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Jonathan Holder has a realistic shot of making the All-Star team

Middle relievers have only recently started receiving universal recognition for their individual performance in Major League Baseball, due to the new age of numbers in the sport. Saves are no longer the all-telling, ultimate stat about a reliever’s success and WAR, ERA+, and other metrics have opened the eyes of fans on just how valuable it is for a team to have dominant relievers outside of the ninth inning role. Their widely agreed on importance has led to a lot of non-closer relievers making the All-Star team in recent seasons. The American League squad had two of them in 2017 and 2015, and a whopping four in 2016. If this trend continues, the AL should feature at least one or two non-closer relievers, and possibly more, with the scarcity of lockdown closers in the AL in 2018. The Yankees feature a lot of highly talented middle relievers and the pitcher who has surprised everyone the most, Jonathan Holder, has a very realistic shot of cracking the AL All-Star squad.

Former major league pitcher Ryan Dempster jokes about "pace of play" in regards to the death of the Trenton Thunder's bat dog, Derby

When the offseason is in a lull, major sports networks such as, MLB Network, need more stories to cover in order to fulfill the airtime requirement of television shows. On the MLB Network talk show, Intentional Talk, host Chris Rose asked guest co-host Ryan Dempster about Derby, the Trenton Thunder bat dog, who recently passed away at age 9 due to cancer.

Photo Credit: Martin Griff

Dempster started off by discussing that it is sad to lose a family member or loved one, but then decided to look on “the brighter side.”

“On the brighter side the pace of game will pick up in Trenton as they are working on that in the minor leagues,” Dempster said with an extremely straight face.

Rose immediately put his face into his hands in disbelief and asked Dempster to reiterate what he said in regards to pace of play.

Dempster went on to discuss how a person with two legs can retrieve a bat much faster than a bat dog who has four legs.

Pace of play is a focal issue in the sport right now, however, Dempster’s comments on the matter improving due to a deceased dog that was beloved by Trenton community and their fans is utterly disturbing and uncalled for.

In his defense, he did share his condolences and praise Derby’s work as a bat dog and in all likelihood did not mean to but a negative twist on the story, but that does not make up for the fact that he used airtime on national television to talk about how a dog’s death “has a bright side” and can speed up the game.

Most Yankee fans already had a strong dislike for Dempster, which is likely an understatement, due to his part in intentionally beaning Alex Rodriguez at Fenway Park leading to one of the most explosive arguments Joe Girardi had ever been a part of with an umpire.
Photo Credit: Jared Whickerham | Getty Images
“On the bright side” of all this, maybe Ryan Dempster will learn that life and companionship is more important than a minute or two being shredded from the gametime of a Double-A baseball game.

Article by: Ryan Thoms



  1. Get over it. Some writers will write anything to get public approval - not me!


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