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Friday, March 10, 2017

Cubs, Kris Bryant Agree To Record Pre-Arb Deal

The Cubs have agreed with star third baseman Kris Bryant on a record-setting pre-arbitration salary, Jon Heyman of Fan Rag reports. Fresh off of a year in which he won the National League’s Most Valuable Player award, Bryant will take home $1.05MM.

Chicago also shared some of its World Series wealth with righty Kyle Hendricks, who’ll earn a hefty $760,500, per Gordon Wittenmyer of the Chicago Sun-Times. Hendricks was another key performer for the Cubs, turning in an outstanding campaign ...

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Meatwad needs baseball Posted: March 10, 2017 at 08:17 PM | 51 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs, kris bryant

Is Kyle Hendricks a No. 1-quality starter? Maddon says not yet – Chicago Sun-Times

Maddon believes a “slight regression,” at the least, on Hendricks’ part is likely just because his 2016 numbers were off-the-charts good. But the 27-year-old Hendricks isn’t wired to think that way. He doesn’t really think about numbers at all.

It isn’t just talk when Hendricks says he’s about commanding his pitches and thinking one step ahead of the hitter, and let the numbers fall where they may. It’s entirely how he approaches the game, and what makes him so good.

Jim Furtado Posted: March 10, 2017 at 07:07 PM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs, kyle hendricks


Rockies’ Chad Bettis will undergo additional chemotherapy after cancer spread

Colorado Rockies pitcher Chad Bettis’ testicular cancer has spread, and he will be starting chemotherapy in the near future, according to an update that he posted today. A biopsy ordered during his most recent check-up revealed the spread.

Dammit.

Perry Posted: March 10, 2017 at 04:28 PM | 3 comment(s)
  Beats: cancer sucks, rockies

Clint Frazier gets haircut at Yankees camp | MLB.com

While the world has changed in any number of ways since then, Girardi believes the policy still makes sense for today’s game.

“I think it has value because it’s a tradition,” Girardi said. “It’s a tradition by a man that meant so much to this organization, and if it’s important to him and it’s important to his family, then it needs to be respected by all of us and important to us. That’s the bottom line.”

Jim Furtado Posted: March 10, 2017 at 02:51 PM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: yankees

No MLB public tickets for Pirates-Cardinals game at Bowman

Cool stuff.

While two Major League Baseball teams will be playing at Bowman Field on Sunday, Aug. 20, in what will be the first regular season MLB game in history at the longtime stadium, local fans don’t appear to be attending.

The Williamsport Crosscutters, who play their home games at Bowman Field, announced that Major League Baseball said no public tickets will be available for the MLB Little League Classic and that those in attendance will be Little League players and their families. ...Read More...

Barry`s_Lazy_Boy Posted: March 10, 2017 at 01:19 PM | 7 comment(s)
  Beats: little league

Clint Frazier’s hair was too much for the Yankees

The top outfield prospect, known for his flowing red locks, was shorn Friday morning after his long hair apparently became too much of an issue around Yankees spring training.

The cut, at 7:15 a.m. in the clubhouse at George M. Steinbrenner Field in Tampa, from a barber visiting special for the occasion, was scheduled after Frazier spoke with Yankees manager Joe Girardi about his personal style expression. The Yankees have a long-standing policy forbidding facial hair or overly long hair.

...

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RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: March 10, 2017 at 12:57 PM | 40 comment(s)
  Beats: clint frazier, hair policies, yankees

MLB Teams With the Most Dead Money

Last season, there was around $136 million in dead money on payroll. This season, that amount has doubled. In terms of teams paying the most, the Dodgers have a healthy lead, with the Padres and Yankees also devoting some payroll to players not contributing to the current club…..

In terms of payroll on the field, the Padres might rival the Houston Astros team from 2013 that opened with a $26 million payroll. Billy Butler and Brandon Phillips account for a fairly significant portion of the ...

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RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: March 10, 2017 at 12:54 PM | 26 comment(s)
  Beats: dead money

RYAN CHURCH AND THE CONCUSSION THAT ENDED HIS CAREER

Then came May 20, 2008. A day that forever changed the course of Church’s baseball career, and subsequently his life. In the second game of a doubleheader against the Atlanta Braves, the Mets found themselves down to their final pair of outs at Turner Field. As he was trying to break-up a game-ending double play off the bat of Damien Easley, Church’s head viciously collided with the knee of Braves shortstop Yunel Escobar. The impact knocked off Church’s helmet, where his head then slammed ...

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RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: March 10, 2017 at 12:53 PM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: concussions, mets, ryan church

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 3-10-2017

Chicago Eagle, March 10, 1917:

Did you ever hear about one pinch-hiter who retired two pitchers with one swing of his mace?

His name is Tom Clark, the Rhinelander backstop. On June 13, 1916, the Reds and Braves battled to a 16-inning scoreless tie. Toney started the game for the Cincinnatians and Rudolph did likewise for the Bostonians. But neither finished it, because Clark finished both of them in the twelfth.
...
Cholly Herzog, then piloting the Red skiff, decided to send Clark to back in ...

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Jefferson Manship (Dan Lee) Posted: March 10, 2017 at 11:01 AM | 16 comment(s)
  Beats: dugout, history

The Easiest Question in Baseball History Might Have a New Answer

So there’s a game baseball fans like to play (and by “fans” we also include anybody, anywhere, who has ever written any words, at any time, about the sport). The game is to rank the best player who ever lived at every position…

———

The best first baseman of all time is Gehrig. Always has been.

But here’s a thought: What if… he’s not?

What if the easiest question in the history of baseball is about to get a different answer?

What if Albert Pujols – not Lou Gehrig – is the ...

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gehrig97 Posted: March 10, 2017 at 09:54 AM | 219 comment(s)
  Beats: angels, first basemen, gehrig, history, pujols, yankees

Andrew McCutchen’s vow after Pirates dangle him: ‘I’m going to have monster year’

“I’m not going to hold any grudges against them,” says McCutchen, a five-time All-Star. “I mean, I have people who say it should be my choice because of the sacrifices I’ve made and the things I’ve done for the organization. But l ’m not going to be angry.

“I’m just going to go out and play my game because that’s my job. I work for them. They are my bosses.

“They ask me to do something, it means I have to do it.”

Jim Furtado Posted: March 10, 2017 at 09:46 AM | 12 comment(s)
  Beats: andrew mccutchen, pirates, wbc

Mookie Betts Cleanup - Unorthodox But Don’t Freak Out

So, John Farrell is tinkering with the idea that Andrew Benintendi might hit third, sliding Mookie betts down to the cleanup spot…

Some of the initial reaction when Ken Rosenthal first surfaced this notion late Wednesday focused on the concern over Betts, the American League MVP runner-up, potentially not getting to the plate in the first inning.

Fair.

But understand that cleanup hitters more times than not actually do hit in the first, which means they are coming to the plate with runners ...

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Jose is El Absurd Pollo Posted: March 10, 2017 at 09:26 AM | 9 comment(s)
  Beats: lineups, red sox

Why Max Scherzer is a true rarity among baseball’s best pitchers | FOX Sports

Scherzer, early in his career, struggled to identify the proper off-season throwing program.

“I had problems up to 2012,” Scherzer said. “It all stemmed from one thing — taking time off.

“The baseball book says don’t throw a ball until Jan. 1. And that’s what I did. I never touched a ball in October, November, December. Then, when I would start my throwing, my shoulder would kill.”

So after ’12, Scherzer stopped shutting down his arm once the season ended, playing catch on ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: March 10, 2017 at 07:45 AM | 3 comment(s)
  Beats: max scherzer, nationals

Cuba advances in World Baseball Classic | MLB.com

One big hit did in Australia.

Veteran outfielder Alfredo Despaigne’s fifth-inning grand slam provided Cuba with all its runs in a 4-3 win that broke Australia’s hearts again. The Australians have played in the World Baseball Classic all four times it has been held but have never made it out of the first round. This time they believed they really had a chance.

Jim Furtado Posted: March 10, 2017 at 07:42 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: wbc

Dominican Republic beats Canada at WBC 2017 | MLB.com

The DR looks tough to beat.

Jim Furtado Posted: March 10, 2017 at 07:41 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: wbc

Italy defeats Mexico with 5-run 9th in WBC ‘17 | MLB.com

Shock is right.

Jim Furtado Posted: March 10, 2017 at 07:41 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: wbc

Orient resident, MLB 20-game winner Bill Hands dies at 76

RIP, and glad you got to enjoy the Cubs winning it all.

QLE Posted: March 10, 2017 at 12:10 AM | 14 comment(s)
  Beats: 1969, bill hands, cubs, obituaries

Thursday, March 09, 2017

Heyman: 7 Teams That Could Surprise In 2017

Heyman’s latest notes column.

Jim Furtado Posted: March 09, 2017 at 08:04 PM | 29 comment(s)
  Beats: notes

Smith’s bunting a way to highlight fleet feet

Mallex Smith knows how his bread is buttered. Speed is his game.

Given that fact, the new Rays outfielder tries to do everything he can to incorporate his speed into the equation. Which is why he spends an inordinate amount of time laying ‘em down.

If you see a Rays player working on his bunting skills, there’s a good chance the player you see is Smith.

 

Barry`s_Lazy_Boy Posted: March 09, 2017 at 05:07 PM | 3 comment(s)
  Beats: bunting

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 3-9-2017

Washington Times, March 9, 1917:

Manager Griffith today ordered carboys of spring water placed in the rooms occupied by his players, and spring water will also be served at the dining tables.

The Old Fox is most serious over conditions of the [Augusta, Georgia] water supply. “I had no idea the water here was so bad,” said he today. “I am not going to have any of my players made sick drinking this dark brown stuff, and so have ordered spring water for all of them.

And ever since the day Clark ...

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Jefferson Manship (Dan Lee) Posted: March 09, 2017 at 10:09 AM | 14 comment(s)
  Beats: dugout, history

Baseball Prospectus: DRA 2017: The Convergence

I’m just not a fan of attempts at creating a be-all, end-all stat. Doing so just limits your stat because you have to make too many compromises to make the data work. Why not have one metric that looks back and another that looks forward?

On another note, does anyone know if DRA has separate components for pitching in the stretch and in a full wind up? Some old research suggested the difference can have a significant impact on runs allowed.

Two years ago, I wrote the first DRA essay, focusing ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: March 09, 2017 at 09:47 AM | 3 comment(s)
  Beats: dra, pitching, sabermetrics

Giving big dollars to older pitchers doesn’t make sense - Buster Olney - ESPN (INSIDER $)

Remember when the Red Sox said they wouldn’t sign any more older, expensive free agent starters?

The Boston Red Sox gave Price the most money ever for a pitcher, $217 million over seven years, when he was 30 years old. He had a good but not great first year in 2016, leading the American League in innings. But now with the uncertainty over Price’s elbow, the Red Sox don’t know what they’ll get out of him in Years 2 and 3, when he would have theoretically been at his best for Boston, before the ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: March 09, 2017 at 09:35 AM | 54 comment(s)
  Beats: red sox

Lawsuit states Minor League Baseball Salaries are too low | BaseballAmerica.com

Although I can appreciate the idea the current state of affairs can be laid at the feet of owners, it’s also true the MLBPA could help cut away a slice of their pie to help minor leaguers.

In response, the suit was narrowed to players who played at least seven days in either California, Florida or Arizona. The certified collective under the new decision will be “any person who, while signed to a Minor League Uniform Player Contract, participated in the California League, or in spring training, ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: March 09, 2017 at 08:27 AM | 6 comment(s)
  Beats: minor league pay, minor leaguers

The Mets should be embarrassed about Tim Tebow’s disastrous debut - NY Daily News

On the SNY telecast, Ron Darling couldn’t resist:

“That’s the first standing ovation I’ve ever seen for hitting into a double play.”

And so it went.

In truth, the only surprise on Wednesday was that Gentleman Tim made it so obvious when he disagreed with Addition, the home plate umpire, staring at him on at least four occasions, twice on called third strikes.

Tebow managed to annoy Keith Hernandez, who practically lectured him on TV in his final at-bat of the day.

“You can’t ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: March 09, 2017 at 08:26 AM | 59 comment(s)
  Beats: mets, tim tebow

Billy Hamilton is a Statcast highlight reel | MLB.com

I’m not sure this is the right breakdown. As he said, “how can you make a great play if the opportunity to make a great play doesn’t exist first? Of those 116, 44 didn’t make a single Five-Star play.” Wouldn’t a better look be percentage of five-star catches in five-star opportunities be a better comparison?

For this sample, we’re looking at the 116 outfielders who had at least 100 total outfield chances and at least 10 Five-Star chances, because, after all, how can you make a great play if the ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: March 09, 2017 at 07:15 AM | 2 comment(s)
  Beats: statcast

Not all spring training numbers are meaningless

Was this article meant to convince us about something?

Jim Furtado Posted: March 09, 2017 at 07:11 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: red sox, spring training

Why Tim Tebow is good for baseball | New York Post

“If you see something you like, be aggressive,’’ Tebow said of the major lesson of the day.

Also, this is not football. Call your manager Terry or TC. Not coach.

Jim Furtado Posted: March 09, 2017 at 07:10 AM | 2 comment(s)
  Beats: mets, tim tebow

Wednesday, March 08, 2017

Dodgers’ Brandon McCarthy tests life after baseball as part owner of Phoenix soccer club - LA Times

I would rather have more good athletes play baseball.

“You’d just like to see our very good athletes playing, where it’s less of a marginalized sport … It’s a quick, fun, accessible game. There’s less money and less time needed to play than in other sports. I’d like to see it become more popular.”

Jim Furtado Posted: March 08, 2017 at 08:33 PM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: brandon mccarthy, dodgers

Jose Bautista, humbled but not hurt, aims for Blue Jays revival at 37

I guess his agent isn’t big on honesty.

“It was confusing, and it was tough at times,’’ Bautista says, “but you can’t take it personally. You can’t feel like it’s necessarily a direct vendetta against you or a group. I know markets have their ups and downs, but I can’t explain what happened to me.

“I’m not complaining about the deal I got. Could it have been better a couple of years ago? I guess. You can expect things, and think about what happened in the past, but at the ...

Read More...
Jim Furtado Posted: March 08, 2017 at 08:31 PM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: blue jays, jose bautista

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