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Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 1-28-2014

Pittsburgh Gazette Times, January 28, 1914:

At the upper end of Wylie Avenue - the aristocratic end - there is excitement these days. Passersby hear the thumpety-bump of the latest tangoes, rag-time pieces and opera numbers.
...
[Frank] Smith never gives that new player-piano a rest. His massive 190 pounds of bone and muscle presides over the instrument all the day long, while his trained musical ear is strained constantly to detect a sour note.
...
[After receiving a $1,500 bonus for signing with the Baltimore team in the Federal League, Smith] spied the player-piano in a downtown window. “Ah-ha,” he cried. “Me for that.” Then he bought it.

And for this reason the high-brow section of Wylie boulevard rejoices.

Smith was known as “Piano Mover” because he claimed to be able to carry a baby grand up four flights of stairs without a rest. He was not known as the “Piano Owner”, however.

Greasy Neale Heaton (Dan Lee) Posted: January 28, 2014 at 09:00 AM | 29 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: dugout, frank smith, history

Reader Comments and Retorts

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Statements posted here are those of our readers and do not represent the BaseballThinkFactory. Names are provided by the poster and are not verified. We ask that posters follow our submission policy. Please report any inappropriate comments.

   1. Greasy Neale Heaton (Dan Lee) Posted: January 28, 2014 at 09:05 AM (#4647150)
Decent Birthday Team today. If you want, you can move White to center field (he started 31 games in CF), bench Shinjo, and play Lyle Overbay at first. Not that there's a correct answer in the perennial Overbay/Shinjo argument.

C: Dick Lowe
1B: Bill White
2B: Pete Runnels
3B: Lyn Lary
SS/Manager: George Wright
LF: Jermaine Dye
CF: Tsuyoshi Shinjo
RF: Magglio Ordonez

SP: Bill Doak
SP: Salida Tom Hughes
SP: Bob Muncrief
SP: Emil Yde
SP: Doug Waechter
RP: Joe Beckwith
   2. Davo Dozier Posted: January 28, 2014 at 11:57 AM (#4647292)
Pete Runnels from age 23 to 27: Never hits over .285 in a season.

Pete Runnels from age 30 to 34: Hits over .310 every season and wins two AL batting titles.

He got traded to the Red Sox at age 30--he was a .332/.418/.422 hitter in Fenway over his career.
   3. JJ1986 Posted: January 28, 2014 at 12:25 PM (#4647322)
Who are the players left who are likely to sign minor league contracts before spring training?

The most obvious ones to me are Sam Fuld and now Tyler Colvin. Joe Saunders should end up somewhere, Jake Westbrook is probably not worthy of a major league contract. Kelly Shoppach is worth a flyer. And there are a bunch of formerly good relievers (Kevin Gregg, K-Rod, Papa Grande, Carlos Marmol, Andrew Bailey, Mike Gonzalez) who are unsigned.
   4. They paved Misirlou, put up a parking lot Posted: January 28, 2014 at 12:31 PM (#4647327)
Dye and Ordonez were born on the exact same day (and Dye replaced Ordonez as the White Sox RF in 2005). We all know about Frank Thomas/Jeff Bagwell. Are these 2 the second best pair of players born on the same day?
   5. Davo Dozier Posted: January 28, 2014 at 12:44 PM (#4647344)
I'm stunned Tyler Colvin is attracting so little interest. Before the off-season started, I designed my "dream" off-season plan for the Minnesota Twins, and it involved signing Colvin for $2,000,000 to be a platoon right fielder.

I mean, he's a former first-round pick who's just a year removed from a .290/.327/.521 season, and he's only 28. No one wants to give him another shot? That's just crazy to me.
   6. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: January 28, 2014 at 01:13 PM (#4647374)
Colvin had a MLB deal with Baltimore, but failed the physical.

Why do so many guys fail physicals with Baltimore? Do they have extra high standards or something?
   7. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: January 28, 2014 at 01:16 PM (#4647375)
Who are the players left who are likely to sign minor league contracts before spring training?

The most obvious ones to me are Sam Fuld and now Tyler Colvin. Joe Saunders should end up somewhere, Jake Westbrook is probably not worthy of a major league contract. Kelly Shoppach is worth a flyer. And there are a bunch of formerly good relievers (Kevin Gregg, K-Rod, Papa Grande, Carlos Marmol, Andrew Bailey, Mike Gonzalez) who are unsigned.


Yuni!

I'm surprised Jeff Baker hasn't attracted more interest. He's a lefty-masher who can fake it at a lot of different positions. He had a 1.073 OPS against lefties last year. Seems like a great guy to have on your bench.
   8. Jick Posted: January 28, 2014 at 01:17 PM (#4647376)
Are these 2 the second best pair of players born on the same day?


Posnanski mentioned the other week that Greg Maddux and David Justice were both born on April 14, 1966.
   9. Tom Nawrocki Posted: January 28, 2014 at 01:18 PM (#4647379)
I was disappointed the Rockies didn't give Colvin more of a shot last year, but he was really, really bad in his major league stint last season. He hit a pair of homers in his first start of the season, and from then on, he hit .134/.171/.179. It was painful to watch.
   10. Greasy Neale Heaton (Dan Lee) Posted: January 28, 2014 at 01:42 PM (#4647400)
Somebody's going to sign Jason Hammel, and I can't imagine it would be a good idea for that team to give him an MLB contract. Certainly he's no more useful than Jake Westbrook.
   11. Nasty Nate Posted: January 28, 2014 at 01:49 PM (#4647406)
Dye and Ordonez were born on the exact same day (and Dye replaced Ordonez as the White Sox RF in 2005). We all know about Frank Thomas/Jeff Bagwell. Are these 2 the second best pair of players born on the same day?


Albert Pujols and Mark McGwire...
   12. puck Posted: January 28, 2014 at 01:52 PM (#4647407)
I mean, he's a former first-round pick who's just a year removed from a .290/.327/.521 season, and he's only 28. No one wants to give him another shot? That's just crazy to me.

He's an odd one. Year removed from that season, but last season was a disaster, following on 2011 also being a disaster year following a promising 2010. I wonder what a normal BABIP for the guy is.
   13. Greasy Neale Heaton (Dan Lee) Posted: January 28, 2014 at 01:53 PM (#4647408)
Speaking of guys who are unsigned, what's with all the disinterest in Francisco Rodriguez? I mean, I know he's got a reputation as a headcase, but in the past three years he's got an ERA+ of 121, he's struck out nearly 10 per nine, and he's not walking people or giving up home runs.

Despite that, nobody's signed him, he doesn't appear close to signing, the Brewers couldn't get anything more than a middle-of-the-road prospect in A ball for him, and MLBDepthCharts has him one rung above Oliver Perez on their ranked list of 2013-14 free agents.

What am I missing? Is he that much of a pain in the butt?
   14. Crispix reaches boiling point with lackluster play Posted: January 28, 2014 at 01:56 PM (#4647411)
I guess he's no longer on pace to break the all-time saves record.
   15. SoSH U at work Posted: January 28, 2014 at 02:03 PM (#4647417)
Albert Pujols and Mark McGwire...


Huh?

   16. Nasty Nate Posted: January 28, 2014 at 02:06 PM (#4647421)
Maybe he declined offers in the range that Mujica/Crain/Axford/Thornton signed for and the teams moved on to those guys.

The rumor mill doesn't churn for most of these relievers, so we might not hear about Rodriguez until he signs (or is on the verge). A lack of news doesn't always mean a lack of interest.
   17. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: January 28, 2014 at 02:11 PM (#4647428)
IIRC, K-Rod didn't sign til like May last year. I imagine he's (a) a headcase; and (b) he think he should be paid like an elite reliever, when he's not an elite reliever.
   18. salvomania Posted: January 28, 2014 at 02:28 PM (#4647444)
Whenever I see Bill Doak's name I'm remembered of his place in baseball history, as the creator of the innovative Bill Doak Model Rawlings glove, introduced in 1922 and available until 1953, that first featured the web connecting the thumb to the first finger.
   19. Crispix reaches boiling point with lackluster play Posted: January 28, 2014 at 02:31 PM (#4647445)
Ah, Bill Doak, he was truly the Jose Sulaiman of baseball.
   20. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: January 28, 2014 at 02:51 PM (#4647459)
KLaw organizational rankings (INSIDER)

1. Houston
2. Minnesota
3. Pittsburgh
4. Cubs
5. Boston
   21. Moe Greene Posted: January 28, 2014 at 03:41 PM (#4647509)
Huh. Looks like Rob Neyer is leaving SBNation (mentioned at end of article):

Link

Any indication about where he's headed next?
   22. Guapo Posted: January 28, 2014 at 03:45 PM (#4647517)
I was wondering what Shinjo was up to on his birthday and found a recent article on him online, which I think was in Indonesian- I've provided the online translation below:

Tsuyoshi Shinjo , Japan 's baseball athletes are now busy looking for a job . On January 21, 2014 and then back to Tokyo , after five years of living in Bali . Outspoken speech , and he was called the Big Boss by Balinese people around their home .

" Living in Bali fun . I can buy a license to drive a motor just to pay 3,000 yen , " said Tsuyoshi Shinjo Nikkan Gendai interview on Friday ( 24/01/2014 ) .

Tsuyoshi Shinjo is a former professional baseball player Hanshin . Tsuyoshi admitted very happy to stay in Bali , although he considers Indonesia is a country that is chaotic .

" SIM or SIM motor car can easily be bought in Bali . Delicious smokers living in Bali . Seat belt did not have to use . Deh mess this country . Drinking sake or liquor is also free , it's okay in Bali , " he said .

Tsuyoshi Shinjo said , his house in Bali repaired with a cost of 80 million yen . While in Bali , Shinjo spends his time playing motocross .

According to Shinjo , he bought acreage and put a lot of security guards at his home . Motocross track to be made at a cost of about 20 million yen can be used to race motocross .
   23. Greasy Neale Heaton (Dan Lee) Posted: January 28, 2014 at 03:59 PM (#4647533)
Nice find, Guapo. It's just like I always say: Delicious smokers living in Bali.
   24. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: January 28, 2014 at 04:13 PM (#4647549)
Huh. Looks like Rob Neyer is leaving SBNation (mentioned at end of article):


Well that was a short stay. Wonder if Ezra Klein or Matthew Yglesias will be replacing him.

Is he going to take a Joe Posnanski-type sojourn around different platforms?
   25. morineko Posted: January 28, 2014 at 06:40 PM (#4647665)
IIRC, K-Rod didn't sign til like May last year. I imagine he's (a) a headcase; and (b) he think he should be paid like an elite reliever, when he's not an elite reliever.


He was arrested for domestic assault (again) at the end of 2013, but as the victim didn't show up to testify, the charges were dismissed. (?) Surprisingly the Brewers brought him back but that was on a minor league contract in May, like you said, and they flipped him after a monthish for Nicky Delmonico. So the Brewers have an extra prospect and Brandon Kintzler has K-Rod's job. This trick doesn't work twice.
   26. Walt Davis Posted: January 28, 2014 at 07:53 PM (#4647713)
Are these 2 the second best pair of players born on the same day?

Not born in the same year but sharing a birthday ... and my new fave trivia question ...

Alfredo Amezaga was the 401st pick of the 1999 draft. 3.2 career WAR
Albert Pujols was the 402nd pick of the 1999 draft. 93 career WAR.

Vaguely recalling (incorrectly) that Frank Robinson shared a birthdate with somebody big, I did discover that Aug 31, 1979 witnessed the birth of Shane Loux, Ramon Santiago, Clay Hensley and Tim Raines Jr. Nobody impressive but 4 MLers on one day ain't bad. (No idea if it's the record, expansion obviously helps here.)

June 15, 1972 saw Pettitte, Tony Clark and Ramiro Mendoza. And June 15, 1987 also has three guys.

In the "crap I'm old" category, Izzy Alcantara turned 40 last year. He also shares a birthday with Willie Mays.

And under "holy crap, how did I not know this" -- Jackie Robinson and Ernie Banks (and Nolan Ryan) share the same birthday (Jan 31). Also Yuni's birthday so that's 3 HoFers and one slam-dunk candidate sharing a birthday.
   27. Edmundo got dem ol' Kozma blues again mama Posted: January 28, 2014 at 07:55 PM (#4647714)
his house in Bali repaired with a cost of 80 million yen

800 GRAND for repairs! Nice house.
   28. Der-K thinks the Essex Green were a good band. Posted: January 28, 2014 at 09:46 PM (#4647758)
Yuni signed with Orix.
   29. vortex of dissipation Posted: January 28, 2014 at 10:12 PM (#4647762)
Yuni signed with Orix.


They'll just LOVE his work ethic in Japan.

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