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Friday, September 23, 2011

ESPN: Manny Ramirez seeks reinstatement

Manny Ramirez, upon learning he will not be able to play winter ball in the Dominican Republic because he’s on MLB’s inactive list, told ESPNdeportes.com Thursday that he will formally request reinstatement.

Ramirez said that upon reentry, he would serve his 100-game suspension for a second violation of MLB’s drug policy.

“I would comply with my pending sanction and I would be available for any major league team,” Ramirez told ESPNdeportes.com’s Enrique Rojas via telephone from Miami. “I ...

Read More...
SG Posted: September 23, 2011 at 12:45 PM | 28 comment(s)
  Beats: red sox, rumors, steroids

NY Times: Belson: From Cruise Control, a Shift to Panic Mode in Boston and Atlanta

The recent twists of fate are especially cruel in Boston. Fans thought the Red Sox had vanquished their loser label in 2004 when they won their first World Series in 86 years, in part by rallying from a three-games-to-none deficit against the hated Yankees in the American League Championship Series. For good measure, they won the World Series again in 2007.

The ghosts were supposed to be exiled, the curses broken.

But if the Red Sox fail to make the playoffs, and in historic fashion, those ...

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ERROR---Jolly Old St. Nick Posted: September 23, 2011 at 11:36 AM | 12 comment(s)
  Beats: general

Mitch Albom: Tigers Justin Verlander undoubtedly most ‘valuable’ player

What if our beliefs in the meaning of Valuable were not what divided us, but what pulled us together? (Re: over-hyperion)

Let’s just focus on the word “valuable.” The “V” in MVP. That is what the award is supposed to signify, right? Not biggest bat, niftiest glove or flashiest numbers.

Valuable? Is there any question that, if you took Verlander off this Tigers team, it would not be making the playoffs? Valuable? Is there any question that Verlander was a human tourniquet for nearly every ...

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Repoz Posted: September 23, 2011 at 10:24 AM | 42 comment(s)
  Beats: awards, tigers

Brennaman mum on Nuxhall but not by choice

Marty loved Joe, so why hasn’t Marty Brennaman urged Reds radio listeners to vote for Nuxhall’s nomination for the Ford C. Frick Award?

Because he can’t.

“If I mention it on the radio, they’ll take away my voting rights,” said Brennaman, who was presented the Frick Award for baseball broadcasting excellence by the Baseball Hall of Fame in 2000.

“I can’t promote him on the radio,” he said. “They alert all of us every year.”

...To me, the Facebook vote is inherently unfair to guys like ...

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Repoz Posted: September 23, 2011 at 10:01 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: announcers, awards, business, hall of fame, media, reds, television

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 9-23-2011

Pittsburgh Press, September 23, 1911:

Clarksville, Tenn., Sept. 23.—There is gloom all over this place today because the supply of baseballs was exhausted in the seventh inning and Clarksville had to forfeit the game to Cairo yesterday, which was the last day of the “Kitty” league season and only a few balls were provided.

They’re feelin’ low.  Oh, no, no, no!  Oh, no, no, no!  And they don’t know if they’re ever coming home.

Put a Milo Candini on him. (Dan Lee) Posted: September 23, 2011 at 09:54 AM | 22 comment(s)
  Beats: dugout, history, minor leagues

WSJ: Futterman: Baseball After Moneyball

We can’t find socks that shape to our feet, we’re sick of it. SICK OF IT!

The Baseball Geeks Become Insufferable

...“I’m O.K. until someone starts explaining to me why Bobby Abreu is better than Roberto Clemente,” says the longtime broadcaster and MLB Network host Bob Costas, an early Bill James disciple. “Then I’ve had it.”

Former baseball commissioner Fay Vincent hates speaking out against statistical analysis because it makes him sound like a Luddite, which he swears he isn’t, but he says ...

Read More...
Repoz Posted: September 23, 2011 at 09:46 AM | 18 comment(s)
  Beats: announcers, athletics, books, business, history, media, sabermetrics

AL Wildcard race: September 22, 2011

BOS 88-68 [5-16 in SEPT]
TBR 86-70 [12-9 in SEPT] (2 GB)
LAA 85-71 [12-8 in SEPT] (3 GB)

MLB.com: Moore, Rays come up big to trim WC deficit
MLB.com: Angels fall to Jays in 12, fall back in races

BOS: 3 @NYY, 3 @BAL
TBR: 3 vs. TOR, 3 vs. NYY
LAA: 3 vs. OAK, 3 vs. TEX

NTNgod Posted: September 23, 2011 at 02:44 AM | 46 comment(s)
  Beats: angels, game recaps, rays, red sox

Roger Ebert gives Moneyball 4 out of 4 stars

I walked in knowing what the movie was about, but unprepared for its intelligence and depth.
....
“Moneyball” is not a traditional sports movie, and indeed should be just as gripping for non-sports fans. It’s not a series of Big Games. When it goes to the field, it’s for well-chosen crucial moments.

JRVJ Posted: September 23, 2011 at 01:43 AM | 148 comment(s)
  Beats: general

MLB and MLBPA will bring All-Star Series to Taiwan in November

Major League Baseball (MLB) and the Major League Baseball Players Association (MLBPA) today announced that a team of Major Leaguers will travel to Taiwan this November to play against the Chinese Taipei national team in the 2011 Taiwan All-Star Series.

The 2011 Taiwan All-Star Series will consist of five games played between November 2 - 6 in three different cities - New Taipei City (XinZhuang Stadium) on November 2, Taichung (Intercontinental Stadium) on November 3 and 4 and Kaohsiung ...

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Gamingboy Posted: September 23, 2011 at 12:36 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: international

Thursday, September 22, 2011

NL Wildcard race: September 22, 2011

ATL 88-68 [8-13 in SEPT]
STL 86-70 [14-6 in SEPT] (2 GB)
SFG 84-72 [12-7 in SEPT] (4 GB)

MLB.com: Cards can’t put away Mets, fall two out in WC

A weary Cardinals bullpen suffered a breakdown in an extremely disheartening and costly 8-6 loss to the Mets at Busch Stadium on Thursday afternoon.

Manager Tony La Russa cycled through three relievers in a six-run Mets ninth as St. Louis saw a four-game winning streak come to an end. The Cards had led, 6-1, through seven innings.

MLB: Loss puts ...

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NTNgod Posted: September 22, 2011 at 11:32 PM | 35 comment(s)
  Beats: braves, cardinals, game recaps, giants

ESPN: Lance Berkman, Cardinals agree

Lance Berkman has agreed to a $12 million contract with St. Louis, giving the Cardinals a valuable bat for 2012.

The 35-year-old Berkman is completing a big comeback season with 31 home runs, 91 RBIs and a .300 average. The switch-hitter made his sixth All-Star team this summer, his first such honor since 2008.
...
Berkman said he’d been aware for a few days that the deal was done. Talks accelerated recently and Berkman pointed out he probably could have gotten a two-year deal for the amount ...

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NTNgod Posted: September 22, 2011 at 09:41 PM | 23 comment(s)
  Beats: cardinals

ESPN: Robinson Cano stumps for MVP

Vote for me and I’ll set you fre…akin’ 13th in OPS+ & WAR?!

One candidate in the American League MVP race sticks out to New York Yankees second baseman Robinson Cano.

“MVP is tough right now, you got a lot of guys, but I would give my vote to myself,” Cano said. “You can see the numbers. I’m batting fifth in the lineup, I’ve been there the whole year and why not me? My numbers are there and you guys got to decide that. I hope I get your guys vote.”

The second baseman gave his opinion on the ...

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Repoz Posted: September 22, 2011 at 09:11 PM | 15 comment(s)
  Beats: awards, yankees

Jason Whitlock: Sports closer to art than science

I won’t be going to see “Moneyball.” The movie celebrates the plague ruining sports: sabermetrics.

Jason Takes Madhatter!
image

When the “Moneyball” movie hysteria subsides, I hope the sabermeticians STFU.

Repoz Posted: September 22, 2011 at 07:26 PM | 45 comment(s)
  Beats: fantasy baseball

Marlins Closer Leo Núñez Suspended by Team, Mysteriously Leaves The Country

Marlins relief pitcher Leo Núñez, who’s racked up a career high 36 saves this season so far as the team’s closer, has mysteriously been suspended by the team and left the country, according to The Miami Herald. The report has precious few details. Nothing like a gold ol’ sports controversy mystery.

Núñez’s agent isn’t talking much either.

“I can’t yet comment,” Andy Mota tells the paper. “This is very recent. I don’t want to say anything at all.”

Why the team suspended the player hasn’t ...

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Repoz Posted: September 22, 2011 at 07:17 PM | 78 comment(s)
  Beats: miami

Posnanski: Moneyball The Movie

“They broke down Chad Bradford’s pitching style”... wannabes.

There are baseball details so real that no other filmmaker would have ever dared even try it. They broke down Chad Bradford’s pitching style. They use the key sabermetric phrase “small sample size.” They spent a good chunk of the movie talking about Beane’s fascination with left-handed specialist Ricardo Rincon, for crying out loud. And then, on the other hand, they have a whole movie about the 2002 Oakland A’s without even subtly ...

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The District Attorney Posted: September 22, 2011 at 07:06 PM | 44 comment(s)
  Beats: athletics, baseball geeks, business, media, reviews

EPL Talk: Exclusive Interview With Liverpool Chairman Tom Werner

In England, the Red Sox are still a “powerhouse” and Theo Epstein is still a genius.

Alex Fairchild (AF):  To what extent is your experience transforming the Red Sox into a MLB powerhouse helping you turn LFC around?

Tom Werner (TW): I have said in the past that John and I are better owners at the Red Sox because of the experiences we had at the San Diego Padres and the Florida Marlins. I expect that our knowledge of running a first class baseball organization will give us useful experience ...

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Greg Franklin Posted: September 22, 2011 at 05:11 PM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: business, red sox, special topics

Boston Herald: Source: Sox made play for Mets’ Capuano

How desperate are the Red Sox to hold on to their incredible shrinking wild card lead? So desperate the team is looking to trade for pitchers to just finish out the regular season. According to the Boston Herald, the Red Sox have spent the last week trying to get lefty Chris Capuano from the Mets to start Sunday at Yankee Stadium.


According to the report, the Mets will hold on to Capuano, who is a free agent after the season. Capuano is the scheduled starter for the Mets on Thursady in a 1:45 ...

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Avoid running at all times.-S. Paige Posted: September 22, 2011 at 03:55 PM | 49 comment(s)
  Beats: mets, red sox, rumors

LAT: Bankruptcy doesn’t mean Dodgers can’t offer big contracts

The Dodgers’ status as a bankrupt company should not prevent owner Frank McCourt from offering big contracts this winter, according to parties involved in the federal bankruptcy proceedings.

“Whatever happens with the club, it’s in everyone’s interest for the team to be competitive and not compromised in trying to operate,” said Michael Weiner, executive director of the Major League Baseball Players Assn., which, as co-chair of the bankruptcy creditors’ committee, represents the interests of ...

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Posted: September 22, 2011 at 03:14 PM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers

Allen Barra: The ‘Moneyball’ Myth

Alright, alright…so the “SLOBball” movie wasn’t ignatin’ and fell through. But did you have to drag the Hirsch brothers in?

But while the New York Yankees had far more money to spend, the competition on the field was not so lopsided. Baseball had been evolving into a more competitive sport for decades. In fact, 2000 marked the first season in which every team in the league finished between .400 and .600 in won-lost percentage. In other words, no matter how much money was being made or spent by ...

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Repoz Posted: September 22, 2011 at 01:54 PM | 29 comment(s)
  Beats: athletics, books, business, history, media

MASN: Billy Rowell displeased with organization’s handling of his time after injury

Rowell from Sewell. No well.

I asked him if he thought he had been given a fair chance to show what he could do with Bowie?

“Not really. I was supposed to go to Florida for two weeks according to (director of player development) John Stockstill. Two weeks in Florida and then come back to Bowie. That was the plan. I was good (healthy) after two weeks, then they brought up the guy they traded for Derrek Lee, what’s his name, Baker.

“They bring him up and he gets dominated in Double-A. The game ...

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Repoz Posted: September 22, 2011 at 01:37 PM | 41 comment(s)
  Beats: business, minor leagues, orioles, prospect reports

One Hundred Years

Young’s shutout against Pittsburgh that Friday afternoon 100 years ago brought his season record to 7-6 (4-2 with Boston.)  It was the 511th win of his career. It would turn out to be the last. Three days later, he lost his next start 6-5 to the Cubs, giving up the winning run with one out in the ninth; five days after that the Reds beat him 4-1 in Cincinnati. This would be the 749th (we think!) and definitely the final complete game of his career. There’s another record that looks pretty safe. ...Read More...

mathesond Posted: September 22, 2011 at 01:17 PM | 13 comment(s)
  Beats: general

TTF: Dad-gum fired up about Kershaw snub on ESPN

Gee, I might have to find ESPN on my remote again.

The regular anchor started talking about the National League Cy Young race and said that a baseball expert was going to break down the race and the favorites. Then this “expert” came on and said that no matter what, a Philadelphia Phillies pitcher – either Cliff Lee or Roy Halladay – is most deserving of the Cy Young award. ESPN then flashed Lee, Halladay and Kershaw on the screen. Kershaw has more wins than Halladay or Lee. Kershaw ...

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Repoz Posted: September 22, 2011 at 01:14 PM | 33 comment(s)
  Beats: awards, dodgers, phillies, projections, sabermetrics

ESPN: Ban foils Manny Ramirez’s comeback plans

Pregnant pause…......for a Winston Llenas sighting!

Manny Ramirez will have to scuttle existing plans to play for a team in the Dominican Republic because his Major League Baseball-mandated drug suspension still has to be served, a source close to the situation told ESPN’s Colleen Dominguez.

An MLB official confirmed that since Ramirez has unresolved MLB drug-program violations and the Dominican winter league is affiliated with MLB, commissioner Bud Selig’s office considers him ineligible to ...

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Repoz Posted: September 22, 2011 at 10:19 AM | 106 comment(s)
  Beats: history, international, steroids

Former major league outfielder Aaron Guiel retires

Guiel’s theme goes away with everything…

Former major leaguer Aaron Guiel has retired after five seasons in Japanese professional baseball.

The 38-year-old outfielder from Vancouver, British Columbia, was limited to 11 games this season with the Yakult Swallows because of a back injury.

He batted .234 with 90 homers and 239 RBIs in 441 games over five seasons in Japan, all with Yakult.

“The Swallows brought me over here, and that changed my life and my career, so I think it’s only fitting ...

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Repoz Posted: September 22, 2011 at 10:08 AM | 6 comment(s)
  Beats: international, japan, royals

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 9-22-2011

This just in:  Old-timer says current players aren’t as good as they used to be.

White Sox manager Hugh Duffy in the Toledo News-Bee, September 22, 1911:

“When I was a player you had to serve a long apprenticeship in the minors.  Breaking in with a major league club was a tough job.  Furthermore, the other players, the fellows who were in ahead of you, impressed it upon your mind at the start that you had a lot of things to learn.  They don’t do it that way any more.”

“A ballplayer starts with ...

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Put a Milo Candini on him. (Dan Lee) Posted: September 22, 2011 at 09:42 AM | 15 comment(s)
  Beats: dugout, hall of fame, history

Strikeouts put Stubbs in funk

James Jamerson…Shake him, wake him (when it’s over)!

With the Reds idle today, Stubbs essentially will have two days off before play resumes Friday in Pittsburgh. He was in the original lineup Wednesday, then Baker thought better of it.

...“Obviously I’ve been in a pretty big funk lately,” Stubbs said. “This gives me a chance to kind of regroup.”

Yes, the strikeouts bother Stubbs.

“That’s a big part of it,” he said. “At the same time, it’s not like I’ve been striking out a couple times and ...

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Repoz Posted: September 22, 2011 at 03:50 AM | 13 comment(s)
  Beats: projections, reds, sabermetrics

MLB.com: Posada’s clutch hit delivers AL East title

The New York Yankees captured their 12th American League East championship in 16 years Wednesday at Yankee Stadium with a 4-2 win over the Tampa Bay Rays. Pinch-hitter Jorge Posada leveled the final blow in the eighth inning, a two-out, bases-loaded single that broke a 2-2 tie and put New York ahead for good.

The win gave the Yankees a sweep of a day-night doubleheader and, combined with Boston’s loss to Baltimore, mathematically eliminated the Red Sox from contention for first place in the ...

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NTNgod Posted: September 22, 2011 at 03:19 AM | 46 comment(s)
  Beats: game recaps, yankees

Joe Posnanski: Moneyball and the Ballad of Bill James

Da, dun…dun, dun, dun, dun. You walk into the post-movie party room. And you go watch the numbers geek

The movie did not suck, not at all; that’s the wrong word, and that’s a story for tomorrow. The story for today is how we even got here. It is a story about a man who is not really in the movie. No actor plays him. He’s mentioned in the movie here and there, but only for a few seconds. Still, without him, there is no Moneyball. There is no sabermetrics, at least not under that name. ...

Read More...
Repoz Posted: September 22, 2011 at 03:13 AM | 18 comment(s)
  Beats: books, history, media, sabermetrics

NL Wildcard race: September 21, 2011

ATL 88-68 [8-13 in SEPT]
STL 86-69 [14-5 in SEPT] (1.5 GB)
SFG 84-71 [12-6 in SEPT] (3.5 GB)

MLB.com: Lowe solid, but Braves stifled by Vazquez

[Javier] Vazquez extended a dominant run that extends back to June and made Derek Lowe pay for the few mistakes he made as the Marlins claimed a 3-0 win over the Braves at Sun Life Stadium on Wednesday night.

MLB.com: Freese’s big day helps Cards close on Braves
MLB.com: Giants 8, Dodgers 5

NTNgod Posted: September 22, 2011 at 02:40 AM | 34 comment(s)
  Beats: braves, cardinals, game recaps, giants

AL Wildcard race: September 21, 2011

BOS 88-68 [5-16 in SEPT]
TBR 85-70 [11-9 in SEPT] (2.5 GB)
LAA 85-70 [12-7 in SEPT] (2.5 GB)

MLB.com: Beckett stumbles

For the second consecutive evening, what was shaping up as a much-needed win turned into loss. Playing their final game at Fenway Park this season, the Sox suffered a 6-4 defeat to the last-place Orioles.

Almost stunningly, considering the juncture of the season that it is, Boston lost three out of four to Baltimore to cap a disappointing 3-7 homestand.

MLB.com: Rays miss ...

Read More...
NTNgod Posted: September 22, 2011 at 02:13 AM | 93 comment(s)
  Beats: angels, game recaps, rays, red sox

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