I grew up a Cubs fan, so I've heard every discussion there is about the day games wearing them down. Those continue, even with night games now in the picture at Wrigley. It's the same with Texas, where heat is often the issue, bringing up discussions of how the team could thwart the pounding summer temperatures and the effects it has on the Ranger players.
Except for one thing. We don't have any evidence that it's the case.
There's anecdotal notes of course. Players are human and heat affects them. They've said so in stories since the 1920s, in the case of the Cubs, even as all other baseball teams suffered from the same need to play in daylight.
What we haven't seen is a single scientific study that's shown any sort of cause-and-effect relationship. I'm not talking about something simplistic, like hydration. I'm talking about a real study, the kind of thing MLB should be doing and that teams themselves should be doing but aren't.
Even with the statistical revolution of the last 20 years, with people like Bill James ensconced in every front office, baseball still eschews even the most basic of research, with the budgets of most teams for any sort of research very easy to note: zero. None have the budget that approaches even a fifth-round pick.
It's no wonder I have so many people to write about every week and have for the last 12 years. In a league where small advantages matter more than ever, there's still a big chance for a team to get that advantage at low cost, if it would just buck the trend against change.
For now, on to the injuries: