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Wednesday, September 24, 2014

30 for 30 Shorts: ‘Fields of Fear’

Welcome back to our 30 for 30 documentary short series.

Mackey Sasser was an exceptional catcher for the New York Mets in the late 1980s and early ’90s. He could hit. He could manage a pitching staff. He could nail you trying to steal second base. But one day, there was something Sasser couldn’t do. He couldn’t throw the ball back to the pitcher. Suddenly the most basic act for a catcher was next to impossible for Sasser. What happened? This film explores the mental side of the game and ...

Read More...
RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: September 24, 2014 at 05:19 PM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: 30 for 30, film, mackey sasser, mental issues, mets

Good-bye, Mr. November: Taking Stock of Derek Jeter’s Divisive Legacy

Jeter ranks in the top five. He’s fourth among all shortstops according to FanGraphs’s Offensive Runs stat, and third per Baseball-Reference… Put on the spot, I’d probably rate Jeter somewhere in the middle, as the fifth-best overall shortstop of all time, behind Wagner, A-Rod, Ripken, and Vaughan.

If we’re ranking the greatest Yankees, there’s just no way we can justifiably put Jeter above the big four: Babe Ruth, Lou Gehrig, Mickey Mantle, and Joe DiMaggio, in that order… The ...

Read More...
Win Big Stein's Money Posted: September 24, 2014 at 02:31 PM | 182 comment(s)
  Beats: derek jeter, yankees

OT: Sad News to Share

[Batter’s Box’] own John Northey has recently lost his wife due to complications from childbirth. John now has four young children, including a newborn, to look after.

We don’t know if any of you have had to go through something like this. We don’t know if any of you are single parents. But John is looking for any advice you might have. The old saying is a problem shared is a problem halved so we hope some of you might be able to help.

mathesond Posted: September 24, 2014 at 01:49 PM | 46 comment(s)
  Beats: family, tragedy

Dodgers beat Giants after Bumgarner hits Puig and benches clear

Although the Giants came back against Zack Greinke in the third inning when Bumgarner hit a two-run homer, they got no closer in a 4-2 victory for the Dodgers, who lowered their magic number to 1 to clinch the NL West. Cy Young contender Clayton Kershaw can lead the Dodgers to their fifth division title in 11 seasons Wednesday in the series finale.
...
Puig hit the dirt when the pitch hit his foot, looked at Bumgarner, then the two exchanged words and the scrum was on. Puig had been hit by a ...

Read More...
Robert in Manhattan Beach Posted: September 24, 2014 at 01:43 PM | 30 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, fake tough guy, giants, madison bumgarner, yaisel puig

medium.com: The Outfield Assist: An Appreciation

Nowadays, the outfield assist is an afterthought on the diamond; a throwaway stat that’s never even been good enough for a baseball card. Few of the advanced or sabermetric stats give the assist much weight.

And for good reasons probably, but they’re always fun to watch. If a team can find a good enough center fielder to make up for the [probable] hitting deficit, they probably should for the purposes of providing an entertaining team to watch.

manchestermets Posted: September 24, 2014 at 10:56 AM | 31 comment(s)
  Beats: fielding

OMNICHATTER 9-24-2014

5 gamedays remain (including today). Today is the final Wednesday of the regular season.

CLINCHED TEAMS:
Angels (AL West Champions)
Orioles (AL East Champions)
Nationals (NL East Champions)
Dodgers (Clinched Playoff Spot)
Cardinals (Clinched Playoff Spot)
Pirates (Clinched Playoff Spot)

CHATTER UP!

Gamingboy Posted: September 24, 2014 at 08:58 AM | 100 comment(s)
  Beats: omnichatter

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 9-24-2014

Harrisburg Telegraph, September 24, 1914:

Manager Mack and his players spent an idle day [in Chicago], not being scheduled to play, but were entertained by Armour & Co.

After an inspection through the packing departments and stockyards, the world’s champions enjoyed a novel luncheon. The menu and special dishes were designed especially for the occasion.
...
While in the stockyards, “Home Run” Baker gave an exhibition of his strength by knocking out several steers with a heavy mallet.

“What did ...

Read More...
Dan Lee is some pumkins Posted: September 24, 2014 at 07:50 AM | 32 comment(s)
  Beats: dugout, history, home run baker

The Pirates’ Sabermetrics Road Show «

Another great piece by Ben Lindbergh at Grantland.

Jim Furtado Posted: September 24, 2014 at 06:59 AM | 17 comment(s)
  Beats: people, sabermetrics

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Brisbee: Adam Wainwright and the Jan Bradys of years past

Everyone’s [Clayton] Kershaw this and Kershaw that, as they should be. But what of [Adam] Wainwright? He’s the second fiddle. Again.

Which brings us to a search for the best second fiddles since 1980…

C - Javy Lopez…
1B - Kent Hrbek…
2B - Lou Whitaker…
SS - Alan Trammell…

I’ve written about this extensively here, but there’s no greater second fiddle than Trammell…

LF - Tim Raines…
CF - Kenny Lofton…
RF - Larry Walker…
SP - Mike Mussina…
RP - Trevor Hoffman

...Read More...

Romo, Dunston involved in shouting match at Dodger Stadium

Wild Card fever is tearing this family apart.

Multiple sources confirmed that right-hander Sergio Romo and coach Shawon Dunston exchanged heated words with raised voices, causing Bruce Bochy to emerge from his office to intervene. The air was cleared – as was the clubhouse – but Romo stretched with teammates a few minutes later and remained available to pitch in Monday night’s series opener, sources said.

Bochy praised Romo as recently as Friday in San Diego, saying the right-hander was ...

Read More...
RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: September 23, 2014 at 03:42 PM | 9 comment(s)
  Beats: fights, giants, sergio romo, shawon dunston

Vance Worley member of All-Surprise Team

These guys put the “talent” in “Freely Available Talent.”

Steve Pearce, Orioles
Pearce began the season with the Baltimore Orioles (they had originally claimed him off waivers from the New York Yankees in 2012) but only appeared in three games before they released him on April 27. The Toronto Blue Jays actually claimed Pearce, but he had the right to refuse the deal and instead become a free agent and apparently had an agreement to sign back with Baltimore. Two days later, with Chris ...

Read More...

MLB’s Metal Detector Policy is What ‘Terrorists Winning Looks Like’

Maybe if all fans were armed with guns, we’d be safer.

Security measures have been on the rise all across sports for years now, of course — who can forget the Yankees’ attempts to keep their fans safe by banning umbrellas and sunscreen? But last winter MLB significantly upped the ante, ordering every team to either install walkthrough metal detectors or place security staff with wands at all entrances by the start of the 2015 season. According to an MLB spokesperson, most teams are ...

Read More...
RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: September 23, 2014 at 10:54 AM | 123 comment(s)
  Beats: 911, metal detectors, security, terrorism

Old Cuban stars don’t begrudge ballplayers who defect - The Boston Globe

Speaking of power, Chavez laughed when he describing playing with Cuba’s Maximum Leader.

“Fidel was a good pitcher,” he said. “He threw the ball in different styles. A fastball, screwball, everything.

“It was funny because when we were younger, the Cuban national team sometimes played with Fidel. They’d mix the team up and play together. But it was difficult because if Fidel was losing the game, the game wasn’t ended.

“Fidel would say, ‘We have to continue playing.’ We ...

Read More...
Jim Furtado Posted: September 23, 2014 at 09:34 AM | 3 comment(s)
  Beats: cuban baseball, red sox

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 9-23-2014

New York Tribune, September 23, 1914:

The dauntless Cincinnati Reds go about their task of playing baseball with a grim determination worthy of a better cause. It took ten innings, brimful of action, for them to lose to the Brooklyn Superbas at Ebbets Field yesterday afternoon. The score was 5 to 4.

It was their eighteenth consecutive defeat, and their slogan is, “Twenty-six or bust.” To all appearances, the Reds are out to break the National League record of twenty-six straight defeats, ...

Read More...
Dan Lee is some pumkins Posted: September 23, 2014 at 08:01 AM | 9 comment(s)
  Beats: dugout, history

VIDEO: Jose Altuve leaves his feet to hit a high fastball

Astros second baseman Jose Altuve came into Monday leading all of baseball with 220 hits. No one else had more than 193, so he’s way ahead of the pack.

Altuve is also 5-foot-6, so sometimes getting to a high pitch can be a challenge. On Monday night, he literally left his feet trying to reach a high fastball.

Weird.  I assume this was part of a hit and run attempt, but since this was an Astros-Rangers game surely no one was watching so I guess we’ll never know for sure.

This is also ...

Read More...
Robert in Manhattan Beach Posted: September 23, 2014 at 05:26 AM | 6 comment(s)
  Beats: astros, jose altuve

Calcaterra: If Bobby Cox has anything to say about it, Fredi Gonzalez will manage the Braves for a long time

It’s possible Cox has the ulterior motive of boosting his own legacy as Braves manager by ensuring that an underwhelming successor stays in place for a long time. It worked for Casey Stengel. It’s also possible that Cox has been brainwashed, Manchurian Candidate-style, by the Nationals. Because all I know is that the Nats fans in my Twitter feed were thrilled to hear this.

I guess we’ll see how much juice Bobby has these days.  Braves fans, yea or nay on showing Fredi the door?

I vote ...

Read More...
Robert in Manhattan Beach Posted: September 23, 2014 at 05:18 AM | 21 comment(s)
  Beats: bobby cox, braves, please make it stop

OMNICHATTER 9-23-2014

6 gamedays remain (including today). Today is the final Tuesday of the regular season.

CLINCHED TEAMS:
Angels (AL West Champions)
Orioles (AL East Champions)
Nationals (NL East Champions)
Dodgers (Clinched Playoff Spot)
Cardinals (Clinched Playoff Spot)

CHATTER UP!

Gamingboy Posted: September 23, 2014 at 12:21 AM | 118 comment(s)
  Beats: omnichatter

Monday, September 22, 2014

Mets near extension with GM Alderson

The Daily News was first to report that the Mets plan to give Alderson a three-year extension on his current deal, which expires after this season. Alderson and manager Terry Collins, who is under a guaranteed contract next season, both came aboard before the 2011 campaign.

Alderson, 66, has guided the Mets to a 301-341 record over his first four seasons in the front office. Best known for his work with the A’s of the 1980s and ‘90s, Alderson has reduced the Mets’ payroll from more than $140 ...

Read More...
Russlan is fond of Dillon Gee Posted: September 22, 2014 at 07:52 PM | 50 comment(s)
  Beats: mets

MLB creates pace of game committee

Next they’ll need a committee to examine the pace of committees designed to study the pace of the game.

Baseball games are too slow and take too long. They’re still enjoyable and we’re all going to watch them, but they could be sped up and improved. The fact that even Major League Baseball commissioner (for now) Bud Selig has recognized this is the greatest proof that we know. Selig, in what will likely be one of his last major acts as commissioner, has set up a committee to figure out ...

Read More...

ESPN (Crasnick): Free-agent missteps led to demise of Atlanta’s Frank Wren

Wheels within wheels, my friend…

Speculation around Wren’s future had been swirling since Aug. 23, when Braves CEO Terry McGuirk told Jeff Schultz of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution that “everyone is accountable” for the team’s performance. If McGuirk was looking to provide stability or inspiration, the message failed to resonate. The Braves had just won seven of eight games when McGuirk gave his state of the team address. Since then, they’ve gone 8-18 and averaged a feeble 2.31 ...

Read More...
Depressoteric feels Royally blue these days Posted: September 22, 2014 at 04:04 PM | 15 comment(s)
  Beats: atlanta braves

Jeter Denies Gift Basket Rumors

BTF needs a new meme.

The 2011 rumor claimed that any female lucky enough to end up staying the night at Jeter’s Trump Tower apartment would be greeted the following morning with a gift basket stuffed with sports memorabilia and a ride home.

Jeter roundly denied this to New York.

“Like I’m giving [women] signed baseballs and pictures of myself on the way out! Who comes up with a story like that?” Jeter said. “It said the reason people found out was because I gave the same girl ...

Read More...
eddieot Posted: September 22, 2014 at 03:49 PM | 38 comment(s)
  Beats: derek jeter,, el capitan, gift baskets, new york yankees

Gene Collier: No shame in staying home for Pirates

The very best baseball summer in the history of PNC Park ended pretty much the way it began here Sunday, with a tense 1-0 victory against a divisional opponent, the first on an extra-inning home run by Neil Walker way back on March 31, the last when Andrew McCutchen caught Aramis Ramirez’s lazy fly to push the Milwaukee Brewers to the absolute edge of further relevance.

In between, the 2014 Pittsburgh Pirates packed 49 additional home victories of every conceivable dimension: wins in 16 ...

Read More...

Rays missing out shows how tough it is to consistently reach playoffs

The majority of the 2014 squad won 92 games in 2013, won the AL wild card before getting bounced by the Boston Red Sox in the AL Division Series.

The Red Sox won the World Series. Now they are last in the AL East. The Rays are fourth in the five-team division. The teams meet this week in Boston for what most everyone expected to be a huge late-September series between the defending World Series champions and the team ready to take them down.

That won’t happen, which illustrates just how ...

Read More...
Coot Veal and Cot Deal taste like Old Bay Posted: September 22, 2014 at 01:12 PM | 19 comment(s)
  Beats: rays

Chad | Have a heart! Root for the Royals

Kansas City is sometimes called “Paris of the Plains.” Shouldn’t these down-home, Midwestern Parisians be rewarded with a Royals postseason trip in 2014?

Before we chronicle the Royals’ miserable past and promising present, let’s celebrate Kansas City itself.

Any town that produces Calvin Trillin and Big Joe Turner is all right by Couch Slouch. It is the birthplace of Robert Altman, Edward Asner, Burt Bacharach, Don Cheadle, Jean Harlow — and Casey Stengel. Walt Disney and Walter ...

Read More...
Coot Veal and Cot Deal taste like Old Bay Posted: September 22, 2014 at 12:57 PM | 38 comment(s)
  Beats: jean harlow, royals

Svrluga: Baseball’s Relentless Grind - The Glue

“I tell people that if someone came in here naked, they could go out and play baseball fully equipped outside in front of a crowd,” Wallace said.

Jake Peavy was showering and unavailable for comment.

boteman Posted: September 22, 2014 at 12:34 PM | 10 comment(s)
  Beats: clubhouse, nationals, travel

MLB: Braves fire GM Frank Wren; John Hart to take over interim position

Nobody is surprised.

ATLANTA—Nearing the end of their most disappointing season in more than two decades, the Braves have decided to begin altering the organization’s culture by relieving general manager Frank Wren of his duties. Wren learned of his termination on Monday morning.

John Hart, former GM of the Indians and Rangers who is one of Braves president John Schuerholz’s closest friends, was named interim GM, but he has made it known that he enjoys his work as a MLB Network analyst ...

Read More...
Depressoteric feels Royally blue these days Posted: September 22, 2014 at 11:15 AM | 149 comment(s)
  Beats: atlanta braves, obituaries

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 9-22-2014

Milwaukee Sentinel, September 22, 1914:

George Stallings, manager of the Braves, is no neutral. During the series between the Braves and the Cardinals Charlie Schmidt, Boston’s big first baseman, made a fearfully stupid play. Stallings, fuming on the bench, blurted out: “I ought to fine that man a hundred dollars.”

Nobody made any reply, but after a few seconds of silence the manager thought better of his remark.

“I was wrong,” he confessed. “I ought not to fine him, but I ought to fine myself ...

Read More...
Dan Lee is some pumkins Posted: September 22, 2014 at 08:23 AM | 14 comment(s)
  Beats: butch schmidt, dugout, george stallings, history

OMNICHATTER 9-22-2014

Only 7 game days remain (including today)! This is the last Monday of the regular season!


CLINCHED TEAMS:
Angels (AL West Champions)
Orioles (AL East Champions)
Nationals (NL East Champions)
Dodgers (Clinched Playoff Spot)
Cardinals (Clinched Playoff Spot)

CHATTER UP!

Gamingboy Posted: September 22, 2014 at 12:03 AM | 127 comment(s)
  Beats: omnichatter

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Young fan throws back Jeter foul

Coot Veal and Cot Deal taste like Old Bay Posted: September 21, 2014 at 08:02 PM | 9 comment(s)
  Beats: wise beyond their years, yankees

Calcaterra | The Padres are going to keep Bud Black as their manager for 2015

The Padres are not, historically speaking, quick to change managers. Bruce Bochy preceded Black and held the job for 12 years. Black is finishing his eighth year as Padres manager. None of Black’s years have ended with a playoff appearance, however, and he’s 613-676 at the helm. Though, to be fair the Padres have very rarely given him a lot to work with.

Coot Veal and Cot Deal taste like Old Bay Posted: September 21, 2014 at 07:54 PM | 10 comment(s)
  Beats: bud black, padres

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