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Monday, October 03, 2011

Shaughnessy: Fallout from Red Sox downfall just beginning with Francona’s firing

It happens to all of them, especially in 2011. There are no more Walter Alstons. You won’t find a Bobby Cox anymore. Joe Torre had his magical run in New York, and it ended badly. Now Tony LaRussa looks like he’s near the end in St. Louis. Even while he’s in the playoffs.

I doubt there’ll ever be another eight-year manager in Boston. The corner office at Fenway Park is a combustible space. The Sox field boss has to deal with interference from the front office. Owner John Henry is a notorious ...

Read More...
Repoz Posted: October 03, 2011 at 12:48 AM | 29 comment(s)
  Beats: red sox, sabermetrics

Sunday, October 02, 2011

Bon Appétit: Food Pics of the Well Known: Texas Rangers Pitcher CJ Wilson

I gar-on-t-bone!

image

While the opening round of the MLB Playoffs has most of his attention these days, Texas Rangers’ starting pitcher CJ Wilson is also admittedly “kind of obsessed” with food, but it’s a vice he’s comfortable with. “I don’t drink; I don’t do drugs; I do food.” But the All Star and soon-to-be $10 million free agent takes his food seriously. “I think I have a sophisticated palate because I’m adventurous. I try to find a spot in every city we visit to satisfy any craving from ...

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Repoz Posted: October 02, 2011 at 11:58 PM | 15 comment(s)
  Beats: rangers

MLB.com: Overpowered by Scherzer, Yanks fall into tie

The Yankees were overmatched by Max Scherzer’s high-octane arsenal on Sunday, as the right-hander carried a no-hitter into the sixth inning and helped the Tigers post a 5-3 victory in Game 2 of the American League Division Series, evening the series at 1-1.

Miguel Cabrera slugged a two-run homer and drove in three runs for the Tigers, who got to New York starter Freddy Garcia for four runs (three earned) in 5 1/3 innings.

NTNgod Posted: October 02, 2011 at 10:52 PM | 2 comment(s)
  Beats: game recaps, tigers, yankees

Davidoff: Baseball Insider: Awards Show

Drew Butera obviously takes the belly-scratcher.

Just as we’re settling into the postseason, let’s divulge our annual end-of-the-regular-season awards.

AL Most Valuable Player: Jose Bautista, TOR
AL Least Valuable Player: Carl Crawford, BOS
NL Most Valuable Player: Matt Kemp, LAD
NL Least Valuable Player: Aubrey Huff, SF
AL Cy Young Award: Justin Verlander, DET
AL Belly-Itcher: John Lackey, BOS
NL Cy Young: Roy Halladay, PHI
NL Belly-Itcher: Derek Lowe, ATL
AL Rookie of the Year: Michael ...

Read More...
The District Attorney Posted: October 02, 2011 at 08:05 PM | 13 comment(s)
  Beats: awards

Murray Chass: FRANCONA IS FIRST FALLOUT FROM DOWNFALL

They should be erecting a statue of Terry Francona in front of Fenway Park, not shoving him out the back door. Francona, after all, won two World Series with a franchise the World Series had forgotten, two, in fact, only three years apart, the first in 2004 that ended an 86-year drought. ...

In his comments, Francona said he left because he felt the players needed to hear a different voice. Perhaps his view can be linked to the substance of reports that Francona had “lost” the clubhouse, ...

Read More...
bobm Posted: October 02, 2011 at 06:12 PM | 24 comment(s)
  Beats: braves, red sox

Royals’ goal for next season: Find front-line starter

I understand Damian Moss is available.

the Royals figure to take a run at [free agent] Edwin Jackson. But club officials say any impact acquisition is likely to come through a trade…

[James] Shields seems the best fit — if the Rays are indeed willing to deal him after their surprising run to postseason — because his salary is about to jump from $4.25 million to $7 million in 2012, $9 million in 2013 and $12 million in 2014.

That might be more than the frugal Rays can afford, but it fits ...

Read More...
The District Attorney Posted: October 02, 2011 at 05:44 PM | 11 comment(s)
  Beats: royals, rumors

N.Y. Times: Rosenheck: Did the Tigers Have the Right Man at Second Base?

An ode to Ramón Santiago.

Fortunately for Detroit, the punchless Gardner pulled the meatball on the ground to the right side of second base. Unfortunately for Detroit, Ryan Raburn was playing second. He took a few choppy steps to his right and didn’t even try to get his glove down, as the ball had clearly beaten him. Teixeira and Posada came around to score, and Detroit’s likelihood of winning the game fell to 10 percent from 25 percent. Had Raburn made the play, the Tigers’ probability ...

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David Concepcion de la Desviacion Estandar (Dan R) Posted: October 02, 2011 at 05:38 PM | 7 comment(s)
  Beats: general

Zambrano to Marlins?

Weird, I read about it in El Pollo Loco.

With Ozzie Guillen leaving the White Sox to manage the Marlins, there has been speculation that Carlos Zambrano will join him in Florida. The two Venezuelans are close and have helped each other’s charities…

According to a report in Venezuela’s El Nacional by reporter Ignacio Serrano, Guillen has reached out to Zambrano and wants to bring him to Miami. Zambrano is owed $18 million next season on his contract, and the report says the Marlins would pay ...

Read More...
The District Attorney Posted: October 02, 2011 at 05:10 PM | 9 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs, miami, rumors

Noble: Jeter always in right place at right time

Even when he’s not! (scratches head feverishly with engraved trephine blade)

Before pitching coach Larry Rothschild could express concern above the effect working from the stretch had on Nova’s pitches, Peralta struck, Granderson waited for the sinking line drive to reach him, and Jeter prepared himself to not lose. The primary cutoff man was to be Mark Teixeira at the mound. Infield coach Mick Kelleher said Jeter, the cutoff man on a throw to third, was out of position when he put himself in ...

Read More...
Repoz Posted: October 02, 2011 at 12:43 PM | 33 comment(s)
  Beats: game recaps, history, tigers, yankees

AL and NLDS Day 3 Game Chatters

Tigers (Scherzer) vs. Yankees (Garcia) 3:00 PM TNT
D-Backs (Dan Hudson) vs. Brewers (Greinke) 5:00 PM TBS
Cardinals (Carpenter) vs. Phillies (Cliff Lee) 8:30 PM TBS

Gamingboy Posted: October 02, 2011 at 12:38 PM | 593 comment(s)
  Beats: general

Klaassen: Should Arizona Have Pitched Around Fielder?

Let’s let Kapitan Kirk Gibson answer that…”“I left him in; it was a bad decision on my part, obviously,”

This is not to say that these are the only considerations to take into account. Perhaps Arizona manager Kirk Gibson or his coaches could have seen something in Kennedy at that point that would have indicated he should be pulled (I don’t know). Maybe Gibson would have been better served to bring in an appropriate lefty-killing reliever to get Fielder out.

It is easy to speak with the ...

Read More...
Repoz Posted: October 02, 2011 at 12:14 PM | 10 comment(s)
  Beats: arizona, brewers, history, projections, sabermetrics

Jim Leyland says numbers were on his side with Al Alburquerque

And he’s got time to roll a number…Oh, Alburquerque.

Why did he bring Al Alburquerque, a right-hander, into Game 1 of the Division Series on Saturday night instead of a left-hander to face Robinson Cano with the bases loaded in the sixth inning?

Cano made it a hot topic because he hit a grand slam off Alburquerque in the Tigers’ 9-3 loss to the Yankees, the first home run Alburquerque has allowed as a Tiger.

“To me,” Leyland said, “that’s one for everyone else to second guess. Obviously, ...

Read More...
Repoz Posted: October 02, 2011 at 11:38 AM | 21 comment(s)
  Beats: sabermetrics, tigers, yankees

Engel: Michael Young quietly remains most valuable Ranger

Branded! The anti-anti-anti Moneyball is in full swing!

And yet just watch, everybody will skip Young’s role because, frankly, it involves intangibles, and what cannot be measured no longer matters in baseball, or so we have been told. Just do not tell Rangers manager Ron Washington unless you want him to drop an f-bomb on you and walk away talking about the fool he just talked to who does not know the first thing about baseball or how much chemistry matters.

...What Young did instead was ...

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Repoz Posted: October 02, 2011 at 11:17 AM | 34 comment(s)
  Beats: awards, history, rangers

Lupica: Francona saw lack of intangibles in Red Sox collapse, not lack of ‘Moneyball’ statistics

The Million-Dollar Throw-Up Challenge.

Terry Francona didn’t talk about OPS numbers on Friday after he was fired in Boston. He didn’t talk about Pythagorean winning percentages or range factors or runs created or win shares. He didn’t talk about Bill James or Billy Beane or sabermetrics, the cult that now runs baseball. Francona essentially spoke of how the men on the field playing the game for the Red Sox this past September weren’t enough of a team when their season exploded all over the ...

Read More...
Repoz Posted: October 02, 2011 at 10:45 AM | 85 comment(s)
  Beats: books, fantasy baseball, red sox, sabermetrics

MLB.com: Cano’s slam finishes Tigers in Game 1 rout

Robinson Cano connected for his team’s first postseason grand slam in nearly 12 years and Ivan Nova fired 6 1/3 sterling innings in his postseason debut, leading the Yankees to a 9-3 victory over the Tigers in Game 1 of the American League Division Series on Saturday.

Cano’s towering blast to right field off left-hander Al Alburquerque highlighted a six-run New York sixth inning, helping the Yankees pull away after the skies cleared to permit the continuation of the contest.

NTNgod Posted: October 02, 2011 at 03:48 AM | 18 comment(s)
  Beats: game recaps, tigers, yankees

Plaschke: Baseball should come clean for Roger Maris

Tally Ho-oey!

Maris should be considered the all-time home-run champ, but baseball officials can’t simply change the record books, so he’s not.

Maris could be in the Hall of Fame based on that season alone, but his career numbers don’t meet Cooperstown’s standards, so he’s not.

Maris should have been honored and remembered on every field where they played major league baseball this weekend…

...The family is hurt equally by knowing that Maris will probably never receive the vote he needs ...

Read More...
Repoz Posted: October 02, 2011 at 03:11 AM | 29 comment(s)
  Beats: cardinals, hall of fame, history, memorabilia, yankees

MLB.com: Go fourth: Big inning helps Texas force ALDS tie

The Rangers scored five runs in the fourth inning and held on for a 8-6 victory over the Rays in Game 2 of the American League Division Series at the Ballpark in Arlington on Saturday night.

The victory, their first ever in a Division Series at the Ballpark, allowed the Rangers to even the series at one game each.
...
Derek Holland earned the victory despite allowing three runs in five innings.

NTNgod Posted: October 02, 2011 at 02:52 AM | 5 comment(s)
  Beats: game recaps, rangers, rays

MLB.com: Phils overcome sluggish start to pound Cards

Philadelphia never blinked after falling behind early Saturday in an 11-6 comeback victory over the St. Louis Cardinals in Game 1 of the National League Division Series at Citizens Bank Park.
...
Halladay quietly got into a groove, and by the time the Phillies scored a run in the fourth inning to make it 3-1—Shane Victorino singled in a run after Cardinals third baseman David Freese dropped a foul ball, giving Victorino new life—Halladay had retired nine consecutive batters.

Halladay had ...

Read More...
NTNgod Posted: October 02, 2011 at 12:13 AM | 9 comment(s)
  Beats: cardinals, game recaps, phillies

Neyer: Rumor: Theo Epstein Leaving Red Sox For Cubs

Why would Epstein leave?

Remember, he’s almost left before. Six years ago, Epstein exited the Red Sox for roughly a month before returning to the fold. Perhaps that was merely a negotiating ploy—he presumably did well, financially—but the relationship between Epstein and his bosses has not always been 100-percent highly functional.

I don’t know Theo Epstein anything like well enough to read his mind, but it’s certainly possible that he’s simply ready for a change. I’ve had two great jobs in ...

Read More...

Saturday, October 01, 2011

MLB.com: Crew’s dynamic trio brings home Game 1 win

Gallardo pitched eight inspired innings and tied Don Sutton’s postseason franchise record with nine strikeouts, and Prince Fielder belted a seventh-inning, two-run home run, the biggest hit of a 4-1 Brewers win over the D-backs in Game 1 of the National League Division Series on Saturday.
...
Eight innings and 106 pitches later, [Gallardo] had limited Arizona to four hits and one run to give the Brewers the series edge. Gallardo was just short of what would have been the Brewers’ first complete ...

Read More...
NTNgod Posted: October 01, 2011 at 09:05 PM | 17 comment(s)
  Beats: arizona, brewers, game recaps

NYT: Voice of Yankees Draws High Ratings and Several Critics

John Sterling Sings for Only the Lonely…

All in a night’s work — the roughly 3,800th game Sterling has worked since he joined the Yankees, a period during which he has never missed a game.

Within 90 minutes of the final out, Sterling is usually at home in his apartment in Edgewater, N.J., where he lives alone. In public, he always seems undeniably on display, a tall man stalking through hallways with a booming voice that precedes him. Late at night, he mixes a drink, revs up the DVR and ...

Read More...
Repoz Posted: October 01, 2011 at 08:37 PM | 56 comment(s)
  Beats: announcers, braves, business, media, television, yankees

Topps to release cards next year with gold

Ha! Nice try, Topps. I’m still sitting on a worthless pile of J.M. Gold RC’s.

Topps celebrated its 60th anniversary of making baseball cards this year by placing actual diamonds into cards.

Next year, it’s going gold. The company recently unveiled the design for its flagship card set to arrive next February, and it’s one that sets a new standard with gold all over the product.

As in real gold—the stuff that set a new record high at $1,922 an ounce earlier this month.

“I think next year, ...

Read More...
Repoz Posted: October 01, 2011 at 05:37 PM | 10 comment(s)
  Beats: business, media, memorabilia

Silva: Steve Phillips Finally Wins a Championship as a General Manager

Congrats, Steve! The 1st place prize is on its way!

image

Former Mets manager Steve Phillips is on the verge of winning the Sirius XM Fantasy Baseball Experts League and talked about it with the RotoExperts yesterday.

What was his strategy?

Phillips claims he turned over 23 of his 26 players on his roster during the course of the year. “Trader Phillips” acquired Matt Kemp and Carl Crawford and then flipped them to get Adrian Gonzalez. He also dealt Victor Martinez for Alex Avila. He says he ...

Read More...
Repoz Posted: October 01, 2011 at 03:31 PM | 5 comment(s)
  Beats: announcers, business, fantasy baseball, history, media, mets, sabermetrics, television

AL/NLDS Day 2 Chatter

D-backs (Kennedy) vs. Brewers (Gallardo) at 2:00 PM on TBS
Cardinals (Lohse) vs. Phillies (Halladay) at 5:00 PM on TBS
Rays (Shields) vs. Rangers (Holland) at 7:00 PM on TNT
Tigers (Fister for Verlander) vs. Yankees (Nova for Sabathia) at 8:30 PM on TBS


Weather Permitting, of course.

Gamingboy Posted: October 01, 2011 at 01:41 PM | 667 comment(s)
  Beats: general

Wertheim: Prince Fielder made history by drawing a walk in his final at-bat

Lord, I’m running trying to make .300 because .29876977152… won’t do.

Yet the strangest occurrence of all last Wednesday may have happened during the Brewers-Pirates game in Milwaukee. The game itself was meaningless. The Brewers had long since clinched an appearance in the playoffs. The Pirates had long since assured themselves a record 19th straight losing season. But in the bottom of the seventh inning, Prince Fielder came to bat. Facing Brian Burress, a left-handed journeyman, Fielder ...

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Repoz Posted: October 01, 2011 at 01:18 PM | 36 comment(s)
  Beats: brewers, history, sabermetrics

FanGraphs: Cameron: The Idea and Reality of Justin Verlander

Hey, when Larry Christenson is your number one comp*...

But, I’m starting to feel like the idea of Justin Verlander is becoming larger than the reality of Justin Verlander. He’s a great pitcher who had a great year, but it’s not like he did anything this season that was historically unprecedented. In fact, there’s a pitcher that performs at something close to this level nearly every season.

...If we set a 220 inning minimum (which eliminates a few amazing seasons by guys like Pedro ...

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Repoz Posted: October 01, 2011 at 12:52 PM | 28 comment(s)
  Beats: history, projections, sabermetrics, tigers

Shaughnessy: Ignore that spin from the brass - he was fired

Gather round ye sunshineless stat geeks and rise up against…..

Bingo. Henry has had Francona in his crosshairs for a couple of years. Ultimately, Francona was not enough of a numbers guy to satisfy Boston’s Moneyball boss.

...Francona represented a nice blend of old school and Moneyball. He always had a computer on his desk, but had reverence and respect for the baseball lifers who played when his dad played in the 1950s and ’60s. But it was hard to deal with daily lineup suggestions ...

Read More...
Repoz Posted: October 01, 2011 at 11:23 AM | 48 comment(s)
  Beats: business, history, media, red sox, sabermetrics

Mike Schmidt: Did ‘Moneyball’ brainwash baseball?

As Gary “Sarge” Matthews lid-flippingly said the other day…“With the dimensions here at Citizens Bank Park…Mike Schmidt would average 50 HR’s a year!”

Watch a game today and count the number of hittable fastballs the run producers watch go by in those counts. Again, in a perfect world, the get-on-base guys would only swing with two strikes, but the thumpers need to remove the safety and pull the trigger. I wish there was a stat that told this story, what a hitter would have done had he swung ...

Read More...
Repoz Posted: October 01, 2011 at 11:04 AM | 24 comment(s)
  Beats: athletics, fantasy baseball, history, sabermetrics

Heyman: My award picks for 2011 season

This is all an inexact science and very subjective, and if someone values pitchers slightly less than I do (or more for that matter), I understand it. And if someone wants to make the case that players on also rans should be given greater consideration, I understand that, too. There are voters more numbers-oriented and less wins-oriented who will tell me my votes are idiotic, that Kemp and Bautista should be higher than third and fifth, respectively. That’s OK, the individual numbers have ...

Read More...
Repoz Posted: October 01, 2011 at 03:32 AM | 13 comment(s)
  Beats: awards

MLB.com: Rain suspends ALDS opener in Bronx

Game 1 of the American League Division Series between the Tigers and Yankees at Yankee Stadium on Friday night was suspended because of rain and will resume on Saturday at 8:37 p.m. ET in the bottom of the second inning with the score tied at 1.

Game 2, weather permitting, has been rescheduled from Saturday night to Sunday at 3:07 p.m. Ivan Nova—originally scheduled to pitch Game 2—will be on the hill for the Yankees when Game 1 resumes, and Doug Fister will pitch for the Tigers. New York will ...

Read More...
NTNgod Posted: October 01, 2011 at 02:33 AM | 49 comment(s)
  Beats: game recaps, tigers, yankees

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