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Jim Furtado
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Editor - Baseball Primer


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Wednesday, November 18, 2015

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 | 97 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

Braves CEO: “Baseball is not a widely profitable business” | HardballTalk

Franchise values wouldn’t be going up so much if teams weren’t profitable.

Jim Furtado Posted: November 16, 2015 at 11:17 AM | 65 comment(s)
  Beats: braves, economics

The strain of WAR you use can dramatically affect your perception of a player - Beyond the Box Score

Calling them all the same name is confusing. When Bill James came up with Runs Created, every alternative runs formula creator didn’t call his creation the same name.

Jim Furtado Posted: November 16, 2015 at 11:12 AM | 36 comment(s)
  Beats: sabermetrics, war

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 11-16-2015

New York Tribune, November 16, 1915:

James A. Gilmore, president of the Federal League, returned to [New York] yesterday, after attending the annual meeting of the Feds in Chicago.
He announced that the invasion of Manhattan Island by the Federal League was a fact, and insisted that within a week or ten days the location of the grounds and the plans for building the stadium would be made public.

The chief of the youngest organization in baseball was inclined to be a bit reticent, and evaded ...

Jefferson Manship (Dan Lee) Posted: November 16, 2015 at 08:19 AM | 24 comment(s)
  Beats: dugout, federal league, history

OTP - 2015 November 16: It’s not baseball, it’s politics

In 1951, Warren Spahn was on the way to becoming the winningest left-handed baseball pitcher. Will painted the scenario of a game when he was pitching for the Boston Braves against the New York Giants.

The Giants sent up to the plate a rookie who had yet to record his first big league hit. The rookie was Willie Mays.

“Spahn stood from the mound, 60 feet and six inches from home plate, and fired a bullet in. Mays crushed it,” Will said. “After the game, sports writers asked Spahn what ...

Bitter Mouse, Space Tyrant Posted: November 16, 2015 at 08:19 AM | 1902 comment(s)
  Beats: off-topic, politics

Baseball clubs walk competitive tightrope when rebuilding - Houston Chronicle

“I think the beauty of baseball - this is not to get overly philosophical - is that there is no one way to do it,” said Klentak, who was an assistant GM with the Los Angeles Angels previously. “I think all we need to do is look at the 2015 playoff rosters. The Kansas City Royals won the World Series; they were built in a certain way. The New York Mets … they were built in a certain way. The Mets and the Astros, what I would draw from them from an optimistic perspective is how quickly they ...

Jim Furtado Posted: November 16, 2015 at 06:43 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: team building

With teams more willing to take a risk, Zack Wheeler remains attractive . . . but Mets aren’t actively looking to trade him | Newsday

“We’re not actively shopping Zack by any stretch,” Ricco told Newsday. “But as with the other starters, if something came up that we thought made us better, we’re going to talk about it.”

Judging by the reaction of rival executives, the Mets could find themselves with plenty to talk about should they dangle any of their dynamic young pitchers. That includes Wheeler, even though he likely won’t be ready to pitch in the big leagues until July.

Jim Furtado Posted: November 16, 2015 at 06:37 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: mets, zach wheeler

Ot: 2015-2016 NHL Thread

Better late than never.

Meatwad wont hit were you tell him Posted: November 16, 2015 at 12:34 AM | 19 comment(s)
  Beats: nhl, ot

Sunday, November 15, 2015

Should Red Sox have traded prospects for starter instead of Kimbrel? | FOX Sports

A bunch of things here, including this gem.

Finally, the Mets are fairly adamant that they will not trade any of their young starting pitchers, but would it have made sense for them to trade right-hander Matt Harvey for the package that the Red Sox used to land Kimbrel?

Granted, the four prospects who went to the Padres are not yet close to the majors, but Margot could have been the Mets’ center fielder of the future, Guerra would have given them another shortstop prospect to go with Amed ...

Jim Furtado Posted: November 15, 2015 at 07:11 PM | 31 comment(s)
  Beats: braves, red sox

The Atlanta Braves, Liberty Media, and Misplaced Anger

While it is true that the Atlanta Braves typically are in the middle of the pack in payroll dollars, the reality is that it isn’t Liberty Media holding payroll down (more in this later). The Braves’ payroll and operating budget are set by Braves’ longtime Chairman and CEO Terry McGuirk. McGuirk and President John Schuerholz run the day-to-day business operations of the Braves, while President of Baseball Operations John Hart runs the day-to-day baseball operations. Liberty Media has ...


Phillies acquire Jeremy Hellickson from Diamondbacks

The rebuilding Phillies acquired righthander Jeremy Hellickson from the Arizona Diamondbacks in exchange for pitching prospect Sam McWilliams.

ReggieThomasLives Posted: November 15, 2015 at 03:04 PM | 12 comment(s)
  Beats: diamondbacks, phillies, phils

MLB to review runners coming off base on tag plays

Since the start of expanded video review for the 2014, more runners have been called out after fielder’s press their gloves against them, hoping they will come off the base for a split second during or after their slide.

“I’ve talked to a number of managers about that, and in a lot of ways they feel it’s unfair,” Joe Torre, MLB’s chief baseball officer, said Wednesday. “And yet when you’re dealing with replay and dealing with technology, it is what it is. If there’s a separation and his glove, ...

Zach Posted: November 15, 2015 at 12:31 PM | 57 comment(s)
  Beats: common sense, instant replay, rules of play

Saturday, November 14, 2015

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