The former first baseman talks about his days in the big leagues, the Hall of Fame, and most importantly his commitment to Wolfram Syndrome.
To many fans, J.T. Snow is remembered as the slick-fielding San Francisco Giants first baseman who had to scoop up three-year-old batboy Darren Baker from harm’s way in the 2002 World Series. Eight years later, the now-retired six-time Gold Glove winner is committed to a far more important cause: helping children suffering from a rare disease called Wolfram Syndrome. Snow, who hit .268/.357/.427, with 189 home runs over 15 big-league seasons, shared his thoughts on a variety of subjects, including the importance of defense, steroids and the Hall of Fame, and athletes as role models. His foundation, The Snowman Fund, is named for himself and his late father, former Los Angeles Rams wide receiver Jack Snow.
Manager Ron Washington has gotten the Rangers to buy into his style of play, along with other news and notes from around the major leagues.
Ron Washington has the chance to make history in the next two nights. The Rangers lead the Yankees 3-2 in the American League Championship Series and need only one win in the next two games to qualify for the first World Series appearance in the franchise' 50-year history.
One final look at injury news from around the major leagues.
There's no easy way to say goodbye, but there's always a time when we have to do it. Life turns like a season, and as the leaves change, so do the circumstances of our life. Eight years is a long time to do any one thing at any one place. I think in some small way, I've been able to perform the core mission I hoped to when I started writing about sports medicine: to educate the public about the overlooked importance of health, safety, and the hard work of medical staffs in winning baseball.
The Red Sox' supplemental-round pick this year discusses getting drafted, his arsenal, and coming back from injuries.
Anthony Ranaudo lasted until the 39th pick of this year’s draft, but the 6-foot-7 right-hander might have the highest upside of any hurler selected. The Red Sox certainly hope so, as it took a $2,550,000 signing bonus—an agreement made minutes before the August 16 deadline—to get the LSU flamethrower in the fold. Widely regarded as the top draft-eligible pitcher going into the season, he ultimately fell to Boston in the sandwich round due to an inconsistent junior campaign, concerns about his elbow, and the Scott Boras factor. Ranaudo, who will turn 21 next week, joined the short-season Lowell Spinners after spending the summer pitching in the Cape Cod League.
I have seen the future, and its name is FIELDf/x. OK, so we kind of knew that. But today, FIELDf/x started to seem a lot more real, and even more exciting than I’d imagined. You may have noticed that BP had a man on the scene at Sportvision’s PITCHf/x summit whose liveblog was actually live. So why am I doing this, when Colin already did? Well, for one thing, Colin arrived fashionably late, and I was all over those first 14 minutes that he missed. For another, his computer died before a lot of the fun started. And for still another (this is a third reason, now), I thought it might be fun to do a Simmons-style quasi-liveblog (written live, published later) that would free me from worries about frequent updates, and allow me to write at length. Most likely that length turned out to be a good deal longer than anyone has any interest in reading, but if you’re determined to catch up on the day’s intriguing events without sitting through eight hours of archived video, you’re welcome to peruse what lies below. If you’d like to follow along, here’s an agenda, and here’s where you should be able to find downloadable presentations in the near future.
Here we are in sunny California, home of the cutest girls in the world, if the Beach Boys are to be believed (I gather there’s also a more recent chart-topper that expresses a similar view). Okay, so by “we,” I mean the attendees at the 3rd (annual?) Sportvision PITCHf/x summit, held at the Westin San Francisco in—you guessed it—San Francisco. I, on the other hand, am watching from the other end of the continent, via a webcast that dubiously claims to be “hi-res,” despite being blurry enough to make deciphering text an adventure (I guess “hi-res” is relative, in the sense that there are even lower resolutions at which it could’ve been streamed). And sure, maybe the Beach Boys weren’t thinking of this particular gathering when they extolled the virtues of California’s beach bunnies. But never mind that—it’s a beautiful Saturday afternoon here in New York, and how better to spend it than to watch a video of some fellow nerds talk about baseball in a dark room some 3,000 miles away? Well, to describe the experience at the same time, of course. Let’s get this quasi-liveblog started.
A Twins prospect discusses rules and regs, off-season jobs, and more.
Six years after signing with the Twins, Kyle Waldrop has become well acquainted with minor-league baseball’s ups and downs, as well as its day-to-days and dos and don‘ts. A 24-year-old right-hander who was taken 25th overall in the 2004 draft, Waldrop is pitching out of the bullpen for the Triple-A Rochester Red Wings, where he has a 2.48 ERA in 51 appearances.
Some of the things Baseball Prospectus' resident injury expert ponders on a daily basis.
In the last 24 hours, I've had three men I really respect discuss three topics with me. One asked about pain and baseball. Another asked about the dangers of wall vs. player collisions. The last one asked about the cost of injuries. This is a bit of a change of pace for UTK, but it's all related, so I wanted to share the type of things I think about on a day-to-day basis.
Our resident medhead looks at the top 10 baseball orthopedists.
It's hard to say "ignore the rankings" when I'm about to give you a Top-10 list, but I'm telling you—ignore the rankings. From 1-10, these are some of the top orthopedic surgeons in the world. The rankings were based on a short survey I gave to several players and front-office types, but barely have any meaning. If anything, think of this as the program to the next time an athlete goes on a tour to find a doctor he likes. They say you can't tell the players without a program, but for years we've been asked to just accept that our favorite players and teams are relying on doctors. While I could write a book on this topic, a few hundred words on each is more than most know about any of them. So, tip your cap to the medical heroes, the super surgeons that have to put our athletic Humpty Dumpties together again:
Dr. James Andrews Practice: Andrews Sports Medicine (Birmingham, Alabama); The Andrews Institute (Pensacola, Florida) Team: Rays School: LSU School of Medicine Speciality: Elbow, shoulder, knee Signature Surgeries: Roger Clemens (shoulder, 1985); John Smoltz (elbow, 2000) Why He's No. 1: In baseball, Andrews is perhaps known best for things he really didn't found. Many think he invented Tommy John surgery. (That was Dr. Frank Jobe, of course.) Many think he was the first consulting surgeon. Instead, Andrews should be known for being the athlete's choice. There's a confidence that athletes seem to get when dealing with Andrews. Perhaps it's that he's known as the best, but if you get the chance to speak with him, his deep Louisiana drawl goes from being "Wow, I didn't expect that" to comforting when paired with his matchless confidence. Birmingham became synonymous with injuries, but while going to Birmingham was bad, there was always a tag on it, that a player fully expected to come back healed. An article a few years ago tabbed Andrews as "the most valuable man in sports." No one's going to argue with Andrews being at the top of the list and moreover, his American Sports Medicine Institute Fellows program helped put a couple more on the list below. His influence is going to last far beyond the careers of the men he did surgery on.