It did not save Willie Randolph's job as manager of the New York Mets, but Robinson Cancel helped his own chances of more major league time when he slapped a two-run, pinch-hit single to help the struggling team salvage a doubleheader split against Texas Sunday.
Cancel had batted only once in the major leagues since 1999 until he broke a 2-2 tie in the sixth inning with an 0-2 single to center at Shea Stadium. The Mets won by that 4-2 margin. Coming on the heels of a solid spring training showing and being brought up from New Orleans twice in recent weeks, it is obvious some people in the Mets' heirarchy like the 32-year-old catcher-first baseman's bat.
"Cancel made me look good for a minute," the beleaguered Randolph told The Associated Press.
Cancel got 44 at-bats with Milwaukee in '99, and since then has traveled the AA-AAA-Independent world in search of another big-league opportunity. The right-handed hitter made Indy stops at Somerset, NJ of the Atlantic League in '03 and '04, and also was with the traveling Road Warriors for a time in that league in '03. Then he was a .297-10-52 performer on a fulltime basis with the Edinburg (TX) Roadrunners of the United League in 2006.
Have you visited www.IndependentBaseballClassifieds.com today?
HOW ABOUT THESE EARNED RUN AVERAGES?
Anyone wanting some bragging points about Independent Baseball need look no further than several major league ERAs. Independent teams are in parenthesis. Brad Ziegler of Oakland (Schaumburg, IL, Northern League) 0.00 for eight innings, Craig Breslow of Minnesota (New Jersey Jackals, now in Can-Am League) 1.69 for 16 innings, Tim Byrdak, Houston (Gary, IN and Joliet, IL of Northern League) 1.31 for 20.2 innings, Edwar Ramirez of New York Yankees (Pensacola, FL, now in American Association and Edinburg) 2.25 for 20 innings, George Sherrill of Baltimore (Evansville, IN, Frontier League; Winnipeg, Canada, Northern; and Sioux Falls, SD, now in American Association) 3.48 plus 22 saves in 31 innings.
We all know earned run averages for starting pitchers normally are higher, but Luke Hochevar is looking better with most every start for Kansas City. The onetime Fort Worth (TX) Cats (American Association) hurler is holding his own with a 4-5 record and a 4.66 ERA for 65.2 innings. He ranks fourth on the team in innings, and has the second best ERA among the four.