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Saturday, January 24, 2015

Ernie Banks, Hopeful Mr. Cub, Dies at 83; His Mantra Was ‘Let’s Play 2’

Long after retiring, Banks recalled the sweltering midsummer’s day in 1969 when he bubbled over in a phrase that became his trademark.

“We were in first place, and all the reporters were already in the locker room when I arrived at Wrigley for a game with the Cardinals,” Banks told The Arizona Daily Star. “I walked in and said: ‘Boy, it’s a beautiful day. Let’s play two.’ They all thought I was crazy.”...

“Ernie was the eternal optimist,” the former Cubs second baseman ...

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Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: January 24, 2015 at 07:28 AM | 80 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs, general

Report: Brewers discussing trade for closer Jonathan Papelbon

Doug Melvin Develops Dementia;Local Fan Provides Diagnosis.

Harveys Wallbangers Posted: January 24, 2015 at 07:22 AM | 11 comment(s)
  Beats: brewers, papelbon, phillies

Tribune: Ernie Banks Dead at 83.

R.I.P. Ernie.

Slivers of Maranville descends into chaos (SdeB) Posted: January 24, 2015 at 02:37 AM | 3 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs, death

Keri - Wayward Marlins Take Aim at Sustained Success

How did the Marlins go from a frequently penny-pinching club that couldn’t find the money to sign future first-ballot Hall of Famer Miguel Cabrera to a team that just paid Giancarlo Stanton $325 million before making a slew of other offseason moves intended to turn Miami into a consistent contender? After 22 tumultuous years for the franchise, why do the Marlins now believe they are financially secure enough to pay their best player a third of a billion dollars and talented enough to compete ...

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boteman Posted: January 24, 2015 at 12:36 AM | 2 comment(s)
  Beats: grantland, jonah keri, marlins, saving money is what we do

Friday, January 23, 2015

Chicago Cubs—2015 ZiPS Projections

The most important event of the offseason!

Walt Davis Posted: January 23, 2015 at 10:30 PM | 11 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs, moses, theo epstein

Neyer: That time Bud Selig yelled at me

I let the machine pick up, and was more than a little bemused to hear this: Rob, this is Commissioner Selig. I read your column on ESPN and wanted to talk to you about it. When you get a chance, please call me at …”

Selig clearly had a print-out of my ESPN.com column at hand, probably with the offending passages highlighted by a flunky. And he spent the next half-hour or so simply going through the passages, and telling me exactly how I’d gotten each one so horribly wrong. A few times, I ...

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Win Big Stein's Money Posted: January 23, 2015 at 09:00 PM | 31 comment(s)
  Beats: black hand, bud selig, commissioner

2015 Prospect Watch | Top 10 First Baseman | MLB.com

Pittsburgh’s Josh Bell is #1.

Jim Furtado Posted: January 23, 2015 at 03:54 PM | 35 comment(s)
  Beats: prospects

Announcing finalists for 2015 SABR Analytics Conference Research Awards | SABR

Congrats to the nominees.

Jim Furtado Posted: January 23, 2015 at 03:52 PM | 4 comment(s)
  Beats: sabr

Ranking the commissioners: Selig’s No. 1 - SweetSpot Blog - ESPN

Is there a sexier topic?

Jim Furtado Posted: January 23, 2015 at 03:49 PM | 13 comment(s)
  Beats: commissioners

IN PURSUIT OF PENNANTS: #16 — Theo Epstein

The boy wonder.

Jim Furtado Posted: January 23, 2015 at 03:28 PM | 42 comment(s)
  Beats: general managers, history, theo epstein

ESPN: Ichiro Close To Deal With Marlins

Looks like another old guy is moving to Florida:

Free-agent outfielder Ichiro Suzuki is close to an agreement on a one-year contract with the Miami Marlins, a baseball source confirmed to ESPN.com Friday.. Although the two sides are still working through some final details before the deal becomes official, Suzuki is expected to earn a base salary of about $2 million in 2015.

The Marlins, who have one of baseball’s most talented young outfields with Giancarlo Stanton in right field, Marcell ...

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Updated thoughts on the Dan Duquette situation - Baltimore Sun

For a long time Dan Duquette was a pariah in baseball. Peter Angelos took a chance and brought him back. Although I understand Angelos’ desire to either keep Duquette in Baltimore or get significant return from the Blue Jays to let him go, I can’t see how forcing Duquette to stay in Baltimore will turn out to be a good outcome.

Jim Furtado Posted: January 23, 2015 at 09:26 AM | 15 comment(s)
  Beats: blue jays, dan duquette, orioles

Don’t expect Red Sox to acquire an ace for rotation - Sports - The Boston Globe

The Red Sox don’t feel a *need* to overspend on an ace right now.

“Look, starting pitchers who perform at the highest level and do so consistently and are relatively young and near their prime, those guys are hard guys to get and are valuable and cost a lot, whether it’s dollars or talent,” he said.

“We’re trying to put ourselves in a position where we have that caliber of pitching and hopefully we have some of it internally and maybe some of it still has to develop. There’s no ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: January 23, 2015 at 09:23 AM | 15 comment(s)
  Beats: red sox


Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 1-23-2015

Braves manager George Stallings, quoted in the January 23, 1915 edition of the Pittsburgh Press:

“I don’t like $2 bills, and I never laid a hand on one during the world’s series.

“Throughout the season, of course, I have to come in contact with some of these, but I would fold them over and tear the corners off just as soon as I got hold of one to kill the jinx. If any of the readers of this story come across a $2 bill with the corners trimmed off they will know that the $2 bill circulated ...

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Why Jung-Ho Kang Doesn’t Need to be a Brilliant Fielder | FanGraphs Baseball

A really good look at what the Pirates are doing on defense.

Jim Furtado Posted: January 23, 2015 at 06:51 AM | 3 comment(s)
  Beats: defense, jung-ho kang, pirates, sabermetrics, shifts

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Making the Case for a Strasburg/Betts Trade | FanGraphs Baseball

Neither side is comfortable with the deal which suggests that perhaps it’s a reasonably fair proposal? Really? David Cameron writes some enjoyable articles at times. I’m glad, though, that he’s not the GM of the Red Sox.

In talking with people in the game, neither side seems comfortable with the deal, which suggests that perhaps it’s a reasonably fair proposal, or at least in the ballpark of being reasonable on both sides. I know I’m higher on Betts than most, and if you place a very high ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: January 22, 2015 at 07:41 PM | 47 comment(s)
  Beats: mookie betts, nationals, red sox, stephen strasburg


Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 1-22-2015

Washington Times, January 22, 1915:

The Indianapolis Federals, world’s champions by default, probably will do their spring training at home. There is plenty of money in sight to sent them on a training trip such as a world’s championship team would be supposed to take, but the Hoosier Fed promoters think better results can be obtained in the latitude of Indianapolis in March and April.

Team owner Harry Ford Sinclair really did have plenty of money - shady oil deals can be extremely lucrative - ...

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Willie Horton Hears The Who (Dan Lee) Posted: January 22, 2015 at 09:41 AM | 6 comment(s)
  Beats: dugout, federal league, history

Max Scherzer says winning, not cash, landed him in D.C.

I call bullshit.

“It’s pretty easy. It’s one (reason). Winning,” he said. “This team is capable of winning, and winning a lot, when you look at the near-term and long-term. This is an organization you want to be a part of.”

Jim Furtado Posted: January 22, 2015 at 09:02 AM | 31 comment(s)
  Beats: free agents, max scherzer, nationals

IN PURSUIT OF PENNANTS—#17 — Dan Duquette

A current GM makes the list.

Jim Furtado Posted: January 22, 2015 at 08:45 AM | 61 comment(s)
  Beats: general managers, history

Are top prospects overvalued in baseball? - GammonsDaily.com

Publications such as Baseball America provide great information on a wealth of young players, but a significant number of those players covered never amount to anything of significance at the major league level. Consider this study from Matt Perez of Camden Depot which concluded that from 1990 through 2006, approximately 70 percent of Baseball America Top-100 prospects failed. Over at Royals Review, Scott McKinney conducted a similar study that came to a couple of conclusions: A) 70 percent of ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: January 22, 2015 at 08:04 AM | 60 comment(s)
  Beats: prospects

Bud Selig: The Greatest Commissioner in the History of Baseball | HardballTalk

Craig Calcaterra’s take on Bug Selig’s tenure as Commissioner.

Jim Furtado Posted: January 22, 2015 at 07:16 AM | 205 comment(s)
  Beats: bud selig, commissioner

Video: Tomas works out with D-backs | MLB.com

Hopefully tomorrow they will have video of him eating lunch.

Jim Furtado Posted: January 22, 2015 at 07:12 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: diamondbacks

Seven-year deals for pitchers ... big trouble - Jayson Stark Blog - ESPN

Scott Boras amazes me. How any team would give Max Scherzer a contract of this length shocks me. As Stark notes, the track record for such contracts is terrible.

Jim Furtado Posted: January 22, 2015 at 07:06 AM | 21 comment(s)
  Beats: max scherzer, nationals

The Yovani Gallardo gamble: Can the Texas Rangers get more from Yovani? | FOX Sports

Isn’t this the crux of the question? Without knowing “why” he made the change, all the rest doesn’t really tell us much.

It’s certainly possible that Gallardo made the switch because his four-seam fastball has eroded in quality to the point where he’s not capable of generating strikeouts anymore. And perhaps asking him to go back to that style of pitching would result in a disaster. But pitchers are tinkerers, and it’s also possible that Gallardo moved more toward the bottom of the zone because ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: January 22, 2015 at 06:58 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: rangers, yovani gallardo

Rockies notes: Rosario plans, Blackmon trade, Shields rumors

Wiln Rosario doesn’t look particularly athletic to me.

General manager Jeff Bridich tells me that the team is confident that catcher Wilin Rosario can make the transition from catcher to first base, and possibly even right field.

Rosario spent a full week at the team’s training complex in Scottsdale, Ariz., earlier this month, working at first base and the outfield. He will also spend time at the team’s academy in the Dominican Republic before reporting for spring training around Feb. 20.

...
Read More...
Jim Furtado Posted: January 22, 2015 at 06:56 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: rockies, wiln rosario

The Angels bullpen power outage

They only throw in the low 90’s. Pfft!

Jim Furtado Posted: January 22, 2015 at 06:54 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: angels

Guillermo Heredia Leaves Cuba - BaseballAmerica.com

The trickle is turning into a flood.

Jim Furtado Posted: January 22, 2015 at 06:53 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: cuban free agents, guillermo heredia

Marco Scutaro designated for assignment by San Francisco Giants - ESPN

Second baseman Marco Scutaro was designated for assignment by the San Francisco Giants on Wednesday as he recovers from back surgery.

The Giants said they plan to retain Scutaro and continue working with him through his rehabilitation following back surgery that could end his career. Dr. Michael Wang performed a fusion last month in Miami to alleviate the troublesome area at level L-2/L-3 of Scutaro’s spine. It will be four to six months before doctors determine whether Scutaro can play ...

Read More...
Jim Furtado Posted: January 22, 2015 at 06:52 AM | 13 comment(s)
  Beats: giants, marco scutaro

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