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Tuesday, February 14, 2017
phredbird says, “Pitchers and catchers report today. Happy Valentines Day, all you other baseball nuts at BTF, and all fans of the greatest sport ever.”
I am a Red Sox fan. If you aren’t, that’s fine. Our disagreement in fandom won’t diminish the joy I get from the team.
I enjoyed Field of Dreams and felt a heart tug when Ray played catch with his father because it reminded me of my time with my long-passed father. If you don’t feel the same connection, that’s fine too. I don’t feel the need to convince you otherwise. Those who go out of their way to try and diminish the joy fans get from the movie tells us more about them than the movie ...Read More...
Posted: February 14, 2017 at 09:58 AM | 41 comment(s)
field of dreams
El Paso Herald, February 14, 1917:
Dave Davenport, of the St. Louis Americans pitching staff, was seriously wounded at his home in Runge, Texas, today when his rifle was accidentally discharged. Davenport had just returned from a hunt. The bullet passed through his chest and also inflicted a scalp wound.
Davenport must have recovered fairly quickly, because he led the American League with 39 starts in 1917.
How did Castro do it?
“Just a lot of work and a lot of understanding of angles and what it takes to be a good receiver,” said Astros manager A.J. Hinch, a fellow Stanford catching product. “Like most smart players, he found a deficiency where he was being criticized a little bit or he wasn’t being ranked as much.”
Posted: February 14, 2017 at 09:26 AM | 0 comment(s)
“We think our starting pitching, we have a lot of depth through the system. Not necessarily front-end rotation types, but, honestly, I would rather take numbers of solid prospects over the higher valued few. Give me numbers because we know the attrition rate. So I think we’re in good shape there. Our expectation is that we’ll be better than we were a year ago, and our expectation is that we’ll continue to introduce new talent onto our Major League team, not unlike we did last year.” ...Read More...
Posted: February 14, 2017 at 09:25 AM | 0 comment(s)
This is a bad, bad take.
It’s not that the filmmakers lazily mailed in the father-son story, however, relying on you to bring your own baggage into the the theater in order to provide any dramatic heft. They just had a story they wanted to tell more. A story about how a parent’s values are more important than their children’s, how youthful idealism is a sin and how 1960s-style progressivism must be repudiated and repented for.
Posted: February 14, 2017 at 08:49 AM | 123 comment(s)
field of dreams
Monday, February 13, 2017
ESPN’s Jerry Crasnick reports that the Royals are expected to sign pitcher Travis Wood. It will be a two-year deal, according to Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports.
Wood, 30, pitched out of the Cubs’ bullpen last season, posting a 2.95 ERA and a 47/24 K/BB ratio in 61 innings. Right-handed hitters hit him pretty hard, compiling an .865 OPS, but Wood held lefties to a .447 OPS.
Posted: February 13, 2017 at 05:26 PM | 19 comment(s)
As their pitchers and catchers streamed into West Palm Beach ahead of their official report date Tuesday, the Washington Nationals made a significant addition to their bench by agreeing to terms with power-hitting lefty Adam Lind, according to a person familiar with the situation. The deal, the terms of which were not immediately available, will become official once Lind passes a physical.
If he passes, he will become the fourth outfielder and backup first baseman, likely bumping similar big ...
Posted: February 13, 2017 at 02:46 PM | 20 comment(s)
John Kruk isn’t going to hold back on Comcast SportsNet.
The Phillies and CSN introduced Kruk as the newest member of their broadcast team Tuesday afternoon at Citizens Bank Park, and Kruk entertained during the nearly 15-minute news conference. Kruk, who sources said signed a 5-year contract, will work between 80-90 games as an analyst this season. Ben Davis will work the remaining 70-80, and Mike Schmidt will work with Kruk or Davis during weekend games in Philadelphia.
“It’s going to be a ...
Sources told ESPN that MLB wants a 30-second time limit for managers to decide whether or not to challenge an umpire’s call and is currently discussing that limit, along with other possible changes to replay, with both the players’ and umpires’ unions.
The current rules say that, in most cases, managers must “immediately” inform umpires if they want to challenge a call. But in reality, there are often long delays as managers often wait for advice from their internal replay assistants before ...
Posted: February 13, 2017 at 02:34 PM | 80 comment(s)
pace of play
Want a reason that Marvin Miller should immediately be elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame? It’s the best rule change in the history of baseball. It’s called free agency.
Since 1979, only three years after free agency began, Major League Baseball has seen an unprecedented period of competitive balance and parity. In that span there have been 37 World Series played and 21 different franchises have won championships.
Posted: February 13, 2017 at 02:17 PM | 38 comment(s)
John Sickels’ list. I have some spreadsheet work to do this week!
Once you get past the Top 100 especially, you should take a “neighborhood” tier approach rather than “this guy at 179 is clearly better than the guy at 182.”
1) Andrew Benintendi, OF, Red Sox, Grade A
2) Yoan Moncada, INF, White Sox, Grade A
3) Dansby Swanson, SS, Braves, Grade A
4) Alex Reyes, RHP, Cardinals, Grade A
5) Amed Rosario, SS, Mets, Grade A/A-
6) Tyler Glasnow, RHP, Pirates, Grade A/A-
7) Gleyber Torres, SS, ...
With pitchers and catchers officially reporting and the first workout scheduled for Tuesday, the Red Sox still don’t have a healthy Wright, who continues to work his way back from an injury that didn’t require surgery, but has proven more stubborn than anyone expected.
“He’s making improvement,” manager John Farrell said on Sunday. “This has probably taken longer than he anticipated, than we certainly anticipated. He’s back throwing to 120 feet. He’s throwing flat ground ...
Posted: February 13, 2017 at 11:57 AM | 21 comment(s)
Grantland Rice via the Philadelphia Evening Ledger, February 13, 1917:
“The moist ball must go.”—Governor [and National League president] Tener. That in itself will be no great deprivation. We can ramble along in the absence of the concrete fact.
But, in the spicy literature of the game, what new phases are to take the places of those employed to denote the spitball’s flight? What will take the place of “Damp Fling,” “Saliva Shoot,” “The Dripping Drop,” “The Moistened Hurl,” “The Foamy ...
1. Alex Reyes, RHP, St. Louis Cardinals
2. Dansby Swanson, SS, Atlanta Braves
3. Andrew Benintendi, OF, Boston Red Sox
4. J.P. Crawford, SS, Philadelphia Phillies
5. Yoan Moncada, 2B/3B, Chicago White Sox
Congrats to the Jeter family. As for reports of the sonogram showing the girl has trouble moving to her left, that remains UNCONFIRMED.
On May 14, the Yankees will retire Derek’s number. It’s a significant moment, and one that’s had me thinking a lot about the end of his playing career — those last two years for him as a player, that also happened to be the first two years for us as a couple. Big moments have a funny way of doing that, I think — of getting you to look over your ...
Schneider believes the industry can learn to better prevent injuries in an era when they keep growing in number. To Schneider, the process doesn’t have to be rocket science, but it does require diligence and organization-wide agreement on practices and principles. And perhaps the greatest lesson to be learned from the White Sox is this: for as much promise as science and technology hold, preventing more injuries begins with open, honest dialogue.
Posted: February 13, 2017 at 10:11 AM | 1 comment(s)
“The primary reason why it’s hard to repeat is just because it’s really difficult to win the World Series,” he said. “In any given year, if you’re any old team, you have a 3 percent chance. If you’re the best team, you might have a 10-12 percent chance. It’s just hard to do.”
Throw in a post-title celebration of the century, and the challenges can increase.
“When you win, you get pulled in a lot of different directions,” Epstein said. “And there can be a tendency to ...
Posted: February 13, 2017 at 08:53 AM | 7 comment(s)
Why not also add in a “college of coaches”?
The setup is somewhat different. In November both were named senior vice presidents, with Neander also the general manager, and both are working under baseball operations president Matt Silverman, giving the Rays, in essence, a three-headed department.
“It is a unique structure,” Silverman said. “But it works because of the uniqueness of their paths and the relationship they’ve been able to form over a decade.” ...Read More...
When Rick Hahn discusses the White Sox current rebuild, the team’s general manager uses two words in describing his vision.
Posted: February 13, 2017 at 06:51 AM | 0 comment(s)
Sunday, February 12, 2017
Because this past week was the annual nadir of baseball news, and because the political Patriots are getting some headlines, this week’s OTP link is unabashedly unconnected to baseball:
In the wake of the Patriots’ thrilling 34–28 overtime victory, six players, five of whom are African-American—Martellus Bennett, Devin McCourty, Dont’a Hightower, LeGarrette Blount, and Alan Branch—announced they would skip the team’s ceremonial visit to Trump at the White House. All this ...
Posted: February 12, 2017 at 10:04 PM | 2310 comment(s)
Twice in his 22-year career, Baines and his fellow major leaguers were robbed of games due to labor stoppages. In 1981 and again in 1994, the owners and the MLB Players Association came to loggerheads and shut down the game. Could those two labor disputes have caused Baines the hits he needed to get to 3,000? If Baines has 3,000 hits on his ledger when he debuts on the Hall of Fame ballot in 2007, does he garner only five percent of the vote?
Jimmy thinks Hardball is a weird way for Sherman to talk about himself in the third person.
That is why it was so easy to name Epstein Hardball’s Most Interesting Person in Baseball heading into 2016.
The choice is less clear this year. But again Hardball will pick an executive facing ever-intensifying heat to win it all. When Andrew Friedman joined the Dodgers as president of baseball operations after the 2014 season and surrounded himself with former general managers, he forged the most ...
Posted: February 12, 2017 at 07:49 AM | 0 comment(s)
More wonderful Statcast stuff.
So the way we’ve identified “competitive throws” is to identify a player’s 90th percentile arm strength, and then take the average of all throws above the 90th percentile, as a good proxy for tracking only throws where a fielder was trying to make play with some urgency. Of the 107 outfielders who had at least 10 such throws last year, Aaron Hicks’ average of 99.4 mph was baseball’s best (remember this?), and Khris Davis’ average of 72.5 mph was the weakest. That’s ...
Posted: February 12, 2017 at 07:00 AM | 0 comment(s)
Biggest hurdle is probably Phillips no trade clause. Of course, if they tell him he’ll be a bench player if he stays might incentivize him to accept the deal.
Brandon Phillips could soon be headed to Atlanta. MLB Network insider Ken Rosenthal reported Saturday evening that the Braves are nearing a trade to acquire the second baseman from the Reds. Neither club has confirmed the report.
It’s not yet clear what Cincinnati may receive in return, but the Cincinnati Enquirer reported that Phillips ...
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