Saturday, December 27, 2014

The Mysteries of Matt Kemp

One mystery is solved; Matt Kemp will be playing in San Diego next year. The Dodgers' outfield was crowded so they thinned the herd by trading "The Bison," eating $32 million in salary to do so.

Padres fans got an early Christmas gift last week from rookie GM A.J. Preller, who acquired two more outfielders in a 24-hour-period, Justin Upton from the Braves and Wil Myers from the Rays, and then went out and got A's catcher Derek Norris and Boston third baseman Will Middlebrooks.

Still a mystery is the state of Kemp's health. The center fielder missed 150 games over the last three seasons. Kemp underwent a major shoulder operation in 2012 and had ankle surgery in 2013. He finished strong last year—leading the major leagues in slugging percentage after the All-Star Game—but a pre-trade physical reportedly found severe arthritis in both hips.

Most mysterious of all, however, is the question of who gave me a Matt Kemp figurine.

Friday, December 26, 2014

Bud Norris, Two Times

We saw right-hander Bud Norris twice this year, although only Melvin took note of the fact. We watched him in a mid-July minor league start during the MLB all-star break and more recently as the Orioles completed a three-game sweep of the Tigers.1

Bud Norris pitches to Ian Kinsler; bottom of the first, Game 3 of the 2014 ALDS.

The division series game was, as my trilingual brother would say for effect, the ray-ZHON-det-TREAHR for the short October trip. However, any visit with Melvin and Watson is a profound pleasure whether or not baseball is involved and we spent our time together well.