speaking of team chippiness, get this! The Dodgers are "accusing" the Cubs of stealing signs.  This is, for us rubes, something un-written down in the Unwritten Rules of Baseball. There is no such thing as any rule preventing players from doing this on the field of play. But there is a reason these guys are not designing inter-planetary rocketry. Having to worry about things going on in a game of baseball and having to worry about communicating secretly with your teammates is just too much to ask. So when it fails, the failing side has little but to whine about how unfair it all is, and maybe punch somebody.........

Back at the drawing boards, MLB is pushing yet again for an International Draft in this current CBA negotiation cycle. No real surprise there. Never lose sight of the fact that an entry draft exists not to ensure competitive balance, but to ensure lower entry ages for players. These billionaire businessmen who own these teams are never for free market forces when it comes to labor costs. The origin of the MLB draft is, actually, your Los Angeles Angels. The larger population of MLB owners chose to institute the system in response to Gene Autry's eager willingness to bid as high as necessary to secure the signing of Rick Reichardt..........

The Cleveland Mascot War is not going to end anytime soon, but the skirmish in Toronto has come to a conclusion. As I mentioned yesterday, when an application for an injunction against Cleveland being allowed to use uniforms and caps which displayed the word "Indian" and/or Chief Wahoo was filed, MLB would certainly chime in. I expected MLB to object to anything that might disrupt their playoff schedule. This s precisely what MLB did, with a written statement. It turns out that the application was rejected and the Toronto courts are not getting involved...........

The Cubs, who have scored 9 runs in 2 NLCS games and 25 runs in 6 playoff games so far, is suffering from an offensive "slump". It's true that the 3-4-5 hitters are batting .043 - .182 - .045 in the playoffs to date, but we are talking 6 games. Some guys go cold and other guys get hot. it happens. I'd take an average of +4 runs per game in the National League and not call it any sort of 'slump", but that what happens when you get the expectations set upon these Cubs............

The tide has truly turned. The "book" on bullpen convention is now overdue at the local library. Enough unconventional management is afoot in games as critical and attention-getting as this year's playoffs is showing the world, and other organizations, that free thinkers are running wild with their authority to call the shots, and the ones who are less free thinking are not on the stage anymore. Maybe not all of these tactics are sustainable over 162 games, but that doesn't mean they cannot be cycled in against crucial matchups..........

Speaking of expectations, yes, we might expect Cubs fans to become just as insufferable as Red Sox fans should the Cubs stop being the lovable little losers. Then again, Dodgers fans are already insufferable and Cleveland fans have an active NBA title to allow their insufferability to blossom. And we already know how Toronto fans are out of control. So, in the end, there is no winning this battle this year.........

That MSM employee who tossed the beer can in the Wild Card game is no longer an MSM employee. His ex-employer, PostMedia, must have run through their "internal investigation" rather quickly. the public courts won't get to this Ken Pagan dude until next month.........

Yahoo! In 2020 MLB will get start selling all new merchandise to everyone who now has closets full of merchandise..........

Baby steps here in the all-white dude deck chair shuffle. Atlanta Braves first base coach Eddie Perez is being considered for the Manager role at both Colorado and Arizona..........

The Tim Tebow experiment ain't going too well. In fact, it might be imploding before it even gets a chance to place Tebow jerseys into the team store at Citi Field...........


Hey, how about a bonus? Last night, during the top of the 9th inning, Roberto Perez stepped up to bat against Roberto Osuna with runners on 2nd and 3rd and only 1 out. Perez had worked the count to 3 balls and no strikes. On the 4th pitch Osuna threw a pitch up in the zone, and smack over the middle of the plate. The umpire called it strike 1. Let's compare something. Here is the PITCHf/x recording of that pitch (#4):

Here is that same pitch, off the screen cap. Notice how that pitch is right above the belt, right about where PITCHf/x plots it. But notice also that the TBS video feed tracking technology spots the pitch ABOVE the zone, as a ball. Even though the ball was about belt high:


How could this be? How could they differ? Who is telling the truth? Is there a truth?

Well, I want you to look at this frame, just a fraction of a second earlier. Look at the circles. The ball is still in flight, and has not even reached home plate. Now look at the pitch location graphic very, very carefully. It is already started to paint the pitch location! WTF?

To watch it all in real time, here is my slo-mo screen cap.

I can think of two explanations for all this. One would be that the TBS technical crew is running a delay and merging their pitch tracking results into delayed game broadcast once the pitch track graphics have been computed. The delay is so slight that, combined with other delays, it becomes unnoticeable. This explanation ends up with the TBS pitch tracking software disagreeing with PITCHf/x because they have two clearly different results.

The other explanation I can think of for this is that the TBS pitch tracking software is registering results out in front of the plate. This all happens in real time, synchronized and not delayed then merged later. And, because the pitched baseball continues to drop as it pass across the plate and into the catcher's mitt, the graphic shows a result different than what we can easily see with our eyes, AND what PITCHf/x reports. PITCHf/x can use simple geometry to project where the ball will continue on over the plate. They (the people at Brooksbaseball,net) can do this, because they have time to do this. They don't show any results until a game is completed.

What's your guess?