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Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Royals playoff run inspires team executive to come out

“To walk into my boss’s office, how do I set it up? Do I give them a warning? Do I spring it on them? I’m still not even totally comfortable with saying the words, ‘I’m gay.’”

Through the Royals’ magical October run, that discomfort was replaced more and more by confidence. Like so many fans in places like Kansas City, Cleveland and Buffalo desperately hungry for a championship, Schulte’s whole demeanor — even his self-worth — has been affected by decades of sports disappointment.

While baseball is relegated by some to simply a “kids’ game,” for Schulte the last two months have been cathartic.

“I had family at all of the home games. I got to spend time with them. It was an awesome experience. We’ve all been Royals fans all of our lives. To go through the connections with the team, the city and my family, it made me realize it’s time to take a step forward myself and put myself out there. I had been in a rut, with the Royals and all of their difficult seasons and what I was struggling with inside.

“The Royals’ success just made me decide to be proud and just own it, to just be who I am.”

 

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: November 19, 2014 at 12:30 PM | 20 comment(s)
  Beats: gay rights, matt schulte, royals, team executives

Royals eye aces, but focus on Ervin, Liriano, trades (and Torii for OF) - CBSSports.com

Jon Heyman on the Royals off-season plans.

Jim Furtado Posted: November 19, 2014 at 11:54 AM | 5 comment(s)
  Beats: royals

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Killing Salvador Perez

Erik Kratz is the Maytag man of baseball.

Salvador Perez’s personal experience of the 2014 season was akin to wandering into a time machine and going back 40 or 50 years. The 24-year-old Royals backstop started 143 games at catcher, the most in the majors, was a defensive replacement in three more, and then added another 15 starts in the postseason. That total of 158 starts was the most by any catcher in at least a century and represented the kind of workload that was a regular occurrence for players such as Johnny Bench, but that teams have largely decided is not in their best interests.

Ned Yost and pals can’t be faulted for riding Perez hard. The playoffs last four rounds nowadays, and you’re not going to start Erik Kratz in a key game if you can help it. What makes the whole thing curious is the team’s consent or acquiescence in the matter of Perez going off to Japan with a team of all-stars to catch yet more games. With two more games caught and the possibility of five more to come, Perez is on the verge of going where no major league catcher has gone before. In 1968, Randy Hundley of the Cubs started 156 games for the Cubs and entered late in four other contests for a total of 160 games played. Assuming each player had a like number of spring training squats, Perez may finish his tour of the Pacific Rim as the catcher to have put the most mileage on his odometer in a single year.

The funny thing is it may not matter, at least, not in the near term.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: November 13, 2014 at 02:41 PM | 29 comment(s)
  Beats: japan, royals, salvador perez

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Mariners aim to emulate Royals; will KC land Big Piece?

Bob Nightengale’s latest.

They are intent on dumping first baseman Ryan Howard and the remaining $60 million on his contract, but after finding no takers during the season, they have surprising interest from a small-market club with one baseball’s lowest payrolls.

The Royals.

The Royals aren’t about to rip up their payroll, and David Glass suddenly isn’t about to go all Steinbrenner on us, but if the Phillies are willing to eat most of the contract, the Royals have had internal discussions about acquiring him.

They believe he just might be the perfect fit to replace Billy Butler as their everyday DH, and considering they didn’t have a single player hit 20 homers or drive in 75 runs last year, he may be the power threat the Royals need to return to the World Series.

Jim Furtado Posted: November 11, 2014 at 07:45 AM | 17 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs, mariners, phillies, red sox, royals, yankees

Monday, November 10, 2014


Friday, October 31, 2014

Deadline: World Series Ratings: Game 7 Scores Home Run For Fox

the most watched show on TV this year. Baseball is dead.

By far the best result of this year’s World Series, last night’s game is way, way up a stellar 70% from the 8.9/14 metered market results of Tuesday’s 8 PM – 11:30 PM Game 6. And with what looks to be the network’s best non-NFL rating in more than 3 years, Fox must be pretty happy that the last game of the third World Series win in 5-years by the Giants is steady with the World Series 2014 logoovernight results of the last World Series Game 7 back on October 28, 2011. That fall classic between the victorious St. Louis Cardinals and the Texas Rangers got a 16.2/28 in MM ratings – just a 6% difference with this year in a very different TV landscape. The only other times that the World Series has gone seven games in the 13 years that Fox has exclusively had the diamond battles was in 2001 and 2002. That latter game between the Giants and the winning Anaheim Angels saw a now almost unimaginable 19.8/28 MM rating.

After the lowest rated World Series on record so far, Fox really needed last night’s unexpected Game 7 to turn things around and have America’s pastime grab America’s eyeballs. With smaller market and wild card teams making up the match-up and most of the games’ blowouts, the series and Fox distinctly suffered. Not only was it down from the sturdy numbers of 2013 but this year’s World Series also dipped from the 4-game series of 2012, which had been a record low.

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Game 7 only drew 50% more viewers than the most watched show on TV this year. Baseball is dead.

By far the best result of this year’s World Series, last night’s game is way, way up a stellar 70% from the 8.9/14 metered market results of Tuesday’s 8 PM – 11:30 PM Game 6. And with what looks to be the network’s best non-NFL rating in more than 3 years, Fox must be pretty happy that the last game of the third World Series win in 5-years by the Giants is steady with the World Series 2014 logoovernight results of the last World Series Game 7 back on October 28, 2011. That fall classic between the victorious St. Louis Cardinals and the Texas Rangers got a 16.2/28 in MM ratings – just a 6% difference with this year in a very different TV landscape. The only other times that the World Series has gone seven games in the 13 years that Fox has exclusively had the diamond battles was in 2001 and 2002. That latter game between the Giants and the winning Anaheim Angels saw a now almost unimaginable 19.8/28 MM rating.

After the lowest rated World Series on record so far, Fox really needed last night’s unexpected Game 7 to turn things around and have America’s pastime grab America’s eyeballs. With smaller market and wild card teams making up the match-up and most of the games’ blowouts, the series and Fox distinctly suffered. Not only was it down from the sturdy numbers of 2013 but this year’s World Series also dipped from the 4-game series of 2012, which had been a record low.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: October 31, 2014 at 09:05 AM | 45 comment(s)
  Beats: giants, royals, tv ratings, world seres

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Statcast: Butler chugs home

Statcast isn’t just for the burners.

Jim Furtado Posted: October 30, 2014 at 06:29 AM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: giants, royals, statcast, world series

Old shortstop, fireman help Giants get critical out in Game 7 | CSN Bay Area

Dunston and Chop had several angles on the play in the third inning. Second baseman Joe Panik stretched every fiber while diving to knock down Eric Hosmer’s hard grounder, he flipped with his glove to Brandon Crawford and first baseman Brandon Belt made the stretch. The replays were extremely close, but one angle showed a bulge in Belt’s glove from where the baseball made contact while Hosmer’s fingers were millimeters from touching the base.

“I said, ‘OK, OK, he’s out. Let’s go for it,’” Dunston said. “And we did that together.”

Jim Furtado Posted: October 30, 2014 at 06:06 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: giants, royals, world series

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

San Francisco Giants at Kansas City Royals - October 29, 2014 | MLB.com Box

When he first came out of the pen I thought things were going to go into the crapper. I was wrong. Bumgarner was awesome. Congrats to the Giants and their fans.

Jim Furtado Posted: October 29, 2014 at 11:23 PM | 92 comment(s)
  Beats: giants, royals, world series

On a wild ride to Game 7, these Royals super fans are the cat’s meow - Yahoo Sports

I hate it when fans get catty.

Jim Furtado Posted: October 29, 2014 at 09:06 PM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: giants, royals, world series

Nobody knows anything about Game 7 | FOX Sports

The most insightful, accurate pregame prediction that I’ve read all day. Great job, Rob!

Later today, I’m sure I’ll be overcome by the impulse to cogitate, to calculate, and finally to prognosticate. But while we know an immense amount of things about these teams, literally more than we’ve ever known about any two sports teams before athe biggest of games, nobody knows anything the actual Biggest Game.

Jim Furtado Posted: October 29, 2014 at 02:23 PM | 25 comment(s)
  Beats: giants, royals, world series

Second-guessing ends for managers in World Series Game 7 | SportsonEarth.com : Will Leitch

Although I agree that process is important, the critiquing of every managerial move has gotten out of hand.

Jim Caple of ESPN thinks so, arguing earlier this week that all we’re doing when we’re yelling at Ned Yost or Mike Matheny is creating senseless noise, that it’s the players who decide this, not the managers. As he put it: “Can we please have a moratorium on ripping every single managerial move, including the ones that work out?” The opposing argument, nicely elucidated by Joe Sheehan in his indispensible baseball newsletter, argues that it doesn’t matter what the results are, that all you can evaluate, and all that matters is the process. If Royals manager Ned Yost makes a dumb move and it works out anyway, that doesn’t change the fact that it’s a dumb move.

Jim Furtado Posted: October 29, 2014 at 06:54 AM | 4 comment(s)
  Beats: giants, royals, world series

Game 7 fitting end to perfectly strange World Series | CSN Bay Area

I have become a bigger fan of Ray Ratto this postseason. He’s a funny guy.

“There’s a lot of managers out there, and I understand that,” official manager Bruce Bochy said when asked a circuitous question about the Twitteratii, “but this guy just pitched. He’s going to be on two days’ rest. He just threw a complete game. Our confidence in Huddy. But you know, this guy is human. I mean, you can’t push him that much . . . so when they Tweet you, just tell them that.”

Jim Furtado Posted: October 29, 2014 at 06:44 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: giants, royals, world series

Royal flush turns World Series into 7-game stud | MLB.com

What’s the over/under on how many innings Herrera, Davis, and Holland pitch tonight?

Jim Furtado Posted: October 29, 2014 at 05:19 AM | 7 comment(s)
  Beats: giants, royals, world series

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Is Yordano Ventura the hardest-throwing starting pitcher ever? - Beyond the Box Score

Nolan Ryan was very, very, very fast.

Jim Furtado Posted: October 28, 2014 at 10:32 AM | 74 comment(s)
  Beats: fastballs, royals

No place like home for the Royals | New York Post

The Royals only have one game to worry about.

Jim Furtado Posted: October 28, 2014 at 09:34 AM | 2 comment(s)
  Beats: giants, royals, world series

Monday, October 27, 2014

Royals employees gifted a trip to World Series

Section 334: It is a tiny blue pie slice among 40,000 fans. But in games three, four and five of 2014 World Series, the faces of its 185 or so Kansas City occupants — both elated and glum, broadcast on national television — became the faces of Royals fandom in AT&T Park.

Nicole Bruce, 45, of Independence was seen on TV by her brother-in-law who was watching in Texas. Bob and Kathy Butler of Kansas City said their son and grandson back home saw them.

Throughout the ballpark, people could hear their voices calling out from high up in left field: “Let’s go Roy-als!”

In game three, Giants fans congratulated them. In game four, they rubbed in the hurt of an 11-4 loss, shouting, “You’re so qui-et!”

Section 334 shook it off and stood. “Let’s go Roy-als!”

“We want our boys to hear us,” said Kathy Butler, 67, of Overland Park.

When she said “our boys,” she meant it, but not in the way moms and dad mean it. The faces you’re seeing in Section 334 belong to the Royals’ organization who, after Kansas City clinched the American League Championship Series, were given a gift by team owner and president David and Dan Glass.

The gift: a free trip, including chartered plane and hotel, to all three World Series games in San Francisco for each member of the Royals’ front office staff, plus a guest.

David Glass probably didn’t give them a complimentary drink on the plane, that cheap miser.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: October 27, 2014 at 04:00 PM | 34 comment(s)
  Beats: david glass, royals, world series

SF Giants head groundskeeper: ‘no gamesmanship,’ denies flooding the basepaths - John Shea

Elliott said the composition of the dirt includes 59 percent lava cinders and sand, 21 percent clay and 19 percent silt. Plus, conditioner is added “to keep the moisture on the soil so the footing’s right.”

“You can’t get caught up in it,” Elliott said of talk his crew goes overboard with watering. “The worst thing I could do, from my standpoint, is change the field on them without them knowing it. Then they’re playing in unexpected and unfamiliar territory.”

Jim Furtado Posted: October 27, 2014 at 09:04 AM | 4 comment(s)
  Beats: giants, royals, world series

Legend of the fall: MadBum’s CG gives SF Game 5 win | MLB.com

Bumgarner takes charge of the series.

Jim Furtado Posted: October 27, 2014 at 06:18 AM | 17 comment(s)
  Beats: giants, madison bumgarner, royals, world series

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Rany on the Royals: Royals Today: World Series, Game 4.

The scrutiny of every managerial decision has been over the top this series. Every decision shouldn’t be made based on the Win Expectancy Table.

As always, you will find a lot of good sense from Rany Jazayerli in this postgame write-up after Game 4.

Someone – I believe it may have been Sam Miller of Baseball Prospectus – wrote earlier this month something to the effect that we’ve reached the point with baseball analysis where players no longer are blamed for failure: it’s either the fault of the manager for putting him in that position or the GM for not acquiring a better player. It’s hyperbole, but seeing the reaction to Game 4, I wonder just how much of an exaggeration it is.

Jim Furtado Posted: October 26, 2014 at 08:25 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: giants, managers, royals, world series


Saturday, October 25, 2014

MLB - Royals’ Ned Yost keeps managing to win - ESPN

Ned Yost doesn’t care what you think. Got that?

He doesn’t care if you think his team is winning this World Series because he’s the second coming of John McGraw. He doesn’t care if you think his team is winning this World Series in spite of his never-ending bumbleheadedness.

He. Doesn’t. Care. Are we clear on that?

“I don’t really pay attention to when people say I’m stupid,” the perpetually embattled manager of those Kansas City Royals said this week. “And I don’t really pay attention to when people say I’m smart—because I’m neither. I’m not a dope, but I’m not the smartest guy on the face of the earth either. So I just let all that go. I don’t pay any attention to it. I don’t read about it. I just want our team to win.”

Jim Furtado Posted: October 25, 2014 at 08:36 AM | 17 comment(s)
  Beats: giants, royals, world series

Gambling Bochy creature of habit when it comes to pitchers | CSN Bay Area

Ratto cracks me up.

In the two Giants losses, the San Francisco is 1-for-24 with nine strikeouts against Kelvin Herrera, Wade Davis, Greg Holland and late entry Brandon Finnegan. In fact, Kansas City manager Ned Yost ran afoul of the Mezzanine Constabulary again by:

(a) Letting starter Jeremy Guthrie, who had been brilliant for five innings, start the sixth inning with a 3-0 lead, a single to Brandon Crawford and an RBI double by Michael Morse.

(b) Bringing Herrera on to stanch the bleeding, which he did after walking Gregor Blanco and giving up three routine groundouts, one of which scored Morse.

(c) Letting Herrera bat for himself in the seventh with two outs and Jarrod Dyson at first. He became the 15th American League reliever to bat in the last 20 years, and the 15th to fail. He then started the seventh, walked Hunter Pence and was pulled for Finnegan, making the idea of letting him hit seem particularly daft.

But Yost has his ways, and he will be second-guessed until the cows come home, get their GEDs and head off to college without bother. He’s the one up, 2-1. Savage away, o fevered intelligentsia.

Jim Furtado Posted: October 25, 2014 at 08:35 AM | 6 comment(s)
  Beats: giants, royals, world series

Yost’s managerial decisions make for extra-entertaining World Series | FOX Sports

In defense of Yost.

We’re welcome to disagree with Yost, as I rather enjoy doing. But he deserves our respect — and admiration. He knows things about his players that we don’t. He also knows how to lead underdogs to a 10-1 record in the postseason, two wins from a champagne-soaked legacy.

Jim Furtado Posted: October 25, 2014 at 08:29 AM | 18 comment(s)
  Beats: giants, royals, world series

Ned Yost’s team won despite his managing in Game 3 | FOX Sports

Micro analysis in real time.

Jim Furtado Posted: October 25, 2014 at 08:20 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: giants, managers, royals, world series

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