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Tuesday, October 16, 2018

Rosenthal: Manny Machado still has work to do if he wants to keep the focus on his performance – The Athletic

Whenever I see you and ask you how you’re doing, you say, ‘I’m chillin.’ I know that’s your personality, that’s how you are. But there was a ball the other night, and you didn’t run hard. Manny, you know this, at this time of year people notice that kind of thing, so how would you explain it? What happened?

Machado: “Uhhh … (pause) … I’ve been thinking about it and it happens every time, there’s no excuse for it honestly. I’ve never given excuses for not running. I’m not hurt, there’s no excuse but I’ve been the same player … I’ve been doing this for eight years, I’m in The Show for eight years, I’ve done the same thing for eight years, I’ve been the same player. (Machado actually just completed his seventh season.)

“Obviously I’m not going to change, I’m not the type of player that’s going to be ‘Johnny Hustle,’ and run down the line and slide to first base and … you know, whatever can happen. That’s just not my personality, that’s not my cup of tea, that’s not who I am.

“Should I have run on that pitch? Yeah … but I didn’t and I gotta pay the consequences for it. It does look bad. It looks terrible. I look back at the video and I’m like, ‘Woah, what was I doing?’ You know, just the emotions of the game … I’m the type of player that has stayed in the zone, I’m playing and I’m just in the zone.

“On 3-0, I’m trying to drive one out. I hit a 100 mph groundball (actually 76 mph) right into the shift, right to the shortstop … before I even step out of the box, I look to the shortstop, he has the ball in his hands and I’m like, ‘I’m out.’ … I mean, what am I going to do?

“Should I have given it a little more effort? One hundred percent. (It’s) my fault like always, I mean that’s just my mentality when I’m in the game. (There are) things that you learn, things that you gotta change. I’ve tried changing it for eight years and I still can’t figure it out but, one of these days I will.”

Jim Furtado Posted: October 16, 2018 at 02:33 PM | 27 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, manny machado, pay site

Will Duquette and Showalter get top jobs elsewhere or will the disaster of 2018 — and the perceptions that re-emerged — damage their resumes? – The Athletic

Like the Mets it’s tough to know how many bad decisions were owner driven.

This takes us back to the original premise: Showalter and Duquette are good at what they do. They, together, helped lift a moribund franchise back to relevancy.

It wouldn’t be surprising if Showalter gets at least one interview this offseason for one of baseball’s managerial vacancies or if Duquette ends up as special assistant somewhere given his keen eye for undervalued assets.

But for them to get hired in high-profile, decision-making positions again, an organization will have to overlook what has happened in Baltimore since September 2017.

In the “what-have-you-done-lately” world of baseball, that may be a tall order. Especially considering the falls from grace are illustrative of the negative perceptions – fair or not – that have followed both men during successful baseball careers.

Jim Furtado Posted: October 16, 2018 at 10:16 AM | 6 comment(s)
  Beats: buck showalter, dan duquette, orioles, pay site

‘He’s as smart as anyone I’ve met in baseball – or anywhere’: How former team lawyer Sandy Alderson became one of the most influential GMs in the sport’s history – The Athletic

And even he couldn’t get the power to do the job. What’s the next Mets GM going to do?

“To me, if you look at the executives today and the template for the guys that run baseball teams today, they essentially all have the background of Sandy,” said Beane. “Sandy was the original Ivy League graduate with analytics driving his decisions. He was the groundbreaking guy.”

As such, those who know Alderson believe him deserving of at least one more honor.

“He should be in the Hall of Fame,” Ricciardi said. “He deserves to be a Hall of Famer.”

“On the short list of GMs who are at that level, you’re talking about Pat Gillick, John Schuerholz and Sandy,” said Ricco, referring to two other GMs enshrined in Cooperstown already. “That’s the company he belongs in.”

“He’s just been so influential, and his influence is still going on today,” Beane said. “If you look at the tree of executives that has worked with him and around him, absolutely he’s a Hall of Famer.”

Jim Furtado Posted: October 16, 2018 at 10:07 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: mets, pay site, sandy alderson

Tuesday, October 09, 2018

“By now I’m entirely consumed with it, and only marginally able to do anything else”: Bill James can’t stop dreaming about baseball – The Athletic

I know exactly how he feels. I also know I wouldn’t be making this post without ever finding and reading his books.

“The more you know about the game, the more enjoyable — the more fun it becomes,” James says. “And this cycle has been running in me for 50 years, so that by now I’m entirely consumed with it, and only marginally able to do anything else.

“And I’m up in my dirty little office upstairs, just obsessively studying this and that. Not because I have to … I just can’t stop doing it.”

“I dream about baseball every night,” Bill James says, one day earlier this year. He doesn’t know if people will believe this. It sounds apocryphal, a charming anecdote. James is not trying to be charming. He lays down. He dreams about the game. He wakes up.

“It’s true,” he says.

Jim Furtado Posted: October 09, 2018 at 01:47 PM | 129 comment(s)
  Beats: bill james, pay site

Friday, September 28, 2018

The Yankees have paired the best bullpen ever with cutting-edge tools to optimize its usage. Will it be enough in the playoffs? – The Athletic

A really interesting look at what the Yankees are doing with analytics

In his previous life as a broadcaster, Boone dutifully studied matchups. Before every game he was assigned to call, it became part of his routine to learn which pitchers had the most success against each batter. Past performance was his guide, the same as it had been for many others over the last century. This is the information that allows fans to manage along at home and on Twitter, one of the many charms of the game.

But in in his role as Yankees manager, those numbers have almost become an afterthought.

“There’s pretty strong evidence that it’s nonsense,” Boone said recently.

...

Then there’s the science. For the Yankees, their work in that area is proprietary, so club officials declined to share specifics. But according to people with knowledge of the team’s thinking, they have designed a projection system to identify the best matchups based on stuff and pitch types, thus allowing Boone to use certain arms to attack perceived vulnerable spots in opposing lineups.

The concept itself is not new. There’s no shortage of publicly-available data to expose which hitters might have trouble against cutters buried in on the hands, or two-seamers that nick the corners. But the Yankees have used their blend of data to tailor those projections. With their tools, it’s possible to estimate a hitters’ performance not against just two-seam fastballs in general, but two-seam fastballs thrown by Britton, or curveballs thrown by Robertson, or sliders thrown by Chapman. Specific velocity and spin is taken into account and matched up to a hitters’ bat path, which can also be precisely measured.

Jim Furtado Posted: September 28, 2018 at 09:01 AM | 35 comment(s)
  Beats: pay site, sabermetrics, yankees


Tuesday, August 28, 2018

The making of a modern closer: The meteoric rise of Edwin Díaz, explained – The Athletic

Some nice insight On one player’s development.

Stottlemyre: “This all goes with something I remember my dad (former Yankees and Mets pitching coach, Mel Sr.) always telling me about pitchers. He would say, ‘You never know when things are going to click.’ You work with these guys, have long sessions with them, and then all of a sudden, it’s like something clicks, and it starts to resonate.

“With Eddie, I have seen a guy who carries himself differently now. He has a much better understanding of who he is. That’s big. That takes time. In our eyes, we didn’t know if that was going to come this season or next season.”

Jim Furtado Posted: August 28, 2018 at 08:11 AM | 14 comment(s)
  Beats: edwin diaz, mariners, pay site

Monday, August 27, 2018

Why J.D. Martinez could rebuild himself into a feared slugger, and others can’t – The Athletic

Nice insight into sometimes stubborn mind of a hitter.

Jim Furtado Posted: August 27, 2018 at 07:36 AM | 6 comment(s)
  Beats: hitting, j.d. martinez, lars anderson, pay site

 

 

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