ENJOY THE AGE OF DISCO (HAYES)!
About a month ago (here is the link: http://lisawinston.tumblr.com/post/884690489/the-age-of-disco-is-back-and-the-blue-crabs-have), we wrote about the one and only Chris Hayes, relief pitcher extraordinaire for the playoff-bound Southern Maryland Blue Crabs.
More recently, we promised our readers a video interview with the irrepressible sidearmer, so here is it.
The “knucklescraper” with the funky delivery, whose stuff, despite being down in the lower 70s (which is how he got the nickname “Disco”), has been described by opposing hitters as “nasty” and “filthy” has been a jack of all trades for the Blue Crabs since signing in late July.
Since we lead off the interview assuming that SOME of the folks reading this have seen him pitch, we are adding this video clip of Hayes back when he was with the Triple-A Omaha Royals, and many thanks to Lee Warren Jr. whose YouTube clip we’re attaching here:
In QoD’s humble opinion, Hayes should have been a contendah for Atlantic League Pitcher of the Month for August. In that span, he started one game, went at least four innings in relief in four others, and pitched in 10 games. Overall he was 2-0 with a 1.59 ERA in 34 innings. Take away the lone start — the first of his professional career, by the way — and that ERA diminishes to an 0.62 over 29 innings. Called on to stop the bleeding on several occasions, he might also have received “Paramedic of the Month” honors.
Overall, Hayes has posted a 3-0 record and 2.11 ERA since joining the Blue Crabs in late July and currently leads the club’s active pitchers in ERA. He’ll continue to help the Crabs’ bullpen get through the middle innings through the playoff season, paving the way for their outstanding closer Jim Ed Warden to come in at the end, while also giving scouts from the other 29 clubs (guessing Kansas City not in the mix after releasing him from Triple-A Omaha) more of a chance to keep an eye on him and line up with offers for 2011 spring training spots.
Hayes has been something of a cult favorite — especially with the media — since Arizona Fall League 2008 when he wrote a mock interview with Orioles uberprospect Matt Wieters for an MLB.com Royals blog. http://aflroyals.mlblogs.com/archives/2008/11/chris_hayes_guest_blogger.html
After that he was given his own MLB.com blog, “Got Disco,” which he wrote for most of 2009 and which was one of the most popular blogs on the site: http://discohayes.mlbblogs.com . Though that blog has been dormant for about a year, it remains an insightful and hilarious timeless read.
(And yes, Queen of Diamonds is hoping that Hayes might do some guest blogging for THIS site in the off-season to keep us fresh with his unique POV and his quest for a big league camp invite).
With a composite 2.79 ERA in 316 innings of affiliated ball with the Royals prior to coming to the Atlantic League, including a 1.41 ERA in 58 games in the Double-A Texas League, and now his consistent mowing down of a lot of former major league hitters here, that invite should be in the mail. Soon. Right?
Anyway, this video Q&A helps you get to know the inimitable Hayes and even includes a little tidbit that had even this reporter, who rarely finds anything amazing or compelling, to say WTF? when he shared his hidden talent — or, as he explained, more like a LACK of a certain ability — at the midway mark. But don’t fast forward unless you’re in a hurry. You’ll want to savor the whole thing, as they say.
Tune back in later this week for some more tidbits from Atlantic League players as well as a playoff preview extravaganza … and just as a little tease, look for a terrific video interview to kick off the first day of the Atlantic League post-season (Wednesday, Sept. 22) with a guy who is unquestionably the most pleasant surprise in the league this year and could be a stealth contender for the league’s MVP award.