Blog Archives

The Royals Or O’s Winning The Title Would Be Good And Bad: MLB Payrolls Part 2

Kauffman Stadium was newly renovated about 5 years ago.  It is a nice visual display of a ballpark, however it is far being in the top venues in the Majors for earning money.  The Royals fans saw the club struggle to finally end a 3 decade long playoff drought this year.  It is imperative that the MLB work with 'cost control' in the upcoming 'Collective Bargaining Agreement. Both KC and Baltimore had to endure lengthy stints of losing campaigns, before compiling enough top level draft picks to compete in their respective divisions.  Hopefully other small to mid market teams will not have to be bad for that amount of time in the future to obtain success finally.

Kauffman Stadium was newly renovated about 5 years ago. It is a nice visual display of a ballpark, however it is far being in the top venues in the Majors for earning money. The Royals fans saw the club struggle to finally end a 3 decade long playoff drought this year. It is imperative that the MLB work with ‘cost control’ in the upcoming ‘Collective Bargaining Agreement. Both KC and Baltimore had to endure lengthy stints of losing campaigns, before compiling enough top-level draft picks to compete in their respective divisions. Hopefully other small to mid market teams will not have to be bad for that amount of time in the future to obtain success finally.

Yesterday I addressed the Dodgers potentially winning the World Series in the next few years while bringing more attention to the inequities of the big and small market clubs. 

Even with LAD losing today and being eliminated, it doesn’t change the fact they will be playoff contenders for years to come based on their talent level, and super imposed revenue stream to outspend every team in the National League.

I identified the last several lower revenue teams that have had success, and pointed out that it took them big stretches of poor campaigns in order to collect on some good.

This is the biggest reason why baseball needs to adopt a salary cap – in order to leveling off the field.

Kansas City and Baltimore are perfect examples of this.  The narrative is great here  Franchises that haven’t appeared in the Fall Classic since 1985 and 1983 respectively, when both organization won their last Titles.

The Royals 29 years since that has been tough to stomach.  The later George Brett years, the core from the championship had aged or moved on by the time he hung up the cleats.

After the 1994 strike/1995 lockout, the Royals found themselves at the bottom of the division for years. Read the rest of this entry

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Ichiro Suzuki Is Closer To Setting The ALL-Time Professional Hits Record: Provided He Keeps Playing

Ichiro Suzuki fashioned 10 straight 200 hit campaigns to start his career, tying Pete Rose for the most 200 Hit season ALL-Time, and setting the most consecutive years with the feat. He may only be a .270 - .280 hitter now as a 4th OF, but he still plays decent defense, and makes nice contact.  Suzuki is about a full year of AB away from setting the professional hits record.  He is a Free Agent after this year. and at 40, he may have a few years left to offer a club.

Ichiro Suzuki fashioned 10 straight 200 hit campaigns to start his career (2001 – 2010), tying Pete Rose for the most 200 Hit seasons ALL-Time, and setting the most consecutive years with the feat. He may only be a .270 – .280 hitter now as a 4th OF, but he still plays decent defense, and makes nice contact. Suzuki is about a full season of AB’s away from setting the professional hits record. He is a Free Agent after this year, and at 40, he may have a few campaigns left to offer a club.  His 2841 Career Hits come during what will end in 2014, as his 14th year only in the MLB.

Chuck Booth (Owner/Lead  Analyst) 

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He is not receiving the kind of fanfare that Derek Jeter is this year, (although maybe he would if he was retiring too and had announced it), by Ichiro Suzuki has put forth a decent year in 2014.

His .284/.323/.338 Slash Line is not something to write home about, but he is a nice 3A Outfielder on a club that has seen its fair share of injuries.

Heading into the last 4 games of the year, the 10 time 200 hit man, has 99 hits on the season, thus giving him 2841 Hits in his MLB Lifetime.

After Derek Jeter retires this year. Ichiro will be 2nd in active total hits to Alex Rodriguez. Read the rest of this entry

B.J. Upton And Dan Uggla Were The Biggest Reasons Why Wren Was Shown The Door!

The Brothers Upton both were acquired in the 2012 offseason by the Atlanta Braves.  This was a risk for the organization, and while Justin has played extremely well in condensed pockets, Upton is quickly establishing himself as one of the worst contracts ever signed in Major League Baseball.  a .197/.276/.310 3 Slash Line - with 20 HRs and 60 RBI in 902 AB is simply abysmal.  The Braves brass should send him to the Winter Leagues this off-year, to correct his problems.

The Brothers Upton both were acquired in the 2012 offseason by the Atlanta Braves. This was a risk for the organization, and while Justin has played extremely well in condensed pockets, B.J.Upton, now 30,  is quickly establishing himself as one of the worst Free Agent contracts ever signed in Major League Baseball. with a .197/.276/.310 – Braves 3 Slash Line – with 20 HRs and 60 RBI in 902 AB during his 1st 2 years as a Brave is simply abysmal. The club’s brass should send him to the Winter Leagues this off-year, to correct his problems.  Justin Upton, 27, has fared much better in his 2 seasons, with an OPS of .822, 54 HRs and 162 RBI for his 1108 AB. The worst part about this is that the younger brother only has 1 more year left on his deal in 2015, making $14.5 MIL, while B.J. has 3 more years left on his deal, paying him a sum of over $46 MIL for the duration.

Hunter Stokes (Chief Writer): 

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I started writing for this website about a year ago.  One of my first articles I put forth was one centered around the albatross contracts that were B.J. Upton and Dan Uggla.

True to prior blogs written here at the MLB Reports, the older Upton’s Free Agent contract of 5 YRs/$75 MIL will go down as one of the worst deals ever consummated on the open market.

You add the $15 AAV (Average Annual Value) to Uggla’s $11 MIL, and you are forking out over $26 MIL a year – for what are horrific numbers.

The genesis of my theory was simply the team would not recover financially, or be able to cover up any mistakes/injuries that may come to the club.

Atlanta has been one of the best franchises in the MLB for the last 24 years.  Even after the organization claimed 14 straight NL East titles, they only took about 5 years to reload the troops for another wave of success.

Since the end of the 2012 year though, the franchise has seen Chipper Jones retire, longtime Catcher Brian McCann move on to New York, and former Brave great Tim Hudson move out to the San Francisco Giants. Read the rest of this entry

Current Odds To Win The 2014 MLB Divisions + The Week Ahead For The Contenders

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Hunter Stokes (Chief Writer): 

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Based on last week’s 4 – 1 – 1 record for picking the best valued odds on the 6 Divisions, I am sticking with the same teams for value again as nothing has really changed.

My only loss for picking the selections, was that Atlanta dropped from +700 to +1000.  I broke even with none of the NL West odds changing.

My AL East pick of the Yankees proved worthy – as they went from +1000 to +800.

My AL Central wager of the week was Cleveland, and they jumped from +2500 to +1800.

The Biggest registered bet was on the Mariners, shaving off a +3500 to a now +2500.  This is the only prognostication I actually put real money on down.

It was a clean sweep for me to win on the American League.

I was 1 – 1 – 1 in the National League.  My St. Louis to rise as a favorite worked in plotting the week.  They are now tied with the Brewers for the odds to win the NL Central.

The Cardinals came up just enough to break me with a .500 record for NL picks.

I have eliminated the Jays and Rays from the Divisional races.  Any double digit deficit will result in this automatically for the rest of the campaign.  

Read the rest of this entry

Current Odds To Win The 2014 MLB Divisions: Betting The Longshots The Only Value Left

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Hunter Stokes (Chief Writer): 

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Well its another banner prognostication period for me.  Last time we checked on the Divisions, I had the Rays, Angels, Royals, Nationals, Dodgers and Pirates as the best value plays.

I wasn’t expecting Tampa to trade David Price at that point, so I will lose that wager.  I also lost the Bucs value pick, even though they were better odds for the most part of the 3 weeks until the losing streak started.

Overall, the Royals jumped from +800 to just +125 as they skyrocketed up the Division – and now have amassed a 2 game lead over Detroit.

The Dodgers actually had some value 3 weeks ago at -225.  Hope you put some cabbage on them, because now they are -800.

The same can be said for Baltimore, pole-vaulting from +160 – all the way to -900.  They are the biggest favorite in any AL Division.

Washington has played great baseball in the last 21 days, opening up a 6 game lead in the NL East.  They blitzed from -190, to now being -1600.  That odd is not worth wagering anymore..

Los Angeles (on AL Side) have taken over the lead in the AL West by a half game on Oakland, and are still a +125 underdog, to the A’s -150 mark.

It was still good enough to venture from +175 to +125 now, and make me a 4 – 2 prediction selector for the last 3 weeks in duration.  Let’s have it this time around.  If I don’t feel a team has a chance at the Division, i will leave them off the lists.

Read the rest of this entry

The Bullet Version Of Monday’s MLB Games + Craig Kimbrel Is Filthy!

Season high 7 game winning streak - including 3 straight walk off hits at Nats Park.  They hold a 6 game lead over 2nd place Atlanta, and the Nationals haven't even hit full stride with several key players not maximizing on their talent level.  With a weaker NL East schedule down the stretch, they just may hold home field advantage by season's end in the National League.

Season high 7 game winning streak – including 3 straight walk off hits at Nats Park. They hold a 6 game lead over 2nd place Atlanta, and the Nationals haven’t even hit full stride with several key players not maximizing on their talent level. With a weaker NL East schedule down the stretch, they just may hold home field advantage by season’s end in the National League.

Hunter Stokes (Chief Writer): 

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Erik Kratz smacked 2 HRs and now has 23 HRs in just 472 AB.  Thats a HR for every 20.52 AB or would equal about 29 Bolts in a 600 AB campaign.  The guy is 34 so that is not likely to happen… but smart move on KC’s part to bring him in.  Beats the alternative for what they had.

Washington is starting to heat up, and if you play them into late and extra innings, any of their hitters can beat you right now.  This does not bode well for Atlanta.

Everybody just back off of Trevor Rosenthal, as all young relievers go through this.  Besides what is a season if the Cardinals didn’t changeup their Closer at least once…

Everyone also needs to take a chill pill on the A’s missing Yoenis Cespedes so much it has destroyed the unity of the offense.  Teams go through stretches where they don’t play well.  It is just 17 games of a sample size so far. Read the rest of this entry

How All Of The Braves Hitters Were Acquired: 2014 Roster Tree – Upton/Uggla Deals Still Looming Doom

Justin Upton

How All Of The Braves Hitters Were Acquired:

By Chuck Booth (Lead Baseball Analyst/Website Owner):

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The Atlanta Braves are moving into a new ballpark in Cobb County GA in a few years..  Unfortunately the club will still be paying the contract of B.J. Upton.

At least Dan Uggla will be off the books by then.

Atlanta has been an awesome franchise in the last quarter-century, and far from me to admonish these guys on just a few deals doled out, when they have done it right as an organization for 25 years.

The current roster of hitters resembles a ton of Draft Picks by the franchise.  Not only that, but several of the players have inked their names  long term for the Braves.

Freddie Freeman, Jason Heyward, Evan Gattis, Andrelton Simmons  and Tommy La Stella were all selected by the squad in the MLB Amateur Draft over the last several years. Read the rest of this entry

Current Odds To Win The 2014 MLB Divisions

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Hunter Stokes (Chief Writer): 

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With the trade deadline lurking this week, you have to factor this in when you are making bets.

I would be shocked if the Rays trade David Price before July.31, 2014.  This team has erased so many deficits since 2008, and they have been the best team in the league for the last 25% of the year.

I would also predict the Royals to add a bat for the last 2 months.

Pittsburgh has a lot of money in their wallets for a few salary dumps even if they have to wait for the non-waiver deadline.

Cincinnati is fading fast and needs to wheel and deal for some replacement help.

St. Louis has never played well without Molina, and while I love the A.J. Pierzynski addition, they must not stay stagnant here.

The Yankees should break the bank on several more trades now that they are going to be Luxury Tax Abusers yet again!

The Braves should do a deal, yet they have been hampered by all of the payroll B.J. Upton and Dan Uggla eat up.  Maybe 2014 is not their year.

Read the rest of this entry

Current 2014 MLB Team Payrolls: Trade Deadline Manuevering

Clayton Kershaw is the highest paid player on the highest payroll of the Majors with the Dodgers.  Los Angeles is currently sitting at nearly $240 MIL for total team payroll, and will enter the 2nd year of their Luxury Tax Threshold Penalty, where they will pay a 30% surcharge on any monies spent over $189 MIL.  As it stands right now, the club will pay somewhere north of $15 MIL this year.  If the Dodgers are in penalty again for 2015, they will pa 40% of any cash over the Threshold.  Abusers of the tax for 4 years and beyond pay $50%.  With their payroll this year, it would cost Los Angeles over $25 MIL if they were at that limit.

Clayton Kershaw is the highest paid player on the highest payroll of the Majors with the Dodgers. Los Angeles is currently sitting at nearly $240 MIL for total team payroll, and will enter the 2nd year of their Luxury Tax Threshold Penalty, where they will pay a 30% surcharge on any monies spent over $189 MIL. As it stands right now, the club will pay somewhere north of $15 MIL this year. If the Dodgers are in penalty again for 2015, they will pa 40% of any cash over the Threshold. Abusers of the tax for 4 years and beyond pay $50%. With their payroll this year, it would cost Los Angeles over $25 MIL if they were at that limit.

By Chuck Booth (Lead Baseball Analyst/Website Owner):

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2014 Team Salaries Rank  (In Millions)

1. LAD – $239.8 ( 2nd time abuser – Luxury Tax Penalty at 30% over $189 MIL = $15.24 MIL to be added at the end of the year.) (1st in NLW)

2. NYY – $200.0 ( 4 or more time abuser – Tax Penalty at 50% over $189 MIL for an additional $5.5 MIL to be added at end of the year.) (1st In ALE)

3. PHI – $177.4 (1st in NLE)

4. DET – $163.0 MIL (1st in ALC)

5. BOS – $157.9 (2nd in ALE)
Read the rest of this entry

MLB ALL – Star Break Report Cards – National League

The best letter grade we gave out was to the Milwaukee Brewers,  The team pole vaulted out to a fast start, and despite other clubs having a lot more talent than this bunch, young players have emerged for the Brew Crew.  Even with recent play, the other teams have had injury trouble while Milwaukee is relatively healthy.

The best letter grade we gave out was to the Milwaukee Brewers, The team pole vaulted out to a fast start, and despite other clubs having a lot more talent than this bunch, young players have emerged for the Brew Crew. Even with recent play, the other teams have had injury trouble while Milwaukee is relatively healthy.  Still with 4 clubs within 3.5 games or better in the NL Central, this should be a dogfight to the bitter end.

Hunter Stokes (Chief Writer): 

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Division             GBL Letter Grade

NL EAST

T1.  WSH 51 – 42: – (C+)

Have dealt with a plethora of injuries to Bryce Harper, Ryan Zimmerman, Wilson Ramos, Adam LaRoche and Doug Fister.

Jayson Werth had a nice hot streak right before the end of the 1st half.

The team with limited flaws has just not taken off like it should.

Gio Gonzalez hasn’t found his form yet.

T1.  ATL 52 – 43: – (B-)

This team has a nice 14 – 6 stretch to end the 1st half.

When you consider the club has withstood year ending injuries to Kris Medlen, Brandon Beachy and Gavin Floyd.

Dan Uggla and B.J. Upton are making 25% of the team payroll and are posting anemic numbers.  The older Upton has done better in the last 10 games.

Evan Gattis and Freddie Freeman have kept the team afloat, and whenever Justin Upton hits, this team wins.

A great patchwork job done by the Starting Pitchers replacements.  Aaron Harang and Alex Wood have done spade work.

Still one of the best Bullpens in the game. Read the rest of this entry

MLB Teams Pitching Payroll vs Positional Players Payroll In 2014

The Dodgers are the new kings of spending money on payroll in the MLB.  They already spend the most money their Pitching Staff, are the only team well over the $200 MIL mark, and are also creeping up on the New York Yankees for position player spending.  With the Bronx Bombers not in a playoff spot currently, the Dodgers may pass the Pinstripers by adding salary to their lineup, or by New York deciding to trade a few players from their position lineup.

The Dodgers are the new kings of spending money on payroll in the MLB. They already spend the most money their Pitching Staff, are the only team well over the $200 MIL mark, and are also creeping up on the New York Yankees for position player spending. With the Bronx Bombers not in a playoff spot currently, the Dodgers may pass the Pinstripers by adding salary to their lineup, or by New York deciding to trade a few players from their position lineup.

By Chuck Booth (Lead Baseball Analyst/Website Owner):

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The LA Dodgers have 5 quality Starting Pitchers, and a bevy of former Closers in their Relief Core.

The boys who play their home games at Chavez Ravine, would fit into the top half of entire team payrolls for the majors with each of their pitching and offense separately.

If the Yankees trade 1 or 2 hitters before the Deadline, or the Dodgers add an offense player to their depth, they will hold the #1 spot in both distinctions.

New York, Detroit, Philadelphia, Washington, Boston and both of the Los Angeles franchises are in the top 10 in each. Read the rest of this entry

30 MLB Team Power Rankings: Week 15 – 2014

The Atlanta Braves were hovering around .500, and in serious jeopardy of watching the Nationals blow by them with a healthy roster.  Instead, they are the biggest mover of the week, riding a 9 game win streak.   All of this coming on the heels of losing Evan Gattis for awhile.

The Atlanta Braves were hovering around .500, and in serious jeopardy of watching the Nationals blow by them with a healthy roster. Instead, they are the biggest mover of the week, riding a 9 game win streak. All of this coming on the heels of losing Evan Gattis for awhile.

Hunter Stokes (Chief Writer): 

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*** Denotes Division Leaders

Records are before play Thursday July.06, 2014

RK Team   Last Wk Rnk  ()      Current Rec –  Last 10 Days Rec

1.  ***Oakland A’s (1) 54 – 33:  6 – 3  The A’s are the only team that has an above .600 Win Percentage.

What is not to like.  They have the best record since 2012, are even better over the last 2 years (July 2012, July 2014, about .615 Baseball), have won 2 AL West in a row as well.

Added to the fold is a great trade bringing in Jeff Samardzija and Jason Hammel, and not yielding anything from the current MLB Roster in return.

2. ***Detroit Tigers (2) 48 – 36: 6 – 4: Tigers beat the better teams, and have troubles with the lesserlites.

Emergence of J.D. Martinez is a major bonus for a team starving for OF help.  Still need more Bullpen arms.

Great division for opponents down the 2nd half. Read the rest of this entry

The Atlanta Braves Prospects + Organizational Depth Charts For All Affiliates – 2014 (MLB + MiLB)

The Atlanta Braves went to the World Series  5 times in the 90's, only winning the title in 1995.  The team won 14 Division Titles from 1991 - 2005, and have been very competitive for the last 4 years, after a short dry spell.  A lot of it has to do with their Minor League System.

The Atlanta Braves went to the World Series 5 times in the 90’s, only winning the title in 1995. The team won 14 Division Titles from 1991 – 2005, and have been very competitive for the last 4 years, after a short dry spell from 2006 – 2009.. A lot of it has to do with their Minor League System.

By Chuck Booth (Lead Baseball Analyst/Website Owner): & Jeff Kleiner (Org Depth Chart + Payroll Expert – find his website here)

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Do you ever wonder how the Atlanta Braves have been so successful as an organization for the last quarter century? The answer is they are able to develop within.

In fact, the only times the club seems to do poorly is when it goes outside its comfort zone, and spend a bushel full of money for Free Agency.

Take the B.J. Upton abysmal deal, that may plague the franchise for spending until they reach their new stadium digs in Cobb County GA.

Yes, they hit a HR in the mid-90’s when they signed Greg Maddux, but times have changed for the economy of baseball.

The club also suffers from the trade to acquire Dan Uggla. These are small blips on a stellar establishment mostly comprised of homegrown talent.

Freddie Freeman, Jason Heyward, Craig Kimbrel, Alex Wood, Julio Teheran, Andrelton Simmons and Evan Gattis are the future of this team. Braves fans are hoping for another World Series Winner.

If you are a fan, get to know these players we list in the post, and follow their progress in the Minors.  if you click their name, it will take you to baseballreference.com’s player page of them.

Read the rest of this entry

30 MLB Team Power Rankings: Month Of June 2014

Welcome to your new World Series Favorite. according to the oddsmakers.  I see their rationale.  The A's have the best record in the Majors, and also the biggest lead within their Division.  Oh yeah..this club has back to back West Titles, and a deep lineup in a parity league that is the AL.  While I don't endorse them as the favorite for the World Series right now (based on predicting playoffs solely), there is no doubt I ranked them #1 in power rankings

Welcome to your new World Series Favorite. according to the oddsmakers. I see their rationale. The A’s have the best record in the Majors, and also the biggest lead within their Division. Oh yeah..this club has back to back West Titles, and a deep lineup in a parity league that is the AL. While I don’t endorse them as the favorite for the World Series right now (based on predicting playoffs solely), there is no doubt I ranked them #1 in power rankings

Hunter Stokes (Chief Writer): 

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*** Denotes Division Leaders

Records are before play Thursday June.26, 2014

RK Team   Last Wk Rnk  ()      Current Rec –  Last 31 Days Rec

1.  ***Oakland A’s (2) 48 – 30:  17 – 10:  The A’s are still the best team in the Majors for the last 2 1/2 years.  Coco Crisp on another hot spell.

Josh Donaldson and Brandon Moss both in the top 5 for HRs, and Sonny Gray/Scott Kazmir among several starters for ERA, WHIP and quality starts.

Yoenis Cespedes has the power numbers to be a perfect complement to the top guys, and the bar can always be raised higher.

Sean Doolittle is authoring one of the greatest Bullpen efforts ever for a Closer. A 53/1 Strikeout to Walk ratio is beyond filthy.

2.  ***Detroit Tigers (3) 42 – 32: 14 – 13:  A nice rebound after they dropped out of 1st place temporarily.

Victor Martinez and J.D. Martinez will exceptional June’s, and Miguel Cabrera is still on pace for 130 RBI.

Justin Verlander and Max Scherzer had sub-par starts, but look to correct themselves now.

Joe Nathan is making the late innings nervous for Tiger’s fans, after they had to endure Joaquin Benoit, Phil Coke, Jose Veras and Jose Valverde over the last few years. Read the rest of this entry

Odds To Win The 2014 World Series + Best Value Bets Based On Trade Deadline Speculation

Welcome to your new World Series Favorite. according to the oddsmakers.  I see their rationale.  The A's have the best record in the Majors, and also the biggest lead within their Division.  Oh yeah..this club has back to back West Titles, and a deep lineup in a parity league that is the AL.  While I don't endorse them as the favorite for the World Series right now (based on predicting playoffs solely), there is no doubt I would rank them #1 in power rankings currently.

Welcome to your new World Series Favorite. according to the oddsmakers. I see their rationale. The A’s have the best record in the Majors, and also the biggest lead within their Division. Oh yeah..this club has back to back West Titles, and a deep lineup in a parity league that is the AL. While I don’t endorse them as the favorite for the World Series right now (based on predicting playoffs solely), there is no doubt I would rank them #1 in power rankings currently.

Hunter Stokes (Chief Writer): 

Follow The MLB Reports On Twitter

I had another on fire week last week, with 5 right predictions, and 5 draws, with zero outright losses.

Furthermore, Cincinnati jumped from +5500 to now being +4000 – with making it back to .500 last night.

I also have seen the KC Royals skyrocket from +8000 2 weeks ago, to now be sitting pretty at +2500.  The Royals were my best bets 2 weeks ago.

Your new favorite to win the World Series is the Oakland A’s at +650.  I understand the odd believe me, but this will be temporary.

I fully expect the Nationals to take over this position if their recent pitching trends continue.

Also if the Dodgers can come within 2 games of the Giants, they will take over as the Fall Classic Favorites once again.

Again this week I hate the Blue Jays being among the heavy favorites for the title.  These guys gave been slipping recently, and the Orioles and Yankees are breathing down their necks in the AL East.

I also firmly believe with the AL West stranglehold the A’s are sure to bury the Angels, and if Detroit is a matchup for any WILD Card winner out of the AL West, heck even the Royals with James Shields, I favor them over any Halo’s pitcher for 1 game. Read the rest of this entry

30 MLB Team Power Rankings: Month Of May

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Hunter Stokes (Chief Writer): 

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*** Denotes Division Leaders

Records are before play Monday May.26, 2014

RK Team   Last Wk Rnk  ()      Current Rec –  Last 16 Days Rec

1.  ***San Francisco Giants 32 – 19 (3) 10 – 4:  The Giants have the best team in the Majors record wise, and have done so without dominate pitching, and Buster Posey hasn’t taken off yet.

The San Fran players are using the ‘someone is always on fire’ offense.  Even Brandon Hicks is clobbering HRs out of 2B.  Depth prevails here.  4 Games up on the Dodgers.

2.  ***Oakland Athletics 31 – 20 (2) 8 – 5:  The A’s did lose 3 straight to the Blue Jays, however they had scored 76 runs in 11 Games prior, and pasted 10 on the board yesterday.

Brandon Moss is an underrated slugger, and Josh Donaldson has 4 separate game HR streaks this year.

Showing that depth at Starting Pitching can do well even if players go down with TJ Surgery. Read the rest of this entry

30 MLB Team Power Rankings: Week 7 – May 2014

The Mariners are 10 - 4 in their last 14 games - without receiving any outstanding play from one particular player.  They are the biggest jumpers in this weeks rankings, going from #20 - #15.  The club concludes a series vs the Kansas City Royals, before they welcome the Tampa Rays next into Safeco Field.

The Mariners are 10 – 4 in their last 14 games – without receiving any outstanding play from one particular player. They are the biggest jumpers in this weeks rankings, going from #20 – #15. The club concludes a series vs the Kansas City Royals, before they welcome the Tampa Rays next into Safeco Field.

Hunter Stokes (Chief Writer): 

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We are almost at the quarter pole for action in the MLB.

The biggest mover and shakers this week were the Seattle Mariners, followed by Baltimore Orioles. LA Angels and San Francisco Giants.

Plummeting in the other directions were led by the Phils, who we dropped from 17th to 24th.

The Yankees, Nationals, Dodgers and Rangers all lost 4 places in the rankings based on sub-par weeks.

The AL New York franchise is about 1 bad week from free-falling to the AL East.  Right now the team has received buoyancy because of ace Masahiro Tanaka being 5 – 0.

Brian McCann and Carlos Beltran are having a tough time finding their rhythm with the Bronx Bombers.

I believe the Dodgers will rectify their situation shortly and take off.

Washington is barely over .500 even though most of their players are playing to their capabilities.

The Royals offense is destroying their team morale, as is the Mets having a tough time with the Relief Core, and their Pitchers are still battling .000 for the year like you and me.

Oakland is still leading the MLB in wins since the start of the 2012 year.

The Red Sox are one of the most likely teams to climb the standings in the next few weeks.

With the Cards not playing well, keep in mind, 18 of the next 21 games reside in Busch Stadium for them.  It is time to make some headway.

The AL has fashioned a 18 – 8 mark in Interleague this week to apply a 34 – 33 overall lead on the NL now.

The Rockies are blasting every baseball into orbit right now.  These guys are hitting as well at home as the Pre-Humidor ERA. Read the rest of this entry

Odds To Win The 2014 MLB World Series – Updated For Week 4

Wrigley Field is about the best all natural ballpark experience out of all of the 30 teams in the MLB - however the attendance has started to sag with the recent play of the franchise.  Wrigley Field has seen a decline in fans attended every year since 2008, down from 3.3 Million fans in 2008, to 2.65 Million people in 2013 (only good for 7th out of 15 NL Teams).  Today's 100th birthday of the field should be the best game of the year at Addison and Clark.

Wrigley Field is about the best all natural ballpark experience out of all of the 30 teams in the MLB – however the attendance has started to sag with the recent play of the franchise. Wrigley Field has seen a decline in fans attended every year since 2008, down from 3.3 Million fans in 2008, to 2.65 Million people in 2013 (only good for 7th out of 15 NL Teams). Today’s 100th birthday of the field should be the best game of the year at Addison and Clark.

Hunter Stokes (Chief Writer): 

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Odds To Win The 2014 World Series

1.  LA Dodgers +600

2.  Detroit Tigers +700

T3.  Washington Nationals +900 (Down from +700)

They have only really beat the Marlins all year, haven’t fared well against the great clubs,

T3. St. Louis Cardinals +900 (Down From +850)

Surprising a little they have come down a little, still will be able to catch Milwaukee.  Poor start for Allen Craig and Jhonny Peralta should correct itself.

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30 MLB Team Power Rankings: Week 4 MLB Baseball Apr. 2014

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Hunter Stokes (Chief Writer): 

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We are now at the 10% pole of the MLB year.  The American League looks to have some serious battles taking place in the divisions, while the National League has teams who are separating from others.

Kansas City put themselves back on the map with a 5 – 2 week, and now have a tie for the AL Central lead.

The Yankees started the week winning 4 straight, before dropping the last contests with the Rays, but look good for the long haul.

The Rays officially lost Matt Moore for the year, and Alex Cobb is gone for a while too.

Albert Pujols is bouncing towards 500 HRs, but his Halo’s are in the midst of a tough 3 city road trip.

The Nationals are learning once again that nothing is handed to you. Read the rest of this entry

With Moore Out For TJ Surgery – The Rays Should Hold Onto Price Through 2015

Matt Moore finished 17 - 4 with a 3.29 ERA in 2013, but was off to an even better start in the 1st half before he had some elbow soreness.  Losing this LHP will hurt the club, however the team was deep with Price, Archer and Cobb still manning the 1 - 3 slots in the rotation.  That was, until Cobb went down with an injury himself.  With the teams projected #2 Starter being down for the next 12 - 18 months from his very best, the franchise should not trade Price at any cost.

Matt Moore finished 17 – 4 with a 3.29 ERA in 2013, but was off to an even better start in the 1st half before he had some elbow soreness. Losing this LHP to TJ Surgery hurts the club, however the team was deep with Price, Archer and Cobb still manning the 1 – 3 slots in the rotation. That was, until Cobb went down with an injury himself.  The squad will have to weather the storm for a few months with some organizational players that might include the players: Erik Bedard, Nate Karns or Cesar Ramos. With the teams projected #2 Starter being down for the next 12 – 18 months from his very best, the franchise should not trade Price at any cost in 2014 and 2015..  Moore is under Team Control through the 2019 year, and when he comes back to the fold at 100% in 2015, hopefully the Rays will be vying for another postseason berth in the second half.

By Chuck Booth (Lead Baseball Analyst/Website Owner):

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Lets face it.  The Tampa Bay Rays have had an incredible run at it.  The Florida squad trails only the Yankees for wins since the start of the 2008 season in baseball.

The club has made it to the postseason 4 out of the last 6 years, and possess 5 out of 6 years with 90+ Wins.

All of this with a shoestring budget, and incredible use of stretching dollars on player talent.

Every year, Andrew Freidman finds a bargain Free Agent that becomes an ALL – Star once he dawns the blue and purple. Read the rest of this entry

MLB Odds To Win Both Of The AL And NL Pennants In 2014: 5 Best Value Plays

With injuries to the Pitching Staff mounting fast for the Rays, and now with them not paying out such a great odd, the value pendulum has swung back to pick either the Yankees at +900 or the Red Sox at +750 for the AL Pennant.  The Yankees just took 3 out of 4 from the Red Sox, have a better offense in this year's lineup, and have decent pitching.  Boston is the reigning champs - and will be part of the race before all is said and done.  Factor in major injuries to Texas, Oakland and the LA Angels early, and a horrid Tigers Bullpen so far, and these two rivals have the best value on the board.

With injuries to the Pitching Staff mounting fast for the Rays, and now with them not paying out such a great odd, the value pendulum has swung back to pick either the Yankees at +900 or the Red Sox at +750 for the AL Pennant. The Yankees just took 3 out of 4 from the Red Sox, have a better offense in this year’s lineup, and have decent pitching. Boston is the reigning champs – and will be part of the race before all is said and done. Factor in major injuries to Texas, Oakland and the LA Angels early, and a horrid Tigers Bullpen so far, and these two rivals have the best value on the board.

Hunter Stokes (Chief Writer): 

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The Rays are finally listed where they should be on the betting board.

3 teams start play today tied in the AL East in the Rays, Yankees and Jays.  Baltimore has struggled along with Boston.

I think it is way too early to shovel dirt on the Red Sox season.  While I think they may not take down another pennant, they are my 2nd favorite play in the AL Pennant Odd list for return.

The Yankees are my favorite odds pick right now with a +900 mark.

Yes they have injuries to old guys are their team, but the guys in the lineup can mash right now, and particularly at Yankee Stadium. Read the rest of this entry

30 MLB Team Power Rankings: Week 3 MLB Baseball 2014

Hunter Stokes (Chief Writer): 

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A little rant before the power rankings this week

Well, another 7 days has passed in baseball for this year.

There are no more home openers, attendance is down, fans are scattering about their Easter business and the NFL Draft is around to swing its mighty sword on the sports landscape. Read the rest of this entry

The Braves Continue To Step Up To The Plate In The Ervin Santana Signing

Hunter Stokes (Chief Writer): 

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It was a move that had to be done in my view.  Atlanta has 60% of its Starting Rotation currently in the sick bay, or has questionable thoughts to whether it could pitch near Opening Day.

In the end it is a Win/Win situation for all above.

The Braves acquire a top end of the rotation guy, and it serves as great insurance, and Santana is able to play for a full season trying to re-establish his worth on next winter’s open market.

Sure Atlanta sacrifices a 1st RD pick, but they are still receiving the compensation Pick from the Yankees for the Brian McCann signing.

Santana flies right out the American League, and will look to pad his stats versus the likes of the Mets and Marlins this year, and to avoid the AL Beast, the only teams that were coveting him that he mutually was talking with Read the rest of this entry

MLB’s 2014 Most Likely To Class…….

PED use or not, Stem Cell technology, and who knows what else has aided Colon's body over the last 3 seasons of success.  Yes he was 18 - 6, with a 2.65 ERA - finishing 6th in AL Voting, however the A's went and paid someone else, and usually they are not wrong on guys.  The 40 Year Old from Dominican Republic, is also a gigantic man that decimated his hamstring during a PFP out in 2011 with NYY.  You have to think his lucky streak is numbered sooner or later - and especially on the basepaths in the NL hitting a few times a game.

PED use or not, Stem Cell technology, and who knows what else has aided Colon’s body over the last 3 seasons of success. Yes he was 18 – 6, with a 2.65 ERA – finishing 6th in AL Voting, however the A’s went and paid someone else, and usually they are not wrong on guys. The 40 Year Old from Dominican Republic, is also a gigantic man who decimated his hamstring during a PFP out in 2011 with NYY. You have to think his lucky streak is numbered sooner or later – and especially on the basepaths in the NL hitting a few times a game.

Hunter Stokes (Chief Writer): 

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Remember when you graduated, or just had a school yearbook, and one of the best features was a ‘Most Likely To‘ Section.

It could have been John is most likely to succeed at playing football, or Sally will make a fortune by selling her clothes fashions to Hollywood Diva’s.

Lets do this for the MLB 2014 as it sits.

The Most Likely To Hit The DL after running to 1st is Bartolo Colon. Read the rest of this entry

The Top 50 Contracts Of ALL – Time IN MLB: Freddie Freeman Is 29th With His New Deal – But It Makes Sense

Freddie Freeman Highlights 2013 – Mature Content – Parental Guidance is Advised

Hunter Stokes (Chief Writer): 

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Freddie Freeman is worth the money he just signed for when it comes to his talent level, age and production thus far.

Yesterday, the 24 Year Old First Baseman inked a 8 YR deal worth $135 MIL with the Tomahawk Choppers.  As someone who was just entering the 1st year of Arbitration Eligibility, he was bought out of that negotiation.

The Braves will pay more money in the short – term, but will make up for it in the long run – by not having to dole out 200+ MIL bucks for the guy once he could have hit Free Agency. Read the rest of this entry

The Tampa Bay Rays State Of The Union For 2014

The Rays are always at the bottom for attendance in the Major Leagues, which is a shame for how successful this team has been for the last 6 years - posting 4 playoff berths and an AL Pennant.  This has all been done on a shoestring budget - and facing the toughest strength of schedule in the bigs,

The Rays are always at the bottom for attendance in the Major Leagues, which is a shame for how successful this team has been for the last 6 years – posting 4 playoff berths and an AL Pennant. This has all been done on a shoestring budget – and facing the toughest strength of schedule in the bigs.  The 2014 season will pose the same kind of challenges and problems that have arisen in the teams history.  The Rays have to contend with high payroll teams like Boston and New York fielding ALL – Star squad’s throughout their lineups.  The management has done a fantastic job to stay competitive, and will rely on their franchise depth to post yet another nice record for a 7th consecutive year.

Hunter Stokes (Chief Writer): 

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The Tampa Bay Rays are still one of the best run franchises in baseball, and have put themselves in a position to contend for the AL East for yet another campaign.

I hope the Rays Management decides against trading David Price in the next 2 years, and just goes for a World Series trophy.

Being the 13th biggest city, and yielding the 28th lowest payroll in the game should not be conducive to sustained success, yet there the Rays are pesky every year.

It has been noted on this website plenty, that since the beginning of 2008, the Rays have the second best record in the game to the Yankees in this time frame.

In that span, they trail the Bronx Bombers by just around 10 wins.

Wil Myers 2013 Highlights

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Tampa Bay Rays In Payroll 2014 + Contracts Going Forward: They Should Also Trade David Price To St. Louis For Matt Adams

David Price became a 20 game winner for the first time last season, and it won him the American League Cy Young Award. That is really hard to match, but early struggles and injuries held him back in 2013.  He was 9 - 8, with a 3.39 ERA.  Since he is due a payraise - to the $13 - $15 MIL range, it is my feeling the team should trade him for a slugging 1B.  How about Matt Adams of the Cardinals anyone?  The St. Louis team will need an ace to replace Chris Carpenter - and could bridge the gap for his few years of eligibility.

David Price became a 20 game winner for the first time last season, and it won him the American League Cy Young Award. That is really hard to match, but early struggles and injuries held him back in 2013. He was  still 9 – 8, with a 3.39 ERA. Since he is due a payraise – to the $13 – $15 MIL range in Arbitration, it is my feeling the team should trade him for a slugging 1B. How about Matt Adams of the Cardinals anyone? The St. Louis team will need an ace to replace Chris Carpenter – and could bridge the gap for the team before Free Agency eligibility in 2016.  It was too bad Hak-Ju Lee was hurt for some of 2013, as that would have been a perfect package to help bringing back another Starter.  Perhaps the Rays should use Matt Joyce also as bait?  Maybe they could a prospect Starter after all.  The team figures to be around $55 – 57 MIL before Price.

Chuck Booth (Lead Baseball Analyst/Website Owner):

I am of the belief that the Andrew Friedman and Stu Sternberg have been the ‘model franchise’ in the AL over the last 6 years. 

Not only do they compete in the vaunted AL East versus the New York Yankees and Boston Red Sox, but they have made the playoffs 4 times in that span, including a World Series Loss to the Philadelphia in the 2008 year. 

Had Evan Longoria not been hurt for the majority of the 2012 season, one could argue that the club was poised to make another playoff appearance to make it 6. 

So how are they doing this?  Their team payroll is roughly one-third of the Yankees and the 40 % of the Red Sox total Payroll. 

The Rays are smart enough to let their higher priced Free Agents walk, or even trading them before they are due significant pay raises. 

They are also using the philosophy of the ‘John Hart‘ Indians of the Pre-Milennium Cleveland Indians.  Once it was established that Evan Longoria could play at the MLB Level, they signed him to an 8 year contract. 

They did the same thing with Starting Pitching Matt Moore last year with a 5 year deal for the rookie based on one playoffs of decent pitching. 

It is a risk sometimes to do this, yet the rewards can save you Millions in future payroll if the new player (s) outperforms his/their contract (s).

Rays Highlights 2013:

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The Braves Keep On ‘Chopping’ Despite Several Key Injuries

The Braves have been falling by the wayside to injury since the 1st part of the year.  They have lost Venters, O'Flaherty. Hudson and now Heyward for a 2nd time.  If you couple that with lackluster performances from Dan Uggla and B.J. Upton, then this team has overachieved to the fullest with the rest of the choppers!

The Braves have been falling by the wayside to injury since the 1st part of the year. They have lost Venters, O’Flaherty. Hudson and now Heyward for a 2nd time. If you couple that with lackluster performances from Dan Uggla and B.J. Upton, the injury time on the DL for Brian McCann, Brandon Beachy – and even Evan Gattis, plus the retired Chipper Jones having been departed from the 2012 squad, then this team has overachieved to the fullest with the rest of the choppers!  Atlanta currently owns the best record in the MLB – with a 77 – 50 mark, 14 games clear of the 2nd place Washington Nationals in the NL East. Also, please stop inadvertently injuring our players New York Mets!

By Bob McVinua (Special Guest Braves Writer – visit his website here):

The word “injury” has plagued this 2013 Braves team all season long.

The injury bug didn’t take long to hit as Jonny Venters the teams premier set up man was unable to throw a single pitch this regular season.

Then it was Eric O’Flaherty who was hit with a season ending injury. At this point in time it was about mid May and many were in panic mode over what would become of this feared and revered Atlanta Braves bullpen.

It wouldn’t take too long to find out the answer to that question. After a little mixing and matching Fredi Gonzalez found the right guys to plug into those critical 7th/8th inning roles and they have been nothing short of spectacular.

Jason Heyward Hit In The Face – Not For The Weak Of Heart, You Have Been Warned!

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Who Has Earned Their $ – And Who Has Not: The Top MLB Contracts Of All – Time Part 1 of 10

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Saturday Aug.10/2013

Mike Piazza has been linked to admission of using PED's during.  his career.  This will probably not go down favorably with the BBWAA.  Mike Piazza hit 427 HRs in his MLB Career (397 as a Catcher) to go along with a .308 Avg and 1335 RBI.

Mike Piazza has been linked to admission of using PED’s during. his career. This will probably not go down favorably with the BBWAA towards an entry into the Baseball Hall of Fame. Mike Piazza hit 427 HRs in his MLB Career (397 as a Catcher) to go along with a .308 Avg and 1335 RBI. From 1999 – 2005, he signed a 7 YR/$91 MIL deal with the New York Mets after being acquired from the Miami Marlins.  He was full value for the franchise, hitting for a 3 Slash Line of .296/.373/.915.  In the 7 years of his deal, he blasted 197 HRs and drove in 579 RBI – despite missing half of the 2003 year.  He was the most prolific hitting Catcher during the era.

By Chuck Booth (Lead Baseball Analyst/Website Owner):

In doing a recent article about the Oakland Athletics and Tampa Bay Rays ways of contracts, I thought I would delve into some of the biggest contracts of ALL – Time – in order to dissect them.

I have decided to break the articles up into a 10 part series that will go through the top 53 contracts in the history of the MLB.  We are going to count backwards.

Each week for the next 2 months, there will be a post over the weekend with a set of 5 or 6 players. 

At the MLB Reports, we are committed to being the best overall payroll/roster/depth chart/state of the union site for each club. Bookmark our page dedicated for keeping track of this here.

Signing high 8 or 9 digit Salaries is a risky business that can cripple a franchise for many years.  I mean who wouldn’t want to shed themselves of the biggest Free Agency contracts of late.

I think once we have gone through these all, you will see most of them have not lived up to the value they did – when they first received their deals.

Billy Beane, The A’s Management, The Rays front office and the Braves have been the best run franchises in terms of not making horrendous mistakes.

I have to give the ultimate edge to the A’s and Rays because of B.J. Upton‘s current 5 YR/$75 MIL contract looks to be the worst FA signing ever presently, he fell just short of being in this list.’

Tied for #49 are 5 players, and the 48 th biggest contract belongs to Mike Piazza.

Mike Piazza Post 9/11 HR

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Atlanta Braves Payroll In 2013 And Contracts Going Forward

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Tuesday, July.23, 2013

Craig Kimbrel is one of the best young closers in baseball. He has saved 27 games this season for the Braves and with only three blown saves. The hard-throwing righty has a 1.49 ERA with 57 strikeouts and 13 walks in 36.1 innings pitched. He has a WHIP of 0.99 and 14.1 SO/9. The opposition is just hitting .181 against him, and he is holding right-handed batters to a .140 average. He is holding opposing teams an average of just .129 when runners are in scoring position. They  fare a little better with runners on and two outs with a .176 average.

Craig Kimbrel is one of the best young closers in baseball. He has saved 27 games this season for the Braves and with only three blown saves. The hard-throwing righty has a 1.49 ERA with 57 strikeouts and 13 walks in 36.1 innings pitched. He has a WHIP of 0.99 and 14.1 SO/9. The opposition is just hitting .181 against him, and he is holding right-handed batters to a .140 average. He is holding opposing teams an average of just .129 when runners are in scoring position. They fare a little better with runners on and two outs with a .176 average.

By Chris Lacey (Lead Baseball Columnist/Minority Website Owner)

The Atlanta Braves have a comfortable lead in the National League East division with them ahead 6 ½ games on the Philadelphia Phillies. This division is having a down year, with no team a legitimate threat to catch Atlanta.

The Braves have a high-powered offense that only a few teams in baseball can match. They have the 3rd best offense in the NL with them scoring 425 runs this season.  Atlanta has a play style that is more suited to the American League than the NL.

Atlanta Braves 2012 Highlights – Parental Guidance Is Advised

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