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Sunday, October 09, 2011

John Feinstein: Question for Red Sox fans

Last Chance: Behind the Scenes at the Final Eight…

As soon as the last day of the regular season concluded, I was convinced there was a book to be done that would focus strictly on that final day, arguably the most dramatic in regular season baseball history. I thought—think—that if you go back to the eight teams involved in those four deciding games, focusing on the four teams fighting for the playoffs but also including the other four teams and get players, managers, coaches, ...

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Repoz Posted: October 09, 2011 at 12:16 PM | 32 comment(s)
  Beats: books, media, products, red sox

D’Amato: Harvey’s Wallbangers vs. Beast Mode

The Journal Sentinel asked a panel of five baseball experts to compare and contrast “Harvey’s Wallbangers” of 1982 with the current team, headed to the second LCS in franchise history.

The panel consists of five former major-leaguers, all of whom played for the Brewers and still live in the Milwaukee area: Jerry Augustine, Sal Bando, Larry Hisle, Ken Sanders and Gorman Thomas.

...Offensively, the teams were built differently. The 2011 Brewers are heavily reliant on Braun and Fielder for their ...

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Repoz Posted: October 09, 2011 at 11:55 AM | 47 comment(s)
  Beats: brewers, history

Lakeview resident 99.9 percent sure he saw Theo Epstein at Starbucks near Wrigley

Of all the overpriced coffeehouses, in all the towns, in all the world, he walks into mine.

Pinzur said he was sitting near the window of the Starbucks on Racine and Wrightwood avenues, surfing the web on his laptop, when a Honda SUV pulled up and parked out front with the engine running. The driver stayed in the car, while Epstein, or his doppelganger, walked in wearing a ‘‘Diablos” baseball cap and stood in a short line.

Pinzur couldn’t believe his eyes. He had just finished reading a ...

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Repoz Posted: October 09, 2011 at 11:40 AM | 60 comment(s)
  Beats: business, cubs, red sox

Lupica: Yankees’ Randy Levine got it wrong calling season a failure: it was another typical year

But the most dramatic thing the Yankees do, other than sign more free-agent stars, is change pitching coaches once in a while. They make the playoffs with amazing consistency, year after year. Make boatloads of money. Then they make the Series about as often as a lot of other people in baseball, even as they talk about how special they are.

...“Oh, they destroy secondary pitching,” a manager from out of their division said Friday night. “They destroy fourth and fifth guys in the rotation and ...

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Repoz Posted: October 09, 2011 at 10:50 AM | 31 comment(s)
  Beats: business, media, projections, sabermetrics, yankees

Henning: Delmon Young a loss for Tigers, but not a devastating one

It’s not unfair to say Delmon Young is one of those baseball players who cuts both ways.

His lethal edge is as a hitter, of course, and that’s where he most helps a team.

He can hit .300 and slam home runs. He found a home with the Tigers as manager Jim Leyland’s prized No. 3 batter after he was traded to Detroit in August, and he has given the Tigers an immense lift, especially during last week’s playoff upset of the Yankees.

But he also is risky in left field, especially at Comerica Park, ...

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Repoz Posted: October 09, 2011 at 10:40 AM | 3 comment(s)
  Beats: projections, sabermetrics, tigers

Raissman: Inexperienced Terry Francona might boost Fox ratings, but move is insult to fans

Tito Premiere: Bringing the worlds of TV and baseball entertainment together on one intelligent, easy-to-use idiot box!

No matter how you thought Francona handled Saturday night’s Game 1, this is still a bad idea.

Think about it: The Foxies are putting Francona, a guy with exactly one game of baseball broadcasting experience, on the biggest of stages. And they’re actually expecting him to give baseball fans what they deserve, a compelling, competent contribution to the telecast.

Please. This ...

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Repoz Posted: October 09, 2011 at 03:34 AM | 35 comment(s)
  Beats: announcers, business, media, red sox, television

Zack Greinke calls out Chris Carpenter

If you think these comments are surprising, you don’t know Zack!

In a Milwaukee Brewers clubhouse filled with oversized personalities, the first shot at the rival St. Louis Cardinals going into Game 1 of the NL championship series came from a surprising source: Starting pitcher Zack Greinke, whose bout with social anxiety disorder typically make him one of the least likely players to pop off.

Speaking to reporters at Miller Park on Saturday, Greinke said the Brewers don’t like Cardinals ace ...

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Banta Posted: October 09, 2011 at 01:04 AM | 27 comment(s)
  Beats: brewers, cardinals

Saturday, October 08, 2011

Smith: Sabathia is worth big money, but adding years to the hefty lefty’s deal is a risk

Cheez Doodles

Serving Size 1 bag (21.0 g)
Calories - 110 ~ Calories from Fat 54%
Total Fat - 6.0g ~ 9%

And is the rotund Sabathia really worth investing in over the next five years? Six years? Seven years?

Let it be said right here that Sabathia is worth the money.

Just not the years!

Sabathia, a nice man by all accounts, can bloviate all he wants about how “there’s no reason to think I can’t” be an ace over that period of time, as he told reporters following the Yankees’ Game 5 loss on ...

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Repoz Posted: October 08, 2011 at 10:39 PM | 36 comment(s)
  Beats: business, yankees

Lucchino: ‘I Like Beer’ video was unapproved

This Is Boston, Not Amarillo!

Red Sox President and CEO Larry Lucchino, in a Saturday afternoon appearance on the Mustard & Johnson Show, said that the appearance by Red Sox starting pitchers in the video for Kevin Fowler’s song, “Hell, Yeah, I Like Beer,” had not received team or Major League Baseball permission to use either Fenway Park or Sox players in uniform.

In the video, Josh Beckett, Clay Buchholz, Jon Lester and Tim Wakefield all make brief cameos mouthing the lyrics to Fowler’s ...

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Repoz Posted: October 08, 2011 at 09:29 PM | 6 comment(s)
  Beats: business, media, red sox

Murray Chass: JEFF WILPON’S WILFULNESS [sic] HURTS METS, OTHERS

Talking to a baseball executive recently, I expressed the thought that David Samson, the president of the Florida Marlins, was probably the most disliked executive in baseball. I was thinking about Samson because I had just written about the Marlins’ questionable treatment of their rookie left fielder, Logan Morrison, in demoting him to the minors.

However, my executive friend disagreed. If not Samson, I asked, who? Jeff Wilpon, he said.

Wilpon is the New York Mets’ chief operating ...

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bobm Posted: October 08, 2011 at 07:13 PM | 9 comment(s)
  Beats: amateur, mets, miami, yankees

ESPN: Colletti assesses Dodgers personnel

2. Matt Kemp and Clayton Kershaw had MVP/Cy Young Award-type seasons. Do you plan on trying to extend either of their contracts this offseason?

Matt Kemp is a priority, and I plan on getting with his agent, Dave Stewart, and will work diligently in trying to work out a long-term deal with Matt. There is some urgency because he’ll be a free agent at the end of the 2012 season if they don’t sign him long term now. Clayton Kershaw’s situation is not as urgent because he’s only first-time ...

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Tripon Posted: October 08, 2011 at 04:17 PM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers

ESPN: Nolan Ryan thinks of Ventura fight

“I’m sure we’ll show it Opening Day,” Morgan said. “But it’s not something we do every game and we probably won’t do it every game of that series, either.”

In 1993, then 46-year-old Ryan hit then 26-year-old Ventura with a pitch. The White Sox third baseman charged the mound but Ryan put the younger player in a headlock and got in a number of shots to his head. It still makes highlight reels of all-time baseball brawls.

Morgan has also incorporated Ventura into the Texas Legends race, where ...

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Tripon Posted: October 08, 2011 at 04:14 PM | 16 comment(s)
  Beats: rangers, white sox

Melewski: Orioles: Job one for the new regime: Fix the minors

Just walking through batting practice in the rain @PalmerFacelift
Getting soaking ####### wet @MildBillHagy
Torturing my frickin’ heart @EatMeBrooks
By trying to forget @IHateCrabs

At a time when this organization is desperate to find talent, more players needed to play winter ball and they did not.

I have seen some of the minor leaguers post on Twitter this year they were happy once when batting practice was rained out. I won’t mention any names here, but someone needs to remind these kids ...

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Repoz Posted: October 08, 2011 at 03:37 PM | 21 comment(s)
  Beats: media, minor leagues, orioles, prospect reports, scouting

ALCS Game 1 Chatter

Tigers (Verlander) at Rangers (Wilson), 8:05, FOX

Gamingboy Posted: October 08, 2011 at 03:06 PM | 239 comment(s)
  Beats: general

Zeigler: A Gay Night Out at the Ballpark

In 2004 I organized a “gay night” with the New York Mets. It wasn’t easy. When I first approached them, they were very reticent; one team executive even wondered aloud in a meeting with me, “What do we do if a guy dressed as a woman tries to use the women’s restroom?” There was some twisting of arms back then, and I felt I had to let them know that “of course, if you don’t make this happen, I’ll have to call my friends at the New York Daily News and let them know.”

On Monday, Sept. 26, the New ...

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Repoz Posted: October 08, 2011 at 12:23 PM | 34 comment(s)
  Beats: business, history, media, mets

Hirsch: ‘Moneyball’ is Entertaining, and Not Accurate

Hirsch: Without a Clue.

All told, there is zero evidence to support one of Moneyball’s pillars: Beane’s unique ability to identify and draft undervalued prospective stars. Indeed, Beane’s weak track record drafting players clearly contributed to the team’s disastrous performance in 2011. Many low-budget teams fared better – not just this year but over the past several years.

In Lewis’s telling, the A’s use of advanced statistics also produced superior game management. The team ...

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Repoz Posted: October 08, 2011 at 10:57 AM | 21 comment(s)
  Beats: athletics, books, media, reviews, sabermetrics

Mark Teixeira’s struggles are becoming a big concern

Pufferfish will not last long outside their temperate zone!

All might have been forgotten in Game 5, as he came to bat against Joaquin Benoit with the bases loaded and the Yankees trailing by two runs in the seventh. Teixeira drew a walk, cutting the deficit to one, but the Yankees were unable to get the big hit they needed to complete the comeback.

“It’s tough; I felt really good about my at-bat,” Teixeira said. “It was 3-1 and I said, ‘I’m going to get a pitch to crush right here.’ You ...

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Repoz Posted: October 08, 2011 at 10:24 AM | 24 comment(s)
  Beats: sabermetrics, yankees

MGL: Worst Managing Ever?

Many of you know how much I hate TLR’s in-game managing.  I think he is atrocious and today he did not disappoint.  I said before the game started to my son and someone I know in the Cards front office that Tony would do something dumb just to show how “smart” he is.  It didn’t take long.  Even before the game, he inserted Nick Punto into the lineup in place of John Jay. Now Punto is probably the better defender than Schumaker at second, but Punto has no bat whatsoever.  My sim ...

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Forsch 10 From Navarone (Dayn) Posted: October 08, 2011 at 05:59 AM | 219 comment(s)
  Beats: baseball geeks, cardinals, phillies, sabermetrics

Philly.com: Ryan Howard: Achilles ‘felt like it was on fire’

The early prognosis on Ryan Howard is not good.

He’s being told that he might have a torn left Achilles’ tendon. An MRI is scheduled for later today.
...
“I was trying to run and I felt this pop and the whole thing went numb, like it was on fire,” he said. “It literally felt like I had a flat tire. I tried to get up and I just couldn’t go.”
...
“They think it might be torn, so we’ll see what happens; get the MRI to confirm it,” said Howard, who has had bursitis in the troubled ankle all ...

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NTNgod Posted: October 08, 2011 at 05:08 AM | 44 comment(s)
  Beats: phillies

W.P. Kinsella back in the game with Butterfly Winter

The Further Adventures of Slugger Kinsella…

So Butterfly Winter should be a very big deal in Canadian publishing. The author of Shoeless Joe is back. He’s writing about baseball. He’s including hallmark elements of magic realism.

...Nevertheless, Butterfly Winter should appeal to his core audience. It’s the story of twins Julio and Esteban, baseball players from the fictional Caribbean country of Courteguay who aim for the big leagues while being controlled by a mysterious man in a ...

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Repoz Posted: October 08, 2011 at 04:33 AM | 8 comment(s)
  Beats: books, history

Report: Andy MacPhail leaving Orioles

No joy division. He’s lost control.

Orioles president of baseball operations Andy MacPhail is moving on after running the front office of his childhood team for four-plus seasons.

A person familiar with the decision told The Associated Press about MacPhail’s departure. The person spoke Friday night on condition of anonymity because the Orioles hadn’t announced the move.

Baltimore went 69-93 during its 14th consecutive losing season, and MacPhail’s contract expires on Oct. 31.

...Andy ...

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Repoz Posted: October 08, 2011 at 04:14 AM | 25 comment(s)
  Beats: history, orioles

MLB.com: Carpenter’s gem sends Cardinals into NLCS

The Cardinals secured their first postseason series win since the 2006 World Series with a sensational 1-0 victory over the Phillies at Citizens Bank Park on Friday night. The win gave them a 3-2 National League Division Series triumph over the league’s best regular-season team, and moved them into the NL Championship Series for a delicious matchup with their Central Division rivals, the Brewers.

Rafael Furcal and Skip Schumaker teamed up to get a single run for the Redbirds before the game’s ...

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NTNgod Posted: October 08, 2011 at 03:20 AM | 77 comment(s)
  Beats: cardinals, game recaps, phillies

MLB.com: Royal Plush: Morgan’s hit lands Crew in NLCS

A hysteria-inducing 3-2 win over the D-backs in Game 5 clinched the NL Division Series, a win-or-go-home game decided in the bottom of the 10 inning on Nyjer Morgan’s single after John Axford’s first blown save since mid-April.

Carlos Gomez, at second after a single and a stolen base, raced home on Morgan’s hit to give Milwaukee’s its first postseason series win in 29 years.

The NL Championship Series opponent still awaited as the Brewers celebrated with 44,028 deliriously towel-waving fans, ...

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NTNgod Posted: October 08, 2011 at 01:00 AM | 72 comment(s)
  Beats: arizona, brewers, game recaps

Friday, October 07, 2011

Inside the Padres: Lackey

For starters, every Red Sox fan I know would celebrate if Lackey is sent to the Better Coast, more so if he’s deposited near Alcatraz or off the coast of Tijuana. The righty not only had a 6.41 ERA last season, he is still owed $45.75 million over the next three years, and if the Boston press is to be believed, Lackey was one of the clubhouse skunks who fouled the team’s chemistry.

Clearly Lackey must leave Boston, and clearly the best place for him to revive his career is San Diego.

Petco ...

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Tripon Posted: October 07, 2011 at 11:27 PM | 26 comment(s)
  Beats: padres, red sox

Steinberg: Bryce Harper is still cheering for the Yankees

Do the eye black gouge, you turkey neck!

Since the awful gnawing fear of D.C. baseball fans includes something about homegrown superstars fleeing to big markets, plus since rooting for the Yankees is like watching downhill skiing and rooting for the mountain, this didn’t go over super well among Nats fans.

But that was a year ago, and since then Harper has actually become teammates with real live Nationals, so maybe you’d think he would no longer actively cheer for another Major League ...

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Repoz Posted: October 07, 2011 at 10:43 PM | 9 comment(s)
  Beats: nationals, yankees

Key owner’s fortunes sink along with M’s

The McCourts aren’t the only owners in divorce court.

Word of his struggles comes at a time the Mariners had another losing season with declining attendance, while rivals increased spending. A significant payroll hike appears needed, but Mariners owners haven’t added any new money — through what is known as a capital call — in more than a decade.

Larson would be on the hook for just more than 30 percent of any capital call, but the team instead has cut payroll since 2008 without saying why ...

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The Ghost's Tryin' to Reason with Hurricane Season Posted: October 07, 2011 at 09:18 PM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: business, japan, mariners

Barra: Yankee Post-Mortem: A-Rod Not the Only Cause of Death

And Barra breaks it down to putrefractions too!

Mike Lupica wrote a whole column about how it is A-Rod’s fault, three days after writing a whole column about how if they lost, it would be A-Rod’s fault. You get the feeling that if he did not play and the Yankees lost, Lupica would switch to soccer or something.

On ESPN.com, Buster Olney tells us that “A-Rod Doesn’t Get The Job Done.” Well, there’s no argument there. He didn’t get the job done, though it might have been charitable if someone ...

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Repoz Posted: October 07, 2011 at 09:14 PM | 11 comment(s)
  Beats: history, sabermetrics, tigers, yankees

Squirrel traps set at Busch Stadium

The Busch Stadium “Rally Squirrel” may need to find a new home.

A squirrel ran onto the field during both games of the National League Division Series in St. Louis this week, including the game Wednesday when the animal ran across home plate as Cardinals second baseman Skip Schumaker was hitting…

“We just started seeing them,” said head groundskeeper Bill Findley, who is unsure whether it is just one squirrel or several. “The first sighting we saw was Monday, and we didn’t think anything of ...

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The District Attorney Posted: October 07, 2011 at 07:38 PM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: cardinals

Brisbee: The New Miami Marlins Logo Is No Longer The Worst Thing Ever

If Carnival and Las Vegas had a baby, this would be the placenta. If Charlton Heston ever lands on Planet of the Fish, this will be their version of the “It’s a Small World” ride. This is what would happen if Vikings attacked a Gloria Estefan concert by catapulting flamingos and marlins into the pyrotechnics display.

JE (Jason) Posted: October 07, 2011 at 03:21 PM | 90 comment(s)
  Beats: miami, reviews

NLDS GAME 5s GAME CHATTERS

D-Backs (Kennedy) vs. Brewers (Gallardo) at 5
Cardinals (Carpenter) vs. Phillies (Halladay) at 8:30

This should be fun.

Gamingboy Posted: October 07, 2011 at 01:21 PM | 1063 comment(s)
  Beats: general

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