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By Chuck Booth (Lead Baseball Analyst/Website Owner): Follow @chuckbooth3024
The Major League Baseball Season is roughly 10% over and we are seeing some trends and patterns. The next time you wonder why games are so long in the game right now, look no further than there are about 150 hitters that are currently on pace to Strikeout 100 plus times this season.
The Cincinnati Reds won every game this past 7 days, after losing every day the week prior. This is simply why they shot up the rankings. I think the NL Central is the weakest Division this year. It was my prediction that the oldest professional baseball club would run away with this Division by at least 10 games.
Shin-Soo Choo and Joey Votto are on the Basepaths at all times – carrying an OBP of over .500 plus each. Votto is starting to drive the ball with authority too. Brandon Phillips, Todd Frazier and Zack Cozart are driving in Runs at an incredible rate.
Look for BP Follow @DatdudeBP to be a dark horse NL MVP candidate.
Brandon Phillips Talks about Winter Workouts:
In a jammed packed episode of The Sully Baseball Daily Podcast, I talk about listening to Yu Darvish’s attempt for a perfect game while at Ikea, the futility of Heath Bell and the dominance of the San Francisco Giants.
And I determined which hitters and pitchers owned baseball for the day.
Subscribe on iTunes HERE.
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MLB Reports: Welcome to our newest Kids writer Jason Alpert-Wisnia – for being selected to join our MLB Reports Kids Writing team. We are pleased to present the readers with a youthful look to the game of baseball. Moms and Dad’s – if you have a young kid who loves baseball and wants to write about the game, please email us at email@example.com. We will be selecting three more kid writers for our website this year.
By Jason Alpert-Wisnia (AKA “JAWS”): (MLB Reports Kids Writer – visit his website here )
The Miami Marlins are a semi-new team compared to other teams such as the Red Sox, debuting as a team in the season of 1993 as the Florida Marlins. They won two championships in that time, yet tore down the team right after.
In 2012, the team moved to Marlins Park with a boatload of new players and I say, after that, it was only a matter of the, before the team was headed for a downfall. The past was sure to repeat itself.
Florida Marlins Story on 1997 and 2003:
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Satuday, March 16.2013
By Ryan Dana (MLB Reports Writer): Follow @ryandana1
Normally Miami is a desirable destination, but playing for their Major League Baseball team, the Miami Marlins, might be the one time it is not. It’s amazing how things have changed in the past year. Around this time in 2012 the Marlins moved into a brand new ballpark and opened up their wallets to sign big name free agents Jose Reyes, Mark Buehrle, and Heath Bell.
Now all 3 players have been traded, along with Marlins stars Hanley Ramirez, Anibal Sanchez, Josh Johnson, and other solid players like Omar Infante, Emilio Bonifacio, and John Buck. The Marlins traded away nearly all significant contracts and veteran talent to rebuild. That is not what the fans in Miami wanted, and certainly not something their lone remaining star Giancarlo Stanton would find desirable.
Giancarlo Stanton, the Marlins Right Fielder, is just 23 years of age, but his ability is on the baseball field is far beyond most players of his age. Stanton is 6’5” and weighs in around 245 lbs. He is about as intimidating a hitter as you will find. These days baseball talent evaluators will argue over the importance of how a player looks on the field, and what numbers are attached to their play.
There is no debating that Stanton is a top talent in both senses. He is a stud athlete who received offers to play for top colleges in his home state of California in both baseball and football, but he opted to go pro after being drafted by Miami (then Florida) in the 2nd round of the ’07 draft.
2012 Giancarlo Stanton Highlights – Mature Lyrics so Parental Guidance is advised:
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Tuesday March 5th, 2013
Bernie Olshansky (Baseball Writer): Follow @BernieOlshansky
The Miami Marlins are in a state of disrepair. 2012 was meant to be their return to contention with the signings of Jose Reyes, Mark Buehrle, and Heath Bell. A healthy Hanley Ramirez and Giancarlo Stanton were meant to provide power to the lineup that supported the pitching staff anchored by Josh Johnson and Ricky Nolasco.
The excitement of the new-look team combined with the anticipation of the new stadium. Unfortunately, the Marlins had a terrible season and shipped Hanley Ramirez to the Dodgers, and every notable player except Giancarlo Stanton and Ricky Nolasco to the Blue Jays, most notably.
Ricky Nolasco Warming Up:
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By Nicholas Rossoletti (MLB Reports Trade Correspondent): Follow @NRoss56
Welcome to Miami, home to sunshine, beautiful people and a unique multicultural atmosphere. Miami is not home, however, to a big market baseball team. For years the Marlins have attempted to fake it to make it. The team would build its payroll towards a single season where the front office felt like it could compete for a world championship. Then, regardless of result, the Marlins would break up the team, sell the pieces for as much value as was offered and rebuild towards another season when a championship hope seemed realistic. So the Miami Marlins, their fans, their brand new stadium enter 2013 in a very similar situation. In 2012, the team took a shot at competing by spending money on several free agents. I’ve written in detail about why that didn’t work and what the fans can look forward to in the future. In 2013, the payroll will be once again be amongst the lowest in baseball.
As with our past looks at payroll we will start with the high-end of the Miami payroll. You will notice that one of these is not like the other.
Giancarlo Stanton Highlights 2012 – Mature Lyrics so parental guidance is advised:
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Saturday, February.16, 2013
By Chris Lacey (Diamond Backs Correspondent) Follow @aecanada12
Arizona Diamondbacks fans had some high hopes coming into the 2012 season after winning the division in 2011 and making their way back to the playoffs for the first time 2007. The 2012 off-season saw them bring in free agent OF Jason Kubel. The season started off great with a three game sweep of the San Francisco Giants, but when CF Chris Young went crashing into the wall to catch a deep ball against the Pittsburgh Pirates the team was never the same. The Diamondbacks are in tough division the NL West, which is known for pitching. They will have to rely on their young starters if they hope to compete with San Francisco Giants & Los Angeles Dodgers. The offense will have to get better with manufacturing runs and instead of depending on the long ball to score runs. They traded away RF Justin Upton and 3B Chris Johnson, but they brought in versatile player Martin Prado and pitching prospect Randall Delgado.
Game #7 of the 2001 World Series – Gonzalez Game Winner – Can the 2013 DBACKS get back to the WS?
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Thursday, February.14, 2013
By Chris Lacey (Diamond Backs Correspondent) Follow @aecanada12
The Diamondbacks finished the 2012 season with disappointment as they struggled to get over .500 for much of the season. They lost the last game of the season to the Rockies that summed up what happened during the year. When they got good starting pitching, the defense would make a costly mistake, and then the offense would struggle to score any runs. The Diamondbacks enter the 2013 camaign with plenty of new faces on the club.
General Manager Kevin Towers has changed the makeup of this team these past two off-seasons. He has put an emphasis on players who can make consistent contact, rather than hitting the long ball. The Dbacks GM is always looking to improve upon the bullpen. He did this by taking a risk on Heath Bell who had a bad year with the Marlins, but Towers believes a change of scenery will help. Towers not only brought in bullpen help, but also signed some key players’ to long-term contracts that will aid the team to not only contend now, but for the future.
2011 DiamondBacks Post Season Highlights. Lyrics May Contain mature content so Parental Guidance is advised:
Thursday, December.20, 2012
Note from Chuck Booth: I am attempting to bring the history for each of the 30 MLB Franchises into a 5 part series that will focus on 1. The teams history. 2. The hitters 3. The pitchers. 4. The Teams Payroll going into 2013 and 5. The Ball Park that they play in. (The stadium articles will all be done next summer when I go to all of the parks in under a month again.) Be sure to check my author page with a list of all of my archived articles section here.
Chuck Booth (Lead Baseball Writer/Website Owner): Follow @chuckbooth3024
The Tampa Bay Rays Franchise can be summarized into two different categories: “The Devil Rays Days” and the “Rays Days.” The Devil Rays endured 10 straight losing seasons to start the club’s history. From 1998-2007, was a complete gong show (645-972) and last place finishes in a tough AL East every year, except for 2004, when they finished 4th, although they did stockpile several top Draft Picks based on their horrid regular seasons. In 2008, all of that changed when the ‘Devil’ was literally and figuratively knocked away from the Tampa Bay team. Their young stars finally saw their potential realized and they appeared in the 2008 World Series versus the Philadelphia Phillies. The Franchise would lose in 5 hard-fought, weather fulfilled games, however the team was now one of the model clubs in baseball. From 2008-2012, the club has gone 458-352.
The Rays have made the playoffs in 2010 and 2011 since, plus featured two other over .500 records in 2009 and 2012. The club has now had 5 winning seasons in a row. There is still a long way to go as they feature the worst winning percentage in MLB History, with a 1103-1327 Franchise Record (.454). The next worst team is the Padres at .463. The Arizona DiamondBacks were the NL Expansion cousins of the Rays and they feature a Win Percentage of (.498), which is second overall for the Expansion teams. The Arizona DiamondBacks also have made the playoffs 5 times and won the World Series in 2001. Still if you asked anyone right now, the Rays would gladly be the team everyone picked.
Franchise Series Links:
Tropicana Field Expert: An Interview with Tropicana Field Expert Kurt Smith
Thursday November 22nd, 2012
Bernie Olshansky: What the Marlins had to do this offseason is horrible. Last year, the Marlins raised the hopes of the fans with a rejuvenated logo and uniforms, a new stadium, and most of all a new-look team. Last winter, Marlins management made a commitment to the fans to provide a contending team for the years to come. They went out and signed Jose Reyes for seven years. He and Hanley Ramirez were supposed to serve alongside Giancarlo Stanton as the core of the team for almost the next decade. To build on the Reyes signing, the Marlins also inked pitchers Mark Buehrle and Heath Bell. Ozzie Guillen also jumped aboard and was set up to be a lovable manager. With this spending spree, the Marlins brought a lot of excitement to South Florida and were supposed to be a major contender in the NL East.
Unfortunately this was not the case. The Marlins quickly faltered and Ozzie Guillen was immediately under the spotlight for his comments about Fidel Castro. Fans were already calling for Guillen to be fired. The team’s performance was not helping. I personally attended the second home game at Marlins Park against the Astros. Although it was against the Astros, any team that spends as much money as the Marlins did in the offseason should have a packed house at their second game of the season (in their new stadium!). The stadium was full, but not sold out. I was hoping that this was not a sign of things to come, but it was. The Marlins continued their spiral downward and talks of trades began. Heath Bell was the opposite of what the Marlins signed him to be and lost his job as closer. Both Reyes and Ramirez slumped. The Marlins needed to make some moves.
Friday November 9th, 2012
Jake Dal Porto: If the Miami Marlins fired Ozzie Guillen with the intention to improve the team, they are going to find that replacing Guillen will not make much of a difference. Perhaps Mike Redmond, the newly hired Marlins’ manager, has other thoughts on the topic. But realistically, a new face at the helm cannot improve a lethargic Marlins’ roster that was constantly tinkered with throughout the season.
Michael Hill, Miami’s general manager, twinkled with high hopes before the 2012 season with a couple of blockbuster moves that seemed to change the shape of a team that hadn’t posted a winning season since 2009. These moves in particular—-signing free agent Jose Reyes, signing Mark Buehrle, and signing Heath Bell. Reyes churned a sub-par season, compiling a .780 OPS. The upside is the fact that he stayed off the disabled list, a rarity indeed. For such a hefty contract though, (6-years, $106 million) it’s safe to assume that Hill and his team envisioned a bit more production out of the all-star shortstop. Read the rest of this entry
Friday November 2nd, 2012
Alex Mednick (Baseball Writer and Analyst):
In 2011, the Arizona Diamondbacks made a really nice push in the AL West and finished with 94 wins, 8 games ahead of the second place San Francisco Giants. They performed well above expectations, and they did so with a relatively unglamorous starting rotation, that consisted mainly of Ian Kennedy, Joe Saunders, Josh Collmenter, Daniel Hudson and a revolving 5th starter. What really carried the team in 2011 and made the Arizona Diamondbacks a competitive in 2011, happened to be their weakest link in their miserable 2010 season: the bullpen.
The Diamondbacks won 29 more games in 2011 than they did in 2010. The most drastic changes made by the organization were in the bullpen where the D-Back’s added closer J.J. Putz and setup man David Hernandez. The 2011 bullpen allowed 100 fewer runs than their predecessors in 2010 and dropped their group ERA from 5.74 in 2010 to just 3.71 in 2011. It goes without saying that their newly revamped bullpen allowed Arizona to stay close in a lot more games and gave them a better chance to be winners.
Following their great 2011 season, the D-Back’s found themselves reverting back to their former ways in 2012. Finishing 13 games behind the first place Giants, and just barely hanging on to a .500 record, the Diamondback’s finished 81-81. You want to know something interesting? It was their bullpen, once again, that failed. Read the rest of this entry
Tuesday July 31st, 2012
John Burns: Much speculation has been in the past years that the Oakland A’s would be getting a new stadium. With Oakland currently playing great baseball (18-4 in July) it makes you wonder if the chances of a new stadium increase. It has been rumored that the new stadium would be in San Jose, California and named Cisco Field. The projected opening date would not be until 2016. Oakland has been playing at the Coliseum since 1968. It would be the first time since 1909 that the A’s received a brand new stadium. The field dimensions for Cisco Field are: Left Field – 302 feet, Left-Center – 375 feet, Center Field – 405 feet, Right-Center – 345 feet, and Right Field – 310 feet.
The chances are good for Oakland to make the playoffs this season with only being four games back of the Texas Rangers in the A.L. West lead and leading for one of the A.L. Wild Card spots. If the A’s keeps this up and the fan base increases, the chance for a new ball park increase also. With an increased fan base, the A’s will have help going after a new park because of the money that will be coming in from attendance, merchandizing, etc. Cisco Field would be ready for the 2016 season, so if the A’s have a bad rest of the season and continue to struggle the chances decline for a new ballpark. Another thing to consider is that 2016 is four years away, so anything can happen and the A’s don’t necessarily have to wait for Cisco Field. Oakland could explore other options if they start to become a power house and want a new stadium sooner rather than later. Perhaps they will look at other locations like Portland, Memphis and Durham. Or even go back to Oakland for one more try to obtain a new stadium in their current home.
The Athletics realistically have to look at moving the team out of the Bay Area altogether. With Yoenis Céspedes looking like Oakland’s franchise player, he would be the perfect player to build around the team and a new ballpark. Oakland is in a very similar situation to what the Miami Marlins faced in recent years. Miami ultimately were able to land a new stadium and make a big splash. But their new ballpark took a great deal of negotiations and was iffy right until the last minute. As a result of their new digs, the Marlins went out and signed Jose Reyes, Heath Bell, Mark Buehrle, traded for Carlos Zambrano, and hired Ozzie Guillen. Now they are starting to sell off their players, but that’s another story for another day. The A’s could do something very similar to that if they do get a new stadium (but actually keep their talent). Watch out for the Athletics if they get a new stadium in a city to be named later. Everything could change and I expect the change to be very positive.
***John Burns- MLB reports Intern: I am a highschool junior, play 1st base and catcher. I am a diehard Phillies fan. I was born in Philadelphia but now live in Virginia. I come from a huge baseball family and just love the game. My cousin was drafted by the New York Mets in the 2008 MLB draft. My favorite players are Shane Victorino, Carlos Ruiz, and Ryan Howard. I tweet all the time and you can follow me on twitter(@JohnBurns_MLB)***
Please e-mail us at: firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions and feedback. You can follow us on Twitter and become a fan on Facebook . To subscribe to our website and have the daily Reports sent directly to your inbox , click here and follow the link at the top of our homepage.Follow @mlbreports
Monday July.9, 2012
Chuck Booth (Lead Baseball Writer and @chuckbooth3024)- I thought we would try a different top ten today with the ALL-Star Break here today. This morning I did some research on the odds of what http://www.bet365.com thinks will happen for the rest of the MLB Year based on their gambling futures. Gambling is an increasing industry like no other entity in the world. The NFL is better suited for ‘punters’ to throw down some bucks at Vegas. They have only one game a week and the gambling experts think that baseball is easier for the bad teams to beat the good teams. I will tell you as one of these ‘so called experts’, they are completely right. The worst teams in baseball usually can still beat the best teams 1 out of 3 games in a series. This makes normal gambling for a regular season game really hard to make any money, or minimize losses. I do think that betting who makes the playoffs and who wins it all has some good value picks.
Y0u have to search for the value in anything. I never like to play the #1 favorites of each league because they simply don’t pay enough of an odd. Right now, Bet365.com has the Texas Rangers at +175 to win the AL, or The Yankees at +190. I love these two teams to probably represent the AL in the World Series, however these odds are not good at all. As I list all of the odds for each league first, then the World Series, I will make some notes up. I have two teams in the NL that I have already wagered with and I am coming up roses on them so far. It is time for Gambling 101. Read the rest of this entry
Sunday July 8, 2012
Bryan Sheehan (MLB Writer): The All-Star Break is now upon us, so now is a good time to start looking at stats for the first half of the season. One of the most important statistics in the game of baseball is the “save,” and the mammoth contracts that relievers are signed to every year in free agency are proof that teams are hungry for a strong closer capable of providing saves. In fact, a third of the league’s closers are making at least $4.5 million in 2012, while eight are raking it at least $7 million. This does not include the huge salaries of Ryan Madson ($8.5 million), Mariano Rivera ($15 million), Brian Wilson ($8.5 million) or any other that may have been injured or otherwise removed from their role as closer. But salary does not always equal success: six of the top eleven saves leaders are earning less than $2.75 million (keep in mind that the MLB average is just about $3 million). This top eleven, all of whom have recorded 19 saves or more, is not as predictable as you might think: Heath Bell of the Marlins serves as a surprise member of the list while his NL East counterpart Jonathan Papelbon, while more consistent in terms of ERA and opportunities converted, falls just shy. So who else is on the list? You’ll have to read on to find out. Read the rest of this entry
Monday May 28th, 2012
Peter Stein (Fantasy Baseball Analyst – MLB reports): In this week’s fantasy focus, I take a look at a group of hitter who have improved significantly in one category and as a result have seen a tremendous increase in their overall value. While some of these guys are legit, others should be traded while their value is at a peak. Also, do not miss the “Closer Corner”, as the saves category has been as frustrating and hard to predict as any in 2012.
Martin Prado has always been a serviceable infield option, although now only eligible at third base, due to his ability to hit for average and decent power and production. However, his average took a hit in 2011 (.260) and his career highs in home runs (15) and stolen bases (5) leaves a lot to be desired. In 2012, Prado has made an effort to be more aggressive on the base paths and has already stolen 7 bases in 8 attempts. Even 15 stolen bases would tremendously increase his overall value. I expect him to approach 20, especially as he is getting on base more with an even 21:21 walk to strikeout ratio. His average is a robust .333 (career .297) and his new approach at the plate could have Prado ending the year with a line looking something like this: .310/14/80/20.
After crushing 21 home runs in 2009, Billy Butler has disappointed many owners by hitting 15 and 19 home runs in his follow-up seasons. He is an OPS machine and the power seems to be developing in 2012, as he already has 11 home runs. Due to his size, 240 pounds, people expected the power to develop right away, but we cannot forget that he is only 26 years old. Guys typically do not reach their full power potential until their late twenties. While we know we can expect a .300 average from Butler, is appears that he will at least come close to approaching 30 home runs in 2012. The fact that he hit 13 of his 19 home runs in the final three months of the 2011 season is even more promising for Butler owners. The only discouraging thing about Butler is that he is only eligible at the DH position in most leagues. Read the rest of this entry
Sunday May 6, 2012
Bryan Sheehan (Baseball Writer): Seeing Mariano Rivera go down with a torn ACL is like driving by a car accident and reflecting on how easily it could have been you in that accident, or in this case- how it could have been your team’s closer cringing in pain on the warning track. And this is the year of the injured closer: from Boston’s Andrew Bailey to San Francisco’s Brian Wilson, closers across the league have been dropping like flies. Other closers, like the Angels’ Jordan Walden, have stayed healthy but haven’t played well enough to keep their coveted ninth inning role. Even though there has only been a month of baseball so far, much has changed for some clubs.
Today, I’ll be taking a look at every team’s closer situation, and breaking down how it got to be the way it is: Read the rest of this entry
Wednesday February 29th, 2012
Peter Stein (Fantasy Baseball Analyst – MLB reports): The National League East is filled with many big name fantasy players, particularly the Philadelphia Phillies with their starting rotation and hitters like Howard, Utley, Rollins, Victorino, and Pence. However, this division is intriguing, because teams like the Braves have a plethora of up-and-coming players. Furthermore, scattered throughout the rest of the division are players who have potential to provide sneaky good value. Read the rest of this entry
Wednesday February 22nd, 2012
Sam Evans: Over the last three seasons, Heath Bell has recorded more saves than anyone in baseball. Whenever the Padres had a late-inning lead they could rely on Bell to shut the door. In 2011, Bell got the job done in San Diego once again. He tallied 43 saves in 48 opportunities. Unfortunately, he didn’t pitch in as dominant of a fashion as we are used to seeing from Bell. His strikeout and line drive percentages both were askew from the standards we are used to seeing from him. In 2012, Bell will have to rekindle his previous success, in order to continue his triumph as one of the games premier closers Read the rest of this entry
Thursday December 8, 2011
MLB reports – Jonathan Hacohen: With the Winter Meetings at an end, players/teams/agents are left standing to look over the game of musical chairs and who is left standing. A particularly interesting position was closer- with more eligible players than open positions. In the past few weeks, we have seen many signings and trades in this area. Jonathan Papelbon to the Phillies. Sergio Santos to the Blue Jays. Huston Street to the Padres. Francisco Rodriguez accepted arbitration from the Brewers. Heath Bell to the Marlins. Joe Nathan to the Rangers. Andrew Bailey is openly being discussed in the trade market as leaving the A’s. Frank Francisco and Jon Rauch joined the Mets. As a result, one big name is left standing with no dance partner. Ryan Madson is still on the open market with few promising prospects ahead.
As the story goes, Madson was supposed to re-sign with the Phillies. A reported 4-year, estimated $44 million contract was put on the table by the Phillies early in free agency. Player and agent (Scott Boras) happily accepted and a Philadelphia return was in order. Not so fast. There are conflicting stories on what transpired. Needless to say, there was never a firm deal in place and the Phillies moved quickly to sign the top closer on the free agent market, Jonathan Papelbon. Since then, there has been little discussion on Madson. There have been reports throughout the process linking him to the Jays, Marlins and Red Sox. Well…the first 2 teams have filled their vacancies. The Red Sox have Daniel Bard as the incumbent set-up man who could get a look at the closing position- although he may end up in the rotation. Other than that, there seems to be little hope for Madson.
Last night, Madson chose not to the K-Rod route and accept salary arbitration. As a result, he remains out in the market waiting for his next contract offer. Francisco Cordero is in the same boat, although he is still likely to go back to the Reds on a 1-2 year contract from the whispers around the league. But even if the Reds do not retain Cordero, it is unlikely that they will sign Madson- especially given the young players they still need to lock-up to extensions. So what other options exist for Madson? Perhaps the Orioles. Maybe the Rays. The options are getting bleak.
This is one of the few times that you will see Scott Boras caught “with his pants down” so to speak. For an agent that is well known to be able to create and stimulate markets and demands for his clients, Boras has come up short for Madson. The perception is that the Phillies did what was best for them in signing Papelbon, which left Boras outraged and in a bind. With little to no teams looking for closers, Boras essentially only has the Red Sox to work with. At this point, he may need to take a 1-2 year deal for Madson, in the $7-10 million range to rebuild his value and try again on the open market in the future. A risky proposition, but with few options- Madson may have no other choice.
I was actually quite surprised that Madson didn’t take the Phillies offer of arbitration. Based on his stellar 2011 numbers, he could have expected a strong 1-year contract at least. Now Boras and Madson are left to take their chances on the open market. For a closer with only 1 full year on the job, time is not on Madson’s side. A proven closer like Francisco Cordero knows that he find a contract soon. Heck, even K-Rod knows that he just needs another solid season under his belt and his next deal will follow shortly after. Madson was in line for his first and only big payday this offseason. If he gets hurt or becomes ineffective in 2012, that dream vanishes. Scott Boras better work overtime to get the Red Sox biting on his closer client. Otherwise, it may not turn out to be a very Merry Christmas in the Madson household this year.
Jonathan Hacohen is the Lead Baseball Columnist & Editor for MLB reports: You can follow Jonathan on Twitter (@JHacohen)
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