Halfway though the season already?
There’s a lot of New York today.
- Voting for the All-Star Game starters begins in about four hours from the time that this article gets posted—11 a.m. Central time on Wednesday. Here’s what you need to know to get seven Cubs in the starting lineup. Write-in Robel Garcia for second base. He has 20 home runs already. (There are no write-in votes. Garcia has also never played in the majors.)
- We’re about halfway through the 2019 MLB regular season and David Schoenfield has a big list of all the big developments of the first half.
- One thing that’s important about the first half is the number of home runs that have been hit. Dr. Meredith Wills continues her research into the baseballs and concludes that the baseballs have changed again and they is leading to the balls flying even farther. (The Athletic sub. req.) For those who don’t subscribe or who don’t want to wade through all the scientific evidence she presents, her basic point is that the balls are simply being made better and of a higher quality. (That’s overly simplistic, but basically it.) High quality balls are rounder, smoother and they fly farther.
- The Yankees have now homered in an MLB record 28 consecutive games.
- It was second baseman DJ LeMahieu who extended the streak and David Schoenfield calls LeMahieu the stealth star of the Yankees this season.
- The bad news for the Yankees is that outfielder Giancarlo Stanton is hurt again and he’s going to have an MRI on his knee.
- The Yankees are doing so well that MLB is sending them to London. (OK, this has actually been in the works for over a year.) Here’s everything you need to know about the London Series this weekend.
- Prince Harry will be throwing out the first pitch. What? Were they worried that Meghan was going to wear a Dodgers cap?
- One more thing about the Yankees. Ben Reiter has a major feature piece on Alex Rodriguez in retirement and how he’s made one of the greatest public re-inventions in recent American history. There’s a lot on Jennifer Lopez and how she taught him to just be himself in public. (If you don’t want to read the whole article, Mike Oz has a list of highlights.)
- The A-Rod piece was a part of Sports Illustrated’s “Where are they now?” issue, and they also have a piece on how former Red Sox third baseman Kevin Youkilis is now running his own brewery.
- Moving over to Queens, the Mets have tried to straighten out the fallout from the incident at Wrigley Field on Sunday between manager Mickey Callaway and a beat reporter. It took Callaway two tries to issue a public apology over the incident.
- Emma Baccellieri has six ways the Mets could have handled the situation better.
- Claire McNear writes about how the Mets are masters of the self-inflicted injury. They are the master of the own-goal, so to speak.
- Wallace Matthews doesn’t think the Mets should fire Callaway. He thinks the Mets and Callaway deserve each other.
- Mets general manager Brodie Van Wagenen denied that he ordered Callaway to make a pitching change during a game on June 1.
- Rays owner Stuart Sternberg held a press conference to argue that his plan to split the Rays between Tampa Bay and Montreal would be best for everyone, but it doesn’t sound like he convinced anyone.
- Phillies manager Gabe Kapler got the dreaded “vote of confidence” from GM Matt Klentak.
- Cardinals closer Jordan Hicks will undergo Tommy John surgery.
- Dan Szymborski looks at the situation with Hicks and where the Cardinals go from here.
- Padres third baseman Manny Machado returned to Baltimore Tuesday night and received a warm welcome from Orioles fans. He also hit a home run, but everyone does that on a trip to Baltimore.
- Machado talked about his feelings on returning to his first baseball home.
- Peter Gammons has a great piece on Darren Baker, Dusty’s son who is still most famous for getting picked up and carried to safety by J.T. Snow in the 2002 World Series. Darren Baker is now a pretty good baseball player in his own right. (The Athletic sub. req.) He’s leading the Cape Cod League in hitting this summer.
- Indians third baseman Jose Ramirez was an MVP-candidate the past two seasons. He’s been terrible in the first half of this year. But Craig Edwards thinks that Ramirez isn’t too far away from turning things around.
- There have been a lot of retrospectives looking back on the 50th anniversary of the 1969 season. We’ve been doing them around here and there will be another one later today. But Larry Stone explains how the Seattle Pilots are now more popular than ever, 50 years after their one and only season.
- Dodgers outfielder Cody Bellinger loves his fans. He just politely requests that they stop running onto the field during games to give him a hug.
- Former Cub Jorge Soler hit the longest foul ball that you’ll ever see.
- Finally, with Andrew McCutchen on the shelf, the Phillie Phanatic stole a camera and started his own filmmaking career.
And tomorrow will be a better day than today, Buster.