Oct
07

Open Thread: Max Ashton

By

We’ve been focusing on the Yankees and their ALDS matchup against the Tigers over the last week, but there’s some other really cool stuff going on elsewhere around the league. Take Arizona for example, they invited a kid named Max Ashton to throw out the first pitch before Game Four of NLDS on behalf of The Foundation for Blind Children. Max is completely blind, so how do you think he did? Just watch.

Once you’re done looking at that awesomeness, use this as your open thread. The Brewers and Diamondbacks are still wrapping up Game Five of their NLDS matchup on TBS, then the Cardinals and Phillies will play their Game Five a little later on (8:37pm ET on TBS). The NHL season started yesterday, so there’s probably a free preview of the NHL package or whatever it is on your local cable network. Talk about whatever you want here, go nuts.

(h/t Amazin’ Avenue)

Categories : Open Thread
  • http://bleedingyankeeblue.com Jesse

    Damn, nice pitch, especially for a completely blind guy. Good for him.

    • Dave

      Think they would take AJ for him?

  • Brooklyn Ed

    I feel bad for him that he won’t be able to watch the video himself, bet he’s thinking I probably screwed up and they just saying I did good. Seriously, that’s an awesome pitch he threw.

  • http://johnsterling.blogspot.com/ Xstar7

    Sign him to a minor-league contract

    • Freddy Garcia’s 86 mph Heat

      hey, he can’t be any worse than Laffey and Proctor, right??

      • Erica

        He’s better than Ayala!

      • http://johnsterling.blogspot.com/ Xstar7

        Of course he can, are you kidding me???

        Now if you can get him to throw lefty, then we can talk.

  • http://bleedingyankeeblue.com Jesse

    Honestly, before I watched this clip and read what Axisa wrote underneath the video I thought he threw a completely terrible pitch that missed everything.

  • StanfordBen

    Tim McClelland called that a ball.

    • The Big City of Dreams

      The first of many lines like this.

  • Jesus Freak

    For the 3rd time in 10 years the Yanks racked up the best record in the AL, yet were bounced in the first round. It happened in 2002, 2006, and now 2011.

    Something has to change.

    A line-up of All-Stars that dominate during the regular season but goes cold in postseason is ultimately pointless.

    • http://bleedingyankeeblue.com Jesse

      Didn’t they have the best record in the AL in 2009?

      • Jesus Freak

        They did.

        They’ve had the best record in the AL 6 times in the last 10 years. Yet only 1 title.

        In the end the approach, the formula isn’t leading to the goal.

        • Freddy Garcia’s 86 mph Heat

          The best record in MLB has only won the WS twice since 2001. 2007 Red Sox and 2009 Yankees.

          • Jesus Freak

            Exactly. Having the best record doesn’t lead to titles.

            • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike Axisa

              It doesn’t not lead to titles either.

            • Freddy Garcia’s 86 mph Heat

              It Also means the Yankees aren’t the only team “unable” to win with the best record.

            • Jesus Freak

              This brings to mind the Oakland A’s of the late 80s.

              They had so much talent (Rickey Henderson, Canseco, McQwire, Stewart, Welch, Eck). They dominated the regular season but were routed by two inferior teams in the post season.

        • StanfordBen

          Is that worse than the overall rate of winning the WS for teams with the best record?

          That sounds like what you’d expect from a team that has the best record, because overall there’s a 1 in 8 chance, and you’d expect the team with the best record to have a somewhat (but not much) better chance. So 1 in 6 sounds about right.

        • pete

          there is no formula for winning in the post season. Just put together the best team you can. It will always be a crapshoot, no matter how good your team is.

    • PaulF

      So you’re saying you want them to lose more regular season games?

      • Freddy Garcia’s 86 mph Heat

        He wants the Yankees to be the 2006 Cardinals every year.

      • Jesus Freak

        I’m saying I want them to win more games during the post season and their post-2001 forumla of an All-Star at every position isn’t working.

        • Anonymous

          We don’t have an all-star at every postition.

        • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike Axisa

          So they should get worse players?

          • Tom O

            No, we obviously need All stars at every position, and All Stars in the front office. We need to sign Prince Fielder. TO BE THE GENERAL MANAGER.

          • Heisenberg

            Is David Eckstein available? He’s a proven winner. He may be short, but he has the heart of a Lion.

            /FJM’d

            and tiger blood.

            /Carlie Estevez’d

            • Heisenberg

              */Chuck Estevez

          • Logan Morrison

            You should trade Swisher for me. Notify Cashman immediately Mike.

          • Jesus Freak

            Better post season players

            There are some players who don’t do well in the post season.

            Before he started abusing steroids, Barry Bonds famously had that issue.

            • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike Axisa

              Postseason performance is not predictable. There’s no such thing as a player that hits well in the playoffs year after year.

              • CP

                If a player can perform well for the 15 or so games in the playoffs, then why can’t he do that for a full season?

                I don’t want lazy players that only try hard when they’re in the playoffs.

    • http://www.facebook.com/dougchu Doug

      It all comes down to pitching. We did not have it.

      • The Big City of Dreams

        Pitching was not the problem this yr

      • Brian S.

        No we did. False narrative.

        • A-Rod’s Wingman

          Freddy and CC were pretty crappy in both of their starts.

          • nedro

            SSS much?

            • http://bleedingyankeeblue.com Jesse

              The postseason is all about SSS.

            • JobaWockeeZ

          • Brian S

            Freddy was awesome in his start. Two runs weren’t his fault, he gave up two weak ground balls that found holes and Jeter had a crucial error. Freddy induced ten groundouts and had six strikeouts. He was AWESOME.

    • StanfordBen

      In 2010, the Rays had the best record in the AL and lost in the first round.

      In 2009, the Yankees had the best record and won the WS.

      In 2008, the Angels and the Cubs both had the best records in their leagues and lost in the first round.

      Baseball is a pretty fluky sport. Having the best records doesn’t mean that you *should* or *need* to win a 5 game series, just that you’re slightly more likely to.

      It’s true that aspects of the team that help it do well in the regular season (like having a good #4 or #5 starter) don’t necessarily translate to the playoffs, but “clutchness” is not one of those things. It probably doesn’t exist, and if it does, it’s an extremely minor effect. Do you think Jeter possessed the ability to be clutch in 2005 (.967 postseason OPS), 2006(1.467), and 2009 (.995), but lost this ability in 2004 (.686), 2007 (.353), 2010 (.661), and 2011 (.572)? Or is it more likely that over the course of just a few games, you’re bound to get fluky numbers no matter the player?

      Basically, I agree (as does pretty much everyone) that the Yankees would greatly benefit from a better #2 starter for the playoffs, but the “going cold in the postseason” thing is not a real effect and is not something that only this group of all-stars suffers from.

      • Jesus Freak

        There is such thing as “clutchness”, but not in the mythical sense, but rather with how one responses to adrenalin and pressure.

        • The Fallen Phoenix

          False.

  • Erica

    Oh God, if I wasn’t already teary enough today, this put me over the edge. Beautiful stuff.

    • http://johnsterling.blogspot.com/ Xstar7

      You want teary? I’ll give you teary.

      http://newyork.yankees.mlb.com.....8;c_id=nyy

      • Erica

        OH GOD OH GOD I DIDN’T WANT TO SEE THIS BUT I HAVE TO. Will let know reaction.

        • Erica

          That was so unbelievably sad. I… my God. Georgie!

  • The Big City of Dreams

    Nice video

  • dkidd

    giving that kid the high strike is bs

    robots now!!!

    /unable to modulate bitterness for the next few days’d

  • Vags

    Better than gary dellabatte , and he can see.

    • Claudell

      You beat me to this joke. He out-pitched Bababooey 100%.

      Way to go, Max!! Very cool.

  • BJ

    Right after this, I couldn’t help but watch the John Wall first pitch and how badly he failed. One pitch thrown by a blind person, the other pitch thrown by a professional athlete who gets paid millions of dollars and is presumably somewhat coordinated.

  • A-Rod’s Wingman

    While the team was able to get by with a pitching staff surrounded by questionmarks and really was failed by their 4-6 hitters and ace in the playoffs, I do think that the rotation after CC is the easiest thing to upgrade on the team. I’m on the Darvish bandwagon.

  • Freddy Garcia’s 86 mph Heat

    Wow Brewers. Talk about the Yankees sucking in game 5 at home…

  • Erica

    Sooooooo… I met Andy Pettitte at an event at Macy’s Herald Square yesterday. Cool stuff.

    • Sarah

      Did you talk him out of retirement?

      That’s cool, tho.

      • Erica

        I figured if I batted my eyelashes a little more, he’d be so mesmerized that he’d come anywhere with me and then I would have gone to the Stadium and been all like, “PITCH OK NOW U R NOT REITRED” and he would have.

        Alas, that did not happen and I babbled like an idiot. That stare, man.

        • Sarah

          I have had similar experiences with far lesser individuals.

          Maybe we can start a letter writing campaign? Or a sit in at his house in Houston? Occupy Pettitte’s Place!

          • Erica

            Who’s stolen your ability to speak when the moment was right?

            YES, let’s Occupy Pettitte’s Place! YES!

            • Sarah

              Oh potential employers, Brian Boitano, people like that.

  • Plank

    In the chat today someone asked if Melky Mesa will be back next year and Mike (I think it was Mike) said he doubted it. What happened? Is he now a minor league free agent?

    • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike Axisa

      He dropped down the depth chart, have to figure he’s in line to be DFA’d.

      • Plank

        But why wouldn’t he just stay in AA? He’s 24. Is he in a position where he needs to be on the major league roster or they lose him?

        • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike Axisa

          He’s on the 40-man roster, and he really doesn’t deserve a spot. Hasn’t done enough to keep it.

          • Plank

            Ah, thanks for getting back to me. I knew I was missing something. So does he go away because he becomes a minor league free agent and will elect to go elsewhere? Or does the rule 5 draft come into play since he’s off the 40 man?

            Minor league free agent, right?

            • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike Axisa

              Yeah, he becomes a minor league free agent because that’s why they added him to the 40-man in the first place. They can re-sign him if they want.

  • DERP

    Looks like MacPhail is out in Baltimore. Think they might interview Oppenheimer?

    • CP

      That’s disrespectful to Mike Flanagan.

      • Plank

        I laughed.

      • http://bleedingyankeeblue.com Jesse

        I laughed.

  • Freddy Garcia’s 86 mph Heat

    Words can not describe how much I want to see the Cardinals knock out the Phillies here.

    • Erica

      Ditto. Diiiiiiiittttttttttt-oh.

    • Erica

      I’m going for a Cardinals-Rangers World Series, with the Cardinals winning.

      What’s your bet?

      • Sarah

        I like that one, but I think if the Cards get past the Phillies, the Brewers might have the edge with HFA.

        Anyone beating the Tigers or the Rangers is ok with me.

        • Freddy Garcia’s 86 mph Heat

          06 WS rematch. Same result. Book it.

      • http://bleedingyankeeblue.com Jesse

        That’d actually be a good series. If I had an NL team I actually like it’d be the Cardinals. Albert Pujols, Chris Carpenter (a personal favorite), and Tony LaRussa. Fun team to watch even though they play in the ultra boring National League.

  • Jimmy McNulty

    I’m interested to see which FO guys end up where.

  • Midland TX

    Some photoshopping (well, GIMPing) during a conference call today:

    http://i277.photobucket.com/al....._small.jpg

    • Jimmy McNulty

      Didn’t mention the piss on the hands.

      • Midland TX

        You know it’s fake because I didn’t blur the line about “best defensive players of his era.”

    • http://bleedingyankeeblue.com Jesse

      Would you mind if I posted this on my facebook profile?

      • Midland TX

        Shucks, I’d be flattered.

      • Midland TX

        But unfortunately, I don’t have explicit permission from the owner of the original photo to alter or redistribute, so I had to take it down, and I can’t condone anyone else doing either of those things either. Sorry.

  • Jimmy McNulty

    Nick Punto is still in baseball, more importantly, he’s getting meaningful ABs in the playoffs?

    • The Big City of Dreams

      Think about how he feels he never played PS baseball past the LDS. His head probably exploded when he found out there was a 2nd round.

    • Brian S

      He had like a 125 wRC+ this year and played good defense. He moved to the NL and learned how to hit somehow (.388 OBP)

  • Monteroisdinero

    Not Sure what I find more annoyingly futile: sliding into 1B or Swisher climbing the wall with his back to the infield on a HR 10-15 rows up.

  • Plank
    • http://bleedingyankeeblue.com Jesse

      Who the fuck do they think they are, Disney World or something?

      • Pat D

        Dude, Disney has much better taste than that.

        • http://bleedingyankeeblue.com Jesse

          Eh, I don’t see much of a difference. But whatever.

    • boogie down

      First their logo and now this? 0-2, Miami.

      • Plank

        I actually like the logo. Not in the sense that it is something I would want to wear, but in terms of it totally fits the city and has a cool vibe to it. The logo along with their new manager make the Marlins feel like they have turned from a generic faceless nothing into a part of Miami.

        This home run monument though, wow. If you are in the grandstand and it’s 500 feet away, maybe it won’t be that bad. I’m willing to hold out judgement, but first impression is that it’s hilariously bad.

  • The Big City of Dreams

    Wow the Phillies loss

  • boogie down

    Wow… and Howard’s hurt! That really blows for Howard.

  • The Big City of Dreams

    And now Howard is hurt.

  • David N

    Cards win!!! What a game by Carpenter.

  • Pat D

    That’s what all those fucking Phillies fans at my job get for applauding when the Yankees lost last night.

    Go fuck yourselves, Phillies fans!

  • Hall and Nokes

    Wow, way to hand pick your LDS opponent, Philly.

  • Westcoastyankfan

    FU Cliff Lee

    • David N

      Amen!

    • Ryan

      “I think Philadelphia gives me the best chance to win multiple championships.”

      Enjoy your aging team and 5 more years of Ryan Howard.

  • boogie down

    Shit, playoffs are completely wide open now. Rangers-Brewers World Series, if you ask me.

  • Pat D

    Here’s how I feel about the Phillies losing right now:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JfUM5xHUY4M
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v.....re=related
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v.....re=related

    And just because this clip celebrates the death of an enemy:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ptRxrH1rVK8

  • Kramerica Industries

    Not gonna lie – the sting of yesterday’s loss won’t wear off for a while to come, but knowing the 102 win Phillies were upset in even bigger fashion in the opening round, and actually had a more grueling loss (which I didn’t even think was possible) does give me a little bit of relief, if not joy.

    Hope the winner between the Cards and Brew win the World Series. Kinda neat that we see a World Series re-match in a LCS, as well.

  • Kenny

    Can you say ’06 World Series rematch??

    • Greg

      Can you say ’82 World Series rematch in the NLCS??

    • The Big City of Dreams

      With the Tigers winning???

      Can they throw to the bases w/o making errors. That’s the real question.

  • Monteroisdinero

    Cliff Lee and Carl Crawford guarantee the 2011 WS matchup for their teams.

    Sure.

  • PaulF

    So each year since 08 the Phillies add an ace Starter and each year they do worse in the playoffs than the previous year. Gee, maybe it’s not all about starting pitching like everyone says it is.

  • Kramerica Industries

    Literally everyone said Red Sox-Phillies in March.

    Hell, blowhard Schilling said there’s no reason for that matchup not to occur.

    Lovely seeing failures abounding in two of the most insufferable sports cities in America.

    • The Big City of Dreams

      But but the Yankees have a 200 million dollar payroll

      signed
      Philly and Red Sox fans along with ESPN “experts”

  • Kramerica Industries

    All told, St. Louis went 9-5 against Philly this season.

    That’s pretty friggen impressive.

  • http://RAB Nuke LaDoosh

    Wow! So happy the Phillies are out and what an unbelievable performance by Carpenter. Looking forward to the All Mid-West NLCS (even more than the ALCS.) Go Cardinals!

  • Pat D

    I think that my favorite thing about what’s left of baseball’s postseason is that the ratings are probably gonna suck because not many people on either coast will care a whole hell of a lot.

    Take that, Fox!

    • aRX

      Desire to see Fox get low ratings aside, I find that a pretty depressing reality. I dream of the day when an awesome matchup like Texas/Milwaukee can draw huge numbers, because it’ll mean more ppl are watching and enjoying the best baseball, rather than just LA/NY/Boston fans/haters.

      • https://twitter.com/johnsc2000 JohnnyC

        There is no real betting on MLB games so, unlike the NFL, there is no incentive to watch teams that have no bearing on one’s rooting interest. One thing Selig should have done as commish was, like Stern in the NBA, promote the shit out of individual stars rather than teams per se. Oh, wait…forgot the steroid era. Sorry, never mind.

  • bakekrukow412

    Not to rain on the Cardinal’s parade, I hate the Phillies. But I don’t think it’s fair that the Yankees and Phillies, clearly the two best teams in baseball, have to sit and watch lesser teams go on. I understand the Yanks were outplayed, but man, something just doesn’t seem right. The Phillies are clearly better than the Cardinals.

    • http://bleedingyankeeblue.com Jesse

      Life’s not fair.

    • David N

      If the best team always won, why even play the season? Just declare a champion after free agency.

      That’s why they play the games.

    • dkidd

      that’s why they play the games

  • Coolerking101

    Remember when the season started and the Phillies were guaranteed locks to win the world series with the best starting rotation of all time? Whoops.

    Wonder if Hamels comes on the market this winter. Maybe for some young hitting prospects?

    • http://RAB Nuke LaDoosh

      yeah, the matchup between the Greatest Starting Rotation Ever and the Reincarnation of the ’27 Yankees was going to be EPIC!

      • Sarah

        So much to like here.

  • dkidd

    brutal loss for the phillies

    100 times worse than last night for the yanks

    • Jesus Freak

      Kruk is furious. He says the entire season is a failure.

      His grades for the season:

      Yankees — “C”

      Phillies — “F”

  • Jesus Freak

    The 9 highest payrolls have been eliminated.

    Only 2 of the 9 even made the payoffs.

    • http://bleedingyankeeblue.com Jesse

      Yet fans of small market teams bitch and bitch and bitch and bitch and bitch (ok you get the point) about payroll ALL THE FUCKING TIME.

  • Andrew

    better than john wall and justin bieber.

  • http://hasanyoneseenmyshoe.blogspot.com Derwood Morris

    The kid is blind, he gets to throw out a ceremonial first pitch in a postseason game and it’s to Lyle Overbay?

    Seriously, though – outstanding video.