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Monday, May 01, 2017

Before Baseball-Reference, Statheads Relied On The ‘Big Mac’

For diehard baseball fans, a world without Sean Forman’s Baseball-Reference.com is difficult to imagine. But the site is relatively new; it didn’t grace the Internet until 2000. Before that, for seamheads interested in baseball statistics there was only … print. Print? Yes, print. You remember print.

One of those print compendiums of baseball information was a 6.5-pound behemoth nicknamed “Big Mac,” and it changed how people think about the sport. A world without the Big Mac might ...

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RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: May 01, 2017 at 01:48 PM | 74 comment(s)
  Beats: baseball reference, rob neyer

Dustin Pedroia: I don’t do anything different because of small hands

Have you always had small hands?

Pedroia: Yes, but I’ve always hand great hand-eye coordination. Even as a kid, I was always able to make solid contact. The strength in my hands started to come when I was in high school. But it wasn’t until my sophomore year in college that I could really feel the strength in my hands. I was constantly doing hand-strengthening exercises and exercises for my forearms.

What player’s hand did you shake, and were stunned by the size of his hands?

Pedroia: The ...

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RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: May 01, 2017 at 01:17 PM | 18 comment(s)
  Beats: dustin pedroia

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 5-1-2017

Pittsburgh Press, May 1, 1917:

Philadelphia expert claims that Connie Mack knows baseball backwards. Is that so?
Well, that’s the way the Athletics play it.

Where do you think the Reds will finish this year?
In July.

Zing!

Also on the same page of the same newspaper, the inmates at Eastern penitentiary have formed a baseball team and are looking to play home games only, Germany Schaefer says it’s not his fault the country named after him is at war with the United States, and Pittsburgh ...

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Jefferson Manship (Dan Lee) Posted: May 01, 2017 at 12:30 PM | 22 comment(s)
  Beats: dugout, history

Noah Syndergaard has partial tear of right lat | MLB.com

I guess he really doesn’t know himself very well.

Jim Furtado Posted: May 01, 2017 at 11:54 AM | 19 comment(s)
  Beats: mets, noah syndergaard

Fenway Park rejection shows why scoreboard proposals are a terrible idea | MLB | Sporting News

There was some serious drama going on in Fenway Park, and we’re not talking about the Cubs-Red Sox matchup.

Fans in attendance at Sunday night’s game were forced to witness the spectacle of what appeared to be a failed scoreboard proposal.

Jim Furtado Posted: May 01, 2017 at 11:17 AM | 175 comment(s)
  Beats: love lost, red sox

Jon Daniels on why Rangers demoted Jurickson Profar to Triple-A

In the space of a week, Jurickson Profar has gone from losing a role to losing a job.

Before the start of their 5-2 loss to Los Angeles Sunday, the Rangers claimed infielder Pete Kozma off waivers from the New York Yankees, then sent Profar to Triple-A Round Rock after the game. Kozma, 29, is a middle infielder and dyed-in-the wool bench guy. The Rangers still believe Profar’s ceiling is higher than that, so they are sending him to play every day.

“The way the rotation is in left field and ...

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RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: May 01, 2017 at 10:33 AM | 17 comment(s)
  Beats: jon daniels, jurickson profar, peter kozma, rangers

Aprils best Statcast Catch Probability catches | MLB.com

These catches are pretty, pretty good.

Jim Furtado Posted: May 01, 2017 at 09:55 AM | 2 comment(s)
  Beats: defensive plays, statcast

Friends swore he would be the next Derek Jeter, but Brandon Martin is now charged in three killings - LA Times

It wasn’t the money. Sad story.

“You can’t even fathom what that money does to an 18-year-old mind,” said Justin Hayes, a former clubhouse attendant for the Inland Empire 66ers who was one of Martin’s roommates and his closest friend.

Jim Furtado Posted: May 01, 2017 at 06:58 AM | 46 comment(s)
  Beats: human interest story

How Marlins sale must work: Creative deal, a Jeter fans have never seen | New York Post

Loria is in the kind of fiscal mess — with some in the game saying the team is $400 million in debt, with $75 million or more in possible losses this year and no ready avenues to borrow more money to finance the debt — that he will accept the fastest deal that meets his requests and he believes will be approved by the other owners.

Jeter’s group, which has bid $1.3 billion, is considered the front-runners and, as one involved person said, “Think how disappointed an already apathetic ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: May 01, 2017 at 06:54 AM | 40 comment(s)
  Beats: marlins

OTP 1 May 2017: “Season of Lies” mixes baseball, politics

Dennis Hetzel has crafted “Season of Lies,” a new novel featuring the Chicago Cubs becoming enmeshed in a dirty presidential campaign.

Now that the Cubs have finally won a world championship, their chances of building a new baseball dynasty are threatened by sinister circumstances beyond the team’s control, when star pitcher Trey Von Ohmann decides to endorse President Luke Murphy for re-election, much to his teammates’ consternation.

Heh, remember when you knew a book was fiction if ...

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BDC Posted: May 01, 2017 at 06:14 AM | 1799 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs, fiction, politics

Sunday, April 30, 2017

WaPo: Anthony Rendon Has 3 HRs, 10 RBI In Historic Rout

Tony Two-Bags had a very good day:

Anthony Rendon, who began the day as the least productive player in the starting lineup, fronted the charge by going 6 for 6 with three home runs, a three-run double and 10 RBI. The third baseman became the fifth player in club history with three home runs in a game and the 13th player in major league history — and first since 2007 — with at least 10 RBI in a game. Rendon joined Walker Cooper as the only players in major league history with six hits, three ...

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The Yankee Clapper Posted: April 30, 2017 at 10:59 PM | 4 comment(s)
  Beats: anthony rendon, home runs, rbi, washington nationals

Syndergaard injury just the latest example of one of baseball’s biggest problems

RoboThal’s latest.

...Smoltz compares pitchers to race cars. The most difficult thing for a pitcher, he explained, is distinguishing between injury and soreness. And with most taught to simply throw as hard as they can, they are unable to adjust to flashing signals on their personal dashboards.
....

“We’re getting dangerously close to every pitcher red-lining when he doesn’t really have to. They’re not preparing to learn how to pitch like it’s a six-gear car. They’re always in sixth ...

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LA Podcasting Hombre of Anaheim Posted: April 30, 2017 at 10:09 PM | 15 comment(s)
  Beats: injury, mets being mets, syndergaard

Red Sox sorely miss David Ortiz’s bat, presence

The position and spot in the Red Sox batting order are filled, but not by anyone wearing his uniform.

The clubhouse is filled with veterans who have leadership skills, but none remotely resembling that huge presence and voice.

David Ortiz, the heart, soul and spine of the Red Sox franchise for the last 14 years, is gone.

And he is not coming back.

“This wasn’t just a bat leaving,’’ former Boston Red Sox ace Curt Schilling told USA TODAY Sports, “this was a lineup changer that ...

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RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: April 30, 2017 at 05:56 PM | 8 comment(s)
  Beats: david ortiz, red sox

Ask BA: How Tough Is The Classification Jump? | BaseballAmerica.com

Good stuff.

Scouts have told me that they think the leap to Double-A is toughest on lefthanders who are reliant on their changeups and pitchers who have a “trick” pitch. A lefty with a good changeup will often be able to cruise through Class A lineups because they are generally incapable of recognizing a quality changeup.

But in Double-A, that usually isn’t enough. The pitcher will need to either spot his fastball well enough to get ahead in the count with it or he’ll have to have a ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: April 30, 2017 at 02:13 PM | 9 comment(s)
  Beats: player development, prospects

Caleb Joseph’s Historic RBI Drought Is Finally Over

Last September, we brought you the tale of Orioles backup catcher Caleb Joseph—closing in on the sad feat of becoming the first baseball player ever to finish a season with more than 100 plate appearances and not a single RBI.


Joseph made it through the rest of the year without an RBI, and he started this season the same way. Until today! For the first time since September 11, 2015, Joseph knocked in a runner—courtesy of a two-run shot in the ninth inning of a 12-4 loss to the Yankees.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: April 30, 2017 at 02:05 PM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: caleb joseph, orioles


Sunday Notes: Mendoza-Hendricks Nerdiness, Selsky as Dangerfield, Edwards Evoked ’86, more | FanGraphs Baseball

Red Sox rookie Andrew Benintendi benefitted from a scoring change earlier this week. It was made by the league office in New York, which routinely reviews decisions that are challenged. In this case, an official scorer at Fenway Park had charged a Pirates infielder with an error for not handling a throw. Here’s what happened.

With a runner on first base and less than two outs, Benintendi blooped a ball that fell safely in short centerfield. Wary that the ball might be caught, the runner got ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: April 30, 2017 at 10:10 AM | 13 comment(s)
  Beats: notes

Dodgers hit 3 straight homers in walk-off win | MLB.com

Turned on the game just in time to see this. Then I fell asleep on the couch.

Yasiel Puig, Cody Bellinger and Justin Turner hit back-to-back-to-back home runs in the bottom of the ninth inning against Hector Neris to spark an incredible 6-5 comeback victory over the Phillies. Puig got things going, crushing a 3-2 fastball to left field to cut the lead to two. Bellinger hit a first-pitch splitter off the right-field foul pole to make it a one-run game. Turner then smoked a 0-1 fastball to left ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: April 30, 2017 at 10:05 AM | 12 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers

Saturday, April 29, 2017

Austin Romine opens eyes in shot he didn’t know would come

The Yankees were 1-4 and skidding toward disaster when Gary Sanchez was sent to the disabled list. Exactly how could vanilla backup Austin Romine fill in for last year’s slugging sensation?

Well, soon enough, Sanchez may have a hard time filling Romine’s spikes.

In addition to his routinely effective game-calling behind the plate, Romine had one of his best offensive performances Saturday afternoon, driving in a career-high five runs in a 12-4 win over the Orioles at Yankee Stadium to ...

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RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: April 29, 2017 at 09:06 PM | 4 comment(s)
  Beats: austin romine, gary sanchez, yankees

Diamondbacks’ Shelby Miller opts for elbow surgery, ending season

Shelby Miller’s season is over after the Arizona Diamondbacks right-hander announced Saturday he will have Tommy John surgery on his pitching elbow.

Miller, injured last Sunday during his start against the Los Angeles Dodgers, was diagnosed with right elbow inflammation and placed on the 60-day disabled list on April 27. He sought second opinions on his elbow during the week before ultimately deciding on major surgery.

Miller said he hopes to return to throwing next spring.

“It’s the best ...

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RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: April 29, 2017 at 09:05 PM | 13 comment(s)
  Beats: diamondbacks, shelby miller, tommy john surgery

Mets face more injury drama as Noah Syndergaard refuses MRI, plans to start Sunday

Noah Syndergaard says he is healthy enough to start Sunday, and the Mets have no reason to doubt him – especially after he refused to have an MRI exam on his sore biceps.

Syndergaard was scratched from his scheduled start Thursday and told reporters he couldn’t lift his pitching arm over his head that that point. However, he insists he is healthy enough to face the NL East-leading Nationals tomorrow.

“I’m pretty in tune with my body,” said Syndergaard, via MLB.com. “That’s ...

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RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: April 29, 2017 at 09:04 PM | 59 comment(s)
  Beats: mets, mr, noah syndergaard

Sources: Nationals CF Adam Eaton done for season with torn left ACL

Washington Nationals center fielder Adam Eaton, who was carried off the field Friday, has a torn left ACL and will not play again this season, sources told ESPN, confirming multiple reports.

The team announced earlier Saturday that Eaton had been placed on the disabled list with what was initially diagnosed as a left knee strain.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: April 29, 2017 at 09:04 PM | 35 comment(s)
  Beats: acl, adam eaton, nationals


Yankees Stage Improbable Comeback Behind a Volley of Home Runs

Didn’t look good for the Yankees, down 9-1 in the 6th, and 11-4 in the 7th, but …

“He’s probably the most gifted baseball player I’ve ever been around,” said Matt Holliday of his 25-year-old teammate Aaron Judge, a rookie with all of 155 major league at-bats. “I mean, he’s 6-foot-8, 275 pounds. He moves really well in the outfield. I’m not saying he’s going to be the greatest player who ever played, but as far as when the guy hit a 97-mile-per-hour fastball that was a line ...

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Friday, April 28, 2017


Baseball’s New Pitch-Tracking System Is Just A Bit Outside

It all started the first weekend of the season, when observers noted some unusual pitch velocity readings from San Francisco Giants hurler Madison Bumgarner. Bumgarner’s fastball was up almost two full miles per hour compared with last year; in a league where every tick matters, that reading could have meant a much better season for the Giants’ ace than expected. It wasn’t just Bumgarner: FanGraphs writer Dave Cameron quickly noticed that velocity numbers had jumped across the league. ...

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RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: April 28, 2017 at 02:55 PM | 2 comment(s)
  Beats: pitch fx

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 4-28-2017

Pittsburgh Gazette Times, April 28, 1917:

President Tener of the National Baseball League [yesterday] ordered replayed the game of April 17 between Philadelphia and Boston, which was protested by Manager Moran of the Philadelphia team, when Boston was declared the winner.

Umpire Bransfield decided a Philadelphia runner out for walking away from second base under the impression that he was out. President Tener says the decision was erroneous.

Maybe I’m wrong, but I feel like a call like that ...

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Jefferson Manship (Dan Lee) Posted: April 28, 2017 at 11:08 AM | 22 comment(s)
  Beats: dugout, history, protests

Fred Lynn might’ve been a Hall of Famer if he’d stayed healthy — or in Boston

Lynn’s sabermetric numbers — 50 WAR, 44.1 JAWS and 94 Hall Rating — all paint him as a very good, though not great player who fell just short of Cooperstown.

But if he’d played a full career in Boston, Lynn might have long since been in the Hall of Fame. To some extent, his career is one of the great what-ifs in baseball history.

.....

Asked whether he considered himself a Hall of Famer, Lynn said “Talent-wise, yes. Numbers-wise, no.”

He noted, “If you want to make the Hall, ...

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‘Sports Center’ Anchor Agrees Politics is Hurting ESPN

But how could anyone not believe that Bruce Jenner deserves the Arthur Ashe award?

Captain Supporter Posted: April 28, 2017 at 10:38 AM | 81 comment(s)
  Beats: espn

Are MLB Teams Gaming the New 10-Day DL System? – The Ringer

There’s another reason it’s probably too soon to pass judgement on the 10-day DL: If we do see stretching of what constitutes an “injury,” some of it will likely be done in the name of preventing fatigue. “Fatigue” needn’t be a BS justification for a DL stint; as former Dodgers head athletic trainer and VP of medical services Stan Conte says, “Many people think the 10-day DL will be [used] to rest players with the idea that this will reduce injuries overall, since many of us ...

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Jim Furtado Posted: April 28, 2017 at 10:05 AM | 44 comment(s)
  Beats: disabled list, rules of the game

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