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Sunday, June.09, 2013
Guests in this Podcast – Thomas Aaron Roberts (25 Minute Mark and a 17 Min Segment) (Former MLB Reports Dodgers Correspondent and 1 of 7 MLB FanCave Dwellers left in New York) Follow @bertsball
Richard Perez (www.strosbros.mlblogs.com and 1 of our 3 Astros Correspondents from there – (4 Minutes in and a 20 Minute Segment) Follow @yokorick
Guys (Frank and Carmen) from the @mydopehatgame (44 Minutes In and a 10 Minute Segment) Follow @mydopehatgame
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Friday November 23th, 2012
Note from Alex Mednick: I am going to be putting together a small project that accumulates all the best players of all time, and puts them together on teams according to their birthplace. For example, in this first edition I will be breaking down players from the United States of America into teams from the 1) Northeast, 2) Southeast, 3) Midwest, and 4) Southwest…(sorry, there really is not enough quality coming out of the northwest to compete with these teams…maybe I will put a Northwestern United States team in a later edition with less competitive teams). Later on I will bring you teams assembled from the all-time greats out Central and South American (Mexico, Venezuela, Panama, Panama Canal Zone, etc.) and the All-Caribbean Team (Dominican Republic, Cuba, Puerto Rico, Curacao, etc). Also look forward to teams from Japan, Canada and the EU. Should be fun to sort of assemble an “Olympics” of Baseball. I love watching the World Baseball Classic and seeing players fight for their nations pride…but by grouping the teams by region, it might make the teams more competitive. Of course, this is all for the sake of speculation; Babe Ruth was a great player, but I don’t think he will be taking any at-bat’s soon. (Also, please note that I do not lend consideration to relief pitchers in this analysis). Read the rest of this entry
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): Follow @chuckbooth3024
In sifting through 35 years of history with the Toronto Blue Jays as a franchise, it is sad that since 1994, only Pittsburgh, Toronto and Kansas City have not made a playoff appearance in the Major Leagues. They have been battling the Red Sox and Yankees powerhouse clubs since the 1994 player strike/1995 Lock-out. This baseball interruption of play was also a deciding factor on the Montreal Expos losing their franchise, however one could say that this has had a profound effect on the other only team North of The Border. The Jays were a model franchise all the way through the 80′s. From 1983-1993, the team carried out 11 straight winning seasons, 5 Pennants and back to back World Series Wins in 1992 and 1993.
Pat Gillick had been with the baseball club from the get go, and after finishing in dead-last for the first 5 years of existence, the Jays rode the backs of several budding stars that were drafted by the man. From the early pitching stars of Jim Clancy and Dave Stieb, to the young outfield that flourished as a core for years in: Lloyd Moseby, George Bell and Jesse Barfield, the team showed that drafting and trading for young players was the way to build an organization. It took until 1985 for the teams first Pennant, barely edging the Yankees by 2 games for the AL East. Playoff disappointment followed from 1985-1991. The team soon would find the promised land as the top team in 1992 and 1993.
Franchise History Part 2 1994-2012:
For Part 6 of the 7 Part Series: Blue Jays 2013 Team Payroll Click here:
For Part 7 of the 7 Part Series: Blue Jays 2013 Team Payroll: A Readers Thoughts, Click Here:
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
Chuck Booth (Lead Baseball Writer): Follow @chuckbooth3024
I am pleased to always write about a player that has appeared one of my #UnheraldedAwarenessWeeks on Twitter. For those that don’t know what that is, every week I pick a retired player and a current player to talk about and share info, stats, stories and funny anecdotes about. Marco Scutaro was one of those players in September. My buddy Patrick (who hosts a PODCAST I do MLB Expert Interviews on called ‘The Big Ticket Show‘) was the first one to say this signing was good. I did remember that Scutaro was able to plate a 100 runs for the Jays in 2009 despite only playing in 144 games and also provided solid offense out of the Shortstop Position. He was hitting in low .300′s at the time of the trade on July.27 to the San Francisco Giants from the Rockies. I wasn’t as sold on the guy heading to AT &T Park to play half of his games at home. I quickly came on board when he started tearing it up in his 1st week as a Giant. Boy did I ever turn out to be wrong with him batting in San Francisco too, where he hit .352 in 33 games at AT &T Park in 2012. That is an incredible average for what is one of the toughest parks on player averages in the Major Leagues!
Scutaro ended up being the best trade deadline acquisition in the Major Leagues this year. Not only did he hit .339 in the second half, he also hit .402 in the month of September and the last 3 games of the regular season in October. After going 0-12 in the 1st 3 games against Cincinnati in the NLDS, Scutaro has put a 9 game hitting streak together-and he had 6 multi-hit games in the NLCS en-route to being named the NLCS MVP. He has pivotal game changing hits in Game #2 (where he also got run into by a hard and controversial slide by Matt Holiday before leaving) and in Games 6 and 7. Scutaro tied and LCS record by recording 14 hits in 28 AB for a .500 Average. while scoring 7 runs. The man has also contributed solid defense at second base, a position the Giants have struggled to fill since Jeff Kent left almost a decade ago. Read the rest of this entry
Chuck Booth (Lead Baseball Writer and @chuckbooth3024 on twitter)- As the world of Twitter and Facebook has invaded the internet these days, I am brainstorming about all sorts of stats I have had in my head for years. This stat came to my head because of Gary Sheffield. A few years back, I watched a game on my birthday at Safeco Field. It was the New York Yankees and Sheffield visiting. There are players that you are sure to watch live in person. Gary Sheffield was one of these hitters. Not only is he one of 25 player in history to hit 500 HRs, but he had one of the fiercest swings ever. The man would wiggle that bat back and forth like a toothpick before striding and swinging with daunting ferocity. It was an unorthodox style that must have made Little League coaches cringe, yet it was effective. Sheffield was a bit of a hot head though, this may have led to him being traded or not re-signed by several teams. Hitting 40 HRs for 6 different teams is definitely impressive and may never be duplicated. I knew he had played on several teams already so the seed of today’s article was planted back in 2005.
Fred McGriff was the exact opposite of Gary Sheffield when it came to temperament. This man was traded several times in his career because he could flat-out hit. Jose Canseco is the only other player besides McGriff and Sheffield to hit 40 HRs with 5 different teams. The reason many older players are not on this list is because free agency never arrived in the MLB until the early 70′s when Curt Flood challenged a trade and the Players Union saw it through. Now player movement has enabled more players switching teams each season than ever before. Rusty Staub was the 1st to make this list and Alfonso Soriano is the last player to make this list and the only current player left. I have a feeling we will see more players arrive on this list in the next 25 years.
Thursday February 9th 2012
MLB reports – Jonathan Hacohen: Today on MLB reports, we are joined by Zachary Johnson (Zach)- Houston Astros prospect. Zach completed his first professional season last year, playing for the Tri-City ValleyCats. Name sound familiar? It should! Back in December, we had the chance to interview Zach’s teammate, Neiko Johnson (no relation apparently). Born in California, Zach attending Oklahoma State University. After getting drafted by the A’s in 2010, Zach did not come to terms and was later drafted by the Astros the following year. A 15th round selection of the Stros, the right-hand hitting Johnson plays first, third and second. After getting his feet wet last season, Zach Johnson is looking forward to the upcoming year. With a young, rebuilding Houston squad- plenty of opportunity will be available in the coming years for the Astros brightest prospects. Zach Johnson is definitely looking to get to Houston one day. Heck, when you growing up watching Barry Bonds and Jeff Kent, while looking up to Chase Utley- clearly you are setting the standards high. Learn Zach’s baseball story from university, the draft and making it to pro ball. You may think you know the name Zach Johnson. But you might be thinking of another sport (golf). We are baseball-only on MLB reports and for us, there is only ONE Zach Johnson. In today’s exclusive interview with us, get to know this up-and-coming Astros prospect: