Thursday, November 21, 2013

Biscuit Player Moves + The Ugly - A Baseball VooDoo Lesson


With the Rule 5 Draft coming up in the first week of December, teams have been shuffling their 40 man roster. Any player not on the 40 man roster can be taken in the Rule 5 Draft so to protect their 40 best players MLB teams have been making moves - including moves affecting past and possibly future Biscuits.

Lets take a look!

CJ dont mean Chipola Joe
CJ Riefenhauser and Kirby Yates, both former 'Skitz, were added to Tampa Bay's 40 man roster.

Reifenhauser, whose first name is Charlie, was excellent out of the pen and appeared in the MLB Futures game this past summer.

Kirby Yates was 4-2 with 16 saves in fifty games for the 2012 Biscuits. He saved 20 for the Bulls, and along with Reif the pair make up a nice bullpen of prospects for the Rays.

Former Skitz pitcher Kyle Lobstein was added to the Tigers 40man roster.
Kyle in his road grays

The lefty was taken in the second round by the BayRays and made 29 Biscuit starts in 2011 & 2012, posting 140 strikeouts in 155 Innings Pitched. His ERA wasn't good, partly a product of a high walk rate.

During his tenure with Montgomery KyLo walked batters at twice his previous career rate, prompting the Rays to give up on him after two bad seasons in buttery blue.

He really turned it around after signing with Detroit, putting up a career high 143 strikeouts and the best ERA since low-A rookie ball at 3,27. He turned 24 in August and looks to have cut down drastically on the walks. This years he has re-established himself as a prospect.

In other news, former Biscuit pitcher Matt Buschmann was signed by the Oakland Athletics.
New Athletics pitcher Matt Buschmann
 Buschmann, the 15th round pick by the Padres in 2006 out of Vandy. He took the hill for the Gumpskitz in 2012 and 2013 and leaves with a 13w-11L mark. Each year he was promoted midseason to Durham but he logged 33 starts for Montgomery in total.

Former Biscuits infielder Reid Brignac agreed to terms with the Philadelphia Phillies. Reid split time between Colorado and the Yankees this year, batting under .200 in 46 games. He hit .267 for the back-to-back Champion Biscuits in 2006-7.

Ex-Biscuit slugger Kyeong Kang signed a contract to play for the Baltimore Orioles.

Kang signs an autograph for Barry
Kang had 40 hr 137rbi as a Biscuit in the past three seasons and has proven to be a clutch left handed power bat as well as a fan favorite.

On the down side, the Korean born Kang also had 327 strikeouts as a Biscuit to 157 walks, putting him on the list for most K's in a Biscuits career. Yet Kyeong would have had to whiff another 80+ times to pass Gabriel Martinez's 409 punchados! Gabby also tops the team lists with 53 homers and 266 rbi.
Gabby "What would you use to strike me out?" Prochaska "A baseball. Or maybe the rosin bag." 

Justin Nicolino signs a ball for Dale
 I get a few baseballs during the course of the season. We sit in a hot spot behind first base, minor leaguers wear out the first few rows around where we sit.

Lefty hitters swinging early foul change-ups towards us, righty hitters who swing late on fastballs also punch souvenirs our way. Any over-aggressive throw from shortstop or second base ends up in our laps, as does any throw the first baseman cant handle.

And there are some that get caught for the final out of the inning and are flipped into the crowd by the fielder. Im usually friendly to the visiting team and wave an old glove that just begs to have an orb tossed into it.

Making the grab!
 I don't consider myself a "ball hawk" as I don't fight for them. More I am a baseball magnet, they just seem to find their way into my mitt!

Last summer they all added up and I used every one for an autograph of a player or three. Well, almost every one...


I say I used them all. I used them all but one.
It was an ugly. So ugly it was THE Ugly.

I say Ugly, because it was. It was pretty much a mudball, a nasty sphere used for batting practice or tossed around the infield between innings so many times that the leather cover wasnt just scuffed, it was suede. It was more than a few shades darker than it was when it was new and rubbed up for game use, having been through more than one rain delay puddle and then lurking in the bottom of the equipment bag.

Those kind of balls are saved back for road trips. You cant give one of those to a kid at a home game, its an insult!

He might toss that to the crowd - or NOT!
Some smart-ass first baseman fielded the throw or caught a popup for the final out of the inning and as he came off the field, someone in the dugout tossed him the Ugly Ball, intending it to get thrown around the infield before the next inning.

But the first baseman doesn't want the Ugly, he wants the gamer.

He then tosses the Ugly to the crowd, keeping the game ball from the final out of the inning in his glove. A not-so-sneaky sleight of hand!

That means the Biscuits fan gets the Ugly while the first baseman gets a laugh out of keeping a ball that would have made a nice keepsake.

Yep, I was that fan.

So, there I am with a baseball caked with mud. Im a little annoyed about being the double-switch the first baseman made - I have been nice enough to cheer him when he makes a good grab in spite of the fact he drove in a pair of runs to beat us yesterday. Now we are getting beaten again.

Add to that the fact he thinks I am enough of a schmuck that he threw me the Ugly. He smiled when he did it. He knew.

Feelin abit drafty in the hut today?
There is no way anyone can use this ball, I cant scrape the mud off enough even to give it to a kid without his mother being mad about his dirty hands. This thing has been filthy too long, probably riding in the bottom of the bag since the first rain delay of the year, getting thrown back for a cleaner ball by every player on the club.

Time to make baseball magic!

When creating a charm, baseball or otherwise, it does indeed help to have a personal possession from the subject of the spell. Even better if it is given freely by them, at its best if offered up with attitude or emotion involved.

I chose the language of the swamp for the inscription, which I kept simple and easy to focus on. I included a symbol representing the desired outcome - not quite a sigil not quite an effigy, the shape was a form easily recognizable and familiar to the subject of the charm.

Cleaned up nicely, now its a lucky totem!

Im not claiming I won any games for the Biscuits. Im just saying that the home team came back from a deficit to win that night. And in other games when the Ugly came out with the Biscuits behind late.
Geaux indeed, the Skitz were trailing in these games before the rally ball came out!

The moral of this story?
Well, for players, be careful who you toss the Ugly to, someone might know how to use it against you!
For fans, its that you can have an active role in the game, even in the seats you can use your mojo!

No comments: