Pitch clock violation costs the Braves a walk-off walk Phillies’ Dombrowski: Harper likely to report in 2 weeks
Cal Conley of the Atlanta Braves thought he had just won the game with two strikeouts loaded with bases on Saturday. He took a few steps towards first base, still holding the bat, when umpire John Liebka popped out from behind the plate and called the third hit.
Game over. Conley couldn’t believe it. As are his teammates. The fans booed.
Welcome to 2023, when new baseball rules designed to improve the pace of the game are quickly rolling out to everyone, especially the players.
The most dramatic moment of the new era of clocks on the field came on the first full day of spring games, and in the most dramatic scenario possible. Conley, who faced pitcher Robert Kwiatkowski of the Boston Red Sox, missed the box as the clock showed less than eight seconds.
The penalty is an automatic kick that ended the game in North Port, Florida 6-6. Kwiatkowski got the out with just two real punches.
It was a more dramatic moment than when the San Diego Padres slugger Manny Machado on Friday became the first player to draw a pitching clock violation when he was called for an automatic hit at the bottom of the first inning against Seattle because he didn’t hit the box in time.
The serving clock is one of the new rules designed to speed up the pace of the game. Players will have 30 seconds to resume play between batters. Pitchers have 15 seconds between pitches when there is no one and 20 seconds when there is a base runner. The pitcher must start pitching before the time runs out. After the pitch, the clock restarts when the pitcher returns the ball, the catcher and batter are in a circle around the home court, and the game is otherwise ready to resume.
Bryce HarperWe’re a couple weeks away from arriving at spring training camp as the Philadelphia Phillies batter is recovering from elbow surgery.
Phillies President of Baseball Operations Dave Dombrowski said Thursday that Harper is batting at home in Las Vegas and will report March 8 or 9.
Harper underwent surgery on his right elbow in November after leading the Phillies to the National League pennant. The Phillies then said that Harper was expected to return as a designated hitter by the All-Star break and be able to play on the right field by the end of the season.
“He’s doing great in terms of recovery,” Dombrowski said. “In his progress, doctors are happy where he is.”
Phillies manager Rob Thomson said the next step in the rehabilitation process would be for Harper to hit the ball and make a soft shot in the cage.
In April, 30-year-old Harper suffered a minor tear in his ulnar collateral ligament. He last played right field in Miami on April 16.
In May, Harper was injected with platelet-rich plasma and switched to DH. He went on to help the Phillies reach their first World Series since 2009, and they lost to Houston in six games.
He hit .349 with six homers and 13 RBIs in 17 postseason games.
Harper missed two months last season after breaking his thumb on the field in late June. The two-time NL MVP hit .286 with 18 homers and 65 RBIs in 99 games.
THOMPSON OFFERS ARBITRATION ANALYSIS
Tampa Bay pitcher Ryan Thompson called for more transparency in the arbitration process after losing his case last week. Thompson would make $1 million, not the $1.2 million he was looking for.
“The biggest problem with this process for me is that the arbitrators can make whatever decision they come up with without explaining or defending the decision,” Thompson said in a long Twitter thread. “In any other court case, the decision is public, for some reason it is very secretive and secret.
“If the process is created for the sake of justice, then why don’t we study the laws of the country? In a sense, we were shooting in the dark, not knowing what the referees relied on and what they did not pay attention to. This understanding matters.”
Major League Baseball and the Players’ Association agreed when they established arbitration for 1974 that only an award would be made without any explanation.
Thompson said that he had no hard feelings towards the Rays and said they were “as professional and respectful as you can get, given the circumstances.” But he had problems with the statistics that were used to gauge his worth as a center pitcher.
Thompson said he considers holding and leverage index to be the most important statistic for the average pitcher or a lineman like himself. He said the Races discredited his stats in those categories, and noted his botched saves, lack of use against left-handers, and what he called a Fangraphs metric called “melts” that essentially measures whether a pitcher upped his chance of hitting. his team due to a certain amount.
Thompson also noted that he was told not to disclose the date of his case, so that the arbitrators would not investigate it in advance and create bias.
“However, they all have phones when they enter the hearing and use them freely during breaks,” Thompson tweeted. “After the case, they don’t sit in the room and discuss the decision, but had to go to the hotel bar. It is extremely embarrassing that the arbitrators communicate, drink and use their devices before making a decision. (Not at all assuming foul play.) Just an obvious flaw that I’ve witnessed.”
Thompson, 30, went 3-3 with three saves and a 3.80 ERA in 47 games last season.
Milwaukee Brewers pitcher Corbin Burns said last week there was “no doubt the relationship has definitely taken a hit” after the 2021 NL Cy Young Award winner heard the team’s arguments during a hearing he lost, resulting in a salary of $10.01 million , not the $10.75 million he asked for.
Major League Baseball proposed in negotiations last year to replace arbitration with a metrics-based system, but the players’ association preferred the current system.
CORTES CONTINUES PROMOTION
Southpaw, New York Yankees All-Star Nestor Cortes worked out an inning in his first simulated game as a right hamstring strain resulted in a 10-day layoff.
The injury cost Cortez his chance to play for the United States in the World Baseball Classic.
Cortez, who struck out Anthony Rizzothere will be another simulated game before it possibly appears in the spring practice game.
“In fact, everything was much better than I thought,” Cortez said. “Just because it was my first gig, I didn’t know how my foot would react to the intensity and the impact of these guys.”
Cortez went 12-4 with a 2.44 ERA in 28 starts last year.
Ben Gamel CONNECTS RAYS
Outfielder Ben Gamel and the Tampa Bay Rays signed with the minor leagues.
Gamel, who turns 31 May 17, hit .232 with nine home runs and 46 RBIs in 115 games for the Pittsburgh Pirates last season. He’s a .253 career hitter with 40 homers and 198 RBIs in seven seasons with the New York Yankees, Seattle, Milwaukee, Cleveland and Pittsburgh.