Dustin Parkes

Recent Posts

Marlins vs. Twins

Every Friday, the Getting Blanked crew makes a prop bet of sorts with one another having something to do with baseball games over the weekend. Of the four competitors, whoever wins the prop bet is able to dole out a punishment on the colleague of their choice. This week’s punishment was watching and recapping Tuesday night’s Minnesota Twins and Miami Marlins game. We call this #PropHate.

The Narrative

The Miami Marlins are a juggernaut, and the only thing that will stand in their way is a general lack of talent, very little depth and the remainder of their regular season schedule – which on most nights will have them competing against superior competition. It would be arguable whether or not this was the case on Tuesday night when the Minnesota Twins visited Marlins Park for the very first time.

With a 4-2 victory over their guests, the Marlins have won four of their last five games in what has easily become their best run of the season. Miami achieved this despite a lackluster outing from their best pitcher, 20-year-old Jose Fernandez, who by my personal count had thrown 1,384 pitches by the second inning.

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A Few Good Ballplayers

On Tuesday night, Ian Kennedy threw a baseball at Zack Greinke during a game between the Arizona Diamondbacks and Los Angeles Dodgers. It hit him in the shoulder, and a brawl ensued.

It all began when Diamondbacks outfielder Cody Ross was hit by a pitch from Greinke earlier in the game, and then Kennedy responded by throwing at and hitting Yasiel Puig in the sixth inning. During the top of the seventh, Greinke drilled Miguel Montero in the back. The benches cleared at that point, but it was a typical “GRUNT, GRUNT. We make fire here” bit of nonsense as opposed to anything serious.

So, when Greinke came to bat in the bottom of the inning, a first pitch fastball up and in was shamefully not a surprise. Neither was the far more serious emptying of the dugouts that followed.

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Baseball 2006Last week, ESPN’s Outside The Lines reported that Major League Baseball would seek to suspend 20 players connected to Biogenesis of America, a former Miami-area anti-aging clinic founded by Anthony Bosch that was implicated in providing banned substances to professional athletes in January by a whistle-blowing former employee. After a lawsuit was filed against him by MLB, Bosch reached an agreement – according to the OTL report – to cooperate with the league’s investigation into the matter, potentially offering evidence necessary to suspend several players.

In exchange for Bosch’s cooperation, MLB will not only drop the lawsuit it filed against Bosch in March, but also protect him from liability for any other legal action that might arise from his cooperation, provide security for him and speak on his behalf with any law enforcement agency that seeks to bring charges against him in the future.

This represents the very first time in professional sports that a league has investigated the past use of banned substances by multiple high-profile players for punitive purposes. And like any first time, it carries with it a lot of nuance, intricacies and questions that are likely to be ignored by our initial reaction to the possibilities of wide spread suspensions.

With a bit of distance from the story breaking, let’s go over some of the larger issues pertaining to the investigation and potential punishment, and try to gain an understanding of – forgive me for this – what it all means.

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Ten Stray Thoughts On A Friday

DOMINICAN-BASEBALLFor many, Friday represents the end of a long work week that’s filled with heavy doses of drudging, sludging and other words that don’t actually exist but rhyme with “udging” and connote menial and tedious tasks that are ultimately distasteful.

It’s my hope that at the end of such misery, at that moment in time that only occurs on a Friday afternoon – when it’s too far away from closing time to leave work early, but too late in the day to start anything new – you’ll join us here to read some random observations about baseball and contribute your own thoughts on the topics that get discussed.

So, without further ado, I present this week’s Ten Stray Thoughts On A Friday:

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mybaseballcard

Typically, at this point in the day – at this point in the week – I’d introduce a column in which I offer ten thoughts on some of the newsier items around baseball. I like doing it because, well, I really like baseball, and I really like sharing what I think about baseball. In this sense, it’s not surprising that occasionally my thoughts will admittedly drift toward becoming self-indulgent.

In fact, the whole premise of offering up my thoughts as something that others NEED to read – and promoting it through social media as “my thoughts” – has always felt a little bit too suggestive of megalomania to me. My greatest fear is that someone reads through TSTOAF and counts the number of times I used “I think …” to start a sentence. Nonetheless, the response for the weekly feature is usually pretty good, and the conversations in the comments section tend to be opinionated in the good way – respectful of the perspectives of others, while still offering insight that causes points of view to be questioned.

This is what makes the column worthwhile to me.

Today, I’m going in the opposite direction of the one toward which I’d like to move. I’m going to be self-indulgent, and it’s probably going to seem as though I think my experiences are more important than they are. I don’t feel this way. In fact, my hope is that my experiences are common. That you’ll recognize your own experiences in mine, and that you’ll be able to walk away after reading this with the ability to express something that you felt but couldn’t articulate before, or that, like our comments section does to me, you’ll question your own perspective.

I’m going to write about the ten most influential moments in my own baseball fandom.

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Ten Stray Thoughts On A Friday

Toronto Blue Jays v New York YankeesFor many, Friday represents the end of a long work week that’s filled with heavy doses of drudging, sludging and other words that don’t actually exist but rhyme with “udging” and connote menial and tedious tasks that are ultimately distasteful. It’s my hope that at the end of such misery, at that moment in time that only occurs on a Friday afternoon when it’s too far away from closing time to leave work early, but too late in the day to start anything new, you’ll join us here to read some random observations about baseball and contribute your own thoughts on the subjects that are broached.

So, without further ado, I present this week’s Ten Stray Thoughts On A Friday:

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Ten Stray Thoughts On A Friday

clay-buchholz-forearmFor many, Friday represents the end of a long work week that’s filled with heavy doses of drudging, sludging and other words that don’t actually exist but rhyme with “udging” and connote menial and tedious tasks that are ultimately distasteful. It’s my hope that at the end of such misery, at that moment in time that only occurs on a Friday afternoon when it’s too far away from closing time to leave work early, but too late in the day to start anything new, you’ll join us here to read some random observations about baseball and contribute your own thoughts on the subjects that are broached.

So, without further ado, I present this week’s Ten Stray Thoughts On A Friday:

Read the rest of this entry »