PRODcast 139′s Old School Player of the Week: Don StanhouseDon…

PRODcast 139′s Old School Player of the Week: Don Stanhouse

Don Stanhouse was a pitcher in the bigs for 10 years with the Rangers, Expos, Orioles, Dodgers, and then the Orioles again. He bounced back and forth between the pen and the starting rotation, and was not particularly good at either, as he finished his career with a 38-54 record, 64 saves, an ERA of 3.84, and a WHIP of 1.528. Somehow this Ronald McDonald lookin’ dingus “excelled” as a closer, and was named an All-Star in 1979. He earned the name “Fullpack” from manager Earl Weaver, because he had a habit of walking batters, and a chain-smoking Weaver would apparently smash an entire pack of heaters during one of his appearances. Earl was also quoted as saying Stanhouse was an asshole who ruined his health. Harsh, but fair.

Much more important than his on-field exploits is his ridiculous ginger afro and pushbroom stache that make him look like a cross between pre-manscaping Carrot Top and David Crosby.

HELLO, BASEDBALL…

HELLO, BASEDBALL FANS

HOUSEKEEPING

MUSICAL GUEST: THE ARMED

“Only Love” is out now.

Buy it on Bandcamp.

Stream it on Spotify.

THE BASEBALL THINGS

  • The Machado sweepstakes
  • Meanwhile, the best team in the NL is … checks notes … The Brewers?
  • All Star Game: I have no idea what’s going on and I don’t care.
  • Astros and Red Sox are on a collision course for … something
  • Maximum Muncy
  • Baseball is bad. Please watch it.

BAD BALLPARK FOOD OF THE WEEK

The Erie SeaWolves released a new food creation: The cotton candy hot dog. It is fucking gross and I hate it.

MINOR LEAGUE TEAM OF THE WEEK: Spokane Indians

OLD SCHOOL PLAYER OF THE WEEK: Don Stanhouse

I wouldn’t normally say “Go to Hartford!” I mean, not that…

I wouldn’t normally say “Go to Hartford!” I mean, not that there’s anything wrong with Hartford, but just as I don’t often tell people to go to, I dunno, Poughkeepsie or Toledo (sorry to anyone from those two towns I’ve never been to), Hartford is just kind of there. 

But I went to Hartford the other day for the Yard Goats and now everything has changed. Now Hartford is a destination you should head off to for one of the most gorgeous Minor League ballparks I’ve ever seen. I mean, there are legit second decks. I obviously have only seen a small percentage of Minor League stadiums, but I don’t think I could tell you of a single other one with a second deck. 

There’s a home run device that, because the stadium is owned by Dunkin’ Donuts, is a coffee cup that RELEASES THE STEAM

Oh, yeah, and there are actual, live goats in the petting zoo. So, scrap those summer plans of going to Disney or Europe or the Pacific Coast Highway. Go to Hartford. 

Anyway, here are a few things I wrote this week that you should read: 

Willians Astudillo is unlike any other player in baseball. Namely, because he’s built like a backyard shed and he never strikes out. How’s he doing it? Click and read for all that and more in this week’s IN SHORT ORDER

Bartolo Colon has given up home runs to 301 different players. He’s only the second pitcher to ever pull that off. While it seems like a record you wouldn’t want, it’s actually a testament to how good he’s been for so long. Here are 10 homer-rific facts about his milestone

Who are the big league stars that absolutely dominate their fellow All-Stars? Click and find out. (What? You think I’d give away that premium #content without a click?) 

If you are like me, you’ve spent most of this summer sweating through your clothes. Here are 11 times players dealt with it a little better

And here a few pieces from other people that I really enjoyed: 

Grant Desme was once a top prospect. Then he left the game to pursue the priesthood. R.J. Anderson spoke with him now that he’s making a comeback in baseball

Jon Gray, the assumed ace of the Rockies, was recently sent down. Here’s a look at some of the issues he’s had that don’t show up in his otherwise-good FIP

Paul Moehringer’s All-Time Team Rankings are super fun and a great way to remember some otherwise forgotten fan favorites. Here are the Diamondbacks, who have quite the stacked rotation. 

PRODcast 138′s Old School Player of the Week: Biff PocorobaBiff…

PRODcast 138′s Old School Player of the Week: Biff Pocoroba

Biff Benedict Pocoroba spent his entire underwhelming 10-year career as a Barve, and hit .257, mashed 21 taters, had an OPS+ of 86, and was worth -0.6 WAR. He made the NL All-Star Team in 1978 despite hitting .242. He was added to the squad because he was Phil Neikro’s personal catcher and nobody else wanted to catch that goofball’s junk. He was kind of like an optimized Jeff Mathis … a bad baseball player who carved a little niche for himself by being fun to pitch to I guess.

At his peak, Biff looked like a young James Franco with a creepstache, dabbled in some 60-grade dadhat, and looked mostly confused in every baseball card he took a photo for. There’s also a little Randolph Mantooth in there, but that is a reference that will be lost on 98% of our youthful and vigorous listening audience.

In retirement, he opened Sausage World, a specialty meat establishment in Lilburn, Georgia, which is definitely the name of a porn.

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HOUSEKEEPING

MUSICAL GUEST: BRIGID MAE POWER

The Two Worlds is out now. 

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THE BASEBALL THINGS

  • Miek Truot. Still good.
  • Which is handy, because Albert is roughly replacement level.
  • ASG voting is whatever
  • Mets fire sale about to open up
  • HOU won 12 straight…
  • But the M’s are still hanging in!

MINOR LEAGUE NAMES TEAM OF THE WEEK: THE ABERDEEN IRONBIRDS

OLD SCHOOL PLAYER OF THE WEEK: Biff Pocoroba

Apologies if I seem baseball-distant this week, but I’ve got a…

Apologies if I seem baseball-distant this week, but I’ve got a terrible illness. I’ve caught World Cup fever and it’s affecting my bones, my blood, my brain, and my heart. And sure, while it’s given me a physically need to have strong opinions about things like Panama’s center back pairings or the tactical acumen of France manager Didier Deschamps, it’s also a disease I welcome with all my heart. 

Because the competition is amazing. Sure, in part because sports are fun and seeing these amazingly high stakes from 8 am until 4 pm every day is great, but that’s such a small part. It’s really because of the glory of international competition – whether it’s the World Cup, the World Baseball Classic, the Olympics, or even 12 dudes stuck in the international terminal of LAX at 4 am. 

Here’s a time when we can put aside our differences, our politics, the terrible things done in the name of things we believe or not believe in. When you cheer for your team, you cheer for the people of your country, for the physical beauty of the land, for that one amazing dish that your parents made for you growing up. And while you scream and chant and needle the opposition’s fans for 90 minutes, when it’s over, you go and grab a beer and some food together. 

And even if the USMNT aren’t there, there are 32 other countries on display because of a silly ball getting kicked and chased around. And that’s fun. And I can’t help loving every damn minute of this tournament. 

Anyway, if you’re wondering what the deal is with that long preamble, well, it’s because I wrote a lot of baseball World Cup content. 

Here’s the MLB Starting XI. If you’re wondering why Aaron Judge is up top it’s because I’m a dumb man that loves target men in the box. At least, that’s what the internet thinks (though I definitely am). 

And if you’re still looking for a team, why not use my bonafide, trusted rooting guide based on your baseball team of choice

Here’s a few other things I wrote this week that may be of interest: 

Juan Soto traveled back in time* to hit a home run before he actually debuted in the Majors. Here are five other players including Barry Bonds that also did it. 

*maybe not

Bryce Harper shaved his beard. Oh, the horror. So, I looked at his many and varied haircuts that we can ogle (and rank) while we let that sink in

Corey Kluber walked a batter on Friday. That was his first in over 170 batters. I looked at just how he had avoided doing that. Plus, I blow the lid off the fact that Babe Ruth NEVER EVEN EXISTED, MAN. 

PRODcast 137′s Old School Player of the Week: Mike CubbageMike…

PRODcast 137′s Old School Player of the Week: Mike Cubbage

Mike Cubbage was a serial killer-ass lookin’ switch hitting utility infielder who played in parts of eight seasons for the Texas Rangers, Minnesota Twins and New York Mets. He was much less bad than the disasters we usually feature in this segment, but he was also not good, as he was worth 6.4 WAR and hit .258 w/ 34 dingers, and an OPS+ of 94. What *was* bad was his whole get up, from the dadhat to the mom hair, to the dadglasses, to his waxlike and expressionless face, to his midcalf pants, to his wack ass golf shoes. There’s a lot going on here … and all of it is wrong. There’s also a little “John Denver goes to fantasy baseball camp” going on.