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Jim Furtado
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Editor - Baseball Primer


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— All the News That's Fit to Link

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 11-19-2015

Liberal [Kansas] Democrat, November 19, 1915:

Baseball 4,000 Years Old

It is now believed that Egypt is the birthplace of the original ball game. How it was played history does not record. Recent excavations made near Cairo have brought to light a number of small balls, some of leather and others of wood, dating back to at least 2000 B.C. These are the oldest balls of this sort known.

Archaeologists excavating the Egyptian tombs also found a Julio Franco rookie card.

And, yes, the newspaper ...

Jefferson Manship (Dan Lee) Posted: November 19, 2015 at 07:33 AM | 23 comment(s)
  Beats: dugout, history

Oakland A’s sign Rich Hill: fantasy impact - Fake Teams

I’ve always liked Rich Hill‘s stuff. Unfortunately, he’s had a lot of injury problems. It will be interesting to see how he holds up this season.

Jim Furtado Posted: November 19, 2015 at 06:57 AM | 42 comment(s)
  Beats: athletics, free agents, rich hill

Interview with former Mets prospect Jeff Grose: Part 2 |

This interview with a former Mets minor leaguer illustrates the differences between approaches then and now. It used to be sink or swim in baseball. Prove that your arm could take the work or get out.

Mets360: You had thrown a fair amount of innings by the time you were 21, and of course this was during a less-evolved era in terms of caring for pitcher’s arms.

GROSE: We always went out to pitch a complete game. The relief pitchers, at that time, were usually pitchers who had gotten shelled ...

Jim Furtado Posted: November 19, 2015 at 06:51 AM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: interviews, mets, minor leaguers

UPDATED: Staten Island Sports Hall of Famer and legendary baseball scout George Genovese dead at 93 |

A real scouting legend passes.

Legendary baseball scout George Genovese, who left his family’s Clove Road home for the minor leagues in the days before World War II and remained in the game for the next 75 years, scouting and signing the likes of Bobby Bonds, Dave Kingman and George Foster, died Sunday in Burbank, Ca., following a brief illness.

Jim Furtado Posted: November 19, 2015 at 06:36 AM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: obituaries, scouts

Billy Wagner on Hall of Fame: ‘I was talked about as one of the best’

The long-time Astros closer and seven-time All Star presents one of the most interesting cases on the writers ballot this year. If one strictly rates relievers by saves, Wagner suffers as he trails Hoffman, Mariano Rivera and Lee Smith who might get enshrined before him and John Franco, who’s unlikely to ever get close. Many people also still haven’t warmed to the idea of enshrining relief pitchers. The deeper one digs into Wagner’s numbers, though, the more impressive he becomes. He’s ...

Jim Furtado Posted: November 19, 2015 at 06:29 AM | 35 comment(s)
  Beats: billy wagner, hall of fame

Yankees Still Moving Toward Path to Win Without Luxury Tax - The New York Times

It’s nice to have the revenue to still make the playoffs when you are in the middle of a rebuild.

“The last couple of years, the money that has come off, we’ve had to kind of put it back in to fill voids, because we haven’t had the young players to do it with,” Steinbrenner said.

Steinbrenner knows New York has to have marquee players but said it is essential to have a mix of veterans and youngsters. That will provide more payroll flexibility.

“I feel better than I did two or three years ago,” ...

Jim Furtado Posted: November 19, 2015 at 06:27 AM | 22 comment(s)
  Beats: yankees

Newberg: The varying degree of cutting ties. -

Tom Wilhelmsen is not a Jerry Dipoto trophy.  He was an asset for a new General Manager to evaluate, to decide whether his greatest value to the club was in the bullpen or in a trade.  Rumored for weeks to be hunting for a center fielder (such as Brett Gardner, Peter Bourjos, Jon Jay, or Martin, according to Fox Sports columnist Ken Rosenthal earlier this month), Dipoto clearly decided that adding Benoit (on Thursday) would facilitate flipping Wilhelmsen for that center field addition.

Just a ...

Jim Furtado Posted: November 19, 2015 at 06:14 AM | 4 comment(s)
  Beats: general managers, jerry dipoto, mariners, rangers

Braves GM John Coppolella’s tone deafness is something to behold | HardballTalk

Losing is tough on fans. Film at 11.

Jim Furtado Posted: November 19, 2015 at 05:53 AM | 61 comment(s)
  Beats: braves

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

The Same Scout Once Drafted Both Of Today’s Cy Young Winners

Neither Arrieta nor Keuchel were high-round, can’t miss prospects. Milwaukee drafted Arrieta in the 26th round of the 2005 draft, after his freshman season at Weatherford Junior College. Instead of signing he opted to transfer to TCU, and after two solid years Baltimore selected him in the fifth round ...

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: November 18, 2015 at 10:08 PM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: dallas keuchel, jake arrieta, scouting

Posnanski: Its Time to Fix Manager of the Year voting

Was it actually Ned who was the Yost with the most?

1. Vote on the Manager of the Year AFTER the playoffs. This seems so obvious, it’s hard to believe that it needs to be said. The Baseball Writers in the olden days started voting for their awards before the playoffs because … there were no playoffs. There was only a World Series, and that was considered separate from the rest of the game. Voting at the end of the regular season made some sense then.

But now, the playoffs are the whole ...


For MLB clubs, Korean player market turning into a best buy

North Korea, South Korea, Carlos Correa…

One high-ranking NL executive isn’t so sure the talent has improved, suggesting that the league’s spiked interest in Korea may be a result of changes in the last collective-bargaining agreement. The CBA imposed spending limits on amateur acquisitions but made an exception for foreign professional players who were at least 24 years old.

“There’s only so many avenues to acquire players,” said the executive, who has been involved in ...


Jays’ Travis sidelined 4-5 months after left shoulder surgery

The headline covers the salient details. With Pennington gone to California, looks like Ryan Goins is the starter at second. Whither Aaron Hill?

mathesond Posted: November 18, 2015 at 04:45 PM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: blue jays, devon travis, injury

Tigers get Francisco Rodriguez from Brewers |

The Tigers reportedly acquired All-Star closer Francisco Rodriguez in a trade with the Brewers on Wednessday. The teams have not yet confirmed the deal.

It was unclear what the Brewers will receive in return, though a report out of Venezuela said it will be a package that includes infield prospect Javier Betancourt.

Jim Furtado Posted: November 18, 2015 at 12:14 PM | 37 comment(s)
  Beats: brewers, tigers, trades

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 11-18-2015

A follow-up on Senators pitcher Jim Shaw’s hunting accident (yesterday’s link), which resulted in him accidentally shooting himself in the neck:

Washington Herald, November 18, 1915:

Jim Shaw, the big right-hander, regarded as a valuable asset to the Washington baseball club, has worked his last game. In other words, he is through so far as hurling is concerned for all times.
A piece the size of a half dollar is carved out of Shaw’s trusty right arm, which means that his pitching days are ...

Jefferson Manship (Dan Lee) Posted: November 18, 2015 at 08:34 AM | 29 comment(s)
  Beats: dugout, guns, history, hunting, jim shaw

Jeff Banister and Joe Maddon Managers of Year |

The award season continues.

Jim Furtado Posted: November 18, 2015 at 08:07 AM | 50 comment(s)
  Beats: awards and honors, managers

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Russell Branyan Arrested For Allegedly Breaking Into Ex-Wife’s House, Stealing Stuff, Turning Down The Thermostat

That’s just cold.

The victim of the alleged burglary is Branyan’s ex-wife, Jill Branyan. It is unclear when the two divorced, though as of 14 months ago Russell referred to her as his wife. According to a warrant that was issued for Branyan’s arrest on Oct. 31, he broke into Jill’s house while she was sleeping, stole some things, and ###### with the thermostat. He also acknowledged to a witness that he took the items and wants to return them:

The defendant made entry into the ...

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: November 17, 2015 at 05:31 PM | 69 comment(s)
  Beats: domestic abuse, police blotter, russell branyan

David Ortiz to retire after 2016 season |

Is he a Hall of Famer?

This will clear a path for Hanley to DH in 2017.

Jim Furtado Posted: November 17, 2015 at 02:24 PM | 260 comment(s)
  Beats: david ortiz, red sox

MLB minimum salary set to remain $507,500 in 2016

Thanks, Obama.

e major league minimum salary will remain at $507,500 in 2016, the same as in 2015, because of the Consumer Price Index released on Tuesday morning. Major League Baseball has not yet made the announcement.

Next year is the final year of the collective bargaining agreement, which covers the years 2012-2016. The CBA called for minimum salaries of $480,000 in 2012, $490,000 in 2013, $500,000 in 2014, then cost of living increases in both 2015 and 2016. The cost of living ...

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: November 17, 2015 at 11:07 AM | 13 comment(s)
  Beats: cba, minimum salary

Ryan Thibs has his HOF Tracker Up and Running

Ten ballots so far, and Garret Anderson already has a vote from a BBWAA member who has went public for the first time- guess we have a good idea of who voted for Darin Erstad last year…

I also like the voter who went with three closers out of his ten choices. Reminds me of my fantasy baseball league…

TJ Posted: November 17, 2015 at 11:06 AM | 98 comment(s)
  Beats: hall of fame

Andrew Benintendi could be on fast track to majors with Red Sox - Sports - - Providence, RI

Why not also say he can walk on water?

“I wasn’t going to tell anybody because I wouldn’t want that kind of pressure on a guy that didn’t have a big-league at-bat yet,” Gamboa said. “But his swing is exactly the same as Carl Yastrzemski’s, and he’s built exactly like Carl Yastrzemski.”

More than his similarity to a Boston icon, however, it was the maturity Conforto showed that convinced the Mets they could push him aggressively—maturity in his plate approach as well as the ...

Jim Furtado Posted: November 17, 2015 at 09:45 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: andrew benintendi, prospects, red sox

Five teams that should try to sign free agents Price or Greinke | FOX Sports

Does Ken Rosenthal work for Scott Boras and Bo McKinnis now?

We know the obvious suitors for free-agent aces David Price and Zack Greinke — the Dodgers, Giants and Cubs; Cardinals, Red Sox and Blue Jays (at least for Price).

I can think of five other teams that also should be in the mix — teams with expiring contracts, teams that should not wait until next offseason, when the free-agent pitching class (Stephen Strasburg, Andrew Cashner, etc.) will be much weaker.

The 2017-18 class could be ...

Jim Furtado Posted: November 17, 2015 at 09:42 AM | 36 comment(s)
  Beats: free agents

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 11-17-2015 which reports of Jim Shaw’s death are greatly exaggerated.

Pittsburgh Press, November 17, 1915:

James Shaw, aged 22, a member of the pitching staff of the Washington American League baseball club…was probably fatally shot Monday afternoon while hunting near Greensburg, when he accidentally discharged his shotgun while holding it about a foot away from his face.
While walking through a thicket, Shaw came to a fence, and while climbing over it, his gun was discharged. The trigger caught ...

Jefferson Manship (Dan Lee) Posted: November 17, 2015 at 08:26 AM | 23 comment(s)
  Beats: dugout, guns, history, hunting, jim shaw

John Coppolella on Trading Andrelton Simmons | FanGraphs Baseball

“The New York Yankees made a run at Simmons last off-season so there was history and familiarity there with (Angels GM, and former Yankees assistant GM) Billy Eppler. Billy called me the first week of the off-season and asked about Simmons. I told him we would listen on anybody, but weren’t looking to trade Simmons.

“We spoke on and off for three weeks, sometimes on the phone and sometimes on text, where each party made offers that were ultimately declined by the other party. Billy and I ...

Jim Furtado Posted: November 17, 2015 at 06:56 AM | 29 comment(s)
  Beats: andrelton simmons, braves

Monday, November 16, 2015

Your team should pay for a pitcher now because next year’s free agents stink

Isn’t Jaret Wright still available?

Who’s available? A power ranking:

1. Stephen Strasburg
Oh, he’s an ace, alright. Probably. He comes with risks (Tommy John history, a lousy 2015 season, Scott Boras), but if you’re going to pay for talent, it helps if the pitcher has talent. Strasburg has talent. He practically leaks talent. Uh, anyone want to get some rags and help us out with this talent? It’s sort of getting everywhere.

But, yes, Strasburg has the potential to lead a rotation. Most ...

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: November 16, 2015 at 11:12 PM | 6 comment(s)
  Beats: free agency, stephen strasburg

Ranking baseball’s top 10 GMs — yes, Cashman makes the list

Ruben Amaro is not eligible for this list, since he was fired.

5. Brian Cashman

Ah, yes. Mr. Cashman. The mere refusal to advocate for his immediate firing draws venom from many fan corners. The Yankees haven’t won a playoff game since 2012, for crying out loud!
Look at the other names on this list. Only Mozeliak can relate to Cashman on one very important career track: In 18 years on the job, not once has Cashman made a “sell” trade, nor has he picked in the top half of the draft. ...


Despite Risks, Cubs Eyeing Own TV Network

Can I still watch “Family Matters” reruns before games?

The Cubs are making $60 million to $70 million per season under their current TV contracts, a figure that is below market compared to other big markets like New York, Los Angeles, Boston, Dallas, and Philadelphia. However, the deal is still around the back end of the top-third in all of baseball. The Cardinals’ new billion dollar contract, which doesn’t kick in for a few more years, is set to pay the Cardinals an average sum roughly ...

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: November 16, 2015 at 11:01 PM | 7 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs, media, regional sports networks, television

Mariners get Leonys Martin for Tom Wilhelmsen |

The rapid evolution of the Mariners’ roster under new general manager Jerry Dipoto continued Monday as the club acquired center fielder Leonys Martin and right-handed reliever Anthony Bass from the Rangers in exchange for part-time closer Tom Wilhelmsen, outfielder James Jones and a player to be named.

Jim Furtado Posted: November 16, 2015 at 07:26 PM | 7 comment(s)
  Beats: mariners, rangers

How Yankees’ optimistic A-Rod, Teixeira thinking can burn them | New York Post

“I’m going to try to upgrade our roster and not worry about regression on certain guys,” Yankees general manager Brian Cashman said last week at the General Managers’ Meetings. “If that’s a possibility, it’s a possibility.”

Jim Furtado Posted: November 16, 2015 at 07:12 PM | 14 comment(s)
  Beats: yankees

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