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Thursday, March 30, 2017
The Diamondbacks have thrown low at a greater rate than average every year since 2009. Over the past three years in particular, they’ve exceeded the average by six, five, and six percentage points. In the spring-training data that’s been recorded, they’re lower than the average by two percentage points. No other team has seen so great a shift, which is what makes this notable.
Last year, the Diamondbacks had the highest rate, out of 30 teams. This spring, the Diamondbacks have the ...
Posted: March 30, 2017 at 03:19 PM | 4 comment(s)
The most popular theory, unsurprisingly, posited that something had changed with the composition of the ball itself, an interesting thought given that the home run surge seemed to start somewhat suddenly in 2015. A study by FiveThirtyEight went so far as to have a laboratory fire balls out of a cannon to test them, but the results were inconclusive. And not only did Commissioner Rob Manfred tell ESPN that nothing had been changed with the ball, but a well-respected college physics professor ...
Posted: March 30, 2017 at 12:17 PM | 4 comment(s)
Most players head home or travel the world to unwind the moment the season ends. But Ichiro is back in the cages, practicing his swing, within days after the last game has been played.
“I’m telling you,” Turner said, “there’s nobody in the world that takes more swings over the course of a year than this guy. Guaranteed.”
As the iconic outfielder for the Marlins prepares to embark on his 25th season in professional baseball — the past 16 of them in the U.S. majors — Ichiro is ...
Posted: March 30, 2017 at 11:15 AM | 121 comment(s)
Ogden Standard, March 30, 1917:
[A famous bat maker says Benny Kauff] “buys more bats—has them made to order too—than all the rest of the club put together. He doesn’t order just one bat or maybe two, as others do. He orders from one dozen to two dozen at a clip. And he goes right down the line, trying one at a time, until he gets a good stick. He then sticks to that one until he has a bad slump in hitting. Then he destroys the whole lot and buys a new set.”
Benny Kauff was a strange guy. ...Read More...
“This was difficult and long, but we’re going to have baseball in Colorado for three more decades,” said Matt Sugar, spokesman for the district. “The greatest benefit will be that the taxpayer won’t have to pay a dime.”
Major League Baseball approved the deal Wednesday morning. Coors Field, the third-oldest stadium in the National League, will remain the Rockies’ home through 2047, when the stadium will turn 53 years old.
The Rockies get it right. Coors is a gem.
Posted: March 30, 2017 at 10:13 AM | 27 comment(s)
With three days left in spring training and their bullpen at capacity for Opening Day, the team granted Pelfrey an unconditional release today. He is owed $8 million after signing a two-year, $16-million deal before 2016.
It’s the second release of a veteran righty this week, after letting Mark Lowe go Sunday. Lowe was due $5.5 million after signing a two-year, $11-million contract before 2016.
Pelfrey, 33, went 4-10 with a 5.07 ERA and 1.73 WHIP last season. This spring, he posted a 7.94 ERA ...
Wednesday, March 29, 2017
A group of investors that wants to bring professional baseball to Montreal said the only thing they are waiting for is a call from MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred.
The Major League Baseball Commissioner had previously established requirements for returning a team to Montreal: a solid financial package, government support, a site and plans for a stadium.
All of these conditions have now been met by the group, a source told the Canadian Press.
Thus, the money is there, the support of two of ...
Billy Beane shouldn’t have taken those photos.
“Fantasy Life” is subtitled “Baseball and the American Dream,” and the idea behind it is striking ... and ambitious. In 2002, the A’s used a counterintuitive strategy, the now-famous Moneyball philosophy, to draft players. They didn’t concern themselves much with all those subjective things that had motivated scouts through the years—tools, body type, potential, etc.—and instead focused more on production and statistical analysis. Their most ...
According to a Wednesday morning report from Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports, New York Mets’ closer Jeurys Familia has finally learned his fate. After previously meeting with Major League Baseball Commissioner Rob Manfred on Monday, Familia has now been handed a 15-game suspension to start the 2017 regular season…..
The 27-year-old was originally charged with simple assault back in October following an arrest at his home. Police found Familia’s wife with both scratches on her chest and a ...
Harrisburg Telegraph, March 29, 1917:
When the Brooklyn Dodgers and the Boston Red Sox took the field at Red Elm Park, Memphis, yesterday, for the first road game of their spring championship series, the town folk of the Southern burg witnessed an innovation in baseball. Players of both teams wore on the sleeves of their uniforms identification numbers similar to those adopted by some of the leading universities for their bootball warriors.
Cool. I’m enjoying seeing the occasional reference to ...Read More...
Peas and carrots. Burt and Ernie. Beer and sportswriters. Baseball and bowling.
Baseball and bowling? Baseball and bowling!
[Mookie] Betts has competed in PBA-sanctioned bowling tournaments, making him the only two-sport star currently active on a major league roster. It might not be Bo Jackson tearing out of the backfield, but it’s not nothin’
When the Baseball Hall of Fame phoned Boudreau to tell him he’d been elected, his wife had to take the call—Lou was out bowling.
——— ...Read More...
It’s not clear that early baseball’s pioneers picked the right version of base ball. In his duties as official historian, Thorn has played in re-enactments of both the old New York game and the old Massachusetts game. “To be completely honest,” he said, a bit resignedly, “the Massachusetts game was a lot more fun.”
Posted: March 29, 2017 at 07:14 AM | 10 comment(s)
Grant Brisbee looks for answers.
Time between pitches is the primary villain. I tallied up all the pitches in both games that we’ll call inaction pitches — pitches that resulted in a ball, called strike, or swinging strike, but didn’t result in the end of an at-bat or the advancement of a runner. These are the pitches where the catcher caught the ball and threw it back to the pitcher, whose next step was to throw it back to the catcher. Foul balls didn’t count. The fourth ball of a plate ...
Posted: March 29, 2017 at 07:04 AM | 62 comment(s)
How to lose a job.
Park slugged a cut fastball from Tampa Bay righthander Austin Pruitt several rows deep into the seats in right-center at Hammond Field during the seventh inning, providing all the offense Minnesota would need to win for the first time since last Thursday. It was Park’s fifth home run of the spring, two more than any teammate, and an effective punctuation mark on a solid bounce-back spring.
It also drained any drama out of the battle to be the Twins’ designated hitter. ...
“We came into this spring saying we basically got two bullpen jobs. Due to some injuries and everything that always complicates it, now we got some tougher decisions to make,” Mets manager Terry Collins said. “We’re very lucky we have some depth on our club to fill in those holes.”
Posted: March 29, 2017 at 06:45 AM | 1 comment(s)
Matt Kemp’s getting out of the Hollywood scene and coming to Atlanta, where he can just focus on baseball, is a great thing for him. He’ll never get back to MVP caliber, but he still has one or two All-Star seasons in him…..Jonathan Schoop is a great defender with great range and a great arm. He’ll be a perennial All-Star…..I heard a lot about Jason Heyward’s adjusted approach this spring, lowering his hands, but I haven’t seen any results yet….. After Clayton Kershaw, Corey Kluber ...
Posted: March 29, 2017 at 12:47 AM | 23 comment(s)
Tuesday, March 28, 2017
In his final start before Opening Day, right-hander Zack Greinke continued to show diminished velocity, and he gave up some hard-hit balls in his four innings against the Mariners. Greinke allowed three runs on six hits. He did not register a strikeout or issue a walk. “I’m as ready as I’m going to be getting ready for the season at the moment,” Greinke said. “There weren’t any setbacks or anything throughout camp.” His fastball topped at 90.4 mph, and according to GameDay data he ...
A few days ago, this debate was over in our minds. Robert Gsellman had pitched his way into the No. 5 spot, returning WBC hero Seth Lugo was at worst a great bullpen piece and Zack Wheeler would be left behind in Florida for some fine-tuning after a roller-coaster two-year rehab from Tommy John surgery.
And then the past 24 hours happened, forcing us to rekindle the discussion all over again, exactly one week from Opening Day. Right after Steven Matz wound up in limbo because of ...Read More...
In a sport considered America’s national pastime, Lindor’s identifiable, relatable personality somehow makes him an anomaly. It also makes him an appealing star to brands—including New Balance, which lured Lindor from Under Armour with a multiyear endorsement in February. New Balance is trying to promote a fresh young backward hat-wearing star in Lindor, something Major League Baseball hasn’t had since the Ken Griffey Jr. era, when Nike created the Swingman brand for The Kid and released ...
Former White Sox catcher A.J. Pierzynski is becoming a full-time analyst with Fox Sports, the network is set to announce Tuesday.
Pierzynski, who contributed to Fox postseason baseball coverage in 2011, ’12, ’13 and ’15 before ending his 19-season major-league career last year, will work games as well as make regular appearances on FS1’s “MLB Whiparound.”
His first assignment will be Yankees vs. Rays on April 5, with Kenny Albert on play-by-play and Ken Rosenthal as reporter.
Gennett was put on waivers by the Brewers despite having a minor-league option available. His contract for the 2017 season was $2.525 million, which will be picked up by the Reds. The transaction opens up a spot on the Brewers’ 40-man major-league roster.
Gennett, a Cincinnati native, was drafted in the 16th round by the Brewers in 2009 and played four seasons in the majors with the ballclub. In 2016, he batted .263 (.317 OBP) with 14 homers and 56 RBI in 137 games.
Brewers general manager ...
Peter Bourjos, who appeared to be the leading candidate to open the season as the Sox’ center fielder, is headed to the Rays for cash considerations, a major-league source said.
An announcement will be made Tuesday.
The move opens the door for prospect Jacob May to begin the season in center. He’s hitting .339 with an .886 OPS while playing good defense.
Bourjos, 29, owns a lifetime .243/.300/.382 slash line. He batted .313 this spring after coming in as a non-roster invitee.
Washington Times, March 28, 1917:
President August Herrmann, of the Cincinnati Nationals, was notified last night that Heinie Groh, infielder, had left the local club at Memphis, Tenn., last night, and was now on a train to Cincinnati. Groh is said to have left a note for Manager Mathewson in which he stated he was “homesick.”
A quote from Groh in the Pittsburgh Press, March 28, 1917:
“Any married man can understand. I was homesick, dead lonesome, and simply had to come home. I feel better ...
“Is he the Jacoby Jones who played for the Ravens?”
Nope. He most certainly is not.
“Wonder why nobody’s talking about him?”
“Unless there’s another Jacoby Jones.”
Yep, that’s what it is.
“Nope, different JaCoby Jones, my bad.”
It happens, but probably shouldn’t.
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