Saturday Notebook: Monday Chat, Playing Catch, Worst First Pitches, Brewers Mistake, and More

USA TODAY Sports

Today's Saturday Notebook announces our first ever Cover It Live baseball chat, a couple kids getting to play catch with some baseball players, a look at the 17 worst first pitches in recent history, the Brewers eliminating a popular female-centered event for another that is far more sexist, and this week's collection of GIFs.

I have made an important discovery. While I was sitting at home one day, looking through the FanGraphs website, I discovered that they have a daily chat from Cover It Live on the website. These chats involve having one of the FanGraphs authors answering questions from readers on pretty much anything you can imagine.

You may know where this is going. I chatted with Jesse and we think it would be a great idea to hold a Twinkie Town Cover It Live chat from 5 to 6 pm on Monday night prior to the Twins game against the Braves, hosted by the two of us. If you've never participated in one of these before, essentially you the reader will submit comments/questions to us, and we will pick out the ones we find interesting or provocative and will comment back for all to see.

Will you be busy from 5-6 on Monday? No problem, as you can always ask a question or make a comment down below, and we may choose to post it during the chat if we've hit a lull or are flooded with "Are you even a Twins fan!?!?" comments. Plus, an archive of the chat is saved even after it's completed so you can always visit the chat after it's been completed to see everything that was discussed.

Jesse and I are both excited about the Cover It Live chat and we hope you will be as well. Remember, post comments and questions below if you want to ask or say something but won't be present on Monday, and you can also send them to us on Twitter using the hashtag #TTchat.

  • As a kid, it's a huge thrill to meet a professional athlete. I don't really remember meeting many players when I was younger, but I know I would have just about had an anxiety attack if I had gotten to do what these two boys got to do. First, we have a lucky kid that got a chance to play catch with Dodgers pitcher Hyun-Jin Ryu. No, not on the field or at a charity event, but while the boy was still in the outfield bleachers at Dodger Stadium. Oddly enough, another boy got to do the very same thing with Nationals pitcher Gio Gonzalez, also at Dodger Stadium.
  • BuzzFeed isn't my first choice for getting baseball-related stories, but they posted what could be the worst first pitch ever, which occurred at a Florida State-Stetson college baseball game. The man, who is identified as John Bledsoe, steps up to the mound, attempts to throw the ball, and instead spikes it into the ground toward the first base line. Okay, that's happened before, so what? Well, to make things worse, he then loses his balance and falls forward off the mound. That is how you look terrible throwing a first pitch. After that happened, BuzzFeed then proceeded to collect the 17 "least accurate" (euphemism for "worst") first pitches in history, or at least in the television era. My favorites: Joan Steinbrenner for her "Ah, screw it" hand wave, Karen Peterson for the crazy hair and "Holy (redacted)!" reaction, and Charlie Brown because the catcher (some Philly Phanatic-like thing) doesn't even move. Least favorites: Mariah Carey for no effort on her throw and her obnoxious *giggles* "Oops, did I do that?" reaction, and the Kardashian group attempt because every single one of them had a bad throw. Also, because it's the Kardashians.
  • Congratulations to Joe Mauer on becoming the active leader in batting average, wrestling the title away from Albert Pujols by having a .324 mark. Blame Mauer Bot and thousands of Twins fans still bet the under on an over/under of 129.5 career home runs, however.
  • Nicole Haase, an author of fellow SB Nation blog and Twinkie Town interleague rival Brew Crew Ball has an article about a brand new event the Brewers have rolled out that is tailored towards women. The good news: It's for women. The bad news: It stereotypes women, and it completely eliminated another more successful Brewers-themed event directed towards females. The prior event was titled All-Access For Women, and had regularly sold out as an event that taught women more about baseball and included talks by women in positions of power within the Brewers organization of what they did and what work was like in a male-dominated field. If the Twins were to do such a thing, I assume that executive vice-president Laura Day would be involved. Anyway, it appears that the Brewers have now eschewed the All-Access For Women in lieu of "Brewed For Her." This new event features style tips from fashion experts, merchandise vendors, hair and nail demonstrations, and a Brewers gift bag, along with a game ticket with food and drinks included for $115. Haase rants that Brewed For Her seems to assume that all women want to do is get their hair and nails done, shop, and learn how to dress well for summer, and that the baseball is completely cosmetic, and I completely see her point. To make things worse, apparently participation has been poor as they are now offering tickets for half-price. Really, you should read the entire thing to get a better understanding of how it looks like the Brewers screwed up with their female fan base. $10 says a solid chunk of the Brewers merchandise sold is pink, also.
  • Finally, here's our now-weekly collection of GIFs, because I love GIFs about as much as I love playing Candy Crush Saga.
  1. We check in with former Twin Francisco "Head Case" Liriano, who was involved in a strange play while batting in a minor league game prior to being called up by the Pittsburgh Pirates. Words alone would not do it justice, so watch this play and learn that only one player on the field knew what was truly happening.
  2. LOL Astros. Pitcher Jordan Lyles stumbles when his plant foot scrapes the ground a little early in his stride and it causes him to fail in delivering the ball to home. Runner Elvis Andrus gives the "Hey, whatever works" shrug as he trots home on the balk.
  3. Ian Kinsler bites the dust as he tries to dive head-first into 3rd base. Pro tip, Ian, your hands are supposed to stay in front of you to prevent you from skidding forward on your chest.
  4. Overlaying a pitcher throwing multiple pitches into a single GIF is the new online reader market inefficiency, and the latest recipient is Mariano Rivera as we get to see 6 of his cutters laid atop one another. Yeah, they all move the same, but the real treat is that all 6 cutters resulted in a broken bat, thus creating a baseball bat fireworks explosion at the end of the clip.
  5. This is actually a YouTube clip from the KBO (Korean Baseball Organization), but that should not take away from the humor. The batter prematurely celebrates his home run by doing an excellent bat flip and pointing towards his dugout, but it goes for naught as his drive is caught on the front of the warning track. The best part is he lingers around 1st base, embarrassed that he prematurely shot his wad.
  6. The ceremonial first pitch has possibly jumped the shark after it was done by Heisman Trophy winner Johnny Manziel. The play made by his catcher (Mark Kotsay?) is just as great.
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