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Tuesday, August 16, 2011

ESPN: Szymborski: Who’s next to 600 home runs? (INSIDER)

At long last, Jim Thome hit his 600th career home run and became the eighth player in major league history to reach that milestone. Given the increase in home runs in the past 20 years, the 400-homer club has become almost old news, and hitting 500 homers is no longer an automatic ticket to Cooperstown.

But 600 homers is still a pretty rare feat—you can count the club members without running out of fingers—and many of the best players of this generation are likely to fall well short.

Who ...

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Dan Szymborski Posted: August 16, 2011 at 01:43 AM | 40 comment(s)
  Beats: projections

ESPN: Jim Thome hits 600th home run

Minnesota slugger Jim Thome has become the eighth player to hit 600 home runs, connecting twice against the Detroit Tigers on Monday night.

The 40-year-old Thome hit a two-run homer in the sixth inning for No. 599, then came to bat again in the seventh. He hit a 2-1 pitch from Daniel Schlereth over the fence in left field, then circled the bases as the Detroit fans gave him a standing ovation.

Thome became the second-fastest hitter to reach the milestone, hitting his 600th homer in at-bat No. ...

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NTNgod Posted: August 16, 2011 at 01:14 AM | 30 comment(s)
  Beats: indians, phillies, twins, white sox

Yahoo: Brewers turn triple play in second against Dodgers

The more unusual 4-6-3-2 variant…

The Milwaukee Brewers turned the sixth triple play in franchise history against the Los Angeles Dodgers in the second inning on Monday night.

Matt Kemp walked and Juan Rivera singled to put runners on first and second. James Loney hit a grounder that second baseman Josh Wilson snagged moving to his right. Wilson flipped the ball out of his glove to shortstop Yuniesky Betancourt and Betancourt threw to Prince Fielder at first for the second out.

Fielder went ...

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NTNgod Posted: August 16, 2011 at 01:01 AM | 27 comment(s)
  Beats: brewers, dodgers

Monday, August 15, 2011

ESPN: New Baseball Tonight Studio to Debut

..New Baseball..126 NFL PLAYERS ARRESTED..Tonight..NBA’S STERN REVEALS FLAMING RIM TAT..Studio..CHRIS BERMAN RELEASES BLUEGRASS CD..to Debut..

ESPN will debut a new Baseball Tonight studio – the network’s first studio space devoted exclusively to baseball throughout the entire Major League Baseball season – tonight, Monday, Aug. 15, at 10 p.m. ET. The new state-of-the-art Baseball Tonight studio is the largest ESPN sport-specific studio, with approximately 5,000 square feet including an ...

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Repoz Posted: August 15, 2011 at 09:15 PM | 27 comment(s)
  Beats: announcers, business, fantasy baseball, media, television

Tim Marchman: The Classical

I’ll let Tim explain this venture…“So along with some really smart guys and good writers like Bethlehem Shoals from FreeDarko, Eric Nusbaum from Pitchers and Poets and Tom Scharpling from The Best Show on WFMU among others, I’m starting up a website for which I’m presently raising some funds.”

Plus, David Roth, Lang Whitaker and others!

The Classical is a daily web publication. We’ve written about sports and other things for the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, Sports Illustrated, ...

Read More...
Repoz Posted: August 15, 2011 at 08:45 PM | 15 comment(s)
  Beats: business, media, site news, special topics

WSJ: MLB Postpones Vote to Approve Sale of Astros

The commissioner’s office said Monday “the standard due diligence that must be completed before any transaction of this magnitude can close remains ongoing.”

Translation: Bud doesn’t yet have the votes to approve Mr. Crane’s petition to join the brotherhood of MLB owners.

Mike Emeigh Posted: August 15, 2011 at 08:45 PM | 9 comment(s)
  Beats: astros, business

Twins trade Delmon Young to Detroit

Fun fact: Delmon Young had more MVP votes last year than Buster Posey, Matt Holliday, Shin Soo Choo, Alex Roriguez, or Jim Thome.

The Twins have traded Delmon Young to Detroit for minor-league left-handed pitcher Cole Nelson and a player to be named later.

Nelson, who was selected by the Tigers in the 10th round of the 2010 draft, pitched for Class A Lakeland in the Florida State league this season. The 6-foot-7 lefty is 5-11 with a 4.87 ERA and has been assigned to Class A Fort Myers.

In ...

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RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: August 15, 2011 at 06:43 PM | 65 comment(s)
  Beats: tigers, twins

Hauls of Shame: Where’s “Black Betsy”?  Is “Shoeless Joe’s Bat Still in Greenville?

....the claims that it was used in Jackson’s days playing for Cleveland and Chicago will have to be examined more closely as the result of a report written by Carter ”Scoop” Latimer for the cover-story of The Sporting News in 1942.  In his report, Latimer describes how a small group of local kids appeared at Jackson’s home to present him with a gift:

“The treasured gift, which the kiddies bought with pennies saved was a replica of “Black Betsy,” the ebony-colored, hand-turned ...

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Pop Snyder Posted: August 15, 2011 at 06:20 PM | 3 comment(s)
  Beats: history, memorabilia

Baseball Transitions from ‘Eye Test’ to Sabermetrics in Latin America

In Latin America, the perception, as president of the Puerto Rico Professional Baseball League Sadi Antonmattei admits to be true, is that scouting and the evaluation of players is done primarily by the old-fashioned “eye test.”

However, he believes that’s about to change.

“Change is not always very welcomed at first, but those who don’t evolve with this technology might be making a big strategic mistake in the long run,” Antonmattei said. “It is too early to tell how ...

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Repoz Posted: August 15, 2011 at 05:59 PM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: international, sabermetrics

ESPN: Simon: Peter Bourjous has them covered

BIS employees do video tracking for every play in every major league game, providing reports and stats to more than half the major league teams. The company has multiple methods of compiling defensive data.

One involves the plotting of points at which plays are made on a computerized baseball diamond, with the ability to denote for an outfielder whether the batted ball was a line drive, fly ball or something in-between (they call them “fliners”), and for how long the ball was in the air ...

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Dan Szymborski Posted: August 15, 2011 at 05:50 PM | 4 comment(s)
  Beats: angels, sabermetrics

Barry Zito sprains ankle during rehab start

San Francisco Giants left-hander Barry Zito sprained his right ankle during a rehabilitation start for Triple-A Fresno and will be sidelined indefinitely.

On the bright side, his name is in the credits of The Franchise for providing some music, so that’s nice.

Gamingboy Posted: August 15, 2011 at 04:37 PM | 9 comment(s)
  Beats: giants

THT: Jaffe: Baseball’s Randy Moss All-Stars

Chris splains…“It tries to come up with a team full of guys whose careers seemed like terrible wastes of talent despite rather impressive career numbers.”

Third base: Dick Allen

In terms of popular perception, Allen might be closest to Moss. He had undeniably talent, and his career numbers were impressive enough to garner him some Hall of Fame support (despite the fact that his off-field reputation didn’t help him with the voters).

Maybe if Allen had been healthier, he’d be a better ...

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Repoz Posted: August 15, 2011 at 03:32 PM | 144 comment(s)
  Beats: history, sabermetrics

Athletics Nation: elcroata: PxP: Out of Control

So, when the hitters connected on the meatball and put it in play, they had a batting average of .368, significantly higher than the 2010 baseline of .299. However when they reached for the slider that was either too low or too far outside they did significantly worse.

So, by taking a mix of all the pitchers, hitters, defenses, parks, counts and whatnot, we are hoping to isolate the effect the pitch quality itself has on the BABIP. What we get is the observed level of talent, and we are ...

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tshipman Posted: August 15, 2011 at 03:06 PM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: fantasy baseball, projections, sabermetrics

Jays-M’s could make killing in Vancouver

They should be playing 150 miles to the north – at BC Place in Vancouver, B.C.
Just think of the buzz it would generate: Jays rookie Brett Lawrie, a 21-year-old from the Vancouver suburb of Langley, is a sensation in the North. He has an OPS of 1.104 after nine big-league games, and Canadians would surely turn out in droves to see their native son.

“It would be huge,” said Bart Given, the former Blue Jays assistant general manager who currently lives in Vancouver.

Of course, that’s ...

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Gamingboy Posted: August 15, 2011 at 02:56 PM | 89 comment(s)
  Beats: blue jays, international, mariners

Kilgore: Jayson Werth has much to prove in season’s final months

The gods of baseball are cruel! In time, all men shall learn to live without them!

The black-and-white truths of the first 119 games, he knows, have told a different story. Even after a recent surge, Werth has a 97 OPS+, a metric that combines a player’s ability to slug and reach base on a scale that uses 100 as league average. He has a .330 on-base percentage and a .383 slugging percentage.

His batting average, now .225, has been the measure most commonly held against Werth.

“It’s an ...

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Repoz Posted: August 15, 2011 at 02:49 PM | 8 comment(s)
  Beats: history, media, nationals, phillies, projections, sabermetrics

Stan Isaacs: The Philadelphia Story: Glory, Glory, Glory!

Ribby awakening quotes from some punchy old-timers…including Larry Merchant!

Charley Scott, 97, a onetime Penn soccer coach, said, “I guess I didn’t pay much attention to the Phils because of the Athletics. The father of a girl friend of mine was a lawyer who had some of the great Athletic players as clients and I met some of them when I visited a few times.”

Dr. Pete Hyman, 94, another Haverford resident, an internist at Temple U.niversity Hospital before he retired, said he saw a game ...

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Repoz Posted: August 15, 2011 at 12:56 PM | 7 comment(s)
  Beats: history, phillies, sabermetrics

Jorge Posada loves Yankees fans, but would consider playing for a new team

Play Ball! (elsewhere)

Jorge Posada wearing anything but Yankees pinstripes? That would have seemed impossible a few months ago.

Not anymore.

Posada, a career-long Yankee who is celebrating his 20th year with the organization, said he would consider playing for another team once his contract is up at the end of this season.

“It could [happen],” Posada told The Post yesterday. “I don’t know what’s going to happen after this year. But we’ll see.”

...Nevertheless, Posada would consider ...

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Repoz Posted: August 15, 2011 at 12:28 PM | 47 comment(s)
  Beats: yankees

Newhouse: C’mon, Selig, let’s tour Oakland

“Cars don’t behave. They are behaved upon.”

Dear Bud Selig:...

And so I’m contacting you now with a generous offer. I’m inviting you as my guest to take a personal tour of Oakland, with me as your chauffeur.

It won’t be a limo, just a Toyota Camry. But all I’m asking is that you give me a day, or a half-day, to show you around the Oakland you’ve yet to see.

...Now, Buddy boy, let me show you Oakland’s friendly neighborhoods, its waterfront, its lakes, all its new restaurants and its lovely ...

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Repoz Posted: August 15, 2011 at 12:10 PM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: athletics, business, giants, history, media

N.Y. Times: For Branca, an Asterisk of a Different Kind

[Ralph] Branca folded his bare arms and looked out onto the golf course. I asked if he had mentioned to anyone the reason for our lunch — the second revelation I had recently told him. He said he had told his wife, Ann.

“I said,” recalled Branca, “‘do you know you married a Jew?’”

Branca’s mother, Kati, immigrated to the United States in 1901 from Sandorf, Hungary. (The town is now Prievaly, Slovakia.) Her maiden name was Berger. I had included this fact in the book I ...

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bobm Posted: August 15, 2011 at 11:23 AM | 15 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, history

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 8-15-2011

Toledo News-Bee, August 15, 1911:

Outfielder Ten Million of the Victoria Northwestern league team has been sold to the Cleveland club.  He will report at the end of the Northwestern league season.

I haven’t been able to find much information on Ten Million, but I’m pretty sure he’s ten times better than One Million.

Dan Lee is some pumkins Posted: August 15, 2011 at 08:32 AM | 18 comment(s)
  Beats: dugout, history

PIT Tribune-Review: Kovacevic - Patience with [Pedro] Alvarez will pay off

In the summer-long category, though, I’ll put watching Pedro Alvarez atop my torment list.

The Pirates’ best power-hitting prospect in a decade has become utterly cringe-worthy, whether a pitch or a grounder is headed his way. His average is down to .197 after again going hitless in the Pirates’ 2-1 loss Sunday, and his three home runs and 15 RBI seem frozen in time next to those 66-and-counting strikeouts.

Since returning to the Pirates on July 25, he is batting .176 and astoundingly has hit ...

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NTNgod Posted: August 15, 2011 at 04:21 AM | 29 comment(s)
  Beats: pirates

Denver Post: Rockies’ Sunday losing streak reaches MLB-record 17 games

In their one and only appearance on ESPN, the Rockies became the first modern team to lose 17 consecutive games on Sunday, falling 6-2 to the St. Louis Cardinals at Busch Stadium.

The Phillies had cornered the market on Sunday misery, their 1927, 1928 and 1960 teams all dropping 16 straight. The indignity now belongs solely to Colorado.
...
Looking nervous and hesitant, starter Esmil Rogers nibbled at the strike zone, hardly resembling the pitcher who beat the Reds last week. Pressure found ...

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NTNgod Posted: August 15, 2011 at 04:04 AM | 31 comment(s)
  Beats: cardinals, game recaps, rockies

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Rany on the Royals: Of Moose and Men

“What you want of a dead moose, anyways?”

“I could pet it with my thumb while we walked along.”

I decided to make a list of every third baseman who, in the year he debuted in the major leagues, batted 175 or more times with an OBP of under .250 and a slugging average of under .250.

Mike Moustakas is the first name on that list. He is also the last name on that list. No third baseman has ever debuted as poorly as Moustakas has in so many at-bats.

So I decided to expand the list to look at ...

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The District Attorney Posted: August 14, 2011 at 11:58 PM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: royals

Arizona Republic: Arizona Diamondbacks starter Jason Marquis likely out for season

Trade deadline acquisition Jason Marquis’ time with the Diamondbacks already appears to have come to an end. The Diamondbacks right-hander left Sunday’s start against the Mets in the fourth inning with a fractured right fibula, an injury that likely will end his season.

Marquis was struck on the right leg by an Angel Pagan line drive in the third inning. He remained in the game and finished the inning, then pitched to three batters before going down in pain in the fourth.

He lost control of a ...

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NTNgod Posted: August 14, 2011 at 11:00 PM | 26 comment(s)
  Beats: arizona

MLB.com: Uggla’s streak ends as Braves fall

Braves pitchers had 18 strikeouts, 0 walks, and lose.

But three unearned runs weren’t enough as Carlos Pena hit a two-run homer off Eric O’Flaherty in the seventh inning to cap a meltdown by the Atlanta bullpen and give Chicago a 6-5 victory. In the process, Braves second baseman Dan Uggla’s hitting streak was snapped at 33 games.
....
With Jair Jurrjens and Tommy Hanson sidelined, and Derek Lowe scuffling, the Braves have needed rookie starter Brandon Beachy to pitch well, and he has done ...

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NTNgod Posted: August 14, 2011 at 09:48 PM | 37 comment(s)
  Beats: braves, cubs, game recaps

Forman: An R.B.I. Leader, but Not an Elite Hitter

If we combine hitting, defense and base running, WAR (wins above replacement) rated him as the seventh-best player on the Phillies this year. ...

Howard benefits significantly from the quality of the hitters ahead of him in the batting order. Chase Utley, Shane Victorino and, to a lesser extent, Jimmy Rollins and Placido Polanco all have strong on-base percentages. Through Wednesday, the Phillies’ 1-3 hitters reached base 547 times, the eighth most in the majors. But as a group, they ranked ...

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bobm Posted: August 14, 2011 at 07:32 PM | 28 comment(s)
  Beats: phillies, red sox

Press-Telegram: GETTING INTO NED’S HEAD: Q&A with Dodgers GM Colletti

Instead of losing a sleeve of balls on a golf course or taking a long mud bath during a spa day, Dodgers general manager Ned Colletti admits that he has recently allowed himself a guilty pleasure.

About once a month, he’s been going to dinner with “five or six guys who are well-versed in life,” he says. “We talk about whatever comes up. If we’re there three hours, I hope the baseball conversation is only 15 minutes.”

The other night, the group included Tom Sherak, the president of the Academy ...

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Tripon Posted: August 14, 2011 at 07:24 PM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, media

Local legend subject of one cool baseball card

Lowell Palmer: Or as we used to watergatingly call him “Lowell Wackier, Jr.”

image

Palmer has one of the coolest baseball cards of all time. In 1970, he refused to remove his sunglasses for his Topps baseball card photo shoot. He refused again in 1971 and his major league claim to fame was etched in baseball history.

Palmer’s Wikipedia entry reads, “Palmer was renowned for wearing dark sunglasses while pitching and his baseball cards are considered classics.”

Palmer, however, did not have a ...

Read More...
Repoz Posted: August 14, 2011 at 05:12 PM | 7 comment(s)
  Beats: cardinals, history, indians, memorabilia, phillies

Mariano Rivera’s problem is the Yankees’ closer is always being compared to himself, not his peers

Bill Madden writes:

Rivera has five blown saves this season, which equals his total for last year and is the second-most failures in his career.

Mariano Rivera - Top Blown Save Seasons

9 - 1997
7 - 2001
6 - 2003
5 - 1998
5 - 2000
5 - 2010
5 - 2011

Thanks to Carlos on FB.

Repoz Posted: August 14, 2011 at 04:49 PM | 3 comment(s)
  Beats: fantasy baseball, history, media, yankees

Flip Flop Fly Ball: Field of Erroneous Scorekeeping

Field of Dreams opened in cinemas on April 21, 1989.
During the film, as you know, Kevin Costner’s character goes to Fenway Park with James Earl Jones’ character to watch the Red Sox play the Athletics.

We can assume that the film was shot in 1988.

There is a brief shot of Kevin Costner (or a hand pretending to be Kevin Costner) keeping score.
The camera shows the following, mostly-incomplete names on the scorecard:
EED
RRETT
BOGGS
ANS
WELL

I checked Baseball-Reference.com to see which game ...

Read More...
bobm Posted: August 14, 2011 at 04:28 PM | 4 comment(s)
  Beats: athletics, red sox

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