Cokin’s Corner, Sunday 7/24/16
The Del Mar vacation has concluded, and it was mission accomplished as far as getting refreshed from the daily grind is concerned. I even managed to garner a net profit at the racetrack, although I think it’s safe to say the small plus on the ponies wasn’t exactly life changing. Great trip, can’t wait to visit that wonderful little slice of heaven on earth again soon.
Meanwhile, we’re closing in on the non-waiver trading deadline in baseball, and things got really weird on Saturday evening. Chris Sale was a late scratch from his scheduled start for the White Sox against the Tigers. The initial explanation was that he was a flu bug victim, but no one seemed to believe that. Speculation then began that the Chisox might have a deal pending, as it’s no secret that GM Rick Hahn has gone into sell mode and no one on the roster is untouchable.
But what turned out to be the apparent actual reason Sale was scratched and banished from the clubhouse was downright bizarre. Sale allegedly objected to the throwback uniforms the White Sox were sporting for this game, and threw what amounts to a hissy fit. Obviously, I wasn’t there, so I’m relying on reports as far as this goes, but those were courtesy of some pretty high level baseball media people.
To be honest, my initial reaction to this news was disbelief. The only justifiable excuse I could come up with was that the White Sox throwback uniforms were those silly shorts that Bill Veeck tried to introduce way back when. Has that been the case, I’d be siding with Sale right now. But I watched the game, and based on the uniforms the team wore, I have no idea what Sale’s problem is.
One cannot help but wonder if Sale has pitched his last game for the White Sox. I’m not suggesting they’re suddenly going to shop him because of this nutty incident. But it might just be that this was a signal of sorts from Sale that he does not want to be part of what is going to be a White Sox rebuild. If that’s the case, he’s without question the prime commodity for interested trade partners.
Sale is an elite pitcher, one of the best in the game. The Rangers and Dodgers are teams with loads of top prospect talent, and each is in need of starting pitching help. I would not be shocked if one of those two contending teams decides to put together a major prospect package in hopes of landing Sale.
In any event, it sure looks like the White Sox are about to become a central player in whatever deals get made over the next several days. It should be a blast to watch!
A perfect Saturday here, with three winners, a push on the suspended White Sox-Tigers game, and net profit of right around +3.5 for the day. Two plays already in action for the Sunday card, and one of those will be the free play posted on this page.
For info on what’s remaining in baseball and what’s on tap as far as football is concerned, drop me a line at email@example.com and I’ll explain exactly what’s available.
Good job by the Marlins and the amazing Jose Fernandez as the Saturday free play. I’ll flip to the American League for the Sunday comp.
RANGERS (Griffin) @ ROYALS (Volquez)
Take: ROYALS -115
The Rangers won against the Royals on Saturday. But with Cole Hamels going that was the game they figured to get in this series. I like KC to rebound here.
Edison Volquez is in far superior form to AJ Griffin. The Texas righty is strictly a finesse guy, heat range 85-90, and of late his command has been pretty shaky. These guys cannot survive at the big league level if they aren’t locating.
Volquez has some skewed numbers due to that one inning disaster against the Astros, but he’s been pretty good for the most part, and he’s definitely better at home than on the road. I have no problem trying to beat the Rangers right now and feel as though I’m getting a good enough price to warrant a play today on the Royals.