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A weblog of baseball news and analysis

Wednesday, July 16, 2003
Blalock delivers for AL. And this time, it counted! (Yahoo!)

All-Star Diary from Joe Sheehan.
7:12 p.m.: Alfonso Soriano has enormous talent, but if I'm an American League pitcher, I do nothing but throw fastballs at his left elbow and force the issue of him hanging in the strike zone. Some umpire will eventually make the right call.

This is also the solution for Mo Vaughn, Craig Biggio, Jason Kendall and all the other hitters who set up in the strike zone. Umpires want to complain about Questec; maybe if they enforced the rules in the rule book it wouldn't be necessary for a machine to point out that they don't.
(Baseball Prospectus)

Blue Jays send leadoff man Stewart to slumping Twins. The Jays get Bobby Kielty; the Twins also get a player to be named later. (

Prospectus Triple Play: Red Sox, Reds, Padres. "Phil Nevin's rehab starts have begun, and after looking like he'd be out all season earlier this year, he'll probably be back with San Diego by early August. Nevin's bat has certainly been missed by the Padres, who are putting up a .258 EQA as a team--good for ninth in the league. In his absence, Ramon Vazquez did an excellent imitation of a top-of-the-order hitter until an abdominal strain put him on the shelf, off-season pickups Rondell White and Mark Loretta turned in productive half-seasons, and rookie Xavier Nady had a couple of solid months to start the season. Oh, and Sean Burroughs has quietly developed into one of the top 10 third basemen in the majors." (Baseball Prospectus)

Prospectus Triple Play: Orioles, Rockies, Mets. "The Rockies are a .500 team that has sat on the periphery of the Wild Card race all season long. They are able to dominate at home but are unable to win on the road except against the weakest clubs in the majors. It seems unlikely that they will be able to make a run unless a number of other teams falter. They have 43 games left with over-.500 teams and only 22 games left with under-.500 teams, in addition to five more games on the road than at home. The Rockies may be able to call this season a success on its own terms, but they won't be playing in October." (Baseball Prospectus)

Prospectus Q&A: Kevin Youkilis. "Toiling for the [Red] Sox is a flashpoint player in the tools vs. performance debate--Kevin Youkilis. While lacking in several of the tools that scouts covet, Youkilis was an offensive machine in college, hitting .405 his senior year, with 18 home runs, 61 RBI, 22 stolen bases, and a .549 on-base percentage. Still, it was not until his summer in the Cape Cod League, where he continued to rake the ball, that he finally began grabbing attention on a larger scale. Youkilis was recently chosen to represent America in the Futures Game at All-Star Weekend. BP Correspondent Mark Haverty sat down with Youkilis to discuss tools vs. performance, the Red Sox, and the Cape Cod League." (Baseball Prospectus)

No relief for Cashman. Steinbrenner wants him to trade for a setup man. (NY Daily News)

Midseason Muselix from Don Malcolm. "I didn’t know this until I looked up his stats, but [Shea] Hillenbrand is actually an Arizona native, born in Mesa. That said, he’s still a free-swinging lunkhead, but despite the efforts of many of you, this is still not a federal offense, merely an pseudo-aesthetic blight upon certain sensibilities. It probably isn’t a coincidence that the D-Backs have been winning a lot of games since he arrived, but that’s probably temporary." (Big Bad Baseball)

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