• 2013 Play-In & Play-Off Predictions

    Posted by on September 30th, 2013 · Comments (20)

    Rays over the Rangers.
    Indians over the Rays.
    Red Sox over the Indians.
    A’s over the Tigers.
    Red Sox over the A’s.

    Pirates over the Reds.
    Cardinals over the Pirates.
    Dodgers over the Braves.
    Dodgers over the Cardinals.

    Dodgers over the Red Sox.

    Don Mattingly is the new Joe Torre.

    Hey, Joe, The Cubs Job Is Open Now…

    Posted by on September 30th, 2013 · Comments (2)

    If I am Joe Girardi, I look at the Yankees front office, the Cubs front office, the age on the Yankees roster, and the prospects in the farm systems for both teams…and then I run to Chicago as fast as I can…

    Once Again, Cashman Dodges Blame Bullet

    Posted by on September 30th, 2013 · Comments (6)

    Via Joel Sherman -

    At the highest levels of the organization, there has been frustration and anger about the lack of young talent available this season as injuries mounted. The Yankees used a team-record 56 players, none you can call a high-end prospect — and there appears to be none on the horizon.

    Within the industry there is a sense there will be a scapegoat or two for that, and that it will not be Girardi or GM Brian Cashman, who has a year left on his pact. Instead, two longtime organizational employees are perceived as most in peril: Damon Oppenheimer, who is in charge of the draft, and Mark Newman, who is in charge of development.

    The Yankees, for all the caricatures of George Steinbrenner’s firing squad, have been mainly an insular group. Will the lack of young talent motivate them to try to reach into an organization that drafts and develops well — such as the Cardinals — to make a significant hire or two to restructure how this business is done?

    Damon Oppenheimer is a waste. But, shouldn’t the guy who makes the final call on these things also be held accountable too?

    Game 163

    Posted by on September 30th, 2013 · Comments (1)

    Tribe in as Rays, Rangers head to tiebreaker.

    As a baseball fan, this is fun, right?

    Somerset Patriots Force Atlantic League Championship Series Game 5

    Posted by on September 29th, 2013 · Comments (5)

    My 9-year son and I were there for Game 4 and it was a blast!

    Game 3 on Friday went 10 innings and Game 4 on Saturday was 16 innings.

    It’s going to be interesting to see what these pitching staffs have left for the winner take all today (Sunday).

    Larry Beinfest

    Posted by on September 29th, 2013 · Comments (4)

    Somebody is going to get him – and, he’s a good GM.

    Yes, The Yankees Will NOT Lose 80 Games This Year!

    Posted by on September 27th, 2013 · Comments (3)

    Yeah, that’s what it’s come down to, at this point…

    I Don’t Think The ‘Stros Are Sweating It

    Posted by on September 27th, 2013 · Comments (2)

    A-Rod Makes An Early Exit

    Posted by on September 26th, 2013 · Comments (5)

    Alex Rodriguez gets OK from Yankees to skip final road trip to Houston to prep for his arbitration hearing.

    What a douche.

    Carlos Gomez Is Not Making Any Friends

    Posted by on September 26th, 2013 · Comments (5)

    Brian McCann just made me a fan.

    Cano Wants 10-Year, $305 Million Deal

    Posted by on September 26th, 2013 · Comments (10)

    Yeah.

    Good luck with that.

    Phil Hughes Sets A Yankees Record!

    Posted by on September 25th, 2013 · Comments (8)

    Tonight was Hughes’ 14th start this season in which he lasted fewer than five innings, the most of any Yankees pitcher in a season since 1916.

    Yanks Have Even Less To Spend Next Year?

    Posted by on September 25th, 2013 · Comments (52)

    Via Joel Sherman -

    Understand something about the $189 million luxury-tax threshold for next season. It isn’t really $189 million.

    Each team is charged roughly $11 million for items such as insurance and pension. Thus, if the Yankees are going to get under — and I believe they are determined to do so — then they can pay their players about $178 million.

    But wait. It isn’t like they could just get to $177.9 million in the offseason. They need to create spare money for promotions, potential bonuses reached and obtaining players via trade. Let’s make that a conservative $8 million.

    OK, now we are talking about the Yanks having approximately $170 million for players next season. Assuming Derek Jeter picks up his option and Alex Rodriguez’s suspension is upheld, the Yanks would have six players signed for next season — Jeter, CC Sabathia, Mark Teixeira, Alfonso Soriano, Ichiro Suzuki and Vernon Wells. For luxury-tax purposes, that crew costs roughly $68.5 million.

    That would leave a little more than $100 million to spend, and you can subtract about another $14million-$16 million to reach agreement with the arbitration-eligible Brett Gardner, David Robertson, Ivan Nova, Shawn Kelley and Francisco Cervelli. We can assume another $3-$4 million for five or six non-arbitration players such as David Phelps and Adam Warren.

    That will leave around $80 million, and a good deal of that will be earmarked for Robinson Cano, Curtis Granderson, Hiroki Kuroda — or their replacements.

    You can see how quickly the money goes and why the Yanks are pretty much desperate for A-Rod’s suspension to be upheld and his $27.5 million to go away from their ledger.

    It means the Yanks are going to have to count pennies elsewhere in trying to still have a deep/contending roster with the $189 million constraints.

    I really hope the Yankees do find a way to get Brendan Ryan to return in 2014. They’re going to need a shortstop. I have no faith in Jeter’s ability to man that position – either well or for a prolonged period. And, I can live with no stick when it’s a glove like Ryan.

    Rk Player dWAR From To Age G
    1 Brendan Ryan 13.7 2009 2013 27-31 631
    2 Clint Barmes 9.9 2009 2013 30-34 659
    3 Alexei Ramirez 8.8 2009 2013 27-31 774
    4 Yunel Escobar 8.2 2009 2013 26-30 703
    5 Andrelton Simmons 7.8 2012 2013 22-23 201
    6 Troy Tulowitzki 7.6 2009 2013 24-28 585
    7 Elvis Andrus 7.5 2009 2013 20-24 751
    8 J.J. Hardy 7.0 2009 2013 26-30 657
    9 Jack Wilson 5.5 2009 2012 31-34 286
    10 Alcides Escobar 5.4 2009 2013 22-26 651
    Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Play Index Tool Used
    Generated 9/25/2013.

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    Those Inside The Moat Had Mo Bobble Heads Hand Delivered

    Posted by on September 25th, 2013 · Comments (6)

    Via CBS

    Thousands of Yankees fans were angered Tuesday night when a late shipment of Mariano Rivera bobbleheads led to confusion and long, long lines to redeem vouchers for the tardy giveaway.

    “There’s a lot of mayhem, people cutting in line, aggravation,” fan Lou Licameli told WCBS 880. “It’s ridiculous. And we’re sitting here missing the majority of the game, which we bought our tickets to see. The way they handled this, someone’s head should roll over it.”

    But some reportedly didn’t have to miss a single pitch. Witnesses told the New York Post that fans “in the priciest seats” had their Mo bobbleheads hand-delivered by Yankee Stadium employees.

    Am I shocked by this? Not at all.

    Houston, You Have A Problem

    Posted by on September 25th, 2013 · Comments (0)

    Via CBS -

    The Houston Astros keep breaking records for the wrong reasons.

    This past Sunday according to Nielson ratings, the Astros and Indians game drew a rating of 0.0 in the greater Houston area.

    ZERO-POINT-ZERO

    The Houston Chronicle explains that it doesn’t necessarily mean that there wasn’t one person who tuned in, it just means that not a single, solitary Nielsen household tuned in to watch the Astros.

    “There are a couple of asterisks involved here, of course,” the Houston Chronicle explained. “For one thing, Nielsen persists with the statistically supportable but still head-shaking concept that it can measure what millions of television viewers are watching by monitoring the behavior of hundreds.”

    Hey, there’s no where to go but up from there, right?

    Happy Birthday Scooter

    Posted by on September 25th, 2013 · Comments (2)

    Life On Earth Likely To End In 2.25 Billion Years

    Posted by on September 25th, 2013 · Comments (0)

    Hopefully, the Yankees will fire Brian Cashman before it happens.

    Yanks 5 Back In Wildcard With 5 To Play

    Posted by on September 24th, 2013 · Comments (71)

    When does next season start?

    If Watching The Yankees Mail It In Tonight Wasn’t Enough…

    Posted by on September 24th, 2013 · Comments (7)

    Leave it to the Yankees to screw up something as simple as a bobble head giveaway.

    Via the Daily News

    Exit Sandman, enter chaos.

    Those coming to Yankee Stadium usually must sit through several innings to see if Mariano Rivera will pitch, but fans also had to wait a few extra hours and withstand chaotically long lines Tuesday night to receive a bobblehead doll of baseball’s retiring all-time saves leader.

    Rivera was feted with a lavish retirement ceremony Sunday, including Metallica performing the 13-time All-Star’s signature song, “Enter Sandman.” The celebration was to continue Tuesday with the first 18,000 fans in attendance at the Yanks’ game against Tampa Bay slated to receive a commemorative Rivera bobblehead doll.

    But the giveaways hadn’t arrived at the Stadium when the gates were slated to open at 5 p.m., as thousands of fans queued up outside.

    The gates opened more than 30 minutes later than usual, and the Yankees handed out vouchers instead.

    An announcement was made during the middle of the third inning that vouchers could be redeemed from that point until 30 minutes after the game.

    Lines formed immediately and stretched from beyond the right-field foul pole to third base on the main level, then up a ramp to another level and back down to the first level, as some fans waited several innings to scoop up their collectible figurines. Deborah Tymon, the Yankees’ Sr. VP of Marketing, said the shipment arrived shortly after 6 p.m., adding “everyone with a voucher will be receiving a bobblehead tonight.”

    Good Luck Joe

    Posted by on September 24th, 2013 · Comments (1)

    Via CBS

    He sacrificed his job for his baseball team. Joseph Neubauer was fired from his position because he didn’t want to mess up an attendance streak at Yankee Stadium.

    Neubauer has been rooting for the Bronx Bombers since he was 10-years-old and hasn’t missed a home game since the 1970s, CBS 2′s Jessica Schneider reported.

    His loyalty is admirable but it recently got him fired from his job at the Taxi and Limousine Commission, a position that he has held for nearly three decades.

    “I was working for the city for 27-and-a-half years until I got terminated on July 31, 2013,” Neubauer said.

    The trouble stemmed from a game on September 19, 2012.

    The Yankees were rained out the night before and rescheduled for the next day. Neubauer refused to break his 38-year tradition and took a day off from work without permission.

    “I feel like I regretted it in a way. I just want to try to come back,” he said.

    Officials at the Taxi and Limousine Commission say it wasn’t the first time Neubauer had gone AWOL.

    A Judge suspended him for 60-days without pay in 2011 for going to Pheonix for the All-Star game even though his vacation request had been denied.

    A year prior to that Neubaur had been suspended for 25 days after calling out sick for 13 Yankee games. Despite his problems in the past, Neubauer said he just wants his job back.

    “I’m hoping to go back to work,” he said.

    Now, he’s appealing his termination.

    Neubaur was also previously disciplined for other problems at work including improperly accessing DMV records.

    Something tells me that Joe doesn’t have Corinthians 13:11 tattooed on his forearm…

    The Perfect Inning

    Posted by on September 24th, 2013 · Comments (0)

    B&C To YES?

    Posted by on September 24th, 2013 · Comments (0)

    Via Bob R the other day –

    Norman Julius Esiason and Craig Carton could be on the verge of leaving the Madison Square Garden Network and heading for the Yankees Entertainment & Sports Network, according to industry sources.

    The Daily News has learned YES suits have made an offer that, if accepted, would bring WFAN’s simulcast of “The “Boomer and Carton” morning drive-time show to the pinstripe network.

    Esiason/Carton’s MSG contract expires in the middle of this month. Traditionally, the incumbent network, in this case MSG, has an exclusive negotiating period, but that window has expired.

    This has allowed YES, which already airs the simulcast of Mike (Sports Pope) Francesa’s WFAN afternoon drive show, to begin negotiations to acquire rights to Esiason/Carton’s FAN simulcast. YES did make a competitive bid, a TV mole said.

    MSG now has the right to match YES’ offer if it wants to keep “The Boomer and Carton Show.”

    MSG brass now has a big decision to make. Stepping back, and looking at this situation on a number of levels, it would be stunning if MSG declines to keep Esiason/Carton on its network.

    The only impediment would be if YES has offered CBS, WFAN’s parent company, outrageously stupid money for the simulcast rights. Then again, when it comes to getting what he wants, price is usually not an object for James (Guitar Jimmy) Dolan.

    So if matching YES’ offer is not cost prohibitive for Dolan and Co., then the Garden has a number of solid reasons to retain the rights to “The Boomer and Carton Show.”

    If this happens, I wonder if B&C will continue to be so pro-Mets? In any event, it beats airing infomercials about male sexual performance.

    Nicole Beharie

    Posted by on September 24th, 2013 · Comments (1)

    She caught my attention in 42. But, now, she really has my attention in Sleepy Hollow.

    She’s a star in the making. Magneto is a lucky dude, too.

    Is Josh Donaldson The 2013 A.L. MVP?

    Posted by on September 24th, 2013 · Comments (0)

    Hey, he was once traded for Chad Gaudin! (Sorta/Kinda)

    And, yes, the Yankees passed on him in the draft so that they could take Andrew Brackman.

    Dude gets it, too.

    Players With 2+ Career 5+ BB Games

    Posted by on September 24th, 2013 · Comments (0)

    Since 1916:

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    Can anyone catch Master Melvin?

    Signal Fan

    Posted by on September 24th, 2013 · Comments (3)

    Via pressofatlanticcity.com:

    With 9 minutes, 31 seconds left in the first quarter of the Philadelphia Eagles’ opener at Washington earlier this month, quarterback Michael Vick glanced over to the sideline to get the next play.

    While coach Chip Kelly spoke into Vick’s headset, assistant R.J. Harvey fanned out a series of colored blades and held them up for Vick and center Jason Kelce to see.

    Jill Cakert’s phone buzzed and she read a text message from her nephew, Jonathan Cakert, that read, “Signalfan in play.”

    The Ventnor native looked up at her TV, saw the Eagles’ coach brandishing her invention, and screamed.

    “We had some people over watching the game with us and when we all saw it, we started hugging and crying,” Cakert said in a phone interview. “It was crazy. I’ve never been so happy. I’m still riding the high.”

    Hours earlier, Cakert had been crying for a different reason.

    Earlier that morning, the Atlantic City High School graduate had attended the funeral and burial of her mother, Edith Sherman, who passed away Sept. 7 at age 92.

    Later that evening, physically and emotionally exhausted, she returned to her Ventnor home, sank onto her couch with her son, Doug, husband, Buck, and other family and friends, and turned on the Eagles’ game against the Redskins.

    “I was supposed to be at FedEx Field with my cousin (Jonathan), but obviously I couldn’t go to the game,” Doug Cakert said in a phone interview. “He was sitting up in the cheap seats and noticed that they were using my mom’s Signalfan. That’s when he sent the text.

    “We’re not a real emotional family. But when it was shown on TV, we all started screaming. We needed something like that after such a difficult day.”

    Jill Cakert invented the Signalfan in 2007. A former standout softball player for Atlantic City and Temple University, she was looking for a way to make it easier for batters to see signals from the third-base coach.

    She created a device that features six 11-inch blades, which are colored black, blue, green, red, white and yellow. The blades are held together with a screw and unfold like a fan. Baseball and softball coaches could use various combinations of blades to signify different plays such as bunts and steals.

    Over the years, it became popular among field hockey and softball coaches. She even sold one to a high school football coach in Texas.

    She sent one to Kelly on Aug. 27 after noticing the new Eagles coach was using giant placards with pictures of things like cheesesteaks, Rocky and the Liberty Bell to send signals from the sideline.

    If I ever saw this used in a baseball game, I would puke. That said, I suspect, in the near future, baseball batters and runners will be wearing wrist bands that receive visual signals/instructions from the coaches and/or managers – eliminating the need for signals from the base coaches. Pitchers and catchers? There, it will take longer for them to break away from the tradition and current signal system.

    Best Seasons With 189+ Strikeouts

    Posted by on September 23rd, 2013 · Comments (12)

    Looks like Crush may be the best of all-time.

    Rk Player WAR/pos SO Year Age Tm G PA R H 2B HR RBI BB SB BA OBP SLG
    1 Chris Davis 6.1 193 2013 27 BAL 154 651 101 162 41 51 134 68 4 .286 .369 .633
    2 Bobby Bonds 5.2 189 1970 24 SFG 157 745 134 200 36 26 78 77 48 .302 .375 .504
    3 Adam Dunn 4.6 195 2004 24 CIN 161 681 105 151 34 46 102 108 6 .266 .388 .569
    4 Mark Reynolds 3.3 223 2009 25 ARI 155 662 98 150 30 44 102 76 24 .260 .349 .543
    5 Curtis Granderson 3.0 195 2012 31 NYY 160 684 102 138 18 43 106 75 10 .232 .319 .492
    6 Ryan Howard 2.9 199 2007 27 PHI 144 648 94 142 26 47 136 107 1 .268 .392 .584
    7 Danny Espinosa 2.6 189 2012 25 WSN 160 658 82 147 37 17 56 46 20 .247 .315 .402
    8 Jack Cust 2.6 197 2008 29 OAK 148 598 77 111 19 33 77 111 0 .231 .375 .476
    9 Adam Dunn 2.5 199 2010 30 WSN 158 648 85 145 36 38 103 77 0 .260 .356 .536
    10 Drew Stubbs 1.9 205 2011 26 CIN 158 681 92 147 22 15 44 63 40 .243 .321 .364
    11 Ryan Howard 1.7 199 2008 28 PHI 162 700 105 153 26 48 146 81 1 .251 .339 .543
    12 Adam Dunn 1.3 222 2012 32 CHW 151 649 87 110 19 41 96 105 2 .204 .333 .468
    13 Mark Reynolds 0.9 196 2011 27 BAL 155 620 84 118 27 37 86 75 6 .221 .323 .483
    14 Chris Carter 0.7 204 2013 26 HOU 142 562 62 110 24 29 79 68 2 .226 .324 .463
    15 Mark Reynolds 0.5 204 2008 24 ARI 152 613 87 129 28 28 97 64 11 .239 .320 .458
    16 Mark Reynolds 0.4 211 2010 26 ARI 145 596 79 99 17 32 85 83 7 .198 .320 .433
    17 Adam Dunn 0.4 194 2006 26 CIN 160 683 99 131 24 40 92 112 7 .234 .365 .490
    Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Play Index Tool Used
    Generated 9/23/2013.

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    And, The Winner Is…

    Posted by on September 23rd, 2013 · Comments (1)

    …the Cleveland Plain Dealer. For the longest and stupidest headline of the year:

    Nick Swisher matches his usual numbers to his unusual optimism in an Indians’ season trending toward an amazing result

    Poor Manny Machado

    Posted by on September 23rd, 2013 · Comments (1)

    This is going to leave a mark.

    See Ya, CC

    Posted by on September 23rd, 2013 · Comments (3)

    Not that it matters much, at this point. Via the Ledger -

    The worst season of CC Sabathia’s storied career is over.

    The Yankees announced Sabathia would not pitch again this season after straining his hamstring in his start on Friday. It was a Grade-2 strain, which calls for eight weeks of recovery time.

    So even as the Yankees cling to their last bit of life in the Wild Card race, they’ll have to play without their highest-paid pitcher.

    Sabathia, 33, went 14-13 with a 4.78 ERA this season. He gave up 112 earned runs, the most in the American League. He allowed a career-high 28 home runs, six more than he ever had before in a season.

    Gene Monahan was smart to retire when he did…

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