Tag: Baseball

John Smoltz

Jonah Keri braves the elements with Hall of Fame pitcher John Smoltz about the best weather for pitching; being traded as a prospect; the legendary Braves starting rotation of the 1990s; fostering longevity in pitchers; keys to the Braves’ suc…

Where Have All the Pinch Hitters Gone? Pirates’ Joyce Mastering Vanishing Craft

When the Pittsburgh Pirates signed Matt Joyce to a minor league contract in February, they were buying a penny stock.

Once a productive regular and 2011 All-Star for the Tampa Bay Rays, Joyce had nearly whiffed his way out of baseball last season, hitting a woeful .174/.272/.291. So when the Buccos took a flyer on him on the eve of spring training, they were guaranteeing nothing more than a minor league contract, with a chance to make $1 million if he made the big league roster…still a rock-bottom salary by today’s standards.

The 30: Four Teams Creating Late-Summer Drama in This Week’s Rankings

August can be a rough month to be a baseball player. Dating back to the start of spring training, you’ve been diving after liners in the gap and snapping off curveballs for six months. When a day game after a night game comes along in 97-degree weather, it’s easy to feel a little less sharp or to lose that normal jolt of energy.

Sarah Tiana

Jonah Keri talks Chop with Sarah Tiana about fantasy sports; her job shooting the t-shirt cannon at Atlanta Braves games; Sarah’s recent 2nd place finish on Roast Battle; her upcoming pilot; her friendship with John Rich; tenacity; going to ba…

The 30: Four Teams Going Streaking in This Week’s Power Rankings

The concept of momentum in baseball is fraught with counterexamples. Plenty of teams have entered the postseason scorching hot only to flame out quickly. Plenty of teams have backed into the playoffs only to go on to win the World Series. Generating big winning streaks (or big losing streaks) late in the season guarantees nothing.

Cameron Esposito and Rhea Butcher

Jonah Keri puts his hands together for Cameron Esposito and Rhea Butcher (creators and stars of the new Seeso show “Take My Wife”) about specificity in sports; the Olympics; LeBron and Cleveland; the current political landscape; working with y…

The Top Turnaround Stories in MLB This Season, from Ken Giles to Zack Greinke

Four weeks into the 2016 season, the Astros looked like they’d made one of the dumbest trades in recent major league history.

Vince Velasquez, a then-23-year-old right-hander traded away over the winter, looked like he was developing into a star. He fired 15 straight shutout innings to start the season, capping that two-start rampage with a 16-strikeout, no-walk, three-hit shutout of the Padres, one of the most electrifying performances by any pitcher this season.

A.J. Ellis

Jonah Keri cops a squat with A.J. Ellis, catcher for the Los Angeles Dodgers, about the trade deadline; Zack Greinke and Clayton Kershaw; addressing slumps and declining skills; a day in the life of a major league catcher; playing at high alti…