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Jim Furtado
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Friday, December 04, 2015

Closer Utilization Trends and Where They’re Headed | Banished to the Pen

Twenty years is far too short a timeframe. This graphic shows the average duration of reliever appearances over time. 1995-2015 has pretty much the same usage pattern.

Pitchers like Drew Storen, who were once an anomaly, have now become the norm. Storen was solely a reliever in college, and threw only 53 2/3 minor-league innings before making his MLB debut. The most innings the right-hander has pitched in a professional season: 79 2/3, between his sophomore season at Stanford and his first year ...

Jim Furtado Posted: December 04, 2015 at 10:38 AM | 12 comment(s)
  Beats: sabermetrics

Source: Detroit Tigers nearing deal with free-agent starting pitcher Mike Pelfrey

The Detroit Tigers’ starting rotation appears close to being set.

The Tigers are nearing a deal with free agent starting pitcher Mike Pelfrey, according to a source close to the situation. The two sides are discussing a one-year deal worth roughly $8 million, has learned.

Tigers officials have not commented on the talks.

Pelfrey, who most recently pitched for the Minnesota Twins, was spotted in Detroit late Thursday. He would need to pass a physical as part of completing the deal. ...Read More...

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: December 04, 2015 at 10:35 AM | 28 comment(s)
  Beats: mike pelfrey, tigers

Padres, Angels, Dodgers Showing Most Interest In Utley

The Padres, Angels and Dodgers are showing the most interest in second baseman Chase Utley, reports ESPN’s Jayson Stark. Utley has told friends that his preference is to play in his native California, Stark hears, adding that the Los Angeles area native now resides in northern California but still has family in the southern portion of the state.

Some believe that the Padres’ interest could be a precursor to a trade of some kind, Stark writes, as the team has internal second base options in ...

EvilBoWeevil Posted: December 04, 2015 at 10:10 AM | 10 comment(s)
  Beats: angels, braves, dodgers, padres, phillies, rumors

How much money are Rockies working with in MLB offseason?

hat leaves the Rockies about $5 million to work with, as it stands now. Not coincidentally, that’s also what they were working with before last season when the Rockies made pitcher Kyle Kendrick their last big addition, signing him in February to a $5.5 million contract.

The Rockies before last season shed Michael Cuddyer’s $11.5 million contract (which they basically used to pay for built-in raises to Troy Tulowitzki and Gonzalez) and Brett Anderson’s $8 million (which they used to sign ...

Jim Furtado Posted: December 04, 2015 at 08:43 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: rockies

In Alvarez, Pirates GM Huntington’s 1st call turns into his toughest cut | TribLIVE

“My mistake was bringing him to the big leagues before he was ready,” general manager Neal Huntington said late Wednesday night, minutes after the club officially severed ties with Alvarez. “That was my mistake. In hindsight, giving him additional time in the minors probably would have been very beneficial. Things might have been different.”

Jim Furtado Posted: December 04, 2015 at 08:42 AM | 51 comment(s)
  Beats: free agent, non-tenders, pedro alvarez, pirates

Jason Heyward would look good in a Phillies uniform

The Phillies signing the 26-year old Heyward isn’t the worst idea. How much money would they have to overpay to get him to play there, though?

Another benefit of being the worst in baseball is that you don’t lose your first-round draft pick when you sign an elite free agent. It would be silly for the Phillies to go after a 30-something player when they are in the midst of a rebuilding plan, but Jason Heyward, who was Bourjos’ teammate in St. Louis, is only 26.

Klentak and MacPhail, like most ...

Jim Furtado Posted: December 04, 2015 at 08:37 AM | 18 comment(s)
  Beats: free agents, jason heyward, phillies

Purdy: Greinke not worth what Giants offering - San Jose Mercury News

Setting the salary bar on a 30+ pitcher is a risk that’s great for the *other* team to make.

Jim Furtado Posted: December 04, 2015 at 08:23 AM | 4 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, free agents, giants, zach greinke

Henning: 11 are Hall-worthy, so I’m not voting again

This is silly. It’s a tantrum. Make your vote and voice your complaints. Hurting the ten people who you *can* vote for makes no sense.

There have been too few ballot slots for worthy Hall of Famers. It’s because Cooperstown is hung up on the self-crafted sanctity of the number 10. You can vote only for 10 players, even if your experience and convictions—and some overwhelming historical comparisons – support a broader collection of plaque-worthy men.

So, reluctantly, and with the same sense of ...

Jim Furtado Posted: December 04, 2015 at 08:17 AM | 70 comment(s)
  Beats: hall of fame

Zack Wheeler wants ‘to play for the Mets’ next season - NY Daily News

Wheeler is still targeting the middle of the 2016 season — June or July — to return to the majors, and he very much hopes that is with the Mets.

He made that clear this summer. Wheeler was mentioned in a near trade with the Brewers — which fell through because of Carlos Gomez’s medical issues. At the time, Wheeler called GM Sandy Alderson and personally expressed that he would like to remain a Met.

“I know it’s a business and if something happens, well it is what it is, but this ...

Jim Furtado Posted: December 04, 2015 at 08:02 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: mets, zach wheeler

Arizona Diamondbacks unveil new uniforms |

You can click through to view the fashion show. The Jetsons would approve.

The D-backs will have plenty of uniform combinations to choose from in 2016, as the team on Thursday unveiled eight uniform sets, which can also be mixed and matched to form even more looks.

“My head is spinning kind of figuring out what kind of matching they’re going to do,” outfielder A.J. Pollock said. “We have so many different types of combinations we can do with them. They all look good, and it will be interesting ...

Jim Furtado Posted: December 04, 2015 at 07:47 AM | 23 comment(s)
  Beats: diamondbacks, uniforms

Blue Jays name Ross Atkins as team’s new general manager -

Atkins, a 42-year-old from Greensboro, N.C., has a long resume in player development, a strong breeding ground for general managers because countless decisions and evaluations must be made on players, coaches and staff. He also has experience in Latin America, an area the Blue Jays plan to continue prioritizing despite international director Ismael Cruz’s departure for the Dodgers.

A right-handed pitcher who spent five seasons in the Indians system before topping out at double-A, he’d been ...

Jim Furtado Posted: December 04, 2015 at 07:43 AM | 9 comment(s)
  Beats: blue jays, general managers, ross atkins

Thursday, December 03, 2015

Hunter Pence Perfects the Art of Proposing by Popping the Question at Disney

San Francisco Giants outfielder Hunter Pence went all-out to give his girlfriend, Alexis Cozombolidis, a proposal she will never forget.

The setting: Disney World, the place where dreams come true.

Sign: “Hunter Pence thinks Disney World is cool”

eddieot Posted: December 03, 2015 at 09:38 PM | 28 comment(s)
  Beats: hunter pence, san francisco giants

White Sox, catcher Dioner Navarro reach 1-year deal

There’s a run on backup catchers!

Switch-hitting catcher Dioner Navarro has agreed to a one-year free-agent contract with the Chicago White Sox, pending a physical, sources confirmed to ESPN on Thursday.

Alex Avila has agreed to a one-year, $2.5 million contract with the White Sox, who are looking to improve a catching position that finished ninth in the AL in batting average this past season.
Navarro, who will be 32 when the 2016 season begins, is a 12-year major league veteran. He was the ...

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: December 03, 2015 at 02:02 PM | 13 comment(s)
  Beats: dioner navarro, white sox

Six Year-Old Marcus Stroman on “Figure it Out”

In 1997, six year-old Marcus Stroman appeared on a Nickelodeon game show and won $100 Geoffrey dollars from Toys R Us.

Dock Ellis on Acid Posted: December 03, 2015 at 11:03 AM | 19 comment(s)
  Beats: marcus stroman, nickelodeon, toronto blue jays

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 12-3-2015

Richmond Times-Dispatch, December 3, 1915:

Averill A. Bates, a youngster from Peniel, Texas, is looking for a job as a mascot to a big league club. Bates says that he is luckier than any other boy of his age in the world, and that with him around all summer a club would have to win. He applied to George Stallings for a job, but was turned down cold.

It would be good work if you can get it. Looks like Bates would have been 17 years old in December 1915. I can’t imagine a more enjoyable way to ...

Jefferson Manship (Dan Lee) Posted: December 03, 2015 at 10:46 AM | 25 comment(s)
  Beats: dugout, history, mascots

Farewell: What’s left of Charlie Faust | FOX Sports

Bummer. I’m very sorry to read this. JABO consistently put out quality analysis.

If you’ve read this far, I’m grateful. It’s not often that a big-time website publishes a story about a long-forgotten and -neglected grave, for the simple reason that the subject has limited appeal. So I’m grateful to you for reading, and I’m grateful to my employers for allowing me to publish nearly whatever I’ve liked here.

I’m also grateful to everyone who’s written for this site, including my ...

Jim Furtado Posted: December 03, 2015 at 10:14 AM | 16 comment(s)
  Beats: mlb

Baseball Prospectus | 2016 Prospects: Milwaukee Brewers Top 10 Prospects

A freebie from BP.

The Top Ten

1. SS Orlando Arcia
2. OF Brett Phillips
3. RHP Jorge Lopez
4. OF Trent Clark
5. SS Gilbert Lara
6. RHP Devin Williams
7. OF Monte Harrison
8. RHP Zach Davies
9. RHP Cody Ponce
10. OF Tyrone Taylor

Jim Furtado Posted: December 03, 2015 at 09:32 AM | 2 comment(s)
  Beats: brewers, prospects

red sox - Will David Price be able to handle Boston? Former teammate Jonny Gomes offers what pitcher is up against - WEEI | Rob Bradford

Gomes said this part of the equation will have be part of evolution that Price endures as a member of the Red Sox. But, as the outfielder explained, the 30-year-old has at least shown the ability to adapt throughout what has now been an eight-year big league career.

“He’s the new-age, young, hip player, with the social media and Twitter deal off the field. I don’t do any of it, but it’s just how these guys came up,” Gomes said. “It’s what they know. It’s their baby. They’re all attached to ...

Jim Furtado Posted: December 03, 2015 at 09:32 AM | 21 comment(s)
  Beats: david price, jonny gomes, red sox

The Unionization of Baseball – The Hardball Times

In case you don’t already know the history of the MLBPA.

Jim Furtado Posted: December 03, 2015 at 09:29 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: history, mlbpa

David Price is not overpaid | For The Win

Simply put, teams just have way, way more money to throw around now than they ever did before. Every single year, it seems, we’re stunned by how much money clubs are willing to shell out for the biggest names on the open market. The idea of paying an older version of David Price $31 million a year from 2019-2022 sounds ridiculous to us now, but that’s only because we haven’t yet seen the contracts his colleagues will sign between now and then. If Price stays healthy for the next three ...

Jim Furtado Posted: December 03, 2015 at 09:27 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: david price, red sox

Did losing Anthopoulos cost Jays shot at re-signing Price, too?

The Price was wrong for Toronto.

Would the Toronto Blue Jays have signed David Price if Alex Anthopoulos were still making the team’s baseball decisions?

We can’t say it’s terribly likely, because it’s difficult to imagine the Jays matching Boston’s winning bid of $217 million over seven years.

But this much is known: Toronto would have offered Price a contract.

Sources say Anthopoulos began laying the groundwork to do so in August, before Mark Shapiro was named the team’s new ...

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: December 03, 2015 at 08:56 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: alex anthopoulos, blue jays, david price, mark shapiro

Jose Miguel Fernandez Leaves Cuba To Pursue MLB Deal -

Who will write this big check?

Jose Miguel Fernandez, a second baseman who ranked as the No. 3 player still in Cuba in April, has left the country to pursue a contract with a major league team, Baseball America has learned.

As a 27-year-old with seven seasons of experience in Cuba’s Serie Nacional, Fernandez will be exempt from the international bonus pools, and the interest from major league teams should be high. Fernandez is a major league-ready infielder with a short, quick swing from the ...

Jim Furtado Posted: December 03, 2015 at 08:32 AM | 10 comment(s)
  Beats: cuban free agents, jose miguel fernandez

Teams non-tender noteworthy players |

A partial list of non-tenders includes Pedro Alvarez, Chris Carter, Greg Holland, Mike Minor, Henderson Alvarez, and Ike Davis.

Jim Furtado Posted: December 03, 2015 at 08:24 AM | 61 comment(s)
  Beats: free agents, non-tenders

Spd: scoring speed among top prospects | News | The Official Site of Minor League Baseball

Sam Dykstra compares Speed Scores and players’ scouting ratings.

Jim Furtado Posted: December 03, 2015 at 08:17 AM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: minors, sabermetrics, scouting

Wednesday, December 02, 2015

MLB Trade Rumors: Non-Tender tracker

Henderson Alvarez, Mike Minor, and Greg Holland are among the bigger names so far.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: December 02, 2015 at 10:17 PM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: greg holland, henderson alvarez, mike minor, non-tenders

Braves sign Gordon Beckham to 1-year, $1.25 MM deal

Its starting to come together, Braves fans.

Thee Atlanta Braves have made an addition to their infield today, and they’ve brought home a local product, to boot. According to a report from Ken Rosenthal, the Braves have signed former Chicago White Sox infielder Gordon Beckham to a one-year, $1.25 MM contract, with $500,000 in incentives.

Beckham was with the Chicago White Sox from 2009 until last season (with an extremely brief stint with the Los Angeles Angels in 2014 in there as well), and ...

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: December 02, 2015 at 12:58 PM | 69 comment(s)
  Beats: braves, gordon beckham

Padres trade Alonso to A’s for Pomeranz

Go Yonder, Alonso!

The Padres are trading first baseman Yonder Alonso to the Oakland Athletics in exchange for left-hander Drew Pomeranz. According to’s Keith Law, the Padres are including lefty reliever Marc Rzepczynski in the deal, while Oakland also will send minor league left-hander Jose Torres to San Diego.

Pomeranz, 27, is a former top pitching prospect with both starting and bullpen experience in the majors. A harder thrower than most lefties, he went 5-6 last season with a ...


How did the price tag for elite pitchers get so high? - The Boston Globe

A very interesting take by Alex Speier.

Ultimately, the Red Sox are making a huge commitment, but they’re not simply making that commitment to the best pitcher available – a sometimes less-than-impressive pool – but instead to someone who is unquestionably one of the best pitchers in the game. For such a pitcher, in the aftermath of a second last-place finish in as many years, the team elected to spend, a sign of the staggering resources that have been made available by Red Sox owners to ...

Jim Furtado Posted: December 02, 2015 at 11:07 AM | 25 comment(s)
  Beats: david price, free agency, red sox

The Value of the Opt-Out Clause in the David Price Contract | FanGraphs Baseball

Good stuff from Eno Sarris. Be sure to click-though and look at Sky Kalkman’s and Dave Studeman’s stuff.

Jim Furtado Posted: December 02, 2015 at 10:51 AM | 12 comment(s)
  Beats: david price, red sox

Mariners reach agreement with free-agent outfielder Nori Aoki


Even before the Mariners complete one deal, they’re on to another one.

The latest addition is free-agent outfielder Nori Aoki, who fits the club’s new preferred profile as an athletic player with on-base skills.

Aoki, 33, has a .287 average and a .353 on-base percentage in four seasons since coming to the big leagues after eight seasons in Japan. He matched those numbers last season in 93 games for the San Francisco Giants.

The deal was first reported on twitter by Jon ...

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: December 02, 2015 at 09:34 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: mariners, nori aoki

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