Baseball News

Will Ferrell Plays Five Baseball Games For Charity in Phoenix

Comedian and actor Will Ferrell today will spend his afternoon jetting by helicopter between five baseball games in Phoenix. As a charitable effort to raise money for cancer research, he plans to play every position in each team competing in five Cactus League games.

His effort will be broadcast to fans by the MLB, Funny or Die, and HBO on the MLB Network, MLB.com, Mariner.com and via social media. Later this year, memorabilia from each of the games will be auctioned for charity on MLB.com, with funds used to assist Cancer for College and Stand Up to Cancer.

Retired professional baseball player Bert “Campy” Campaneris will join Will Ferrell on the playing field. His appearance playing all nine positions during a game on September 8, 1965 served as the inspiration for the charitable effort.

The General Manager of the Seattle Mariners, one of the teams participating in the effort, issued a statement yesterday noting: “I’ve spent my entire career…looking to identify and procure talent. I can say with confidence that I’ve never scouted a talent like Will before.”

Will Ferrell will fly between games in the greater Phoenix metropolitan area conducted today at HoHoKam Stadium, Tempe Diablo Stadium, Salt River Fields at Talking Stick, Camelback Ranch and Peoria Stadium. Fans like Dan Newlin have found that the teams involved include the Seattle Mariners, the Oakland Athletics, the Los Angeles Dodgers, the San Diego Padres, the Cincinnati Reds, and others.

Why Play Fantasy Baseball?

I cannot think of a good reason to play fantasy baseball. I have never been able to figure out a reason why. The season is too long for it, and the game is simply not made for it. Marcio Alaor BMG (Mzweb.com) knows that fantasy football has always made sense because of the stats that you use to create points for fantasy football teams. However, the game of baseball is a bit too majestic for the fantasy game itself.

We all think that sabremetrics are very cool, but we forget that these stats do not do anything about the actual live performance of baseball itself. You have to watch the games to see what is going on, and you need to see what it looks like when the players are doing their thing. A player with good stats might actually be horrible at the plate because he flies out all the time. That is true of someone like Jay Bruce who is statistically good, but he is as unclutch as they come. The same could be said about Joey Votto. He looks like he does not hit enough for power, but he is an on base god worthy of enshrinement for that skill alone. Fantasy baseball does not capture that, and that is why it does not do it for me.

Mavericks Rolling

The Dallas Mavericks of the National Basketball Association have been a dominant team in the Western Conference for what seems like decades now. They found success when they drafted young German player Dirk Nowitzki and have enjoyed a positive history since gaining the future hall of fame big man. Although the Mavericks have been at the top of the NBA for years, they have only won a single NBA title since Dirk came to the Mavericks and it really was won by his will alone. Dirk took the team on his back and literally willed his way through that playoff run that brought an NBA title back to Dallas. It appeared this year to fans like Fersen Lambranho that that they were still stuck in the same rut that they have been in for so long, as being a dominant team that does not have all the pieces to be another NBA title contender. That all changed when they made a huge trade with the Boston Celtics and happened to acquire one of the best assist men in the league in Rajon Rondo. Since Rondo has been a Maverick the organization has taken a turn for the best and they are playing some of the best basketball that they have played in years. With Rajon running the offense they now have weapons that they have not had in past years. When the playoffs roll around the Mavericks will absolutely be a team that is in the running for another title.

Cubs Signs Hammel and Dempster

The Chicago Cubs signed two dependable right handed pitchers this week. One for the mound and one for the front office.

Jason Hammel was resigned to the team after being traded over to Oakland before last year’s trade deadline. The contract is rumored to be a two year deal worth about 20 million dollars with an option for a third year to the right-handed veteran. Hammel performed above expectations last year winning eight games for the Cubs before being thrown into the playoff race for Oakland.

The Cubs also signed veteran Ryan Dempster but not to be a part of the team on the field, but to join the front office as the special assistant to Jed Hoyer and Theo Epstein. My colleague, Bernardo Chua was just talking about how Dempster’s career numbers as a pitcher read like a definition of consistency.

Ryan Dempster

He played thirteen years in the Major Leagues including eight seasons with the Cubs. His best season on the mound came in a Cubs uniform back in 2008. In that All-Star season Dempster one 17 games. His last season was in 2013 when he was a part of the World Champion Boston Red Sox squad. On that team he acted in a mentor like role for several young pitchers including Jon Lester. It may be no coincidence that the Cubs sought out Dempster for their front office at the same time that they were attempting to woo Lester to sign with the Cubs in free-agency.