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Saturday, August 19, 2017

MLBTR: Dodgers Acquire Curtis Granderson

The Dodgers fortify the postseason roster while the Mets receive a few shekels to help meet the bankers’ demands.

Granderson, 36, gives the Dodgers yet another interesting piece to work with. The timing of his addition is particularly notable given that Los Angeles just welcomed veteran first baseman Adrian Gonzalez back from the DL, which seemingly left breakout young star Cody Bellinger slated for at least some additional time in the outfield. Then again, it may turn out that Gonzalez will function mostly as a bench bat.

Both Gonzalez and Bellinger hit from the left side, as do Granderson and the struggling Joc Pederson. It remains to be seen how things will be sorted, but this move could push Pederson out of his semi-regular role in center. Regardless, Dodgers skipper Dave Roberts will have options. The club has three right-handed hitters capable of playing the outfield in Yasiel Puig, Chris Taylor, and Enrique Hernandez — the latter two are also infield options — so there are loads of different ways the team can line up depending upon the situation.

Despite his age and early-season struggles, Granderson is a significant addition. he has destroyed opposing pitching to the tune of a .273/.395/.596 slash in his last 250 trips to the plate. It doesn’t hurt that he’s still capable of manning center field, giving an alternative to Pederson. It’s worth noting that, like Pederson, the new addition has been far more effective this year (and over his career) when hitting with the platoon advantage. The Dodgers will surely continue to mix and match heavily.

It’s not yet clear how the teams have sorted out the remainder of Granderson’s $15MM salary — just under $4MM of which remains to be paid. He had previously cleared revocable waivers. It’s worth noting, too, that the move seemingly makes it unlikely that the Dodgers will end up assigning a significant role to veteran Andre Ethier when he finally returns later in the year. Los Angeles also announced that it designated righty Dylan Floro for assignment to open a 40-man spot for the addition of Granderson.

For the Mets, the swap brings an end to a productive four-year tenure for Granderson. He joined the team on a four-year, $60MM pact and largely performed to expectations after a middling first year. All told, he produced a .239/.341/.444 slash with 95 long balls over his time with the Mets — while also serving as a respected clubhouse member through occasionally tumultuous times.

Renegade (((JE))) Posted: August 19, 2017 at 09:59 AM | 11 comment(s)
  Beats: curtis granderson, dodgers, madoff, mets, money, ptbnl

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Dodgers’ Yasiel Puig shows patience under pressure against White Sox – Orange County Register

The Dodgers’ magic number is so low, they can clinch a playoff berth before the calendar turns to September. They are 50 games over .500 for the first time since 1953. Still, the schedule insists that the regular season lasts another six weeks.

Jim Furtado Posted: August 16, 2017 at 08:40 AM | 10 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers

Dodgers trade Chris Hatcher to A’s

Addition by subtraction. Maybe Beane saw something in Hatcher he thinks his coaching staff can fix.

Joyful Calculus Instructor Posted: August 16, 2017 at 03:09 AM | 2 comment(s)
  Beats: athletics, dodgers

Friday, August 11, 2017

Top 20 Greatest Dodgers of all-time according to WAR

According to baseball-reference.com, Fernando pitched in front of more fans than any other pitcher in baseball from 1980 to 1990. That’s true even though Fernando missed six weeks to injury in 1988 and only made two starts in 1980.

Starting Pitchers who Performed in Front of the Most Fans, 1980-1990

1. Fernando Valenzuela … 12,945,716
2. Nolan Ryan … 10,867,110
3. Bob Welch … 10,114,515
4. Jack Morris … 10,096,435
5. Dave Stieb … 10,005,851

Wahoo Sam Posted: August 11, 2017 at 03:56 PM | 61 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, don drysdale, jackie robinson, pee wee reese, sandy koufax

Wednesday, August 09, 2017

The New Moneyball, With Lots and Lots of Money - WSJ

The Red Sox were once the smartest organization. Unfortunately their thinking stagnated and they started making decisions based on ratings and short-term gains. The Dodgers, on the other hand, have kept their focus on the long-term and continue to explore every possible path to improvement, while using their financial might to maximum advantage. Their organization should be applauded for their patience, starting with Stan Kasten.

Under their stewardship, the Dodgers have avoided long-term contracts; hoarded prospects like Cody Bellinger, a breakout star of the 2017 team, rather than trade them for short-term gain; and stockpiled undervalued assets by prioritizing depth and versatility.

“That’s been the model: have a lot of good players—and some great players,” Zaidi said. “Having resources creates a broader opportunity set. We can cast a wider net.”

Jim Furtado Posted: August 09, 2017 at 09:39 AM | 8 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers

Tuesday, August 08, 2017

Yasiel Puig’s return to good graces is sealed with a kiss - LA Times

Puig has been doing a lot of things right lately.

Jim Furtado Posted: August 08, 2017 at 01:49 PM | 2 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, yasiel puig

Ryan Parker on Twitter: “Bellinger   ShotTracer https://t.co/voqQHoZ1iL”

This is beautiful.

Jim Furtado Posted: August 08, 2017 at 08:38 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: cody bellinger, dodgers

Monday, August 07, 2017

The Dodgers Have A Real Chance To Break The All-Time Wins Record

According to FiveThirtyEight’s Elo model, which simulates the remainder of the season using power ratings and each team’s probability of winning every game, the Dodgers are on pace to win 112 games. But that’s just their average outcome — in some simulations they win more, and in some they win less. In a shade over 20 percent of sims, they win at least 116 games, which would tie the all-time mark. And 13.5 percent of the time, they finish the season with at least 117 victories, setting a new single-season record for greatness.

Joyful Calculus Instructor Posted: August 07, 2017 at 01:57 PM | 76 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, fivethirtyeight

Sunday, August 06, 2017

Dodgers shortstop Corey Seager keeps quiet, but his excellent play speaks for itself - LA Times

Know it all computers. Pfft!

Cody Bellinger has made headlines with his prodigious power, Justin Turner has become the people’s champion, but it’s Seager who remains the team’s best position player. He continues to bat second in the order — “according to my computer, the most important spot in the lineup,” half-joked general manager Farhan Zaidi.

Jim Furtado Posted: August 06, 2017 at 10:07 AM | 14 comment(s)
  Beats: corey seager, dodgers

The Dodgers’ catchers will help Yu Darvish in a specific way - Beyond the Box Score

Nice detailed look at the change.

Here are two things we know about the 2017 Major League Baseball season:

Jonathan Lucroy (formerly of the Rangers) has gone from one of the best framing catchers in baseball to literally the worst in baseball.

The Dodgers starting and backup catchers are two of the best framers in baseball.

That’s simple enough. It doesn’t take any more information than that to conclude that Yu Darvish will almost definitely benefit from throwing to his new Los Angeles backstops.

Jim Furtado Posted: August 06, 2017 at 09:26 AM | 3 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, yu darvish

BR | Dodgers Complete Best 50-Game Stretch in MLB Since 1912 with Win vs. Mets

With a come-from-behind 7-4 victory over the New York Mets on Saturday, the Los Angeles Dodgers have completed the best 50-game stretch in Major League Baseball since 1912 by going 43-7.

LA Podcasting Hombre of Anaheim Posted: August 06, 2017 at 03:59 AM | 53 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, jinx, mets, superteam of destiny

Thursday, August 03, 2017

Presidential bid didn’t work out, but how about Ambassador Jamie McCourt?

Jaime McCourt and her ex-husband leveraged the Dodgers, splitting the team ownership into multiple legal entities for the purpose of drawing money out of the team for personal use. They then used bankruptcy to clear liabilities and sold the team for a huge personal profit. She’ll fit right in with this administration.

Joyful Calculus Instructor Posted: August 03, 2017 at 02:29 PM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, donald trump, mccourt

Dodgers, Astros redefining starter use—and winning

Why? Because as we saw last October, when the games really begin to matter, the traditional roles go out the window. “Starters” and “relievers” don’t matter nearly so much as “pitchers” do, because it’s simply about getting 27 outs as effectively as possible. More and more, that means starters leaving early and relievers coming in often, rather than having one pitcher turn over a lineup several times—because such a strategy no longer correlates as well to actually winning games as well as it once did.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: August 03, 2017 at 10:22 AM | 10 comment(s)
  Beats: astros, dodgers, starter usage, third time through the order

Tuesday, August 01, 2017

Inside the frenzied 12 minutes that led to the Dodgers’ deal for Yu Darvish

Unique isn’t a synonym for flawed.

A few days earlier, the Rangers insisted a deal for Darvish include one of Los Angeles’ two best prospects, pitcher Walker Buehler or outfielder Alex Verdugo. The Dodgers refused to consider either, a position on which they held firm in all offers. Texas eventually softened its stance and considered a deal around Willie Calhoun, one of the most unique prospects in years.

Jim Furtado Posted: August 01, 2017 at 06:48 AM | 8 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, trade deadline, yu darvish

Dodgers add Yu Darvish to talented rotation | MLB.com

That’s what the Dodgers paid for, anyway: upside. They didn’t need Darvish, not really. They were just fine without him, which is why they weren’t willing to give up their top trio of prospects to get him. But this is clearly their year, and they weren’t about to let this year’s team head into October without every possible asset at their disposal. If Darvish adds value in October, the deal will be worth it. If he doesn’t? They might be good enough anyway.

Jim Furtado Posted: August 01, 2017 at 06:36 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, yu darvish

Monday, July 31, 2017

Dodgers trade for Yu Darvish, bolster bullpen | MLB.com

Los Angeles sent right-handed pitcher Angel German and infielder Oneil Cruz, who was the team’s No. 21-ranked prospect, to the Pirates for Watson.

and

The Dodgers sent outfielder Scott Van Slyke and another [Hendrik Clementina] to the Reds for Cingrani, 28. Cingrani was a third-round pick of the Reds in 2011, and he will not be eligible for free agency until 2020. He has a 5.40 ERA in 25 games. He missed May with an oblique strain, and he has allowed nine earned runs in his last 5 2/3 innings.

Jim Furtado Posted: July 31, 2017 at 06:04 PM | 2 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, pirates, reds, trades

Dodgers acquire right-hander Yu Darvish from Rangers

The Los Angeles Dodgers, owners of the best record in baseball, have acquired right-hander Yu Darvish from the Texas Rangers, according to Fox Sports.

Los Angeles landed perhaps the biggest name available right at the trade deadline on Monday. The Rangers will receive three minor-leaguers, but one of the Dodgers’ top prospects, outfielder Alex Verdugo, will not be part of the deal, sources told ESPN’s Buster Olney.

LA Podcasting Hombre of Anaheim Posted: July 31, 2017 at 04:44 PM | 46 comment(s)
  Beats: darvish, dodgers, rangers, trade

Heyman | Dodgers And Rangers At An Impasse In Darvish Talks

The Dodgers, to this point, have been steadfast in their resolve to keep their top two prospects — pitcher Walker Buehler and outfielder Alex Verdugo — and the offers to the Rangers haven’t come close to enticing them, according to sources. The Dodgers in the past always declined to trade Corey Seager, Cody Bellinger, Joc Pederson and Julio Urias, and it seems the same is holding true now.

Jim Furtado Posted: July 31, 2017 at 10:17 AM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, rangers, trade rumors, yu darvish

Thursday, July 27, 2017

BAR: Hoarding prospects a proven strategy

The Dodgers are the model big-market team right now. They need to win the World Series to be fully appreciated, however.

The top farm system in 2015? The Cubs, the 2016 World Series champs. Not counting the Cubs since it’s been too recent — of all the teams with the top farm system, all but three have been in the playoffs at least three times within five years of being named the top farm system. Those three were the 2006 Diamondbacks, National League West winners in 2007 and 2011, the 2014 Pirates and the Kansas City Royals.

The top system in 2016, the Dodgers, made the playoffs last year and look to do so again this year. Baseball America’s top system this year was the Braves, and they probably won’t make the playoffs this year, but they’ve been surprisingly competitive. If history holds, they will be in the playoffs at least twice in the next five years, and they’ll do that because they have good, young talent.

Jim Furtado Posted: July 27, 2017 at 10:20 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs, dodgers

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Verdugo hits wacky homer, plates four | MiLB.com News

Zach Borenstein’s baseball legacy.

Jim Furtado Posted: July 26, 2017 at 10:35 AM | 17 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, video

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Bellinger homer gives 30-year-old rookie win in MLB debut - LA Times

On the first day of life without Clayton Kershaw, rookie Cody Bellinger put the Dodgers on his shoulders. With the Dodgers five outs from a defeat, Bellinger hit his 28th home run, a three-run shot that powered the team to a 6-4 victory Monday over the Minnesota Twins.

The crowd chanted for a curtain call. Bellinger obliged, with a nudge from Enrique Hernandez.

Update: Here’s the video.

Jim Furtado Posted: July 25, 2017 at 10:18 AM | 5 comment(s)
  Beats: cody bellinger, dodgers

Monday, July 24, 2017

Dodgers beat Braves in 10 after losing Kershaw | MLB.com

UPDATE: Projected to miss 4-6 weeks.

No, no, no, no. no.

Kershaw, who missed 2 1/2 months last year with a herniated disk, left with lower right back tightness suffered while warming up for the second inning after an eight-pitch first inning. Atlanta starter Sean Newcomb (1-6) struck out nine but also issued five walks in six innings, two of them scoring ahead of the homer by Barnes inside the left-field foul pole on an 0-2 pitch.

Jim Furtado Posted: July 24, 2017 at 02:59 PM | 22 comment(s)
  Beats: clayton kershaw, dodgers

Friday, July 21, 2017

Baseball’s Best Teams Are Too Damn Good

As we approach the July 31 trade deadline, this is more than just an academic curiosity. A team’s willingness to pony up prospects for a better shot at the World Series is directly tied to how much good it thinks a trade will do. In a wide-open season, even teams outside the top tier of contenders could be convinced to roll the dice on an upgrade — particularly with the expanded wild-card format. But the stronger the top teams are, the less incentive teams on the periphery have to make a championship push. According to Elo, we haven’t seen a stronger crop of elite teams in the expansion era than this season’s top six.1

As recently as a few years ago, you could have lamented the lack of dominant teams at the top of the major leagues. At this same time in 2015, for instance, the leading Elo teams were among the weakest at their slots in the expansion era. But baseball’s era of parity seems to be officially over, with the game moving back toward imbalance. While a top-heavy MLB might never look like its basketball equivalent,2 it’s still going to be tougher than usual for aspiring contenders to break through — a fact you can bet every GM is keenly aware of in the lead-up to the deadline.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: July 21, 2017 at 05:40 PM | 73 comment(s)
  Beats: astros, dodgers, fivethirtyeight, parity

Thursday, July 20, 2017

THT: A Joyful Celebration of Baseball

Good reporting by Sarah Wexler on the 19th annual induction day for the Baseball Reliquary’s Shrine of the Eternals.

The first honor bestowed was the 2017 Hilda Award, named, of course, for Hilda Chester, and intended to especially honor noteworthy fans.

This year’s recipient was Cam Perron, a 22-year-old Tulane University business management graduate. Perron’s life’s passion is the preservation of Negro League history. At the age of 12, he began writing retired ballplayers for autographs, sending 20 to 40 letters a week to former major leaguers and former Negro leaguers. He found that the Negro league alumni tended to be quite enthusiastic in their responses, often sending replies that were two or three pages long. Perron started including his phone number in his letters, and often ended up having hours-long conversations with players.

...At the age of 13, he teamed up with Dr. Layton Revel, founder and executive director of the Center for Negro League Baseball Research in Carrollton, Texas, whom he describes as his “best friend.” The two have organized Negro Leagues reunions in Birmingham, Ala., for each of the past eight years.

Perron was also instrumental in getting MLB to launch a Negro League pension program, which provides anyone who can prove they played Negro League baseball for four or more years with a yearly $10,000 pension — a sum which, in Perron’s words, “really makes a difference” for a lot of guys. Perron has been featured twice on Real Sports with Bryant Gumbel, given a TED-Ed talk, and is currently in the process of working on a feature film based on his efforts.


Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Likely destinations for all the top stars on the block

The Brewers may be the most aggressive team pursuing Gray, who pitched three years for Brewers pitching coach Derek Johnson at Vanderbilt. The Brewers, whose rebuild has suddenly been accelerated by their first-place status in the NL Central, not only have the prospects, but also a fiery owner wanting to land him….

The Astros, 62-30, actually may be the team that most needs Gray. Sure, they’ll cruise to the AL West title with or without him, but with the way the Astros have dominated this year, anything short of a World Series berth will be a disappointment.

The Astros would prefer to land Detroit Tigers All-Star Michael Fulmer, and likely would include No. 1 prospect Francis Martes for him, but they inquired, just like the Cubs, and came up empty. If Fulmer is traded, the Tigers say, it won’t be until this winter when everyone can make a bid.

The Astros realize that Gray is the ideal front-line starter in this market to make a run for their first World Series title in franchise history, giving them a dynamic rotation with All-Stars Dallas Keuchel and Lance McCullers Jr.

Prediction: Gray goes to the Astros for starter Joe Musgrove, prized pitching prospect Forrest Whitley and outfield prospect Teoscar Hernandez.


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