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Saturday, January 21, 2012

Plain Dealer | Cleveland Indians acquire Kevin Slowey

The Indians acquired Slowey and a reported $1.25 million from the Rockies for right-hander Zach Putnam.

Coot Veal and Cot Deal taste like Old Bay Posted: January 21, 2012 at 12:04 PM | 10 comment(s)
  Beats: indians, rockies

SI.com: Economic considerations at heart of Carmona’s decision

An interesting analysis of signing ages, signing bonuses, and success rates in the Dominican Republic, by Melissa Segura of Sports Illustrated ...

Teams pay premiums for 16-year-olds for two primary reasons: One, because teams often want to be the first to sign a promising player and, thus, avoid bidding wars with other teams; and two, clubs prefer to develop their players’ skills under the watchful eyes of their own club personnel rather than under those of unqualified and unaffiliated coaches or trainers.

But are 18-year-old Latin American players really worth 70 percent less than their 16-year-old counterparts? Here’s another data analysis that calls into question the industry practice of placing a premium on youth. Let’s assume the most basic marker of a successful signing is making it to the majors. We’ll make it simple and look at the 79 players who have made their major league debuts from 2008-2011 from Carmona’s Dominican Republic. Of those 79, only six were signed as 16-year-olds. The debuts suggest older players were more likely to advance to the majors. ...

[...]

What’s more, SI tracked down the bonus data for 60 of the 79 players. Fernando Martinez, signed by the Mets in 2005 for $1.3 million, was the only one to receive a seven-figure bonus. Only nine others signed for six figures and one — the Rockies’ Juan Nicasio — received nada to sign, according to the data obtained by SI. The median signing bonus among them tallied a paltry $35,000.

Joe Kehoskie Posted: January 21, 2012 at 04:09 AM | 16 comment(s)
  Beats: indians, international, mets, miami, minor leagues, rockies, scouting

Friday, January 20, 2012

Kevin Goldstein: Indians Top 11 Prospects

System in 20 Words or Less: This is the youngest, riskiest, most volatile Top 11 I’ve ever done.

Five-Star Prospects
1. Francisco Lindor, SS
Three-Star Prospects
2. Dillon Howard, RHP
3. Ronny Rodriguez, SS
4. Austin Adams, RHP
5. Tony Wolters, SS
6. Nick Hagadone, LHP
7. Dorssys Paulino, SS
8. Luigi Rodriguez, OF
Two-Star Prospects
9. Scott Barnes, LHP
10. Robel Garcia, INF
11. Elvis Araujo, LHP

Nine More
12. Jake Cisco, RHP: This 2011 third-round pick has size and stuff, but he’s raw.
13. Zach McAllister, RHP: He has command and fastball movement, but little else. His ceiling is a fifth starter.
14. Felix Sterling, RHP: This young righty has a power arm and big potential, but he needs refinement.
15. Jorge Martinez, SS: He’s yet another teenage Dominican with loud tools. He profiles as a third baseman with power.
16. Chen Lee, RHP: This undersized righty has an electric fastball. He should pitch in big leagues this year, and has a seventh- or eighth-inning ceiling.
17. Levon Washington, OF: He’s still a great athlete, but his swing fell apart in 2011.
18. Jesus Aguilar, 1B: This massive first baseman is a bat-only prospect, but there are questions about what he can do other than hit for power.
19. Chun-Hsui Chen, C: He has impressive offensive skills, but he’s well below average behind the plate.
20. Zack Putnam, RHP: Like Lee, Putnam should reach the big leagues this year, but he profiles as a solid reliever, not an impact one.

 

Tripon Posted: January 20, 2012 at 12:33 AM | 6 comment(s)
  Beats: indians, minor leagues, prospect reports, scouting

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Fausto Carmona arrested in Dominican Republic for using false identity

Sure, when Newton McPherson uses a different name, its okay, but when Roberto Hernandez Heredia does it, its a criminal matter!

Jorge Arangure of ESPN.com passes along word from reporter Yancen Pujols that Indians right-hander Fausto Carmona was arrested in the Dominican Republic and is being charged with using a false identity.

According to Pujols, Dominican police arrested Carmona–whose real name is apparently Roberto Hernandez Heredia–while he was leaving the American consulate after renewing his visa.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: January 19, 2012 at 03:46 PM | 81 comment(s)
  Beats: indians, international

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Orlando Cabrera To Retire From Baseball

OH NO, EXPO!

Last season, Orlando Cabrera batted .238 with the Indians and Giants, posting a 61 OPS+. The season before that, he posted a 76 OPS+. The season before that, he posted an 85 OPS+. Orlando Cabrera has been declining, and just turned 37 years old. As a free agent, Cabrera didn’t drum up much interest, which I’m guessing is why he’s intending to hang ‘em up. Enrique Rojas:

  “Orlando Cabrera to retire from baseball, he said in Colombia radio station. Thanks for memories!”

Cabrera had a long career that’ll be difficult to forget. He debuted with the Expos in 1997, and remained there until the giant Nomar Garciaparra three-way trade in 2004. That year, with the Red Sox, Cabrera won a World Series. He wound up with the Angels, earning the unfortunate nickname “The Wizard of O.C.”, and then he wound up with the White Sox, and the A’s, and the Twins, and the Reds, and the Indians, and the Giants ... He remained a shortstop to the end, and collected 2,055 hits. He will always be remembered as a pest. An absolute pest.

Repoz Posted: January 18, 2012 at 09:06 PM | 23 comment(s)
  Beats: angels, athletics, expos, giants, indians, red sox, reds, twins, white sox

Sunday, January 15, 2012

MLB Trade Rumors: Bartolo Colon Agrees to Sign With Unknown Team

Bartolo Colon has agreed to a deal with an unknown club reports Bob Nightengale of USA Today (on Twitter). The right-hander wouldn’t divulge the team because he has not yet passed his physical.

Pretty sure it’s either the All-Stars or the Champs.


Saturday, January 14, 2012

Baseball America’s Top 10 Prospects: Cleveland Indians

Pork Chop Pough, don’t ya know!!!

1. Francisco Lindor, ss
2. Dillon Howard, rhp
3. Nick Hagadone, lhp
4. Chen Lee, rhp
5. Luigi Rodriguez, of
6. Zach McAllister, rhp
7. Tony Wolters, ss
8. Austin Adams, rhp
9. Scott Barnes, lhp
10. Zach Putnam, rhp

If things don’t click for the Indians, they’ll likely have to turn back to trade market. The trades of White and Pomeranz and graduations of Chisenhall and Kipnis have left the system thin of talent. Cleveland’s strength in the minors is its depth of relief pitching, but Hagadone, Chen Lee, Zach Putnam and Co. aren’t going to provide the foundation for a contender.

The Indians’ best prospects are years away from contributing. They paid $4.75 million for their first two picks in the 2011 draft, shortstop Francisco Lindor and righthander Dillon Howard, but they’re high schoolers with a combined five games of pro experiences. Similarly, Dominican outfielder Luigi Rodriguez and shortstop Tony Wolters have played just 34 games in full-season leagues.

Repoz Posted: January 14, 2012 at 08:46 AM | 6 comment(s)
  Beats: indians, minor leagues, prospect reports, scouting

Friday, January 13, 2012

Adam Everett retires, joins Indians as special assistant

I forget if Roger Clemens said it or if someone said it to him when he went to the Astros…but the “Now I’ll/you’ll finally have a Major League shortstop behind me/you.” was pure Jeterkill.

I guess this means Adam Everett is officially retired.

Everett was released by Cleveland in the middle of his 11th big-league season last June, and the light-hitting, Gold Glove-caliber shortstop has decided to end his playing career and join the Indians’ front office as a “special assistant to baseball operations.”

Everett hit just .242 with a .294 on-base percentage and .346 slugging percentage in 880 games and never won a Gold Glove, but consistently rated among the elite shortstops in baseball according to various defensive metrics. He also earned about $12 million in addition to the signing bonus he received as the Red Sox’s first-round pick in 1998, so all in all that’s a pretty solid career.

Repoz Posted: January 13, 2012 at 06:01 PM | 23 comment(s)
  Beats: astros, indians

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Cleveland Indians trade Luis Valbuena to Toronto for cash

Luis Valbuena, one of the many players who have tried to fill the hole at second base since the Indians traded Brandon Phillips, was traded to Toronto for cash Saturday.

Valbuena was designated for assignment by the Indians on Nov. 18 as they set the 40-man roster in preparation for the Rule 5 draft. He’ll turn 26 Sunday.

The Indians acquired Valbuena and Joe Smith in a three-team trade with Seattle and the Mets at the winter meetings in 2008. Valbuena, acquired from Seattle, caught the eye of former Tribe manager Eric Wedge in 2009 as he hit .250 (92-for-368) with 25 doubles, three triples, 10 homers and 31 RBI in 103 games.

It was downhill from there.

Thanks to RD.

Repoz Posted: November 27, 2011 at 01:51 PM | 14 comment(s)
  Beats: blue jays, indians

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Indians re-sign Grady Sizemore

Even as other teams made him offers, Grady Sizemore knew there was only one that made sense for him.

He still belonged with the Indians.

“I wasn’t ready to say goodbye and move on,” he said.

On Wednesday, the Indians re-signed Sizemore to a one-year, incentive-based contract, bringing the oft-injured former All-Star outfielder back for another chance to become the electrifying player whose career has been derailed the past three seasons by injuries and surgeries.

Sizemore’s journey into free agency didn’t take him every far.

Although there were “good offers from good organizations,” Sizemore decided to stay with the one that has patiently waited for him to get healthy. “They know me better than anybody,” Sizemore said.

Thanks to Cheto.

Repoz Posted: November 24, 2011 at 12:35 AM | 9 comment(s)
  Beats: business, indians

Friday, November 18, 2011

Tulsa World: Allie Reynolds deserves to be in the Baseball Hall of Fame

Maybe if he had more Wins and less Saverins!

If I had a vote, Reynolds would be my No. 1 selection. He should have been in the Hall of Fame a long time ago.

Reynolds was dominant in a relatively short career from 1942-54. He helped the Yankees win six World Series in his nine seasons with them. Reynolds had a 182-107 career record and sacrificed a chance for more wins by willing to be used as a reliever to help the Yankees win world titles.

...I had a chance to speak recently to his granddaughter, Stacey Reynolds-Peterson, who said, “My grandfather was a man of few words and we didn’t talk much about his baseball career. But I heard him say, `I have never asked for much, but I want more than anything to be inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame.’

“I think people need to be reminded that Allie thought of the team first before he thought of himself or his career.”

And he should not be penalized for that attitude that kept him from reaching 200 career wins. His Hall of Fame batterymate, Yogi Berra, has recently made a Hall of Fame pitch on Facebook for Reynolds.

 

Repoz Posted: November 18, 2011 at 10:46 AM | 94 comment(s)
  Beats: hall of fame, history, indians, sabermetrics, yankees

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Murray Chass: A GOOD POLICY IN NEED OF REVISION

Selig gets and takes credit for the [minority interviewing and hiring] program, and I suppose he deserves it because he was the commissioner who implemented it, and he did it before the National Football League instituted a similar program, the Rooney Rule. ...


This off-season clubs created openings for six general managers and five managers. A total of seven members of minorities were interviewed. White male interviewees numbered at least three times that number.


Clubs don’t always include minorities in their interviews, and the commissioner often shrugs it off, offering some lame excuse for the team. ...

But when Selig exempts teams, he misses the point of his own policy. The idea is to allow minorities to be exposed to the interviewing process and to enable themselves to be exposed to other teams for possible future consideration. No interview, no exposure. ...

Since the end of the 2009 season baseball has had nine subtractions and only three additions among minority general managers and managers. But two of the additions, Guillen and Fredi Gonzalez, also count among the subtractions, and the third addition, Edwin Rodriguez, became a subtraction when he resigned last season from his managing job with the Marlins.

In other words, no new minority appears on baseball’s landscape. ...

From what I have been able to piece together – Major League Baseball will not disclose lists of candidates for each team – three members of minorities (one each Hispanic, black and female) were interviewed for six general manager openings, two for the same opening, and four (three Hispanic, one black) were interviewed for five managerial vacancies, one candidate by two teams.

That’s not exactly a torrent of candidates. If Selig is “quite satisfied that all the clubs have done what they’re supposed to do,” he needs to set a higher standard. How can Selig be satisfied that Major League Baseball has only seven people who are considered worthy of being interviewed for top jobs? He shouldn’t be satisfied; he should be embarrassed.

bobm Posted: November 13, 2011 at 03:34 PM | 8 comment(s)
  Beats: angels, arizona, business, cardinals, cubs, dodgers, indians, mets, miami, nationals, orioles, padres, rays, red sox, tigers, twins, white sox

Friday, November 11, 2011

Indians’ newest addition Derek Lowe wants to take command

Lowe: Never Stop Improvising.

Asked if he had altered his arsenal of pitches the past few years, he said: “I’m not at the stage of my career to start throwing a knuckleball. But I started throwing a cutter a couple of years ago. I’ve become a breaking ball pitcher, and for me, that’s not the way to go.

“I have to be a fastball pitcher, a guy who throws down and away. Last year, that was my problem. I have to get back to throwing my fastball, to commanding my fastball.”

Lowe has been known as a sinker, slider guy, a pitcher who depends on inducing batters to beat the ball into the dirt. He believes he is on he way to becoming that pitcher again.

“I got into such a mechanical funk — [pitching coach] Roger McDowell and I took note of it — but I couldn’t stop it. My pitching was not competitive, to be honest. But you learn from it and make sure it doesn’t happen again.”

...Since the end of the season, Lowe thinks he has made progress in fixing his delivery.

“I started working out a month ago,”’ he said. “So I’ve been working on it, trying to get that muscle memory back. [The defect] already has gone away, but I have to make sure I stay on top of the ball and do the other things that all pitchers have to do.”

Repoz Posted: November 11, 2011 at 10:40 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: braves, indians

Tuesday, November 08, 2011

Keri: Cleveland’s band of worm burners

In adding Lowe to a rotation that also includes Justin Masterson and Fausto Carmona, the Indians will feature three of this year’s top eight ground-ball-inducing starters. Throw in Ubaldo Jimenez and his above-average ground-ball rate and the Indians will field a staff unlike any other in the game. In a perennially weak division where little edges can mean a lot, the Indians may have found a new path to success, and just maybe a 2012 playoff berth.

To understand how extreme the Indians’ staff figures to be, let’s dive into some numbers. Lowe triggered grounders on 59 percent of the balls in play hit against him in 2011, Masterson 55.1 percent, and Carmona 54.8 percent. Over the past three seasons, Lowe, Masterson, and Carmona put up composite ground-ball rates of 58 percent, 56 percent, and 55 percent, respectively, three of the four highest marks in baseball. With apologies to some of the Tommy John-led staffs and other grounder-heavy rotations of the past, publicly available ground-ball data goes back just a decade. In that time, only five other teams have deployed three starters with GB rates of 50 percent or higher — four of them Cardinals staffs led by sinkerball fetishist/guru Dave Duncan. None had a higher aggregate ground-ball rate among its top three starters than what Lowe, Masterson, and Carmona put up this year.

Any way of getting more innings per start per starter sounds like a good idea to me.

Crispix Attacksel Rios Posted: November 08, 2011 at 07:12 PM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: indians, sabermetrics

Friday, November 04, 2011

Mlb.com: Thome, Phillies agree to one-year deal

I was at Citizens Bank Park a few days after Thome’s 600th career home run. The Jumbotron in left field replayed the moment and the Phils fans’ lengthy ovation was genuine. Welcome home.

Sources said Friday evening that the Phillies and Thome have agreed on a one-year contract, pending Thome passing a physical. Terms of the deal were unknown, although it seems likely to be a low-risk signing.

It is not a surprising move, but it is an interesting one. Both parties hoped to reunite during the 2011 season, but the Twins traded Thome to the Cleveland Indians in August. Thome has maintained a strong relationship with Phillies manager Charlie Manuel, who has been a big influence in his career from their time together in Cleveland. He also has fond memories of the Phillies, who traded him to the Chicago White Sox following the 2005 season to clear room for Ryan Howard.

Thome will provide a strong presence in the clubhouse and power off the bench from the left side of the plate, which the Phillies sorely lacked in 2011. But Thome also turned 41 in August and has played just 28 innings defensively since the Phillies traded him to the White Sox.

Thome has made just one appearance defensively since 2007—a token appearance at third base with the Indians this season—playing exclusively as the designated hitter for the White Sox, Twins and Indians. Thome joined the Los Angeles Dodgers for the final month of the 2009 season, making 17 at-bats as a pinch-hitter.

AndrewJ Posted: November 04, 2011 at 11:51 PM | 45 comment(s)
  Beats: indians, phillies, twins

Thursday, November 03, 2011

Kilgore: Grady Sizemore ‘not limiting his choices’ in free agency

After the Cleveland Indians declined to exercise their 2012 option on him this weekend, free agent center fielder Grady Sizemore has received interest from several teams and is willing to play anywhere, his agent Joe Urbon said.

“He’s open to anything,” said Urbon, who is part of CAA Sports. “He’s not limiting his choices at all.”

...In choosing his next team, Sizemore wants a place he can prove himself again. He would prefer center field – the Nationals’ greatest area of need – but would play a corner position if that provided the best chance to play.

“He wants to have an opportunity that will allow him to show he’s still the elite player he’s been,” Urbon said. “In a perfect world, he’d love to play center field. You can’t ignore the fact that’s where he won two Gold Gloves, where he’s been a three-time all star. When healthy, he’s one of the best players in the game. But if he feels the best opportunity is for him play in a corner spot, then he has the ability to do that.”

...Sizemore’s situation has little precedent – a player becoming one of the game’s best by his mid-20s before suffering injuries and becoming a free agent before age 30. The risk in signing him would be significant, but so would the upside.

Thanks to TR.

Repoz Posted: November 03, 2011 at 10:27 AM | 29 comment(s)
  Beats: business, indians, nationals

Monday, October 31, 2011

Twitter: Indians acquire Derek Lowe

The offseason moves start?

Creditable sources inform me that #Braves P Derek Lowe is being informed as we speak that he has been traded to the #Indians

Mike Emeigh Posted: October 31, 2011 at 04:47 PM | 57 comment(s)
  Beats: braves, indians

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Some of baseball’s best teams fell short of title

The 2011 Pirates just missed the cut.

The ’73 Reds lie in contrast with the 2001 Seattle Mariners, whose 116 wins tied for the most ever in a season. The Mariners lost to the Yankees in the ALCS that year, assuring them of a high spot on the list of top non-champions. But they still didn’t impress quite as much as the Reds did. The unbalanced American League produced four teams (29 percent of the league) with 96 or more losses that year (there was only one such NL team in 1973), giving the Mariners a power rank /standard deviation score of 2.45, good for third on the list behind the Reds and the 2005 Cardinals (2.75), a team that took its division by 11 games and won 100 games during a season in which no NL team hit the 100-loss mark. Another renowned post season loser, the 109-win Baltimore Orioles of 1969 who dropped the World Series to the “Miracle Mets” (those pesky Mets again), also fall lower on the list than you might expect (No. 10) – the expansion that added two teams to the AL that year inflating their win total.

Others in the great-but-we-hardly-knew-ye club: Cincinnati’s 1973 cousins, the 1970 Reds (2.39), who won their division by 14 ½ games and swept the Pirates in the NL playoffs before falling to Baltimore in the World Series, the 1973 Dodgers (2.35), a dominant team that didn’t even make the playoffs thanks to the misfortune of playing in the Reds’ division, and the 1995 Cleveland Indians (2.34), a power laden club led by Albert Belle and Manny Ramirez(notes) that finished thirty games ahead of the second place Royals on their way to the AL flag, only to drop a six-game World Series to the Atlanta Braves.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: October 23, 2011 at 03:47 AM | 2 comment(s)
  Beats: athletics, braves, cardinals, dodgers, indians, mariners, orioles, reds

Monday, October 17, 2011

Officer.com: Fla. Trooper’s Death Haunts Family After 50 Years

Even though Baseball-Reference has Edwin Gasque as still being alive!

The University of Tampa gave Eddie a full scholarship to play baseball. He pitched so well for two years, the Cleveland Indians drafted him and gave him a $25,000 bonus and a ticket to the minor leagues.

At 19, he won 13 games for the Daytona Beach Islanders. He met Kate at the beach and they married on Sept. 22, 1951. The next season, “The Big Q” won 20 of 27 decisions. He expected Cleveland would call him up any minute, but the Indians already had four of baseball’s best pitchers: Bob Feller, Mike Garcia, Bob Lemon and Early Wynn.

On June 29, 1952, Eddie and Kate celebrated the arrival of a daughter they named Katherine Ann. A few months later, the Army came calling. Pvt. Gasque’s assignment for the next two years: baseball. The 220-pound right-hander pitched the Third Army to the service championship.

After his discharge, he played three more seasons for Cleveland’s minor league teams. In Indianapolis, his roommate on road trips was 21-year-old Roger Maris, who would go on to break Babe Ruth’s single-season home run record as one of the greatest of all New York Yankees.

Eddie, meanwhile, grew tired of the travel. He suffered several injuries, including a broken bone in his throwing arm during winter league competition in Venezuela. At 28, with a wife, daughter and 3-year-old son, he yearned for a more traditional life.

Repoz Posted: October 17, 2011 at 02:25 PM | 24 comment(s)
  Beats: history, indians, minor leagues, obituaries

Monday, October 10, 2011

Keeping Stadium Neighborhoods Alive in the Off-Season

There’s only one thing more depressing come October than the end of baseball season: the sight of an empty ballpark. All those vacant seats, the hot-dog concessions closed, the field empty, and the gates padlocked until the following spring.

It’s a bitter scene for baseball lovers. But it’s an economic conundrum for cities, too.

“A large percentage of most facilities built in the last 25 years have been financed with public money,” says Patrick Rishe, an associate professor of economics at Webster University. “That creates a problem, because whether you’re talking about football, or baseball in particular, what else are you going to do with those facilities?”

There’s an extensive debate among economists about whether public financing for stadiums is ever as good a deal for cities as sports fans would like to believe. But at least this much is certain: the economics of empty stadiums are grim…..

Progressive Field in Cleveland may have come up with the best solution yet to the empty ballpark. Last year for the first time, the team converted the field into a vast winter playground. The Indians laid an ice track around the field for skaters and built a snow-tubing hill from the bleachers onto the outfield. “Snow Days” drew to downtown Cleveland last winter about 50,000 people who otherwise would have been bundled up at home. And because Progressive Field sits nestled in the city’s downtown (when it was constructed in the early 1990s, planners intentionally spurned surface parking lots), the event fed into the surrounding entertainment district and restaurants.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: October 10, 2011 at 02:20 PM | 85 comment(s)
  Beats: business, indians

Wednesday, October 05, 2011

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 10-5-2011

AP via Calgary Herald, October 5, 1986:

Cleveland Indians’ pitcher Phil Niekro, who has won 311 games, added another accomplishment to his illustrious career Saturday.  The 47-year-old knuckleball pitcher stole his first base—literally.

...

Niekro, in full uniform and wearing a red napkin over his face like a mask, burst out of Cleveland’s first-base dugout.  Niekro ran towards second base and dove headfirst into the bag.  Niekro looked up at second base umpire Vic Voltaggio, who gave a safe signal, and then pulled the bag out of the ground.  Niekro then sprinted into the Cleveland dugout, holding the base as a crowd of 11,991 cheered.

Being an Indians fan in the ‘80s wasn’t exactly what I’d call fun, but this is one of my fondest memories of that era.

Jefferson Manship (Dan Lee) Posted: October 05, 2011 at 09:16 AM | 21 comment(s)
  Beats: dugout, hall of fame, history, indians

Monday, October 03, 2011

Baseball Prospectus: On The Beat—The next managers

Some usual, and some not so usual, managerial suspects from John Perrotto.

They call it the Silly Season in NASCAR. It is that time right after the stock car season ends, in which drivers and pit crews began jumping from one team to another, the sport’s version of free agency.

What happened last week could be described as Major League Baseball’s version of the Silly Season for managers.

TerpNats Posted: October 03, 2011 at 02:34 PM | 9 comment(s)
  Beats: braves, cubs, giants, indians, miami, nationals, phillies, rays, red sox, white sox

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

TRACER: Bill Veeck’s Satchel Paige vs Joe Dimaggio anecdote

Bill Veeck was known for telling some wonderful tales and so I decided to see if one of his tales was actually true.

Joe Dimaggio had trouble hitting Satchel Paige, partly-I suppose-because Satch made him wait. Satch once committed the ultimate insult of walking a man deliberately to get at Joe, and then getting Joe to pop out. It was DiMaggio’s temperament to be a solid professional, to show no emotion, but you knew that Joe burned inwardly at the gratuitous slap and was hurting to get back at Satch. And so Satch would fiddle around on the mound until he saw he had Joe anxious, then he’d give him the three loop-de-loop windups and have Joe ready to catch the ball in his teeth and spit it out by the time it got the plate. Page 238 Hustler’s Handbook Ivan R. Dee edition

So did Paige ever IBB walk a player to get to Joe and how did Joe do against Paige?

Paige shows up in the major leagues in 1948 and plays for Veeck’s Indians until 1949. He then shows up with Veeck’s Browns in 1951 which is also Joe’s last season. So we have three seasons in which Paige was in the AL and Dimaggio was playing.

In 1948 Paige faces the Yankees 5 times for a total of 7.2 innings. Fortunately we have PBP for all 5 of those games. So did it happen in 1948? Nope. Paige faced Dimaggio twice and got him to fly out and strike out (though Joe did reach base on that strikeout) . The strikeout was to lead off the inning and the flyout did not happen after a walk. In fact he didn’t walk anybody in that game and he only walked one Yankee and that was in a game in which he didn’t face Dimaggio.

In 1949 Paige faced the Yankees 4 times for a total of 9 and a third innings. That year, according to Retrosheet, Paige had no IBB against the Yankees but he did have 3 walks against them. So perhaps one of those was of the unintentional intentional variety. Well, in Satch’s only start against the Yankees Dimaggio did not play and that was the game in which Paige gave up his 3 walks. So we definitely know it didn’t happen this year. Joe was 0-3 against Paige this year with a pop out, fly out, and a strike out. One of the outs had Joe as the leadoff hitter of the inning while the other two outs came after a double play and a flyout.

So all we have left is 1951 and in that year Paige faces the Yankees 3 times for a total of 14 and a third innings. Unfortunately Retrosheet has only PBP for two of the three games against the Yankees that year. Paige does give up 7 walks to the Yankees this year though none of them are recorded as IBB. Perhaps some of them were since it appears Retrosheet has none of his walks recorded as IBB for that year. In Paige’s first start he gives up 5 walks but Dimaggio did not play that day. In their final matchup of the season Dimaggio faces him once and hits into a fielder’s choice. So that just leaves us with the one game in which we only have the boxscore. In that game Paige pitches 4.1 innings and gives up one walk. Unfortunately the other two Browns’ pitchers give up 4 walks so there are a ton of walks to go around. Woodling batted in front of Dimaggio and he did draw a walk. I believe Paige faced him Joe 2 times in that game. So we’ll have to go to the newspapers to find out and the newspapers reveai that Woodling was walked by Pillette in the 4th and not by Paige. Paige walked Joe Collins who subbed for Johnny Mize in the 6th spot while Joe Dimaggio was in the 4th spot. Dimaggio goes 0-2 against Paige in that game and might have struck him out once or twice.

So Joe never faced Paige during the regular season after somebody else had been walked, intentionally or otherwise. Perhaps it happened during spring training. The Yankees held their Spring Training in St. Pete’s during this era except for 1951 when they played in Phoenix. The Indians after WWII moved out to Arizona so it is unlikely that Paige and Dimaggio faced each other when Paige was an Indian. The Browns it appears held their spring training in Burbank, CA in 1951. So it doesn’t appear that his could have happened during spring training.

I’m not sure if they still had exhibition games in the late 40’s and early 50’s or if Veeck heard about some barnstorming game from the 30’s but it appears this part of the story is false.

But on the other hand Dimaggio was 0-8 against Paige so Bill Veeck was very much correct in saying Joe wasn’t very good against Paige.

McCoy Posted: September 28, 2011 at 07:40 PM | 9 comment(s)
  Beats: baseball geeks, cardinals, hall of fame, history, indians, negro leagues, orioles, yankees

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

L.A. Times: Frank McCourt goes on a fishing expedition

On deck in the Dodgers’ bankruptcy case: the Florida Marlins?

Could be, if Frank McCourt gets his way. As the bankruptcy proceedings increasingly resemble a grudge match cloaked in legal briefs, with Bud Selig threatening to banish the Dodgers from the league in order to rid it of McCourt, the Dodgers’ owner might respond by trying to take down the commissioner.

The Marlins could be in the collateral damage.

In July, U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Kevin Gross wrote of what he called “the underlying feud between the Commissioner and … Frank McCourt” and added: “It appears that their dispute will shortly be before the Court.”

Game on.

Selig’s argument for kicking out McCourt boils down to this: You consented to our rules, you broke our rules, and we don’t want you in our club any more.

“Compliance with the Baseball Agreements is the price of membership in Major League Baseball,” league attorneys wrote in a court filing Friday.

And what is most prominent among Selig’s grievances?

“A Club owner must be well-capitalized and cannot use the team as a personal ‘cash cow,’ ” the filing read.

That could bring us to the Marlins — perhaps uncomfortably for Selig, and for Jeffrey Loria, the team’s owner.


Sunday, September 25, 2011

Jim Thome made what could be his last appearance at Progressive Field—as a third baseman

hellodes adds…“Fantastic news for people who have Jim Thome in leagues with a “one appearance” eligibility rule:”

The crowd got a big surprise when Jim Thome made what could be his last appearance at Progressive Field—as a third baseman. The 41-year-old slugger took the position for one pitch in the ninth.

Thome got a standing ovation as a pinch-hitter in the eighth. When he walked, the crowd booed Twins pitcher Glen Perkins. Moments later, they cheered again as Thome went to third—where he started his career in 1991. He had not played there since Sept. 29, 1996. The next year, he moved to first base and after 2002 played for four teams, including the Twins, until returning to Cleveland last month.

Thome has 604 homers, eighth on the career list, and has not announced if he will return for a 22nd season in 2012. On Friday night, the Indians unveiled plans for a statue in his honor at the ballpark.

Repoz Posted: September 25, 2011 at 10:26 PM | 2 comment(s)
  Beats: game recaps, indians, twins

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