Saturday, May 17, 2014

Biscuits Identity Crisis, Jim Hugh Moss from One Hitter to Electric Chair

Who are the Biscuits?

Even they don't know - if the team wins the reward is losing their best players which makes it harder to win. If they lose, well, then they are just losers. So far the team has enough talent to withstand a few promotions, though the replacement level guys who fill the void are pretty low quality.

Its an annual problem made worse this year by the Rays playing Devil Rays style baseball, by that I mean "in the basement". The low spot in the AL East standings means that the Rays don't have the luxury of standing pat in the minors. Its all hands on deck in Tampa!

For the Biscuits that means they lose out. The Bulls players move up and the Biscuits lose guys to fill the Durham roster. We have seen in the past that the Port Charlotte roster is off limits for in-season advancement in the first half of the season and often until after mid-July.

So it falls to the guys on the Biscuits who are unable to impress enough to get promoted to power the pennant drive.

Which explains why the Biscuits have never won the first half, and don't know if they are winners or losers.

In fact, they are just Biscuits. 


Skitz 2b Ryan Brett is fourth in the Rays organization with a .398 BABIP.

Willie Argo is second in the organization with over 17% Walk rate.

Pitcher Matt Ramsey, second in the organization in strikeouts per nine innings, leads all Rays with a 47.1% strikeout rate, 41% swinging!

The announcement finally came out - and yes it is indeed a Big Mo statue wearing patriotic clothes.

The marketing department really struck out on this one, from missing the mark on the subject of the giveaway to announcing it just a couple weeks ahead of time and thusly not having a chance to play it up. Add in the fact that fans wanted a Mateo themed giveaway, and its one-two-three strikes your out!

They could give Big Mo in an Uncle Sam hat any year, its a rare chance to commemorate a historic occasion like the first no-hitter in your ballpark. Shame on the Biscuits for failing to promote it the way fans want to see it handled.

Sadly, this has been a trend - falling into the same category as the Meet the Biscuits event that didn't happen. Fans want consistency, not just on the field. The team can't expect fans to support a rotating strategy or random events.

Scott Trible was promoted to General Manager, prompting the question "What took so long?"

Tribs has been filling the role vacated by Marla midseason last summer, likely doing the heavy lifting GM work for Assistant GM money. Its a good thing they went ahead and promoted him, or the ownership might risk being seen as cheapskates.

MAY 17 1920 
"Negro Hurler Goes to One-Hit 'Ledger'

Hurling big league baseball, Moss for the Montgomery Grey Sox held the New Orleans team of the Negro Southern League to 1 hit yesterday afternoon and the home club won the contest 5 to 4. The visitors' runs were due largely to errors."

This is pitcher Jim Hugh Moss, one of only a handful of professional baseball players ever to be executed for murder.

Moss had already spent time with the Chicago American Giants before 1920, later he left the north to return to his southern roots and get work on the railroad. He was recruited to pitch for the GreySox as Montgomery put together a strong team for the Negro Southern league. Moss would be a top of the rotation guy, as evidenced by his one hitter against New Orleans.

However, eight years later he would be embroiled in a bad situation - riding with a white couple and a bottle of whiskey the group would stop at a gas station. The store owner was gunned down and Moss was executed for the crime, as was the husband of the couple.

The wife got a prison sentence and submitted three different versions of a "confession" that variably implicated Moss, her husband, or someone else entirely - depending on which one was at trial and might benefit from a different story.

Later Moss would be recognized as a likely miscarriage of justice.

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