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Monday, August 22, 2016
Topeka State Journal, August 22, 1916:
The Philadelphia Athletics, for many years the idols of the game, have provoked much mirth this season and are now preparing to finish the race the worst last we have had for a long time.
It may sound queer to many, but as the season begins to sight its close Connie Mack is expressing satisfaction with the team he has been training this summer.
“By next year I expect to have a club that will be a big factor in the pennant race, and within two years ...
On this day in 1870, pitcher Fred Goldsmith demonstrated to baseball writer and historian Henry Chadwick that the curve ball is real. And the world was never the same.
The New Haven Register, Goldsmith’s hometown newspaper, wrote about the event recently.
“No game was scheduled this particular day, but a large crowd, curious to the proceedings, began to gather,” the Register reported. “[Goldsmith’s friend Ham] Avery, the story goes, drew a 45-foot line in chalk. He then hammered ...
“I had a bad year last year and I was coming off a hip surgery, and everybody wants to look at you like your career is done and you can’t do it anymore,” Moss said. “I wanted to tell them, ‘Hey man, pump the brakes a little bit. I’m fighting though a lot of things here.’
“You get tired of the constant questions about it. You’re going out there and fighting every single day to be the best for your team and your teammates that you can possibly be. Everyone in the room knows that you’re ...
Posted: August 22, 2016 at 06:51 AM | 10 comment(s)
Update (8/22/2016 3:10 PM EDT): Shoulder stain and rotator cuff irritation.
Shoulder not elbow. Ugh.
The Mets are still hopeful to have Steven Matz this week for their crucial series with the Cardinals. The Long Island lefty was heading to New York Sunday night to have his shoulder examined by team doctors Monday.
The Mets are holding his next scheduled start open for him, listing their starter for Thursday’s finale against the Cardinals as “TBA,” until they hear the diagnosis.
Posted: August 22, 2016 at 06:50 AM | 1 comment(s)
It was a dream more than 15 years—plus nearly five hours—in the making, but borders and politics always stood in the way. Yulieski Gurriel, at 32 years old, knew he was running short on time if he wanted to reach the pinnacle of the sport and play in the big leagues, which is why he took a chance and defected from Cuba with his brother earlier this year.
Gurriel, who defected following the Caribbean Series in February and signed with the Astros in July for $47.5 million, finally ...
Posted: August 22, 2016 at 06:40 AM | 0 comment(s)
The Arizona Diamondbacks are a mess.
Diamondbacks ownership is strongly considering making sweeping front-office changes, firing some of the most respected men in the game.
If owner Ken Kendrick and president Derrick Hall fire chief baseball officer Tony La Russa and his staff, including general manager Dave Stewart and assistant GM De Jon Watson, the D’backs will be changing GMs for the seventh time in just 11 years.
Stewart and Watson will have been given all of ...
Posted: August 22, 2016 at 06:22 AM | 39 comment(s)
Will they get another season?
La Russa paused when asked what he thought of the industry reaction. He said he understands the attention the trade received, particularly since the club had given up another first-round pick, pitcher Touki Toussaint, earlier in the year. But he questions the perception that everyone in baseball disliked it for the Diamondbacks.
“How many front offices, if you polled the other 29, how many would have questioned it or said it was a bad deal?” La Russa asked. ...
Sunday, August 21, 2016
Despite facing left-handed starters Saturday and Sunday, designated hitter Billy Butler was not in the lineup for the Athletics. Manager Bob Melvin said Butler was out sick due to nausea and vomiting, though he ruled out the flu.
There seems to be more to this story than a simple illness, however. According to Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle, Butler was injured in an altercation with teammate Danny Valencia on Friday. No one with the A’s has commented on the incident. From ...
Dating back to June 21, Kluber has gone 7-1 with a 2.08 ERA and 69 strikeouts over 69 1/3 innings. Despite a slow start, that’s moved him into the top ten in several pitching categories. Most notably, he’s first in the AL in FIP (3.02). He also led in that category in 2014. He’s also second in WHIP (1.02), and still climbing in strikeouts and WAR.
Posted: August 21, 2016 at 08:58 AM | 12 comment(s)
He also likes to pitch inside. Espinoza has received advice from Pedro Martinez, and not surprisingly, it includes the importance of intimidation.
“Pedro told me the ways I have to pitch,” said Espinoza. “He told me how to control myself, and to not be afraid to go inside. It’s OK to knock some guys down. After you hit them, they will be afraid of you next at bat.”
Posted: August 21, 2016 at 08:40 AM | 0 comment(s)
“For each trade you make there are 20 that didn’t work,” said Rizzo. “It’s a process that takes time and requires great research by our staff. We’re not afraid to make a deal. For me, when the deal succeeds for both teams it’s a success.
“We have great discussions with our staff. We have great debates. I want people to tell me I’m wrong and back it up with how they feel about a player. We love analytics, but what this is all about is the scout who drives that extra 100 miles ...
It doesn’t sound like the Red Sox will be getting bullpen help via trade.
Posted: August 21, 2016 at 08:00 AM | 0 comment(s)
Saturday, August 20, 2016
Kris Bryant isn’t Mike Trout, of course. No one is. But if you look at the numbers over the last year, you might be surprised how close it is.
Is Kris Bryant the best position player in baseball not named Mike Trout?
Posted: August 20, 2016 at 04:48 PM | 38 comment(s)
Memories from a fantasy baseball and sabermetrics pioneer.
Once upon a time, there was no internet.
It was a period of great struggle for fantasy leaguers looking for an edge. We had to rely on ancient forms of information, primarily books, magazines and newspapers. If an East Coaster needed to find out whether the Padres planned to put Shane Mack on the DL, we’d have to phone a distant relative or long lost classmate on the other side of the country, who then had to dig out yesterday’s ...
Posted: August 20, 2016 at 11:05 AM | 22 comment(s)
Arizona Diamondbacks managing partner Ken Kendrick is said to be “upset” and “embarrassed” about the team’s performance this season, at a time when the club’s very famous and accomplished top baseball operations executives, who include Hall of Fame manager Tony La Russa and former pitching great Dave Stewart, have contract decisions coming due.
While Kendrick’s alleged current mood isn’t necessarily determinative, and the official word is that no decisions have been made yet, ...
Posted: August 20, 2016 at 07:49 AM | 16 comment(s)
The Rockies already got a boost offensively from calling up top prospect David Dahl last month. Now, they will try and get the same type of boost to their pitching staff with Jeff Hoffman.
The Rockies will call Hoffman up to make his major league debut on Saturday against the Cubs, according to multiple reports. Hoffman, the Rockies’ No. 3 prospect at midseason and a Futures Game participant, was 6-9, 4.02 with 124 strikeouts and 44 walks in 118 2/3 innings pitched for Triple-A Albuquerque.
Posted: August 20, 2016 at 07:40 AM | 5 comment(s)
A sign of the times.
Manager Terry Francona, when told of the speculation, said, “If it’s on the Internet, you know if has to be true. I think a lot of that goes on – more than people realize. Just because it gets written about doesn’t mean you react all of a sudden.
“We watch for that stuff all the time. Teams watch us. We watch them. It’s common. Some teams are better at it than others.”
Posted: August 20, 2016 at 07:26 AM | 10 comment(s)
Finally, Plummer writes, “The study is an evaluation and it points out the strengths and weaknesses of various locations. Forcing Centro to disclose weaknesses identified in the Requested Information clearly puts Centro at a substantial competitive disadvantage.”
But shouldn’t the public know about potential “weaknesses” before writing a big check?
“We reached a tentative agreement that has amicably resolved the matter,” Miske’s attorney, Vincent Miranda, told the Daily News. He declined to say when the case had settled, but it appeared to have been very recent — no papers had yet been filed in the case indicating a deal.
Miske, whose most recent stint with the team began in 2009, says he was told by his boss, then-assistant general manager Billy Eppler, that “50 years in scouting is enough.”
“The Yankees often treated Mr. ...
Posted: August 20, 2016 at 07:20 AM | 0 comment(s)
Beltran has taken a liking to his new haunt in other ways, too—like preferring the vibes in Texas to those in New York. Here’s what he told KESN-FM about the difference between his most-recent employers, per the Dallas Morning News:
But at the end of the day, [in] New York there’s a lot of distractions, a lot of things going on more than baseball. Here it’s more about baseball.
That’s not a surprising answer. Beltran has every reason to prefer playing in Texas—in part because, you know, the ...
Friday, August 19, 2016
Turns out the shipments were just going to Peyton Manning’s wife!
Philadelphia Phillies first baseman Ryan Howard and Washington Nationals first baseman Ryan Zimmerman were cleared of wrongdoing in Major League Baseball’s investigation into their possible use of performance-enhancing drugs, prompted by an Al Jazeera report.
MLB announced Friday that the investigation was complete and it “did not find any violations of the Joint Drug Prevention and Treatment Program by either Howard or ...
“You’re supposed to sit on your ass and nod at stupid things,” the late Warren Zevon sang on his tribute to the former big league pitcher Bill Lee. But the free-spirit player, known to most as “Spaceman,” wasn’t about to do that — and it eventually cost him his career after a one-game walkout.
So you sat through the film?
Yeah, uncomfortably, in Montreal. It was funny, cute. I loved the ending, which has me pitching in San Rafael, kissing the ground. It doesn’t make me look ...
Posted: August 19, 2016 at 09:11 PM | 7 comment(s)
They are six games behind the Baltimore Orioles and Boston Red Sox in the wild card race entering Wednesday night.
But, oh, how everything could have been different if Cole Hamels didn’t exercise his no-trade rights when the Philadelphia Phillies were traded to the Astros a year ago, and Milwaukee Brewers catcher Jonathan Lucroy wouldn’t have vetoed a deal two weeks ago to the Cleveland Indians.
“It changed,’’ Luhnow said, “everything.’’
Posted: August 19, 2016 at 08:26 PM | 22 comment(s)
Interesting candid thoughts from the Dodgers (and former Royals, Mets, and Yankees) beat writer.
This past spring, I stopped by the Royals clubhouse. “We got you promoted!” Eric Hosmer said. In that moment, your insecurity creeps in, and you want to say “Fuck you, I did this on my own!” But that’s not totally true. So I wear it. I’m sure I’ll be connected with Kansas City for a while, and I’ll stomach the occasional dweeb on the Internet telling me I owe my career to the ...
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