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National Pastime Archive: June 2008


  • KILL - My Five - Burgeoning Bats

    I'm taking a page out of Hugh Hefner's playbook this week and devoting another column to the youthful talent scattered abundantly throughout the majors. This week in My Five, I'll follow up last week's young pitchers breakdown with a much-deserved shout-out to the rising studs at the dish. By Sean Raposa. Published June 30 2008

  • Prospect Q&A - Nolan Reimold, Baltimore Orioles

    Finally healthy after battling nagging injuries the past two years, Orioles prospect Nolan Reimold is having a fine season at double-A Bowie. With little left to prove in the minors, Reimold figures to be the first player called upon if the Orioles find themselves in need of an outfielder, or just another power bat in the lineup. By Jay LeBlanc. Published June 30 2008

  • Morning Report - Monday, June 30

    Ronnie Belliard smacked a two-run, walk-off shot of O's closer George Sherrill to lift the Nats over their regional rival. Elsewhere, the Angels' John Lackey, the Twins' Kevin Slowey, the Blue Jays' A.J. Burnett and the White Sox' Mark Buehrle stifled their interleague foes, while the Mets topped their crosstown rivals behind a solid performance by the usuallly erratic Oliver Perez. Catch up on all yesterday's MLB action in today's Morning Report. By Jay LeBlanc. Published June 30 2008

  • KILL - MR 6/30

    Ronnie Belliard smacked a two-run, walk-off shot of O's closer George Sherrill to lift the Nats over their regional rival. Elsewhere, the Angels' John Lackey, the Twins' Kevin Slowey, the Blue Jays' A.J. Burnett and the White Sox' Mark Buehrle stifled their interleague foes, while the Mets topped their crosstown rivals behind a solid performance by the normally erratic Oliver Perez. Catch up on all yesterday's MLB action in today's Morning Report. By Jay LeBlanc. Published June 29 2008

  • KILL - Prospect Q&A - Dominic Brown, Phillies

    The same traits that make Dominic Brown one of the Phillies' best prospects could have kept him off the baseball field altogether. As a high schooler, he put his 6' 5" frame and above-average speed to use as a wide receiver and was good enough to score a football scholarship offer from the Miami Hurricanes. Luckily for the Phillies, baseball is Brown's first love and he opted instead to sign with them after they selected him in the 2006 draft. By Jay LeBlanc. Published June 29 2008

  • PUBLISHED - Prospect Q&A - Colton Willems, Nationals

    Right-hander Colton Willems, a first-round pick in 2006, has experienced success at every level so far while steadily making his way up the Nationals' organizational ladder. After a stellar 2007 campaign in short-season Class A, he's enjoying another fine season with the Class A Hagerstown Suns and looks like yet another outstanding young player the Nats can build around. By Jay LeBlanc. Published June 29 2008

  • KILL - Prospect Q&A - Stephen King, Nationals

    Nationals prospect Stephen King, the team's third-round pick in the 2006 draft, has impressed the Nats with his ability to play multiple infield positions and the progress he's made at the plate after a slow start to his pro career. The 6' 2", 195 pound King is only 20 years old, and scouts believe he'll eventually develop into a power-hitting middle-infielder in the Jeff Kent mold. By Jay LeBlanc. Published June 29 2008

  • Signature Stories - Manny being Manny

    The dreadlocks were still years away, his wallet was significantly lighter and he had exactly zero big league home runs to his credit, but Manny Ramirez was the Manny we've all come to know and love even back in the summer of 1993. I'd heard all about the top prospect, then playing for the triple-A Charlotte Knights, so I went to see him play and hopefully score an autograph. By Jay LeBlanc. Published June 29 2008

  • Steamboat Willie runs ashore

    Despite general manager Omar Minaya's odd handling of the situation - firing his manager in the wee hours of the morning 3,000 miles from home - the question remains: Was Willie Randolph really to blame for the disappointing play of the Mets? Probably not, but the fact is the team blew a golden opportunity to make it to the World Series and followed that up by wallowing in their own demise for the first half of 2008. Someone was going to have to take the blame, and it was Randolph. By Nick Leco. Published June 28 2008

  • KILL - Steamboat Willie runs ashore

    Despite general manager Omar Minaya's odd handling of the situation - firing his manager in the wee hours of the morning 3,000 miles from home - the question remains: Was Willie Randolph really to blame for the disappointing play of the Mets? Probably not, but the fact is the team blew a golden opportunity to make it to the World Series and followed that up by wallowing in their own demise for the first half of 2008. Someone was going to have to take the blame, and it was Randolph. By Nick Leco. Published June 28 2008

  • PUBLISHED - Steamboat Willie runs ashore

    Despite general manager Omar Minaya's odd handling of the situation - firing his manager in the wee hours of the morning 3,000 miles from home - the question remains: Was Willie Randolph really to blame for the disappointing play of the Mets? Probably not, but the fact is the team blew a golden opportunity to make it to the World Series and followed that up by wallowing in their own demise for the first half of 2008. Someone was going to have to take the blame, and it was Randolph. By Nick Leco. Published June 27 2008

  • KILL - Signature Stories - Manny being Manny

    The dreadlocks were still years off, his wallet was significantly lighter and he had exactly zero big league home runs to his credit, but Manny Ramirez was the Manny we've all come to know and love even back in the summer of 1993. I was 13 years old at the time and had heard all about the top prospect, then playing for the triple-A Charlotte Knights, so I headed to McCoy Stadium in Pawtucket, R.I., to see him play and hopefully add his signature to my collection. By Jay LeBlanc. Published June 27 2008

  • The Tampa Bay blueprint

    No franchise enjoys losing, but Tampa Bay has managed to make the best of it. The team has consistently scored high picks in the annual MLB draft as a result of its poor play, and few teams can match the Rays' success in identifying and subsequently developing top amateur talent. It's finally paying off in 2008, as the surprising Rays find themselves just a half-game behind the mighty Red Sox in the A.L. East. By Jay LeBlanc. Published June 27 2008

  • Morning Report - Friday, June 27

    The Orioles smacked the Cubs around at Wrigley, while American League hurlers Matt Garza of the Rays, Rich Harden of the A's and Cliff Lee of the Indians dominated their Senior Circuit competition. Meanwhile, Edinson Volquez of the Reds proved he's capable of having a bad day just like the rest of us. All that and more in today's Morning Report. By Tim Whitman. Published June 27 2008

  • A look back at a thrilling CWS

    When the dust had settled in the battle of the Bulldogs, Cinderella was dancing well past midnight and the underdogs from Fresno were piling on each other in the middle of the Rosenblatt Stadium after the last Georgia batter was retired. I could write for days about the upsets, clutch hits, amazing plays and record crowds that got far more than their money's worth. Instead, I'll take a look back at the best players and moments from this year's tournament and hand out some hardware. By Tom Stad. Published June 27 2008

  • A look back at a thrilling CWS

    When the dust had settled in the battle of the Bulldogs, Cinderella was dancing well past midnight and the underdogs from Fresno were piling on each other in the middle of the Rosenblatt Stadium after the last Georgia batter was retired. I could write for days about the upsets, clutch hits, amazing plays and record crowds that got far more than their money's worth. Instead, I'll take a look back at the best players and moments from this year's tournament and hand out some hardware. By Tom Stad. Published June 26 2008

  • Prospect Q&A - John Ely, White Sox

    As the Chicago White Sox slumped toward their eventual 70-92 record last summer, the team realized it would need an influx of good young pitching to compete in the A.L. Central going forward and took pitchers with their first six picks in last June's MLB draft. With three major league pitches in his repertoire and outstanding command, third-rounder John Ely looks like he'll be ready to help the big league club sooner rather than later. By Jay LeBlanc. Published June 26 2008

  • Morning Report - Thursday, June 26

    Jesus Flores lifted the Nats to victory with a walk-off RBI single, while the O's fell at Wrigley despite Jay Payton's two jacks. David Wright had two longballs of his own to lift the Mets over the Mariners, and Joba Chamberlain picked up his first win as a starter for the pinstripers. All that and more in today's Morning Report. By Jay LeBlanc. Published June 26 2008

  • Underdog Fresno takes NCAA title

    Fresno State won the NCAA baseball title yesterday with a 6-1 victory over No. 8 Georgia, putting an exclamation point on an improbable 43-day odyssey that started in Louisiana at the WAC Tournament, moved back across the country to Long Beach for the regional round of the NCAA tournament, continued with a trip to Tempe, Ariz., to shock Arizona State in the Super Regional and then concluded in Omaha's historic Rosenblatt Stadium. By Tom Stad. Published June 26 2008

  • KILL - Underdog Fresno takes NCAA title

    Fresno State won the NCAA baseball title yesterday with a 6-1 victory over No. 8 Georgia, putting an exclamation point on an improbable 43-day odyssey that started in Louisiana at the WAC Tournament, moved back across the country to Long Beach for the regional round of the NCAA tournament, continued with a trip to Tempe, Ariz., to shock Arizona State in the Super Regional and then concluded in Omaha's historic Rosenblatt Stadium. By Tom Stad. Published June 26 2008