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Wednesday, May 30, 2018

How Dwight Evans Overcame a Mid-Career Crisis to Evolve into a Hall of Fame-Caliber Player

In early July 1980, Dwight Evans’ career stood at a crossroads.  For the past seven and a half seasons, Evans had played right field for the Boston Red Sox.  Evans possessed one of the most feared throwing arms in the game and was recognized for his defensive skills which had won him three Gold Glove Awards.  Evans was a decent hitter but had yet to have a breakout campaign at the plate.  After struggling mightily in the batter’s box during the first few months of the 1980 season, Evans found ...

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How The Yankees Landed Aaron Judge In The 2013 Draft

An oral history of a draft pick that has paid off big time:

Tim McIntosh, Yankees area scout (2001-03, ‘10-12): My ex-wife grew up in Linden. Everybody knows everybody. Somebody said, “There’s a big kid playing and you’ve got go look at him.” My cousin coached [Judge] in basketball and said, “He’s kind of passive; he’s soft. He’s the kind of guy that if he knocks you over, he’d let the play go down the court and help the guy up.”
.  .  .
Don Lyle, Indians: My mind was already set that this guy ...

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Rizzo’s slide into catcher stirs Cubs-Bucs debate

PITTSBURGH—Cubs first baseman Anthony Rizzo’s hard slide into Pirates catcher Elias Diaz broke up a double play, forced an errant throw into right field that scored two runs and left everyone in both clubhouses debating whether the play was legal, clean or dirty.

Umpires ruled that Rizzo’s eighth-inning slide was legal, and a replay review upheld the call. Cubs manager Joe Maddon was irate that the play was reviewed in the first place, and Pirates manager Clint Hurdle was ejected after arguing ...

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Barry`s_Lazy_Boy Posted: May 30, 2018 at 08:19 AM | 199 comment(s)
  Beats: slide rule

OT - 2018 NBA Summer Potpourri (finals, draft, free agency, Colangelo dragging)

I estimate only 10-12 Primates care about the NBA, none of whom can be bothered to curate their own thread to avoid detracting from what this site is really about:  complaints about mayonnaise.


EDIT: image is shrunken. Mouse over to show full size. -vi

Lance Reddick! Lance him! Posted: May 30, 2018 at 12:56 AM | 1860 comment(s)
  Beats: basketball, nba, off-topic

Tuesday, May 29, 2018


This is how Verlander got his groove back

“I was 99 percent sure I was going to need shoulder surgery. I couldn’t throw a baseball.”

By now, you probably know two things: Verlander didn’t need shoulder surgery, and he’s currently enjoying the most dominant season of a probable Hall of Fame career. After Monday’s emphatic 5-1 win over the Yankees, he leads the Majors with a 1.11 ERA. Verlander is pitching for the defending World Series champion Astros in a rotation that could become the best of all time.

Perhaps most tellingly, the ...

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Los Angeles El Hombre of Anaheim Posted: May 29, 2018 at 01:17 PM | 14 comment(s)
  Beats: astros, justin verlander, tigers


OT: Soccer Thread (World Cup)

We’ve gotten through Champions League and most of the relegation/promotion stuff so we may as well focus on the World Cup. And what a World Cup, Buffon playing his sixth, Pulisic making his WC debut, quality on-site reporting from Fox and two time Copa America champs Chile just part of what should make for an amazing tournament!  Plus of course the the family-friendly, inclusive atmosphere sure to be fostered by the Russians.

Group A - Russia, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Uruguay
Group B - Portugal, ...

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Jose is an Absurd Doubles Machine Posted: May 29, 2018 at 09:57 AM | 935 comment(s)
  Beats: off topic, soccer

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 5-29-2018

El Paso Herald, May 29, 1918:

There have been many queer developments and freakish plays in the history of baseball but the one that takes the cake was staged in Muncie, Ind., 28 years ago tomorrow…The remarkable chapter of the contest was confined to one inning, when the Anderson players made six hits—three triples, a double and two singles—without scoring a single run.

Triple. Out at home trying to score on a passed ball. Triple. Out at home trying to stretch it into a home run. Triple. Bunt ...

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Jefferson Manship (Dan Lee) Posted: May 29, 2018 at 09:36 AM | 44 comment(s)
  Beats: dugout, history

OTP 2018 May 28: Don’t turn down WH invitation: Former Nats manager on Powerhouse Politics podcast

“Baseball is not about politics, it’s just about going out and enjoying the game,” Johnson says of his experience managing a team in the nation’s capital in comparison with managing teams elsewhere, such as the New York Mets, Cincinnati Reds and the Philadelphia Phillies.

Games at Nationals Park in Washington, D.C., are often a “who’s who” of the political world, including Supreme Court justices, leading Democratic and Republican congressional leaders and high-profile media figures. ...

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Padres acquire Phil Hughes from Twins, but he’s probably not why they made the deal

In all likelihood, the Padres made this deal despite Hughes’s inclusion rather than because of it. In exchange for taking on less than $7 million in 2019 money, the Padres will net the 74th pick in the draft. (Remember, the competitive balance picks are tradeable.) This will again give the Padres four picks in the top-84, beginning with pick No. 7—they’d previously surrendered their second-round pick to sign Eric Hosmer. In addition, the Padres will pick 38th and 84th


Monday, May 28, 2018


Saturday, May 26, 2018


Friday, May 25, 2018

Alex Colome, Denard Span traded to Mariners

Dipoto improved both his bullpen and outfield with a two-for-two deal, acquiring Tampa Bay closer Alex Colome, veteran outfielder Denard Span and cash for Minor League starters Andrew Moore and Tommy Romero.

Jim Furtado Posted: May 25, 2018 at 11:37 PM | 21 comment(s)
  Beats: alex colome, denard span, mariners, rays, trade

Red Sox to part ways with Hanley Ramirez

According to a major league source, the Red Sox informed Ramirez Friday morning that they will designate him for assignment in order to open a spot on the major league roster for Dustin Pedroia, who is returning from the disabled list after his rehab from offseason knee surgery.

The Red Sox are responsible for more than $15 million remaining on Ramirez’s salary through the duration of this season. They will have seven days to trade or release him.

The decision to part ways with the ...

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Greg Pope Posted: May 25, 2018 at 12:08 PM | 72 comment(s)
  Beats: hanley ramirez, red sox


Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 5-25-2018

Toledo News-Bee, May 25, 1918:

Joe Jackson announced [today] that he is done with professional baseball.

“It makes no difference when the war ends. I shall not attempt to go back to ball playing to make a living. I intend to make my home here and to follow the trade of ship building.”

Jackson is peeved over press criticism of his action in quitting the White Sox after being called for selective service. He said he applied to the shipbuilding plant [in Wilmington, Delaware] two months ago for a ...

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Thursday, May 24, 2018

Key takeaways from MLB study of HR rate

Baseball’s home run surge of recent seasons is attributable not to a bouncier—or “juiced”—baseball, but rather to better carry resulting in longer fly-ball distances, a committee of experts has concluded.

In a report of findings released by Major League Baseball on Thursday and available at MLB.com, the independent committee chaired by Alan Nathan, professor emeritus of physics at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, concluded its research had achieved “partial success,” in that it ...

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Los Angeles El Hombre of Anaheim Posted: May 24, 2018 at 02:16 PM | 23 comment(s)
  Beats: chicks dig the long ball

White Sox’s Welington Castillo suspended 80 games for PEDs

“I was recently notified by Major League Baseball that I had tested positive for EPO, a substance that is prohibited under MLB’s Joint Drug Agreement,” said Castillo via statement. “The positive test resulted from an extremely poor decision that I, and I alone, made. I take full responsibility for my conduct. I have let many people down, including my family, my teammates, the White Sox organization and its fans, and from my heart, I apologize. Following my suspension, I look forward to ...

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Zack Cozart is concerned the Rays ‘have an ulterior motive’ in starting Sergio Romo

“I feel like teams have an ulterior motive when they are doing this,” Cozart said before the Angels’ game on Tuesday night. “Less starting pitching means you don’t have to pay guys as much.”
...
“I’m more concerned about the financial aspect of three or four years down the road, if your whole staff is bullpenning except a couple guys, your payroll is going to go down because you don’t have to pay starters anymore,” he said.



Diamondbacks lose seventh straight game, get swept by Brewers

Arizona has lost 13 of 14, falling out of the NL West lead while scoring just 26 runs in that span. The three games marked the Brewers’ first sweep of the Diamondbacks since June 2-4, 2008.

Meanwhile, the Dodgers have been winning a little and the Rockies and Giants have been treading water.  All 4 teams are within 4 games of each other.  It could be a weird year in the NL West.

Nasty Nate Posted: May 24, 2018 at 09:56 AM | 4 comment(s)
  Beats: arizona diamondbacks

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 5-24-2018

Lake County [Indiana] Times, May 24, 1918:

Persons who sell seats on any roof or structure overlooking a baseball park will be obliged to pay a war tax to the government, according to an announcement issued [yesterday] by the bureau of internal revenue.
...
The announcement says that in one city a woman whose yard adjoins the ball park has been selling seats in a tree, the price being five and ten cents, depending on how high the patron has to climb. Recently the price has been advanced to 6 and ...

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Jefferson Manship (Dan Lee) Posted: May 24, 2018 at 09:00 AM | 21 comment(s)
  Beats: dugout, history, i must be in the front row

Wednesday, May 23, 2018


Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 5-23-2018

New York Tribune, May 23, 1918:

Eddie Holley, shortstop on the Newark International League baseball team, was struck by lightning at the baseball park [in Rochester] this afternoon in a severe hail and thunder storm. He was made partially unconscious.

Holly might have been out for the year. It’s not easy to tell, but a former MLB shortstop named Ed Holly played 24 games for the 1918 Newark Bears. If he played regularly for a month or so, then missed the rest of the year, 24 games sounds right. ...Read More...

Jefferson Manship (Dan Lee) Posted: May 23, 2018 at 10:41 AM | 65 comment(s)
  Beats: dugout, history

Bautista must be last over-the-hill vet the Mets take a chance on

Is this really the best the Mets can do to fill out their roster?

Jim Furtado Posted: May 23, 2018 at 06:59 AM | 53 comment(s)
  Beats: jose bautista, mets

Sullivan: Baseball’s Hardest Thrower Gets the Second-Fewest Strikeouts

Most counterintuitive observation of the day?

Or ever?

Part of this is easy to understand. Why doesn’t Hicks strike more batters out? Just look at the walks. He’s wild. Been better lately, but still wild. Hicks’ overall strike rate ranks in the sixth percentile. Batters are better when they’re not behind in the count. If you don’t have command, you want to at least have control.

Another factor here is that Hicks doesn’t throw a hard four-seamer. Rather, he throws a sinker, and ...

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Stormy JE Posted: May 23, 2018 at 06:32 AM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: cardinals, fastballs, jordan hicks, strikeouts, velocity

Philip Roth obituary: Poignantly humane novelist set on emancipating American literature from respectability

Tall, curly-haired Phil (as he was known in the family) was passionate about baseball. He regularly attended minor league baseball games at Ruppert Stadium in Newark, and devoted The Great American Novel (1973) to the mythologies of baseball set against the harsher realities of communist subversion and anti-communism. He was supporter of the Brooklyn Dodgers.

[The Breast] was followed by The Great American Novel. Asked by a Sports Illustrated journalist why he wrote about baseball, Roth ...

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QLE Posted: May 23, 2018 at 05:04 AM | 105 comment(s)
  Beats: baseball novels, obituary, philip roth, the great american novel

The Shohei Ohtani experiment isn’t just working—it’s been perfect

Hardly anything has ever worked as well as the Ohtani experiment has so far. Pitching in the Los Angeles Angels’ six-man starting rotation, Ohtani has made seven starts and the Angels are 6-1 in those games; playing three or four days a week as the club’s DH, he has batted 90 times and outhit everybody on the team except Mike Trout. Short stretches of baseball are inherently inconclusive, but we can now say Ohtani is certainly one of the 50 best pitchers in the world, probably one of the 30 ...

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Los Angeles El Hombre of Anaheim Posted: May 23, 2018 at 02:51 AM | 57 comment(s)
  Beats: angels, shohei ohtani

Tuesday, May 22, 2018

MLBN: Kenny on Rays Starting Romo

Chris Russo talks with Brian Kenny about the Rays starting Sergio Romo in back-to-back games

Got earplugs?

Stormy JE Posted: May 22, 2018 at 03:26 PM | 10 comment(s)
  Beats: brian kenny, chris russo, kevin cash, rays, sergio romo

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