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Monday, March 27, 2017

Is Trevor Story ready to fill Troy Tulowitzki’s big shoes with the Rockies?

Replacing the best shortstop in the history of the franchise isn’t easy.

Jim Furtado Posted: March 27, 2017 at 10:50 AM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: rockies, trevor story

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 3-27-2017

Tacoma Times, March 27, 1917:

[Seattle manager] Bill Leard waxed highly indignant the other day because of a remark by Harry Wolverton of the Seals, quoted in a local newspaper, the tenor of which was that organized baseball might just as well let down the bard to negroes if it is to permit Chinamen to play.

You tell ‘em, Bill! Of course players of all ethnicities should be allowed to play!

“Think of that!” fairly hissed the scrappy Leard. “Think of it. Ayau is an American-born, half-Chinese-half ...

Read More...
Jefferson Manship (Dan Lee) Posted: March 27, 2017 at 10:13 AM | 10 comment(s)
  Beats: casual ethnic prejudice, dugout, history

Cleveland Indians 2017 opening day roster projections: Paul Hoynes | cleveland.com

Indians roster questions.

Jim Furtado Posted: March 27, 2017 at 09:37 AM | 4 comment(s)
  Beats: indians

Sandy Alderson on Steven Matz’s latest injury: ‘It’s worrisome’ | Newsday

“It’s worrisome that he continues to be injured off and on,” Sandy Alderson said. “That’s the difficulty. We don’t think it’s serious. On the other hand, we have to be able to, with starting pitchers, to rely on them every five days. We’re not sure exactly where this is going to take us.”

Jim Furtado Posted: March 27, 2017 at 09:17 AM | 7 comment(s)
  Beats: mets, steven matz

Matt Harvey hits 97 in best start of spring | MLB.com

Mid 90s plus he’s an ace. Low 90s he’s a backend guy.

“Today, he amped it up a little bit,” Collins said. “And I’m sure when we get to Citi Field and he gets out there for the first time, he’ll amp it up that day, also.”
It wasn’t just velocity that boosted Harvey in his best start of the spring. There was also a high-80s slider that Harvey routinely buried low-and-away to right-handed hitters, plus a command of all pitches that Harvey lacked for much of the spring.

...Read More...
Jim Furtado Posted: March 27, 2017 at 09:13 AM | 5 comment(s)
  Beats: matt harvey, mets


Red Sox spring training: Blake Swihart leads group sent to minor-league camp - Over the Monster

He’ll be back when Sandy Leon proves he’s a pumpkin.

The highlight here is that Blake Swihart has been optioned to Triple-A. While this was always seen as inevitable, it is still something of a disappointment to some. There is an argument to be made that he is the most talented catcher in the organization, but since he was the only backstop with minor-league options he’ll have to wait to prove it. He had a hell of a spring, though, and it won’t be too long before he gets that chance.

...Read More...
Jim Furtado Posted: March 27, 2017 at 09:08 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: blake swihart, red sox

Yard Goats stadium sparking literally dozens of hotel-room conversions, yay? | Field of Schemes

VERDICT: I do not think that word “dramatically” means what you think it means. Building a new sports facility may not have the kind of economic impact that sports team owners pretend it does, but it does have some, and “making the hotel-to-rental-apartment conversion that developers already had in the works marginally more marketable” is just about perfectly the size of it. Downtown Hartford is starting to draw more interest from renters with money, but that’s thanks to the Great ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: March 27, 2017 at 09:07 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: minor leagues, stadium deals

How Latino Players Are Helping Major League Baseball Learn Spanish : Code Switch : NPR

Guillén agrees that there are missed opportunities for Latino players to take up leadership roles because they cannot be outspoken about what they feel and think. That, he says, is a reason some great Latino players never become managers or join a team’s leadership ranks. Guillén says learning English and acclimating to U.S. culture is most important for young players in the minors who have less money and support, both on and off the field. During the 2016 Minor League Baseball season, ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: March 27, 2017 at 09:04 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: diversity, reporting

Silverman: Christian Vazquez deserves starting catcher job | Boston Herald

He can catch but can he hit?

Jim Furtado Posted: March 27, 2017 at 07:08 AM | 9 comment(s)
  Beats: red sox

Sunday, March 26, 2017

OTP 27 March 2017: Trump, Healthcare, and the Art of the Botched Deal

OK, there’s just one easy-ground-ball baseball metaphor in this story.  And Donald Trump started college the year the Mets moved to Queens.  But it is the week’s big political news:

When Donald Trump was growing up in Queens, the local baseball team, the New York Mets, was the lowliest franchise in the National League. The Mets were so bad that the manager, Casey Stengel, once famously asked of his team: can’t anybody here play this game?

That’s the central question now in Donald ...

Read More...
BDC Posted: March 26, 2017 at 10:10 PM | 55 comment(s)
  Beats: casey stengel, mets, politics

Will teams blow White Sox away for Jose Quintana?

Nick Cafardo’s Sunday baseball column.

Jim Furtado Posted: March 26, 2017 at 07:20 PM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: notes

Gammons: Daniel Bard Is Willing To Endure The Frustration

The Cardinals last spring signed Bard to a two year deal which his agent Mike Milchin thought would give the organization time to see if they could ground him. His initial numbers with Palm Beach in the Florida State League (3 3 8 9 13 1) were not successful, but Director of Player Development Gary LaRocque and his minor league pitching staff decided to have him try a lower arm slot.

“In some ways, it’s a lot like what Andrew did—simply everything,” says Bard. In 2012, when struggling ...

Read More...
villageidiom Posted: March 26, 2017 at 05:01 PM | 12 comment(s)
  Beats: cardinals, comebacks, control issues, cubs, daniel bard, pirates, rangers, red sox

Former Phillies reliever Todd Frohwirth dead at 54

Tragedy struck the baseball world late Sunday morning, as retired nine-year veteran RHP Todd Frohwirth passed away at the age of 54 due to stomach cancer, an illness he had been battling for a “lengthy” period of time, per Dan Connolly.

The Milwaukee, Wisconsin native was drafted in the 13th round of the 1984 amateur draft and spent his first four seasons with the Philadelphia Phillies from 1987 to 1990. In 72 relief appearances with the Phillies, Frohwirth combined to go 3-3 with a 3.95 ERA, ...

Read More...
RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: March 26, 2017 at 03:11 PM | 5 comment(s)
  Beats: obituary, todd frohwirth

Wong would rather be traded than platoon at second base

Second baseman Kolten Wong expressed confusion and frustration Sunday about the news that the Cardinals are considering a platoon approach at Wong’s position to start the regular season.

“You know what, that’s out of my control,” Wong said before the Cardinals played the Marlins in a Grapefruit League game at Roger Dean Stadium. “I was told that I was going to be the starting second baseman. If that’s what they want to do, then that’s their decision. The thing with me, and my frustrations is ...

Read More...
RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: March 26, 2017 at 03:07 PM | 9 comment(s)
  Beats: cardinals, kolten wong

What’s a Delill?

A delill is a short bat about 18 inches long that was used in town ball and was wielded with only one hand. As far as I can tell, there is nothing in major league baseball rules that would prohibit using one now (the rules specify maximum length and diameter, but not minimums. I wonder if Pete Gray (one-armed outfielder who played in 1945) and Jim Abbott might have found a delill easier to use than a normal-sized bat?

Hank G. Posted: March 26, 2017 at 02:54 PM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: baseball origins, delill, town ball

Tigers release Mark Lowe, who’s still due $5.5M

The Tigers on Sunday unconditionally released the veteran right-handed reliever, whom they still owe $5.5 million.

“It’s never easy when you have to cut players, but Mark Lowe was a particularly tough one for me because I really like the guy,” manager Brad Ausmus said. “He was one of the better guys in that clubhouse. He does everything right. We just felt like there were other pitchers at this point who are more deserving.

“It doesn’t mean I don’t wish him well. I like the ...

Read More...
RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: March 26, 2017 at 01:12 PM | 10 comment(s)
  Beats: mark lowe, tigers

Mike Trout proposes umpire change

It was during one of those chats with a veteran umpire earlier this spring that Trout offered a thought: As the experienced umpires work their way back into game shape in spring training, just as the players do, why not have them work five or six innings and turn over the last innings to umpires who would normally work minor league games on back fields?

The idea is simple, but has a lot of helpful layers, beyond allowing an older plate umpire a little more time to work into condition in spring ...

Read More...
RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: March 26, 2017 at 01:00 PM | 18 comment(s)
  Beats: mike trout, umpires

Tigers will try to convert OF Anthony Gose to pitcher

Sean Doolittle did it. Kenley Jansen and Jason Motte did it.

The Tigers are going to see if Anthony Gose can do it, too.

Gose, the Tigers’ opening day starting center fielder the last two seasons, was re-assigned to minor league camp Sunday. He will still play outfield wherever he lands in the system this season, but he will also take initial steps to convert to pitcher.

“He came back to us with an idea – something that we had talked about internally and the end of last season,” ...

Read More...
RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: March 26, 2017 at 12:50 PM | 18 comment(s)
  Beats: anthony gose, pitcher conversions, tigers

Cleveland Indians working on long-term deal with Francisco Lindor, confirms small child

The Cleveland Indians may be working on a seven-year extension for star shortstop Francisco Lindor, a small child confirmed on the team’s live broadcast yesterday.

Ok, that intro sentence sounds a bit off, let me explain. No, I’m not insulting Jordan Bastian by calling him a small — the son of Indians general manager Mike Chernoff joined Tom Hamilton in the booth yesterday and he, uh, well, might have broke some news.

After a few minutes of typical adolescent shyness, young Brody ...

Read More...
RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: March 26, 2017 at 12:49 PM | 3 comment(s)
  Beats: francisco lindor, indians, kids, mike chernoff, podcast

Mets lefty Steven Matz to skip next start | MLB.com

This isn’t good.

“It’s worrisome that he continues to be injured off and on,” Alderson said, referring to Matz’s checkered medical history. “That’s the difficulty. We don’t think it’s serious. On the other hand, starting pitchers are relied on every five days. I’m not sure exactly where this is going to take us.”

Matz said he began feeling discomfort even before his last outing, in which he gave up five runs in four innings Wednesday against the Marlins. Examining the left-hander following that ...

Read More...
Jim Furtado Posted: March 26, 2017 at 12:06 PM | 7 comment(s)
  Beats: injuries, mets, steven matz


Saturday, March 25, 2017

Brockmire’ Trailer: “Sybaritic Love Letter To Baseball” Says Hank Azaria

IFC’s new comedy Brockmire, debuting Wednesday April 5 at 10 PM, is a “sybaritic love letter to baseball,” star Hank Azaria told TV critics today at TCA.

cardsfanboy Posted: March 25, 2017 at 06:20 PM | 6 comment(s)
  Beats: baseball tv show, hank azariahomer simpson

Sources: Rougned Odor expected to sign multi-year extension with Rangers

Two MLB sources said the Rangers were growing increasingly optimistic they would complete a contract extension for Odor before the end of spring training. The expected six-year deal in the $50-52 million range may only be lacking formalities. It comes on the heels of a much smaller deal for Chirinos, who signed a one-year extension with a club option earlier in the week.

Rangers general manager Jon Daniels, citing his long-held policy of not commenting on contract negotiations, declined to ...

Read More...
RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: March 25, 2017 at 12:09 PM | 13 comment(s)
  Beats: rangers, roughned odor

Dodgers’ pitchers rate well in Statcast metric | MLB.com

Lowest estimated OPS in 2016
.438—Kenley Jansen, Dodgers
.450—Andrew Miller, Yankees/Indians
.456—Zach Britton, Orioles
.471—Grant Dayton, Dodgers
.487—Aroldis Chapman, Yankees/Cubs
.491—Alex Reyes, Cardinals
.508—Shawn Kelley, Nationals
.515—Dellin Betances, Yankees
.517—Kershaw, Dodgers
.526—Seung Hwan Oh, Cardinals

Jim Furtado Posted: March 25, 2017 at 08:48 AM | 5 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, statcast

Why Travis d’Arnaud should never catch Noah Syndergaard | New York Post

I watched most of yesterday’s day. He’s right; this should never happen again.

Jim Furtado Posted: March 25, 2017 at 08:32 AM | 3 comment(s)
  Beats: mets, noah syndergaard, travis d'arnaud

Twins’ option struggling, ‘overthinking’ J.T. Chargois

Updates on the spring.

Jim Furtado Posted: March 25, 2017 at 08:26 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: twins

Friday, March 24, 2017

Heyman: Nationals leaning toward Koda Glover for closer role

Unknown long shot Koda Glover, who has zero major-league saves, emerged as the favorite to win the coveted Nationals closer job, sources suggest. Glover has impressed Nats people with his fastball and moxie — especially his moxie.

“He doesn’t give a (hoot),” one Nats-connected person said, admiringly.


Nationals people are expected to meet within the next three days to discuss the situation, and perhaps solidify things.

There’s still 10 days to go and things can change, but Nats ...

Read More...
RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: March 24, 2017 at 11:24 PM | 28 comment(s)
  Beats: koda glover, nationals

Sources: Indians finalizing four-year extension with Jose Ramirez

Versatile infielder Jose Ramirez and the Cleveland Indians are finalizing a four-year contract extension that will guarantee him upward of $30 million, sources familiar with the deal told Yahoo Sports.

The deal, which includes two club options, will kick in next season and give the Indians control of Ramirez through the 2023 season. If the Indians exercise the options, it could push the value close to $50 million, according to the sources.

The 24-year-old Ramirez is coming off a breakout year ...

Read More...
RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: March 24, 2017 at 10:53 PM | 7 comment(s)
  Beats: indians, jose ramirez

Detroit Tigers’ J.D. Martinez will be out 3-4 more weeks

Detroit Tigers manager Brad Ausmus said rightfielder J.D. Martinez will miss 3-4 weeks of baseball activity, starting from Friday, due to a sprained Lisfranc ligament in his right foot. Ausmus also told reporters Martinez is wearing a cast that will be on for 7-10 days.

Ausmus had previously said he was optimistic about the results of two MRIs. Martinez went to Charlotte on Friday to have a stress CT scan performed by Dr. Robert Anderson. That test was used to determine the severity of the ...

Read More...
RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: March 24, 2017 at 05:54 PM | 8 comment(s)
  Beats: j.d. martinez

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