Two Shots, Across the Atlantic, History Repeating Itself

An off day seems to cure all ills in minor league baseball, and the day of rest on Tuesday sure seemed to help the Fort Wayne nine, as they defeated the South Bend Silver Hawks Wednesday night at Parkview Field.

Kyle Gaedele stole the show as he hit two home runs–one in the fourth and another in the second–doubling his total for the season. It was the third two-homer game of the year for a member of the TinCaps, as Gaedele joined current teammate Yeison Asencio and former teammate Casey McElroy in the club. McElroy is now at Advanced-A Lake Elsinore.

31 games in to the second half, it’s not too early to start thinking about a potential playoff berth for the TinCaps in the second half. They are in first place, leading West Michigan by two games and Great Lakes and South Bend by three games.  The rest of the way Fort Wayne plays only Eastern Division opponents, meaning every game can give a boost to the standings. The TinCaps 19-12 record is matched by Bowling Green and Lansing, the two first half playoff qualifiers. Having those two teams playing well is great news for Fort Wayne, so long as the TinCaps don’t have to play the Hot Rods or Lugnuts. If Bowling Green and Lansing can beat up on other opponents and Fort Wayne continues to win, that only means better news in the standings each day.

In today’s TinCaps Report Podcast, hear from Kyle Gaedele who talks about his first ever two-homer game as a pro:

BEHIND THE SCENES, ACROSS THE ATLANTIC

In the coming days and weeks as you kick up your feet at the end of a long work day and prepare to watch a gymnast from Russia or a basketball player from Canada in the Olympics, take a moment to think about just how that broadcast is reaching you. Seems like it’d take a lot of cables and wires, right? Right.

 Brian Stelter of The New York Times peeks inside the operation that works hard to carry the broadcasts of the Olympic games:

“The volume of video — roughly 325 hours’ worth a day — must be carried to the United States on a complex series of circuits that are diagramed on a wall in NBC’s work space. “We call this the subway map,” Mazza said proudly.

What a difference a decade makes. In Sydney, Australia, for the 2000 Summer Olympics, NBC sent three video feeds, technically called circuits, to the United States. Now it sends 92. They show up as small lines of strings on the diagram, each with a different color name (turquoise, scarlet, taupe, maroon, azure; colors translate well around the world) and a different purpose.

Some key video feeds are named for the British royals: Will is carried across the Atlantic on a separate path from Kate, in case one path is interrupted for any reason. There are backups for the backups, too, including a few satellite paths “in case everything else dies,” Mazza said.

“It all depends on the level of risk,” he said. “If it’s the prime-time show, we could get on the air about six different ways. If it’s the stream of table tennis, there might be a single thread.”

Sending so much video to the United States, a step also taken for the Beijing Games, also allows for more work to be done there, saving money for NBC. Five control rooms in New York are dedicated to the Games’ coverage, as are dozens of editors and producers. It is almost as if the engineers have erased the Atlantic Ocean off the map — but there is still a 3.5-second delay for the video to and fro.”

I really hope you enjoy this article, because it was the last free one I’ll get to read from The New York Times this month. Oh look! August is almost here!

HISTORY REPEATING ITSELF?

In 1984, the New York Mets featured a young star pitcher and a stud outfielder, with Dwight Gooden and Darryl Strawberry. Two years later, the Mets won the world series.

Jared Diamond of The Wall Street Journal says there might be a parallel between those Mets and the Nationals of 2012. The star pitcher? Stephen Strasburg. The outfielder? Well, surely you’ve heard of Bryce Harper.

“And if that doesn’t convince you, consider this almost unfathomable link between the two teams, which existed nearly three decades apart: They have the same manager, Davey Johnson.

“There are a lot of similarities, especially with all the young arms,” Johnson said.

The resemblance doesn’t stop with just Strasburg and Harper. Both teams relied on a pitching staff made up of young, mostly home-grown pitchers.

While Strasburg clearly mirrors Gooden, Washington’s Jordan Zimmermann seems to match up with Ron Darling. The Mets traded for Darling less than a year into his professional career and developed him through their minor league system. The Nationals drafted Zimmermann themselves. Meanwhile, Gio Gonzalez plays the role of Sid Fernandez—the left-handed pitcher acquired in a trade relatively early in his major-league career.

Offensively, the Mets made a key deal with the Cardinals in 1983 to acquire Keith Hernandez, who became one of the most beloved and successful Mets of all time. The Nationals signed Jayson Werth before last year for the same reason: to add a veteran presence to the lineup.”

MUSICAL GUEST

Boston…take it away!

If you’d like to get in touch, you can reach me at Couzens@TinCaps.com or on Twitter @MikeCouzens.

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