Here are several links from the past week that will make your Monday a bit more bearable:
- With Nelson Cruz choosing not to appeal his 50-game Biogenesis-related suspension, the Rangers traded for Alex Rios.
- The Phillies gave Chase Utley a two-year contract extension.
- David Golebiewski of Baseball Analytics profiles 21-year-old rookie Jose Fernandez and is impressed by the ability of the right-handed Marlins pitcher to retain his velocity in the later innings.
- Click above to find out why Mets radio announcer Howie Rose exclaimed, ”What in the wide, wide world of sports was that?”
- The Rays may have been shut out in Chavez Ravine on Saturday, but at least their infielders successfully executed the hidden-ball trick on an unsuspecting Juan Uribe. After the game, Adrian Gonzalez had a little fun at the expense of his Dodger teammate.
- Miguel Cabrera is enjoying an even more impressive 2013, but Grantland’s Jonah Keri contends that Mike Trout is doing better too. One explanation offered by Keri is Trout’s improved pitch selection:
Trout is seeing fewer pitches in the zone this year (49 percent going into Tuesday’s game, down from 51.1 percent last year), which is likely contributing to the spike in his walk rate. But he has also been far more selective, chasing just 24.6 percent of the pitches he’s seen below the strike zone this year, well below his rate of 30.6 percent last year.
- McCovey Chronicles’ Grant Brisbee thinks he knows when this year’s Giants passed the out-of-contention point of no return.
- Rob Neyer of Baseball Nation breaks down Jack Clark’s performance-enhancing-drug accusations against Albert Pujols and comes away unimpressed. Clark was subsequently fired from his St. Louis radio show.
That’s it. Have a walk-off week!