Dear friends, we have made it. Today the last full work week without baseball is over. The last Friday with no regular season games is here.
We’ve survived a full-length offseason (and then some); two frenzied free agent hot stoves; and of course a complete lockout of Major League Baseball. It was an offseason for the history books, and may it be one we never see repeated again.
After an abreviated spring we may not know exactly what to expect of out clubs when regular season games start next Thursday, but I know one thing for sure: I’ll be watching.
Now, on to the rest of the links, and let our countdown to the season begin.
- Guess who is the Royals’ Opening Day starter...
- Justin Choi reflects on the woes of Tommy Pham.
- MLB TV, MLB Network, YouTube, Apple TV+, this is a list of places you may have had to look for games (or knew you’d need to look for games this year), but according to Nick Selbe you might need to add Amazon Prime to that list for certain Yankees games this season.
- Tony LaRussa is responding to the comments he made implying some White Sox fans weren’t “real fans.” Story by Scott Merkin.
- Have the Twins found the missing piece of their rotation with Chris Archer? Ben Clemens looks at the newest pitcher in Minneapolis.
- Is the Ty Cobb statue at the Tigers’ Lakeland spring training home actually of Ty Cobb? Story by Cody Stavenhagen. (The Athletic subscription required.)
- Brian Cashman thinks the Astros cheating scandal played a hand in the Yankees ongoing postseason drought. (ESPN)
- Andy McCullough dives a little deeper into Cashman’s resentment over the Astros defeat of the Yankees in 2017. (The Athletic subscription required.)
- This is a fun little tidbit.
Joe Ryan is the third player in MLB's expansion era (since 1961) to make an Opening Day start within the first six games of his career.— Do-Hyoung Park (@dohyoungpark) March 31, 2022
Joe Ryan (MIN, 2022)
José Guzman (TEX, 1986)
Steve Busby (KC, 1973)
- David Wright showed up to Mets spring training camp, reports Anthony DiComo.
- You probably forgot all about the bench-clearing brawl between the Tigers and White Sox in September of last year, but MLB certainly hasn’t, and Tim Anderson will begin the season serving a two-game suspension, reports Madison Williams. Anderson might not be the only player benched for opening day, either, as Williams also reports that shoulder tightness might keep Mets’ ace Jacob deGrom from his scheduled start.
- Bryce Harper pays tribute to Mike Schmidt on the cover of the Phillies’ new media guide. (ESPN)
- The MLB dot com staff take a swing at ranking all 30 farm teams.
- Will Laws tries to address one big question for every National League team.
- It’s the season for predictions as Jeff Passan makes his big guesses for 2022.
- Matthew Leach gives us a preview of the likely candidates for Rookie of the Year.
- J.J. Watt is a card-carrying member of the Shohei Ohtani fan club, shares Brianna Williams.
- They say no one player carries a whole team, but Will Leitch looks at the most indespensible player on every club’s roster.
- Apparently, Rob Manfred really is trying to improve his relationship with the players after the lockout debacle if his spring training efforts are any indication. Story by Ken Rosenthal. (The Athletic subscription required.)
- If you’re anything like me, sometimes you’ll muse over whatever became of a certain player after they stopped being in the majors. Admittedly, for me that player is Darwin Barney, but I also sometimes wonder “what’s Jake Peavy doing these day?” and the answer is that he and Hunter Pence will be joining MLB Network as full-time analysts. Story by Stever Berman. (The Athletic subscription required.) (side note, not that anyone else but me is interested, but Darwin Barney is currently coaching for the Oregon State Beavers, and was at one point an investor in a project to bring an MLB team to Portland)
- The Nationals are the first team of the season to unveil their City Connect jerseys, and the uniforms pay tribute to an iconic spring offering in DC: the cherry blossom. (The Athletic subscription required.)
And tomorrow will be a better day, Buster. Make it so.