By Scott Barancik/Jewish Baseball News
Mondays blow. So inhale this:
- Hungering for more Jewish ballplayers? Jewish Sports Review recently uncovered two: Toronto Blue Jays prospect Ian Kadish, and Pittsburgh Pirates prospect Jared Lakind. Kadish, a 23-year-old reliever, debuted last year with the Bluefield Blue Jays (Rookie), going 2-3 with a 2.67 ERA, 7 saves, and 35 strikeouts in 30-and-one-third innings. Lakind, a 20-year-old first baseman, showed impressive run-production last year, contributing 4 HRs and 20 RBIs in just 108 at-bats for the GCL Pirates (Rookie), although his .148 batting average and 43 strikeouts left plenty of room for improvement.
- Kevin Youkilis, out since April 28, took batting practice and fielded ground balls Sunday (5/13/2012) for the first time since straining his lower back. We hope Youk returns to the Boston Red Sox lineup soon.
- Chicago White Sox reliever Dylan Axelrod is a practicing Christian. Why mention him? Because Axelrod, who made his Major League debut last month, is one of several current Major Leaguers who have at least one Jewish parent or grandparent — and thus may be eligible to play for Team Israel in the November 2012 qualifying round for the World Baseball Classic. Among others, Axelrod is joined by Cleveland Indians 2B (and Rookie of the Year candidate) Jason Kipnis, and Arizona Diamondbacks 1B Paul Goldschmidt, each of whom has a Jewish parent but identifies as Christian.
- Harrisburg Senators (AA) phenom Danny Rosenbaum turned in yet another stellar start on Friday (5/11/2012), pitching 7 scoreless innings in an 8-1 win over the Akron Aeros. A wizard at inducing ground balls, the 24-year-old Washington Nationals caused the Aeros to hit 11 times as many grounders as they did fly balls. So far this season, Rosenbaum is 5-0 with two complete games, a league-leading 0.71 ERA, 33 strikeouts, and just four walks in 50-and-2/3 innings, or less than one per 9 innings.
- In Milwaukee, Brewers 1B Ryan Braun is known not only as a star baseball player but an emerging restaurateur. His latest opening, a joint venture with Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers, will be called 8*twelve MVP Bar & Grill. The name is a nod to the two stars’ jersey numbers — Braun’s is ‘8’ –and the fact that each is his sport’s reigning MVP.
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