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Sunday, November 13, 2011

Slate: Michael Lewis and Billy Beane talk Moneyball

Don’t have time to thumb through all of it (flood of Waylon Thornton and the Heavy Hands EP’s take precedent!), but this…

However, the people who make this objection don’t seem to grasp the basic principles of imitation and catch-up. Once all teams are playing Moneyball, then playing Moneyball no longer gives you an edge. Indeed, the richer clubs have the means to play it smarter. The New York Yankees recently hired 21 statisticians, Beane marvels.

...Lewis breaks in: “To be totally fair ...

Read More...
Repoz Posted: November 13, 2011 at 02:34 PM | 14 comment(s)
  Beats: athletics, books, business, history, media, sabermetrics

Don Malcolm: LAST PLAY AT SHEA

Billy Joel? Elton John? Paul McCartney? Screw the wrecking ball…bring in the mofo Wrecking Crew to tear these MOR (Middle Of the yellow brick Road) ####-tinklers down!

Combining the life stories of Billy Joel and Shea Stadium with a minor-key glimpse at the relentless, Robert Moses-driven suburbanization of Long Island, Last Play at Shea captures a moment of bittersweet transition that valiantly attempts to valorize a world that is falling apart. (In the case of Shea Stadium, of course, this ...

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Repoz Posted: November 13, 2011 at 01:41 PM | 2 comment(s)
  Beats: history, mets, music

Jim Kaat: WOW! ANOTHER OH WHAT A NIGHT!

Too bad Sid Melton just died. Such talent, he would have loved it.

A little over a week ago I blogged about a great night I experienced at the MLBPAA [ baseball alumni] dinner in New York. Last friday courtesy of Rawlings Sporting Goods I think I had an even better one. I’ll give you the overview first. The theme was Gold glove awards. The emcees were Joe Piscopo with help from Dennis Haysbert.

...I’ll fast forward to the final events of the program. Jerry Seinfeld performed 30 minutes of ...

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Repoz Posted: November 13, 2011 at 01:05 PM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: awards, history, media

Ron Kaplan: The end of The Sporting News as we know it?

Even long lost members of Spinks family look to the heavens for an answer!

image

The memory was brought to mind by a piece by Samir Husni, aka “Mr. Magazine” about TSN‘s decision to move from a bi-weekly to a monthly publication. He’s mostly concerned with the ethics of subscription fulfillment (or the lack thereof) as the magazine undergoes the transition. Seems TSN is trying to shortchange their readers by cutting back on the remainder of issues they’re allowing based on how much of ...

Read More...
Repoz Posted: November 13, 2011 at 12:39 PM | 21 comment(s)
  Beats: baseball geeks, business, history, media, memorabilia

Shaughnessy: Red Sox managerial search raises questions

Shaughnessy: Nanny…on Primer is now on duty.

We know the Sox emphasized the “organizational approach’’ in the eight years that Terry Francona managed the team. Francona had a computer on his desk, and Theo Epstein’s minions were in and out of his office all the time.

But only in the days after Francona was fired did we get a grasp of the extent of the interference from above. If you saw Philip Seymour Hoffman’s depiction of an emasculated Art Howe in “Moneyball,’’ you know ...

Read More...
Repoz Posted: November 13, 2011 at 12:10 PM | 35 comment(s)
  Beats: red sox, sabermetrics

Japan Times: Dragons’ Koike smacks game-winning blast in 10th

Baseball season isn’t over yet…

Masaaki Koike didn’t get all of Takahiro Mahara’s forkball in the 10th inning, but he got enough of it. And that’s all the Chunichi Dragons needed.

Dragons starter Chen Wei-yin had one of his best outings of the year, Kazuhiro Wada backed him with a game-tying solo homer in the fourth, and Koike provided the difference in the 10th to give the Dragons a 2-1 win over the Fukuoka Softbank Hawks in Game 1 of the Japan Series on Saturday at Yahoo Dome.

...Read More...
vortex of dissipation Posted: November 13, 2011 at 07:30 AM | 5 comment(s)
  Beats: international, japan

Mooney: The plan of attack for Epstein and Hoyer

It rips open the hot hell behind the sabermetric glory!

Epstein has talked about the “parallel fronts” the Cubs will be working on, improving the big-league team you pay a lot of money to see while assembling the scouting and player development “machine.”

So the Cubs won’t be the Miami Marlins, who seem to be wooing almost every free agent of consequence, hoping they take their talents to South Beach. They won’t cut corners in the amateur draft or the international market, ...

Read More...
Repoz Posted: November 13, 2011 at 03:56 AM | 5 comment(s)
  Beats: business, cubs, media

Baker: Hitting Approaches of Comic Book Characters

The fan makes an excellent point in the specific (that Superman is no Mantle) and an even better point in general: A good physique is not going to overcome poor mechanics. Superman’s ass is halfway to the dugout while taking this swing. You can’t drive anything that way, even with the above-average strength he possesses. Clearly, the curve ball has joined Kryptonite on the short list of holes in Supes’ game…

Also included: Felix the Cat, Winnie the Pooh, Daisy Duck, Frosty the Snowman, Porky ...

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The District Attorney Posted: November 13, 2011 at 12:24 AM | 56 comment(s)
  Beats: general

Kevin Goldstein: Seattle Mariners Top 11 Prospects

System in 20 Words or Less: As enviable a trio of starters as any team, but system leans on hopes of exceedingly young talent from there.

Five-Star Prospects
1. Taijuan Walker, RHP
2. Danny Hultzen, LHP
Four-Star Prospects
3. James Paxton, LHP
4. Nick Franklin, SS
Three-Star Prospects
5. Jose Campos, RHP
6. Guillermo Pimentel, OF
7. Francisco Martinez, 3B
8. Vinnie Catricala, 3B/1B/OF
9. Chih-Hsien Chiang, OF
10. Chance Ruffin, RHP
11. Phillips Castillo, OF

Nine More
12. Alex Liddi, 3B: ...

Read More...
Tripon Posted: November 13, 2011 at 12:05 AM | 3 comment(s)
  Beats: mariners, minor leagues, prospect reports, scouting

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Corcoran: Awards week preview: Top honors ahead for best moundsmen

AL Rookie of the Year

Expected Winner: Jeremy Hellickson, SP, Rays (13-10, 2.95 ERA, 1.15 WHIP, 5.6 K/9, 1.63 K/BB, 2 CG, 1 SHO)

Deserving Winner: Hellickson

O’Connell refuses to pay phone bill.

There’s an argument to be made that Mariners righty Michael Pineda pitched better than Hellickson this year. Pineda had a huge advantage in strikeout rate (9.1 K/9 to Hellickson’s 5.6) as well as a superior walk rate (2.9 to 3.4). Both allowed home runs and hits at comparable rates, but because he ...

Read More...
Repoz Posted: November 12, 2011 at 10:58 PM | 10 comment(s)
  Beats: awards, special topics

Bill Madden: What’s old is new again at GM meetings ?

Much like the music industry’s recent rediscovering of Ken Delo’s smoldyering talent!

Baseball’s movers and shakers converge in Bud Selig’s Milwaukee this week where the stalled collective bargaining agreement negotiations and the long-awaited approval of businessman Jim Crane as owner of the soon-to-be American League Houston Astros head up the beer-and-bratwurst agenda.

For the general managers, who begin the meetings on Tuesday before the owners come in the next night, it’ll be a ...

Read More...
Repoz Posted: November 12, 2011 at 09:51 PM | 13 comment(s)
  Beats: business

Edes: “The guess here is that” Boston GM “has settled on” Dale Sveum as manager

After talking about the departure of Jon Papelbon, Gordon Edes of ESPN Boston drops this on us.

The guess here is that [Boston GM Ben] Cherington has settled on a manager—team sources say he is extremely high on Dale Sveum—and is just going through the process, making sure his judgment is sound.

(More predictions: Mike Maddux to be hired by the Cubs, Terry Francona by the Cardinals.)

Hell, let’s throw this in here while we’re at it.

It is now up to Cherington & Co. to make that calculation… ...

Read More...
The District Attorney Posted: November 12, 2011 at 09:30 PM | 13 comment(s)
  Beats: cardinals, cubs, red sox, rumors

NYTimes: CHICAGO NEWS COOPERATIVE | SPORTS What to Know When Interviewing With Cubs

Eschewing such timeworn staples as “So tell me about yourself” and “Where do you hope to be in five years?” Theo Epstein and his cronies are employing a real-life baseball quiz designed to assess a skipper’s aptitude for decision-making at game speed: two-run deficit, seventh inning, runners at first and second, nobody out, sixth-place hitter up - are you bunting? Opponent switches to a left-handed reliever - are you pinch-hitting? With whom? ...

Yet there was an obvious “I didn’t know there ...

Read More...
bobm Posted: November 12, 2011 at 06:30 PM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs, phillies

River Avenue Blues: Questioning Batting Average, 96 Years Ago

And you thought that

Tom Tango

Bill James

Pete Palmer

Branch Rickey was the godfather of sabermetrics:

Lane opens his discussion with a question: “Suppose you asked a close personal friend how much change he had in his pocket and he replied, ‘Twelve coins,’ would you think you had learned much about the precise state of his exchequer?” He goes on to compare two mens’ respective financial situations: Man A, with “twelve coins” consisting of a combination of quarters, nickels, and ...

Read More...
Mike Emeigh Posted: November 12, 2011 at 06:01 PM | 43 comment(s)
  Beats: history, sabermetrics

Buckley: Jonathan Papelbon’s $50m exit leaves gap in guts

Couple of drunk firemen friends of mine calling themselves Gap n’ Guts, once jumped into the ring against The Wild Samoans. Not a pretty sight.

What made Papelbon special — and what will make him hard to replace — is that he was fully invested in The Boston Baseball Experience. We have seen, especially in recent years, that even hardened big league veterans can get tangled up in The Boston Baseball Experience. The lights at Fenway Park [map] are too bright, the fans are too fanatic, the ...

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Repoz Posted: November 12, 2011 at 02:54 PM | 14 comment(s)
  Beats: history, phillies, red sox

NYT: Gil Hodges Added to Hall of Fame Credentials After Playing Days

Yup, that aswoony-inducing Ned Yostian .467 winning pct. does the trick.

It’s all there, in the fine print. The Hall of Fame voting rules state, “Those whose careers entailed involvement in multiple categories will be considered for their overall contribution to the game of baseball,” and later cite an individual’s “record, ability, integrity, sportsmanship, character and contribution to the game.”

In other words, if, after your playing days, you become a manager and by imposing ...

Read More...
Repoz Posted: November 12, 2011 at 01:51 PM | 5 comment(s)
  Beats: hall of fame, history, mets, nationals

Baseball By The Yard: Coach McCreary: The effects of tension

Bear McCreary for a moment here…Eureka!

To get an idea on the effects of tension, try this quick experiment.  Sit down at a table and place your dominant arm on the table in front of you so that the arm from the elbow to the finger tips is resting on the table.  The palm should be facing down but not completely flat on the table.  Just relaxed.  Now tense up all the muscles in your forearm, wrist, hand, and fingers at once and while doing so, try to quickly tap your finger tips on the table.  ...

Read More...
Repoz Posted: November 12, 2011 at 01:14 PM | 3 comment(s)
  Beats: baseball geeks

Verducci: Dodgers ready to play Moneyball

Can The Human Verducci Effect please not saunter onto the Clubhouse Confidential set like Dean Martin heading to his closet. Thank you.

The Dodgers and general manager Ned Colletti, with his three decades in baseball, have gone sabermetric. In September the Dodgers hired Alex Tamin, a graduate of Johns Hopkins and UCLA School of Law, as Director of Baseball Contracts, Research and Operations. That was a confirmation that Los Angeles is joining the “new school” franchises with a strong ...

Read More...
Repoz Posted: November 12, 2011 at 12:44 PM | 16 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, projections, sabermetrics

Baseball America’s Top 10 Prospects: Washington Nationals

Didn’t Bryce Harper and All Them Other Guys have a syrupy psychestnut on Chocolate Soup For Diabetics Vol. 12? Thought so.

1. Bryce Harper, of
2. Anthony Rendon, 3b
3. Brad Peacock, rhp
4. A.J. Cole, rhp
5. Brian Goodwin, of
6. Alex Meyer, rhp
7. Matt Purke, lhp
8. Sammy Solis, lhp
9. Derek Norris, c
10. Steve Lombardozzi, 2b/ss

The organization enjoyed a strong developmental year from top to bottom, with upper-level prospects such as Brad Peacock, Tom Milone and Steve Lombardozzi ...

Read More...
Repoz Posted: November 12, 2011 at 12:17 PM | 21 comment(s)
  Beats: minor leagues, nationals, prospect reports, scouting

Charlie Lea, former major league pitcher, found dead at Collierville home

Charlie Lea...RIP.

Former major league pitcher Charlie Lea, a star at Kingsbury High and then-Memphis State University before embarking on a successful pro career, was found dead in his Collierville home Friday. He was 54.

Collierville Police Chief Larry Goodwin said Lea died of a suspected heart attack.

Winner of 62 games in an eight-year major league career that ended with the Minnesota Twins in 1988, Lea pitched a no-hitter for the Montreal Expos against the San Francisco Giants in 1981, ...

Read More...
Repoz Posted: November 12, 2011 at 03:38 AM | 8 comment(s)
  Beats: expos, obituaries, twins

Wilson Ramos rescued, safe in Venezuela

Wilson Ramos has been rescued in Venezuela and is with the police on his way back home, his agent, Gustavo Mercano, said in a phone conversation. The Interior Minster called to tell the family at roughly 10 minutes before 10 p.m. East Coast time.

“They got him,” Mercano said. “He’s safe.”

Ramos was freed in the mountains of Montalban in the state of Carabobo in central Venezuela, said the government’s Communications Minister, Andres Izarra. The area is roughly 40 miles northwest ...

Read More...
Repoz Posted: November 12, 2011 at 03:23 AM | 29 comment(s)
  Beats: international

Friday, November 11, 2011

Marlins Ballpark: What are the Critics Saying Now?

Woo-hoo! More trash being tossed around than a sonickle’s worth of a Guerrilleros de Nadie gig!

The Marlins and many of the ballpark boosters are also convinced the new stadium will spark a building boom of gentrification in Little Havana.

“I have my doubts in terms of that,” said Miami-Dade County mayor Carlos Gimenez, one of the stadium deal’s loudest critics. He voted against the deal when he was a county commissioner.

“Well, I think the deal is really still rotten, that hasn’t changed at ...

Read More...
Repoz Posted: November 11, 2011 at 10:52 PM | 40 comment(s)
  Beats: business, media, miami

Dodgers are about to lose Jamey Carroll

Oh Carroll, don’t let them steal our heart away!

The Minnesota Twins reportedly are close to signing an everyday shortstop.

Jamey Carroll, who has spent the past two seasons with the Los Angeles Dodgers, is closing in on a deal with the Twins, according to Jerry Crasnick of Baseball America and ESPN.com. Fox’s Ken Rosenthal is reporting it would be a two-year deal.

The Twins had a revolving door at shortstop last year en route to a 99-loss season. Alexi Casilla opened the season at short, ...

Read More...
Repoz Posted: November 11, 2011 at 08:52 PM | 13 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, twins

Ramos abduction in Ven.: Police gathering evidence, still no contact from kidnappers, 36 hours in

The last news from the Adam Kilgore of the Washington Post:

UPDATE, 2:10 p.m. Venezuelan police put out a press release denying the rumor that Wilson had been found dead following the abduction that occurred Wednesday evening.

“The Body of Scientific, Penal and Criminal Investigations (CICPC), denied the occurrence of the alleged corpse of Wilson Ramos in the vicinity of the Plaza de Toro de Valencia,” the press release read.

In the statement, the CICPC added officials believe it possible ...

Read More...
Gamingboy Posted: November 11, 2011 at 08:19 PM | 18 comment(s)
  Beats: nationals

Jonathan Papelbon Agrees to Deal With Phillies, Ending Seven-Year Career With Red Sox

Face of a Nation no longer.

Jonathan Papelbon is Philadelphia-bound.

The best available closer on the free-agent market agreed to a deal with the Philadelphia Phillies, pending a physical, according to Jim Salisbury of CSN Philly.

Sports Illustrated’s Jon Heyman confirmed the deal.

Salisbury reported the deal is for four years and is worth close to $50 million.

The Phillies were reported to have been closing in on a deal with their own closer, Ryan Madson, worth $44 million over four ...

Read More...
Repoz Posted: November 11, 2011 at 07:41 PM | 91 comment(s)
  Beats: phillies, red sox

Wade: Steroid use, real or rumored, did not make Hall of Fame careers

Best part of this is Will Carroll’s tweet…“Hearing from lots of BBWAA members on @dwade’s steroid piece. He’s moved the discussion forward with this.”

It’s hard to imagine, with all of the moralizing, rending of clothes, and ashes and sackcloth that we’ve seen the steroids controversy produce, that their real impact could be so small, but that’s the reality. For all but a few players, PEDs may have produced a physiological change, but it didn’t do much else.

This updated data echoes the ...

Read More...
Repoz Posted: November 11, 2011 at 07:26 PM | 59 comment(s)
  Beats: hall of fame, history, projections, sabermetrics, steroids

Charley Walters: Ex-Minnesota Twin Tony Oliva getting Hall of Fame push

Red Sox Knox just gagged on a rolled up schwall of Yaz bread.

Tony Oliva has some big hitters lobbying for his election to the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, N.Y.

“I was talking to Gene Michael the other day, and I told him there was one guy who really deserves to be in the hall of fame,” former Twins pitcher Dean Chance said Wednesday. “Tony Oliva’s the best hitter I ever pitched against. And Denny McLain says the same thing, that Oliva is the best left-handed hitter he ever faced. ...

Read More...
Repoz Posted: November 11, 2011 at 06:55 PM | 20 comment(s)
  Beats: hall of fame, history, twins

Countdown to Marlins’ relaunch under way

I shall dub it Operation Neon Swordfish Disco!

The countdown is under way for the much-anticipated relaunch of this franchise, which entered the National League in 1993. Starting at 4:30 p.m. ET, visitors to Marlins.com will see only the countdown splash page. Beginning at that time, the suspense will build for the 9 p.m. festivities ushering in a new Marlins era.

All Miami Marlins Unveiling events can be seen live on the splash page. They will start with a red-carpet welcome and Miami-style ...

Read More...
Gamingboy Posted: November 11, 2011 at 04:23 PM | 11 comment(s)
  Beats: miami

Jewish ex-players join Israel’s WBC bid

JERUSALEM—Three Jewish former major leaguers have joined Israel’s bid for the 2013 World Baseball Classic, a move that could transform the baseball backwater into a legitimate contender.

Shawn Green, Brad Ausmus and Gabe Kapler met this week in Los Angeles with Israeli baseball officials and committed to helping Israel field a competitive team in next year’s WBC qualifying round, the three players told The Associated Press.

While it remains unclear if the recently retired players will take ...

Read More...
Gamingboy Posted: November 11, 2011 at 04:20 PM | 11 comment(s)
  Beats: international

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

Harrington Crissey, “Abner Doubleday Would Have Been Proud”, via SABR Research Journal:

Baseball players have participated in all U. S. military conflicts from the Civil War (Doug Allison of the Cincinnati Red Stockings) to the Viet Nam War (Al Bumbry of the Baltimore Orioles). Some major league players appeared in more than one war. Arlie Pond, for example, was a medical officer in the Spanish-American War and the Philippine Insurrection, and returned to active duty as Assistant Surgeon General ...

Read More...
Dan Lee is a Big Hunk of Neufchâtel Posted: November 11, 2011 at 12:36 PM | 7 comment(s)
  Beats: dugout, history

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