Home > Colorado Rockies, Los Angeles Dodgers > Recapping some of baseball’s weird, wild (and slightly testy) opening week

Recapping some of baseball’s weird, wild (and slightly testy) opening week

The 2016 MLB season is eight days old, and take a gander at just some of the crazy things that have happened so far:

— The player of the week was Trevor Story, a rookie barely included inside Baseball America’s or Baseball Prospectus’ preseason top 10 rankings of Rockies prospects who leads the world in home runs. I’m not sure which is the greater: the number of rookie, team, league and start-of-season records Story set this past week or the number of “Story” puns used by headline writers across the nation.

— Two games ended due to a violation by a runner coming into second base. One incident had everything to do with the new “Chase Utley rule.” One incident had nothing to do with Chase Utley and everything to do with a previously unenforced rule.

— Those replay reviews led to some understandably upset ballplayers and managers. But it seemed like an inordinate number of people were feeling crusty during the opening week. John Gibbons, in response to the Blue Jays’ loss following Jose Bautista’s interference, suggested that his team would wear dresses for their next game. Mariners manager Scott Servais and Rangers manager Jeff Banister exchanged some heated words. Thom Brennaman didn’t hide his disdain for Odubel Herrera’s home plate routine. If people are this ornery in April, what are we going to have when the summer heat starts aggravating everyone?

— The Dodgers didn’t allow a run in their season-opening series against the Padres. In a related story, the Padres didn’t score a run in their season-opening series against the Dodgers. It was the first three-game shutout series to begin a season since 1963.  The Dodgers then allowed 12 runs in their next game, and the Padres scored 29 run in their next two games.

— It was a big week for pitchers hitting homers, because chicks dig the long ball. Madison Bumgarner homered off of Clayton Kershaw for the second time in his career. Kenta Maeda sent one deep in his first MLB game. And none of Trevor Story’s seven home runs traveled as far as this 440-foot shot from Jake Arrieta.

— More fun with pitchers batting: Francisco Liriano picked up the season’s first RBI.

— The Rangers and Dodgers won their opening games in historic and incredibly dichotomous ways. Texas won with the help of just one hit. The Dodgers had one hit … plus 15 more.

— Robinson Cano homered four times in six games. His fourth home run last season didn’t come until June 26, his 71st game.

— Seriously, the Dodgers had one hell of an eventful week. Rookie right-hander Ross Stripling threw 7.1 no-hit innings in his major league debut, giving media members everywhere reason to care about Bumpus Jones from 1892. But leading 2-0 and with the no-hitter intact in the eighth, Stripling was taken out of the game after 100 pitches. Chris Hatcher entered and immediately surrendered a game-tying home run. A huge debate flared over whether manager Dave Roberts should have stayed with Stripling. I’ll just say that Roberts made the smart call. It didn’t work out, but it was the smart call. And Stripling agreesThe Dodgers would go on to lose the game in extra innings.

— A lot of guys threw at least 100 pitches last week. But only one of them was a reliever. The Astros’ Michael Feliz was called upon after Collin McHugh could record only one out on Wednesday. Feliz gave up six runs in 4.1, but considering that Houston trailed the Yankees 12-5 before the end of the third inning, Feliz had no choice but to take one for the team.

— Jose Fernandez became the sixth pitcher since 1913 to strike out at least 13 batters in fewer than six innings. However, he also allowed five runs and lost, 7-3.

— Dallas Keuchel permitted at least four walks in each of his first two starts. He had only one such outing through his previous 47 regular-season starts.

— Joe Maddon, because he makes all the right moves, started light-hitting outfielder Matt Szczur in the Cubs’ second game of the season one night after Szczur’s alma mater, Villanova, won the men’s basketball championship. He homered.

— Blue Jays reliever Brett Cecil went 38 consecutive appearances, dating back to June 24 of last year, without allowing a run, tying the all-time record for most consecutive scoreless appearances. In his attempt to break the mark, he gave up a two-run homer.

— We also had sharks, dinosaurs, unicorns and Ninja Turtles, oh my!

All that happened in one week. There are 25 weeks remaining in the regular season, so let the weird flow like beer at an Irish pub.

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