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Tuesday, May 23, 2017


Rangers’ Nomar Mazara shares his life story | MLB.com

Good stuff here.

It didn’t take me long to realize I needed to learn English, too. I remember sitting in the middle of meetings during my first year in the U.S. not knowing what any of the coaches were saying. I was so lost, so I started asking my teammates for help.

Joey Gallo was my guy. I would tell him things like, “Every day, you’re going to tell me one word so I can repeat it and repeat it, over and over, so I can learn. And then the next day, you’re going to teach me another one. So like ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: May 23, 2017 at 11:11 AM | 3 comment(s)
  Beats: nomar mazara, rangers

The curveball’s resurgence is changing starting pitching | SI.com

Although blowing a fastball by someone is a lot of fun, there is nothing like buckling a hitter’s legs by dropping a big curve right over the plate.

Said one NL general manager, “Three teams have become big, big believers in the combination of high fastballs and curveballs: the Astros, Dodgers and Rays. Those teams are heavy into analytics. The game is changing away from the sinker/cutter/slider guys.”

Jim Furtado Posted: May 23, 2017 at 11:05 AM | 7 comment(s)
  Beats: pitching

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 5-23-2017

A letter to Grantland Rice, via the Harrisburg Telegraph, May 23, 1917:

Dear Sir: It has been suggested that we economize and cut out surplus padding…Why not the one syllable lineup in these days of restriction? I hereby nominate the following:

Catchers—Schang and Schalk.
Pitchers—Ruth, Shore, Schupp, Smith, Coombs, Bush.
First base—Chase.
Second base—Pratt.
Shortstop—Scott.
Third base—Groh.
Outfield—Cobb, Wheat, Burns.

Rice responds with a “three or more syllables team”:

Catchers—Nunamaker, ...

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Jefferson Manship (Dan Lee) Posted: May 23, 2017 at 10:30 AM | 37 comment(s)
  Beats: dugout, history

How Many More Years? – Joe Blogs – Medium

Before the 2001 season, Nomah’s agent Scott Boras did a statistical study on his client. The study estimated that Garciaparra would hit .336 for his career and finish with more than 3,500 hits and 500 home runs. Yes, it’s true, that statistical study had an excel column for “wishful thinking,” and another labeled “hard to keep a straight face.” But it was true that Garciaparra at that point was a lifetime .333 hitter and that he had more than 800 hits. Big numbers were in play.

Jim Furtado Posted: May 23, 2017 at 10:29 AM | 32 comment(s)
  Beats: hall of fame, nomar garciaparra

Ruben and Jon, v.5. | Texas Rangers Blog | The Newberg Report

Ruben Amaro?

Jim Furtado Posted: May 23, 2017 at 09:18 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: rangers

Trying times for John Farrell as Boston Red Sox manager | FOX Sports

The goal for any organization should be to employ one of the best managers. Finding a great manager, of course, is easier said than done. To get to a great manager you don’t want to be firing a manager every year or so; you want some stability. At this point, though, Farrell is clearly not a great manager. He’s had sufficient time to show that he isn’t. The million dollar question, who could you replace him with?

The excuses for the Sox, though, go only so far — all teams deal with injuries, ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: May 23, 2017 at 09:11 AM | 33 comment(s)
  Beats: john farrell, red sox

Matt Harvey studies past success and discovers arm slot issue in recent troubles | Newsday

Is this really true? Six inches higher? How does a pitching coach not notice a change like this?

“Looking at video from successful starts that I’ve had in the past, we found out that my arm slot was like six inches higher [than in previous years],’’ Harvey said Sunday. “Not this past start, but the previous ones. It kind of dated back to last year when I had some issues with my rib and I couldn’t throw from my normal arm slot because of the injury.”

“So I think I probably got ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: May 23, 2017 at 08:33 AM | 8 comment(s)
  Beats: matt harvey, mets

Curiosity Might Kill the Home-Run Spike | FanGraphs Baseball

Adjust, then adjust to the adjustments.

It appeared at one point as though the most popular counterpunch to the uppercut swing would be an increase of elevated four-seam fastballs. But we’re not seeing more teams follow the Tampa Bay model. In fact, according to Baseball Savant data, we’ve seen fewer four-seam fastballs thrown in the upper third of the zone and higher this year: an 8.8% rate this season compared to 9.9% in 2016 and 9.8% in 2015. Pitches down and below the zone have inched up ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: May 23, 2017 at 07:02 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: sabermetrics

Aaron Judge Gets His Own Rooting Section

Even the Babe didn’t get this:

The verdict is in: Rookie slugger Aaron Judge is getting his own rooting section at Yankee Stadium. Now in session, The Judge’s Chambers. Framed by faux wood paneling, covering three rows and fashioned to fit 18 fans wearing black judicial robes with the Yankees’ logo on the front and his No. 99 on the back, this court opened on Monday night.
.  .  .
New York hosting Kansas City was first on the docket. Looking like a jury box, ballpark style, with proper lettering ...

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The Yankee Clapper Posted: May 23, 2017 at 12:50 AM | 31 comment(s)
  Beats: aaron judge, legal, new york yankees, yankee stadium

Monday, May 22, 2017

The Chicago Cubs’ Circle of Trust - WSJ

What about a Cone of Silence?

Jim Furtado Posted: May 22, 2017 at 03:42 PM | 22 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs


Gwinnett Braves plan to change team name for 2018 season, ask for fans help in naming contest

What about “Barves”?

“The Atlanta Braves are still currently the only major league team that owns the majority of their minor league teams and a major part of the Braves footprint and the Braves expanding their brand throughout the Southeast is to continue to have minor league teams use the Braves name,” Johnson said. “When the team was in Richmond, that made great sense. If you were going to a Braves game, you knew you weren’t going to Atlanta. You were definitely going to Richmond.

...
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RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: May 22, 2017 at 02:46 PM | 57 comment(s)
  Beats: braves, gwinnett, mascot, minor league

Is John Farrell Officially On Hot Seat As Red Sox Manager? « CBS Boston

I’d expect them to get a more emotional manager to replace him. Farrell isn’t a bad manager; of course, he’s not a good one either.

Jim Furtado Posted: May 22, 2017 at 02:26 PM | 20 comment(s)
  Beats: john farrell, red sox

Focus on Jeter should inspire memories of Garciaparra’s peak

“it’s as if Jeter stands alone as the shortstop talent for a generation.

It’s too bad, considering that Garciaparra was every bit the player Jeter was. And in his prime, he was better.

There’s no question that Jeter brings the superior career to a debate between the two. Injuries derailed what Garciaparra could become from a legacy standpoint, and cost him the Hall of Fame”

Shortstops with most seasons of 6+ WAR, debuting 1969+:

Name            Yrs From   To   Age ...
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DanG Posted: May 22, 2017 at 12:50 PM | 50 comment(s)
  Beats: derek jeter, hall of fame, nomar garciaparra, red sox, yankees

We road-tested MLB’s foray into VR game streaming | New York Post

When will this be a thing? The technology seems a long way away.

Jim Furtado Posted: May 22, 2017 at 10:59 AM | 3 comment(s)
  Beats: technology

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 5-22-2017

Tacoma Times, May 22, 1917:

Baseball trades are funny propositions.

A week ago the Tacoma team traded Ray Alexander, pitcher, and Toots Bankhead, outfielder, to the Seattle team for Kid McIvor, southpaw pitcher.

Bankhead refused to play for Seattle, and quit organized baseball by starting east. McIvor has a good job with a Seattle shipyard and refuses to come to Tacoma. He plays ball in the Seattle shipbuilding league.

I know it’s because I’m looking at it from the perspective of 2017, but it ...

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Jefferson Manship (Dan Lee) Posted: May 22, 2017 at 10:46 AM | 9 comment(s)
  Beats: dugout, history

Terry Collins, Mets need to find way to relieve strain on bullpen | FOX Sports

A quality bullpen can’t exist when your starters are getting knocked out early every game.

Jim Furtado Posted: May 22, 2017 at 10:41 AM | 11 comment(s)
  Beats: mets


Mets need Matt Harvey to get his act together now more than ever - NY Daily News

One amusing moment during the Mets game was Mike Trout AB against Milone. Trout had a bad swing on a Milone pitch and Keith Hernandez (I think) made a comment about not needing to throw 95 to be effective. I turned to my wife and said, “Trout’s going to take him deep now.” Five seconds later, boom!

After the game, Terry Collins said the Mets are probably going to push Zack Wheeler back a day from his scheduled Wednesday start to give him an extra day’s rest and they might do it with Jacob ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: May 22, 2017 at 08:27 AM | 2 comment(s)
  Beats: matt harvey, mets

Top Yankees Prospect Gleyber Torres Promoted To Triple A

All is proceeding according to plan:

The Yankees have promoted top prospect Gleyber Torres to Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre. The move was announced after Sunday’s game by manager Bobby Mitchell on the team’s weekly radio show. Torres, 20, was hitting .273/.367/.496 in 32 games at Double-A and had homered in four of his past seven games, including a grand slam on Friday against Portland.

“Every since we’ve gotten him in the organization, he’s shown the ability to give quality at-bats ...

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Sunday, May 21, 2017

Red Sox are too good to be this average

The Red Sox need a trade, a benching, a tipping over of the food table moment, a stern meeting. They need to be shaken up.

They are 21-21 after a terrible 8-3 beating Saturday at the hands of the Oakland A’s, a last-place team the Red Sox have helped revive.

The Red Sox should be way better than this. It was an awful day. They fell to .500 for the first time since they were 5-5 to begin the season.

“Yeah it’s disappointing. We’re not a .500 team,” insisted Chris Young. “At the ...

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RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: May 21, 2017 at 11:41 PM | 20 comment(s)
  Beats: nick cafardo, red sox

Dodgers’ newest pitcher could be outfielder Brett Eibner

The Dodgers manage their roster with a short bench and a surplus of creativity. The player who has pinch-run most often this season is pitcher Ross Stripling.

So it might come as little surprise that the Dodgers are experimenting with outfielder Brett Eibner as a pitcher. He played the outfield and pitched at the University of Arkansas from 2008-10, so he would be working on seven years rest.

“I’m also 25 pounds heavier, so we’ll see what happens,” he said.

This isn’t just about a ...

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RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: May 21, 2017 at 11:38 PM | 29 comment(s)
  Beats: brett eibner, dodgers

OTP 22 May 2017: George W. Bush photobombs a sports reporter

Former president George W. Bush attended a Texas Rangers baseball game Wednesday evening, and happened to be heading to his seat with drink in hand right when sideline reporter Emily Jones was live on TV.

So Bush did what any normal person would do — seize the opportunity to be on TV and make a funny face.

Mark my words, the Donald will be doing this a couple of decades from now, and we’ll all be nostalgic for the innocent, rosy days of 2017.

(As always, views expressed in the article ...

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BDC Posted: May 21, 2017 at 08:10 PM | 1731 comment(s)
  Beats: journalism, politics, rangers, television

Brewers Stir A Little Beef By Suggesting That Cubs Called Rainout For Reason Other Than Rain

A few hours before the scheduled first pitch, the Cubs called to reschedule yesterday afternoon’s game against the Brewers due to rain. But when the original game time rolled around, it was no longer raining—and things stayed pretty dry for the rest of the day. An ordinary display of caution by the Cubs? A simple judgment error? Not according to the Brewers!

Per Tom Haudricourt of the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel, general manager David Stearns stopped short of accusing the Cubs of any ...

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RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: May 21, 2017 at 01:40 PM | 37 comment(s)
  Beats: brewers, cubs, postponement, rain



Red Sox chairman Tom Werner and his influence on baseball’s competition committee

Boston Globe Sunday notes.

Jim Furtado Posted: May 21, 2017 at 10:27 AM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: notes


Olney: Baseball must end its beanball legacy - Buster Olney Blog- ESPN

Good stuff in this one.

Jim Furtado Posted: May 21, 2017 at 09:27 AM | 4 comment(s)
  Beats: beanballs, orioles

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