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Sunday, October 12, 2014
1. They started spending.
Royals owner David Glass had developed a reputation as a cheapskate, and for good reason. In 2011, the Royals had a payroll of just $38 million — less than a fifth of what the Yankees spent that year. (The Royals record in 2011? A weak 71–91.) In the seasons since, though, they’ve steadily raised that figure: from $64 million in 2012 to nearly $82 million in 2013 to $92 million this year. In 2014, their Opening Day payroll was a middle-of-the-pack 19th, ahead of ...
Posted: October 12, 2014 at 09:15 PM | 25 comment(s)
Adam Kilgore in the Washington Post-
... this October was likely LaRoche’s last ride with the Nationals — the last time the beloved teammate, dependable first baseman, genial outdoorsman and charitable man will wear a Nationals uniform. If the decision was his to make, in a vacuum, LaRoche would finish his career in Washington. He knows it is not, and he is okay with that.
In the case of the Rangers’ managerial search, which is likely to be pared down to three finalists this week, the mentors — particularly Terry Francona and Clint Hurdle — loom very big. Both are models for what the Rangers want in their next manager. Both have taken two different organizations to the postseason. Both have been to the World Series.
Most importantly, they both have commanding presence, yet manage by inclusion.
Hearing “hitterish” makes me wince.
Finally, I thought “hitterish” was a newfangled term created by baseball scouts. Nope. When I talked with Hall of Famer Brett in the Royals clubhouse after Game 2, he invoked the term in reference to the emergence of Mike Moustakas. He said the iconic hitting coach Charley Lau used the word during Brett’s playing career to describe batters who look like they’re going to get a hit every time they’re at the plate — even though we know that’s not ...
Posted: October 12, 2014 at 10:01 AM | 17 comment(s)
That’s the Monarch Notes version of Britton’s game; he relied on a sinking fastball and a slider to induce a staggeringly high ground-ball percentage of 75.3 percent during the regular season. But when the games are this big and the ground balls lead to baserunners, ill-fated timing and BABIP woes can smell suspiciously like failure on a grand stage. Fans and the media tend to see it that way, although pitchers try to keep the phenomenon in context.
“One of the biggest things for us as ...
Posted: October 12, 2014 at 09:29 AM | 1 comment(s)
I hate the idea that the Red Sox will pay one of these guys the going rate in free agency. I know big pickups help sell tickets in the short run but I’d much rather see them work out a deal from their prospect surplus than get locked into a big money deal for guys on the wrong side of thirty.
But ideally the Red Sox will simply be looking at this from a slightly more dynamic perspective. Where a high price point isn’t just a high price point that shouldn’t be met, but is taken in the context of ...
Posted: October 12, 2014 at 09:23 AM | 12 comment(s)
The alternative broadcast of the NLCS was a mixed bag last night. Some of it went very well; some of it pushed me back to the regular broadcast. The biggest complaint I have is the split screen format. Although the producers went to more full-screen game action as the game wore on, after complaints on Twitter, there were still too many shots of the guys talking about the game. As I mentioned on Facebook, I don’t really want to see them. Sure, if you have some analysis during a break in action, ...Read More...
Posted: October 12, 2014 at 08:57 AM | 33 comment(s)
Moore and Melvin liked dealing with each other. Each had a scouting background and tended to trust traditional scouting methods more than advanced analytics.
“I have nothing against numbers, but everybody has the same numbers,” Melvin said. “When you’re talking about scouting and player development, that’s risk-taking. If Escobar’s hitting .170, that’s probably not a good deal for them. Same with Cain. But they did a nice job in the last years of their development.”
The teams ...
NLCS Game 2: Giants (Peavy) at Cardinals (Lynn), 8 PM, FS1. Giants lead Best-Of-7 series 1-0.
Posted: October 12, 2014 at 12:07 AM | 511 comment(s)
Saturday, October 11, 2014
Meeting with reporters after the fan session, Epstein joked they can go ahead and write columns criticizing the Cubs for missing out on some big-name free agents this offseason.
“To be the organization that we want to be—to be a world-class organization—you can’t be afraid of perception,” said Epstein. “You have to put yourself out there and look stupid at times. We’re going to miss on players by not signing them, we’re going to sign players who don’t work out. But we’re also going to sign ...
Posted: October 11, 2014 at 08:11 PM | 260 comment(s)
Jack Brett raged at his nice boy son. And George Brett learned to fear failure. He learned to fear embarrassment. He learned to fear that voice, the rumbling voice of his father, tearing him apart over an error he made in the third or a swing out of the strike zone. After one such conversation, George tore the phone off the wall in the clubhouse. After more than one, he headed out into the night to find relief.
George Brett did not grow up to be a nice boy. He took a bat to the toilets in ...
Viva Larry Borowsky.
The Cardinals unite the city of St Louis as no other civic institution can. As the rest of the country has noted (with growing irritation), St Louisans take tremendous satisfaction in the success of our baseball team. Michael Brown was no exception; like almost every local kid, he identified as a proud member of Cardinal Nation. (The Cardinals hat he was wearing when he was shot rested atop his casket on the day of his funeral.) So, no doubt, do most of the officers who ...
Posted: October 11, 2014 at 02:34 PM | 18 comment(s)
The total package is here for a #2 starter. An efficient delivery from a brick wall of a human being, two plus or better pitches and a third average pitch with signs of Major League pitchability. Unless the control hiccups are a harbinger of things to come (something that I’ll be on the lookout for the rest of the month here) I think he’ll be just fine.
The sources would not identify the three candidates, but a report by USA Today listed four finalists for the position: Oakland A’s bench coach Chip Hale, Cleveland first-base coach Sandy Alomar Jr., Diamondbacks Triple-A manager Phil Nevin and former major-league manager Jim Tracy. Sources would not confirm nor deny the names in the report.
The personification of this Royals team is a busted prospect who made himself into a star turning a fastball that catches too much of the plate into a trophy for the right-field seats.
LCS DAY 2: Electric Boogaloo.
4 PM: ALCS GAME 2, Royals (Ventura) at Orioles (Not Available At Submission Time Due To Showalter Secrecy), TBS, Royals lead 1-0
8 PM: NLCS GAME 1, Giants (Bumgarner) at Cardinals (Wainwright), FOX (w/“Just a Bit Outside” simulcast on FS1). Series, obviously, tied at 0.
May the Baby Walrus watch over you and provide comfort during your angst.
Posted: October 11, 2014 at 01:02 AM | 536 comment(s)
Friday, October 10, 2014
In an offseason in which baseball has committed itself to speeding up the pace of games, several players told ESPN.com this week that players want “a voice” in this process and they’re concerned that, so far at least, no one except the players’ union has asked them what they thought.
“Players are very interested in being involved in these discussions,” veteran pitcher Kevin Slowey said. “We just want to be part of a collaborative effort to address these issues. And we want to ...
Posted: October 10, 2014 at 12:10 PM | 80 comment(s)
Anyway, he’s still in good shape.
“It was well played,” John Rocker says, walking down the steps with the Idol in his pocket. “I enjoyed myself and was happy to have the opportunity,” John says…
I just can’t see voting John Rocker out at this stage in the season, other than to avoid awkward moments at mixed tribe social events. If you go along with John, he’s always a bigger target than you are, no matter who you happen to be. He’s always the person who will be viewed as the bigger threat or ...
“I’m tired of talking about 1985, I really am,” he says. “I am sick and tired of it. You know? You can only look in the past for so long.”
George Brett is awesome.
Posted: October 10, 2014 at 09:06 AM | 8 comment(s)
Major League Baseball’s division series action proved that big payrolls and star power can be overrated, while leaving plenty of managerial roadkill in its wake. Judging from the always measured and thoughtful public sentiment on Twitter, Brad Ausmus has no clue how to run a bullpen, Don Mattingly’s ability to make bad decisions knows no bounds, and Matt Williams isn’t equipped to run a convenience store, never mind a team with World Series aspirations.
United Press via Toledo News-Bee, October 10, 1914:
Continuing their whirlwind play, George Stallings’ Boston Braves annexed the second game of the world’s series from Connie Mack’s Athletics.
The Braves had dug up an additional mascot. A young man dressed in a brilliant red costume, such as picture books and stage Inians wear, was on the job at the Boston bench. He was adorned with war feathers and what appeared to be some unfortunate horse’s tail, hung down over his shoulders.
Dan Lee is some pumkins
Posted: October 10, 2014 at 08:13 AM | 8 comment(s)
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