Leap Day by Bob Ryan

leap dayLeap Year…leap day….a strange device developed by scientists to keep our world twirling “on time”…this unusual day has some strange traditions….we’ll get into that later…here’s some baseball talk, some “29” guesses, some29 over & under & some traditions….

…Dexter Fowler just resigned with the Cubs. Fowler really misjudged the market…he got $9.5mil last year and was offered $13mil by the Cubs but he was looking for Heyward money so Fowler turned it down. Heyward gets $17mil in 16 and $22+mil in 17 & 18…Fowler got no offers approaching Heyward except Baltimore’s 3 year-$35mil deal. Fowler wanted a one year buy-out but the O’s don’t do ANY buy-outs…so…Fowler returned with his tail between his legs to the Cubs for $7mil….with the Fowler signing—there’s a crowd in the OF….I sense a real effort by Cubs to package Soler, Baez (2 young players with potential who are cheap for several years) and couple other “prospects” to Miami for Fernandez (who wants out)…btw.. I’ve overlooked the acquisition of Rex Brothers in the pen for the Cubs….that could really be a valuable asset. He’s a lefty who’s suffered due to pitching half his games in Colorado for the past couple years….he could really shore up the 7th or 8th innings. Compare the numbers of Heyward & Fowler from last year…aren’t extremely different except for average

                     Avg           R         RBI       ob%     OPS     HR       SB        age

Heyward     .293         79        60        .359     .797     13        23        26

Fowler       .250          102      46        .346     .757     17        20        29

…a real concern for the Cards (and fans) has to be Yadi Molina….although last year he was the 3rd highest batting average of all MLB catchers @ .270 but it was his lowest fielding average since 2007, he was– the 2nd highest in the MLB in innings caught (1150)– 2nd in games started as a catcher. He’s caught 12,099 innings in his career…in how many more innings can we expect maximum performance from him? Molina’s, an eight-time Gold Glover, has two years remaining, plus a mutual option for 2018, on a contract that pays him $14 million a year, with the option year at $15 million. What can we really expect in 2016? Is this the year that the car breaks down? I mean…I’d try to hang on too…at $14mil a year….I don’t blame him and heck… I’ve never even had that much monopoly money at any one time  

…is something wrong in SF?   Clearly the ace is Madison Bumgarner. He’s being paid $9.75mil for 2016 which is about $12 million less than Matt Cain and $5 million less than both Jake Peavy and Johnny Cueto. So the ace is the 4th highest paid starter on the staff…????

…Mat Latos is listed as a possible “comeback player” for 2016….I don’t see it…I don’t care how hard he throws….this guy is poison in the clubhouse….I mean…how could we expect him to be happy in the White Sox clubhouse if the Dodgers, who win much more often, couldn’t wait to dump this guy….I think he’ll be good until Flag day


Since we’re celebrating leap year, let’s give you a chance to do some predicting using that #29….please respond on Prepcasts…it’s all for fun…here we go..

….when will Cards get their 29th win of 2016?

….who will be the 1st MLB player to reach 29 HR in 2016?

….which Cardinal relief pitcher will be first to make his 29th appearance in 2016?


Now…some over/under with the # 29…

….how many times will Cards score 5+ runs in a game…over or under 29X ?

….will the Cards be over/under 29 team HR in April ?

….will Yadi NOT play in over/under 29 games in 2016 regular season?    

…will the Cards be over/under 29 stolen bases by All-Star break?

…will there be 5 Cardinal relief pitchers in a game used 29 times …over or under?

…will Randall Grichuk be on DL for the 1st time before/after May 29th?


Since Leap Day is a strange day..Let’s Look at one of the strangest events in baseball…2 grand slams in 1 game.. only Fernando Tatis has done it in the same inning in Major League History!

American League Players in Chronological Order

Name               pos         team             date             inn     opp pitcher       inn   opp pitcher

Tony Lazzeri     2B        New York  05-24-1936   2nd George Turbeville 5th Herman Fink

Jim Tabor           3B      Boston       07-04-1939 3rd George Caster       6th Lynn Nelson 

Rudy York          1B      Boston       07-27-1946 2nd Tex Shirley            5th Tex Shirley

Jim Gentile        1B      Baltimore   05-09-1961 1st Pedro Ramos         2nd Paul Giel 

Jim Northrup   RF      Detroit        06-24-1968 5th Eddie Fisher         6th Billy Rohr

Frank Robinson RF     Baltimore   06-26-1970  5th Joe Coleman         6th Joe Grzenda

Robin Ventura   3B      Chicago      09-04-1995  4th Dennis Cook        5th Danny Darwin

Chris Hoiles         C       Baltimore   08-14-1998  3rd Charles Nagy        8th Ron Villone

Nomar Garciaparra S Boston         05-10-1999 1st Brett Hinchliffe     8th Eric Weaver

Bill Mueller 3B           Boston      07-29-2003 7th   Aaron Fultz         8th Jay Powell

National League Players in Chronological Order

Tony Cloninger   P      Atlanta      07-03-1966   1st Bob Priddy             4th Ray Sadecki 

Fernando Tatis  3B     St. Louis  04-23-1999   3rd Chan Ho Park         3rd Chan Ho Park

Josh Willingham RF   Washington  07-27-2009 5th Jeff Suppan          6th Mark DiFelice

****please note Mark DeFelice was a catcher for the Cards..whatta way to get in the record book


Some other LEAP DAY traditions

……….There is a popular tradition known as Bachelor’s Day in some countries allowing a woman to propose marriage to a man on February 29. If the man refuses, he then is obliged to give the woman money or buy her a dress. In upper-class societies in Europe, if the man refuses marriage, he then must purchase 12 pairs of gloves for the woman, suggesting that the gloves are to hide the woman’s embarrassment of not having an engagement ring. In Ireland, the tradition is supposed to originate from a deal that Saint Bridget struck with Saint Patrick.

….Or in Greece it is considered unlucky to marry on leap day

…Or in St Louis, it is considered good luck to have read the complete blog.



  1. Terry G says:

    Always love your blogs although I imagine you have sore fingers when finished.

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