Since we talk about sports on the podcast, anyone who listens doesn’t know that I’m a sucker for bad horror movies. Last night I got sucked in by a movie title called Sexy Evil Genius. Luckily this terrible movie ended in time for me to catch the last 2 innings of the Los Angeles Dodger/Houston Astros game. I had been receiving updates through my tablet since the top of the 6th inning; so I knew Houston’s Mike Fiers had a no-hitter going. I got to see Carl Crawford strike out swinging for the 1st out of the 8th inning. After Crawford Enrique Hernandez and Joc Pederson both struck out looking. The Astros went down 1, 2, 3 in the bottom of the 8th inning and that may have been a good thing for Fiers as he didn’t have a ton of time to sit in the dugout and think about the 9th inning. Jimmy Roliins led off the 9th inning for the Dodgers and it looked like he was going to break up the no-hitter when he hit a 2-2 fastball to right-center field that looked like it was going to be a hit. Jake Marisnick was tracking it, but was running out of room and it looked as though the ball was going over his head. Marisnick was able to track the flyball down and make the catch for the 1st out of the inning. The recently acquired Chase Utley was next up for the Dodgers. Utley was ahead in the count 2-0. On the 3rd pitch of the at bat Utley flew out to Marisnick, but it was a much easier play than the one he had to make on Rollins flyball. Now it was just Josh Turner standing between Fiers and a no-hitter. Turner had a good swing on the first pitch in his at bat, but fouled it off. The 2nd pitch was a ball and Turner swung and miss at the 3rd pitch; so the count was 1-2. Fiers threw a Cutter that missed to make the count 2-2 and it looked like he was almost over throwing, but who could blame him. The 5th pitch of Tuner’s at bat was a fastball that he swung at and missed for the final out of the game. Fiers improved his record to 6-9; he struck out 10 while walking 3. It took Fiers 134 pitches to record his no-hitter. Obviously it was the 1st no-hitter of Fiers young career, but it was also his 1st career complete game. The Astros gave Fiers all the run support he’d need in the bottom of the 2nd inning when with 2 outs Chris Carter singled to leftfield and Marisnick followed that with his 6th home run of the season to left-center field giving Houston a 2-0 lead. In the bottom of the 6th inning the Astros gave Fiers an insurance run as Evan Gattis hit a solo home run his 19th of the season. Gattis home run also came with 2 outs and making the score 3-0 which is how it ended. Fiers was appearing in his 4th game for the Astros; 3 of which were starts after being acquired from the Milwaukee Brewers along with Carlos Gomez on June 30th. The Astros gave up 4 players, 3 minor leaguers Josh Hader, Adrian Houser and Brett Phillps along with outfielder Domingo Santana who had appeared in 14 games for the Astros Before being traded. Last night was Fiers 75th career pitching appearance 59 of which have been starts. He has a career record of 22-28 with an E.R.A. of 3.57. Fiers no=hitter and Houston win along with the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim’s 9-2 lost to the Toronto Blue Jays helped extend the Astros lead in the A.L. West to 3 1/2 games over the 2nd place Angels.
I heard a really interesting debate on the MLB Network the other day. It was about catchers and the question was; who would you want Buster Posey or Yader Molina? Since there where no really parameters set on how anyone had to answer the question it worked out to Posey being the choice, but just because he’s 5 years younger than Molina. I have no issue with that choice as they are both great players and at the top of their position, but what I was wondering was; who’s the next catcher you’d want? Russell Martin was a prized free agent this off season and while he does have 15 home runs which id tied for 5th among catchers this season he is hitting .244. Would you take Martin or how about another veteran like Brian McCann who’s leading all catchers in home runs with 21 and is 2nd in R.B.I.’s with 74, but his average is .241. Maybe you’d like to go with a younger guy; so how about 25 year old Salvador Perez who’s hitting .255 with 17 home runs and 50 R.B.I.’s. Of course you would have to look at their defense and pitch framing, but all 3 Martin, McCann and Perez are very good there. Maybe you would be interested in having a guy like Matt Wieters behind the plate and he is going to be a free agent this off season. Remember that Wieters is coming off of Tommy John surgery and has caught just 34 games this season as the Baltimore Orioles are being very careful with him. Wieters is hitting with 5 home runs in 170 at bats this season. Where would players like Yasmani Grandal, Blake Swihart, James McCann or Travis D’Arnaud rank on your list? They’re all young up and coming catchers, but don;t forget that D’Arnaud has had some injury issues. Oddly there may actually being a choice staring you right in the face; Kyle Schwarber. Schwarber has shown he can hit at the major league level, but the Cubs didn’t think he was going to be able to catch in the majors; so he played a lot of outfield in the minors last season. After being brought up for a short stint as a Designated Hitter (DH) for inter-league play in June Schwarber was called back up on July 17th and his bat has kept him in the majors since. Schwarber has played in 38 games this season; 6 as a DH, 13 as an outfielder, 7 in pinch hitting duty and 12 as a catcher. Schwarber is hitting .294 with 10 home runs, but the question is will he be a catcher down the road? Adding confusing to the Schwarber situation is that the Cubs have Miguel Montero under contract for $14 million next season and they also have Jon Lester’s personal catcher the 38 year old David Ross under contract for next season at $2.5 million. I guess it’s something will have to watch this off season, but the main question still is before you can choose Schwarber is will he catch?
So maybe you have Posey #1 and Molina #2 or Maybe you like Molina in the #1 spot and Posey in the 2nd spot. What I want to know is who do you have as your 3rd, 4th and 5th catcher?
So how was your week?
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