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Thursday, February 26, 2015

Braves insist it’s a ‘remodeling,’ not a ‘rebuilding’

You don’t?

The reality is the Braves didn’t believe they could be a World Series team if they kept the team intact. To be honest, they were actually thrilled the Nationals and Miami Marlins got even better during the winter, reinforcing their belief they were not going to contend for the division title.

At the same time, you don’t bring in veterans A.J. Pierznyski, Jason Grilli, John Buck, Kelly Johnson, Jim Johnson, Alberto Callaspo, Gomes and Markakis, and expect to go out every night and ...

Read More...
Jim Furtado Posted: February 26, 2015 at 08:37 AM | 31 comment(s)
  Beats: braves

Hedges shrugs off rankings, focused on Majors | padres.com

Austin Hedges is the most overrated prospect in baseball.

“I don’t blame them. If you look at my numbers last season, they weren’t great,” said Hedges, who hit .225 last season with Double-A San Antonio. “Those guys weren’t in the Texas League every day and didn’t see what wasn’t on paper, which was a lot of quality at-bats and hard-contact outs.”

Jim Furtado Posted: February 26, 2015 at 08:14 AM | 3 comment(s)
  Beats: austin hedges, padres, prospects

O’Brien turning heads at D-backs camp | dbacks.com

He may have big-time power. His defense has big-time problems, however.

“I think he’s on a different level,” Gosewisch said. “Sometimes there’s guys in BP where you see them hit a few home runs and you might yourself try to hit some home runs to match them, but he’s on another level and it’s fun to watch. You can hear [it], [the ball] just sounds different coming off his bat. There’s a few guys in the game that have that sound, and he’s one of them. He’s got some kind of power.”

...Read More...
Jim Furtado Posted: February 26, 2015 at 08:10 AM | 19 comment(s)
  Beats: diamondbacks, pete o'brien

Yankees confident they can avoid paying A-Rod milestone bonuses - CBSSports.com

This situation can get even uglier than it is already.

Yankees people are said to be confident A-Rod wouldn’t prevail in the expected skirmish over the $30 million, not only because of their belief that his drug missteps have rendered his marketing value nil, but also because of the phrasing in the agreement that requires that the Yankees “designate” the historic home runs as milestones. Perhaps even more important, the potential to call him to the stand under oath should he challenge their ...

Read More...
Jim Furtado Posted: February 26, 2015 at 08:06 AM | 55 comment(s)
  Beats: alex rodriguez, yankees

Slowly, Phillies enter analytics era

This article is all over the place. David, you missed a decade and a half. The sabermetrics/scouting dichotomy is so 2000.

Jim Furtado Posted: February 26, 2015 at 06:26 AM | 8 comment(s)
  Beats: phillies

Hal Steinbrenner: ‘Cheap’ shots at Yankees are way off base | New York Post

Why is Hal Steinbrenner so cheap?

Jim Furtado Posted: February 26, 2015 at 05:51 AM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: hal steinbrenner, yankees

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Yankees pitcher CC Sabathia reports to Spring Training at 305lbs.

He’s in the best-worst shape of his life!

New York Yankees starting pitcher CC Sabathia has reported to spring training at 305lbs, about 30lbs heavier than he was last year, according to a New York Daily News report.

But Sabathia, who is coming off back-to-back underwhelming seasons, said the weight gain was intentional and believes it could help restore some of the lost velocity off his fastball.

The 34-year-old lefthander has logged a 4.87 ERA in 257 innings pitched since the start of ...

Read More...

Lucchino: No ‘palace intrigue to report’ - Boston Red Sox Blog - ESPN Boston

Right. Sure. Nothing to see here.

Red Sox chairman Tom Werner, echoing the comments of principal owner John W. Henry the day before, also said that Lucchino’s place in the pecking order remains the same as always, calling it a “mistake” that a masthead on the team’s website listed Gordon above Lucchino. The team’s media guide will list the top three names as unchanged, even though FSG is the parent company of the Red Sox and Gordon is the second-biggest shareholder in the team, behind ...

Read More...
Jim Furtado Posted: February 25, 2015 at 09:42 PM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: red sox

An Interview With Voros McCracken: DIPS Pioneer — Uncle Charlie’s WheelhouseUCW

An interview with old buddy Voros McCracken. Looking good Voros!

Jim Furtado Posted: February 25, 2015 at 09:38 PM | 28 comment(s)
  Beats: interviews

Report: Josh Hamilton meeting with MLB about ‘disciplinary issue’

Maybe he spoke out in favor of the Fan Cave…?

It sounds like trouble and Josh Hamilton might have found each other again.

The Los Angeles Angels acknowledged Wednesday that their injured outfielder has been summoned to meet with MLB officials at the league office in New York City. Meanwhile, the Los Angeles Times reports Hamilton’s trip is regarding a “disciplinary issue.”...

Fox Sports’ Ken Rosenthal adds:

Asked a baseball executive if Hamilton’s discipline was for PEDs. His response: ...

Read More...
The District Attorney Posted: February 25, 2015 at 05:32 PM | 127 comment(s)
  Beats: angels, josh hamilton

David Ortiz Goes Off In Epic, Expletive-Filled Rant On Speed of Game Changes - Extra Bases - Boston.com

David sounds like he’s getting a bunch of fines.

Edit: Embed removed because autoplay could not be turned off. Jim.

Jim Furtado Posted: February 25, 2015 at 05:30 PM | 56 comment(s)
  Beats: david ortiz, red sox

ESPN: Mark Teixeira: ‘Feel like a kid again’

New York Yankees first baseman Mark Teixeira is now gluten free, sugar free and dairy free, which he hopes will keep him injury free.
Teixeira’s belief in his new diet and renewed weightlifting program makes him believe that he can stay fully healthy for the first time since 2011. If he does, Teixeira thinks he can be a 30-homer and 100-RBI player again.

...Teixeira, who turns 35 in April, hasn’t played more than 123 games since that 2011 season but thinks that with his new diet he will cut ...

Read More...
Pasta-diving Jeter (jmac66) Posted: February 25, 2015 at 03:29 PM | 6 comment(s)
  Beats: buffalo meat, gluten-free, yankees

Royals third-base coach Mike Jirschele: ‘a baseball man’s baseball man’

Mike Jirschele has been a third-base coach going on 20 years. In that time, he has made thousands of decisions about sending guys, holding guys, and obviously not all of them turned out well.

But of all of those moments — Jirschele has decided to send guys or not as many times as most of us have decided to stop for gas or not — the Gordon play will never be one he’ll second-guess or regret.

As a way to simplify it, he asks what people would’ve thought had that been a sacrifice fly ...

Read More...
Zach Posted: February 25, 2015 at 12:00 PM | 8 comment(s)
  Beats: alex gordon, mike jirschele, royals

Tiger Tales: A Detroit Tigers Blog: Updating Catcher Defense: Where Does Alex Avila Rank Now?

Lee Panas looks at catcher defense.

Jim Furtado Posted: February 25, 2015 at 09:17 AM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: sabermetrics

Saying goodbye to ‘Parks and Recreation,’ network TV’s biggest baseball fan

After seven seasons in professional television, NBC sitcom “Parks and Recreation” has retired. Boasting a career average that would make even Ted Williams envious, the show’s final outing aired on Tuesday night. MLB fans everywhere should be a little sorry to see it go, because no sitcom on television was as big a baseball fan as “Parks and Rec.”

Farewell to the law firm of Fwar, Dips, Winshares, Gritt, Nelsson, Woba, Fraplus, Zswing, Range-Factor, Heart, Babip, Pecota, Vorp & Eckstein, LLC. ...Read More...

eddieot Posted: February 25, 2015 at 09:14 AM | 61 comment(s)
  Beats: david eckstein, sabrmetrics, tv

Jose Molina joins the Cardinals as a guest instructor

He’s not officially retired, but Jose Molina is 39 years old, was released by the Rays, and is sidelined following knee surgery. And now he’s joined the Cardinals as a special guest instructor for spring training.

Balkroth Posted: February 25, 2015 at 09:11 AM | 10 comment(s)
  Beats: catchers, molina, [cardinals]

Lucchino, Henry look to create ‘model Triple-A franchise’ - providencejournal.com

I call “bullshit”. Money is the reason the Red Sox ownership bought into its AAA franchise. That’s what the plan to move the team to Providence is about. It’s about putting in luxury boxes, increased concessions, and taking advantage of a desired *free* grant of land in Providence.

We knew that there was a distinct possibility of a sale, and there were no guarantees as to where that sale might go or who might acquire the team,” explained Red Sox team president Larry Lucchino. “So almost as a ...

Read More...
Jim Furtado Posted: February 25, 2015 at 09:04 AM | 28 comment(s)
  Beats: minor league baseball

In Pawtucket, Angst and Anger Over New Owners’ Plans to Move Beloved PawSox - Boston.com

I am not looking forward to seeing the team move out of Pawtucket. The stadium isn’t fancy but watching the Pawsox at McCoy Stadium is what minor league baseball should be.

Jim Furtado Posted: February 25, 2015 at 09:01 AM | 3 comment(s)
  Beats: minor league baseball

Young arms give Mets fans hope after six years of woe

With a team based around young pitching it is surprising to me that the Mets didn’t target a good-fielding shortstop as a stopgap for this season.

Jim Furtado Posted: February 25, 2015 at 08:54 AM | 21 comment(s)
  Beats: mets

More on the Phillies and Moncada

The Red Sox were already over their international budget, so, other than in the wallet, signing Moncada didn’t impede them going forward. The Phillies are in a different position, however. Not only will they be able to sign people this July, they won’t be competing with the Red Sox and Yankees while doing it.

Jim Furtado Posted: February 25, 2015 at 08:47 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: phillies, yoan moncada

Drew Smyly says he has no issue with Yoan Moncada, just the system | Tampa Bay Times

Millionaires vs. millionaires. The players bargain away money for draft picks to line their own pockets.

“I was only trying to say everyone else doesn’t have those opportunities. So I think there should be some way where everyone, every amateur, has the same opportunity and guidelines. And that’s not even America vs. Cuba; Dominican Republic and Venezuela players don’t get that. They have never got close to that signing bonus.

“So I’m all for it. I’m sure Moncada is the real deal; it’s nothing ...

Read More...
Jim Furtado Posted: February 25, 2015 at 08:36 AM | 9 comment(s)
  Beats: economics

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 2-25-2015

Toledo News-Bee, February 25, 1915:

Happy Felch [sic], a 1914 [Milwaukee] Brewer, is a confident rookie. He showed up to join the Chicago White Sox on the training trip, carrying a special bat.

“Mister, what position do you play?” inquired a youngster as Felch passed through the crowd at the station.

“Batter,” announced Felch.

I’m pretty sure he said “Bettor”.

Also on the same page as the linked article, Joe Tinker tells the Smitty-approved story of the time he and Cincinnati’s Dick Egan got ...

Read More...
Willie Horton Hears The Who (Dan Lee) Posted: February 25, 2015 at 08:01 AM | 29 comment(s)
  Beats: dugout, happy felsch, history

Diamond Zen: Jeter’s Last Day Game at Yankee Stadium

Take me out to the ballgame . . . what does baseball mean to us?

Catfish1974 Posted: February 25, 2015 at 07:47 AM | 3 comment(s)
  Beats: babe ruth, mickey mantle, reggie jackson, yankees

Votto defends Reds’ clubhouse leadership | reds.com

Votto responds to Latos’ comments.

“The thing that upsets me the most is the people that are talking about leadership and talking about our clubhouse are not in our clubhouse,” Votto said. “They’re not consistently here to make any sort of comment on the clubhouse. These are guys that very rarely show their face in the clubhouse, are never on the bus, not in the hotel, certainly not on the field, and these guys are constantly commenting on the importance of leadership with no sort of experience ...

Read More...
Jim Furtado Posted: February 25, 2015 at 06:49 AM | 6 comment(s)
  Beats: joey votto, reds

Donaldson already proving great fit with Blue Jays | MLB.com

“I have a pretty good relationship with [A’s GM] Billy Beane,” Anthopoulos said. “We’ve done a bunch of small deals. The one thing about Billy, he’s always open-minded and you can never offend him; you can ask about anybody at any time to make a deal.

“[Donaldson] is somebody we asked about right at the end of the season. We were adamantly told, ‘He’s not going to be moved.’ Then we asked about him a little later. [Beane] was still adamant that [Donaldson] was not going to be moved. Then I ...

Read More...
Jim Furtado Posted: February 25, 2015 at 05:52 AM | 4 comment(s)
  Beats: athletics, blue jays

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Keep an Eye on Korean Baseball

Not Carlos Correa, South Korea.

Putting a blanket statement on the level of talent in the KBO is an unwinnable situation.  Both Nitkowski and Sadowski said that while there are guys there who could not crack a Double-A roster in the U.S., there are players, such as Ryu, who clearly have the talent to be difference makers in the majors.

“I don’t know that there’s a Triple-A team that could roll in and necessarily beat the Doosan Bears,” Nitkowski said. “Even to say that it’s ...

Read More...
RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: February 24, 2015 at 09:47 PM | 2 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, hyun-jin ryu, korean baseball, kyeong kang

California lawmaker wants to ban chewing tobacco for MLB players

Chewing tobacco is plentiful all over the league, with many players carrying a canister in their back pocket or dipping into a bag in the dugout. Having to stop that for California games? That would take some getting used to. Here’s the explanation of the bill, via Reuters:

The bill targets baseball’s ubiquitous habit less than a year after retired San Diego Padres outfielder Tony Gwynn died of cancer of the salivary glands, believed related to chewing tobacco or “dipping” it by lodging it ...

Read More...
RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: February 24, 2015 at 09:24 PM | 48 comment(s)
  Beats: california, legal, legislation, tobacco, tony gwynn

MLB explains pace-of-game rules

Major League Baseball began briefing its 30 teams this week on its new pace-of-game rules, and clubs are learning that the ramifications will have an impact in a variety of areas, including midinning pitching changes and new ways for managers to signal for replay reviews.

The timers in ballparks that are used to count down between-inning commercial breaks will also be used during pitching changes in the same way.

When players violate one of the new rules ... they are subject to fines up to ...

Read More...
Greg Pope thinks the Cubs are reeking havoc Posted: February 24, 2015 at 05:41 PM | 13 comment(s)
  Beats: pace of game

Brian Sabean says that California taxes are a hindrance to the Giants signing free agents

THANKS OBAMA

But Brian Sabean, talking to Hank Schulman of the San Francisco Chronicle, says it’s a factor:

In one of Sabean’s more interesting comments, he offered a bit more insight into why he does not pursue more of the high-ticket free agents.

“To entice a free agent to come to San Francisco, we’re almost in an overpay situation, so why get involved in all those battles where you’re not going to be able to go up the totem pole money-wise?” Sabean said.

When asked to ...

Read More...
RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: February 24, 2015 at 03:58 PM | 69 comment(s)
  Beats: brian sabean, giants, taxes, yoan moncada

Gay Minor League pitcher Jason Burch was just waiting for the right question

Still, through his Minor League career that stretched across six seasons and four Major League Baseball franchises, Burch kept to that mantra: No one asked, no need to tell. During a game for the BaySox in 2008, a rare opportunity presented itself. Sitting in the bullpen, one of his teammates, a pitcher from Latin America, asked him if he had a girlfriend with whom to spend their upcoming break. The door opened and Burch strode right through it.

“I’m not interested in girls. I’m gay. And I ...

Read More...
RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: February 24, 2015 at 03:18 PM | 22 comment(s)
  Beats: cardinals, coming out, gay rights, jason burch, orioles, rockies

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