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Jim Furtado
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Editor - Baseball Primer


Hideo Nomo, Kaz Sasaki, Dodgers, Mariners Newsbeat

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Mariners GM Dipoto: Cano happy in Seattle |

It’s a good thing he feels this way because he’s not going anywhere. Ever.

“He reached out to let me know that did not come from Robbie and that’s not at all reflective of how he felt,” said Dipoto, who replaced former GM Jack Zduriencik two months ago. “Shortly after the season ended, I sat down with Robinson in my office for two hours and we had a great talk and I think we left with a very clear understanding of who one another might be.

“Since the season ended, we’ve had a couple phone conversations and texted back and forth on a couple occasions. I don’t have any reason to believe he has a problem. He has not expressed that to me. As we’re moving forward, we believe he’s going to have a strong season as our second baseman.”

Jim Furtado Posted: November 24, 2015 at 11:50 AM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: mariners, robinson cano

Mariners sign free-agent catcher Chris Iannetta to one-year deal | The News Tribune

In signing free-agent catcher Chris Iannetta to a one-year deal Monday, the Mariners didn’t make the move in order to acquire a caddy for one-time franchise cornerstone Mike Zunino.

“Chris is being brought in to be our primary catcher,” general manager Jerry Dipoto said. “We’ll see where the chips falls once we get into spring and beyond. He’s an experienced player who I feel makes us better.”

So where does that leave Zunino, a former first-round pick who spent two-plus years as the club’s starting catcher before getting a late August demotion to the minors?

“Mike comes in with an opportunity to win playing time,” Dipoto said. “A primary catcher is different from what I would consider an everyday player. There is no catcher who is going to go out and catch 162 games.

“Whether it be a time-share or a backup catcher, Mike is going to be in position to win some of that playing time. He’s still a young guy, and we need to get him back on track.”

Jim Furtado Posted: November 24, 2015 at 06:46 AM | 9 comment(s)
  Beats: chris iannetta, mariners

Monday, November 23, 2015

Robinson Cano reportedly unhappy in Seattle, would like to go back to New York

Last week Andy Van Slyke made the news for, among other things, ripping Robinson Cano in a radio interview, claiming that he was lazy, loafed and ended up getting coaches fired in Seattle. There has been a ton of criticism of Van Slyke for saying that, and today John Harper in the Daily News offers several quotes from the Mariners’ former third base coach, Rich Donnelly, defending Cano and his work ethic.

Buried deep in that story, however, is this bit:

So maybe Van Slyke is just so bitter about being fired that he needed someone to blame. But even if Cano has had the best intentions as a Mariner, one long-time friend who spoke to him recently says the second baseman is not happy in Seattle, especially with a new regime in charge there now, and that he’d love to somehow find his way back to New York.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: November 23, 2015 at 11:43 AM | 60 comment(s)
  Beats: mariners, robinson cano, yankees

Sunday, November 22, 2015

LA Times: Dave Roberts new Dodger manager

Dave Roberts is expected to be named manager of the Dodgers on Monday, according to multiple people familiar with the situation who spoke under the condition of anonymity because the hiring hasn’t been officially announced….Like Mattingly before him, the new manager probably will receive guidance from the front office on everything from lineup to bullpen decisions.

Many of the problems Mattingly encountered also remain, including expectations of a World Series championship. Only now, the team might not have the same resources that existed when Mattingly managed it.

he could use hisself as a pinch-runner, I suppose

Pasta-diving Jeter (jmac66) Posted: November 22, 2015 at 08:37 PM | 96 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers

Dodgers reportedly add Cuban prospects Yusniel Diaz, Omar Estevez

The Dodgers have reportedly landed a pair of Cuban teenagers, with a $15.5 million deal for outfielder Yusniel Diaz and $6 million for infielder Omar Estevez, per Jesse Sanchez of

Joyful Calculus Instructor Posted: November 22, 2015 at 07:20 PM | 4 comment(s)
  Beats: cuba, dodgers

Friday, November 20, 2015

Ex-Mariners coach slams Robinson Cano | The Seattle Times

Worst defensive second baseman ever. That’s a tough one to backtrack on.

Host: “So what happened there, so much promise for your club after you and Lloyd McClendon joined two years ago. What happened last year?”

Van Slyke: “Well our bullpen blew up. Fernando Rodney was horrible. He blew nine of the first 18 chances. Your highest paid, supposedly best player – I mean Robbie’s not a bad guy, let me say that before I say anything bad about how he played. But Robinson Cano was the single worst third-place, every-day player I’ve ever seen – I’ve ever seen for the first half of a baseball season. He couldn’t drive home Miss Daisy if he tried. He couldn’t get a hit when it mattered. He played the worst defense I’ve ever seen at second base. I mean I’m talking about the worst defensive second baseman ever – I’ve ever seen in 20 years in the big leagues. He couldn’t catch the ball. No, I take that back. Any ball that was hit to him was an out. Any ball that he had a chance to turn a double play, he’s still maybe the best in the game today. He’s got a great arm. But I’m telling you, Frank: Robinson Cano cost the GM his job. The hitting coach got fired because of Cano. And the manager and the coaches got fired because of Cano. That’s how much impact he has on the organization. He was the worst player and it cost people their jobs in the process.”

Jim Furtado Posted: November 20, 2015 at 10:05 PM | 42 comment(s)
  Beats: andy van slyke, interviews, mariners

Andy Van Slyke says Kershaw wants Yasiel Puig traded from Dodgers

Former big-leaguer Andy Van Slyke, who’s also the father of Dodgers outfielder Scott Van Slyke, on Thursday talked to host Frank Cusumano on CBS Sports Radio 920 in St. Louis. On the subject of his son’s Dodger teammate Yasiel Puig, here’s what the elder Van Slyke had to say:

“This is just between you and I. When the best player—the highest paid player on the Los Angeles Dodgers—goes to the GM and ... is asked what are [the needs of the Los Angeles Dodgers], this particular highest-paid player said, ‘The first thing you need to do is get rid of Puig.’ That’s all you need to know.”
The highest-paid player on the Dodgers would be Clayton Kershaw, who checks in with a 2015 salary of $32.571 million and a 2016 salary of $34.571 million. Van Slyke wouldn’t mention Kershaw by name, but the implication is clear.

I hope that radio station with thousands of listeners doesn’t tell anyone!

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: November 20, 2015 at 10:53 AM | 30 comment(s)
  Beats: andy van slyke, clayton kershaw, dodgers, yasiel puig

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Newberg: The varying degree of cutting ties. -

Tom Wilhelmsen is not a Jerry Dipoto trophy.  He was an asset for a new General Manager to evaluate, to decide whether his greatest value to the club was in the bullpen or in a trade.  Rumored for weeks to be hunting for a center fielder (such as Brett Gardner, Peter Bourjos, Jon Jay, or Martin, according to Fox Sports columnist Ken Rosenthal earlier this month), Dipoto clearly decided that adding Benoit (on Thursday) would facilitate flipping Wilhelmsen for that center field addition.

Just a week ago an NL club executive explained to Joel Sherman (New York Post), in the context of this wave of GM changes around the league: “What happens is that when you have new people, they do not view the talent left behind like the old people did.  When you draft and develop a player, you tend to have a higher opinion and affinity for the player than someone outside the organization.  The new person doesn’t have the same ties and is more willing to trade them.”

Jim Furtado Posted: November 19, 2015 at 06:14 AM | 4 comment(s)
  Beats: general managers, jerry dipoto, mariners, rangers

Monday, November 16, 2015

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

Thursday, November 12, 2015

Joaquin Benoit traded from Padres to Mariners |

A Mariners bullpen that sported the sixth-worst ERA in the Major Leagues last season received a major boost on Thursday, when veteran right-hander Joaquin Benoit was acquired from the Padres for a pair of low-level Minor Leaguers.

In exchange, new general manager Jerry Dipoto parted ways with starter Enyel De Los Santos and infielder Nelson Ward.

Jim Furtado Posted: November 12, 2015 at 04:41 PM | 15 comment(s)
  Beats: mariners, padres, trades

Jerry Dipoto on the Mariners’ New Direction | FanGraphs Baseball

Good stuff. It’s worth your time.

DiPoto on the organization’s change of philosophy: “The philosophy I’m bringing over here is pretty different. I respect Jack Zduriencik – he’s had a wonderful baseball career and I’m sure he’ll continue to have one – but we’ll do things differently than he did. We see things through a different lens. I’m not going to tell you exactly how, because then it’s no longer an advantage, but it is significantly different. Regarding (the Angels), it would be fair to say that this is a different environment for me.”

Jim Furtado Posted: November 12, 2015 at 09:41 AM | 18 comment(s)
  Beats: jerry dipoto, mariners

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Yankees, Mariners have engaged in talks about Brett Gardner | New York Post

No trade discussions were characterized as far along or specifically targeted to just one team. Nevertheless, Gardner has long been a player whom new Seattle general manager Jerry Dipoto has liked going back to his time as an executive with the Diamondbacks and Angels. The Mariners, in fact, as part of the six-player trade done last week with Tampa, obtained center field prospect Boog Powell, who is commonly compared to Gardner in projecting his future.

Jim Furtado Posted: November 11, 2015 at 07:08 PM | 11 comment(s)
  Beats: mariners, trade rumors, yankees

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Will Dipoto continue his dealing this week at the GM Meetings? | The News Tribune

Having already pulled off the off-season’s first major trade, Mariners general manager Jerry Dipoto is now in a setting that he believes facilitates deal-making.

The general managers are holding their annual meetings this week in Boca Raton, Fla.

“To me, the market is always moving,” Dipoto said. “The general managers’ meetings, years ago, used to be where everything got set up for the Winter Meetings.

“Now, quite frankly, the general managers’ meetings are where we generally culminate, or bring to fruition, a lot of the conversations that we’ve been having since the season ended.”

The Mariners completed a six-player deal last Thursday with Tampa Bay that netted right-handed pitcher Nathan Karns, lefty reliever C.J. Riefenhauser and minor-league outfielder Boog Powell.

In return, the Mariners sent shortstop Brad Miller, first baseman Logan Morrison and righty reliever Danny Farquhar to the Rays.

One day later, the Mariners acquired outfielder Daniel Robertson, a defensive specialist, in a waiver claim from the Los Angeles Angels.

“When you get the opportunity to make trades that fit,” Dipoto said, “you make them.”

More opportunities figure to be available this week in Boca Raton.

Jim Furtado Posted: November 10, 2015 at 11:12 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: gm meetings, jerry dipoto, mariners

Dodgers want Yasiel Puig to lose weight - LA Times

Lose weight, fix your swing, and get a haircut!!

Jim Furtado Posted: November 10, 2015 at 06:29 AM | 73 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, yasiel puig

Saturday, November 07, 2015


To copy the Royals, the Dodgers and the Yankees would have to strip their payrolls and start over. The Yankees would also have to jettison their vastly overrated general manager, Brian Cashman, and find a general manager more adept at putting a roster together and not do it by throwing the Yankees’ millions at free agents.


bobm Posted: November 07, 2015 at 08:32 AM | 45 comment(s)
  Beats: dayton moore, dodgers, rays, royals, yankees

Friday, November 06, 2015

Rays and Mariners Get Hot Stove Fired Up Early | FanGraphs Baseball

Dave Cameron talks about the deal. I bet Karns ends up in Seattle’s pen.

Edit: Baseball America’s breakdown.

Jim Furtado Posted: November 06, 2015 at 06:56 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: brad miller, logan morrison, mariners, nate karns, rays, trades

Thursday, November 05, 2015

Mariners Make Six-Player Trade with Rays.

Seattle Mariners Executive Vice President & General Manager of Baseball Operations Jerry Dipoto announced today that Seattle has completed a six-player trade with the Tampa Bay Rays. Seattle has acquired right-handed pitcher Nathan Karns, left-handed pitcher C.J. Riefenhauser and minor league outfielder Boog Powell in exchange for first baseman Logan Morrison, infielder/outfielder Brad Miller and right-handed pitcher Danny Farquhar.

LoMo is a spare part and Farquhar is less than that, but I can’t help but feel like Miller has value. Can anybody shed light on the Rays players in this trade? I assume that this is not the 74-year-old Boog Powell.

Infinite Yost (Voxter) Posted: November 05, 2015 at 10:16 PM | 40 comment(s)
  Beats: mariners, rays, transactions

Wednesday, November 04, 2015

Dodgers, with proud history of diversity, could pick Dave Roberts as manager | FOX Sports

A team should hire the best candidate. The Dodgers have an established track record of doing that. So, if Roberts is the best candidate, they will hire him; if he isn’t, they won’t. And that should be that.

Jim Furtado Posted: November 04, 2015 at 06:50 AM | 37 comment(s)
  Beats: dave roberts, dodgers

In final analysis, the best choice as Dodgers manager would be ... Dave Roberts - LA Times

Bill Plaschke likes Dave Roberts. He really likes him!

Jim Furtado Posted: November 04, 2015 at 06:38 AM | 4 comment(s)
  Beats: dave roberts, dodgers, manager

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Chase Utley is coming back — if he can find a team | New York Post

Who are his best options?

Now, Utley’s case could impact if he misses two games next regular season. The Dodgers will decline his $15 million 2016 option, making Utley a free agent. However, he turns 37 in December and is coming off his worst season in which he hit .212 for the Phillies and Dodgers with just a .629 OPS.

The Dodgers could conceivably want him back at decreased pay, but as opposed to what would have been in his prime, Utley will not have a robust market.

Jim Furtado Posted: October 28, 2015 at 06:10 AM | 26 comment(s)
  Beats: chase utley, dodgers, phillies

Sunday, October 25, 2015

NY Magazine: California Congressman Forced to Despairingly Sing ‘Meet the Mets’ on House Floor

On Friday morning, representative and Los Angeles Dodgers fan Adam Schiff entered the House chambers wearing a Mets tie.

He and New York representative Steve Israel had made a bet about baseball playoffs earlier this month — if the Dodgers won, Israel would have to wear a Dodgers tie and give his colleague bagels. If the Mets won, Schiff would have to give Israel gourmet popcorn and also have to make an undesirable sartorial choice.


bobm Posted: October 25, 2015 at 10:45 AM | 7 comment(s)
  Beats: congress, dodgers, mets

Inside Baseball: Ins and outs of Mattingly’s exit; plus more MLB notes -

As always some good tidbits from Heyman. I love this one.

As was mentioned in this space a week ago, the former outfielder/former broadcaster Gabe Kapler is beloved by the Dodgers brass as future saber star. (Kapler was put in charge of Dodgers spring nutrition for obvious reasons – he looks like a bodybuilder – and he is said to have taken a sabermetrician’s bent to even that; he was caught counting fruit in spring training.)

See, sabermetricians are counters. How can a seemingly smart fella still not get it?

Jim Furtado Posted: October 25, 2015 at 08:31 AM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, don mattingly, notes

Saturday, October 24, 2015

Dodgers looking for a manager open to collaboration — like Gabe Kapler? - LA Times

Several hours after the Dodgers confirmed Don Mattingly wouldn’t return to their dugout next season, Gabe Kapler was asked if he was ready to take over as the team’s manager.

“I have to go work out,” Kapler said.

He smiled, politely declined to comment further and slipped into an elevator.

Jim Furtado Posted: October 24, 2015 at 02:02 PM | 10 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, gabe kapler, managers

Friday, October 23, 2015

Mariners promote Allison to oversee all scouting operations | The News Tribune

Changes in Seattle continue, including a new manager.

Jim Furtado Posted: October 23, 2015 at 10:05 AM | 57 comment(s)
  Beats: mariners, scott servais

Shaikin: Don Mattingly makes a decision, and Dodgers’ Andrew Friedman gets to make his choice

There are Dodger fans clamoring for Scioscia?

In Los Angeles, ownership deflected the decision on Don Mattingly to Andrew Friedman. There was talk of Mattingly staying another year, maybe more, but not for the kind of tenure that would make the manager feel he was Friedman’s guy. So Mattingly took it upon himself to make the decision. He left. He ought to be better off for it, and so too the Dodgers, without the constant backdrop of when Friedman might bring in his own guy.

Friedman should have done that a year ago, when the Dodgers’ owners hired him as president of baseball operations, but the owners still had Mattingly’s back. By the end of this season, Friedman should have known Mattingly well enough to hand him a pink slip or a contract extension, not engage him in hours of discussions about the who, what, when, and why of future decision-making at Dodger Stadium.

No one would have begrudged Friedman the chance to say, “We’re going in another direction.” Mattingly understands how the game is played. He thought he would succeed Joe Torre as manager of the New York Yankees in 2007, but the Yankees went in another direction and hired Joe Girardi. ...

This is not about the Dodgers losing Game 5 of the National League division series; an analytically inclined front office knows better than to make a decision based on one game out of 167. This is not about a sabermetric front office against an old-school manager; Mattingly bent over backward to embrace the torrent of data flowing from the front office to the clubhouse, and the considerable input from the humans in the executive suites.

“I think it’s great, honestly,” Mattingly said. “I think the information is really good. Do I agree 1,000% with everything that comes through it? Probably not. That has nothing to do with loving information.”

Those Dodgers fans clamoring for the return of a prodigal son — Scioscia or Dusty Baker — should be reminded that a manager’s job has changed these days, and not only at Dodger Stadium. Experience as a manager is an asset, not a requirement.

Today’s manager is more of a middle manager, a politician within the organization and a corporate spokesman representing the organization, a front man for the team at a time the balance of power has shifted from the dugout to the front office.



JE (Jason) Posted: October 23, 2015 at 09:56 AM | 8 comment(s)
  Beats: andrew friedman, dodgers, don mattingly, manager

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