Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Ed Price: Wrong; Craig Breslow: awesome

I was reading through Emma Span's excellent blog, Eephus Pitch, when I came across this link. Ed Price of the Newark Star-Ledger notes that Twins pitcher Craig Breslow threw two wild pitches and also balked. Price cites the baseball-reference.com Play Index and declares that this is the first time any reliever has accomplished such a dubious feat.

Well, you know that I have an affinity for both the B-R.com play index and dubious random feats, so I decided to see what other balk-walk combos there have been. I started with Price's search, and here are the results. As you can see, Breslow is far from being the first ever reliever to have two wild pitches and a balk in a single game. It has been a while since someone has done it, but it's happened sixteen times since 1956. Some pitchers have even had two balks to go with their two wild pitches.

So I don't know what kind of search Mr. Price did, but Breslow is not remarkable for what he did last night. He is, however, a remarkable person. A journeyman left-handed pitcher, Breslow graduated from Yale in 2002 with degrees in both molecular biophysics and biochemistry. After his first season in pro-ball, he interned at a Yale lab studying stem-cell research. Since then he has started a cancer-reasearch charity, the Strike3Foundation, with his sister, a thyroid cancer survivor. Kudos to anyone else who combines my dual love for biology and baseball!

As for Ed Price, well....

Update: Ed Price has altered his post and apologizes for the misleading info. Hooray!

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