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Friday, August 28, 2015

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 8-28-2015

Pittsburgh Press, August 28, 1915:

John J. McGraw, manager of the Giants, has just signed the youngest ball player ever placed under any form of contract by a big league club…
...
Waite Hoyt of Brooklyn is the youngster. He is 15 years old, but large for his age, and weighs around 165 pounds. He is a pitcher.

Nice pickup. Very well done, Mr. McGraw. The kid could definitely pitch, he just mostly did it elsewhere for the next couple decades.

McGraw traded Hoyt to Rochester in 1919 and the youngster eventually became a star as a Yankee. A reasonable trade, though: Teenage Hoyt, a handful of mediocre players, and cash for Earl Smith, a catcher who hit .296/.371/.439 (111 OPS+) and won two World Series rings as a Giant.

Put a Milo Candini on him. (Dan Lee) Posted: August 28, 2015 at 08:18 AM | 2 comment(s)
  Beats: dugout, history, john mcgraw, waite hoyt

Each season has an autopsy. Here’s an early version for the Nationals. - The Washington Post

Thomas Boswell article reads more like an obituary.

“We do an autopsy on every season after it’s over and also every month. Sometimes I feel like I do it every night,” said General Manager Mike Rizzo, whose Nats still trailed the Mets by 6 1/2 games after Thursday’s win over San Diego. “I always say, ‘In the end, you are your record.’ This August has been my worst month ever” as a general manager.

The Nats’ “end” hasn’t arrived yet. Last year the team got healthy at approximately this juncture in the season and ended on a 33-13 streak. Then, they did it with decreasing September pressure as they pulled away. This year they need a repeat but with increasing pressure each day they don’t gain ground. A different test.
...
“We have [star] players who had a combined WAR of 28.5 last year, and this year they are negative . That’s a swing of 29 wins,” said Rizzo, naming nobody but working from some combination of Rendon, Werth, Desmond, Zimmermann, Zimmerman, Span, Fister and Strasburg, all down, Rendon by 6.9 wins, Werth by 6.0 (to -1.9) and Fister by 4.6.

“It’s injuries. It’s coming back without your timing and not hitting for a while. It is bad years [for good players]. It’s everything,” Rizzo said. “Twenty-nine lost wins [in player production] — and that’s on the manager ?”

Jim Furtado Posted: August 28, 2015 at 07:58 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: nationals

Old News in Baseball, No. 18 « Our Game

The picture of Huggins and Ruppert is worth a click.

1925: After a night on the town‚ Babe Ruth shows up late for batting practice. Miller Huggins suspends Ruth and slaps a $5‚000 fine on him. In the ensuing battle of wills, owner Jacob Ruppert backs up his manager. Ruth is forced to apologize to the team before he is reinstated.

Jim Furtado Posted: August 28, 2015 at 07:12 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: history

Dan Shaughnessy: With Don Orsillo news, Red Sox drop the ball again - The Boston Globe

It’s not often that I agree with Shaughnessy.

Jim Furtado Posted: August 28, 2015 at 07:05 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: broadcaster, red sox, television

JON HEYMAN: MLB prevails over Barry Bonds in collusion case over his career ending

Baseball arbitrator Frederic Horowitz has ruled in favor of MLB in the case in which Bonds claimed he couldn’t get a playing job following the 2007 season due to a concerted effort by MLB to keep him out of the game, CBS Sports has learned.

Bonds’ career ended at the time, when no job was forthcoming.

The ruling, made within the last few days, came in the form of an opinion written by Horowitz, who heard Bonds’ case back in May.

Bonds, with the assistance of union lawyers, tried to make the case through circumstantial evidence that MLB’s powers must have colluded against Bonds, as no free-agent players coming off an excellent year fails to get a job.

bobm Posted: August 28, 2015 at 01:17 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: barry bonds, collusion

Thursday, August 27, 2015

The Website MLB Couldn’t Buy

Since 2000, Major League Baseball Advanced Media has conducted a stealth campaign to take over every team domain, undoing any damage caused by its slow start in registration. MLB and other leagues have tried to snap up team sites not only to attract more traffic and ad revenue, but to avoid the unwanted attention that can come from a site like Cowboys.com, which became an “online dating community for men who enjoy the same country living lifestyle,” after the NFL’s Dallas franchise passed on it at auction.1 Both to streamline the process and to avoid hurting its leverage by letting potential sellers know there was big money behind its overtures, MLBAM has worked mainly through intermediaries like Monte Cahn, the founder of URL registrar Moniker.com and the president/director of RightofTheDot, LLC.2

According to Cahn, some of the URL squatters that MLB hoped to dislodge were “taking advantage of misspells and mistypes of famous brands,” like latter-day Twitter trolls who tweak prominent writers’ handles to break fake trades before the deadline. By placing ads on those sites, owners could profit from the traffic that flowed their way from baseball fans who hit the wrong keys. Most, Cahn says, “were unaware of the actual online domain registration laws vs. traditional trademark laws, so some registered names because they were fans of the teams or felt another fan would come and buy it from them, not knowing it could violate the trademark of the owner.” Still others owned sites with words that weren’t subject to trademark. “If you owned a domain like ‘Cardinals,’ your choice would be to just hold it, build a bird website — not that exciting or lucrative, probably — or sell it to MLB through us or other brokers,” Cahn says.

The decades-long scavenger hunt is close to complete. This February, MLB bought Rangers.com for $375,000. That triumph followed the 2013 purchase of Rockies.com (for an undisclosed price), the 2012 acquisition of Athletics.com, the 2010 addition of Angels.com (which went for $200,000 at auction), and the 2009 addition of Cardinals.com. Between 2004 and 2007, MLBAM acquired 12 team addresses, and had already brought 10 into the fold before that. That brings the total of MLB-owned team sites to 27, leaving three holdouts: Giants.com, Rays.com, and Twins.com.

Clown Penis Dot Fart clown penis dot fart from Galen Kennedy on Vimeo.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: August 27, 2015 at 12:53 PM | 18 comment(s)
  Beats: internet, mlbam, twins

Hey, data data: MLB teams face challenge delivering info to players

Some great points in this article.

Some still choose to do their trend-spotting homework themselves. In addition to video and heat maps, Twins catcher Kurt Suzuki said he delves into the raw data while scouting opposing hitters.

“You look at exit speed velocity,” he said. “You look at tendencies in certain counts and certain pitches and quadrants of the zone. Velocity comes into play.

“You try to match it up with your pitcher that you have that day.”

Jim Furtado Posted: August 27, 2015 at 11:53 AM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: sabermetrics, scouting

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 8-27-2015

Pittsburgh Press, August 27, 1915:

TOOK HIM FOUR YEARS TO LEARN HOW TO BUNT

Tod Sloan, outfielder with Birmingham in the Southern league, will be with the St. Louis Browns again next season for his fourth trial in the major leagues.
...
He was sent back from the majors three times, mainly because he couldn’t bunt. He has learned the bunting art this season.

That’s just goofy. Sloan appears to have been an okay enough ballplayer, mostly generic, nothing special but not terrible. In 143 MLB games, he put up 0.1 WAR and an OPS+ of 86.

At least he wasn’t a guy like Showboat Fisher or Buzz Arlett, who were wonderful hitters, possibly even all-time great hitters, but were robbed of MLB careers by an inability to field.

Put a Milo Candini on him. (Dan Lee) Posted: August 27, 2015 at 10:11 AM | 3 comment(s)
  Beats: bunting, dugout, history, tod sloan

Pablo Sandoval has improved defensively - The Boston Globe

I bet this means fans shouldn’t make snap judgement on players. Of course, most of you already know that.

But that has started to change. Since the break, Sandoval has played with more efficiency at third base and become a reliable defender.

It’s something teammates and coaches have noticed.

“I certainly have,” interim manager Torey Lovullo said Wednesday before the Red Sox played the Chicago White Sox. “Moving very well laterally. The first-step quickness, he’s getting to a lot of balls. There’s been an overall upgrade in his game.

Jim Furtado Posted: August 27, 2015 at 09:03 AM | 18 comment(s)
  Beats: pablo sandoval, red sox

Month is cold one for Trout

The greatest player on the planet is struggling.

In 24 games this month, Trout is batting .200 (17 for 85) with one homer and six runs batted in. He has a .327 on-base percentage, .306 slugging percentage, 28 strikeouts and 16 walks.

Jim Furtado Posted: August 27, 2015 at 09:01 AM | 26 comment(s)
  Beats: angels, mike trout

Justin Verlander barely misses third gem as Tigers beat Angels, 5-0 - LA Times

Does this mean Verlander is good again?

Jim Furtado Posted: August 27, 2015 at 08:59 AM | 17 comment(s)
  Beats: angels, justin verlander, tigers

The Pyramid Rating System: JAWS on a Career Scale – The Hardball Times

Interesting. I’m looking forward to seeing some rankings.

Jim Furtado Posted: August 27, 2015 at 08:37 AM | 36 comment(s)
  Beats: rankings, sabermetrics


Plans for more protective netting already in works in Philly | FOX Sports

Nerf balls and bats. Problem solved!

Jim Furtado Posted: August 27, 2015 at 06:33 AM | 2 comment(s)
  Beats: ballparks, phillies

OMNICHATTER 8-27-15

Cold, Refreshing OMNICHATTER

Gamingboy Posted: August 27, 2015 at 06:25 AM | 134 comment(s)
  Beats: mlb, omnichatter

Schoenfield: Trying to figure out Don Mattingly and the Dodgers

I agree with Schoenfield: Absent a World Series ring, Mattingly is going, going, gone.

That brings us to the latest maneuverings of manager Don Mattingly. After Mattingly spent a few weeks screwing around with Yasiel Puig by occasionally sitting him to get Carl Crawford some at-bats, the manager has now benched rookie center fielder Joc Pederson, with Enrique Hernandez—who had been filling in at second due to the injury to Howie Kendrick—moving to center so Chase Utley can play second. The Dodgers, who emphasized better defense with their offseason acquisitions (although that hasn’t worked out as planned, since the Dodgers are 23rd in the majors in defensive runs saved), arguably weakened their defense at two positions, right when they’re playing a crucial stretch of baseball. (I don’t say that with certainty; Pederson is probably average-ish defensively and Hernandez may be as well, despite limited experience at the position. Utley’s diminished range is almost certainly a drop from Hernandez at second, however.)

It’s easy to see why Mattingly benched Pederson. The rookie hit .169 in July. He’s hitting .122 in August. Pederson, however, has drawn 20 walks in August and has a .413 OBP. He told Mark Saxon that he understands the demotion. But ... well, I’ll turn it over to Joe Sheehan, who wrote yesterday:

“What makes Mattingly’s decision all the more incomprehensible is his continued commitment to Jimmy Rollins at the top of the lineup. Rollins has been a replacement-level player this season, batting .223/.275/.361 with below-average defense at shortstop and an abysmal 9/7 [ratio of stolen bases to caught stealing]. It’s Rollins who replaced Pederson atop the Dodgers lineup, leading off in 21 of the last 22 games. In that time, he’s batting .269/.299/.398—a performance inferior to Pederson’s in that time. A leadoff hitter with a .299 OBP is actively hurting your offense. It’s 2015, and there’s an MLB manager unable to see past batting average to build his lineup.”

That’s what’s most stunning to me: The Dodgers, with like 26 general managers in the front office, are watching Mattingly bat his worst hitter leadoff. How does that make sense? As he did with Puig, Mattingly seems to get easily frustrated with young players, and can’t look past a small sample size to see long-term production trends. The roots of Pederson’s recent struggles with his batting average and his current benching go back in some fashion to spring training, when the Dodgers were concerned about his violent, all-or-nothing approach at the plate.

Of course, keep in mind that Mattingly’s style as a hitter was basically the exact opposite of Pederson’s. Mattingly rarely walked and rarely struck out. Pederson waits and waits and waits for his pitch and tries to jack it out, but he pays the price with a high strikeout rate. Mattingly’s swing was smooth and effortless. Note: Even with his recent struggles, Pederson has a .357 on-base percentage on the season. Mattingly’s career OBP? .358.

JE (Jason) Posted: August 27, 2015 at 12:47 AM | 13 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, don mattingly, on-base percentage

SB Nation: Pirates outfielder may have made the most chill out in MLB history

You know, I don’t think I had ever seen a casual throw nail a runner on a tag play.

Starling Marte’s chill knows no bounds. Most players would be harried trying to get the ball to third, but Marte put less effort into this out than people at the fair when throwing at milk bottles to win a prize.

JE (Jason) Posted: August 27, 2015 at 12:39 AM | 30 comment(s)
  Beats: cool, defensive plays, pirates, starling marte

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

After loss and injury, is Javier Baez finally ready for the Cubs?

A really nice article about a guy who sounds really great and his miracle sister.  Keep the tissues handy.

Walt Davis Posted: August 26, 2015 at 08:55 PM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs, javier baez

Fivethirtyeight: The Happiest And Saddest Fans In Baseball

Every fan base lost some of its happiness from the preseason, save one: the Chicago Cubs, who increased their sentiment score by a bit. The Cubs have not only been contenders in the crowded National League Central, they have also seen a number of top prospects called up, most notably Kris Bryant (but also Addison Russell and Kyle Schwarber). Not only are the Cubs contending a little earlier than expected — the future is even brighter.

All other teams’ fans have become much less happy since February, but not all by the same amount. The change in sentiment score from February to July is roughly in proportion to the change in playoff odds of each team.4 Teams that made strides in their playoff hopes such as the Yankees, Angels and Dodgers have seen the smallest declines in sentiment since February. At the other end of the spectrum, teams such as the Mariners, Athletics and Padres have seen their playoff odds tumble. Their fan bases also have had some of the most pronounced declines in sentiment scores per word.

 

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: August 26, 2015 at 04:46 PM | 21 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs

The Irreverent Relics of the Baseball Reliquary

Believe it or not!

It’s been called “the fans’ Hall of Fame,” “the antithesis of Cooperstown,” and “the motherlode vein leading to the heart and soul of baseball.” It calls itself “a nonprofit, educational organization dedicated to fostering an appreciation of American art and culture through the context of baseball history,” but that doesn’t really capture the Reliquary’s unique nature. “It’s hard to categorize,” admits Terry Cannon, 62, a part-time librarian in Pasadena, California, who founded the Reliquary in 1996. “It’s an amazing living organism in all of the directions it has moved into, but it retains the vision I started with.”

Cannon’s vision, to create an organization that embraced his dual passions for art and baseball, has evolved over the past two decades into a nomadic Hall of Fame that celebrates all that is wacky and wonderful about the national pastime. It stages four to six annual exhibits, mostly in Southern California libraries, from its collection of artifacts, ranging from Eddie Gaedel’s jock strap to a portrait of Dave Winfield constructed with chewed bubble gum. The Reliquary counts 51 honorees in its Shrine of the Eternals, including expected mavericks like Bill Lee, Marvin Miller, Pete Rose, Jim Bouton and the San Diego Chicken as well as lesser-knowns such as Steve Dalkowski (the hardest throwing pitcher never to play in the major leagues) and Lester Rodney (the journalist who advocated for integration of organized baseball but was ostracized as a communist).

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: August 26, 2015 at 04:04 PM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: baseball reliquary, history, museums

OMNICHATTER 8-26-15

The All-Natural OMNICHATTER

Gamingboy Posted: August 26, 2015 at 12:37 PM | 162 comment(s)
  Beats: mlb, omnichatter


15 runs only hide the real alarming Yankees’ issue | New York Post

Bring on the kids.

Unfortunately for the Yankees, the same goes for an offensive revival. The Yankees employ established, elite hitters in Alex Rodriguez and Mark Teixeira. Both men, however, have dramatically exceeded their 2015 projections, and both men currently look more fried than Harold and Kumar during their trip to White Castle.

Teixeira started at first base Tuesday, making his first appearance after seven games off to rest a bruised right lower leg, and surely everyone in the announced crowd of 38,015 cringed as Teixeira ran gingerly on a fourth-inning ground out to shortstop. He left the game in the top of the seventh, and Girardi said he wasn’t sure whether the 35-year-old would play in Wednesday’s series finale, a day game.

A-Rod went 0-for-3 with a strikeout before getting lifted, and in 21 August games, 20 of them starts, he has a brutal .145/.261/.263 slash line.

Even Carlos Beltran’s resurgence hasn’t countered the slowdown of his fellow veterans.

“Our offense is important to us,” Girardi reiterated. “We’ve got to score some runs.”

Jim Furtado Posted: August 26, 2015 at 11:40 AM | 29 comment(s)
  Beats: yankees

Axe Bat adds new technology, gains popularity in MLB - Edge - SI.com

If I were still playing, I’d try this bat.

Jim Furtado Posted: August 26, 2015 at 11:38 AM | 4 comment(s)
  Beats: equipment

Blurry line between fantasy sites

How many people have tried either DraftKings or FanDuel? Has anyone made any money?

Jim Furtado Posted: August 26, 2015 at 11:33 AM | 64 comment(s)
  Beats: daily fantasy baseball, fantasy

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