Most of ya’ll have heard by now that the Colorado Rockies, the Parent club of the Modesto Nuts, fired Manager Lynn Sakata on Sunday. The reason for the firing appears to be a difference of opinion as to the course the team wanted to take for their younger players.
This is a tough one in my view. Sakata is one of those players who were in my younger days, among my favorite players. He was one of those “Utility” players like Darrel Thomas who specialized in being able to do everything in a pinch and seemingly willing to do anything and everything to win. In the early 80’s he was THAT guy on the Orioles who seemed to be everywhere, even if he wasn’t “the star player.”
As a manager in the California League it was obvious that he liked to win, and win he did. In fact, as a Manager, nobody won more. That’s why it had to be so frustrating for him to have a team that was controlled by a system that seemed hell bent on not winning.
If, and that’s a big “if,” the system the Rockies have in place was designed to produce a certain type of player that led to the Rockies winning Divisions and Pennants if not World Series, it might make sense to fire him for not going along with it, but let’s face the simple fact, the Rockies have been (with the exception of one fluke year) are, and will be for the foreseeable future a doormat.
They have no real plan for anything and a ballpark guaranteed to make sure that they accomplish exactly that. Given that, maybe teaching their players at the High A level (Modesto Nuts) how to win could have been considered the purest form of “player development,” but the Rockies don’t see it that way.
And so they and the Nuts will continue to flail along “developing” players who are trained how to be Rockies. For whatever that’s worth…
First trip to Banner Island tonight, as the Ports debuted their new (or at least one the two new) alternate uniforms which are worn for home games on Fridays. Frankly I like the new color scheme, but the logo, as I have mentioned before, is appalling. But the silver lettering on the Navy blue looks sharp to my eyes.
Two games now into the season and it’s apparent that the Ports have some very solid pitching. Starter Blake Hassebrock did give up two runs on four hits, but four pitchers combined on a four hitter with eleven strikeouts and zero walks. Catcher Ryan Delgado opened the scoring with a mammoth home run to left. As the In-n-Out Burger “Double-Double Batter of the Game,” if he hits a double a section of the crowd gets free “Double-Double” burgers. I feel that a Home Run is technically a double-double, and if In-n-Out Burger really wanted to impress us, they’d give everybody in the park a free double-double if the “Double-Double Batter” hits a home run… Just my opinion, of course…
It was only a matter of time before the Ports bats woke up, and with some help from Bakersfield Pitching hitting two consecutive hitters, the tie was finally broken in the bottom of the 8th with a two run homer from Tony Thompson, leading to the 4-2 win and a 2-0 start to the 2013 season.
It was great to get out to the Ballpark, have a hotdog and some peanuts and just enjoy the sound of the crowd and the game for the first time this season!
The biggest Ports news of the day is from the World Baseball Classic 2013 where 2012 Port Arnold Leon is one of the leading figures in the Canada-Mexico brawl that marred the 9th Inning of last nights game. With Canada leading 10-3, Leon plunked Rene Tosoni AFTER being warned by the Umpire not to do it. Benches emptied and a kerfuffle ensued with six players ejected before order was restored.
I am not a big fan of the intentionally hit batter, I get that there are times that it has to happen, but the special rules for the WBC13 seem extra designed to make sure that this sort of thing happens. I’m not excusing Leon’s actions, but in the “real world” of baseball the Canadians wouldn’t have done what they did with a six run lead in the 9th. If the WBC wants to be real baseball, then real baseball rules should be in place…
Max Stassi, last years Ports catcher, took note:
Meanwhile Arnold himself took to twitter to comment on the issue in a non-specific way:
(Mexico Thanks for your support! Baseball anywhere in the world is the same! Respect the foe we must have no matter the score!)*
*Translation courtesy of Google, so it’s probably lost a little something in the translation. But you get the idea.