Baseball for the Thinking Fan

Login | Register | Feedback

btf_logo

News

All News | Prime News

Old-School Newsstand


Contributors

Jim Furtado
Founder & Publisher
Repoz
Editor - Baseball Primer

Syndicate

Rays Newsbeat

Sunday, April 26, 2015

Meet the Clubhouse Crew, the team behind the Tampa Bay Rays | Tampa Bay Times

Have you ever wondered who was responsible for keeping Longoria’s jock socks clean?

Jim Furtado Posted: April 26, 2015 at 09:02 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: rays

Friday, April 24, 2015

At Trop, Tampa Mayor also waiting for chance to talk stadium

 

Before and after throwing out a ceremonial first pitch, with gusto, on Thursday, Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn chatted with team president Brian Auld and other Rays officials.

That level of banter is about all they can do for now, at least until St. Petersburg and the Rays work out a deal for them to discuss stadium sites on the other side of the bridges. Those talks are on hold, likely until after the season, after the St. Pete City Council rejected the last proposal.

“We still are willing to talk when they get the opportunity,’’ Buckhorn said. “We just want the Rays to be able to stay in this area. Until the city of St. Petersburg and the Rays come to an agreement, we truly are in the dugout. But when that day comes, I think the entire community will say, “Okay, let the Rays look, let them make the appropriate decision.” The decision may be Pinellas County, it may be Hillsborough. But they’ve got to have the ability to look.’‘

And though Jeff Vinik’s master development plan doesn’t include a stadium, Buckhorn said he was confident there are good options in downtown Tampa.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: April 24, 2015 at 08:31 AM | 6 comment(s)
  Beats: rays, stadium, tampa

Thursday, April 23, 2015

Julio Lugo charged with kidnapping, gun posession

Former Devil Rays infielder Julio Lugo (2003-2006) has been charged in court with kidnapping, according to multiple reports out of the Dominican Republic.

Lugo last professionally played baseball for los Leones del Escogido, and last played stateside for the Braves in 2011.

Lugo’s arrest warrant was issued in the cities of La Romana and Santo Domingo for kidnapping and the posession of fire arms. According to the paper, Lugo and four men held their hostage and his girlfriend at gunpoint, demanding money that had allegedly been invested in a business venture.

A rough translation of the article includes how Lugo had, “always been willing to talk about it, assuring him that the money invested in the company, as well as that of other investors, was sure.”

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: April 23, 2015 at 12:04 PM | 12 comment(s)
  Beats: astros, braves, dodgers, guns, julio lugo, kidnapping, legal, rays, red sox

Friday, April 17, 2015

The Rays’ Radical Reliever Experiment | FiveThirtyEight

The job of sabermetricians is done.

This unconventional strategy is emblematic of the cutting edge of modern, in-game sabermetrics. With every team from the small-market Rays to the moneyed Dodgers now employing a host of analysts, all the obviously beneficial tactical techniques are already in use. All that remains are the scraps. So even as the tactics have become unconventional, the margins have become thin and the advantages minute. For clever front offices like the Rays, negotiating the brave new world of saber-equality may mean relying on subtle, trifling tweaks like reliever-first outings.

Jim Furtado Posted: April 17, 2015 at 07:53 PM | 9 comment(s)
  Beats: rays, sabermetrics

Monday, April 13, 2015

Rays’ Nathan Karns has strong bounceback start | Tampa Bay Times

Rays notes.

Jim Furtado Posted: April 13, 2015 at 08:05 AM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: rays

Monday, April 06, 2015


Moving in a new direction, Rays hope they’re on right course

Uncle Charley
Does Uncle Charlie really believe the Rays will be better offensively?

The same brainy and creative 20-man baseball operations staff now run by Matt Silverman, who merely changed seats after a decade working alongside Friedman, and backed by the same cutting-edge computer system — still named Uncle Charlie — packed with proprietary data and research that is at the core of much of their decision-making.

Jim Furtado Posted: April 06, 2015 at 08:24 AM | 4 comment(s)
  Beats: rays

Monday, March 30, 2015

Rays denied consideration of re-negotiated lease by St. Petersburg City Council

The Rays are one step closer to moving to Paducah, Kentucky.

ch over a minor monetary amount, with many council members taking offense that the team was not interested in negotiating in public forums.

The sticking point were any profits that might have been had if the City redeveloped a portion of Tropicana Field’s 80-acres while the team still occupied the site. Under the current agreement, the team and City split profits equally….

The Rays owner has already made two intentions very clear: that the Rays must be allowed to explore all options in Tampa Bay for their next stadium in order to have a long term solution, and that the search will begin by 2022 with or without City Council approval due to necessity. The Team and Council are at odds.

Separately, Sternberg has also said that without a new stadium, the Rays will be sold and likely moved out of Tampa Bay. By denying consideration of the amended agreement, particularly after efforts by the Rays to re-negotiate the deal to meet the Council’s concerns, means the Rays are that much closer to leaving Tampa Bay.

The team is being backed into a corner, being legally unable to search for a new stadium means the ownership’s prospects of staying long term in the area are not bright. How will that impact their pending negotiations for a new television contract?

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: March 30, 2015 at 09:17 PM | 70 comment(s)
  Beats: montreal, rays, relocation, stadium

Sunday, March 29, 2015

With major defections, early rotation woes, could Rays be in for long year? - CBSSports.com

Jon Heyman doesn’t paint a pretty picture for the 2015 Rays fortunes.

Jim Furtado Posted: March 29, 2015 at 09:13 AM | 3 comment(s)
  Beats: rays

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Grantland: 2015 AL East Preview

Welcome to Grantland’s 2015 MLB division previews. From now through next week, Jonah Keri and I will analyze each team in each division, focusing on offseason triumphs and failures, roster strengths and weaknesses, telling projections, revealing stats, and off-field story lines, and wrapping up with our over/under verdicts on each team’s projected record. As always, all overly pessimistic opinions should be blamed on the well-known grudge we bear your team, and only your team, because of that thing it did to us that one time that we’re still extremely bitter about.

Win Big Stein's Money Posted: March 26, 2015 at 12:23 PM | 53 comment(s)
  Beats: blue jays, orioles, rays, red sox, yankees

Monday, March 23, 2015

Tampa Bay Rays prospect Brent Honeywell’s screwball a “bloodline deal” | MiLB.com

Another screwball article, including a Mike Marshall connection.

Jim Furtado Posted: March 23, 2015 at 02:44 PM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: brent honeywell, mike marshall, rays, screwball

Rays to name Asdrubal Cabrera everyday shortstop | Tampa Bay Times

“He has not done anything this spring to look like he’s lost range,” Cash said last week. “If I had to say, from spring training, this spring, I’ve had the benefit of seeing him his last two years in Cleveland, he looks better. … His body looks better. He’s moving really well.

“He’s made a couple nice plays where he is moving, soft line drives, a couple plays up the middle, and then a backhand play (last week) where he kind of pulled (first baseman James) Loney off the bag, but still he showed his range.”

Jim Furtado Posted: March 23, 2015 at 06:27 AM | 34 comment(s)
  Beats: asdrubal cabrera, rays

Saturday, March 21, 2015

Rays notes: Souza puts scare into team on diving attempt | TBO.com

Some Rays notes.

Jim Furtado Posted: March 21, 2015 at 08:36 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: rays

Monday, March 09, 2015

Drew Smyly injury a blow to Rays’ pitching depth | Tampa Bay Times

Having No. 3 starter Drew Smyly sidelined indefinitely, with his availability to start the season in question due to shoulder tendinitis, is bad enough news for the Rays.

“I think it’s fair to say there is a concern,” manager Kevin Cash said Sunday.

Worse is that the depth after their top four starters was already one of the biggest questions, and potential flaws, of several on their roster anyway.

Jim Furtado Posted: March 09, 2015 at 06:50 AM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: drew smyly, injuries, rays

Sunday, March 08, 2015

Silverman consulting with Rays players on key decisions | Tampa Bay Times

Much of what Matt Silverman has done since taking over as head of Rays baseball operations is similar to what Andrew Friedman did before him.

But one thing he has done differently — and interestingly — is soliciting opinions from a small group of key players before making decisions on hiring manager Kevin Cash and other moves and changes.

Jim Furtado Posted: March 08, 2015 at 08:34 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: rays

Thursday, March 05, 2015

Patriots, Giants, Rays sign amicus brief in support of same-sex marriage

The New England Patriots, San Francisco Giants and Tampa Bay Rays have all signed onto an amicus brief urging the United States Supreme Court to legalize same-sex marriage across the country, according to the Huffington Post. They are among almost 400 companies - many of which are some of the biggest corporations in the country - to support the brief. The Supreme Court will hear a case on gay marriage on April 28 and is expected to make a determination by June.

All of these teams have strong histories on LGBT issues. The Patriots’ owner, Bob Kraft, supported LGBT rights years ago and the Patriots appeared at an LGBT fundraiser years before it was en vogue. The Giants were the first team to produce an It Gets Better video in 2011, sparking a string of other MLB teams to follow suit. That list included the Rays.

 


Sunday, February 22, 2015

Baseball America: Five Historical Precedents for Cubs’ Loaded Top 100 Class.

1. 2006 Diamondbacks

The Players

SS Justin Upton (#2), SS Stephen Drew (#5), 1B Conor Jackson (#17), OF Carlos Quentin (#20), OF Chris Young (#23), OF Carlos Gonzalez (#32), RHP Dustin Nippert (#67)

The First Six Seasons
Arizona went 477-495 (.491) from 2006-11, with three winning seasons and two trips to the playoffs, one courtesy of an National League West division title.

The precedents aren’t as strong as I would have expected.

Cloude Atlas (Voxter) Posted: February 22, 2015 at 02:37 PM | 13 comment(s)
  Beats: braves, brewers, cubs, diamondbacks, prospects, rays, royals

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Wade Townsend had to flop at baseball to live a dream. | SportsonEarth.com

Wade Townsend’s life after baseball.

Jim Furtado Posted: February 19, 2015 at 10:21 AM | 3 comment(s)
  Beats: rays, wade townsend

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Schoenfield: Ranking the teams: 24 through 19

Can the Yankees compete with the large market teams?

Due for a better year: Rodriguez? CC Sabathia? Carlos Beltran? Take your old, injured veteran and project better numbers. And then go buy a lottery ticket.

Due for a worse year: Did Miller turn the corner in 2014? After averaging 5.3 walks per nine innings over his career, he lowered that to 2.5 while striking out a dominant 14.9 per nine. The Yankees forked over a lot of money to get the big lefty and now he and Betances could make for the best one-two relief punch in the majors if Miller replicates his 2014 success.

I’m just the messenger: Can the Yankees get 90 starts from Sabathia, Masahiro Tanaka and Michael Pineda? Those three combined for just 41 last season, although Tanaka and Pineda pitched some sweet baseball when healthy. All are major health risks, of course, but keep this in mind as well: The Yankees are losing some quality starts from 2014. Kuroda, McCarthy, Greene and Phelps combined for 77 starts and a solid 3.68 ERA. Even if those guys stay healthy they may not be any better than that rate of production.

The final word: The Yankees have been outscored each of the past two years, although they managed to finish over .500 both seasons. While a lot of people are pointing to a healthier rotation and better seasons from some of the veterans as reasons the Yankees will contend this year, I turn that around and say: Who’s a good bet to improve? The only thing I’m sure of is the Yankees will have better defense at shortstop. I’m taking the under .500—for the first time since 1992.

Prediction: 78-84

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: February 10, 2015 at 06:57 PM | 4 comment(s)
  Beats: brewers, david schoenfield, marlins, rays, reds, white sox, yankees

Sunday, February 08, 2015

Rays manager Kevin Cash plans more stable lineup | Tampa Bay Times

Ultimately we would like our core guys to have a good sense of where they’re hitting in the lineup,” Cash said. “Some would be planted, whether in the No. 3 spot or No. 4 spot or wherever. And some we’d like to have it be, ‘You’re going to hit either fifth or sixth’ or ‘You’re going to hit first or second,’ something of that degree. Our goal coming in is to have a righty lineup and a lefty lineup, and have that be very similar on a daily basis.”

So whether the Rays decide to put Evan Longoria third (where he has preferred) or fourth (where there is potential for him to be more productive), and whether they settle on Kevin Kiermaier or Desmond Jennings or even John Jaso at the top, expect them to stick with that plan. (Last year, for example, Jennings hit in six spots, and no lineup was used more than five times.)

Cash’s theory is that the stability is better for the players, thus the team.

Jim Furtado Posted: February 08, 2015 at 10:12 AM | 13 comment(s)
  Beats: rays

Saturday, February 07, 2015

Catching? John Jaso takes a break | Tampa Bay Times

I’m interested in seeing how Jaso does as a full-time DH. About a 1/4 of his PA so far have come at DH. He’s essentially hit about the same as he does behind the plate.

“We have an understanding that they want me to hit, and putting me in the instance where I could be in harm’s way — where I would then be on the bench for the rest of the year — that’s not worth it at this point,” he said.

Jaso said he plans to eventually return to catching, though it’s possible — and potentially better for him — that he would wait until next season, allowing for more time to pass since his most recent concussion.

Jim Furtado Posted: February 07, 2015 at 10:14 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: john jaso, rays

Friday, January 30, 2015

The Rays’ Kind of Fastball | FanGraphs Baseball

More good stuff from Jeff Sullivan.

Last season, Rays pitchers threw 56% of their fastballs at least two and a half feet off the ground, which is approximately the vertical middle of the strike zone. This was the highest rate for any team in baseball. The Nationals finished second, but they’ve also lost prolific high-fastball throwers in Tyler Clippard and Rafael Soriano. They’ve been open to moving Jordan Zimmermann. The league average, by the way, was a hair under 48%.

Jim Furtado Posted: January 30, 2015 at 08:39 AM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: rays, sabermetrics

Monday, January 12, 2015

Ian Desmond, Ben Zobrist were part of Nationals-Mets-Rays trade discussion | FOX Sports

The Nationals would have sent Desmond to the Rays for Zobrist and Escobar, the two players the Rays traded to the Athletics on Saturday. The Rays then would have flipped Desmond to the Mets.

The roadblock was the Rays’ request for two top Mets prospects from a list of three – a price the Mets considered too steep for Desmond, who is entering his free-agent year.

The Rays’ wish list included right-hander Noah Syndergaard, the Mets’ No. 1 prospect according to Baseball America. The other two targets are not known.

Jim Furtado Posted: January 12, 2015 at 06:22 AM | 40 comment(s)
  Beats: mets, nationals, rays, trade rumors

Saturday, January 10, 2015

A look at the A’s deal for Ben Zobrist, Yunel Escobar

Another slow news day and BOOM!

With the additions of Ben Zobrist, who will become Oakland’s primary second baseman, and shortstop Yunel Escobar, the A’s are likely done assembling their 2015 team – and there is little doubt they plan to contend.

Zobrist was hotly pursued by numerous teams this winter, including the Giants, but the fact that Oakland could also find a spot for Escobar probably helped the A’s complete the deal.  The A’s will send catcher John Jaso to the Rays along with two minor-leaguers, top shortstop prospect Daniel Robertson and outfielder Boog Powell.

Jim Furtado Posted: January 10, 2015 at 01:35 PM | 44 comment(s)
  Beats: athletics, ben zobrist, boog powell, daniel robertson, john jaso, rays, yunel escobar

Thursday, January 01, 2015

Zobrist decision not an easy one for Rays | MLB.com

The Rays can afford to wait on dealing Zobrist.

Jim Furtado Posted: January 01, 2015 at 10:27 AM | 2 comment(s)
  Beats: ben zobrist, rays

Page {e2c518d61874f2d4a14bbfb9087a7c2dcurrent_page} of {e2c518d61874f2d4a14bbfb9087a7c2dtotal_pages} pages {e2c518d61874f2d4a14bbfb9087a7c2dpagination_links} | Site Archive

 

 

BBTF Partner

Support BBTF

donate

Thanks to
Traderdave
for his generous support.

Bookmarks

You must be logged in to view your Bookmarks.

Hot Topics

NewsblogOT: Monthly NBA Thread - April 2015
(1625 - 6:40pm, Apr 26)
Last: PJ Martinez

NewsblogRosenthal: St. Louis Cardinals ace Adam Wainwright believed to have season-ending Achilles injury | FOX Sports
(32 - 6:40pm, Apr 26)
Last: SoSHially Unacceptable

Newsblog4-26-2015 OMNICHATTER
(92 - 6:39pm, Apr 26)
Last: Baldrick

NewsblogOTP - April 2015: Church, baseball, politics: Rahm and Chuy work to close the deal
(3919 - 6:33pm, Apr 26)
Last: Rickey! is just here so he don't get fined

NewsblogAll-around catchers among most valuable commodities in baseball - The Boston Globe
(20 - 6:20pm, Apr 26)
Last: Dr. Vaux

NewsblogYelich dealing with bulging disk in back | MLB.com
(11 - 5:54pm, Apr 26)
Last: bobm

NewsblogManfred: Rose will be allowed to be part of All-Star Game
(144 - 5:51pm, Apr 26)
Last: cercopithecus aethiops

NewsblogOT: Soccer March 2015
(789 - 5:28pm, Apr 26)
Last: The John Wetland Memorial Death (CoB)

NewsblogOT: Wrestling Thread November 2014
(901 - 4:53pm, Apr 26)
Last: NJ in DC (Now with Wife!)

NewsblogCarlos Beltran making case for NY’s most hated player | New York Post
(6 - 4:13pm, Apr 26)
Last: The Yankee Clapper

NewsblogSource: Angels close to trading Josh Hamilton to Rangers | FOX Sports
(22 - 3:29pm, Apr 26)
Last: Sunday silence

NewsblogNick Cafardo | On Baseball: At 40, Koji Uehara in a pitched battle - Sports - The Boston Globe
(2 - 2:10pm, Apr 26)
Last: tfbg9

NewsblogSunday Notes: Bucs’ Watson, Rox McMahon, Belle the Beast, much more | FanGraphs Baseball
(6 - 2:06pm, Apr 26)
Last: Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad)

NewsblogThe emergence of Matt Harvey 3.0 -- and a matchup vs A-Rod - NY Daily News
(11 - 1:10pm, Apr 26)
Last: Loren F.

NewsblogThe early leaders in MLB’s “Franchise Four” thing have been announced
(81 - 11:15am, Apr 26)
Last: ERROR---Jolly Old St. Nick

Page rendered in 1.5365 seconds
169 querie(s) executed