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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 | 267 comment(s)
  Beats: softball

Friday, July 03, 2015

Brewers bullpen catcher eats 23 cheesesteaks, breaks Citizens Bank Park record | MLB.com

He’d just broken the record for cheesesteak consumption in the visitor’s clubhouse at the Phillies’ 11-year-old yard, downing 20 of the massive sandwiches as of Thursday afternoon—and counting. On Wednesday, Hanel broke the previous three-game mark held by Mets bullpen catcher Eric Langill when he took the first bite of cheesesteak No. 18. On Thursday, Hanel blew past Marlins right-hander Mat Latos’ four-game record (18), and had already finished No. 20 when it was time to head out to catch Wily Peralta’s pregame bullpen session.

Jim Furtado Posted: July 03, 2015 at 10:09 AM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: brewers, phillies, tasty sandwiches

Say hey, baseball: The Dodgers don’t care about your dumb spending limits - SBNation.com

The Dodgers had a budget of $2,020,300 to spend, the fourth-lowest in the game. On Thursday alone, they signed two players who would have busted that budget by themselves, and a third who would have come close: Cuban right-hander Yadier Alvarez signed for $16 million, while Starling Heredia and Ronny Brito agreed to bonuses of $2.6 million and $2 million, respectively. What’s even better about all this is that the Dodgers signed nine players total, but we don’t yet know the bonuses for four of them. Oh, and there are 11 months left in this signing period: the Dodgers are already $20 million over budget, and guaranteed to go higher than that. And that doesn’t count the 100 percent tax on their spending that they’ll owe. Yup, the Dodgers casually dropped over $40 million yesterday, from a starting point of just over $2 million.

You have to appreciate the audacity of it all, though, especially since Los Angeles used a portion of their allotted budget to trade for other players yesterday as well. The $2,020,300 allowed for them is actually broken into smaller chunks, which can be dealt to other teams. So, since the Dodgers were over budget anyway and there is no extra penalty for being even further over, they sent more than half of their assigned budget elsewhere to teams trying to follow the rules. One wonders if the owners who were trying to cut spending/hoard their money regret their lack of foresight right about now.

Jim Furtado Posted: July 03, 2015 at 10:06 AM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, international players

It’s disgusting how jokester GM, cheap owners watch Mets burn | New York Post

The torches are out in New York.

Jim Furtado Posted: July 03, 2015 at 10:04 AM | 8 comment(s)
  Beats: mets

Michael Conforto is the upgrade Mets too afraid to summon | New York Post

What’s the worst that can happen? The guy could come up get buried, lose his confidence, and become a used up husk of a player.

Sandy Alderson recently chided media members for overzealousness by dubbing them the denizens of Panic City. Funny. Alderson has a dry wit. What he doesn’t have is a good enough offense to support a superb rotation. What he doesn’t have yet is a trade market ready to deliver him a bat to enliven a comatose lineup.

The answers, for now, must come internally. And while Alderson might see Conforto as the kind of gambit the mayor of Panic City would love, I don’t. I see it as a low-risk gamble. If he hits, great; that is a found bat at a moment of crisis. If not, he is just like everyone else on the roster, and he can be returned to the minors to continue his development.

Jim Furtado Posted: July 03, 2015 at 10:00 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: mets, michael conforto

Video: Statcast: Molina’s amazing throw | MLB.com

OK, you might want to turn the volume on this it. It’s a great throw, though.

Jim Furtado Posted: July 03, 2015 at 09:49 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: video, yadier molina

Inside Baseball: 12 possible sellers, who might go and proposed deals - CBSSports.com

Sunday Notes, on Friday! Many tidbits, including this one.

Proposed Trade: Cueto to the Astros for young outfielder Domingo Santana and infield prospect Nolan Fontana. (Though it may not be so easy to get Reds GM Walt Jocketty to get together on a trade with his Astros counterpart Jeff Luhnow—word is, ex-Cards execs Jocketty and Luhnow are even less close than Luhnow and the remaining Cardinals front office folks).

Jim Furtado Posted: July 03, 2015 at 09:20 AM | 11 comment(s)
  Beats: sunday notes

Blind Resumes: A Fascinating Keuchel Comp

Some interesting player comparisons.

Jim Furtado Posted: July 03, 2015 at 09:06 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: sabermetrics

Dodgers acquire four Minor Leaguers in moves | dodgers.com

If understand the slot system, this means the Dodgers got four players and saved spending $1.3 million, which further reduces their pool, which means they will pay a higher tax on the money they already spent. Right?

With the two deals, the Dodgers acquired four players for $1,320,300 in overage tax for international signings.

Jim Furtado Posted: July 03, 2015 at 08:43 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: international free agents

Thursday, July 02, 2015

Cardinals fire Scouting Director for hacking Astros

Correa has admitted hacking into a Houston Astros database but said it was only to verify whether the Astros had stolen proprietary data, according to a source with knowledge of the investigation.

Correa did not leak any Astros data, and is not responsible for additional hacks that the FBI has alleged occurred or leaking any data, said the source.

Dan The Mediocre Posted: July 02, 2015 at 05:36 PM | 58 comment(s)
  Beats: astros, cardinals, hacking, scouting

Royals’ Chris Young brings the heat even with a slow fastball

Glenn Fleisig is the research director at the American Sports Medicine Institute, which has long been the leader in understanding sports-related injuries and as such has worked with many major-league teams.

He says that many of those teams openly admit that they put too much emphasis on fastball velocity. Part of it is that pitch speed is so easily quantifiable, where other factors like character and mechanics and work ethic can be vague. He hears over and over again that if two prospects are otherwise comparable, the one with more velocity will be more highly regarded because they figure to have more potential.

Fleisig thinks the teams should be taking the opposite approach.

“I’m trying to tell them that if you have two guys with the same results, with the same makeup, same injury history,” he says, “I would actually rather have the one with less velocity. Because if all those other things are equal, he has less chance of injury.”...

All of it is evidence to reinforce a point Fleisig has made to teams. A few years ago, he ran data to correlate fastball velocity and performance, as measured by ERA. He found the relationship to be non-existent. Zero. Nothing.

Maybe that surprises you. It surprises some scouts. It does not surprise Young, halfway through another season showing that fastball velocity is overrated and overpaid.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: July 02, 2015 at 05:05 PM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: babip, chris young, injuries, royals, velocity

Al Newman gets fine, suspension from Northwoods League for violating pitch count rule

Dusty Baker would have been banned from this league forever.

Alexandria Blue Anchors manager Al Newman wanted to give his pitcher an opportunity to throw a complete game on Monday afternoon against the Willmar Stingers.

It’s a move that ended up costing him a 14-game suspension and a $1,000 fine from the Northwoods League (NWL). Newman says he thought he was within the legal pitch-count guidelines set forth by the NWL when he sent Angelo State’s Graylon Brown out for the ninth inning on June 29.

“I never even gave it consideration,” Newman said on Thursday morning. “I thought the rule was that he can’t start an inning after 100 pitches. So when he didn’t have 100 pitches, in speaking with the pitching coach [Travis Lawler], we decided kids need to learn how to finish. He was pitching an outstanding game, had not had a stressful inning the whole game. In essence, yes, I broke the rule. I’m not going to say I would do it again because it’s a league rule, but I’m being punished for going past the 110 pitch limit with Graylon Brown.”

Northwoods League pitching guidelines state that a pitcher cannot begin a new inning after throwing 100 pitches and also can’t face a new batter after throwing 110 pitches or more.


CSN Philly: GIF: Kyle Lohse tackles Ryan Howard to the ground

Careful! The Phils don’t want to see Howard’s trade value go down.

Kyle Lohse went from pitcher to hitter to NFL safety in the time it took him to run to first base.

The Milwaukee Brewers righthander had himself a night against the Philadelphia Phillies on Wednesday, picking up the win and racking up three hits in a 9-5 victory over the worst team in baseball. One of those hits did not come easy, however, as Lohse wound up running right into the backside of mammoth first baseman Ryan Howard while trying to leg out an infield single.

Lohse is listed as 6’2”, 215 pounds. Ryan Howard is 6’4”, 250 pounds (if you believe that).

Howard wound up hitting the deck.

JE (Jason) Posted: July 02, 2015 at 03:21 PM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: brewers, kyle lohse, phillies, ryan howard

Manny Ramirez loves coaching the Cubs, and the Cubs love having him around | For The Win

Manny Ramirez, hitting savant.

“Sometimes people just worry so much about how they feel,” he says. “You’re not going to feel good every day, so just go and compete. Just focus on what is out there. The game is still easy. Everybody throws 95, OK, but they still make the same mistakes.

“The strike zone is a little bit bigger, but the game’s the same.”

Jim Furtado Posted: July 02, 2015 at 02:44 PM | 3 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs, manny ramirez

The Forgotten Story of ... the world’s best baseball stadium – that was never built

The best major league baseball park that was never built was given a name: Labatt Park. It had a site; in downtown Montreal, just southeast of the Bell Center, home to hockey’s Canadiens. The best major league baseball park that was never built was going to be tiny, with only 35,000 seats. It would have given fans in even the worst seats a sense they were close to the field. It would have had a grace unique to any ballpark – modern but not utilitarian. It would have been … perfect.

“Ahhh it’s a shame it didn’t get built,” Eugenio Carelli said with a sigh. Carelli is the architect who designed Labatt Park. Before the late 1990s, when Provencher Roy was approached by the Montreal Expos to create their new home, Carelli had never built a stadium. This didn’t bother him. He designed grand civic buildings in public places. The Expos park gave him a chance to make something memorable, something distinctive.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: July 02, 2015 at 02:37 PM | 12 comment(s)
  Beats: baseball stadiums, expos, montreal

Giants To Sign Lucius Fox

“Prospect”? I think he should be running the organization!

The Giants have agreed to sign shortstop Lucius Fox to an approximately [$6 million] bonus, Jesse Sanchez of MLB.com reports on Twitter. Fox, who’ll officially sign out of the Bahamas, entered the July 2 period as a consensus top-five prospect.


Top international prospects signing breakdown | MLB.com

Jesse Sanchez reveals the current agreements.

With the international signing period officially underway, here is a look at MLBPipeline.com’s Top 30 International Prospects and which of them have agreed to terms with clubs so far.
Unless otherwise noted, clubs have not confirmed the deals.

Jim Furtado Posted: July 02, 2015 at 09:59 AM | 25 comment(s)
  Beats: international players

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 7-2-2015

Pittsburgh Press, July 2, 1915:

Persistent rumors to the effect that Connie Mack’s holdings in the Athletics were for sale and that he had named his price to a syndicate which has the approval of Ban Johnson, president of the American league, were emphatically denied by the manager of the Mackmen.
...
[Mack:] “My interest in the Athletics is not for sale at any price, but any time my partners are dissatisfied with the way I’m running my ball club, or the American league does not like what I’m doing and want to drive me out of the city, they can do it easy enough. But it will be a care of driving me out, for I don’t intend to quit. I’m here to stay, and I’ll win just as sure as I’ve won before.

Yep, that’s pretty much exactly what happened. Mack won back-to-back world championships in 1929 and 1930 and only sold the team because he didn’t have enough money to make it through the 1955 season.

Dan Lee is a Big Hunk of Neufchâtel Posted: July 02, 2015 at 09:47 AM | 39 comment(s)
  Beats: connie mack, dugout, history

Star-Telegram: Could Cricket Come to Texas?

“It would be one game, to introduce it to the United States,” [Texas Secretary of State Carlos] Cascos told a crowd of hundreds gathered for a Fort Worth Chamber of Commerce luncheon Tuesday at the Petroleum Club.

The game would take as long as two years to plan, Cascos said, but if it does happen, it could draw more viewers than a Super Bowl traditionally does.

“It opens up a whole new market,” Cascos said during the chamber’s Leaders in Government Series. “We could have billions of people watching this match coming out of Texas.”

Billions of people to watch a friendly one-day international cricket match!  Yes, I mean, probably not … I also like the impression that this would be the first time cricket has ever been played in Texas … there’s weekly intramural cricket a couple of blocks from my house, and our university is in the process of building a regulation pitch.  But what the heck, I’d probably try to get tickets for India vs. Pakistan at the Cotton Bowl.

BDC Posted: July 02, 2015 at 09:18 AM | 17 comment(s)
  Beats: business, cricket, international, texas

Massarotti: Celebrate Your Independence… From The 2015 Red Sox « CBS Boston

Tony Massarotti is a mindless blowhard. He literally hurts my head listening to him on the radio and reading his columns. I usually just ignore him but I’ve been noticing one silly headline after another over the last few weeks. If the Red Sox let him make decisions for the team, they would be a perennial loser and wouldn’t have won one World Series over the last 15 years.

Sorry, I had to get that off my chest.

Jim Furtado Posted: July 02, 2015 at 08:59 AM | 12 comment(s)
  Beats: blowhards, red sox

Corbin could return Saturday to face Rockies | dbacks.com

D-backs manager Chip Hale said the club feels Corbin, who underwent Tommy John surgery, may be ready now to pitch in the Majors for the first time since 2013. If they opt instead to call up a starter from the Minors or use Josh Collmenter for a spot start, then Corbin will pitch once more for a Minor League affiliate on Saturday.

“We all feel like he’s ready, but we just want to make sure over these next few days that he feels the way he should feel, and that’s the way we want to go as a group,” Hale said. “Between the training staff and front office and the coaching staff, he’s ready to pitch, we’re just not 100 percent sure if we don’t want him to go out.”

Corbin made four rehab starts between Class A Advanced Visalia and Double-A Mobile. He pitched six innings and threw 79 pitches in his most recent outing for Mobile last Friday.

The original plan for Corbin’s week was for him to make one final rehab appearance for Triple-A Reno on Thursday before his return to the Majors in one of the D-backs’ two games against Texas next week.

Jim Furtado Posted: July 02, 2015 at 08:53 AM | 2 comment(s)
  Beats: diamondbacks, patrick corbin

Rays to activate Moore, option Krauss | raysbaseball.com

Matt Moore starts against Corey Kluber and the Indians today. It’s Matt Moore is back day!

Jim Furtado Posted: July 02, 2015 at 08:51 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: matt moore, rays

MLB.com 2015 Prospect Watch | MLB.com

With the international signing period starting today, here’s MLB.com’s Jesse Sanchez’s top prospect list.

Jim Furtado Posted: July 02, 2015 at 08:45 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: international players

Cleveland Indians’ Carlos Carrasco has stuff to dominate rest of year - SweetSpot - ESPN

He was pressing in the 9th. He also reacted better than any pitcher I’ve ever seen lose a no hitter.

Major league hitters don’t swing and miss as often you may think. When they swing, they put the ball in play 41 percent of the time, hit a foul ball 37 percent of the time and swing and miss just 21.6 percent of the time, or about one of every five swings.

Which helps tells us about the type of stuff that Cleveland Indians pitcher Carlos Carrasco had Wednesday night against the Tampa Bay Rays. Carrasco came within one strike of throwing the Indians’ first no-hitter since Len Barker’s perfect game way back in 1989, and while it was painful to see Joey Butler line an 0-2 changeup over the leaping Jason Kipnis, Carrasco’s performance rates as one of the most impressive of 2015, not just in results but in pure dominance.


The Indians’ Carlos Carrasco works from the stretch and uses four pitches that would grade out as plus. AP Photo/Steve Nesius
The Rays swung at 67 of Carrasco’s 124 pitches—and missed 30 of them, a swing-and-miss rate of 45 percent, or more than double the MLB average. That’s the most swings and misses in a game this year, three more than Max Scherzer generated in his one-hit, 16-strikeout outing June 14 against the Milwaukee Brewers. The last pitcher with 30 swings and misses in a game was Francisco Liriano of the Minnesota Twins in 2012 start against the Oakland A’s. And the last one with more? I’m not sure. Our database only goes back to 2009 and nobody else had 30.

Jim Furtado Posted: July 02, 2015 at 08:40 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: carlos carrasco, indians

Trevor Story jumps to Triple-A for Rockies, closer to replacing Troy Tulowitzki - The Denver Post

Of course, the “rumors” are writer driven.

Rumors and reports, especially out of New York, continue to swirl around Tulowitzki, who will make $20 million this season on a multiyear contract that takes him through 2020. With the Rockies floundering in last place, Tulowitzki seems the most valuable trade chip to gain rebuilding pieces for the future.

But Bridich was quick to keep the spotlight on Story and not Tulowitzki.

“This is a Story story,” Bridich said.

Jim Furtado Posted: July 02, 2015 at 08:38 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: rockies, trevor story, troy tulowitzki

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