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Monday, July 25, 2011

Granillo: The Joy of Catching a Foul Ball

My Fritz Peterson foul ball from 1966…(had to beat 5,896 others in attendance that day to the ball!)

image

But the best group is, far-and-away, the children. When a little kid catches a ball (or is the first to pick it up), that pride and excitement that you see on their faces is fantastic. They’re excited when a parent or adult gives them a ball that they caught, but catching the ball themselves is the best. The Giants and Diamondbacks had two interesting moments this week, when young fans were ...

Read More...
Repoz Posted: July 25, 2011 at 07:26 PM | 22 comment(s)
  Beats: history, memorabilia

Champions Japan threaten WBC boycott over revenue

“We are not saying we don’t want to take part,” union president Takahiro Arai said. “But we will not be able compete under the current conditions, which are unfair.”

Japan won the first two editions of the WBC in 2006 and 2009. However, the Japanese players received only 13 percent of total revenue from the last tournament, compared to the 66 percent the MLB and its players took.


If memory serves, they did something similar back before the ‘09 Classic. Highly doubt they will actually pull ...

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Gamingboy Posted: July 25, 2011 at 07:15 PM | 2 comment(s)
  Beats: international, japan

Image of the Day: Cal Ripken League Stadium FROM SPACE

Here’s a space view of the stadium where the Cal Ripken World Series. As you can see, it’s based heavily on Camden Yards. Zoom around a bit and you’ll find other ballfields that are scaled-down versions of Fenway, Yankee and Wrigley. The stadium where the Aberdeen Ironbirds play is to the south.


View Larger Map

Gamingboy Posted: July 25, 2011 at 07:05 PM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: special topics

Kernan: Baseball Hall of Fame may lower induction wait to 3 years

“The Post has learned” (trembles)

Derek Jeter and Mariano Rivera could become Hall of Famers much faster than expected after they retire. The waiting time is currently five years after a player retires to be named to the ballot. The National Baseball Hall of Fame, though, is considering making the waiting period only three years, The Post has learned.

That would be a great move.

...One reason Hall officials would want to shorten the waiting period is to make it a more “immediate” event. ...

Read More...
Repoz Posted: July 25, 2011 at 06:59 PM | 123 comment(s)
  Beats: announcements, hall of fame, history

Gammons: Gillick, Alomar belong in Hall together

Really more of just a Gillick column, but whatever.

It’s Trade Deadline week, so it’s appropriate to go back to the ‘93 deadline. Gillick had two deals going, one with Oakland for Rickey Henderson (Steve Karsay and a player to be named later), one with Seattle for Randy Johnson (Karsay and Mike Timlin).

He wanted the Johnson deal, but Pat couldn’t find Woody Woodward, who was playing golf. Sandy Alderson called and took the Henderson deal.

Problem was, Rickey being Rickey, he wanted money to ...

Read More...
Guapo Posted: July 25, 2011 at 06:42 PM | 13 comment(s)
  Beats: arizona, astros, athletics, blue jays, cubs, hall of fame, history, mariners, orioles, padres, phillies, yankees

Dave Cameron: When Statistics Are Not Helpful

Here on USSM, we talk a lot about probability and likely outcomes. When making a decision, we think it’s generally wise to understand historical precedent, and to learn from history rather than repeat it.

But, there are times in life that you’re not making a decision, and knowledge of the probability of outcomes just doesn’t help at all. You are just rooting for one specific result, even if you don’t have any control over whether it occurs or not.

I’m now in one of those situations. ...

Read More...
Repoz Posted: July 25, 2011 at 12:56 PM | 74 comment(s)
  Beats: site news, special topics

Don Malcolm: WHEN SWOBODA WAS A STAR…

Or as the non-Fillpot faced Quaid brother said in Frequency...“Man, I’ll love Ron Swoboda till the day I die.”

You will read that headline, and think that we have ingested some mind-altering (make that mind-destroying) substance.

Ron Swoboda. A star? Clearly some kind of in-poor-taste joke served up by someone named Shirley. Ron Swoboda? The guy nicknamed “Rocky” (and this was well before Sly Stallone gave that name some cachet—“Rocky” was a nickname for the state of Ron’s career). He was up ...

Read More...
Repoz Posted: July 25, 2011 at 12:40 PM | 11 comment(s)
  Beats: history, mets, sabermetrics

Bethel: Concepcion being overlooked by Hall of Fame

FIRE B.J. BETHEL
Where Bad Sports Journalism Came To Die

Concepcion isn’t — and for reasons that remain rather dubious. ESPN motor mouth Skip Bayless has this saying of “this isn’t the Hall of Very Good,” but Concepcion was beyond good. He was a star at his position. He was one of the two best during his prime, something which would normally guarantee admission.

He’s hurt considerably from the large shadow cast by his Big Red Machine teammates and one Ozzie Smith, who was always ...

Read More...
Repoz Posted: July 25, 2011 at 12:16 PM | 89 comment(s)
  Beats: hall of fame, history, reds, yankees

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 7-25-2011

Nashua Telegraph, July 25, 1911:

The control of the Boston National baseball club passed into the hands of President William Hepburn Russell Monday.  The announcement that neither “Ned” Hanlon of Baltimore, Md., nor anyone else, can buy the club, followed the transfer of stock.

...

Baltimore will not obtain a franchise in the league without precipitating a baseball war between the leagues, according to Edward Barrow, president of the Eastern league, who issued a statement criticizing certain ...

Read More...
Greasy Neale Heaton (Dan Lee) Posted: July 25, 2011 at 11:53 AM | 11 comment(s)
  Beats: dugout, history

Thoma: Baseball Hall of Fame approaches a crossroads

Make Ed Thoma a BBWAA Chapter Chairperson!...Or at least let him walk Yogi around on stage or something!

But here’s the thing: Nobody’s numbers should be taken at face value. All baseball stats are creatures of context.

The National League — the entire league, pitchers included — hit .303 in 1930. In the American League in 1968, no regular player hit better than .301. An outfielder in the 1930 NL who hit .290 wasn’t helping; an outfielder in the 1968 AL who hit .290 was a star.

...
Read More...
Repoz Posted: July 25, 2011 at 11:14 AM | 15 comment(s)
  Beats: hall of fame, history, projections, rumors, sabermetrics, steroids

FanGraphs: Slowinski: Ryan Howard and the RBI

While the barriers between traditional and advanced baseball analysis are falling every day — hearing David Cone cite FanGraphs during a Yankees-Rays broadcast this week was awesome — there are still certain players who are a wedge between non-saberists and saberists. It’s always the same pattern: one side thinks Player X is awesome, the other doesn’t. Flame wars ensue. Each side cites statistics to back up their position, then declares that the other side’s statistics are worthless. ...Read More...

Repoz Posted: July 25, 2011 at 11:00 AM | 19 comment(s)
  Beats: history, phillies, projections, sabermetrics

Hofmann: Hall of Fame induction speech was 100% Bill Conlin

Oh, I like you too, and to tell you the truth
That was my bill1chair after all…

My endangered industry faces far more complex problems. Unlike major league baseball, newspapers are not awash in money. We’ve been shot at and hit. The way we did things for centuries literally vanished in a few mouse clicks.

We came late to the party, trying to keep pace with a technology so powerful a government can be toppled by a thousand protesters with smart phones, Facebook accounts and a common cause. ...

Read More...
Repoz Posted: July 25, 2011 at 10:39 AM | 25 comment(s)
  Beats: hall of fame, history, media, site news, special topics

Mike Trout’s first big league homer helps Angels pull away from Orioles

BALTIMORE—Even if 19-year-old Mike Trout hits hundreds of home runs during his big league career, he will never forget the first.

Everything went right for Trout on Sunday, whose three-run drive in the eighth inning helped secure a 9-3 victory over the Baltimore Orioles.

With family and friends in attendance, Trout hit a 3-1 pitch from Mark Worrell into the left field seats to turn a 3-2 lead into a four-run cushion. He got the silent treatment upon returning to the dugout before being mobbed ...

Read More...

N.Y. Post: JPMorgan Chase holding up Mets-Einhorn deal

Dimon notes…

Einhorn’s $200 million purchase of a 33 percent stake in the money-losing Mets franchise is structured as a loan—with the hedge-fund investor getting paid back in three years and having his stake reduced to about 16 percent.

JPMorgan Chase, which is owed about $500 million by the team, won’t approve such a deal unless its loans get serviced—repaid or restructured—prior to Einhorn.

In addition to objecting to the Einhorn deal, in the last few months the bank wrote a “tough” ...

Read More...
bobm Posted: July 25, 2011 at 05:55 AM | 16 comment(s)
  Beats: business, mets

Mariners lose 15th straight

Tim Wakefield also got his 2000th K as a member of the Red Sox.

robinred Posted: July 25, 2011 at 01:30 AM | 49 comment(s)
  Beats: general

HoF website: Alomar, Blyleven, Gillick Immortalized

Link contains links to transcriptions for all three speeches given at Cooperstown today.

Dag Nabbit is part of the zombie horde Posted: July 25, 2011 at 01:12 AM | 2 comment(s)
  Beats: general

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Guzzardi:  Double the fun: Doubleheaders Were Yogi Berra’s Thing; He Caught Both Ends 117 Times

On May 15, 1948, the Philadelphia Athletics took on the New York Yankees in a doubleheader. What’s significant is not that the A’s, who finished a surprising fourth in the American League, swept the Yankees in New York, 3-1 and 8-6. After all, the Yankees were in a down year and finished in third place.

On that Saturday afternoon before 69, 416 fans, Yogi Berra caught both ends of the double dip for the first of what would eventually be 117 times. Berra had an atypical offensive day. He ...

Read More...
Jolly Old St. Nick Still Gags in October Posted: July 24, 2011 at 04:33 PM | 25 comment(s)
  Beats: general

Image of the Day/HOF induction chatter

The HOF inductions start at 12:30 on MLB Network, and if this is up by then you can use this as a chatter. Here, by the way, is the Clark Sports Center, where the inductions are held (as you can see, when it’s not used for inductions it is, well, a actual sports center with softball, soccer, etc.)


View Larger Map

Gamingboy Posted: July 24, 2011 at 02:18 PM | 22 comment(s)
  Beats: hall of fame, special topics

Baseball legend Warren Spahn’s Anna Maria home

With some descent elbow grease…I’m sure the bloody Healter Skelter practice scrawls will come off the walls.

Warren Spahn named his cottage “The Mound.” Ironically, its address is the same number as his ERA in 1953 — 2.10, the best he ever posted.

Warren Spahn clearly enjoyed living on the beach, and sometimes after spring workouts you could see him rowing a 16-foot life raft in the Gulf for an hour to get into shape.

“The Mound” is one of a cluster of cottages that were built by Warren ...

Read More...
Repoz Posted: July 24, 2011 at 01:01 PM | 4 comment(s)
  Beats: brewers, business, history

Jenkins: Nyjer Morgan: Is flamboyance a winning look?

Or as the chicken parmigiant Michael the K said yesterday…“It looks like Jemile Weeks goes to the same barber as his brother.” (in-studio stale Snicker bars abound)

Morgan was simply a disgrace in center field Friday night, at least by modern-day standards. The bleacher fans were riding him, as is their custom with most any opposing outfielder, and Morgan heard every word. He routinely engaged them with words and sweeping gestures, at least one of them carrying the hint of malice, and created ...

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Repoz Posted: July 24, 2011 at 12:38 PM | 38 comment(s)
  Beats: brewers, giants, nationals

Larry Bowa’s time in Reading a learning experience

And for this, the MLB Network pays him how much? (reaches for dusty “BOWA GOTTA GOWA” sign)

Still, Bowa said he’s not sure whether he’d like to return to the field as a manager or coach, even though he looked fit and probably 10 years younger than his age.

“I like what I’m doing,” he said. “I don’t like the way a lot of people approach the game now. I don’t want to categorize everybody, but there are a lot of general managers who throw everything into a computer and then try to pick their ...

Read More...
Repoz Posted: July 24, 2011 at 12:18 PM | 4 comment(s)
  Beats: announcers, dodgers, media, phillies, television

MacAree: The Problem With Sabermetrics

Sorry if I didn’t post it the right way. I thought this was kind of interesting and was wondering what people here might think.

Once upon a time, sabermetrics was an interesting field. Better, it meant something. Those curious about how baseball worked were lifting the veil and understanding the mechanics of the game. New metrics were developed that gave us a better idea of not only what a player was worth but how to puzzle that particular question out. Following the logic behind the new wave ...

Read More...
Orangepeel Posted: July 24, 2011 at 11:49 AM | 45 comment(s)
  Beats: sabermetrics

Jaffe: Silver anniversary: Davey Johnson runs out of players

July 22, 1986 - date of one of the most remarkable games ever

A quarter century ago, Mets manager Davey Johnson got stuck in an unenviable position: He ran out of position players before he ran out of game. Ejections and pinch hits forced him to get creative, as the Mets somehow managed to prevail over the Reds in 14 innings. ...

So Carter at third, and Hearn at the backstop. Who replaces Mitchell in the outfield?

Here’s where Johnson gets really creative. He has a southpaw pitcher in the ...

Read More...
bobm Posted: July 24, 2011 at 07:44 AM | 28 comment(s)
  Beats: mets, reds

weather.com: Ejections and Heat: Rising Together

According to a Wall Street Journal report, the number of ejections in the past 10 years has actually increased with the rising summer temperatures. Using information from Stats LLC, the study concluded that temperatures below 50 degrees yield just 5.8 ejections for every 100 games played in that weather from 2001 to 2011. From there, the average total goes up to 7.2 ejections every 100 games played in temperatures between 50 and 59 degrees, 8.4 in games between 60 and 69 degrees, 8.6 in games ...

Read More...
bobm Posted: July 24, 2011 at 06:03 AM | 3 comment(s)
  Beats: general

Must-see: Memphis Redbirds will wear ‘organ-themed’ uniforms

The Memphis Redbirds, the Triple-A affiliate of the St. Louis Cardinals, are holding an “Organ Donor Night” at AutoZone Park on Aug. 13 and these are the jerseys that they are planning to wear:

Organs in Memphis? Booker T approves!


Saturday, July 23, 2011

Peticca: Baseball’s new-fangled statistics: A perfect example of how flawed they can be

Look, I don’t have time to goof on this…I’m too busy goofing on Spotify!

For instance, in the aftermath of Texas Rangers’ third baseman Adrian Beltre’s hamstring injury, which has landed him on the disabled list, Richard Durrett writes for ESPN.com:

      Perhaps the best measurement of Beltre’s worth is Wins Above Replacement or WAR. Basically, it looks at the wins a player adds above what a “replacement level” player would do. ESPN Stats & Information (shout out Joshua Kritz) tells me ...

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Repoz Posted: July 23, 2011 at 11:28 PM | 20 comment(s)
  Beats: rangers, sabermetrics, special topics

Corcoran: Where does Alomar rank among game’s best second basemen?

Still, if pressed, my list of the top 10 second basemen of all-time would probably look like this:

1. Eddie Collins

2. Joe Morgan

3. Rogers Hornsby

4. Nap Lajoie

5. Charlie Gehringer

6. Frankie Frisch

7. Roberto Alomar

8. Ryne Sandberg

9. Bobby Grich

10. Lou Whitaker

That would make Alomar the second-best second baseman since integration and the seventh-best second baseman in the game’s 140-year history. Your list may differ, but no matter how you shuffle those rankings, Alomar’s ...

Read More...
They paved Misirlou, put up a parking lot Posted: July 23, 2011 at 09:06 PM | 75 comment(s)
  Beats: hall of fame

Image of the day: Wahconah from Space

Image of the Day has returned for a special run, as we’ll see images of Baseball parks… FROM OUTER SPAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAACCCCCCCCCCCCCCEEE!

Today is Wahconah Park in Pittsfield, Mass. Many of you are probably familiar with it, at least passingly, and anybody who isn’t should be able to figure out what is so unusual about it by looking at this satellite image.


View Larger Map

Gamingboy Posted: July 23, 2011 at 05:45 PM | 8 comment(s)
  Beats: special topics

Transcript of Jeff Conine’s comments about Florida Marlins SS Hanley Ramirez

From comments…“Conine is simply pissed off that he is no longer the greatest Marlins player ever.”

Does Jeff Conine get frustrated by Hanley Ramirez?

“On a nightly basis.’’

Because?

“I just, I don’t know, I think that obviously Hanley is a phenomenal talent. But as a guy that… I’m probably jealous too because I didn’t have that kind of talent but I had to work extremely hard on a nightly basis to put my talent on the field . I think that there are some nights when he ...

Read More...
Repoz Posted: July 23, 2011 at 05:13 PM | 17 comment(s)
  Beats: miami

On his way to Cooperstown, Pat Gillick’s journey was Southern California centric

Gary Lane and Ron Mertus already have a small claim to fame - they can boast of having played together on the same Van Nuys High varsity baseball team with Don Drysdale nearly 60 years ago.

“He started off as a second baseman, and we called him ‘Porky,’” said Lane of the Dodgers’ eventual Baseball Hall of Fame pitcher.

Pat Gillick didn’t have any kind of similar nickname when Lane and Mertus hung out with him growing up in the San Fernando Valley.

“I know they called him ‘Yellow Pages Pat’ ...

Read More...
YearOfGlad Posted: July 23, 2011 at 05:05 PM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: hall of fame

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