In a game where pitchers will allow a runner to steal third, simply because a man at second might be able to see the signs shared between pitcher and catcher, it should come as no surprise that one of the biggest stories of the week involves a team seeing their rival’s pitching plan.
After a sixth-inning score in Monday’s game, Kiermaier evidently picked up a gameplan card that had fallen from Jays’ catcher Alejandro Kirk’s wristband. Kiermaier ultimate took the card back to the Rays dugout, and later told the press, “I never even looked at it, I’ll say that. But at the same time, I’m not going to drop it or hand it back.”
You can see the incident here:
The Blue Jays are not happy.— Arash Madani (@ArashMadani) September 21, 2021
Last night in the 6th, Kevin Kiermaier slid into home plate and grabbed a card (video here). That card, I'm told, was from Alejandro Kirk's wrist band that fell out on the tag.
On the card: the Blue Jays' game plan on pitching to Rays' hitters. pic.twitter.com/wjjuYd3Bhk
- Nick Selbe assesses the situation for SI.
- ESPN reports that the incident is now “aqua under the bridge.”
- David Adler takes a closer look at Kiermaier’s post-game comments.
Now on to the rest of today’s links!
- Are the A’s still considering a move to Las Vegas? Eric Fisher looks at their narrowing list of optional new ballpark sites.
- Is this 17-year-old pitcher the future of women in baseball? Jesse Dougherty gives us some insight into Paloma Benach.
- Will Bardenwerper brings us a deep dive into what the change in MLB’s farm system has done for small baseball towns.
- Ben Clemens has two great pieces on underrated players over at FanGraphs this week. He looks at Liam Hendriks, everyone’s favorite foul-mouthed reliever; and Mike Zunino, the surprising offensive heavyweight for the Rays.
- Which players graduated to stardom, or even superstardom in the 2021 season? Jeff Passan and David Schoenfield look at the new class of heroes.
- Michael Clair wonders which Wild Card contender could win it all?
- Ken Rosenthal looks at how this season’s postseason race helps demonstrate the problems that might occur with a 14-team playoff scenario. (The Athletic subscription required.)
- That Tatis/Machado dust-up is “done” according to the players.
Manny Machado and Fernando Tatis Jr. addressed the media together to discuss their confrontation in the dugout on Saturday.— The Athletic (@TheAthletic) September 22, 2021
"Those are situations that we learn as leaders, as a team... and we just get better from that."
- Look forward to another big moment for all-women broadcast teams, as ESPN will have their first all-women broadcast. Reported by Frank Pallotta.
- Tim Keown reports on the often-surprising season of the San Francisco Giants.
- And Ryan Herrera looks at the 10-game winning streak the Cardinals are on.
- Tim Britton wonders, “What if the Mets had signed Chaim Bloom?” (The Athletic subscription required.)
- Stephanie Apstein spotlights the incredible, if imperfect, season of Joey Votto.
- This is a super fun old find, the oldest known recording of a radio broadcast for a regular-season game. It’s between the Tigers and the Yankees but still fun to give a listen to!
- Talk about a great giveaway.
It's like the golden ticket, but better!— Detroit Tigers (@tigers) September 21, 2021
Five lucky fans at Friday night's game will receive a Miguel Cabrera autographed comic book poster. pic.twitter.com/0MBZ8d8qYx
And tomorrow will be a better day than today, Buster. Make it so.