Good morning. Lots of stuff today, so no stupid comments up here.
- The Hall of Fame induction ceremony were on Sunday and Jim Kaat, Bud Fowler, Minnie Miñoso, Tony Oliva, Gil Hodges, Buck O’Neil and David Ortiz were all inducted into the Hall. Fowler became the first inductee to Cooperstown who was actually from Cooperstown.
- Bradford Doolittle has some more on the careers of the inductees and what they said at the ceremony.
- Bob Nightengale writes that Ortiz stole the show with a powerful induction speech.
- Ian Browne calls the speech “classic Papi.”
- Tim Kurkjian was inducted into the writer’s wing of the Hall on Saturday. Jayson Stark has a tribute to his friend and colleague. (The Athletic sub. req.) And also lots of stories to tell about Kurkjian.
- Shifting gears, for the first time in 17 years, the “Three-true outcomes” in baseball (home run, strikeouts and walks) are down. Jayson Stark and Eno Sarris examine several theories as to why this is true. (The Athletic sub. req.)
- Now that the Draft, All-Star Game and the Hall-of-Fame ceremony are over, then it must be trade season. Buster Olney takes a look at the teams interested in Nationals outfielder Juan Soto. (ESPN+ sub. req.) Or if the Nats might just wait until the off-season to deal Soto.
- Ken Rosenthal writes that the Padres have a good chance to acquire Soto (The Athletic sub. req.) as well as why the Angels are unlikely to deal Shohei Ohtani. Plus other Rosenthal nuggets.
- Mark Feinsand polled league executives as to where they thought Soto would end up.
- Jon Heyman and Joel Sherman report that the Cardinals are the favorites to land Soto. Oh yeah, that’s all we need.
- Mark Feinsand has eight teams that have a hard decision on whether to buy or sell.
- One of those teams with a hard decision is the Red Sox. Matt Snyder looks at the two paths facing Boston right now.
- The Red Sox had a bad weekend. You’ve undoubtedly heard this already, but they lost to the Blue Jays 28-5 on Friday. Raimel Tapia hit an inside-the-park grand slam when Red Sox center fielder Jarren Duran lost the ball in the lights.
- In fact, the Red Sox lost all three games of the series by a combined run differential of -47, which was the worst run differential for any three-game span since 1894.
- After blowing out the Red Sox, the Blue Jays return home to take on the Cardinals, who will be without Nolan Arenado and Paul Goldschmidt because they refuse to be vaccinated against COVID. Also, Austin Romine won’t be making the trip for the same reason.
- Dan Hajducky and Jerry Humphrey III examine how inflation is impacting concession prices at the ballpark.
- Earlier this week, Hannah Keyser caused a stir when she asked commissioner Rob Manfred for the reason that minor leaguers weren’t paid a living wage. Keyser explains the context of the question and asks why MLB won’t answer it.
- Keyser also notes that today is the deadline for MLB and the MLB Players Association to agree to an international draft and that it is very unlikely that the two sides will come to an agreement considering how far apart the two sides are right now.
- Kiley McDaniel recaps every team’s draft (ESPN+ sub. req.)
- Will Leitch ranks the eight MLB playoff races from most- to least-interesting.
- Shanthi Sepe-Chepuru lists seven players in line for a All-Star second half.
- Jesse Rogers notes that manager Tony La Russa seems to be taking most of the blame for the White Sox’s disappointing season and ponders whether La Russa is really to blame.
- Blue Jays coach Mark Budzinski paid tribute to his daughter as he returned to the team after her death in a boating accident.
- Braves outfielder Adam Duvall is out for the season with a wrist injury.
- Yankees reliever Michael King will also miss the rest of the year with an elbow injury.
- Rays shortstop Wander Franco had $650,000 worth of jewelry stolen from his SUV when he was in Jacksonville on a rehab assignment. A suspect has been arrested and some, but not all, of the jewelry has been recovered.
- Some amazing defense by the Triple-A Salt Lake Bees:
- Phillies outfielder Nick Castellanos got into it with a reporter after Castellanos was asked what he said was a “stupid question.” To be fair, it was a stupid question. But also, Castellanos should know that the polite way to respond to such inquiries is to say “That’s a clown question, bro.”
- And finally, as long as we’re on the subject of clowns, it seems that Diamondbacks pitcher Madison Bumgarner took exception to how long Nationals outfielder Victor Robles admired the home run he hit off Bumgarner. So Bumgarner said “He’s (Robles) is a clown, golly.” So Robles made an adjustment to his look the next game.
Madison Bumgarner called Nationals outfielder Victor Robles "a clown" after he celebrated a home run while being down on Saturday.— Sports Illustrated (@SInow) July 24, 2022
Today, Robles came back with the ultimate troll pic.twitter.com/GIVrvhDkAN
And tomorrow will be a better day than today, Buster.