Jonah Keri weighs in on the never ending "Does Joey Votto walk too much?" question for FiveThirtyEight Sports. Keri delves deeply into the advanced statistics, and despite some small sample sizes in play, he reaches the conclusion that even though Votto is, in his words, "one of the best all-around players on the planet," he could stand to swing the bat more with runners on base.
Peter Gammons took notice of the incredibly rare event that happened in Boston this week, when Votto popped out to the infield. Gammons has some quotes from Votto and Reds assistant hitting coach Lee Tinsley about Votto's focus and preparation. It's probably not news to any Reds fans, but it's always nice when a national media figure takes notice if what a unique player Votto is. Of course, this is Gammons we're talking about, so half the blog post is about the Red Sox, but there are also some fun comments in there from Jonny Gomes regarding Pete Rose.
The Providence Journal has a fascinating article about Homer Bailey, his new contract extension, and the impact it's likely to have on other pitchers (specifically Jon Lester). The taciturn Texan comes off like Marvin Miller reincarnated in some of his quotes in the article, crediting the players' solidarity over the years for his ability to negotiate his deal. Bailey even cops to delaying the announcement of his extension out of concern that his relatively low 2014 salary could have a negative impact on another pitcher who was still going through the arbitration process at the time. It's a side of Bailey that I, at least, was surprised and pleased to see.
Yesterday was the 30 year anniversary of a unique baseball accomplishment when former Red Tom Seaver earned two wins on the same day. The first game began on May 8, 1984 but was suspended after 17 innings. It resumed the following day, and eventually Harold Baines hit a home run in the 25th inning to finally end the game. Seaver was in the game as a relief pitcher. He then started the next game, throwing eight and a third innings and earning the win. The New York Times has the story.
The story of Mike Kekich and Fritz Peterson, two Yankees pitchers who in 1973 swapped wives, as was the style at the time, is being made into a movie. Ben Affleck and Matt Damon are producing, but not starring, and Jay Roach is in talks to direct. Seems like this movie is likely to be a comedy, which is interesting, given that the real-life story had a happy ending for Peterson, but a fairly sad one for Kekich.
At long last, one of the most closely guarded and hotly debated secrets in the history of Reds baseball as been uncovered. That's right, after all these years, the secret origins of the Banana Phone have been revealed. Turns out, there actually is a physical banana-shaped phone, but they've unsurprisingly never used it to take Banana Phone calls.
Chris Heisey talked to C. Trent Rosecrans about his father Craig's battle with ALS (commonly referred to as Lou Gherig's Disease). The disease took Craig Heisey's life in 2007, as Chris was working his way through the Reds minor leagues. May is ALS Awareness Month.