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World Series Newsbeat

Monday, November 24, 2014

Jazayerli: The Legacy Of The 2014 Royals, Part 1.

What about Jake Taylor’s Indians?

Here’s another way to frame the season we just witnessed: Imagine that you could pick any team in the history of major league baseball to root for, but with the caveat that they could not have won the world championship. Would you pick the 2014 Royals?...

You could rank these teams in any number of ways, but to me there’s a pretty clear first tier, which I’ll do my best to rank here. (Feel free to debate this in the comments.) Remember, the criteria is, “since 1951, the team you would most like to have rooted for even though they didn’t win the World Series.”

1) 1967 Boston Red Sox
2) 1991 Atlanta Braves
3) 2007 Colorado Rockies
4) 2014 Kansas City Royals
5) 1982 Milwaukee Brewers
6) 2008 Tampa Bay Rays
7) 1959 Chicago White Sox
8) 1975 Boston Red Sox

(I go back and forth on whether the 1995 Indians should be on this list, because I just see them as a different kind of team – like the 2001 Mariners, they were such a regular season juggernaut that anything shy of winning the World Series felt like a disappointment. Maybe it’s unfair that I’m penalizing them for being too good – in which case they probably should rank #1.)

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: November 24, 2014 at 11:09 PM | 42 comment(s)
  Beats: royals, world series

Friday, October 31, 2014

Statcast: Dissecting Gordon’s odds of scoring | MLB.com

One more time with Statcast.

Jim Furtado Posted: October 31, 2014 at 04:16 PM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: statcast, world series

Sending Gordon | Joe Blogs

I will say this, though: If the Jirsch HAD sent Gordon home and Gordon HAD been thrown out by something comical like 30 or 40 feet, that would have created one hundred times the second-guessing that’s going on now. It would have been one of the greatest blunders in sports history. And people would still be wondering what was behind those other curtains, the ones that would never be opened.

Jim Furtado Posted: October 31, 2014 at 01:38 PM | 45 comment(s)
  Beats: world series

MLB—It’s time to back off on manager bashing - ESPN

“You’re always going to have those questions,” Bochy said of managerial criticism. “‘Well, you could have done this or done that or it may not work out.’ It’s part of the game now, more so now than ever. You understand that, but hey, it’s great people are watching the game.”

Jim Furtado Posted: October 31, 2014 at 09:43 AM | 9 comment(s)
  Beats: managers, world series

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Statcast: Gordon stops 90 feet from tying Game 7

Gordon should have stayed at third. And so much more!


No, Alex Gordon wouldn’t have scored an inside the park home run

No, Alex Gordon should not have been sent.

Perhaps a decision to run would have forced a poor throw home, but with a good throw Gordon would have been out easily. Regardless, that was a tremendous Game 7.

Jim Furtado Posted: October 30, 2014 at 03:44 PM | 158 comment(s)
  Beats: world series

Send Alex Gordon! | FiveThirtyEight

Nate Silver thinks Alex Gordon should have been sent home.

Jim Furtado Posted: October 30, 2014 at 03:37 PM | 100 comment(s)
  Beats: world series

Angell: The Best

I missed Christy Mathewson somehow but caught almost everyone else, down the years—Lefty Grove, Carl Hubbell, Sandy Koufax, Bob Gibson, Jack Morris, Curt Schilling, Randy Johnson—but here was the best. Madison Bumgarner, the Giants’ left-handed ace, coming on in relief last night in the fifth inning of the deciding seventh game of this vibrant World Series, gave up a little opening single, then retired fourteen straight Kansas City batters, gave up another hit, and then closed the deal. The Giants won, 3–2, claiming their third World Championship in five years. It was almost his third victory of this Series—the scorers had it that way for a time, then gave the W back to Jeremy Affeldt, the left-handed reliever who was still the pitcher of record when the Giants went ahead in the fourth. Bumgarner, who lost a game along the way, in the Divisionals, on a little throwing error of his own, winds up at 4-1 for his October. He had won a game in each of the Giants’ World Championships, in 2012 and 2010, and now, at twenty-five, stands at 4-0 in the classic, with an earned-run average of 0.25. He was pitching on two days’ rest but also on manna: possibly the best October pitcher of them all.

Sure, we can talk about this: we’ve got all winter. Christy Mathewson threw three shutout victories for the Giants in the 1905 World Series, and won two more games (while losing five) in the Series of 1910, 1911, and 1912, but, as Matty would point out if he were here—he was famous for his fairness—even at his best he would not fare well against the enormous, toned-up athletes of our day.

[...]

I don’t know what it felt like watching Mathewson pitch, but watching Bumgarner is like feeling an expertly administered epidural nip in between a couple of vertebrae and deliver bliss: it’s a gliding, almost eventless slide through the innings, with accumulating fly-ball outs and low-count K’s marking the passing scenery. It’s twilight sleep; an Ambien catnap; an evening voyage on a Watteau barge. Bumgarner is composed out there, his expression mournful, almost apologetic, even while delivering his wide-wing, slinging stuff. Sorry, guys: this is how it goes. Over soon.

[...]

I don’t know how to bring this up, but attention must be paid, as Mrs. Willy Loman used to say. In the last line of my pre-World Series post here, I startled myself with a prediction: the Giants, because of their bullpen, would win this in seven. Yes, exactly so— and who now wants to step up with a wayd-a-minnit objection, claiming that Madison Bumgarner, though he actually emerged from there —we saw him— did not exactly represent the Giants’ bullpen last night? Eat my shorts.


Madison Bumgarner, World Series legend - McCovey Chronicles

It’s all Madison Bumgarner.

Jim Furtado Posted: October 30, 2014 at 06:35 AM | 103 comment(s)
  Beats: giants, madison bumgarner, world series

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

Bumgarner extraordinary as Giants claim decade | CSN Bay Area

“You know what?” he said with that knowing smile. “I can’t lie to you anymore. I’m a little tired now.”

Hell to the yes, he is. So he’ll wave with his right hand at the parade. So he’ll skip a few chores back home. So he’ll ease into spring training. The extraordinary comes with a price, and he cheerfully paid full retail for a moment this sport hasn’t seen since Catfish Hunter, Mickey Lolich, Koufax and Bob Gibson. He thought he might be a bridge from Jeremy Affeldt to Santiago Casilla Wednesday night. Instead, he is a bridge between eras, and a monument in a town that knows how to surround its ballpark with them.

Jim Furtado Posted: October 30, 2014 at 06:26 AM | 4 comment(s)
  Beats: giants, 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

Angell: The World Series is Almost Over

O.K., a blowout, but who knew? Every year along about this time, friends start asking me, “Who’s going to win tonight? Whadda you think?” But of course I have no clue. Baseball’s absolute unpredictability makes amateurs of us all, and after the Royals’ wholly unexpected 10–0 shellacking of the Giants in last night’s Game Six we can all get ready for the finale tonight with cheerful idiocy. Both starting pitchers—the Giants’ Tim Hudson and the Royals’ Jeremy Guthrie—are veterans who know that they will be gone in an instant, with plenty of time ahead for duck-hunting or sleeping in or a second-grade play, at the first signs of a wobble.

[...]

Go, Royals! Stay, baseball. The players on both teams will be cheerful during B.P. tonight, with the end of their long journey in sight, but a last game is always tougher on the rest of us. Get some sleep after.


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

Road maps to pitching success in Game 7 | FOX Sports

Three innings for Hudson seems like a low bar. Why don’t we wait and see what kind of stuff he has before getting those bullpen guys up?

But if Hudson can get through three innings, and Bumgarner can give the Giants two behind Hudson, then the Giants will be setup well to have their four main relievers pitch the final four innings in some fashion. The Royals probably shouldn’t set things up as traditionally. The Royals should get to Herrera, Davis, and Holland as quickly as possible.

Jim Furtado Posted: October 29, 2014 at 06:17 AM | 10 comment(s)
  Beats: 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

mlb.com: Video: Who will be next the champion? [sic]

Here you go- the last 49 World Series-clinching plays. With one five minute video, you can get excited for tonight and relive your entire baseball existence.

Guapo Posted: October 29, 2014 at 12:53 AM | 17 comment(s)
  Beats: history, video, world series

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Angell: Giants Near Crown

These have been fun games, though. Watching Bumgarner, whose amazingly extended lefty delivery begins with the held ball detouring toward short center field, I decided that his great stuff is equalled by the calm and the air of mournful apology with which it’s delivered: Sorry, guys, but you’ve got no chance. It’s quiet when he’s pitching, with little to note beyond the flow of strikeouts or pop-ups or ground balls, delivered without gesture or a change of expression, and the click of another passing inning is like someone closing a door in the next room.

[...]

No one is having more of a blast than Hunter Pence, who started off with a home run in the first inning of the Series and has more or less kept it up ever since, running the bases with his mouth open and his eyes alight, making unexpected closing-ground catches in right, and, with his black stockings accenting that half-open stance and slash at the ball, batting .474 in the Series to date. His pop eyes and thick curls reminds you of a young Donald Sutherland, and what he’s telling us is, “Man, am I hot! Watch—here’s more!”

I could say almost as many complimentary things about the young Royals, but let’s hold that for the next two games—two more, please, everybody, here before winter. In passing, I’ll throw in that Lorenzo Cain’s catch of Pence’s line drive to right in the fifth inning last night was as good as any outfield play so far in this upscale Series. It took only seconds—the ball was drilled—and Cain, racing hard after a quick jump, stuck his glove up and back-handed the ball almost directly over his head, leaning in midstride to give himself room.

As I’ve been saying here, thank you.


Frankovich: Keith Olbermann, Traditionalist

FYI: Nick was an editor at SABR back in the day.

So said Keith Olbermann. He too has taken to calling the World Series, disparagingly, “the MLB Finals.” Hard left in his politics, the ESPN2 commentator is, mirabile dictu, a hardcore traditionalist in matters baseball. I just came across this video from last Tuesday:

JE (Jason) Posted: October 28, 2014 at 01:10 PM | 2 comment(s)
  Beats: espn, keith olbermann, postseason, world series

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

The story behind ‘Marlins Man’ - JSOnline

A little more info about Marlin Man.

Jim Furtado Posted: October 28, 2014 at 09:19 AM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: human interest story, world series

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