Happy Sunday! In case you missed it, yesterday was an intrasquad game for the Mariners that was sadly not televised nor broadcast in any way, shape, or form. I say sadly because this was an especially toothsome matchup, featuring top pitching prospects and yet relatively unseen pitchers Logan Gilbert and Brandon Williamson, along with a host of other young prospects. While we appreciate very much the fact that the Mariners are televising workouts at all, including intrasquad games on Fridays, to have nothing on weekends seems particularly rough for the people who work during the week and aren’t able to livestream practices nor scrimmages, in addition to being a golden opportunity to get fans (in the NW market and beyond!) invested in this next wave of Mariners prospects. We hope the team will reconsider, especially as there’s a non-zero chance intrasquad scrimmages might be the closest thing we see to baseball all year.
Scenes from yesterday’s intrasquad scrimmage:
- Rust? What rust? Logan Gilbert was entirely dominant in his first inning of work, retiring the side 1-2-3 and topping out at 96 mph. On the day, LoGi threw 28 pitches over two innings, which is higher than he would like for sure, but he also recorded four strikeouts.
- Jarred Kelenic worked a walk off Gilbert and Donnie “Donovan” Walton doubled to score him, which would be the only scoring of the day.
- On the other side, Brandon Williamson wasn’t as efficient as Gilbert, but did young Noelvi Marte pretty dirty with this slider:
Here’s the video. That 3-2 breaking ball is nasty pic.twitter.com/Lqv9YVLc5C— Ryan Divish (@RyanDivish) July 11, 2020
Today, Williamson apparently didn’t have his best control over his nastiest pitch, the curveball, so these poor batters have an unpleasant surprise waiting for them in the future.
- Joey Gerber also pitched yesterday, and if you haven’t listened to the most recent podcast with Gerber as a guest, you should. He uses the word “facade” properly and everything [stares in Ryon Healy].
Joey Gerber works out of some trouble in his inning. Walk, fielding error, but then gets a double play ball and strikes out Lopes swinging. pic.twitter.com/P7tyc00CXH— Lauren Smith (@smithlm12) July 11, 2020
- Dan Altavilla is a very nice human but also joined the party of veteran pitchers putting rookies in their place on this nasty slider to strike out Jarred Kelenic:
Altavilla faced five batters - all outs. Struck out Haggerty and Kelenic on three pitches, Vogelbach on four. Was consistently upper 90s. 14 pitches. pic.twitter.com/I1Cu0eQ19a— Lauren Smith (@smithlm12) July 11, 2020
- The biggest bummer of the day: apparently Gerson Bautista, after hitting triple digits on the stadium gun, walked off the field pointing to his elbow. That’s pretty devastating news for a guy who worked hard to get back healthy and effective and looked really sharp in Spring Training before the shutdown. Here’s hoping the elbow wrap was just precautionary.
In other Mariners news:
- Kyle Lewis isn’t only grabbing headlines around Seattle press. The Grey Lady has apparently been doing a series on Lewis, which is pretty cool. The latest one includes the heartbreaking anecdote Lewis recently shared in the Black Voices in Baseball panel, about a racist incident he experienced while playing for the Mariners’ Double-A affiliate in the Texas League. If you missed the previous installment, here’s a link to that.
Around the league:
- Veteran infielder Brian Dozier was released by the Padres:
- Puig your Baltimore Oriole? Part of me hates it, part of me wants to see Puig in Hampden hanging out with John Waters at the Hon Cafe. Okay, a lot of me wants to see that. Perhaps a pink flamingo-inspired hairstyle for Puig?
- The last catcher on the Royals’ 40-man roster, Cam Gallagher, has tested positive for COVID-19. Worse, Gallagher was asymptomatic and had played in an intrasquad game the night before his positive test. Here’s hoping it was a false positive, like the test that apparently slowed Joey Gallo’s return to the sport. Also, maybe consider cleaning your catcher gear a little more intently, Royals.
- Aroldis Chapman is the latest high-profile player to test positive for the virus.
- These quotes from Rays catcher Kevan Smith are brutal, and make me gladder than usual that I don’t live in the state of Florida. Look, if Pennsylvania—a state where, until recently, you couldn’t buy beer except by the caseload, a state that boasts a city that has literally been on fire since 1962—is looking like the more responsible state in this equation, that is a big big problem, okay!
- The Astros have had to cancel yet another workout:
#Astros cancel today’s workout in Houston “as a precautionary step due to a potential direct exposure” of COVID-19 to a staff member. Team says it is working to “safely bring our players and staff back to the field as soon as possible.” @MLBNetwork— Jon Morosi (@jonmorosi) July 11, 2020
- I wasn’t sure where to put this, but this should have been the All-Star weekend, and today was the day that should have been the Futures Game. The Mariners probably would have been represented by some combination of Jarred Kelenic-Logan Gilbert-Julio Rodriguez-or I don’t know, pick literally any of our pitching prospects. 2020 sucks, y’all. If you’re really hard-up and have a Baseball America sub, Josh Norris put together some hypothetical rosters; the Mariners are represented by their two twin teen titans but no pitchers, but it’s fun to think about whether Logan Gilbert would have been included or if he and Kelenic would have both had to bow out if they were already in Seattle.
- Luis Robert of the White Sox fell down hitting a home run and it’s glorious:
Se caiga al piso indeed.
- I don’t know about you but I have been having kind of a Hard Time of it lately, and since there was no baseball to watch yesterday and it was too rainy to go out and do some badly overdue weeding, I spent most of the day finishing off the Netflix Babysitters Club reboot. I was a huge fan of the books growing up until the point where my mom refused to buy them for me anymore because I could read one cover to cover in twenty-six minutes (and yes, I did time myself. I am such a Kristy in a lot of ways, even though nine-year-old me would have hated to admit that). Anyway, the show itself, while being as low-stakes as the books, is really gentle and inclusive but still pretty funny! and would be excellent watching with a tween in your life, regardless of gender expression (about which the show also has something to say, in a similarly gentle and inclusive vein). And if anyone knows where I can get a copy of the Super Specials I foolishly gave away as a teenager who wanted to fill her shelves with grownup books I never loved as dearly as the good old BSC, hit me up.
- I wasn’t joking above about Centralia, Pennsylvania, a once-bustling town that has been on fire since 1962 and is now reduced to a modern ghost town. Learn more about it, and Pennsylvania’s fraught coal-mining history, from the documentary on the town or any of the other writings on it.