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Oakland Athletics State Of The Union: 2014 Preview

When does Beane ever sleep?   56 transactions over the last calendar year, and he may be prepping the phone with another rash of injuries to 60% of his Starting Staff.  Beane has at least addressed the teams depth for 15 years, and when you look at the salary for their Pitchers, you will be able to detect why.  They never overpay on long-term deals for Starters.

When does Beane ever sleep? 56 transactions over the last calendar year, and he may be prepping the phone with another rash of injuries to 60% of his Starting Staff. Beane has at least addressed the teams depth for next 2 – 3 years, and when you look at the salary for their Pitchers, you will be able to detect why. They never overpay on long-term deals for Starters.

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

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It has been a tough week in Oakland for the Starting Pitching.  Jarrod Parker will need Tommy John Surgery and is  out for the 2014 year.

A.J. Griffin received better news, but also will be sidelined for the near future with a UCL strain.

To complicate the opening roster even more, Scott Kazmir has Triceps soreness and is currently also on the shelf.

Billy Beane doesn’t seem that worried, as he has Tommy Milone and Jesse Chavez stretched out to work some starts if needed. Read the rest of this entry

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Oakland Athletics Payroll In 2014 + Contracts Going Forward

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

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Billy Beane is a master tactician when it comes to freeing up some cash in order to acquire more players.

Oakland ended last year with a payroll of about $70 MIL.  So far this offseason, the A’s GM has picked up several relief pitchers and also signed Scott Kazmir to a 2 YR deal worth $22 MIL.

The team also said goodbye to Bartolo Colon,(who signed with the Mets for a 2 YRs/$20 MIL deal).

Beane has held a fantastic track record of assessing talent, so don’t be surprised if the stocky 40 year old breaks down in the Mets uniform – and not under the A’s watch. Read the rest of this entry

Top 10 Stolen Base Leaders in 2013

Ellsbury missed 88 Games in 2012 (and also missed 144 Games in 2010), which brings into question his long - term durability. Heck, even this year, he was seen with a walking boot only a few weeks prior to the playoffs. You can't deny the man has put up some great numbers out of the leadoff spot for the Red Sox since 2007. Ellsbury has a Career 3 Slash of .297/.350/.789 - and averages 57 XBH, 55 SB, 198 Hits and 108 RBI for every 162 Games Played. The Yankees have inked him to a 7 year deal, and will bank on him staying healthy for most of the contract.

Ellsbury missed 88 Games in 2012 (and also missed 144 Games in 2010), which brings into question his long – term durability. Heck, even this year, he was seen with a walking boot only a few weeks prior to the playoffs. You can’t deny the man has put up some great numbers out of the leadoff spot for the Red Sox since 2007. Ellsbury has a Career 3 Slash of .297/.350/.789 – and averages 57 XBH, 55 SB, 198 Hits and 108 RBI for every 162 Games Played. The Yankees have inked him to a 7 year deal, and will bank on him staying healthy for most of the contract.

Hunter Stokes (Chief Writer): 

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With a decrease in the total amount of players taking PED’s in the MLB, speed is a more important factor to help manufacture runs than it was even a decade ago.

Jacoby Ellsbury leads the list last year with 52 bag swipes.  The Yankees will need him to duplicate what he did in 2013 if they want any chance to compete in 2014.

Everth Cabrera would have been the odds on favorite to take the title – had he not been suspended 50 games for his part in the Biogenesis clinic.

Rajai Davis also enters the list.  The Blue Jay in 2013, and Tiger in 2014, swiped 45 bags despite only coming in with 331 AB.

Jacoby Ellsbury 5 Stolen Base Game 2013

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Ortiz Is Almost Done Playing: Who Will Be The Next Great DH Among The AL Clubs??

David Ortiz has been the quintessential DH in the AL over the last 11 years.  Boston is in contention perennially because he put up great #s compared to his competition.  With all of the teams imploring several employees to scouting staffs - trying to find advantages to bring to Major League Lineups - why aren't teams focusing on the DH position more.  Ortiz has been a full time DH since joining the Red Sox, and has been instrumental in the club bringing home 3 World Series Titles.  In fact, the only time the team has struggled in the last decade, was if "Big Papi" is hurt or struggling.

David Ortiz has been the quintessential DH in the AL over the last 11 years. Boston is in contention perennially because he put up great #s compared to his competition. With all of the teams imploring several employees to scouting staffs – trying to find advantages to bring to Major League Lineups – why aren’t teams focusing on the DH position more. Ortiz has been a full time DH since joining the Red Sox, and has been instrumental in the club bringing home 3 World Series Titles. In fact, the only time the team has struggled in the last decade, was if “Big Papi” is hurt or struggling.

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

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There is no doubt in my mind that the Red Sox has won 3 World Series Titles in the last 10 years because they have had the quintessential DH in the American League.

While other teams have used the position as a rest stop for aging players, or stop-gap measure for players with defensive faulty, clubs have not seemed to have stressed emphasis on the slot in the lineup.

My question is why?  With everyone always searching for an edge in today’s game, you have one sitting right in front of you, that equates to over 600 AB a year.

David Ortiz (Post Season Heroics 2013)

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The Nate McLouth Signing Demonstrates A Lesson Learned For Washington About Bench Players

The Nationals failed to meet expectations as the Preseason favorites to lock down the World Series in 2013.  Heck, they didn't even qualify for the playoffs.  Whether it was injury, or complacency, the talent of this team didn't maximize their potential this year.  However, the club did go 24 - 12 in their last 36 Games Played, and made a late charge at the 2nd Wild Card Spot.  Most of the nucleus is coming back for the 2014 year.

The Nationals failed to meet expectations as the Preseason favorites to lock down the World Series in 2013. Heck, they didn’t even qualify for the playoffs. Whether it was injury, or complacency, the talent of this team didn’t maximize their potential this year. However, the club did go 24 – 12 in their last 36 Games Played, and made a late charge at the 2nd Wild Card Spot. Most of the nucleus is coming back for the 2014 year.  But a most underrated facet of an NL club sometimes is their bench.  Washington hopes to have a better bunch of pine riders in 2014 – than they did in 2013.

By David Huzzard (Nationals Correspondent via Citizens of Natstown.com – view website here): 

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When the Nats built a bench on the cheap in 2012 it worked.

Steve Lombardozzi, Roger Bernadina, Chad Tracy, and Tyler Moore all had outstanding seasons, and the four of them combined cost less than half of what the Nationals will be paying Nate McLouth in 2014, but when they tried to do the same thing in 2013 it was a disaster.

The only back-up outfielder to have a higher than .700 OPS was Corey Brown and that was in 15 plate appearances. Hardly enough of a sample size to be trusted.

Nate McLouth gives the Nationals bench something it severely lacked in 2013, a reliable veteran. McLouth’s numbers aren’t great.

Nate McLouth Highlights in 2012 – Mature Lyrics So parental guidance is advised

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The A’s Pickup Another Quality Bullpen Arm In Gregerson

Luke Gregerson has authored 5 brilliant seasons coming out of the Padres Bullpen.  He has a 2.78 ERA and 1.092 WHIP in his 347 IP worth of work.  The 29 Year Old from Park Ridge, IL originally, has averaged appearing in 68 games a year.

Luke Gregerson has authored 5 brilliant seasons coming out of the Padres Bullpen. He has a 2.78 ERA and 1.092 WHIP in his 347 IP worth of work. The 29 Year Old from Park Ridge, IL originally, has averaged appearing in 68 games a year.  The A’s will use him as a late inning arm with Jim Johnson, Ryan Cook and Sean Doolittle also being capable inning’s eater to nail down shut victories.  Gregerson is in his 3rd Year (made $3.2 MIL) of Arbitration before he hits the Free Agent Market in 2015.

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

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Billy Beane ended his whirlwind day on Tuesday. by flipping just signed OF/DH/PH Seth Smith to the San Diego Padres for Relief Pitcher Luke Gregerson.

In what can only be described as shock, I can’t believe the Padres could be this brutal in talent evaluation.

Beane has continued his pillaging from all other franchises.

The result was that he never touched any of the 9 Starting Players from his offense, zero from his Rotation, and only 2 Minor League Players from last season, to acquire 2 potential Closers/late inning relievers, a premiere CF defender, and a nice #5 Starter in return.

Luke Gregerson Interview from 2012

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The Jacoby Ellsbury 7 YRs/$153 MIL Deal Opens Up Many Possibilities for New York

Ellsbury missed 88 Games in 2012 (and also missed 144 Games in 2010), which brings into question his long - term durability.  Heck, even this year, he was seen with a walking boot only a few weeks prior to the playoffs. You can't deny the man has put up some great numbers out of the leadoff spot for the Red Sox since 2007.  Ellsbury has a Career 3 Slash of .297/.350/.789 - and averages 57 XBH, 55 SB, 198 Hits and 108 RBI for every 162 Games Played.  The Yankees have inked him to a 7 year deal, and will bank on him staying healthy for most of the contract.

Ellsbury missed 88 Games in 2012 (and also missed 144 Games in 2010), which brings into question his long – term durability. Heck, even this year, he was seen with a walking boot only a few weeks prior to the playoffs. You can’t deny the man has put up some great numbers out of the leadoff spot for the Red Sox since 2007.

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

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So all of a sudden the Yankees have taken a page from their 2006 playbook.

Prior to that season, they overbid for the services of Johnny Damon, effectively ending his tenure with their rivals – the Boston Red Sox.

They have gone back to the well for a 2nd time – raiding the Sox for their Starting CF.

It is a bold and calculated gamble for the Yankees, but then again, they are the biggest entity in the MLB – and they needed to protect the fledgling ratings on TV, and also to make sure the fans come through the turnstiles at New Yankee Stadium

Jacoby Ellsbury was brought in for a 7 YR/$153 MIL deal – that will send shockwaves throughout the Bronx and Major League Baseball.

Jacoby Ellsbury 2013 Highlights – Mature Lyrics So Parental Guidance Is Advised

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Billy Beane Adds 4 Pitchers To The A’s Flock, Plus Gentry – Only Surrenders Weeks. Choice + Smith

Billy Beane is the perfect 'Baseball Rounder'. We all see that the moves the A's GM made yesterday where another way to gain assets in the short term - without losing much in the long run. With the A's usually operating at around the $65 MIL mark the last few years, and now being somewhere in the $75 MIL range, look for Beane to stay active in the transactions throughout this winter to shed payroll - and to receive team controllable players.

Billy Beane is the perfect ‘Baseball Rounder’. We all see that the moves the A’s GM made yesterday and today – where another way to gain assets in the short term – without losing much in the long run. With the A’s usually operating at around the $65 MIL mark the last few years, and now being somewhere in the $75 MIL range, look for Beane to stay active in the transactions throughout this winter to shed payroll – and to receive team controllable players.  The Athletics gain 4 players in these acquisitions that all saw significant playing time in the MLB, where the outgoing guys spent the majority of (if not all) their time in the Minors last year

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

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I said it last week in a Cards article that there were 3 teams that have perfected ‘baseball rounding’, and these teams were the Cardinals, A’s and Tampa Bay.

While the Oakland and Tampa Bay teams don’t have the wherewithal to do this as extensively as the St. Louis franchise, they have the master of the trade in Billy Beane.

“Baseball Rounding” is defined by organizations who always roundup Free Agents, Waiver Wire Deals, Rule 5 guys, or sell high when they know a player is past his projections, in order to obtain assets coming back.

The purpose of these deals is that the organization never touches the main core, meaning the franchise will be in awesome shape if you know how to groom players in your Minor League System after you draft them.

Scott Kazmir 2013 Highlights – Mature Lyrics so Parental Guidance Is Advised

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Oakland A’s State Of The Union – Trust In Billy Beane To Find A Gem This Winter – Just Not Cruz!

Billy Beane saw his 2013 squad reel in their 2nd straight AL West Title.  The team will be hard pressed to do it again in 2014, but don't ever count out the A's.  It has been a quiet winter thus far, with just signing Nick Punto, and exercising options on Coco Crisp and Brett Anderson. What acquisition does the MoneyBall GM have up his sleeve this time around?

Billy Beane saw his 2013 squad reel in their 2nd straight AL West Title. The team will be hard pressed to do it again in 2014, but don’t ever count out the A’s. It has been a quiet winter thus far, with just signing Nick Punto, and exercising options on Coco Crisp and Brett Anderson. What acquisition does the MoneyBall GM have up his sleeve this time around?  I don’t think he will dip into the FA Market for a big name, but certainly a guy or two that can help his ballclub.

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

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Nelson Cruz is a sought after Free Agent for power, but it is my humble opinion that the A’s will just not fork out that type of money required to land his services.

Already, the club is projected to give out contracts that will estimate to in the $50 – $55 MIL range once some of their guys head to Arbitration like Seth Smith, Josh Reddick, Brandon Moss, Jed Lowrie, Jerry Blevins and John Jaso.

The franchise will likely see Bartolo Colon and Closer Grant Balfour also leave the nest from their 2013 Pitching Rotation.

Billy Beane hasn’t really been that busy in Free Agency, as he only  signed Utility Infielder Nick Punto for a 2 YR/$5.5 MIL deal, and he exercised the Team Options on Coco Crisp and Brett Anderson.

Cespedes 2013 Highights

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Stoking The Fire – Week 7: Bullet Version Of Free Agent Signings + Trades This Winter

Hunter Stokes (Chief Writer): 

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2014 Winter Transactions

Dodgers Sign SP Dan Haren -1 YR/$10 MIL: Great Depth move for the probable 2014 NL West Division champs!

Rays Sign C Jose Molina – 2 YRs/$4.5 MIL: Great Defensive Catcher, club doesn’t spend a ton either.

Cards Sign SS/OF – Jhonny Peralta 4 YRs/$52 MIL: Hate the PED aspect of this – smart deal for Cards.

Angels Sign RP – Joe Smith 3 YRs/$15.75 MIL: The club still needs 4 more relievers and 3 starters.

Yankees Sign C – Brian McCann 5 YRs/$85 MIL (6th Year Option at $15 MIL):  Great early strike for the Bombers!

Angels and Cards Trade OF Peter Bourjos for 3B David Freese: is Jerry DiPoto high?  Fight at the trainers table next year.

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Who Owns October? (WOO) Tally Updated for October 8, 2013

CE1_2601.JPG

Each winning team for every post season game gets a pitcher and a hitter who earn a full WOO.

And at my discretion, I award a 1/2 WOO to a worthy player on the losing team.

For a full explanation, click HERE.

From today’s games:

Receiving 1 WOO

Craig Breslow pitched 1 2/3 solid innings of relief, striking out 4 and getting the decision as the Red Sox eliminated the Rays 3-1.

Jacoby Ellsbury got on base twice, stole a base, possibly helped cause Tampa’s catcher to miss a wild pitch and scored the go ahead run in the Red Sox 3-1 clinching victory.

Doug Fister may not have been dominant, but his 6 innings prevented the A’s from pulling away and helped set up the Tigers come from behind 8-6 win.

Jhonny Peralta clubbed a 3 run homer in the 5th that tied the game helped turn a potential elimination game for the Tigers into a wild 8-6 victory against Oakland.

Receiving 1/2 WOO:

Coco Crisp collected 4 hits, scored 3 times and drove in a run, doing everything he could to lead the A’s to victory as they fell short to Detroit, 8-6.

Yunel Escobar got 3 hits and scored the Rays lone run in their 3-1 loss to the Red Sox.

Matt Moore came out of the bullpen and prevented the Red Sox from putting up much of a fight over two scoreless innings in the Rays 3-1 defeat by Boston.

Dan Straily was brilliant the first four innings and solid through 6, letting up only 4 hits, striking out 8 and walking none. It wasn’t enough as the Tigers came back to win, 8-6.

To view the Playoff Leaders for ‘Who Owned October Standings’ – Click the READ THE REST OF THIS ENTRY ICON OR SCROLL DOWN.

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Oakland + Tampa Bay Are Building Their Teams The Old School Way

The A's wrapped up their 16th AL West Title in 46 years since moving to Oakland yesterday.  They have clinched the Division at home the last 2 years.

The A’s wrapped up their 16th AL West Title in 46 years since moving to Oakland yesterday. They have clinched the Division at home the last 2 years.  They beat out the Rangers and Angels  – clubs that double their Team Salary of  roughly $65 MIL in 2013.

By Chuck Booth (Lead Baseball Analyst and Website Owner)

It is a simple rule of economics how these teams have built their teams.  Yep, but you must look a little deeper.  Over the course of the last year, I have constructed both teams entire Roster Trees.

Both managements constructed these teams by selling high on players (usually trading their ALL – Stars for 2 – 3 players back in return, and continuing the cycle.)

The Athletics and Rays have been incredible at finding Free Agents, that cost exactly zero assets back in return.

Just look to Bartolo Colon, Coco Crisp and Yoenis Cespedes for the A’s, while Fernando Rodney, James Loney, Casey Kotchman and Rafael Soriano all have signed Free Agent contracts on limited years recently over the last several seasons.

It corresponded with the players having the best years of their careers, or complete renaissance’s for a bargain based salary.

Oakland A’s Clinch The 2013 AL WEST

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Who Owned Baseball Yesterday (September.19th) – Updated Yearly ‘WOB’ Standings

Christian Petersen/Getty Images

Christian Petersen/Getty Images

Hanley Ramirez hit a pair of homers including a game tying shot in the 7th. He would go 4-5 with 4 runs batted in and set up the Dodgers clinching of the NL West crown, 8-7 over the bitter Diamondbacks.

Gerrit Cole struck out 12 in 6 innings, letting up just one run and helping the Pirates inch closer to first place and avoid a sweep by San Diego, 10-1.

Coco Crisp got on base 3 times and smacked the go ahead 2 run homer in the 8th that put the A’s on top for good, 8-6 over Minnesota

John Lackey took a no hitter into the 7th and settled for a complete game 2 hit, 1 run masterpiece as the Red Sox won 3-1 over Baltimore and clinched at least a Wild Card berth this October.

They all owned baseball on September 19, 2013.

My explanation for “Who Owns Baseball” can be found here.

At the end of the year, we will tally up who owned baseball the most individual days and see how it compares to the final MVP and Cy Young vote.

To view the Yearly Leaders for Who Owned Baseball Standings – Click the READ THE REST OF THIS ENTRY ICON.

To View The List of just the nightly winners (WOB dedicated Page) starting from Mar.31/2013 – today click here

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The Athletics Have Blasted Their Way Back To The Top Of The AL West Standings, But How Far Can They Go?

Athletics

The A’s have been hanging around the top of the AL West all season long,  and have been blasting their way back to the top. With players like Coco Crisp, Jed Lowrie, Brandon Moss and Alberto Callaspo leading the way of late, they are poised to make a run for not only the division but maybe the American league Pennant.

By Dan Wanser (MLB Reports Writer)   

The Oakland Athletics have been considered contenders to win the American League West the entire season, but now that the season is coming to an end they are blasting their way to the top in an attempt to overtake the Texas Rangers.

With key players doing their job offensively, Pitchers doing their job well and keeping the team in games, and a pretty easy schedule going down the stretch they have all the components to make a stretch run.

Oakland’s 2012-2013 season Highlights:

 

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Who Owned Baseball Yesterday (August.26th) – Updated Yearly ‘WOB’ Standings

Photo: Julian H. Gonzalez - Detroit Free Press

Photo: Julian H. Gonzalez – Detroit Free Press

Coco Crisp  homered, doubled, singled, drove in 2, scored a pair and made a highlight film catch, helping the A’s win a wild back and forth 8-6 game over the Tigers.

Allan Craig was a triple shy of the cycle and hit a 2 out come from behind 7th inning grand slam to put St. Louis ahead of Cincinnati in a crucial divisional victory, 8-6.

Zack Greinke put the Dodgers back in the win column by pitching shutout ball into the 9th inning and finishing with 8 2/3 strong frames, letting up 2 runs and getting the 6-2 decision over the Cubs.

R. A. Dickey did not dominate the Yankees. But he pitched well enough into the 7th to give the Blue Jays a rare “W” against them, 5-2.  

They all owned baseball on August 26, 2013.

My explanation for “Who Owns Baseball” can be found here.

At the end of the year, we will tally up who owned baseball the most individual days and see how it compares to the final MVP and Cy Young vote.

To view the Yearly Leaders for Who Owned Baseball Standings – Click the READ THE REST OF THIS ENTRY ICON.

To View The List of just the nightly winners (WOB dedicated Page) starting from Mar.31/2013 – today click here Read the rest of this entry

MLB 30 Team Power Rankings: Week 21

42 - 8, 25 - 3, 19 - 1, 10 wins in a row.  These are all significant numbers put up with a team with deep pockets, the ability to outdraw everyone, and owners willing to do whatever it takes to bring home the 1st World Series Title since 1988.  No one can touch these guys right now. Best 3 Starters in the NL and hottest 2 NL Hitters in Puig and Ramirez.  Oh yeah, the Bullpen has been lights out for the last 50 contests!

42 – 8, 25 – 3, 19 – 1, 10 wins in a row. These are all significant numbers put up with a team with deep pockets, the ability to outdraw everyone for park attendance, and owners willing to do whatever it takes to bring home the 1st World Series Title since 1988. No one can touch these guys right now. Best 3 Starters in the NL and hottest 2 NL Hitters in Puig and Ramirez. Oh yeah, the Bullpen has been lights out for the last 50 contests!

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

It is time for the MLB Power Rankings.  These are based on my thoughts on whether who has the best chance to win the World Series.

A lot of these positions are based on who has the toughest Strength of Schedule left, who their competition is for the Division, and possibly even the League they are in,

The races for the Divisions (AL East, AL West and NL Central are starting to tighten up, while the NL West, AL Central and most notably NL East are looking to be foregone conclusions

The Braves have rattled of a 18 – 3 stretch, and have been ousted by the Dodgers for the #1 spot in the MLB Rankings .

The Rangers are trying to ricochet off of a couple of great deals, in order to flame down the Oakland Athletics.

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How All Of The Rockies Pitchers Were Acquired

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Tuesday Aug.13/2013

In one of the better moves done recently by Rockies management, this former Indian was picked up by the team in 2009, for a player that has never made the Major Leagues.  Betancourt has a 0.994 WHIP in his Colorado Career - spanning 244 IP.  Impressive considering some of the Innings lugged are in the thin air of Coors Field

In one of the better moves done recently by Rockies management, this former Indian was picked up by the team in 2009, for a player that has never made the Major Leagues. Betancourt has a 0.994 WHIP and a 2.97 ERA in his Colorado Career – spanning 233.1 IP. Impressive considering some of the Innings lugged are in the thin air of Coors Field.  At age 39 next season, the club has a Team Option for $4.25 MIL.  They should do it.  Their Bullpen has been better than expected.

How All Of The Rockies Pitchers Were Acquired:

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

At the MLB Reports, we intend to show you the Roster Tree for the Colorado Rockies – and how they assembled their current roster for hitting and Pitching.  It will work in a six degrees of separation like format.

Once we figure out the origin of how many trades going back in time it takes to see where the tree started, it will be time to dissect how the team fared on the deals.

If a player has never left the organization at all, the tree will be easy – as it will just be the year they were drafted or signed.  Today, we will cover the Pitchers.

Jorge De La Rosa’s Great Start

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Oakland Athletics Payroll in 2013 And Contracts Going Forward

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Monday, August.05, 2013

Coco Crisp is having a good season for the Athletics, while playing superb defense for the club.  He has a .251/.332/.752  triple-slash in 347 at-bats on the season. He has 10 HRs and 39 RBIs to include 16 Doubles and 87 hits overall. Coco is still a threat to steal bases with him swiping 16 bases and has only been caught four times. He also shows tremendous plate discipline with walking  and striking out 45 times this season. He is a switch-hitter, but prefers to face right-handers with a .275 batting average in 218 at-bats. He does struggle against left-handers, as he only has a .214 average in 126 at-bats. He does a good job with runners in scoring position, as indicated by his .266 average and 29 RBIs in 64 at-bats.

Coco Crisp is having a good season for the Athletics, while playing superb defense for the club. He has a .251/.332/.752 triple-slash in 347 at-bats on the season. He has 10 HRs and 39 RBIs to include 16 Doubles and 87 hits overall. Coco is still a threat to steal bases with him swiping 16 bases and has only been caught four times. He also shows tremendous plate discipline with walking and striking out 45 times this season. He is a switch-hitter, but prefers to face right-handers with a .275 batting average in 218 at-bats. He does struggle against left-handers, as he only has a .214 average in 126 at-bats. He does a good job with runners in scoring position, as indicated by his .266 average and 29 RBIs in 64 at-bats.

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

The surprise team in the American League this season has to be the Oakland Athletics. They have a 2 ½ game lead over the Texas Rangers in the AL West division and they are doing it with their pitching.

The Athletics are 6th in the AL with a starters ERA of 3.90 this season and they have a solid offense that is 8th in the AL with 488 runs scored. The best thing about this team is that their rotation is comprised of several young pitchers.

The Swingin’ A’s 2012 – Parental Guidance Is Advised

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The Billy Beane Way Of Contracts + His Trade History Since MoneyBall!

Wednesday July.03, 2013

Updated January.05, 2014

Beane does his transactions throughout the entire year - and very little at the deadline.  He is never finished with re-arranging his franchise.  Perhaps his best Trade Deadline deal was to acquire Jermaine Dye in 2001.  Conversely, he had to pay Dye a big FA contract afterwards.  Between he and Eric Chavez's deal, Beane learned not to be burned on long term deals.  He is a big fan of 1 to 2 Year Deals with Veterans.

Beane does his transactions throughout the entire year – and very little at the deadline. He is never finished with re-arranging his franchise. Perhaps his best Trade Deadline deal was to acquire Jermaine Dye in 2001. Conversely, he had to pay Dye a big FA contract afterwards (3 YRs/$30 MIL). Between he and Eric Chavez’s deal, (6 YR/$66 MIL deal) Beane learned not to be burned on long term contracts. He is a big fan of 1 – 2 Year Deals with Veterans.  A lot of his players have not fared as well when they have left the organization.  Even the guys that have, simply cost too much money for the A’s liking.  The Oakland team received the same kind of production from them for a small percentage of the salary paid out.

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

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We have talked a ton about Billy Beane‘s genius way on the website.  The Website founder ‘Jonathan Hacohen’ was one of the first baseball writers to uncover the new Beane strategy last year.

I further studied some of his brilliant work  – by figuring out the current roster tree for all of the current team last November.  I was able to pick up a lot more patterns from his work as a GM.

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Triple Play Podcast Ep # 13 – Around The Horn w/OAK/KC/COL/TOR + Bean Wars + The Genius Beane

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Monday, June.17, 2013

The Triple Play Show will have 5 shows per month.  Each show will be about 1 hour

The Triple Play Show will have 5 shows per month. Each show will be about 1 hour.

By The Big Ticket Show ( AKA Triple Play Podcast on http://www.mlbreports.com)

Guests in this Podcast – Chuck Booth (MLB Reports Owner and Lead Analyst) 

On this week’s show Chuck Booth joins us to break down all the biggest stories in MLB. We also go Around the Horn with Chuck to discuss the A’s, Rockies and Royals current situations and declare the worthy few that belong on their respective Mt Rushmore’s. Bethubb.com best bets end the show as always. Happy Father’s Day!!!!!!!

Intro – 10 Minutes, Toronto Blue Jays talk from 10 Minute to the 18 Minute Mark.  OAK chat – 18 minute – 33 Minute Mark, COL Talk 33 Minutes – 44 Minute Mark.  Kansas City Royals Chart 44 Minutes Mark – 59 Minute Mark.  Late Jays Talk Bethubb Best Bets 1 hour 1 MIN mark to 1 hour 9 Minute Mark.

Quick Facts:  Catsfish Hunter was 7 – 2 in the Post Season for the 1972, 1973 and 1974 World Series Winning A’s – and only 2 -4 with the 3 Post Seasons with the Yankees.  Still 5 World Series Winners was great.  Chuck also meant Ewing Kauffman (Chuck thought his nickname was Charlie in the podcast – maybe because his name his Charlie) when talking about the Royals MT. Rushmore for the franchise.

Yogi Berra did indeed play in 14 World Series and won 10 of them in his Yankees days.

To Keep Reading and Listen to this Podcast click the READ THE REST OF THIS ENTRY or scroll past the Triple Play Logo.

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Who Owned Baseball Yesterday (June 3rd) – Updated Yearly “WOB” Standings

Harry How / Getty Images / June 3, 2013

Harry How / Getty Images / June 3, 2013

Coco Crisp led off the game with a homer and got on base 5 times while going 4-5 in the A’s 10-2 thrashing of the Milwaukee Brewers.

Erik Bedard earned his first win of the year, going 7 innings letting up only one run and 5 hits (none by Albert Pujols) as the Astros finished their shocking 4 game sweep of the Angels in Anaheim.

Bronson Arroyo threw 8 shutout innings , letting up 4 hits and walking none as the Reds beat the Rockies 3-0.

And in his spectacular big league debut, Yasiel Puig led off with a hit, collected another hit and ended the game with a spectacular double play, throwing firing to first after a catch in the outfield to double off the runner and seal the much needed 2-1 victory over the Padres.

They all owned baseball on June 3rd, 2013.

My explanation for “Who Owns Baseball” can be found here.

At the end of the year, we will tally up who owned baseball the most individual days and see how it compares to the final MVP and Cy Young vote.

To view the Yearly Leaders for Who Owned Baseball Standings – Click the READ THE REST OF THIS ENTRY ICON.

To View The List of just the nightly winners (WOB dedicated Page) starting from Mar.31/2013 – today click here Read the rest of this entry

MLB Team Power Rankings: Week 8

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Monday May.27/2013

The Detroit Tigers were second on the list for moving up rankings with 5 spots.  They have overtaken the Indians - and have 5 players that are hitting north of .300.  Their top 4 Starters may be the best in the game - and they play in an extremely winnable division where teams can`t match them for payroll or talent.

The Detroit Tigers were second on the list for moving up rankings with 5 spots. They have overtaken the Indians in the AL Central  – and have 5 players that are hitting north of .300. Their top 4 Starters may be the best in the game – and they play in an extremely winnable division where teams can`t match them for payroll or talent.  Miguel Cabrera is the best hitter on the planet – and has great support.

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

The Oakland Athletics are making another run at the expense of the lesser lites  in the Division.  This team feasts on the Astros and Mariners – and are not half bad at playing the Rangers and Angels either.  The goal for them is to continue to pitch.  They must try to at least take 2 games versus San Francisco in the 4 game set.

The Kansas City Royals may have rolled up snake eyes in gambling on their 2013 season.  Suffering the longest playoff drought in the majors at 28 years, the franchise traded away its best prospect player in Wil Myers for a 2 year pitching solution in James Shields.

The problem is that their nucleus of young talented hitters have failed them.  Eric Hosmer and Mike Moustakas are being outpowered by some teams Pitching cores in the NL.

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The Athletics Enter The Quarter Pole At .500: Its Better Than It Looks

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Tuesday May.14/2013

Cespedes has struggled this year - hitting for a 3 Slash Line of .212/.283/.748.  However the team always better when he is in the lineup.  They were 4 - 10 with the big fella out of the Lineup.  Cespedes left last nights game with an illness - after cracking his 7th HR.

Cespedes has struggled this year – hitting for a 3 Slash Line of .212/.283/.748. However the team always better when he is in the lineup. They were 4 – 10 with the big fella out of the Lineup. Cespedes left last nights game with an illness – after cracking his 7th HR.  With the longball Monday night, Cespedes now has hit 31 HRs and driven in 101 RBI in his 1st 155 Games and 586 At-Bats.  Billy Beane signed him as  a Free Agent last winter – prior to the 2012 year.  He finished 2nd in Rookie Of The Year Voting and 10th in AL MVP Voting.  His salary at 4 YRs/$36 MIL deal looks pretty good right now.  He made $6.5 MIL last year, will make $8.5 MIL this year – and will earn $10,5 MIL for both 2014 and 2015.

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

The Athletics will enter game #41 at the record of 20 Wins and 20 Losses.  Last nights win was a sigh of relief for the Oakland club and their fans.

After taking 2 out of 3 versus the New York Yankees in the Bronx last week, they were swept in Cleveland in a 4 game series (including that debauchery of a call by Angel Hernandez on the Adam Rosales Game Tying HR) – before losing two of three to the Seattle Mariners.

The A’s have seen their quick start of 12 -4  turn into a barely .500 season thus far at 20 – 20.

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MLB Top Teams 1 – 30 + (Best 200 Stats of 2013)

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Monday May.06/2013

Matt Harvey with his stellar outings so far this season may have just become the New York Mets "ace". Harvey is now 4-0 with a 1.66 ERA. Harvey has pitched 40.1 innings - only given up 21 hits, 12 Walks for a League Leading WHIP of .0818  For his awesome 5 weeks we name him the MLB Reports NL Pitcher Of The Month

Matt Harvey with his stellar outings so far this season – may have just become the New York Mets “ace”. Harvey is now 4-0 with a 1.66 ERA. Harvey has pitched 40.1 innings – only given up 21 hits, 12 Walks for a League Leading WHIP of .0818. For his awesome 5 weeks – we name him the MLB Reports NL Pitcher Of The Month

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

Stats all Prior to May.06th games. 

The time has come for the 1sy May Power Rankings.  There will be one each for May, June, July, August, September – and then a special playoff edition Power Rankings will be done in October.

I will not do a weekly Power Rankings during this weeks, because in essence, these are the weekly rankings done on a much larger scale.

These Reports are done with a heavy thought to how the teams project by the end of the season – along with how the clubs have fared so far.

I will point out who has had great months for the all 30 MLB Teams.  I reward the good performances in these rankings – and leave the poor ones for the Podcasts or future articles. CLICK THE READ THE REST OF THIS ENTRY ICON

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Oakland Athletics Payroll In 2013: A’s Organizational Rosters + Depth Charts – (MLB + MiLB)

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Monday, Apr.29/2013

How important was Cespedes to The A's Lineup?  They went 82-47 with him in the lineup and 12-21 without him.  He was the biggest reason the team has soared into the playoff race and wont the AL East.  Beane secured him Free Agency last year without trading any prospects.  Cespedes clubbed 23 HRs.  So far in 2013, the team has gone 10 - 2 with the big Cuban and 4 - 8 without him.

How important was Cespedes to The A’s Lineup? They went 82-47 with him in the lineup and 12-21 without him. So far in 2013, the team has gone 10 – 2 with the big Cuban and 4 – 8 without him.  Clearly he is the teams MVP.

By Chuck Booth (Lead Baseball Analyst/Website Owner): and welcome Jeff Kleiner (Salary, Roster and Depth Chart Expert for the MLB) – visit his website  here  

You guys are all in for a treat.  Jeff Kleiner recently contacted me about a partnership merge for the website.  He has developed a site (prosportsrosters.com) that covers all organizational affiliates in the Minors for all of the Major League Baseball Clubs.  We are going to combine efforts to bring you the best look at salaries, current 25 Man Player Rosters and Depth Charts for all 30 teams. 

Jeff is going to provide the documents in form of spreadsheets and I am going to accompany the posts with deep analysis of what the numbers tell us from my perspective.  If you can’t wait for all of my assessments for each club, go and visit Jeff’s website over at http://www.prosportsrosters.com.

In Speaking with Jeff, he is one of the more passionate fans I have come across towards the game of baseball.  He spends enough time in updating his MLB Facts for it to be a Full-Time Job.  So after the usual Video Clip and READ THE REST OF THIS ENTRY button, you will find some serious &*!@?!#!

Jeff updates this page below on a daily basis.  After you click on it….Bookmark it.  There is a 3 year salary forecast and stats not listed here on this page.  Jeff updates these pages daily and these changes include any Roster moves!

For a Full 3 year Salary Outlook plus last years Stats for every player in the Athletics Organization click here

MLB Hard Talk 101 – Can The A’s Do It Again?

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Mid – Week MLB Reports Around The Horn Rant – April.25th/2013

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Thursday Apr.25/2013

Adam Dunn has hit 40+ HRs 6 times in his career and 38+ HRs in 8 of the last 9 years. He is the Classic '3TO' AKA 3 True Outs: HR/BB or SO. At The MLB Reports, we call it a 'Dunn Trick' when he does all 3 in a game. But this year he is hitting a meager .100 - with only 3 HRs.  His time may be up.

Adam Dunn has hit 40+ HRs 6 times in his career and 38+ HRs in 8 of the last 9 years. He is the Classic ’3TO’ AKA 3 True Outs: HR/BB or SO. At The MLB Reports, we call it a ‘Dunn Trick’ when he does all 3 in a game. But this year he is hitting a meager .100 – with only 3 HRs. His time may be up.

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

Welcome to the 1st installment of the Mid – Week Around the Horn blog.  This weekly piece will feature random thoughts from the MLB – that I just cant go on without saying something.

Notes:

Will somebody please (for the love of god) remove Adam Dunn from  the #4 slot.  I think he would be best hitting 9th – even 2nd (if he continues to walk).  Hitting a .100 as the cleanup hitter has to have cost the club some games.

Shin-Soo Choo is off to a hot start and we are having an awareness week for him at the MLB Reports.  He has a Career 3 Slash Line of .282/.386/.856 and had 20+ Stolen Bases in 3 out of the last 4 years.  The one year he didn’t achieve 20, he swiped 15 Bags in 85 Games.

Shin-Soo Choo trains with the Reds

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Nate Freiman: Beane Finds Yet Another Hidden Gem… And The A’s Next 1st Baseman

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Friday April 5th, 2013

All Nate Freiman did was carry the Country of Israel during the recent World Baseball Classic Qualifying Tournament. Can this First Base giant do the same in Oakland?

All Nate Freiman did was carry the Country of Israel during the recent World Baseball Classic Qualifying Tournament. Can this First Base giant do the same in Oakland?

Jonathan Hacohen  (Lead Baseball Columnist, Oakland A’s Correspondent and Website Founder):  

Baseball is a funny game sometimes. One minute you’re crying the Chris Carter blues. Then before you  know it, Nate Freiman appears. That is how Billy Beane works my friends. Just when you think he might be slipping, he pulls a magic rabbit out of his hat (better known as the waiver wire in baseball terms). 

On February 11, 2013, I wrote an article outlining Billy Beane’s error in trading Chris Carter. While I have always endorsed the talents of Jed Lowrie, it was my opinion that giving up a future star in Chris Carter was too high of a price to pay.

The trade (which actually took place on February 4th) saw the Astros acquire yet another stud First Base prospect. I wondered out loud what the Astros would do with all their First Base talent (Brett Wallace, Jonathan Singleton, Nate Freiman and veteran Carlos Pena).

It seemed like too many bats and not enough positions in Houston, despite the newfound need for a Designated Hitter. A little over a month later, March 23rd to be exact- I had my answer. Nate Freiman was on his way to Oakland.

The star for Israel in this year’s World Baseball Classic qualifying tournament was going to get the opportunity of a lifetime.

While some felt the A’s were simply acquiring roster depth, I saw a different vision. The A’s had their replacement for Brandon Moss at First Base.

Billy Beane had an uncovered yet another gem that was going to thrive in Oakland. Remember Josh Reddick 2012? Meet Nate Freiman 2013.  

Nate Freiman Interview:

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Chris Carter: The Future Star That Will Make Billy Beane Regret His Trade Mistake

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Monday February 11th, 2013

Chris Carter had a 3 Slash Line of .239/.350/.864 in 218 AB during the 2012 season. He clubbed 16 HRs and 39 RBI. He hit 11 HRs in just 122 AB away from o.co Coliseum. At just Age 26 - and team controllable until 2019, it is weird that Billy Beane would trade away the slugging 1B/DH

Chris Carter: A career .283 hitter in the minors, with a .378 OBP and .535 SLG. The perfect combination of power and patience. He will prove to be the one that got away from Billy Beane.

Jonathan Hacohen  (Lead Baseball Columnist, Oakland A’s Correspondent and Website Founder):  

Mark down the date of February 4th, 2013. The day that Billy Beane broke my heart. In preparing for my latest A’s feature, the working title of the article was “Chris Carter: The Next Great A’s Superstar”. Then fate intervened. Or rather, Beane decided to pull off one too many trades. After a successful offseason that saw the A’s GM bolster significantly bolster his playoff squad, Beane decided that one more blockbuster move was in order. Jed Lowrie was headed to Oakland, with Chris Carter (the good one), Max Stassi and Brad Peacock going over to the Astros. For the purpose of this piece, I will be focusing on the loss of Carter. Stassi is a former 4th round pick of the A’s and a young 21 Year Old catching prospect. With Derek Norris ready to grab the A’s catching job for the next decade, I can see how he was expandable. Peacock was a 41st round pick of the Nationals. A 25 Year Old arm that may develop one day, but crashed and burned last season in AAA. With the A’s pitching depth, I can see how he could be ticketed out-of-town for a change of scenery. But Chris Carter?  Really Billy??!! You worked your magic to get him in the first place from the Diamondbacks. I certainly hope that your return pans out (Jed Lowrie and Fernando Rodriguez). Right now, I simply cannot see the logic of this move.


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The Oakland A’s 2013 Roster Tree Part 1: The Hitters

Saturday, Dec.01/2012

How important was Cespedes to The A's Lineup?  They went 83-47 with him in the lineup and 12-20 without him.  He was the biggest reason the team has soared into the playoff race and wont the AL East.  Beane secured him Free Agency last year without trading any prospects.   He is signed for 3 more years.

How important was Cespedes to The A’s Lineup in 2012? They went 82-47 with him in the lineup and 12-21 without him. He was the biggest reason the team soared into the playoff race and won the AL East. Beane secured him in Free Agency before the start of last year. He is signed for 3 more years at 9 Million Dollars Per Year.

Chuck Booth (Lead Baseball Writer/Website Owner):

A few months ago, our Lead Columnist/Website Founder (Jonathan Hacohen) wrote a brilliant piece about the assembly of the Oakland Athletics roster.  He called it “MoneyBall 2.”  Right after the piece, the A’s surged to the greatest record in the second half of the season and won the AL West.  The team is now constructed of power hitters and power pitchers.  The man behind it all is Billy Beane.  I will not get into too much of this philosophy as you can read that piece here.  What I intend to do is to show the roster of how it was comprised by Beane in the form of a roster tree.  It is just like a family tree, however this shows trades dating back 2,3,4,5,6 fold etc.. in order to show you the mastery of the GM’s ability to field a roster on a limited budget.

The Future of the Oakland A’s:  The Mustache Gang Meets the Bash Brothers:  Revealing Billy Beane’s Master Plan click here.

The Oakland A’s 2013 Roster Tree Part 2:  The Pitchers  click here.

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Analyzing the Oakland A’s Outfield Conundrum

Monday November 5th, 2012

Jake Dal Porto: The A’s now find themselves in a sticky situation with four outfielders who are all capable of being full-time starters. Oakland acquired Chris Young from the Diamondbacks on October 21st in exchange for Cliff Pennington as part of a 3-way trade with the Marlins. While it’s safe to say that Billy Beane won the trade from a talent standpoint, it did not solve any problems because the A’s already had Yoenis Céspedes, Coco Crisp, and Josh Reddick locked in the outfield to commence the 2013 season. Young just creates unnecessary havoc that easily could have been avoided. In Beane’s defense, who wouldn’t have traded an inconsistent shortstop for a more proven outfielder?

In 2012, Young dealt with an injured shoulder. Rarely did he play in back to back games towards the end of the year, and his numbers took a beating because of that. He triple slashed for a .231/.311/.434 line, hitting 14 home runs with an OPS of .745. Obviously 2012 wasn’t one of his memorable years, but you would have to think that his injured shoulder played a role in his depleted stats. For Young, it is just a matter of staying healthy and proving that his once wobbly shoulder caused his downfall, not a decreasing bat.

The A’s are now “stuck” with four everyday outfielders. The good news? They do not have to trade anyone in the newly formed quartet to solve this glaring problem. Read the rest of this entry

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