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Sunday, January 31, 2016

Baseball execs can’t lose sight of human element in decision making | FOX Sports

Rosenthal goes off the rails on this one. Making decisions purely on emotion is ridicules. Replace Bautista and the Blue Jays with Albert Pujols and the Cardinals. The emotional decision on Albert would have been to keep him. Does anyone think the Cardinals didn’t make a better decision to let him go? A fan’s emotional connection to a team and its players encourages them to dig into their pockets. That emotional connection doesn’t survive losing. Does anyone believe Mets fans would prefer ...

Read More...
Jim Furtado Posted: January 31, 2016 at 05:25 PM | 30 comment(s)
  Beats: blue jays

A’s GM David Forst Talks about the A’s Starting Rotation, Clubhouse Chemistry, an Extension for Redd

In what’s become his annual winter interview with bloggers, A’s general manager David Forst addressed a wide range of topics covering both the major league squad as well as some of the system’s top prospects at A’s FanFest on Sunday.

In his session, Forst discussed how he sees the team’s starting rotation shaping up, whether or not the A’s may still be able to make some additions to the roster, the likelihood of signing outfielder Josh Reddick long-term, last year’s lack of ...

Read More...
Jim Furtado Posted: January 31, 2016 at 10:44 AM | 11 comment(s)
  Beats: athletics, david forst

Nick Cafardo: Rebuilt Cubs ready for the next step - The Boston Globe

The Boston Globe’s Sunday Notes.

Asked whether the Cubs had entered the final phase of the rebuild, Epstein answered no.

“I think you can get yourself in trouble if you think you’re taking that last step or two and building the perfect team. Often times it leaves you in a worse spot because it leaves you inflexible to react during the season and address weaknesses that crop up. We have some issues that we’re curious to see as guys respond to new roles,” he said.

Jim Furtado Posted: January 31, 2016 at 09:49 AM | 22 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs, notes


Evaluating the 2016 Prospects: Cincinnati Reds | FanGraphs Baseball

The Reds top prospects.

Jim Furtado Posted: January 31, 2016 at 08:29 AM | 3 comment(s)
  Beats: prospects, prospects reports, reds

Saturday, January 30, 2016

Brewers, D-backs strike 5-player deal: Segura, Wagner headed to Arizona for Anderson, Hill, Diaz

“The Brewers and D-backs made a Saturday splash with a five-player trade that sent shortstop Jean Segura and Southern League ERA champ Tyler Wagner to Arizona for right-hander Chase Anderson, infielder Aaron Hill and Minor League shortstop Isan Diaz. The Brewers also received cash in the deal, presumably to cover some of the $12 million due to Hill in the final season of the veteran’s three-year contract.”

Scott Lange Posted: January 30, 2016 at 06:57 PM | 19 comment(s)
  Beats: brewers, diamondbacks, trades

KATOH’s Top 100 List: Now Incorporating Multiple Years | FanGraphs Baseball

Some interesting work from Chris Mitchell.

Jim Furtado Posted: January 30, 2016 at 10:20 AM | 20 comment(s)
  Beats: prospects

Top 100 Prospects Rankings | MLB.com

The big news for this year’s list comes at the very top. For the first time since the preseason list in 2013, there is a new No. 1 prospect: Corey Seager, the Dodgers shortstop who played a pivotal role in Los Angeles’ run to the NL West title last year. He supplants Twins outfielder Byron Buxton, who held the top spot since the midseason re-rank back in ‘13.

Some may wonder why Seager and Buxton, among others, are still on this list. It’s because they still have rookie eligibility. To qualify ...

Read More...
Jim Furtado Posted: January 30, 2016 at 07:49 AM | 13 comment(s)
  Beats: prospects, top 100

Friday, January 29, 2016

Dodgers re-sign Howie Kendrick | MLB.com

The Dodgers have a two-year, $20 million deal with free-agent second baseman Howie Kendrick, Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reported Friday.

Jim Furtado Posted: January 29, 2016 at 09:55 PM | 19 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, free agents, howie kendrick

With Deals in Baseball, Opting Out Is Very In

“The only scenario where you can say, with certainty, that the player is not going to opt out is if he’s had a career-ending injury or he has performed at a level that is so far beneath the value of those out-years that nobody’s going to duplicate it,” Manfred said. “That’s the only time the player is going to stay in that contract. Otherwise, you’ve lost control of the player.”

Hank G. Posted: January 29, 2016 at 03:46 PM | 35 comment(s)
  Beats: contracts, options

Fangraphs: Astros Take Fister Chance

The setting should be comfortable. Not that anyone particularly enjoys pitching in Houston, because cheap home runs are going to happen, but the Astros aren’t afraid of softer-throwing pitchers. Last year their pitching staff had the lowest average fastball velocity in the American League, and the only hard-throwing projected starter this coming year is Lance McCullers. Maybe this is part preference and part driven by budget concerns, but the Astros are willing to work with someone who throws ...

Read More...
GrumpyFan Posted: January 29, 2016 at 10:50 AM | 21 comment(s)
  Beats: astros

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 1-29-2016

Pittsburgh Press, January 29, 1916:

Every baseball groundkeeper in the country is interested in the new rules for the laying out of a diamond as prepared by Secretary John A. Heydler, of the National league.
...
Nearly all of the groundkeepers erred in the location of the pitcher’s rubber. The diagram shows this distance to be 60.5’. This was interpreted by nearly all those who laid out the diamond to be 60 feet and five inches…It is claimed that some of the architects of the diamond started ...

Read More...
Jefferson Manship (Dan Lee) Posted: January 29, 2016 at 09:12 AM | 9 comment(s)
  Beats: dugout, groundskeeping, history

Royals are one of the worst AL teams to win World Series since 2000

Since 2000, the NL and AL have won eight World Series titles apiece.

Looking at the batting averages of the eight AL winners, the 2015 champion Kansas City Royals rank as one of the worst Junior Circuit teams to win the World Series the past 15 years.

Scott Ross Posted: January 29, 2016 at 09:09 AM | 76 comment(s)
  Beats: dumbness, royals, stats

Inaugural Red Sox women’s fantasy camp is a huge hit - The Boston Globe

This is different.

Jim Furtado Posted: January 29, 2016 at 07:06 AM | 19 comment(s)
  Beats: red sox

A-Rod, at 40, raring to go as Yankees’ spring training approaches | Newsday

He has spent the winter working out, spending time with his two daughters and “trying to get this old body ready to go again,’’ he said by phone from Miami yesterday. “I’ve only been 40 once, but it is new territory. I embrace it. One thing about this game, it has a funny way of humbling you and it’s such a difficult game to play every day. It’s so much of a better game today than when I first came in 1994. The young talent is as good as I’ve ever seen it.’’

Jim Furtado Posted: January 29, 2016 at 06:54 AM | 67 comment(s)
  Beats: alex rodriguez, yankees

Mariners farm director Andy McKay believes improvement between the lines has to start between the ears | The Seattle Times

“While Andy’s history as a mental-skills expert, of sorts, is a great advantage, it won’t define who he is,’’ Dipoto said. “He’s a farm director and a baseball man first.”

McKay doesn’t actually mind being typecast as a mental coach, because he firmly believes the basis of all baseball success is between the ears. In fact, his conviction that baseball is “100 percent mental” is at the core of his entire team-building philosophy

“You can’t separate the two, the mental ...

Read More...
Jim Furtado Posted: January 29, 2016 at 06:53 AM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: mariners

Thursday, January 28, 2016

Walt “No Neck” Williams passes at 72

I’m a Walt, I grew up in Chicago, I really started becoming a baseball fan in 1970.  Of course he was one of my favorite players.

RIP.

Walt Davis Posted: January 28, 2016 at 05:24 PM | 10 comment(s)
  Beats: colt .45's, indians, walt williams, white sox, yankees

Report: Rockies clear logjam, deal Corey Dickerson to Rays

The Colorado Rockies found a way to get rid of their outfield logjam Thursday. The team reportedly agreed to send Corey Dickerson to the Tampa Bay Rays for closer Jake McGee. Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports initially reported the deal, while Joel Sherman of the New York Post first said McGee was involved.
The 26-year-old Dickerson has put up strong numbers the past two seasons, though that comes with a few caveats. Dickerson crushes right-handed pitching, but isn’t the same player against lefties. ...

Read More...
RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: January 28, 2016 at 04:26 PM | 32 comment(s)
  Beats: corey dickerson, jake mcgee, rays, rockies

10 Best Under-the-Radar Pickups

Aaron Hicks, Yankees

This has been a winter in which the Yanks have famously not signed a single free agent, with the Castro and Chapman trade acquisitions their biggest sources of improvement. But don’t forget about the trade they made with the Twins for Hicks.

At 26, and with less than 1,000 plate appearances in the big leagues, there’s an argument to be made for upside here. Though the Yankees’ trade discussions involving Brett Gardner have gone nowhere, to date, perhaps they see Hicks as ...

Read More...

THE CASE FOR NOT EXTENDING THEO EPSTEIN

That was only a bit over four years ago, and Epstein has done a borderline miraculous job of running the Cubs over that span. So I understand why it caused waves, two weeks ago or so, when I suggested on Twitter that the Cubs might be wisest to shelve the much-discussed idea of extending Epstein’s contract beyond 2016, and to move on. As insane and radical as it sounds, though, I still think that. My goal today is to show you why.

—-

The Cubs are going to be very, very good over the next ...

Read More...


Tough to figure out what the Rockies are doing this offseason | FOX Sports

Ken Rosenthal doesn’t like the Rockies off-season.

Jim Furtado Posted: January 28, 2016 at 09:20 AM | 34 comment(s)
  Beats: rockies

Hall of Fame president Jeff Idelson: ‘We’re very comfortable with the process of election’

Graham Womack interviews Hall of Fame President Jeff Idelson.

SN: A couple years ago, the window of eligibility for the BBWAA to consider Hall of Fame candidates was shortened from 15 years to 10 years. Was this an effort at all to speed up the process of getting guys from the Steroid Era off the writers ballot and maybe considered by one of the committees?

JI: No. First of all, the rules for election for the writers and our various committee elections are constantly being reviewed. It’s ...

Read More...
Jim Furtado Posted: January 28, 2016 at 09:16 AM | 68 comment(s)
  Beats: hall of fame, interviews

Reds’ Devin Mesoraco says his hip is no problem leading to spring

Devin Mesoraco says he’s pain-free and has been doing all the catching drills he needs to do to be ready for spring training, despite his June hip surgery.

“I’ve done everything, I’ve been hitting for a couple of months. Catching-wise, I’ve been blocking, throwing, receiving, doing just about everything with no pain,” Mesoraco said on Wednesday at the announcement for the Reds hosting the 2016 and 2017 R.B.I. World Series. “Everything’s been as planned.”

Jim Furtado Posted: January 28, 2016 at 07:06 AM | 6 comment(s)
  Beats: devin mesoraco, reds

Two major hurdles stand in way of Rays signing Ian Desmond | Tampa Bay Times

For the Rays, there are two major hurdles in signing Desmond, who turned 30 in September.

One would be the terms. Desmond made $11-million last season with Washington and turned down a qualifying offer, which was a one-year, $15.8-milliom deal, expecting he would do better on the open market.

That Desmond has indicated he would like to play for the Rays, that he is from Sarasota, that he is represented by the same agency as Rays manager Kevin Cash (Sports One Athlete Management) and that he ...

Read More...
Jim Furtado Posted: January 28, 2016 at 07:03 AM | 16 comment(s)
  Beats: free agents, ian desmond, rays

The best defensive teams of all time - SweetSpot- ESPN

This team was phenomenal.

1. 1969-73 Baltimore Orioles. A pretty clear choice as the greatest defensive team of all time. If there was a Hall of Fame of Defense, Brooks Robinson, Mark Belanger and Paul Blair would all be first-ballot inductees. When Bobby Grich replaced Davey Johnson at second, the defense got even better. There’s a reason Jim Palmer had a career .249 BABIP. In fact, he may owe his Hall of Fame career to the guys playing behind him.

Jim Furtado Posted: January 28, 2016 at 06:59 AM | 2 comment(s)
  Beats: defense, sabermetrics

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 1-28-2016

Washington Times, January 28, 1916:

Those Baltimore Federal League stockholders mean to go to the limit in their battle against organized baseball…
...
The directors of the Terrapins have been authorized to raise $50,000 to wage a court fight to recover damages for losses they claim to have sustained through the failure of the Federal League promoters to consider them when peace on the diamond was declared.
...
According to President Rasin, the Baltimoreans will sue to be reimbursed for about ...

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Jefferson Manship (Dan Lee) Posted: January 28, 2016 at 06:50 AM | 14 comment(s)
  Beats: anti-trust exemption, dugout, federal league, history

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

IMPORTANT: Here’s the Yankees’ likely 2016 lineup in anagram form

Dayn’s latest!
In the service of no discernible purpose, this scribe is going to make anagrams out of the Yankees’ projected lineup for 2016. What’s an anagram, you ask? This sports-action definition should help ...


So we’re taking the names of the players in the Yankees’ likely 2016 lineup and rearranging the letters of those names to make different words. That’s what we’re doing, OK? The motivation for doing this is the very absence of motivation. Incoming ...
...Read More...


Assimilation of Twins slugger Byung Ho Park will be a key factor – Twin Cities

In the end, both Nero and the Twins are confident Park will be able to replicate the sort of success Kang enjoyed last year.

“We saw a lot of (Kang) in spring training,” Ryan said. “He looked like he made that transition rapidly. We’re hoping the same will be true here.”

Added Nero: “This is an outstanding young man. He’s very motivated. There’s not going to be any concern over him transitioning. He’s a good family man. He’s got a good marriage and a beautiful young son. ...

Read More...
Jim Furtado Posted: January 27, 2016 at 06:22 PM | 6 comment(s)
  Beats: byung ho park, twins

Schoenfield: The best defensive teams of all time

6. 2013-2015 Kansas City Royals. Their +93 Defensive Runs Saved figure in 2013 is the second-highest of DRS era (behind only the +95 of the 2005 Phillies) and defense was obviously vital to their playoff runs in 2014 and 2015. Maybe they lack that one signature, historic defender, but they’ve solid across the board….

4. 2002 Anaheim Angels. They had a lot of excellent defensive ratings in this era with the 2002 World Series champs topping them off at plus-98 runs.Darin Erstad won a Gold Glove ...

Read More...
RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: January 27, 2016 at 04:50 PM | 36 comment(s)
  Beats: defense, royals

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