The two biggest story lines Wednesday evening and yesterday were the Melky Cabrera PED suspension, and the Felix Hernandez perfect game. The latter occurred second, and got at least as much attention as the Cabrera news. Think Melky owes Felix a fruit basket?
- How about a mix of bits in the aftermath of those two big stories? Jonah Keri looks at 27 points about Hernandez's perfect game (including a notation about Safeco being the worst ballpark for hits this season by far). Rob Neyer discusses the perfecto. FanGraphs does what FanGraphs does in breaking down the perfect game. Giants GM Brian Sabean was shocked by Cabrera's PED suspension. Victor Conte says there is rampant use of synthetic testosterone in baseball right now. FanGraphs wonders whether the 50-game suspension is enough of a deterrent to prevent guys from juicing when they know the reward could be so extreme. Rob Neyer explains why Cabrera is now the favorite to win the NL batting title.
- Red Sox President Larry Lucchino says that the Red Sox brand has been damaged during the ugly past year and a half, but they'll be back. "Every franchise, every brand goes through rough times. No one is immune to the hills and valleys," Lucchino said. "We've had a long run of success. We've created very high expectations for the franchise. Sometimes those high expectations are not met, and the result is a reduction, a hit to the brand and to the team and to the fan base. If it's broke, we'll fix it." Lucchino made sure to also give manager Bobby Valentine another vote of confidence, stating plainly that Valentine will be the manager of the team through the end of the season.
- Lucchino added that the report about Red Sox players meeting with management and ownership to inform them of their problems with Bobby Valentine was "exaggerated and inaccurate." What else is he going to say?
- Roberto Hernandez - formerly Fausto Carmona - is finally back and pitching in the big leagues after a tumultuous offseason and first few months of the season. He just finished serving a three-week suspension, during which he aged three years, from 28 to 31.
- Beyond the Boxscore looks at what's up with Hunter Pence's down season (and particularly down time in San Francisco).
- The Padres' sale has been approved by MLB owners, and is now official. The price is around $800 million, and the new owners are led by the family of Peter O'Malley, who formerly owned the Dodgers.
- Some sad news out of Toronto: last night's White Sox/Blue Jays game was delayed in the 7th inning while a fan in the stands received emergency medical attention, including CPR. The fan later passed away at a hospital.