Jesse Goldberg-Strassler, Mick Gillispie and Kevin Reichard discuss this year’s MLB rule changes, the meaning of the term Kentucky Wonder and the unique experience of an MiLB tarp pull on this week’s Ballpark Digest Broadcaster Chat.
In this week’s chat:
- Mick and Jesse discuss the experience of actually watching baseball on TV during the regular season as opposed to working at a game
- Mick is not a fan of the new rules implemented in MLB this season, including the DH, extra innings starting with a runner on second and seven-inning doubleheaders; Kevin doesn’t care about the DH and likes the new extra-innings rule
- What happens to the season when players like Lorenzo Cain and Yoenis Cespedes opt out? In the end, the agreement is that the Cespedes situation is really a Mets thing, not an MLB thing
- Mick and Jesse discuss MiLB players who shut down their game before the season end and wonder how prevalent it will happen in MLB
- Should organizations worry more about winning or player development at the MiLB level? It seems players are either priorities/investments or not.
- Why the South Bend Cubs were such a great story in 2019, winning the Midwest League title
- Kevin remembers Joe Kernan and Lou Schwechheimer; Kernan saves pro baseball in South Bend by buying the South Bend Silver Hawks, a team slated for a move, and turning that team around, while Schwechheimer was a baseball lifer who passed away from COVID-19 complications before he could see his new Wichita ballpark open
- After Kernan saved the Silver Hawks, he paved the way for current South Bend Cubs owner Andrew Berlin and team president Joe Hart to upgrade the ballpark and the team
- The Field of Dreams game between the White Sox and Cardinals in Dyersville, IA, has been canceled, but watch for it in 2021
- Jesse is the official statistician of the Lemonade League and discusses what stats to track and what stats to ignore; the advice is to focus on the basics as well as what stats college coaches track
- Today’s Baseball Thesaurus term: Kentucky wonder, which is a reference to a brushback or purpose pitch. Joe Kelly was suspended for nine games for throwing at Houston Astros, and the panel discusses how brushback pitches are such rarities these days and why they were much more common 50 years ago
- Mick and Jesse discuss tarp pulls and why they are a rite of passage in Minor League Baseball; Kevin has never had the pleasure, and Jesse asks for folks to send their favorite tarp-pull stories to firstname.lastname@example.org
Jesse Goldberg-Strassler is the Voice of the Lansing Lugnuts and the author of The Baseball Thesaurus and The Football Thesaurus from August Publications. Mick Gillispie is the Voice of the Tennessee Smokies and a spring-training Voice of the Chicago Cubs. Kevin Reichard is publisher at August Publications and Ballpark Digest.