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Wednesday, February 20, 2019

Baseball union chief says tanking talk damaging sport - HoustonChronicle.com

This is from 2016.

To Clark, who visited Astros camp Friday on his annual tour around spring training, the sustained discussion around tanking is damaging to the sport - regardless of semantics.

“(Tanking is) a nice catchphrase that grabs the headlines, but the truth is as a union, as a part of the industry, we can appreciate as much as anything a club having flexibility to make what decisions it needs to make in order to be successful - we get that,” Clark said. “There are some sensitivities ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: February 20, 2019 at 06:02 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: cba, tony clark

Braves want you to get excited about ‘monetary yield’ and ‘glide slope’

Last week Braves president Terry McGuirk and general manager Alex Anthopoulos gave a sit-down interview with Jeff Schultz and David O’Brien of The Athletic. It did not go over well with Braves fans.

In the interview McGuirk and Anthopoulos walked back multiple past claims that the Braves would spend more money for the 2019 season and, as I detailed here, did so in a pretty condescending manner. It was difficult to take anything away from the interview other than the conclusion that (a) ...

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QLE Posted: February 20, 2019 at 04:49 AM | 9 comment(s)
  Beats: alex anthopoulos, braves, money

Chatting on the bases is good-natured, a learning experience

MESA, Ariz. (AP) — While playing for Texas, Jurickson Profar always learned something from new teammate Khris Davis when the Oakland slugger stopped at Profar’s second base spot.

Majors home run leader Davis appreciates any chance he gets to talk baseball and life with Albert Pujols while spending a few moments on first alongside the Angels star.

Mike Trout gets a chuckle out of any good-natured prank pulled by Detroit’s Miguel Cabrera at first — and there’s usually something.

For ...

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QLE Posted: February 20, 2019 at 04:44 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: first base, sports culture

Giants encouraged by Jeff Samardzija’s progress to begin spring training

Jeff Samardzija said he has eight hurdles to hit this spring: Bullpen session, “heavy” bullpen session, live BP session, and then five Cactus League starts. He got through his live BP on Tuesday and said it felt good. Samardzija threw all his pitches while facing players on a back field.

“No pain, no restrictions,” he said. “I just need more work.”

He’ll get it. Samardzija, coming off a season-ending shoulder injury, will be in the rotation when the Giants kick off spring action this ...

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QLE Posted: February 20, 2019 at 04:40 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: giants, jeff samardzija, spring training

Mike Moustakas has unfinished business in Milwaukee

PHOENIX—Mike Moustakas fell one win shy of reaching the World Series with the Milwaukee Brewers.

“I think we had some unfinished business after last year,” Moustakas said Tuesday after finalizing a $10 million, one-year deal with the Brewers. “I loved playing here last year. It was a lot of fun. We fell a little bit short, obviously, but I feel like this team can get back to where we were at last year and make a push for the World Series.”

After Milwaukee won the NL Central for the first time ...

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QLE Posted: February 20, 2019 at 04:35 AM | 4 comment(s)
  Beats: mike moustakas, milwaukee, unfinished business

Scooter Gennett upset with Reds over lack of communication regarding contract extension

And now the world’s slowest dance begins for the next off-season….

QLE Posted: February 20, 2019 at 04:31 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: contract extension, reds, scooter gennett

White Sox boss on Manny Machado signing with Padres: ‘We thought we were the high offer’

Manny Machado isn’t going to Chicago after all. The Chicago White Sox, who signed Machado’s brother-in-law Yonder Alonso this offseason and added his friend Jon Jay, lost out to the San Diego Padres, who agreed to a 10-year, $300 million deal Tuesday with the star free agent.

Kenny Williams, the White Sox’s executive vice president, expressed surprise that they were beat out for Machado. He told reporters at White Sox camp they thought they had the highest offer.

Turns out they ...

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QLE Posted: February 20, 2019 at 04:17 AM | 21 comment(s)
  Beats: kenny williams, outbid, white sox

Now that Manny Machado got $300M, Bryce Harper and the Phillies are on the clock

And then there was one.

Bryce Harper, the second baseball star seeking a $300 million contract this offseason, saw Manny Machado get his money Tuesday and is now awaiting a ridiculous payday of his own.

Machado got $300 million over 10 years, enough to leave your mouth agape, enough to set a new free-agent record in baseball, enough to provide for generations of his family and the exact number both Harper and Machado were said to be chasing this offseason.

It’ll be a record until it ...

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QLE Posted: February 20, 2019 at 04:15 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: bryce harper, free agency, hot stove, phillies

Tuesday, February 19, 2019

With Manny Machado’s deal, reports of baseball’s demise might have been exaggerated - The Washington Post

So the owners aren’t trying to win if they don’t put all new money into player salaries. Shouldn’t players who want to win be willing to accept less than full market value so their teams can afford more good players?

Of course not.

“Every time you look around, more money is pouring into the game from some new source,” Zimmerman said last week. “And a lot of owners seem to be keeping it, putting it in their pockets and not trying to win. We players all try to win.”

Jim Furtado Posted: February 19, 2019 at 07:46 PM | 28 comment(s)
  Beats: free agency

Baseball’s Shifting Financial Equation: Long-Term Security Over Free Agency - WSJ

Agents point to early extensions that now look like incredible bargains. Cleveland Indians righty Corey Kluber, for instance, signed a five-year, $38.5 million extension before the 2015 season that could’ve turned into seven years and $77 million with bonuses and team options. His 2.96 ERA since then is the best in the American League, and he has statistically already outperformed the entire contract by a wide margin with up to three years remaining.

On the other end of the spectrum, ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: February 19, 2019 at 07:13 PM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: free agency

ESPN:  Former Dodgers great Don Newcombe dead at 92

Newcombe, one of the first African-American pitchers in MLB, joined the Brooklyn Dodgers in 1949, winning Rookie of the Year while helping the team win the NL pennant. In Newcombe’s debut season, he and Dodgers teammates Jackie Robinson and Roy Campanella became three of the first four African-Americans (along with Cleveland outfielder Larry Doby) to appear in an All-Star Game.

His best season came in 1956, when he led the league with 27 wins and won the Cy Young and MVP awards and led the ...

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Gonfalon Bubble Posted: February 19, 2019 at 03:31 PM | 18 comment(s)
  Beats: 1955 dodgers, don newcombe

BREAKING: Free agent star Manny Machado has agreed to a deal with the San Diego Padres, league sources tell ESPN.

Edit: Reportedly 10 years for $300 million. Jim

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: February 19, 2019 at 12:27 PM | 177 comment(s)
  Beats: manny machado, padres

Trevor Bauer Is More Concerned With Being Right Than Being Liked

Trevor Bauer sits on a folding chair in a drafty warehouse, sipping applesauce from a plastic cup and electrocuting his brain. Well, electrifying his brain, actually. Bauer, who values precision, points out that there’s an important difference. To electrocute something means to injure or kill it. But he will spend 20 minutes with one milliamp coursing, not unpleasantly, between the electrodes affixed near his temples in an effort to improve the organ that was already most responsible for his ...

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RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: February 19, 2019 at 11:43 AM | 95 comment(s)
  Beats: trevor bauer

With labor tension high, it’s time for me, Dr. Rosenthal, to stage an intervention between MLB and its players

Still, a deal on the current issues probably could be forged from these elements alone:

*A 20-second pitch clock that would be turned off with men on base (Mr. Manfred announced on Sunday he will introduce the clock in spring training to prepare players and umpires in the event it is used during the regular season).

*A three-batter minimum for pitchers, which the union reportedly is willing to accept starting in 2020.

*The expansion of rosters from 25 to 26 with a 12-pitcher maximum and ...

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RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: February 19, 2019 at 11:31 AM | 2 comment(s)
  Beats: labor

Bradford: Did Red Sox learn their lesson after Jon Lester mess-up? | WEEI

Oh, by the way, the Red Sox blew it five years ago.

That was the out-of-nowhere admission by principal owner John Henry Monday. It came and went in the midst of the 22-minute get-together with the team’s ownership with nary a warning and very little follow-up. Yet the proclamation made by Henry was something that was a long time in coming.

“I think we blew the Jon Lester—we blew that signing in spring training,” Henry said. “So for reasons that are pretty apparent now, which I won’t go into, ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: February 19, 2019 at 08:44 AM | 7 comment(s)
  Beats: jon lester, red sox

The clock is ticking for pitchers, and there are concerns

The umpires are the key to having this make an impact.

Then again, the minor league rules allow you to step off the rubber if you get close to the time limit, and the clock restarts. Nobody knows if this will be implemented. Apparently, the 20-second clock starts when the pitcher receives the ball from the catcher, and if the batter is messing around outside the batter’s box as the clock ticks away, “It would be up to the umpire to make sure the batters get in the box,” according to Red ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: February 19, 2019 at 08:21 AM | 33 comment(s)
  Beats: pitch clocks, red sox

Mets Need to Prove They’re a Big-Market Team in Handling of Jacob deGrom | Bleacher Report | Latest News, Videos and Highlights

Will he be able to come close to replicating 2018? That’s a tall order.

Yes, it could cost more by then. Yes, it could cost more by next winter, if deGrom comes anywhere close to replicating a 2018 season in which he had a 1.70 ERA and struck out 269 in 217 innings.

Big-market teams don’t need to worry much about things like that. They can afford to wait, because if the price goes up, they can afford to pay it.

The New York Yankees often operate that way.

Jim Furtado Posted: February 19, 2019 at 06:45 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: jacob degrom, mets

Farm System Rankings: Pitchers (30-21) | MiLB.com News

I wish the Giants were trying a little harder to build their farm system.

Jim Furtado Posted: February 19, 2019 at 06:40 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: giants

Angels owner Arte Moreno addresses team’s payroll, stadium and GM Billy Eppler – Orange County Register

Owner Arte Moreno said Monday that the Angels base their budget on their revenue.

“Typically for us, we allocate about 50 percent of our revenue towards payroll, but I bust through that every year,” Moreno said. “A small-market team would go about the same. Sometimes the larger market teams would only use 40 percent. Every year is a little different with your needs.”

The Angels currently have a payroll that’s roughly at $183 million, in terms of actual cash flow for 2019. That ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: February 19, 2019 at 06:38 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: angels, arte moreno


Twitter: Scott Lindholm: Big Contract Performance

 

Jim Furtado Posted: February 19, 2019 at 06:27 AM | 7 comment(s)
  Beats: free agency

How can the Nats be better without Bryce Harper? It’s fundamental, really. - The Washington Post

The article says the Nationals are putting more of a focus on the clubhouse this off-season. It’s hard to believe this unnamed vet is one of the team’s leaders.

Though few mention it, subtracting Harper, while it will cost 34 homers, a .899 career OPS and some amazing hair flips, would help any team improve its attention to fundamentals. When the most famous player on the team can’t go 10 days without failing to run out a groundball or overthrowing a cutoff man by 15 feet or throwing to the ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: February 19, 2019 at 06:12 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: bryce harper, nationals

How the Mariners are using data, biomechanics and technique to build a better catcher – The Athletic

How much of Omar Narváez’s inferior defense a product of player development? I guess we are going to find out.

Jim Furtado Posted: February 19, 2019 at 06:10 AM | 3 comment(s)
  Beats: mariners, omar narvaez

MLBPA’s Tony Clark calls Rob Manfred’s comments on payroll ‘unconstructive and misleading at best’ - CBSSports.com

Of course, building through the farm is the right way. Free agent spending should be a last resort, especially at the top of the market. It’s a way to finish off your team. It’s not a great way to build.

There are multiple ways to build a good roster, but spending on veteran talent remains the most villainized approach. Teams instead sell their fans on building the “right way,” which just so happens to double as the most cost-efficient way. Budget space is not, within itself, inherently ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: February 19, 2019 at 05:54 AM | 2 comment(s)
  Beats: mlbpa

Chicago Cubs: Tom Ricketts addresses father’s racist emails

When asked directly why the Cubs didn’t spend any more money this winter, Ricketts said the answer was simple:

“We don’t have any more,” he said. “We have to have flexibility in the future. ... We’ve been in the top five spending the last few years, and we put our money back onto the field. You can’t have a high-profile free agent every single year.

“The way we look at it, you got to think long-term, it’s not just one season. We think we have a very, very good team. I think ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: February 19, 2019 at 05:51 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs

Dodgers’ Kenley Jansen hoping higher spin rate will help him sizzle

ESPN’s statistical database, which might differ from what the Dodgers carry internally, had Jansen with an average spin rate of 2,302 RPMs in 2017, ranked fourth among the 274 pitchers who compiled at least 60 innings. In 2018, Jansen’s RPMs dropped to an average of 1,867, ranked 61st.

Jansen wasn’t worried about those numbers before.

“He didn’t need to be,” Dodgers president of baseball operations Andrew Friedman said. “It was elite—don’t mess with it.”
Editor’s Picks

Prior seeks the ideal ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: February 19, 2019 at 05:45 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, kenley jansen

Reds’ Joey Votto tries to rebound from subpar season

GOODYEAR, Ariz.—Joey Votto has spent the offseason trying to make sure he doesn’t have another subpar season.

The Cincinnati Reds star led the National League in on-base percentage last year but hit just 12 homers, his fewest in a full season, and batted .284, his lowest since 2014. He had 67 RBIs.

“It was the first year where I had a poor offensive year,” Votto said. “It is hard to speak on this without sounding arrogant. I’ve always performed at a certain level. Last year was a bit of a ...

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QLE Posted: February 19, 2019 at 04:58 AM | 5 comment(s)
  Beats: comebacks, joey votto, reds

Clark: Some teams make little effort to justify ticket costs

NEW YORK (AP) — Players’ union head Tony Clark took the extraordinary step of saying baseball fans should question whether it makes sense to purchase tickets for some teams, responding to Commissioner Rob Manfred’s assertion that free-agent players have failed to adjust their economic demands in a market upended by analytics.

Top free agents Bryce Harper, Manny Machado, Craig Kimbrel and Dallas Keuchel remain unsigned with spring training under way, creating tension during negotiations ...

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QLE Posted: February 19, 2019 at 04:54 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: free agency, rob manfred, ticket prices, tony clark

Jorge Posada on joining Marlins: ‘Perfect timing’

JUPITER, Fla. (AP) — A black cap with the Miami Marlins’ new neon logo sat atop Jorge Posada’s graying hair Monday, a jarring sight for fans who recall he spent his entire playing career with the New York Yankees.

But Posada switched allegiances to return to the majors, and he’s at spring training as a special adviser to his close friend and former teammate, Marlins CEO Derek Jeter.

“Perfect timing,” Posada said Monday. “Derek approached me sometime in January and said, ‘Do ...

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QLE Posted: February 19, 2019 at 04:51 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: derek jeter, detectives believe alcohol was involved, jorge posada, marlins

Moreno says Angels have had internal talks on new Trout deal

TEMPE, Ariz. (AP) — Los Angeles Angels owner Arte Moreno said the team has had internal discussions regarding a new contract for outfielder Mike Trout, who can become a free agent after the 2020 season.

The two-time AL MVP is owed $33.25 million in each of the next two seasons, completing a $144.5 million, six-year contract.

“One of the last interviews I gave I said it’s not in the back of our mind but in the front of our minds,” Angels Moreno said Monday.

Chief among those internal ...

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QLE Posted: February 19, 2019 at 04:47 AM | 7 comment(s)
  Beats: angels, arte moreno, mike trout, waste

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