The slow torture of high pitch counts is making the great game of baseball about as fun as watching grass grow. Even the command savvy Masahiro Tanaka lasted only six innings against the ultra-patient A's.
Ian Kennedy might be the biggest winner in this year's trade deadline, going from a hitter's haven where he watched his mistakes fly out of the yard to a pitcher's paradise that should help him right the ship.
Teams are increasingly using the draft to find players who are nearly major-league ready. Such is the case with the Astros' first-overall selection of Mark Appel, who could be in Houston later this year.