Date: Wednesday, August 16th, 2017
Opponent: Detroit Tigers (53-66)
Starters: Anibal Sanchez (3-3, 6.69) vs. Cole Hamels (7-1, 3.31)
Hey, everyone. It’s a bright-skied Wednesday afternoon here at the ballpark, and everything is fine, I had a cup of coffee on the drive to the ballpark, and I avoided reading too much news today, and ahhhh actually, you know what, I forgot to eat before I came, but I’m sure it’s okay. I’m sure nothing will happen that will be too much of a probOH NOOOOO CARLOS GOMEZ
It’s the--HERK *breathes deeply, eyes closed, one finger up* whewwwwwww. Baseball Tex--HURK... mmmmmmmmmmm It’sTheBaseballTexasDaily.
1. Carlos Gomez last played on Sunday night, and when he and Shin-Soo Choo were both out of the lineup on Monday, Jeff Banister told us that Gomez was feeling “a little under the weather”. We found out today what that meant: “It’s a… I don’t know how to say it in English,” Gomez said, “it’s--” he stopped and turned around and took off his shirt, revealing a lanced cyst on his right shoulder blade that was at least the size of a silver dollar, perhaps bigger, I don’t know, I was focusing my breathing. It was huge and gross and it looked like it was hungry for human flesh.
“It started as a little pimple thing,” he explained, telling us that it had already grown into a cyst before Sunday’s game. The brave training staff drained it before the game, but he was in a lot of pain (even before being hit by two pitches).
But pain is one thing. It was what happened after the game that kept Gomez out for a couple days: “I didn’t think it was going to be that bad, but I didn’t sleep that night after the game. I had a fever, I was shaking. I almost went to the emergency room.” He motioned all the way around to his right pectoral muscle. “All the way up here,” he said.
So, that’s horrifying.
But it does appear the worst is over. Gomez has been on antibiotics, and tells us that “today, it’s still in pain, but I think I’ll be available to pinch-hit or pinch-run. ...I don’t want a high-five, but…”
2. Jake Diekman is starting a rehab assignment tomorrow in Frisco. He’s scheduled to throw 15 pitches, and it will be his first game action this season; he has been recovering from a three-surgery procedure to remove his colon and treat him for Ulcerative Colitis, something he has battled his entire adult life. Diekman is understandably excited to finally be getting into a game. “I’m just ready to face different hitters. That aren’t on my own team.”
As for his repertoire, Diekman isn’t tipping his pitches, even against a AA lineup. Asked if he would be throwing only fastballs to build arm strength, or if he would be using his entire arsenal to try to get batters out, Diekman replied with a straight-faced “I feel like I can get through an inning with only heaters.”
After a beat, he expounded: “I mean yeah, I want to have command of my heater first. I don’t want to be in 2-0, 2-1, 3-0 counts. If I get in a count where I feel like I can throw a slider, then I’ll do that, but I want to make sure I can command both sides of the plate, up-and-down.”
Diekman said the rest of the rehab is tentatively “scheduled out”, but that he wasn’t ready to talk about anything beyond tomorrow just yet.
3. The Gut It Out Foundation, which he and his fianceé Amanda Soltero officially launched today. They have already been making donations from the sale of T-Shirts to help fund research to cure Ulcerative Colitis and Crohn’s disease, but now they’re making it official and starting a foundation.
“The first $10,000 will go to a clinical trial that we picked out at the Mayo Clinic,” he told us. “And then, there’s ‘Camp Oasis’ going on near Waco right now. We’d like to send kids to that sometimes, because it’s pretty expensive to send kids (to camp) for 4-5 days. We’re just thinking of new ways to raise money, but the biggest thing is that we don’t make any money off of it. We’re not taking a dollar, so anything that is donated, 100% of it goes to (these charities).”
The goal is clear. “Hopefully to find a cure. Like… adults, if you talk to an adult with Crohn’s or Colitis, they’ll be like ‘eh, I can deal with it’. This is more so 6-to-10 year olds don’t have to go through crappy infusions and drugs that just got on the market and then ten years down the road, they find out, ‘oh that drug really sucked, it did harmful things to your body’. I would like to find a cure before these kids are on a drug that harms them down the road.”
You can visit the new foundation's website and get involved at gutitoutfoundation.org
4. Cole Hamels is pitching tonight, and the hope is that he will continue his recent dominant stretch after returning from an extended time on the DL with an oblique injury. Jeff Banister says that he easing back into a full workload has been partially to thank, in his opinion, for Hamels’ post-DL success, and says that the team is keeping a close eye on the balance between using Hamels as much as possible in an attempt to make it to a Wild-Card game, vs. resting him as much as possible to prepare him for a postseason run where he will be relied on heavily, perhaps even moreso in the absence of Yu Darvish.
“It’s all predicated on how he feels coming out of each start. Coming out of Spring Training, he probably wasn’t completely the Cole Hamels with the velo that he normally had, then with the oblique… We still need to get to where we want to go first (the postseason). That’s kind of a slippery slope. Don’t use him and don’t get there, (or use him and ) then if you do get there, you don’t have him (at full strength). We’ll monitor each (start).”
That’s all for today! Hope I didn’t ruin your dinner.
"Nobody Likes a Quitter", the latest album (Oct. 2016) from All Get Out. Okay, I'll be honest. I'm still stuck on "Black Mile to the Surface" by Manchester Orchestra, but I felt like it would seem either lazy or unhealthy to tell you I'm still listening to that one album exclusively, so I tried to branch out today, and All Get Out is opening for Manchester Orchestra at House of Blues on September 10th, so I've been listening to it while I write. It's definitely got an indie rock quality to it, and it makes sense why the two bands would tour together. I'll enjoy the 9/10 show more if I'm more familiar with the openers, so here we are. It's good! You should listen if you like guitars and drums and well-written songs.
(Spotify, Apple Music, Website)
During the regular season, these recommendations occasionally come from Rangers players, broadcasters, or other people around the team (here’s a complete list). If there’s a player or person you’d like Levi to ask for a music recommendation, shoot him an e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or a tweet here.
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