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Wednesday, February 13, 2019

End of free Cubs games on local TV: Team partners with Sinclair to launch regional sports network in 2020

The Chicago Cubs are teaming with Sinclair Broadcast Group to launch a regional sports network in February 2020 that will become the exclusive television home of the Cubs.
The Marquee Sports Network will air the full regular season schedule, expanded pregame and postgame coverage, classic broadcasts from the archives and other local sports programming.

It marks the end of more than 70 years of over-the-air broadcasts for the Cubs, and the beginning of an ambitious endeavor to sell cable and ...

Read More...
RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: February 13, 2019 at 08:49 PM | 33 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs

Detroit Tigers’ Casey Mize impresses with new-age ideas, old-school ethic

Mize, for one, is a huge believer in this technology. In fact, it led him to change the shape and grip of his slider. 

“It’s the most efficient way to develop a pitch,” he said. “The numbers are right there in front of you. You can see the flight of the ball, the path of the ball. You know how it’s playing off your other pitches. With the slow-motion cameras, you can see the last thing the ball touches out of my hand.”

Mize, after studying the spin axis and release of his slider ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: February 13, 2019 at 01:13 PM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: casey mize, technology, tigers

2019 Top 100 Prospects | FanGraphs Baseball

1. Vlad
2. Franco
3. Tatis
4. Whitley
5. Robles
6. Lewis
7. Senzel
8. Jimenez
9.Bichette
10. Tucker

Franco and Whitley a little higher than some of the other lists.

Jim Furtado Posted: February 13, 2019 at 11:17 AM | 16 comment(s)
  Beats: prospect rankings, prospects

Baseball is back — except for the 100 or so remaining free agents. Is this the new normal? - Chicago Tribune

One of the *fixes* I’ve seen mentioned is players getting to free agency sooner. That might help a relatively small percentage of players. It will only make things worse for the middle of the road players. Having more of them on the market won’t drive up their salaries.

Asked whether it’s a problem for MLB to have so many free agents unsigned as spring training begins, Epstein predicted things would be “re-ordered” by the time the next collective bargaining agreement is agreed upon by MLB ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: February 13, 2019 at 10:23 AM | 23 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs, free agents

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 2-13-2019

Pittsburgh Gazette Times, February 13, 1919:

The $900,000 damage suit which was brought against organized baseball several seasons ago by the Baltimore Federal League club has again bobbed up, and President John A. Heydler of the National League…announced that the case would be heard on March 10. The action is brought under the Sherman anti-trust law.
...
Not only the major leagues are defendants in the action, but also the Wards of Brooklyn, Harry Sinclair, who owned the Newark Club in the ...

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Jefferson Manship (Dan Lee) Posted: February 13, 2019 at 09:57 AM | 20 comment(s)
  Beats: dugout, history

Texas Rangers: Internal expectation is to win | Fort Worth Star-Telegram

“We’ve been pretty clear that this wasn’t the winter we would be looking to put the finishes touches and we were not competing at the highest level of the trade market or free agency,” Daniels said. “Can we go out there and compete without signing folks and some of the good things we’ve got going on? I absolutely think we can

“But focus has been and will be on the future. Everybody that we’ve hired and all the transactions we’ve made have been with that in mind. When you ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: February 13, 2019 at 09:38 AM | 4 comment(s)
  Beats: chris woodward, rangers

In slow market, Adam Jones’ free agency confounds former Orioles teammates: ‘Unfortunately, it’s where we’re at’ - Baltimore Sun

Adam Jones is one of my favorite players. From what I’ve read the reason he isn’t signed is that he’s holding out for a salary based on the player he was, rather than accepting a salary for the player he is. I hope he changes his mind.

“Unfortunately, it’s where we’re at,” outfielder/designated hitter Mark Trumbo said. “You’d think somebody with that kind of bulk and track record, especially with how much he brings in addition to the baseball side of it — it is kind of hard to wrap your head ...

Read More...
Jim Furtado Posted: February 13, 2019 at 09:17 AM | 54 comment(s)
  Beats: adam jones, orioles

Posey is healthy and hopeful of handling full catching load

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. (AP) — One day in early November, Buster Posey felt his body respond more normally again as he rehabilitated from season-ending hip surgery. Working out his lower half with a 15-pound dumbbell in his left hand he leaned forward for a one-legged Russian Dead Lift. Posey felt the muscles in his right buttocks being used exactly the way they should.

“This might be TMI,” San Francisco’s star catcher noted of perhaps providing too much information. “I could really feel ...

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QLE Posted: February 13, 2019 at 04:53 AM | 2 comment(s)
  Beats: buster posey, catching, giants

Joe Maddon explains ‘own it now’ slogan for 2019 Cubs

MESA, Ariz. - Joe Maddon had an extra month to work out his standard slogan for the new year ahead, but he probably didn’t need it.

Maddon’s phrase for 2019 - “own it now” - could’ve been hatched in mid-October and that’s not at all critiquing the slogan. It’s just that the main narrative around the Cubs hasn’t changed since the first hour of the offseason when stunned players hung around at their lockers and talked about the lack of urgency at times throughout the season.

The Cubs’ main ...

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QLE Posted: February 13, 2019 at 04:49 AM | 5 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs, joe maddon, slogans

King Felix entering critical last season of Seattle contract

PEORIA, Ariz. (AP) — Every day for several years, Felix Hernandez has walked past large photos of himself and Randy Johnson — the Seattle Mariners‘ only Cy Young Award winners — in the hallway leading to the clubhouse of their spring training complex.

King Felix will make those walks for perhaps the last time this year, with a bigger goal as motivation.

“I know this is my final year, but I don’t think I am done,” the 33-year-old Hernandez said on Tuesday following Seattle’s ...

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QLE Posted: February 13, 2019 at 04:47 AM | 3 comment(s)
  Beats: felix hernandez, mariners

Teams will wear ‘MLB 150’ patch on uniforms this year

Major League Baseball evolved more than it was invented, but generally everyone agrees on 1869 as the date after which baseball was a truly professional pursuit. That was when the Cincinnati Red Stockings became the first all-salaried baseball team. Prior to that teams paid some players, but not all, and majority professional teams would often play fully amateur clubs on the regular.

1869 was 150 years ago and, since people like numbers that are divisible by 5, 10, and 25, Major League ...

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QLE Posted: February 13, 2019 at 04:44 AM | 16 comment(s)
  Beats: anniversaries, cincinnati red stockings

Giants have been talking with Cameron Maybin

ESPN’s Buster Olney reports that the Giants have had contract discussions with free agent outfielder Cameron Maybin. Olney notes that adding Maybin would give the Giants a safety net in center field and would pair well with the left-handed-hitting Steven Duggar.

Exactly the sort of free agent the Giants have historically grossly overpaid for!

 

 

QLE Posted: February 13, 2019 at 04:42 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: cameron maybin, giants

SEE IT: Former Mets manager Bobby Valentine plays the ‘Baseball Dating Game’

With Chuck Barris and Jim Lange gone, it isn’t the same, is it?

QLE Posted: February 13, 2019 at 04:38 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: bobby valentine

Matsuzaka sustains freak injury during spring training

TOKYO (AP) — Daisuke Matsuzaka has dealt with numerous arm injuries during his career as a pitcher in Major League Baseball and Japan but none quite like this.

The Chunichi Dragons say Matsuzaka is experiencing pain in his right shoulder after an overzealous fan pulled his throwing arm during a fan event at spring training in Okinawa.

Matsuzaka was diagnosed with inflammation in his throwing arm as a result of the incident, and the Dragons on Tuesday told him not to throw for the time ...

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QLE Posted: February 13, 2019 at 04:34 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: daisuke matsuzaka, flukes, japanese baseball

Dodgers’ Cory Seager is running at nearly 100 percent

GLENDALE, Ariz. (AP) — With Corey Seager’s expected return by opening day and the acquisition of right-handed hitting center fielder A.J. Pollock, the Los Angeles Dodgers are not expected to be platooning.

Seager was limited to 26 games last season and did not play after April 29. He had Tommy John surgery on May 4 to repair a torn ulnar collateral ligament and had arthroscopic surgery on his left hip on Aug. 7.

“There is a certain narrative on us platooning last year, and I think that was ...

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QLE Posted: February 13, 2019 at 04:31 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: best shape of his life, corey seager, dodgers, platoon

Former Yankees star Jorge Posada is joining the Marlins. This is what he will be doing

The player who made the final out for the New York Yankees when they lost to the Marlins in the 2003 World Series is switching sides.

Former Yankees catcher Jorge Posada has been hired as a special advisor to baseball operations for the Marlins, a source confirmed.

Posada, who spent his entire 17-year major league career with the Yankees, is a friend and former teammate of Marlins chief executive officer Derek Jeter.

Arnold Johnson wasn’t this shameless when he was in the tank for the ...

Read More...

Adnan Virk seeks settlement, denies leaking ESPN information: ‘I did nothing wrong’

Former ESPN personality Adnan Virk is seeking a settlement with the network that fired him after he reportedly leaked confidential information about its broadcast plans.

A rising star who called baseball games, hosted “Baseball Tonight” and made regular appearances on ESPN’s radio network, Virk addressed his firing in a Tuesday in a statement to the New York Post.

Sadly, this is still less embarrassing than FOX’s coverage of baseball….

 

QLE Posted: February 13, 2019 at 04:21 AM | 7 comment(s)
  Beats: broadcasting, espn

Tuesday, February 12, 2019

MLB breakout players you need to know for 2019

Chad Pinder getting more love.

Jim Furtado Posted: February 12, 2019 at 01:47 PM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: scouting

Giants’ turmoil ahead with Madison Bumgarner, Jeff Samardzija? - SFChronicle.com

Jeff Samardzija needs to worry about getting outs first otherwise the only action he’ll be getting is mop up duty.

When Giants starter Jeff Samardzija recently called the concept of openers “a load of crap,” and Madison Bumgarner seemed of a like mind, it looked like the team could be heading for friction and turmoil this season.

But it’s spring training, for goodness’ sake, a time to be positive.

So, the Giants are perfectly positioned to help major-league baseball ease into the ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: February 12, 2019 at 01:43 PM | 14 comment(s)
  Beats: giants, jeff samardzija, madison bumgarner, opener

Mets have versatile Jeff McNeil working on potential switch to outfield | Newsday

How much playing time can Jeff McNeil realistically get?

Jim Furtado Posted: February 12, 2019 at 11:06 AM | 9 comment(s)
  Beats: jeff mcneil, mets

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 2-12-2019

John McGraw talks about pitcher Bugs Raymond in the Harrisburg Telegraph, February 12, 1919:

“I had a record of Raymond’s night out, and sent it to [Giants owner John] Brush, along with Raymond. This record showed ‘Bugs’ had swallowed forty-two beers and seven green onions. Mr. Brush cross-examined Raymond, and after a long time he finally admitted that he might have sipped the beers, but he was sure he had nothing to do with the onions.
...
Once we were playing a tight game with the Pirates…I ...

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Jefferson Manship (Dan Lee) Posted: February 12, 2019 at 10:25 AM | 15 comment(s)
  Beats: dugout, history

Introducing The Athletic Fantasy Baseball – The Athletic

I usually avoid linking to content from pay sites but, as I’m sure you’ve noticed, I regularly link to The Athletic content. The reason is simple, they have too many quality writers to ignore. Yesterday they added even more interesting writers. Who knows how long they will be able to sustain their business model but while they can they will be on my must read list.

One thing we stress at The Athletic Fantasy is making sure we are earning your subscription. We’re pretty normal people who know ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: February 12, 2019 at 06:03 AM | 8 comment(s)
  Beats: fantasy, pay site

Kyler Murray chooses to pursue NFL, ‘fully committing’ to becoming QB

The former Oklahoma quarterback and Heisman Trophy winner announced Monday he was “firmly and fully committing my life and time to becoming an NFL quarterback.”

Murray was also the No. 9 pick by the Oakland Athletics in the 2018 MLB draft and was due to report to spring training on Friday. But now his focus will turn to the NFL scouting combine in Indianapolis, which begins Feb. 26.

“Football has been my love and passion my entire life,” Murray wrote in a picture posted to Twitter. “I was ...

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RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: February 12, 2019 at 06:01 AM | 121 comment(s)
  Beats: kyler murray

Orioles Radio Voice Joe Angel Is Retiring

In the 1970s Angel broadcast for the San Francisco Giants (1977–78), as well as Stanford University football and University of San Francisco basketball. Stints with the Minnesota Twins (1984–86), Baltimore Orioles (1988–90, 1992) and New York Yankees (1991) followed. In 1993, he left the Orioles to become the Florida Marlins’ first radio voice, and was behind the microphone for the Marlins’ first world championship in 1997.

Bote Man Posted: February 12, 2019 at 06:01 AM | 2 comment(s)
  Beats: marlins, orioles, radio

Pitcher tracks data to plan diet, workout regimen, sleep

BEST SHAPE OF HIS LIFE!

Boyd underwent DNA tests to determine what foods his body reacts to better and what health conditions he might be predisposed to genetically. He had his heart rate and other vitals tracked to determine workout recovery and optimal sleeping patterns.

Some changes were obvious, others more individualized. With help from McKee, Boyd adjusted his diet to take in more monounsaturated fats found in olive oil, avocados, nuts and grass-fed beef. He cut out whole grains and ...

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RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: February 12, 2019 at 06:01 AM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: matt boyd

5 spring training storylines you’re going to be real sick of in a month

Look, I don’t blame anyone in Chicago for getting excited about baseball this week. It’s been 20 degrees every day since early October. We’re getting our third ice storm of the year this week.

If you want to put all your eggs into the baseball-starts-this-week basket, go right ahead. There are probably worse ways to spend winter’s last leg than living vicariously through 15-pitch outings and ranking non-roster invitees based on their baserunning skills.

With that said, any professional sports ...

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QLE Posted: February 12, 2019 at 05:44 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs, spring training

Drivers Wanted: how you can apply to drive the Nationals’ bullpen cart

The driver’s seat for the Nationals bullpen car is open.

According to the job listing, which was posted Monday, duties include charging the cart’s battery, monitoring a live feed for potential pitching changes, and of course, driving the cart to and from the bullpen, dugout, and center field gate.

The lucky driver gets a team radio to communicate with other employees as well as a “pitcher preference document” that lists which players do and do not want to use the cart to get to the mound. ...Read More...

QLE Posted: February 12, 2019 at 05:43 AM | 2 comment(s)
  Beats: bullpen carts, nationals

Garth Brooks in spring training with Pittsburgh Pirates

BRADENTON, Fla. (AP) — Garth Brooks has come out of baseball retirement.

The country music legend will spend just over a week participating in spring training with the Pittsburgh Pirates, reporting Monday with the pitchers and catchers.

The 57-year-old has previously been in the camps of the San Diego Padres (1999), New York Mets (2000) and Kansas City Royals (2004). His workouts start Thursday.

Mr. Brooks later admitted that he considered trying this for the Marlins, but decided not to ...

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QLE Posted: February 12, 2019 at 05:37 AM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: garth brooks, pirates, spring training

Name game: Britton says wife, Yanks led to spelling change

TAMPA, Fla. (AP) — Even Zack Britton gets confused about the proper spelling of his first name.

Known throughout his baseball career as Zach, the 31-year-old New York Yankees reliever said last week that going forward his name should be spelled Zack.

“I was born with a ‘ch’, sorry, excuse me, the ‘ck,‘” Britton said Monday after his first pre-spring training workout at the New York Yankees’ minor league complex.

The sort of loopiness that one wishes were more prevalent this ...

Read More...
QLE Posted: February 12, 2019 at 05:34 AM | 10 comment(s)
  Beats: name change, yankees, zack britton

Gerrit Cole goes to arbitration with Astros

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) — Pitcher Gerrit Cole has gone to arbitration with the Houston Astros, asking to be given $13.5 million rather than the team’s offer of $11,425,000.

Cole made $6.75 million last year, when he earned his second All-Star selection and went 15-5 with a 2.88 ERA. He earned $6.75 million.

Arbitrators Gil Vernon, Steven Wolf and Walt De Treux heard the case Monday and are expected to decide later this week.

So, what comes first: the end of this year’s arbitration, the ...

Read More...
QLE Posted: February 12, 2019 at 05:29 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: arbitration, astros, gerrit cole

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