Tag:Domonic Brown
Posted on: July 7, 2011 1:39 am
Edited on: July 7, 2011 2:11 am
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3 Up, 3 Down: Pinch-Hit McGehee



By Matt Snyder


Casey McGehee, Brewers. Maybe the Brewers should just start using McGehee strictly as a pinch-hitter? It's been a rough year for McGehee, as he entered Wednesday hitting .222 with four homers, 33 RBI and a .582 OPS. This was after hitting .285 with 23 homers, 103 RBI and an .801 OPS last season. Wednesday, however, McGehee came through with a clutch pinch-hit three-run homer. It came in the bottom of the seventh and put the Brewers up for good. Earlier this season, McGehee hit a two-run go-ahead homer in the bottom of the eighth as a pinch-hitter. So, in just four pinch-hit at-bats, McGehee has accrued 40 percent of his home runs, driven home five runs and won two games for the Brewers. This one was huge, too, because the Brewers had lost seven of eight and fallen into fourth place in the NL Central prior to the game.

Justin Masterson, Indians. The Yankees hadn't lost a series since being swept by the Red Sox in early June, but Masterson brought home the second win in three games against the Yankees with a dominant performance Wednesday. He threw eight shutout innings, allowing only three hits and two walks while striking out six. That's quite the feat against the powerful Yankees, and the outing lowered Masterson's ERA to 2.66. Poor run support is one of the reasons Masterson was kept off the All-Star team, because his record is now just 7-6, but he's pitched far better than that.

Dan Uggla, Braves. The Braves' 9-1 win Wednesday -- their eighth in the past nine games -- was a complete team effort. Jair Jurrjens was great again and the offense pounded 14 hits for nine runs. Let us look closer at Dan Uggla, though. He'd been a disaster for the Braves for most of the season -- you could argue only Adam Dunn had hurt his team more offensively -- but the past two days should provide from confidence for Uggla. In the two Braves' wins, Uggla was 4-5 with two home runs, a double, three walks, four runs and three RBI. With that pitching staff, getting some more offense would be a big step in the Braves challenging the Phillies in the NL East, where the deficit is now three games.

Room for one more -- Nate Schierholtz, Giants: We initially published this before the Giants-Padres game concluded, because it felt like it would literally last all night, but Schierholtz took care of things in the bottom of the 14th. He slugged a walk-off homer that cleared the wall by mere inches. It was his second home run of the night as he went 3-6 with two runs and three RBI.



Ricky Romero against Red Sox. It's just not working for the Blue Jays' ace when he squares off against Boston. The Red Sox lit him up for nine hits and six earned runs, including two home runs, Wednesday. As noted on Twitter by Stats, Inc., Romero now has an 8.08 ERA in his career against the Red Sox and 3.28 against everyone else. It's an even bigger discrepancy this season, though. After the disaster in Fenway Wednesday evening, Romero has an 11.45 ERA and 2.88 WHIP this season against the Red Sox, while he's sporting a 2.45 ERA and 1.11 WHIP against everyone else.

Domonic Brown, Phillies. He tripled in the sixth inning, only he didn't. Upon appeal at second base, Brown was called out for missing the bag. He even admitted after the game he missed it. John Mayberry followed with a home run, though there's absolutely no guarantee that happens with a runner on third, because you can bet the Marlins pitch Mayberry differently. Still, Brown missed the bag and gave away an out in a game where the Phillies lost in extra innings. Brown also misplayed a Gaby Sanchez single into a three-bagger that allowed two runs to score, meaning you could say he cost the Phillies the game with the two mistakes. Still, I could much more easily tolerate a physical gaffe than a mental one. I will never understand how a player misses a bag while running the bases in high school, much less in the MLB. That's an avoidable mental error at any level.

Jake Westbrook, Cardinals. The Reds came into Wednesday having scored two or less runs in four of their past five games. The Cardinals had held the Reds to just one run combined in the first two games of the series. So I guess you could say they were due, though that's likely no consolation to Westbrook. He was torched by the Reds for eight hits and seven earned runs through just 4 1/3 innings. Five of those hits were of the extra-base variety, including three homers. After seeing his offensive teammates rally and his bullpen hold strong for much of the game, Westbrook had to have felt even worse when the Cardinals lost 9-8 in the 13th inning.

Spared: Sure, the Reds ended up winning, but it shouldn't have taken 13 innings to do so after leading 8-0 through five. That is unacceptable.

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Posted on: June 15, 2011 1:35 am
 

3 Up, 3 Down: Big Game James



By Matt Snyder

James Shields, Rays. Since Shields threw a shutout on May 22, he was 0-2 with a 6.50 ERA in his next three starts. Sure, two of them weren't awful and one was -- skewing the small sample numbers a bit -- but he wasn't throwing the ball near as well as he was earlier in the season. His task Tuesday night was to face the now-mighty Red Sox, who entered the game with a nine-game winning streak -- one in which they'd averaged about nine runs per game. After a shaky first, where Shields left the bases loaded, he settled in and threw a complete-game shutout. The victory moved the Rays to within 3 1/2 games of the Red Sox. Shields has already set the Rays record with three shutouts in a season and is the fastest to three shutouts in the AL since Randy Johnson and David Cone in 1994.

Domonic Brown, Phillies. The Phillies slugged five home runs en route to a 9-1 victory of the disappearing Marlins, but the highlight was Brown's upper tank shot in the seventh. It was not only majestic, but also his second blast of the game. As too many long-time members of the lineup get closer to being too old, the 23-year-old outfielder provides a glimpse into the future.

Johnny Cueto, Reds. As the Reds creep closer to the NL Central leaders -- we'll get to them in a moment -- they can definitely start to feel very confident when one member of the rotation gets the ball each turn. Cueto has now thrown 14 consecutive innings without having allowed an earned run and his ERA has shrunk to 1.68 through eight starts and 53 2/3 innings. Coming out and giving an effort like Tuesday night's -- seven innings, five hits, five strikeouts, zero earned runs -- against Clayton Kershaw is the stuff aces are made of.

Also: Don't forget to give props to Justin Verlander for shutting out the Indians and moving the Tigers into first place. It's just that it's not really surprising anymore.




Alexi Ogando, Rangers. So much for that sparkling ERA, WHIP and undefeated record. Ogando entered Tuesday with a 7-0 record, 2.10 ERA and MLB-best 0.898 WHIP. He couldn't even get out of the second Tuesday, though. The Yankees tuned him up for six earned runs on six hits and a walk in 1 2/3 innings. This came after a 1-2-3 first inning, too. Ogando now has a 12.38 ERA and 1.75 WHIP in Yankee Stadium this season. Everywhere else? 1.68 ERA and 0.88 WHIP. Fortunately for him and the Rangers, this will be his last outing in the Bronx this season -- well, unless he has to pitch there in the playoffs. If it comes to that, they'll surely find a way to avoid throwing him in his house of horrors.

Hanley Ramirez, Marlins. The DL-stint may have cured his back, but it didn't do much to alter the path this disaster of a season has taken for the star shortstop. Ramirez returned to the lineup in the leadoff spot and proceeded to go 0-4 with two strikeouts. Granted it wasn't exactly an easy matchup against a locked-in Cole Hamels, but it certainly wasn't encouraging for Ramirez, either.

Brewers', Cardinals' bullpens. As the two teams fight for the top of the NL Central, they seem to be going out of their way to blow late leads. Tuesday, they each coughed up leads against sub-par teams. The Cardinals held a 6-1 lead heading into the bottom of the seventh against the Nationals. Miguel Batista, Trever Miller and Jason Motte combined to allow five hits, three walks, a hit-by-pitch and six earned runs. Yes, that was all in one inning. Most of the damage was allowed by Batista, but Miller hit the only guy he faced and Motte let two inherited runners cross home plate. Not to be outdone, Marco Estrada of the Brewers gave up three runs in the bottom of the eighth to the Cubs. The big blow was an Aramis Ramirez two-run home run, which tied the score at four and eventually sent the game to extra innings. In the 10th, Tim Dillard allowed a Tony Campana double, a sacrifice and a Starlin Castro single to lose the game. The Brewers have now lost two in a row to the Cubs. The Cardinals have lost four straight. They're tied atop the Central, though the Reds and Pirates are in striking distance. Meltdowns like Tuesday are the reason no one has pulled away.

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Posted on: June 6, 2011 10:12 am
Edited on: June 6, 2011 10:35 am
 

Pepper: No baseball in November



Can Zack Greinke continue to lead the Brewers? What is going on with Cliff Lee? How important is Josh Hamilton to the Rangers? Scott Miller joins Lauren Shehadi with the answers.

By Evan Brunell


NO BASEBALL IN NOVEMBER
: As baseball tries to expand the postseason to one additional Wild Card series, the question has always been how that can be pulled off without pushing the postseason into November, which both fans and players dislike. Angels manager Mike Scioscia feels the postseason can be limited to just October and accommodate an expansion without eating into the 162-game season.

Scioscia, who is part of a special committee for on-field matters and has input into the expansion of the playoffs, feels that by tightening up travel time and playing the occasional doubleheader, an extra series can be fitted in easily. In regards to travel, Scioscia points to his own team's upcoming trip from L.A. to Seattle, New York, Florida and back to Los Angeles as inefficient because of two off days during the trip.

"I don't know what kindergartner figured that one out, but I think maybe we can move to first grade and get that a little better organized," Scioscia said. "The bottom line is we need to be more efficient with travel."

Scioscia believes teams should play in the division for the bulk of April, July and September, which will cut down on travel, as well as schedule the occasional double-header. If baseball can trim the postseason by a few days as well, the World Series would be complete by the time Halloween rolls around.

"We can't have baseball played in November," Scioscia said. "I don't think the Pilgrims set it up that way." (Los Angeles Times)

SLEEPLESS IN CHICAGO
: Cubs manager Mike Quade admitted after Albert Pujols' 12th inning walk-off home run on Saturday that he needs to do a better job communicating with his pitcher and catcher on what to do in these type of situations. Clearly, he's got some more work to do as Pujols repeated his walk-off home run heroics in the 10th inning Sunday. (MLB.com)

DEAD BALL
: The Phillies won Sunday's game 7-3, but that doesn't mask what was a missed opportunity to score an extra run for Philadelphia. Through no fault of the team, Domonic Brown's single hit the umpire at second base and was immediately ruled a dead ball. There were runners on first and third, but Ryan Howard, on third, was not allowed to advance. The bases were loaded for Wilson Valdez, who grounded into an inning-ending double play. Just overall a weird play and a weird result -- you'd think Howard would be able to score on that play. (MLB.com)

EJECTED
: Jason Marquis was ejected from the game Sunday after plunking Justin Upton for the fourth time in the four-game series. Both Marquis and manager Jim Riggleman were adamant that the HBP was not intentional after two Nationals got hit in the inning previous. You can believe that, as the game was currently 1-0 and Upton represented the go-ahead run on base. (MLB.com)

HARPER DOWN
: Touted Nationals prospect Bryce Harper was hit by a pitch on the left knee in the first inning, and had to leave the game after needing to hobble to the dugout. Good news, though: It appears to be just a bone bruise, so he should be back in the lineup before long. (Washington Post)

ZIMMERMAN REHABBING: In that same game in which Harper was struck by a pitch, third baseman Ryan Zimmerman began his comeback trail by going 2-for-2 with a walk. Zim had an ab tear way back on April 9 and is only just getting back into the fold. It's unclear when Zimmerman will return to Washington, but mid-June looks like a good bet. (MLB.com)

VERLANDER THE BEST? Jim Leyland's been around, so he's got plenty of first-hand experience on which pitcher has been the best to ever pitch for Leyland. The long-time skipper says Verlander has the best stuff of any pitcher he's seen without question, although he still calls Doug Drabek the best pitcher, as Verlander is still learning how to pitch. (MLB.com)

PERFECT IN TRIPLE-A
: Mike Minor has made two spot starts for the Braves due to Brandon Beachy's injury, but was shipped back to Triple-A as the club did not need a fifth starter for a while. Minor showed Atlanta he should be considered for the next spot start after taking a perfect game into the seventh and finishing up with a one-hitter through eight. (Atlanta Journal-Constitution)

TIME TO WAIT: Many in the game seemed to feel as if Brett Lawrie would be called up to Toronto last Friday. That changed when he was hit by a pitch, and that bruise has landed him on the seven-day DL although it was backdated to the point where he will only miss two games. Once Lawrie's pain subsides, he's expected to make his major-league debut. (MLB.com)

HITTING HINDERED: Luke Scott's torn labrum is affecting his hitting, he finally admitted on Sunday. Scott is hitting just .224 this year with six home runs and received a cortisone shot in the hopes that clears up the pain. For now, he's still avoiding any talk about surgery. (MASN)

BELTRAN BRUISED: Carlos Beltran has had a strong season so far, crushing a league-leading 19 doubles and playing in 57 of a possible 59 games. On Sunday, he had to leave the game with a bruise after fouling a ball off his right leg, but is considered day-to-day. (New York Times)

BACKSTOP HEALING: Nick Hundley bashed a home run in his rehab start on Sunday, proving his strained oblique has healed nicely. If he comes through his rehab assignment with no setbacks, he could be back in San Diego by Wednesday. (MLB.com)

MENTAL BREAKS: Jason Bay (New York Times) and Alex Rios (MLB.com) are both receiving mental breaks as both players are scuffling. Rios has been letting his frustrating seep out, so manager Ozzie Guillen feels as if Rios could benefit from a few days off. Bay, who has struggled mightily, will be back in the lineup when the team plays again Tuesday.

BATTING AROUND: Curious how many teams have batted around in the order during the first inning without recording an out? Well, the last time that happened was in 2006 when the Indians terrorized K.C. for seven runs before registering their first out, needing 10 hitters to do so. (Baseball Reference)

NEW JOB? Ozzie Guillen's on the hot seat in Chicago, so his job mixing drinks for a charity event could prove a harbinger of his future job. OK, not really. (White Sox Twitter)

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Posted on: June 3, 2011 12:10 pm
Edited on: June 3, 2011 12:54 pm
 

Victorino back, Mayberry down

By C. Trent Rosecrans

Shane VictorinoShane Victorino is coming back to the Phillies and Domonic Brown will be there to greet him, as the team has sent down John Mayberry Jr. to make room for Victorino on the active roster.

Victorino, 30, went on the DL on May 20 after hurting his right hamstring a week earlier. He played two games each for Double-A Reading and Class A Lakewood, going 2 for 13 with a home run and four RBI. He was hitting .284/.343/.503 with six home runs and 19 RBI in 39 games before he was hurt.

Mayberry, 27, played in 45 games for the Phillies, hitting .231/.316/.365 with three home runs and 12 RBI. Mayberry started the season strong, mostly as a pinch-hitter, hitting .345/.424/.517 in April. He started five games and made 33 plate appearances. In May, he had g17 starts, but hit just .194/.275/.319 in his expanded playing time.

Brown has started seven games since being called up on May 21 and is hitting .324/.368/.529 with one home run and five RBI in 38 plate appearances -- numbers similar to Mayberry's first month in the majors.

Brown started the season on the disabled list after suffering a broken hamate bone in March.

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Posted on: May 22, 2011 4:37 pm
Edited on: May 22, 2011 4:40 pm
 

Phillies sign Podsednik to minor-league deal

By C. Trent Rosecrans

Scott PodsednikIn what seems to be an attempt to bolster a struggling outfield, the Phillies have signed outfielder Scott Podsednik to a minor-league contract, Ken Rosenthal of FoxSports.com tweets.

The 35-year-old signed a minor-league deal with the Blue Jays in the offseason, but was released earlier this month after hitting just .254/.365/.352 in 85 plate appearances.

Podsednik played for the Royals and Dodgers last season, hitting .297/.342/.382 with six home runs and 35 stolen bases.

Earlier this week, the Phillies placed Shane Victorino on the disabled list and called up top prospect Domonic Brown. Raul Ibanez and Ben Francisco have struggled as the team's other outfielders.

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Posted on: May 20, 2011 2:42 pm
Edited on: May 20, 2011 3:20 pm
 

Domonic Brown promoted to majors

By Evan Brunell

BrownDomonic Brown has finally recieved the call to the major leagues.

The move was made when Shane Victorino hit the disabled list. Brown is naturally a right fielder, so Ben Francisco and Michael Martinez will split playing time in center. Brown will also have to contend with John Mayberry, Jr., but Mayberry will likely man left field in lieu of Raul Ibanez against left-handers.

Brown, 23, made his major-league debut last season and posted a .210/.257/.355 line in 70 plate appearances. He entered spring training in the lead for the right field job, but injuries knocked him out. He's been playing in Triple-A, getting 51 plate appearances after a five-game stint in high-Class A. For Triple-A, he was raking to the tune of a .341/.431/.537 line with two home runs. GM Ruben Amaor has been adamant that Brown needs more playing time, but appears to have changed his mind as the Phillies are in desperate need of offense, and Brown is the logical boost.

In another move, the team optioned reliever Scott Mathieson to the minors and recalled David Herndon. Joe Blanton is also expected to go on the DL, but that hasn't happened yet.

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Posted on: May 20, 2011 12:29 pm
 

Pepper: Scorching Hafner could hit DL



By Evan Brunell


HAFNER HURT: Indians DH Travis Hafner is hitting like it's 2006, as the oft-injured DH is roaring along at a .345/.409/.549 clip with eight doubles and five home runs in 127 plate appearances.

Sure, that average is over his head, but he's still geared up to have a quality season. It's about time, as Hafner has been one of the game's most overpaid players as he succumbed to injuries following his four-year, $57 million deal signed during the 2007 season. He's been a major reason why Cleveland finds itself in first place, and has helped fend off any type of decline that could have happened once Grady Sizemore hit the disabled list.

Unfortunately, Hafner may be joining Sizemore on the DL with a sore oblique. He was taking swings in the batting cage prior to Wednesday's game when one swing left him unable to swing any more. After being a late scratch, Hafner plans to get the injury checked out Friday with a MRI.

"One of the big things was how it felt [Thursday] morning," said Hafner. "It wasn't worse. That's kind of encouraging."

Obliques are the scourge of baseball these days, and unfortunately for Hafner, he's probably going to have to go on the DL and could be out for a month or more. (Cleveland Plain Dealer)

LEYLAND'S BACK
: Jim Leyland still lives in Pittsburgh, but he hasn't been back in the stadium as an opposing manager since 2006, his first year with the Tigers. Leyland, of course, is well known for his 11 years managing the Pirates in the glory days, back when Barry Bonds was manning left field. (MLive.com)

RJM:
A nice story about Ricky Romero and J.P. Arencibia's night on Thursday. Romero went seven strong while J.P. Arencibia crushed a home run that eventually gave the team a 3-1 victory. Both players were reeling from the passing of a two-year-old fan after a battle with leukemia. (Toronto Star)

UNPRECEDENTED:
Jose Bautista's leap from last man on the bench to the best hitter in the game is still tough to wrap one's head around. But it's not the last time such a leap has been made. The closest comparable? Seattle's Bret Boone, who jumped in relevancy from 1999-2001. Of course, the likelihood that Boone used steroids is high, but unless you're really reaching or just hate Bautista/the Blue Jays, the same questions are not there for Bautista. (Fangraphs)

TURNING THE CLOCK BACK:
It's always entertaining to see players wear throwback uniforms. Sometimes these uniforms are preferable to the current set... sometimes they're nice memories or a way of learning more about history. Sometimes, they make us burst out laughing. History's being profiled Saturday when the Red Sox and Cubs wear 1918-era uniforms. (Boston Globe) Here's a look at what you can expect -- the 1918 uniforms of the BoSox and the 1918 road uniforms for the Cubs. And yes, no logo for the Red Sox.

FLIPPING THE BIRD
: Sometimes I wonder if we take ourselves a little too seriously. Andre Ethier, who was slightly irritated with a photographer prior to Monday's game, flipped him the bird before adding the other hand to the equation. Ethier joked about the situation before Thursday's game before issuing a standard mea culpa. "I wasn’t [angry] at all. If you’re going to stand there and take the same picture for 15 minutes, what’s the difference between the first and the 15th minute? It just got kind of annoying. I guess I slipped up, and that temper you guys sometimes like to write about, got ahead of me and I didn’t use my head and use the best judgment in that situation. I made a mistake of it and it’s unfortunate." Don't we have better things to worry about? (Los Angeles Times)

DISLIKED:
Are the Cardinals the most disliked team in baseball? Let's look at the evidence. (St. Louis Post-Dispatch)

WHERE'S ALLIE?
When talking about Pittsburgh Pirates pitching prospects (try saying that four times in a row), the conversation invariably turns to Jameson Taillon and Stetson Allie. Except that Allie is nowhere to be found on the stats pages. That's because he's been at extended spring training, working on his windup and a lack of control. Things have progressed to the point where he is nearing game action. (Pittsburgh Post-Gazette)

LIND ETA:
Adam Lind won't be back with the Blue Jays for at least 10 days and is still a week away from baseball action in his recovery from a sore back. (Sportsnet via Twitter)

WHO'S OUT IN BALTIMORE? When Alfredo Simon returns to the Orioles' bullpen on Sunday, someone's gotta go. Bet on one of Brad Bergesen or Chris Tillman, as Jeff Zrebiec writes. Both -- especially Bergesen -- have been very poor in the rotation and the team can go with four starters for several days because of Brian Matusz's looming return late next week. (Baltimore Sun)

JOHN SMOLTZ RULE: John Smoltz effected a rule change in minor-league baseball while on a rehab assignment with the Red Sox in 2009. Now, major-league pitchers on rehab starts down on the farm can use major-league baseballs in games. (MLBlogs.com)

TWITTER CLOSED: Tony Sanchez closed his Twitter account amid what we thought were the Pirates being too sensitive about players going on Twitter and expressing a personality. However, Sanchez closed his account on his own (although a stern talking-to from the brass didn't help). Sanchez was benched three games for criticizing umpires. (Pittsburgh Tribune-Review)

GOLD: A pretty neat promotion the Angels are putting on in which fans will get an autographed baseball from a player. Those lucky enough to end up with a gold baseball will then get to meet that player and get four tickets to another Angels game. (Orange County Register)

DL-BOUND: Joe Blanton is returning to the DL and will take Shane Victorino with him. The Flyin' Hawaiian has been hobbled the last few days and now the Phillies have decided they can't wait for him to heal much longer. Don't expect Domonic Brown's promotion, as GM Ruben Amaro continues to hold Brown back. (Wonder if it has to do with service time?) Anyways, expect either Delwyn Young or Ronnie Belliard to get the spot. (CSNPhilly.com)

NO MORE TOBACCO: The call to ban all types of tobacco in baseball only got stronger with the Diamondbacks' CEO Ken Kendrick calling for such a ban. (Arizona Republic)

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Posted on: May 14, 2011 12:08 pm
 

Domonic Brown to miss a week with strained thumb

By Evan Brunell

BrownDomonic Brown will see his return to the majors sidelined for at least a week, as he will be out of game action for five to seven days more after suffering a first-degree sprain of a ligament in his right thumb Wednesday diving for a ball in the outfield as the Philadelphia Inquirer reports.

The Phillies could really use Brown's offense as Ben Francisco has done anything but run away with the job and the club is only just seeing Raul Ibanez get hot. After suffering a broken hamate bone in the spring, Brown has collected a scorching .353/.425/.588 line in 40 plate appearances for Triple-A, banging two homers and swiping a base. While Brown is likely the best option right now to man right field for Philly, he's been hobbled by injuries the last few game-playing months, also suffering a strained quad in September 2010. He simply needs at-bats, and the team is wisely opting to have him get those at-bats in Triple-A.

Still, Brown needs to stay on the field. He's important to Phiadelphia's offense, especially down the stretch. If he keeps getting dinged up, the Phillies won't be comfortable bringing him up. As a result, he's  earned several additional days of games in Triple-A beyond whenever his recall date might have been.

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The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com