Because how can you not love a baseball player named "Bubba"?
Exciting game for Cincinnati today. It was a tight pitchers' duel, tied 1-1 after nine innings. Jared Burton (helped by an Encarnacion error) gave up two runs in the 10th, and things were not looking good for the Reds. But Encarnacion hit a lead off home run. Then the much-maligned backup catcher, Paul Bako, hit another home run. Yup, back-to-back homers tied the game in the bottom of the 10th. Griffey eventually hit a walkoff single to win the game for the Reds.
The big story was Edwin Encarnacion. He's struggled, at the plate and in the field. He had a roller coaster of a day. His home run in the 5th took the game to extra innings. Then his error in the top of the 10th seemingly gave the game away. He was booed by the Cincinnati fans when he came to bat in the bottom of the 10th...then redeemed himself with another home run.
But it's Paul Bako I'm happiest for. I know he'll never be a star. This is his age 36 year, which is pretty old for a catcher. He was originally drafted by the Reds back in 1993, and has ended up back with them this year. He's been playing very well, but this was his first home run of the year. And what a time to hit it.
Speaking of backup catchers...Chad Moeller started for the Yankees today. He had another good day, going 2 for 4 with a double. I thought the double was going to be a home run; instead, it bounced off the top of the wall. Moeller is batting .350 now. He's another guy I'm happy to see succeed. Trent calls him "The Nicest Guy In The World."
The Yankees won today, but it was closer than the final score would indicate. Anything can happen in a short series, but it's troubling that Baltimore gave the Yanks so much trouble. Baltimore? Weren't they going to blow up their team and start over this year?
Worse, A-Rod had to leave the game with a strained quad. The Yanks are really being decimated by injuries. Just bad luck...or what you have to expect with an aging roster?
In Louisville...despite what Rick Sweet said, Andy Phillips was not in the lineup today. Paul Janish is heating up. He was 2 for 5 today and now has a respectable .273 average.
Jerry Hairston is en fuego. He was 3 for 5 today, with a home run, a double, and five RBIs. I suspect he will be called up soon.
Hairston apparently played the last two seasons with a broken rib. He didn't realize it; just thought it was one of the aches and pains that come with growing older. Finally it got so bad he had a doctor look at it. He was shut down for a couple of months to heal, and has been a new man since.
I've been keeping an eye on the Indianapolis Indians (the Pirates' Triple-A team), to see how Craig Wilson is doing. He started at 1B and was 0 for 3 with a walk today. Former Yankee T.J. Beam is a relief pitcher for Indianapolis; his ERA is 3.60. Kevin Thompson is doing quite well. He started in LF today and was 2 for 4 with a home run. He's hitting .357.
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