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Thursday, April 27, 2017

Mariners’ James Paxton rising to ace status | MLB.com

Giddy up!

How overpowering has Paxton been? Coming into the game, his average four-seamer velocity of 95.8 mph ranked third out of the 56 pitchers in MLB with at least 150 four-seamers thrown, behind only right-handers Luis Severino of the Yankees and Gerrit Cole of the Pirates. He was even better Wednesday, averaging 96.2 mph with a high of 98.1, according to Statcast™.

Paxton relied on the four-seamer more heavily, throwing it for 74 of his 103 pitches (72 percent), compared with his average of 61 percent in his first four starts.

Jim Furtado Posted: April 27, 2017 at 06:46 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: james paxton, mariners, statcast

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Dodgers to call up top prospect Cody Bellinger to aid outfield

With Joc Pederson on the disabled list and the team’s outfield production stalled, the Dodgers have decided to call up top prospect Cody Bellinger, according to a person with knowledge of the situation. The team needs to clear a spot on its 40-man roster to make room for Bellinger, a 21-year-old who was rated the No. 7 prospect in the sport before the season by Baseball America.

Bellinger can play first base, but he is expected to aid the team’s outfield upon his debut. He will likely rotate between left field and center field against right-handed pitchers.

Bellinger was hitting .343 with five home runs and a 1.055 on-base plus slugging percentage in 18 games for triple-A Oklahoma City.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: April 25, 2017 at 05:14 PM | 12 comment(s)
  Beats: cody bellinger, dodgers

Saturday, April 22, 2017

Dodgers’ quartet of pitching prospects can bring the heat – Orange County Register

White said he pitched about 20 innings as a high schooler in San Jose. He went undrafted after his senior year, was barely recruited by colleges, and didn’t have much of a choice when he chose to attend Santa Clara University. He’s still thrown fewer than 200 innings in his life, by his own estimate.

By contrast, Buehler was a 14th-round draft pick out of Henry Clay High in Lexington, Ky., in 2012. He chose not to sign with the Pittsburgh Pirates and attend Vanderbilt University instead. Two years later, Buehler was a College World Series champion and a big-name prospect.

Santana was primarily a shortstop until he turned 18. His $170,000 signing bonus didn’t tab him as a marquee name, but after becoming a pitcher he shot through the Dodgers’ system quicker than many of his peers.

And then there’s Alvarez, who left Cuba at age 18. By the time he turned 21 in March, he was already married with a young daughter. (They were in Rancho Cucamonga, Alvarez said, when he pitched Monday in Lancaster.) He’s already used his $16 million signing bonus to purchase four cars: a Lamborghini, a Porsche, an Audi S8 and a Chevy Tahoe. It seems the rest of his life is merely trying to keep pace with his fastball.

Jim Furtado Posted: April 22, 2017 at 07:59 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, prospects

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Dodgers trying to connect with next generation of fans despite lack of TV exposure

For the fourth consecutive year, the cable company that markets the Dodgers-owned SportsNet LA channel has been unable to sell it to any other major cable or satellite provider in the Los Angeles area. The Dodgers got a record $8.35 billion in their 25-year cable deal, but there is no end in sight to the blackout.

“They’re pushing all the right buttons, but that TV contract has just been a killer,” Wagner said. “It’s hurt the team. It didn’t hurt them financially.

“It’s one thing to take care of 45,000 or 50,000 people a night. But, with how well they play and with all the improvements they have made, not to have the exposure to your product on television in a market of 20 million people? Every one of their games should be on TV.

LA Podcasting Hombre of Anaheim Posted: April 18, 2017 at 11:48 AM | 4 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, tng, tv contracts

Sunday, April 16, 2017

Quakes’ Buehler fans final eight batters | MiLB.com News

Of course, this might say more about their opponent.

Buehler, Wes Helsabeck, Dean Kremer and Shea Spitzbarth (1-0) combined for a season-high 20 strikeouts.

“It was exciting to watch. We have a very talented staff and we’ve got a lot of guys who throw the ball well. I hope we can do that again and I wouldn’t be surprised if we did,” Buehler added. “It was a special night, especially the way Helsabeck finished it with six strikeouts.

Jim Furtado Posted: April 16, 2017 at 07:37 AM | 5 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, walker buehler

Saturday, April 15, 2017

Nothing to worry about as Clayton Kershaw dominates again - Los Angeles - Dodgers Report- ESPN

Clayton Kershaw just keeps on pitching well.

“I said it before, but it’s not a lot of fun to face guys you know and consider a friend,” Kershaw said. “We did a really good job against him tonight. We really battled, made him throw a lot of pitches, didn’t give him many easy outs tonight. We kind of broke it open there with a few big hits with runners in scoring position, so hats off to our guys tonight. They really battled well against him.”

They were enemies for one night, but Kershaw and Greinke are close friends. Three years as teammates, while operating as two of baseball’s best pitchers, forged the bond. Their kids are close in age. Their wives are friends.

Jim Furtado Posted: April 15, 2017 at 08:35 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: diamondbacks, dodgers

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

LAT: A closer look at Rich Hill and his blisters

The blisters a pitcher gets are much more painful. They start deep below the surface of the skin, usually between the nail bed and the skin surrounding it. It will begin to radiate heat as the area (further below the surface of the skin than blisters we get) fills with fluid. Continue to pitch and the fluid erupts to the surface, taking a lot of skin with it and causing a lot of bleeding. So the pitcher is left with a hole in his skin next to his nail, and the hole exudes pus and blood.

Pitchers can’t just slap a Band-Aid on it and go out and pitch, because they can’t have anything on their fingers while pitching. It’s against the rules. And when you have a hole in your finger that’s oozing pus and blood, you don’t really want to grip a ball 100 times and throw it as hard as you can, especially when you throw as many curveballs as Hill does. Imagine the pain from the worst ingrown toenail you have had, double it, and you will have a sense of what it is like.

LA Podcasting Hombre of Anaheim Posted: April 12, 2017 at 04:43 PM | 17 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, gross stuff, rich hill

Tuesday, April 11, 2017


Monday, April 10, 2017

The Forgotten Rivalry: The Reds and Dodgers Battle for Supremacy of the 70s

“As far as talent goes, I’ll take Reds-Dodgers in the ‘70s over any version of Yankees-Red Sox, Cubs-Cardinals, or Dodgers-Giants.”

—————-

It was only one game, but it was a game that showed the world what it was like to have three of the greatest everyday players of all time, all in their primes, in one lineup, at the same time. Comb through baseball history and try to find a team that ever had three such players - you won’t. Secretariat may have moved “like a tremendous machine,” as the track announcer at the Belmont Stakes would famously call three weeks later. But he could have just as easily been describing The Big Red Machine.

—————-

But even against the backdrop of the era, the Dodgers’ starting pitching was pretty extraordinary. Around the league, 200-plus inning workloads were typically limited to the front line pitchers. Most teams had two or three such starters, and divided the workload at the back end of the rotation among several others. But four of the Dodgers’ five 1973 starters – Don Sutton, Andy Messersmith, Claude Osteen, and Tommy John - topped the 200 inning mark. The only one who didn’t, Downing, finished with 193.

gehrig97 Posted: April 10, 2017 at 02:37 PM | 71 comment(s)
  Beats: bench, big red machine, dodgers, garvey, morgan, reds, rose, sutton

Statcast of the day Angels 9th inning rally | MLB.com

Now that’s a comeback.

Jim Furtado Posted: April 10, 2017 at 06:56 AM | 2 comment(s)
  Beats: angels, mariners

Friday, April 07, 2017

How Dodgers GM Farhan Zaidi became one of the most coveted minds in baseball - LA Times

A great feature on Farhan Zaidi.

“You get one ‘Friday Night Lights’ ending, and you get 29 ‘Sopranos’ endings,” Zaidi said. “The lights just go out, and you don’t know what happened.”

Jim Furtado Posted: April 07, 2017 at 08:43 AM | 4 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, farhan zaidi, general managers

Tuesday, April 04, 2017

Pedro Guerrero, feared Dodgers slugger, reportedly ‘fighting for his life’

Pedro Guerrero, whose big bat powered many of the Dodgers’ best teams in the 1980s, was hospitalized Monday in the Dominican Republic. Initial reports offered conflicting information about Guerrero’s current state.

Miami-based journalist Antonio Puesan reported that Guerrero has died. Three other reports indicated Guerrero is alive, but in failing health. ESPN’s Renato Bermudez reported that Guerrero suffered a heart attack, while ESPN’s Enrique Rojas reported that Guerrero suffered a stroke. Hector Gomez of Deportivo Z101 wrote on his Twitter account that Guerrero is brain dead.

A spokesperson for the Dodgers had no information about Guerrero’s condition Monday night.

Guerrero, 60, played 15 seasons in the major leagues. As a Dodger from 1978-88, he made three All-Star teams and finished in the top four in National League MVP voting three times.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: April 04, 2017 at 01:03 PM | 9 comment(s)
  Beats: cardinals, dodgers, pedro guerrero

How do you build a winning outfield? Mariners mixing up the blueprint

Picture the prototypical corner outfielder, and a classic image springs to mind: He has strong wrists and forearms and the ability to hit 20 home runs by accident. The defense might be spotty, but he’ll compensate with a penchant for driving balls into the seats.

That’s the stereotype, and Seattle Mariners general manager Jerry Dipoto isn’t hesitant to admit he bought into it until his analytics department took a dive into the numbers.

“If you look at what’s available in today’s game, sometimes people in the industry get lost in the shuffle of what our expectations are for a position,” Dipoto said. “Corner outfielders are supposed to hit like George Foster, but that’s really not happening in today’s game as much.”

To amplify his point, Dipoto offers the following pop quiz: Of the 60 corner outfield spots in 2016, how many individual players hit .260 with a .320 on base percentage and 16 home runs? Those seem like relatively meager numbers, right?

The answer: 11.

“I think it comes as a shock to most [people] when they see the list,” Dipoto said.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: April 04, 2017 at 10:24 AM | 23 comment(s)
  Beats: mariners

Saturday, April 01, 2017

Dodgers aim for versatility off bench when setting roster for opening day - LA Times

You need a versatile bench when you carry twelve pitchers. It will be interesting to see how many teams decide to go with thirteen.

Jim Furtado Posted: April 01, 2017 at 08:20 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers

Friday, March 31, 2017

Smyly diagnosed with flexor strain, expected to miss six-to-eight weeks Read more here: http://www.

Left-hander Drew Smyly will open the season on the disabled list after being diagnosed with a flexor strain in his elbow. The injury surfaced Tuesday when he experienced problems in a routine between-starts bullpen workout.

Smyly, 27, is expected to miss six-to-eight weeks, and the Mariners will compensate, at least initially, by recalling left-hander Ariel Miranda from Triple-A Tacoma.

This is Smyly’s fifth trip to the disabled list since 2012. He missed much of the 2015 season because of tendinitis in his shoulder but appeared fully recovered last season when he made a career-high 30 starts.

 

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: March 31, 2017 at 03:55 PM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: drew smyly, mariners

Trupin: Drew Smyly’s arm has drowned, he’s out 6-8 weeks

If only he had pitched in meaningless Cactus League games in lieu of meaningless WBC games…

Cool cool cool. Drew Smyly was the acquisition that signaled for many a shift in the Mariners from fringy contenders to Wild Card favorites. With his return expected in June, they’ll have to rely on their considerable but lightly proven pitching depth. Ariel Miranda will get first crack in the rotation, reportedly, and will start the fourth game of the season in Houston. The choice to continue stretching him out as a starter will now come in handy, albeit sooner than anyone would have liked. According to a doctor from Rice University, flexor bundle strains are an elbow injury that develop due to overexertion over time, which makes it equally plausible that this was exacerbated by Smyly’s WBC start, or that he simply would have developed this later on regardless. It’s tough to say. On the somewhat positive side, flexor bundle strains supposedly respond well to rest and rehab. Less cheerily, a similar injury, albeit more serious, ended Adrian Sampson’s season last year, did similarly to Roenis Elias, and contributed to Homer Bailey’s struggles recently. This is trouble, pure and simple.

Renegade (((JE))) Posted: March 31, 2017 at 03:49 PM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: drew smyly, mariners, wbc

Saturday, March 25, 2017

Dodgers’ pitchers rate well in Statcast metric | MLB.com

Lowest estimated OPS in 2016
.438—Kenley Jansen, Dodgers
.450—Andrew Miller, Yankees/Indians
.456—Zach Britton, Orioles
.471—Grant Dayton, Dodgers
.487—Aroldis Chapman, Yankees/Cubs
.491—Alex Reyes, Cardinals
.508—Shawn Kelley, Nationals
.515—Dellin Betances, Yankees
.517—Kershaw, Dodgers
.526—Seung Hwan Oh, Cardinals

Jim Furtado Posted: March 25, 2017 at 08:48 AM | 5 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, statcast

Wednesday, March 22, 2017


Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Sport Illustrated MLB preview: Dodgers will beat Indians in the World Series

A number of teams could win it all this year if things break right for them. But L.A. is the one best positioned to win even when things go wrong.

Here are SI’s complete postseason predictions:

AL wild-card game: Mariners over Rangers
NL wild-card game: Mets over Giants

AL Division Series: Indians over Mariners; Red Sox over Astros
NL Division Series: Cubs over Mets; Dodgers over Nationals

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: March 21, 2017 at 02:30 PM | 20 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, indians, sports illustrated

The new Mariners’ culture: what’s changed? - Lookout Landing

The new Culture Club?

Jim Furtado Posted: March 21, 2017 at 06:34 AM | 26 comment(s)
  Beats: mariners

Saturday, March 18, 2017

Dodgers Prospect Cody Bellinger Has Limitless Potential

Another next big thing.

Jim Furtado Posted: March 18, 2017 at 08:00 AM | 10 comment(s)
  Beats: cody bellinger, dodgers, prospects

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Sporting News: Bat flips are so last season.

Bat flips are so pedestrian. Or, as the video states, so last season. Time to switch things up. Say hello to The Swashbuckler, The Jockey, The Lullaby, The Grandpa and The Drum Major. Worthy alternatives all.

Stay to the end for the Edgar Martinez punchline.

Infinite Yost (Voxter) Posted: March 15, 2017 at 07:44 PM | 3 comment(s)
  Beats: bat flips, edgar martinez, mariners, unwritten rules

Dodgers’ Cody Bellinger unfazed by slow start to spring training - The Orange County Register

“During the (Arizona) Fall League, the first couple games were like that,” Bellinger said. “For some reason that happens, but that’s baseball. It’s a game of adjustments. Your hands aren’t going to be in the right spot 100 percent of the time.”

Ward believes there’s more to it than that.

“You’ve got to go through things in the course of the season and the course of spring,” Ward said. “Always, there’s little adjustments to make. I wish I could say it’s one thing, little adjustments, this or that. But literally it’s constant adjustments that guys are making.”

Jim Furtado Posted: March 15, 2017 at 07:09 AM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: cody bellinger, dodgers, prospects

Statcast’s New Defensive Metrics and Seattle’s Glove-First Outfield | U.S.S. Mariner

. I used his averages and calculated plays made above average for each player in 2015 and 2016, and then I looked at how their chances were distributed. That is, some players (Jackie Bradley, Jr.) saw proportionally more extremely difficult opportunities, while others (Kevin Kiermaier) saw fewer. The plays on the Statcast leaderboards apparently don’t include the absolutely never missed, can of corn, 100% probability balls. At least, that’s my guess just from noting that the sum of each players chances across all 5 buckets totals a fraction of their overall chances/putouts as reported elsewhere. If true, that means that the plays that really separate defenders are in a few not-terribly-large buckets in the ranges where catches are made 25-50% of the time or so. Given THAT, I’m pretty impressed with how reliable these numbers look. Kiermaier, Lorenzo Cain, Ender Inciarte, etc. look great both years despite varying playing time, opportunities, etc.

Jim Furtado Posted: March 15, 2017 at 06:12 AM | 3 comment(s)
  Beats: mariners, statcast

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Phillies get ambidextrous

The Phillies made a minor trade with fun implications today, flipping outfield prospect Joey Curletta to the Seattle Mariners for switch pitcher Pat Venditte. Both Curletta and Venditte are off of 40-man rosters, so there will be no corresponding moves needed.  Curletta was the player to be named later in the Carlos Ruiz deal (the other two pieces being A.J. Ellis and RHP Tommy Bergjans).


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