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Thursday, March 31, 2016

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 3-31-2016

Pittsburgh Press, March 31, 1916:

Strawberry shortcake was blamed by Manager Tinker of the Cubs for the many defeats handed to the team, according to statements he made [at New Orleans] today. Tinker says the chef at the training camp told that Cubs were eating double orders of the pastry. “Next year it will be tabooed,” said Tinker.

Yeah, well, it figures that Johnny Evers’s mortal enemy would be opposed to the ingestion of junk food.

100 years ago today in saddled burro news, Pat’s Corral in ...

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Jefferson Manship (Dan Lee) Posted: March 31, 2016 at 09:30 AM | 11 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs, dugout, history, joe tinker

MLB Draft Bites (Week 3): Enter the Prep Prospects | 2080 Baseball

Reports on some high school prospects.

Jim Furtado Posted: March 31, 2016 at 08:43 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: draft prospects

Wrigleyville - KNOW YOUR (2016) ENEMY: ST. LOUIS CARDINALS

People aren’t very high on the Cardinals. I’m not ready to write them off.

Jim Furtado Posted: March 31, 2016 at 08:32 AM | 34 comment(s)
  Beats: cardinals, previews

Where we stand with muddled Yankees bullpen picture | New York Post

This was not a good day for the Yankees.

After the game, in which relievers Andrew Miller and Bryan Mitchell were injured, Girardi was waiting on test results and still not sure what his pen looked like.

Jim Furtado Posted: March 31, 2016 at 08:28 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: andrew miller, bryan mitchell, injuries, yankees

Once ‘the next Cal Ripken,’ former prospect Brandon Wood begins his career as a manager | For The Win

Baseball is 90 percent mental and the other half is physical. ~ Yogi Berra

Wood now recognizes that anxiety, more than any physical limitations, prevented him from Major League success.

“On opening day, 2010, when I started at third base for the Angels, something just came over my body,” he remembered. “I was light-headed. I felt like I was going to fall over — no control of my body parts. Looking back, it’s because I wasn’t breathing. I’d go probably 90 seconds without taking a ...

Read More...
Jim Furtado Posted: March 31, 2016 at 06:37 AM | 11 comment(s)
  Beats: brandon wood

This Is a Garrett Richards Changeup | FanGraphs Baseball

Garrett Richards might be ready to break out even bigger.

Richards listened to Street and then worked the recommended changeup into a bullpen. That led to using it in games, first against minor leaguers. He used it heavily in an intrasquad game, and while I don’t know how often he used the pitch Tuesday, it’s certainly been getting plenty of work. That 92 above might be an outlier — the linked article says the changeup tends to hang around 88-90. As you might’ve been able to predict, an ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: March 31, 2016 at 06:35 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: angels, garrett richards

The Potential Rejuvenation of Matt Bush | FanGraphs Baseball

Hopefully, he keeps his life in order.

Jim Furtado Posted: March 31, 2016 at 06:30 AM | 7 comment(s)
  Beats: matt bush, rangers

2016 MLB Preview 30 Statcast Stats On 30 Teams | MLB.com

I love this stuff. I want to see full listings for all of it.

Jim Furtado Posted: March 31, 2016 at 06:12 AM | 2 comment(s)
  Beats: statcast


A Baseball Mystery: The Home Run Is Back, And No One Knows Why

We can’t credit last year’s increase in offense to a reversal in strike-zone size: The zone actually grew again in 2015, albeit very slightly. Similarly, strikeout and walk rates barely budged. But home runs rebounded by enough to produce most of the extra scoring. The graph below shows monthly home-run rates as a percentage of contact (HR/Contact), where “contact” is defined as at-bats minus strikeouts. Once again, playoff rates aren’t pictured, but in 72 games last postseason, ...

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Wahoo Sam Posted: March 31, 2016 at 12:14 AM | 2 comment(s)
  Beats: home runs

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Yankees’ Andrew Miller exits with injury | MLB.com

The Yankees have been blessed with good health for most of the spring, but those fortunes may have taken a turn on Wednesday afternoon when lefty reliever Andrew Miller was hit on the right wrist by a line drive. Miller immediately walked off the field after being struck with the seventh-inning drive off the bat of pinch-hitter Willians Astudillo in the Yankees’ 2-0 Grapefruit League victory over the Braves.

Jim Furtado Posted: March 30, 2016 at 07:06 PM | 12 comment(s)
  Beats: andrew miller, yankees

Pirates opt for new model for pitching reclamation projects | TribLIVE

“I’d love to sit here and tell you we have one model and acquire players to fit the model, but we don’t,” Huntington said during the offseason. “Jonathan might be of a different style than pitchers we acquired in the past. … But if you only stick to (one model) especially at the major league level, especially given how the market has evolved, you are really going to limit your options.”

Jim Furtado Posted: March 30, 2016 at 06:27 PM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: pirates

Indians moving Trevor Bauer to the bullpen; Cody Anderson No. 4 starter, Josh Tomlin No. 5 - Cleveland Indians - Ohio

Indians pitcher Trevor Bauer was relegated to the bullpen toward the end of last year, and that’s where he’ll be beginning the 2016 season as well.

The Indians announced on Wednesday that they will be moving Bauer, an assumed starting pitcher this spring, to the bullpen and slotting Cody Anderson and Josh Tomlin into the No. 4 and No. 5 spots in the starting rotation, respectively, to start the season.

The moves effectively finalize the Opening Day 25-man roster. Bauer will be the eighth ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: March 30, 2016 at 06:23 PM | 13 comment(s)
  Beats: indians

Rays tell James Loney he won’t be on team

Loney said he was told that he will either be released or traded. He plans to leave Port Charlotte today to await his fate upon mutual decision with the team.

“It had to be somebody (to go), right?’’ Loney said. “It is what it is.’‘

If released, the Rays will be responsible for his $8-million salary.

“There’s not a trade right now,’’ Loney said.

Loney lost his job as the Rays acquired Logan Morrison, Steve Pearce and Corey Dickerson during the off-season, With Dickerson as the primary DH, ...

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RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: March 30, 2016 at 04:43 PM | 2 comment(s)
  Beats: james loney, rays, rene rivera

A Baseball Mystery: The Home Run Is Back, And No One Knows Why | Five Thirty Eight

On his first day in office, in January 2015, Major League Baseball Commissioner Rob Manfred announced his interest in “inject[ing] additional offense into the game.” Over the previous several seasons, scoring in baseball had dropped to levels not seen since the mid-1970s, as an expanded strike zone, an increase in average pitch velocity, the rise of defensive shifts, and detailed data on batter tendencies had combined to keep runs scarce. Manfred mentioned banning the shift as a possible ...

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philoye Posted: March 30, 2016 at 04:33 PM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: offense

Orioles move to cut ties with Miguel Gonzalez, placing him on release waivers

The Miguel Gonzalez era with the Orioles is over. According to The Baltimore Sun’s Eduardo Encina, the O’s have given Gonzalez his unconditional release. Next, Gonzalez will be placed on waivers, and if he goes unclaimed for 48 hours, he will become a free agent.

It’s a move that’s surprising in the sense that the O’s under Buck Showalter have tended to stick with their guys, and Gonzalez was definitely one of their guys. It’s less surprising in that Gonzalez had a bad year last year, posting ...

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RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: March 30, 2016 at 03:24 PM | 17 comment(s)
  Beats: miguel gonzalez, orioles

If you care about Red Sox’ future, you should care about Single-A Salem

“The ability for guys to come up together is always a great thing,” said Red Sox assistant farm director Brian Abraham. “You see that now with our major league team: Blake Swihart, Mookie Betts, Christian Vasquez, Travis Shaw. Those guys all played together throughout the minor leagues. The camaraderie and team work they are able to establish at the big league level, that’s been going on since they were drafted, since they signed. That’s really important, it’s great when you’re ...

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Jose Remains The Most Absurd Thing on the Site Posted: March 30, 2016 at 10:24 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: minor leagues, red sox

Abreu: ‘I want to spend whole career with White Sox’ | Chicago Sun-Times

Abreu shared his allegiance while talking about his disdain for designated-hitter duty. When kiddingly asked if wants to be traded to the National League, which doesn’t the DH, he said through translator Billy Russo, “No, not even a joke. I want to spend my whole career with the White Sox organization because they were the ones who gave me the opportunity to play here. And they have done a lot for me. I love to be here.’’

The Sox were aggressive in their pursuit of Abreu three ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: March 30, 2016 at 09:58 AM | 63 comment(s)
  Beats: jose abreu, white sox

Locke on making Pirates rotation: ‘It’s news to me. It’s good news to me’ | Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

Not even when Jeff Locke passed a group of reporters as he walked off the field at Pirate City Tuesday did it occur to him why they might want to talk to him. Only after he threw another inning in the batting cage did he hear the news.

Asked when and how he heard he had earned a spot in the starting rotation, Locke said, “You just told me.”

Jim Furtado Posted: March 30, 2016 at 09:42 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: jeff locke, pirates

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 3-30-2016

Pittsburgh Press, March 30, 1916:

Schalk, first catcher of the Whitesox, is after the high jump record in the American league. Schalkie leaped over a saddled burro at the training grounds in Mineral Wells.

This, of course, doesn’t answer the obvious question: Why would you leap over a saddled burro?

Later in the linked article, Browns manager Fielder Jones is furious at Tigers manager Hughie Jennings for allegedly suggesting the Browns were a joke and a farce, and would easily finish last in ...

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Jefferson Manship (Dan Lee) Posted: March 30, 2016 at 09:35 AM | 56 comment(s)
  Beats: bad ideas, dugout, history, ray schalk, saddled burros

Orioles’ conundrum with Hyun Soo Kim just the latest drama in a spring training full of messes - Baltimore Sun

Would any other team pick him up?

And why should Kim—after receiving just 44 spring training at bats—be convinced he can’t cut it in the United States? It was just last year that Pittsburgh Pirates rookie Jung Ho Kang struggled mightily in spring training. He opened the spring 1-for-23, looked lost at shortstop and, at the plate, he couldn’t make adjustments as pitchers jammed him inside.

The Pirates carried Kang as a backup infielder on Opening Day. By mid-May, he was hitting .300 and he ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: March 30, 2016 at 09:25 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: hyun soo ki, orioles

Braves have pair of young shortstop prospects | MLB.com

If they put put Swanson in High A, he’s probably more on a middle of next year timeline.

The Braves saw enough from Dansby Swanson and Ozzie Albies during Spring Training to strengthen their confidence that these two elite prospects could form a double-play combo in Atlanta within the next year. Now, they must decide how to best develop these two high-impact shortstops.

After seeing Swanson and Albies develop a strong bond and friendship during their time in camp, the Braves flirted with the ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: March 30, 2016 at 08:53 AM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: braves, dansby swanson, ozzie albies

Roberto Osuna to be Blue Jays closer | bluejays.com

I wish they had announced this one day earlier.

Jim Furtado Posted: March 30, 2016 at 08:53 AM | 16 comment(s)
  Beats: blue jays

The Top 175 MLB Prospects for 2016 - Minor League Ball

Edit: The linked spreadsheet should be useful if you have a minor league draft coming up.

John Sickel’s Top 150. It came out a few days after my simulation league’s minor league draft so it didn’t help me this year. If you haven’t had your draft yet check it out. Also, here’s an Excel sheet of most of my prep work. If you haven’t had your draft yet, I’m positive it can help you.

Jim Furtado Posted: March 30, 2016 at 08:43 AM | 12 comment(s)
  Beats: minor leagues, prospects

The vigilante Royals are a big part of baseball’s big problem | FOX Sports

This “problem” is soooooooooo overblown. A bigger problem is the outrage from the media over things so inconsequential.

Jim Furtado Posted: March 30, 2016 at 08:36 AM | 25 comment(s)
  Beats: royals

Braves keeping Francoeur, will add him to roster

Though Francoeur proved productive through his first two Major League seasons, he began to decline and was traded to the Mets during the 2009 season. He has since played for the Rangers, Royals, Giants, Padres and Phillies.

But now, Francoeur is truly coming home to strengthen the Braves’ bench with his right-handed power potential. He can capably handle both corner outfield spots and he has acquainted himself with center field over the past few weeks.

And there was much rejoicing at BTF!!! ...Read More...

eddieot Posted: March 30, 2016 at 08:30 AM | 21 comment(s)
  Beats: braves, jeff francoeur

Apple strikes deal with MLB to provide every team with iPad Pros | The Verge

Apple and Major League Baseball have signed a multi-year deal that will see every team receive iPad Pro tablets for use in the dugout, reports The Wall Street Journal. The 12.9-inch tablets will be used with rugged, MLB-branded cases based on the one from STM pictured below, and a custom app called MLB Dugout will help managers see performance statistics, check videos from earlier games, and analyze how pitchers and hitters are likely to perform against each other.

 

philoye Posted: March 30, 2016 at 02:12 AM | 10 comment(s)
  Beats: mlbam

Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Arizona Diamondbacks’ GM, wife navigate unique situation

Among those competing for a roster spot are catcher Chris Herrmann and reliever Enrique Burgos. Both are former clients of Stewart, the club’s GM. Both are current clients of Murray, the GM’s wife.

shoewizard Posted: March 29, 2016 at 10:05 PM | 14 comment(s)
  Beats: agents, diamondbacks, general, general managers, legal

Analysis: Free bases and outs are costly | Boston Herald

“I’ve got nothing against the bunt, in its place. But most of the time that place is at the bottom of a long forgotten closet.” ~ Earl Weaver

This essentially means a manager must pick and choose his sacrifice bunting opportunities very carefully. The Red Sox have done just that, executing only 20 sacrifice bunts in 2014 and 30 in 2015.

“I think there’s a place and a time for it,” said Red Sox bench coach Torey Lovullo. “Never would we ask Mookie Betts or Travis Shaw or Hanley ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: March 29, 2016 at 06:44 PM | 14 comment(s)
  Beats: red sox, sabermetrics

Let’s Invent a New Pitch | FanGraphs Baseball

Everything has already been invented.

Jim Furtado Posted: March 29, 2016 at 02:42 PM | 8 comment(s)
  Beats: pitching

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