Live From the AFL..

by Chuck

Time for a new thread….

Will be at Surprise Stadium today (3:35PM EST) for the Mesa v. Peoria game. Peoria is playing their home games in Surprise this year due to clubhouse renovations at Peoria Sports Complex.

Mesa has prospects from the Angels, A’s, Cubs, Nationals and Tigers and on paper they are the deepest team in the league. The Cubs in particular a loaded positionally and have sent three of their top four players here (would have been 4-4 but Javier Baez was pulled right before the season started).

Chicago has sent their first round picks from the last two drafts, centerfielder Albert Almora (2012) and third baseman Kris Bryant (2013) in addition to IFA signing Jorge Soler, and powerful rightfielder from Cuba.

Oakland’s #1 from last year, shortstop Addison Russell is here as well, as is Angels’ first rounder C.J. Cron.

Peoria has players from the Astros, Mariners, Padres, Phillies and Royals. A few of their top guys are Delino DeShields Jr, Nolan Fontana, Cheslor Cuthbert, Austin Hedges and Keyvius Sampson.

For the season, Mesa is undefeated at 5-0, while Peoria is at 3-3.

Starters are Tommy Collier (Tigers) and Matt Heidenreich (Astros).

429 Responses to “Live From the AFL..”

  1. Chuck Says:

    Astros have a guy they signed from the Mexican League, Japhet Amador.

    Check out the size profile.

  2. Raul Says:

    I doubt that Delino DeShields Jr kid will be any good.
    These toolsy speed guys rarely pan out if the contact isn’t there.

    I’m still waiting for this “Desmond Jennings” superstar to emerge…

  3. Raul Says:

    I wasn’t far off from that guy’s size profile @ Chuck.

    Then again, everyone’s body frame is different.
    Still, they gotta get that kid away from the enchiladas.

    It’s funny how big we have gotten.
    Back in the day Dave Kingman was probably thought of as a big guy. I doubt he ever tipped the scales at even 210.

  4. Raul Says:

    Err. I meant to say George Foster. Not sure why I wrote Kingman’s name.

  5. Chuck Says:

    DeShields looks good in center. I did not know he had played there before and was moved to 2B for awhile.

    He misjudged a ball in the first inning, but made two real nice back to the plate running catches.

    I’m with you though, Raul, he’ll be like Eric Young Jr…maybe a good reserve player but no where as good as the old man.

  6. Chuck Says:

    You were close to 300?

  7. Raul Says:

    At one point I was 320.
    Not in my playing days. Back then I was 190-205.

  8. Chuck Says:

    Had no idea.

    My heaviest was 202..I’m 194 now..playing weight was around 165-170.

  9. Raul Says:

    Yeah I was bony until about my junior year of HS. Got a job, had my own money to eat and stuff…started working out. I probably went from 165 to 190 from 9th grade to 11th. And gained like another 15 my senior year and that summer before college. I was 205 as a college freshman…6′4.

    Left school around 235.
    Then ballooned up to 265-ish. Then had this patch of a few years where I went out to bars and drank and ate like an animal. I don’t even know how heavy I got up to. When I started working in NYC and making more money, that just meant more eating out. I am sure I weighed more than 320 but that’s the highest I’ve actually recorded my weight at.

    I’m down to 280 now. Hoping to get to 265 by New Years.
    Then down to 240-ish by April 2014.

    From there, I’ll feel it out and decide if I want to lose more.
    240 is probably still heavy but I think with my frame (big thighs, barrel chested), getting down into the 210s might be pushing it, but we’ll see.

  10. Chuck Says:

    Amador is a big guy, but he’s not offensive lineman fat..he seems pretty solid.

  11. Raul Says:

    Teams took a shot at Prince Fielder, so…

  12. Raul Says:

    I thought Cameron posted something about Carlos Beltran and his hot hitting in the playoffs.

    I checked.
    He’s hitting .143 this postseason.
    You giving credit for what he did 7 years ago?

  13. Cameron Says:

    Really? I knew he was doing alright earlier. Especially Game 1. Throws a guy out in the 10th, blasts a homer in the 13th to win it.

    …Must’ve missed a few things in between. In my defense, I’ve had shit to do.

  14. Cameron Says:

    @3 Really? When I think of fat ballplayers from the 70s, I always think of Greg Luzinski. I’m not sure how much was fat and how much was him being built like a brick shithouse, but the dude looked big.

    @10 So you think most of that 300 is muscle then?

  15. Chuck Says:

    Luzinski was not fat..maybe at the end in Chicago, but not early on. He was linebacker thick.

    No, he could stand to lose some weight…but he has a barrel chest and wide shoulders. I was expecting to see some revolting beer gut guy, but that’s not the case.

  16. Jim Says:

    Not sure if it is just in the Boston market, but the announcer audio feed has disappeared, leaving only crowd noise to accompany the action..


  17. Jim Says:

    RS v. Tigers game

  18. Raul Says:

    Tigers about to tie the series.

  19. Raul Says:

    Any Yankees at the AFL?

  20. Raul Says:

    Kershaw goes against Wacha in Game 6 on Friday.
    LA will try to even the series and force a Game 7.

    Place your bets.

  21. Raul Says:

    Jon Lester and the Red Sox will try to shut down the Tigers tonight.
    Anibal Sanchez takes the hill for Detroit.

    If Detroit is going to win this thing, Prince Fielder has to hit his weight.
    He’s hitting .200/.294/.267 is not what the Tigers are paying 200M for.

  22. Chuck Says:

    Pitchers Brett Gerritse, Fred Lewis, Vidal Nuno and James Pazos, and position players Peter O’Brien, Mason Williams and Tyler Austin.

    I watched no baseball yesterday…other than the Fall League game.

    The Dodgers game was on in the press box, they were winning in the seventh when we left, don’t know if they hung on or not and no clue on Sox game.

  23. Raul Says:

    Dodgers and Tigers both won.

    Only names ringing a bell are Williams, Austin and Nuno.

  24. Jim Says:

    Arguably Fielder is responsible for the Tigers losing game 2 or at minimum giving the RS a chance to win.

  25. Cameron Says:

    Greatest pizza run ever.

  26. Bob Says:

  27. Chuck Says:

    You guys know why these International imports sign with lower quality teams?

    You guys know if Andre Eithier and Matt Kemp hadn’t been hurt Yasiel Puig would have been nothing more than a September call-up?

    It’s not financial, it’s not riding buses in Double A.

    Out of all the teams interested in Abreu, the White Sox were the only one he actually has a chance of making next year.

    This Abreu guy is a stiff, he’s a 1B only and if Konerko comes back his chances of making the team are pretty slim.

    The Sox have lost 90+ games two straight years, moves like this won’t help.

  28. Cameron Says:

    The Astros had a chance at him. Who the hell is blocking him there? Carter? Wallace?

    Plus the Cuban imports have had a pretty good track record of late. Chapman is lights-out now, Cespedes is a solid outfielder, I’d say Cuba’s one of the safer FA markets out there.

  29. Bob Says:

    He profiles as a 1b or dh.

  30. Cameron Says:

    Last season’s line for Jose Abreu

    .453/.597/.986 with 33 home runs in 66 games.

  31. Cameron Says:

    Wait, sorry. That was 2010-2011. Still, holy balls.

  32. Raul Says:

    A lot of guys come into the minors with…I think…the wrong mentality.

    It’s not really about trying to hit a HR every time you’re up. Or strike every batter out.

    If you’re a stud prep or high school player, chances are, you’re going to dominate at Rookie Ball or A-Ball.

    But you really should be using those games to develop the weaker areas of your game. Some guys don’t. They’re usually the guys that just crush it in their first year or 2 of minor league ball…and then stagnate at AA and AAA.

  33. Cameron Says:

    I think that’s why some teams like the import players. At the pro level, regardless of country, mentalities like that aren’t tolerated. You go, you play ball, you try to win. You try to be cute about it, you’ll get bitched out.

  34. Chuck Says:

    Teams go international because they can’t afford to compete in major league free agency.

    Cespedes was better than advertised last year..this year, not so much.

    The Dodgers let Puig get away with acting like an asshole because he was hitting .400…next year will be a different story.

  35. Bob Says:

    Plus Kemp and Ethier were hurt. If Kemp, Crawford and Ethier are healthy , who sits?

  36. Jim Says:

    Ethier, most likely gets traded.

  37. Mike Felber Says:

    You guys had the weight talk before. Good to see you are losing Raul. It is actually almost rare for someone to lose & then KEEP weight off for years or permanently. I am ~235 dressed, should be a max of 210, permit it since strong.

  38. Cameron Says:

    Sox vs. Cards, place your bets folks!

  39. Chuck Says:




    Red Sox.


  40. Bob Says:

    Red Sox in 6.

  41. Chuck Says:

    Red Sox suck…Cardinals in 3

  42. Chuck Says:

    Gossip around the batting cage from the AFL….

    Number one on the agenda for the next CBA is unifying both leagues as far as the DH goes.

    Appears the 41 year experiment will finally come to an end.

  43. Cameron Says:

    I’ll say Cards in… Let’s say six.

  44. Raul Says:

    Jesus Christ.
    Cardinals and Red Sox.

    The two teams I hate the most.
    I guess I’ll just be watching my Planet Earth documentary dvds for a week.

  45. Cameron Says:

    I’m a Royals fan first, Yankees fan second. Two of my biggest rivals in the sport. I’m not rooting for either of them. I’m rooting for Carlos.

  46. Cameron Says:

    I… I can’t believe it.

    Last undefeated team in the NFL, the Kansas City Chiefs.

  47. Jim Says:

    @42 will the DH be eliminated after Ortiz or ARod retires?

  48. Chuck Says:

    The name mentioned was Billy Butler..effective with the 2017 season.

  49. Bob Says:

    Jim Leyland is retiring.

  50. Chuck Says:

    Had a feeling..

  51. Jim Says:

    Hope he went on his own and wasn’t pushed. He did a good job with a flawed team. Great starting pitching, very good hitting, poor defense and mediocre relief pitching.

  52. Cameron Says:

    I think it may just be… You know… He’s old as shit.

  53. Jim Says:

    explain this to coach


  54. Jim Says:

    bad url

  55. Chuck Says:

    If I was on the defense, that kid doesn’t take two steps without pulling his teeth out of the roof of his mouth. Either that, or our coach would make sure we were.

    How can someone get away with that.?

  56. Chuck Says:

    You heard it here first….Kirk Gibson will be the new Tigers manager, Matt Williams in AZ.

  57. Cameron Says:

    Considering what Kirk did for the Tigers, I can see that. Wasn’t Williams a bench coach for the Dbacks?

  58. Cameron Says:

    Also, Bryan Price is going to be the next Reds manager.

    This will also be Tim McCarver’s final World Series broadcast.

  59. Chuck Says:

    Yes, he’s 3B coach now.

    Mattingly’s out in LA, too.

  60. Jim Says:

    @55, it was a junior high football game. I wonder what the down and distance was.

  61. Cameron Says:

    With all Donnie’s done for that team, that’s kinda shitty.

  62. Chuck Says:

    Sometimes it’s a personality conflict between the manager and the front office. The story about how Girardi ended up getting fired in Florida always cracks me up.

    Loria suggested he play a certain player, Girardi suggested he go fuck himself.

  63. Bob Says:

    Lincecum re-ups with the Giants for 2 years.

  64. Raul Says:

    Lincecum got that out of the way early.

  65. Bob Says:

    Funny. I thought he wanted a 1-year deal to reclaim his status as a top-tier pitcher. The Giants wanted a multi-year deal. Initially I thought the deal was too steep, now I think the Giants know something about his health that makes this a good deal for him.
    Due to how rapidly this deal came together, I am predicting a good season for Lincecum in 2014 for you fantasy guys. Though I am also a well-known dumbshit, so perhaps take this post with a grain of salt.

  66. Chuck Says:

    Comment on Twitter yesterday in response to Billy Butler’s name being floated as a trade possiblity.

    “Improving defense at the DH position is the new frontier of sabermetrics.”

    El Oh EL. Keep finding ways to reinvent stupid.

  67. Bob Says:

    Just think. The nation gets to witness Ortiz in the field this week.

  68. Chuck Says:

    “The nation gets to witness Ortiz in the field this week”

    Says who the networks can’t show x-rated material in prime time

  69. Jim Says:

    That’s right they showed Prince Fielder playing defense and running that bases last week. On offense he was impotent.

  70. Raul Says:

    “Improving defense at the DH position is the new frontier of sabermetrics.”

    What does that even mean?

  71. Bob Says:

    Having a defesively gifted DH will give a manager and GM a tad more flexibility in trades and line-ups than a shit sad sacker.
    Though yes I understand that DHs by definition are shit on the diamond, though not in the batters box.

    Or the statement was said in jest, or by someone who had too many rum and cokes or smoked the contents of a dime bag

  72. Raul Says:

    The entire point of the DH position has, at its very core, the idea that you don’t ever give a damn about a player’s defense as long as he can hit.

    If you want a DH who plays good defense, he’s not going to be a DH. He’ll be your 1B or RF or 3B.

    Like, I can’t even wrap my head around how stupid it is to want a good defensive DH.

  73. Chuck Says:

    The comment was total cheap internet sarcasm/humor, directed at the Royals for considering trading their best offensive player who just happens to be a DH.

    I’m assuming whoever they get to replace Butler won’t be as good an offensive player, so his defense from the DH spot would make up the difference.

    I cracked up when I read it, thought it was hilarious.

    I guess I’m the one who needs to start drinking again.

  74. Bob Says:

    Last night I was reminded of how small Ken Rosenthal is. Pedroia, who is either 5′5″ or 5′6″ was clearly taller than Rosenthal who was doing a post-game interview with him.

  75. Raul Says:

    Evolution will ultimately spare us all from the likes of that jagaloon Ken Rosenthal.
    Short people aren’t built to last.

  76. Cameron Says:

    Hey, I’m offensive and I find that to be very short.

  77. Cameron Says:

    I think I should like the Red Sox in theory. I’m as short and hairy as Pedroia, but as big a fatass as Ortiz. I’m a Red Sox player waiting to happen.

    …Gonna go work on my slider some more.

  78. Bob Says:

    At 3:55 in the morning, somewhere in Ohio, during the balmy month of October Cameron Nelson is perfecting his craft. The story writes itself.

  79. Cameron Says:

    The funny thing? I own an Indians cap. I’m so hairy that at this point, if I were eight inches taller and somehow still weighed the same, I’d look exactly like Chris Perez.

  80. Chuck Says:

    If I were you, I’d shave. Some nut case at 3:55 am may actually think you’re Chris Perez and shoot your ass.

  81. Chuck Says:

    Sorry, Bob.

  82. Bob Says:

    Shit happens. A crazy play.

  83. Chuck Says:

    Some of the crap on the ‘net today about the play defies belief.

    Allen Craig tried to run back to second and was out of the baseline.

    Craig should have been called out for interference because he slid into Middlebrooks and caused him to miss the ball.

    Middlebrooks raised his legs because he thought Craig was attacking him to fight.

    And my personal favorite…Jim Joyce was trying to make up for the call on Galarraga.

    When they make a smart phone that you could push a button and punch someone in the face, I’m in.

  84. Cameron Says:

    RIP Lou Reed

  85. Jim Says:

    Damn Lou Reed, I know what will be on the stereo this evening.

    No doubt the umps got the call right. Interesting that the obstruction rule doesn’t allow judgement for intent. Given how the play developed there was no way Middlebrook could not have obstructed him according to the rule.

    That said the mistake was Salty trying to be a hero. He should have put the ball in his pocket and pitch to Kozma w/2 outs. Craig would have been safe at 3rd even if the throw was handled and to the base.

  86. Cameron Says:

    “Only 30,000 people bought the first Velvet Underground album. …But everyone who did formed a band.”

    -Brian Eno

  87. Chuck Says:

    “Interesting that the obstruction rule doesn’t allow judgement for intent”

    It really does.

    If you read it, it says “unimpeded access” or something to that effect to the baseline.

    Once the throw got past Middlebrooks, he is no longer “in the act of fielding.”

    At that point, he can’t move, and he clearly did. Would Joyce have made the call if Middlebrooks didn’t lift his legs? Maybe not. But once he did, and once he contacted Craig, he had no choice.

    It was a clear and indisputable call, and anyone who questions the call is either a homer Red Sox fan or doesn’t understand the rule book. I can help you with the second one (rule book is on MLB website), Dr. Phil might be able to help with the first one.

  88. Cameron Says:

    To be fair Chuck, obstruction of the basepath is one of the more obscure rules. Hell, most people don’t understand blocking the plate, try getting blocking third base past them.

  89. Chuck Says:

    If someone had questions when the play first happened I get that, but once the broadcasters explained the rule or once you read is clear.

    We lost a state playoff game my junior year of HS because of verbal interference.

    Not understanding that, I can understand.

  90. Jim Says:

    Chuck not sure at whom your rant was aimed. Bob? I opened my comment by saying the umps got it correct and if you were sitting in my living room you would have heard me mutter “interference?” as the play developed.

    That said, the adequacy of the obstruction rule will be reviewed, if Joe Torre comments were reported accurately by Fox. Also based on Hirschbeck’s(?) comments, the only thing Middlebrooks could have done is get out of the way, though the attempt would have been itself interference.

  91. Bob Says:

    The umps have been outstanding. The teams have have been outstanding. Hence the series is tied at 2 apiece. In other baseball news

  92. Bob Says:

  93. Chuck Says:

    While I’m rooting for the Cardinals, I hope the series ends tonight….I can’t watch Game seven…which would suck.

    Then again, maybe not as much as the Red Sox winning would.

  94. Raul Says:

    The Yankees being valued at 1 billion more than anyone else is mildly surprising. I didn’t think the gap would be a billion.

    But the Mets being valued at 2 billion? Maybe that Madoff stuff didn’t hurt as much as people thought.

  95. Cameron Says:

    I think the Madoff thing didn’t hurt the Mets as a corporate entity as much as it hurt the Wilpons personally. Yes, they own it, but New York Mets LLC (or whatever the fuck their incorporation is) but the person that owns the company isn’t the only source of income the place has.

  96. Jim Says:

    @95 you’re right Cam. Madoff hurts the Mets because the Wilpon’s have lost financial flexibility and while the team is worth $2B it is an illiquid asset till sold.

  97. Jim Says:

    Gold Glove results

    C – Salvador Perez, KC (AL), Yadier Molina, STL (NL)

    1B – Eric Hosmer, KC (AL), Paul Goldschmidt, ARI (NL)

    2B – Pedroia, BOS (AL), Brandon Phillips, CIN (NL)

    SS – J.J. Hardy, BAL (AL), Andrelton Simmons, ATL (NL)

    3B – Manny Machado, BAL (AL), Nolan Arenado, COL (NL)

    LF – Alex Gordon, KC (AL), Carlos Gonzalez, COL (NL)

    CF – Adam Jones, BAL (AL), Carlos Gomez, MIL (NL)

    RF – Victorino, BOS (AL), Gerardo Parra, ARI (NL)

    P – R.A. Dickey, TOR (AL), Adam Wainwright, STL (NL)

  98. Chuck Says:

    Not bad..saw the show…

  99. Cameron Says:

    Actually Jim, I think it helps the Mets. Wilpon only has 52% ownership and I think is still looking to sell more of his personal stock. Eventually, the Madoff thing could drive Wilpon away from owning the team at all.

    …And let’s face it, it’s not like he was that good at his job.

  100. Chuck Says:

    Keith Law said Arenado couldn’t play third and didn’t have him on his top 150 prospect list because he wouldn’t have power in the majors.

    I may check his Twitter timeline from last night just to see his squirming.

  101. Lefty33 Says:

    Just to drop a few facts in here regarding Wilpon and the Mets situation.

    1. Per and the NY Post from 2012, Wilpon (aka Sterling Equities) controls 52% of the Mets and has gone on the record that he will not sell any more shares in the team so as to obviously keep his ownership percentage over 50 percent.

    2. The shares that Wilpon sold in 2011 and 2012 went to pay off emergency loans that he had to take out with Bank of America for $40 million dollars and MLB itself for $25 million (plus there were other loans) to be able to meet payroll and basic operating expenses in 2010 & 2011.

    3. The Madoff matter has been settled for a while now in terms of the dollars involved.

    The problem that Wilpon currently has is that he has had to take out more loans to cover that settlement plus they are still paying off loans from their cash crisis of ’10 & ’11.

    Wilpon is currently trying to refinance around $250 million in team debt this winter without having to pay any additional principal. On the good side of things is the fact that while the team has lost money in each of it’s last three seasons, that loss has shrunk from $70 million in ’11 to around $10 million this past season.

    If Wilpon can refinance the debt without kicking out any additional principal combined with the increased revenue from next year’s new national TV deal that kicks in, The Mets should break even with a payroll in the 85-95 million dollar range.

  102. Jim Says:

    @99 I’d forgotten that Wilpon’s had sold some of their interest in the team.

  103. Cameron Says:

    Gotta say… Congrats to the Red Sox. Coming into the season, I thought they looked like a joke team. No pitching, half the roster’s green as goose shit, and outside of the big 3 on offense, fuck all at the plate.

    …I was wrong on all three counts, they’re the best team in baseball this year. Hell of a Cindarella story, congrats for winning a hell of a Series.

  104. Bob Says:


  105. Cameron Says:

    Now that that’s out of the way…

    Royals, 2014 World Series champs. No joke this time, I’m taking next season seriously.

  106. Chuck Says:

    Congrats, Bob.

  107. Bob Says:

    I am taking 2014 seriously myself..

  108. Chuck Says:

    I don’t know what’s the biggest shit show…Erin Andrews on the postgame or the sabermetric crowd felllating Bill James on Twitter for “building the Red Sox”

    As Cameron would say….”the fuck?”

  109. Bob Says:

    Thank you.

  110. Cameron Says:

    Well, you just came off the top of the mountain. I know they say that there’s nowhere to go but down, but who said you had to move at all, right?

  111. Chuck Says:

    Andrews interviews Koji’s interpreter, then his son, then a well on his way to Drunkville Ortiz.

  112. Cameron Says:

    Uh, James doesn’t make any moves on the team. His official title is Senior Advisor on Baseball Operations. I think his capacity is educating scouts on how to adjust college and minor league stat lines. He doesn’t have much impact on the major league level. And that’s self-admitted.

  113. Bob Says:

    7 arrests in Boston as of now, The entire city is drunk.

  114. Cameron Says:

    Wow, how much champagne does it take to tank Papi? He’s a big dude.

  115. Bob Says:

    The Sox have copious amounts of champagne.

  116. Cameron Says:

    I had to check to make sure if Xander Bogaerts was old enough to actually drink some of that champagne.

    …Just barely.

  117. Mike Felber Says:

    So many surprising turnarounds. Recall when not too far into ‘09 everyone thought Ortiz was done? Though with the DH ding, his best WAR since then was this year, 4.4. His PS production is mostly luck, but what if he had not been so good? I spent my Freshman year at Northeastern so have a soft spot for Boston.

    Lou Reed had played at a big SUNY Buffalo festival where I transferred to. He was always real, I recall n pretensions from him.

  118. Cameron Says:

    Oh thank god. James Shields’ contract had a club option for next year. Signed that as soon as we could.

  119. Cameron Says:

    Derek Jeter has resigned with the Yankees. For one year and 12 million dollars.

    That’s roughly $706,000 for every game he was able to play this year.

  120. Chuck Says:

    I’ve made one off-season prediction so far and I’m 0-1.

    Brad Ausmus new Detroit manager.

  121. Cameron Says:

    I’ll give you half a point. You predicted Matt Williams would manage a team. It’s just Washington instead of Arizona.

  122. Chuck Says:

    Well…what I said was Gibson would leave AZ for Detroit and Williams would get the job here.

    There’s still a chance Gibson leaves even though the Dbacks picked up his option.

  123. Bob Says:

    I like Ausmus for Detroit as well. It appears Tom Brookens will never manage.

  124. Cameron Says:

    The Cubs are going to announce the new manager sometime this week. My money’s on AJ Hinch. If there’s one thing Theo Epstein likes, it’s a brown-nose.

  125. Chuck Says:

    LOL @ Cam..

  126. Chuck Says:

    The AFL is testing the new 2014 instant replay rules this week.

    There are five games which will be televised on MLBNetwork starting tomorrow and running through Saturday at 7pm EST.

    Managers have been instructed to “go overboard” with their challenges, so it’s probably a good bet to see a little bit of everything.

  127. Bob Says:

    The Yankees give qualifying offers to Cano, Kuroda and Granderson.

  128. Bob Says:

    Life is great for Red Sox fans.

    2. Life sucks for Dolphin fans.

  129. Cameron Says:

    I think anyone who’s known half a thing about Richie Incognito knows that he’s an asshole. Loudmouth, aggressive, probably on steroids, and has a very large reputation of playing dirty (as an O-lineman, I have NO idea how you play dirty).

    …That said, this level of scumbag surprises me.

  130. Bob Says:

    Incognito is a motherfucker. And he will soon be job and penniless. And soon can not come here rapidly enough.

  131. Cameron Says:

    Actually, as much of a moron as he is, the dude has a good amount of business savvy. I don’t think he’ll be penniless, but I doubt he plays in the NFL ever again. This is a level of reclamation project even the Patriots won’t touch, and they signed Albert Haynesworth AND Tim Tebow.

  132. Bob Says:

    Nobody will ever hire him again in a meaningful position. Espn will take Ray Lewis but never in a million years will they take Incognito. Never coach anywhere or even end up as an AD ala Bobby Valentine. He went way too far.

  133. Cameron Says:

    Two words, my friend. Real estate. That’s his future.

  134. Cameron Says:

    So, the Veteran’s Committee for the Hall of Fame released its ballot.

    Dave Concepcion
    Bobby Cox
    Steve Garvey
    Tommy John
    Tony La Russa
    Billy Martin
    Dave Parker
    Dan Quisenberry
    Ted Simmons
    George Steinbrenner
    Joe Torre

    For a Vet ballot, that’s pretty beefy.

  135. Chuck Says:

    Incognito will never play for the Dolphins again, but I’d bet he plays in the NFL again.

    I would vote Torre, LaRussa and Steinbrenner, and Simmons.

    I think Cox is the most overrated manager in history, but he’s getting in.

    Torre gets in in part for his playing career, his managerial career itself isn’t HOF worthy.

  136. Cameron Says:

    I’d probably vote in the big 3 managers and The Boss.

    Also, I’m not sure why, but I expect Garvey to get decent vote totals. Not enough to be inducted, but more than he probably deserves. That said, when Quiz is a ballot’s weakest member, that’s a damn good ballot.

  137. Cameron Says:

    Wacky and kind of scary week in the NFL. Denver coach John Fox had to be hospitalized with a heart condition and is going into surgery and Houston coach Gary Kubiak collapsed at half-time and was stretchered off with what turned out to be a blood clot blocking flow to his brain temporarily (a “mini stroke” if you want to use the press terms).

    You know, it’s times like these that I can appreciate baseball. Football has ten time the pressure of baseball in a tenth of the games, making football coaches a hundred times more fucked than baseball managers. Half of the baseball managers are old enough to collect pension checks, not a single one had to be carted off to the hospital this year.

  138. Chuck Says:

    Out of all the players on the ballot, outside of Quiz and maybe Concepcion is Garvey.

    John, Simmons, Parker and even Torre himself are better candidates.

  139. Cameron Says:

    Seems like the BBWAA awards this season are taking a page from the NCAA and are announcing finalists for the awards before actually giving the awards. 5 for each MVP, 3 for Cy, RotY, and MotY.

    Just give the damn award, don’t make asses of yourse… Wait, it’s the BBWAA. Nevermind.

  140. Raul Says:

    Agree with Chuck.

    Simmons was great from 1972-1980.
    Not “out of this world” good, but steady for that time period.

    Torre and LaRussa are easy choices.
    Cox probably gets in but I wouldn’t pick him.

    Steinbrenner, for better or worse, was the most influential owner in the game…and probably in sports during his time.

    I know the Dave Winfield thing might never die down, though.

  141. Bob Says:

    1. Rick Renteria will be the Cubs next manager.
    2. Pedroia’s thumb surgery may be a tad more complicated than thought.

  142. Chuck Says:

    Class move by the Red Sox.

    I hope you guys have been watching AFL games the past couple of nights, good stuff.

  143. Bob Says:

    I have watched them a bit. Now to peer pressure Kerry back into the group.

  144. Cameron Says:

    @141 Found the ad.

  145. Bob Says:

    This sucks.

  146. John Says:

    Hey y’all.

    Sorry I’ve been a ghost.

    Congrats to the Red Sox. Something, something beards.

    Who is everyone’s picks for awards?

    I’ll be honest, I watched like 15 games this year. 2013 might as well be 1933, because that’s how much of the season I saw. But I’m guessing:

    AL ROY: Myers
    NL ROY: Fernandez
    AL CYA: Scherzer
    NL CYA: Kershaw
    AL MVP: Trout (but, like last year, Cabrera will win?)
    NL MVP: McCutchen

  147. Cameron Says:

    AL ROY: Iglesias
    NL ROY: Fernandez
    AL CYA: Scherzer
    NL CYA: Kershaw
    AL MVP: Cabrera
    NL MVP: McCutchen

  148. Chuck Says:


  149. Bob Says:

    I will agree with Chuck across the board.

  150. Cameron Says:

    I would, but I think Iglesias’s .300 hitting, glove, and the playoff factor are going to sway the vote.

  151. Bob Says:

    Playoffs have no bearing on the vote. The votes are submitted before the playoffs begin.

  152. Bob Says:

    John, you enjoying the west coast?

  153. Chuck Says:

    How can you not enjoy San Diego?

    Especially when getting paid to live there and don’t have to worry about cost of living.

  154. Chuck Says:

    Twins announced today Joe Mauer is their new first baseman effective immediately.

  155. Cameron Says:

    Understandable. Dude’s getting a little banged up behind the plate. That said, he was an amazing bat for a catcher… But that bat at first base? Not worth the contract he has now. Especially in Target Field.

  156. Chuck Says:

    Winning three batting titles is a great achievement, but ask Bill Madlock how much they really mean.

    He’s a loooooooooooonnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnng way from being HOF worthy.

  157. Raul Says:

    Mauer will be 31 in the Spring of 2014.
    With a career line of .323/.405/.468 as a catcher with 3 batting titles through 10 years, he’s likely on his way to the HOF.

    But he’s at the midpoint of his career. He has to put up another 3 excellent years (maybe 4) and another 3 or so of above-average years (OPS ~115-ish).

    Too early to tell.
    Players who switch positions mid-career tend to be judged a lot on the 2nd half of their careers. Probably because it’s the most recent memory of them.

  158. Chuck Says:

    Where you been hidin’, Raul? Got yourself a woman?

  159. Cameron Says:

    @157 Unless your first half was THAT damn good, a la Ernie Banks.

  160. Jim Says:

    If Mauer continued to catch till his mid-30’s and maintained his level of production, he’d be a Hall shoe in. Moving to first with those stats and he’s a player who will fall short.

  161. JIm Says:

    It seems like the Braves have conned a county government into building them a new playground.

    Corporate socialism continues to be the American way.

  162. Chuck Says:

    #160…spot on, Jim

  163. Cameron Says:

    Forgot to list my votes for Manager of the Year tonight. Pretty obvious winners I think though. Farrell and Hurdle.

  164. Cameron Says:

    Francona wins AL, okay… Curious.

  165. Jim Says:

    Marlon Byrd – 2 x $8M! What the…

  166. Cameron Says:

    2/16? Damn, Philly, I know you’re desperate, but shit.

  167. Chuck Says:

    Dbacks will hire Dave Duncan as organizational pitching coordinator.

  168. Cameron Says:

    Glad to see Dave get back into baseball. Seems a little soon, but he’s a good guy.

  169. Lefty33 Says:

    The Byrd signing is stupid in a way but in a way it’s really their only play.

    The Phillies are not going to go all in for $100 million on guys like Ellsbury or Choo with so many other spots to fill in and giving five years to Cruz is even more stupid so when you strip all that away it leaves a very short list of guys like Byrd who can be had on short term teams for cheap dollars in comparison to the others previously mentioned.

    I’m not a big fan of the move myself but I’m going to wait to reserve judgement because maybe this won’t look as bad in a few months when seen in the macro sense with whatever other moves that Amaro hopefully makes.

    But yeah, by itself this is not a great start to their offseason.

  170. Chuck Says:

    Mets’ fans were going crazy on Twitter yesterday that they couldn’t afford their cleanup hitter.

  171. Lefty33 Says:

    The other Phillies rumor that seems to be getting some traction is that supposedly they are in “serious” talks with the Blue Jays about moving Domonic Brown plus two others for Jose Bautista.

    The two others aren’t known but one story has it as Kyle Kendrick and a low level minor leaguer with the Jays being agressive sellers to move Bautista’s mouth/attitude.

    If the Phillies get Bautista he will likely be seeing a good deal of time at 3B in addition to the OF.

  172. Lefty33 Says:

    @170 – I’ll be interested to see what the Mets do this offseason in general because according to the NY Post, Alderson is only going to get around $90ish million again if Wilpon can restructure the Madoff settlement debt.

    If he can’t, that number only goes down.

  173. Chuck Says:

    Ron Davis was at an alumni event here last week, I asked him if he thought Ike would be traded, he said “definitely”.

    I asked him where he thought he’d end up and he said “it could be anywhere, there are five or six teams talking to his agent everyday”, he said the most interested teams so far are the Rays and Brewers.

  174. Raul Says:

    I’m still looking for a woman, Chuck.

    I might ask you for help in that department, but I’m afraid you might point me toward some Grade A San Juan Lolita skank. Hahaha.

    I’ve just been busy. And I had little interest in the World Series this year.

    Down to 274 from 320 lbs. Just slowly chipping away, trying to get healthy.

  175. Cameron Says:

    I think Ike Davis going to the Rays makes too much sense. He’s the perfect Tampa first baseman. Mediocre bat with a good glove? Sounds like Tampa to me.

  176. Raul Says:

    Ike Davis is a pull-happy goon.
    MLB is full of these all-or-nothing power guys lately.
    It’s about time we get them out of the league.

  177. Raul Says:

    Terry Francona has 2 World Series titles under his belt.
    He just got his 1st Manager of the Year award, for coaching a team that didn’t even make the playoffs.

  178. Jim Says:

    Nigh on impossible for a manager in NY or Boston to win manager of the year. That said, it is hard to begrudge Francona winning as he deserved to win one with the Sox.

  179. Cameron Says:

    True. But I predicted Boston to be in the running for the top 3 draft picks this season and they won the World Series. I think he deserves more credit for having a team that posted the best record in the league and winning it all with talent no one expected to perform at the level they did than a first-year manager getting to game 163.

  180. Cameron Says:

    Brian Wilson refuses to talk to the New York Yankees in their search for a reliever on the grounds that he refuses to shave.

  181. Cameron Says:

    Also, next season the Giants will FINALLY have Barry Zito off the books.

  182. Chuck Says:

    Only Mexicans in Phoenix, Raul, can’t help you with the Lolita, but I got the skanks covered.

    Fifty pounds is fucking awesome, brah, keep it up. Ever get out to Phoenix, calzones and brewskies on me.

    #175..first thing I thought of.

    Thank God for facial hair policies…Brian Wilson sucks.

  183. Raul Says:


    Thank you. Every year I say I’ll go to Phoenix for the AFL or ST and I never go.
    I’m pretty sure I won’t be able to do ST this coming year because I just have too many things I need to pay off first.

    But yeah, I’m slowly plugging away. Eating a little healthier, working out. The progress is slow but I’m hoping to be around 250 by Spring. From there I want to see how I feel. I kinda have a big frame so I’m not sure I want to go too far below 240.

    But sometimes you get to a certain point and you just make a new goal. So who knows.

    I wouldn’t want Brian Wilson on the Yankees anyway. But I don’t want Cano on the Yankees either.

  184. Cameron Says:

    So, saw an interview with Carlos Beltran. He said he was only considering teams that will be competitive next year… And he says if the Royals would talk to him, he’d definitely listen.

    I know I shouldn’t go back to being the ten-year old who first saw him at Kauffman Stadium back in 2000… But I can’t help myself.

  185. Raul Says:

    Rumors are the Mariners are interested in trading fo Matt Kemp.

  186. Jim Says:

    Pay Kemp in both players and $’s or pay Ellsbury. Ells was better than Kemp in 2013 and his injuries have been as the results of impacts rather than soft tissue, pulled muscles etc. Also Ells deal will be longer. How do the Mariners project them going forward?

  187. Bob Says:

    If the Mariners sign Ellsbury, they part with a pick.

    If they trade for Kemp, and absorb the contract, the price in prospects will not be that high. The Dodgers may hve over-extended themselves with starting outfielders. Or the Dodgers eat a chunk of Kemp’s contract and ask for the Mariners better prospects/

  188. Cameron Says:

    Think they’d be ballsy enough to ask for Taijuan Walker?

  189. Bob Says:


  190. Cameron Says:

    And your AL MVP is Miguel Cabrera

  191. Cameron Says:

    And the NL MVP is…

    Andrew McCutchen!

  192. Bob Says:

    Chuck and I scored 100%

  193. Cameron Says:

    Out of 30 possible first place votes, McCutchen got 28 of them. The other 2 votes he got were a second and a third. Landslide victory for Catch 22.

  194. Raul Says:

    I wish someone could explain to me how Yadier Molina suddenly became a .300 hitter over the last few years.

    It feels suspicious to me.

  195. Raul Says:

    I mean the first 7 years of his career he hits .268/.327/.361 with 41 combined HR.

    The last 3 he hits .313/.361/.481 with 48 HR.


  196. Bob Says:

    Perhaps he was the only clean player at one time. Now with every one else clean, they went down, he went up.

  197. Cameron Says:

    I think it’s just Yadi’s work ethic speaking for itself. Dude’s got a great reputation for working on his game, both defensively and offensively. There’s no drastic increase in power, so I think it’s just him working on pitch selection and timing.

  198. Cameron Says:

    Oh shit. The Lakers didn’t sell out the Staples Center last night. They’ve sold out every home game for the last seven years.

    No Kobe, no money.

  199. Chuck Says:

    We all rip on Brian Kenny and deservedly so, but Craig Calcaterra makes him look like he invented stats. What a douche.

  200. Chuck Says:

    Can’t believe the AFL is over already..seems like it just started.

    Brewers first home ST game is March many days is that?

  201. Bob Says:

    31 in December and January + 28 in Feb. plus 13 more in this month gives us a grand total of 103.

  202. Bob Says:

    Any thought on Kris Bryant?

  203. Cameron Says:

    I think the Cubs have something special with Bryant.

  204. Chuck Says:

    My friend Bernie Pleskoff called him the best prospect in the league.

    Bernie writes for, (and is a great Twitter follow..@BerniePleskoff, tell him I sent you) and is a former Mariners and Astros scout. I worked with Seattle at the same time he did and we lost our jobs at the same time, but were in different scouting areas and neither of us remember meeting.

    Addison Russell is going to be a great player. Jorge Soler will be better than Puig or Cespedes, and Albert Almora may be better than Soler.

    The Cubs are stacked….with position players.

    Bryant is legit…I think he can stay at third…Scott Rolen is a borderline HOFer and is bigger than Bryant, and so is Troy Glaus, and he was pretty good for awhile, too.

    He was working on some swing/setup changes while he was here and still was MVP, so that tells me about his makeup, too.

    I’ll tell you this…Anthony Rizzo’s days are numbered if Bryant has to change positions.

  205. Cameron Says:

    I remember finding out that Bryant had more homers than over 200 NCAA teams had this year.

  206. Bob Says:

    1. The Yankees and Brendan Ryan agreed to a deal.
    2. Wally Joyner is the Tigers new hitting coach.
    3. Am I missing anything?

  207. Cameron Says:

    The Phillies resigned Carlos Ruiz for 3/26 with a $4.5MM club option.

  208. Cameron Says:

    Also, the Tigers added Omar Vizquel as first base, infield, and baserunning coach.

  209. Bob Says:

    Tim Hudson is a Giant.

  210. Cameron Says:

    Jeff Niemann was granted a release by the Rays.

  211. Chuck Says:

    “Tim Hudson is a Giant”

    Compared to Dustin Pedroia, yeah.

  212. Bob Says:

    Precisely what I meant.

  213. Cameron Says:

    Dustin Pedroia is what I’d look like with a haircut and about 50 pounds of weight loss.

  214. Lefty33 Says:

    @207- I just about coded when I read that today.

    Watching a Phillies game next year will be like watching a Golden Girls reunion.

  215. Jim Says:

    Daniel Bard’s struggles continue in the PR winter league in 3 appearances he’s given up 7 earned runs on 9 walks, 4 wild pitches, 3 hit batsman but giving up no hits. His last appearance Saturday his outing went: walk, walk, wild pitch, walk, wild pitch, wild pitch, walk, walk.

    Can’t imagine how he’s beating himself up when he goes home.

  216. Cameron Says:

    LaTroy Hawkins is signing with the Rockies. I’m amazed he’s still around.

  217. Cameron Says:

    Skip Schumaker is looking to sign with the Reds, physical pending.

  218. Chuck Says:

    Indication that Brandon Phillips will be traded?

  219. Raul Says:

    Brandon Phillips should have been traded 3 years ago.

  220. Cameron Says:

    Doubt it. Phillips is still one of, if not the best, second basemen in the National League. This is a utility signing.

  221. Raul Says:

    Phillips is 32 and hit .261/.310/.396 while playing half his games in Cinci-friggin-nati.

    His premier player days are finished.

    I get that he’s a nice defender and all.
    But if I could get a B-level prospect or a Sandwich draft pick for him, he’s gone.

  222. Chuck Says:

    Schumacher signing is official, two years, five mil.

    Nice scoop, Cam

  223. Cameron Says:

    Not much of a scoop. It was on the front page of at like two in the morning. Must’ve been pushed off by morning.

  224. Cameron Says:

    1. Josh Johnson is looking to sign with the Padres for 1/8, 1/9.25 if he makes 26 or more starts, pending physical.

    2. Boston is looking to make a push for Carlos Beltran.

    3. The Yankees have reportedly told Robinson Cano they are NOT paying him $300MM+

  225. Cameron Says:

    David Murphy signed with Cleveland for reportedly north of 2/10

  226. Mike Felber Says:

    Keep it up Raul! I am ~ 235 dressed even though 210 would be ideal I accept ~10% overweight if strong/maintain muscle. If you can maintain ~ 235 while exercising regularly, that is much better than getting down to college weight but continually doing a yo-yo up & down over the years. At your height ~ 235 & active would be great to maintain, & if you STAY around that level for years, that would be quite a victory, & unfortunately for this society, very unusual to keep off the weight!

  227. Raul Says:

    Thanks Mike.

    I’m just trying to stick with it. I don’t know what what weight my body will “plateau” (if that’s the right word to use).

    If it’s 240, 230, 220. Whatever it is, I think I’ll be okay and work it out from there.

    No way should the Yankees pay Cano 300M. I wouldn’t even pay him 150.

  228. Bob Says:

  229. Raul Says:

    I believe A-Rod was juicing for several years.
    But I also believe MLB is staging a vicious campaign to malign and ruin Alex Rodriguez. It’s personal for MLB. I don’t know why, exactly. But everyone’s hands are dirty in this whole situation.


  230. Chuck Says:

    I love the Hot STove

  231. Cameron Says:

    My favorite line.

    “Braun was suspended without pay for the final 65 games last season after admitting to violating MLB’s performance-enhancing drug policy. Braun tried to discredit the man who collected his urine sample in 2011 by telling peers he was a Cubs fan and anti-Semitic.”

  232. Cameron Says:

    Breaking news.

    Detroit Gets
    Ian Kinsler

    Texas Gets
    Prince Fielder

  233. Cameron Says:

    Also, Javier Lopez is looking to sign with the Giants and Chris Carpenter is retired. There are talks to get him an office job in St. Louis.

  234. Raul Says:

    Prince should hit better in Texas.

    It’s still a terrible contract.

  235. Cameron Says:

    It’s still terrible, but didn’t Kinsler sign 5/90 a year or two ago? I think it’s about a wash monetarily. It was a need thing. Texas needed a DH, Detroit needed a 2B, and the were making about the same.

  236. Cameron Says:

    Also, another plus for Detroit? Miggy moves back to first. Considering his defense and how he’s getting older, this is probably even better than replacing Fielder with Kinsler.

  237. JIm Says:

    The Tigers’ infield defense improves. Getting rid of Fielder and moving Miggy to 1st is an improvement and almost anyone they put a 3rd will be a defensive improvement over Cabrera.

  238. Bob Says:

    Yeah. I like this trade for Detroit, though wish Fielder well. The Tigers save a little bit of cash( to extend Scherzer) and their defense improves with Kinsler and Iglesias for the whole season.

  239. Cameron Says:

    In a rather…. Head-scratching move, the Royals signed Jason Vargas to a 4/32 deal.

  240. Raul Says:

    Kinsler sucks dogshit outside of Texas.
    If he OPSes .700 I’ll be impressed.

  241. Raul Says:

    Jason Vargas.

    Another Royals case of signing a Mariners pitcher hoping for the best. It really worked out with Gil Meche, huh.

  242. Cameron Says:

    I’ll cross my fingers since it wasn’t directly off the Mariners. Had a stop in Anaheim before coming here.

  243. Bob Says:

    RIP Michael Weiner

  244. Cameron Says:

    Depending on the development of young players, seeing if James Shields can keep up the level of play he had (best pitching season by a Royal in 3 seasons), and if the Gold Glove defense we have keeps up… We could be interesting next year. On the other hand, our last winning season was followed up with 104 losses.

    I’m watching the Royals closely next year. For what, I don’t know, but I’m watching. We can realistically be anything from World Series Champs to #1 Draft Pick contenders.

  245. Cameron Says:

    Sidenote. If we do reach the World Series, please let it be against the Dodgers. I’d love for us to fuck Zack Greinke over on the biggest stage possible. “Leaving Kansas City was the happiest day of my life,” my ass. Ungrateful fuckstick…

    Same goes for Johnny Damon, fuck him too.

  246. Bob Says:

    And what if the Dodgers win and Greinke outperforms Kershaw, ( and Shields and Vargas) Then what?

  247. Cameron Says:

    I start drinking? I dunno.

  248. Bob Says:

    Good answer. And if that would be your first taste of alcohol, go with a light beer. Got to work your way up to rum and cokes.

  249. Bob Says:

  250. Bob Says:

  251. Bob Says:

    The Cardinals acquired Peter Bourjos for David Freese. Possible that other parts are also being exchanged.

  252. Chuck Says:

    David Freese is a pretty good player. Peter Bourjos is crap.

    What the heck?

    Attaboy, Cameron, tell us how you really feel.

    Let it all out, Grasshopper.

  253. Cameron Says:

    I think it’s a combination of need (St. Louis has extra infielders, Anaheim has extra outfielders) and payroll (Bourjos makes far less).

  254. Cameron Says:

    Here’s the shopping list for the Yankees so far.

  255. Raul Says:

    I had a weird dream where Robison Cano signed for 7 years, 17.9 per — 125M

    Weirdly specific numbers.

  256. Cameron Says:

    The top contracts for 2B over the last few years…

    Ian Kinsler – 5/75
    Chase Utley – 9/112 (over 2 contracts)
    Dustin Pedroia – 8/110

    To ask for 10/300? Out of his mind.

  257. Jim Says:

    @255 Cash and the brothers have had the same dream.

  258. Raul Says:

    LOL @ Cam.

    I had no idea the numbers for 2nd basemen were like that.

    I guess my dream was pretty reasonable.
    It was weird. I NEVER remember my dreams.

    Cano won’t sign for that little, but it was interesting.

    LOL @ Jim. Me too

  259. Cameron Says:

    Brian McCann signs with the Yankees for roughly 5/85, vesting option could push it close to 6/100.

    The Cardinals sound close to getting Jhonny Peralta.

  260. Cameron Says:

    Joe Smith is signing with the Angels for 3/15, pending physical.

  261. Chuck Says:

    Don’t get the McCann signing…

    I know the Yankees were desperate at the position, but that much money for that length of time for a guy clearly on the south side of his career is a bit much, especially with a full no trade.

    The Yanks have had me scratching my head so much this year everytime I comb my hair it takes a half hour to stop the bleeding.

  262. Cameron Says:

    Eh, I don’t agree with 17 per, but I don’t think it’s an awful move. A left-handed power bat plays well at Yankee Stadium. He hit 20 bombs in Turner field after missing a quarter of a season. He’ll be a huge lift for an offense that’s been, well, kinda shit. Plus, he’s got a good arm behind the plate and he’s a huge clubhouse guy, and the Yankees have been lacking leadership lately.

    Overpay? Yeah, probably. Bad signing? Not a chance.

  263. Cameron Says:

    Dan Haren signs with the Dodgers for 1/10, vesting option for an undisclosed amount if he pitches 180 innings.

  264. Raul Says:

    The Yankees haven’t acquired a right-handed power bat since Gary Sheffield.
    The Yankees keep getting all these guys trying to take advantage of the RF porch and they get exposed against good pitchers.

    That, and the fact that everyone they get is a fucking strikeout machine.

  265. Cameron Says:

    Actually, Brian McCann is fairly decent in the strikeout department. 9 years in the league, none of them with 100+ strikeouts. Still more Ks than walks, but the past couple of seasons haven’t looked good for him between issues with his hip and his eyes. Both have been fixed with surgery. I think he won’t be too far off from his old All-Star form in the Bronx.

  266. Chuck Says:

    Latest contribution to the SABR Bio Project

  267. Cameron Says:

    It’s Hall of Fame time, folks! Welcome the 2014 ballot.

    Moises Alou
    Jeff Bagwell
    Armando Benitez
    Craig Biggio
    Barry Bonds
    Sean Casey
    Roger Clemens
    Ray Durham
    Eric Gagne
    Tom Glavine
    Luis Gonzalez
    Jacques Jones
    Todd Jones
    Jeff Kent
    Paul Lo Duca
    Greg Maddux
    Edgar Martinez
    Don Mattingly
    Fred McGriff
    Mark McGwire
    Jack Morris
    Mike Mussina
    Hideo Nomo
    Rafael Palmeiro
    Mike Piazza
    Tim Raines
    Kenny Rogers
    Curt Schilling
    Richie Sexson
    Lee Smith
    JT Snow
    Sammy Sosa
    Frank Thomas
    Mike Timlin
    Alan Trammell
    Larry Walker

  268. Cameron Says:

    In between this and the stacked VC ballot, I think Cooperstown is going to explode on induction weekend.

  269. Chuck Says:

    There are more people on the VC ballot who are HOF worthy than on the BBWAA.

    Seriously..Mike Timlin?

    Without steriods, there are no more than six guys on the BBWAA ballot who are legitimate HOFers.


    Bonds, Clemens, Glavine, Maddux, Palmeiro and Piazza.

    Thomas put up stupid numbers, but he played 70% of his games at DH, he’ll get in, but I’d never vote for him.

    Mussina is a sabermetric pitcher, which means his fake numbers are better than his real numbers. He was better than Schilling or Morris, but I wouldn’t vote for him, either.

    No one else is worth talking about.

  270. Cameron Says:

    I was listing all eligible candidtes, Chuck. Only criteria for Hall Ballot is ten years. I had to do some fishing for a full ballot.

  271. Raul Says:

    Curious how many votes Biggio gets.

  272. Cameron Says:

    He’s getting in. He made it on 68.2% of the ballot last year. I think he might make it due to possibly up to 3 first-ballot (Maddux and Glavine off the career, Thomas due to career and a combination of his vocal anti-steroid views and being voted in a non-electing year as a statement against steroids. Don’t count the BBWAA to make a statement out of Thomas), just to stack the induction year. We could see the busiest induction weekend since 1955’s 4 inductees.

    Also, fun fact. The last year that a player was not elected to the Hall of Fame was 1996, where the highest vote-getter was Phil Niekro, at 68.3%. Near identical to what Biggio was last year.

  273. Chuck Says:

    Biggio’s not getting in this year.

  274. Raul Says:

    Ray Durham was a pretty good player.
    Like a poor man’s Tim Raines.

  275. Bob Says:

    Happy Thanksgiving. See you guys on Monday.

  276. Chuck Says:

    Thanks, Bob, same to you.

  277. Cameron Says:

    Happy Eat Til You Puke and Get Drunk to Avoid Talking to Relatives You Don’t Know Day

    …I was raised Episcopalian though. That’s every holiday for us.

  278. Raul Says:

    Unfortunately, April Fools Day isn’t for another 5 months.

    Royals extend GM Dayton Moore

  279. Cameron Says:

    First winning season in a decade, dude. I’ll cut him some slack.

  280. Raul Says:

    Of course you would.
    You’re high off 1 winning season and not seeing the full picture, which is 13 years of excellence from Wil Myers in another uniform.

  281. Cameron Says:

    You know what? Yeah, I am a little high. You’re a Yankees fan. You don’t know what one winning season in a decade feels like. You’re used to ten.

  282. Cameron Says:

    Also, it’s Tampa. He’ll spend the next 13 years in at least two uniforms. =P

  283. Raul Says:

    This is like when Tony Peña led you guys to a decent season and then you continued losing.

    The Royals aren’t close to competing for a division title.
    This was an outlier year.

    What they have to do is continue developing a core of guys. Because Alex Gordon is getting older. Billy Butler’s days are numbered. Alcides Escobar is a lot closer to 2013 than his 2012 season. Mike Moustakas is proving to be a scrub. And James Shields won’t be around much longer either.

    If they don’t find some Free Agent miracle in a bottle or develop their talent better, KC will be looking at another string of 65-win teams.

    Then yeah, you’ll be wishing you had Wil Myers.

    It’s just the truth.
    And Bubba Starling isn’t exactly inspiring hope thus far.

  284. Cameron Says:

    “Then yeah, you’ll be wishing you had Wil Myers.” So we can be… What? A 70 win team? 72?

  285. Raul Says:

    If that’s what you think, you might as well advocate gutting the entire team right now.

  286. Chuck Says:

    I think all things considered (his boss is a cheapskate), Moore has done about as well as could be expected.

    The fact he had the balls to trade Myers tells me he’s not afraid to take risks to build a better team. Yeahm, he probably could have gotten more for him, but you have to at least give credit.

  287. Cameron Says:

    I think if Shields does well enough for us next season that Glass would be willing to throw money at him. He doesn’t like locking up the young guys, but if you have a track record, he’ll pay you. …Sometimes overpay.

    Like Gil Meche… And Jose Guillen… And *grumblegrumblegrumble*

    To be fair to Glass though… We don’t make much money. We get revenue sharing yes, but our media presence nationally in nonexistent, we do shit in merchandise sales, our tickets are dirt cheap and we still have low attendance… We don’t spend a lot because we kinda don’t… Have a lot. Like, I’m sure Alex Rodriguez is worth more than the whole team, business side included.

  288. Cameron Says:

    Sweet, the Beltran talks are looking serious for KC.

  289. Chuck Says:

    Beltran is going to the Yanks, Cam…sorry, man.

  290. Chuck Says:

    Phil Hughes to the Twins…3/24

  291. Raul Says:

    Target Field in Minnesota allowed the fewest rate of HR in the American League in 2013.

    Just off the strength of that alone, Hughes’ ERA figures to drop by a run.

  292. Cameron Says:

    Scott Kazmir signs with Oakland for 2/22. I think it’s a decent pickup.

  293. Cameron Says:

    Detroit Gets
    Robbie Ray
    Ian Kroll
    Steve Lombardozzi

    Washington Gets
    Doug Fister

    Clearing cap space for that Scherzer contract, I see.

  294. Cameron Says:

    Baltimore Gets
    Jemile Weeks

    Oakland Gets
    Jim Johnson

  295. Chuck Says:

    Fister’s not that good..certainly not worth the $10 mil he’d get in arbitration.

    Fister got traded not because of the need to pay Scherzer, but because they don’t want to pay Fister.

    And if anyone thinks Scherzer will ever again have a year remotely close to this one, let’s talk bridge sales.

  296. Cameron Says:

    Fister’s solid. Ten million? Not really? But he’s the number four in that rotation and will provide them 180-200 innings barring injury. I think it’s good for both sides. Washington gets a proven innings eater, Detroit clears cap space.

    And Scherzer having a year this good ever again? Highly unlikely. Scherzer has always been an all-or-nothing flamethrower. He throws as hard as the better half of the 1-2 the Tigers have, but he’s not as good a pitcher. It’s the old “thrower =/= pitcher” argument.

  297. Bob Says:

    And the Sox sign A.J Pierzynski

  298. Cameron Says:

    Red Sox, to be precise.

  299. Cameron Says:

    Let me see if I can piece the details here…

    Tampa Bay Gets
    Heath Bell
    Ryan Hannigan
    Cash ($500k from Arizona, Undisclosed amount from Miami)

    Arizona Gets
    Justin Choate
    Cash or PTBNL

    Cincinnati Gets
    David Holmberg

  300. Bob Says:

    The Marlins get Salty.

  301. Cameron Says:

    The Tigers are closing in on a two-year deal with Joe Nathan.

  302. Cameron Says:

    Two trades.

    Houston Gets
    Dexter Fowler

    Colorado Gets
    Jordan Lyles
    Brandon Barnes

    Alex White, Drew Pomeranz, now Jordan Lyles. Stocking up the big-name bust pitchers aren’t they?

    Oakland Gets
    Luke Gregorson

    San Diego Gets
    Seth Smith

    At some point, Oakland also got Craig Gentry form Texas as well, it seems.

  303. Cameron Says:

    Ah, found the details about the Gentry trade.

    Texas Gets
    Michael Choice
    Chris Bostick

    Oakland Gets
    Craig Gentry
    Josh Lindblom

  304. Chuck Says:

    Looks like you may be right after all, Cam….the so-called “mystery team” who offered Beltran 3/48 was, in fact, the Royals.

  305. Cameron Says:

    And now time to cause Raul and Chuck to have rage fits.

    Jacoby Ellsbury. 7 years, 153 million dollars… New York Yankees.

  306. Cameron Says:

    In international news, in an attempt to fix the posting system, the MLB is proposing that to sign players from Nippon Pro, there be a maximum bid limit in order to limit damage to teams trying to sign top Japanese players. Nippon Pro is supportive of this, as it allows NPB to continue doing business with MLB. The current figure for a max bid is hovering around 20 million.

  307. Chuck Says:

    Fuck you, Cameron

  308. Cameron Says:

    Don’t shoot me, I’m just the messenger. Blame Cashman and the boys.

  309. Cameron Says:

    Also, the Rockies are close to a two year deal with Justin Morneau. I hear 2/13, but I’m not confident on that.

  310. Chuck Says:

    I don’t get it.

    Maybe it’s just a sign I’m getting old and the world has passed me by.

    $22 million for an injury prone singles hitter.

  311. Cameron Says:

    Ells? Oh yeah, I agree it’s a terrible signing. Resigning Grandy would’ve been a cheaper and better option.

  312. Cameron Says:

    Paul Konerko resigns with Chicago, 1/2.5, with $1MM deferred until 2021, after the deferred money from his current contract runs out in 2020.

  313. Raul Says:

    The Yankees shouldn’t have signed Ellsbury.
    They shouldn’t have signed Granderson.
    They shouldn’t sign Cano.

    All for different reasons.

    This Ellsbury contract will end up next to Carl Pavano’s.
    Horrendous contract for a team already saddled with bad contracts that they can’t move.

    Sweet Jesus. If the Mets were run by a 10th grader, they could put together a winner and dominate NYC headlines for a decade.

  314. Raul Says:

    Who wants to bet that Ellsbury’s batting average dips by at least 20 points and he strikes out over 100 times in a season for the first time in his career?

    Kevin Long can’t WAIT to ruin another baseball player.

  315. Cameron Says:

    So, looked through the Top 50 draft prospects this year. There’s someone in there from my hometown this year. Monte Harrison, an outfielder (ranked 32 on the top 50) from the high school across town. He’s got a commitment to Nebraska and might end up going, but still, that was cool to see.

  316. Cameron Says:

    Boston and New York won’t hand Beltran a third year, feelings around the league are that #15 is coming home.

  317. Raul Says:

    Carlos Beltran turns 37 in April.

    Relax, Cameron.

  318. Cameron Says:

    Let me be sentimental, dammit. =P

  319. Chuck Says:

    Royals obtain OF Norichka Aoki from the Royals for the Fresh Prince of Bel-Air.

    Bye, bye Beltran.

  320. Cameron Says:

    Please, Aoki was a backup OF for a team that had a shit outfield to begin with. If anything, this signals Lorenzo Cain getting benched.

  321. Cameron Says:

    Also, Gordon’s hitting third in the lineup now with Aoki penciled in. Sweet.

  322. Bob Says:

    1. Dave Winfield will be a special assistant to Tony Clark.
    2. James Winston will not be charged.

  323. Chuck Says:

    “Please, Aoki was a backup OF for a team that had a shit outfield to begin with”

    He was the Brewers’ starting RF the past two seasons.

    Jameis Winston shouldn’t be charged…it’s a joke charges were even filed.

  324. Cameron Says:

    RIP Nelson Mandela

  325. Cameron Says:

    Robinson Cano is meeting with Seattle. Preliminary numbers look like 10/230-240.

    New York only went as high as… I think 9/170.

  326. Raul Says:

    Good riddance

  327. Cameron Says:

    Big day so far.

    -Scott Feldman, 3/30 (Houston Astros)
    -Hiroki Kuroda, 1/16 (New York Yankees)
    -Curtis Granderson, 4/60 (New York Mets
    -Robinson Cano, 10/240 (Seattle Mariners)

  328. Raul Says:

    I’m actually thrilled the Yankees didn’t sign Cano.
    For once this team didn’t overpay for some goon who will be mediocre in 2.5 years. Maybe sooner, playing in Safeco.

    They just screwed up by signing Ellsbury to that contract.

  329. Cameron Says:

    I think if he would’ve taken the 9/170 or so the Yankees were offering it wouldn’t have been that bad (still bad, but not what he did sign for).

    That said, the double play combo in the Bronx is now Eduardo Nunez and Derek Jeter. Assuming he’s healthy.

    In all likelihood, we’ll be seeing Nunez and Ryan up the middle. Yikes.

  330. Chuck Says:

    Yanks aren’t done…they signed Kelly Johnson, they re-signed Ryan, they have Jeter.

    They need to sign Infante…could play second if ARod isn’t suspended, or third.

    Cano overpriced himself, Yanks did the right thing. I’m still foaming at the mouth over the Ellsbury signing but what can you do, it is what it is.

    They could have brought Granderson back for 4/60, which is $15 a year and pretty reasonable for his age and production, but, nooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo, they had to overpay by three years and $93 million for a guy who can’t carry his jock.

  331. Cameron Says:

    Omar Infante would make almost too much sense for the Yankees. They need as many band-aids in that infield as they can get.

  332. Chuck Says:

    Beltran’s a Yankee, 3/45

  333. Cameron Says:


  334. Cameron Says:

    Napoli back to Boston for 3/42

  335. Raul Says:

    WTF @ Beltran


    So I guess…someone’s getting moved.

  336. Cameron Says:

    Current Yankees OF Courtesy of the 40-Man plus the new signings.

    Zolio Almonte
    Ramon Flores
    Brett Gardner
    Slade Heathcott
    Alfonso Soriano
    Ichiro Suzuki
    Vernon Wells
    Jacoby Ellsbury
    Carlos Beltran

  337. Raul Says:

    I have to think that Gardner stays in case Beltran gets hurt…or WHEN Ellsbury does.

    Soriano is a RH bat so he’s not going anywhere.

    I don’t think they’re paying Wells much so he might be the odd man out.
    Ichiro probably has no value to anyone and I could see him being outright released.

  338. Jim Says:

    Boston press has the Napoli deal as 2/32.

  339. Cameron Says:

    Yeah, I had some outdated info it looks like. Early relase numbers.

  340. Cameron Says:

    @337 Well Almonte, Flores, and Heathcott are probably getting designated when the season starts, so that leaves 6 OF. …Workable, but not optimal. There’d either need to be one less pitcher or one less infielder to make it work. …And it’ll probably be the infield that takes the hit because of the versatility of some of the guys involved there that multiple players can cover multiple positions.

  341. Jim Says:

    Reportedly the Phillies are shopping Papelbon. They should take back a bag of peanuts and a beer if someone takes that contract.

  342. Raul Says:

    There’s no reason to carry Ichiro @ Cameron

    He doesn’t hit for average.
    He doesn’t get on base.
    He doesn’t steal bases.
    He doesn’t play exceptional defense anymore.

    And he’s left-handed.

    The Yankees right now have too many LH outfielders.
    Ichiro should be the odd man out.

    Closers are interchangeable. Except for Mariano Rivera.
    The Phillies should have known better.

  343. Chuck Says:


  344. Cameron Says:

    Gardner’s probably not gone. He’ll probably shift back to left with Soriano DHing.

  345. Raul Says:

    David Ortiz…bro, I know you have to support your boy Cano because he’s Dominican and all, but you’re talking reckless.

    Cano was the face of the Yankees?

    Punta Cana?

    Derek Jeter has been, and will be the face of the Yankees for the next 50 years.

  346. Jim Says:

    Roy Halladay retiring. Signing a one day deal w/the blue jays so he can retire as a Jay. Nice for Toronto fans.

  347. Raul Says:

    That one-day contract stuff is meaningless and stupid.
    You think I’m gonna give a damn if in 9 years Robinson Cano signs a 1-day contract with the Yankees?


  348. Chuck Says:

    Twitter is full of stupid today…more so than usual.

    1) More people criticizing who didn’t get into the HOF than praising those who did.

    2) Roy Halladay’s a first ballot HOFer. No, he isn’t. Roy Halliday is Jack Morris.

    3) Questions about managers today getting into the Hall because their win totals are tainted because they managed players who used steriods.


  349. Raul Says:

    Maybe Johan Santana will retire too @ Chuck.

    Just to put one more dingbat HOF argument in your twitter feed.

  350. Cameron Says:

    I think Halladay was at the “padding the resume” point of his career. But hey, I’ll give him credit for walking away if he isn’t physically able to play anymore. No need to kill yourself over a game.

  351. Raul Says:

    A few days later to reflect and I’m downright shocked that Seattle gave Cano 240M.

    The team is in shambles and they gave a 31 year old 2nd baseman…like 95% of whose value comes solely from his bat…240M.

    But 13-14 years ago they were literally on the verge of DOMINATING the American League with potentially FOUR Hall of Famers and they told them all to f*ck off.


  352. Cameron Says:

    Well, I think Cano could profile at third once his ability to field second diminishes. That said… Yeah… Though there’s some pieces there. They have Hernandez and Hultzen in the rotation, Walker isn’t too far off, not entirely unbelievable to think that they can’t resign Iwakuma. The defense is solid. The Angels and Astros are playing like dogshit.

    Another bat or two and they won’t look so bad.

  353. Bob Says:

    There are rumors that Seattle could attempt to pry Price from Tampa. Seattle is not done. Though your larger point stands.

  354. Bob Says:

  355. Cameron Says:

    LA is looking to trade one of Ethier, Kemp, or Crawford. Seattle would probably have to lose Walker, but Kemp would punch the lineup up.

  356. Bob Says:

    I have heard/read Walker for Price, with another piece or two going to Tampa.

  357. Chuck Says:

    Nobody is going to take on Kemp’s see how bad that is?

  358. Chuck Says:

    Will David Price be traded before spring training….maybe.

    Will he be traded this week? No.

    Logan Morrison will be traded..probably before I finish typing this, and I expect Ike Davis as well…(as I said a month ago…Milwaukee or Tampa), but if Morrison ends up with Tampa, then…..

  359. Cameron Says:

    The Brewers traded Aoki for Will Smith. They had the same package from the Mets for Ike Davis. …The Brewers picked Smith.

    I’m not sure if that says more about Milwaukee or Ike Davis.

  360. Lefty33 Says:

    “But 13-14 years ago they were literally on the verge of DOMINATING the American League with potentially FOUR Hall of Famers and they told them all to f*ck off.”

    That’s 100% the fault of CEO Howard Lincoln.

    Supposedly the guy is a real 1st class A-Hole which is why the four HOF caliber guys you mentioned plus guys like Pinella and Gillick have all chosen to leave rather than continue to work for him.

    In his 20 years in the job his two big accomplishments were getting Ichiro to play/stay in Seattle and getting Safeco built. Other than that his run has been filled with nonstop failure from a baseball point of view.

    But then again, that clearly hasn’t been what Nintendo has been worried about.

  361. Cameron Says:

    Nope. And even though it’s officially run by Nintendo of America, NoA is pretty much the bitch of Nintendo’s parent branch in Japan. And Nintendo… Well, I’m a gamer who researches the industry. Nintendo’s business practices are a little… Weird.

    But basically, as long as the M’s keep in the black, they’re fine according to Nintendo, W/L be damned.

  362. Raul Says:

    Congratulations to Joe Torre, Tony LaRussa and Bobby Cox.
    I have my issues with the votes but you’re in.

    However, serial verbal diarrhea-ist Mike Lupica wrote a piece calling Joe Torre the most important manager in Yankee history, which might be the single dumbest thing I’ve read since an ex-girlfriend drunk texted some gibberish to me in 2009.

  363. Bob Says:

  364. Raul Says:

    So now I’m reading rumors of a Tampa-Seattle trade that gives the Mariners David Price, and puts Nick Franklin with the Rays.

    Unbelievable if Tampa gets Nick Franklin and Wil Myers in a 1 year span.

  365. Raul Says:

    Just curious…

    First 2 years in the league:

    Hideo Nomo

    27-17 W/L
    419.2 IP
    2.90 ERA
    470 K
    133 ERA+

    Daisuke Matsuzaka

    33-15 W/L
    372.1 IP
    3.72 ERA
    355 K
    126 ERA+

    Hiroki Kuroda

    17-17 W/L
    300.2 IP
    3.74 ERA
    203 K
    110 ERA+

    Yu Darvish

    29/18 W/L
    401 IP
    3.34 ERA
    498 K
    127 ERA+

  366. Raul Says:

    Does Adam Eaton project to be anything more than a .240/.315/.390 hitter?
    Seriously, how has Kenny Williams kept his job this long?

  367. Cameron Says:

    Corey Hart signs a one year deal with Seattle, Milwaukee gets Logan Morrison in a trade.

  368. Raul Says:

    Two shit deals that nobody cares about.

    Hart hasn’t played in a year.
    And Morrison is better at Twitter than he is at baseball.

    Hart is listed at 6′6, 235 lbs.
    Morrison is listed at 6′3, 245 lbs.

    Jesus Christ.
    These two white guys are playing the wrong sport.

  369. Cameron Says:–mlb.html

  370. Cameron Says:

    Bartolo Colon signs a two year deal with the Mets.

    Cincinnati approached the Yankees with a deal of Brandon Phillips for Brett Gardner and prospects. The Yankees declined this offer. There may be more in these talks, but there are two roadblocks in this trade. The Yankees are on Phillips’ limited no-trade, and Phillips wants his contract to be re-opened so his current deal can pay him more.

  371. Cameron Says:

    My bad. After rereading the reports, Morrison went to the Mariners as well. So Hart, LoMo, and Justin Smoak are all fighting for PA at first, the other two will probably be split between 1B and OF (LF for Morrison, RF for Hart)

  372. Raul Says:

    What about Ackley?

  373. Jim Says:

    Joba to the Tigers.

  374. Raul Says:

    Phil Coke once left the Yankees to go play for the Tigers and seemingly gained 40 pounds over that winter.

    I’m guessing Joba will check in around 3 bills.

  375. Cameron Says:

    Ackley’s in center and his backup is second. He’s safe with Hart and Morrison there. Actually, Hart may be able to pull the starting RF job. I mean, the competition is Abraham Almonte.

    Michael Morse signed a one-year deal with the Giants.

    The Texas Rangers selected Russell Wilson in the Rule 5 Draft. …Yes, THAT Russell Wilson.

  376. Raul Says:

    So I’m about midway through Chapter 5 of Mike Tyson’s autobiography “Undisputed Truth”.

    It’s downright fascinating.

    Most of what you think you know about Mike Tyson isn’t true.
    And what you DO know about him is barely the tip of the iceberg.

    I really recommend it.

  377. Raul Says:

    David Ortiz turned 38 last month.

    In the 3 seasons of 2008-2010, Ortiz hit .257/.356/.498 with 83 HR in 404 games.

    In the 3 seasons of 2011-2013, Ortiz hit .311/.401/.571 with 82 HR in 373 games.

    What gives?
    I can’t say steroids but 37 year old overweight men don’t do this.

  378. Raul Says:

    Ortiz has better career numbers than Edgar Martinez (although not when OPS is adjusted; 139 to 147 for Martinez).

    Is poor Chuck going to live much longer if he has to endure David Ortiz for Hall of Fame tweets in 7 years?

  379. Raul Says:

    Well that’s interesting.

    According to BBREF’s WAR, despite the similar offensive numbers, Martinez leads Ortiz in WAR 68.3 to 44.2.

    It would take Ortiz like 5 more years of All-Star performance to crack that.

  380. Cameron Says:

    Hell yeah you can say steroids Raul. He’s been busted at least twice. Maybe this time he’s just using something not showing up like HGH.

  381. Cameron Says:

    Kansas City signs Omar Infante for 4/30.

  382. Cameron Says:

    James Loney resigns with Tampa for 3/21.

  383. Jim Says:

    Raul, no idea or opinion whether Papi is juicing or not, but the guy is not the pro-typical 38 yo fat baseball player. The guy is ripped.

  384. Chuck Says:

    Why would anyone seriously think David Ortiz is a HOFer?

    I like the Infante look at Kansas City’s lineup now they’re pretty solid. They get any pitching at all next year and they’ll be right in it.

    Good riddance, Joba, you worthless piece of bleep.

    Mariners really are into some shit, huh?

    Met Mike Silva on Monday..he was in Phoenix on business for a couple of days, we hooked up for dinner on Monday. Good guy, trying to get into radio full time, has an ESPN gig with a station on Long Island now but it’s a start-up so their programming is messed up.

  385. Cameron Says:

    I hope they keep Emilio Bonifacio here in KC as well. He’s the poor man’s Infante. Between them, we have two guys who can play the entire left side of the infield.

  386. Cameron Says:

    The Pirates sign Clint Barmes and Edinson Volquez.

  387. Cameron Says:

    Got a good laugh out of something I read on I think these two quotes explain why.

    When asked about Jameis Winston’s baseball ability, University of Miami coach Jim Morris said the following: “I think he’s a first-rounder in both sports,” Morris told reporters. “It’s really, really hard in baseball to be able to pitch and to hit, and he might be their best pitcher and their best hitter.”

    While earlier in the article, they outlined his performance by saying this: “Winston was a pitcher/outfielder for FSU’s baseball team this past spring. He started 20 games in right field and 10 at designated hitter. Winston hit .235 with nine RBIs. He also made 17 relief appearances, going 1-2 with a 3.00 ERA. He struck out 21 in 27 innings.”

    A first-rounder hitting .235, huh?

  388. Raul Says:

    Why the hell do the Pirates need Clint Barmes?

    Just a stupid signing.

  389. Raul Says:

    Hard to say whether someone is a 1st rounder based on 30 games, Cam.

  390. Cameron Says:

    Real first-rounders put up video game numbers in college. Even in one season, not look like the bastard child of Manny Mota and Mike Timlin.

  391. Cameron Says:

    Max Scherzer, showing his holiday spirit in the best way he can.

  392. Jim Says:

    The Twins will re-sign Mike Pelfry. Shows how bereft of pitching prospects the upper levels of the Twin’s farm system is, that signing Mike Pelfry, Phil Hughes and Ricky Nolasco improves the rotation. All of these guys are back of the rotation starters.

  393. Raul Says:

    Hughes left the Yankees and went to a more grounded organization, playing in a more relaxed media atmosphere and in a ballpark that doesn’t allow very many home runs.

    It won’t surprise me one bit if he puts up a sub-3.30 ERA next year.

  394. Mike Felber Says:

    Yes, don’t tell Chuck about Tyson’s virtues or skill though. He thinks prime Tyson vs. current Stephen Hawking would be a pick ‘em bout! :-)

    What about what Pete Rose said re: banning collisions at home plate?

  395. Chuck Says:

    Not sure about Tyson, Mike, but I’d bet Hawking could kick your ass.

  396. Raul Says:

    A lot of people think Tyson got reckless and bad in the 90s with Don King.

    You gotta read his book.
    Tyson basically stopped caring about fighting from the day that Cus died.
    Even when he won the title at 20, he really didn’t care much from that point on.

  397. Raul Says:

    This hot stove season is pretty lame so far.

  398. Cameron Says:

    I don’t know this Mike Tyson fellow. Do you mean Malik Abdul Aziz? =P

  399. Jim Says:

    You would think that with the available free agents being underwhelming that there would be more trade discussion, particularly around pitchers.

  400. Chuck Says:

    I think everyone is waiting to see if Tanaka gets posted and where and for how much he signs for.

    He’s unproven, but there may be some teams who view him as a better and more reasonable option than say Matt Garza.

  401. Cameron Says:

    Tanaka will get posted. Probably a lot more people will get posted since the $20MM cap was put in place. Much friendlier to teams.

  402. Cameron Says:

    The Yankees are closing in on fixing their holes at second and the bullpen by reaching deals with Brian Roberts and Matt Thornton.

  403. Cameron Says:

    Also, as for the Masahiro Tanaka situation, it’s best for Rakuten to post them. Best to recoup the 20 and strike while they can, because he’ll leave as an IFA if he isn’t posted.

  404. Jim Says:

    Jeff Passan has a rumor that the Yanks offered Sinn-Shoo Choo 7/1400M after signing Ellsbury and he turned it down. Hard to see who else will match that.

  405. Raul Says:

    Not a huge problem with the Yankees signing Matt Thornton to a 2 year, 7M deal.

    But bullpens are such a waste of money.
    Thornton has been decent for his career but he’s going to be a 37 year old LOOGY next year.

    7 million for that?

    It’s staggering that teams can’t reach into their farm systems for these types of pitchers.

    I could see going after a veteran to pitch the 8th inning.
    But a LOOGY?

  406. Bob Says:

    Where does Stephen Drew end up?

  407. Raul Says:

    Drew is a backup at this point.
    I would have said Pittsburgh until they got Barmes.

    Maybe he can steal Brandon Crawford’s job in San Francisco.
    Or back up Alexei Ramirez in Chicago.

  408. Jim Says:

    Bob, Drew will end up in Boston. The question is will it be a one or two year deal. He should have taken the 14.1M, having a draft pick attached to signing him killed his value.

    I suspect the RS made the qualifying offer knowing full well that Boras has too large an ego to recommend that Drew accept it. It seems every year Boras has client who turns down the best deal counting on the market to developing and it never does. This year he may have two Drew and Choo.

  409. Bob Says:

    I was watching C.J Nitkowski a night or two ago, and he said he hoped baseball scrapes the draft pick compensation in the next round of the CBA.
    Perhaps something like give the losing team a sandwich pick or something. No 1st round picks especially when they are tied to how much Selig and company allow you to spend on the draft.

  410. Cameron Says:

    Royals traded David Lough for Danny Valencia. I like Lough, but I really like the trade. Valencia’s a .300 (singles) hitter and can play both corners. Between him, Bonifacio, and Infante, that infield is deep at every spot.

  411. Jim Says:

    The players association and the agents would like it scrapped, but I’m don’t believe the owners would scrap compensation without a huge concession elsewhere.

  412. Cameron Says:

    I think being able to trade draft picks would be something I’d like to see in the next CBA. It’s in every other freaking sport with a draft ever. Why the holdout?

  413. Cameron Says:

    Wow… I think the NFL is catching up to the MLB in terms of punishing PED users.

    Seattle Seahawks cornerback Brandon Browner was suspended for PEDs earlier in the season. He was offered a plea deal that would allow him to be suspended for the remainder of this season only instead of a full season ban (which would be roughly… I think week 10 of next season). He declined and decided to appeal. In the process of this, it was discovered that Brandon Browner didn’t keep up with his drug tests while under suspension. So now his suspension has been upgraded from “one full year” to “indefinite”. Damn.

  414. Cameron Says:

    And in veteran news, two one year-deals have been inked. Raul Ibanez to the Angels and Eric Chavez to the Diamondbacks.

  415. Mike Felber Says:

    Thanks Chuck, maybe you are right…With a spring-missile loaded wheelchair at least! Better you addressed this than the home plate collision controversy…I guess.

    Raul, East Side boxing has endless threads on boxing minutia, And a tight group discusses overwhelmingly heavyweights & mythical match-ups, some boxers, in the boxing section here:

  416. Cameron Says:

    Credit to Amaro for sticking to his gunms on this article. That said, I think he’s going down with the ship.

  417. Lefty33 Says:

    Amaro’s not going anywhere.

    The thing that people fail to realize about the Phillies is that they are not, especially since Montgomery took control in ’97, an organization that runs on the ideal of accountability nor do they seem to care what the fans/pundits/talking heads think.

    And quite honestly, why should they?

    More cash starts next year with the new national TV deal and once their own new TV kicks in for the ’16 season they’ll be making a guaranteed profit every year before one ticket is sold or one hot dog is consumed.

    That said, what do you expect Amaro to come out and actually say publicly?

    He’s made some stupid contract moves plus he’s got 10/5 guys that are all in essence unmovable especially since ownership likes “names” on the roster and they won’t allow contract money to be eaten to trade talent.

    The franchise is stuck from ownership on down in their own rut of shallow inbred thinking. But just because they are don’t think that someone is going to be the fallguy because that’s not how Monty has run the show in almost 16 years of control.

  418. Cameron Says:

    I’m concerned for Amaro though. I mean, how many bad contracts can one guy sign before he gets axed. …Well, I guess there is Brian Cashman…

  419. Bob Says:

    Luke Scott will be playing in South Korea.

  420. Chuck Says:

    There is no home plate collision controversy, Mike, unless you don’t understand the rule.

    MLB is now enforcing an existing rule, they are not changing a rule or adding a new one, like the National Fairy League.

    So, this Tanaka guy won’t be posted because the owner of his team is worried about portraying Japanese baseball as a farm system for MLB.

    For a Harvard educated guy, he’s not to bright.

    There is nothing dumber in sports than paying a posting fee.

  421. Raul Says:

    If the Phillies are standing pat because they will gain flexibility with their new TV deal, then I can see why Amaro would remain in charge.

    Where are they in terms of payroll the last few years? The 120-140M range?
    I’d imagine a TV deal allows them to hit the 150-170M.

    That could mean another superstar player.
    It could also mean they have no intention of trading away Cole Hamels.

    That said, they are an old team.
    Amaro is going to have to be creative in keeping the team relevant enough to sell tickets. But he also has to find a way to get younger.

    And I’m not sold on Domonic Brown, either.
    This guy has Vernon Wells written all over him.

  422. Bob Says:

    Scott Downs signs with the White Sox for a year and 4 million.

  423. Jim Says:

    Note today that Seattle may be hitting their payroll ceiling. Given the needs that this team has, breaking the bank on robbie cano will leave them…in the second division.

  424. Bob Says:

    Will Cano do to Seattle what ARod did to Texas and Tom Hicks?

  425. Lefty33 Says:

    “Well, I guess there is Brian Cashman…”

    Yeah, but Cashman is in a quasi-different situation all together. As long as he doesn’t buck the Steinbrenner’s when they force him to go after guys like Wells, Ichiro, Randy Johnson, etc, etc, etc, etc. who make no baseball sense he’ll have the GM job for life.

    Amaro is sort of in the same boat. He’s been part of the organization forever and they are a franchise which prides themselves in insular thinking to the extreme. As long as he appeases the two members of Phillies ownership (Montgomery & Middleton) who like “names” on the roster I don’t see him being taken to the woodshed for simply following orders the same as Cashman.

    Amaro is under contract through the end of the ’15 season and I would be shocked if he’s canned before then and quite honestly if they show any life at all he’ll get another two or three year extension.

  426. Lefty33 Says:

    “If the Phillies are standing pat because they will gain flexibility with their new TV deal, then I can see why Amaro would remain in charge.”


    “Where are they in terms of payroll the last few years? The 120-140M range?
    I’d imagine a TV deal allows them to hit the 150-170M.”

    The Phillies have been over 160 the last three years and that’s before the medical and other stuff is figured out to get the total tax number which adds on another 10ish million. In 2011 & 2012 they made trade deadline deals to dump salary on other teams so as not to pay luxury tax.

    The new TV deal would allow them to spend like the Dodgers if they wanted to but it will never happen because of organizational philosophy where tax spending is forbidden.

    “That could mean another superstar player”

    Maybe, so long as payroll is below 189.

    “It could also mean they have no intention of trading away Cole Hamels.”

    They have no intention now and with more money in three years I doubt they will then.

    “Amaro is going to have to be creative in keeping the team relevant enough to sell tickets. But he also has to find a way to get younger.”

    Before they sign the TV deal that’s impossible and after that it’s unlikely because too many of their contracts are not moveable. Montgomery would have to change his stance on eating contract money for them to move Papelbon, Lee, Howard or Rollins and Rollins along with Utley have 10/5 rights so good luck there especially when Rollins has said repeatedly that he’s not going anywhere and Utley with his contract options in theory could be in Philadelphia until 2018.

    “And I’m not sold on Domonic Brown, either.”

    Neither am I. He runs what are easily the worst routes in the sport after flyballs and he has no ability to stay on the field for a whole season without having some sort of injury.

    He had two decent months last year and then was either hurt or sucked the rest of the year. He’ll be moved at some point as well since Boras is his agent and the Phillies more or less don’t deal with Boras clients once they hit free agency.

  427. Chuck Says:

    When Brown was playing in the AFL, he butchered a fly ball..a guy in the press box says, “In 25 years of watching pro ball, I’ve never seen anything like that.”

    Brown tracks fly balls like a drunk trying to hit a pinata.

  428. Raul Says:

    Great insight @ Lefty

    Hahaha @ Chuck’s comment about the pinata.

  429. Mike Felber Says:

    Huh Chuck? Did you even read the link I posted? It constantly refers to & describes the new rules change, how it will be drafted, enforced, penalties, vagaries of interpretation that need to be defined…Pretty sure Alderson is no baseball ignoramus, & Rose + everyone else is not imagining a shift in the rule book. Also the concern for the lifetime debilitating-crippling body breakdown resulting in a much shorter NFL veteran lifespan & traumatic brain injuries wreaking havoc on mental & emotional functioning…Yeah, I guess the NFL are pussies for caring about this. Endless life-altering concussions are fun!

    Here is the article where the “no controversy, no rule change” is discussed.

    LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. (CBSNewYork/AP) — Major League Baseball plans to eliminate home plate collisions, possibly as soon as next season but no later than by 2015.

    New York Mets general manager Sandy Alderson, chairman of the rules committee, made the announcement Wednesday at the winter meetings. Player safety and concern over concussions were major factors in the decision.

    “Ultimately what we want to do is change the culture of acceptance that these plays are ordinary and routine and an accepted part of the game,” Alderson said. “The costs associated in terms of health and injury just no longer warrant the status quo.”

    In a sport long bound by tradition, a ban will be a major step. MLB also is instituting a vast increase in the use of instant replay by umpires next season in an effort to eliminate blown calls.

    “What are they going to do next, you can’t break up a double play?” Pete Rose said in a telephone interview with The Associated Press. “You’re not allowed to pitch inside. The hitters wear more armor than the Humvees in Afghanistan. Now you’re not allowed to be safe at home plate? What’s the game coming to? Evidently the guys making all these rules never played the game of baseball.”

    Rose, banned for life in 1989 following a gambling investigation, famously bowled over catcher Ray Fosse in the 1970 All-Star game. Rose insists Fosse was blocking the plate without the ball, which is against the rules.

    “Since 1869, baseball has been doing pretty well,” Rose said. “The only rules they ever changed was the mound (height) and the DH. I thought baseball was doing pretty good. Maybe I’m wrong about the attendance figures and the number of people going to ballgames.”

    Citing player safety, Alderson said wording of the rules change will be presented to owners for approval at their Jan. 16 meeting in Paradise Valley, Ariz.

    “The exact language and how exactly the rule will be enforced is subject to final determination,” he said. “We’re going to do fairly extensive review of the types of plays that occur at home plate to determine which we’re going to find acceptable and which are going to be prohibited.”

    Approval of the players’ union is needed for the rules change to be effective for 2014.

    “If the players’ association were to disapprove, then the implementation of the rule would be suspended for one year, but could be implemented unilaterally after that time,” Alderson said.

    The union declined comment, pending a review of the proposed change.

    Discussion to limit or ban collisions has intensified since May 2011, when San Francisco’s Buster Posey was injured by Florida’s Scott Cousins. Posey, an All-Star catcher, sustained a broken bone in his lower left leg and three torn ligaments in his ankle, an injury that ended his season.

    Posey returned to win the NL batting title and MVP award in 2012, when he led the Giants to their second World Series title in three seasons.

    “This is, I think, in response to a few issues that have arisen,” Alderson said. “One is just the general occurrence of injuries from these incidents at home plate that affect players, both runners and catchers. And also kind of the general concern about concussions that exists not only in baseball but throughout professional sports and amateur sports today. It’s an emerging issue, and one that we in baseball have to address, as well as other sports.”

    The NFL reached a settlement last summer in a concussion-related lawsuit by former players for $765 million and a group of hockey players sued the NHL last month.

    Former catchers Joe Girardi, Bruce Bochy and Mike Matheny — all of them now managing in the majors — attended Wednesday’s meeting.

    “I don’t think it’s completely sparked by anything that’s happened in baseball as much as what’s happening outside of baseball and how it’s impacting people and impacting the welfare of each sport,” said Matheny, now managing the St. Louis Cardinals.

    But not everyone is in favor of a change.

    “I lost time as a catcher being run over a couple different times, but I thought it was part of my job and I enjoyed the contact,” said Girardi, the Yankees’ manager. “Now I’m not so sure that everyone enjoys contact. But I love football, so I liked it.”

    MLB intends to have varied levels of punishment.

    “I think there will be two levels of enforcement,” Alderson said. “One will be with respect to whether the runner is declared safe or out based on conduct. So, for example, intentionally running over the catcher might result in an out call. So I think that the enforcement will be on the field as well as subsequent consequences in the form of fines and suspensions and the like.”

    But drafting the rule figures to be complicated.

    “Does it include at every base or just home plate?” Baltimore manager Buck Showalter said. “What’s considered blocking the plate and how do you define all of it?”

    The NCAA instituted a rule on collisions for the 2011 season, saying “contact above the waist that was initiated by the base runner shall not be judged as an attempt to reach the base or plate.” The umpire can call the runner out and can eject the player if contact is determined to be malicious or flagrant.

    “The actual detail, frankly the kinds of plays that we’re trying to eliminate, we haven’t finely determined,” Alderson said. “I would expect to put together 100 of these plays and identify which ones we want to continue to allow and others that we want to prohibit, and draft a rule accordingly.”

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