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Friday, November 09, 2018

The Library of Congress Site is a Digital Wonderland for Baseball Fans

“Honus Wagner, looking like he was sutured together by a grave-robbing mad scientist: Enormous hands at the end of long, stove-pipe arms; broad shoulders and barrel chest; a short torso supported by severely bowed legs that suggested he spent the off-season in the saddle…”

gehrig97 Posted: November 09, 2018 at 08:53 PM | 2 comment(s)
  Beats: honus wagner, nap lajoie, ruth, ty cobb, walter johnson

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 11-9-2018

El Paso Herald, November 9, 1918:

BOSTON CLUB IS ABOUT TO SINK

Two major league clubs may find themselves homeless before the snow begins to fly. It is said that they are involved in financial troubles to such a degree that their landlords intend to freeze them out for nonpayment of debts. If these clubs are evicted it is probable that their franchises will be sold to the highest bidder. Both have lost big money since 1916 and the gossips insist that the end is near.
...
The total expenses of ...

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Jefferson Manship (Dan Lee) Posted: November 09, 2018 at 10:01 AM | 5 comment(s)
  Beats: dugout, history

MLB faces offseason challenges

(Reuters) - Major League Baseball heads into the offseason with no shortage of issues to address, most pressingly the drop in stadium attendance and TV ratings, a trend toward longer games and a dearth of star power in its ranks.

Easy answers, however, may prove hard to come by.

Average attendance for regular season games in 2018 fell four percent from the previous year to 28,830 per game, according to MLB, while the total number of fans who showed up at the ballpark fell below 70 million for ...

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QLE Posted: November 09, 2018 at 07:55 AM | 30 comment(s)
  Beats: attendance, doom and gloom, pace of play, ratings, stars

Reds’ Scott Schebler, Rangers’ Matt Bush miss arbitration cutoff

CARLSBAD, Calif.—Cincinnati outfielder Scott Schebler and Texas pitcher Matt Bush just missed the cutoff for salary arbitration eligibility, while Chicago Cubs pitcher Carl Edwards Jr. and Toronto pitcher Joe Biagini earned the final spots.

The Major League Baseball Players Association said Thursday the cutoff for eligibility this winter is 2 years, 134 days of major league service—up from 2 years, 123 days last year.

The top 22 percent of players with at least two years of service time, but ...

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QLE Posted: November 09, 2018 at 07:55 AM | 2 comment(s)
  Beats: arbitration, matt bush, scott schebler

No MLB rule changes likely until eve of spring training

CARLSBAD, CALIF.- Major League Baseball and its players’ union likely will not decide until the eve of spring training whether to change rules in an effort to increase action on the field next year.

Deputy Commissioner Dan Halem said Thursday as the annual general managers’ meetings ended that there was no consensus for change yet. More discussions will take place when owners gather next week in Atlanta, the union’s executive board convenes in late November and major league executives go to ...

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QLE Posted: November 09, 2018 at 07:55 AM | 30 comment(s)
  Beats: rob manfred, rule changes, still considering

Mookie Betts wins 2018 Heart and Hustle Award

So, who says that heart, hustle, and sabermetric-approved performance don’t mix?

QLE Posted: November 09, 2018 at 07:55 AM | 6 comment(s)
  Beats: heart, hustle, mookie betts

Rick Ankiel undergoes elbow surgery as he attempts MLB comeback as a pitcher

Rick Ankiel’s attempt to return to baseball as a pitcher will be delayed a bit. Yahoo Sports reports that Ankiel had ligament reattachment surgery in October. Per the report, Ankiel is looking at a return at some point next season.

Wait, what?

Yes, it’s true. That Rick Ankiel is trying to make a comeback as a pitcher after making a comeback as a position player. What a story this would be.

So, is this heartwarming, a tragedy, or a farce?

QLE Posted: November 09, 2018 at 07:55 AM | 16 comment(s)
  Beats: comeback, elbow surgery, rick ankiel

The Best Quotes from Sports Agent Scott Boras’s Baseball Media Scrum

Scott Boras is a super agent. He’s also a fantastic quote, too.

During his annual media scrum at Major League Baseball’s general manager meetings on Wednesday, Boras’s comments were arguably on par with the high-caliber talent levels of the numerous star athletes he represents.

Below is a compilation featuring some of Boras’s best remarks from his offseason session.

Warning: Many of these quotes are prime examples of what our British friends mean when they state that Mandy Rice-Davies ...

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QLE Posted: November 09, 2018 at 07:55 AM | 5 comment(s)
  Beats: attendance, scott boras, tanking

Determining Madison Bumgarner’s future will be Farhan Zaidi’s first Giant decision

The ink on Farhan Zaidi’s contract as the new San Francisco Giants general manager was barely dry Wednesday when he was asked the question weighing on the mind of every Giants fan.

Is it possible, and perhaps even necessary, that he seeks to trade the franchise’s longtime ace and multiple time World Series hero, Madison Bumgarner?

The question itself was as straight forward as it gets. As for the response? It was not surprisingly vague.

Mind you, with pitchers, the future tends to be ...

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QLE Posted: November 09, 2018 at 07:55 AM | 5 comment(s)
  Beats: farhan zaidi, giants, madison bumgarner

Red Sox fan wins $100,000 grand prize after playing jersey numbers in lottery

TEMPLETON, Mass. —After winning the 2018 World Series, the Boston Red Sox have now helped a Massachusetts man win the lottery.

Jim Aylward Jr., of Templeton, won a $100,000 grand prize in the Massachusetts State Lottery’s Mass Cash game by playing the jersey numbers worn by five key members of the Red Sox championship team.

Aylward’s winning combination of 11-16-19-22-25 represents the jersey numbers of third baseman Rafael Devers, left fielder Andrew Benintendi, ALCS MVP Jackie Bradley ...

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QLE Posted: November 09, 2018 at 07:55 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: fans, jersey numbers, lottery

J.D. first to win 2 Silver Sluggers in same year

BOSTON—J.D. Martinez had such an impressive offensive season that he pulled off an unprecedented feat on Thursday, becoming the first player to win American League Silver Slugger Awards at two positions in the same season.

The right-handed-hitting masher, who helped the Red Sox win the World Series, received Silver Slugger Awards at designated hitter and outfielder.

The announcement came just three days after many were stunned when Martinez was not selected as one of the top three finalists ...

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QLE Posted: November 09, 2018 at 07:55 AM | 7 comment(s)
  Beats: jd martinez, silver slugger

Thursday, November 08, 2018

Red Sox: Bill James “is not an employee nor does he speak for the club”

People are losing their minds over James’ tweets. Of course, people lose their minds over all kinds of stupid stuff, so I shouldn’t be surprised. Anyway, Craig has the important links and info.

Jim Furtado Posted: November 08, 2018 at 02:03 PM | 182 comment(s)
  Beats: bill james, mlbpa

Sarris: If you could build the perfect pitcher, what would he look like? – The Athletic

Another interesting article from Eno Sarris.

Jim Furtado Posted: November 08, 2018 at 11:20 AM | 14 comment(s)
  Beats: pay site, pitchers

Document prepared for potential investors says Dodgers plan on staying under luxury tax threshold - Los Angeles Times

More info in the article.

Under the projections prepared for potential investors, the Dodgers would spend $185 million in 2019 and 2020, $191 million in 2021 and $196 million in 2022.

Should you rent or own? How fast can you get that part? Does it fit the budget? That’s what your Cat® Dealer is here for. Learn more at MiltonCAT.com/promotions/caterpillar-national-program.

The Dodgers’ payroll projections are not binding. One high-ranking team official called the figures a “forecast,” ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: November 08, 2018 at 11:13 AM | 7 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers

How the Mets could jumpstart the Brodie Van Wagenen era with a few low-cost pickups and some good luck - CBSSports.com

This is a tough place to be.

Even with some big chunks of money coming off the books, the Mets have strikingly little financial flexibility for a team coming off such a lousy season. According to the excellent Cot’s contracts page, New York is already projected to carry about $144 million in payroll next season, with about $46 million of that total tied up in projected arbitration awards. Syndergaard and deGrom project to earn about $22 million combined through arbitration in 2019, with a ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: November 08, 2018 at 10:59 AM | 3 comment(s)
  Beats: mets

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 11-8-2018

El Paso Herald, November 8, 1918:

Irish Fans Not Very Excited Over Baseball

Weather and an open-eyed wonder as to what it is all about made the first international baseball game Dublin has seen something of a fizzle so far as enthusiasm was concerned.

Yanks met Canadians, and the Yanks won, 13 to 6. The game was played in puddles, with much slopping about. Dublin boys will not adopt baseball as the result of their first introduction to the game.

People trying to spread baseball in Ireland were ...

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Jefferson Manship (Dan Lee) Posted: November 08, 2018 at 10:12 AM | 26 comment(s)
  Beats: dugout, history

Tomase: Overreliance on WAR may have hurt J.D. Martinez in AL MVP vote that’s going to be won by Mookie Betts | WEEI

Take this year’s AL MVP race. Betts led the league in WAR, will win the award, and deserves it. Hard to argue with Trout or Ramirez, either, based on performance, though I’m certainly open to the idea of an MVP coming from a winning team, and not Trout’s sub-.500 Angels.

But there are other deserving candidates whose WAR won’t give them a sniff. Red Sox slugger J.D. Martinez is one of them. For five months, he flirted with the Triple Crown. Because he’s mostly a DH and no better than ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: November 08, 2018 at 08:54 AM | 26 comment(s)
  Beats: analytics, j.d. martinez, war

Bryce Harper free agency focus at GM Meetings

Huge ten-year contracts pretty much suck. Pass.

While that contract would be the largest for a free agent, it would not surpass Giancarlo Stanton’s record-breaking 13-year, $325 million deal from 2014, nor would it surpass Zack Greinke’s $34.42 million for the highest average annual value. Harper has confirmed he is seeking a long-term deal, but accepting a contract with no opt-outs would lock Harper up for the entirety of his prime without giving him the chance to earn more money should player ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: November 08, 2018 at 05:27 AM | 5 comment(s)
  Beats: bryce harper

Mariners finalizing a trade that would send catcher Mike Zunino, outfielder Guillermo Heredia to the Rays | The Seattle Times

Mike Zunino may not have to go far from his home in Gainesville, Fla., when the 2019 season begins.

Multiple Major League Baseball sources said the Mariners are finalizing a deal with their favorite trade partner, the Tampa Bay Rays. Seattle would send Zunino and outfielder Guillermo Heredia and minor league left-handed pitcher Michael Plassmeyer to Tampa in exchange for outfielder Mallex Smith and minor league outfielder Jake Fraley.

Jim Furtado Posted: November 08, 2018 at 05:21 AM | 19 comment(s)
  Beats: guillermo heredia, mallex smith, mariners, mike zunino, trade

Alex Rodriguez ‘not a fan’ of tech in the strike zone - CNET

I’m still not sure what to think about ARod. It’s tough to know what’s real and what’s bullshit.

Jim Furtado Posted: November 08, 2018 at 05:15 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: alex rodriguez

Wednesday, November 07, 2018

Here’s why the Cardinals need Bryce Harper

Is Harper really better than Stanton?

9. They were just willing to do this with Stanton
The Cardinals, by all accounts, were willing to take on Stanton’s entire contract last offseason. Stanton is signed through 2027 for a total of $270 million, nearly $33 million a year (when you account for a $10 million buyout in ‘28). Stanton is (obviously) a great player. But is he better than Harper? Probably not, right? And then remember that Harper is two years younger. Harper might get more than $33 ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: November 07, 2018 at 09:51 PM | 66 comment(s)
  Beats: bryce harper, cardinals

A’s building 2019 with dwindling revenue sharing - SFChronicle.com

The A’s are sticking with their plan to increase the payroll, which was lowest in the majors at the start of last season. Forst and executive vice president Billy Beane met with owner John Fisher last week to discuss spending parameters.

“We didn’t leave with a number I can report to you,” Forst said. “John has been pretty consistent in being open to what we want to do so I think we feel we have some flexibility.”

Jim Furtado Posted: November 07, 2018 at 09:31 PM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: athletics

Giants’ new baseball chief Zaidi talks Bumgarner, rebuild, working with Bochy

The Giants are in good hands.

Jim Furtado Posted: November 07, 2018 at 09:09 PM | 2 comment(s)
  Beats: farhan zaidi, giants

MLB cheaters beware: Baseball finally addressing sign-stealing problem | NBC Sports Boston

One high-ranking club official in the National League said that last offseason, MLB started asking some clubs about potentially allowing pitchers and catchers to communicate with an earpiece, or the like. As an American League front office member noted: Why hasn’t that technology already been tested in the Arizona Fall League, or some other venue?

Now the matter is at least at the top of the docket. The next steps, however, are unclear.

“I have no idea,” said one high-ranking league ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: November 07, 2018 at 08:04 PM | 7 comment(s)
  Beats: sign stealing

Sonny Gray is perfect change of scenery arm | MLB.com

The new Ed Whitson.

Jim Furtado Posted: November 07, 2018 at 04:32 PM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: sonny gray, yankees

Astros have a few changes occur as the offseason simmers

I missed Hallahan’s departure.What’s going on in Houston?

While the offseason rumors simmer, the Astros’ front office is experiencing employee turnover. Sig Mejdal, one of the key figures in Houston’s data-driven front office, is moving on from the organization as Brian McTaggart of MLB.com notes here. Chandler Rome of the Houston Chronicle reports here that another key member of the front office, Ryan Hallahan, the Astros’ senior technical architect, will also leave the club.

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Jim Furtado Posted: November 07, 2018 at 03:49 PM | 4 comment(s)
  Beats: astros

BA: Minor League Free Agents 2018

520 players, list includes hyperlinks to BA player pages.

Der-K: at 10% emotional investment Posted: November 07, 2018 at 02:58 PM | 23 comment(s)
  Beats: dreams, free agents, minor leagues, retirements

This changes everything: Giants president Farhan Zaidi agrees to a five-year deal – The Athletic

Friedman and Zaidi may be competing for the same guys.

And how’s this for intrigue? Before the Giants and Dodgers meet on the field next season, Zaidi and Friedman could find themselves in a more immediate form of competition. Zaidi is almost certain to hire a GM. Friedman, unless he decides to keep Zaidi’s former chair empty, will be in the market for one, himself. And here’s betting their lists will have some overlap.

Will Zaidi seek to renew with Billy Owens, his former colleague with ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: November 07, 2018 at 11:11 AM | 9 comment(s)
  Beats: farhan zaidi, general mangers, giants, pay site

Sources: Nationals made Bryce Harper ‘aggressive offer’ last month, did not reach agreement

This sounds like a PR leak.

According to multiple people familiar with the negotiations, the Nationals discussed terms for a new deal with Harper and his agent, Scott Boras, throughout September. Those conversations led to what one person called “an aggressive offer.” That offer included no opt-outs, and was less than the $400 million some have speculated Harper could receive, according to a person with direct knowledge who would not disclose the exact terms.

Jim Furtado Posted: November 07, 2018 at 10:15 AM | 42 comment(s)
  Beats: bryce harper, nationals

Texas Rangers: Woodward dines with Andrus, others | Fort Worth Star-Telegram

They aren’t going to win without much improved starters.

“These guys are eager, man,” Woodward said during the first full day of the general managers meetings. “I don’t know how many games we’re going to win next year. Nobody does, but they don’t like the fact that people have low expectations for us. I think that’s important.

“They want to win. They’re not looking at this thing as we’re expected to lose 100 games or 90 games. They were mad. They weren’t happy about that. ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: November 07, 2018 at 10:10 AM | 12 comment(s)
  Beats: rangers

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