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Saturday, November 05, 2016

Why The Union Should Push Back At International Changes | BaseballAmerica.com

Ben Badler makes the case against raising the international minimum signing age to 18.

There will still be some Latin American players who can get to the majors at 21 and hit free agency still at their traditional peak years, but raising the signing age from 16 to 18 reduces the number of them who will. That hurts players in the union—and not just Latin American players. While international amateur players aren’t in the union, the players’ association would be smart to push back against ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: November 05, 2016 at 06:15 AM | 23 comment(s)
  Beats: cba, international draft, international free agents

Friday, November 04, 2016

Love, loss and the Indians

MLB.com writer shares his thoughts on the Indians, the World Series, and his late son.

neck Posted: November 04, 2016 at 07:15 PM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: indians

Prospecting on the Beautiful Island

As the game of baseball continues to globalize, major league organizations are looking beyond the prospect hotbeds in the Americas. For many organizations, this includes scouting in Taiwan, which 16th-century Portuguese sailors dubbed Formosa, “The Beautiful Island,” owing to its natural fusion of green fields, forest ranges, mountain tops and water bodies.
The San Diego Padres, for example, recently signed Taiwanese pitcher Wen-Hua Sung, who turned 20 in September. Sung, whom the local ...

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RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: November 04, 2016 at 04:59 PM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: international, prospects, taiwan

Arizona Diamondbacks pick Torey Lovullo as manager

The usually reliable John Gambadoro of Arizona Sports is reporting that the team will name Boston Red Sox bench coach Torey Lovullo as the new manager of the Arizona Diamondbacks. While there has not yet been an official announcement, the choice has since been confirmed by others, including Nick Piecoro and Jon Heyman, so it appears to be close to a done deal. Lovullo will become the 10th manager in team history.

This is no great shock: as soon as Red Sox GM Mike Hazen was appointed to the ...

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RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: November 04, 2016 at 04:53 PM | 15 comment(s)
  Beats: diamondbacks, torey lovullo

Is the Postseason Becoming Too Different?

Or, if we want to look at it another way, relievers threw 43% of all the postseason innings this year. That’s up from 39% a year ago, and over the last five years, it had held pretty steady between 35-40%, right in the same range as the 63%/37% split we see during the regular season. It certainly feels like this year is the start of a shift, and teams are going to continue to push their bullpen usage in October, especially given how well it worked this year.

But that brings up a bit of a ...

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RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: November 04, 2016 at 01:48 PM | 29 comment(s)
  Beats: dave cameron, post-season

Why Aren’t There More Gay Baseball Players?

Spoiler alert! There’s no single great answer to that question. Complex spoke to every living professional baseball player who’s come out publicly: Conroy and Denson, plus four others who came out after retiring, and all of them had somewhat different takes.

“I think people are misguided in thinking that it’s connected,” says Billy Bean, the one-time major leaguer who came out four years after his pro career ended and wrote a book about everything, now serving as Major League ...

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RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: November 04, 2016 at 01:43 PM | 26 comment(s)
  Beats: gay players, gay rights, rob neyer

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 11-4-2016

Topeka State Journal, November 4, 1916:

BALL PLAYERS TOO RICH FOR GOOD OF THE GAME

Ed Barrow, president of the International league, in speaking of the decline of interest in baseball…declares that interest in the game could be greatly revived by requiring the visiting players to travel to the park via busses and fully dressed in their uniforms. He deplores the many automobiles and the large bank accounts that players have nowadays, and attributes much of the lack of interest in baseball to too ...

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Jefferson Manship (Dan Lee) Posted: November 04, 2016 at 11:02 AM | 13 comment(s)
  Beats: dugout, history, old man yells at cloud

A Night To Remember

Series of fan and player photos from game seven.  I love this stuff.


The Game Plan: How the Indians Almost Won It All | FanGraphs Baseball

The Indians Way.

Jim Furtado Posted: November 04, 2016 at 09:44 AM | 4 comment(s)
  Beats: indians

The Cubs Just Ended Baseball’s Analytics War

It’s never, ever been about being right. It’s always about being better. It’s tough to get better if you believe you have all the answers. By questioning everything, including what you believe to be true, you remain open to change and improvement. Theo has always gotten this.

Baseball has been solved, and the solution is simple: There is no solution. It’s when you think you’ve got the game figured out that it bites you in the ass. There is always more information to be had, and more ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: November 04, 2016 at 08:28 AM | 58 comment(s)
  Beats: analytics, cubs

GM Dick Williams in control of Reds operations | reds.com

The reliever market gets more expensive every day.

“The bullpen will be interesting to see how it comes together,” Williams said. “The market is going to make it challenging. There is not a ton of options available, and there are a lot of teams talking about needing bullpen help right now. We just have to be careful that we don’t get swept up in a market that is overheated. We’ll monitor that market and try to find value.”
Creative bullpen management was in focus throughout the postseason, with ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: November 04, 2016 at 08:10 AM | 27 comment(s)
  Beats: dick williams, general managers, reds

Steve Bartman ‘overjoyed’ by Cubs’ World Series win, won’t crash victory parade

Completely unexpected.

Jim Furtado Posted: November 04, 2016 at 08:09 AM | 62 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs

At Last - The New Yorker

Roger Angell’s take.

Quieter scenes remain from this famous evening. There was an instant where we saw, amid a row of standees, Jack Epstein held in the right arm of his dad, Theo, the Cubs’ president (and the inventor and curator of this team), his arm around his dad’s neck and everyone’s eyes fixed on the doings below. Later, Manager Terry Francona’s post-season interview in the silent Cleveland clubhouse was a model of grace and generosity, but standard for him. I also caught a very ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: November 04, 2016 at 07:59 AM | 41 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs, indians, world series

Option roundup from around Major Leagues | MLB.com

These players are going back to their teams.

Jim Furtado Posted: November 04, 2016 at 07:17 AM | 18 comment(s)
  Beats: free agents

Thursday, November 03, 2016

Tigers trade Cameron Maybin to Angels for minor league pitcher

For their first move today, they traded centerfielder Cameron Maybin to the Los Angeles Angels for minor-league right-handed pitcher Victor Alcantara.

The Angels will exercise Maybin’s $9 million option for 2017.

Alcantara, 23, posted a 4.30 ERA and 1.46 WHIP in 29 games – 20 starts – for Double-A Arkansas this season. He is not considered a top prospect.

In essence, the Tigers simply decided not to pick up Maybin’s option. This was not an unsurprising move, given the team’s plan ...

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RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: November 03, 2016 at 09:57 PM | 16 comment(s)
  Beats: angels, cameron maybin, tigers, trade

Game 7 most watched baseball game since 1991

Game 7 was watched by 40.045 million last night on Fox — the best any baseball game has done since 1991.

Last night’s Game 7, which lasted 290 minutes including a 17-minute rain delay, also was up 70% in viewership compared with the most recent World Series Game 7 broadcast, in which the San Francisco Giants beat the Kansas City Royals on October 29, 2014.

Baseball is dying.


Does Eric Hosmer deserve another Gold Glove? Read and decide for yourself

If the BIS scorers are working off game video, that’s a problem. One of my complaints about watching games on TV is that they rarely show defensive alignment. UZR “stringers” can’t include where a player started if those stringers aren’t actually at the games; like everybody else, they’re at the mercy of what TV chooses to show them.

Ask the people in uniform about Hosmer’s range and you’ll hear his range to his glove-side is about average, while his range to his arm-side is ...

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RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: November 03, 2016 at 04:53 PM | 7 comment(s)
  Beats: defensive metrics, eric hosmer, gold glove, range, uzr

Top 111 Free Agents

Players are ranked based on how I expect teams will view them, not on how I view them myself. Essentially, they’re ranked from predicted biggest contract to smallest, not accounting for options.

All ages are as of April 1, 2017.

1. Yoenis Cespedes (31, OF, Mets): It couldn’t have been a very difficult call; Cespedes will opt out of the final two years of his three-year, $75 million contract and seek a longer contract after striking out on getting a five- or six-year deal in a crowded ...

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RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: November 03, 2016 at 03:39 PM | 47 comment(s)
  Beats: free agency

Vin Scully Unhappy About Reduced World Series Role

Vin and I made plans in the spring of ’66 to have dinner when we later had the Dodgers on our broadcast schedule,” Gowdy remembered pensively.  “As our date approached, I called Vin to finalize details and he abruptly told me that dinner was off. He had apparently found out that if the Dodgers win, his television role would be reduced. He was obviously not happy about the decision.

I was surprised by Vin’s reaction but understood it. Heck, the World Series was then sports’ ...

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Bote Man Posted: November 03, 2016 at 02:37 PM | 7 comment(s)
  Beats: broadcaster, broadcasting, dodgers, poopyhead, television, vin scully, world series

Congratulations! The Royals are sending pizzas to the Chicago Cubs front office

It’s a tradition like no other. OK, maybe not at the level of The Masters, but this is certainly very cool.

After the Royals won last year’s World Series, the San Francisco Giants sent 25 pizzas to the Royals. The Giants were the defending World Series champions and they had received pizzas the year before from the Boston Red Sox, who won the title in 2013.

So the Royals are paying it forward.

Toby Cook, the Royals’ vice president of publicity said the team is sending Giordano’s deep ...

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Zach Posted: November 03, 2016 at 11:58 AM | 28 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs, royals, traditions, world series


Ben Zobrist named World Series MVP after go-ahead double in Game 7 - Chicago Tribune

Back-to-back championships for Zobrist.

Jim Furtado Posted: November 03, 2016 at 06:21 AM | 31 comment(s)
  Beats: ben zobrist, cubs

Method to Cubs’ Joe Maddon’s madness - Chicago Tribune

The Cubs bats picked Maddon up. They turned his decision to pitch Chapman in the previous game a footnote.

Maddon called on closer Aroldis Chapman with two out in the bottom of the eighth inning with a three-run lead, but Chapman - who had thrown four innings and 62 pitches in two previous games - surrendered three consecutive hits, including a game-tying home run by Rajai Davis.

“Chappy is our guy in that moment,” Maddon explained. “We narrowed it down to four outs. If you want to really ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: November 03, 2016 at 06:18 AM | 69 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 11-3-2016

Harrisburg Telegraph, November 3, 1916:

Federal Judge Landis is declared by a morning newspaper to-day to be the choice of several major league baseball magnates for chairman of the national commission in case that position should be vacated by August Herrmann. The attitude of Judge Landis on the subject, however, was not stated, the jurist apparently not having been advised that his name was to be brought into the list of possibilities for the position.

I had no idea people were positioning ...

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Jefferson Manship (Dan Lee) Posted: November 03, 2016 at 06:16 AM | 21 comment(s)
  Beats: dugout, history, kenesaw mountain landis

Cubs’ David Ross goes out with a bomb—and a World Series title | Chicago Sun-Times

When he took the pitch off his mask and stumbled around, I thought he had suffered a concussion. It was surprising when they didn’t come out to check on him. Then he hit a home run.

Unbelievable.

“Win a World Series in your last year when you know you’re going out and you’re a backup catcher,’’ Ross said, “and these guys treat me the way they do and the city shows me the love it has shown me and you’re a part of one of the greatest games in the history of baseball and breaking ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: November 03, 2016 at 06:14 AM | 19 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs, david ross

Theo Epstein adds to Hall of Fame resume | MLB.com

Theo has brought a lot of joy to a lot of people.

“I’m truly just honored to be part of Major League Baseball,” Epstein said after the hug broke up. “I grew up a fan, loving the game, and not being good enough to play, so to be part of a Major League Baseball is incredible. To have the privilege of working with two organizations like this is something I never thought I’d have, and to be a part of winning World Series in both places is something I will always treasure and won’t take for granted. ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: November 03, 2016 at 06:01 AM | 23 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs, red sox, world series

Cubs win World Series after 108 years waiting | MLB.com

The Indians made it tough, erasing a 5-1 lead in Game 7 and tying it on Rajai Davis’ eighth-inning home run. A 17-minute rain delay before the 10th inning saved the day. Outfielder Jason Heyward called the Cubs hitters into the weight room, and general manager Jed Hoyer watched as the players regrouped.

“I think the rain delay was the best thing that ever happened to us, to be honest,” Hoyer said. “We went down to the rain room, talked a little bit. [Cubs president of baseball operations Theo ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: November 03, 2016 at 05:55 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs, indians, world series

Cubs vs. Indians Wrapup | 11/02/16

Congrats to all the Cubs fans out there! Indians fans, you deserved a victory as well. Unfortunately, only one team can win.

Jim Furtado Posted: November 03, 2016 at 12:48 AM | 182 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs, indians, world series

Wednesday, November 02, 2016

Arizona Fall League Fall Stars Rosters | BaseballAmerica.com

I already have my DVR set.

Jim Furtado Posted: November 02, 2016 at 09:05 PM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: afl, prospects

Jacksonville Suns changing name to Jumbo Shrimp

I grew up in Jacksonville, and have fond memories of going to the Jacksonville Expos (later the Suns) games at old Wolfson Park. I’ve made it to their new park last year, and it’s a nice enough place. As for the name change, honestly I’m more irritated by the stupid logo than I am the unwieldy name.

For his part, team owner Ken Babby offers some particularly egregious corporate speak by way of explanation:

“This is a high-energy, impactful, bold move,” Babby said Tuesday. “There’s ...

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Brian C Posted: November 02, 2016 at 07:50 PM | 19 comment(s)
  Beats: i mean seriously what is this, jacksonville, minor leagues

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