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Monday, December 29, 2014

Starlin Castro’s agent says he could move to the USA

Good idea.

Spahn Insane Posted: December 29, 2014 at 11:09 PM | 11 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs, dominican

Nine possible spots for Max Scherzer: Star FA without a team, or a rumor - CBSSports.com

Will Boras really be able to convince a team to go $200 million on Scherzer?

9. Yankees: Hal Steinbrenner has been weighing Scherzer for weeks, but in recent days indications are Steinbrenner still isn’t ready to dive in, and they’ve said as much. Many rotation question questions carry over from last season, and it appears that for now at least, talented youngster Nate Eovaldi is the answer to McCarthy’s departure. Their starting group could be very good, but there’s a lot of uncertainty, from ...

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Top 10 Game-Changing MLB Moments

WHAT ABOUT JETER’S WALK OFF?

Among all the moments on this list, none has a higher WPA than Davis’ June 30 grand slam against Oakland. The Tigers had a win expectancy of 20 percent entering the at-bat. (And that presumes each moment occurs in a vacuum. It didn’t take into account that the light-hitting Davis has never hit more than eight home runs in a season and that Davis had never hit a walk-off shot.)

With one smooth swing, Davis crushed a hanging curveball over the left-field wall, one ...

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RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: December 29, 2014 at 02:15 PM | 12 comment(s)
  Beats: alex gordon, angels, athletics, mike trout, rajai davis, royals, tigers, wpa

Vice Sports: The Radical Case for Cities Buying Sports Teams, not Sports Stadiums

Okay, so there is one small holdup with the public owning sports teams in the U.S., which is that the major pro sports leagues here have dedicated themselves to blocking it at every turn. McDonald’s heiress Joan Kroc once tried to give the Padres to the city of San Diego as a charitable donation, but was overruled by MLB; a similar league edict later prevented the city of Pittsburgh from getting a share of the Pirates in exchange for a $20 million “loan” that was never repaid. The NFL was so ...

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Marlon Byrd Trade Between Phillies, Reds Fell Through

Will the Byrd fly the coop?

The Phillies are in clear rebuild mode, having dealt Jimmy Rollins and Antonio Bastardo this offseason, and they appear to have had a third trade in the works before it fell through. Jon Morosi of FOX Sports reports that the Phillies and Reds were close to a trade that would’ve sent Marlon Byrd to Cincinnati before talks broke down (Twitter link). The other players in the trade are unclear at this point, though Morosi notes that the Reds and Phils could still ...

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RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: December 29, 2014 at 12:45 PM | 7 comment(s)
  Beats: marlon byrd, phillies, reds, trade rumors

Why the Kansas City Royals need to dismantle the Big Three - Beyond the Box Score

Wait, I thought the dominant bullpen was the wave of the future?

Jim Furtado Posted: December 29, 2014 at 10:24 AM | 32 comment(s)
  Beats: royals

Are Mariners’ signings enough in face of surging baseball payrolls? | Mariners | The Seattle Times

Geoff Baker doesn’t think the Mariners have done enough this off-season.

Jim Furtado Posted: December 29, 2014 at 10:22 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: mariners

Baseball’s Hot Stove Season Offers More Sizzle Than Substance | FiveThirtyEight

Some interesting info from Neil Paine.

It also bears noting that, because of MLB’s economic structure, the market price for hot stove players is higher than the average amount that teams generally pay per win. When we hear about the cost of a win in these contexts, it generally refers to a player’s value on the open (free agent) market, and when teams are bidding against each other, this framework does a good job of predicting what free agents will be paid for the WAR they’re expected to ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: December 29, 2014 at 10:09 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: sabermetrics, war

Gil Hodges and the Hall of Fame « Our Game

John Thorn’s latest on MLB.com.

Jim Furtado Posted: December 29, 2014 at 10:05 AM | 131 comment(s)
  Beats: gil hodges, hall of fame

Mess with MLB? Lose your All-Star Game

We heard a couple of weeks ago that Petco Park in San Diego was likely to host the 2016 All-Star Game. This conflicted with an earlier report that Camden Yards in Baltimore would play host.

Today Roch Kubatko of MASN confirms that, no, Camden Yards will not be the site and cryptically adds that “Major League Baseball doesn’t seem to have much desire to do the Orioles any favors these days.”

It has to be cryptic, I assume, because Kubtako’s employer is at the center of the reason why ...

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RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: December 29, 2014 at 09:20 AM | 3 comment(s)
  Beats: all-star game, litigation, masn, nationals, orioles

Are Yankees in on Scherzer? Read Tex message from six years ago | FOX Sports

As a Red Sox fan, I’d love to see the Yankees get Scherzer. In the short run it will help them but in the long run the odds are they will end up with another Sabathia-type contract.

Regardless of what you’ve heard so far this offseason, and however much the teams downplay their needs to the media, the fact remains: 2014 was the first season in more than two decades during which both the Red Sox and Yankees missed the playoffs. They’re due for an old-fashioned bidding war with Boras in the ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: December 29, 2014 at 09:14 AM | 34 comment(s)
  Beats: max scherzer, yankees

Starlin Castro of Chicago Cubs questioned about shooting - ESPN Chicago

Some updates on Castro.

Jim Furtado Posted: December 29, 2014 at 09:01 AM | 7 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs, starlin castro

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 12-29-2014

Milwaukee Sentinel, December 29, 1914:

Cyril Slapnicka, the Brewer pitcher, is up in arms these days.

According to the official pitching averages of the American association, issued last week by President Chivington, Slap is credited with eight victories and is charged with nine defeats. According to his record he lost only eight games, giving him an average of .500 for the season. As Slap had a bonus of $200 coming, in the event of his winning half his games, naturally he is quite interested ...

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Willie Horton Hears The Who (Dan Lee) Posted: December 29, 2014 at 08:21 AM | 20 comment(s)
  Beats: cy slapnicka, dugout, history

Sunday, December 28, 2014

Bastian: Mind Over Matter: Bauer Goes High Tech in Offseason Regimen

Bauer detailed one of the setups that he uses in the offseason. He will have a camera in each batter’s box mounted at eye level, so he can see the hitter’s perspective. Bauer also has a camera mounted from the center-field view in order to track the flight of the ball. He then films his pitches at 240 or 480 frames per second, and he can overlay the pitches on video to see variances in the movement.

“So, then I can tailor-fit what pitches I throw and where to make them all appear the same, ...

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davekemp Posted: December 28, 2014 at 06:33 PM | 3 comment(s)
  Beats: bauer, indians, sabermetrics

Despite losses, Orioles still perched on top in AL East - Sports - The Boston Globe

No excuse? How about if the price tags on the available starters are unreasonable? Don’t get me wrong. Getting an ace would be great. Getting an ace at the expense of too much talent, though, is a price they shouldn’t be willing to pay. That’s especially true if you believe having the ace will only get the team to 84-88 wins.

To do: Find an ace. The Red Sox have no excuse for leaving themselves short in this area. They have player and financial resources to obtain free agents such as Max ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: December 28, 2014 at 02:50 PM | 16 comment(s)
  Beats: blue jays, orioles, rays, red sox, yankees

In Africa, Out of Nowhere, There Is Baseball - WSJ

It’s baseball.

Jim Furtado Posted: December 28, 2014 at 10:06 AM | 23 comment(s)
  Beats: international

Peter Gammons: If traded, will Hamels reap the desired return? - GammonsDaily.com

If your GM is not listening to Pat Gillick, your GM has big problems.

The Red Sox made it clear when they opened talks about Hamels that they will not deal Mookie Betts, who is clearly a regular and he who wills the vital role of leadoff hitter (check Bill James’ 2015 projection on Betts, over .400 OBP, 500 slug, just 22 years old); in 37 games, Betts’ WAR was 2.1, in 175 Myers’ was 0.9. They will also not trade catcher Blake Swihart. Now, Charlie Manuel saw more games in the Boston system ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: December 28, 2014 at 10:03 AM | 18 comment(s)
  Beats: phillies

Sunday Notes: Starting vs Relieving, Trade Dialogue and Much, Much More | FanGraphs Baseball

David Lauria’s Sunday Notes column.

Jim Furtado Posted: December 28, 2014 at 08:41 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: sunday notes

Blue Jays await Takashi Toritani decision | Toronto Star

[Takashi] Toritani, who hired notorious baseball agent Scott Boras to guide his transition to the big leagues, is currently mulling offers from the Jays and San Diego Padres, according to Japanese news reports. The Padres are believed to be offering a chance to play shortstop, while in Toronto Toritani would be moved to second, where he played at the 2013 World Baseball Classic. Given his age, Toritani is likely to sign a short-term deal of just one or two years. Since he is a free agent, no ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: December 28, 2014 at 08:39 AM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: blue jays, japanese baseball, padres, rumors, takashi toritani

Saturday, December 27, 2014

Starlin Casto Arrested in Shooting Incident

And tweet from: @Enrique_Rojas1

#Cubs SS Starlin Castro arrested Saturday by authorities for questioning by a shooting that left 6 injured by bullets, police said.

Dock Ellis on Acid Posted: December 27, 2014 at 02:16 PM | 43 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs, starlin castro

2014 Organization All-Stars | MiLB.com

Since this is such a slow baseball news period, here’s a link to MiLB’s organizational reports.

Jim Furtado Posted: December 27, 2014 at 12:19 PM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: minor leagues

The Economist: The baseball-card bubble

A nice short history of the baseball card bubble:

Several years of caustic negotiations between team owners and the players’ union culminated in a work stoppage in 1994 and the cancellation of the World Series for the first time since 1904. The strike cost Major League Baseball dearly—attendance and revenues fell sharply when play finally resumed—and spelled doom for the card traders and dealers whose success depended on unbroken good fortune.

Just a few years after the bitter collapse ...

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The Fallen Reputation of Billy Jo Robidoux Posted: December 27, 2014 at 09:50 AM | 24 comment(s)
  Beats: bubbles, cards, finance, memorabilia

Friday, December 26, 2014

MLBTradeRumors: Twins Extend Phil Hughes to 2019

If anyone thought there would be hard feelings about that missed $500,000 bonus from last season, this puts paid to that…literally.

The Twins have locked up a key rotation cog going forward, as the team today announced that they have restructured and extended the contract of Phil Hughes. Originally owed $16MM through 2016, Hughes receives an additional three years and $42MM under his new deal. [...]

The 28-year-old Hughes enjoyed an excellent season with Minnesota in 2014 — the first of a ...

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Esoteric Posted: December 26, 2014 at 11:53 PM | 6 comment(s)
  Beats: minnesota twins

Hiroki Kuroda Plans To Return To Hiroshima Carp – MLB Trade Rumors

Yankees need another starter.

Veteran righty Hiroki Kuroda is planning to return to the place where he made his name, the Hiroshima Carp of Japan’s Nippon Professional Baseball league. Japanese media outlets Nippon and Chugoku Shimbun reported the news earlier today, with Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com reporting via Twitter that Kuroda was in fact headed back to Japan.

Jim Furtado Posted: December 26, 2014 at 07:52 PM | 21 comment(s)
  Beats: hiroki kuroda, japanese baseball, yankees

Ammenheuser: Picking the next Baseball Hall of Fame class

It took Ammenheuser longer to sign his name on the ballot… “After a lot of statistical examination and careful review of their careers, I chose to include Raines and Schilling to join Johnson, Pedro Martinez and Smoltz.”

The holdover list is much more enticing. The debate rages whether Bonds, Clemens, McGwire and Sosa belong in the Hall. Alleged use of performance-enhancing drugs will likely keep them out. And that’s too bad. Bonds and Clemens, specifically, were among the game’s elite ...

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Repoz Posted: December 26, 2014 at 01:37 PM | 39 comment(s)
  Beats: hof

Dave Annebheuser’s HOF Ballot

His choices- Pedro, Unit, Smoltz, Raines, and Schilling. FTFA…

“I can make very good cases for Biggio, Piazza, Bagwell, Raines, Smith, Mussina and Schilling. After a lot of statistical examination and careful review of their careers, I chose to include Raines and Schilling to join Johnson, Pedro Martinez and Smoltz.

Who do you think I should have included?”

I don’t know, maybe the other five guys you considered…

TJ Posted: December 26, 2014 at 12:47 PM | 3 comment(s)
  Beats: hof

Rob McMillin: Transparency In The Hall: An Appreciation Of Repoz’s Gizmo

Or as I told Rob…“I think the MLB Network should have a 3-hr show of all HOF ballots being opened…with a Sammy Petrillo-type host using a magic wall.”

It is probably not too strong to suggest that Darren Viola’s Hall of Fame Ballot Collecting Gizmo — an annual event for a number of years now — has sparked a dialogue about transparency in BBWAA voting that is vastly overdue. That it must be crowdsourced is understandable (at least for a while), as is the humble and necessarily incomplete ...

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Repoz Posted: December 26, 2014 at 10:31 AM | 11 comment(s)
  Beats: gizmo, hof

Tampa Bay Rays Ben Zobrist can play infield and outfield, is 33 and will be a free agent after next season, so it’s time to examine potential trade partners because it makes sense that the Rays will try to move him | FOX Sports

From what I have read and heard from the Rays front office, they aren’t throwing in the towel on competing in 2015. I don’t see them trading Zobrist unless they start off next season poorly.

Jim Furtado Posted: December 26, 2014 at 08:40 AM | 63 comment(s)
  Beats: rays

Ace Maeda re-signs with Carp | The Japan Times

He would have gotten more than $2,492,437.04 in MLB.

Hiroshima Carp ace Kenta Maeda on Wednesday re-signed with the Central League club for ¥300 million, up ¥20 million from last season.

“The club not only valued my results but also the way I played,” the 26-year-old said after signing the new deal at Mazda Stadium.

Jim Furtado Posted: December 26, 2014 at 08:30 AM | 4 comment(s)
  Beats: japanese baseball

Benjamin Hill’s Minoring in Business announces first annual Bizzies award winners | MiLB.com News | The Official Site of Minor League Baseball

The CLAWlossal is not something I would order.

Therefore, what follows is my first annual “Minoring in Business” Awards—the Bizzies, if you will—culled from my extensive ballpark travels during the 2014 season. The eight inaugural honorees, each representing an arbitrarily chosen category, have all gone above and beyond in their quest to make the Minor League Baseball fan experience as memorable as possible. Congratulations to all of the winners, as being included in this article surely ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: December 26, 2014 at 08:19 AM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: business, minor league promotions

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