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Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Matheny: Spring training ‘priorities’ may look different this year | stltoday.com

“Efficiency” is the buzzword Matheny used Monday to describe the spring training work, and he said he and his staff “may go against the grain of what traditionally has been done — implementing different priorities.”

Jim Furtado Posted: January 17, 2017 at 09:01 AM | 9 comment(s)
  Beats: cardinals, mike matheny

Gordo: How many of Cards’ talented prospects will ever reach the majors? | Jeff Gordon | stltoday.com

Overall, the Cardinals nail player development. The organization scouts and teaches well. Matheny has fostered a prospect-friendly environment at the big league level, making certain that his veterans are welcoming and helpful.

This is the Cardinal Way. It’s not just a philosophy, it is a business model. By building and maintaining a self-renewing talent base, the Cardinals fill most needs internally without spending big money on free agents like Dexter Fowler.

They keep contending and keep ...

Read More...
Jim Furtado Posted: January 17, 2017 at 09:00 AM | 5 comment(s)
  Beats: cardinals

Pirates’ Bell credits yoga for improved flexibility, weight loss | TribLIVE

“I took my first ground ball and I was like, ‘Oh, gosh! I’m way too stiff.’ ” Bell said. “All season long, (Young) was busting on me: ‘I told you to go to yoga. What, you say your hips are tight? I told you to go to yoga.’ So, the first day of (this past) offseason, I started going to yoga.”

Jim Furtado Posted: January 17, 2017 at 08:58 AM | 18 comment(s)
  Beats: josh bell, pirates

The Bautista and Saunders news - and what it means for the Orioles’ RF pursuit - BaltimoreBaseball.com

When does Trumbo come back?

So, I don’t view the news from Monday involving Bautista or Saunders as particularly damaging for the Orioles. But I do see the Saunders signing as an indication that the number of free-agent outfielders who can truly help the Orioles, is starting to wane.

That’s key, because adding Welington Castillo and Seth Smith has to be the start of the club’s plan to be better than it was in 2016 and not the full plan.

Jim Furtado Posted: January 17, 2017 at 08:16 AM | 10 comment(s)
  Beats: free agents, orioles

Jerry Dipoto’s Trade Activity, in Context | FanGraphs Baseball

I don’t recall him making a lot of trades with the Angels.

Jim Furtado Posted: January 17, 2017 at 07:00 AM | 14 comment(s)
  Beats: jerry dipoto, mariners

Cubs honored by President Obama at White House | MLB.com

It was a true love fest.

Jim Furtado Posted: January 17, 2017 at 06:49 AM | 53 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs, world series

Monday, January 16, 2017

Padres’ Margot tops prospects all defense team | MLB.com

These days, there may be more value placed on defense and certainly more time spent on evaluating and quantifying it than ever before. When MLBPipeline.com surveyed front-office officials as to which prospects stood out most for their glovework, there was no shortage of candidates.

In fact, there were so many talented defenders that among the 18 votes we received, no player garnered more than Padres outfielder Manuel Margot’s three and a half. Thirteen players received at least a half a ...

Read More...
Jim Furtado Posted: January 16, 2017 at 07:28 PM | 7 comment(s)
  Beats: prospects

Royals, starter Danny Duffy agree to contract extension through 2021 season

The Royals and left-handed starter Danny Duffy on Monday agreed to a new five-year, $65 million contract that runs through the 2021 season.

Duffy could have become a free agent after the 2017 season, his final year of arbitration, but will instead make $5 million this season, $14 million in 2018, $15.25 million in 2019 and 2020 and $15.5 million in 2021.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: January 16, 2017 at 03:39 PM | 4 comment(s)
  Beats: danny duffy, royals

Bearing the Glory: Jackie Robinson’s 1949 MVP Award

After twenty years of singular focus and desire, twenty years of getting knocked down and picking yourself up, twenty years of eating ####, twenty years of crawling over broken glass, twenty years of getting on a crowded bus to brave that goddamned commute, twenty years of bearing it, you are finally and publicly acknowledged as the very best in your chosen profession.

You’ve MADE it. You’ve reached the goal you’ve been chasing every day for the last twenty years. It should be the very best ...

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gehrig97 Posted: January 16, 2017 at 01:13 PM | 12 comment(s)
  Beats: branch rickey, dodgers, integration, jackie robinson, racism

10 baseball trades that look more lopsided now | MLB.com

Or, stop judging deals when they get made.

Jim Furtado Posted: January 16, 2017 at 09:41 AM | 28 comment(s)
  Beats: trades

Jose Bautista close to signing with Blue Jays | MLB.com

The sides are discussing a two-year deal worth between $35 million and $40 million, MLB Network insider Ken Rosenthal reported early Monday.

Jim Furtado Posted: January 16, 2017 at 09:40 AM | 37 comment(s)
  Beats: blue jays, jose bautista

Five Candidates Who Have Fallen a Single Vote Shy of Election to the Baseball Hall of Fame

The Hall of Fame only started publically releasing voting percentages for the Era and Veterans Committees elections in 2003, yet in that short period of time the tiny electorate has had five candidates miss being voted into Cooperstown by a single tally.  Each of those five candidates have appeared on both the Veterans Committee and Era Committee ballots where their Hall of Fame candidacies have been affected by the frequent changes in the format used by this voting body


Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 1-16-2017

Bridgeport Evening Farmer, January 16, 1917:

Baseball is to be unionized. The [ballplayers’] fraternity, through its President, David L. Fultz, applied in Washington, D.C., for a charter from the American Federation of Labor. Samuel Gompers, President of the Federation…said there was no doubt that the fraternity would be admitted to membership.

Tacoma Times, January 16, 1917:

The entire Boston Red Sox baseball club will go on strike if Dave Fultz, head of the baseball players’ fraternity says the ...

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Jefferson Manship (Dan Lee) Posted: January 16, 2017 at 07:31 AM | 25 comment(s)
  Beats: dugout, history, labor relations

Sunday, January 15, 2017

OTP 16 Jan. 2017: The ‘honor’ Trumps politics in scheduling Cubs’ White House visit

Seems like the obvious story this week:

President Obama, a White Sox fan, extended invitations to his other hometown baseball team via Twitter and a phone call to Maddon to visit the White House to celebrate their first championship in 108 years before the president leaves office.

Already gathered in town this weekend for Cubs Convention, the Cubs plan to fly to Washington for the visit Monday, just a few days before Trump’s inauguration.

Given the Rickettses’ ties to Trump, there was ...

Read More...
BDC Posted: January 15, 2017 at 10:17 PM | 2387 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs, politics, world series champions

Hall of Fame voting shifts in Jeff Bagwell’s favor - Houston Chronicle

Is there any other actual “evidence”?

Fairly or not, last year’s election of Piazza also helped Bagwell’s case. As home run hitters who played in the steroid era, each long faced similar obstacles to election. Both have been suspected by writers of using illegal performance-enhancing drugs despite never failing a drug test or showing up in the Mitchell Report. (Both also admitted using the testosterone-boosting androstenedione back when it was legal in MLB.)

Jim Furtado Posted: January 15, 2017 at 03:07 PM | 2 comment(s)
  Beats: hall of fame, jeff bagwell

Materials From Jim Bouton’s ‘Ball Four’ Days Going Once, Going Twice ... - The New York Times

Has anyone here not read the book?

Jim Furtado Posted: January 15, 2017 at 03:06 PM | 8 comment(s)
  Beats: books, jim bouton

Sunday Notes: Baseball Scotland, Projections, Posada, more | FanGraphs Baseball

I’m always amused when I hear/read something like this. Why don’t we do it when we talk about everything?

Football — what we Americans call soccer — rules Scotland’s sporting scene. Rugby runs a distant second, while golf, which was invented in St. Andrews, probably ranks third in terms of popularity.

Jim Furtado Posted: January 15, 2017 at 08:54 AM | 26 comment(s)
  Beats: notes

Nick Cafardo: Manny Ramirez’s desire to keep playing is being supported all over baseball

Sorry about the lack of links yesterday. Slept right to my alarm yesterday (which never happens) and didn’t get to post anything before leaving in the morning. The festivities of my sim league auction started at 8 AM breakfast and continued until about 10 PM. It was a long but awesome day. 

Dumbest decision of the season.

Steven Wright, RHP, Red Sox — Wright is still rehabbing his right shoulder but feels he’ll be full-go for spring training. Wright has been dealing with bursitis and ...

Read More...
Jim Furtado Posted: January 15, 2017 at 08:39 AM | 3 comment(s)
  Beats: manny ramirez, notes

Friday, January 13, 2017

Rangers sign right-hander Tyson Ross | MLB.com

The Rangers have not yet announced the deal, but Ross has chosen to sign with the Rangers over the World Series champion Cubs. Sources confirmed Yahoo!‘s Jeff Passan’s report that the contract is worth $6 million plus incentives.

Jim Furtado Posted: January 13, 2017 at 07:31 PM | 14 comment(s)
  Beats: padres, rangers, tyson ross

The Ballot 7: Larry Walker

I came to Walker’s Hall of Fame case a bit later, I admit. I’ve thought from that start he deserves to be a Hall of Famer, but I was busy obsessing over Tim Raines and Jeff Bagwell and Mike Mussina and how to handle the PED era players to be too worried about him. Last year, the 10-man ballot crunched me … and I did not vote for Walker. I believed him to be Hall of Fame worthy, absolutely, but he was 11th on my 10-man ballot. I’ve come around to a slightly different view: It’s time to ...

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Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 1-13-2017

Pittsburgh Gazette Times, January 13, 1917:

Threats of David L. Fultz, president of the Baseball Players’ Fraternity, to call a strike of between 600 and 700 players unless their demands are granted before the beginning of the 1917 season were answered by B.B. Johnson, president of the American League, here [last night].
...
“We never again will listen to any proposal he may offer,” President Johnson said. “We invite him to carry out his bluff…The American League will see that Fultz is crushed; ...

Read More...
Jefferson Manship (Dan Lee) Posted: January 13, 2017 at 09:33 AM | 11 comment(s)
  Beats: dugout, history, labor relations, union

2017 Organizational Reviews | 2080 Baseball

Prospect mavens need to bookmark this page.

Jim Furtado Posted: January 13, 2017 at 07:54 AM | 4 comment(s)
  Beats: prospect reports

Brewers urge Junior Guerra out of winter ball | MLB.com

Venezuelan baseball fans were abuzz Thursday after Junior Guerra told reporters he would make a pair of starts in that country’s winter league playoffs.

Not so fast, the Brewers say.

Contrary to the suggestion made in Venezuelan news reports, the Brewers have not endorsed Guerra’s participation with Tiburones de La Guaira, according to a source, and are discussing the matter with Guerra’s agent, Peter Greenberg.

Jim Furtado Posted: January 13, 2017 at 07:53 AM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: brewers, junior guerra

Orioles to use ‘file-and-trial’ arbitration approach; will it hurt relations with core players? - Baltimore Sun

The team is now employing a “file-and-trial” approach with all of its arbitration-eligible players, meaning they will only negotiate with those players up until Friday’s 1 p.m. deadline for exchanging salary figures. If a deal isn’t reached by then, players will go to an arbitration hearing.
...
But the Orioles’ top arbitration-eligible players remain in negotiations – including third baseman Manny Machado, right-hander Chris Tillman and closer Zach Britton. And at this point, they ...

Read More...
Jim Furtado Posted: January 13, 2017 at 07:51 AM | 5 comment(s)
  Beats: orioles

Of Andrew Benintendi, Rusney Castillo, and growing pains - Over the Monster

Even if his winter league play this year is a true indication that he’s made an important adjustment, Rusney Castillo probably isn’t an option for the Sox. On the radio yesterday someone (can’t remember who) made the point about Castillo’s contract being an issue for his call-up. Castillo is no longer on the 40-Man so his $11 million contract no longer counts toward the luxury tax. If the Sox recall him, he’d put the Sox over the threshold, which is something they clearly don’t want to do. ...Read More...

Jim Furtado Posted: January 13, 2017 at 07:32 AM | 22 comment(s)
  Beats: andrew benintendi, red sox, rusney castillo

Payoff for long-term deals a mixed bag | MLB.com

Tracy Ringolsby looks at the history of 10+ year contracts.

The intention is good.

An organization reaches out to a high-profile player, provides him with long-term security, looking to show its fan base a commitment to success.
It, however, is a gamble.

Jim Furtado Posted: January 13, 2017 at 07:09 AM | 5 comment(s)
  Beats: free agents, long-term contracts

The many reasons why Sandy needs to move Bruce for good of Mets - NY Daily News

You trade a player when you feel you are getting a fair return (a debatable value). Alderson’s patience isn’t a flaw.

We’ll see about all of that in Port St. Lucie. For the moment, the priority is unloading Bruce. It doesn’t mean Alderson was wrong to be patient, waiting for the logjam of free-agent sluggers to clear and perhaps leave some team in need of Bruce’s power.

The Blue Jays, for example, still seem like a viable trade partner, but only if they don’t wind up re-united with Jose ...

Read More...
Jim Furtado Posted: January 13, 2017 at 07:03 AM | 15 comment(s)
  Beats: jay bruce, mets

Thursday, January 12, 2017

Mets, Zack Wheeler Avoid Arbitration, Agree On $800K Deal

Zack Wheeler and the Mets have avoided arbitration by agreeing on a one-year, $800,000 contract for this season.

WFAN baseball insider Jon Heyman reported on the deal Wednesday.

Wheeler, 26, has not pitched in the majors since 2014. The right-hander tore the ulnar collateral ligament in his pitching arm and underwent Tommy John surgery in March 2015.

Russlan thinks deGrom is da bomb Posted: January 12, 2017 at 02:03 PM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: mets, zack wheeler

Do the Orioles and Mark Trumbo really want a reunion this offseason? | FOX Sports

Trumbo recently asked the O’s for a three-year, $50 million contract, but later indicated that he would sign a deal of the same length in a lesser $40 million to $50 million range, according to major-league sources.

The willingness of Trumbo to accept a three-year deal below $50 million — after the two sides reportedly discussed four-year contracts at higher guarantees earlier this off-season — would at least appear to create room for negotiation. The Orioles made Trumbo an ...

Read More...
Jim Furtado Posted: January 12, 2017 at 11:47 AM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: mark trumbo, notes, orioles

We assigned cooler names to old players to get them into the Hall of Fame

His career ERA+, however, was 104. To put it another way, if Tim Lincecum comes back and pitches for five seasons at an Ervin Santana level, he’s basically the modern day Catfish Hunter. Yet, there’s no way Lincecum would get the same kind of Hall of Fame support that Hunter did. What’s the difference?

My theory is that Catfish Hunter was one of the best baseball names ever, and it added to the mystique whenever he came to town and blew your team away. Scott Kazmir (who also has a career ...

Read More...
RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: January 12, 2017 at 10:50 AM | 91 comment(s)
  Beats: catfish hunter, hall of fame

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