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Thursday, December 29, 2016

Thirteen former Red Sox first-rounders, and what scouts had to say at the time

This one includes an off-shoot of the “good face”.

4. Bruce Hurst, lefthanded pitcher
1976, 22d overall selection

Scout: Gordon Lakey.

What he said: “Tremendous natural ability. Premium draft. Mormon religion. Can become above-avg. major league pitcher. Desires to play basketball in JC even if he signs.”

What we say now: Hurst, a star of the 1986 World Series, is tied with Dennis Eckersley for 20th in Red Sox history with 88 wins. One nitpick with the scouting report: Lakey cites ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: December 29, 2016 at 05:56 AM | 6 comment(s)
  Beats: prospects, red sox, scouting reports

Ballot 2: Roger Clemens | Joe Posnanski

Roger Clemens and missed opportunity in the draft.

Jim Furtado Posted: December 29, 2016 at 05:52 AM | 43 comment(s)
  Beats: astros, hall of fame, red sox, roger clemens, yankees

Baseball Hall of Fame 2017: First-time voter Ryan Fagan explains his ballot

Jay Jaffe’s work on JAWS has a far reaching impact on the HOF voting. This isn’t the first time I’ve seen it referenced; I’m sure it won’t be the last.

Two quick notes: First, huge thanks to Sports Illustrated’s Jay Jaffe for creating his JAWS system, which provides statistical context for this Hall of Fame discussion, and all the work he’s done breaking down the candidates on the ballot. Invaluable resources. Here’s the landing page for his breakdowns of the candidates. And, second, all ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: December 29, 2016 at 05:40 AM | 11 comment(s)
  Beats: hall of fame

10 prospects poised for success in 2017 | MLB.com

MLBPipeline.com’s new Top 100 list doesn’t come out until the end of January, but the Pipeline crew is hard at work trying to sort out who should go where. The list will undoubtedly include players who weren’t previously Top 100-type prospects. There might be others who don’t start the year on the list, but they could make a jump that could land them there down the line.

Jim Furtado Posted: December 29, 2016 at 05:38 AM | 3 comment(s)
  Beats: prospects

Heyman: In Strange Market, After Encarnacion, Dozen Sluggers Remain

Jon Heyman’s latest notes column includes the following. I can’t see how misreading the market for his client was wasn’t a big mistake.

There’s a lot of criticism of Encarnacion and agent Paul Kinzer for not immediately jumping on the Jays’ initial $80 million, four-year offer, but the reality is that while that was obviously quite a reasonable bid (and the highest one he’d receive, as it turns out; he also got one for $66 million and three years from the Astros) there is no one who would ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: December 29, 2016 at 05:24 AM | 22 comment(s)
  Beats: notes

Wednesday, December 28, 2016

Masterpiece Fall Classic

We’re supposed to see a gassed reliever on the mound, and so that’s what we see. If the velocity readings are 100 and 101, then we look for something else. “Here’s the thing,” Alex Rodriguez said later during the rain delay. “When you’re fatigued, you don’t lose miles per hour, per se. But what you do lose is command and movement.” But Chapman didn’t lose movement. He didn’t lose command (arguably, he doesn’t need command anyway). If you didn’t see Guyer’s ball split the gap and you didn’t know ...

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Jose is El Absurd Pollo Posted: December 28, 2016 at 01:34 PM | 10 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs, indians, world series


2016 most extreme Statcast baserunning moments | MLB.com

Most of these guys run very fast. Ryan Howard is not one of them.

Jim Furtado Posted: December 28, 2016 at 12:48 PM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: statcast

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 12-28-2016

Pittsburgh Gazette Times, December 28, 1916:

Charles (Chick) Evans, Jr., national amateur and open golf champion, is going to teach batting “form” to members of the Chicago National League Club. Evans today accepted he invitation of Charles H. Weeghman, president of the club, to make the spring training trip to Pasadena, Cal.

President Weeghman believes that Evans will be able to improve the batting of every player on the team.

“There is form in the driving of a golf ball,” [Weeghman] said, ...

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Jefferson Manship (Dan Lee) Posted: December 28, 2016 at 10:27 AM | 2 comment(s)
  Beats: dugout, history

Silverman: Here’s my Hall of Fame ballot with Manny Ramirez on it | Boston Herald

Curt Schilling — I respect but don’t agree with a voting writer’s decision to cite the character clause to vote against any candidate when it comes to PEDs or political beliefs or sense of humor or musical taste. I don’t believe I’ve ever injected partisan politics into my baseball coverage. I fall into the First Amendment absolutist, ACLU card-carrying ranks when it comes to players and ex-players speaking their minds, which must be why I can’t quit the belief that Schilling and ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: December 28, 2016 at 08:11 AM | 8 comment(s)
  Beats: hall of fame, indians, manny ramirez, red sox

Oakland and the Athletics turn their eyes to MLS exec

After graduating from Stanford in 1998, Dave Kaval and a buddy gave themselves a gift, a cross-country road trip in which they visited all 30 Major League ballparks. They wrote a book about it called “The Summer That Saved Baseball.”

Now, almost two decades later, Kaval has found a higher calling: Saving baseball for Oakland.

Jim Furtado Posted: December 28, 2016 at 07:15 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: athletics, stadiums

David Wright, Jacoby Ellsbury and the deals MLB teams would undo | New York Post

Ouch.

For as much as the Mets want to move Jay Bruce and his $13 million, that is a one-year headache. David Wright is beloved in his clubhouse, and looks as if he will be the first above-average player to spend his entire career with the Mets. But he has four years at $77 million left, and due to his spinal stenosis, the organization has no idea how much he can play moving forward and to what level.

Jim Furtado Posted: December 28, 2016 at 07:12 AM | 74 comment(s)
  Beats: bad deals, free agents

Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Yankees, White Sox expand trade talks | MLB.com

What are they dangling?

USA Today reported New York was interested in acquiring both Quintana and Robertson from the White Sox, while The New York Post reported the Yankees have not discussed acquiring both players. The Yankees have not commented on the reports.

Jim Furtado Posted: December 27, 2016 at 01:21 PM | 15 comment(s)
  Beats: white sox, yankees

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 12-27-2016

Washington Herald, December 27, 1916:

Tom Hughes, known to the local followers of baseball a few years ago as the “iron man” of the Nationals, denies the story that he has quit baseball and is one of Salt Lake City’s “finest”.
...
In this letter Tom denies a great many of the “fairy stories” that have been printed about him recently. The “Tighten-up” wizzard [sic] claims that he was never kidnapped by any Cleveland gamblers…He also claims that he was never left in [Salt Lake City] by any manager ...

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Jefferson Manship (Dan Lee) Posted: December 27, 2016 at 09:58 AM | 9 comment(s)
  Beats: dugout, history, long tom hughes

Pirates first baseman Josh Bell heeds advice from veterans on the offseason | Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

Jaso, who also will work at third base and in the outfield, picked up the first-base position quickly this year and had only five errors in 748 innings there this season. He could be an option to enter late in games to spell Bell, a role Sean Rodriguez has filled the past two seasons.

“Josh Bell is going to grow into being a really good defensive and offensive player and he won’t need that,” Jaso said. “But if that’s a role I can have and that the team would want me to that, that ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: December 27, 2016 at 09:31 AM | 2 comment(s)
  Beats: josh bell, pirates

Can any other team follow the Pirates’ blueprint? - Beyond the Box Score

So, the Pirates won’t be able to follow their own blueprint.

Those three defining characteristics sum up the Pirates — if not in their entirety, in large part. Success with developing prospects, bringing in free agents, and tweaking pitchers is a big reason why the Pirates are reloading, not rebuilding, and ready to carry their success over into another generation of prospects. Unfortunately, those defining characteristics seem fairly unique to the Pirates; they’re products of luck, ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: December 27, 2016 at 08:41 AM | 15 comment(s)
  Beats: pirates

OTP: 26 December 2016: Sport, politics and ‘Russia’s aggression’

Germany’s national football team will monitor human rights in Russia during World Cup 2018, German sports officials said. We have heard similar statements before the Olympic Games in Sochi in 2014. Is it deja vu?
According to German national football team manager Oliver Bierhoff, “we will definitely not turn a blind eye on violations of human rights in Russia.” “We” stands for both the German Football Association and the national football team.
In general, the remarks from the German official ...

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BDC Posted: December 27, 2016 at 08:20 AM | 764 comment(s)
  Beats: international, politics, soccer

Monday, December 26, 2016

How often will Reds play Jose Peraza in 2017? | MLB.com

Assuming no trades involving Brandon Phillips or Zack Cozart, would you consider sitting Phillips more often to play Jose Peraza/Dilson Herrera?
—@handrewmichael

It certainly wouldn’t be the ideal situation, but multiple people may have to sit so Peraza can play at least four games per week. That could mean breaks for Phillips and Cozart, or even Billy Hamilton in center field, which Peraza also plays. Herrera would likely begin the season at Triple-A Louisville if no one is dealt. The club ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: December 26, 2016 at 11:53 AM | 6 comment(s)
  Beats: jose peraza, reds

Does Ryan Braun Still Make Sense For The Dodgers?

I wouldn’t do it.

All other things being equal, the Dodgers would be well-served to step up their pursuit of Braun, but all other things aren’t equal. Braun just turned in his best season since 2012, but he is at a stage in his career when decline can begin at any time. He would cost the Dodgers $19 million in salary in 2017, but even if he were to regress from being a 3.2-win player (using fWAR) to the 2.9-win level he established in 2015, he should make that investment pay off. After that, ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: December 26, 2016 at 09:44 AM | 11 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, ryan braun

Show Before the Show: Episode 89 featuring Willson Contreras, Albert Almora Jr., Alex Bregman | MiLB

Don’t have time to listen right now but this seems an interesting mix of young players.

Jim Furtado Posted: December 26, 2016 at 08:30 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: podcasts

Toolshed: What we learned from Minor League Baseball in 2016 | MiLB.com News | The Official Site of Minor League Baseball

There was some hope that the rookie class of 2015 had opened a new era in how young talent would take over the game. Potential stars such as Kris Bryant, Francisco Lindor, Carlos Correa and Noah Syndergaard hit the ground running, despite all making their Major League debuts that summer. As a group, 2015 rookies were worth a collective 84.7 WAR, according to FanGraphs, shattering the previous record of 49.4 held by the Class of 1987.

The rookie class of 2016, by comparison, was worth only 39.9 ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: December 26, 2016 at 08:28 AM | 8 comment(s)
  Beats: minor leagues, prospects

Klapisch: Holiday gifts only a major leaguer could love

Patience in New York?

Brian Cashman: Patience

Must be tempting to know the White Sox would possibly deal the estimable Jose Quintana for Gleyber Torres and Clint Frazier. That would be a mistake, though. The Yankees are too invested in their rebuild to start dealing prospects just yet.

Jim Furtado Posted: December 26, 2016 at 08:25 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: mets, yankees

Goold: With TV riches ahead, will Cardinals hike payroll in 2017? | Derrick Goold: Bird Land | stltoday.com

That brings us back to the beginning.

Encarnacion.

The tumult and consternation about the slugger has it wrong. The Cardinals, according to a source, had “mild” interest in him. A short-term, high-salary deal seemed most likely, if one was of interest at all. It became clear his market didn’t soften that much. The Cardinals don’t discuss specific free agents, so it’s only possible to speculate they didn’t see a fit, not for his glove or not for that commitment. They have the money ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: December 26, 2016 at 08:22 AM | 2 comment(s)
  Beats: cardinals

Selig election may open Hall to Bonds, Clemens

Don’t try to follow his thinking.

Jim Furtado Posted: December 26, 2016 at 08:19 AM | 86 comment(s)
  Beats: hall of fame

SB Insights from 2016 Retrosheet Data | Exploring Baseball Data with R

OK, now that Christmas is past, you are ready to play with Retrosheet data. Right?

Jim Furtado Posted: December 26, 2016 at 08:15 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: sabermetrics

Sunday, December 25, 2016

Black Plans To Take Simple Approach With Rockies’ Pitchers

“You look at some of these pitchers coming through the system now, they were drafted as Rockies,” Black said. “They were born as Rockies, developed as Rockies. There’s a mindset that’s been taught and talked about through development in our system, and that’s a good thing. Hopefully, as this organization moves forward, we’ll see results.”

Jim Furtado Posted: December 25, 2016 at 02:54 PM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: bud black, rockies

Saturday, December 24, 2016

Baseball Prospectus | Baseball Therapy: Worrying About the Money

A clear-headed take on baseball’s internship “problem”.

Jim Furtado Posted: December 24, 2016 at 08:57 AM | 44 comment(s)
  Beats: job applicants

Jose Bautista’s path back to Toronto becomes even clearer

Is the last part true? If he’s really as volatile as this suggests, why would a team want to overpay *and* deal with him when there are other options?

Whether they should certainly is disputable. The fears about Bautista are fair. Older players are risky. They have trouble staying healthy. Bautista is right-handed and the lineup desperately could use another left-handed hitter. And this could be the big one: According to sources, while Bautista is willing to accept a one-year deal, he wants it ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: December 24, 2016 at 08:34 AM | 21 comment(s)
  Beats: blue jays, free agents, jose bautista

Pitch Framing Was Doomed From the Start – The Hardball Times

Pitch-framing numbers answered questions we didn’t know we had. A new statistical category emerged out of nowhere, and before long, the research proved its own worth. That was the birth of the revolution. Every team now wants good-receiving catchers. Every team, additionally, wants to develop more good-receiving catchers. The market is going to end up flooded with good-receiving catchers. By then we’ll no longer recognize them as good-receiving catchers. Pitch-framing is sufficiently ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: December 24, 2016 at 08:29 AM | 9 comment(s)
  Beats: pitch framing, sabermetrics

Get in the holiday spirit as these managers, players and broadcasters read Christmas poems | MLB.com

Merry Christmas, Ramadan, Chanukah, Kwanzaa, Winter Solstice, Tet, Festivus…in other words HAPPY HOLIDAYS!

Jim Furtado Posted: December 24, 2016 at 07:58 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: holidays

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