Around the NL East - Hamels, Niese, Rollins DL'd, Contreras, Zimmermann, deactivated, Reyes, Hanley, Strasburg rehabbing

Hurricane Irene, or the arrival of Galactus?

Did you know that in 1999, the then-Braves affiliated High-A Myrtle Beach Pelicans were playing for the Carolina League Mills Cup Championship in their inaugural season? Very impressive for a new team to overcome the constant shuffle of securing a High-A squad over the prior three years, a new park on the beach with new unfamiliar tendencies, but still went to show off the Braves' strength in developing pitching, as they dominated their way to the finals. Opposing them were the Royals' Wilmington Blue Rocks, and the two teams battled it out to a 2-2 series, with the deciding game to take place at Myrtle Beach.

It never happened because Hurricane Floyd obliterated the eastern seaboard to the point where it couldn't be made up. But of course you all know this already, because you've all already bought and read the MSP Braves Annual, right? Right??

But there's my hurricane story for the week. I'm actually kind of glad that Saturday and Sunday's games have been cancelled; I've got a lot of household chores to tend to, and a new laptop that is begging to be clean installed and nerded up. It's kind of a relaxing reprieve, to be honest.

Welcome back to the basement.


Cole Hamels to DL - Phillies Nation
It's funny, the earthquake had more impact in Virginia than it did Pennsylvania, but it seems like every Phillies site is the one spouting all the bad earthquake puns. Either way, Hamels to DL, every saw it coming, but it's retroactive to about a full two weeks ago, so he'll be back on Monday. The Connect Four champion, recalled for two days.

Jered Weaver's extention to give glimpse of what Hamels could expect - Phillies Zone
Comparably, they're fairly close in numbers. Now that Weaver commands a $15M/year salary, what can Cole Hamels expect, nearing free agency?

Jimmy Rollins DL'd with strained right groin - Beerleaguer
Bad time to get an injury that hampers speed. I'd say good news for the Braves, but the Phillies don't really seem to lose in the wake of injuries, no matter who goes out.

Jose Contreras done for season with elbow problems - Phillies Zone
What really sucks? Contreras is kind of a contingency plan in the even that Lidge and/or Madson depart, and is actually under contract for 2012. The surgery he'll undergo is exploratory, meaning nobody really has any genuine idea of what the problem is; so it could be as small as bone chips, tendon problems, or, you guessed it; ligament damage.

Phillies' cost of injuries - Crashburn Alley
Seeing long lists of DL'd players like this kind of reminds me of the Braves last year. Not that I'm championing the injuries to all these players, but I'm kind of glad that fans of other teams can see kind of what we Braves fans had to endure around this time last year. Fact: not every member of the Phillies opening day lineup has been DL'd, but every single member of the opening day lineup has missed games due to injury.

Oh wait, there's more - Phillies Zone
Ryan Howard and Raul Ibanez achy and taking some games off as well. Ibanez with a sore left groin, and Howard, having some inflammation in the ankle he injured... last year.

Phillies vs. Marlins to consolidate games - Phillies Nation
The difference is that the Phillies are doing it to hope to avoid Hurricane Irene, but the Marlins are doing it simply to end the pain and suffering that is the probable routs that the Phillies customarily put on them.

What's this? - Beerleaguer
A Phillies blog that is acknowledging that the Braves aren't dead in the division race yet? Doth my eyes deceive me?

Jazz haaaaaaaaaaaandsss - The Good Phight
Man, I didn't think for a second that the Shane Victorino Foundation would have a second annual fashion show. Poor Cole Hamels. You'd think Chunk had naked pictures of his mom or something, and threatened to sell them real cheap if he didn't do this.



Stephen Strasburg nearing return, to make another start at AAA - Nationals Journal
Supposedly, he will start in AAA, and make one last tune-up start at AA, before joining the Nationals after the minor league season completes.

Jordan Zimmermann nearing deactivation - Nats Insider
In a sample of what Stephen Strasburg can expect in 2012, one-year removed from TJS Jordan Zimmermann is set to make one more start before being deactivated for the remainder of the season. Previously the Nationals' top pitching prospect prior to injury, a 1-2 punch of Strasburg and Zimmermann will be deadly for years to come if they both remain healthy.

Scott Boras thinks Ivan Rodriguez should stay with the Nationals - MASN
That's a new tactic - typically Boras clients stick to a script about how they want to finish out their careers in __, and then they go elsewhere, but I can't remember if Boras has actually advised someone to stay somewhere. It doesn't really matter if Washington doesn't make it worth it, but considering Boras clients comprise of 20% of the 40-man, the jokes I made in the past about the Nationals becoming the All-Boras club don't seem as off-beat as they once were.

Danny Espinosa using Twitter to connect to fans - Nationals Journal
In an earnest attempt to walk amongst us commoners, Danny Espinosa tweeted that he would give tickets to the first four people who asked him about them at a Baja Fresh burrito joint. And in wake of the earthquake that RAVAGED the Washington D.C. area, Espinosa implored locals to come out to the park to get over the fear of the devastating disaster.

Wilson Ramos may have tipped oncoming pitches - MASN
Maybe it's little things like this that could convince the Nationals to retain Pudge; the catcher of the future was essentially setting up too soon, hinting to the batter of what might be coming, stuff that a seasoned veteran like Rodriguez might be able to teach more efficiently.

If just for one game, one series, the Nationals fought back - Nats NQ
I have to admit, when the Nationals took their home series against the Phillies on two walk-offs, I wasn't as happy for the Braves, nor was I as happy for the Nationals, but I was happiest for the Nationals fans in attendance who have had to put up with invasion after invasion from the Phillies fans that infest their park whenever the Phils are in town.

Phillies advertisers still enjoy kicking Jayson Werth while he's down - The Bog
Apparently a Toyota dealership out in Pennsylvania still hasn't gotten over the departure of Werth, even if he is having a pretty lousy year in Washington. To the point where their banner ads on still do nothing but poke shots at The Dude's batting average, amongst other probable reasons that are kind of irrelevant these days.

Jayson Werth strains groin - Nats Insider
I think the worst outcome of most strains and tweaks is simply the unknowns that come along with it. Groin strains mostly need some rest, but if guys are continually insisting they can go, they're going to go, at a slightly inhibited pace.

Throwing opposing homers back onto field at Nats Park gets you thrown out - The Bog
No matter where it's at, it's a stupid tradition. If I catch any ball that was in play, I'm keeping that sucker, booing or goading from those around me be damned.

Uber-ballhawk/dork Zack Hample gets his ass kicked (sorta) at Nationals Park - His Blog
The saddest thing is that I know who Zack Hample is, because he's always capable of getting into baseball news several times a season, for his overzealous pursuit of baseballs at the park, all across the MLB landscape. But amusing to me, is his own account about how one aggressive Nationals Park employee gallantly denied Hample of one more baseball to add to his ridiculous collection.



Jon Niese DL'd, Scott Hairston to accompany - MLB
Ribcage injury to Niese. This will prevent him from facing the Braves over the weekend, if the games actually happen. Hairston has a strained left intercostal (within ribcage) muscle, which could DL him as well, leaving the Mets extremely depleted at this moment.

Hurricane Irene expectancy causing schedule-altering - The Mets Police
Personally, considering the Mets aren't really in contention, I'd rather Saturday and Sunday's games be postponed, and after the Braves take the division and clinch, it gets to a point where those two games won't have to mathematically happen. I can wish, right?

Jose Reyes has begun rehab assignments - ESPN NY
The good news is that Reyes is expected to be ready to go for the Mets by Monday. Barring any rescheduling to Monday means the Braves may avoid him outright this weekend.

How much will these constant injuries cost Reyes? - FanGraphs
Using WAR and win shares as their variables, FanGraphs tries to hypothesize what the effects of a 100-game a season guy would feasibly expect to make next year, as opposed to someone who is a little bit more reliably healthy.

Johan Santana "back on track" - NY Post
I bet there will be a setback or something detrimental next week. Seriously, that's precisely has it's been for the last six weeks now.

Citi Field to move outfield wall in - Amazin' Avenue
Allegedly as soon as next year, the left and right field walls will be moved in. How much, not quite sure yet, but this kind of news probably has to excite guys like David Wright and Jason Bay whose numbers have been made to look more pedestrian than their power is.

K-Rod not the least bit deterred in return to New York - NY Post
It's funny how calm and collected, like a Hindu cow, K-Rod gets when he's playing for a contender. Naturally, while back in New York with the Brew Crew, K-Rod is booed, but bother him, it didn't.

Sarge calls the Mets crybabies - NY Daily News
This once short great rivalry's come to this?

I guess this is a good thing for Phillies fans - NY Times
Once an easy two hour drive for hundreds of Mets fans to watch a divisional matchup is turning into a scarcity over at Citizens Bank Park. The Times reports on the dwindling number of Mets fans that show up to root for their team in hostile, fairweathered Philadelphia. Considering the last time I was in Philly, coincidentally for a Mets visit, I saw no less than four fights, and one bloodied Mets fan, I guess I'm not surprised.

Nick Cannon tries to break hug record, makes critical error of using Mets game as setting - The Apple
Seriously, Nick Cannon wanted to try to break the record of most hugs in an hour. Whether or not it actually happened is unknown because I'm a lazy journalist poser, but using a Mets game as the setting to accomplish such might not have been the best idea. Doesn't matter thought; the record has probably been broken 20 times over in the Braves' dugout, by Freddie Freeman.

Angel Pagan delays game due to intestinal emergency - NY Daily News
With the last few years of LOLMets, it's almost surprising that it's taken this long before it went in this direction. Honestly, I'm just so not surprised, that I can't think of anything witty to say about it. However, it is interesting, because in all the years I've watched "the big" professional sports, I was always curious to how bathroom breaks were handled. I still think the worst is tennis, because when the urge hits, typically the entire match is over "due to intestinal cramps." Imagine if like Serena Williams or Novak Djokovic had to forfeit Wimbledon because they ate something funny the night before? How awful.

Saving the best for last - Amazin' Avenue
Realtive to the preceding link, I really like and admire this piece, because of the emotion and cerebral vitriol in the tone of Matthew Callan's words. Naturally, being fans of a rival team, we're expected to laugh and tout the LOLMets that understandably Mets fans are beyond tired of caring for, much like I'm pretty over outsiders taking shots at Atlanta attendance. But the exasperation at the local media who have taken it upon themselves to blast the Mets and take endless shots, yeah, I can understand how old that can get real fast. That being said, I salute this post, because it really has me thinking of my own approach to seeing the Mets, not just as a constant butt of lame jokes, more often than not, just a team plagued by unfortunate circumstances.



Sometimes, it's hard to be a Marlins fan - Marlin Maniac
Of course, the dbaggery that came out of the Dan Uggla-Marlins divorce came from Dan Uggla's side. But a fairly well contemplated list of why it sometimes sucks to be a Marlins fan.

Logan Morrison recalled, has no idea of what happened - Marlins Diehards
Honestly, this sounds a lot like the Jeff Francoeur demotion, but a few days longer. Interestingly, as indicative of the Marlins' cheapness, LoMo is brought back to Miami through Fort Lauderdale, and not, Miami. Regardless, the mood out of this whole debacle seems kind of tense, and leading to an inevitable departure sooner rather than later.

An official count of Marlins attendance - Deadspin
347 people showed up to the second game of a doubleheader between the Marlins and Reds. Announced attendance was 22,505. Just a little exacerbation going on there.

Hanley Ramirez to begin rehabbing - Palm Beach Post
If all goes well, he'll be back next week, hopefully minus Hurricane Irene havoc.

Ricky Nolasco surpasses franchise record in Ks, former holder Dontrelle Willis applauds - Fish Stripes
Granted, with a franchise as young as the Marlins, these records are kind of flimsy, but regardless, I'm glad to see that despite his recent uncertainty, that Dontrelle Willis is as gracious as ever, saluting his former teammate.

Trader Jack thinks team's play is unacceptable - Palm Beach Post
They've lost 15 out of their last 17. That's yeah, pretty bad.

Mike Stanton is apparently the only ray of hope - Marlin Maniac
A litany of links showing the offensive and defensive prowess of Mike Stanton.

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