You know the drill by now, dear readers: the lockout is ongoing, and while things are beginning to show some slow signs of progress (if you can call hiring a mediator progress) it is becoming less and less likely we will see spring training start on time, which of course puts the entire timeline of the season into question. When will players get to start working out with professional coaches again? When will practice games be played? And most important of all: will the season itself begin on time?
One thing we do know, is that because the lockout does not impact the minor leagues, we will most certainly get MiLB games on schedule, and yesterday we learned how many of those games we’ll get in 2022: 150.
Triple-A baseball is going to play 150 games in 2022. pic.twitter.com/GZzVNDctao— JJ Cooper (@jjcoop36) February 3, 2022
While this is great news for those who want to see the best stars of tomorrow in action, it doesn’t do much to quell our concerns about the lockout and when MLB games will return. Obviously, we’ll be keeping an ear to the ground for any news on that front. Yesterday’s news regarding MLB asking for federal mediation didn’t help much.
Now on to the rest of links!
- Cedric Mullins had a tremendous season in 2021, but he was struggling off the field.
Today, Cedric Mullins shares a very personal story for the first time.— MLB Players Media (@MLBPlayersMedia) February 2, 2022
Mullins was baseball's only 30-30 player last season, and he did it while battling Crohn's disease.@cedmull30 | @CrohnsColitisFn pic.twitter.com/HoOLgpGXRx
- Who is the all-time greatest baseball player in history? Well, ESPN has their opinions and you can count down the top 25 now. Agree? Disagree? Don’t worry, they already know what most people will complain about and have compiled a follow-up article.
- Ben Clemens uses the Super Two players of the 2012-13 offseason onward to assess recent CBA discussions and compensation changes.
- Dan Szymborski offers lockout projected ZiPS for both the American League and the National League.
- New Pirates development coach Caitlyn Callahan talks about the barriers that were broken to get her to her current role with the club. (AP)
- Since National Girls and Women in Sports Day was this week, Alyson Footer gives us a timeline of women breaking into new roles in MLB, just like Caitlyn Callahan is doing.
- Zach Buchanan looks at the evolving role of the bullpen catcher. (The Athletic subscription required.)
- Mike DiGiovanna looks at the ongoing story of former Angels clubhouse manager Bubba Harkins, whose defamation suit against the Angels and MLB has just been reinstated. Harkins was fired by the Angels under allegations he provided “sticky stuff” to team pitchers.
- In other Angels-related legal news, we’ve learned which players will be testifying in the Eric Kay trial connected to the death of Tyler Skaggs.
BREAKING: Matt Harvey, Andrew Heaney and Garrett Richards are among 7 players on the witness list to testify at the Eric Kay trial.— Bill Shaikin (@BillShaikin) February 3, 2022
Cam Bedrosian, CJ Cron, Mike Morin and Blake Parker are the others.
- Former Cardinals outfielder David Green has passed away at age 61. (AP)
- Satchel Paige being delivered to the pitcher’s mound by helicopter? It happened. Matt Monagan has the story.
- And on a role for historical throwbacks, Monagan also has the story of how Expos mascot Youppi! managed to get himself ejected from a game.
- Is elite fielding killing groundballs? Tom Verducci takes a look at how things are changing.
- Michael Russo and Dan Hayes offer a glimpse at Justin Morneau’s icy version of Field of Dreams, a hockey game for MLB players. (The Athletic subscription required.)
- MLB has hired former Mets GM Omar Minaya as a consultant for amateur scouting. (AP)
- Cody Stavenhagen spends the day with Tigers rookie sensation Akil Baddoo. (The Athletic subscription required.)
- Lindsey Adler and Eno Sarris assess which advanced metrics matter to both fans and the front office? (The Athletic subscription required.)
- It’s Black History Month and the team over at The Undefeated is highlighting the 44 most influential Black Americans in history. The whole post is worth your time (it has incredibly cool art and the biographies are short and educational), but of course, we wanted to share their spotlight on Jackie Robinson by Howard Bryant.
And tomorrow will be a better day than today, Buster. Make it so.