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Tuesday, April 21, 2015

With suspensions looming, Royals hope to move on from ‘emotional’ series with Oakland | The KC Star

Sure.

The gesture was broadcast on the television screen inside Ned Yost’s office. Ejected from Sunday’s game, Yost witnessed Kelvin Herrera point to his head after throwing a pitch behind the back of Oakland third baseman Brett Lawrie. As a spectator, Yost experienced a reaction common to viewers across the country.

“You look at it, and you’re like ‘God, what’s he doing that for?’” Yost said.

Herrera received an ejection of his own, as one of five Royals tossed from Sunday’s fracas. After the game, he insisted he lost his grip on the baseball, even if it was the second pitch he threw inside to Lawrie, the antagonist for Kansas City all weekend. When asked the meaning of his gesture, Herrera said he was saying to Lawrie, “Think about it.”

Read more here: http://www.kansascity.com/sports/mlb/kansas-city-royals/article19097880.html#storylink=cpy

Jim Furtado Posted: April 21, 2015 at 06:44 AM | 29 comment(s)
  Beats: athletics, royals

Sunday, April 19, 2015

More from Oakland A’s Brett Lawrie, Josh Reddick - Oakland Athletics : The Drumbeat

Brett Lawrie, the voice of reason?

Lawrie said first-base umpire Greg Gibson commended him on how he handled himself, and Lawrie said, with a little grin, “He hits you with one, and there’s two things I can do. I can blow up right here, or I can just take it and walk to first base and let him get in trouble and let it get the better of him.

“What’s the crowd want me to do right there? They want me to blow up and create a huge scene, but why fuel the fire? Why dump another thing of gasoline on it when I can just put a smile on. I was on first base, got to be on first base, and we won the game.”

Jim Furtado Posted: April 19, 2015 at 08:21 AM | 142 comment(s)
  Beats: athletics, josh reddick, royals, yordano ventura

Friday, April 17, 2015

U.S. Supreme Court asked to overturn baseball’s anti-trust exemption

Leading off…..Roberts…..John Roberts….

For the first time in four decades, the U.S. Supreme Court will have an opportunity to reconsider baseball’s notorious exemption from antitrust law. On Wednesday, the city of San Jose, California filed an appeal with the nation’s highest court, asking it to overturn professional baseball’s nearly century-old immunity from the Sherman Antitrust Act.

The appeal is the latest step in the litigation surrounding the Oakland A’s proposed move to San Jose. Back in 2013, the city sued Major League Baseball claiming that the league’s failure to approve the A’s relocation violated federal antitrust law. The district court dismissed the lawsuit later that same year, concluding that baseball’s exemption shielded MLB’s relocation decisions from antitrust scrutiny. That decision was upheld earlier this year by the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals.

While these lower courts were constrained by a series of Supreme Court precedents exempting baseball from the Sherman Act, the Supreme Court itself is not bound to follow the prior rulings. So San Jose is asking the Court to seize this opportunity to overturn baseball’s highly controversial antitrust immunity. Like any appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court, however, the odds that the Court will agree to take San Jose’s appeal are rather slim.


San Jose is hoping to convince the Supreme Court to take the case by arguing that baseball’s antitrust exemption is an outdated doctrine that is harming the public interest in a variety of ways. In its Petition for A Writ of Certiorari – the formal name of an appeal to the Supreme Court – the city argues that none of the original legal justifications for the exemption remain.

 


Thursday, April 16, 2015

REMEMBERING THE WORST ATTENDED MLB GAME OF ALL-TIME

Someone ought to move that team to San Jose!

April 17, 1979, was not exactly the night they hit rock bottom: the A’s would lose 99 more games that year on their way to a 54–108 record, to date the most losses in the franchise’s 114-year history. They would finish with the second-worst record (a game above the 109-loss Blue Jays), lowest whole-season attendance (306,763), most errors, and the lowest batting average in the AL.

But the scene that empty April night drew coverage around the country. 653 tickets sold, but scarcely 250 people walked into the stadium who were not paid to do so; the San Francisco Chronicle’s Herb Caen asked later, “Can you name them?” The 1979 Oakland A’s were a team forsaken by their owner in a city on the verge, it seemed, of being forsaken by its team: these were the Athletics on the brink.

The game was one of the very first regular season games to air on television in Oakland. As the people of Oakland got home from work that day and hung up their coats, they looked out their windows, and checked the sports listings. Better to stay warm at home and see what your ballpark looked like on TV….

The A’s pugilistic owner, Charles O. Finley, once a passionate advocate, now made little effort to disguise his waning interest in Oakland baseball. The advent of free agency in 1976 had players suddenly demanding hefty salaries. The notoriously cheap Finley would have none of it. He slashed his payroll, so that by 1978 the A’s salaries were less than half the league average. He fired most of his staff, at one point maintaining a front office of just six employees, including a frenetic 17-year-old named Stanley Burrell whom Finley had jokingly appointed vice president. (Burrell would release his first album as MC Hammer—a nickname awarded to him by Charlie Finley, who thought he looked like Hank Aaron—several years later.) Finley made noisy overtures to other cities—scheming at one point to replace the White Sox in Chicago, where his insurance business was based, by first having the White Sox move to Seattle—and publicly attempted to finagle his way out of a 20-year Oakland lease.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: April 16, 2015 at 05:03 PM | 45 comment(s)
  Beats: athletics, charlie finley

Monday, April 13, 2015

Down On The Farm with A’s Special Assistant Grady Fuson | A’s Farm

This is a week old but worth reading.

Jim Furtado Posted: April 13, 2015 at 07:12 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: athletics, prospects

Friday, April 10, 2015

The tragic extent of Monique and Milton Bradley’s violent relationship

Victim said her husband grabbed her right hand and pushed her hand against her mouth, causing her to hit herself…. Victim said her husband grabbed her cellphone from a bedroom table and threw it towards the wall. Victim said her cellphone broke into several parts…. Victim said she followed him into the hallway. Victim said her husband turned around and used his right forearm and pushed her against the wall. Victim stated his forearm was against her throat and she was having a difficult time breathing…. Victim said her husband went around the house and picked up all the cellphones, house phones, her car keys and credit cards and left.

MIKE SNAKENBORG: She was upset and crying…. She indicated to me that she was pregnant…. She had a small cut on the inside of her lip that was bleeding.5

MILTON BRADLEY: She had a busted lip…. She was threatening, “Oh, I’m going to call the police” ... and I’m like, “I’m not staying here because I didn’t do nothing.”

HARLAND BRAUN: Did you ever throw the phone at a wall or anything like that?

MILTON BRADLEY: I never threw the phone.5

MICHELLE LIM: Has [Mr. Bradley prevented you from calling the police] in the past?

MONIQUE BRADLEY: He’ll take my cellphone and the house phones, and when he doesn’t do that he says, “Call the police. You’ll be dead by the time they get here anyway.“5

The Los Angeles County District Attorney’s office ... declined to press charges in the July 11 incident because of “insufficient evidence.” [Prosecutors’ documents] read: “Victim was interviewed a [second] time and changed her stories.” —L.A. Times

MICHELLE LIM: What kind of things would he yell at you?

MONIQUE BRADLEY: Tell me I was stupid, I was a #####, a whore, slut, idiot.5

Milton Bradley is the Dodgers’ nominee for this year’s Roberto Clemente Award ... which recognizes the player who best exemplifies the game of baseball, sportsmanship and community involvement, and the individual’s contribution to his team. —Dodgers.com


Thursday, April 09, 2015

Calcaterra: A’s rookie Mark Canha did the “Bull Durham” cliche thing after his debut

Whaddaya know? Meat wrote it down.

This morning in the recaps I noted that I had never heard of A’s rookie Mark Canha. Now I am certain to never, ever forget him, because he is an instant legend.

No, not because he went 3-for-5 with two doubles and four RBI in his debut (though that’s awesome) but because he dropped the “Bull Durham” “Good Lord Willin’ . . .” cliche speech in the postgame interview, basically word for word.

JE (Jason) Posted: April 09, 2015 at 09:45 AM | 142 comment(s)
  Beats: athletics, baseball movies, bull durham, rookies

Wednesday, April 08, 2015

Shea: Henderson has plenty of faith in Zito - San Francisco Chronicle

I hope Barry Zito gets back.

Jim Furtado Posted: April 08, 2015 at 05:53 AM | 2 comment(s)
  Beats: athletics, barry zito, rickey henderson

Monday, April 06, 2015

Comeback detoured: Barry Zito accepts assignment to Triple-A Nashville

Zito was reassigned to the Oakland’s Triple-A team in Nashville. Zito, who hasn’t pitched in a big league game since 2013, had the right to refuse the assignment and pursue a major league job elsewhere. That thought, apparently, never even entered his mind.

“I’m gonna take it,” Zito said after the game. “Just continue to have fun pitching. That’s been my goal all along. I knew I was going to take a year off, and I was going to come back. I’ve been having a lot of fun this spring. I just want to keep doing that.”

“I didn’t stay in shape for a year to come back here and go all in and go sit at home,” he said. “Why should I rush to go sit at home? A lot of the retired guys that I’ve talked to that I’ve played with over the years, I think they ended up bitter that they rushed into that. A lot of them regretted that they just didn’t keep going, put your pride aside, and just go play baseball.”

Barry Zito is determined to go out on his own terms, but it will be very interesting to see how those terms play out.

Win Big Stein's Money Posted: April 06, 2015 at 03:43 PM | 14 comment(s)
  Beats: athletics, barry zito

HOF Broadcaster Lon Simmons dies at 91

Lon Simmons, the Hall of Fame broadcaster whose baritone voice and dry wit captured some of the most thrilling moments in Bay Area sports history, has died. He was 91.

The Chronicles of Reddick Posted: April 06, 2015 at 06:01 AM | 13 comment(s)
  Beats: athletics, giants

Wednesday, April 01, 2015

Marcus Semien Is a Shortstop Now | FanGraphs Baseball

From what I have seen from Semien this spring, he has a looooooooonnnnnnnnnggg way to go before he’s a major league shortstop. If he keeps booting as many routine plays as he has been, he won’t last the season as a starter at the position.

Jim Furtado Posted: April 01, 2015 at 05:37 PM | 15 comment(s)
  Beats: athletics, marcus semien

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Sean Doolittle’s girlfriend will buy your tickets to A’s Pride Night

As part of their special events this season, the Oakland Athletics recently introduced Pride Night. Pride Night will “celebrate the Bay Area’s LGBTQ community.” Partial proceeds from the event will benefit a non-profit charity supporting the LGBTQ media arts. After hearing about the promotion, some fans decided they did not want to attend the game, and would rather sell their tickets. Enter Eireann Dolan, girlfriend of A’s reliever Sean Doolittle. Dolan put up a post on her website, telling Athletics’ fans that she will buy their tickets if they don’t want to go to Pride Night.

A’s fans; if attending a baseball game on LGBT Pride Night makes you at all uncomfortable, it is probably a good idea to sell your tickets. And I have the perfect buyer. ME! If you’d like to sell your tickets to June 17th’s LGBT Pride Night game, I will buy them from you at face value. As many as I can. No judgments. No questions asked. From there, I will donate any tickets I purchase to the Bay Area Youth Center’s Our Space community for LGBTQ youth.

Dolan writes in the post that she was raised by two moms, both of who are die-hard A’s fans, and that’s why she’s so passionate about the cause.

Win Big Stein's Money Posted: March 31, 2015 at 03:03 PM | 105 comment(s)
  Beats: athletics, sean doolittle

Monday, March 30, 2015

Grantland (Lindbergh): 2015 AL West Preview

I enjoy these previews but it’s hard to see how every team will hit the “over” on their projections.

Chris Fluit Posted: March 30, 2015 at 04:53 PM | 3 comment(s)
  Beats: al west, angels, astros, athletics, mariners, rangers

Monday, March 23, 2015

Nationals’ Jerry Blevins as much a renaissance man as he is a baseball player

He became an avid film watcher then, too. His mother always made time on Sundays to take him and his brother to the movies. As a minor leaguer with a lot of free time on the road, Blevins always found the local video store.

“I remember Clinton, Iowa,” said Blevins, whose favorite movie is “The Shawshank Redemption” and who loves the documentary “The King of Kong: A Fistful of Quarters.” “They had a riverboat casino and a Blockbuster down the street. You could go and get five movies for 25 bucks. I’d get the most obscure movies and watch them.”

Blevins also reads a lot, from the news to books. His favorite genre is science fiction and fantasy. He is reading Isaac Asimov’s Foundation series. He goes to sleep each night reading on his Kindle.

Martin Prince: As your president, I would demand a science-fiction library, featuring an ABC of the genre. Asimov, Bester, Clarke.
Student: What about Ray Bradbury?
Martin Prince: I’m aware of his work…

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: March 23, 2015 at 01:35 PM | 2 comment(s)
  Beats: athletics, jerry blevins, loogys, nationals

Sunday, March 22, 2015

For A’s prospect Canha, better bat speed the key - San Francisco Chronicle

Really, who can wait on a cookie?

“They said, ‘These guys don’t make as many mistakes, so you have to go up with the mind-set, ‘I’m going to have to go outside my comfort zone. Be ready for everything, don’t wait for that cookie, because you’re hardly ever going to get those,’” Canha said. “‘Just go after those pitchers’ pitches, because otherwise you’re behind in the count — and then you’re walking back to the dugout and what you’re looking for is never going to come.’”

Jim Furtado Posted: March 22, 2015 at 07:40 AM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: athletics

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Neyer: I have seen Pat Venditte and He was glorious.

The bottom of the seventh inning ended, Venditte trotted in from the bullpen—his arrival trumpeted by the nine-year-old boy running loose in my row—and at 3:42 Mountain Standard Time, I finally saw Pat Venditte throw a real pitch to a real batter.

Win Big Stein's Money Posted: March 19, 2015 at 05:14 PM | 3 comment(s)
  Beats: athletics, pat venditte

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Geldbal? Dutch club AZ Alkmaar hires ‘Moneyball’ executive Billy Beane

We’re not selling clogs here.

Pardon us, Netherlands readers, but how do you say Moneyball in Dutch? Besides ‘Moneyball’, of course.

AZ Alkmaar has hired Oakland Athletics executive Billy Beane, one of the most celebrated advanced statistics gurus in the world and the subject of the film “Moneyball”, in an advisory capacity.

The AZ site says he’ll be helping the club in the areas of “high performance and innovation”.

The club’s general director, Robert Eenhoorn, played four years in Major League Baseball, and its director of soccer is USMNT legend Earnie Stewart.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: March 18, 2015 at 09:48 AM | 15 comment(s)
  Beats: athletics, billy beane, netherlands, scocer

Monday, March 16, 2015

Barry Zito – what are the odds he’ll make A’s rotation? - Oakland Athletics : The Drumbeat

Barry Zito is going back to the future.

Jim Furtado Posted: March 16, 2015 at 07:08 AM | 5 comment(s)
  Beats: athletics, barry zito

Monday, March 09, 2015

A’s facing a major power outage in 2015 - Spring Training Blog - ESPN

The A’s certainly won’t be a powerhouse on the position player side. If you look at BB-Ref’s Positional Comparisons it looks like the rebuilt A’s have the potential to put at least similar WAA on the position player side as they did last year. Ben Zobrist (5.0 bWAR) is a big upgrade at 2B (Oakland -1.4 bWAR last year). This one pick-up can have a big impact. The keys, however, are Marcus Semien and Brett Lawrie. If Semien can provide slightly above average play at SS and Lawrie can stay on the field (1.7 WAR in 70 games in 2014) the sky won’t fall in Oakland.

Jim Furtado Posted: March 09, 2015 at 08:20 AM | 7 comment(s)
  Beats: athletics

Sunday, March 08, 2015

Oakland Athletics Top 20 Prospects for 2015 - Minor League Ball

John Sickels’ Top 20.

Jim Furtado Posted: March 08, 2015 at 10:12 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: athletics, prospects

Saturday, March 07, 2015

Jim Harbaugh Suits Up For Oakland A’s

The man who brought the 49ers to Super Bowl XLVII and fled to Michigan after last season amid a falling out with his bosses is in camp with the Oakland A’s today.

In a green and gold uniform. Wearing stirrups – “That’s old school,” he said. With a No. 4 jersey. And planning to coach first base for a couple of innings when the A’s host the Angels at Hohokam Stadium.

#6bid rescued Ichiro the carpenter! Posted: March 07, 2015 at 03:50 PM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: athletics, jim harbaugh

Thursday, March 05, 2015

Joe Posnanski’s Top 100 Players: No. 40: Eddie Collins

Annnd, we’re back!

There is no satisfying way to compare ancient players from Deadball to the players today. For instance: There is an argument to be made, a strong one, that Eddie Collins was one of the ten best player in baseball history. If you treat the baseball of his time as equal to all other times, you almost have to rank him in that stratosphere. He ranks tenth In wins Above Replacement. He hit .333 with more than 3,000 hits, more than 700 stolen bases, more than 1,800 runs scored — only Ty Cobb has that combination…

How can you guess what Eddie Collins would be in 2015? He was a 5-foot-9, 175-pound competitor, a peerless bunter, a breathtaking base runner, a player with a brilliant baseball mind. Would that game play in 2015? Collins averaged — AVERAGED — more than 20 sacrifice hits per season over his 25-year career. Last year, no player had more than 13 sacrifice bunts. We don’t have complete information, but based on what we do know it seems Collins routinely would get thrown out 30 times a season attempting to steal. That obviously wouldn’t play these days. Collins seemed to get on base a lot with bunts … but even his admirers would say that he wasn’t breathtaking fast, he was just a great bunter. Would that work in 2015 against specialized defenses?

Then again he was just such a smart player — you have to believe he would adjust to modern times. Would have become a faster Dustin Pedroia? A Joe Morgan type? Your guess is probably as irrelevant as mine.

The District Attorney Posted: March 05, 2015 at 02:12 PM | 146 comment(s)
  Beats: athletics, eddie collins, history, joe posnanski, white sox

Mike Norris and the Moral Winter – The Hardball Times

Here’s a nice article about Mike Norris.

Jim Furtado Posted: March 05, 2015 at 08:33 AM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: athletics, mike norris

Saturday, February 28, 2015

Deep dive from Ike Davis on Mets’ downfall, hope for future - NY Daily News

I still kinda like Ike.

Jim Furtado Posted: February 28, 2015 at 08:06 AM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: athletics, ike davis, mets

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Donaldson already proving great fit with Blue Jays | MLB.com

“I have a pretty good relationship with [A’s GM] Billy Beane,” Anthopoulos said. “We’ve done a bunch of small deals. The one thing about Billy, he’s always open-minded and you can never offend him; you can ask about anybody at any time to make a deal.

“[Donaldson] is somebody we asked about right at the end of the season. We were adamantly told, ‘He’s not going to be moved.’ Then we asked about him a little later. [Beane] was still adamant that [Donaldson] was not going to be moved. Then I guess, about a week before we did the deal, we asked about him again in a conversation, he again said he wouldn’t move him, but it seemed in passing that one of the issues was they wanted to win this year. They might retool, but they weren’t going to tear it down.

“[Beane] wasn’t going to leave a hole at third base. I’m the one who introduced Lawrie at that point. We weren’t going to trade Lawrie, but I wasn’t getting anywhere with trying to get Donaldson. Once I introduced Lawrie to fill that hole for him, he seemed a little bit more open-minded and we took it from there. That was the only way I think things could get off the ground, because [Beane] still had every intention to win.”

Jim Furtado Posted: February 25, 2015 at 05:52 AM | 4 comment(s)
  Beats: athletics, blue jays

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