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Friday, November 18, 2011

ESPNChicago: Theo Epstein ponders Steve Bartman

Epstein was doing a remote guest appearance on ESPN’s “PTI” when he was asked if he would try to contact Steve Bartman to mend fences between the team and the fan whose pursuit of a foul ball during Game 6 of the 2003 NLCS is the stuff of Cubs infamy.

“I haven’t talked to anyone here at the Cubs about that, but from afar, it seems like it would be an important step, maybe a cathartic moment that would allow people to move forward together,” Epstein said.

The Cubs were leading the series 3-2 ...

Tripon Posted: November 18, 2011 at 05:38 AM | 95 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs

Griffin: Blue Jays’ chances of making playoffs just improved by 10 per cent

We are the 10%!

But for current GM Alex Anthopoulos and Rogers ownership the bar has been raised. The rebuilding is over. The new target is high 80s in wins in order to compete.

...But what this has done is amp up the adrenaline level in all middle of the pack major-league cities and their fan bases. It has raised the bar for all GMs, so that if you finished around .500 and have some young prospects coming up that could just as easily develop at the major-league level as you tell your fans ...

Repoz Posted: November 18, 2011 at 03:47 AM | 41 comment(s)
  Beats: blue jays, history, projections

Rockies sign Brandon Wood to minor league contract

Vs. Ian Stewart in…

From Ken Rosenthal of comes word that the Rockies have signed the 26-year-old infielder to a minor league contract… Wood batted just .216/.270/.340 with seven home runs and 31 RBI in 272 plate appearances this year between the Angels and Pirates. He’s never posted an OPS above .610 in a major league season.

The Rockies’ front office is likely viewing the former top prospect as organizational depth at third base.

The District Attorney Posted: November 18, 2011 at 03:32 AM | 4 comment(s)
  Beats: rockies

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Bobby Valentine Emerges as Candidate for Red Sox’ Managerial Job

According to multiple reports, former Mets manager Bobby Valentine is now in the running for the open Red Sox job.

Fox Sports’ Ken Rosenthal, who first reported the news with Jon Paul Morosi, indicated that Valentine has already met with one member of the Red Sox ownership group, and he’s expected to meet with the others at some point.

The news seemed to come out of nowhere, especially given its proximity to the news that Sveum was headed to Chicago. However, the Boston Herald’s Michael ...

Repoz Posted: November 17, 2011 at 10:51 PM | 28 comment(s)
  Beats: announcers, media, red sox, television

Sources: Dale Sveum takes Cubs’ offer

But was he spotted near a Lincoln Park Starbucks?

Milwaukee Brewers hitting coach Dale Sveum has accepted an offer to be the next manager of the Chicago Cubs, according to multiple league sources, with only some final details needing to be worked out before the deal is finalized.

Cubs president of baseball operations Theo Epstein and general manager Jed Hoyer were seen walking into Sveum’s hotel on Thursday afternoon. They emerged an hour later, walking with Sveum out of the hotel and into a ...

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: November 17, 2011 at 07:39 PM | 23 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs

2011 NL Cy Young: Clayton Kershaw Rides Pitching Triple Crown to Award

Los Angeles Dodgers lefthander Clayton Kershaw, a Triple Crown of pitching winner with league-best totals of victories (21), earned-run average (2.28) and strikeouts (248), won the National League Cy Young Award in balloting by the BBWAA.

Kershaw, at 23 the youngest Cy Young Award winner since 20-year-old Dwight Gooden of the New York Mets in 1985, was named first on 27 of the 32 ballots, cast by two writers in each NL city.

Pitcher, Team                         1st    2nd    3rd    4th ...
The District Attorney Posted: November 17, 2011 at 07:35 PM | 41 comment(s)
  Beats: awards, dodgers

MLB adds two wild cards, moves Astros to AL

The American League West has claimed the Houston Astros off waivers….

Two wild card teams will be added to Major League Baseball’s playoffs no later than 2013, the same year the Houston Astros will begin play in the American League.

Commissioner Bud Selig announced Thursday that baseball’s owners unanimously approved Jim Crane as the Houston Astros’ owner. As part of his agreement to buy the club, Crane will shift the Astros to the AL after 2012, creating two 15-team leagues.

“It’s a ...

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: November 17, 2011 at 06:32 PM | 300 comment(s)
  Beats: astros, business

The Bat Stands Pat: Pat Burrell Hangs It Up

Burrell was elected into the University of Miami Hall of Fame in 2008 and was followed two seasons later by Aubrey Huff(notes) and Jason Michaels(notes). Huff later credited Pat with helping him overcome his shyness by saying “I broke out of my shell at the University of Miami when I got around guys like Burrell.”

How did Burrell help? Well, here’s one story Huff has told:

  “After two weeks at Miami, I wanted to go home [...] So my mom flies out, trying to convince me to stay. I was living ...

Bourbon Samurai in Asia Posted: November 17, 2011 at 06:02 PM | 9 comment(s)
  Beats: college, giants, phillies, rays Key Mets introduce 50th anniversary logo

Similar to the franchise’s traditional cityscape emblem, the [Mets’] new logo sports a gold 50th anniversary banner superimposed over the New York City skyline and will be featured on the left sleeve of jerseys and hats.

Gone for the 2012 season are the black-and-blue Mets caps, as players will wear the traditional orange-and-blue hats with their pinstriped home uniforms, gray road jerseys and two alternate unis—black and solid white. The 2012 uniforms will reflect the look from the Mets’ ...

The District Attorney Posted: November 17, 2011 at 05:21 PM | 15 comment(s)
  Beats: mets

Calcaterra: Koby Clemens barred from winter ball after going AWOL

According to the report by Karla Pacheco Alvarez at the Puerto Rican paper Primera Hora, Clemens left the team without providing any reason. This led his team to file paperwork which bans him from playing for any other winter league team, be it in Puerto Rico, Mexico, the Dominican Republic or Venezuela. Here’s team owner Daniel Aquino, translated by our friend Mr. Collias:

  “The paperwork will explain that he didn’t give reasons for abandoning the team. With this document we’re ...

Repoz Posted: November 17, 2011 at 02:59 PM | 10 comment(s)
  Beats: international

Baseball Superstar David “Big Papi” Ortiz Is Now Powered by FUSE

Freakin’ Uber Steroidal Effect!

One of Major League Baseball’s biggest stars David “Big Papi” Ortiz is now “POWERED by FUSE.”

This agreement with Ortiz follows the recent announcements of partnerships with Tiger Woods, Arian Foster and a host of other athletes, and augments FUSE Science’s overall strategy of signing the most notable players from around the world of sports to spotlight FUSE’s innovative technology and products.

“I am excited to be part of the FUSE Science family which is ...

Repoz Posted: November 17, 2011 at 02:51 PM | 12 comment(s)
  Beats: business, media, red sox

[OT] Q4 NFL Thread

So as what not to annoy the people in the “no, no, the fact that we exploit our players and refuse to cut them in on the cash except for dirty booster money makes us amateur and pristine!” thread.

Rickey! something like a pipe-bomb ready to blow Posted: November 17, 2011 at 12:08 PM | 2939 comment(s)
  Beats: community

MASN: O’s to honor six Hall of Famers with bronze statues inside Camden Yards

While we’re on the subject of statues…

Remember those rumblings about the Orioles doing something more concrete at Camden Yards to honor their six Hall of Famers? Turns out those plans are finally out in the open - and the finished products will be in bronze.

A club source has confirmed the Orioles will erect bronze statues of their players enshrined in the National Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, N.Y. - Brooks Robinson, Frank Robinson, Jim Palmer, Earl Weaver, Eddie Murray and Cal ...

Repoz Posted: November 17, 2011 at 11:20 AM | 37 comment(s)
  Beats: history, orioles

RH: Is Derek Jeter Now Underrated?

When people say dreams don’t come true, tell them about Joe Rudi.

There are three great truths about Derek Jeter that we know that tell us his skills are changing as he declines.  First, he is hitting for less power.  This much is obvious as he’s only had one year of more than 12 HR’s in the last five after averaging nearly 19 per season from 1998 to 2005.  Second, he’s hitting more and more balls on the ground as he ages.  Now, Jeter has always been a big ground ball guy—his career GB rate is ...

Repoz Posted: November 17, 2011 at 10:58 AM | 10 comment(s)
  Beats: history, projections, sabermetrics, yankees

Red Sox could bring on Omar Minaya to baseball ops staff

Well, we know where he learned obp from…ops, I’m not quite sure.

With the Red Sox considering changes in baseball operations, including in international scouting, is it possible Omar Minaya could be added to the staff? According to a source, the Sox may be interested in Minaya for a position in the organization.

...Minaya was appointed GM of the Mets on Sept. 30, 2004, a position he held until the end of the 2010 season, when he was let go with two years remaining on his contract.  He was not ...

Repoz Posted: November 17, 2011 at 10:37 AM | 37 comment(s)
  Beats: business, expos, history, mets, red sox

Spending time with a local legend: Jim Landis

Or as we used to mockingly sing when his horrific Challenge the Yankees card would pop up…“This Landis YOUR Landis”.

Your (White Sox) teammates volunteered you to be the player rep one year and you asked on their behalf for $50 in appearance fees. Weren’t you traded pretty soon after?

Landis: Ha ha, you bugger. How did you hear about that? No, I wasn’t traded. What he’s talking about is our player rep got traded somewhere — I think it was Detroit — so they made me (player rep) and I ...

Repoz Posted: November 17, 2011 at 10:12 AM | 9 comment(s)
  Beats: history, white sox

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 11-17-2011

Today could very easily have been the 100th anniversary of the biggest one-for-one trade in baseball history.

Toledo News-Bee, November 17, 1911:

An effort was made in Chicago Thursday by Manager Callahan of the White Sox to secure Tris Speaker from the Boston Americans.  Jimmy McAleer was willing, but wanted Ed Walsh.  This quickly stopped the deal.

The Palehose should have pulled the trigger.  Career (BB-Ref) WAR after 1911: Speaker 113.8, Walsh 11.9.  In terms of Win Shares after the trade, ...

Jefferson Manship (Dan Lee) Posted: November 17, 2011 at 09:38 AM | 8 comment(s)
  Beats: dugout, history

Cubs offer manager’s gig to Brewers’ Dale Sveum

The Cubs’ search for a new skipper could be over.

According to Jon Heyman of Sports Illustrated, Brewers hitting coach Dale Sveum was offered the vacant position at some point Wednesday night…

[Sveum] was also a candidate for Boston’s managerial opening, but they’re now expected to continue that search for another couple of weeks.

Look for Sveum to make a decision on the offer soon, probably within the next 12-24 hours.

To be precise, what Heyman actually wrote was “Cubs offer sveunm ...

The District Attorney Posted: November 17, 2011 at 05:35 AM | 27 comment(s)
  Beats: brewers, cubs, red sox, rumors

Rubin: Mets Meet with [Frank] Francisco’s Agent

The Mets, whose primary spending this offseason should be on the back end of the bullpen, met with the agents for Frank Francisco, Newsday reported.

Pitchers who throw chairs at fans are the new market inefficiency.

Adam Starblind Posted: November 17, 2011 at 02:59 AM | 19 comment(s)
  Beats: mets

MLB: Braves campaigning to get Murphy into Hall of Fame

Murphy buzz or Buzz Murphy?

With Murphy scheduled to be on the Hall of Fame ballot just two more times, Braves president John Schuerholz has intensified the efforts to campaign for one of his organization’s most beloved figures. Schuerholz has sent a letter to Hall of Fame voters and other members of the Baseball Writers’ Association of America asking them to take a closer look at Murphy’s credentials.

Dear Hall of Fame Voter:

As you prepare to vote for the National Baseball Hall of Fame’s ...

Repoz Posted: November 17, 2011 at 01:01 AM | 52 comment(s)
  Beats: braves, hall of fame, history

Q&A with Astros GM Ed Wade

Out Of Our Tree…and still out of his.

Q: Despite the Astros’ final regular-season results in 2011, what are you most proud of as the team’s general manager?

A: I like the way, despite the fact we played so poorly from a win/loss standpoint, that our guys gave a really solid effort each day. I think that’s a tribute not only to the players, but also to Millsie [manager Brad Mills] and the staff. I am proud of the way the young guys, when given opportunities, have stepped up and responded. It ...

Repoz Posted: November 17, 2011 at 12:43 AM | 4 comment(s)
  Beats: astros, history

Magruder: Kirk Gibson’s intensity, intellect a winning combo


“But he’s prepared for everything. He has the feel for the game, and he also takes all the sabermetrics and all that stuff and combines it into what he wants to have available.”

“You wouldn’t think it of ‘Gibby,’ but that’s part of his repertoire of a manager,” Williams said. “He has an idea of what he wants to do and has an idea of what the other club is going to do, and he reacts accordingly. I think it worked very well.”

...Mark ...

Repoz Posted: November 17, 2011 at 12:17 AM | 12 comment(s)
  Beats: arizona, sabermetrics

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Fielder’s next stop: Brewers unlikely, Parma possible?

The free agent slugger was in Parma, Italy, last Saturday as part of a European tour with fellow major leaguers Adam Jones, Mike Stanton, Dexter Fowler, Roger Bernadina, Greg Halman, and Dutch-born right-hander Rick VandenHurk. Former All-Star Bobby Bonilla, an executive with the players’ union, joined the group as they conducted youth clinics in Parma, Amsterdam, and Prague.

Why Parma? Baseball is more popular there than just about anywhere else in Italy. Cariparma Parma is one of the most ...

Gamingboy Posted: November 16, 2011 at 11:28 PM | 10 comment(s)
  Beats: brewers, international

The London Rippers?

The return of professional baseball in London, Ontario is off to a controversial start.  The London Rippers will begin play in the independent Frontier League in 2012.  The nickname was introduced Tuesday and its likeness to serial killer Jack The Ripper is drawing plenty of criticism.  London City Council has asked the club to reconsider its moniker.

Paul D(uda) Posted: November 16, 2011 at 07:48 PM | 143 comment(s)
  Beats: minor leagues

Haudricourt: Craig Counsell won’t be back

Damn, I haven’t been this bummed…since I found out GBV’s Let’s Go Eat the Factory wasn’t an aborted tribute to us.

Brewers general manager Doug Melvin just told us that he doesn’t plan to make an offer to re-sign free agent infielder Craig Counsell, a Milwaukee native who has played the last five seasons with the club.

...I contacted Counsell at his home in Milwaukee and he said he was aware that the Brewers would not try to re-sign him.

“I’ve talked to Ron (Roenicke) a couple of times and ...

Repoz Posted: November 16, 2011 at 07:46 PM | 17 comment(s)
  Beats: brewers

BBWAA: Manager of Year: Kirk Gibson Wins NL Award, Joe Maddon Wins in AL

Kirk Gibson, who directed the Arizona Diamondbacks in a worst-to-first season as winners of the National League West title, was voted NL Manager of the Year in balloting by the BBWAA.

Gibson, 54, placed first on 28 ballots and second on the other four of the 32 ballots, submitted by two writers in each league city, to score 152 points, based on the 5-3-1 tabulation system. He was the only manager in either league this year to be named to every ballot.

Joe Maddon, who guided Tampa Bay from a ...

Repoz Posted: November 16, 2011 at 06:57 PM | 26 comment(s)
  Beats: arizona, awards, rays

Cubs to give Carlos Zambrano a chance

MILWAUKEE—Chicago Cubs president of baseball operations Theo Epstein met face-to-face with Carlos Zambrano on Monday afternoon and said the starter will get a chance to return to the team in 2012.


“We met today at his request,” Epstein said. “It went well. He expressed a strong desire to be a Cub (again) and an even stronger desire to have a strong 2012 season. He’s in great shape. He’s working out twice a day, pitching down in Venezuela. I told him that we’d let him earn his right back ...

Who Swished In Your Cornflakes? Posted: November 16, 2011 at 05:47 PM | 35 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs, japan

Kevin Goldstein: Orioles Top 11 Prospects

System In 20 Words Or Less: Elite-level draft picks lead to a pair of studs, but without them, it’s a mess.

Five-Star Prospects
1. Dylan Bundy, RHP
2. Manny Machado, SS
Four-Star Prospects
3. Jonathan Schoop, INF
Three-Star Prospects
4. Nick Delmonico, 3B
5. Jason Esposito, 3B
6. Robert Bundy, RHP
7. Parker Bridwell, RHP
8. Dan Klein, RHP
9. Ryan Adams, 2B
Two-Star Prospects
10. L.J. Hoes, OF
11. Eduardo Rodriguez, LHP

Nine More:
12. Clayton Schrader, RHP: Put up remarkable numbers; ...

Tripon Posted: November 16, 2011 at 05:01 PM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: minor leagues, orioles, prospect reports, scouting

Chad Harbach:  (Almost) Winning in Milwaukee

This was too long for my Internet-addled mind to get through in one quick sitting (and it has footnotes!).  Let me know what it says.

I could tell the crowd was serious by how little Packers garb I saw despite the autumn Sunday — even in the height of summer there’s usually more green and gold. Fans in red had to be vetted for Badger or Cardinal alliance — if they were wandering instead of tailgating, they were probably from St. Louis. The Cards fans’ beefiness looked different from ...

Fat Al Posted: November 16, 2011 at 03:22 PM | 3 comment(s)
  Beats: brewers, cardinals

Detroit News: Paul: One down, one to go? Verlander wants the MVP, too

“But that doesn’t make him a slam dunk for anything more than he won Tuesday. He still has plenty of competition for MVP, among the candidates, three outfielders — Jacoby Ellsbury from the Red Sox, Curtis Granderson from the Yankees and Jose Bautista from the Blue Jays.

“Curtis Granderson, he’s a friend,” Verlander said of his former Tigers teammate. “If I don’t win, that’s the guy I hope has the best opportunity.”

Still, Verlander’s as competitive as it gets. On the mound. On the golf ...

Don Malcolm Posted: November 16, 2011 at 02:54 PM | 29 comment(s)
  Beats: awards

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