Sure, numbers are fine for fantasy leagues, but if you want to truly define a player’s value, or recognize the importance significance of clubhouse culture, it’s time to wake up and embrace character, too.
“I think we’re losing part of our game because so many of these people in charge don’t have the scouting background or playing background,’’ Peavy said. “All they have is a great education and they’re really good at math. Some of these front offices crunch all of these numbers, and think they’ve got it all figured out.
“I don’t know the formula for winning, but I do know what it means when teams are inseparable, enjoy their time together, care for each other, and play for the higher cause. I’ve seen it. I’ve been part of it.
“You can have all of the education you want, and break down every number you want, but unless you get to know what’s inside a player, you really don’t know the player.’’...
“We had our Moneyball movie, and they didn’t even win,’’ Peavy said of the Oakland Athletics. “How about let’s make a movie about the good ol’ fashioned baseball people, and how they judge team chemistry, and put together guys that fit in.
“How about a movie about a team that actually wins in the end?’’
For Cole (14-6), this one had a little extra sting. The budding ace of the Pirates staff had hoped to be the difference against the first-place Cardinals. After the game, he didn’t spend a spare word blaming his defense. The biggest mistakes, he said, were his.
“Those guys are fighting their [butt] off every night just like I am,” he said. “I don’t look at it like they let me down. … There’s no defense for balls pulled over the plate or line drives crushed into the outfield. There’s no defense for that.”
“It is a great credit to our player-development system that they prepare the players for what is expected when they get here,” said Mozeliak. “Historically, we have been a team that handles the ups and downs. We look to use the internal options, which are typically young and inexperienced players, but we have a manager and staff willing to try that, which is very helpful.”
Of course, if managers stopped managing for the save, the criteria for getting paid would be based more on actual performance and impact on wins than a show stat.
Matheny said Sunday it’s appealing, but the save stat cannot be ignored.
“You want to be respectful, too, to what these guys are trying to do individually,” Matheny said. “For us as a team to move forward certain things need to happen and a lot of times it’s trying to create an atmosphere where each of these guys are able to achieve everything, and there are contracts involved. There are personal statistics that help drive personal achievement as far as salaries go. For us to be completely oblivious to that, I think is a mistake as well.
“Then you start having some friction,” Matheny continued. “There are outside influences that are constantly pushing these guys toward the statistics that are going to get them paid someday, right?”
Reportedly, it’s a done deal. Brandon Moss for Rob Kaminsky.
According to sources, the Indians and Cardinals are believed to be making progress on a deal that appears to be significant, likely involving top Cardinals’ prospect Rob Kaminsky. The sides have been discussing Brandon Moss in recent talks as well, according to a source. The possibility of a one-for-one-swap of Moss-for-Kaminsky appears to be in play.
[Kyle] Barraclough, 25, was the Cardinals’ seventh-round pick in 2012. He had a 0.60 ERA in 11 games at A-ball this season before being promoted to Double A, where he has posted a 3.28 ERA in 23 games with eight saves.
A trade, when built around urgency and not reason, has the likelihood of rising to the level of ineffectiveness. Mozeliak has pointed several times to the Feliz trade as a lesson for him and his brain trust. In the years since, Mozeliak and his closed-circuit front office have continued to refine their approach to trades, and as this year’s July 31 deadline nears the word Mozeliak has used often to describe it is “disciplined.” With “data-driven decisions,” they don’t want the winds of the moment to blow them away from their hold on the future.
“You’re trying to make a deal that basically touches on what your goals are,” he explained. “But there are times when we have made deals and they haven’t necessarily been good deals because of a more knee-jerk reaction. Subsequently, we’ve tried to eliminate that as much as possible. We intend to avoid that.”
From the replay I saw (and I couldn’t find one on MLB.com), the ball looked like it went over the bag. Nevertheless, Gould makes some good points about replay, which I’ve criticized many times. Maybe it would be a good idea to get rid of challenges and just put replay in the hands of an extra umpire.
Before we get to the rule, here’s the situation: With two runners already on base and the Cardinals leading by a run, Seth Maness delivers a pitch that Cubs rookie Addison Russell reaches out just to make contact. The ball clearly first hits the dirt in foul territory, only a few feet from the batter’s box. Russell does not break from the box. There is little reaction on the field as the players appear as if they believe the ball is going foul. It hugs the line and hops over the base – before again landing in foul territory beyond the base.
Cardinals first baseman Mark Reynolds cannot reach the ball, but also trots away from it as if it was a foul ball. It is in that millisecond that first-base umpire Pat Hoberg points that it is a fair ball.
Correa’s attorney, Nicholas Williams, said: “Mr. Correa denies any illegal conduct. The relevant inquiry should be what information did former St. Louis Cardinals employees steal from the St. Louis Cardinals organization prior to joining the Houston Astros, and who in the Houston Astros organization authorized, consented to, or benefited from that roguish behavior.”
The probe by investigators at the FBI’s Houston office is complete, according to officials briefed on the matter, but is awaiting action by the Houston U.S. attorney’s office. A U.S. attorney spokeswoman didn’t respond to a request for comment.
A spokeswoman for the Houston U.S. attorney’s office said “no charges have been filed and we obviously cannot provide any information that is not contained in our public court record nor confirm or deny the existence or non-existence of an investigation.”
FBI spokeswoman Shauna Dunlap said the agency “aggressively investigates all potential threats to public and private sector systems.”
“Once our investigations are complete, we pursue all appropriate avenues to hold accountable those who pose a threat in cyberspace,” she said.
The intrusion isn’t considered computer hacking. Instead, investigators believe Cardinals employees used an old password belonging to a former employee who went to work for the Astros in order to gain access to the Astros database.
The Chronicle on Thursday learned that the Cardinals had unauthorized access to Astros information as early as 2012, a year earlier than was previously known. Cards owner Bill DeWitt Jr., meanwhile, for the first time acknowledged that his organization had played a role in accessing proprietary information belonging to the Astros, blaming “roguish behavior.”
One was the implication that the hackers had been able to gain access to the Astros’ database—which is called Ground Control and contains scouting and medical reports and statistical projections, among other data—because he had failed to change his old passwords. “That’s absolutely false,” said Luhnow, who worked as a technology executive before he began his career in baseball. “I absolutely know about password hygiene and best practices. I’m certainly aware of how important passwords are, as well as of the importance of keeping them updated. A lot of my job in baseball, as it was in high tech, is to make sure that intellectual property is protected. I take that seriously and hold myself and those who work for me to a very high standard.”
“Unequivocally,” Mozeliak said, “I knew nothing about this.”
He just wants answers.
Cardinals owner on investigation: ‘These are serious allegations’
“I don’t know the outcome of this or where it’s going to go,” he said, “but our hope is that when everything comes to light, people will realize that it wasn’t something that was organizationalwide. It shouldn’t be something that takes away from any of the success this organization has had.”
So, he doesn’t know what he’s talking about in two sports.
Just call them the New England Cardinals … or maybe the St. Louis Patriots … or maybe just call them phonies in the wake of a New York Times report that they are being investigated by the FBI for hacking computer networks and stealing information about the Houston Astros.
This take is somewhat hotter than the core of the Sun.
There is, of course, only one course of action that baseball can take in the wake of this hilarious, impossibly joyful development: CONTRACT THE CARDINALS. That’s right. Destroy them. Raze their stadium. Arrest their players and fans. Intern them all in some kind of horrible Bud Light Mixx Tail tent (with a dress code), where they can wander around in a daze, whispering to each other, “They said it could never happen here, but it DID.”
That is what the Cardinals deserve for lording their superiority over the rest of baseball for decades now. No more Busch. No more best fans in baseball. No more computer hacks that let them get by superior teams in the playoffs and then pass it off as a feat of sheer guile. No more insincere clapping for the other team. No more Bernie Mickelsauce writing deliberately terrible columns in the hopes of getting them fisked. No more custom Darren Wilson jerseys. No more drunken Tony La Russa letting his cat drive.
This is the appropriate course of action for an organization and fanbase that have gone out of their way to brand themselves as special and different from the rest of us. Oh, you’re different, all right. Thanks to the feds, now we know: you’re worse than any of them, and you deserve to BURN. BURN IN A FIRE LARGE ENOUGH TO RIVAL YOUR CITY’S MANY OTHER TIRE FIRES.
WASHINGTON — The F.B.I. and Justice Department prosecutors are investigating front-office officials for the St. Louis Cardinals, one of the most successful teams in baseball over the past two decades, for hacking into the internal networks of a rival team to steal closely guarded information about player personnel.
Investigators have uncovered evidence that Cardinals officials broke into a network of the Houston Astros that housed special databases the team had built, according to law enforcement officials. Internal discussions about trades, proprietary statistics and scouting reports were compromised, the officials said.
He was a 24-year-old rookie middle infielder who hit 23 homers while playing half his games in Petco Park. How do you not want to lock that guy up? The only real question is when to stop offering him more and more years on the extension. He had a 113 OPS+ when he was 24, which meant it was reasonable to expect even more from him as he entered his prime, and that even more would mean he would be a perennial All-Star.
Instead, he was one of the worst everyday players in baseball last year, hitting .210/.280/.333. He’s hitting .210 again this year, and he’s doing it with even less power. There was a glimmer of hope last year, as Gyorko got relatively hot after the All-Star break, but he lost his job to Cory Spangenberg this season and was banished to the minors again. He’s 26 now, and he’s been a .220-or-worse hitter for almost two calendar years now. He’ll make $13 million in 2019, which is an absolutely stunning amount for a player struggling this mightily.
Even when the problem with a pitcher is hard to diagnose, like with Cahill and Romero, there’s still an element of assumed risk that’s easy to understand because pitchers are supposed to be fragile and mercurial. Gyorko reminds us that hitters can be just as weird, and considering how far removed we are from the version the Padres thought they were locking up, it looks like the problem had more to do with poor evaluation and overreacting to a fast start. It’s the new front office regime that has to pay for it, too.
The subject of mental and physical toughness has popped up multiple times in Matheny’s online blog.
“Every once in a while,” Matheny wrote in 2013, “you find a group that almost seems to stand up taller and straighter when things get tougher. You see them stick out their chin and say ‘Okay, bring it on.’ I love the fight in these guys and the fact that they can’t wait to prove people wrong. To me, that is toughness.”