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Monday, December 14, 2015

Longtime Daily News sports writer Phil Pepe dead at 80

Phil Pepe, a longtime Daily News Yankee beat writer whose career covering New York sports spanned 50 years, died Sunday at the age of 80 at his home in Englewood, N.J., a family member told The News.

Pepe covered the Yankees for The News from 1968-1981 and wrote the lead game story for every World Series from 1969-81. In 1982, he succeeded Dick Young as The News’ sports columnist.

He left the paper in 1989 for WCBS radio, where he did morning sports — including his signature “Pep ...

Read More...
RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: December 14, 2015 at 10:51 AM | 11 comment(s)
  Beats: beat writers, media, obituaries, phil pepe, reporters, yankees

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 12-14-2015

New York Sun, December 14, 1915:

The feeling grows daily, at least among those on the outside, that the baseball war is far nearer a satisfactory solution than at any time since Gilmore launched his first attack upon the so-called trust.
...
[An anonymous source in Organized Baseball says] “Organized baseball and the Federal League are like two big fellows standing out in the street and hurling threats at each other. One tells the other how strong he is and how weak the other fellow is. But in ...

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Jefferson Manship (Dan Lee) Posted: December 14, 2015 at 08:26 AM | 30 comment(s)
  Beats: dugout, federal league, history

OTP - 2015 December 14: Donald Trump Should Buy The Yankees

This brings me to the reason the Yankees are also perfect for him: Owning the New York Yankees would give Trump a way to maintain his gargantuan media footprint, which not even the presidency can provide. Sure, he’s getting all the attention in the world now, but that ends if he loses.

Bitter Mouse, Space Tyrant Posted: December 14, 2015 at 07:38 AM | 1720 comment(s)
  Beats: centaurs, humor, politics

How the D-Backs Landed Grienke in 333 Minutes

Ken Kendrick, the Diamondbacks’ managing general partner, made the call at about noon MT on Friday, Dec. 4.

The D-backs were about 5½ hours away from reaching a six-year, $206.5 million agreement with free-agent right-hander Zack Greinke. But at that point, they had yet to even inform Greinke’s agent of their interest in the pitcher.

Lots of interesting stuff in here. It certainly makes Grienke look like a mercenary (he didn’t even talk to the team until after the offer was accepted), ...

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PreservedFish Posted: December 14, 2015 at 12:51 AM | 43 comment(s)
  Beats: arizona diamondbacks, dave stewart, zack greinke

Sunday, December 13, 2015

Nick Cafardo | Sunday Baseball Notes: Red Sox have rest of division’s attention - The Boston Globe

Nick Cafardo’s Sunday notes.

Jim Furtado Posted: December 13, 2015 at 05:07 PM | 8 comment(s)
  Beats: notes

Ken Rosenthal Notebook: Notion of interchangeable relievers doesn’t add up | FOX Sports

The lesson: Relievers matter. To every team.

No kidding.

Rosenthal is a great reporter. His analysis, like a lot a great reporters, doesn’t match his reporting skills. In this case, he’s conflating a bunch of different sabermetric findings into one big pile of nonsense.

Jim Furtado Posted: December 13, 2015 at 04:07 PM | 21 comment(s)
  Beats: notes

Carlos Beltran says 2016 could be his last MLB season

Beltran, who has played in 2,306 MLB games for six teams, said his performance in 2016 will dictate whether he hangs up his cleats.

“I don’t think there is any big decision I have to make — other than to play one more year or go home,” Beltran said, via the New York Post. “In my case, I am very happy with my career. … If I feel like I produce well to the point where I can make a good impact on a team, then I can play one more year. Or if I feel like I have (had) enough, I’ll go ...

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Dennis Eclairskey, closer Posted: December 13, 2015 at 11:36 AM | 9 comment(s)
  Beats: carlos beltran, hall of fame, new york yankees

Sunday Notes: Winter Meetings Managers, Terry Ryan, Blyleven, more | FanGraphs Baseball

David Laurila’s latest.

“We can be happy with what we did last year, but we shouldn’t be overjoyed, by any stretch,” said Ryan. “We have a long way to go. I would hope that last year was just us moving in the right direction.”

Which is, again, the question at hand. Along with voicing the word “hope,” Ryan indirectly admitted that the baseball gods smiled on the Twins this year. When I brought up the idea of some teams being better at outperforming their peripherals and winning ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: December 13, 2015 at 09:19 AM | 2 comment(s)
  Beats: notes

Jeff Luhnow defends drafting Mark Appel after trading him - Ultimate Astros

That has to sting.

Trading Mark Appel — the first overall draft pick in 2013 and the eighth overall draft pick in 2012 — in a package with four other pitchers for a premier young closer and a 17-year-old shortstop speaks for itself.

Appel hasn’t lived up to expectations. And everything that has transpired since the Astros drafted him indicates the organization made the wrong choice picking atop the 2013 draft.

The second pick that year, third baseman Kris Bryant of the Cubs, was the ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: December 13, 2015 at 09:05 AM | 18 comment(s)
  Beats: astros, kris bryant, mark appel

Cards must heal, regroup to battle Cubs : Sports

This owner gets it.

DeWitt said the goal is run differential, however it’s achieved.

“We’re trying to put together a team that has the biggest spread in runs scored vs. runs allowed, and that can come in all different forms,” the Cardinals’ chairman said. “With a player like Price you’re preventing runs. With an impact hitter you’re creating runs. It’s always a balance, and it’s always based on cost. What are you getting for the cost that you’re paying?”

Jim Furtado Posted: December 13, 2015 at 08:30 AM | 6 comment(s)
  Beats: cardinals

Detroit Tigers’ Bruce Rondon ejected following ugly brawl during winter league game | MLive.com

You don’t see too many brawls start on pick-off throws.

Jim Furtado Posted: December 13, 2015 at 08:27 AM | 5 comment(s)
  Beats: bruce rondon, tigers

Atlanta Braves should trade Freddie Freeman | MLB.com

At 26 Freeman is certainly too old to be part of a playoff contender in 2017 or 2018.

By comparison, the six years and $118.5 million remaining on Freeman’s deal looks like a bargain, and there are teams ready to win right now that could use a first baseman. There’s probably no better fit than the Astros, for example, who tentatively have Jon Singleton penciled in at the position and could offer a package including first baseman A.J. Reed, the 2015 Minor League Player of the Year who hit 34 ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: December 13, 2015 at 08:19 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: braves, freddie freeman

Former No. 1 pick Mark Appel saddened to be leaving Astros organization - Ultimate Astros

Mark Appel doesn’t pay off for the Astros.

“The only emotions and the only feelings toward the Astros is gratitude,” he said. “There’s so much thankfulness for what they’ve done for me, how they’ve supported me and how they handled everything and just supported me through my difficult season through my learning curve of acclimating to pro ball and really working through some difficulties and struggling.

“I’m not going to shy away from the difficulties that I’ve had, but the ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: December 13, 2015 at 08:03 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: astros, mark appel, phillies

Jason Heyward’s deal should open backlogged MLB outfield market

Beware the lessons of Crawford and Ellsbury.

With Heyward off the board, Justin Upton and Yoenis Cespedes are at the top of the outfield pecking order, with Alex Gordon a tick below. All three players bring some serious attributes to the table, along with a few warts.

“The biggest issue is the years and the money,’’ said an AL scout. “Each year that you add on at the end, you pretty much know it’s going to be a bad year.’‘

Jim Furtado Posted: December 13, 2015 at 07:53 AM | 20 comment(s)
  Beats: free agents, notes

Beltran: Yankees veterans will be all over Starlin Castro | New York Post

“Starlin Castro is a very athletic guy, a guy who can play a lot of different positions on the infield,” Beltran said on Thursday while making an appearance at Lord & Taylor in Midtown. “I believe he’s going to be an important key for us this year.

“With the veterans we have, we’ll be on top of him, helping him become a better ballplayer.”

Jim Furtado Posted: December 13, 2015 at 07:48 AM | 24 comment(s)
  Beats: carlos beltran, starlin castro, yankees

Saturday, December 12, 2015

Phillies acquire Charlie Morton from Pirates | phillies.com

The Pirates give up on Morton.

The Phillies acquired right-hander Charlie Morton from the Pirates in exchange for Minor League right-hander David Whitehead. Morton’s current contract runs through the 2016 season.

Jim Furtado Posted: December 12, 2015 at 11:06 AM | 30 comment(s)
  Beats: charlie morton, phillies, pirates, trade

Mariners reach agreement on two-year deal with veteran reliever Steve Cishek | The News Tribune

Sources say the club reached two-year agreement with veteran reliever Steve Cishek for $10 million, pending completion of a physical examination, An official announcement could come as early as Monday.

The deal was first reported by ESPN.com’s Jerry Crasnick. It includes $3.5 million in performance bonuses each year based on games finished.

Jim Furtado Posted: December 12, 2015 at 11:03 AM | 5 comment(s)
  Beats: mariners, steve cishek

Alex Rodriguez $252 million contract with Texas Rangers remains landmark on 15th anniversary

Rodriguez exercised his right to void the final three years of the contract after seven seasons, and agent Scott Boras revealed the news during the eighth inning of Game 4 of the 2007 World Series—just as the rival Red Sox were putting the finishing touches on a sweep of the Rockies. Yankees executive Hank Steinbrenner initially said there was “no chance” the team would re-sign Rodriguez, but six weeks later Rodriguez inked a new 10-year, $275 million deal with New York.

Jim Furtado Posted: December 12, 2015 at 08:32 AM | 18 comment(s)
  Beats: alex rodriguez, free agency

Daily Fantasy Sports Gets Victory In New York Court Battle

It’s a good thing the lottery isn’t gambling because New York would be in trouble.

Jim Furtado Posted: December 12, 2015 at 08:23 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: daily fantasy baseball, gambling, gaming

Simon: Mets’ Michael Cuddyer is retiring

Asked to comment on the announcement, Lassus said he was “impressed.” Russlan called the move “inspiring.”

Mchael Cuddyer is retiring from baseball. The decision surely comes as a surprise to Mets fans, as Cuddyer had one year remaining on the two-year, $21 million contract he signed last offseason. Cuddyer was set to make $12.5 million in 2016, and it’s unclear if there are any financial terms—a buyout, for example—for his retirement.

About an hour ago, the Mets’ transactions page listed ...

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JEe (Jason) Posted: December 12, 2015 at 04:00 AM | 181 comment(s)
  Beats: mets, michael cuddyer, retirement

Friday, December 11, 2015

Cards fans not happy Jason Heyward signed with the Cubs

Jason Heyward was traded to the Cardinals last offseason after spending the first five seasons of his career with the Braves, but it seems one year in St. Louis is all it took for the self-proclaimed “best fans in baseball” to grow quite attached to him. On Thursday the free agent Heyward signed with the Cardinals longtime rivals the Cubs, who also ended the Cardinals playoff run in the NLDS this October. Cardinals fans are very, very upset at the outfielder and are wishing ill towards him, ...

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spanx for the memories Posted: December 11, 2015 at 11:34 PM | 33 comment(s)
  Beats: chicago cubs, st louis cardinals

Mets’ Michael Cuddyer retiring, reports say

Mets outfielder Michael Cuddyer is retiring after 15 seasons in the majors, reports say.


Rumors of Cuddyer’s retirement began to circulate on Twitter after the 36-year-old was listed as retired on the Mets transaction page, though the status was later removed:

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: December 11, 2015 at 10:22 PM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: mets, michael cuddyer, retirements

Cubs president Epstein the architect behind MLB’s newest juggernaut | FOX Sports

I remember Theo Epstein wandering through the lobby at the 2012 general managers’ meetings in Indian Wells, Calif., looking uncomfortable, muttering something to the effect of, “I’m irrelevant.”

And I remember thinking, and maybe even replying, “Not for long.”

This was coming. We all knew it was coming. The Cubs were far from a quick fix, losing 101, 96 and 89 games in their first three seasons under Epstein as president of baseball operations and Jed Hoyer as GM. But the team ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: December 11, 2015 at 05:46 PM | 35 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs

IT’S THE CUBS’ WORLD NOW

Not to spoil the ending, but:

But the Cardinals aren’t doomed. They still have a solid lineup, a solid rotation and a solid bullpen, and you’d have to think they’ll add somebody. But for years, some fans have claimed, wrongly, that Cardinals-Cubs isn’t a real rivalry because the Cards have always been so much better than the Cubs. This, not coincidentally, is the same thing Yankees fans used to say about the Red Sox, before Epstein took over there as well. Now, some have said, in the wake of ...

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Moses Taylor, Optimist Posted: December 11, 2015 at 04:22 PM | 99 comment(s)
  Beats: best fans in baseball, cardinals, cubs, free agents, theo epstein

Autopsy: Ex-Braves pitcher Tommy Hanson died from cocaine, alcohol

RIP

Former Atlanta Braves pitcher Tommy Hanson died from delayed complications of cocaine and alcohol toxicity, according to autopsy results released Friday morning.

Hanson, 29, was at a friend’s Newnan-area home on Nov. 8 when he was found unresponsive in bed. That friend’s girlfriend, Clare Jordan, called 911 to report Hanson’s face was discolored and his hands were cold, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution previously reported. Jordan began chest compressions on the 6-foot-6 Hanson until ...

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RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: December 11, 2015 at 02:09 PM | 43 comment(s)
  Beats: drug abuse, obituaries, tommy hanson

Jose Canseco Thinks We Should Nuke Mars

Former Major League Baseball star José Canseco took to Twitter Thursday night to outline a surprisingly well-thought-out plan to terraform Mars by nuking the polar ice caps and throwing one of Saturn’s moons at it.

I still won’t give him a Follow.

eddieot Posted: December 11, 2015 at 11:44 AM | 57 comment(s)
  Beats: astrophysics, jose canseco

Peter Gammons: Winter Meetings Over, Holiday Shopping Continues - GammonsDaily.com

Good stuff from Gammons.

Just don’t try to apply analytical logic to all things baseball. Actually, there was logic to the Miami Marlins at least talking to more than a half-dozen teams about Jose Fernandez. “We’d be crazy not to listen,” said Marlins President David Samson.

So word would leak about Fernandez. Team X, Y or Z would be mentioned. Mike Hill would then offer the antiphonal response, “we are not shopping Jose Fernandez.”

One Dodger official said, “if we gave them what ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: December 11, 2015 at 11:07 AM | 7 comment(s)
  Beats: marlins

BBTN: Red Sox the biggest winner of offseason so far - ESPN Video

This video popped up on my Facebook feed so gave it a look. (Doesn’t ESPN know embedding videos drives more traffic?) I don’t watch ESPN very much anymore. This video is a perfect illustration why.

Do you know what winning the [Winter Meetings/off-season/whatever] means? Nothing. Absolutely nothing.

Jim Furtado Posted: December 11, 2015 at 11:01 AM | 6 comment(s)
  Beats: video, winter meetings

Bethancourt, a cautionary tale about prospects, dealt to Padres | Jeff Schultz blog

So, he only has issues with his work ethic, offense, and defense. Other than that, he’s a good prospect.

His problem? Defense. The Braves could put up with offensive issues. (Bethancourt hit .327 with Triple-A Gwinnett but only .205 in 48 games and 155 at-bats in the big leagues last year.) But with a young pitching staff and an offensively challenged roster, they couldn’t afford his struggles behind the plate. He had four errors and eight passed balls during his brief time with the Braves and ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: December 11, 2015 at 09:50 AM | 7 comment(s)
  Beats: braves, christian bethancourt, padres

Where is the outrage over Ken Giles trade?

There is a lot of discussion on Twitter about this article.

Jim Furtado Posted: December 11, 2015 at 09:43 AM | 49 comment(s)
  Beats: phillies

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