Nats let another win slip away
Beginning the weekend interleague series in Baltimore this evening, Yunel Escobar was back in the lineup for the Nationals, and Gio Gonzalez was on the mound, so there was reason for a better outcome than against the Reds. Gio went six-plus strong innings, giving up just one run (a homer by Adam Jones in the fourth inning), putting himself in line for the win. Tyler Moore and Michael Taylor got clutch RBIs in the [fifth] inning to take a 2-1 lead. But the bullpen faltered yet again, as the O's scored one in the eighth and one in the ninth. Tanner Roark got two strikeouts in the ninth, looking in command, and then Jonathan Schoop (pronounced "Scope") reached on a pretty good outside slider and somehow hit a line drive that barely cleared the left-field wall for a home run. And so, the Nats lost to the Orioles, 3-2.
Yunel Escobar had been suffering from a tight hamstring earlier in the week, but he's good enough to play. But Denard Span has lingering severe back tightness, which needs to be properly treated, so he has been put on the 15-day disabled list. Fortunately, an MRI showed "no structural damage." In his place, infielder Wilmer Difo has been called up from the minors. See MLB.com
Fortunately, Ryan Zimmerman, Anthony Rendon and Jayson Werth are all making progress and may return by the end of this month, or August, in the case of Werth. Finally, Nats pitcher Jordan Zimmermann is taking three days of paternity leave, as his wife Mandy just gave birth to their second baby today. Congratulations, Jordan! He is scheduled to pitch on Saturday in Baltimore.
Final All-Star Votes
Mike Moustakas (Royals) and Carlos Martinez (Cardinals) won the (respective) AL and NL Final ALl-Star Vote, raising suspicions about whether it's not just Kansas City but the whole state of Missouri that is rigging the selection process. Just kidding! I thought that Johnny Cueto was in the lead.
Chase Field update
After taking a close look at a graphic image sent to me by Bruce Orser recently, I noticed an apparent anomaly. So, I consulted my D-Backs magazine from last summer, and had a startling realization: The outfield walls and adjoining seating sections form an acute angle with the foul lines, rather than being perpendicular to them, as I had previously thought. Holy cow! That correction had the effect of reducing my estimate of fair territory from 114,900 square feet to 114,200 square feet. And so, after making a few other detail enhancements, I have updated the Chase Field diagrams.
Demolitions, now & then
Yep, it's really gone. All that remains of Candlestick Park is piles of rubble and twisted steel beams. After it's all cleared away, they'll start construction on a new outlet mall. Hopefully, they'll keep track of the exact former location of home plate in the new building, as has been done in Minneapolis, Pittsburgh, and other cities. See sfchronicle.com
While looking for something else recently, I came across a fine collection of photos of Atlanta-Fulton County Stadium being demolished, in 1997, at ajc.com.
And speaking of Atlanta-Fulton County Stadium, I recently added to that page a photo I took in September 2001 of the former location of the diamond and outfield fence, marked in a parking lot just north of Turner Field. Coincidentally, Zach LaFleur reported (via the Stadium Impressions feature) a broken link to that page, but I'm not sure on what page the broken link is located. The scroll-down menus work, as do the links on the Stadium lists page.