This and That; Random Thoughts on Random Things

by Chuck

So, it’s been awhile since anything fresh has been written, sorry about that. With John off saving the world it’s up to me to keep everyone entertained, and entertainment isn’t my strong suit.

Sure, I could easily post something everyday, like Brian Kenny making an ass of himself, but even that would get stale eventually….right?

*Speaking of Kenny, he posted a tweet the other day that listed the most sabermetrically driven organizations, with Houston leading the way with “6″. I replied, “6 what?” and didn’t hear back, so one can only assume he was killing time for some reason. Kevin Goldstein, the former Baseball Prospectus prospect writer who now scouts for the Astros, did respond, calling Kenny out, saying, “we are not an organization driven by analysis.”  When the leading proponent of sabermetrics gets called out by someone who used to be a leading proponent of sabermetrics, it’s a good day.

*Speaking of the Astros, about a year and a half ago I sent letters and resumes to all thirty major league teams, just putting my name in the hat for openings in scouting or player development. Most positions are entry level internships which require you to work your ass off for nothing, but a job in baseball is a job in baseball. Some teams responded, some did not. Houston did initially, a Dear John like everyone else. Yesterday, though, I got a letter saying there was “a position open which fit my resume and skills” and contained an email address where I could go and click a link to get an application. I type the URL into the computer and I go to a page which I assume was the Astros’ Human Resources page, where two questions pop up.

“Are you bi-lingual?” I select no.

“Are you willing to relocate to an as yet to be determined location in Mexico?” Again, I chose no.

The page flashes for a second, then a window pops up. “Thank-you for your interest in employment with the Houston Astros Baseball Club, we wish you success in your future endeavors.” It’s like getting eliminated first from a reality TV show.

*Dick Allen has a real cool website, he’s on Twitter and Facebook, too. From what I gather, he does most of the posting himself.

*I, for one, am glad it appears Masahiro Tanaka won’t be posted. The only thing dumber than paying a posting fee is paying $20 million a year for a Triple A pitcher.

*If sabermetrics really mattered in MLB, Shin Soo Choo would have signed a month ago. Defensively challenged outfielders who can’t hit lefties aren’t worth $23 million a season for seven years despite what Scott Boras and Brian Cashman try and tell you.

*I think it’s pretty cool Joe Torre, Bobby Cox and Tony LaRussa will go into the Hall of Fame together, but, yet again, the omission of Marvin Miller is somehow considered more newsworthy. Miller posted no stats, he never played, he didn’t build a team into a perennial champion, he was a labor leader. His primary function was to make money for the union, to do that he promoted the stars, while simultaneously forgetting about the other ninety percent of his constituents. I’ve written on these pages before about my friend Mike Colbern leading a group of players in a lawsuit against MLB and the PA for benefits; while they lavished cash on the likes of Catfish Hunter and Reggie Jackson, guys like Colby struggled with the effects of injuries suffered while playing and were denied the resources to pay for medical care or material things like their mortgage.

*Speaking of the Hall of Fame, the BBWAA portion of the ballot was released recently with results being announced on January 8th. As everyone knows, I’m a small hall guy and look for reasons to keep guys out, you won’t see me trying to justify Curt Schilling by looking at his post-season record or Jeff Kent because he’s the all-time home run leader at a position known more for defense. While I have to admit my stance is softening on Barry Bonds and Roger Clemens because of the “already in before they cheated” argument, I still can’t couldn’t convince myself to vote for them if I could, but if 75% of the BBWAA does, I won’t have a stroke afterwards.

Here’s the way I’ve always looked at the Hall of Fame; you were an elite player for a long time. If you play 23 years in the majors but don’t get an MVP vote or make an All-Star team after age 29, or only have one qualifying season over your last ten, you’re not elite (Tim Raines).  If you play more than 50% of your career games as a designated hitter and accumulate more than 60% of your career numbers at the same time, you are not elite. (Frank Thomas/Edgar Martinez).

If you are linked to steriods or HGH in any way, whether proven or not, you’re out. I would much rather take my grandkids someday to Cooperstown and explain why you’re out than try to explain how a cheater can get this type of recognition.

My prediction is only Greg Maddux gets elected.

*I met Mike Silva last week, he was in Phoenix on business and we had dinner together at the Cheesecake Factory in Scottsdale. He’s doing his radio stuff now for Champions Radio in Long Island, which is an ESPN affiliate. He’s been talking to his producers about getting his old NYBD show back up and running, if only for a brief segment of his Saturday morning show. If he can pull it off, that means the old gang will be back together, albeit in a limited format; me, Joe DelGrippo, Frank Russo, Steve Keane and Jed Weisberger. Stay tuned for that.

*The City of New York changing the address for Yankee Stadium from River Avenue to Rivera Avenue is the dumbest thing I’ve heard in years.

*Some of the prospect rankings are starting to come out now, and the list of shortstops is, in a word, stunning. Javier Baez, Xander Bogaerts, Carlos Correa, Addison Russell, Francisco Lindor…just crazy.

*As bad as the Robinson Cano contract is, the Jacoby Ellsbury deal is so bad I can’t even find words. The Yankees will be trying to get out of it by 2016, and since they gave him a full no-trade on top of $100 more than he’s worth, well…

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year, everyone.

Yes, Mike, even you.

415 Responses to “This and That; Random Thoughts on Random Things”

  1. Raul Says:

    LOL @ that Kevin Goldstein response. Nobody is against doing stats analysis as part of their review and projection of their players. But here we are like 10 years after Moneyball, and this revolution that people talk about just hasn’t materialized. Stop trying to make Moneyball happen. It’s not going to happen.

    Aw man. That sucks about the Astros posting. They should have been more direct and said it was a Mexico posting. I wouldn’t work in Mexico. Not with the violence in that country these days.

    Paying a posting fee is stupid. With the money teams spend on that, they could buy like the top 7 or 8 DR/Venezuela prospects each year.

    Shin-Soo Choo is a good player. He’s not 100-million good, though.

    Yeah I’m kinda worn out on the steroid guys debate, too. Some of the writers’ reasons are so annoying though.

    Wait, what? Mariano Rivera is getting a street named after him? This is a joke, right?

  2. Cameron Says:

    I don’t mind the posting fee, especially with the new cap in place. …What I wonder though is if multiple teams hit the cap, does the player get to negotiate with all the teams that posted the number? Cap postings are blind, so no one knows who won until the deal is signed, so… I dunno. I want to see Tanaka get posted if only to answer that question.

    On top of that, the Golden Eagles don’t want to post him because the reports say:

    A) The owner of the Golden Eagles (one of the few owners to oppose the new posting agreement) doesn’t want to see NPB as a feeding ground for MLB or…

    B) The Golden Eagles, reigning NPB champions want their ace there to help them repeat as champions.

    …I would like to point out that Masahiro Tanaka is a free agent after next year anyway though. They could at least make 20 while they can instead of delaying the process a year.

  3. Chuck Says:

    “What I wonder though is if multiple teams hit the cap, does the player get to negotiate with all the teams that posted the number?”

    Yes.

    Tanaka could negotiate with every team and once he agrees to a contract, that team forks over the posting fee.

  4. Cameron Says:

    Thanks for the clarification.

  5. John Says:

    Hey y’all

    Just got back in last night. Thanks for posting, Chuck – I’ll start writing again, but first I have to figure out what’s going on. Like, I totally missed the Cano and Ellsbury signings. Last year, I watched maybe 15 games total so 2013 is a weird blur for me, baseball-wise.

    The Cano signing is absurdly expensive. He’s a stud, don’t get me wrong. Since 2010, he’s been better than any player in baseball with the possible exception of Miguel Cabrera. But he’s also 31. I get that the price of doing business is paying for years your won’t realistically get, but I predict he’ll be elite for another 2 years, good/great for another 2-4, and then you’re looking at about half the remaining years going to waste. And he’s not going to be a 2B that whole time. Speaking of 2B that did age well, Bobby Grich should really be in the Hall of Fame.

    I agree, the Ellsbury signing is worse. Unlike Chuck, I’m big on Ellsbury…if he’s healthy. Even though the 30 HR season was a flash in the pan, his skill set is enormously valuable. But you’re talking about a guy who has averaged 96 games a year since 2010.

    A big part of signing a guy to a long-term deal is reliability…if you sign him, is he going to at least be there? Robinson Cano has missed 14 games since 2007. Prince Fielder missed 1 game in the 3 years since he signed and hasn’t missed a game since. Ellsbury is constantly hurt. Not smart.

    I’ve obviously been a stark defender of sabermetrics, but the defensive metrics are a tad crazy. Shin Soo Choo graded as one of the best RF in the league 3 years ago. Now those statistics – from the same years – have been revised to show Shin Soo Choo as the 35th best RF from 2009-2010 at -0.5 dWAR in between Randy Winn and wow, Nelson Cruz.

    My stance on steroids and the HOF is that players should be contextually. Sammy Sosa is not a HOFer. He hit 600 HR, drove in over 1600 runs, but he’s not a HOFer. He was only briefly among the game’s best, but was generally a one-dimensional player. Barry Bonds belongs in inner circle of the greatest people to ever play.

  6. Chuck Says:

    Good to see you, John.

    I’m sure you can tell some submarine stories that would be way better than any lockrroom stories I have.

    A couple hundred guys floating in a soup can for six months…yeah…never mind.

    San Diego now?

  7. John Says:

    Yup. I was actually only gone for a month or so…got out of training just in time to catch the last leg of my boat’s deployment. Gonna be out a lot over the next couple years though.

  8. Jim Says:

    There was a note earlier with the writer pointing out that Brett Gardner’s numbers compare favorably with Michael Bourne and are not far off Ellsbury’s. $18M/yr for Brett Gardner?

  9. Cameron Says:

    Nah… 15. Probably worth 10 if his contact and discipline hold up past his legs wearing out.

  10. Bob Says:

    Youkilis will be playing in Japan.

  11. Cameron Says:

    To Masa Tanaka’s team, the Rakuten Golden Eagles. They needed a new third baseman because they lost their hot corner… Casey McGeehee.

  12. Raul Says:

    18M a year for Brett Gardner?

    Congrats, Jim.
    I didn’t think you had it in you.
    Troll of the year.

  13. Cameron Says:

    Bourne is making 18 per, Ellsbury is making 23 per. …Is it really THAT far out of the question?

  14. Bob Says:

    If Cano can request 300 million, I can see Gardner requesting 18m per year. May not get it, but the guy can dream.

  15. Jim Says:

    brett gardner 162 game line

    .268 .352 .381 .733 OPS+ 97 Career WAR 19.1 6 seasons

    Michael Bourne

    271 .335 .364 .700 OPS+ 91 Career WAR 22.3 8 seasons

    Jacoby Ellsbury

    .297 .350 .439 .789 OPS+ 108 Career WAR 21 7 seasons

    Based on comparing performance it is hard to see why Gardner shouldn’t get at least Michael Bourne money. Granted Bourne is an overpay and Ellsbury a huge overpay.

  16. Raul Says:

    Sounds like you just sold Boston on their new outfielder, Jim.

    Enjoy Gardner.

    LOL

  17. Mike Felber Says:

    Hello John Welcome back.

    Thanks Chuck, I an right up there with Tiny Tim.

    Put PED cheats & liars in the Hall for performances done before they used. If they admit their crimes & apologize. Otherwise why honor someone totally contemptuous of fair play & the rules?
    Though it is not fair to keep out anyone suspected without good cause. We will accidentally elect cheaters anyway, there must be a reasonable likelihood someone used to fairly exclude them.

    Adding one letter to the name of a street to honor a beloved star seems like an amusing & cool thing to do. Folks will feel pride & enjoy it. It is not like the East River is going to get upset.

    It is however much value you added throughout your career that should be the main HOF litmus test. I like Raines for it, but I can see the case against him, there are better players denied. Schilling is the opposite case, excellent later in his career. But you need NO reference to the PS to see he created much value & is easily a “mid tier” HOF guy. Emotions about his character, loud mouth, & politics (which I do not share) bias so many.

    It would be very difficult to have such a superb BB/K ratio over those IP & NOT be worthy. Others look only at his ERA & fail to properly compensate for his career years exactly tracking the steroid era: his ERA + was excellent, HR allowed OK for the era. USUALLY SM sheds light on how good a player really was despite its defensive shortcomings. In Schilling’s case it absolutely does.

    Great Dick Allen Web Site! According to Bill Jenkison, he was just behind Elston Howard in how FAR he hit HRs, & lost little distance to the opposite field. #5 for pure distance all time!

  18. Chuck Says:

    All Gardner needs to do when considering salary requests is look across the clubhouse.

    Ellsbury is essentially the same player and is getting $22 million a year for seven years..guaranteed.

  19. Cameron Says:

    I think the guaranteed money is a big sticking point with contracts like these. You see shit contracts in the NFL too, but on some of those contracts, you can eat some of it and cut the guy (like Mark Sanchez probably will be). It’s something I’d like to see catch on in other sports, but players unions would have shitfits about it.

  20. Chuck Says:

    In what other industry can you agree to a multi year employment contract, get fired before the contract ends, and still get paid the full amount?

    There’s a lot of stupid in sports in general, but that’s right up close to the top.

  21. Chuck Says:

    Bill Deane is the former research director at the Hall of Fame. For the past 33 years, he’s predicted the election ballot with pretty good results.

    Here is his 2014 prediction, with vote percentages:

    Greg Maddux (94)
    Tom Glavine (67)
    Frank Thomas (63)
    Craig Biggio (61)
    Jack Morris (58)
    Mike Piazza (54)
    Jeff Bagwell (48)
    Tim Raines (45)
    Lee Smith (39)
    Roger Clemens (29)
    Barry Bonds (29)
    Curt Schilling (27)
    Edgar Martinez (26)
    Alan Trammell (25)
    Larry Walker (16)
    Fred McGriff (15)
    Mark McGwire (13)
    Don Mattingly (10)
    Jeff Kent (9)
    Mike Mussina (7)
    Rafael Palmeiro (5)
    Sammy Sosa (5)

    http://baseballpastandpresent.com/2013/12/15/2014-hall-fame-election-forecast/

    Vince Gennaro, the President of SABR, said yesterday on Clubhouse Confidential he would be surprised of Kent got 5%.

    Which would be awesome.

  22. Cameron Says:

    We’ll see. I have hopes for an absolutely insane ballot this year. Partly because of the empty year last year, partly because that induction weekend would be insane… And largely for sentimental purposes. These are the guys I watched as a kid first getting into baseball.

  23. Raul Says:

    Wow @ Bill Deane’s ballot.

    It’s not surprising that much that he has only Maddux getting elected.

    What’s shocking to me is that he has Glavine getting the 2nd most votes.
    If he’s got the pulse of the voters, that says an awful lot about how they view the steroid guys.

  24. Cameron Says:

    Choo to the Rangers for 7/130.

  25. Chuck Says:

    I wonder if that means the Rangers are now walking away from Nelson Cruz.

  26. Cameron Says:

    Most likely, I think. That’s significant capital.

  27. Cameron Says:

    You know why I think boxing is so paranoid about head trauma? Not Duk Koo Kim. George Foreman. When a man has five sons and names them George Jr., George III, George IV, George V, and George VI, there’s clear signs of brain trauma.

  28. John Says:

    What’s absurd is Mussina getting 7%.

    Glavine: 118 ERA+, 1.314 WHIP, 1.74 K/BB, 74 WAR
    Mussina: 123 ERA+, 1.195 WHIP, 3.58 K/BB, 82 WAR

    Glavine pitched about 800 more innings, and won a pair of Cy Young’s (one of which should clearly have gone to Kevin Brown or, barring that, a 5th to Maddux). And he got to the magical and tremendously arbitrary 300-win mark. He also has a WS title.

    Not to diss Glavine, I think he belongs too. But Mussina put up better numbers against better competition, wins be damned.

  29. John Says:

    “If sabermetrics really mattered in MLB, Shin Soo Choo would have signed a month ago. Defensively challenged outfielders who can’t hit lefties aren’t worth $23 million a season for seven years despite what Scott Boras and Brian Cashman try and tell you”

    Admittedly, he didn’t get 23M AAV. Closer to 19.

  30. John Says:

    I’d go 10 guys on this ballot. No secret that I’m a big hall guy, but we’re starting to really build-up a log-jam.

    Bonds
    Clemens
    Bagwell
    Trammell
    Raines (we needn’t discuss this one again)
    Maddux
    Glavine
    Mussina
    Piazza
    Biggio

    I consider Biggio very borderline, and I agree with the consensus that if he had 62 fewer hits, he’d be out. Which, again, how arbitrary is that. Was his career fundamentally better because he played in 2007? Given that he was worth -2.1 WAR that season, I would argue that it made his career fundamentally worse getting to that, again, very arbitrary milestone.

  31. John Says:

    I’m still pretty bearish on Palmeiro, but I think his 1999 1B Gold Glove should be sent to the HOF along with his 1999 DH Silver Slugger, to be displayed side-by-side, to teach the general public about how meaningless Gold Gloves are.

  32. Jim Says:

    @16 The RS wouldn’t pay Ells, why would they pay Gardner?

    See where Choo is signing with the Rangers for 7/130M. Another guy who Gardner can point to to justify $18M.

  33. Cameron Says:

    If I had to submit a ballot this year, since John and Chuck did theirs…

    Greg Maddux
    Tom Glavine
    Frank Thomas
    Craig Biggio
    Mike Piazza
    Roger Clemens
    Barry Bonds
    Alan Trammell

  34. John Says:

    “See where Choo is signing with the Rangers for 7/130M. Another guy who Gardner can point to to justify $18M.”

    Choo has a much wider skill-set than Gardner.

    Gardner’s a solid player and all, but he’s also a single-point failure. If his legs go, then he isn’t legging out infield hits, he’s not stealing bases, and he’s not chasing down balls in LF.

    Choo is interesting in that he does everything pretty well, but his plate discipline is really the only thing he’s great at.

  35. Chuck Says:

    I heard Youkilis had an offer from Oakland to be the backup at third and first and he turned it down because he didn’t want to be a bench player.

    Raises the question…is the Oakand situation really that bad? I mean, taking a 66% paycut to play in friggin’ Japan says a lot too.

  36. Cameron Says:

    Youk’s official statement is that the year in Japan is a cultural opportunity for his family he couldn’t pass up. As someone who knows a fair bit about Japanese culture, I can buy that. Japan is awesome.

    That said, I think with the injury problems he’s had the last year or two, I think taking a paycut for a full-time job might do him some good. Think of it as a year-long rehab stint.

  37. Chuck Says:

    Can’t argue with that…makes sense.

  38. Jim Says:

    @34, John, you’re right about Choo, but to your point about Gardner’s value being in his legs, is also true of Bourne and Ellsbury. I’m less familiar with Bourne’s defense, but Ells is a good outfielder because his speed makes up for his slow reads and interesting routes. In a couple of years the Yanks will want to move Ells to left.

  39. Cameron Says:

    Gardner has decent reads and plate discipline. He won’t be awful once his legs go. He won’t be great… Probably not even good. But no worse than any backup OF in the league.

  40. John Says:

    “I’m less familiar with Bourne’s defense, but Ells is a good outfielder because his speed makes up for his slow reads and interesting routes. In a couple of years the Yanks will want to move Ells to left.”

    Bourne has always struck me as being a very smart CF. Gets a good beat on the ball so that he’s able to go back with relative ease. The speed helps, obviously, but, as Jim Edmonds proved, you don’t necessarily need speed if your instincts are good.

    Ellsbury and Gardner are both speed-reliant defensively.

  41. Raul Says:

    Forget their bats.

    In their defensive prime: who do you want playing CF?
    Griffey Jr
    or
    Andruw Jones

    ??

  42. Cameron Says:

    Oof… I’d probably say Griffey. Jones may have been better on routine flies, but I’ve never seen anyone wall-rob better than Junior.

  43. Chuck Says:

    Griffey…easily.

    Faster, better arm, and that Kingdom turf was a motherbleeper.

  44. John Says:

    I’d take Jones.

    What Cameron said is right, but at the end of the day, it’s better to have a CFer who makes the hard plays look routine than to have the guy with the better timing on jumps and dives and such.

    That being said, Andruw Jones had his fair share of spectacular web-gems too.

  45. John Says:

    Casual observation…Andruw Jones had the better career range factor, 2.76 to 2.60 and was consistently higher in his prime than Griffey was in his.

    Correct me if I’m wrong, but didn’t Atlanta do a much better job at keeping the ball on the ground than the Mariners?

  46. Cameron Says:

    Yeah, but that’s mostly due to Seattle having fuck-all behind Johnson in Griffey’s day.

  47. Jim Says:

    I’d take Griffey, but Griffey v. Jones could fuel a long argument.

  48. John Says:

    @46, right. Fassero, Moyer, etc…

    My point is, I would think that if Griffey were better than Jones, he would get to more balls if there were more balls in the air.

  49. Lefty33 Says:

    “And he got to the magical and tremendously arbitrary 300-win mark.”

    Except that the 300 win mark is NOT arbitrary.

    If it were then you would have guys who get get there and still wouldn’t get in except that will never happen. 300 is compulsory not arbitrary in reaching the HOF. If a guy falls shortof 300 that’s when things become arbitrary.

    My ballot:

    Maddux, Glavine and Thomas

    Who do I think will get in:

    Maddux & Glavine

  50. Chuck Says:

    RF doesn’t count homers…Fulton County is smaller than the Kingdome…Griffey picking up a ball on the warning track hurts him, while the same ball in Atlanta is five rows in the seats.

    Over the course of a full season a .16 difference in RF couldn’t be that noticeable….could it?

  51. John Says:

    “If it were then you would have guys who get get there and still wouldn’t get in except that will never happen.”

    That’s not what I mean by arbitrary.

    A guy with 300 career wins didn’t have a career fundamentally better than someone with 299 career wins, or someone with 270 against the toughest division in the game.

    Now, that being said, 300 is a surprisingly excellent benchmark (unlike 3000 hits or 500 HR):

    Among players with 300 wins, only Early Wynn (with exactly 300) was a bad HOF pick. And he wasn’t even that bad.

    Among pitchers between 250-300 wins, it’s basically a 50/50 shot. Jim Palmer, Fergie Jenkins, and Bob Gibson all fall in that group, but so do Jack Morris, Jamie Moyer, and Andy Pettitte.

  52. John Says:

    “RF doesn’t count homers…Fulton County is smaller than the Kingdome…Griffey picking up a ball on the warning track hurts him, while the same ball in Atlanta is five rows in the seats.”

    Admittedly, I didn’t consider that part of it, and it does factor in, bigtime. But a couple things: Jones played very few games at AFCS, he mostly played in Turner Field. Also, Griffey isn’t “hurt” by having more balls stay in the ballpark – if anything, that helps him. RF just looks at the raw number of plays you make, not the percentage of balls in play you get to.

    Using 1998 (Jones’s first full year in CF, Griffey’s last full season at Kingdome), we find that Mariners pitchers gave up 1577 flyballs, of which 154 went for HR. Braves pitchers gave up 1489 flyballs, of which 174 went for HR. (Both teams gave up about the same number of line drives and line drive HR)

    Now, this doesn’t account for hit trajectory, or pop-ups, or handedness of pitchers or any of that, so there’s a lot more you could look at. But, based on correlation, it would seem that there are a whole lot more balls for Griffey to get than for Jones to get, and yet, Jones got to 25 more balls.

    “Over the course of a full season a .16 difference in RF couldn’t be that noticeable….could it?”

    Roughly 25 plays per season. That’s kinda like the difference between a .291 hitter and a .333 hitter.

  53. Chuck Says:

    Wait…so you’re counting ALL flyballs?!

    Why….?

  54. John Says:

    Furthermore, it wasn’t the difference of 2.76 to 2.60 that was so striking, but that the player with fewer opportunities to make plays had the edge.

    If they were equally good, you would expect Griffey to have a better range factor based on opportunities alone, wouldn’t you?

  55. Chuck Says:

    Range factor only counts putouts and assists, it only counts balls you make a play on..you could be a donkey and have a plus RF if you have Clemente’s arm.

    Griffey cutting balls off in the gap Jones wouldn’t get to, especially on the turf, would make him the better OF even though those plays aren’t reflected in RF.

  56. Chuck Says:

    Never been much of a RF fan, doesn’t tell you anything, really.

    Yeah, the difference between 2.67 and 2.51 is 26 chances, or about one a week, or one every six games or so.

  57. John Says:

    @53, I’m just not sure how to break it down further without breaking out hit-charts.

    A team that gives up more flyballs probably also gives up more flyballs to cf.

    But not automatically.

  58. John Says:

    Range Factor is a LONG way from perfect.

    In order to use it at all, you have to use some type of context.

    Fact of the matter is that, with any defensive statistic, there are a bunch of factors in play. Hell, I hadn’t even considered the difficulty of cutting off gappers on astro-turf vs. grass.

  59. Chuck Says:

    RIP former Yankee catcher Ed Herrmann

  60. Mike Felber Says:

    Good points, especially on Moose. I like Foreman, he really reformed & becamse a great guy, besides a big pitchman. Anyone else names a billion kids after themselves, I think Egomaniac, but with him I just grin at the goofiness.

    KY will enjoy his sojourn there. My ex is Japanese, great nation to visit. Still struggling with their economy, & some wild things there just below the surface. Repression & cultural schizophrenia will do that.

    After Midnight in NYC in & almost warm after midnight! You could just change the lyrics to “Late December AND its 63…(Oh what a night). Discovered Epic Rap Battles of History searching for the song, pretty cool.

    I must admit to enjoying the global warming as we go down the tubes!

  61. Bob Says:

    Not sure how much time I will spend near a computer in the next week, so you guys have a merry Christmas and a happy New Year. And the free agents worth mentioning are really Stephen Drew and a few starting pitchers.

  62. Bob Says:

    Look at this line-up.

    http://www.nyshows.org/white-plains-show/next-autograph-guests/

  63. Chuck Says:

    Happy Holidays, Bob…

    Impressive lineup…Only guy on that list I’d pay for is Sayers.

  64. Chuck Says:

    Story starting to leak…there are references if you Google it…not just repeating Twitter garbage…

    Miguel Cabrera’s injury last year was suffered breaking up a clubhouse fight between Avasail Garcia and Prince Fielder..apparently Fielder had found out Garcia was boning his wife.

    That’s why Garcia was traded, why Fielder filed for divorce and went into the tank, and why Cabrera played the second half of the season on one leg.

  65. Raul Says:

    Wow @ that story.

    Avisail could have gotten with any of the groupies that hang around the ballpark. You’ve got to be a real dirtbag to sleep with a teammate’s wife.

    Prince Fielder’s wife isn’t even good-looking. Although who knows? Maybe she has some “skills”.

    Hell of a thing by Cabrera to still put together an MVP season on 1 leg.

  66. Raul Says:

    When Buster Posey won the MVP in 2012, it was the first time a catcher in the National League took the award since Johnny Bench in 1972.

  67. Raul Says:

    The Yankees have accomplished the near impossible – they had the oldest player in the majors (Mariano Rivera) and the oldest starter (Andy Pettitte) retire and yet somehow have gotten older this offseason

    http://nypost.com/2013/12/21/yankees-roster-is-one-for-the-ages/

    The Yankees have accomplished the near impossible — they had the oldest player in the majors (Mariano Rivera) and the oldest starter (Andy Pettitte) retire and yet somehow have gotten older this offseason.

    Thus, the Yankees saw one of their biggest problems — the decay physically and statistically in older players — and doubled down on it rather than run away. This is what happens when you have a putrid farm system combined with a never-rebuild philosophy combined with hundreds of millions of dollars to spend. You buy for today, the heck with tomorrow — and, by the way, today is no given either with this much seniority.

    Because this comes at a time when seemingly more effective PED testing has coincided with fewer older players performing well, which only has elevated the value of above-average players in their 20s. Yet, a week after pitchers and catchers arrive at George M. Steinbrenner Field in February, Brian McCann will turn 30, meaning the Yankees will not project a starting position player in his 20s.

    Can this work? Maybe. The Yankees are not employing older bums, but players with significant pedigree. However, the problem — like last year — is sheer volume. Maybe a few Yankees graybeards will recall their prime, though two who excelled in 2013 — Rivera and Pettitte — are now gone. But the chances six or seven perform at a high level are not good. And there are no talented youngsters ready to step in to provide quality and energy.

    How dependent are the Yankees on the aged? Let us count the ways:

    1. Mark Teixeira, who turns 34 in April, will be the third-oldest starting first baseman behind just Adam LaRoche, 34, and Ryan Howard, 34, who like Teixeira is an expensive item who was in decline even before significant injury.
    Prior to a 2013 lost mainly to a wrist ailment, Teixeira’s OPS from 2008-12 had sunk from .962 to .948 to .846 to .835 to .807. Even if healthy, can Teixeira stop this trend? And if not, what does that mean for the Yankees, who still owe him $67.5 million the next three years?

    2. Brian Roberts, 36, projects as the third-oldest starting second baseman behind Marco Scutaro, 38, and Mark Ellis, who is three months older than Roberts — assuming Ellis starts for the Cardinals over rookie Kolten Wong.
    Robinson Cano had many assets, perhaps none more impressive than his durability. Over the past four seasons, he played 640 games, tied for second in the majors with Billy Butler, seven games fewer than Prince Fielder. But Butler is a DH and Fielder a first baseman, while Cano is in the middle of the action at second. Roberts played 192 games the past four years, which ranked 505th. Just to understand how few games Roberts played, that is two fewer than Mets afterthought Mike Baxter.

    3. Derek Jeter, 39, is 4 ¹/₂ years older than the next-oldest likely starting shortstop, Jimmy Rollins. He missed most of last season with a twice-fractured ankle. He turns 40 in June. Shortstops who have come to bat even 300 times in an age-40-or-older season: Luke Appling, Honus Wagner, Omar Vizquel and Barry Larkin. None missed most of the previous season with a twice-broken ankle.

    4. If Alex Rodriguez, 38, escapes his full suspension and plays in 2014, he would be the oldest starting third baseman by three years over Aramis Ramirez. A-Rod’s OPS has dropped six straight seasons.
    And if Rodriguez is not around, then Kelly Johnson is likely to be the primary third baseman. On this team, he is pretty much a baby, not turning 32 until February. Yet he currently sets up as the fourth-oldest starting third baseman behind only Ramirez, 35, and Adrian Beltre and Juan Uribe, both 34.

    5. If Raul Ibanez is no longer considered an outfielder — he probably will be the Angels’ primary DH — then the oldest outfielders currently on major league rosters are: 1. Ichiro Suzuki (40), 2. Torii Hunter (38), 3. Alfonso Soriano (38 in January), 4. Carlos Beltran (37 in April), 5. Ryan Ludwick (35), 6. Vernon Wells (35). That’s right, four of the top six — Suzuki, Soriano, Beltran and Wells — are Yankees. It is possible, however, that Suzuki and/or Wells won’t be with the team by April.
    Also, Beltran and Soriano should see plenty of DH time, especially if Brett Gardner is not traded.
    But keep this in mind: Two offseasons ago, the Yankees stayed away from giving Beltran a two-year contract because they were concerned about the combination of his age and damaged knees. Now, though Beltran is two years older and has two more seasons played on those troubling knees, the Yankees have given him a three-year contract. This is Yankees math: Don’t trust him with a two-year contract at age 35, give him a three-year contract at age 37.

    6. Hiroki Kuroda probably will be the third-oldest starter, turning 39 in February, and trailing only Bartolo Colon, 40, and knuckleballer R.A. Dickey, 39. Kuroda has retained excellence into his late 30s. If you are looking for a worrisome sign, however, he finished last season 0-6 with a 6.56 ERA in his final eight starts.
    CC Sabathia, at 33, is the seventh-oldest starter currently on an AL roster. But among all active pitchers, only Mark Buehrle (2,882 ²/₃) and Tim Hudson (2,813 ²/₃) have logged more career innings than Sabathia (2,775 ¹/₃), whose pitching age because of wear and tear might be older than his chronological age. He is coming off his worst season by far and yet another dip in his average fastball velocity.

    7. When it comes to lefty relievers, age generally is not as big a deal because they have a specific, narrow job — to get lefty hitters out — that they can continue to do into a more advanced age. Nevertheless, in Yankees fashion, they let a 29-year-old (Boone Logan) go for a 37-year-old (Matt Thornton). The only lefty relievers currently on major league rosters older than Thornton are Randy Choate, 38, and Scott Downs, who turns 38 in March.

  68. John Says:

    Good stuff. This is part of why I don’t get the Ellsbury deal. Your aging lineup and rotation is going to make competing a tough order this year…so what, you’re signing Ellsbury for his contributions in 2017? Ok, good luck with that.

    Miguel Cabrera…man. To do what he did this season on one leg is nothing short of extraordinary.

  69. Raul Says:

    I don’t think I understand this at all.

    But maybe the math nerds like John and Kerry might take a peek.

    http://mrphilroth.com/2013/12/22/mlb-payrolls-updated/

  70. Raul Says:

    Flyball/Groundball ratio is the new Moneyball?

    http://www.athleticsnation.com/2013/12/19/5227176/the-as-secret-is-out-as-the-new-moneyball-is-now-revealed

  71. John Says:

    ESPN Magazine had published something in 2012 (when McCarthy was still an Athletic) about how Brandon McCarthy had made himself a solid pitcher by focusing on becoming a ground-ball pitcher.

  72. Chuck Says:

    Stupid article..these Billy Beane poster worshipping jerkoffs really don’t believe we’re laughing AT them.

    ” I bet there are teams that have people hired simply to analyze what the A’s, Rays, Braves, and Cards do.”

    Possibly the dumbest comment I’ve ever read.

    The total ignorance and stupidity of that kept me from reading further. Where’s Shaun when you need him?

  73. Chuck Says:

    Seriously, my eyes are fucking bleeding here…

  74. Jim Says:

    @69 Raul click on the image in the box and it opens an interactive window where you can select a team, say the Angels and see there total payroll for any year back to 1998 and forward to 2024. After you pick a team and year, you can see the breakdown of what the major contracts are and you can how those contracts play out over coming years. For instance, Dustin Pedroia’s deal peaks at $16M in 2018 and goes down a million each year till it ends in 2021.

    In 2017 the RS have payroll commitments of $29M, Pedroia and Buchholz. The Yanks have commitments for 2017 for $83M Ells, McCann, ARod and CC. For a fan, say an Angels’ fan, you can see where the light is in the bad contract tunnel. For the Angels’ it will be 2018 when they only are carrying Pujols’ contract for ahem $27M rising to $30M in the final year.

  75. Raul Says:

    Makes sense now, Jim

    Thank you.
    I was at work and I guess my work internet blockers must have made the interactive thing not work properly.

  76. Jim Says:

    The drinking has started early at SB Nation, at least in the backwater that is Over the Monster. The boys, tired of talking about what it would take to pry Stanton from the fish are now all a tither with thoughts of what it would take to get Mike Trout from the Angels.

    http://www.overthemonster.com/2013/12/24/5241394/mike-trout-red-sox-trade-xander-bogaerts

    Silly stuff

  77. Raul Says:

    Giancarlo Stanton can be had.

    Mike Trout is not going anywhere. Don’t even bother calling about him.

    Just because I’m f*cking bored…

    First 352 games of Alex Rodriguez’s career:

    .314/.366/.534
    100 Doubles
    64 home runs
    228 RBI
    51 stolen bases
    109 walks

    First 336 games of Mike Trout’s career:

    .314/.404/.544
    72 doubles
    62 home runs
    196 RBI
    86 stolen bases
    186 walks

    A couple of differences.
    Alex Rodriguez was a shortstop. Mike Trout is an outfielder.
    Trout won’t hit home runs at the rate Alex did. And I suspect his steals will decrease like Alex’s did because the Angels will want to protect him.

    This isn’t a comparison designed to argue who was better between A-Rod and Trout.

    It’s to show that Trout is just as impressive a force as a young player as Alex was.

    Players like that don’t get traded.
    In Alex’s case, he was a financial burden later on with Texas.
    Trout is dirt cheap. He’ll be in Anaheim for years.

    To put things in perhaps a more fair light (since comparing anyone to A-Rod is probably unfair), Mike Trout has made us all forget about Bryce Harper — the media’s wet dream for the last 3-4 years. That’s how amazing Trout has been.

  78. Raul Says:

    I might be reading the contract incorrectly, but it looks like Giancarlo Stanton becomes a Free Agent after the 2017 season.

    What will sting the Marlins is that Stanton becomes Arb-eligible after 2014 (I think)…and my guess is he’ll get close to 10M. How could he not? And if he does, you figure he alone will account for like 40% of the Marlins payroll.

  79. Cameron Says:

    Which is impressive considering that Harper has been pretty damn good. Better than any of us expected at this point in his career.

    Through 257 games…

    .272/.353/.481
    50 doubles
    42 home runs
    117 RBI
    29 stolen bases
    117 walks

    Pretty damn good for a kid who can’t even drink yet. His power’s still coming around at the major league level. Stuff that used to be homers are going into the gap now. That .270 average is probably legit, but that homer total is likely to go up. He’s a two-time all-star in two years. No Mike Trout, but who is?

  80. Cameron Says:

    Merry Christmas, everyone. Also, Tanaka will be posted, Rakuten caved in.

  81. Chuck Says:

    Merry Christmas, Cam

  82. Mike Felber Says:

    Merry X-Mas All!

  83. Chuck Says:

    Merry Christmas, Mike.

  84. Mike Felber Says:

    :-)

  85. Raul Says:

    Carl Crawford proposed to …well, I’m not sure how to refer to her other than as a gold digging skank, but Carl Crawford proposed marriage to Evelyn Lozada.

    Now, Lozada is 38 and I’m not sure what surgeries she’s had or anything, but she’s certainly bang-able.

    But that’s about it.

    Lozada is famous for being on that tv show Basketball Wives and was married to Chad Ochocinco Johnson for a few months in 2012 before they split up after Chad beat her in some argument.

    In any case, Crawford is a moron for marrying a 38 year old drama queen when he’s playing for the Dodgers. The man could get by just off the residual Mexican and Filipina vag-fest hovering outside the stadium after games.

    He certainly didn’t need to buy Evelyn Lozada a 1.4 MILLION dollar engagement ring.

    You remember that awesome documentary ESPN did on 30-for-30? I think it was called Broke…anyway, you can bet in a decade or so, Carl Crawford will be on the follow up documentary to that.

    What an idiot.

    This is why I always have to respect Derek Jeter. The man is the only one…THE ONLY ONE…who has done it right.

    Date hot women.
    Marry none of them.

    One by one, all these great men are being taken down by money grubbing whores.
    Alex Rodriguez
    Tiger Woods
    Paul McCartney
    Arnold Schwarzenegger

    I mean the list is endless.

  86. Chuck Says:

    Maria Shriver is a Kennedy, pretty sure her bank account is bigger than Arnold’s.

    Not her fault he knocked up the housekeeper either.

    McCartney’s an idiot for marrying on the rebound.

    Tiger had a ho in every city he played in, don’t blame the Mrs. at all on that one.

    If Arod was as discreet as Jeter, he’d still be married.

    That said, Crawford’s getting in the batter’s box with someone who already has a strike against them…odds aren’t good…he doesn’t get a pre-nup, he deserves to end up on “Broke.”

  87. Chuck Says:

    RIP former Yankees and original Seattle Pilot Mike Hegan..(and former Brewers broadcaster)

  88. Raul Says:

    Arnold got taken down by himself, but that maid knew the deal.

    Tiger married a friggin babysitter. She was all about the money from the get go.

  89. John Says:

    There’s a place in Milwaukee called “Mike Hegam’s Field of Dreams.” Sort of a combination of a bunch of batting cages, arcade games, and I think they still do baseball clinics. Fun place to go as a kid. RIP

  90. Raul Says:

    So does Prince Fielder put together a Top 5 MVP season in 2014?

  91. Cameron Says:

    Possibly… Not sure for certain.

  92. Bob Says:

    I hope so.

  93. Bob Says:

    http://sports.yahoo.com/news/belichick-questions-nfl-offseason-workout-173124731–nfl.html;_ylt=A2KJ3CXjXbxSU1AAaK7QtDMD

  94. Chuck Says:

    RIP Paul Blair.

    Dammit…three in four days. This sucks.

  95. Raul Says:

    Wow.
    I met Paul Blair once. Very nice man.
    RIP.

  96. Chuck Says:

    Recognize this guy?

    It’s Craig Biggio, six years removed from steriods.

    http://www.baseballnation.com/2013/12/26/5245584/murray-chass-hall-fame-ballot-craig-biggio-steroids

  97. Bob Says:

    Happy new year you guys.

  98. Chuck Says:

    Same to you, Bob, thanks.

    Brewers’ first home game…March 1st…

  99. Cameron Says:

    So… This was the last season of Candlestick and the Metrodome. That kinda sucks.

  100. Cameron Says:

    http://extramustard.si.com/2013/09/26/hunter-pence-infomercial-weird-mechanics-kids-youth-baseball-camp-hunters-hitters/

  101. Mike Felber Says:

    What? Chuck, the article you cited chides Murray Chass, often laughably irrational on a host of issues as providing zero basis for assuming Biaggio used steroids. John told you long ago that “every” Professional athlete becomes less muscular when retired. And absent some extremely rapid bulking up, or a huge absolute level of mass, it is just very difficult & irresponsible to conclude someone used just from looking. And some use & do not get very big, or have extra fat…From the Baseball Nation piece:

    “It’s odd to see Chass place Craig Biggio among players who “were proved to have cheated, admitted they cheated or are strongly suspected of having cheated.” Strongly suspected by … whom, exactly? I’ve never seen anything in print about Biggio. I’ve not heard any rumors, either. Chass is welcome to his opinion, of course. But if he’s not willing to cite the existence of even anonymous sources, he should at least admit that he is the one doing the strong suspecting.

    So far, we’ve got two problems with his ballot:

    1. He’s not voting for Roger Clemens and Barry Bonds, and
    2. He’s not forthcoming about his Craig Biggio suspicions.

    Now there is an extended argument in the comments section about other matters & players. Here is some information about Bagwell from 2 commenters, showing the folly & unfairness of using single points of evidence which are highly suppositional, in this case re: power production.

    “I absolutely hate the “He had no power” argument

    Jeff Bagwell was always a power hitter, and the only ones who don’t realize it are too lazy to actually form their own opinions. My reasons:

    A) He was a first baseman. He wouldn’t have played there if people didn’t think he could hit.
    B) Baseball America named him the #32 prospect in 1991 at the age of 23. Again, he wouldn’t be considered a top first base prospect if people didn’t think he could hit, as the only way for Baseball America to consider you a serious first base prospect is if you hit.
    C) He hit 15 home runs as a 23 year old IN THE ASTRODOME. The home runs increase at a pretty standard rate from there.
    D) The only other “no power” anecdote that I hear is that he only hit 4 home runs at AA. Everyone ignores that he had 34 doubles and 7 triples with that, or that that ENTIRE TEAM only had 31 home runs and the team leader only had 5. But no, it’s much more likely that the entire 1990 New Britain team had no power, then all of them discovered steroids after leaving for other stadiums.

    Not even going to get into the “he had no power after arthritis that forced him to retire set in”. By that metric, can we also just accuse Sandy Koufax?

    http://hotcornerharbor.blogspot.com/
    by TheoHCH on Dec 26, 2013 | 6:22 PM up reply
    Alex Hall
    Indeed.

    Here is a pre-draft scouting report about Bagwell in which he’s listed as having 60 power (on the 20-80 scale) and a physical description as a “muscular” build. At age 20. It does say he has bad speed, but wasn’t he more of a “smart” baserunner/stealer than a fast one? As in, better at picking his spots and running smart than simply out-running throws with blinding speed? Here are two more scouting reports crediting 20-year-old Bagwell with good, above-average power, and one of them mentions upper body strength as well: here and here. Dude was always strong.

    And regarding New Britain, the team was last in the Eastern League in homers every year from 1987-91. In those years, totals were low across the league; no one even broke 100 from 1988-1992. Maybe it was just extra cold in New England for a few years.

    Despite the assumptions that all MiLB leagues/parks are equal, that anyone knows how the run environment of the 1990 EL relates to any other run environment of any other MiLB league-season, that players all develop according to traditional MLB career arcs while in MiLB, and that production should be consistent across all levels of difficulty no matter the player age…

    By the scientific method of going to the career HR list and clicking on random names in the top 200….

    Bawell: 6 HR in 710 ABs
    Jeter: 7 HRs in 1026 ABs
    Matt Stairs: 10 HR in 758 ABs
    Ron Gant: 10 HR in 664 ABs
    Carl Yastrzemski: 7 HR in 570 ABs”

    All here know I am as moralistic & critical re: PED use as you & almost anyone Chuck. It is stealing personal glory, success for yourself, the team, cheating others of money, opportunity, & more while warping the integrity of the game. But it is also very wrong to assume someone is using without very good evidence.

    There are tons of factors why folks can improve power & muscularity, & to mock, dismiss, or contribute in even a small way to ruining a player’s reputation, we had better have a damn good reason to establish that all the other causes you can add up besides cheating could not have accounted for changes & production.

  102. Mike Felber Says:

    More to defend the besmirched honor of Biggio, from several commenters:

    Its more likely to me that Chass heard from someone who says they’re sure.

    That doesn’t mean its true but it makes more sense than a HOF voter leaving a player off his ballot by mistake.

    What’s the outward case against Biggio? He was among the players of that era who played effectively into their 40’s (that we’re not seeing anymore post- testing). Anything else? He wasn’t any bigger as far as I could tell. His power production didn’t spike. He was equally effective before and after testing started as far as I could tell. He name was never leaked off the MLB survey testing list. I sincerely hope that the old curmudgeon has a good source on this one.

    Waste not, want not
    by putmeincoach on Dec 26, 2013 | 5:07 PM up reply
    Probably heard it…..

    ….from whomever bought him his last drink, like most sports writers of his era…..Perhaps an unfair statement, but I have as much evidence for it as is available about PED use by Biggio or Bagwell….

    ….My guess is the “case” against Biggio is that he played with Guys like Clemons, Caminiti, and “prime suspect” Bagwell…..and as all crack investigative reporters know, just being in the same clubhouse with such scoundrels is damning evidence….as it is against many hundreds of Yankees, Red Sox, Blue Jays, Padres and Astros who were similarly scarred…..

    …even today, I visited a CVS and walked down the aisle near the NyQuil; I’m guessing this eliminates me from HOF consideration (probably more so than the fact I never played !)…..

    I don’t know, you don’t know, Murray Chass doesn’t know…..deal with it. But don’t act as if you do.

    And…

    Unfair to lump Biggio w/ cheaters…

    The suspicion w/ Biggio seems to be more from association than anything else. He was a good friend and a former teammate of Ken Caminiti, who admitted to using steroids. But other than that, there’s no evidence or even any suggestion that Biggio ever used steroids. That being said, it’s unfair to any of the players (like Biggio) who were never caught, implicated in a criminal investigation, etc., to lump them in with the guys who were caught or implicated (like Clemens, Bonds, and Palmeiro). If you’re going to include Biggio as a suspected cheater because he happened to have played w/ an admitted cheater and nothing else, then basically everyone who ever played in MLB since the mid-80’s is a suspected cheater b/c everybody played w/ somebody who used steroids. Take the guys that Chass would vote for… Jack Morris once played w/ Manny Ramirez, so Morris should be guilty by association, too, right? Tom Glavine? He played with Ken Caminiti, too. Greg Maddux? Well, he has to be guilty b/c he played w/ Caminiti and Rafael Palmeiro…

  103. Chuck Says:

    “What? Chuck, the article you cited chides Murray Chass”

    The picture, Mike, look at the damn picture. I didn’t know who read the article, nor did I read it.

  104. Raul Says:

    Apparently this is Jeff Kent and Craig Biggio.

    Some big guys there.

    http://mlblogsfooter.files.wordpress.com/2009/03/0319_blog_kent_biggio1.jpg

  105. Chuck Says:

    When players retire from baseball, they retire from everything. They don’t spend ten hours a day at the park anymore, and they don’t spend three hours at the gym.

    Remember seeing Tony Gwynn at his HOF ceremony? Anyone see Cal Ripken Jr. lately? You watch games on TV and see the former players that are managers and coaches now. Terry Francona? Chris Bosio? Lloyd McClendon? Mark McGwire?

    Players GAIN weight, soft weight, after they retire.

    Remember, the giveaway for steriod use isn’t what a player did BEFORE or DURING his use, it’s what happens AFTER he stops using.

    Players don’t lose 30 pounds after they retire. Biggio went from Arnold Schwarzenegger to Arnold Horshack. So did Bagwell.

    He used. Get over it.

  106. Mike Felber Says:

    Of course I saw the picture Chuck. And I am still shocked-shocked, I tell you-that you would conclude somebody was a liar & cheat on such extraordinarily tenouous broad theorizing. I do not even know if I can say evidence.

    Many players gain weight after retiring. And they lose muscle. But some, especially those who through whatever means became more heavily muscled, lose body fat. Makes sense for your health, & of course folks who are concerned about fitness & aesthetics, some would want to be healthy when they retire!

    C. B. was never anything like Ahhhnold, he was not even as bulky as Bagwell. You may be confusing muscle definition & body fat with overall bulk.

    Regardless, I really am taken aback that you find a big sign of use is just getting lean after retiring! And more gobsmacked that there can be no giveaway for what he did/how fast & much he transformed when a Professional athlete.

    You have this bass-ackwards pal. And there is just zero indication that his career progress, size, injury…ANYTHING even broadly fits the profile of a steroid user.

    Again, some can coincidentally, due to genetics, training, nefarious rumors & ugly guilt by association-look to the untrained eye as likely users. And many DID use PEDS.

    But merely NOT GETTING FAT & losing muscle (as most all do after retirement)as an indication of PED use?!?!

    WOW! If bizarre circumstances ever somehow get me up on charges in Arizona, I pray you already fulfilled your Jury Duty service!

  107. Chuck Says:

    With due respect Mike, but you’re not going to goad me into this again.

    I’ve seen your website, and it’s pretty clear you’re a well respected individual and businessman..you couldn’t pull something off of that size otherwise. That said, as Robert E Lee once said, “You know, common sense really isn’t all that common.”

    If you need a needle or UPS delivery receipt or whistleblowing ex-employee to prove things, that’s up to you.

    In this case, guilty until proven innocent works for me.

  108. Raul Says:

    LOL

    Did you see Biggio’s arms in the picture I posted?
    I don’t think Omar Vizquel’s thighs were even that big.

  109. Mike Felber Says:

    Chuck, thank you for the good words. I am not making money from my ventures, but hopefully doing good with them & enjoying.

    Yet I am NOT goading you. Any web site like this is about discussion & friendly debate. If you see anything I say you differ with, you tell me. That is also fine.

    MANY things in baseball you follow much closer & have much more personal knowledge of, whether right or wrong in your opinions. Yet you know very little about PEDs. And you have absolutely NO response to all my arguments. Also that your supposition that if you lose muscle & do not get fat after an athletic career means you must have been a user.

    With all due respect, that is a crazy belief. I cannot think of a forum where if THIS is your “evidence”, you would nopt be roundly excoriated for it, can you?

    Raul, I saw the picture. Biggio’s arms were big, not massive, not like Big Mac’s, let alone a HW Professional bodybuilder. I know a good deal about measurements, & I can assure you even a thin pro like Omar had thicker thighs than his arms. Which were maybe around 18″ max., not the over 20 Omar’s thighs surely were.

    The angle, definition & clothing accentuate them. There size is at most around what an average guy can reach with years of training. I reached 19″, would be 18″ if as lean as most pro athletes. And I never used even Creatine.

    I am just surprised at the level of precipitous damning judgement & cynicism here. When there is really NO even shaky circumstantial evidence, the guy never got really big or big quickly, did not have a suspicious pattern of production or related to aging…

    Anyway, quite a snow storm around NYC. I walked back way late night from seeing free movies in Times Square, which has become a great pedestrian mall for some years now. Hopefully new Mayor DeBlasio will keep that, big (& good) changes are afoot.

  110. Raul Says:

    LOL

    You know what a 2nd baseman looks like, Mike?
    He looks like Mark Lemke or Rafael Belliard.

    He doesn’t have 18 inch biceps.

    The problem is not that you don’t think Biggio juiced.
    The problem is that you think the overwhelming evidence suggests that FAR AND AWAY Biggio did it all clean.

    We’ve discussed this on here way too much.
    Only a fool would think that it’s LIKELY that Biggio was clean.

  111. Mike Felber Says:

    We did not discuss this too much. Arguably it was not worth my time to write at length when the DETAILS of what I claim are not even noticed or addressed often, but I do not mind.

    You just put words in my mouth. Care to understand what I actually claimed & believe?

    There is NO evidence even presented that Biggio juiced. You know very well that Chuck’s claim that not getting fat & losing muscle when you retire occurs all the time, & does not qualify as evidence. Yet you like many are less willing to point to contradict someone when you make a psychological alliance.

    You COMPLETELY CHANGED the terms of debate & invented what I believe.

    Which was about no decent reason to think Biggio used. Chuck did not argue that he might have, he made an absolute claim based upon nothing.

    Now I think it UNLIKELY Biggio juiced, since there is zero evidence & nothing about him fits the profile of a juicer. But you CANNOT prove a negative Raul. And the fact that MANY juiced in that era means statistically he could have. Like so many have serious addictions to alcohol or drugs, but that does not make it remotely fair or reasonable to assume say, you do.

    You have described what a 2nd baseman usually looks like. FOr years now some middle infielders have been bigger, & even if no ‘roids existed this would be true due to weights & nutrition.

    A small point: I said Craig’s arm was around 18″ MAX. Likely it is not bigger than 17″ & change. Knowing his height, approximate weight, & having experienced as a lifter, potential clean,measuring guys, reading…

    I made SUCH a modest claim, denying an outrageous assertion that a man who is not at all unusual amongst clean modern players of any position must have used.

    You just do not want to say the obvious to Chuck, “Dude, I am usually with you but have provided zero cause to indict Mr. B.”

    Try floating the claim on *any* baseball web site & see who finds it sane.

  112. John Says:

    “Remember seeing Tony Gwynn at his HOF ceremony?”

    Remember seeing Tony Gwynn when he was a professional athlete?

  113. John Says:

    “You know what a 2nd baseman looks like, Mike?
    He looks like Mark Lemke or Rafael Belliard.”

    That’s such a puzzling argument to me.

    Biggio may very well have used, I don’t know. If Chass or Chuck has secondary accounts from players that he did, then they obviously aren’t going to tell us who those sources are.

    But saying, “he wasn’t tiny and he played a position long known for tiny people” just isn’t going to get it done for me. After all, he started off as a catcher.

  114. John Says:

    Also, it essentially suggests there are two options for second basemen.

    1) Suck
    2) Use steroids

  115. Chuck Says:

    “…nothing about him fits the profile of a juicer.”

    Um, no.

    “Biggio may very well have used, I don’t know. If Chass or Chuck has secondary accounts from players that he did”

    Just guilt by association and the same unnatural progression the others had.

  116. John Says:

    Physical progession? Because his career statistical progession looks…fine? Ish? He was good in his ’20’s/early ’30’s. Then he started sucking.

  117. Cameron Says:

    Age 22 (1988): Cup of coffee as a catcher, numbers not worth mentioning.

    Age 23 (1989): Rookie season as a catcher, wins Silver Slugger as a catcher.

    Age 24 (1990): Moves to second, average increases by 20 points, finds his contact stroke.

    Age 25-28 (1991-1994): Averages about a .290 hitter with more doubles every year. Hits 21 homers in ‘93, single digits every other year. Three all-stars in four years.

    Age 29-31 (1995-1997): Hits double digit homers for three years (22, 15, 22) and hits for over .300 average. Wins two Silver Sluggers and three Gold Gloves.

    Age 32 (1998): Best season of his career. 51 doubles, 20 homers, .325 average, 50 stolen bases.

    Age 33 (1999): Hits more doubles than the year before, slightly less homers, .294 average, down to 28 stolen bases.

    Age 34 (2000): Only season with 20+ games lost to injury.

    Age 35 (2001): Hits .292 with 20 homers.

    Age 36-37 (2002-2003): Average drops to .260, has last season with 15+ SB. 15 homers both years.

    Age 38 (2004): Makes first trip to World Series, hits .281 with 24 homers.

    Age 39 (2005): Hits 26 homers, a career high, but with a .264 average.

    Age 40 (2006): Hits 21 homers with a .246 average.

    Age 41 (2007): Last season, notches 3000th hit. Hits .251 with 10 homers.

    There. There’s his career progression.

  118. Cameron Says:

    I will point out that he had that power spike in 2004-2006, when he was teammates with Clemens and Pettite, who were both busted for PEDs at the time, and the period from 1994-1999, and started in 1994-1995, when he was teammates with Ken Caminiti, the first shot fired in the PED war. At the same time, EVERYONE IN THE GODDAMN WORLD had a power spike in the mid to late 90s, so take that with a grain of salt.

  119. Cameron Says:

    Also, can we be done? I’m fucking tired of talking PEDs. It makes John look like a pedantic stat nerd, Mike like a soapboxing twat, Chuck like an old man whose head is so far stuck up his ass that he hasn’t seen the sun since Mickey Mantle retired, and Raul like Chuck’s parrot.

    And I’d like to point out what everyone else is like, but you four going at each other’s throats has scared everyone else off. Thanks, guys.

  120. Mike Felber Says:

    Thank you Cameron. And his top season for HRs was only 26, when testing had started, yet offense was still elevated. Also during that late “power spike” his OPS was 105, 104 & 84, all less than his career average & much lower than his peak years. He was making the best of declining skills, NOTHING about his career progression or size suggests he likely used PEDs.

    Aaron had his career high in HRs late also only a slight % increase from his best. Power is last to go, & it is not remotely like a Sosa or Bondsian surge in HR/HR per AB!

    Only issue I have with your statement John is that there can be huge problems with “secondary accounts”. Chuck is not even claiming it for Biggio, & no reason to think Chass claims it. Sure, he is incompetent enough in his reasoning to foolishly name Biggio yet cite nothing-yet Occam’s Razor suggests he likely just was careless in dropping Biggio’s name, or did guilt by association that anybody can be attacked for.

    Guilt by association is a textbook case of what is WRONG to do. It is a broad-brush, illogical libel. My quote from above shows how anyone from the error can be seen as guilty due to teammates & relationships: & you need no degree of separation to “prove” it. I guess Kevin Bacon ‘roided up also… ;-)

  121. Mike Felber Says:

    Your insults are funny Cam, so I take them in the rough good humor & faux-tough guy affectation & spirit you intend them!

    Yet I point out that RESPECTFUL debate-like what we did above-not name calling, disdain, cruelty-is NOT “going at each others throats”, & scared nobody off. Being able to discuss without rancor, AND not getting upset when things are brought up that do not interest you, are signs of maturity.

  122. Chuck Says:

    Nice, Cam…

  123. Chuck Says:

    Fully admitting I used to be “one of those people”, but…

    Why do people get so upset about something they have NO control of? No opinion, no vote, no consultation, nothing.

    There isn’t one member of the BBWAA who gives a shit about what I think, so getting my boxers in a bunch over what they think is counter-intuitive.

    I think the voters know who used, whether there are links or not. I think the vote totals for Larry Walker and Bagwell and Biggio, among others, are justification for that opinion.

    I think the writers take their responsibility seriously as a whole. I think they understand the sanctity of the HOF and what it means. I think they are more than aware that one or two dimensional players like Raines and Edgar Martinez and Curt Schilling are not HOF worthy.

    I think they all are more than aware of the past indescretions of the old “good ol’ boys” Veterans Committee and realize there are a number of guys in who shouldn’t be, and take that seriously, almost to a fault, of not making the same mistakes again.

    If Joe Blow from the Hicksville Times believes in HIS mind that a player used, the HOF voting criteria GIVES HIM THE RIGHT not to vote for him. It also gives him the right to submit a blank ballot, and it gives him the right to not publicize his ballot.

    Baseball Think Factory has a tracker for ballots made public..as of this morning there have been 118 ballots, which is just over 20%.

    100 – Maddux
    97.5 – Glavine
    90.7 – F. Thomas
    82.2 – Biggio
    ———————————
    73.7 – Piazza
    65.3 – Bagwell
    61.9 – Jack (The Jack) Morris
    58.5 – Raines
    43.2 – Bonds
    42.4 – Clemens
    40.4 – Schilling
    33.1 – Mussina
    25.4 – Trammell
    22.9 – E. Martinez
    20.3 – L. Smith
    14.4 – Kent
    13.6 – McGriff
    11.0 – L. Walker
    10.2 – McGwire
    7.6 – S. Sosa
    6.8 – R. Palmeiro

    Anyone not listed, including Don Mattingly, are less than 5% and will fall off.

  124. Chuck Says:

    Everybody except Jack Morris from Clemens up sees a vote increase, everyone from Schilling down sees a decrease.

  125. Mike Felber Says:

    No need to get personally emotionally upset Chief, that I agree with. Though passion for a player & Justice, at least fairness in reasoning, are good.

    I agree they they usually take their responsibilities seriously & are aware of past injustices.

    But there is absolutely no indication that the voters did not provide enough support for Bagwell, Biggio & Walker due to PED usage. The vast majority do not have enough support for election, & there are many reasons why, so WHy think it is due to PED suspicions?

    There is no evidence that most believe Bagwell used, though at least he may fall short due to when he had his debilitating shoulder injury & lost weight, though NO decent evidence is presented against him But where is any significant suspicion about Walker? And we know well that there is plenty of suspicion about his worthiness just due to the eras large #s being inflated due to pre-humidor Coor’s Field! But his adjusted #s even seem good enough.

    Show me ANY serious baseball man who argues Biggio used. I mean there could be a couple, but it is not common, & no suspicious evidence or pattern is ever suggested. Plus he is “above the line” at 82.2 i the poll/returns in above. For someone not long eligible (unless a historically great player), that is very good.

    Oh, & 1 or 2 dimensional does not matter at all, like a Ted Williams or even Wizard of Oz, if you are good enough. It is the total value you create.

    I can see small Hall folks-or those to me too opposed to the DH, no matter how well done-denying Raines or Martinez.

    But With Schilling it is not even close.

    First, he happened to be multidimensional. His Walks/K’s was transcendentally great in the heart of the steroid era. He had a decent # of IP. He had an EXCELLENT ERA +. Even his unearned runs allowed was very good.

    Though he does not need it at all, in over a 1/2 year against the best teams/under pressure, he was great in the post season. His accumulated AND peak value, total WAR, peak years/JAWS was easily that of a “middle tier” HOF man.

    But his mouth, politics, Boston for many…were polarizing. He was is the best pitcher on the ballot not named Maddox. And he was not given any extra inches off the plate like him & Glavine.

  126. Lefty33 Says:

    “But there is absolutely no indication that the voters did not provide enough support for Bagwell, Biggio & Walker due to PED usage.”

    I’m trying not to jump in here but sometimes Mike, as we have covered here for years, things you say are so naive, stupid and pedantic that it boggles the mind.

    Are you seriously going to say that there is no indication that Bagwell vote total hasn’t been hurt by PED allegations? I mean Good Lord man, pull your head out of your ass and actually look into things before you type.

    Bagwell has been dogged by that since the day he retired and it is the ONLY REAL reason that he has not already been inducted. Ditto that for Biggio. Both guys like it or not are going to make it one day and it’s only because of the BBWAA PED dog and pony show that they are still on the outside.

    @119 – God Bless Cam. I’m glad that someone said the obvious.

  127. Cameron Says:

    Sorry for snapping at you guys. I just get tired of seeing you guys snipe at each other over this shit.

    Though I think Chuck kinda lost his own argument about Biggio when he said the writers think they know who used. 68% first year doesn’t seem like a guy who most people think used.

    Also, I love being a Chiefs fan this year. The most points the Chiefs scored in a playoff game was 31 against the Bills in the AFC Championship game en route to Superbowl 1. …We scored that in the first half tonight. Andy Reid, god bless you man. This city needed you.

  128. Cameron Says:

    Fuck Andrew Luck, fuck TY Hilton, fuck the Colts, fuck the city of Indianapolis and everyone in it.

  129. Raul Says:

    That loss is on the Chiefs.
    Sorry.

  130. Cameron Says:

    Yeah… Two deep, Luck fires one to TY open up the middle and it was over. That… That happens with Kendrick Lewis’s coverage more than I like.

  131. Raul Says:

    It doesn’t look like the Saints have it tonight.

  132. Cameron Says:

    6 to 7 at the half… Honestly, I thought the scoreboard for this game would be the score for the Chiefs-Colts game. Kinda boring, actually. That said… I’m rooting for the Eagles. What can I say? They’ve won me over this year. Plus I really liked Nick Foles coming out of Arizona. Glad to see I don’t look like a total jackass for saying he’d be a good pro.

  133. Mike Felber Says:

    Hey Lefty! If you really believe what Cameron said you should not be calling anyone stupid. Cameron did not seem mean to me, it was funny, an exaggeration of how we can come across. But again, “at each other’s throats” does NOT apply to civil debate; it involves hate, mockery & contempt.

    Name calling rather than describing why someone is so wrong would qualify as a “throat attack”. Even if I HAD said something very incorrect-as I guess everyone does sometime-it is unjustifiable & provocative.

    Now on to the substance. You found no fault with many statements I made, nor about Walker, nor the core one about no evidence for Biggio’s guilt. As for Bagwell, describing the rumors that we all well know do not present any evidence for it being what kept him out in the short time he has been eligible. But I checked what I wrote above:

    “There is no evidence that most believe Bagwell used, though at least he may fall short due to when he had his debilitating shoulder injury & lost weight, though NO decent evidence is presented against him But where is any significant suspicion about Walker”?

    So reading this it seems I was unclear. I meant & SHOULD have typed that his VOTE TOTALS may fall short due to his injury & when he could not lift heavy anymore & lost muscle. And I amend my statement to say that Bagwell’s vote totals MAY WELL have fallen short due to the rumors.

    There was never any decent evidence against him or complete transformation of physique & game beyond what you ever so naturally &/or late in his career like Sosa & Bonds. And you did not give specific indications that a significant # of VOTERS did not go for Baggy due to the allegations. But I am willing to say that given his total & advanced stats #s, he may well not have gotten enough because of this, not just the Nintendo #s overall.

    Fair enough? And barring some decent evidence both guys SHOULD be in. But not putting in those who corrupted the game, unless they clearly could have without drugs, & are sincerely repentant, seems the right thing to do symbolically & to discourage the rewards of cheating & screwing over the careers & fortunes of honest players.

  134. Cameron Says:

    I don’t think that Bagwell or Biggio used. It’s not a dogmatic belief, but it’s more benefit of the doubt. I don’t want to completely discredit Chuck and Raul by saying there isn’t any associated guilt there. When Bagwell and Biggio came up, Caminiti was there and in the scope of the 90s, there’s a lot of guilt just in general.

    However… There was also a lot culturally going on in the 90s with an unhealthy fascination with muscular physiques. There was the boom of supplements, action movies were at an all-time high, sports were getting more physical then ever (and how ironic that after the hugely physical era comes an extremely safety-conscious one). The 90s as a whole was very macho. Guys who didn’t need to lift weights lifted weights anyway, advances in medical science led to supplements. …Seriously, look back at the 90s for a minute. More muscled jagoffs than you can count. It was weird as a whole.

  135. Cameron Says:

    Sorry for rambling. What I was trying to say is… In between the legit steroid boom and the cultural obsession with being a musclebound macho man… I have no clue who did and didn’t use.

    …But I hate to admit it, there is associated guilt involved. With anyone. Certain teams in particular, though. Most notably would be Houston, Oakland, Texas, and the Mets.

  136. Chuck Says:

    “Chuck like an old man whose head is so far stuck up his ass that he hasn’t seen the sun since Mickey Mantle retired”

    “I don’t want to completely discredit Chuck”

    About ten comments too late on that one.

    Two years ago there would have been 400 comments already on this, 350 being, “Yes he did” or “No he isn’t”, so there’s clearly some restraint here. Maybe it’s the holidays, who knows, but things are definitely different.

    I wish Brautigan and Patrick were still around (I know why they left, BTW, and it had nothing to do with what Camerons said), but they’re not, so….

    ..I do consider Shaun not being around a worthwhile trade-off, however.

    Outside of a couple of former bosses and an ex-sister-in-law, he may be the most ignorant human being I’ve ever spoken with.

    If an ex-teammate told me Player X used, then that’s good enough for me…no one is saying it has to be good enough for you..don’t spend 100 comments arguing about body mass and weight gain and nonsensical, pointless shit.

    That’s what Cameron means (I think), and I think I’ve done a pretty good job with my 2013 New Year’s resolution to avoid those type conversations.

    Or not?

  137. Cameron Says:

    Eh, I don’t know what I really meant when I said that. I just reflexively want to punch something when I see these arguments these days. Don’t worry about what I said. I don’t exactly remember why Braut left, but I think I remember why Patrick left. It’s alright. I’m not too attached to the site anymore, I’ve got stuff I follow that I’m not as active as I used to be, but I do come back to check on you guys.

  138. Raul Says:

    Well you can come up with a scenario in which anything is possible.

    Could a 2nd baseman gain 30 pounds of muscle?
    Sure. He COULD.

    Could he do it cleanly? I suppose. Though it’s HIGHLY unlikely.

    I’m not going to give credence to the idea that it’s more likely than not, given that I kinda know what the daily routine is for baseball players during the season. And lifting heavy weights in a gym for 3 hours every day is not part of it.

  139. Cameron Says:

    Slamming the weight room to an unhealthy degree and (at the time legal in the MLB) Andro? …Yeah, it can happen. Though he’s listed at 5′11″ and 185. Even at his peak, he didn’t weigh 215 and if he weighed 155 naturally, he’d be Pedroia levels of scrawny for 5′11″.

  140. Chuck Says:

    A couple of years ago, John said something like, “If Tim Raines had 150 more hits, he’d be in the HOF already.”

    He’s right.

    You know who Craig Biggio is?

    Tim Raines with 150 more hits.

    Biggio had a 64.7 WAR in 20 years.

    Which is less than Willie Randolph posted in 18 years.

    As a 2B, he played 15 seasons and had a WAR of 51.7. Bobby Doerr played 14 seasons and had a WAR of 52.4.

    Raines is a better HOF candidate than Biggio.

  141. Chuck Says:

    So, I leave work yesterday and listen to the Colts/Chiefs on the radio. It’s 7-7 when I get home. I wanted to watch but had things to do, worked out for 45 minutes, made dinner, cleaned up the kitchen, did emails and twitter stuff.

    Turned on the game with six minutes left, 44-35 KC.

    See the end…watch the Eagles game and hear the announcers talking about it…second biggest comeback in history, first time a QB throws 4 TD’s and no picks in a loss.

    Reading the paper and the boxscore this morning…it’s like….damn.

  142. Mike Felber Says:

    Now you two are trying & largely succeeding in being reasonable. Cameron you made some astute comments about the ’90’s. I just must point out the error in guilt by association. It is broadly similar to correlation does not equal causation. Some players associate & get each other involved, use together…But it makes no sense to conclude a player did absent any good evidence, you could indict a whole team any known user was ever on that way.

    I will say the inverse of what you do Raul. I agree Bagwell COULD have used. We differ in what the odds are. I believe he reached a cut 215 (Cam does not think so), in the past it was said here (erroneously) somewhat more. SO it could have been 30 lbs. of muscle.

    But you are just factually wrong that you need to spend anything remotely like 3 hours a day in the gym to gain muscle. And even less to maintain it, which is all most players will do during the season. An AVERAGE guy can gain 30-40 lbs. of muscle over a guy with the same frame, ~ 40-50 from where he starts as a fairly thin kid. This can be easily confirmed via numerous sources, anecdotal & scholarly, I have linked some of them.

    Fair enough on what an ex teammate told you Chuck. Only you know the source, & hopefully how reliable it is in intention & accuracy.

    Though after slagging off WAR forever, for a while now you have used it to discredit the suitability of a candidate for the HOF! So you must have accepted it as generally accurate, otherwise it would be irrational to use it when convenient. And you must ACCEPT the negative dWAR they earn. OK, good.

    Both Raines & Bigggio do worse than subtracting there dWAR from their oWAR would suggest. I am trying to recall why, but only Biggio suffers significantly. Actually Raines has a negative value for LF positional scarcity.

    They are not so different. Biggio played more over fewer years, Raines a bit better for his peak, & better than the average LF in the Hall, Biggio below the average 2B. Whether you want these guys for the Hall in part depends upon whether you believe that either position has been treated liberally or conservatively in being granted access. AND how much you prioritize peak value. Though I would say in most cases balancing the ATGs with those undeserving, an average candidate is clearly deserving.

    So as a large hall guy-& you do not need to be too liberal to want them both I think-I have them in. But if you deny Biggio based largely upon WAR, then unless you have a good reason otherwise, you must say those with similar or worse WARs & peaks at 2B are ALSO undeserving.

    So Chuck, Whitaker is a bit below the average 2B in JAWS. But his peak value is well BELOW average. Mr. Consistency, but not HOF level dominance ever. And your text above suggests that peak value means a lot to you, + you are not a large hall guy. Thus Sweet Lou is out by you, right Chuck?

    Now it is much more clear with Schilling. I see his WAR has been marginally upgraded in the calculations to 80.7! And also well above the average HOF in his 7 year peak value too. With his adjusted ERA + of 127 & his superb K/BB-any way you slice it 2 of the 3 most important thing a pitcher can do besides not giving up dingers-he is like Blyleven was extremely qualified.

    It would be unfair & perverse to claim that this most vocal of PED critics was a complete hypocrite & liar about using without any evidence, right? Because just being clean & excellent against all the users is a credit to him.

    Koufax is often overrated (due to era, park, length of career, & sentimentality). But I was surprised how far short he falls, even in peak value. His 5th & 6th best year are good but not tremendous, & he has nothing after that. He comes off better than Dizzy Dean, but not as dramatically as one would think. I do not know if this is unfair.

  143. Chuck Says:

    “So you must have accepted it as generally accurate”

    Hardly…The fact WAR makes guys like Raines and Biggio seem like slam-dunk HOFers is a slap at WAR, not as an acceptance.

    I’ll never accept WAR..it’s an idiotic stat, however, depending on the environment one finds himself it serves a purpose as a talking point.

    “So Chuck, Whitaker is a bit below the average 2B in JAWS. But his peak value is well BELOW average. Mr. Consistency, but not HOF level dominance ever. And your text above suggests that peak value means a lot to you, + you are not a large hall guy. Thus Sweet Lou is out by you, right Chuck?”

    Consistency means more than peak value. Whitaker played 19 seasons and his peak accounted for 50% of his career total, Biggio played 20 years and his peak accounted for 61% of his, which makes Whitaker a better player for a longer time. To answer your question…I think Whitaker is borderline, but haven’t lost any sleep with him being out.

    I know the saber crowd has a boner for Bobby Grich…Whitaker is a better candidate than he is.

    Schilling fares better in career WAR than he does in peak or in JAWS. Mussina beats him in WAR but not in peak or JAWS..so that’s a tough nut to crack. The closest to Schilling in WAR is actually Glavine, and I think he’s getting in for the same reason Schilling eventually will…hit a magic number. Personally, I’d take Mussina over both of them, and I can’t see him in anytime soon.

  144. Mike Felber Says:

    Some of what you say is confusing Chuck, so let me ask you.

    When you compared these Biggio & Raines to Randolph & Doerr,it seemed like you were saying they were worse in accumulating value, & from what I know about you, found THOSE guys not worthy, thus were saying of course the 1st 2 guys fall short.

    I will say Doerr had neither a very long career-his one lost war year also may have been counterbalanced by acquiring better stats when league quality had declined-& never hit 6 WAR, so fell WAY short in career & peak value, thus JAWS. Randolph comes closer, & is 2 places behind Biggio amongst 2nd basemen, 16th & 14th. But both clearly below the average HOF man. Whether you think the AVERAGE is a fair standard for any of some positions effects how worthy you will find them. AND if the positional values assigned through the ages are fair.

    But WAR does not make Biggio a slam dunk. I would say that it makes him LIKELY qualified from those who accept it as accurate. Raines is MORE qualified, 8th all time in JAWS & above the average HOF man. So IF you accept the WAR as correct, including positional value, AND that the relative rankings by position of those in the HOF reflects roughly who should be in, then Raines is more like a slam dunk.

    But there are these vagaries. Add t that the occasional adjustments-now I see Mussina rose, if memory serves, about 8 points from when I last checked! I may have to again ask what adjustments were made in its formula.

    But I DISAGREE that consistency means more than peak value. I know you will love to debunk your BFF James, so tell me: if 2 guys both have the same WAR-assuming that you believe it happens to coincidentally reflect their true value-WHY are not more big years reflective of greatness? I think it adds more for a team to be way above an average starter, but is not an inescapable aspect of greatness having really good peak years?

    Fair enough you find Whitaker borderline. Though even with peak value being a priority for me above consistency, he is worthy, 11th all time in 2b men. You are astute in saying WAR can serve as a talking point regardless of your belief. Though many like me see it is generally accurate, & unless you can find specific faults in how it is used in particular cases-& defense is one imperfect metric-I take it as not Gospel, but usually quite close to the truth.

    Now the way you talk about WAR for pitchers sounds as if you accept its values ar pretty much correct. The closest to Schilling in what is most meaningful, factoring in peak value, JAWS: is not Glavine, but Mussina. Who Schilling just beats out. I think they are CLEARLY all HOF worthy. Since there are so many starting pitchers, the first 33 rate ABOVE the average HOF man, & all the guys we are talking about are above that, 27, 28 & 30.

    Aside from the vagaries of pre-1893 pitchers when the mound was so close-though most likely still belong-I find the FIRST guy who is questionable for the HOF is # 45, Rick Reuschel! Unless you dock the underrated #40 Newhouser for cleaning up by playing through WW2.

    But I CHALLENGE you in a friendly way to reconsider your preference for consistency over peak value. Anybody that you will consider has to have more than peak value anyway. Take #43, Juan Marichal. No missed war years like Feller, & a huge concentration of his value over 6 years

    Does not WAR pretty well reflect his true value how good he was in how many years? AND is not his peak greatness part of what should be considered important to “fame”, & overall greatness?

    I would actually slightly weight peak 7 years to determine greatness, at least 55%, 60% maybe. OR give a small weight, like 10%, to peak 3 years.

    I also think with competition slowly getting keener over time-with war & strike year regressions-& a bigger pool, that there could be a slight favoritism to modern over old time guys re: standing out. Not large, but statistically there is LESS extreme dominance over time, & this is due to better overall athleticism & competition.

    Anyway, A greater peak (a 76 OPS + helps a bit) over pitching forever is what makes my avatar greater than Cy Young. A # of years of dominance MUSt be a part of what adds to a legacy of greatness!

  145. Cameron Says:

    @142 When I said I didn’t believe he hit 215, I was talking about Biggio, not Bagwell. Though funnily enough, Bagwell only has an inch and ten pounds on Biggio.

  146. Mike Felber Says:

    Oh! True if Bagwell is 6′, he also has been listed as 5′11″.

  147. Cameron Says:

    According to baseball-reference, who I believe cite team listings for height/weight, Biggio is 5′11″/185, Bagwell is 6′/195. Thirty pounds on either would push them to 215 and 225. I know what 225 looks like. I watch a lot of pro wrestling, and the indy scene in particular. 6 feet and 220 is surprisingly big, and that’s the cutoff for what we call “light” heavyweight. Biggio would be 210 at best in his prime, 200 to 205 is most likely. Bagwell about… I’d actually 205. He had big shoulders and arms, but he didn’t have much weight anywhere else, and that mass doesn’t actually add much weight.

  148. Mike Felber Says:

    Those suppositions are likely about right. Though many round u or add height as if in shoes, especially to 6′ even. Maybe Bagwell was only 205, but he may well have reached 215. These heights & weights are pretty big when someone is LEAN, not just not overweight.

    Here is a web site done by some authoritative, experienced lifter. About what is the maximum NATURAL potential for guys. The “bulked” measurement means eating a lot/often so more food is in your digestive system. http://www.weightrainer.net/bodypred.html

    Here are values I entered at 6′ for an average bone structure & a pretty LEAN 10″ body fat.

    The WeighTrainer
    Maximum Muscular Bodyweight and Measurements Calculator

    Height: 72 in Wrist: 7 in
    Ankle: 9 in

    Your estimated maximum muscular bodyweight at ~10% bodyfat is: 207.8 lbs

    Your estimated maximum bulked bodyweight at ~10% bodyfat is: 216.1 lbs

    Your estimated maximum muscular measurements (@ ~8%-10% bodyfat) are:

    Chest: 48 in Biceps: 17.3 in
    Forearms: 13.9 in Neck: 16.9 in
    Thighs: 25.5 in Calves: 17.1 in

    I cannot stress enough that no serious lifters would said you need to, or recommend, hours of workouts a day to bulk up. If you are looking for perfect symmetry & definition to compete that may be different. Many short sessions are most effective, & it is easy to get catabolic with 3 hour sessions. And one can maintain so much easier than bulking up, usually in the off-season.

    The #s above are consistent with what the Astros B-brothers COULD have achieved naturally. The figures could be higher IF they were not this lean, &/or their bone structure was bigger.

    Or they or anyone could have cheated, you cannot prove a negative.

  149. Raul Says:

    Nobody is talking about weight lifters.

    We were talking about baseball players who engage in aerobic activity with like 20 off days in 7 months.

    This is the problem, Mike.

    You’re like Donny in The Big Lebowski.
    You’re out of your element.

  150. Chuck Says:

    Street & Smith’s Baseball Yearbook…1989..first year Biggio was on the 40 man roster….5′11″, 180

    The Sporting News lists him at 5′10″, 180.

    Street & Smiths, 1992, first year for Bagwell, 6′0″, 195

    TSN..5′11″, 185.

  151. Raul Says:

    The point that I take from that, Chuck, is that Bagwell wasn’t a stick figure to begin with.

    So him putting on 25-30 pounds of muscle on an already-adult frame would be nearly impossible.

  152. Raul Says:

    I remember hearing around the time that Pedro Martinez threw Don Zimmer to the ground that he was still around 165 pounds.

    Martinez had been in the league for 12 years at that point.

  153. Mike Felber Says:

    Wrong Raul, utterly wrong & unfair. It would be fine if you were correct, but instead it is you who often do not listen.

    1) I rarely miss anything said to me, you often do. I addressed this a few times before, including recently above, in some detail.

    2) You can gain mass even during the season. You can do so working out a couple or 3 -4 times a week, with UNDER an hour each session. Short sessions are recommended as most effective.

    3) Baseball is not so aerobic: the vast majority of the movement is under a minute, anaerobic! How can players who move much MORE in most sports be horses then, like Basketball? Intense aerobics TEND to interfere with gaining mass, though keeping calories up & genetic potential can contradict this, like a Wilt & Shaq gaining 50 or so lbs. over their career. Baseball is overwhelmingly brief sprints, & most of the game you do not move much.

    4) But most players do most of there building up in the off-season. They also have tons of money, personal trainers, & access to the best nutrition.

    5) I am completely in my element re: how much mass a normal person can gain who already has a typical adult frame. Total potential is 30-40 lbs. over an average man. AND with hard & efficient training, 1/2 of that can be added within a year & a 1/2, I have read 88% within 3 years. So 25-30 lbs. over some years is not at all impossible.

    6) If pressed you will likely ADMIT I am right & know exponentially more about weight training & potential than you. BUT you will say I am completely wrong about what is possible for a Professional athlete who plays a full season.

    7) So tellyawhatI’m-a-gonnado! If you accept the challenge, I will find & CONSULT someone who is involved with Professional ball & knows about this. Somebody who has played or trained & seen many players. Don’t know who yet, but I will ask you IF you will accept the name & credentials of whoever I find, if you prefer, even before I pop the question. I can send you or post here the PRECISE phrasing of it for your approval.

    All that needs to be determined is what you wanna bet. I do not want money, maybe a public confession of my correct-itude will be sufficient. ;-)

  154. Mike Felber Says:

    It was 65 degrees within the last couple of weeks. Tonight it is warming up significantly as it gets later, 10:30 PM it is 45-46 degrees. It will be ~ 50 during the day, THEN the next days high will be 13 or 16, & I heard an estimate of 10 below as a low when considering wind chill. Crazy variation.

  155. Mike Felber Says:

    Whaaaa? Now I recall hearing Martinez gained a little weight some time, but so what if he never gained an ounce, what does that prove? Some players stay lean always even in the ‘roid era, but even before it, many gained some weight. If a Billy Wagner, Sam Cassell/Reggie Miller stays lean, how does that show whether anybody gained weight naturally or not?

    Some choose to stay lean, some have more trouble gaining muscle or keeping body fat down. Some vary even whether or how much adding bulk helps them.

  156. Raul Says:

    No Mike.
    You’re wrong.

    Nothing you talk about regarding bodybuilders applies to professional baseball players.

  157. Mike Felber Says:

    The question is whether what applies to regular guys, just committed lifters, not pros or necessarily even bodybuilders, can apply to the best motivated, excellent natural athletes with great resources to obtain superior training, trainers, & nutrition in an overwhelmingly anaerobic sport with a long off-season.

    Why just repeat your premise? If you are so sure, accept my challenge. You can approve whomever I find, consult with them too…

    You have nothing to lose except your preconceptions.

  158. Raul Says:

    You have no idea what baseball players work on, focus on, how they train, or how they spend their time.

    How could you possibly have any idea to set up a premise under which you could prove that a baseball player could gain that type of mass?

    You’re arguing that players spend their off seasons bulking up.
    That alone shows that you don’t understand the dynamics of baseball and how it affects the body.

    You think a player’s season ends in September and he starts pumping iron like a mad man from October through to February?

    The one with preconceptions is you, Mike.

  159. Mike Felber Says:

    What preconceptions Raul? You have set up a Straw Man. WHERE did you draw the conclusions that:

    1) I have no idea how players train. YOU have no idea how much I know who I have spoken to, read, etc…If you took truth serum, could you claim you know what I know?

    2) WHERE did I argue that players spend their off season bulking up?

    What I SAID is that players can & do bulk up in the off season. What is in question is how OFTEN. Of course nobody would deny that MANY players have, clean & dirty, especially during the steroid era. And many never do, fewer today. Though it is not an all or nothing. Commonly players try to make various physical improvements that may include adding muscle. Just some of those tried to maximize strength &/or bulk.

    You were unresponsive to my challenge. Would you accept a reference to a verifiable baseball man, & if you approve his expertise, I will present a neutral argument to him on both sides-not revealing who believes what?

    Regular sized men *have* gained this type of mass in more aerobically rigorous sports than baseball. You are married to a binary of yes or no absent looking at the nuances. It is a lot of work-though no need for marathon workouts-& only some try it, some use drugs to get there…

    If someone said 40 lbs. of pure muscle on a regular build guy in 3 years naturally, I would say NO. 15 lbs. of ONLY muscle on the same guy during an off season? Also NO. Though 10 lbs. where the rest is fat or water, by opening day, certainly possible. And almost always it is not 100% muscle.

    25-30 lbs. over at least 3 years? Possible. Let’s ask an authoritative stranger, shall we?

  160. Chuck Says:

    “When you compared these Biggio & Raines to Randolph & Doerr,it seemed like you were saying they were worse in accumulating value, & from what I know about you, found THOSE guys not worthy, thus were saying of course the 1st 2 guys fall short.”

    Correct.

    “But I DISAGREE that consistency means more than peak value”

    Fine, your opinion.

    “WHY are not more big years reflective of greatness”

    You realize WAR7 or “peak” is not consecutive, right? It’s the total of their best seven WAR seasons over the course of their careers.

    Raines’ top seven took place at ages 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 32 & 33. The thing that jumped at me looking at that was Raines played 22 years and only had six seasons above 4 and never had an 8 season..which is considered AS caliber.

    So, Mike, the question is…for 16 of his 22 seasons, Raines was Brett Gardner, why on earth would anyone consider him even a star quality player, much less a HOFer? Because even by sabermetric measurements, he falls woefully short.

    I admittedly don’t know the formula for JAWS, so until I see it I can’t really talk to it.

  161. Chuck Says:

    So, JAWS is career WAR plus peak7 divided by two.

    ???????

    So, this guys is “famous” in the sabermetric world for “inventing” a stat a four year old could do?

    Dear god help us.

  162. Bob Says:

    Onto real 2014 news. 6 teams have interest in Brett Tomko.

  163. Chuck Says:

    Fat weighs more than muscle…if a 5′11″ guy with 10% body fat weighs 185 pounds and works out a couple of hours every day, he would not gain any measureable weight, even over a longer period of time.

    Weight gain would occur when he stopped working out because muscle would be replaced by fat.

    For a guy to gain 30 pounds in a short period of time and whose profession is counter productive to bulk could only do so by cheating.

    When a player retires and stops working out and papidly loses 30 pounds, that’s unnatural weight he’s losing.

    I have nothing but suspicion on Biggio using, however, the two pictures posted here do nothing but confirm those suspicions.

  164. Chuck Says:

    Tomko?

    He didn’t even pitch last year, did he?

  165. Bob Says:

    He was in the Independent League.

  166. Bob Says:

    http://english.yonhapnews.co.kr/culturesports/2014/01/06/86/0702000000AEN20140106002200315F.html

  167. Chuck Says:

    Interesting…the Mariners have an agreement like that with a Japanese team, and so does, I believe, Texas.

  168. Bob Says:

    Jerry Coleman passed away. RIP

  169. Chuck Says:

    It is Texas, but it’s Korea, not Japan…

  170. Bob Says:

    My favorite story of the year. And no, its not from the Onion. http://www.breitbart.com/InstaBlog/2014/01/05/Drug-Dealer-Under-House-Arrest-Begs-For-Jail-To-Escape-Nagging-Wife

  171. Mike Felber Says:

    I am surprised you did not know JAWS, & of course I knew WAR7 took best 7 years.
    You cannot have it both ways, dissing sabermetrics for being too complex & in another instance too simple. The question is how effective it is for getting at the truth.

    You are way off with listing 8 as an All Star season Chuck. I have heard 4-5, or 5 to be safe. 8? That is MVP level Chuck. Which is sometimes below, & usually at least 8. ATG seasons hit double digits.
    http://www.baseball-reference.com/leaders/WAR_leagues.shtml

    Interesting that since they tweaked the #s, Gooden’s monster season is the biggest since the 19th century, save 1 by Ruth & 2 by my avatar. Decent hitting helps a pitcher too.

    SO you went from thinking WAR makes Raines a poster boy for HOF material to reaching the opposite conclusion? Now that you know what an AS season is, yuou will see your new conclusion is wrong. In fact it has his JAWS score 2.4 points ABOVE the average LF, & # 8 of all time!

    Left Field (8th), 69.1 career WAR/42.2 7yr-peak WAR/55.6 JAWS
    Average HOF LF (out of 19) = 65.0 career WAR/41.5 7yr-peak WAR/53.2 JAWS

    Though to be as “fair & balanced” as possible, you could dock him if you like bigger years & more full years better. We both like consistency, though most understand that a bunch of big years means more for what is “great”, so I take a little off his case there…And still find him worthy. But cearly not the best of those not in.

    I’m gonna have a proverbial field day with your lack of knowledge of weights & muscle!

  172. Chuck Says:

    To me, Raines isn’t a HOFer.

    Nothing has changed, nor will it ever.

    Slice the pie any way you want, still not biting.

  173. Mike Felber Says:

    This is separate from above Chuck, ’cause you are just completely in the dark about weight training & muscle gain bug guy. You said:

    “Fat weighs more than muscle…if a 5′11″ guy with 10% body fat weighs 185 pounds and works out a couple of hours every day, he would not gain any measurable weight, even over a longer period of time”.

    Answer: fat indeed is more dense than muscle. But this does not at all imply that a lean man will not gain muscle through hard & effective exercise! Whaaaa? I think you may be under the impression that you need extra fat to “turn into” muscle, which is a myth.

    Biggio & Kent were clearly muscular in the photo pictured. They also clearly looked within what folks can achieve naturally, They appeared max 47-48″ unexpanded chests, & likely 17″ & chain upper arms, without giant legs.

    Now it has been endlessly PROVED that bulk benefits many. Even IF you lose fielding & running ability-& Biggio does NOT show unusual decline there, nor a suspicious late career or ANY giant unexpected spike-Hitting & power (overwhelmingly HRs & the extra walks you draw) more than makes up for it.

    Of course you believe this. How else did Bonds, Sosa & many others lose mobility, have most of their game decline, but were more productive than ever through just HRs & BBs? Antithetically, though usually only if young, sometimes like with Canseco one keeps their speed.

    To gain mass, all anyone needs to do is cause the stimulation that breaks down (micro-tears) the muscles & when one recuperates from workouts, getting adequate rest & nutrition, you keep very slightly repairing things by adding mass. Unless you are near your genetic potential, you can get bigger. The basic factor you omitted is one must take in more calories than they burn! This is even more important & primary than adequate protein.

    So many used, anybody COULD have used, even those who did not do so effectively or long term, or took junk to maximize strength but not mass.

    According to your logic, nobody lean & fit ever gains mass!

    Weight gain MIGHT be replaced by fat when one stops working out. Fat & muscle never can “transform” into each other, but IF one does not cut calories, burned both in activity & less calories needed as you lose muscle: then as is very common, ex-jocks get pot bellies or fat!

    If you simply cut consumption though, you will lose muscle & not gain fat! It is just that folks like to eat & drink! Nothing remotely suspicious re: PED use when you merely lose overall body mass after stopping intense activity though.

    Now 30 lbs. of pure muscle in a short time, I AGREE that is very suspicious. But I have no indication that Bagwell gained more than 25-30 lbs. of pure skeletal muscle (things like Creatine that have been legal help increase strength, thus muscle, but also retain water), over AT LEAST 3 years. Again, he COULD have used too, but his muscle gain does not show it.

    But you *really* have no decent reason to think the smaller Biggio used! The guilt by association could be used on ANYONE. And your 1st & main point, that he just lost muscle & did not get fat over some years after retirement?!?!?!

    Think about this-most all lose some muscle that they do not need as they retire & get older. Is it reasonable to think that those who care about their health & do not get fat likely used PEDs? If so, you outta move to Salem Mass & reinvigorate Ye Olde Tyme religion! :-0

  174. Bob Says:

    The Dodgers and Mattingly are working on an extension.

  175. Chuck Says:

    Mike, going to be honest…won’t even read that.

    Been there, done that, not going there again.

    Mattingly getting an extension?

    After the nonsense last year, I figured he was lame duck this year. Good for him.

  176. Mike Felber Says:

    You should at least READ what I wrote Chuck, & I suspect you do not want to because you are aware that you are completely in the dark about what Strength training related matters.

    Your post # 163 is objectively, factually incorrect in each of its statements.

    You are completely mistaken about the rudimentary aspects of weight lose & gain related to lifting. For someone into nutrition it is willfully blind to not even try to consider the facts.

  177. Raul Says:

    Not sure how things will pan out for Mattingly.
    He might be sabotaged, in a way. I mean not intentionally. But you gotta figure the Dodgers will shed payroll and trade away some of their best players in the months to come. I hope they recognize the strain that can put on his ability to win right away.

  178. Bob Says:

    Well should they not trade away one of their outfielders?

  179. Raul Says:

    I guess they have to.
    But things have a way of snowballing.
    My guess is it won’t just be 1 outfielder that goes.

  180. Cameron Says:

    They’re taking calls on Kemp, Ethier, and Crawford. The one that’d net the highest return would be Kemp, I think the one that does get traded is most likely Ethier.

    The OF the Dodgers have on the depth chart right now is Kemp, Ethier, Crawford, Puig, and Van Slyke. Nick Buss and Mike Baxter are on the 40, but I don’t think either will break camp. Scott Schebler had a breakout season last year and is now regarded as one of the top prospects in LA along with Joc Pederson. Schebler and Pederson both were invited to the Dodgers’ private winter camp and that has a HIGH graduation rate of players to the majors.

    My prediction is that the Dodgers say, “Screw service time, we have money,” take whatever three outfielders don’t get traded, break camp with Schleber and Pederson, and keep Slyke on the roster as backup 1B.

  181. Cameron Says:

    And I’m… Slightly with Raul. If Pederson or Schleber (or both) get hot, they’ll look to make a big deadline deal with one of the OF and move the hot OF into the rotation full time.

    …And he’ll probably get traded for a third baseman, because the hot corner is currently manned by Juan Uribe with Justin Sellers backing him up. I think Corey Seager may get called up by midseason, but LA has the chance to add a prime player there.

  182. Raul Says:

    The thing is…

    Boston and the Yankees are pretty much at capacity as far as payroll goes.
    They’ll add a guy here and there but they’re not huge buys in terms of trades over the last few years.

    So who are these people on the Dodgers getting traded to?
    Chicago is trying to build from within.

    Texas isn’t spending much more.
    Philly needs younger players, not veterans.

    I see LA either keeping these guys or they will agree to pay a big part of the salaries.

  183. Cameron Says:

    I still don’t discount the Kemp to Seattle rumors, Texas doesn’t seem shy about spending. Detroit could be a surprise. Who knows?

  184. Cameron Says:

    Oh, Cincinnati too. Second base has Alexander Guerrero penciled in, but he’s a Cuban refugee rookie and the Dodgers are looking internally for replacement on top of that. A Crawford/Ethier and change package for Phillips isn’t out of the question, we know Phillips is on the block after the fiasco with the Yankees.

  185. Chuck Says:

    Pederson is probably…likely…trade bait.

    I’ve heard his name mentioned a few times…Ethier too.

    Kemp’s contract is brutal…no one is taking that. Dodgers are stuck with him.

  186. Cameron Says:

    After Vernon Wells being traded TWICE, no contract is untradeable anymore.

  187. Raul Says:

    Maybe not.
    But if Matt Kemp gets traded, the Dodgers will probably pay 40% of the remaining dollars, depending on which prospects come back

  188. Raul Says:

    Probably the best trade, was the A-Rod trade to the Yankees.

    The Yankees got like 5 MVP years out of Alex and I don’t think they paid half his salary. Did they?

  189. Chuck Says:

    HOF announcement tomorrow, within “a few days after..” will be the arbiter decision on ARod’s suspension.

    Shit be flyin’

    If you use the internet like I do…for comic relief…then the next week or so will be hysterical.

  190. Cameron Says:

    They Yankees were on hook for 112 of the 179 million of the contract, Texas took the other 67.

  191. Raul Says:

    So Texas took something like 37.5% of Alex’s contract…

    That seem like a reasonable benchmark?

    So the Dodgers owe Matt Kemp 128 million.
    37.5% of that would be 48 million.

  192. Bob Says:

    I use the internet for porn. My New Years resolution.

  193. Chuck Says:

    Funny, mine was to stop using the internet for porn…

  194. Cameron Says:

    That and they unloaded about another 5 in Soriano’s contract.

    That said, the new Dodgers owner group seems to be swimming in money and not giving a damn about luxury tax. They strike me as eating cash to make a deal work.

  195. Chuck Says:

    Announcing a new world record.

    We have this instant messaging system at work…we can communicate with anyone world wide at any time.

    Sitting at my desk and a text box pops up asking if I’ll still be working spring training.

    “Yes”

    “Can I get four tickets for the Dbacks game on March 14th?”

    “Sure, remind me a week before.”

  196. Raul Says:

    That was really direct @ Chuck.

    Even a whore gets a car ride before she gets fucked.

  197. Chuck Says:

    Saw where Ubaldo Jimenez wants a 3/42 contract.

    Talking about being taken for a ride.

    I don’t mind the tickets, they give them to me and I’m already there, so, why not?

    As long as you don’t ask for autographs or balls or bobbleheads, we’re good.

  198. Bob Says:

    This fucking sucks. http://espn.go.com/mlb/story/_/id/10259259/greg-maddux-unanimous-hall-selection

  199. Raul Says:

    He should have his voting privileges revoked.
    Period.

    Not because he didn’t vote for any of them.
    But because of the reason why he didn’t vote for any of them.

    As stupid as you have to be to not think Maddux is a Hall of Famer, you have to be exponentially more stupid to just throw out an entire generation of players.

    Is stupid the right word? Maybe I should just call him a fucking asshole.

  200. Cameron Says:

    “Over his best decade of work, from 1983 to 1992, identifying a better pitcher other than Roger Clemens is difficult.”

    What they fail to note is that there hasn’t been a worse decade for pitching since the start of live ball.

    Also Raul, fucking asshole still isn’t strong enough. I think cancerous tumor upon the earth, but even then that feels light. (These statements are in no way, shape, or form anger that my favorite player of all time is being discounted by an ass-backwards fuckhead who lets a couple of needle-in-the-ass morons color his perception of a guy who was six feet and weighed 170 SOAKING WET.*)

    * – Indicates this statement is a bold-faced lie and this guy needs two between the eyes in front of his wife and kids.

  201. Chuck Says:

    “I only voted Morris because everyone else played in the steriod era.”

    Jack Morris faced Jose Canseco 58 times….

  202. Cameron Says:

    Yeah… They tend to forget that steroid use started in the mid 80s once the amphetamines cycled out.

  203. Mike Felber Says:

    Nah, the effect on your idol could not posibbly color your perception Cam, lol!

    Though at most Martinez was 5′ 11″. I think they should at least warn someone like this guy that if he insists on disqualifying a generation due to drug abuse, he will have his voting privileges revoked. That is against the spirit of Fair Play, & would serve as a good example for others.

  204. John Says:

    “Raines’ top seven took place at ages 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 32 & 33. The thing that jumped at me looking at that was Raines played 22 years and only had six seasons above 4 and never had an 8 season..which is considered AS caliber.”

    8 is considered “MVP caliber.” 4-5 is what you expect an all-star to put up. Raines put up a number of good seasons cut-off by strikes, collusions etc. For example, 3.5 in 1981, 6.7 in 1987. And then he missed time due to injury, which doesn’t help his cause (part of the reason I think Walker/Edgar can stay out) but also shouldn’t hurt the perception of the quality of player he was.

    In 15 years as a regular, Raines put up 64.9 WAR, averaging 5.2 – aka All-Star level – per 650 PA.

    He was a role player after the age of 36. Big deal.

  205. John Says:

    ““Over his best decade of work, from 1983 to 1992, identifying a better pitcher other than Roger Clemens is difficult.””

    Bert Blyleven
    Orel Hershiser
    Frank Viola
    Nolan Ryan
    Dave Stieb
    Bret Saberhagen

    That’s off the top of my head. The author picked a COMPLETELY arbitrary period of time to coincided with Morris’s first and last 20-win season…AND MORRIS IS STILL NOT EVEN THE FIF-FUCKING-TEENTH BEST PITCHER OF **THAT** **IMAGINARY** ERA.

    He’s 16th in WAR during that period. Slightly ahead of Charlie Hough. Behind Tom Candiotti.

    Wow.

  206. Mike Felber Says:

    Yes John, all good points. Though I already mentioned Chuck’s 8 is an AS season misperception with links to the WAR of all historical league leaders. But he actually believes a lean average sized man CANNOT gain size naturally, in ANY context, & other basic errors about the nature of weight training.

    As he has told us recently, his mind is completely closed on Raines (& some other matters).

    I like Walker & Edgar for the HOF, though if you want a smaller Hall or value more complete years IO can see the case.

    I hope that you see the opposite career progression, being better late, & the actual productivity of Schilling, career & peak, makes him a better candidate than all of these hitters. And better than Mosse, Glavine, & certainly Smoltz.

  207. Cameron Says:

    I don’t really like Walker’s chances at the Hall. He had good years in Montreal and was good with the Cards at the end, but I think the Coors Field Effect hurts his numbers in the end, plus even with guys like Palmeiro and Sosa discounted, his numbers aren’t the best of his era. He’s good, great… Not a legend.

  208. Chuck Says:

    “8 is considered “MVP caliber.” 4-5 is what you expect an all-star to put up”

    “I stand corrected, 8 is MVP, 5+ is AS.”

    Read the whole thread before commenting.

  209. Chuck Says:

    The BBTF tracker was updated this morning and is now at 194 ballots, which is 34%, meaning there are approximately 380 ballots which haven’t been made public.

    The updated totals still have Maddux, Glavine, Thomas and Biggio getting in, but all have lost percentage points since.

    Biggio is falling, has lost almost five percent and now stands just barely over the 75% mark at 78.2%.

    The next three guys, Piazza, Bagwell and Morris, have lost anywhere from 4 to 7%, with Raines picking up 4%.

    The two guys taking the biggest hit at almost 8% are Schilling and Walker, with Walker now coming close to falling off altogether.

    I know it’s too small a sample size, but if I’m a Biggio supporter I’d consider hedging my ballot bet.

  210. Bob Says:

    Sorry for this football news on a baseball heavy day, but http://espn.go.com/nfl/story/_/id/10259808/miami-dolphins-gm-jeff-ireland-part-ways

  211. Cameron Says:

    No word on Joe Philbin yet, but I expect him to get shitcanned too.

  212. Chuck Says:

    Only the first four paragraphs matter.

    http://www.csnbayarea.com/giants/unapologetic-hall-fame-ballot-revealed-explained

    The fourth one, really.

  213. Raul Says:

    Not that it makes much difference, but I kinda raised an eyebrow at Jayson Stark’s view on Mike Mussina…

    “Mike Mussina never won a Cy Young Award. Had only one full season with an ERA under 3.00. Never led his league in ERA or strikeouts. Retired while he was still 30 wins away from 300. But if those are the kind of numbers you’re using to conclude this man was not a Hall of Famer, you’re not looking closely enough, because Mussina’s 18 years of sustained, consistent excellence rank him alongside the best pitchers of his time:

    Finished in the top six in the AL in ERA 10 times, despite spending his whole career pitching in hitters’ parks in the AL East. … Was awesome in 21 postseason starts (3.42 ERA, 1.10 WHIP, 4.4-to-1 K/BB ratio). … A .638 winning percentage that ranks sixth all-time among members of the 250-Win Club. … And the clincher is this: nine seasons with an adjusted ERA-plus of 130 or better (and at least 24 starts). The only pitchers since 1900 with more seasons like that: Clemens, Walter Johnson, Grove, Christy Mathewson and Greg Maddux. And the group tied with Mussina at nine consists of Randy Johnson and Curt Schilling. Feel free to read that last nugget again. It has “Hall of Fame” written all over it.”

    Stark did not place a vote for Curt Schilling, interestingly enough.
    http://espn.go.com/mlb/story/_/id/10253089/jayson-stark-2014-mlb-hall-fame-ballot

  214. Raul Says:

    Wait, is Schilling up for election? Maybe not.
    My bad.

  215. Raul Says:

    I tell you though, I get really sick of hearing “the greatest leadoff hitter not named Rickey Henderson”…as if that’s supposed to carry any weight for HOF elections.

    I’ve heard some good arguments for Raines, but that one is just stupid.

    Literally no better than saying “The greatest closer not named Mariano Rivera” or “The greatest #5 hitter not named Yogi Berra” or some stupid crap like that.

  216. Chuck Says:

    This is Schilling’s second year on the ballot.

  217. Raul Says:

    I’m losing it.

    In any case, I’m curious which undeserving 1st ballot player will get a vote.

    Kenny Rogers
    Luis Gonzalez
    Moises Alou
    Ray Durham
    Hideo Nomo
    Richie Sexson
    Paul LoDuca
    Armando Benitez
    Mike Timlin
    Sean Casey
    Jacque Jones
    Eric Gagne
    JT Snow
    Todd Jones

  218. Raul Says:

    You need 5% of the vote to remain on the ballot.
    Should that be increased?

  219. Chuck Says:

    “You need 5% of the vote to remain on the ballot. Should that be increased?”

    Yes and No

  220. Raul Says:

    Why?

  221. Chuck Says:

    The purpose is to get unqualified people off the ballot ASAP…

  222. Raul Says:

    Right.
    But, if a guy gets 15% or 20% of the vote, for example…really, what’s the point?
    Kick the guy to the curb.

  223. Chuck Says:

    Craig Biggio missed by two votes.

    He’s not a HOFer to me, so I don’t really care, but, holy damn.

  224. Bob Says:

    Yeah. That has to suck. Also, did Kenny Rogers get a vote?

  225. Lefty33 Says:

    @222- Tell that to Blyleven who on his 2nd round got 14% and at least to me always was a HOF caliber pitcher.

    As we transition over the next ten years from HOF players being elected based on counting stats to guys getting elected based primarily on metric based stats you’re going to see more and more guys come back from the dead to get elected and like it or not the next guy will be Raines who four years ago was in the low 20’s and now is around 50%. After some of the no brainers go in like Maddux, Glavine, Pedro, Johnson, and Griffey he’ll get his due which is sad, but it’s where the vote is trending.

  226. Chuck Says:

    I don’t believe the sabermetric mindset will take over the election process. There may be more of them on the ballot at some point, but they’ll always remain the minority.

    It will matter, obviously, but we won’t have to worry in 18 years about Andy Pettitte getting in.

  227. Chuck Says:

    Kenny Rogers got one vote, Bob.

    Apparently, Dolly Parton has a HOF vote.

  228. Chuck Says:

    Piazza went up just a little, from 58 to 62%…Morris, Bagwell and Raines all went down.

  229. Bob Says:

    Here it is. http://bbwaa.com/

  230. Bob Says:

    Mattingly at 14 years, Trammell at 13 at Lee Smith at 12 are getting close to being done.

  231. Chuck Says:

    Schilling dropped almost ten percent..at that rate, in three years, he’s off the ballot.

  232. Chuck Says:

    Lee Smith should have been done 11 years ago.

  233. Raul Says:

    Maddux got 97.2%?
    How close is that to Tom Seaver? Isn’t Seaver the HOFer with the closest to 100%?

  234. Chuck Says:

    Seaver got 98.5% or something.

    16 writers didn’t vote for him.

  235. Raul Says:

    Wow.
    Here we are, 8 years later and Mark McGwire dropped down to 11% this year. Down from 16.9% last year. Down from 19.5% in 2012.

    I would have thought that sure, the steroid guys might hang around for a while and then eventually get elected, but it looks like the forgiveness that people thought would come…well…it aint coming.

  236. Raul Says:

    Chuck,

    Who are your locks for 2015?
    New to the ballot will be Pedro Martinez, Randy Johnson, John Smoltz…and Everyday Eddie Guardado :-)

  237. Raul Says:

    I have to say…

    How does Lee Smith get more votes than Mike Mussina? (29.9% vs 20.3%) ??

  238. Chuck Says:

    Johnson and Pedro. I think Biggio will get some “Aw, poor guy” sympathy votes so he’ll get in.

    That’s it.

  239. Raul Says:

    If you have to choose between Smoltz, Schilling and Moose, who ya taking?

  240. Lefty33 Says:

    Oh, I don’t know Chuck.

    Most fans or people in general under the age of 30 don’t give a shit about PED’s, cheating, anything which comes close to a counting stat or anything which does not come with an acronym title.

    The future of the voters will rest far more in the corner of the Bleacher Report nut job who doesn’t give a shit whether Edgar was primarily a DH, whether he was parking cars in the valet lot or whether he was green like the Incredible Hulk because he took who knows what substance.

    As long as his (insert shitty/useless/arcane acronym of your choice here) meet a certain arbitrary criteria the rest that we now hold somewhat dear will be irrelevant.

  241. Raul Says:

    What’s sad is that CNN took Bleacher Report as a partner…so that gives it credibility to casual goons who don’t know any better.

    It really is sad, Lefty.

  242. Lefty33 Says:

    Agreed

  243. Mike Felber Says:

    I dunno many of the young saber crowd do care about chaters & liars, many do not. & they do penalize for DH years, but most argue the best Martinez did enough. Unless you are a fanatic, it is a matter of degrees. To me the 147 OPS +, OBP heavy (.418, 21st all time) over a substantial period is enough. If he was up at 160, he would be in anyway.

    Schilling is better than Moose due to peak year dominance. BOTH are clearly worthy.

    Smoltz is borderline when you add the post saseon, I would lean against him. He is 58th all time in JAWS, his peak years are more short. BUT he had a .257 ERA in 209 IP & good hitting. I do not believe in more heavily weighting these more “crucial games” that a whole team gets you into, but how can anyone fairly not consider a full season of great work? This should be considered at least a 6 WAR equivalent, against the competition, likely a 7.

  244. John Says:

    So, who on here did I bet that Frank Thomas would be a first ballot HOFer?

  245. Raul Says:

    Schilling wasn’t better than Moose.
    And Schilling likely juiced anyway.

    Not sure, John.
    Did Frank Thomas ever reconcile with the White Sox? I thought he left on bad terms.

  246. Cameron Says:

    He left on bad terms, but I think he’s a special assistant now. They made up a few years ago.

    Also, two votes short for Biggio. Oof. That’s gotta be a record.

  247. Cameron Says:

    @239

    Neead a pitcher now and game’s on the line, Smoltz.

    For one game, Schilling.

    For a season, Mussina.

  248. Cameron Says:

    Also Mike, as a Braves fan in the height of the Big Three, I must politely tell you to fuck yourself after saying Smoltz doesn’t deserve to be in the Hall.

  249. Cameron Says:

    You want proof Mad Dog is the best of the Big Three?

    Half of Smoltz’s hair is gone.
    Half of Glavine’s hair’s already turned gray.
    Maddux still has a full head of black hair.

  250. John Says:

    I have no problem with Smoltz being enshrined, but by what logic is he in but Schilling out?

  251. Mike Felber Says:

    Equally rational, who has more hair deserves the HOF, & a fan getting mad when someone says that “his” guy is not HOF material! I am sure you are not so insecure as to really mean it Cam-& note I said he is about borderline-but why don’t you make a rational argument for Smoltz? DO not just list accomplishments, any good player has them. Address what I said & show him to be HOF level by what he did. He is close anyway…

    It is disturbing & said when guys here impugn folks like Schilling & Biggio as PED liars & cheats with no, or no serious, evidence. Show me any indication Curt likely used, bearing in mind anyone COULD have used. Especially that this most outspoken antidrug guy is a complete liar.

    There is no other site anywhere I can think of where this opinions would not ne laughed at, at best.

    For a season Moose over Schilling? WHY? WAS lists Mussina’s 2nd year as a great 8.2 Shcilling has 2 consecutive years, 8.8 & 8.7. He also has ‘mo better peak years, though Moose is very consistent.

    Whether you have a problem with WAR, OR we all realize no formula can be perfect. Say why Moose’s best year or years is better than Scilling’s, HONESTLY, & show your work.

  252. Cameron Says:

    I was hoping “politely go fuck yourself” was a clue that I was just busting your balls there, Mike. =P Though with my emotional ties to that Braves period, I doubt I can make a fully rational argument.

  253. John Says:

    I mean, the argument against Schilling kinda hinges on just not having enough dominant full seasons.

    With the exception of the Phillie’s 1993 championship season, Schilling was outstanding every year he put up at least 200 IP. The problem is that he only had 9 such seasons (1992-1993 1997-1998, 2000-2002, 2004, 2006. He had a bunch of very solid partial-seasons, so I can see a very good argument that those partial seasons can’t just be combined into, like 6 great ones for a dominant 15 year career.

    But that’s also an argument that ignores a very dominant stretch.

  254. Cameron Says:

    Exactly. Moose may not have had the peaks, but he gave you the innings. Discounting rookie year, his low innings was 152, and that was his age 38 season.

  255. John Says:

    I shouldn’t say Schilling lacked dominant seasons.

    He had like 6 of those. That’s more than most HOFers.

    He lacked a bunch of 200 IP, 15-11, 3.75 type seasons.

  256. Cameron Says:

    How odd. Mike Mussina’s average season.

    17-10, 3.68 ERA, 226 IP, 178 K.

    18 years of that is pretty goddamn good.

  257. John Says:

    In 2000, Mike Mussina went 11-15 with a 3.79 ERA and earned a lone 3rd place Cy Young ballot.

    The amazing thing is that ERA was third in the league, behind Roger Clemens (3.70) and Pedro Martinez. At 1.74.

    Pedro Martinez, who hits the ballot next year, once had a Major League Baseball season where his ERA was not only 1/3 the league average, but TWO FULL RUNS BETTER THAN 2ND PLACE.

    He also set the modern record for WHIP. While pitching at Fenway Park. In the middle of the steroid era.

  258. John Says:

    Also, it’s worth noting that the year after, Mussina should have won the Cy Young award but lost to his new teammate Clemens due to W/L record. Sigh….

  259. Chuck Says:

    #239

    Mussina

    #241

    Turner Broadcasting owns Bleacher Report…and CNN

    #251

    We’ve been laughing at your opinions for years, Mike. Should be used to it by now.

  260. Chuck Says:

    I’ve been saying for years the BBWAA knows who used, despiite us never knowing. It’s in the vote totals.

    Well, here you go

    http://www.grantland.com/story/_/id/10261642/mlb-hall-fame-voting-steroid-era

  261. Raul Says:

    Hey Chuck,

    List 5 or 6 guys that you thought would be sure superstar players but for one reason or another, never materialized.

    Just curious and bored.

  262. Bob Says:

    1. Ben Grieve for starters.

  263. Raul Says:

    Good one, Bob.
    What about Dreifort?

  264. Chuck Says:

    How far back you want me to go?

  265. Raul Says:

    As far as you want.

    Anyway, have the Orioles given up on Manny Machado as a shortstop?
    207 games…all at 3B…and no sign that he’s moving with Hardy still there.

  266. Raul Says:

    I didn’t realize Adam Wainwright was drafted by the Atlanta Braves.

    The Braves sent Wainwright and Jason Marquis to St. Louis in return for JD Drew and Eli Marrero.

  267. Chuck Says:

    Nigel Wilson, Damian Jackson, Travis Lee, Ryan Christenson, Tim Alderson, George Lombard, Brandon Wood.

  268. Raul Says:

    How did I not know that Jayson Werth was drafted as a catcher?
    Wow.

  269. Chuck Says:

    I don’t think they’ve given up on Machado as a SS, they just don’t need him as a SS.

    When he’s done playing, he’ll have more career games at SS.

  270. Raul Says:

    I should have known about Tim Alderson and Brandon Wood.

    Wow, I remember Travis Lee. I think he came up around the same time as Ben Grieve.

    Nigel Wilson…name rings a bell…maybe I’m confusing him with someone else. He obviously didn’t play long and I never saw him.

  271. Raul Says:

    Wow.
    In the last 30 years, has any team drafted WORSE than the San Diego Padres?

    You have to go back to 1994 to find a 1st Round pick that accumulated a career WAR over 10 (Dustin Hermanson) and Hermanson did it with other teams.

  272. Cameron Says:

    Machado is a decent shortstop, Hardy’s still winning Gold Gloves there. It’s a move to maximize value on both of them.

  273. Raul Says:

    Things have a way of settling though.
    The longer Machado stays at 3B, the more reluctant the Orioles will be to move him.

    You see it happen with pitchers all the time. They bring up a young kid and want to ease him into the league…he does amazingly well as a reliever/closer…and before you know it…

  274. Raul Says:

    On December 21st, Chuck wrote:

    Bill Deane is the former research director at the Hall of Fame. For the past 33 years, he’s predicted the election ballot with pretty good results.

    Here is his 2014 prediction, with vote percentages:

    Greg Maddux (94)
    Tom Glavine (67)
    Frank Thomas (63)
    Craig Biggio (61)
    Jack Morris (58)
    Mike Piazza (54)
    Jeff Bagwell (48)
    Tim Raines (45)
    Lee Smith (39)
    Roger Clemens (29)
    Barry Bonds (29)
    Curt Schilling (27)
    Edgar Martinez (26)
    Alan Trammell (25)
    Larry Walker (16)
    Fred McGriff (15)
    Mark McGwire (13)
    Don Mattingly (10)
    Jeff Kent (9)
    Mike Mussina (7)
    Rafael Palmeiro (5)
    Sammy Sosa (5)

    http://baseballpastandpresent.com/2013/12/15/2014-hall-fame-election-forecast/

    Vince Gennaro, the President of SABR, said yesterday on Clubhouse Confidential he would be surprised of Kent got 5%.

    Which would be awesome.

    Well, the top 3 guys there did get elected, even if the predictio was that only Maddux would get in.

    Kent got 15.2%

  275. Bob Says:

    The Pirates pitching coach expects A.J. Burnett to retire. I also heard last week, that he could sign a deal come June 1st.

  276. Bob Says:

    I forgot about Travis Lee.

  277. Raul Says:

    Burnett could still be valuable.
    Good for him if he chooses to retire. He’s had a pretty good career.
    The season is long and when you’ve been doing it for as many years as Burnett has, it wears on you. Mentally…and the stress on the body.

  278. Mike Felber Says:

    I was sincere in saying I thought you were kidding Cam. Yes Chuck, a tiny group of “we” laughs, but you have gotten SO much better behaved!

    Moose had virtually exactly 400 more IP & 2 more WAR points than Schilling. By any definition of peak or per inning value Schilling is clearly better. And was better in the post season.

    Anybody have any problem with the analysis of WAR here? Look at peripheral or other stats & say why, because this seems accurate to me. They are close, but if you value peak & career equally, Schilling comes out ahead (JAWS or very top years) without the postseason.

    Both are better overall & in Jaws than the average HOF pitcher. I do not think you can argue that the average HOF standard at the position is too weak, especially with Mad Dog in there.

  279. Raul Says:

    Schilling juiced and pitched his best years in the weak NL West.
    If people want to focus on his 3 years in Arizona while overlooking his comparably MEH years in Philly…so be it.

    If this guy doesn’t have the bloody sock to hang his coat on, he’d already be off the ballot.

    Not to mention riding Randy Johnson’s coattails in Arizona.

  280. Raul Says:

    Mike Mussina
    Pedro Martinez
    Greg Maddux
    Tom Glavine
    John Smoltz

    All of them had the best seasons of their career prior to age 32.
    Which is expected since pitchers don’t age like wine.

    Contemporary exceptions?

    Randy Johnson – who was a freak of nature.
    Roger Clemens – who juiced.
    Curt Schilling – who juiced. You gonna sit here and tell me that all those guys called before Congress were dirty except for Schilling? They were all there for a reason, bro. No amount of outspokenness will deflect from the truth.

  281. Mike Felber Says:

    You have ONE possibly good point on Schilling Raul. The opposition he faced. I would like to see a statistical analysis somewhere of the offensive force he feaced throughout his career compared to others, & welcome opinions here.

    But it is shameful how you say he juiced with no credible evidence at all. VERY few besides you feel this is true, even though some hate him for his personality &/or political opinions. Your speculation is completely unfair. Might as well say the other outspoken PED guy Thomas also must be a fraud & liar.

    He eagerly testified-volunteered-since he was already out front on the issue. You think it would be wise & likely to do so if he was dirty?

    I took a closer look. What he improved late is walks, to an exceptional level> Nolan Ryan has some excellent late years. He was 2nd, then FIRST for 5 years in a row in Ks/9 IP—> from ages 36-91! While never very bulky, he was always into fitness, & lifting before others.

    Are you just gonna define him, & anyone else you like, as a “freak of nature”, & Schilling must be a liar & cheater? He COULD have used-& great dominance in K/9-power pitching-seems more suspicious that mastering the strike zone with anemic levels of BB, right? But it is not fair or rational to say they likely did.

    But HERE is proof of your bias & irrationality on Schilling; it calls your judgement into question to say the least.

    Comparatively MEH years in Philly. People logically analyze his WHOLE record. He took a while to hit his stride, the opposite of so many who fade later. But 5 of his Philly years AVERAGE approaching a 6 WAR. Those were solid All Star years, all of them.

    And you want it both ways! Though he was GREAT in his Arizona stint-8.8. 8.7., & 6.0 WAR: you act like he was getting unfair credit! For 2 of those 3 years Johnson was better, but struggled/injured in ‘03. So I guess Pippen, McHale, Gehrig. Foxx amongst so many others did not earn their success if they had the misfortune to play with an ATG at any point in their career?

    The mind doth Reel, Boggle, & finally must snap.

  282. Chuck Says:

    LOL..

    Dan LeBatard (rhymes with retard) is the voter who “sold” his ballot to Deadspin.

    In response, the BBWAA has permanently revoked his voting rights for any award, and suspended his media credentials for the 2014 season.

    Douche. Bag.

  283. Mike Felber Says:

    And now for my proof that peak means more than career value.

    http://www.baseball-reference.com/leaders/jaws_1B.shtml

    Fugghetibout ‘roids, just who would you take for the HOF. IF you differ with the career or peak assessments of players, say why.

    Now even without war year credit, you all got Greenberg & Sisler for the HOF, right? And though they have higher JAW (peak + career value) scores, as better than Murray & Palmiero, yes?

    Consistency is great & very important. But an indisputable measure of greatness is dominance for some years. If 2 guys create the same value over a career (booth excellent) would you not find the one who reached greater heights in a fundamental way a “better” player? Even if he may not have reached his potential as much as “Steady Eddie(s)”.

  284. Mike Felber Says:

    My 1st line was intended to say if career value is equal. Yet I would slightly prioritize peak value/1st amongst equals, at least when using a long period like 7 years, over career value.

  285. Raul Says:

    The way these sports writers are glorified on tv and propped up as having opinions that matter is ridiculous.

    What I mean is…sure, some writers deserve the reputation they had, to a degree.
    Say, a Peter Gammons or Dick Schaap.

    But there’s no reason for these goons like Dan Le Batard and the spider monkeys on Around the Horn to have the forum that they do.

  286. Lefty33 Says:

    @259- CNN, Bleacher Report and Turner Broadcasting are all owned by Time Warner.

  287. Raul Says:

    Came across this…

    If the Simpsons did “Homer at the Bat” with today’s players would you want to see in the episode and why?

    And the top response:

    C: During a tragic mishap while frosting the tips of his hair, the bleach drips into AJ Pierzynski’s eyes, blinding him
    1B: Prince Fielder keeps going back again and again for another helping at the all-you-can-eat Chinese Buffet
    2B: Dustin Pedroia is mistaken for a kindergartener, is ordered onto a school bus by an overbearing, no-nonsense female bus driver voiced by Wanda Sykes, and is unwillingly taken on a field trip to the box factory
    3B: Adrian Beltre goes to Washington State to finally marry Elvis Andrus already
    SS: Derek Jeter espies his own reflection while walking by a store window, and is found still standing there hours later, rubbing his chest while whispering “yeah, Jeetz”
    LF: Bryce Harper, mortified when a falcon descends and flies off with his brohawk toupee revealing him as prematurely bald, chases the falcon deep into the alkali flats where he becomes lost and is never heard from again
    CF: BJ Upton – cut
    RF: Hunter Pence gets inappropriately deeply involved in an intense game of paintball, and never realizes the game has ended and is lost in the forest kind of like a reverse Tropic Thunder
    P: Brian Wilson gets his beard caught in the paint spinner at Home Depot

  288. Bob Says:

    Vernon Wells was designated by the Yankees.

  289. Raul Says:

    Randy Johnson striking out 19 batters vs the Oakland Athletics in 1997.

    50 seconds in…the strikeout of Canseco. WOW. Rising fastball. That pitch was FILTHY.
    And the one at 3:30 of Bellhorn…my goodness.

    Randy is known mostly for his slider but his fastball was so effortless and just nasty.

    http://youtu.be/DE_cxvphwT8

  290. Raul Says:

    Another 19K vs the White Sox in 1997.

    You don’t have to watch this whole video.
    Just the first batter going down on that slider.

    Man, why even bother going to the plate after that?

    http://youtu.be/GwYyFajtvRg

  291. Mike Felber Says:

    Martinez was most dominant per IP over whole seasons in the modern age, though others occasionally wracked up more value through IP. Gooden had the best WAR for ages (bat helped a bit) for 1 year. Gibson, Koufax, Clemens, so many were doninant at their peak.

    WHO have you seen who given the same competition, would be most untouchable on their BEST day?

  292. Cameron Says:

    Out of pitchers I’ve seen from my era? Martinez. When he he was on, he was fucking untouchable.

  293. John Says:

    “while overlooking his comparably MEH years in Philly…so be it.”

    1997-1998 were both outstanding seasons for Schilling, given the context. 1992 was great, and 1996/1999 were pretty great even when considering that he missed a bunch of starts.

  294. John Says:

    @282, LeBatard let people who actually follow baseball, at least on occasion, judge.

    61% of voters thought that Jack Morris was an all-time great.

    They’re the douche bags. They’re the ones who should have their voting privileges revoked.

  295. John Says:

    @287. Holy shit.

    That was awesome.

    THat’s one of my all-time favorite episodes.

    “Good game, Strawberry – but I’m taking you out”
    “But coach – I have 9 home runs today!”

  296. Bob Says:

    Derek Holland is out for a while. Though it appears the Rangers will stand pat for now.

  297. Chuck Says:

    Watching him screw around with the Japanese media during Darvish’s first spring training a couple of years ago was hysterical.

  298. Bob Says:

    ARod. Any thoughts?????

  299. Cameron Says:

    Is he suspended with or without pay?

  300. Bob Says:

    I assume without for 2014.

  301. Chuck Says:

    Without pay…

  302. Bob Says:

    Thanks

  303. Chuck Says:

    http://espn.go.com/blog/new-york/yankees/post/_/id/68295/a-rod-statement-on-suspension#comments

    ARod’s statement. If he expects anyone to buy that, he’s got problems.

  304. Raul Says:

    Preposterous.
    Not because Alex didn’t juice. He probably did.
    But you can’t suspend a guy who never failed a test for an entire season.

    And Bud Selig, that spineless coward, refused to testify in the hearings.

    What a joke.
    I’m a Yankees fan and this saves them a lot of money, but the process is all wrong.

  305. Chuck Says:

    MLB doesn’t need a failed test..he’s an admitted user…so this is essentially strike two…add on the additional penalties for lying and trying to destroy evidence and bribing witnesses….

  306. Cameron Says:

    I think this is great for the Yankees in a “ignore the elephant in the room” way. Kelly Johnson was gonna hit better than A-Rod anyway, they save $27.5MM, and they can open up a roster spot for someone who can hit and/or field, something A-Rod can’t do anymore.

  307. Chuck Says:

    I’m waiting for the Steinbrenner’s or Randy Levine to show their manhood here…

    Ban him from Spring Training and the complex.

    No workouts, no using the cages, nothing. Revoke his access badge, his parking spot, everything.

    What a zoo that would be if they allow him to show up…

  308. Mike Felber Says:

    People did hate A-Rod unfairly before Raul. Much was envy or not liking his image. But his story has stunk from the start. Look at the comments underneath Chuck’s link, the 1st screen of them. Ross Day & others are correct there. Obstructing an investigation & the crimes Chuck alludes to are very serious.

  309. Cameron Says:

    So… Steven Seagal may run for Governor of Arizona. …And his chief endorsement is Maricopa County Sherrif Joe Apraio.

    That’s not a good endorsement if you, you know, have a soul.

  310. Raul Says:

    How can the Union put up with this?

    Bud Selig is Kennesaw Landis now? Just dictating who gets suspended regardless of the collective bargaining agreement in place?

    Shady as the A-Rod defense probably was, MLB did equally scandalous and shady shit in their investigation.

    MLB has this “overwhelming” case against Alex but it won’t release their files and Selig won’t testify? What are they hiding?

    Alex is being made into a scapegoat is what is happening here.
    If the MLB Union had any balls, they’d throw the CBA in the shredder, because this is bullshit.

    The only reason they won’t is because public opinion has come down so hard on the players that the players are willing to disregard due process and throw anyone suspected of PEDs into the bushes in order to distance themselves from the appearance that everyone is dirty — and the Union has to abide.

    Fuck MLB and this whole situation.

  311. John Says:

    It looks like Selig suspended him under the rather vague catch-all “a player’s actions are materially detrimental or materially prejudicial to the best interests of baseball” clause of the CBA.

    http://deadspin.com/a-rod-suspension-where-does-162-game-ban-come-from-1499361350

    I’ve gotta say, you really have to be a dick to make people root for A-Rod, but that’s what I find myself doing here.

  312. Cameron Says:

    I’m not rooting for Selig or A-Rod. This is the “everybody’s an asshole” situation.

  313. Chuck Says:

    MLB COO Rob Manfred will be on 60 Minutes tonight, explaining MLB’s evidence.

  314. Bob Says:

    John, you say you are rooting for ARod. What precisely are you rooting for?
    1. That his ban is reduced to 50 or 100 games?
    2. That it is overturned completely.
    3. That a court hears his case and says the CBA is fucked up?
    4. That Selig at least testify on baseballs behalf, despite the fact that he has not done that for any other player?

  315. Bob Says:

    News for Lefty

    http://articles.philly.com/2014-01-12/sports/46116366_1_phillies-deal-the-phillies-los-angeles-dodgers

  316. Raul Says:

    I’m hoping that Spineless Selig testifies.

    A-Rod failed no test. There shouldn’t be a suspension here.

    Just like Bonds never failed any test, so he wasn’t suspended.

    The way baseball gets back at A-Rod is the same way they got back at Bonds. They simply do not get into the Hall of Fame.

  317. Chuck Says:

    “I’m hoping that Spineless Selig testifies.”

    Do you also hope the spineless ARod testifies?

  318. Chuck Says:

    “A-Rod failed no test. There shouldn’t be a suspension here”

    He doesn’t need to fail a test…which has been said before..

    He’s an ADMITTED USER, test is irrelevant.

  319. Raul Says:

    Of course it is relevant.

    Does the collective bargaining agreement say anything about banning a player based on evidence from a shady doctor even though the player never failed any subsequent tests after the initial admission?

    Everything Bosch is saying might be true…but there’s no failed test.

  320. Bob Says:

    Jim Beam for Tanaka? http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/U/US_BEAM_ACQUISITION?SITE=AP&SECTION=HOME&TEMPLATE=DEFAULT&CTIME=2014-01-13-07-19-30

  321. Raul Says:

    Selig knew Bonds was juicing after Game of Shadows.
    Bonds never saw a suspension.

    Why? Because the commissioner doesn’t have carte blanche to ban guys.

    Sometimes people get away with it.
    You tip your hat and you revise the rules to catch them the next time.

    Sucks, but that’s the way it is.
    There are rules.

  322. Raul Says:

    Not that I’m on some conspiracy theory path here…

    But if the Yankees are under the 189 million dollar threshhold because of this Alex situation…they save something like 50 million in luxury taxes, right?

    Plus they don’t have to pay Alex’s 25 million dollar salary for 2014. Is that right?

    So if that’s true, this saves the Yankees 75 million dollars?
    That’s one hell of a motivation…I’m just saying.

  323. Raul Says:

    Wow.

    On baseball-reference’s page I saw In Memoriam: Gabe Gabler.

    He’s a nobody. Three plate appearances in 1958.

    But I read that as Gabe Kapler instead. My bad.

  324. Bob Says:

    Oh. I agree the Yankees were hoping for the 211 games. And if Selig and baseball wanted him gone forever, the Yanks would be happy. Do not have to believe in a conspiracy. Just common sense.

  325. Raul Says:

    Born today, former Cardinals pitcher Bob Forsch. Bob Forsch is 3rd all-time in wins by a Cardinals pitcher. And he and his brother Ken Forsch are the only brothers to have thrown a no hitter in the major leagues.

    Kevin Mitchell is 52. Not much to say here. Mitchell might actually make Albert Belle look like Mr. Rogers.

  326. Cameron Says:

    You’re comparing a major-league asshole to batshit crazy… Tough call.

  327. Chuck Says:

    “But I read that as Gabe Kapler instead”

    I did the exact same thing.

  328. Raul Says:

    Who will have a better 2014 season?
    Nolan Arenado or Ryan Zimmerman?

  329. Bob Says:

    The Reds signed Jeff Francis.

  330. Raul Says:

    To pitch in that ball park?

    Ouch.

  331. Bob Says:

    I’ll say Zimmerman

  332. Raul Says:

    Is Middlebrooks actually going to hit for you this year, Bob?

  333. Bob Says:

    Well if the Sox sign Drew, then Bogaerts plays third and Middlebrooks is either on the bench or traded. And if he does play, I suspect he will be serviceable, with decent power. Certainly looks like he will far short of becoming an elite talent. And if he is subpar, the Sox will be in a bind. Though once again I think he will be okay.
    The Sox lack of aggression on Drew seems to indicate they have faith in him. They got Napoli quickly, and got the draft pick for Ellsbury. They are content to let Drew wait at least for the time being.

  334. Cameron Says:

    @328 Much as I like Arenado and the Coors Effect is a thing… Zimmerman’s one of my baseball man-crushes, so Zim.

  335. Bob Says:

    On this note, see you guys tomorrow. http://espn.go.com/chicago/mlb/story/_/id/10288652/chicago-cubs-introduce-first-official-mascot-modern-history

  336. Chuck Says:

    “Well if the Sox sign Drew, then Bogaerts plays third and Middlebrooks is either on the bench or traded”

    No…If the Sox sign Drew, Middlebrooks plays third and Bogaerts gets an apartment in Pawtucket.

  337. Chuck Says:

    Raul…did you see the back page of the Post?

    “A-Hole”

    I called my Mom and asked her to send me a copy.

    I will be LOL’ing for weeks.

  338. Raul Says:

    I didn’t see the one that said A-Hole.

    I’m seeing online one that says A-Dios.

  339. Mike Felber Says:

    A sign of the Apocalypse, the Bash Brothers disagreeing! but at least you guys are clean.

    The question is whether they can ban players for cheating without a dirty test. While the nature of specific evidence needs to be considered, I believe they can. Thank God sports can, so long term/serial cheaters like Marion Jones & (also career & reputation ruiner) Lance Armstrong can be brought down, & others given a chance & at least retrospective place.

  340. Chuck Says:

    “I called my Mom and asked her to send me a copy”

    I think it was a internet fake….looked real to me….who knows…seems kind of extreme anyway…but it is the Post, can’t put anything past them.

  341. Chuck Says:

    ARod admitted to using, according to the CBA that equals a failed test.

    I heard on the radio this morning that ARod not only sued MLB but also the Player’s Union.

    I know he’s a gasbag, but I heard Curt Schilling on the radio the other day…someone asked what ARod’s legacy would be….”he doesn’t have one, he’ll live his live like Jose Canseco.”

    That’s not a strong endorsement…

    I want to forget this guy ever wore a Yankee uniform…talk about a black mark in history.

  342. Cameron Says:

    With A-Rod, you wonder when he started using. Seattle? Texas? Who was his first hook-up?

  343. Raul Says:

    Alex Rodriguez is worth hundreds of millions.
    He’s not living like Jose Canseco.

    I’ll tell you though, be careful who you scorn.
    MLB screwed Jose Canseco and be blew the top off with his steroid allegations.

  344. Bob Says:

    Perhaps that is the point. ARod cannot blow the top off om anyone since Canseco blew his wad. Or can he???

  345. Bob Says:

    Jim Burton RIP.http://www.baseball-reference.com/players/b/burtoji01.shtml

  346. Raul Says:

    Born today

    Wayne Gross. I mention Wayne Gross because he somehow managed an 11 year career with the Oakland Athletics from 1976 to 1986. But more than that, Gross was a 1977 All Star and I can’t understand why.

    Gross hit .233/.352/.416 in 1977.
    Okay, so maybe he had a great 1st half.
    Gross hit .235/.337/.431 in the 1st half. So that wasn’t it.

    It’s not like he started the All Star Game.
    George Brett was in the league.
    So was Graig Nettles.

    Gross did have 15 HR at the break, but that seems like a pretty weak reason to give a guy an ASG position considering he wasn’t very good at anything else.

    Anyway, the National League won 7-5. The game was in Yankee Stadium.

    Time of game: 2:34. I don’t even think the HR Derby is over that quickly these days.

    Check out the National League pitching reserves for that game:

    Joaquin Andujar
    John Candelaria
    Steve Carlton
    Goose Gossage
    Gary Lavelle
    Rick Reuschel
    Bruce Sutter

    Your starting pitchers were Don Sutton and Jim Palmer.

    Palmer allowed 3 HR in 2+ innings.
    A lead off homer to Morgan.
    A solo shot to Luzinski later in the 1st.
    And solo shot to Garvey to lead off the 3rd.

  347. Chuck Says:

    In his interview, Schilling said there were “clubhouse rumors” that Rodriguez was using steriods in high school, and that he’s used them his entire career.

    I don’t think ARod will be driving around with a goat in his car, but good luck getting invites to Old Timers Day and Alumni reunions.

    “I would like to say the allegations against me are true, and I fully accept the arbitration decison regarding my suspension. For the good of baseball and the Yankees, I will stay away from baseball, although I will continue to work out in preparation for the 2015 season. I want to thank the Player’s Association and my teammates for their continued support, and hope over time this situation will not define me as a player or person. Under advice from my attorney I will not issue any further statements on this subject and request you honor my desire to put this unfortunate situation behind me.”

    That would have been the right thing to say or do, but NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO, attention whore ARod decided it best for everyone to sue everyone.

    He just cut his throat, the fucking dumbass.

  348. Cameron Says:

    Well, considering he’s about the same size now as he was in high school… Maybe? I think if I had to guess a “for sure used by date” …2001? Everyone in Seattle was off the chain that year. When a guy like Brett Boone hits 37 homers out of nowhere, you start to think.

  349. Chuck Says:

    No, he’s about 30 pounds heavier…he was 190 when he signed, he’s in the 230 range now..easy.

  350. Cameron Says:

    He’s got more muscle, notably I think in the chest and arms, but I was talking his build. I always thought A-Rod kinda looked like he has freakishly broad shoulders and he was the same height too. The dude looked like a major leaguer as a senior in high school.

  351. Cameron Says:

    Fun Fact: The new Cubs mascot Clark is (fictionally) the great-grandson of Joa, the live bear used as a mascot for the Cubs in the 1900s.

  352. Chuck Says:

    I will give you that…he did max out physically pretty early.

  353. Bob Says:

    http://espn.go.com/mlb/story/_/id/10292727/bud-selig-remains-committed-retirement

  354. Bob Says:

    http://www.baltimoresun.com/sports/orioles/blog/bal-dylan-bundy-aiming-for-june-return-from-last-years-tommy-john-surgery-20140113,0,3499778.story

  355. Bob Says:

    http://online.wsj.com/public/resources/documents/ARODMLB01132014.pdf

  356. Chuck Says:

    Thanks Bob

  357. Raul Says:

    4 pages in, and everything stated in the lawsuit is true so far.

    Just saying.

  358. Chuck Says:

    There’s 77 pages…

  359. Chuck Says:

    Both his suits will get thrown out of court…he’s done.

    Tacopino is using ARod as an ATM machine now.

  360. Cameron Says:

    Dallas Braden retired today. Only 30 years old, his multiple shoulder surgeries have left his shoulder “a shredded mess” and doctors have deemed his left shoulder beyond repair.

    That said, I’m not too sad. He valued the time he had. From Braden: “That’s OK, I understood the odds I was facing. You have to face your mortality one day, and I have been so blessed in this game. If I take 10 minutes to be hacked off about it, it would be nine minutes too long. You can’t ask for more than I’ve been given, coming where my grandmother and I are coming from.”

    And more importantly… “I left my arm on the mound at the Coliseum, and I’m OK with that.” I don’t know. That just speaks to a guy’s character I think that he gave an all for a team and doesn’t have regrets for leaving early. Sorta the opposite of guys like Giambi who should’ve retired four years ago.

  361. Mike Felber Says:

    So many allegations of legal, ethical, confidentiality, witness intimidation & MLBPA improprieties in A-Rod’s arguments. They & the evidence of his drug related actions & cover ups sound convincing. Though a man can be very guilty that does not mean the ends justify the means…It is very hard to get at the truth here.

    130 points made by A-Rod’s team. The whole affair is sad.

  362. Raul Says:

    Braden’s character was revealed when he screamed at A-Rod to get off his mound.

    Dude is a jerk.

  363. Raul Says:

    Happy 45th birthday, Delino DeShields. DeShields played 13 years in the bigs and finished 2nd in the 1990 NL Rookie of the Year voting to David Justice. DeShields was the guy who was traded by the Expos for Pedro Martinez — a trade that really has to sting for the Dodgers. According to Wikipedia, DeShields was the manager for the Cincinnati Reds’ AA affiliate, the Pensacola Blue Wahoos last year.

    Happy 34th birthday, Matt Holliday. A career .311/.387/.531 hitter, Holliday is entering the downslope of his career. While his offensive numbers are impressive over his 10 years in the league, his defensive prowess is a black eye on his overall package as a player and could keep him out of any serious Hall of Fame discussions in the future.

    Happy 71st birthday, Mike Marshall. Marshall won the 1974 NL Cy Young Award with the Dodgers after posting a 15-12 record with a 2.42 ERA over 208.1 innings. I should mention he didn’t make a single start that year. Marshall is widely credited for encouraging Tommy John to get the surgery that would eventually bear his name.

  364. Chuck Says:

    29 days to pitchers and catchers, boys.

  365. Raul Says:

    A lot easier to wait through those 29 days when you’re in that Arizona heat.

    Come shiver with us in New York.
    Jerk.

    :)

  366. Chuck Says:

    Haha…touche’.

    Yep, can’t shovel sunshine.

  367. Bob Says:

    Raul, did you miss California this year? Or do the superior restaurants in NYC offset the weather?

  368. Raul Says:

    I only missed the California weather during the cold last week when most of the country saw temperatures in the single digits…some nights we were well below zero.

    Today it’s in the mid-40s here and this feels fine.

    As far as superior restaurants…I’m a poor child, Bob.
    I haven’t been taking too much advantage of the restaurants in NYC lately.
    But the short answer is…yes.

  369. Cameron Says:

    Chuck, I love you like the cranky old uncle we have to kick out early on Thanksgiving… But fuck off with your Arizona winter. I get lake effect, you get tan weather.

  370. Cameron Says:

    Pablo Sandoval lost about 42 pounds this winter. I remember another big weight loss he had either last winter or the year before. He’s gotta be looking normal about now.

  371. Raul Says:

    Easy Cam.

    Chuck does have those 115 degree summer days to deal with too.
    And I’ve heard that there are times when the heat gets so bad that it’s not even worth leaving the house until 7 or 8pm.

    All fair game to be jealous of his winters, though.

    Who has the better 2014 season? The Blue Jays or the Orioles?

  372. Raul Says:

    According to this, Pablo Sandoval denies he’s lost 42 pounds.

    http://www.mercurynews.com/giants/ci_24917547/giants-third-baseman-pablo-sandoval-denies-that-hes

    He does say he’s working on his weight, though.

  373. Cameron Says:

    Managed to find video of Jose Abreu taking BP at White Sox camp. I noticed a few things.

    1) Very smooth swing, not a lot of wasted movement. Keeps his hands up, slight hitch, and lets it rip.

    2) Tremendous bat speed. Pretty sure it caused the camera to blur.

    3) Holy crap are his arms huge. He doesn’t exactly have the big slugger body type of A-Rod or Bonds or Big Hurt with the barrel chest and broad shoulders, but it’s obvious he’s in very good shape and he is very, very strong.

  374. Cameron Says:

    Maybe not 42, but he’s looking better. I can see abs.

  375. Raul Says:

    Eh,

    I don’t know. I couldn’t tell much from the video on MLB that I saw.
    He looks like a big boy. He also looks like he strides to the ball a bit too eagerly.

    But I couldn’t judge anything off lazy swings in BP.

    Nobody has a more beautiful swing than Manny Ramirez did, though. I have a serious crush on that man’s mechanics. The most balanced guy in the batters box that I can remember.

  376. Cameron Says:

    It’s not a hundred percent effort, but I like it. Good stance and maybe the swing’s a bit long, but guys with long swings with good bat speed are having a good time of it as of late (Bautista, Davis). I can tell there’s a lot of strength in that bat though. Plus it wasn’t an ugly hack of a swing like Prince Fielder has when he tries to smack a homer. It’s not perfect, but I see that swing getting him lots of homers.

  377. Cameron Says:

    Clayton Kershaw gets 7/215 with an opt-out after the fifth year.

  378. Bob Says:

    I love this for the Dodgers.

  379. Mike Felber Says:

    Most balanced swing, most unbalanced Man (Ram).

  380. Cameron Says:

    That gets Kershaw from ages 25 to 30 guaranteed, 32 if he doesn’t opt out. I know that’s a lot of money, but if any pitcher in the world would live up to that contract, it’s Kershaw. Then again, with how he’s played since he’s come up, he could live up to A-Rod’s contract.

  381. Chuck Says:

    Sandoval lost 40 something pounds last off-season, then gained it back in a month.

    The knock on Abreu is his slow bat and his obvious lack of any defensive ability. He won’t make it.

    In a couple of years he’ll be playing in Japan.

    Don’t complain about where you live..you can move, you know, your ass ain’t nailed to the street.

  382. Raul Says:

    215 million for a pitcher????

    Wow.

  383. Cameron Says:

    215 for a 25 year old with two Cy Youngs, posted a sub-2 ERA last year and a career 2.60 ERA, and brings high 90s heat from the left side with a hammer curve.

  384. Bob Says:

    The Rangers signed Raul Ibanez.

  385. Mike Felber Says:

    i love where I live. Midtown West near so much, about to go to a 42nd Street theater’s live simulcast of a downtown play, found free tix offer, bringing f(r)iends also!

  386. Cameron Says:

    The fact a guy like you went to 42nd Street proves they scrubbed 42nd Street WAY too clean. =P

  387. Chuck Says:

    “No whites after dark”

    That was 42nd street 35 years ago.

    Harlem was worse.

  388. John Says:

    “I want to forget this guy ever wore a Yankee uniform…talk about a black mark in history.”

    Ergo, you want to forget the 2009 World Championship. Can’t have one without the other.

    He also personally carried the ‘05 and ‘07 teams, essentially by himself, while playing at an elite level for about his first 6 years in a Yankee uniform.

  389. John Says:

    “ARod admitted to using, according to the CBA that equals a failed test.”

    In which case, he would be suspended for 50 games.

    He was suspended for 162. Because, reasons.

  390. Cameron Says:

    @387 Also home of the best grindhouse cinemas in America and hotels that charge by the hour. …Not too different from where I live now.

  391. John Says:

    I’m not going to say that I “like” any record-setting deal, because it is, by definition, unprecedented.

    There is no pitcher you could justify this contract to except Kershaw, who is 25 and coming off 2 (what easily could have been 3) Cy Young awards since 2011 and 3 straight ERA titles.

    What is Kershaw going to do with his age 26-32 seasons?

    His #2 similarity through age-25 is Tom Seaver. #3 is Jim Palmer. #6 is Pedro Martinez and #8 is Roger Clemens.

    Nobody’s going to complain if the next 5-7 years (remember, he has an opt-out after age-30) resembles any of those guys’ age 26-32 seasons.

    If he gets hurt? Different story…

  392. Mike Felber Says:

    A well placed jibe is great Cam, it just does not remotely apply here. “Cause I use some fancy words I must be a fop/delicate? I was a social worker & traveled on my own too all over NYC, walking in rough areas through the boroughs at late hours, for decades. I freegan year round. When a in HS (graduated ‘83) a friend took me into a different Times Square, the porno, booths & live sex shows at Legendary Show World-the areawas dramatically different then, cleaned up in ’90’s. Always walk through there, just came from it, & the pedestrian mall there is a great thing, more areas closed off to cars. DeBlasio will get rif of horse carriage rides within the year BTW…

  393. Cameron Says:

    If he gets hurt, yeah… But he’s got perfect mechanics on top of his stuff. He’s not an injury waiting to happen. I know he’s a pitcher and shit happens to pitchers, but he’s safer than most.

  394. Cameron Says:

    Wasn’t a jab at you necessarily Mike. More a jab at the gentrification of New York. 42nd Street is a place where you went to watch a James Glickenhaus flick, pick up a hooker on the way out, head to a cheap hotel and when they ask if you want the sheets, you can tell them that you just heard that line in the movie you watched.

    …You went to a simulcast of a play. That’s 42nd Street now. People who watch plays go to the Laura Pels or the Black Box, not a 42nd Street movie theater.

  395. Raul Says:

    Mike Trout is eligible for arbitration next year.
    And full out Free Agency in 2018 – when he’ll be 26.

    At the rate he’s going, if he goes on the market you can book it right now…270 million.

  396. Raul Says:

    Trout is arguably the best player in the game now.
    #2 is probably Miguel Cabrera.
    Is #3 Andrew McCutchen?

  397. Raul Says:

    What’s the good word with Oscar Taveras? Is he the starting CFer by June?

    Over/Under 25 HR for Wil Myers in 2013?

    Chuck, you know anything about this Gregory Polanco kid with the Pirates?

    How does Miguel Sano project? Somehow I think of Alfonso Soriano. Am I wrong?

    Jameson Taillon has 382 minor league innings under his belt. How much longer are the Pirates going to keep him under wraps?

    Will Shelby Miller be the Cardinals’ best pitcher in 2014?

    How does a healthy Michael Pineda impact the Yankees expectations for 2014, if at all?

  398. Cameron Says:

    @397

    1) I think the plan for the future with Taveras is RF. They traded for Bourjos because he’s a better fielder than Jon Jay and Taveras is a worse fielder than Jay. He has a cannon of an arm though.

    2) …Can I take a split? I think anywhere between 23-28 with him.

    3) I don’t know about him, so yeah, Chuck.

    4) If you mean a .270 hitter with 30 homer upside, yeah. But the difference is Sano can take a fucking walk (and by that I mean, OBP is usually about 80 points higher than his BA, that’s a grat sign of plate discipline). Future looks like third base for now.

    5) I think midseason this year.

    6) I think the best pitcher the Cards will have is Michael Wacha. Miller has great stuff and I love him, but Wacha can be flat-out unhittable. Miller’s probably #3 behind Wacha and Waino.

    7) #3 starter at best unless CC utterly implodes or Kurdoa starts pitching his age. …Then you’re fucked if that’s the case.

  399. Bob Says:

    Taillon was invited to the big league camp, so he could break camp with them come April. If not, by June 1st.

    Over with Myers, though he really needs to reduce his soda intake. I will go with Wacha myself.

    If Pineda is healthy and pitching well come July, then the Yanks will just have fewer needs come late July. I am guessing they end up with one of
    1. Tanaka
    2. Garza
    3. Santana
    4. Jimenez

  400. Bob Says:

    http://espn.go.com/new-york/mlb/story/_/id/10302554/alex-rodriguez-new-york-yankees-speaks-media-first-season-long-suspension

  401. Raul Says:

    That should have said 2014 regaring Wil Myers…

  402. Raul Says:

    *Regarding.
    Damn typos all day today.

    Which Santana, Bob?

  403. Bob Says:

    Ervin. Sorry.

  404. Raul Says:

    Alex should stop talking.

    Happy 57th birthday, Steve Balboni. Quite possibly the most New York name ever. And he’s from Massachusetts.

    Happy 28th birthday, Mark Trumbo. Trumbo is one of those all-or-nothing guys who could be out of the league in 2 years. That reminds me……how bad is that Adam Dunn contract?

    Happy 44th birthday, Ron Villone. Villone should be your hero. The man spent 15 years in the Major Leagues and his ERA is 4.73. The man earned close to 12 million dollars. Any one of you would give a finger to have been him. Villone is now a pitching coach for one of the Chicago Cubs’ minor league affiliates.

    Happy 48th birthday, Jack McDowell. Who could forget that time Jack McDowell flipped the bird at Yankees fans? I loved it. McDowell won the 1993 AL Cy Young award going 22-10 with a 3.37 ERA, 10 complete games and 4 shutouts. Realistically Randy Johnson or Kevin Appier deserved it more, but it was still a hell of a season and the White Sox won the division.

    Happy 34th birthday, Albert Pujols. What is there to say? He’s already been a Hall of Famer for like 4 years even though he’s not close to retirement. His time with the Angels has been a relative disappointment but there is optimism that Pujols can regain some of the old glory as it seems his health issues are behind him.

  405. Bob Says:

    The Blue Jays signed Chris Getz. Awesome

  406. Raul Says:

    Jose Reyes has 111 career triples.
    Last season was the first season where he had none.

  407. Raul Says:

    Don’t be so quick to completely give up on RA Dickey.

    In the 2nd half, he posted a 6-3 record with a 3.56 ERA over 96 innings and his K/BB ratio (I’m sure John is a fan of that) increased from 1.96 to 3.54.

  408. Cameron Says:

    Ah yes, Bye-Bye Balboni. The Royals single-season home run record holder. …With 36. I’m pretty sure that’s gotta be a low for a team.

  409. Raul Says:

    Taken from some Yahoo.com post…

    AL East

    Baltimore Orioles: Brady Anderson, 50, 1996

    Boston Red Sox: David Ortiz, 54, 2006

    New York Yankees: Roger Maris, 61, 1961

    Tampa Bay Rays: Carlos Pena, 46, 2007

    Toronto Blue Jays: Jose Bautista, 54, 2010

    AL Central

    Chicago White Sox: Albert Belle, 49, 1998

    Cleveland Indians: Jim Thome, 52, 2002

    Detroit Tigers: Hank Greenberg, 58, 1938

    Kansas City Royals: Steve Balboni, 36, 1985

    Minnesota Twins: Harmon Killebrew, 49, 2x (1964, 1969)

    AL West

    Los Angeles Angels: Troy Glaus, 47, 2000

    Oakland Athletics: Jimmie Foxx, 58, 1932

    Seattle Mariners: Ken Griffey, Jr., 56, 2x (1997, 1998)

    Texas Rangers: Alex Rodriguez, 57, 2002

    NL East

    Atlanta Braves: Andruw Jones, 51, 2005

    Miami Marlins: Gary Sheffield, 42, 1996

    New York Mets: Carlos Beltran, 41, 2006, Todd Hundley, 41, 1996

    Philadelphia Phillies: Ryan Howard, 58, 2006

    Washington Nationals: Alfonso Soriano, 46, 2006

    NL Central

    Chicago Cubs: Sammy Sosa, 66, 1998

    Cincinnati Reds: George Foster, 52, 1977

    Houston Astros: Jeff Bagwell, 47, 2000

    Milwaukee Brewers: Prince Fielder, 50, 2007

    Pittsburgh Pirates: Ralph Kiner, 54, 1949

    St. Louis Cardinals: Mark McGwire, 70, 1998

    NL West

    Arizona Diamondbacks: Luis Gonzalez, 57, 2001

    Colorado Rockies: Todd Helton, 49, 2001, Larry Walker, 49, 1997

    Los Angeles Dodgers: Shawn Green, 49, 2001

    San Diego Padres: Greg Vaughn, 50, 1998

    San Francisco Giants: Barry Bonds, 73, 2001

  410. Raul Says:

    To update that list…

    Chris Davis hit 53 HR in 2013, so he is the new leader for Baltimore.

  411. Chuck Says:

    RIP Russell Johnson…the last surviving male lead character from Gilligan’s Island.

  412. Cameron Says:

    Son of a bitch, everyone else has at least 40…

  413. Mike Felber Says:

    I did not mind Cam, it is just your making me the gentrifier-type had no basis on reality. There is some truth to what you say about Ye Olde NYC, but you appear to have only heard about it, never lived in NYC, I grew up in LI & lived in NYC since the ’60’s. Big difference between reading & hearing about something & experiencing it 1st hand for decades. NYC had improved dramatically by the time you were born or still a toddler.

    The simulcast was innovative, an unfinished Chekhov play, & it is still possible to surf/sneak into other movies afterwards.

    Bizarre:
    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/01/16/coach-sues-player_n_4610111.html?1389894785&ncid=webmail6

  414. Mike Felber Says:

    Correction: meant to type I lived in NYC since the ’80’s.

  415. Cameron Says:

    The travel itinerary for the most insane road trip ever. http://www.sportsonearth.com/article/66735520/30-mlb-stadiums-in-30-days

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