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Saturday, January 31, 2015

Where does the Mets’ future lay? A look at the farm system and prospects | NJ.com

Paul DePodesta answers a few questions on the Mets farm system.

Jim Furtado Posted: January 31, 2015 at 08:11 AM | 2 comment(s)
  Beats: mets

Cuban infielder Moncada clears government hurdle | MLB.com

OK, where does he sign? I’m guessing the Yankees.

Jim Furtado Posted: January 31, 2015 at 08:08 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: cuban free agents, yoan moncada

A cut above: Best tools of Top 100 Prospects list | MLB.com

Jim Callis writes about the best tools.

Jim Furtado Posted: January 31, 2015 at 06:52 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: prospects

Breaking down MLB.com’s Top 100 Prospects | MLB.com

Jonathan Mayo breaks down the changes to last year’s list.

Jim Furtado Posted: January 31, 2015 at 06:50 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: prospects

MLB.com 2015 Prospect Watch | MLB.com

Over the night they have changed the formatting on their list. It’s not an improvement. Nevertheless, here’s MLB.com’s 2015 Top 100 Prospects.

(Here’s a link to the old format.

Jim Furtado Posted: January 31, 2015 at 06:46 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: prospects

Friday, January 30, 2015

Puig says Cardinals are Dodgers’ biggest adversary

Yasiel Puig is really close with a particular family in Los Angeles, and that family has a 10-year-old Cardinals-loving boy who has made it his mission to exasperate the Dodgers’ eccentric outfielder….

“His mom calls him ‘The Cardinal,’” Puig deadpanned. “We don’t even know his name anymore. … I take him to the stadium, I put the tickets under my name, I introduce him to all of my teammates, and he shows up with a Cardinals shirt. He’s driving me nuts. I can’t win with him. His cousins all ...

Read More...
Steve Parris, Je t'aime Posted: January 30, 2015 at 09:45 PM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: cardinals, dodgers, yasiel puig

John D’Acquisto Remembers the Late Charlie Williams

When you hear the cliché about the one guy that keeps everybody loose in the clubhouse, that was Charlie. Always cracking wise, always busting chops, always making those around him laugh. Except on the golf course. The boy could flat out swing. At least a four handicap in his day. We all knew he was unbeatable. Didn’t stop some of our teammates from trying to take him down, though. We played a round once during Spring Training, 1973, me, Charlie, our teammate Ronny Bryant, along with Davy ...

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djordan Posted: January 30, 2015 at 11:42 AM | 3 comment(s)
  Beats: john d'acquisto

Minor League Legend Rocky Bridges Dies at 87

There are minor league legends, and then there was Rocky Bridges. Jim Bouton called Bridges his favorite manager, even though he never played for him. Why? Because Bridges made the game fun for his players.

Bridges was also the man who dubbed Mike Epstein “Superjew” and Greg Minton “Moon Man.”

Bruce Markusen Posted: January 30, 2015 at 08:47 AM | 14 comment(s)
  Beats: colorful characters, deaths, managers, minor leagues

The Rays’ Kind of Fastball | FanGraphs Baseball

More good stuff from Jeff Sullivan.

Last season, Rays pitchers threw 56% of their fastballs at least two and a half feet off the ground, which is approximately the vertical middle of the strike zone. This was the highest rate for any team in baseball. The Nationals finished second, but they’ve also lost prolific high-fastball throwers in Tyler Clippard and Rafael Soriano. They’ve been open to moving Jordan Zimmermann. The league average, by the way, was a hair under 48%.

Jim Furtado Posted: January 30, 2015 at 08:39 AM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: rays, sabermetrics

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 1-30-2015

A followup on yesterday’s Link of the Day, from the Pittsburgh Press, January 30, 1915:

Two major leagues only will be recognized by the powers of organized baseball so long as the civic laws of the land permit the operation of the national pastime under existing circumstances.
...
A number of promoters of fast minor league clubs evidently have fooled themselves into the idea that their circuit will be granted classification equal to the big two. It is a foolish hope.
...
According to stories ...

Read More...
Willie Horton Hears The Who (Dan Lee) Posted: January 30, 2015 at 08:06 AM | 38 comment(s)
  Beats: dugout, history, minor leagues

Taking a dip into prospects’ BABIP numbers | MiLB.com News | The Official Site of Minor League Baseball

Sam Dykstra helps to make a little extra sense of minor league numbers.

Jim Furtado Posted: January 30, 2015 at 07:34 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: prospects, sabermetrics

Which prospects will make the Top 100 cut? | mets.com

MLB.com is releasing its Top 100 list tonight. Since they include video, put together a good list, and update their rankings during the season, it’s become one my favorites.

(Sorry about not being able to embed the video. There doesn’t seem to be any way to do it.)

Jim Furtado Posted: January 30, 2015 at 07:30 AM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: prospects

BILL JAMES ON FIELDING, PART 7

My locker was back-to-back with Campy’s. I came in one day with a New York paper and showed Campy the box score. “This says Erskine losing pitcher,” I said. “Shouldn’t it say Campanella losing catcher?” He just smiled and said, “You can always shake me off.” But if you shook off Campy, you had to explain it to Walter Alston, the manager.

cardsfanboy Posted: January 30, 2015 at 04:21 AM | 18 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers

Thursday, January 29, 2015

Omar Minaya to leave San Diego Padres, join MLBPA as special adviser

The former New York Mets general manager left his job as senior vice president of the San Diego Padres on Thursday to become a special adviser to Major League Baseball Players Association head Tony Clark.

Minaya will focus on international affairs and game development in the U.S., including amateur ball. The number of Dominican and Cuban players in the major leagues has increased, and management hopes to get agreement on an international draft in the collective bargaining agreement that ...

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Win Big Stein's Money Posted: January 29, 2015 at 09:19 PM | 6 comment(s)
  Beats: mets, padres

Fangraphs: Last Year’s Minor-League WAR Leaders, If That Existed

Finally, with regard to defense, I’ve made no attempt even to estimate something along the lines of runs saved. Instead, I’ve utilized only a rough approximation of each player’s positional adjustment — which figures one can derive (following the application of some minor arithmetic) from the Steamer projections available at the site.

Having first calculated and then found the sum of those first three figures (i.e. Bat, BsR, and Def), I then also added the replacement-run total [(PA / ...

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RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: January 29, 2015 at 04:45 PM | 20 comment(s)
  Beats: kris bryant, minor leaguers, prospects, war


Manfred talks pace, players and plans as he takes office | FOX Sports

Ken Rosenthal sits down with Commissioner Manfred.

Link to video

Jim Furtado Posted: January 29, 2015 at 10:32 AM | 9 comment(s)
  Beats: commissioner

Montreal threat a reminder of how MLB once touted Tampa | TBO.com and The Tampa Tribune

Major League Baseball views local communities as groups to be exploited.

Jim Furtado Posted: January 29, 2015 at 10:01 AM | 54 comment(s)
  Beats: stadiums

Baseball Prospectus | BP Unfiltered: People Are Currently Reading The 2015 BP Annual And You Could Be Next

I’ve really liked the improvements BP has made to their annuals and web site over the last few years. For example, in the past you didn’t know who was responsible for the team essays and player comments. Now, they make it clear. It might be a small thing for you, but it makes a real difference for me.

Jim Furtado Posted: January 29, 2015 at 09:49 AM | 6 comment(s)
  Beats: annuals, sabermetrics, stuff worth buying

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 1-29-2015

Pittsburgh Press, January 29, 1915:

Three new major leagues, technically so, will greet the playing season of 1915. That was the outlook today with the announcement that the draft rule will be lifted from the American association. Letting down the bars for the association will necessitate doing likewise for the International league and the Pacific coast loop, and then Organized Baseball will have shot its latest and strongest 42-sentimeter [sic] projectile at the Federals.
...
[National League] ...

Read More...
Willie Horton Hears The Who (Dan Lee) Posted: January 29, 2015 at 09:46 AM | 23 comment(s)
  Beats: dugout, history

Top 100 prospects of 2015 including Kris Bryant, Byron Buxton and more - ESPN ($PAY$)

The first of Top 100 prospect lists to appear.

It’s behind the pay wall. (You can get Insider access cheapest by buying an ESPN The Mag subscription for about $10.)

Top 50 Breakdown and the 51-60 breakdown.

Jim Furtado Posted: January 29, 2015 at 09:33 AM | 30 comment(s)
  Beats: keith law, prospects

Sports Collectors Daily: 15 Baseball Cards of Players Who Met Tragic Endings

6. Len Koenecke, 1932 New York Giants schedule postcard: Len Koenecke didn’t make the majors until he was 28, didn’t even start playing minor league baseball until he was 24, and he died before he could make up for the lost time.

His death, which came just 265 games into his big league career, may rank as most bizarre in baseball history. Two days after being released by the Brooklyn Dodgers in September 1935, Koenecke got into an altercation with a pilot during a flight. The pilot hit ...

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Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: January 29, 2015 at 09:29 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: general, history

Baseball’s Choice: Change or Die | VICE Sports

They don’t need a big clock. They need umpires to enforce the rules already in place. Such a change wouldn’t require negotiation with the union. Such a change wouldn’t generate another distracting clock on my TV screen or at the ball park. Yet, it would accomplish the goal.

Baseball is a great game. It doesn’t need radical overhauls to stay popular. It just needs to be tweaked to keep the action moving and to help it fit into our busy lifestyles.

The timeless—in not having a clock, and in ...

Read More...
Jim Furtado Posted: January 29, 2015 at 08:57 AM | 35 comment(s)
  Beats: rules of play

Maybe the Last Key for Carlos Carrasco | FanGraphs Baseball

Jeff Sullivan breaks down Carlos Carrasco emergence as a quality starter last season.

The problem with mechanical fixes is they can be kind of like momentum: they’re only as good as the next day’s game. Ubaldo Jimenez looked like he was fixed, until he wasn’t fixed anymore. On the other hand, that’s one example, and unlike Carlos Carrasco, Jimenez no longer has Mickey Callaway as a coach. Probably, Carrasco isn’t going to be as good as Clayton Kershaw and Felix Hernandez going forward. ...

Read More...
Jim Furtado Posted: January 29, 2015 at 08:35 AM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: carlos carrasco, indians, sabermetrics

Is old school Pat Gillick the right man for his new job?

David Murphy thinks Pat Gillick is an old dog.

Jim Furtado Posted: January 29, 2015 at 08:29 AM | 29 comment(s)
  Beats: pat gillick, phillies

Montgomery returns to Phillies as chairman | phillies.com

The more Pat Gillick is involved in the decision-making, the better the chance for progress in Philadelphia

Jim Furtado Posted: January 29, 2015 at 08:15 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: david montgomery, pat gillick, phillies

Santana, Escobar to engage in shortstop competition | twinsbaseball.com

A battle for shortstop is coming in Minnesota.

Jim Furtado Posted: January 29, 2015 at 07:55 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: danny santana, eduardo escobar, twins

2015 MLB Prospect Spreadsheet 2 - FantasyRundown.com

Here’s a cheap, handy tool for draft prep for dynasty league players. This site provides a spreadsheet with a compilation of all the top prospect lists in one Excel workbook for $3.99. I usually do this myself. This will save me a lot of time this year.

Jim Furtado Posted: January 29, 2015 at 07:14 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: fantasy, prospects, stuff worth buying, tips

Make relievers face more than 1 batter for faster game, more runs | FOX Sports

I would think it would take a few years for teams and hitters to evolve. For me, a little less offense isn’t really an issue. Game time is a bigger issue. Get the time back down to 2.5 hours and I’ll be happy.

Baseball already is kicking around ways to improve the game under new Commissioner Rob Manfred, but some ideas are just too radical, not to mention premature. Take the elimination of defensive shifts. Manfred raised that idea as a radical possibility in an interview with ESPN last Sunday, ...

Read More...
Jim Furtado Posted: January 29, 2015 at 07:04 AM | 269 comment(s)
  Beats: rules of play

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Time for hitters to counter defensive shifts | MLB.com

The game will adjust without banning the shift.

Take it from Brewers catcher Jonathan Lucroy, who sees the data work against him at the plate and for him behind it.
“I think [the shift] is a tough thing to blame for the decline in offense,” he said in a text. “ERAs are down [0.12 points between 2013 and ‘14 and 0.72 points over the past decade], so that means pitching is better. Why is pitching better? The wealth of information we have when calling games is a very large amount. If they wanted to ...

Read More...
Jim Furtado Posted: January 28, 2015 at 07:08 PM | 6 comment(s)
  Beats: defense, sabermetrics

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