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Yankees Off-Season Outlook: Big Shoes To Fill For Jeter, But How Do They?

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By Nicholas Delahanty (MLB Reports Writer)  

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The 2015 off-season is very important for the New York Yankees, as they have a lot of major questions surrounding their current roster. With an aging roster and the return of recently reinstated Alex Rodriguez, the Yankees have some holes to fix, but those issues might not be their biggest concern this off-season.

We all knew the time would come, but no one was ready to start talking about how the Yankees would replace Derek Jeter. Jeter leaves very big shoes to fill in the Bronx, and the Yankees must try their best to find a successor who can not only handle the pressures of New York, but also can step up and produce.

Filling the void might be difficult at first, as past experiences have shown that Yankee fans are very impatient when it comes to replacing some of the best to wear the Yankee pinstripes.  The only legitimate shortstop on the roster, Brendan Ryan, won’t be the Yankees everyday shortstop in 2015, so the Bronx Bombers must go through the trade market or free agency to fill a void that right now is larger than life. 

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THE LONG BALL In 2014 MLB: TOP 5 HRs AL/NL + Who Will Win The HR Titles?

Chris Carter is the biggest mover and shaker this week, and is leading the Majors in bombs since May 09.  He has fashioned his bolts in a short amount of time by having Multi HR Games, and also coupling it with consecutive streaks.  This guy is looking like a keeper for Houston, and may be one of the guys that got away from Billy Beane!

Chris Carter iis leading the Majors in bombs since May 09 – with 28 big flies and 66 RBI during that time frame in just 305 AB. He has fashioned his bolts in a short amount of time by having Multi HR Games, and also coupling it with consecutive streaks. This guy is looking like a keeper for Houston, and may be one of the guys that got away from Billy Beane.  The massive DH/1B/OF burned his old squad last night by drilling a 3 run bomb in the bottom of the 8th inning to give the Astros a 4 – 2 win. The victory knocked Oakland out of 1st place.  I think he will win the HR title in the AL now. Wouldn’t that be something if he won that, in addition to Jose Altuve possibly winning the Batting title?

THE LONG BALL In 2014

TOP 5 HRs AL/NL,

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For Games Played Through Aug 26, 2014

Chris Carter… we have been preaching this man’s name at this website for years.  Our founder and former lead writer Jonathan told me about this man 3 years ago.

When he was traded by Billy Beane, Jonathan explained it would be a deal that he will regret.  Now with the A’s lacking some firepower, and Jed Lowrie on the shelf, plus having an off year, the Astros are looking good in this one.

I have also pointed out the A’s GM forced the Astros to go over their roster limit – exposing Nate Freiman for him to pluck as a Rule 5 Draft right after, however it is hard to argue the “Moneyball” man may end up on the wrong side of this deal long-term.

It would behoove Oakland to have Freiman see more Plate Appearances.  The big 6 ft 7 behemoth clubs 3 HRs in 2 games in Atlanta – and then rides pine for 4 games in the next week.

That is a blog for another time.

We are talking about Chris Carter.  This big man was once an afterthought in Houston this year, despite bombing 29 jacks in 2013.  Bo Porter was taking flak for having CC still in the lineup back in May when he was hitting about ..153 with 4 HRs as of May 9th.

Since that day, he has crushed 28 HRs and added 64 RBI.in his last 302 AB.  This represents about half of a season, and this guy has been completely on fire. Read the rest of this entry

How All Of The A’s Pitchers Were Acquired: Lots Of Depth Even For 2015 Without Breaking The Bank!

Part of the lure in acquiring Samardzija was that he had 1 year left of Arbitration.  He will likely cost in the $12 - 15 MIL range for 2015.  He tops the list of several A's players that will be ARB eligible in 2015 like Moss, Donaldson, Cook, Parker, Jaso, Reddick and Gentry.  While the club is going for it in 2014, there unloading of Cespdes's $10.5 MIL 2015 salary will be used to pay these guys raises.  Some of the club will be traded or released.  The A's should still have about $25 MIL to spend on 7 or 8 guys next year.  Their $95 MIL payroll in 2014 is their highest ever recorded for any one year.

Part of the lure in acquiring Samardzija was that he had 1 year left of Arbitration. He will likely cost in the $12 – 15 MIL range for 2015. He tops the list of several A’s players that will be ARB eligible in 2015 like Moss, Donaldson, Cook, Parker, Jaso, Reddick and Gentry. While the club is going for it in 2014, their unloading of Cespdes’s $10.5 MIL 2015 salary will be used to pay these guys raises for next year, which should ensure them of another chance to compete for it all.. The Pitching Staff will remain almost intact, with losing just Lester, Hammel and Gregerson, while 12 guys are still under Team control, and 3 more guys with lots of MLB experience are in Sacramento waiting for a callup.

How All Of The A’s Pitchers Were Acquired:

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

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Billy Beane has assembled quite the Pitching Staff for his 2014 final playoff push despite having both Jarrod Parker and A.J. Griffin out for the year with Tommy John Surgery.

Sonny GrayA.J. Griffin and Sean Doolittle (although he was drafted as a hitter) are the only active pitchers on their staff that are homegrown products.

Jon Lester was acquired with Yoenis Cespedes (who signed as an International Free Agent.

Much like the hitters, the ‘Moneyball GM’ has wheeled and dealt until he put together one of the best run prevention teams in the game baseball.

Bringing in Jeff Samardzija and Jason Hammel cost the team 2 young prospects and Dan Straily, all of whom were team draft picks. Read the rest of this entry

How All Of The A’s Hitters Were Acquired: 2014 Roster Tree Shows Incredible Beane Trading Record

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How All Of The Athletics Hitters Were Acquired:

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

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Truthfully this blog took me forever to do the research for, simply because the A’s GM Billy Beane has been so proactive at the trading helm.

From flipping Mark Mulder several years ago which fetched Dan Haren as part of the haul, to the massive deal with Dan Haren sent to the D’Backs, he added enough depth to pull off several other moves.

Yes, along the way he may have been burned by Colorado for Carlos Gonzalez, but in a the Dbacks deal still is paying off.

The Roster deals include several Oakland draft picks being flipped for current A’s.

Nick Swisher was traded for Gio Gonzalez, who in turn the club can thank for the Catching tandem of Derek Norris and John Jaso as assets received from Swisher initially.

Jaso was brought back in a 3 way deal from Washington, where the A’s sent the SP back to the team they traded Gio Gonzalez for.

Ryan Sweeney (another player brought in for the Swisher) was packaged with Andrew Bailey to obtain Josh Reddick. Read the rest of this entry

MLB Reports Top 100 MLB Prospects In Mid – 2014 (1 – 50)

The Cubs have 4 players in our top 50 prospect lists, and are stockpiling an impressive arsenal of young talent at the Minor League Level, and some players have already seeped into the Major Leagues.  If most of these guys pan out, the Cubs will be a force to be reckoned with in the not too distant future!

The Cubs at tied for 1st in having  5 players in our top 50 prospect list (3 in the top 12), and are stockpiling an impressive arsenal of young talent at the Minor League Level, and some players have already seeped into the Major Leagues. If most of these guys pan out, the Cubs will be a force to be reckoned with in the not too distant future!

Top 100 Prospects (1 – 50)

 

Jordan Gluck (Baseball Operations Analyst): 

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To make this list you must be able to meet rookie eligibility. To be eligible for a list, a player must have rookie eligibility.

To qualify for rookie status, a player must not have exceeded 130 at-bats or 50 innings pitched in the Major Leagues, or accumulated more than 45 days on the active roster of a Major League club or clubs during the 25-player limit period, excluding time on the disabled list or in military service.

This list doesn’t include players in the 2014 Draft nor the 2014 international signing period.

For Part 2 of our list – Click the Link Below

MLB Reports Top 100 Prospects In Mid – 2014 (51 – 100)

Read the rest of this entry

How All Of The Red Sox Hitters Were Acquired: 2014 Roster Tree – Updated For Cespedes + Craig + Johnson Deals

David Ortiz is incredible based on the consistent numbers he has put forth since everyone thought his career was winding down several years ago.  The 38 Year Old DH continues to bash homers, win games, and now with a flurry of trades, the organization has given him some reinforcements.

David Ortiz is incredible based on the consistent numbers he has put forth since everyone thought his career was winding down several years ago. The 38 Year Old DH continues to bash homers, win games, and now with a flurry of trades, the organization has given him some reinforcements in the 1 -9 lineup for a few years.

How All Of The Red Sox Hitters Were Acquired:

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

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The Boston Red Sox are smart enough to realize a retool was in order.

To kickstart the festivities, the club made a pair of moves that includes Jon Lester and Jonny Gomes to Oakland for Cuban OF Yoenis Cespedes, followed by dealing Jon Lackey to the Cardinals for 1B/OF Allen Craig and SP Joe Kelly.

These deals have helped the Red Sox be better balanced on offense, and has freed up roster spots for their young prospects to thrive.  Read the rest of this entry

Oakland A’s Payroll In 2014 + Contracts Going FWD: Updated For Trade Deadline Deals

Part of the lure in acquiring Samardzija was that he had 1 year left of Arbitration.  He will likely cost in the $12 - 15 MIL range for 2015.  He tops the list of several A's players that will be ARB eligible in 2015 like Moss, Donaldson, Cook, Parker, Jaso, Reddick and Gentry.  While the club is going for it in 2014, there unloading of Cespdes's $10.5 MIL 2015 salary will be used to pay these guys raises.  Some of the club will be traded or released.  The A's should still have about $25 MIL to spend on 7 or 8 guys next year.  Their $95 MIL payroll in 2014 is their highest ever recorded for any one year.

Part of the lure in acquiring Samardzija was that he had 1 year left of Arbitration. He will likely cost in the $12 – 15 MIL range for 2015. He tops the list of several A’s players that will be ARB eligible in 2015 like Moss, Donaldson, Cook, Parker, Jaso, Reddick and Gentry. While the club is going for it in 2014, there unloading of Cespdes’s $10.5 MIL 2015 salary will be used to pay these guys raises. Some of the club will be traded or released. The A’s should still have about $25 MIL to spend on 7 or 8 guys next year. Their $95 MIL projected payroll in 2014 is their highest ever recorded for any one year.

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

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Wow.  What a roster that has been assembled by Billy Beane in the last 30 days or so.

Make no bones about it, the reason the Money Ball GM was able to this was one from depth strength – coupled with being the master of financial flexibility.

We all know that the A’s have shied away from giving long term pitching contracts, or heck, from lucrative long contracts to positional players.

Ever since the team offered Jermaine Dye a big deal at the time, only to see his production fall off, then to be resurrected in other uniforms, did the management learn to ply their craft.

The team also doled out megabucks for Eric Chavez after that, then to watch him suffer through countless injuries.

Players like Nick Swisher, Miguel Tejada, Johnny Damon, Tim Hudson, Barry Zito, Mark Mulder have left the nest to make fortunes in other locations.

Beane made off like a bandit dealing Rich Harden before he eventually broke down.  Oh yeah, the GM received Josh Donaldson for that trade.

It has been a brass that sees about 50 roster transactions every year.  The key is to always sell high, and mix in the right amount of Free Agent veterans.

All of that ‘baseball rounding’ afforded the “Moneyball” GM to go for it this year. Read the rest of this entry

Beane Spins Magic Again In World Series Quest: Picks Up Samardzija + Hammel For Straily + Prospects

Billy Beane - and the Athletics have seen their team post the best record in the MLB during the regular season for the last 2 years (190 Wins). The franchise has completed the most incredible amount of wins per dollar spent. Enough so, that they should really come out with the movie MoneyBall 2. Beane has been awesome in acquiring his Bullpen for 2014 - without surrendering any assets from the MLB club currently (with Dan Straily having been in AAA). the A's GM has made his move to anchor the Starting Rotation for a playoff run, by adding Samardija and Hammel. Addison Russell (20) was a high prospect, as was Billy Mckinney (19) as the 1st RD Draft Pick of the 2013 MLB Amateur Draft.  With the team's core becoming increasingly more expensive going forwards, the window to win is right now.  The trade also helps deepen the starting staff, who have suffered season ending injuries to Griffin and Parker (Tj Surgeries).

Without surrendering any assets from the MLB club currently (with Dan Straily having been in AAA). the A’s GM has made his move to anchor the Starting Rotation for a playoff run, by adding Samardija and Hammel.  Going the other way are: Addison Russell (20) was a high prospect, as was Billy Mckinney (19) as the 1st RD Draft Pick of the 2013 MLB Amateur Draft, Dan Straily and cash compensation, or a PTBNL. With the team’s core becoming increasingly more expensive going forwards, the window to win is right now. The trade also helps deepen the starting staff, who have suffered season ending injuries to Griffin and Parker (TJ Surgeries).

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

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Billy Beane knows his current squad’s best chance to win the World Series now.

He has upped the ante, by acquiring  Jeff Samardzija and Jason Hammel from the Chicago Cubs for highly rated SS Addison Russell, SP Dan Straily, and young prospect OF Billy McKinney, with a player to be named later or cash finalizing the deal at a later date.

I like this move…rather I love this move.

The A’s GM saw what happened to his club the last few weeks when matched against the pitching of the Tigers, and knew he had to bolster his team for the stretch – to replace A.J. Griffin and Jarrod Parker, who both went down to Tommy John Surgeries this campaign. Read the rest of this entry

30 MLB Team Power Rankings: Week 11 MLB 2014

battle of the bay

Hunter Stokes (Chief Writer): 

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Well, another few weeks have gone by, and there has been some separation from all the Divisions and the 2nd place squads, except for the NL East dogfight right now between the Nats and Braves.

9 teams are within the top 2 Wild Card Slots in the AL, with the Angels and Mariners holding onto the 1st and 2nd spots respectively.

Preseason NL favorites Los Angeles joins the reigning NL champs ‘The Cards’ at 0.5 Games behind the playoff bar – constituting either Atlanta or Washington (presently in a dead heat) – and the upstart Marlins. 

The Reds, Rockies and Pirates are within striking distance as well, but look for the Dodgers and Cardinals to take off from here, leaving the current Division leaders and those 2 as the 5 playoff teams.

Arizona and Houston have at least jumped into the conversation with recent good stretches of play, after brutal starts.

*** Denotes Division Leaders

Records are before play Monday June 9, 2014

RK Team  Current Rec  Last Wk Rnk  ()  –  Last 13 Days Rec

***1. SF 42 – 21: (1) 9 – 3:  Must be an even year in the teens of this century.  The offense has a different hero everyday.

Playing .667 ball this late into the year bodes well.  9.5 Games ahead of next club in your Division also will land you as slot #1.

***2. OAK 39 – 24: (2) 8 – 4: Brandon Moss and Josh Donaldson both towers of strength and Sean Doolittle is the best Closer no one has heard about 40+SO/1 BB rate is sick.

Billy Beane continues to find gems like Drew Pomeranz, Jesse Chavez – and Kyle Blanks has fitted in well.

The team could still trade for a 2B that can hit, or bring up Billy Burns, flip Jed Lowrie over to 2B.

Read the rest of this entry

Sully Baseball Daily Podcast – April 21, 2014

David Manning-USA TODAY Sports

David Manning-USA TODAY Sports


Unwritten rules, managerial decisions and not trying to score runs.

A lot of stuff is getting me worked up today!

That and more on today’s episode of The Sully Baseball Daily Podcast..

Rick Porcello, Josh Donaldson, Ryan Howard, Homer Bailey, Troy Tulowitzki, Adam Jones and Gerrit Cole  all added to their totals for Who Owns Baseball.

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Oakland Athletics Roster In 2014: How All Of The Pitchers Were Acquired

Jarrod Parker is out for the year with  Tommy John Surgery.  You are talking about a guy that was 25 - 16 with a 3.68 ERA over the last 2 years combined.  He has top of the rotation stuff and will be greatly missed.  The A's also had a TJ scare with A.J. Griffin, but it has been downgraded to an elbow strain for now.  Parker was traded for by the Athletics in a major package sent to Oakland - including Chris Carter< Carlos Gonzalez and Ryan Cook for Starter Dan Haren.  The club still has many of the components left as assets from that very deal. While it is bad Parker is out in 2014, he will be back.

Jarrod Parker is out for the year with Tommy John Surgery. You are talking about a guy that was 25 – 16 with a 3.68 ERA over the last 2 years combined. He has top of the rotation stuff and will be greatly missed. The A’s also had a TJ scare with A.J. Griffin, but it has been downgraded to an elbow strain for now. Parker was traded for by the Athletics in a major package sent to Oakland with Collin Cowgill and  Ryan Cook for Starter Trevor Cahill. The club still has Parker and Cahill.  While it is bad Parker is out in 2014, he will be back. Cahill has been ineffective for the D’backs in 2014 – with a 9.17 ERA and an MLB leading 4 losses.

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

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I just finished writing an article about how Billy Beane was smart not to have signed Barry Zito, Mark Mulder and Tim Hudson to extensions here.

You really wont find him do this anytime soon with any of his chuckers.

The Scott Kazmir deal is the one he likes to do.  It is simple as to why the man operates like this.  He doesn’t have to give up any assets in the process.

Beane is a “Baseball Rounder”.

It is not unlike him to do manage 50 – 60 transactions per year.  He was won more than he has lost – whether it is Free Agency or trades.  His ballclub has the best record in the Majors since the start of play in 2012 – at 200 – 144 (.581 baseball).

We will go through the Pitching First, and then the hitting by the weekend. Read the rest of this entry

Billy Beane’s Decision To Not Extend Mulder, Zito And Hudson Was The Right One: Money Ball At Its Best

Billy Beane will never spend a king's ransom for Pitchers on long-term deals or for big $$ because of injuries like Tommy John crippling your salary infrastructure for the whole time a player may be out.  Especially with smaller market teams, having too much invested with your pitchers can be catastrophic.  Even though Jarrod Parker is out for the year with TJ surgery, and A.J. Griffin may not be out of the wood for it either, the club is not hampered long-term financially by their injuries.  It hurts yes, but not as much as it could have.  He was forced into realizing the effects from losing Mulder, Zito and Hudson because the team couldn't afford to re-sign them.  But as you will read, it was a blessing.

Billy Beane will never spend a king’s ransom for Pitchers on long-term deals or for big $$ because of injuries like Tommy John crippling your salary infrastructure for the whole time a player may be out. Especially with smaller market teams, having too much invested with your pitchers can be catastrophic. Even though Jarrod Parker is out for the year with TJ surgery, and A.J. Griffin may not be out of the woods for it either, the club is not hampered long-term financially by their injuries. It hurts yes, but not as much as it could have. He was forced into realizing the effects from losing Mulder, Zito and Hudson because the team couldn’t afford to re-sign them a decade ago. But as you will read, it was a blessing in disguise.

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

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This has been an organization that has thrived on brilliant drafting of young arms. But in saying that. Billy Beane is a manager that will never throw out big dollars to retain Starting Pitching once the club has past the Team Controllable years.

In the early 2000’s, the team featured three ace pitchers in Barry Zito, Tim Hudson and Mark Mulder

Billy Beane had to let each of them leave Oakland (in the winters of 2004 – Hudson/Mulder, and 2006 winter – Zito) because they couldn’t pay them the kind of dollars needed to secure them long term.

It was a decision that looked dire to start with while the team struggled from 2007 – 2011, but it also paved the way for a new run at AL West Division supremacy from 2012 to current.

Lets take another look at the decision on how it has worked out since then. Read the rest of this entry

Houston Astros Roster In 2014 Part 1: How All Of The Hitters Were Acquired

The Astros decided to rebuild a few years ago  In doing so they traded away Lance Berkman, Roy Oswalt, Hunter Pence, Carlos Lee, at first, and then have since also traded Bud Norris, Jed Lowrie, Jordan Lyles and Brandon Barnes.  Many of the transactions have given the team many of its current roster today, with many of the players also with the organization - while hardly any of the departing guys are with the team that dealt for them.  Today is the 1st part of a 2 parter seeing how the current club was assembled by the Astros.

The Astros decided to rebuild a few years ago In doing so they traded away Lance Berkman, Roy Oswalt, Hunter Pence, Carlos Lee, at first, and then have since also traded Bud Norris, Jed Lowrie, Jordan Lyles and Brandon Barnes. Many of the transactions have given the team many of its current roster today, with many of the players also with the organization – while hardly any of the departing guys are with the team that dealt for them. Today is the 1st part of a 2 parter seeing how the current club was assembled by the Astros.

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

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At the MLB Reports, we intend to show you the Roster Tree for the Houston Astros – 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.

Sometimes pitchers will be in the hitters part of the write-up and vice versa.  This is simply done when one side of hitter or pitcher is dealt for each other.  Read the rest of this entry

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

The Top Remaining Free Agents Left In The MLB 2014 Season + The Rest

Hunter Stokes (Chief Writer): 

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With the latest signings (by Baltimore) of Nelson Cruz and Ubaldo Jimenez, there is now just 3 Free Agents who come with the price tag of your 1st RD pick (or 1st available pick if you have been busy already this winter).

SS Stephen Drew is still on the open market despite several rumors about the Big Apple,  DH/1B Kendrys Morales is on the board, with teams dwindling in interest, and SP Ervin Santana rounds out the list.

Agents of these gentlemen are now threatening to hold out their players until after the MLB Amateur Draft (when the Draft Pick is no longer forfeited), in order to turn the leverage back to their guys.

I am not sure that is such a great idea, particularly in the cases of the hitters, who are not likely to warrant more than 3 year deals apiece. Read the rest of this entry

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

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

Read the rest of this entry

Houston Astros State Of The Union Address: Fall 2013

From 1992 - 2006, Houston was one of the best franchises in the games of baseball, not having one losing season in that time span.  They won 4 Division Titles, 8 2nd place finishes, and appeared in 6 playoffs.  After being swept in the 2005 World Series, the core got old, and the team waited too long to rebuild.  Once it was time, the management actually did a smart thing in totally gutting the entire franchise, in order to restock the Minor League System.

From 1992 – 2006, Houston was one of the best franchises in the games of baseball, not having one losing season in that time span. They won 4 Division Titles, 8 – 2nd place finishes, and appeared in 6 playoffs. After being swept in the 2005 World Series, the core got old, and the team waited too long to rebuild. Once it was time, the management actually did a smart thing in totally gutting the entire franchise, in order to restock the Minor League System.  Now with 3 105+ Loss seasons, and back to back 1st overall picks, the team has begun the process.  An ownership changed mirrored the last transference of all the remaining Veterans from the previous regime.  How long will it take for the Astros to compete again?

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

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The Astros had one of the easiest years to peg down in the game of baseball for 2013.

They were horrible early, traded away every possible Veteran that were making any kind of cash on the Major League Level, and then proceeded to be even worse after the ALL – Star Game.

The worst part of the campaign was left for the end, where they promptly lost their last 15 games – to finish with a record of 51 – 111.

It was their 3rd straight 100+ Loss season.  But overlooking the obvious is that they actual drew a few more fans in 2013 – compared to 2012.

That was more a symptom of the club moving to the American League.  At least they were not last in the league for Attendance, like payroll.

Read the rest of this entry

How All Of The Red Sox Hitters Were Acquired Onto The Roster + Analysis: Fall 2013

Ben Cherington pulled off the biggest salary dump in MLB History in 2012, with his clearing the deck of Gonzalez, Crawford and Beckett.  He replaced them with saavy, playoff tested Veterans - on lower value, and year contracts.  His club won the 2013 AL East with the revamped squad - that improved almost 30 Wins from 2012.

Ben Cherington pulled off the biggest salary dump in MLB History in 2012, with his clearing the deck of Gonzalez, Crawford and Beckett. He replaced them with saavy, playoff tested Veterans – on lower value, and year contracts. His club won the 2013 AL East with the revamped squad – that improved almost 30 Wins from 2012.  So how did the entire roster of hitters all come to be Boston Red Sox Property?   We will now tell you.

How All Of The Red Sox Hitters Were Acquired:

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

At the MLB Reports, we intend to show you the Roster Tree for the Boston Red Sox – 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 Hitters.

For all of the Rosters, Depth Charts, State of the Unions and Salaries that we do, please visit our dedicated page link here.

David Ortiz Talks Up The Boston Crowd After The Boston Tragedy – Warning:  Explicit Word Used – Parental Discretion Is Advised

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2013 MLB Playoff Predictions By MLB Reports

In my view, Evan Longoria could end up being the MVP of the entire playoffs.  I am predicting the Tampa Bay Rays are going to win the World Series versus the LA Dodgers, in what should be a classic Pitching duel of some of the best Starters in the game of baseball today.  Wil Myers and Ben Zobrist help pitching in will also be Paramount.  Picking up proven playoff performer Delmon Young (HR'd last night - and is .266/.328/.887 - with 9 HRs and 16 RBI In 109 AB was also a good move by the Rays brass.  If these guys hit, the Pitching should do enough.

In my view, Evan Longoria could end up being the MVP of the entire playoffs – with his penchant for being clutch in the last games of years. I am predicting the Tampa Bay Rays are going to win the World Series versus the LA Dodgers, iIf Wil Myers and Ben Zobrist help bashing the ball around, then this team is scary. Also picking up proven playoff performer Delmon Young (yes that guy) (HR’d last night – and is .266/.328/.887 – with 9 HRs and 16 RBI In 109 AB) was also a good move by the Rays brass. If these guys hit, the Pitching should do enough.

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

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Okay, now that the Wild Card Games are over, I am 2 – 1 this week in predicting the outcomes of games.  I had both Rays wins and lost with the Reds.

For those that have been reading my gambling pick posts, will also see that I have been discussing some of the odds posted for the playoffs.  Check out those here.

I am not going with the masses this year, however I am picking 2 favorites and 2 underdogs in the 1st Round. 

Really, I think the matchups are a lot more even than even some of the biggest betting industry odds are suggesting.

I may have also taken the Athletics all the way to the World Series if Cespedes wasn’t hampered by his injured Right Shoulder.

Yoenis Cespedes HR Derby Mashing

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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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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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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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30 MLB Team Power Rankings: Audio Version

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Monday, Aug.12, 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. Chuck Booth will guest once a month for MLB Power Rankings,

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

Patrick sits in as the Producer and only representative of the Big Ticket Show – and Chuck Booth joins him to break down all 30 current rankings, plus what the clubs are up to.

To listen to the audio for this Click the READ THE REST OF THIS ENTRY logo or past the Triple Play Logo. 

If you want the written version of these rankings click here Read the rest of this entry

MLB 30 Team Power Rankings: Week 20

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Sunday Aug.11/2013

Texas has fought off a July slump - and are 9 - 1 in their last 10 games.  They have added reinforcements in the way of Alex Rios and Matt Garza.  If they can just hold the course - and win the AL West, they have the horses and experience to challenge every other team.  The club was the biggest mover upwards in our rankings this week - going from #10 - #4

Texas has fought off a July slump – and are 9 – 1 in their last 10 games. They have added reinforcements in the way of Alex Rios and Matt Garza. If they can just hold the course – and win the AL West, they have the horses and experience to challenge every other team in October. The club was the biggest mover upwards in our rankings this week – going from #10 – #4.  It was not too long ago that the Rangers were sitting at just a half – dozen games above .500 – and behind the playoff bar.

Audio Version Of These Power Rankings

Audio Monthly Rankings – Aug

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 in the NL are becoming less competitive every week.  The NL East and NL West look to be done.  The Pirates are within weeks of ending a 20 year playoff drought.

The Braves rattled off a 14 game winning streak – and should cruise to the NL East crown.

The Athletics are in big trouble with some of their talented offensive players not putting up numbers like they did in 2012.  They now find themselves in 2nd place in the AL West.

Adrian Beltre 2 HR day in July

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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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Athletics’ Are Putting Distance Between Themselves And The AL West

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Wednesday, July.31, 2013

Bartolo Colon is anchoring the rotation for the Athletics this season. he is one of the mnay reasons why they have jumped out to huge division lead this season. He has already won 14 games for them this season to go along with an ERA of 2.54 in 141.2 innings pitched. He is not the strikeout pitcher he was in the past, but is still effective against the opposition. Colon has displayed great control this season by only walking 18 batters and he has a 1.09 WHIP. He is 4th with a WAR of 4.5 for pitchers in the AL. He is also 2nd in the AL with Win-Loss percentage of.824

Bartolo Colon is anchoring the rotation for the Athletics this season. He is one of the many reasons why they have jumped out to huge division lead this season. He has already won 14 games for them this season to go along with an ERA of 2.54 in 141.2 innings pitched. He is not the strikeout pitcher he was in the past, but is still effective against opposing batters. Colon has displayed great control this season by only walking 18 batters and has a 1.09 WHIP. He is 4th in the AL with a WAR of 4.5 for pitchers . He is also 2nd in the AL with Win-Loss percentage of.824 to include him throwing three shutouts this season.

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

For the most of this season in baseball it seemed like the Oakland Athletics were going to have some competition in the American League West Division.

The Texas Rangers were expected to challenge them for the division title, but that is not the case this season. Oakland has a five game lead over the Rangers with more than two months left in the baseball season.

2012 Oakland A’s Highlights – Parental Guidance Is Advised

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How All Of The Nats Players Were Acquired: (Trade, Signed, Drafted, Waiver Wire) + Analysis

How All Of The Washington Nationals Players Were Acquired:

Strasburg and Harper are the franchises future.  Through drafting and smart trades, the club is now considered one of the best talented clubs in the MLB as of now.  Despite dealing with several injuries this current 2013 season - the future is definitely bright in DC

Strasburg and Harper are the franchises future. Through drafting and smart trades, the club is now considered one of the best talented clubs in the MLB as of now. Despite dealing with several injuries this current 2013 season – the future is definitely bright in DC.  The club has strong pitching in the Major Leagues – with some help coming  for more years to come.  They have potential ALL – Stars in almost every position.  Lets see how all of the players were acquired.

Tuesday July.23/2013

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

At the MLB Reports, we intend to show you the Roster Tree for the Washington Nationals – 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.

The Rise of the Nationals

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2 And A Hook Podcast #10: All Star Chat, Yankees, Dbacks + Trade Deadline Talk

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Friday, July.12, 2013

MLB reports and The Benchwarmers Show present 2 and A Hook Podcast

MLB reports and The Benchwarmers Show present 2 and A Hook Podcast.

‘2 And A Hook’ is an expression from Baseball:  ‘Throw the guy 2 Fast balls and then a Hook’ (AKA Curve Ball, Wiggly one, Chair etc..)

By James Acevedo – Host (Podcast Veteran )

Guests On The Show

Im back & ready after being off during the 4th of July week to give you all another baseball packed podcast. On today’s show, brought to you by MLB Reports ( www.mlbreports.com ) & yours truly The Bench Warmers Show.

I star by paying respect to the great Yankee Stadium PA announcer Bob Sheppard on the 3 year anniversary to the day that he passed away…

I talk to the boss man Chuck Booth as he returns to do his segment!  16 Minutes in and a 31 Minute Segment

Chuck makes some notions about the New York Yankees and Brian Cashman needing to risk it all for this year – for the legacies of Derek Jeter, Andy Pettitte, Mariano Rivera and Robinson Cano.  Plus whether the club can trade Joba Chamberlain and Phil Hughes – and maybe acquire a bat. Read the rest of this entry

Top MLB Teams 1 – 30: Monthly Rankings + (Top 200 Stats For Reading And Fantasy Baseball)

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Thursday July.11/2013

The Giants have gone 9 - 23 in their last 32 Games and are in danger of having a brutal campaign just one year after capturing the World Series.  Key injuries and overlogged pitchers have been the main point of contention. They lost 8 Ranking Spots.

The Giants have gone 9 – 23 in their last 32 Games – and are in danger of having a brutal campaign just one year after capturing the World Series. Key injuries and overlogged pitchers have been the main point of contention. They lost 8 Ranking Spots this past time.  Should they also become sellers at the Trade Deadline,  Tim Lincecum and Hunter Pence could fetch a few players in return.  The Giants are currently 40 – 50 and 6.5 Games behind the NL West Leading DBACKS – but are in last in the NL West.

 

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

The time has come for the July Power Rankings with Stats Edition.  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 these 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 or scroll past the video and picture.

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