Chris Berman and John Kruk might not want to stand up 2 cancer (Video)

Chris BermanThe first thing you’re taught when you get into broadcasting is to always be careful whenever a microphone is around. You just never know who many be listening or recording what you’re saying. Chris Berman and John Kruk apparently forgot that lesson.

Berman and Kruk were victims of a “hot mic” Monday during ESPN’s broadcast of the Home Run Derby and could be heard debating whether or not they would stand during the Stand Up 2 Cancer corporate sponsor/charity portion of the event.

Once they decided they needed to get up, they wanted to at least make sure their efforts were caught on camera. I mean what’s the point of doing charity work if you’re not at least getting some public recognition for it, right?

H/T Deadspin

John Kruk not a fan of the 4-run home run

John KrukJohn Kruk wasn’t a big fan of the approach the Oakland A’s took at the plate against the Detroit Tigers in Game 4. In fact, he criticized them on “Baseball Tonight” for taking big hacks in key spots late in the game instead of just trying to deliver an RBI with the team down 5-4.

It wasn’t Kruk’s analysis that was off; he actually made some fair points. What was weird was his parlance.

For some reason, Kruk kept referring to it as a “4-run home run” instead of “grand slam.” Now maybe he was using a cliche to say the A’s were trying to do the impossible, but I’ve always referred to that as a “5-run home run,” because such a thing doesn’t exist.

Hey Kruk, the good news is the Tigers got a 1-run home run from Victor Martinez earlier in the game to tie it up.

John Kruk taken to hospital on stretcher prior to game

John KrukJohn Kruk was taken to a hospital on a stretcher prior to the Los Angeles Dodgers-Boston Red Sox game on Sunday.

The ESPN analyst was preparing to broadcast the game on “Sunday Night Baseball.”

“John left the booth feeling dizzy and was diagnosed with dehydration,” ESPN said in a statement. “His vital signs are stable and he’s in good spirits. We wish him a speedy recovery.”

Kruk was said to be conscious when he was taken out of the press box through the dining room. The LA Daily News says he had just eaten a pregame meal prior to being taken away. We’re pleased to hear that he seems to be doing fine.

John Kruk reveals how Matt Moore is tipping his pitches

Rays pitcher Matt Moore is tipping his pitches, and that could explain why the Yankees hit him harder than any team had in two months. Former All-Star first baseman and current ESPN analyst John Kruk figured out Moore’s tell and revealed it on “Baseball Tonight” Wednesday.

Moore’s tell is pretty simple: When he taps the ball in his glove as he’s getting ready to pitch, he throws a fastball. When he doesn’t tap the ball in his glove, he throws an off-speed pitch. This trend holds true whether Moore is pitching from the windup or stretch.

I went back to watch the first two innings of Moore’s start against the Yankees — one where he allowed 6 runs (4 earned) and 8 hits over 6.1 innings. He hadn’t allowed that many hits since a July 2 start against the Yankees when he gave up 9 knocks. The 6 runs were the most he allowed since May 6, and the 4 earned were the most he allowed since a July 7 loss to the Indians when he allowed 5 in 4.2 innings. In every pitch where the telecast showed Moore’s hands before the pitch, Kruk’s analysis held true.

Below you can see an image of Moore pulling the ball out of his glove as he prepares to tap, which would indicate a fastball is coming:

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John Kruk goes to town on some BBQ ribs, uses Gatorade towel as napkin (Video)

John Kruk was on hand for ESPN’s coverage of the Home Run Derby on Monday, but he decided to do what he does best instead: eat.

Royals legend George Brett joined the broadcasting crew for several minutes and brought a taste of Kansas City with him. He shared a tray of Meat Mitch ribs with the group, and Kruk wasn’t bashful about helping himself. The rotund analyst shamelessly started sucking down the ribs and used a Gatorade towel to wipe himself off.

At least he acknowledged how ridiculous he became, saying at one point “I’m moving to Kansas City and I’m not coming home!”

The good news is at least Kruk shared the platter and allowed Orioles OF Adam Jones to sneak in a bone or two.

Jim Fregosi Wanted John Kruk to be Fat

I made the argument a few years ago that baseball players are meant to be fat. I wasn’t advocating for players to be out of shape so much as I was defending players who are good but fat; if it works for them, why change? Well I’m pleased to say that Jim Fregosi and I are on the same page regarding fat boys who can ball.

I was watching MLB Tonight on MLB Network Friday night when they showed a clip of Matt Stairs grounding out for the Padres. The analysts mentioned that Stairs had lost weight and got in shape but it still didn’t help him run down the first base line any faster. That comment led to a mini-discussion about how losing weight doesn’t always help players. That’s when former Phillies closer Mitch Williams chimed in with this great anecdote about his former teammate John Kruk and former manager Jim Fregosi:

I’m telling you, there’s certain guys that get in shape and it affects their swing. John Kruk got in great shape one winter and couldn’t hit water if he fell out of a boat. Fregosi said ‘You’re getting fat again or you’re not playing.’ That’s exactly what he said to him.

Based on Kruk’s numbers, I’m guessing this incident occurred during the 1990 season. That year, Krukie was hitting .207 after the first 10 games and .241 at the end of the first month. Every other year Kruk was with the Phils he got off to fast starts, so none of those seasons would match. The only issue is Fregosi didn’t become the team’s manager until 1991. So the explanation must lie in one of two areas: either Fregosi was a coach on the staff in 1990 (doubtful), or this incident took place during spring training, giving Kruk time to right the ship for the start of the real season (likely). But with a story that funny, who really cares what the facts are??

More Reasons to Play ESPN Fantasy Baseball

I’ve always been a big fan of Yahoo fantasy sports for a myriad of reasons — it’s user friendly, well-organized, and its game stats and fantasy stats are updated the quickest. That being said, ESPN is now coming on strong in the hunt to attract fantasy players. Witness:

The whole rock concert concept rules — Peter Gammons shredding on the guitar likes he’s Slash or something, John Kruk sporting some serious tats…and the greatest line…

“Look at me now, I just drafted Caaarlos Leeee”

Why Carlos Lee? Perhaps that’s what makes it so funny. Maybe it was intentional. Or maybe they couldn’t come up with anything else to rhyme with fantasy baseball for free.

Still, excellent commercial, had me rollin, and it’s already become a hit amongst the MLB Fanhouse crew…and truthfully, it might actually make me want to play ESPN fantasy baseball. Pat Lackey posted the video over at fanhouse, you should check it out, he’s done the commercial much more justice than I have.