Results tagged ‘ ESPN ’

Chris Sale’s perfect game bid on Twitter

Dash alum Chris Sale had himself quite an outing tonight on ESPN’s Sunday Night Baseball. If you know about it, relive the fun. If you have not heard about his effort, learn about it below.

Great effort, Chris. Here’s hoping the White Sox can pull off the victory over the Angels.

- Brian

Weaver’s Ties To Winston-Salem

Earl Weaver while with the Winston-Salem Cardinals in 1950 (Bob Lemke).

Earl Weaver while with the Winston-Salem Cardinals in 1950 (Bob Lemke).

It is a somber Saturday morning in the baseball world. Hall of Fame manager Earl Weaver has passed away at the age of 82. According to the New York Daily News, Weaver died of an apparent heart attack early this morning on an Orioles fantasy cruise.

Weaver’s claim to fame is his tremendous success as the manager of the Baltimore Orioles. Weaver was 1480-1060 (.583) in 17 seasons, and he led the O’s to four American League pennants. The Hall of Famer led Baltimore to the 1970 World Series title.

A man who Tim Kurkjian called “one of the three greatest managers of all time” on ESPN’s SportsCenter this morning, Weaver contributed to the greatest season in Winston-Salem history.

In 1950, the Winston-Salem Cardinals posted a Carolina League-record 106-47 (.693) mark and won the league’s title. Weaver was the club’s second baseman and hit .276 during the season.

Weaver never reached the big leagues as a player, so he began his managerial career in the minor leagues in 1956. The St. Louis native reached Baltimore as the skipper in the middle of the 1968 season, and he led the O’s to the Fall Classic in each of his first three full seasons.

We send our condolences to the Weaver family. Earl has a special place in baseball history and in Winston-Salem history.

- Brian

Early Season Parity in the Carolina League

It is only 14 games into the season, but we in the sports media like to prognosticate and over-analyze all the time. The 2012 NCAA basketball tournament was over for all of 12 hours before a thorough prediction of the entire 2013 tournament field appeared on ESPN’s website. Oh, did I mention the article has 5,000+ comments for something that won’t occur for more than 300 days.

So what’s the point you ask? Well, right now a dominant team has yet to emerge in the Southern Division. Since Monday night the entire division has been tied on two separate occasions. After the games on that Monday, April 16th, each club in the Southern Division was 5-5. The Carolina League has tiebreaker procedures established for two teams that are tied, but what about three…or all four?!?!

My best guess at what the formula looks like to break a four-way tie in the Southern Division.

The same scenario unraveled two nights later after the Dash beat Myrtle Beach. Everyone was 6-6 and we started to wonder if Carolina League Commissioner John Hopkins was locked in a room trying to devise a formula to break a four way tie to decide the division.

This post was actually conceived with the notion that all four teams in the division would be tied again this morning at 7-7. At the time our broadcast signed off, it certainly looked to be the case. However, Myrtle Beach ruined that novel idea with a comeback win in the ninth inning.

(A side note on Myrtle Beach; their PA announcer had a flair for accentuating the names of Hispanic players on the Pelicans. So the hero of last night’s game, Odubel Herrera, actually sounded like Odubel ERR-ERRRRRRRRRRR-AAAA…That description does not do it justice, but I got great joy out of hearing the overly dramatic flair and I now walk around screeching ERR-ERRRRRRRRR-AAA whenever I see his name in print).

Yes, it is quite early in the season but it is fun to pull out your jump to conclusions mat and wonder what will happen should the first half of the regular season end with a four-way tie. To put into perspective how close the Southern Division is, consider the fact that, in all of minor league baseball, no other division has more than two teams tied for the lead.

With 56 games left in the season, there is still plenty of time for teams to shift their way through the clutter. But if the past two weeks are any indication, we should be in for an exciting divisional race in the first half of the season.

- Mike

Saturday Notes

As I type this, more than 150 Dash fans are vying for an elusive spot as a National Anthem singer at BB&T Ballpark for the 2012 season. Dash Director of Marketing Brandon Cathey is documenting some of the fun on our Twitter feed, so be sure to keep an eye on that throughout the afternoon.

Let’s get you a few notes on this Saturday. It’s a weekend edition of the Dots.

DASH DOTS:

  • Thanks to Ryan Manuel, the Dash’s Baseball Operations czar, for pointing this out to me earlier this week. Former Winston-Salem Warthog Brandon McCarthy, now in the Oakland Athletics’ rotation, is the reigning cover man on ESPN The Magazine. The issue revolves around analytics in sports, and the Athletics’ organization earned national recognition in this field with the “Moneyball” concept.

    Former Winston-Salem starter Brandon McCarthy is on the cover of ESPN The Magazine with his wife Amanda (ESPN Front Row).

  • According to executive editor Scott Burton in this Q&A piece on ESPN Front Row, the article on McCarthy was originally slated to be fairly short. However, McCarthy’s reliance on statistical analysis to revive his career, coupled with his great personality, begged for a significant portion of the issue.
  • Burton took a lot of pride in the McCarthy piece and the issue as a whole: “To me, this is the best storytelling we’ve done in the past year. Just because you’re talking about stats doesn’t mean you can’t tell a story too. I’m very proud to say we were able to do just that.” It’s pretty neat that a former Winston-Salem hurler was an integral part of a great publication.
  • Fans do not need to analyze many statistics to realize that McCarthy rolled through the Carolina League when he was a Warthog in 2004. In eight starts, McCarthy posted a 6-0 record and a 2.08 earned run average. The right-hander whiffed 60 CL swingers in 52 innings of work. All of that is, uh, really good.
  • Who could be the breakout pitcher in the Carolina League? In reality, none of us know. In the fictional world, however, it has to be Myrtle Beach Mermen

    Here is Kenny Powers decked out in his Mermen jersey.

    fireballer Kenny Powers. The third season of the hit series “Eastbound & Down” was filmed in part in Myrtle Beach at the home of the Pelicans. The team is even selling some Mermen merchandise.

  • Unfortunately, this will likely be the final season of “Eastbound & Down,” so there is no chance that the fictional White Sox (if they even exist in Powers’ world) will acquire the righty. Still, give credit to the Pelicans for taking advantage of such a unique opportunity. There will be plenty of “Powers 55″ jerseys around the park when the Dash make their first trip to Myrtle Beach in mid-April, that’s for sure.
  • Finally, if you missed it yesterday, here is a fun look at the Dash’s broadcast team this season–Mike Lefko and I. We had fun writing it and making fun of ourselves a bit. Expect plenty of that on and off the air throughout the spring and summer.

I’ll be back Monday with some thoughts on the White Sox’s spring training opener against the Dodgers. Until then, have a great weekend!

- Brian

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