The Felix Derby

Mike Snow · July 13, 2009 at 11:59 pm · Filed Under Mariners 

So apparently there’s some kind of exhibition going on, which is why we don’t get any real baseball for a couple days. I don’t know what all this has to do with the Mariners. Maybe we can strain a little bit to point out that some guy Jack Zduriencik drafted won some sort of contest. It wasn’t that exciting, but it’s all the news we have right now.

I guess Felix likes this stuff, though, as Larry Stone tells us in an entertaining blog post. You get the sense that Felix would have more fun competing in the Home Run Derby than pitching in the All-Star Game. To which I say, why not?

Let’s have a home run derby specifically for the pitchers. Right now, other than the drama of picking who gets to start the game, there’s not a whole lot of All-Star attention for them. Half of them won’t even play out of fear that we might get another Bud Selig Special. And it’s not like you can have a real skills contest because the starters in particular have to save their arms.

So split the pitchers up into pairs, give them alternating batting practice swings, and whoever hits one out first advances to the next round. Sudden death, keep eliminating guys that way until you have a winner. Instead of numbing repetition as the Ryan Howards of the world knock balls over the fence, you get real suspense throughout. On every fly ball to the warning track, you wonder if this is the one that’s going to make it over. Okay, so maybe the NL guys have a bit of an unfair advantage, but you know Felix’s greatest moment of glory is still that eyes-closed grand slam off Santana. That’s why he would love to be part of something like this.

Wouldn’t this be fun? At least until somebody messes up his arm trying to make a home run swing. Oh well, it was an idea.


14 Responses to “The Felix Derby”

  1. thegroovewrangler on July 14th, 2009 12:10 am

    I was just thinking yesterday how amazing it would be to have Felix take part in the Home Run Derby…

  2. joser on July 14th, 2009 12:37 am

    That would be hilarious. You’d need a lot more kids to cover the field, though, with so many weak squibs dribbling past the baselines. On the other hand, some of those guys came up as position players and could clobber the ball… and yeah, it’s all fun and games until somebody gets hurt.

    But how cool would it be to use Pitch FX to have a skills contest? Most vertical break (at some minimum speed); most horizontal break. Fastest strike (ie, you have to have some control). Fastest pitch, period, even if it kills a mascot. Four consecutive pitches, one to each corner, scored on the minimum aggregate distance from the corners.

  3. Milendriel on July 14th, 2009 1:30 am

    The Home Run Derby would be so much better if they only did one round. What is the point of making guys take a bunch more swings when some of them are clearly fatigued? This would also avoid the ridiculousness of guys hitting record numbers of HRs in the first round and not winning.

  4. DaveValleDrinkNight on July 14th, 2009 2:03 am

    I know this idea would never fly at the AS Game but what about an Ichiro/Griffey HR Derby before an M’s Home Game?

    Good times no?

  5. Paul B on July 14th, 2009 6:29 am

    I expect Felix to say something like he wouldn’t want to be in the HR hitting contest because he would embarrass all the big HR hitters by beating them.

  6. smb on July 14th, 2009 7:39 am

    Felix’s greatest moment of glory is still that eyes-closed grand slam off Santana.

    This statement is just one more of the many reasons to love reading anything written by Dave. Th fact that it’s arguably true only makes it that much sweeter.

  7. smb on July 14th, 2009 7:40 am

    written by Dave Or Mike Snow. Good one, Mr. Snow.

  8. henryv on July 14th, 2009 8:02 am

    I think a pitcher’s home run derby would be great.

    The real home run derby is about as worthwhile viewing as Jerry Springer, and about as exciting as a spelling bee.

  9. Nate on July 14th, 2009 9:23 am

    Instead of numbing repetition as the Ryan Howards of the world knock balls over the fence

    yeah, except the humbing repetition part was that they’d take take eleven pitches (all strikes) and swing at one! they should get 20 pitches total. hit as many as you can over the fence. I liked it in years past when you saw 5, 6, 8 swings in a row.

    oh, and the pitchers HR derby would be more awesome than even that.

  10. Nate on July 14th, 2009 9:24 am

    humbing => numbing

  11. msb on July 14th, 2009 11:54 am

    Um, The Cialas All Star Pitcher Bunt Contest?

  12. joser on July 14th, 2009 11:56 am

    How about the Cialas double-play contest, where both the SS and 2B are lying in bathtubs on either side of second base….

  13. msb on July 14th, 2009 12:46 pm


  14. Marinerz51 on July 14th, 2009 5:30 pm

    Yeah my pick goes to Carlos Zambrano or Micah Owings.

    Also in an unrelated thing that I just thought of. [deleted, unrelated]

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