Tagged: around the horn with dan weisman Ballgames Ballparks Baseball People I have met

Streaking: Chorizo breaks through while Adrian Gonzalez homers in a forest and nobody knows

Without any fanfare, Adrian Gonzalez on Saturday, May 16 stood at the precipice of one of MLB’s most illustrious streaks.

And nobody knows.

Well, some people know. Gonzalez hit yet another home run Friday. It was the fifth consecutive game in which he had homered.

The consecutive game home run streak once was considered one of baseball’s greatest achievements this side of Joltin’ Joe’s 56 straight games and Lou Gehrig-Cal Ripkin’s iron man experiences.

Hitting home runs in consecutive game after game is considered just about the highest degree of batting difficulty.

Eight games by Dale Long from May 19 through May, 28 1956 for the Pirates set the modern record. Don Mattingly for the Yankees from July 8 through July 18, 1987 and Ken Griffey Jr. for the Mariners from July 20 through July 28, 1993, each tied the record.

What do you know a home run record with modern players in no way influenced by steroids. Now, there’s an oddity.

Going the steroid (allegedly) route, Barry Bonds had a seven game streak and three six game streaks.

Gonzalez is the Padres offense, period. So, it’s been surprising he has been pitched to on a consistent basis, although that appears to be changing. Who knows how long teams will continue pitching to the Padres sole offensive presence, how long Gonzalez will continue maintaining patience at the plate,

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Speaking of streaks, Chorizo, the expansion pork in the Milwaukee Brewers sausage race, finally broke through victory lane. Chorizo had lost the first 20 races of the season, and its expansion career, before breaking through on Wednesday, May 13 during the Brewers-Marlins game.

There was much talk before the fateful race that Marlins utility player Alfredo Amazega, a native of Ciudad Obregon de Mexico, had coached his home boy Chorizo before the upset. So, Amazega may have a future in some type of coaching gig, sausage or otherwise. Obviously, Chorizo was no mere fermented cured smoked sausage on the occasion of its upset victory. (Insert your own Randall Simon joke here.)

For the record, as of Friday, to no one’s surprise, big bully Hot Dog led with seven victories, followed by arch-rival Bratwurst at six, Italian Sausage — Mama Mia — at four and fellow slacker Polish Sausage at two wins.

Speaking of sausage races, now everybody seems to have a knock-off. Guess the copyright laws don’t cover this franchise.

Pittsburgh had been doing pierogi. Oakland has some kind of dots. Washington’s is the most ignominious of all, however, with G. Washington, T. Roosevelt, Jefferson, and Lincoln sloshing it up in da house.

Actually, I find the copycat races somewhat tiresome, except fans at the park win a free coke or something. My feelings are decidedly mixed, especially about he president’s race in Washington. It’s sort of funny, sad, pathetic and disrespectful at the same time. These guys are America icons, a lot more so than the Nats, so the entire spectacle looks cheesy in an uncomfortable way.

With that said, they keep stats for everything in baseball these days. So, feed these results in your sabermetrics chart:

Lincoln is the big face in front with seven wins this year, followed by TJeff with five, Georgy “Boy” D.C. Washington — in da house — with three, and that big loser, no doubt slowed by that darn big stick, T.R. with what the little boy shot at, nothing.

President race highlights, according to the authoritative source on all things presidential race-related, http//blog.letteddywin.com/presidents-race:

April 13, Teddy & “The Cat” spoil Thomas Jefferson’s birthday;  April 22, Teddy stops mid-race to pass out Earth Day goodies, and, of course, who in attendance could ever forget May 1, Presidents race blindfolded. Teddy runs the wrong way.

Is there any doubt why that goofball T.R. is winless so far this season.

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Friday’s gone as are these baseball oddities of the week…

1. Bill O’Reilly and Donald Trump looking very, like, ugly together at Yankee Stadium. And they expect the Yankees to win with karma like that in the front row? The Donald’s hair, by the way, hit for the cycle.

2. Ichiro gets physical. Somebody better check his vitamin supplements, wink wink. Two home runs in consecutive innings to beat Jon Lester and the Red Sox single-handedly.  The score was 5-4. Ichiro drove in three runs and scored two.

3. Speaking of face-offs, Heath Bell v. pinch hitter Adam Rosales for the final out in Padres-Reds.  As two of the most visually emotive, and emotional players in the game, each made an incredible show following the final encounter in which Bell smoked Rosario to preserve a rare Padres victory. No brotherly love in that game, either. Jerry Hairston twice lined out to brother love Scott. Darn.

4. Sometimes, the crowd doesn’t know what to make of a situation. Take, for example, the strange scene at Boston when the Red Sox scored 12 runs in a row before Mike Lowell made the first out in the sixth inning against the Indians on May 7. The crowd didn’t know what to do — After all, he made an out, that’s bad, correct? — before breaking out in very scattered, and confused, applause.

5. Oh those darn Indians, B.J. Upton capped a seven run Rays comeback Friday, winning the game 8-7 in the bottom of the ninth inning with a solo blast, But I don’t care. He plays way too shallow in center field and has missed balls over his head all season. Back it up, dude.

6. Adam Jones has been great this year, but he didn’t look so hot the other day when he made an out on Ball Four. Didn’t know you could do that, huh? Alphonse-Gaston, we presume. You’re safe, he’s out. Jones attempted a steal as Nick Markakis took ball four, then over-slid the bag and was tagged out by Derek Jeter — shortstop, six, unassisted, if you’re scoring — and who does these days, nobody — end of inning.

7. In a special note for those following TV instead of, or alongside, baseball on Friday. They had their choice of ingenious counter-programming. “Farrah’s Story” went head-to-head with “America’s Funniest Home Videos.”

Do I stay or do I go? Decision, decisions…

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