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Monday, October 04, 2021


Yankees vs. Red Sox
Gerrit Cole vs. Nathan Eovaldi

Cardinals vs. Dodgers
Adam Wainwright vs. Mas Scherzer

Hombre Brotani Posted: October 04, 2021 at 09:39 PM | 425 comment(s)
  Beats: omnichatter

Los Angeles Dodgers OF Mookie Betts leads MLB in jersey sales; 4 Dodgers in top 10

Mookie Betts and the reigning World Series champion Los Angeles Dodgers had four of the top-10-selling jerseys in Major League Baseball this season.

Betts’ No. 50 uniform claimed the top spot for the second straight year after he was acquired before the 2020 season from the Boston Red Sox. He’s joined in the top 10 by teammates Clayton Kershaw at five, Cody Bellinger at six and World Series MVP Corey Seager at eight. Kershaw and Seager are set to become free agents.

Betts was followed at No. 2 by Padres star Fernando Tatis Jr., who signed a $340 million, 14-year deal to remain with San Diego prior to the season and then played his way into the thick of the National League MVP race.

Ronald Acuña Jr. of the Atlanta Braves was third ...

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: October 04, 2021 at 04:53 PM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: jersey sales, mookie betts

Record-breaking umpire Joe West to retire after postseason

Umpire Joe West has officially informed Major League Baseball he will retire after the postseason.

West, 68, broke the record for most games umpired, held by Bill Klem, when he was behind the plate for No. 5,376 in May.

“Breaking the record was the goal,” West told ESPN on Monday. “I thought I would do it last year but the season got a little messed up and I don’t think it was right to work until the point of the record then just quit.”

Known as a colorful figure, West has been a lightning rod for controversy at times over his storied career, but has always been considered one of the best at his profession by those in the game.

When he set the mark for most games umpired, Hall of Fame manager Tony La Russa called him “the perfect guy ...

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: October 04, 2021 at 04:33 PM | 36 comment(s)
  Beats: joe west, umpires

New York Mets move on from manager Luis Rojas after third-place finish in NL East

Luis Rojas was let go as manager of the New York Mets on Monday after two losing seasons.

The team declined its option on Rojas’ contract for 2022, making the announcement a day after finishing third in the NL East at 77-85 in Steve Cohen’s first year of ownership. The move was no surprise, the first of several significant changes coming again this offseason for a club in constant turmoil.

“I want to share such heartfelt gratitude to so many in the Mets organization for not only the last two seasons as manager, but for the last 16 years in a variety of roles,” Rojas said in a statement released by the team.

“We live in a results-oriented business, and am deeply disappointed for our staff and fans that we didn’t reach our goals this ...

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: October 04, 2021 at 04:32 PM | 5 comment(s)
  Beats: luis rojas, mets

Gio Urshela catch: Yankees infielder goes all out, makes running grab while falling into Rays dugout

New York Yankees shortstop Gio Urshela remained in the game during Sunday’s regular-season finale against the Tampa Bay Rays after making a sensational running catch to end the top of the sixth inning.

MuttsIdolCochrane Posted: October 04, 2021 at 11:40 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: who caught gio

Inside the Padres’ collapse: Manager, GM under scrutiny after club crumbles down the stretch

Sub required.

On Oct. 24, 2019, Preller hired a manager even more obscure than Green. Tingler had never played above Double A. Aside from a stint in the Dominican Winter League, he had never managed above rookie ball. On the day he was introduced to the media, Preller pushed back against the idea that Tingler would operate as a mere extension of the front office. Yet multiple people with the team anticipated there would be less pushback than there was with Green.

“He (hired) someone he feels like he can tell what to do,” one employee said.

Now, almost two years later, Tingler has come under siege. Many of his own players have second-guessed his leadership and decision-making. In an interview this week with MLB Network radio, Tingler ...

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: October 04, 2021 at 09:06 AM | 24 comment(s)
  Beats: padres

Sunday, October 03, 2021

Here’s the 2022 Draft order

It marks the second time in four years the Orioles have the top pick after they selected Adley Rutschman, currently the No. 1 prospect in baseball, in 2019. Baltimore also had the top pick back in 1989, taking Ben McDonald.

The D-backs (No. 2), Rangers (No. 3), Pirates (No. 4) and Nationals (No. 5) round out the top five. The Nats haven’t had a top 10 pick since 2011, when they took Anthony Rendon at No. 6, a year after nabbing Bryce Harper No. 1 overall in 2010 and Stephen Strasburg with the top overall selection in 2009. The Cubs, picking at No. 7, are in the top 10 for the first time since taking Ian Happ at No. 9 in 2015, the last of four straight top-10 picks.

The Mets will pick twice in the top 15, getting the No. 11 pick as ...

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: October 03, 2021 at 11:28 PM | 5 comment(s)
  Beats: draft

Boston Red Sox to host New York Yankees in AL wild-card game

The Boston Red Sox will host the New York Yankees in the American League wild-card game Tuesday night after clutch hits by their biggest stars helped to avoid several Game 163 scenarios.

Aaron Judge drove home the winning run with a one-out single in the ninth inning of the Yankees’ 1-0 win over the Tampa Bay Rays on Sunday while Red Sox slugger Rafael Devers’ 2-run homer in the ninth inning broke a 5-5 tie with the Washington Nationals.

Yankees shortstop Gio Urshela made a Jeter-esque catch, charging recklessly into the visiting dugout, and New York finished the year 92-70, punching a fifth consecutive postseason ticket after nearly falling into a labyrinth of tiebreaker scenarios.

Rougned Odor led off the ninth with a single ...

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: October 03, 2021 at 07:10 PM | 49 comment(s)
  Beats: red sox, yankees

Rockies name interim GM Bill Schmidt permanent general manager

The Colorado Rockies have wrapped up their general manager search, and it doesn’t appear to have been much of a search at all. On Saturday, the team announced Bill Schmidt will have the interim label removed and take over as general manager permanently. Schmidt has served as interim general manager since his predecessor Jeff Bridich stepped down in April.

“After five months as our interim general manager, it became increasingly clear that Bill was the right person to lead this franchise forward,” Rockies president and CEO Greg Feasel said in a statement. “We already knew Bill as a trusted and respected baseball professional within the game. He came into a challenging situation and quickly Impacted the play on and off the field.”

Schmidt ...

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: October 03, 2021 at 11:55 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: bill schmidt, rockies

Mets to contact Theo Epstein for open president of baseball operations job, report says

The New York Mets want to bring in a proven name during the offseason to lead the team’s baseball operations. They will start their search soon with one of the biggest names available.

According to MLB Network’s Jon Heyman, the Mets will soon reach out to former Boston Red Sox and Chicago Cubs general manager Theo Epstein to gauge his interest in the job.

Heyman also reported the Mets will seek permission to Oakland A’s president Billy Beane and Milwaukee Brewers president David Stearns once their respective seasons are over.

“Mets will soon contact Theo Epstein regarding their Baseball President job,” Heyman tweeted, “and plan to request permission to interview Billy Beane and David Stearns after their clubs are out (A’s ...

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: October 03, 2021 at 11:54 AM | 19 comment(s)
  Beats: mets, theo epstein

Saturday, October 02, 2021

Padres To Fire Manager Jayce Tingler

Breaking news. I’m not sure if I’m impressed that the Padres decided to do this as soon as possible, or disgusted that they couldn’t even wait until after the weekend.

Hombre Brotani Posted: October 02, 2021 at 03:43 PM | 18 comment(s)
  Beats: jayce tingler, padres

Los Angeles Dodgers’ Clayton Kershaw exits with left forearm discomfort; playoff availability ‘not looking great’

Los Angeles Dodgers manager Dave Roberts saw Clayton Kershaw occasionally wince as he navigated through the Milwaukee Brewers’ lineup on Friday night and thought—hoped—he was merely upset at not getting some strike calls. It turned out to be far more serious—a recurrence of the forearm/elbow inflammation that kept Kershaw out for an extended period earlier this season, forcing an abrupt exit in the top of the second inning.

With the playoffs approaching, Kershaw’s season is seemingly over. With his contract expiring, it’s fair to wonder if Kershaw’s illustrious Dodgers career is over as well.

Kershaw, still in uniform moments after the Dodgers’ 8-6 comeback victory, called it “a tough blow.”

“It just got bad enough to where I couldn’t ...

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: October 02, 2021 at 11:50 AM | 24 comment(s)
  Beats: clayton kershaw, dodgers

World Series Urgency Index ‘21: Who MUST win?

(W)e put together the Playoff Urgency Index. When you factor in things like past postseason pains, pending free agents, payroll obligations and prospect potency, we can sort the remaining clubs on a relative scale—10 being the most urgent, 1 being the most relaxed.

Note: We are including all teams still mathematically alive for the postseason, which is 12 in total at the moment, even though only 10 will ultimately qualify for the playoffs.

4. White Sox
Urgency Index: 8, or how old Luis Robert was the last time the Sox won it all

While the AL Central champion White Sox do have a lot of young talent on their roster, they also rely greatly on a 34-year-old Lance Lynn and José Abreu and a 32-year-old Yasmani Grandal. The Sox’s farm ...

Jose Is An Absurd Balladeer Posted: October 02, 2021 at 11:36 AM | 5 comment(s)
  Beats: world series

Friday, October 01, 2021

OT - 2021 NFL thread

Quarantine procedure back in effect.

Lance Reddick! Lance him! Posted: October 01, 2021 at 06:41 PM | 26 comment(s)
  Beats: nfl, off-topic, quarantine

OT - October 2021 College Football thread

Like freshly laundered linens, free of the NFL’s stink.

Lance Reddick! Lance him! Posted: October 01, 2021 at 06:40 PM | 290 comment(s)
  Beats: college football, off-topic

Adam Wainwright, St. Louis Cardinals reach deal for 2022, sources say

The St. Louis Cardinals have reached a one-year extension for 2022 with ace Adam Wainwright, sources confirmed to ESPN on Friday.

Terms of the deal are not yet available. A news conference has been scheduled for 3 p.m. ET.

The right hander has had a solid 2021 campaign and will start the National League Wild Card game for the Cardinals next week. He’s 17-7 with a 3.05 ERA in 32 starts including three complete games and a shutout. His 206 innings pitched so far are the most for him since 2014.

Wainwright has won 10 of his last 11 decisions with 11 quality starts during that span.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: October 01, 2021 at 02:41 PM | 3 comment(s)
  Beats: adam wainwright, cardinals

Why Juan Soto should be the National League MVP

Since the all-star break, Soto’s on-base percentage is .535. It’s a number that should be stared at and marveled over. He has reached base in more than half of his plate appearances in what approaches half the season. Given that reaching base invariably helps your team — indeed, it is the base objective of any appearance in the batter’s box — that percentage is staggering. Then, add some context: According to, here are the hitters who have reached base at a higher clip in the second half of any season in history: Barry Bonds and Babe Ruth three times apiece, Ted Williams twice, and Rogers Hornsby once.

I did not realize how well he was doing in the second half.

Russlan thinks deGrom is da bomb Posted: October 01, 2021 at 01:45 PM | 27 comment(s)
  Beats: juan soto, nationals

Rosenthal: This year’s races demonstrate the potential issues MLB would face if the playoffs were expanded to 14 teams

Sub required.

With all due respect to fans of the Phillies, Reds and Padres, do any of those teams objectively deserve a postseason berth?

The answer is no. Yet, under Major League Baseball’s original plan for expanding the playoffs from 10 to 14 teams, two of those three clubs would qualify for wild cards. And in the American League, four of the five current wild-card contenders would be assured of playing in October.

Too many mediocre clubs. Not enough urgency. A plan too flawed to implement, at least in its initial, proposed form.

I’m not opposed on principle to more teams in the postseason. A larger field is inevitable once the league expands from 30 to 32 clubs, which should happen at some point this decade after, ahem, the ...

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: October 01, 2021 at 12:46 PM | 12 comment(s)
  Beats: expanded playoffs

Why Are MLB’s Worst Teams Getting Worse?

They have plenty of miserable company. Pittsburgh was the fourth team this year to lose 100 or more games. The D-backs sit at 109 losses with three games to play. The Orioles have 107 defeats and the Rangers have 100.

This is not normal. This is only the third time in MLB history that four teams have lost 100 or more games in the same season.

But maybe this is the new normal. It also happened in 2019 (with a 60-game 2020 season in between). We are in the age of utter futility when it comes to bad teams. In 2019, there were also four 100-loss teams. In 2018 there were three.

There have been as many 100-loss teams in the past three full seasons (2018, 2019 and 2021) as there were from 2007-2017 combined.

Looked at from a slightly ...

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: October 01, 2021 at 11:38 AM | 34 comment(s)
  Beats: tanking

Fit to be tied? AL Wild Card chaos abounds

Example: Yankees go 0-3; Red Sox go 2-1, Mariners go 2-1, Blue Jays go 3-0

What happens next: The above scenario is the only possible four-way tie, and it means all four teams finish with 91 wins (which is Toronto’s win ceiling). Each team would choose or receive an A, B, C or D designation. The club with the highest winning percentage in games among the tied clubs chooses first, second-highest chooses second, etc. In this scenario, the Red Sox (24-21 against the others) get first choice, the Blue Jays (22-22) choose second, the Yankees (22-23) choose third and the Mariners (15-17) get the leftover spot.

On Monday, Club A (likely the Red Sox) would host Club B, and Club C (likely the Blue Jays) would host Club D. So for the Yankees, it ...

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: October 01, 2021 at 10:13 AM | 58 comment(s)
  Beats: blue jays, mariners, red sox, yankees

Carlos Correa carries Astros to fourth AL West title in five years

It’s the fourth division title in five seasons and 10th overall for the Astros. They’re in the playoffs for the fifth consecutive season, extending a franchise record.

“That sounds pretty special,” Correa said.

The Astros will open the AL Division Series on Oct. 7 against the Chicago White Sox—home field for that best-of-five matchup is still to be determined. Houston went 5-2 against the White Sox this year.

Houston was a wild-card team last year in manager Dusty Baker’s first season with the club. So where did this division-clinching victory rate on his list?

“Every time you win, it ranks higher than the last time. And you never get tired of winning,” he said.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: October 01, 2021 at 10:12 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: astros

Atlanta Braves overcome ‘ups and downs’ to clinch fourth straight NL East title

he Atlanta Braves have done it all before—many, many times before—but this one felt a bit different.

More satisfying, for sure.

After all, the Braves floundered under .500 much of the season. They endured devastating injuries and grim legal issues. They had to essentially rebuild their outfield at the trade deadline.

And yet, there they were Thursday night, swigging champagne, puffing on cigars and celebrating an NL East championship.

Ian Anderson turned in another dominant pitching performance, Jorge Soler and Austin Riley homered to power the offense, and the Braves clinched their fourth straight division title by completing a sweep of the Philadelphia Phillies with a 5-3 victory.

“We were just trying to hang in there and pull this ...

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: October 01, 2021 at 10:12 AM | 6 comment(s)
  Beats: braves

Brother’s Gonna Work it Out: Dave Parker, Sheff & the 1990 Brewers

“Harry Dalton had heard about my work with young players like Eric Davis, Barry Larkin and Kal Daniels and was hoping I could be a positive influence on Sheffield. Milwaukee offered me a raise, a nice signing bonus, two years guaranteed and an option for a third with a buyout. As we left the room, Barry was very excited. He did a nice job managing the situation. Once we got in the elevator, I took him a little by surprise.

‘Check with Alderson one more time,’ I told Barry.”

djordan Posted: October 01, 2021 at 06:56 AM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: brewers, bud selig, dave parker, gary sheffield, mlb

Thursday, September 30, 2021

50 Years Ago Baseball Left Washington In A Chaotic Stampede

After Bobby Murcer grounded out to Grzenda for the second out, Horace Clarke came up to bat. “I wasted some time, kicking dirt around, and Horace stood in that batting circle taking those practice swings,” Grzenda recalled. “And I yelled, ‘Come on, let’s go!’ I looked around, and it was over. They came over the fence, and there was actually dust flying. There were hundreds that came over the fence. It looked like a herd of cattle coming in those old movies, when they stampede.”

Did a now-aged turnstile-jumper with little respect for authority lead the stampede? We may never know.

The Yankee Clapper Posted: September 30, 2021 at 09:33 PM | 11 comment(s)
  Beats: alcohol, fan behavior, forfeits, riots, washington senators

Dodgers Albert Pujols Hits the COVID-19 Injured List

As it turns out, Pujols, the future Hall of Famer, was feeling the effects of his second shot of the COVID-19 vaccination. This injury was for the greater good. Dodgers manager Dave Roberts had the update.

“It’s a covid IL. He got his second shot and he just didn’t feel good after getting it. As far as playing in a Major League game. So just to kind of give him a day to see where he’s at tomorrow, it was an easy move to activate Cody [Bellinger].”

This is normal for most COVID-19 vaccinations, thankfully. Some people feel worse after the first shot, some after the second. The probability is that Pujols should be back giving his teammates hugs by Wednesday or Thursday.

I intend for this to be the new COVID thread.

Lassus Posted: September 30, 2021 at 06:24 PM | 235 comment(s)
  Beats: albert pujols

If these Mets ever had a ‘core,’ it’s about to be blown up

What we’re saying is, prepare for massive changes to the team’s roster and culture, with little regard for what seemed promising during an ill-fated playoff run late in the 2019 season. No one around here is attached to that distant time.

Over the past several weeks, as we’ve talked to sources up and down the organization, three main themes emerge:

1) Quiet optimism that the baseball operations department is heading in the right direction, despite the public perception otherwise.

2) Uncertainty about who will lead the department in a few months.

3) A strong sense that the roster will look extremely different next season. Everyone is expecting significant turnover.

The third point is admittedly general. Without a president of ...

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: September 30, 2021 at 06:02 PM | 27 comment(s)
  Beats: mets

Toronto Blue Jays’ Marcus Semien sets record for homers by a primary second baseman

Blue Jays slugger Marcus Semien set a record for home runs by a primary second baseman when he hit his 44th of the season Wednesday against Yankees ace Gerrit Cole in a critical 6-5 victory.

Semien’s homer, a two-run drive into the left field bullpen, broke a tie with Davey Johnson (1973 for Atlanta), who is still credited by Elias, the official statistician for MLB, as having the most home runs by a second baseman.

Four of Semien’s home runs this season have come while he was playing shortstop, but second base is defined as his primary position as he’s made 75% or more of his starts there. Semien has made 142 of his 157 starts (90.4%) at second base this season.

Rogers Hornsby (42 home runs in 1922), Brian Dozier (42 in 2016) and Ryne ...

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: September 30, 2021 at 03:16 PM | 52 comment(s)
  Beats: marcus semien

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 9-30-2021

Alaska Daily Empire, September 30, 1921:

Participation in a World Series is the ambition of every ball player. Yet Babe Ruth has it figured that if the Yankees get into the interleague title series this fall it will cost him something approaching $50,000.

For Ruth, participating in the annual blue ribbon event of baseball, will be prevented from barnstorming this season as he did last…He received as much as $3,500 per game for playing in semiprofessional parks.
All players participating in a World Series are barred that year from engaging in any barnstorming expeditions.

That’s a weird rule. Speaking as a Cleveland fan, I really wish the Babe had been able to barnstorm during the 1921-22 offseason.

Jefferson Manship (Dan Lee) Posted: September 30, 2021 at 08:23 AM | 6 comment(s)
  Beats: dugout, history

Wednesday, September 29, 2021

Mariners move within a half-game of second AL wild-card spot; here are three reasons why the club is surging

1. Clutch hitting
The Mariners enter Wednesday last in the American League in hits and batting average. They are 13th (of 15 teams) in on-base percentage, 14th in slugging, 14th in OPS and 11th in runs.

What they have done, somehow, is raise their game hitting when it matters more. They are generally terrible at getting on base, but when they do, they start to hit. Check out this progression:

Bases empty: .211/.286/.361
Runners on: .249/.327/.423
Runners in scoring position: .260/.339/.453

Or how about this:

Low leverage: .205/.287/.337
Medium leverage: .228/.299/.397
High leverage: .274/.348/.485

Yep, the Mariners collectively have the clutch gene.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: September 29, 2021 at 10:28 PM | 20 comment(s)
  Beats: mariners

Michael A. Taylor, Kansas City Royals reach 2-year, $9M extension, sources say

Center fielder Michael A. Taylor and the Royals are in agreement on a two-year, $9 million contract extension, sources told ESPN on Wednesday, keeping the elite defensive center fielder in Kansas City as the team’s rebuild nears its next phase.

Taylor, 30, signed a one-year, $1.75 million deal with Kansas City over the winter after being outrighted by the Washington Nationals, with whom he had spent his entire major league career. While Taylor remained an enigmatic offensive performer with the Royals, he placed himself firmly in the discussion for best defensive center fielders—and best defensive player period—in baseball.

Publicly available defensive metrics often disagree on players’ defensive contributions. Not Taylor. He is the ...

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: September 29, 2021 at 06:00 PM | 6 comment(s)
  Beats: michael a. taylor, royals

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