Cup of Coffee: June 6, 2024

All-Star voting, elbows, anxiety, channel names, weird merch, guns, dining and dashing, rich people and The Beatles

Good morning! And welcome to Free Thursday!

I’m back at Cup of Coffee Mission Control in beautiful downtown Columbus, Ohio, so we have actual recaps today. We also have stuff about All-Star voting, a pitcher’s bad elbow, a pitcher suffering from anxiety, a new name for some old channels, weird London Series merch, a man who should NOT have a gun, Great Moments in Dining and Dashing, how the rich are different from you and me, and casting The Beatles.

And away we go . . .

And That Happened 

Here are the scores. Here are the highlights:

Reds 12, Rockies 7: Colorado blew an early 4-0 lead, then blew a late 7-4 lead. The Reds rally came via two runs in the eighth and then six runs in the ninth via Spencer Steer’s two-run go-ahead homer and Johnathan India’s sugar-on-top grand slam. TJ Friedl and Jeimer Candelario also went deep and Elly De La Cruz had three hits. The Reds sweep the three-game set and win their fourth straight overall.

Red Sox 9, Atlanta 0: Nick Pivetta was on-point, allowing just one hit over seven shutout innings while striking out nine and two relievers finished off the one-hitter. Rafael Devers hit a solo home run in the second inning and a two-run shot in the seventh. The once and former teams from Boston split the two-game set.

Phillies 2, Brewers 0: Aaron Nola was almost as on-point as Pivetta, allowing two hits over seven shutout innings in what turned out to be a three-hit shutout of the Brewers. Nick Castellanos’ two-run homer in the fifth accounted for all the scoring. Now it’s off to London Town.

Mets 9, 1 Nationals: Luis Torrens hit two homers, Francisco Lindor hit one, and Luis Severino scattered seven hits and allowed just one run over eight innings. New York sweeps the Nats and now it’s off to London Town.

Cardinals 4, Astros 2: Miles Mikolas was solid, scattering five hits and allowing two runs in six innings. Nolan Arenado homered and Alec Burleson added an RBI double to help the Cards avoid the sweep.

Giants 9, Diamondbacks 3: The Giants got a six-run third inning thanks to a grand slam from Wilmer Flores, who drove in five on the afternoon. Heliot Ramos and Jorge Soler also went deep. While this was a nine-inning game it was three and a half hours long. You don’t see that very much these days. Total 2019 vibes.

Pirates 10, Dodgers 6: Paul Skenes allowed three runs on six hits and struck out eight over five innings. He struck out Shohei Ohtani on a 100 mph fastball in the first but Ohtani later got to him for a two-run homer on a less-precise triple-digit pitch. Skenes still got the win, though, so I’m sure he’s happier this morning. Speaking of velocity, Pirates reliever Aroldis Chapman threw five pitches of at least 103 mph during the seventh inning, including a 104 mph pitch that Teoscar Hernández fouled off. That was the fastest pitch thrown in the bigs all year. Someone check the radar gun at PNC Park. Enough about pitchers, though: Nick Gonzales drove in four, Edward Olivares and Ke'Bryan Hayes each had two hits and an RBI, and the Buccos plated seven in the second inning against James Paxton to stake themselves to an insurmountable lead. Or, at the very least, one that was not in fact surmounted.

Rays 5, Marlins 3: Isaac Paredes drove in three runs with a pair of doubles and Brandon Lowe had two hits and an RBI for the Rays, who continue to dominate their cross-state rivals. I’d say that means they’re “winning the battle for Florida” but who the hell wants to claim Florida?

Blue Jays 3, Orioles 2: Isiah Kiner-Falefa tied the game at two in the second inning on an RBI single and then won the game with another RBI single in the bottom of the ninth. Big assist to Craig Kimbrel here, as he gave up a single to Justin Turner to lead off the inning and threw the ball away while trying to pick off Cavan Biggio, who pinch ran for Turner, allowing him to get into scoring position before Kiner-Falefa’s walkoff hit.

Yankees 9, Twins 5: Aaron Judge hit a bases-clearing triple and knocked in five runs on the evening Carlos Rodón took a perfecto into the sixth, ultimately allowing two runs over six to lead the Yankees to their seventh straight win. They’re now tied with Philadelphia for the best record in the major leagues at 44-19.

Cubs 7, White Sox 6: Paul DeJong homered in the eighth to pull the White Sox even with the Cubs but then Mike Tauchman hit a walkoff solo homer in the bottom of the ninth to send the South Siders to their 13th straight loss. Tauchman had two hits and scored three times in all while Cody Bellinger drove in two. The White Sox’ 13-game skid is the longest losing streak in the majors this year and ties the franchise record set in 1924. One only wonders where this team would be if Jerry Reinsdorf were alive.

Rangers 9, Tigers 1: Rangers starter José Ureña (6.2 IP, 1 H, 1 ER, 6 K) tamed the Tigers, taking a perfect game into the sixth inning before giving up a homer. Meanwhile Josh Smith went 3-for-4 with a homer and a stolen base. Both teams had players leave with injuries, with Detroit starter Kenta Maeda throwing only two pitches before experiencing right-side abdominal discomfort and Rangers shortstop Corey Seager left with left hamstring tightness following an RBI single in the second. Bruce Bochy says Seager was taken out only as a precaution, but we’ll see.

Angels 3, Padres 2: Nolan Schanuel and Zach Neto homered for the Angels but that was the least of the Padres’ problems: Manny Machado left after suffering a hip flexor injury while trying to beat out a double play. He left the field walking gingerly. He’s day-to-day now but, as I said in the previous recap, we’ll see.

Athletics 2, Mariners 1: A’s starter Joey Estes is like the sixth pitcher who has allowed only one hit in six or seven shutout innings in the past couple of days. Here he took a perfecto into the seventh before allowing a base runner. He finished with a line of 6.1 innings, one hit, 0 ER and five strikeouts. The A’s scored their runs on Zack Gelof’s homer in the third and a passed ball in the sixth

Royals vs. Guardians — POSTPONED:

🎶 I'm already scared of the winter
Even though summer's takin' her sweet time to start
It's her manipulative heart
She's full of greed, she's such a tease with neon blues
And greens and sweaty palms
She tricks your heart into thinkin' that it's cold
Then the rain comes back, like it always does

Every noon, and every June, I used to sit beside my window sill and stare
Up at the grey skies, she didn't even care
That I had waited, calculated all the lakes that I would swim
And all the carnival games I'd win
If it would only clear up by then, I'd lift my chin

So I will try, I will wait patiently for July
Or move to somewhere with a clearer sky
When I do, life will be yellow
I won't sink into the blue

And so I tried
I couldn't wait patiently for July
So I moved to somewhere with a clearer sky
But when I did, I only missed the rain 🎶

The Daily Briefing

All-Star voting begins

Voting for the 2024 All-Star Game is officially underway. You can vote at The balloting is sponsored by Buildsubmarines dot com, because when people think about the Midsummer Classic they, obviously, think about job clearinghouses dedicated to the specific task of military submarine manufacturing.

As has been the case for several years now, there are two phases of voting, with the first lasting from yesterday through June 27 and the second from June 30 through July 3. Phase One allows you to vote for whoever you want to, after which things are narrowed down to the finalists, while Phase Two allows fans to “vote for the starters.” Each person can vote up to five times per day. Not because that’s the best way to pick and All-Star team, mind you. Rather, it’s so that the submarine building people get a whole lotta impressions of their ads all over the MLB website. And, really, isn’t that what it’s all about?

Robert Gasser to visit Dr. ElAttrache

The Milwaukee Brewers announced yesterday that they have placed rookie starter Robert Gasser on the 15-day injured list, retroactive to June 2, with a left flexor strain. The foreboding part of that is that he has been sent to Los Angeles to meet with Dr. Neal ElAttrache for a second opinion, and Dr. ElAttrache is not known for “hey, he’ll be alright if he just rubs some dirt on it” diagnoses.

Gasser, 25, debuted with Milwaukee on May 10 and has posted a 2.57 ERA (161 ERA+) with 16 strikeouts and only one walk in 28 innings over five starts. Gasser experienced tightness and soreness after his five-inning appearance this past Saturday.

This is just the latest in a series of pitching injuries for the Brewers. Joe Ross, DL Hall, and Jakob Junis are already on the injured list and Wade Miley and Brandon Woodruff are out for the season. Despite this, Milwaukee is 36-26 and has a comfortable lead in the NL Central right now.

Red Sox pitcher heads to IL due to anxiety

The Boston Red Sox placed reliever Chris Martin on the 15-day injured list Wednesday because of anxiety.

This is something that, while still not super common, we’ve seen a bit more of in recent years. And the reason we’ve seen it is because people in positions of power in baseball are far, far more knowledgable and understanding when it comes to mental health and mental health problems than they were even a few short years ago.

Red Sox manager Alex Cora’s comments after Martin was placed on the IL yesterday are evidence of that. Cora, via the Boston Globe:

“I remember playing the game, going 0-for-4, going to the apartment, turning on the TV at midnight and watching the game again. I was gonna go 0-for-4 again, and then in the morning I’d watch the game again and go 0-for-4 again. I feel like at that time, at that moment, the family suffered. It suffered a lot.

“You guys know, (my daughter) Camila is the daughter of divorced parents. I didn’t help my family to be as strong as it should be because there were a lot of demons, a lot of stuff going on in between the lines and in the clubhouse and out of baseball. That’s why I tip her mom, Nilda, because she did an outstanding job after we separated. We got a great daughter, a daughter that’s gonna kill it in the world because she’s very strong. She has strong parents. We’ve been honest about our situation, what we need to do for her to succeed, you know what I’m saying? We’ve been going through this for a while here as far as guys stepping up and being open about it.

“He’s gonna be OK. Whenever he’s ready he’s ready, right? We don’t know if it’s short-term, long-term. We never know. We don’t know about this. But I think with the team that’s around, it’s gonna surround him and he’s gonna be OK.”

Kudos to folks like Cora for supporting his player. Doing so represents a welcome and necessary normalization of mental health challenges.

FanDuel to take over Bally’s Sports channels naming rights

Diamond Sports Group disclosed during a bankruptcy hearing on Tuesday that it has found a new naming rights partner for its Bally’s Sports Network channels: FanDuel. In totally unrelated news, two of the three leagues whose games will be broadcast on FanDuel channels have recently suspended players for life for gambling on their own sports.

So, if you wanted to know if we’ll ever see less gambling influence on sports, the answer is clearly no.

That’s certainly some merchandise

Seen in London in the runup to the London Series between the Mets and Phillies this weekend:

Tommy Bahama-ass-lookin' short sleeve button up shirt from New Era with both Mets AND Phillies logos on it

That piece of trash can be yours for the low, low price of £114, which is $145 in U.S. dollars. Hell, get two of ‘em while you’re at it in order to show your oh-so-common joint Mets/Phillies pride!

Other Stuff

This is probably a good thing

Back in 2016 Donald Trump infamously said "I could stand in the middle of Fifth Avenue and shoot somebody, and I wouldn't lose any voters, OK? It's, like, incredible."

Per this item from NBC News, it looks like he’s gonna have to reconsider his methods:

Former President Donald Trump's gun license is expected to be revoked now that he has been convicted on 34 felony counts of falsifying business records, according to a New York Police Department spokesperson.

Trump's gun license for New York City had been suspended upon his indictment, the spokesperson said.

May I suggest a candlestick, dagger, a rope, a lead pipe or a wrench? And maybe do it in the conservatory. You’re way less likely to tie up traffic that way, Mr. Orange.

This is bad, but I respect the effort

Maybe a long shot but does anyone here work in the service industry and has come across a guy who keeps dining and dashing? I work at a restaurant in Grandview and this guy has dined and dashed on us like 10 times no joke lol. He’s a white guy, maybe in his 50s/60s, always wears a hat and leaves behind sunglasses. He goes by Patrick O’rourke but that’s not his real name. Anyone hear of the same/similar story or witnessed first hand??? . . . Today he left the glasses and an empty phone case face down, said he was running to his car to grab a business card to give to the bartender and then just never came back.

I obviously do not approve the dine-and-dashing, but I’m not gonna lie, I’m impressed by the sunglasses/empty cell phone case tactic. It speaks of a man who is well-prepared and thinks through problems.

The rich are different than you and me

The ultra-wealthy will often take whole fleets of cars with them when they travel, loading vehicles, along with motorbikes and other toys, onto chartered cargo aircraft that follow their private jets. Covered trucks are used to complete journeys to clients’ addresses or garages; owners baulk at the idea of random delivery drivers adding mileage to their beloved cars.

I realize that we’ve all apparently decided that taxing the wealthy much more than we do already is godless communism and stuff, but I really, really do think we could stand to tax the wealthy much more than we do already.

Casting The Beatles’ films

Back in February it was announced that director Sam Mendes plans to make four separate theatrical films about The Beatles, with each one focusing on a different member of the band. The project has the full cooperation of Apple Corps Ltd., Paul McCartney, Ringo Starr, and the families of John Lennon and George Harrison. Meaning that Mendes will have full life story and music rights for the scripted films, all of which are scheduled to be released in 2027.

Yesterday a report came out regarding the casting of the leads:

  • John Lennon: Harris Dickinson (far right above);

  • Paul McCartney: Paul Mescal (far left above);

  • Ringo Starr: Barry Keoghan (second from left above); and

  • George Harrison: Charlie Rowe (second from right above)

I’m guessing many if not most of you know Mescal (“Normal People” and “Aftersun”) and Keoghan (“Saltburn” and “The Banshees of Inisherin”). Dickinson may not be quite as recognizable, but he appeared in “Where the Crawdads Sing,” “Triangle of Sadness,” and got good notices for playing David Von Erich in “The Iron Claw.” I’m not sure I’ve ever heard of Rowe and nothing in his filmography really jumps out, but he looks a decent amount like George, so hey, why not?

As for the projects themselves: as I said back in February, between scores of books, documentaries, interviews, and even previous scripted, theatrical projects, I’m struggling to imagine what about the lives and careers of the four Beatles has gone unexamined before now. They have been scrutinized to the nth degree beginning in late 1962 or so and going on, unabated, through the present day. While it may be interesting to see these movies for a given reason or two — Allison is madly in love with Paul Mescal so we will almost certainly be at the Paul movie on opening night — this is less about artistic or historical necessity than it is about the further exploitation of Beatles IP. Which has also gone on, non-stop, since 1962.

But I suppose a Beatles Cinematic Universe is better than any number of other ones they’ll eventually come up with.

Have a great day everyone.


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