- Over at the Athletic, Jim Bowden wrote about fifteen prospects who have made a jump so far this season, with quotes from general managers. For the Rays he chose Jesus Sánchez and Nick Solak.
- Baseball America ranked the ten best minor league stadiums, and Durham came in at number six.
- The Rays offense has been on a historic hot streak.
This was the first time in franchise history that the #Rays have scored 8 or more runs in 4 consecutive games.— Steve Kinsella (@Steve_Kinsella1) April 26, 2018
Let that sink in for a minute......
Seriously, think about it.
- Of course, the biggest news was the comeback story of Johnny Venters, who faced a major league batter yesterday for the first time since 2012. Marc Topkin wrote a feature.
- Steve Kinsella did as well.
- As did Jeff Seidel.
- And on Twitter there was an outpouring of support for Venters from his team and teammates.
Huuuuuuuuuge congrats to the perseverance of Jonny! So happy to be able to witness him overcome & achieve his goals pic.twitter.com/U3YW0nTESo— Chris Archer (@ChrisArcher22) April 26, 2018
Pulling for ya JV! Love ya buddy— Chipper Jones (@RealCJ10) April 26, 2018
The outpouring love this man is receiving on Twitter is not a mistake. Beyond honored to have met you a couple years ago and see you climb and persevere back to where you belong in this game. Most humble, soft spoken man I have met in baseball. Congrats Jonny V!! pic.twitter.com/IX98XngJfD— Daniel Robertson (@D_Robertson28) April 26, 2018
Jonny Venters, ladies and gentlemen. If you don’t know, now you know.— Rocco Baldelli (@roccodbaldelli) April 26, 2018
What an honor it was to be in the bullpen tonight while Jonny Venters was making his comeback! Congrats my man! #rays— Matt Andriese (@MAndriese) April 26, 2018
- Just look at these guys not playing the game the right way.
- The silent treatments: it’s not just for rookies anymore.
- Rachel McDaniel wrote a serious and thoughtful Short Relief about homophobic slurs in baseball, and about the experience of code switching as a baseball writer. Every one of us is code switching constantly to some extent, as we move through the world. It’s a good exercise to think how other people are doing it, and why.
- It’s not too early to start pondering a Manny Machado trade.
- Jeff Sullivan with one of those, “Wait, what?” observations. Kurt Suzuki, now 34, has recently become very very good.
- Clutch hitting: still not a replicable skill.
Lastly, there’s an auction to benefit the Umps Care charities right now, live through the 30th. Here’s the info:
It’s the 10th year of the auction, and it’s one of the major fundraisers that helps the charity support youth programs to provide MLB experiences for children awaiting adoption, Build-A-Bear Workshop experiences for hospitalized children coping with serious illnesses, college scholarships for deserving young adults who were adopted as children, and financial assistance for families in need. UMPS CARE Charities is the official charity of Major League Baseball umpires.
You can find and bid on items here. There’s a Kevin Kiermaier signed jersey available, but I have my eye on the “Lunch with an ump.” If you were choosing which ump to have lunch with, who would it be?