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Wednesday, March 04, 2015

Crane Kenney: Cubs Considered Playing A Season In Milwaukee

The Chicago Cubs of Milwaukee?

Crane Kenney’s statement indicates that they had considered playing an entire season—perhaps 2015?—at Miller Park, which would have given them from September 2014 to April 2016 to do significant work at Wrigley Field.

Logistically, this would have created significant issues for Cubs season-ticket holders who live, say, anywhere south of the Lake/Cook county line in Illinois. Even that line is about 70 miles from Miller Park; those season-ticket holders who live in the city of Chicago would be faced with a 90-mile drive to every game. The Bears did something like this when they played a year in Champaign while Soldier Field was being redone—but that was just eight games, once a week, mostly on Sundays. Baseball is a daily commitment. Further, since the Cubs and Brewers are in the same division and are often home at the same time, scheduling might have been difficult.

The Cell would have been, in my view, a better answer if the Cubs wanted to vacate Wrigley for a year to complete the project. At least it’s in the city of Chicago and accessible by public transit. There is a small subset of Cubs fans who refuse to go there. I know some of these people personally and I simply don’t understand that position. It’s a major-league ballpark with (mostly) good sightlines and natural grass.


Opening up about Mets visit, Murphy comments | MLB.com

MLB picked the right man for this job.

When I took this job at MLB, I knew it was going to take time for many to embrace my message of inclusion. Expecting everyone to be supportive right away is simply not realistic. If you asked anyone who has competed in high-level men’s professional sports, I believe they would agree with me. This doesn’t change the way I go about my business, or my belief in what I am doing, but it’s reality.

After reading his comments, I appreciate that Daniel spoke his truth. I really do. I was visiting his team, and a reporter asked his opinion about me. He was brave to share his feelings, and it made me want to work harder and be a better example that someday might allow him to view things from my perspective, if only for just a moment.

I respect him, and I want everyone to know that he was respectful of me. We have baseball in common, and for now, that might be the only thing. But it’s a start.

The silver lining in his comments are that he would be open to investing in a relationship with a teammate, even if he “disagrees” with the lifestyle. It may not be perfect, but I do see him making an effort to reconcile his religious beliefs with his interpretation of the word lifestyle. It took me 32 years to fully accept my sexual orientation, so it would be hypocritical of me to not be patient with others.

Inclusion means everyone, plain and simple. Daniel is part of that group. A Major League clubhouse is now one of the most diverse places in sports. It wasn’t always that way, but we can thank No. 42 for that. So in his honor, with a little patience, compassion and hard work, we’ll get there.

Jim Furtado Posted: March 04, 2015 at 01:52 PM | 8 comment(s)
  Beats: billy bean, inclusion, social issues

MLBAM Player-Tracking System Is Set for Coming-Out Party This Year : Sports Video Group

I’m really looking forward to this.

Jim Furtado Posted: March 04, 2015 at 10:55 AM | 6 comment(s)
  Beats: sabermetrics, tracking, video

Velocity is not Mike Trout’s problem - Beyond the Box Score

Talking about Trout’s “problem” hitting a fastball is like complaining about the ugly feet of a supermodel.

Jim Furtado Posted: March 04, 2015 at 09:31 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: angels, mike trout, sabermetrics


Klapisch: It’s time to give Alex Rodriguez a chance - Sports - NorthJersey.com

♬ All we are saying is…give A-Rod a chance. ♫

Jim Furtado Posted: March 04, 2015 at 08:36 AM | 7 comment(s)
  Beats: alex rodriguez, yankees

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 3-4-2015

Grantland Rice in the Pittsburgh Press, March 4, 1915:

Dear sir—

In your opinion could a ball club be picked from those who live in the south good enough to beat or make an even fight against a club picked from northern players?  E.H.K.

The north would have a decided margin in pitchers, catchers and infielders. The south’s big edge would come in the outfield play, where Cobb, Speaker, Jackson and Milan would close out the debate.

I’ll give this a shot in the comments. My border will follow the Mason-Dixon Line, Ohio River, and the Missouri Compromise line. Players will be classified by birthplace and starters will be determined by Career WAR.

Willie Horton Hears The Who (Dan Lee) Posted: March 04, 2015 at 08:27 AM | 19 comment(s)
  Beats: dugout, history

Rosenthal wants to avoid creating jams : Sports

Rosenthal has a plan.

Jim Furtado Posted: March 04, 2015 at 08:24 AM | 13 comment(s)
  Beats: cardinals, trevor rosenthal

Braves’ T-shirts: ‘Hello, my name is ...’ - Spring Training Blog - ESPN

You can’t know the players without a program t-shirt.

Jim Furtado Posted: March 04, 2015 at 08:08 AM | 3 comment(s)
  Beats: braves


Cubs strike out twice in bid for extended Wrigley construction hours | Chicago

At the least, I hope they will be able to work though the games.

Jim Furtado Posted: March 04, 2015 at 07:00 AM | 25 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs, stadium renovations

Elvis Andrus of Texas Rangers ready to move past ‘rough year’ - ESPN Dallas

Seems legit.

After hitting a career-low .263 last season, which started bad after a difficult camp, Andrus said he reported to Arizona this spring in the best shape of his career.

“I really believe that,” Andrus said. “This year I took it a thousand times (more) seriously than I did the year before. It’s part of the growing part, knowing yourself, knowing your body a little bit more every year. I had a really good plan. Our bodies are our business. You have to take care of that year in and year out.”

Jim Furtado Posted: March 04, 2015 at 06:55 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: elvis andrus, rangers

Matt Garza Gives Brewers Pitchers Personalized Bathrobes

But when Matt Garza wanted to give his fellow Milwaukee Brewers starting pitchers a spring-training gift, he hit exactly the right note. He gave them all these oh-so-comfortable looking personalized robes. It’s one of those things you’d absolutely use but might never think to buy for yourself — the sign of a wonderful present.

Photos at link.

The Yankee Clapper Posted: March 04, 2015 at 01:04 AM | 4 comment(s)
  Beats: bonds, brewers, kyle lohse, lounge, matt garza

Tuesday, March 03, 2015

Mets ask Billy Bean to suit up, but how do players feel about gay player in baseball?

Cuddyer says he has never had a gay teammate that he has known of. Daniel Murphy says he has not either.

He too is ready for a gay teammate, he says. The Mets consulted players this winter before bringing Bean in and Murphy called the idea “forward thinking.” More than just listening to a seminor or speech, it was an opportunity to get to known an individual. He regretted that he had not had the chance to meet Bean yet.

Murphy, a devout Christian, said he would embrace Bean despite a divergence in their beliefs.

“I disagree with his lifestyle,” Murphy said. “I do disagree with the fact that Billy is a homosexual. That doesn’t mean I can’t still invest in him and get to know him. I don’t think the fact that someone is a homosexual should completely shut the door on investing in them in a relational aspect. Getting to know him. That, I would say, you can still accept them but I do disagree with the lifestyle, 100 percent.”

But Murphy also saw the moment as an opening for a conversation and an avenue to get past stereotypes. The issue, he says, was “uncharted territory.”

While there may be a perception that Christian athletes may not be accepting of gay players, Murphy says that it is not the case.

“Maybe, as a Christian, that we haven’t been as articulate enough in describing what our actual stance is on homosexuality,” he said. “We love the people. We disagree the lifestyle. That’s the way I would describe it for me. It’s the same way that there are aspects of my life that I’m trying to surrender to Christ in my own life. There’s a great deal of many things, like my pride. I just think that as a believer trying to articulate it in a way that says just because I disagree with the lifestyle doesn’t mean I’m just never going to speak to Billy Bean every time he walks through the door. That’s not love. That’s not love at all.”

 


Reports: Wright confronts Syndergaard - Mets Blog - ESPN New York

This isn’t a good way for Noah Syndergaard to get in the news.

Jim Furtado Posted: March 03, 2015 at 05:38 PM | 37 comment(s)
  Beats: mets, noah syndergaard

Time to embrace A-Rod, just like Yankees’ spring training fans | New York Post

Huh. Maybe they will be able to market his home run milestones after all.

Think it’s a coincidence A-Rod’s Grapefruit League return comes on a home game? It’s a sound business decision for the Yankees, who surely will sell more tickets and draw more eyeballs to YES than if they fielded a lineup without their most interesting player. Or if this didn’t mark his first game back after missing all of last season due to a suspension for illegal performance-enhancing drug usage and obstruction.

Jim Furtado Posted: March 03, 2015 at 05:36 PM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: alex rodriguez, yankees

Jeff McKnight dies of leukemia at 52

Jeff McKnight, a versatile player who spent six seasons with the New York Mets and Baltimore Orioles, has died. He was 52.

McKnight’s family told the Mets that McKnight died Sunday after battling leukemia for 10 years. His father, Jim, who played for the Chicago Cubs briefly in the early 1960s, was born in Bee Branch, Arkansas.

Jeff McKnight made his big league debut with the Mets in 1989 and hit .233 with five home runs and 34 RBIs in 218 games. He singled in his final at-bat for the Mets in August 1994, on the final day before a players’ strike wiped out the rest of the season.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: March 03, 2015 at 03:16 PM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: jeff mcknight, mets, obituary, orioles

Philly.com: Phillies lose to University of Tampa, 6-2.

UT, ranked No. 1 in Div. II, tied it at 2 when Phillies reliever Nefi Ogando walked in a run with the bases loaded. That prompted a mid-inning pitching change to Hector Neris, who promptly gave up a grand slam to UT shortstop Giovanny Alfonzo.

The Phillies loaded the bases in the ninth, but Cord Phelps grounded out to the pitcher to end it.

A couple of days old, but still a fun story.


Onetime AL Batting Champion Alex Johnson Dead at 72

Few players have been more enigmatic or controversial. In 1971, he became the center of the storm while playing for a team that became known as “Hell’s Angels.” Now Alex Johnson is gone at 72.


Man to walk from Steinbrenner Field to Yankee Stadium for charity

Richard J. Albero, a former naval officer and retired teacher, will begin his journey up the east coast on Monday, March 2, at 10:00 a.m. and he’ll be doing so primarily to honor his nephew, Gary Albero, who died in the Sept. 11 attacks in New York.

In conjunction with that effort, Albero also intends to raise $25,000 for the Wounded Warrior Project as a nod to Gary, who he describes as a charitable man who always put in the effort to raise awareness and funds for causes that were close to him.

So far, he’s off to a pretty good start, as he’s already been able to raise $9,000.

 

Win Big Stein's Money Posted: March 03, 2015 at 12:13 PM | 6 comment(s)
  Beats: charity, yankees

Robothal: Walk away from $144 million? No sweat, Scherzer had it covered

The policy, Scherzer said, would have provided him with $40 million tax-free if he suffered any type of injury that prevented him from receiving an offer below the Tigers’ original $144 million proposal. Scherzer was covered if he injured his shoulder. He was covered if he required Tommy John surgery on his elbow. He was covered for every possible injury under a policy that he said cost him $750,000.

“Don’t get me wrong. I know finance. I know deferral money. I get all that. But this was the best offer. If another team wanted to make a better offer without a deferment, we never received it. This was the best offer.”

Win Big Stein's Money Posted: March 03, 2015 at 12:13 PM | 23 comment(s)
  Beats: max scherzer, nationals, tigers

Corey Hart slices foot stepping into a hot tub

Corey Hart got 3 stitches Sunday after slicing foot on hot tub. The good news is that Hart is only expected to be out for a few days.

Win Big Stein's Money Posted: March 03, 2015 at 12:13 PM | 29 comment(s)
  Beats: pirates

OT: Soccer March 2015

Your abbreviated schedule for March, 2015

March 4: Spurs vs. Swans
March 10: Porto vs. Basel
March 11: Chelsea vs. PSG
March 15: Chelsea vs. Souton
March 16: Swansea vs. Liverpool
March 18: Dortmund vs. Juventus
March 18: Barca vs. Man City
March 22: Götterdämmerung

Current Table:
1. Chelsea, 26 GP, 60 Points.
2. Man City, 27 GP, 55 Points.
3. Arsenal, 27 GP, 51 Points.
4. Man United, 27 GP, 50 Points.
5. Liverpool, 27 GP, 48 Points.
6. Southampton, 27 GP, 46 Points.
7. Tottenham, 26 GP, 44 Points.

The Anthony Kennedy of BBTF (Scott) Posted: March 03, 2015 at 12:13 PM | 40 comment(s)
  Beats: soccer


The path. | Texas Rangers Blog | The Newberg Report

Some good stuff from Jamey Newberg.

Jim Furtado Posted: March 03, 2015 at 09:52 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: joey gallo, minnie minoso, rangers

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