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Friday, January 18, 2019

538: Don’t Worry, MLB — Hitters Are Killing The Shift On Their Own By Travis Sawchik

But in all the hand-wringing over the shift, one detail has been overlooked: Batters have adjusted, and they’ve done it without league intervention or legislation. What’s more, there’s reason to believe shifts are actually encouraging increasingly efficient offensive behavior.

bobm Posted: January 18, 2019 at 07:57 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: shift

Thursday, January 17, 2019

Yankees sign Ottavino for 3 years

The New York Yankees have agreed to a three-year, $27 million deal with free-agent relief pitcher Adam Ottavino,

reech Posted: January 17, 2019 at 03:36 PM | 27 comment(s)
  Beats: yankees

Rosenthal: For the good of the sport, Tony Clark needs to lead the players to a compromise solution on improving the game

The problem is, the union agreed to the current collective bargaining agreement only 26 months ago. Agents criticized the annual thresholds as too low from almost the moment the terms were announced, but the union did not believe teams would or should treat the boundaries as a soft cap. Well, guess what? Most teams do. And the union must bear responsibility for failing to anticipate the potential harm.

The solution, for now, is for the union to work around the edges of the CBA, propose ...

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RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: January 17, 2019 at 03:36 PM | 2 comment(s)
  Beats: labor

Royals’ Eric Skoglund given 80-game suspension for PEDs

NEW YORK—Kansas City Royals pitcher Eric Skoglund was suspended Wednesday for the season’s first 80 games after testing positive for two performance-enhancing substances.

The MLB commissioner’s office said the positive tests were for selective androgen receptor modulators S-22 (Ostarine) and LGD-4033 (Ligandrol).

Royals general manager Dayton Moore said in a statement Skoglund “unknowingly made a mistake” and “we remain proud of who Eric is as a person and will support him as an ...

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QLE Posted: January 17, 2019 at 03:36 PM | 3 comment(s)
  Beats: eric skoglund, peds, suspension

After a polarizing offseason, Cubs owners decide to skip fan fest

After a tumultuous offseason, Chicago Cubs fans might have some … let’s go with interesting questions for the team’s owners. Unfortunately for those fans, the opportunity to have their voices heard just got taken away.

The Ricketts family will skip the team’s annual fan convention in Chicago over the weekend. A Twitter user called @crawlyscubs first reported the news, which was confirmed by Bruce Miles of the Daily Herald.

The family will instead be on Ryan Dempster’s late night ...

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QLE Posted: January 17, 2019 at 03:36 PM | 23 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs, fans, ricketts

Brodie Van Wagenen challenges rest of NL East after adding Jed Lowrie on two-year deal

NEW YORK — Brodie Van Wagenen certainly does not lack confidence.

The Mets general manager said last month he believes the Mets are the division favorites, and that stance hasn’t softened a month later, especially after adding All-Star infielder Jed Lowrie on a two-year, $20-million deal.

“We are a good team, We are a complete team, we are a balanced team. We’ve got veterans, we’ve got youth, we’ve got a hunger and desire to win and I look forward to showing people we’re a team to ...

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QLE Posted: January 17, 2019 at 03:36 PM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: brodie van wagenen, hubris, jed lowrie, mets being mets

Ready for a $2.5 billion swing at Major League Baseball? Portland Diamond Project charter investors revealed

The Oregonian/OregonLive has learned the identities of the other “Charter” investors with the group that aims to bring a Major League Baseball club to Portland.

The roster of investors includes:

• Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson

• Recording artist and entrepreneur Ciara Wilson

• Former MLB player Darwin Barney and David P. Barney and David M. Barney

• Retired business owner and philanthropist Samantha Richardson

• Retired CEO of Platt Electric Harvey Platt and ...

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RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: January 17, 2019 at 03:36 PM | 43 comment(s)
  Beats: portland

Phil Birnbaum: Fun with splits

“Thomas 1” was an order of magnitude better than “Thomas 2,” to the extent that you wouldn’t recognize them as the same player.

This is a real split ... it’s not a selective-sampling trick, like “team ...

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RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: January 17, 2019 at 03:36 PM | 4 comment(s)
  Beats: splits

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 1-17-2019

New York Tribune, January 17, 1919:

The forces of democracy as represented by the minor leagues of baseball won a sensational victory in the waning hours of the long-winded session of the rulers of the national game at the Biltmore yesterday…toward midnight came the big sensation with the announcement that the majors had surrendered and granted practically everything the minors had demanded.
...
It took a long time for the big fellows to get together on this democratic proposition, which in ...

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Jefferson Manship (Dan Lee) Posted: January 17, 2019 at 10:15 AM | 35 comment(s)
  Beats: dugout, history

Wednesday, January 16, 2019

The Best Ever to Never Claim an MVP Award

[He would…] #### his lead leg, suspending his knee waist-high while dropping his hands (and the bat handle) well below his belt-line as the ball made its way to the plate (if he wasn’t holding a bat in his hands, he might be mistaken for a pitcher in his wind-up).

gehrig97 Posted: January 16, 2019 at 02:33 PM | 50 comment(s)
  Beats: derek jeter,, john mcgraw, mel ott, mvp, ny giants, polo grounds

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 1-16-2019

New York Sun, January 16, 1919:

Eleven thousand dollars a month for each club! That was the players’ salary limit for next season adopted by the National League at its meeting in the Waldorf-Astoria yesterday afternoon. The sum named is not to include the manager’s salary. The league’s announcement of this radical legislation immediately set baseball circles agog, and it is expected to develop an upheaval that is likely to include the biggest players’ strike in the history of the game.
...
This ...

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Jefferson Manship (Dan Lee) Posted: January 16, 2019 at 10:16 AM | 21 comment(s)
  Beats: dugout, history

2019 Top 10 left-handed pitching prospects

Highest Ceiling: Luzardo
As a 20-year-old pitching for the first time since Tommy John, Luzardo showed all the ingredients needed to become a frontline starter in the big leagues—and possibly very soon. He has a premium arsenal in a fastball, curveball and changeup that all grade as above-average or better, as well as control and command that allow him to execute each pitch. If it all comes together for him, Luzardo could be one of the game’s best left-handed pitchers and a perennial Cy Young ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: January 16, 2019 at 09:50 AM | 3 comment(s)
  Beats: prospects

White Sox announce minor league managers and staffs for 2019 season

The White Sox minor league coaching staffs are in place for the 2019 season.

The most notable move on this front is something Our Chuck Garfien reported last month during the Winter Meetings. Omar Vizuqel was promoted from the manager of Class A Winston-Salem and is now the skipper at Double-A Birmingham.

Vizquel won the Carolina League’s Manager of the Year honors after leading the Dash to an 84-54 record in 2018. He managed Dylan Cease, Luis Robert, Blake Rutherford, Micker Adolfo, Luis ...

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QLE Posted: January 16, 2019 at 08:25 AM | 2 comment(s)
  Beats: minor leagues, omar vizquel, white sox

How Giants’ park dimensions, location can help free agent recruiting

SAN FRANCISCO — For years, Giants officials have grumbled about the impact their home ballpark has on negotiations with free agents.

It’s no secret that sluggers do not want to play 81 games at Oracle Park, and the Giants have been kept from large portions of the position player market over the past decade.

Farhan Zaidi will have to figure out a way to build an offense for his new park, but when it comes to another set of free agents, he’s not shying away from the dimensions at Third ...

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QLE Posted: January 16, 2019 at 08:25 AM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: china basin, giants, park effects

Melvin Upton explains why he’s changing his name back to B.J. Upton

Veteran outfielder Melvin Upton, formerly known as B.J. Upton, is once again B.J. Upton.

Upton’s change of heart comes nearly four years after he initially made the change back to his birth name. B.J. stands for Bossman Junior, a nod to his father’s Bossman nickname.

 

QLE Posted: January 16, 2019 at 08:25 AM | 9 comment(s)
  Beats: b.j. upton, what's in a name

Pirates great Steve Blass to stop broadcasting after 2019 season

A journalistic cardinal sin was committed and pardoned on Tuesday. No cheering in the press box is a rule that’s typically never broken. Unless its Pirates color commentator and 1971 World Series hero Steve Blass telling a packed press conference room that his 34th season will be last behind the mic.

“It’s time for me to stop and smell the roses. I’ve driven by the roses many times over the last 60 years, but now it’s time to stop and smell them,” Blass said. “It’s been a ...

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QLE Posted: January 16, 2019 at 08:25 AM | 17 comment(s)
  Beats: broadcaster, pirates, retirement, steve blass

Bartolo Colon wants to keep pitching

Clearly, hoping for the days where he can join Julio Franco and Jamie Moyer in popular mythology.

QLE Posted: January 16, 2019 at 08:25 AM | 5 comment(s)
  Beats: bartolo colon

The Phillies are very much in on Bryce Harper, Manny Machado but won’t sign both

The Philadelphia Phillies remain the most fascinating team in the sweepstakes for Bryce Harper and Manny Machado because they’ve said they’re going to spend “stupid money” this offseason and, as far as we know, are in on both Machado and Harper.

But now there’s this: They’re making it clear they won’t sign Machado and Harper.

Which, of course, increases the odds that they will make the wrong choice, being the Phillies and all….

QLE Posted: January 16, 2019 at 08:25 AM | 30 comment(s)
  Beats: bryce harper, manny machado, phillies, rumors

Deion Sanders advises Kyler Murray to choose baseball

After declaring for the NFL draft on Monday, Kyler Murray must choose between football and baseball. One man who’s been in Murray’s position before, two-sport legend Deion Sanders, knows which decision he’d make if he was in the Heisman Trophy winner’s shoes.

Sanders suggested that Murray, an Oakland Athletics draft pick who’s already agreed to a signing bonus with the team, forego life in the NFL and stick to baseball.

“If I was in his shoes, I’m picking up the baseball bat and I’m not ...

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QLE Posted: January 16, 2019 at 08:25 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: choose baseball, deion sanders, kyler murray

Bob Costas Says He’s Done With NBC After 40 Years

The Peacock quietly is losing one of its most colorful, popular and sometimes controversial broadcasters. Forty years after he joined NBC, Bob Costas quietly confirmed today that he’ll no longer work there.

“It’s all settled quietly and happily for all concerned,” Costas told The New York Post, which confirmed the news with the network. The broadcaster also told the paper that he will continue to work for MLB Network, where he’s set to take part in its Hall of Fame inductee ...

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QLE Posted: January 16, 2019 at 08:25 AM | 27 comment(s)
  Beats: bob costas, broadcasting, nbc

Tuesday, January 15, 2019

Texas Rangers Hall of Fame pitcher John Wetteland arrested on child sex abuse charge

Texas Rangers Hall of Fame pitcher John Wetteland was arrested Monday on a child sex abuse charge.

Wetteland, 52, is accused of continuous sexual abuse of a child under the age of 14, according to Denton County jail records. The Trophy Club resident posted $25,000 bond and was released from custody the same day as his arrest.

A long-time born-again Christian, he has coached baseball and taught Bible studies at Liberty Christian School in Argyle after retiring from baseball, but apparently ...

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RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: January 15, 2019 at 01:34 PM | 90 comment(s)
  Beats: john wetteland

Cleveland Indians have talked to Padres, Reds about 3-team trade involving Corey Kluber | cleveland.com

Senzel to the Padres, Padres OF to Cleveland, and Kluber to the Reds. I can see the Reds also putting in an outfielder to get this to work. To get Kluber, the Reds are going to have to pony up.

Jim Furtado Posted: January 15, 2019 at 08:55 AM | 35 comment(s)
  Beats: indians, padres, reds, trade rumors

2019 Top 10 right-handed pitching prospects

Prospect ranking season is upon us.

Jim Furtado Posted: January 15, 2019 at 08:34 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: prospects, scouting reports

MLB Trade Rumors: Phillies Frontrunners To Sign Bryce Harper

With a little more than a month before pitchers and catchers report to spring training, the two biggest free agents of this offseason still have yet to sign deals.

The Phillies and White Sox are the Manny Machado frontrunners, while Harper met with the Phillies brass in his hometown of Las Vegas this weekend, and could command a contract worth $300 million.

There are still plenty of quality free agents to be signed, but the freeze on the Hot Stove probably won’t thaw until Harper and Machado ...

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QLE Posted: January 15, 2019 at 04:41 AM | 24 comment(s)
  Beats: bryce harper, phillies, rumors

Two Mets ranked on MLB Network’s Top 10 Second Basemen list

In one offseason, the Mets went from having none of the Top 10 second basemen in baseball to having two of them—at least according to MLB Network’s Top 10 Second Basemen Right Now! show.

But the order might surprise you.

Jed Lowrie, who the Mets signed to a two-year deal last week, comes in at No. 2 on the list, behind Jose Altuve of the Astros. Robinson Cano, who the Mets acquired along with Edwin Diaz from the Mariners in December, checks in at No. 4.

And, with the Mets being what they ...

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QLE Posted: January 15, 2019 at 04:33 AM | 20 comment(s)
  Beats: jed lowrie, mets, robinson cano, second base

Cubs hire former MLB pitcher Craig Breslow as front office strategist

A fellow Yale graduate has joined Cubs president and Yale product Theo Epstein in the team’s front office.

Monday, the Cubs announced that they have named former MLB pitcher Craig Breslow as Director of Strategic Initiatives for Baseball Operations. Breslow, 38, is a 2002 Yale graduate with a molecular biophysics and biochemistry degree.

In his role with the Cubs, Breslow will “help to evaluate and implement data-based processes throughout all facets of Baseball Operations. He will also ...

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QLE Posted: January 15, 2019 at 04:31 AM | 11 comment(s)
  Beats: craig breslow, cubs, front office, yale

Source: White Sox offer to Manny Machado ‘was for less than 8 years’

Despite reports that the White Sox have made an eight-year offer to Manny Machado, their offer to the free agent infielder “was for less than 8 years and less money than has been reported,” a source has told NBC Sports Chicago.

The financial details of that offer are not completely known, but I’m told the White Sox have not changed their stance on either money or terms since making their initial offer, thought to be around $200 million.

Although it has often been projected that Machado ...

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QLE Posted: January 15, 2019 at 04:28 AM | 5 comment(s)
  Beats: free agency, manny machado, white sox

Barry Bonds’ former agent says MLB owners are colluding against players to suppress salaries

Major League Baseball’s owners are colluding against the sport’s players, long-time agent Jeff Borris charged when he joined The Jonah Keri Podcast.

“When you look at the revenues coming into the game ... it broke an all-time record and over $10 billion, the cost of labor should hand-in-hand go up as well,” said Borris, who’s represented the likes of Barry Bonds, Mike Piazza, and Rickey Henderson, and currently serves as general council for Ballengee Group.

“When that doesn’t happen, I think ...

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QLE Posted: January 15, 2019 at 04:23 AM | 18 comment(s)
  Beats: collusion, jeff borris, owners, salaries

Rod Allen: Incident with Mario Impemba more like a baseball brawl

Former Fox Sports Detroit analyst and Detroit Tigers announcer Rod Allen spoke with Free Press business columnist Carol Cain on the “Michigan Matters” program on Sunday morning on WWJ-TV (Channel 62).

In Allen’s first public comments about the Sept. 4 incident with play-by-play broadcaster Mario Impemba, which turned physical and effectively ended the duo’s 16-plus year run calling Tigers games, he said the situation was largely blown out of proportion in media reports.

Allen said he ...

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QLE Posted: January 15, 2019 at 04:20 AM | 2 comment(s)
  Beats: brawl, broadcasters, detroit, mario impemba, rod allen

Monday, January 14, 2019


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