Thursday, April 15, 2010

Notes on a baseball game in April

White Sox 3 Blue Jays 7

When I'm writing an article on a baseball game I score the game and keep notes on the side. Tonight I'm keeping those notes online, right here as the game progresses. It reminds me of Tweeting. TweetBlogging.

It's Jackie Robinson Day today in Major League Baseball. Number 42, the first black player to play in Major League Baseball - the 1946 Brooklyn Dodgers. Larry Doby, as the Jays new play-by-play man, Buck Martinez points out, was the first black player to break the colour barrier in the American League - with the Cleavland Indians, a year after Robinson. By many accounts Doby had a rougher time of it because the spot light was on Robinson - not say Robinson didn't have a hellish time but through it all Doby never got the recognition for doing the same things Jackie did - but with out the spot light Jackie Robinson had as the majors cause celeb, that offered some measure of protection for him.

Larry Doby deserves a mention when discussing the momentous day.

Since the White Sox are in town it's only fitting to mention that Doby was the second African-American to manage a Major League club - the Chicago White Sox, in 1978. Frank Robinson managed the Cleveland Indians in 1975.

For the Chicago-ans it's off to to Cleavland tonight. Get-away-night? It's a short haul - out of the Island Airport I expect - and an hour later they're in their hotel rooms downtown mis-take-by-the-lake.

The Jays stay here and welcome the Angels for a 7:07 PM Friday night nine, the first of 3.

The roof is open - the earliest it's been open for a baseball game. The previous record was 2002 when it was open for a game on the 19th of April.

It's the 5 starter for the Jays tonight, the second time through the rotation for Dana Eveland.
1-0, 7.1 IP, 5 H, 0 R, 2 BB 2 K, ERA 0.0

For the Sox it's veteran SP Freddy Garcia
0-1, 7 IP, 3 H, 2 R, 5 BB, 4 K, ERA 2.57

In the second inning Travis Snider hit a ball deep into the lower seats in right - a security guard helps a fan charging up the stairs to get his souvenir - pointing out the ball behind the last row of empty seats.

In the 6th, Juan Perrier, trying to score from 2nd base rounds 3rd on a l-ong high fly ball for Vernon Wells in deep right centre. Wells makes the good catch after a long run and Pierre has to turn around and scurry back to 2nd so he doesn't get doubled off. Jose Bautista, playing 3rd, notices that Pierre doesn't touch 3rd on his way back around, so when Peierre gets back to 2nd safely the Jays tag him and appeal to the umps. The 3rd base umpire Mike Everitt confirms Bautista's plea and Pierre is ruled out - double play!

I love stuff like that - knowing the rules and seeing the field while it's all happening - that's a sixth tool in a players kit. Colour commentator Pat Tabler said later that he though that it was an important play in the game - that it may have reversed a building momentum for the White Sox. The Sox did not score in the inning.

In the 8th new call up Jeremy Reed (sent down to AAA Las Vegas after the game) who got the start in right tonight, made a nice catch on a Gordon Beckham line-drive fly. Going straight back to the track he made an over the shoulder catch running flat out. That play records the first out of the inning with Juan Pierre on first. Jansen pitching in his second inning, ends the threat by striking out Carlos Quentin and inducing Paul Konerko to ground out FC 6-4.

That was the last base runner of the game as the two equally matched bullpens did their jobs well.

Thanks to ESPN Boxscore for the stats and the boxscore image of tonights game.


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