Just had a chance to watch the replays. Baltimore catcher Alberto Castillo set up on the outside corner of the plate, hopping out just as the pitch was about to come.
Clearly the O’s wanted to throw a pitch down and away and try and get A-Rod to chase. Instead Chris Ray left it over the plate. Terrible pitch, but A-Rod stayed on it and hit it hard. Don Mattingly and Kevin Long have been on him to attack balls he can get to instead of trying to out-think the pitcher and this was a great example of that.
Alex said he didn’t know where the pitch was, which is actually a good sign as it shows he’s being aggressive.
Had a chance to talk to Doug Mientkiewicz, who obviously knows Alex well. “If he swings like that, he’ll be MVP again,” Mientkiewicz said. “Alex is such a good athlete, he can go up there and just see it and hit it. With (Bobby) Abreu in front of him getting on base, he’s going to get pitches he can handle.”
Meanwhile, Steve Trachsel has a nasty split today and pitched great. He could be a good pickup by the O’s. If Darrell Rasner pitches well tomorrow, Igawa could be on his way to Scranton once Wang comes back. That was a poor effort today.