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Jim Furtado
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Wednesday, August 10, 2011

There’s no cryogenics in baseball! Icy technique seen strengthening wooden bats

Ted Williams/Richard Kuklinski…oh, the choices.

Over the past few decades, companies have shifted how they manufacture bats, resulting in an uptick in the number of splintered wooden bats in professional games. According to a published report, two entrepreneurs are working to fortify wooden bats as they endeavor to reduce the number of breaks that occur during Major League Baseball games.

...Nevertheless, two MLB fans, Jim Cortez and Greg Kendra, have developed a method they affirm can help ...

Repoz Posted: August 10, 2011 at 10:10 PM | 9 comment(s)
  Beats: history, projections, sabermetrics, special topics

Royals Release Kyle Davies

Time ran out Wednesday morning on the Royals’ willingness to wait for right-hander Kyle Davies to develop into a reliable starting pitcher.

The Royals requested unconditional release waivers on Davies, 27, in order to clear space on their 40-man roster for the arrival of catcher Salvador Perez from Class AAA Omaha.

The elusive Robert Denby Posted: August 10, 2011 at 06:35 PM | 7 comment(s)
  Beats: history, royals

Stephen A. Smith: Enough! It’s time for Jorge Posada to go

Cheez Doodles Puffed-up-ery!

Now it’s up to Posada to remind them of how it should be done.

It’s up to Posada to point out all the maneuvers that have been used against him and to elocute the classless way this organization has acted toward him at times.

It’s up to Posada, the catcher with 270 career homers and lifetime .273 batting average, to remind the Yankees that he wasn’t just a spectator during those five World Series championships.

It’s Posada who needs to talk about his love for ...

Repoz Posted: August 10, 2011 at 06:10 PM | 44 comment(s)
  Beats: fantasy baseball, yankees

OC Register - Miller: Happy Garret Richards Day. Here’s What to Expect.

I’m submitting this for two reasons.  First, it is, in fact, Garret Richards day, and it’s newsworthy, especially seeing as how his debut comes against the vaunted Yankees.  Second, I’m not sure everyone is familiar with Sam Miller, who can be really fun to read, provided you don’t mind reading about the Angels.

• Garrett Richards knows that people hate slow baseball games, so he throws only as many pitches as necessary. Over his past 10 games, he has averaged a touch more than seven innings ...

Shredder Posted: August 10, 2011 at 06:04 PM | 6 comment(s)
  Beats: angels, prospect reports, yankees

Signs of trouble in Toronto

“Not too easy, is it?”

From the visitors bullpen at Rogers Centre in Toronto, an American League pitcher screamed at Blue Jays right fielder Jose Bautista as he took his position late in a game in the spring of 2010.

“It’s not too [f———] easy to hit home runs when you don’t know what’s coming!”
“We know what you’re doing,” he said, referring to the man in white, according to the player and two witnesses. “If you do it again, I’m going to hit you in the [f———] head.”

Personally I don’t buy ...

Paul D(uda) Posted: August 10, 2011 at 05:37 PM | 55 comment(s)
  Beats: blue jays

Baseball’s Toronto Blue Jays Under Suspicion For Stealing Signs

This makes Aaron Hill look even crappier.

Not too easy, is it?”

From the visitors bullpen at Rogers Centre in Toronto, an American League pitcher screamed at Blue Jays right fielder Jose Bautista as he took his position late in a game in the spring of 2010.

“It’s not too [f———] easy to hit home runs when you don’t know what’s coming!”

The enraged player and his teammates could hardly believe what they had seen in the previous inning. As they sat on the perch above the right-field bullpen at ...

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: August 10, 2011 at 05:37 PM | 56 comment(s)
  Beats: blue jays, rumors

ESPN article claiming Jays are stealing signs

The Cardinals have levied the same accusations against the Brewers.

Harveys Wallbangers Posted: August 10, 2011 at 05:37 PM | 2 comment(s)
  Beats: general

ESPN: Meyers: The folly of Angels’ Mike Scioscia (INSIDER)

It’s hard to overstate just how poor a hitter Mathis truly is. For his career, he has a .197 batting average in 1,299 plate appearances. According to Baseball Reference, there have been just three others players in history to amass 1,300 PAs while batting below the Mendoza Line, and two of them, Mike Ryan and Ray Oyler spent a much of their careers in the 1960s, arguably the most pitcher-friendly era in baseball history. (Even the guy for whom the Mendoza Line was named actually had a career ...

Dan Szymborski Posted: August 10, 2011 at 04:48 PM | 45 comment(s)
  Beats: angels

OT: NBA Monthly Thread VII - August 2011

I estimate only 10-12 Primates care about the NBA, but with our own thread, we won’t detract from what this site is really about: whatever the hell is going on in that birther thread which I’m afraid to click on, and whether or not ballpark proposals are a great idea or the greatest idea.

(Link is to last month’s thread.)

Jim Furtado Posted: August 10, 2011 at 04:14 PM | 179 comment(s)
  Beats: general

Draft pick Houchins unlikely to sign with Nats

Shortstop Zach Houchins, a 15th-round selection in the 2011 First-Year Player Draft, said Monday it is unlikely that he will sign a professional contract with the Nationals.

Houchins said he hasn’t heard from the club since June after it was discovered that he made what were deemed racist and homophobic remarks on his Twitter page.

Teams have until 12:01 a.m. ET on Tuesday, Aug. 16, to come to terms with their draftees, meaning official notification has to be in the Commissioner’s Office when ...

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: August 10, 2011 at 03:30 PM | 32 comment(s)
  Beats: media, minor leagues, nationals

Talking Chop:  Braves release Proctor, promote Vizcaino

Scott Proctor has been released, although the humane thing to do would be to take him out back, shoot him like a broken horse, and then shave that damned porn ‘stache off of his corpse.

Arodys Vizcaino called up to take his spot in the bullpen.  Randall Delgado is the lone member of the “Four Horsemen” to have not been called up in some role to date.

HBT: Two writers robbed at gunpoint at Great American’s Barry Bloom and Thomas Harding were robbed at 1:30 a.m. this morning about 15 feet outside Gate 3 at Great American Ball Park in Cincinnati, Hal McCoy of the Dayton Daily News reports.

“I thought the guy was a fan as he approached, but he said, ‘We can do this the easy way or the hard way,’” said Bloom. “I started to walk away and he began yelling at me and pulled this big gun that looked like a Glock. He said, ‘Put your wallets on the ground.’ We did and he picked ...

Repoz Posted: August 10, 2011 at 01:21 PM | 39 comment(s)
  Beats: media, reds

Rushin: Watching a baseball game has become a marathon

_ _ _ (Where Angels Fear to Tread).

But chances are your leisure time is finite, and so is the patience of your family, and you might be forced to choose between watching a four-hour Sox-Yankees game or doing something that doesn’t take nearly as long, like writing She Loves You (as Lennon and McCartney did in three hours) or performing a kidney transplant (which can be done in two to three hours).

Yes, you and I are unlikely to save a life—or create an enduring work of art—in lieu of ...

Repoz Posted: August 10, 2011 at 12:58 PM | 38 comment(s)
  Beats: business, media, red sox, television, yankees

Petti: Sabermetrics isn’t a tool, it’s a mindset

Whoa, thought that read “Sabermetrician is a tool”...and that they were dredging the statistically-polluted East River for an old quote from John Sterling about Rob Neyer!

It isn’t often that I disagree with Tango, but I would (albeit slightly) with this statement:

  Sabermetrics is a process, a tool.  It is not an ideology.  Sabermetrics would say that a player’s RBI adds no new information, once you know all these other things.  Sabermetrics would say that a pitcher’s wins, losses and ...

Repoz Posted: August 10, 2011 at 12:13 PM | 28 comment(s)
  Beats: baseball geeks, sabermetrics, site news, special topics

Cincinnati: Official Opening Day holiday looks doomed

“I wanna be classified
I wanna be a statistic
I wanna be a clone
I want a suburban home”

A proposal to declare Opening Day a ceremonial holiday in Cincinnati - an idea supporters felt was a sure hit in the birthplace of professional baseball - appears unlikely to qualify for the November ballot.

With thousands of petition signatures having been thrown out, the chance of Cincinnatians voting this fall on the initiative looks about as promising as the 10-games-out-and-dropping-fast Reds making ...

Repoz Posted: August 10, 2011 at 11:20 AM | 10 comment(s)
  Beats: projections, reds, special topics

L.A. Times: Former Angels Scouting Director Eddie Bane Goes Public

The Angels had four of the first 42 picks [in 2009]. Mike Trout, the outfielder considered one of the two best prospects in baseball, was one. Tyler Skaggs, the pitcher who was the key to the Dan Haren trade, was another. So was [Garrett] Richards.

Eddie Bane, the scouting director at the time, was fired last winter by General Manager Tony Reagins. The Angels did not publicly explain the decision.

Bane said he does not accept the reason Reagins gave him — that the Angels’ recent drafts ...

still hunting for a halo-red october (in Delphi) Posted: August 10, 2011 at 11:01 AM | 11 comment(s)
  Beats: angels, business, scouting

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 8-10-2011

Youngstown Vindicator, August 10, 1911:

A fine deal was put through by [Youngstown] Manager Phillips Wednesday when he sold Scott, Sheer and Tate to Washington on an optional agreement with the understanding that if they make good the Steelmen are to receive a neat figure for the fast trio.

And elsewhere on the same page...

East Liverpool, Aug. 10.—Hugh Tate, first baseman for the Youngstown ball team playing here Wednesday afternoon, had his right wrist shattered by being struck with a fast ...

Jefferson Manship (Dan Lee) Posted: August 10, 2011 at 09:33 AM | 34 comment(s)
  Beats: dugout, history

Milwaukee J-S blog: Freak accident shelves Narveson

Another addition to the “Dumb Injury Hall of Fame”.

A freak accident in the clubhouse during their 5-3 win over the St. Louis Cardinals on Tuesday night has knocked one the Milwaukee Brewers’ starters out of his next turn in the rotation.

Left-hander Chris Narveson was trying to fix some laces on his glove with a pair of scissors when his hand somehow slipped. He sliced the tip of his left thumb deeply enough that he had to have eight stitches, and left Busch Stadium with his digit bandaged ...

NTNgod Posted: August 10, 2011 at 05:02 AM | 3 comment(s)
  Beats: brewers, cardinals Wang stifles Cubs for first win since 2009

After two shaky starts, Chien-Ming Wang showed on Tuesday night that he still has life in his right arm as the Nationals beat the Cubs, 3-1, at Wrigley Field.

How good was Wang on this day? He looked like the pitcher who won a combined 38 games for the Yankees in 2006 and ‘07. In fact, he had a no-hitter after five innings, broken up in the sixth, when pinch-hitter Tony Campana led off the inning with an infield single.
It was Wang’s first victory since June 28, 2009, against the Mets.

...
NTNgod Posted: August 10, 2011 at 04:25 AM | 26 comment(s)
  Beats: game recaps, nationals

NYT: Angels Tag Rivera and Granderson, Handing Yanks Third Straight Loss

“It’s the old Jeff Nelson move that never works!” (pops fistful of unopened Waldorf’s Sweet Relish packets)

But the result was just as shocking, as Bobby Abreu, the former Yankee who left as a free agent after the 2008 season, ripped his second home run of the night, a towering two-run shot to right field with two outs in the ninth, and the Los Angeles Angels won, 6-4, to send the Yankees to their third consecutive defeat.

The two home runs for Abreu, who also homered in the Angels four-run ...

Repoz Posted: August 10, 2011 at 04:22 AM | 37 comment(s)
  Beats: angels, game recaps, yankees



The other is the movie “Moneyball,” which finds Hill co-starring with Brad Pitt.  The film tells the true story of the Oakland A’s baseball franchise and their unusual system of using statistics to build winning teams while spending very little money.

Although the film is set in the world of baseball, Hill told us that you don’t have to be a fan of America’s pastime to understand or enjoy it.

Repoz Posted: August 10, 2011 at 03:49 AM | 2 comment(s)
  Beats: athletics, media, projections, sabermetrics

Tuesday, August 09, 2011

TSN: Clint Hurdle confident Pirates can take punch and bounce back

and still end up looking like Pittsburgh Fritzie Zivic.

Pittsburgh probably won’t make the playoffs considering their current standing, but how they play over these final seven or so weeks will tell a lot about their clubhouse and could go a long way into next season’s outlook. Finish strong and it’s plenty of momentum for 2012. Finish meek and a deflated feeling is inevitable.

“This is an opportunity to have a great learning experience for all of us, especially for our team as we go ...

Repoz Posted: August 09, 2011 at 10:57 PM | 15 comment(s)
  Beats: pirates

Montreal Gazette: Diamond dream alive in Quebec City

Keri est toujours sur le qui-vive.

Playing host to ALS Quebec’s sixth annual Celebrity Softball Game on Saturday, Municipal Stadium in Quebec City - home to the independent Can-Am League’s Quebec Capitales - couldn’t have been a more ideal setting. On hand to lend their support for the cause were former Expos Tim Raines, Pedro Martinez, Moises Alou and Denis Boucher. Former Canadiens captain Vincent Damphousse, a spokesperson for ALS Quebec, also suited up for the game.

This marked the first ...

Greg Franklin Posted: August 09, 2011 at 08:58 PM | 7 comment(s)
  Beats: expos, history, memorabilia

Rob Neyer: Don’t Worry: We Know Michael Young Is Really Good At Baseball

Jimmy Collins Was Truly Chump Change, points out the Aaron Gleeman, Brandon McCarthy, C.J. Nitkowski, Michael Young 2,000 hits ain’t 3,000 to-do.

Still, that simple numbers-based post brought a cascade of tweets from Brandon McCarthy, a one-time teammate of Young’s. Here they are, all put together for your reading convenience:

  I read A LOT of nonsense on a daily basis, but this tops the charts today.

  “Young is the 234th player to reach 2,000 hits, which isn’t exactly exclusive ...

Repoz Posted: August 09, 2011 at 08:34 PM | 30 comment(s)
  Beats: history, media, rangers, sabermetrics

Mitch Williams: Why was Victorino singled out for scuffle?

Shape it, shape it, Wild Thing…

Back to my original question: Why was Victorino the only player suspended? Whiteside and Ramirez were fined; Ramirez instigated the entire thing, and Whiteside made the first physical contact—yet they were fined, not suspended. I don’t understand how they weren’t both suspended as well or why Victorino simply wasn’t fined, as they were.

It sends a bad message—if you are a pitcher, making bad pitches, and the opposing team is hitting those pitches hard, it is OK ...

Repoz Posted: August 09, 2011 at 08:22 PM | 10 comment(s)
  Beats: announcers, giants, media, phillies, television

Sheinin: Adam Dunn can’t escape from vicious, season-long slump

There’s nowhere to hide in baseball. Your batting average is displayed in three-foot-high digits on the scoreboard before each at-bat. The scouts behind home plate hone in on your every weakness. Each flailing swing is just a few clicks of the Internet away for anyone to see.

When you’re Adam Dunn of the Chicago White Sox, and you’re hitting .165 with 142 strikeouts on August 9, and you’re in the first year of a four-year $56 million contract, you are past the point of being unable to ...

Repoz Posted: August 09, 2011 at 05:57 PM | 24 comment(s)
  Beats: projections, white sox

In Which Two Canadians Fight About A Sport That Is Not Hockey

Chris Jones and Jonah Keri debate the intersection of advanced statistics and sportwriting and whether there is tension between the two.

The question is, can we marry great storytelling with analysis? Yes, I think we can. You talk to people, get to know them, get them to open up about their hopes and dreams and fears. You get them to reveal an injury no one else knew they had, or a messy divorce they kept quiet from the public, or a personal tragedy that threw their world off its axis. There ...

Fourth True Outcome Posted: August 09, 2011 at 05:18 PM | 4 comment(s)
  Beats: baseball geeks, giants, media, sabermetrics

Neyer: Red Sox Rich In MVP Candidates

And good luck to ya, Woody Rich!


Which is how the Red Sox list looks like this:

Pedroia: 6.7 fWAR
Ellsbury: 5.9
Gonzalez: 5.1

...Pedroia doesn’t have Gonzalez’s power, or for that matter his batting average.

Pedroia doesn’t have Ellsbury’s power, either. Not this season, anyway.

What Pedroia does have is almost Ellsbury’s power, plus a better stolen-base percentage, other baserunning skills, and a fantastic glove at second base.

The numbers really aren’t precise enough to tell us which ...

Repoz Posted: August 09, 2011 at 02:20 PM | 23 comment(s)
  Beats: awards, projections, red sox, sabermetrics

Barra: C.C. Sabathia: Just How Big a Problem?

Getting past the vast…some good Ralph Kiner-speak.

Kiner also loves to shoot holes in perceived baseball wisdom. “These stolen base hot shots,” he remarked, referring to the fastest runners on both the Braves and Mets. “If they’re so good at stealing bases, just let them steal. I never figured out why it was considered smart for a batter to swing at a pitch he didn’t like in order to ‘protect’ the runner? If the runner is good enough to steal, why does he have to be ‘protected’? They always ...

Repoz Posted: August 09, 2011 at 01:50 PM | 70 comment(s)
  Beats: announcers, media, mets, sabermetrics, television

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