Articles by Jesse Goldberg-Strassler

Baseball

The Tommy John Chronicles: Matt Harvey Edition

Dear Mets fan, Matt Harvey has a partial tear of his ulnar collateral ligament, and you are helpless. You worried that this might happen, that the prized young Mets prospect might go down with any pitch, all the while you delighted to his dominance, a bright orange lining that turned up when you were feeling blue. You recognized that he was no flash in the pan and that his talent was real and lasting – or at least as lasting as the baseball gods would allow. But then fate struck.

Baseball

Kevin Pillar: Life Before the Bigs

In pronouncing Kevin Pillar’s name, put the emphasis on the second syllable. In emphasizing Pillar’s path to the Majors, pronounce the Blue Jays outfielder a scout-doubted, self-motivated steamroller. Jesse Goldberg-Strassler connects with the young man to discuss life, obstacles and the journey that has taken him through minor league baseball to the Bigs.

Baseball

The Adage that Didn’t Add Up

There is a popular saying that goes a little like this: Baseball’s the only avenue in life in which you can fail 70 percent of the time and still be considered a success. While it’s been around for years and in many different forms, you can especially thank Pete Rose for it. Does it make sense? Do you agree with the sentiment? Good. Now let’s attack it.

Baseball

Countdown to the Byron Buxton Countdown

The Minnesota Twins have a long history of success. Unfortunately, it’s one that’s been marred of late by injuries to key players and various cases of underachievement. Luckily for Twins fans, their fortunes have already started to course correct in the form of superstar prospect Byron Buxton. Will 19-year-old Buxton eventually save the franchise?

Baseball

The Peculiar Case of MLB Prospect Development

A thoughtful minor league broadcaster and friend shared a theory this past week on why Major League teams don’t work as hard to develop talent in American inner-city communities as they do in the Dominican Republic or Venezuela and it got us thinking about how prospect development and the draft in general is handled by professional ball clubs. Jesse Goldberg-Strassler explains.

Baseball

Life on the Farm

Between Jimmy Negrych and Chris Bootcheck, the International League’s most productive hitter and most effective pitcher, arguably, are non-prospects. This is far from unusual. In Triple-A, prospects are often outnumbered by journeymen, role players, veterans and free agents, floating freely between organizations, continuing to chase their own Major League dreams. The Majors are, after all, right there, one step above the International League! How do such circumstances affect the atmosphere in the clubhouse?