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 on: May 06, 2019, 11:01:24 am 
Started by panxing18 - Last post by panxing18
Are the Reds seriously seeking a catching upgrade?"Let’s get one thing out of the way before we dig too much deeper here: the Mat Latos trade was nothing sort of a massive success for the Cincinnati Reds. Yonder Alonso wasn’t going to play ahead of Joey Votto Greg Holland Jersey , and hasn’t been worth Votto’s high socks since the deal. Similarly, Latos proved to be a clear upgrade over Edinson Volquez in the great rotations of 2012-2013, and even did so at a much cheaper salary. Brad Boxberger had a few great moments, but it’s hard to truly cry foul about losing a reliever who’s been worth a grand total of 1.8 bWAR in 7 years since the deal.The lone real qualm one could have with the deal was the decision to keep Devin Mesoraco over Yasmani Grandal at the time, though even Mesoraco’s case could be chalked up to freak injuries instead of mere underperformance. So, when you see a national writer like Jon Heyman continually refer to that 2011 swap as ‘ill-fated,’ know that’s frankly a big pile of bull honkey.It’s worth noting, though, that Heyman’s most recent ill-fated reference to that trade being ‘ill-fated’ came late last week in his Inside MLB Notes column at Fancred, one that included that the Reds have inquired about Grandal in free agency.In a vacuum, that’s a pretty harmless rumor. Grandal is the best free agent catcher on the market at the moment, and it’d be silly for any team not to check in with his camp to see what it is he’s looking for. Add-in that Grandal was drafted by the Reds under then-GM Walt Jocketty - who is still a part of the front office - and that he thrived under current Reds hitting coach Turner Ward when Ward was with the Los Angeles Dodgers, and it becomes a tad bit juicier.Of course, it’s not even the first catching rumor the Reds have surfaced in so far this winter, either, as they’ve also been continually linked with Miami Marlins All Star J.T. Realmuto, along with many other teams. And while you may well be able to chalk up the inquiry about Grandal as former acquaintances checking in on one another, the Realmuto news paired with the Grandal inquiry certainly makes it appear that the Reds might have interest in revamping their catching situation.Considering Tucker Barnhart was only signed to his four-year contract extension a little over one year ago - and has banked a Gold Glove since signing it - that’s a bit of an odd revelation, especially given how reasonable the dollar amount on Barnhart’s deal is. Obviously, that begs the chicken/egg question - are the Reds actively looking to upgrade from Barnhart, or are other teams so interested in acquiring Barnhart in a bigger deal that the Reds are trying to figure out what it would cost to replace him?The Cleveland Indians, for instance, have long been trying to trim payroll while maintaining a club capable of competing for another World Series appearance, and that has led to them letting Michael Brantley walk in free agency, shipping Yan Gomes to Washington, and doing everything they could to shed a few million bucks in their swap of Carlos Santana for Edwin Encarnacion. On top of that, they’re still consistently atop the rumor mill with Corey Kluber and Trevor Bauer on the block, a trade of each likely significantly reducing their 2019 payroll while bringing back big-league pieces. Kluber, in particular, has been of interest to the Reds for obvious reasons, and considering the Cleveland catching depth chart now consists of the incredibly lackluster Roberto Perez and Eric Haase in the wake of the Gomes deal - and that of Francisco Mejia to San Diego last trade deadline - perhaps Tucker is a prime piece Cleveland would desire as part of any Kluber package.To me, it seems the latter scenario is one that’s much more likely to be behind the Reds exploring the top end of the catching market. Though Barnhart’s pitch framing numbers have ranked among the worst in the game (Grandal’s have been the best, coincidentally) , he’s otherwise an incredible defender, his pitch blocking skills and ability to control the run game among the best around. He hits just enough to make for a pretty solid option back there, and at a total cost of just about $11.5 million total for the next three years (with an option for a fourth), he’s precisely the kind of bargain for every cost-conscious team out there. In other words, obviously most every team out there should have interest in him, and if he’s the kind of piece the Reds can use to land elite pitching - especially in a year where their payroll can absorb a high-priced catching replacement if needed - that’s an avenue they should realistically explore.Grandal would certainly be a pricey back-fill at catcher, to be sure. He’s average 22 dingers a year over the last four seasons, owns a career 115 OPS+, and has those previously mentioned pitch-framing numbers supporting his case. He has seemingly moved past the torn ACL and PED suspension from his earlier days - his 2018 OPS+ of 121 actually being a career best mark - and despite his struggles in the 2018 postseason he still stands to land a four-year contract that would likely be the priciest free agent deal in Reds history. It is worth noting that he’s spent a decent bit of time playing 1B in his career - 50 games in the big leagues - so he could, in theory, also help take a bit of playing time pressure off Joey Votto as Votto inches into his late 30’s, and do so with significantly better offensive production there than what the Reds could expect from Barnhart and Curt Casali.Given the acquisition of Tanner Roark and Friday’s blockbuster deal for Yasiel Puig, Alex Wood, and Matt Kemp from the Dodgers, it’s clear the Reds have every intention of reshaping this roster to the best of their ability. Catcher doesn’t exactly jump off the page as an obvious need - Tucker Barnhart ranks 15th in total fWAR over the last two years among the 29 MLB catchers with at least 600 PA in that time - but there is still room for some improvement there, especially if there’s another team out there that truly covets Barnhart and his team-friendly contract. CHICAGO (AP) — Shortly after their playoff spot was assured, the Chicago Cubs beat the Pittsburgh Pirates 7-6 on Albert Almora Jr.’s single with two outs in the 10th inning Wednesday night.The NL Central-leading Cubs clinched their fourth straight postseason appearance when Milwaukee beat St. Louis. The Brewers, who sealed a playoff slot with their win, are a half-game behind Chicago. One of them will win the NL Central, the other will play in the NL wild-card game.After Pittsburgh tied it in the ninth on a two-out, two-run double by Starling Marte, the Cubs bounced back to win. Ian Happ led off the 10th with a walk and was replaced by pinch-runner Terrance Gore. Mike Freeman’s sacrifice moved up Gore, and he took third on a groundout. Almora singled to left on an 0-2 pitch from Richard Rodriguez (4-3).Jason Heyward homered and drove in three runs for the Cubs. Javier Baez singled for his NL-leading 111th RBI as the Cubs won after blowing a five-run lead. Star third baseman Kris Bryant didn’t play because of a bruised left wrist. Jose Osuna and Corey Dickerson homered for Pittsburgh.Brandon Kintzler (3-3) got the only batter he faced in the top of the 10th to hit into a double play.BREWERS 2, CARDINALS 1ST. LOUIS (AP) — Milwaukee clinched its first playoff spot since 2011 by ensuring at least a spot in the NL wild-card game, helped when a rookie St. Louis pinch-runner fell on his way to the plate.Jhoulys Chacin pitched five shutout innings and Travis Shaw hit a pair of RBI singles to help the Brewers completed a three-game sweep.The Cardinals missed a big chance to tie it in the eighth inning. Matt Carpenter walked and was lifted for pinch-runner Adolis Garcia. Jose Martinez then hit a slow roller to third baseman Mike Moustakas, who threw wildly to first. Garcia was waved home but fell halfway to the plate, allowing second baseman Hernan Perez to easily throw him out to end the inning.Chacin (15-8), who had lost his last three decisions, gave up one run on just one hit over five innings. Xavier Cedeno, Corbin Burnes, Josh Hader and Jeremy Jeffress combined for four shutout innings as the Brewers held the Cardinals to a season-low two hits. Jeffress earned his 13th save in 18 chances.Chasen Shreve (3-4) took the loss.ROCKIES 14, PHILLIES 0DENVER (AP) — Hard-throwing German Marquez started with eight straight strikeouts to match a modern-era big league record, and Colorado routed Philadelphia to take over the NL West lead.David Dahl homered for the third straight game , and the Rockies went deep four times in all as they extending their winning streak to six.Colorado moved a half-game ahead of Los Angeles for the division lead.Marquez (14-10) allowed three hits in seven innings and struck out 11 to set a Rockies record with 221 for the season, seven more than Ubaldo Jimenez’s total in 2010. By striking out his first eight batters, he tied a post-1900 mark set by Houston’s Jim Deshaies in 1986, and equaled by the New York Mets‘ Jacob deGrom in 2014. The overall record of nine was set by New York’s Mickey Welch in an NL game in 1884.Nick Pivetta (7-14) was the loser.DIAMONDBACKS 7, DODGERS 2PHOENIX (AP) — A.J. Pollock hit a three-run homer and Arizona dropped Los Angeles to second place in the NL West.The Dodgers‘ second loss in a row put them a half-game behind Colorado.Arizona chased Ross Stripling (8-6) with three runs in the second inning and Pollock hit his three-run homer in the fifth for a 6-2 lead.Zack Greinke (15-11) overcame a shaky start to allow two runs and strike out six in six innings. Socrates Brito hit his first big league homer in two years and David Peralta hit his 30th of the season in Arizona’s final home game.ATHLETICS 9, MARINERS 3SEATTLE (AP) — Matt Olson hit a grand slam that capped a six-run fifth inning, Khris Davis added his major league-leading 47th home run and Oakland closed in on the New York Yankees for home-field advantage in next week’s AL wild-card game.Oakland (96-63) improved to a big league-best 41-21 since the All-Star break and trails the Yankees (97-61) by 1½ games. New York holds the tiebreaker to host the Oct. 3 game; the wild-card winner advances to the Division Series against AL East champion Boston.With the score 3-all, Nick Martini hit an RBI single that chased Felix Hernandez (8-14), who made his first appearance since gaining American citizenship this week. Marcus Semien added a run-scoring single against Chasen Bradford before Olson’s drive to right-center.Ryan Buchter (6-0) pitched a hitless inning in relief of Edwin Jackson, who gave up three runs and five hits in 4 1/3 innings.RAYS 8, YANKEES 7ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) — Masahiro Tanaka gave up four runs and six hits over four-plus innings in his final start before the playoffs in New York’s loss to Tampa Bay.New York started play with a 2 1/2-game lead over Oakland to host the AL wild-card game and has the tiebreaker. The Athletics played at Seattle later Wednesday night. Yankees manager Aaron Boone hasn’t decided if Tanaka, JA Happ or Luis Severino will start against Oakland.A four-run, ninth-inning rally by the Yankees came up just short against Sergio Romo, who got the final four outs for his 24th save.Tanaka (12-6) was coming off a four-inning start last Thursday in which he allowed five runs and eight hits as the Yankees lost 11-6 to Boston.Tampa Bay center fielder Kevin Kiermaier was hit by Tanaka’s pitch in the first and left two innings later with what X-rays determined was a hairline fracture of the right foot.Reliever Yonny Chirinos (5-5) went four scoreless innings.Neil Walker hit a three-run homer for New York.RED SOX 19, ORIOLES 3, 1ST GAMEORIOLES 10, RED SOX 3, 2ND GAMEBOSTON (AP) — Boston’s Chris Sale struck out eight over 4 2/3 innings in his final tuneup for an expected start in the AL Division Series opener before Baltimore salvaged a split of the day-night doubleheader.In the opener, Boston handed the Orioles a franchise-record 112th loss. A major league-best 107-52, Boston opens the Division Series at home Oct. 5 against the New York Yankees or Oakland.Sale left after giving up Adam Jones‘ go-ahead, RBI double that made it 3-2 in the fifth. He threw 92 pitches, allowing three runs and four hits.Trey Mancini had a tiebreaking two-run single off Matt Barnes (6-4) in a three-run seventh and drove in three runs. Tanner Scott (3-2) worked 2 2/3 innings of one-run relief, and Paul Fry pitched three hitless innings for his second save.In the opener, J.D. Martinez had three of Boston’s season-high 22 hits, including a three-run homer that brought his major league-leading RBIs total to 127. The Orioles (46-112) broke the franchise loss mark set by the 1939 St. Louis Browns went 43-111.David Price (16-7) settled down after an early stumble in his final tuneup before the playoffs. He allowed three runs — all in the second inning — six hits and three walks, striking out six before leaving with a 10-3 lead after five. Price is expected to start Game 2 of the AL Division Series against the New York Yankees or Oakland.Rafael Devers had four hits and six RBIs, including two homers, and Mookie Betts had two hits to raise his major league-best batting average to .346. Xander Bogaerts and Blake Swihart also homered for Boston.Renato Nunez and Trey Mancini homered for Baltimore. Ryan Meisinger (2-1) was the loser.NATIONALS 9, MARLINS 3, 7 INNINGSWASHINGTON (AP) — Bryce Harper was 0 for 4 with two strikeouts in the rain-shortened game that many expect was his last at Nationals Park as a Washington player.Harper can become a free agent at season’s end. The storm arrived as Harper stood in the on-deck circle while the last out of the seventh was recorded.Nationals rookie Victor Robles had a career-high four hits, including a three-run homer and a two-run double, and also stole a base. Brian Anderson homered for the Marlins.Wander Suero (4-1) got the win with an inning of scoreless relief. Wei-Yin Chen (6-12) was the loser.ANGELS 3 Tyler Anderson Jersey , RANGERS 2ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP) — Shohei Ohtani hit a tiebreaking homer in the eighth inning, sending the Los Angeles Angels to a three-game sweep.Ohtani had an early RBI single before he connected off Texas reliever Chris Martin (1-5), his former teammate in Japan with the Hokkaido Nippon-Ham Fighters. The two-way rookie went the opposite way for his 22nd homer of the season, bouncing it off the top of the left-field wall.Ohtani has driven in runs in three consecutive games and has 59 RBIs in his rookie season.Taylor Ward also homered for the Angels. Adrian Beltre and Jurickson Profar homered for the Rangers, who have lost four of five and eight of 10.Andrew Heaney struck out 10 and yielded two runs over seven innings in a strong finish to the Angels left-hander’s first full season back from Tommy John surgery.Jose Alvarez (6-4) pitched a perfect eighth and Jim Johnson worked the ninth for his second save.BLUE JAYS 3, ASTROS 1TORONTO (AP) — Toronto gave outgoing manager John Gibbons a winning home sendoff against celebrating Houston.Before the game, Toronto general manager Ross Atkins announced that Gibbons will not return next season. After getting the final out, closer Ken Giles gave the ball to Gibbons and the crowd rose for a standing ovation.The World Series champion Astros clinched the AL West title when Oakland lost in extra innings at Seattle well past midnight Tuesday. Several of the Astros partied at a hotel meeting room, but they held a more traditional clubhouse celebration despite the loss. Houston will open the best-of-five Division Series matchup against Cleveland at home on Oct. 5.Randal Grichuk hit a two-run homer and rookie Reese McGuire added a solo shot for Toronto. Grichuk connected off right-hander Chris Devenski in the first, his career-best 25th home run. McGuire led off the fifth with a blast to right, the first of his big league career.Joe Biagini (4-7) pitched 1 1/3 innings for the win and Giles, the seventh Toronto pitcher, needed just five pitches to wrap it up in the ninth, earning his 25th save in 25 opportunities. Devenski (2-3) allowed two runs and one hit in two innings.METS 3, BRAVES 0NEW YORK (AP) — Jacob deGrom was dominant in what likely was his final pitch for the NL Cy Young Award, throwing eight stellar innings for New York and leaving with a major league-best 1.70 ERA.DeGrom (10-9) made his final regular-season start, striking out 10 and allowing just two singles against NL East champion Atlanta. He retired the final 20 hitters after allowing a single to Johan Camargo. DeGrom gave up no more than three runs in his last 29 starts to extend his own single-season record. The All-Star ace also matched the overall mark set by Jake Arrieta in 2015-16.Seth Lugo threw a scoreless ninth for his third save.Luke Jackson (1-2) was the loser. Atlanta had won six straight.INDIANS 10, WHITE SOX 2CHICAGO (AP) — Shane Bieber remained perfect on the road with six scoreless innings, Francisco Lindor led off the game with a home run and Cleveland beat up Chicago.Bieber (11-5) improved to 7-0 on the road, setting a single-season record with most road wins without a loss by a Cleveland pitcher. The 23-year-old rookie has yet to lose a road game in 11 career starts.Edwin Encarnacion was 3 for 4 with a three-run homer and drove in four runs for the AL Central champs.Kevan Smith broke up the shutout with an RBI single with one out in the ninth off reliever Oliver Perez. Adam Engel also added an RBI single off Adam Cimber.Jace Fry (2-3) was the loser.ROYALS 6, REDS 1CINCINNATI (AP) — Rookie Heath Fillmyer struck out a career-high nine, Adalberto Mondesi tripled, stole two bases and scored twice, and Kansas City beat Cincinnati to wrap up its road schedule.Whit Merrifield, who went into the game tied for the American League lead in hits and leading in stolen bases, extended his season-high hitting streak to 16 games with a third-inning single. He also stole two bases. Alex Gordon tacked on a solo home run.The only run Fillmyer allowed was Jose Peraza’s 14th homer in the first inning. Fillmyer (4-2) allowed four hits and two walks while tying his career high with 7 1/3 innings. Fillmyer also had his first major league hit and RBI with a sixth-inning double. Cody Reed (1-3) was the loser.TWINS 11, TIGERS 4MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Johnny Field homered twice, Jorge Polanco hit a bases-loaded triple and Minnesota beat Detroit.Tyler Austin also homered and Willians Astudillo had three hits for the Twins. Christin Stewart tripled and drove in two runs for the Tigers.Tyler Duffey (2-2) earned the win with two scoreless innings of relief. Detroit starter Matthew Boyd (9-13) gave up six runs in 3 2/3 innings.

 on: May 06, 2019, 10:50:13 am 
Started by panxing18 - Last post by panxing18
A tradition like no other"Even though the Indians won Corey Kluber’s Opening Day starts in 2017 and 2018 , it wasn’t because of a rousing offensive performance. They scored a combined five runs in those two wins and only won because Kluber dominated the weak White Sox and Royals lineups. Kluber did the same today, holding the Twins to just two runs, but the offense couldn’t even put up a little bit of their bargain. Instead of two runs like they put up against Chris Sale on Opening Day 2017, the new-look Tribe lineup put up just two hits against potential breakout pitcher Jose Berrios. One, a fourth-inning double from Leonys Martin, and a single from Brad Miller in the eighth after after the Twins already scored a pair of runs and looked like they sealed game away. Miller’s hit barely made it over the glove of the Twins infield, but it was hit 97.5 miles per hour, which is an encouraging sign for Miller, and likely one of the reasons the Indians took a flyer on him with time winding down in spring training. Unfortunately Darin Erstad Jersey , he and everyone else forgot how to make contact. Miller had a pair of strikeouts, just a fraction of the 13 whiffs by Indians batters today. Tyler Naquin was by far the worst offender, having struck out in each of his three at-bats and looking competent on not a single pitch. His first at-bat? Strikeout on three pitches. His second at-bat? Strikeout on three pitchers. He managed to take it to a full count in his final at-bat of the game, but swung on a pitch that couldn’t have been any further from the plate.Not to belabor the point too much, but Berrios was so deep in his head, and he dominated the rest of the lineup as well. The offense looked very reminiscent of early-2018 when they were doing nothing but popping up or striking out. Today they struck out 13 times and flied out 10 times — 23 of their allotted 27 outs.No one got hurt, though, and there are still 161 more games to go. And Francisco Lindor will be back eventually. We can all cling to those truths while we wait for Jose Ramirez and everyone else to warm up literally and figuratively. On the mound, Kluber showed signs that he might be more on par with his performance last year than the pure strikeout machine of year’s past. He held Twins batters hitless through five innings , but relied mostly on weak hits over swings and misses, of which he only had 13. His four-seamer also averaged 92.2 miles per hour and peaked at 92.7, right in line with his approach on the mound last season. Still, it’s hard to argue with carrying a perfect game into the fifth inning and no-hitter into a sixth, especially against a lineup that’s supposed to shock people like the Twins. In other important news, the Indians sported their new block lettering navy away jerseys today and they looked great, even if they were a little on the Red Sox-y side. I may never get over the giant guitar on the sleeve, though a few runs here and there will help numb the cringe. TIME TO BURN ALL YOUR ZACK GRANITE JERSEYS!"WhiteFanposts Fanshots Sections Twinkie Town Farm ReportSatire, Irreverence Shohei Ohtani Jersey , & Other HumorGame RecapsNewsTwins trade Zack Granite to Rangers for minor league pitcher Xavier MooreNew,23commentsTIME TO BURN ALL YOUR ZACK GRANITE JERSEYS!ESTShareTweetShareShareTwins trade Zack Granite to Rangers for minor league pitcher Xavier MooreI WILL REMEMBER YOU!!!!!!Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY SportsZack Granite — that feisty, fast little outfielder the Twins called up sometimes when Byron Buxton injured himself — is no longer a Twin. News broke Sunday that the organization traded Granite to the Rangers in exchange for minor league pitcher Xavier Moore.Was this a good move for the Twins? Probably. Although Granite was named the Twins’ Minor League Player of the Year in 2016, he hasn’t really panned out as a top prospect. He’s only seen action in 40 major league games, all in 2017, over which he hit .237/.321/.611. Last year in Triple-A Granite hit .211/.282/.245 over 60 games. He was a likable guy, but yeah. The Twins designated him for assignment last week to make roster space for Marwin Gonzalez. Writing was kinda on the wall.Granite will probably mostly be remembered for the time he completely failed to touch first base in the 2017 Wild Card game versus the New York YankeesGood times, am I right?To my knowledge, the guy the Twins got from the Rangers in return — Xavier Moore — has never completely run over first base and failed to touch it in a playoff game. He pitched at two different levels last year (Rookie Ball and Low-A) Brandon Phillips Jersey , posting a 5.30 ERA over 18.2 innings. Kid is only 20 years old, so maybe the front office is just hoping on polishing a turd here. I mean, hey, it could happen.In any case, I honestly wish Zack Granite the best of luck going forward. Pour out a quart of Ballentine for the kid.UPDATE[2:54 pm CT]:I’m never blogging again.

 on: May 06, 2019, 10:38:50 am 
Started by panxing18 - Last post by panxing18
Note: If you haven’t voted on the seventh matchup (Bad News Bears v. 61*) Derek Jeter Jersey , vote HEREThe American pastime has lent itself to countless films. But which one is the consensus favorite among the HH..." for Academy of Motion Picture Arts and SciencesNote: If you haven’t voted on the seventh matchup (Bad News Bears v. 61*), vote HEREThe American pastime has lent itself to countless films. But which one is the consensus favorite among the HH faithful? Let’s find out.For this exercise, I’ve set up a 16 film bracket.To determine the films and seeding, I’ve crowdsourced rankings from Rotten Tomatoes, Ranker, and the ultimate authority on everything, Stirrups. Then I’ve added a dash of my own influence to include a couple of Angels-centric titles and make a bracket that makes sense.Let’s get down to deciding.The Sandlot is a classic tale combining baseball, childhood friends, and a hot lifeguard. Now 25 years old , it serves as a vehicle to make us all feel young at heart and for one last chance to go play outside with our friends.For Love of the Game is the last Costner entry of this contest. Widely approved by audiences yet not critics, the Angels own Jose Mota makes an appearance behind Costner’s final pitching performance; one in which he attempts to work though both his life and the Yankees order.Both are good for a baseball-less Saturday afternoon, but which moves on and which is sent packing? TEMPE, Ariz. — Smack dab in the middle of the NL West and wild-card races, the Arizona Diamondbacks can feel the relevance in every pitch.San Diego, for its part, is hoping that its younger players also can take something from the exposure to a playoff atmosphere, even if it is from the other side of the field.The Padres stopped the Diamondbacks 6-2 behind Franmil Reyes‘ first career two-homer game in the first game of a two-game mini-series at Chase Field on Monday, the first of five games remaining between the two this season. The Padres also have series remaining against contenders Seattle and the DodgersArticle continues below ...“These games are going to mean a lot to that club Mariano Rivera Jersey , and it’s a chance for us to make it hard on them,” San Diego manager Andy Green said of the Arizona games.“And then we are going to go into Dodger Stadium in the middle of the month and have an opportunity to go against a team that we can make it very hard on. For the guys that pitch on those days, they are going to feel what it feels like pitching in a September playoff race.“We can’t artificially create that when we go to Cincinnati (this weekend). Those games are going to be equally important for us to win, but I think I’m excited for the opportunity to see our guys tested in the venues this month.”Arizona left-hander Robbie Ray (4-2) is to face San Diego left-hander Joey Lucchesi (7-7) in the second game of the short two-game set Tuesday.Arizona has lost four in a row and six of eight, during which it has scored 14 runs, with a high of three.“Obviously it is not ideal the way we have been swinging the bats,” said veteran catcher Alex Avila, who has been through successful stretch runs before with Detroit and the Cubs.“You can’t let that overtake you and cloud your mind on a daily basis. It’s just a matter of time. There will be a day when we break out of it. It’s a tough game, so you just have to keep plugging away.”The D-backs will commence a streak of 20 consecutive games against teams that are .500 or better with a four-game home series against NL East-leading Atlanta that begins Thursday.Their next road trip is a seven-gamer to Colorado (four games) and Houston followed by a nine-game homestand that includes three-game series against the Cubs Babe Ruth Jersey , Colorado and the Dodgers. They finish up with three games in San Diego.Ray, who has a 4.55 ERA, has given up only one run in each of his past two starts while walking the tightrope, having given up 15 base runners in his previous 10 1/3 innings.When Ray throws strikes, he is tough to hit — he has 16 strikeouts in his last two outings and is averaging 11.9 strikeouts per nine innings, second only to Washington’s Max Scherzer (12.0) among NL starters. Ray missed eight weeks with a strained oblique muscle earlier in the season and has thrown 91 innings in his 18 starts.Ray has worked with pitching coach Mike Butcher on finishing his delivery more on line, with his plant foot facing home plate when he lands so that he is not throwing across his body.He said he felt that click in a no-decision start against Seattle on Aug. 25, when he gave up one run in five innings. He struck out nine in five innings in a 3-1 victory over the Dodgers in his most recent start last Thursday.“I felt locked in mentally and mechanically,” Ray said after the Seattle outing. “Just a small change like that makes a huge difference. It honestly feels fine either way , but just the result of the pitch isn’t exactly where I want it to be when I close myself off.”Ray has made two starts against the Padres this season without a decision while giving up seven runs and nine walks in 8 2/3 innings.Rookie Lucchesi, who sports a 3.59 ERA in 21 starts, had made two consecutive quality starts after giving up five runs in four innings of a 9-4 loss to Arizona at Petco Park on Aug. 17.His last two losses have come against the Diamondbacks, and he has had limited success against them this season, going 0-4 with a 7.71 ERA in four starts, two at home and two on the road. Arizona has five homers and 16 runs off him in 18 2/3 innings.Paul Goldschmidt and Nick Ahmed have two homers apiece off Lucchesi this season and A.J. Pollock has one.

 on: May 06, 2019, 10:25:44 am 
Started by panxing18 - Last post by panxing18
CLEARWATER , Fla. (AP) — Bryce Harper came to Philadelphia to do the one thing he didn’t accomplish in Washington: Win in October.The Phillies gave him one of the biggest contracts in baseball history to deliver.“I want to be on Broad Street and hold a (World Series) trophy over my head,” Harper said after signing a $330 million, 13-year contract.The 26-year-old slugger was a six-time All-Star, 2012 NL Rookie of the Year and 2015 NL Most Valuable Player during seven seasons with the Nationals. But he couldn’t help Washington win a postseason series in four tries.That won’t cut it in Philadelphia.“We didn’t make this move to win 83 games,” owner John Middleton said.The Phillies have had six straight losing seasons and haven’t reached the postseason since 2011. They were 80-82 last year, losing 33 of the final 49 games after leading the NL East in early August.Expectations already were high after the team acquired All-Star catcher J.T. Realmuto, two-time All-Star shortstop Jean Segura Dellin Betances Jersey , 2013 NL MVP Andrew McCutchen and reliever David Robertson. Adding Harper skyrocketed everyone’s hopes, especially fans who jumped on tickets and No. 3 jerseys.“You’ll always be remembered for winning and what better place to do it than Philly,” Harper said.He’ll make his debut in red pinstripes when the Phillies host the defending NL East champion Atlanta Braves on March 28.Here’s some things to know about rebuilt Philadelphia:NEW FACES: Harper is the new face of the franchise but he can’t do it alone. Realmuto is one of the best at his position and could raise his offensive production in a hitter-friendly ballpark. Segura solidifies an important spot and bolsters the lineup. McCutchen is determined to prove he’s not done yet. Robertson is a key part of a deep bullpen.THE SKIPPER: Manager Gabe Kapler was heavily criticized and intensely scrutinized in his first season leading the team. He took plenty of heat for using a lot of pitchers, different lineups and some even had issues with his positive approach. The Phillies won the offseason and now it’s up to Kapler to help the team win games.ACES WILD: Aaron Nola established himself as one of the best starters in the majors last year, finishing third in Cy Young Award voting. The right-hander, who takes the mound on opening day for the second straight season, anchors a questionable rotation. Jake Arrieta got paid to be an ace last year but pitched more like a No. 4-5 starter. His velocity has improved in spring training and he’s feeling better following offseason knee surgery. If Arrieta pitches like he did when he won the 2015 NL Cy Young Award with the Cubs Matt Holliday Jersey , the Phillies could have a top 1-2 punch. They’ll need more from Nick Pivetta, Vince Velasquez and Zach Eflin or the offense will have to outslug opponents quite often.DYNAMIC LINEUP: Odubel Herrera and Maikel Franco are going from batting in the middle of the order to hitting in the lower third in Philadelphia’s revamped lineup. That’s how deep and balanced the new-look offense will be with Harper, Realmuto, Segura and McCutchen joining slugger Rhys Hoskins and Cesar Hernandez. Seven of the eight hitters have hit 20 homers in a season, including six of them in 2018 and Hernandez had a career-best 16 last year.DEEP PEN: Robertson adds depth to a formidable group that includes Seranthony Dominguez, who emerged as the closer as a rookie last season. Former closer Hector Neris rebounded nicely late in the season after losing his job. Veterans Pat Neshek, Tommy Hunter and newcomer Jose Alvarez make this a strong unit that could get the call often if the rotation falters. Morning news and notes for Tuesday Austin Romine Jersey , April 9, 2019"Happy Tuesday, everyone!Tribe newsBauer pitching in to aid youth clubs, activities | MLBTrevor Bauer has a great talent when it comes to striking people out. He’s using this talent to make an impact on youth clubs and organizations. Keep it up, Trevor!Cleveland Indians’ Carlos Santana finishes behind Los Angeles Angels Mike Trout for AL Player of the Week award | Indians starting pitchers are competing for King of the Hill honor, complete with crown | Cleveland.comShane Bieber has yet to win the crown, but it’s amazing to think that any of the Cleveland starters could turn in the best performance in any given week.Around the leagueChris Davis set a record on Monday night that he probably wishes he hadn’t.LGFT Edwin Encarnacion hit two dingers in one inning.Jon Lester left Monday’s game with hamstring tightness , and Pirates starter Jameson Taillon was struck in the head by a line drive.Hyun-Jin Ryu left the game on Monday night with a groin injury and may end up on the IL.Luis Severino is going to New York to have an MRI on his arm.Not many people showed up to watch the Giants on Monday night.If you’re a starting pitcher, you probably don’t want to face the Mariners right now:

 on: May 06, 2019, 10:10:11 am 
Started by panxing18 - Last post by panxing18
Adios , Arizona!"WhiteFanposts Fanshots Sections Farmers onlyFeaturesPlayoffsHistory/Hall of FameGame ThreadsCincinnati Reds host Colorado Rockies in final Cactus League gameNew,13commentsAdios, Arizona!EDTShareTweetShareShareCincinnati Reds host Colorado Rockies in final Cactus League gameJoe Camporeale-USA TODAY SportsIt’s the final Cincinnati Reds game of Cactus League play today, as the Reds will head east for a pair of exhibition games on Monday and Tuesday in Atlanta before opening the regular season on Thursday against the Pittsburgh Pirates. And, Sonny Gray is pitching today, and both of those things should be the headline news here.Instead, we’re stuck trying to figure out what kind of shenanigans the Reds are going to roll out again. On the heels of demoting Nick Senzel and sending us double-talk about how it’s not service time related, the Reds immediately went into silly-land in their actions in the wake of the news that Scooter Gennett will be out 8-12 weeks with a groin injury. Now Robin Yount Jersey , we find out that Jesse Winker - he of the -1.9 dWAR season in LF - will serve as the team’s backup CF, as The Athletic’s C. Trent Rosecrans relayed, and Winker gets the start there today.Nick Senzel isn’t ready to be a CF because of his lack of experience, but Winker - who has started a grand total of 2 games in CF in his professional career and ranked as one of the 17 worst OF on defense in any position per FanGraphs last year (min 300 PA) - is their backup plan out there? Right. Not to mention, if Winker’s in CF that’s because Schebler isn’t playing, meaning either Matt Kemp or Derek Dietrich would be the team’s LF that day...and all three of them ranked alongside Winker among those 17 worst OF defenders last year.To translate, that means the Reds are deliberately not giving a hoot about OF defense while also citing OF defense for why Nick Senzel didn’t make the team. Ya follow?I’m not even mad. I’m just doing everything I can to try to follow any sort of rational thought with this sequence. Blame it on my B.A. in Economics.Here’s the full travel roster for today:It’s an early 3:05 PM ET start today, so plan accordingly. Just don’t plan on watching it since it’s not on TV.Go Reds. You’re my favorite team. Just please stop making so many silly moves and statements. Free agent Manny Machado has now completed his meetings with the three main teams that are interested in his services , now we all await his final decision.The 26-year-old has spent the last week meeting with teams about his potential future with them. Those teams included, the Chicago White Sox, the New York Yankees and the Philadelphia Phillies.Machado concluded these week-long meetings with by visiting the Phillies on Thursday. Now he must make the decision of who he would like to spend the next part of his career playing for.Machado is going to the Yankees. Yankees go out and get everyone. Red Sox are lethal. Rays are dangerous. Can never sleep on the Orioles. I鈥檓 going to the gym. Gonna be in my zone all year. Excited to compete in the best division in baseball! #ALEast— Marcus Stroman (@MStrooo6) December 20, 2018advertisingIt's unclear whether or not the Toronto Blue Jays pitcher has had any contact with Machado, but one thing is for sure is that Stroman is never afraid to express his emotions with the public.Stroman is also not the only one that thinks the four-time All-Star will be wearing pinstripes next season. According to Official Bookmaker, the Yankees have the greatest odds to acquire the shortstop's services.The Phillies and the White Sox currently sit in second and third behind the Yankees for Machado. He will likely announce his decision after the holidays so that he can discuss his life-changing decision with his wife and family.advertising Via BC SportsMachado will be able to have a major impact on either of the three teams interested in him, which is why he is able to demand a massive contract. He is reportedly seeking somewhere around a ten-year contract valuing around $30 million per season.Those demands are why only three teams were able to gain a meeting with Machado this week.He will fit great with any of those three teams that are interested in him. Last season Machado had one of the best seasons so far in his career.Machado appeared in all 162 games last season, producing 37 home runs and 107 RBI's along with a .297 batting average. He's in the prime of his career , which is great for him because teams are continuing the trend of paying players for what they can produce in the future, rather than what they have previously done in the past.advertisingNow that Machado has finished his meetings, we should now be able to finally see where he is going to spend his career for the foreseeable future, which could likely speed up the whole situation with the other big-name free agent, Bryce Harper.Even though they don't play the same position, Machado and Harper are the two biggest players available on the free agency market. So the two teams that miss out on Machado, are likely to relocate that money to the other big-name free agent.

 on: April 29, 2019, 11:31:13 am 
Started by panxing18 - Last post by panxing18
The Royals pitching staff had a pretty poor go in 2018 Justin Morneau Jersey , thanks much in part to trading away some of their best pitches."If you follow me on Twitter (@duvy_013), you may have seen at some point in time that I like to try to rank individual pitches. There is also an entire Twitter account dedicated to pitch quality, you can find them @qopbaseball.If you hop on over to FanGraphs, you can find their section for pitch values where they determine the value of each pitcher’s individual pitches. The point in all this is to say that an attempt to create a reliable valuation for individual major league pitches has sort of taken the baseball world by storm. As a fan that is infatuated with the art of pitching, I have (obviously) dove into the trend and am trying to create what I believe to be the most efficient form of pitch valuation. For personal (and perhaps professional reasons), I am going to keep the majority of my pitch valuation formula private. Here is the gist of how I calculate the data and compare it among all eligible MLB pitchers:Pitchers must have recorded at least 250 total pitches and thrown a minimum of 100 sliders/curveballs in the 2018 seasonZ-scores were then given to each pitcher for nine statistical categories based on the results of their peersI then give a weight to each z-score because getting swings-and-misses is statistically more beneficial than inducing ground balls, for exampleCalculate z-scores to determine which pitcher’s slider or curveball was the best in MLBHere’s kind of what the top 10 table looks like when it’s all said and done:Untitledplayer_idplayer_namepitch_percentxyzabcdeSCOREplayer_idplayer_namepitch_percentxyzabcdeSCORE*For those that may ask about pitch percent factoring in, the entire set of data actually suggests that there is correlation between throwing the pitch more and pitch effectiveness*The first thing that I want to address is that I never compare one pitcher’s slider to another pitcher’s curveball, or vice versa. The reason for this is that certain factors of a curveball impact results differently than certain factors of a slider. You can play around with the “Search” function over at Baseball Savant and find several differences in the outcomes for sliders and curveballs that move and spin similarly.The second thing I want to address is that I put eligibility rules on here for a reason. If Drew Butera were to throw a curveball in a relief appearance when the Royals were getting whooped, I don’t want that data in my formula. I only want pitchers who threw a fair amount of breaking pitches to be involved in the research and the only good way to do that is force a sample size.So any way, now that I’ve explained myself just enough to make you believe that I’m not making stuff up, let’s get to the Royals part of this. Here is a small grouping of my complete slider rankings from 2018:1.) Scott Alexander 3.) Matt Strahm10.) Joakim Soria52.) Kelvin Herrera91.) Jakob Junis133.) Brad KellerYou that read right. And you read that right as well, Scott Alexander, Matt Strahm, and Joakim Soria threw the first, third, and tenth best sliders in all of Major League Baseball, respectively, in 2018. The Royals traded them for a return of...well...nothing. At least the team’s best slider in 2018 (Herrera) returned a decent prospect return. The Royals didn’t trade much away in terms of good curveballs, but they didn’t have anyone that ranked in the top 100 curveballs either, as Jorge Lopez lead the charge for KC at #114. One reason I’m pointing this out is to ask, “Could the Royals have been half-way decent in 2018 if they hadn’t traded away their four best relievers?”The easy way to do this is to look at the WAR of the aforementioned relievers and the WAR of their replacements in KC’s bullpen. According to Baseball Reference, Justin Grimm cost the Royals 1.4 wins, Blaine Boyer cost them 1.8 wins, Brandon Maurer cost them 1.2 wins, Burch Smith another 1.2, and Jason Hammel 1.6. That’s a grand total of 7.2 wins. Scott Alexander was worth 0.3, Matt Strahm was worth 1.4, Joakim Soria was worth 0.8, and Kelvin Herrera was worth 0.2 in Washington. That’s an additional 2.7 wins, giving the Royals a grand total of 10 extra wins in 2018, making their record 68-94.Alright, so it probably didn’t matter much in 2018. Let’s be generous and say the Royals actually win 70 games with the reliever swap, so what? What’s the real question here? What’s the underlying issue?Have the Royals struggled identifying and properly valuing their talent recently?Even if you don’t buy into my pitch data, you can head on over to FanGraphs pitch value page and see Scott Alexander’s slider comes in third place on their per/100 pitch basis (minimum 50 IP). Although I hesitate to recommend their pitch value data, you can at least get a sense that I’m not pulling this out of my rear, but you can also get a sense of why I’m trying to develop my own, as Strahm is no where to be found in the top 30.I certainly don’t claim to be some kind of expert on the matter of Major League Baseball. There’s a reason you’re reading this article: no one is paying me to keep it a secret. It’s not a perfect system (yet) but I believe there’s a ton of truth to it, and a ton of reliability that I just personally have not seen in other places. Using pitch data (and maybe some better scouting) could have potentially helped prevent the disastrous Padres trade. It also could’ve potentially helped the Royals find proper valuations for Scott Alexander and Joakim Soria before the 2018 season, as they would’ve been two of the Royals best pitchers, and were traded for what appears to be very little in return. Perhaps it also helped the Royals find Heath Fillmyer, though I have no idea what went into his scouting before the Royals acquired him.In any case, I got done running on 2018 sliders and thought it was something that Royals fans may find interesting (if not upsetting). In the future I hope to formulate a more reliable data set with long(er)-term implications that could be used to project minor league pitchers as well, though MiLB data is still not always publicly available. So there ya go. I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments. See how the prospects performed last night!"Another day of minor league action in the books. See the results below.AAA: Round Rock Express (4-3) won 9-5 (BOX SCORE)Rodgers made his second start of the season and pitched really well allowing just 1 run over 6 innings. Straw tied the game up at 1 in the 3rd inning on an RBI single. Alvarez gave the Express the lead in the 5th with an RBI double. After Nashville tied it up in the top of the 8th, Alvarez broke the tie with a 3 run HR in the bottom of the inning, his 5th HR of the season. Deetz came into the 9th inning with a three run lead but allowed 3 runs to score without retiring a batter. The game would go to the bottom of the 10th and after walks to Alvarez and Tucker (runner started at 2nd), the bases were loaded for Round Rock. Tanielu sent the fans home happy connecting on a walk-off grand slam to win 9-5.Note:Alvarez has 5 HR, 10 RBI and a 1.630 OPS in 7 games this season.Myles Straw, CF: 2-for-4, 2B, RBI, BBDerek Fisher, RF: 1-for-4, R, BBJack Mayfield, 2B: 2-for-5, 3 RYordan Alvarez, 1B: 3-for-4, 2 R, 2 2B, HR, 4 RBI, BBKyle Tucker, LF: 0-for-4 , R, BBNick Tanielu, 3B: 1-for-4, R, HR, 4 RBI, BBDrew Ferguson, DH: 0-for-3, R, SBBrady Rodgers, RHP: 6.0 IP, 5 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 1 BB, 6 KReymin Guduan, LHP: 2.0 IP, 2 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 0 BB, 3 KDean Deetz, RHP: 0.0 IP, 1 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 3 BB, 0 KBrendan McCurry, RHP: 2.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 1 BB, 2 K (WIN)AA: Corpus Christi Hooks (3-4) lost 10-5 (BOX SCORE)Another rough night for the Hookls pitching staff. LaRue got the start and was decent striking out 6 over 4.1 innings while allowing 2 runs. He was relieved by Scheetz who allowed 2 runs in his 1.2 innings of work. Goetzman put the Hooks on the board with a solo HR in the 2nd. In the 7th, the Hooks rallied to tie the game scoring 3 runs on McCormick, Wrenn, and Toro RBI singles. Ferrell came in to pitch the 8th and really struggled allowing 6 runs. Rojas would add an RBI single in the 9th but it wasn’t nearly enough as they dropped this one 10-5.Note:LaRue has 12 K in 9.1 innings this season. Chas McCormick, LF: 1-for-4, R, RBI, BBStephen Wrenn, CF: 1-for-5, RBIAbraham Toro, 3B: 2-for-4, R, RBI, BBGranden Goetzman, RF: 2-for-5, R, HR, RBIJosh Rojas, 2B: 1-for-3, RBI, 2 BB, SBLorenzo Quintana, DH: 2-for-4, ROsvaldo Duarte, SS: 0-for-3, R, BBCarson LaRue, RHP: 4.1 IP, 5 H, 2 R, 2 ER Byron Buxton Jersey , 1 BB, 6 KKit Scheetz, LHP: 1.2 IP, 3 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 1 BB, 0 KJustin Ferrell, RHP: 1.1 IP, 4 H, 6 R, 4 ER, 4 BB, 2 KRonel Blanco, RHP: 0.2 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 1 KA+: Fayetteville Woodpeckers (4-3) won 11-8 (BOX SCORE)Mushinski started for Fayetteville and allowed 4 runs over 3.1 innings. He was relieved by Feldmann who allowed 4 runs, 2 earned over his 1.2 innings. The Woodpeckers were down 8-0 going into the 6th but they rallied to score 7 runs on a Beer RBI walk, De La Cruz RBI walk, Taylor RBI walk, Sierra 2 run double and Arauz 2 run single. They would take the lead in the 7th on a Taylor grand slam. Sanabria and Rosado combined to toss 4 scoreless innings to close it out.Note: De La Cruz is hitting .364 in five games this season.Jake Meyers, CF: 0-for-4, R, BBCorey Julks, DH: 3-for-4, 2 R, BBSeth Beer, 1B: 0-for-4, R, RBI, BBScott Manea, C: 0-for-4, R, BBBryan De La Cruz, RF:2-for-4, 2 R, RBI, BBChandler Taylor, LF: 1-f or-3, 2 R, HR, 5 RBI, 2 BBMiguelangel Sierra, SS: 1-for-5, R, 2B, 2 RBIJonathan Arauz, 3B: 1-for-5, 2 RBIAlfredo Angarita, 2B: 1-for-3, R, 2BParker Mushinski, LHP: 3.1 IP, 5 H, 4 R, 4 ER, 3 BB, 4 KBrendan Feldmann, RHP: 1.2 IP, 6 H, 4 R , 2 ER, 0 BB, 2 KCarlos Sanabria, RHP:3.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 2 BB, 5 K (WIN)Cesar Rosado, RHP: 1.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 1 BB, 1 K (SAVE)A: Quad Cities River Bandits (4-3) won 7-4 (BOX SCORE)Another dominant strikeout performance. Rodriguez started and went 5 innings allowing 3 runs, 2 earned, while striking out 8. Schreiber put the River Bandits on the board in the first with a 2 run double. In the 3rd inning, Schreiber scored the 3rd run for QC after stealing 2nd and scoring on an error. Castellanos relieved Rodriguez and struck out 6 over 3 innings while allowing 1 run. The River Bandits entered the 9th down 4-3n but rallied to score 4 runs on an Adolph RBI single, Valdez 2 run single, and Salazar RBI groundout. Conn closed out the game with a perfect 9th.Note:Schreiber is hitting .348 in 7 games this season.Ross Adolph, CF: 1-for-5, R, RBIJeremy Pena, DH: 1-for-4, 2 R, BBEnmanuel Valdez, 2B: 2-for-5, R, 2 RBICesar Salazar, C: 1-for-5, RBIScott Schreiber, 1B: 1-for-3, R, 2B, 2 RBI, 2 BB, SBDavid Hensley, 3B: 2-for-4Andy Pineda, LF: 2-for-2, R, 2 BBTrey Dawson, SS: 1-for-4, RNivaldo Rodriguez, RHP: 5.0 IP, 4 H, 3 R, 2 ER, 0 BB, 8 KHumberto Castellanos, RHP: 3.0 IP, 2 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 1 BB, 6 K (WIN)Devin Conn, RHP: 1.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 2 K (SAVE)Today’s starters according to TBD (-.-- ERA)CC: Brett Adcock (16.88 ERA) FV: Yohan Ramirez (6.00 ERA)QC: Cody Deason (16.20 ERA)

 on: April 29, 2019, 11:17:35 am 
Started by panxing18 - Last post by panxing18
The two sides are just $600 Ryan Zimmerman Jersey ,000 apart in their salary negotiations."WhiteFanposts Fanshots Sections Detroit Tigers AnalysisDetroit Tigers Prospect NotebookDetroit Tigers Game ThreadsDetroit Tigers NewsDetroit Tigers PodcastsDetroit Tigers NewsTigers, Michael Fulmer may be headed to an arbitration hearing because the team is being cheapNew,64commentsThe two sides are just $600,000 apart in their salary negotiations.ESTShareTweetShareShareTigers, Michael Fulmer may be headed to an arbitration hearing because the team is being cheapKen Blaze-USA TODAY SportsThe Detroit Tigers have not gone to an arbitration hearing with a player since Dave Dombrowski first came to town as the team’s new president (and eventual general manager) in 2002. While we can’t say for certain, it’s probably safe to call this the longest streak in Major League Baseball.And it may be at jeopardy in 2019. Michael Fulmer and the Tigers are still $600,000 apart in their negotiations for his salary for the upcoming season. According to Bob Nightengale of the USA Today, Fulmer filed for a $3.4 million salary, while the Tigers filed at $2.8 million. Matt Swartz of MLB Trade Rumors projected Fulmer to receive a $3 million salary in 2019.If this sounds like the team is being cheap, that’s because they are. The Tigers have historically paid their arbitration eligible players at or slightly above Swartz’s projections, and have thus avoided arbitration hearings for the past 17 years. There have been close calls before — and Fulmer and the Tigers can still work out a deal in the meantime — but even going past the filing deadline with a player is uncommon for Detroit.This year is different, though. Even before the team agreed to terms with five of their six arbitration eligible players, including Matthew Boyd and Nicholas Castellanos , those connected to the team suspected that the Tigers’ streak of avoiding arbitration hearings could come to an end this year.We have already seen the differences between Westhoff and the new regime in practice. Each of the five players the Tigers already settled with will earn less than the amount they were projected to receive, a rarity in previous years. Castellanos’s salary, in particular, came in more than $1 million lower than originally forecasted.So why is this so important? Arbitration hearings can get rather personal, as the club often has to openly disparage their own player in order to argue for a lower salary for the upcoming season. We have seen several instances of players on other teams getting upset over what was said. New York’s Dellin Betances was one of the more recent examples.Personally, I would hate to see similar comments from Fulmer after an arbitration hearing, especially since the two sides are so close in their negotiations.Again, there is time for the two to come to an agreement. The Tigers have gone right up to the last minute in a few cases in previous years, so it’s not time to hit the panic button. But the optics aren’t great right now, and we would hate to see the Tigers anger one of their stars over a fraction of their 2019 payroll. NEW YORK (AP) — Jed Lowrie would rather talk about wine than whine.The infielder visited Citi Field on Wednesday after finalizing a $20 million, two-year contract with the New York Mets, likely less money and a shorter term than he would have gotten before the free-agent market for solid-but-less-than-stellar veterans buckled a year ago.“I think that argument could be made,” he said. “But you deal in reality Bryce Harper Jersey , and so I’m excited to be a Met.”A switch-hitter who turns 35 in April, Lowrie and is coming off his first All-Star appearance. In his 11th major league season, Lowrie set career highs last year for Oakland with 23 homers, 99 RBIs, 78 walks and 128 strikeouts, hitting .267.“He’s a big wine connoisseur. He gets better with age like many of the wines that he collects,” said new Mets general manager Brodie Van Wagenen, Lowrie’s former agent.Lowrie, wife Milessa, daughter Saige and son Miles likely will live in New York City, possibly in Brooklyn. They have homes in Houston and his hometown of Salem, Oregon, where he keeps his wine collection of several hundred bottles.“Mostly reds. I’ve got California. I’ve got a lot of good Oregon pinot noir Stephen Strasburg Jersey ,” he said. “Got some whites for my wife. Not a lot — some French.”Lowrie spent the last three years as a second baseman but played all around the infield before that. Van Wagenen plans for him to back up 36-year-old second baseman Robinson Cano, 23-year-old shortstop Amed Rosario and third baseman Todd Frazier, who turns 33 next month. Rookie Peter Alonso, Frazier, J.D. Davis and Dominic Smith are possibilities at first.“We have a veteran club and we want to make sure that we’re not overtaxing the players that we have,” Van Wagenen said. “We don’t want to feel like anybody has the need to play 162 games, but if we can manage the workload to get the maximum performance out of each guy, there’s more than enough playing to play time to go around.”Lowrie likely will hit second in the order behind right fielder Brandon Nimmo and ahead of Cano.“He’s going to be in our lineup virtually every day,” Van Wagenen said. “We’ve talked a lot about this offseason of making sure that we are covered in the event that the inevitable adversity happens to our club.”Lowrie will wear No. 4 with the Mets — he was No. 8 on the Athletics, but the Mets have not given out that number since 2001 and seem likely to retire it in honor of Gary Carter.In signing with New York, Lowrie said he is willing to move around the infield.“If you look at look at a lot of teams that have had recent success, they’re very deep, and I think that’s what it takes to win at the major league level at this point ,” he said.Van Wagenen has been reshaping the Mets roster, acquiring Cano, closer Edwin Diaz and catcher Wilson Ramos and reacquiring reliever Jeurys Familia. Jeff McNeil will see time in the outfield, and Keon Broxton was obtained to back up Juan Lagares in center.While making these moves, Van Wagenen reads his Twitter feed “every day throughout the day” and is aware Mets fans are clamoring for a big-name acquisition such as Bryce Harper or Manny Machado.“I’m really happy that this fan base is not apathetic, and some of their ideas make more sense than others,” Van Wagenen said. “But they’re all interesting content, for sure.”He thinks the Mets are in position to win the NL East and return to the playoffs for the first time since 2016.“I think that we’re a good team. I think that we’re a complete team. I think that we’re a balanced team,” Van Wagenen said. “We’ve got veterans. We’ve got youth. We’ve got a hunger and a desire to win. And I look forward to showing people that that we’re a team to be reckoned with.”

 on: April 29, 2019, 11:04:17 am 
Started by panxing18 - Last post by panxing18
The young right-hander is undoubtedly talented , but 2019 is a big year for him."WhiteFanposts Fanshots Sections Detroit Tigers AnalysisDetroit Tigers Prospect NotebookDetroit Tigers Game ThreadsDetroit Tigers NewsDetroit Tigers Podcasts2019 BYB Tigers Prospect #5: Franklin Perez looks to rebound from a lost seasonNew,8commentsThe young right-hander is undoubtedly talented, but 2019 is a big year for him.ESTShareTweetShareShare2019 BYB Tigers Prospect #5: Franklin Perez looks to rebound from a lost seasonDarren Yamashita-USA TODAY SportsMuch of the prospect ink spilled on the Tigers behalf over the past year has been dedicated to players like Casey Mize, Matt Manning, Isaac Paredes, Daz Cameron, and Jake Rogers. It’s been somewhat easy to forget that Cameron and Rogers were secondary pieces in the Justin Verlander trade to the Houston Astros. The headliner of the Tigers’ acquisitions in the deal, right-handed pitcher Franklin Perez, endured a host of injuries in 2018 that turned it into a lost season. As a result, our top-ranked Tigers’ prospect from a year ago now checks in at number five.In recent years particularly, the Tigers have been cautious with young players, shutting down prospects like Kyle Funkhouser and Spencer Turnbull for long stretches because of issues with elbow and shoulder inflammation, respectively. That care paid dividends in 2018, as both were relatively healthy, able to compete a full slate of innings and showed improvements in their command. However, both pitchers are in their mid-20’s, with plenty of work and experience already behind them. Franklin Perez is a different case, and so it will be interesting to see how the Tigers handle the talented young hurler this season.BackgroundFranklin Perez was a 17-year-old Venezuelan third baseman working out at the Carlos Guillen Baseball Academy when the Houston Astros took a liking to him. They identified his true potential as a pitcher, and signed him for a million dollars. Perez rewarded his new club by developing rapidly into a hard throwing young starter with a precocious changeup and advanced control. Two years later, Perez had already made a successful jump to the Double-A level when he was dealt to Detroit. After so much smooth sailing, perhaps a setback year was inevitable. The Tigers only got a brief look at Perez last March before he suffered a lat strain that kept him on the shelf until June. Unfortunately Bill Melton Jersey , that return was short-lived, as Perez quickly succumbed to shoulder inflammation which led the Tigers to shut him down for the rest of the season. Perez encamped around Lakeland this offseason in an effort to improve his flexibility and functional strength with the Tigers’ training staff. If that decision pays dividends for his health, Franklin Perez is going to be back on the fast track to the major leagues.StrengthsThe first thing you notice about Franklin Perez is that he is a fairly imposing individual. Still listed at 6’3, 197 pounds, he’s a good deal bigger than that now, with huge legs, a powerful, muscular frame, and solid athleticism overall. His size and lower body strength are exactly what teams look for in a starting pitcher, hoping for durability and easy gas. That durability took a hit in 2018, but there are plenty of reasons Perez was BYB’s consensus number one ranked Tigers’ prospect this time last year. Perez has a powerful motion off the rubber, but doesn’t have to overthrow to sit 93-95 mph out of a high arm slot. He’s also capable of reaching back for a little more when he wants it. That arm slot has its pluses and minuses, but it produces enough downward plane that Perez can get groundballs low in the zone, while still regularly working at the top of the zone with the heater. It provides some deception, but makes it tougher to really get substantial horizontal break on any of his offerings.That arm slot, combined with good extension and arm speed, does add to the deception of Perez’s changeup. He’s shown advanced feel for the pitch since he was a teenager, and has confidence in it as a primary secondary offering. The changeup has good fading action, and if he can build on its consistency, Perez should take a plus changeup to the majors eventually.The better of Perez’ two breaking balls is the curveball. The curve packs good spin and looping, 12-to-6 break , and again the pitch seems to pair well with the fastball and changeup. It’s not a high-end curveball, but it’s average with a chance for more, and Perez showed pretty good command of it prior to missing most of 2018.Finally, while most young pitchers are held back by their command above all else, Perez has always been precocious in that department as well. Not only does he throw strikes, but when last seen in a groove back in 2017, Perez was locating three pitches down to both sides of the plate, and changing hitters’ eye level by going upstairs with the heater. If he can come out strong in 2019 and recapture these attributes, Perez is actually pretty close to a major league ready pitching prospect.WeaknessesWe can sum these up fairly simply. More than anything else, Perez needs to stay healthy and start building up his innings workload again in 2019. He spent the whole offseason in Florida to continue training at the Tigers’ Lakeland facilities, which is a good sign for his devotion. While he didn’t suffer any major injuries last year, the shoulder inflammation he dealt with has to be the key concern. The organization will hope that adjustments in his strength and conditioning, or perhaps a minor alteration to his delivery, can minimize future shoulder issues.Tied into those health risks, is the fact that Perez is still young and just doesn’t have that much work under his belt yet. He’s only been pitching for a few years. On the one hand, perhaps that bodes well for his recovery. His body is still getting accustomed to the workload. On the other, some people just can’t hold up to the physical stress of being a professional pitcher, no matter how strong they are. The Tigers have to worry about the latter scenario, while hoping these are just growing pains along the way. Beyond health, another issue that may hold Perez back is his lack of a quality slider. He’ll flash a good one now and then, but his arm slot just isn’t conducive to developing a really good slide piece. Perez has enough with his changeup and curveball to succeed anyway Early Wynn Jersey , but the changeup will really have to reach its ceiling for Perez to reach his. The curveball is solid, but just not likely to be a consistent swing-and-miss offering.Finally, if there’s one final flaw in the Franklin Perez package, it’s just the fact that he’s not that far from a finished product. There isn’t a ton of forecasted development left in the tank, barring major and probably ill-advised delivery changes. His motion doesn’t bode real well for major steps in his command, and the breaking balls leave something to be desired. On the one hand this means that his ceiling is limited, and Perez doesn’t really have ace potential. On the other, it means he’s relatively close to being major-league ready, and could surprise with how fast he moves should his body allow it.Projected 2019 team: Double-A Erie SeaWolvesPerez has already succeeded at the Double-A level, so while he may get some time in extended spring camp to save his arm and work on a few things, there just isn’t much for him to learn in the Florida State League. The Tigers will probably control his workload pretty tightly, but he needs to face hitters in the upper minors to improve. Look for him to be under strict workload restriction early on, but if all goes well, Perez will spend most of the year in Erie. With luck, he could even reach Toledo on the cusp of his first major league callup by year’s end. What do you want to know?"We’re rolling out a new feature today...well, feature might not be the right word. A new series? A new column? Whatever you want to call it, it’s new, and it’s got one focal point: to answer your questions in the most quantitative way. Have a thought or hypothesis you’ve always thought was true but could never figure out how to prove it? Need the stats behind something? Does Rex Hudler say something on air and you say to yourself “that can’t be true...” Well the Royals Review Laboratory exists just to confirm or deny those thoughts.Why is Kauffman considered a neutral park when everyone says it’s a pitchers park? How great was the 2014/2015 Royals bullpen? Was their defense that extraordinary? What outcome would an average GM have had in the past decade of drafting that the Royals had?We’ll also along the way look at moments in the season through a quantitative lens, trying to highlight the extraordinary. Email us your questions or theories at:

 on: April 29, 2019, 10:51:37 am 
Started by panxing18 - Last post by panxing18
Yet another DBacks prospect knocking on the door"If familiar with this series go ahead and skip to poll. If not , please read on.This series of articles will run from now until shortly before opening day. The purpose is to crowd source the D-Backs fans of this website to get a sense of how they feel about the prospects of each individual player on the 40 man roster. For this exercise I will only be using rate (average) stats and poll the readers on their sense of direction for that player’s level of basic performance, regardless of playing time expectations.I’m not including defense and base running, so no WAR here, as that is playing time dependent. You will be given two poll options:The player will either exceed the projection or under perform the projection by 5% for hitters OPS or 10% for pitchers ERA/FIP.There is no middle option to vote on. (Otherwise the majority of votes would end up agreeing with the projection).What I am looking for is if you are forced to indicate your sense of direction for the player, is it well over or under the projection?Other Points of note:Projections are the average of Steamer and ZIPS projections.(Click through for original tables)The projections draw on 3 or 4 year samples, weighting most recent seasons the heaviest, but I’m just showing 2018 and career statsin mini table below for simplicityThe player’s name is high lighted with a link to the player’s Baseball-Reference page.Click on that to see more player history and detailAge is the 2019 player age.Polls will run until mid March, so if you miss a player,you can go to the story stream box on the front page andfind a player you might have missed .Please let us know in the comments section your thoughts behind your vote. Thanks !CONTEXT Taylor Widener , Age 24Taylor Widener hasprojection for a 4.49 ERA/4.53 FIP. Do you think he is likely to come in over or under ? Meanwhile Ivan Nova Jersey , Marney made history and we stroll through some history."Blake Parker is saying all the right things about his role with the Twins. In other words, he will be happy to accept whatever role the team gives him. My hope: “bullpen ace.” If Parker can lock down the highest-leverage innings, it will go a long way towards ending the Twins’ problems with walk-off losses, which haunted them last season. There’s a lot more insight into Parker as well, in his recent conversation with Judd Zulgad.Jake Cave isn’t even hitting his weight this spring, but he has still impressed Rocco Baldelli with his hustle and drive. Cave has focused primarily on staying healthy this offseason, and has the opportunity to grab a roster spot this spring. No word on the dampness-level of his blanket, but the reports make it sound pretty dry.Marney Gellner (deservedly) made a little history as the first woman to call a Twins game. Technically, she did it a couple years ago during FSN’s 9-positions-in-9-innings stunt, but this time was the first stint of longer than an inning. C.J. Cron even gave her the opportunity to debut her home run call.Remember Alexi Casilla? To be honest , I had kind of forgotten about him, lost in a long string of mediocrity up the middle of the diamond, interspersed with occasional bouts of truly awful baseball, before the Twins settled on the combination of Dozier and Polanco. Anyway, over at Call to the Pen they dug up the fact that Casilla is still actively playing baseball in the Atlantic League. Who was the best manager in Twins’ history? At Twins’ Daily, Mike Link took a look at a couple of metrics in an attempt to decide. Does your vote go to TK, Gardy, Molly, or someone else? Personally, I’ll go with Ron Gardenhire. He might have never won the big one Brad Hand Jersey , but he saw a lot of sustained success.Speaking of Gardy and Alexi, Kyle Yost at Bless You Boys looked into Gardy’s use of a “utility” player, and it just confirmed what I remembered. Plus, this gives me an excuse to bring up Nick Punto, and any excuse to bring up LNP is a good one. Gardy’s most likely utility guy this season is another old friend, Niko Goodrum.

 on: April 29, 2019, 10:38:04 am 
Started by panxing18 - Last post by panxing18
It’s a crap decision Kolten Wong Jersey , really."You may remember Sunday’s scuffle between the Cincinnati Reds and Pittsburgh Pirates, one that was spawned by Pirates pitcher Chris Archer throwing a 95 mph heater behind Reds hitter Derek Dietrich. Dietrich had previously honked a 440 foot meatball into the Allegheny River off Archer, and apparently that was enough to piss off Archer - or Pirates manager Clint Hurdle - and the retaliation was the attempted beaning.Aside from the crap that is beanball, what was particularly annoying was that home plate umpire Jeff Kellogg immediately halted play and issued warnings to both teams, effectively putting a clamp down on Cincinnati pitching’s ability to pitch inside without fear despite them not having done any damn dastardly thing all game. That irked Reds manager David Bell in particular, and he came roaring out of the dugout to protest that decision. The rest of the Reds bench, though, came roaring out because of Archer’s crap decision to throw at Dietrich, and a huff then ensued.No one was more amped to stand up for his teammates than Yasiel Puig, of course.Puig, Bell, and various others - not Archer, somehow - all got tossed for their actions, and the suspensions were levied by the MLB Commissioner’s office earlier today. Two games for Puig, one for Bell, and *five for Archer.Bell will reportedly serve his suspension tonight, though since Puig is still in the starting lineup for tonight’s game, I’m guessing he’s in the process of appealing. [UPDATE: tonight’s lineup was announced about five minutes before the suspensions and originally had Puig in it, but The Athletic’s C. Trent Rosecrans is now reporting Puig will not appeal and will begin serving his suspension today.]As for Archer, well Trevor Rosenthal Jersey , that’s effectively not even a suspension, since as a starting pitcher he’ll be set for four days of rest in between starts anyway. The Pirates will merely shuffle their rotation, making this nothing more than a fine - and that makes it all a pretty farcical, crap penalty from MLB. Not to mention that there’s no suspension for notorious beanball maestro Clint Hurdle, who has managed a team hell-bent on plunking hitters for damn near a decade.This is all dumb. This is all so, so dumb. The Blue Jays caught baseball by storm when they released Tulowitzki on Tuesday."Troy Tulowitzki is a five-time All-Star, and has two Gold Gloves and two Silver Sluggers to his name. He was a runner up for the Rookie of the Year vote in 2007 (losing to some guy named Ryan Braun), and was arguably the face of the Colorado Rockies during his ten-year duration with the team.Then he was traded to the Toronto Blue Jays and it has been a bumpy road for him since. Tulowitzki has dealt with recurring injuries, and most recently missed the entire 2018 season due to bone spurs in both his heels. Though, according to Jeff Passan, he is currently in the best health he’s been in for ages, the Jays still unexpectedly released him on Tuesday afternoon, making him a free agent.It just so happens that the Detroit Tigers are on the hunt for a shortstop, and Tulowitzki pretty quickly becomes an interesting target. There will be those who point to his recent spate of injuries as a reason to avoid him, and certainly they make a valid point. But don’t forget that the Tigers lost Jose Iglesias to shin issues that cost him the whole 2014 season, and he bounced back in 2015 to become an All-Star. Let’s take a deeper look at the positives and negatives of signing Tulo. The ProsWithout question, Tulowitzki has had monstrous success as a shortstop in his career. While it’s hard to use certain assessments on active players, Tulowitzki ranks 26th of all time according to the JAWS list of shortstops. JAWS assesses the case for players entry into the Hall of Fame based on their peak WAR [Ed.: That we’re even talking about him in this stratosphere says enough, I think]. Tulowitzki’s JAWS rating is 42.2. To put it into perspective, beloved Tigers shortstop Alan Trammell is 11th of all time and has a 57.8 rating , while former Tigers first base coach Omar Vizquel is ranked 42nd with a rating of 36.2. All of this is just a fancy way to say: at his best, Tulowitzki is a very good shortstop.Defensively, he was likely at his absolute best in his rookie season, when he had a DRS of +31 and a UZR of +15.1, but Tulowitzki has remained consistently reliable in the infield, and in his last full season in 2016 still managed a +10 DRS and +5.2 UZR. His injury shorted 2017 campaign is hard to judge because he certainly wasn’t playing with the same freedom of pain-free motion he had previously enjoyed. From an offensive point of view Tulowitzki has has some incredible success, though much of it came during his time with the Rockies, when he was hitting over .300 for four seasons, and averaged .299/.371/.513 over ten years. When he moved to Toronto, he averaged .250/.313/.414 over three years. While it’s more likely that a team biting on Tulowitzki now could expect the latter results, he has certainly demonstrated some incredible power at the plate during his career, and a change of scenery might do great things to re-invigorate his bat.The ConsIn his last active season, Tulowitzki hit .249/.300/.378 over 66 games, with a wRC+ of only 79. Steamer projections suggest he’ll be at 99 in 2019. Though there is always, as mentioned, the chance for an incredible bounceback, it’s far more likely that these are the results one could expect offensively from him going forward. His lackluster 2017 defense appears to be an anomaly, and it’s likely he’ll fare better on that front in 2019, though by how much is uncertain. However it seems a fair bet he wouldn’t be a defensive liability, which is better than many of the free agent targets the Tigers have available currently. His injury history Carlos Martinez Jersey , of course, is the biggest strike against him, and the leading cause of concern if the Tigers decide to take a chance on the 34-year-old. Aside from the 2018 bone spurs, he missed much of the 2017 season as well with a wide array of issues, from a hamstring injury, to a groin issue, to an ankle sprain that put him on the 60-day disabled list. The Tigers are not strangers to players battling frequent injuries — just look at Daniel Norris — but if they’re going to bite on signing a big-name free agent like Tulowitzki, they’d be doing it knowing there’s a risk of him being a frequent visitor to the DL. Then there’s a question of how much it would cost for the Tigers to sign him, and if it would even be feasible on their self-restricted budget. Had Tulowitzki continued with the Jays, he would have been paid $20 million for 2019. Given his injury history and the Jays willingness to eat $38 million (for 2019, $14 million in 2020, and the $4 million 2021 buyout), it’s unlikely he can expect to make anything close to that, but even an average free agent salary might be more than the Tigers are willing to shell out.Still, it would be fun to see Tulowitzki out on the Comerica infield, especially if he can remain healthy.

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