First off, since we had only heard from David Robertson at the time of the recap of Wednesday night's game, the equal-time rule requires us to hear Mike Scioscia's side of the ninth inning.
The White Sox closer called the Angels manager "bush league" for arguing twice about the same call and dragging out the non-action during the ninth inning:
"I felt that Scioscia was very bush league, coming out there and standing in front of home plate after the play had already been reviewed," Robertson said. [...]
"It didn’t throw my rhythm off," Robertson said. "I think it’s funny he walks out and stands in front of home plate. He knows I would like to get a few pitches in there. I wasn’t given that opportunity. So, I guess that’s how he goes about business."
Scioscia denied the charge, for what it's worth:
"In fact, I thought I moved out of the way so he could throw, but he would have gotten a chance to throw anyway," Scioscia told ESPN.com. "Not one iota of my intent was any gamesmanship. I had to get a reason for the ruling because if the ruling was he killed the play, then it was something I could protest."
Robertson ended up with the blown save, but the White Sox still pulled off the sweep, giving the Angels plenty of Sciosciaface to go around. His lineup should receive the brunt of it, as the Angels could have taken the last game had they not gone 0-for-15 with runners in scoring position. That was a theme throughout the series, but the Halos extended it to ridiculous length in the finale:
- Monday: 1-for-9
- Tuesday: 0-for-8
- Wednesday: 0-for-15
- Total: 1-for-32
The problem is persistent enough that reporters asked Albert Pujols about it after Tuesday's game, and Pujols wasn't really up for talking:
"I don't think about that crap," Pujols said when asked about his struggles with runners in scoring position. "You can easily go on a tear and forget about what happened the last three months. I don't think that's a question you should ask.
"This is part of the game. You think I want to get myself out? I want to come through every time. It doesn't happen. You think you want to write a bad article? No, you want to be perfect all the time, but sometimes we make mistakes. Sometimes in this game you have to give credit to the other pitchers."
He did give credit to Carlos Rodon:
"Not too many guys from the left side have a 92-mph slider," Pujols said. "He struck me out twice on that pitch."
- Prospect Purgatory: How Seattle’s Inability to Develop Talent Doomed a Once-Promising Season -- Grantland
The White Sox are starting to get contributions from their farm system, but teams like the Mariners show that it's hard to be comfortable with only early returns. Jonah Keri tries to identify common characteristics tying together the flops:
Pinpointing why, exactly, the M’s have failed to usher top prospects into big league prominence is a tougher task. In hindsight, trying to emulate the big-bat/bad-defense approach that got Zduriencik players like Fielder and Weeks looks like it was a bad blueprint in spacious Safeco Field, where slow, unathletic players like Smoak and Montero became bad fits. A lack of viable alternatives led to rushing players like Zunino. And banking on positional nomads like Franklin and Ackley was already a risky play, one made much worse when both players forgot how to hit.
- Brewers, Doug Melvin made the best possible move and shouldn't be ashamed in the slightest - MLB Daily Dish
The Brewers are moving on from Doug Melvin, whose front office was able to draft and develop one championship window. That's more than most GMs can do in a market the size of Milwaukee's.
- No happy ending to the Nick Swisher saga in Cleveland, just relief from the fan base that it's over -- cleveland.com
It took seven years, but Nick Swisher finally left another team under the circumstances that led to his departure with the White Sox. A lot of people in and around the Indians organization were glad to see him go:
Not all teammates shed a tear when Swisher packed up his belongings and jetted to Georgia. His relentless enthusiasm wore on members of the clubhouse and the fan base, as they longed for numbers in his stat line worthy of those on his paychecks.
The energy and over-the-top bubbly attitude helped eliminate any lasting effects from a defeated team that amassed a 68-94 mark in 2012. When his performance went south, however, his insistence on being the club's commander and cheerleader didn't carry much weight.
Unlike the White Sox,though, the Indians aren't likely to miss out on obvious positive regression. He's hitting .204/.272/.321 over the last 10 baseball months, good for two wins below replacement level.
After a fast start with the Angels, a 3-for-32 slump has knocked Conor Gillaspie's numbers below his line with the White Sox, and his first error with Los Angeles didn't help matters, either:
On that nice pick at third base, @scottmerkin asks: "Is that Gillaspie?" As throw indicates, yes, that is Gillaspie— Scot Gregor (@scotgregor) August 13, 2015
Gillaspie isn't happy with the way the year has gone, but he didn't have anything bad to say about his old team. Tyler Saladino seemed to be picking on him Wednesday night -- taking a base on his arm, trying to bunt at him in extra innings -- which, if there's anything to that, would be even more humbling.
While the Twins are leaning more heavily on analytics with Paul Molitor at the helm, some veterans remain holdouts. We're familiar with the attention Tyler Flowers pays to his receiving, which is why he's measured as one of the best in the game. Kurt Suzuki is regularly below average when it comes to framing, and the phrase "not with that attitude" comes to mind.
Mention his improved standing in the controversial area of pitch framing, and Kurt Suzuki all but rolls his eyes.
It's not just because the Twins' beleaguered pitching staff has spent the past two weeks reversing the gains of the season's first four months.
"I still think that thing is false," said Suzuki, the Twins' all-star catcher.