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Friday, July 31, 2015

Trade Chatter - 2015 Deadline

Linked to MLB.com transaction page.

Jim Furtado Posted: July 31, 2015 at 06:23 AM | 609 comment(s)
  Beats: trade rumors, trades

Friday, March 27, 2015

BBTF 2015 Shooty Memorial Softball Meet-up!

We’ve finally got a date scheduled for this year’s NYC softball game, August 8.

Anybody who’s in contact with Primates who haven’t been around lately, please let ‘em know.

Hysterical & Useless Posted: March 27, 2015 at 06:49 PM | 395 comment(s)
  Beats: softball

Tuesday, August 04, 2015

First-Place Mets Have Baseball’s Easiest Schedule From Here Out - WSJ

General manager Sandy Alderson chose to believe in his team and made moves that reflect his confidence. Now the Mets have a golden opportunity in front of them and a chance to amend some recent history. Ricco recalled the Mets’ collapse in 2007, when they dropped two of three at home to the last-place Marlins with the playoffs on the line in the season’s final weekend.

Still, Ricco said, “It’s better than the opposite.”

Jim Furtado Posted: August 04, 2015 at 08:38 PM | 6 comment(s)
  Beats: mets

Tigers release Dombrowski, promote Avila to GM

Next stop, Toronto?

The Detroit Tigers today announced that assistant general manager Al Avila has been promoted to executive vice president of baseball operations and general manager, replacing Dave Dombrowski in a stunning move this afternoon.

Avila will assume all responsibilities related to baseball operations of the club and will report directly to team owner Mike Ilitch.

“I would like to thank Dave Dombrowski for his 14 years of service,” Ilitch said in a released statement. “Together, we’ve enjoyed some success, but we’re still in aggressive pursuit of our ultimate goal: to bring a World Series title to Detroit and Michigan. I’ve decided to release Dave from his contract in order to afford him the time to pursue other career opportunities. I feel this is the right time for the Tigers to move forward under new leadership.”

asinwreck Posted: August 04, 2015 at 04:38 PM | 43 comment(s)
  Beats: tigers

Beltre crafting rock-solid Hall resume

His career Wins Above Replacement, according to BaseballReference.com, is 36th all time at 80.7. That places him fifth among all third basemen. Only Hall of Famers are ahead of him: Mike Schmidt (106.5), Eddie Mathews (96.4), Wade Boggs (91) and Brooks Robinson (88.4).

His career WAR is higher than a long list of Hall of Famers, including Joe DiMaggio, Johnny Bench, Reggie Jackson and Derek Jeter.

Counting the players who spent most of their time at third base, Beltre is fifth all-time in hits, home runs and RBIs.

Defense? Those metrics are sometimes trickier, but his defensive WAR is second all-time among third basemen, trailing only Robinson.

 

Barry`s_Lazy_Boy Posted: August 04, 2015 at 03:59 PM | 48 comment(s)
  Beats: adrian beltre, hall of fame

Time for MLB to waive goodbye to August trade format for new system

The wrinkle in the waiver system is that a team with no intention of acquiring a player can put in a waiver claim, forcing his team to pull him back and ending the possibility of him being traded. The waiving team can simply let the player go for nothing – the Devil Rays stuck the Yankees with Jose Canseco this way in 2000 — but most often, it’s used as a blocking tool.

As a result, the players who get through waivers tend to be ones with unmanageable contracts. With the way the market has changed, with such an emphasis on teams being able to get some kind of return for pending free agents, it’s time for the game to change with the times.

What Major League Baseball should do is institute a new system, mixing the old waivers system with something resembling the posting agreement that MLB has with Japan.

Here’s how it would work, using Padres outfielder Will Venable as an example so as not to have to refer to “Player X” repeatedly.

The Padres were unable to make a deal before the deadline to offload Venable, a free agent this winter who does not figure to command a qualifying offer, and thus will leave for nothing if the Padres do not re-sign him, unlike Justin Upton, who will get a qualifying offer and would bring a compensatory draft pick to San Diego if he leaves. So, at some point in August, the Padres would post Venable.

Teams interested in Venable would get 24 hours to contact the Padres and find out what San Diego would want in return. Teams would have until 48 hours after the posting to submit their best offers to the Padres. Such offers could be specific or they could be in the form of a list of prospects from which San Diego would have its choice, the way that player-to-be-named-later deals often work.

Upon receiving each team’s bid, the Padres would review their options, and have 24 hours to review medical reports and decide whether to accept an offer, or not be able to trade Venable for the remainder of the season. After 72 total hours, Venable’s situation would be resolved.

 

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: August 04, 2015 at 03:50 PM | 8 comment(s)
  Beats: trade deadline, waiver trades

Yes, the 2015 MLB Trade Deadline Was As Insane As It Seemed. Here’s Proof. «

Ben Lindbergh take on the trade deadline deals.

Jim Furtado Posted: August 04, 2015 at 03:47 PM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: trade deadline, trades

Ruben Amaro, Phillies deal for 12 prospects | phillies.com

Does this make Ruben a tenth level or eleventh level genius?

“This was as well prepared as we’ve been,” Amaro said. “There were no shortage of suitors, and when you’re talking about five or six teams to cover all those players and all those prospects … we started to target some of those guys during the offseason. The scouting and the addition of the analytics portion of these evaluations put us in the best position to be ready to make the trades.”

Quality is key. Some folks considered the Phillies’ farm system to be among the bottom third in baseball before this season. Following the 2015 Draft and the prospects they received from Texas, Washington and Toronto, some believe they have catapulted into the top half, if not the top third.

But quantity is key, too.

“They always say to get five if you need 10,” Gillick said. “It’s a numbers game. We think we got the numbers, and we think we got the quality. Hopefully out of that group, we’ll get four or five of them that’ll be able to perform in the Major Leagues.”

“You want to dream as much as you possibly can, but you also have to be realistic about the players,” Amaro said.

Jim Furtado Posted: August 04, 2015 at 03:42 PM | 11 comment(s)
  Beats: phillies, ruben amaro jr., trade deadline

Blue Jays Aaron Sanchez gets 3-game suspension | MLB.com

The three games for hitting a guy in the leg?

Jim Furtado Posted: August 04, 2015 at 03:36 PM | 18 comment(s)
  Beats: aaron sanchez, blue jays, royals, suspensions

Deadspin: Kelby Tomlinson gets his first MLB hit in front of his wife and dad.

Despite the loss, Tiffany was still overjoyed. Andrew Baggarly of the San Jose Mercury News caught up with Tiffany, who said she wanted to barf from excitement:

“I tried to keep it together the best I could. I couldn’t believe it. I don’t think I believed it until he got on deck and got ready to hit. Then it was, ‘My goodness, it’s actually going to happen.’

“I’m still in disbelief. It was all the emotions all at once. It was so exciting. I wanted to throw up. I’m just so proud of him.”

Baseball is awesome.


How baseball’s tech team built the future of television | The Verge

BAM, BAM…BAM, BAM, BAM!

Jim Furtado Posted: August 04, 2015 at 03:17 PM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: mlbbam, technology

Cards can bank on Lackey

Even with incentives added, Lackey is pitching for about one-tenth of the $15.25 million he made last year because of a contract option clause that said he would play for the minimum if he ever missed a season because of injury.

That clause was exercised this year, and Lackey is a potential free agent after the season, having stated he wants to play two more years.

I thought he was going to retire?

 

Barry`s_Lazy_Boy Posted: August 04, 2015 at 02:42 PM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: minimum wage


A.J. Pierzynski tried to convince ump that this bounced pitch was a strike

When Atlanta Braves pitcher David Aardsma hopped a ball to the plate in the eighth inning Monday night, Pierzynski turned in one of the most shameless sell jobs you’ll ever see from a catcher. He framed up the pitch like it were a strike, held it there to show the ump and looked at him like, “come on, this is totally a strike.”

Rickey! is all out of bubblegum Posted: August 04, 2015 at 11:47 AM | 20 comment(s)
  Beats: pitch framing

Adrian Beltre becomes fourth player to hit for the cycle three times

The Rangers third baseman hit for the third cycle of his career, becoming just the fourth major leaguer ever to do it that many times, and the first since Babe Herman in 1933.

The other players to get a single, double, triple and home run in one MLB game on three occasions were Bob Meusel (1921, 1922 and 1928) and John Reilly (twice in 1883 and 1890), according to the Elias Sports Bureau.

Don’t let it go to his head.

 

Barry`s_Lazy_Boy Posted: August 04, 2015 at 09:47 AM | 16 comment(s)
  Beats: adrian beltre

Leigh Steinberg an agent for change

So, you want to be a sports agent. Really?

The session in Steinberg’s hometown was so well received that they added sessions in Houston, Philadelphia, New York, Chicago and Miami for this year.

“There is no programs in college that focus on preparing you to be a sports agent,” said Cabott, who graduated from La Salle and then got his J.D. from the Widener School of Law in 2005. “These people will learn more about being an agent in one day with [Steinberg] than in an entire semester in a sports management program in college.”

Jim Furtado Posted: August 04, 2015 at 09:35 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: agents, leigh steinberg

Our Game « Our Game

You can read part one at the link! Part 2 is also online.

This little book was issued in 1995 as part of the Penguin 60s series–celebrating Penguin’s 60th anniversary with 60 titles by its authors over the years. The 60 for the UK were somewhat different (a book about baseball would have made little sense across the pond, even though the Brits were first to play the game). I was pleased to be included among the 60 for North America, however, as it placed me in the company of my betters, from Melville and Poe to Emerson and the Pope. I got some cocktail-party mileage out of saying that Stephen King and I received the same fee for our work ($200). Anyway, this little book began its life as part of a book I wrote for The Sporting News in 1988, The Game for All America. Revised and republished over the years, the essay is presented here, at the blog named for it, with a tip of the cap to Whitman (“… well—it’s our game: that’s the chief fact in connection with it: America’s game: has the snap, go, fling, of the American atmosphere—belongs as much to our institutions, fits into them as significantly, as our constitutions, laws: is just as important in the sum total of our historic life”)

Jim Furtado Posted: August 04, 2015 at 09:33 AM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: history

Which Teams’ Positions Have Gone All-Star-Less? – The Hardball Times

The Athletics haven’t had an All-Star second baseman since 1976. Who was it? Read the article.

Jim Furtado Posted: August 04, 2015 at 09:30 AM | 25 comment(s)
  Beats: history

Wilmer Flores is not doing what was expected, and we love him for it |

New York is Wilmer Flores’ oyster.

Flores is now more than simply numbers on a page, he is becoming the heart of the franchise. David Wright is still the soul, but he’s never really been an overly emotional guy, except during a press conference earlier this year regarding his unknowable future dealing with spinal stenosis. Meanwhile, Flores is like the kid brother every teammate and fan never quite had. Not only did he show that he wants to be here with his emotions, but he also showed that he deserves to be here by impacting the team.

Jim Furtado Posted: August 04, 2015 at 09:29 AM | 9 comment(s)
  Beats: mets, wilmer flores

Newly acquired Morse hopes to begin turnaround with Pirates | Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

Michael Morse had already bought a ticket to Los Angeles. His things were in transit and he was at the airport. Then he heard from his agents: His destination had changed.

“I couldn’t be more excited, especially with this clubhouse, especially with the guys, the coaching staff,” Morse said. “For me, it’s like winning the lotto.”

Jim Furtado Posted: August 04, 2015 at 09:26 AM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: michael morse, pirates

Buckley: Why the Red Sox’s Larry Lucchino era is ending | Boston Herald

He was reduced to scrambling for a way to get out his own message Saturday after the Herald had learned Sam Kennedy will be replacing him as president of the Red Sox. None of this happened on Lucchino’s terms, and he said so himself in the statement that was released Sunday:

“We would have preferred to announce all of our transition plans at once, including my new role,” read the statement, “but I can tell you we all feel strongly that Sam Kennedy, who has been with me for 20 years, should be the next President of the Boston Red Sox.”

In other words, Larry Lucchino isn’t stepping down. Instead, it looks like he’s being escorted off the property. And this is happening for one simple reason: It’s time.

Jim Furtado Posted: August 04, 2015 at 09:23 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: larry lucchino, red sox

The Change: Severino, Gray, Owens, Norris & Rookie Pitchers or Rookie Hitters?

There isn’t a lot of daylight between Jon Gray and Henry Owens, and neither is coming into a great situation for a pitcher. They’re also very different, in that the lefty Owens has two non-fastballs that should help his average velocity work, while Gray is a big velocity righty with a tight slider and a changeup with great fade but not much drop. Gray’s command might be better, but if you’re temped to move him ahead of Owens, you always have to remember that home park. At least Gray doesn’t throw a curve ball.

Jim Furtado Posted: August 04, 2015 at 09:19 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: prospects, sabermetrics

Valentino: Examining Latino Hitters’ Plate Discipline

Racist!

Utilizing the five two-sample t-tests, there is evidence at the proposed α = .05 significance level, but not at α = .01, that Latino players are less disciplined hitters than are American players and swing at a higher percentage of pitches outside the strike zone. However, this undisciplined approach works for players from the Dominican Republic, Cuba, Panama, Puerto Rico, and Venezuela, as they more often successfully make contact with those outside pitches. The term ‘less disciplined’ denotes that a hitter would be less effective and not make contact, but this is not true based upon the sample. The analysis indicates Latino players actually hit a higher percentage of the pitches they swing at outside of the strike zone than American players. Further, they statistically hit for a higher batting average than their American counterparts, which is not unexpected since they hit more pitches outside the zone than do trained American hitters. Similarly, they statistically strike out less frequently than American players since they are better ‘outside the zone’ hitters. Lastly, despite American players’ more disciplined approach at the plate, that is, they swing at fewer outside pitches, there is statistically no evidence that Americans have a higher walk rate than Latinos.

JE (Jason) Posted: August 04, 2015 at 09:16 AM | 3 comment(s)
  Beats: latino players, plate discipline

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 8-4-2015

Pittsburgh Press, August 4, 1915:

Herb [sic] Shocker’s good pitching this season is attracting attention. Barney Dreyfuss, president of the Pittsburg club, in the National league, especially, is very keen to see Shocker in action and he has arranged to have his scouts look the youngster over. In fact, the owner of the Pirates intimates that he may have Shocker report to Manager Clarke, as the Ottawa club feels it will be able to let him go.

The “Journal” says: “Dreyfuss would like to have him, as the Pittsburg magnate thinks he might be of use to his club in the chase for the National league pennant. Shocker should make good without any difficulty. He has everything that goes to make up a good pitcher. His spitter when working right cannot be hit with any degree of success.

The Pirates didn’t sign Shocker, but they should have. “Herb” spent parts of 13 seasons in the major leagues with a lifetime ERA+ of 124, with no losing seasons and no seasons in which his ERA+ was worse than league average. He led the league in wins in 1921 and strikeouts in 1922.

As far as I know, the only pitcher in MLB history to appear in more seasons without ever posting a losing record is Andy Pettitte (18).

Dan Lee is a Big Hunk of Neufchâtel Posted: August 04, 2015 at 08:26 AM | 13 comment(s)
  Beats: dugout, history, urban shocker

Matheny: Contracts can’t be ignored in setting bullpen roles : Sports

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?”

Jim Furtado Posted: August 04, 2015 at 08:11 AM | 14 comment(s)
  Beats: cardinals, economics, saves

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