The Book of Mike

"This is no junior college. This is the notorious University of Miami.” -- Marlins starter Dontrelle Willis, after getting knocked around for six runs in 2 1/3 innings by the Canes.

Wednesday, August 31, 2005

Rammer Jammer Yellow Hammer is on the road. You can catch up with Warren St. John and discover the meaning of college football - which will possibly lead you to an understanding of the meaning of life. If you figure that out, please come back and summarize it in the comments.

Thanks in advance!

Friday, August 26, 2005

After the Storm

In case you're trying to track me down after Hurricane Katrina and you haven't been able to: I'm fine. A little water (mostly kept out of my apartment) and no power at my place (FPL says they'll have an update as to when power will be restored by Saturday night - nice!). Other than that, this was just a "fun" storm to ride out.
Hopefully whatever that is blowing around in the Atlantic won't turn in to anything.

Wednesday, August 17, 2005

Taking in BP

I know that I rant about this fairly regularly, but I really enjoy getting to the ballpark early to take in batting practice. There was a nice feature about BP in today's USA Today which I thought I would share. The article gives a lot of nice information about what goes on during batting practice, including the most thorough description of the methods behind the madness (at least the most thorough written description that I've ever seen - I think my only formal exposure to the nuances of BP has been through osmosis).

There's also about an interesting anecdote about how Frank Thomas used to experiment during BP with an aluminum bat. It's too bad that MLB outlawed that. The Sox could have sold tickets to that show.

I also found the table at the bottom of the story to be quite interesting. Sixteen teams allow their fans into the ballpark earlier than the Florida Marlins. The Marlins are also one of only six teams (of 30, of course) that do not allow their fans into the stadium in time to see the home team take batting practice (everyone will allow fans inside in time to watch the visitors hit). That doesn't seem like a very fan friendly policy to me (and spare me the commentary about how the Marlins don't own the stadium and can't control the timing of when the stadium is opened as it's up to someone else's discretion - that's weak).

Friday, August 12, 2005

Maddux and 15

It doesn't seem to be getting much attention, but with yesterday's win, Greg Maddux has only nine wins on the season. Although he's a Cub, I'm a little worried about this, as Maddux has a streak of fifteen win seasons that seemingly goes back until time began.

Can Maddux manage six more wins this season? Looking at it optimistically, it seems questionable. Greg probably has no more than ten starts left this season - so that means he'd have to win six of his next ten starts. That's certainly possible, but it's made more difficult by the fact that the Cubs just aren't that good. Maddux may be more greatful for the return of Nomar Garciaparra than anyone else (assuming of course that the Professor cares about his win streak - my guess is that he doesn't - he just wants to pitch and win ball games, but that the number of years with 15 or more wins is largely irrelevant).

Wednesday, August 03, 2005

Sleeping on the Rocket

In all the pre-All-Star game hype, I got a little lost in the Chris Carpenter - Dontrelle Willis debate. At the time, most folks - myself definitely included - focused on those two as the best candidates to start the All-Star game.

Since then, Dontrelle has faded but Carpenter has continued to pitch well. But one pitcher kept up with both Willis and Carpenter early in the year, and at this point it's safe to say that he's well out-performing both of them.

That pitcher is, of course, Roger Clemens.

I mean, seriously: have you been following the Rocket this year? His numbers are sick. When it's all said and done I think his ERA might compare favorably with Bob Gibson's (1.12) in 1968 after you adjust for the league averages.

Clemens ERA in total is pretty sparkling (1.45). But what blows my mind is his ERA on the road (away from the bandbox known as Minute Main Park) is a miniscule 0.41. I'm pretty sure that 0.41 has to be a Major League record, but I haven't been able to verify it.

Regardless, Clemens is having a special year at the end of what is a special career. We should all take notice of it, because there may never be anything like it again in our lifetimes.