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Jim Furtado
Founder & Publisher
Editor - Baseball Primer


Not Written By Jon Heyman Newsbeat

Sunday, October 23, 2016

Cuyahoga County Animal Shelter naming dogs for Tribe players in a play for home

CLEVELAND, Ohio—Kluber and Kipnis are being shopped around on the eve of the World Series, but there is reason to cheer, Indians fans.

The names belong to two dogs at the Cuyahoga County Animal Shelter, where four others also have been named from the Indians roster.

Really mostly worth it for the pictures of cute dogs in Indians jerseys.

Infinite Yost (Voxter) Posted: October 23, 2016 at 02:42 PM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: dogs, indians, world series

Nick Cafardo: In playoffs, bullpen strategy can make or break a manager

Nick Cafardo’s newest notes column.

Jim Furtado Posted: October 23, 2016 at 11:07 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: bullpens, general managers, notes

Sunday Notes: DH Dilemma, Indians, Gallardo, Glasnow, HoF Managers, more | FanGraphs Baseball

This has been always been my view. Are there really many organizations which think otherwise?

Joe Maddon had the following to say when asked yesterday about the Cubs front office:

“The thing that impresses me the most is their willingness, or ability, to balance the numbers and the person. It’s not just a numeric exercise; it’s not just a sabermetric exercise. It’s also about the guy… I think sometimes in the game today it gets to the point where it’s just about a number, acquiring a number. I’m a big believer in that, but I also like the balance between the person and what the back of his baseball card says.”

Jim Furtado Posted: October 23, 2016 at 10:40 AM | 3 comment(s)
  Beats: notes

Verlander deal? Astros all-in? Why MLB hot stove could be trade-heavy | New York Post

4. Teams need to capitalize on their window to win. We have seen clubs that believe their time is now act very aggressively in recent years — think the Cubs the past two years (Joe Maddon, Jon Lester, Jason Heyward, John Lackey, Ben Zobrist, Aroldis Chapman), the Mets at the past two trade deadlines (Yoenis Cespedes, Jay Bruce) and even the small-market Indians at the last deadline (Andrew Miller).

No team wants to squander a championship core. The Astros now stand out in this way. They have a win-now positional group headed by Jose Altuve, Alex Bregman, Carlos Correa, Yulieski Gurriel and George Springer. But they do not have the rotation to capitalize on that, especially with Dallas Keuchel taking two steps backward in 2016 and Lance McCullers Jr. being unable to stay healthy.

They badly need an ace. So, for example, do they use Bregman as the key piece to go after Sale (on a great contract the next three years) or to try to get a potential young ace such as Julio Urias (if the Dodgers lose Justin Turner to free agency, they could form an infield left side for years of Corey Seager and Bregman)?

Jim Furtado Posted: October 23, 2016 at 10:15 AM | 3 comment(s)
  Beats: trades

Welcome back, Kyle Schwarber! | 2080 Baseball

He just might do it.

Jim Furtado Posted: October 23, 2016 at 08:44 AM | 17 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs, kyle schwarber

Epstein on Cubs clinching NLCS |

Exciting times for Cubs fans.

Jim Furtado Posted: October 23, 2016 at 08:41 AM | 6 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs, general managers, theo epstein

Yes Way Jose Ramirez Becomes Important Cog For Indians

Yes, Jose Ramirez.

Jim Furtado Posted: October 23, 2016 at 08:29 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: indians, jose ramirez

Why Steve Bartman should throw the first pitch at Game 3 of the World Series

I’m all for forgiveness but maybe they should wait until next season to have him throw out a first pitch.

Jim Furtado Posted: October 23, 2016 at 08:28 AM | 68 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs, steve bartman

Heyman - Cubs Seriously Mulling Schwarber Return

Kyle Schwarber isn’t in Arizona playing in the Fall League on just a whim, and word is that he’s a realistic possibility to be activated for the World Series.

Jim Furtado Posted: October 23, 2016 at 08:13 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs, kyle schwarber

Won for the ages: After years of waiting and suffering, Cubs are in World Series - Chicago Tribune

Congrats to Cubs fans!

It’s OK to say it out loud now, Chicago. The Cubs are National League champions. The Cubs are in the World Series for the first time since 1945.

Let those words sink in for a few days before the games — and all the trepidation and anxiety they will bring — begin Tuesday. For now, it’s time for Cubs fans to raise a glass to the millions who never got to say that simple sentence:

Jim Furtado Posted: October 23, 2016 at 08:06 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs, playoffs, world series

Saturday, October 22, 2016

NLCS Game 6 Chatter

Cubs lead 3-2.

Kershaw @ Hendricks.

7:08 central, FS1.

Moses Taylor, Unwavering Optimist Posted: October 22, 2016 at 05:13 PM | 675 comment(s)
  Beats: omnichatter

ESPN: Stark: Why super teams don’t win the World Series

This is Year 22 of the wild-card era. Just twice in the previous 21 seasons has a team like the Cubs, which led the major leagues outright in victories, gone on to win the World Series. The only two to win it all: the 1998 and 2009 Yankees. (No National League team has done it in 30 years, since the 1986 Mets.).....How different might everything have been—because of one pitch or one crazy moment that no one has witnessed before or since? We can’t answer those questions, of course. But go back and take a look at every postseason in this era. There is always a pitch, a play, an umpire’s call or a ball that bounces the right (wrong) way—and alters the fate of teams, players and the fans who care much too deeply about them.

Everyone we talked to for this piece had a story like that—a moment they can’t forget, one which would have turned games and postseasons and careers upside-down.

“Never put a percentage on how much luck is in a baseball game,” Manuel said. “And human nature plays a role.”

BS—it’s guts and grit and character and Jeter and…..


Pasta-diving Jeter (jmac66) Posted: October 22, 2016 at 10:48 AM | 18 comment(s)
  Beats: shit doesn't work

A well-rested Kenley Jansen makes Cubs’ task more daunting | New York Post

The star closer will be on three days’ rest Saturday for Game 6 of the NLCS, and it wouldn’t be surprising if Jansen is an option as early as the seventh inning if Clayton Kershaw needs help.

Jim Furtado Posted: October 22, 2016 at 10:14 AM | 5 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs, dodgers, playoffs

Dodgers turn once again to Clayton Kershaw, this time fully rested but with no margin for error - LA Times

If you are a Dodgers fan, who better to keep your team alive?

Kershaw tends to pitch better on regular rest. In his career, he has a 2.31 earned-run average in the regular season on four days’ rest. His ERA rises to 2.61 when he receives five days off.

But these are unique circumstances. His output has been extraordinary these past two weeks. He started Game 1 of the division series against Washington on Oct. 7, and pitched on three days of rest in Game 4. He helped the team avoid elimination, then two days later he collected the final two outs of the clincher at Nationals Park in Game 5.

Three days after that, he took the ball at Wrigley Field. He emerged victorious, allowing just two hits in a 1-0 win, though his effectiveness appeared to wane during the sixth and seventh innings. Kershaw acknowledged that the Cubs might feel more comfortable seeing him pitch again so soon.

“There’s no secrets, anyway, in the game right now,” he said. “There’s so much information. They know every pitch that I throw and every count and every situation. So it’s just a matter of not really focusing on that and just trying to compete every single pitch and execute every single pitch. You maybe have a little less margin for error facing them the second time, but just be better, I guess.”

At a news conference Thursday, a few hours before the Dodgers dropped Game 5, a reporter asked Kershaw about his “excitement” about the challenge that awaits him.

“I don’t know if excitement’s the right word,” he replied.

What is the right word?

“I don’t know; that’s such a deep thought,” Kershaw said with a wry smile. “I don’t know if I have a word for it. But I think you do everything you can to try and keep it just like another start at the beginning.

“Then, obviously, the magnitude and the situation of the game kind of raises everybody’s adrenaline and things like that. But I’m trying to keep it the same right now.”

Jim Furtado Posted: October 22, 2016 at 09:08 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: clayton kershaw, cubs, dodgers

In Cubdom, the anticipation is brimming, the eagerness palpable - Chicago Tribune

After the Red Sox, I’m a Cubs fan. Unlike a true Cubs fan, I’m not feeling the angst that I felt with the Red Sox. The tips I can give are: keep the faith, keep a paper bag handy, and have something you can destroy in the backyard, just in case.

“It’s within our reach right now,’’ Cubs manager Joe Maddon said. “We’re not going to run away from anything.’‘

Jim Furtado Posted: October 22, 2016 at 09:05 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs, dodgers, playoffs

Beating Clayton Kershaw is Cubs’ biggest barrier to 1st pennant since 1945 - Chicago Tribune

I’m not sure the word “advantage” applies to Clayton Kershaw.

“I always think the advantage goes to the hitters when you’re seeing a guy (in back-to-back starts),” Anthony Rizzo said. “But we’ll have to execute and capitalize on every detail.”

Jim Furtado Posted: October 22, 2016 at 09:03 AM | 11 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs, dodgers, playoffs

Trevor Bauer wants to pitch every game of World Series; Cleveland Indians just want him healthy |

Trevor Bauer has an idea of which World Series games he would like to pitch.

“Game 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 and 7,” he said Friday afternoon.

“That would be a little better than the last series,” manager Terry Francona quipped.

Jim Furtado Posted: October 22, 2016 at 09:01 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: indians, trevor bauer

Ryan Merritt might not be a household name, but the Cleveland Indians pitcher is the talk of the town |

Paul Dolan just wanted to get acquainted with the guy who lifted the Indians to a World Series berth.

“I’m spending this time trying to find him,” the team owner said. “I’ve never met him.”

The “him” is Ryan Merritt, and for eternity, his moniker will satisfy trivia questions and trigger fond memories for those in Cleveland. For the Blue Jays, who barely recognized his name before his astonishing performance in Game 5 of the ALCS, Merritt will be hard to forget.

“He’s kind of unflappable,” said pitching coach Mickey Callaway. “He’s the unflappable Ryan Merritt. He probably doesn’t even know their names.”

Jim Furtado Posted: October 22, 2016 at 09:00 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: indians, ryan merritt

Prospect Retrospective: Ricky Vaughn, RHP, Cleveland Indians - Minor League Ball

Looking back at Ricky Vaughn.

*Drafted by the Los Angeles Dodgers in the fifth round of the 1984 draft, out of high school in Malibu, California.
*Released by Dodgers May 1, 1987 following arrest for grand theft auto
*Pitched in California Penal League 1988 (no statistics kept)
*Signed by Indians as a free agent, February 9, 1989

Jim Furtado Posted: October 22, 2016 at 08:54 AM | 13 comment(s)
  Beats: indians, major league movie

Cleveland Indians’ Terry Francona hints Danny Salazar could start in World Series |

“He threw the ball really well,” said Francona. “He let it go, which is good. He really let it go. He threw his change up with some arm speed. We’ll see how the next one goes.”

Salazar, who went to the All-Star Game in July but spent most of the second half struggling with right elbow problems, is scheduled to throw a three-inning simulated game on Saturday or Sunday.

“He’s ready to pitch,” said Francona.

The Indians have mentioned Salazar throughout the postseason, but usually in terms of pitching out of the pen. When asked if Salazar could start, Francona said, “I don’t know. The good news is if Danny pitches and he pitches healthy, we have a really good pitcher for whatever amount of innings he’s build up for. That potentially could help us.”
Well, except for saying that Bauer was scheduled for more “suture work” on his damaged finger – which at last count was held together by 10 stitches – Francona wasn’t saying a lot.

Jim Furtado Posted: October 22, 2016 at 08:52 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: danny salazar, indians, world series

Friday, October 21, 2016

Bill Murray Bernie Macs the Cubs

Celebrities declaring the Cubs the champs is never a good thing.

bunyon Posted: October 21, 2016 at 05:28 PM | 10 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs, history, world series predictions

Charlie Sheen Responds to Indians Fans Demanding he Throw the First Pitch at the World Series


Charlie Sheen


Major League continues to be the gift that keeps on giving!

if called upon,I’d be honored.

eddieot Posted: October 21, 2016 at 02:08 PM | 58 comment(s)
  Beats: indians, major league, wild thing, winnning, world series

Drew Sharp, Detroit Free Press sports columnist, dies at 56

Well this sucks… RIP

Upon being named columnist, Sharp wrote: “A columnist’s role isn’t to blindly lead cheers. Nor is it a blank check to slam individuals solely because you have been given a club. But there is a responsibility to raise questions and express doubts. There should be a commitment to deflate the smug and arrogant because, after all, this is only sports—a useful diversion and an increasingly influential business, but hardly irreplaceable in our everyday lives.

eddieot Posted: October 21, 2016 at 11:35 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: sportswriters, the freep, tigers

ESPN 2016 Ultimate Standings: Royals, Rangers lead MLB teams

1. Kansas City Royals (9 overall)

The Royals had the second-biggest leap in last year’s Ultimate Standings, and now, after winning the World Series last fall, they climb into the top 10 as the highest-ranked MLB team. Key injuries to Mike Moustakas and Lorenzo Cain and Alex Gordon’s bad year wrecked the team’s playoff hopes, but Kansas City remained baseball-crazy, with the highest local TV ratings in the sport….

27. New York Yankees (100 overall)

The Yankees think of themselves as the greatest franchise in all sports, so their barely making the top 100 goes against corporate culture. (Of course, they’ve also played a grand total of one playoff game since 2012, so this ranking could be even worse.) This offseason, New York finds itself in a transition period, with Alex Rodriguez and Mark Teixeira joining the likes of Derek Jeter and Mariano Rivera on the sideline and making way for the next generation of Yankees, led by catcher Gary Sanchez.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: October 21, 2016 at 09:48 AM | 3 comment(s)
  Beats: espn, fans, ultimate standings

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