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Total AL Plus/Minus Of BB/SO On Offense + Pitching

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

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Baseball is a game full of stats and numbers.  Sabermetrics aside, one thing that I fully believe takes to win baseball games is superior pitching, and still having some plate discipline.

Of course it you can compensate for a lack of patience at the plate, with some big Home Runs, than you still may make out just fine.

While doing some research on the Oakland A’s, I looked at AL offensive and defensive Walk to Strikeout totals on both sides of the field.

I believe this is a relevant look at how good a team is faring.

Right away, the Rays and Orioles stick out in this blog, because the Rays were number 1 for this category, and the O’s are 14th, yet have the 3rd best record in the AL, and lead the AL East by 5 games currently.

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MLB Trade Deadline Breakdown 2014 + The August Aftermath

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Hunter Stokes (Chief Writer): 

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It was a flurry of action that baseball really needed.  Half way through the day, I was amazed their was actually day games.

Oakland and Detroit pushed all of their chips in, and you have to think they are pretty much done with transactions, although one of them doing an August deal could prompt the other to do the same.

I am holding back reservations for judging the Pirates, Blue Jays and Royals….however they all must be the “MLB clubhouse leaders” in August acquisitions to challenge for playoff slots.

Although KC better have a better idea than having Raul Ibanez take regular AB at 1B..That is horrible..

It wasn’t like the club didn’t know Eric Hosmer was injured badly.

I am also about throwing Ruben Amaro‘s career about 10 second from a toe-tag (and those ten seconds are August), for standing pat on his 47 – 60 aging core.

Like I have said so many times on twitter and social media outlets.  Someone teach this man some basic economics.

Take a lesson from Boston, and trade-off assets, to receive younger ones in the process, then you can turn around and spend every red cent in Free Agency in the offseason.. Read the rest of this entry

30 MLB Team Power Rankings: Week 15 – 2014

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

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

Hunter Stokes (Chief Writer): 

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*** Denotes Division Leaders

Records are before play Thursday July.06, 2014

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Gambling In Baseball, Hedging Your Bets + Value Plays: MLB Reports Picks Of The Year

Get set for another season of throwing some cash around when it comes to baseball.  MLB Reports will have you ready with what we are looking at as well.

Get set for another season of throwing some cash around when it comes to baseball. MLB Reports will have you ready with what we are looking at as well.

Hunter Stokes (Chief Writer): 

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Staked with an initial bankroll of over $1000 thanks to a nice NFL Parlay in the 2013 – 2014 year, I set out to make some bank trying make luck at placing some moolah on the game of baseball.

I head to Vegas frequently enough that I have thrown down almost all of it already, but have a great chance of making my $ back and then some.

Before the year began, I placed a wager for each of the Texas Rangers (Yikes), Tampa Bay Rays (Or should I say Devil Rays?), but they best maneuver before campaign was to slot a $14.44 wager on the Giants at 25/1 odds for the World Series.

That pays about $380.00.

I then followed the Tampa Bays advice ticket Chuck Booth laid out for all of the website.  Even though it will break even as a wager, I would do it every time.

The skinny of that was that I bet $120 on the Tampa squad to lose under 88 games, and I used the potential profit to bet on the team to win the AL East, the ALCS and World Series.

The whole caveat was that I was virtually guaranteed to make my money back if Joe Maddon‘s club struggled, but could make substantial amounts of profit if the organization had a long October run. Read the rest of this entry

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Hunter Stokes (Chief Writer): 

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

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

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

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

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

30 MLB Team Power Rankings: Week 3 MLB Baseball 2014

Hunter Stokes (Chief Writer): 

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A little rant before the power rankings this week

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

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

Injuries In The MLB: Hamilton, Garcia + Moore Out Could Change Outlook For Clubs In 2014

Josh Hamilton had his worst year as a Major Leaguer in 2013 with a 3 slash of .250/.307/.432 - with 21 HRs and 79 RBI last year.  This campaign looked to have been better, with the OF hitting .444/.545/.741 through 27 AB.  Injuries just seem to happen for the man.  He underwent thumb surgery two days ago after jamming his hand trying to slide into 1st base.  His loss will be felt big by Los Angeles, and they may not be in position to contend by the time he comes back.  The Angels are at home for 6 games before a killer 9 game road trip at Detroit, Washington and New York.

Josh Hamilton had his worst year as a Major Leaguer in 2013 with a 3 slash of .250/.307/.432 – with 21 HRs and 79 RBI last year. This campaign looked to have been better, with the OF hitting .444/.545/.741 through 27 AB. Injuries just seem to happen for the man. He underwent thumb surgery two days ago after jamming his hand trying to slide into 1st base. His loss will be felt big by Los Angeles, and they may not be in position to contend by the time he comes back. The Angels are at home for 6 games before a killer 9 game road trip at Detroit, Washington and New York.

Hunter Stokes (Chief Writer): 

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The Angels Josh Hamilton is out for 6 – 8 weeks after sliding in head down to first base at Safeco Field on Apr.8.

I would never accuse the guy of being a slacker, but this was not a bright move at all.

Doesn’t he remember suffering a major injury when the Rangers had him barrel down on home plate a few years back.

It came on the heels of the man having a great start.  Nothing seems to go right for Hamilton to play a full healthy season.

The Angels needed this player, with Albert Pujols and Mike Trout hitting on all cylinders to put forth a competitive year.

This curbs the process down badly.

Josh Hamilton’s Injury – 2 Minute Mark

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Which Manager’s Seat Is The Hottest In The MLB – 2014?

Hunter Stokes (Chief Writer): 

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There are many expectations in 2014 for a lot of the MLB clubs. 

Realistically, only the Houston Astros and the Minnesota Twins could be ousted from playoff contention before we even play in the American League.

The National League has several more teams with improbable chances to post a postseason berth in 2014.

The Mets, Marlins, Twins, Cubs and Padres are the longest shots on the board to nail down play in October as well.

Out of those teams, Chicago just hired Rich Renteria, and the other 5 teams would likely let the year play itself out before thinking of a skipper’s switch.

With those teams listed, I highly doubt the current bench bosses will remain in position by the time the clubs become good. Read the rest of this entry

Young Guns To Watch In The MLB For 2014

“Hard Cheddar” – with ‘Baseball Writer’ Steve Cheeseman 

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Young Guns to Watch in 2014

The 2014 season is fast approaching.  With spring training just around the corner, there are many up and coming players who are on the brink of making it to the majors. Who knows!

It may also be the beginning of hall of fame careers for some of these guys.  There are also a couple of players, who are already in the majors, and look to continue their success. 

I’ve profiled 5 hitters and 5 pitchers for your reading pleasure.  Some of these guys may be a little under the radar; however I believe they have a tremendous upside, and are fun to watch.  Let’s take a look.  Read the rest of this entry

The Tampa Bay Rays State Of The Union For 2014

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

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

Hunter Stokes (Chief Writer): 

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

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

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

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

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

Wil Myers 2013 Highlights

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Tampa Bay Rays Organization: 2014 Depth Charts + Rosters, (MLB + MiLB)

Joe Maddon has a career Record of 704 - 644 (.522), but is 552 - 421 (.567) over the last 6 years  from 2008 - 2013.  He runs his offenses like the Angels used to, with a NL style built on speed and contact.  He may be the best AL Skipper when it comes to utilizing players versatility and matchups. Maddon is also great at working in Rookie players.

Joe Maddon has a career Record of 704 – 644 (.522), but is 552 – 421 (.567) over the last 6 years from 2008 – 2013. He runs his offenses like the Angels used to, with a NL style built on speed and contact. He may be the best AL Skipper when it comes to utilizing players versatility and matchups. Maddon is also great at working in Rookie players.

By Chuck Booth (Lead Baseball Analyst/Website Owner): & Jeff Kleiner (Org. Depth Chart Expert)

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The Tampa Rays have been the model franchise in the AL for the last 6 years.  Of course the St. Louis Cardinals club would be the team of the National League.

Besides the New York Yankees, the Tampa Bay Rays have won more games in the last 6 years.

The teams record is 552 -421 during this time span, including 4 playoff spots and 1 AL Pennant.

The key to the teams continuous consistency is their Minor League System.  From 9 years of drafting high from 1998 – 2007, to then making smart trades, the Rays have have been able to sustain their club by using the farm.

Wil Myers 2013 Highlights

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MLB Player Profile: How Valuable Has Ben Zobrist Been To The Rays?

Ben Zobrist has quietly tuned into one of the best all around players in the game.  He has finished in the top for WAR in 3 of the 4 years - including 1st in 2011 and 2nd in 2009.  . Zobrist who continues this season with his musical chairs role on the team has not let his bat cool down ays fans need not worry this early. With only 10 games played in the young season now is not the time to start throwing in the towel and saying that GM Andrew Friedman and his staff have lost their touch.

Ben Zobrist has quietly tuned into one of the best all around players in the game of baseball. He has finished in the top for WAR in 3 of the last 5years – including 1st in 2011 and 2nd in 2009.  Zobrist, 32,  who continued this season with his musical chairs defensive role on the team this year, has two years left on his current contract, and will be a Free Agent at the end of the 2015 season.  It was the summer of 2006, that the brass traded Aubrey Huff for the young player.  Zobrist has played 1500+ Innings in 4 different defensive positions for the franchise (SS/2B/RF/LF – and it helps Joe Maddon bring in favorable platoon matchups for several other lineup spots).  He has a career 3 Slash of .263/.354/.789 in 8 seasons for Tampa.

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

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Picture how bad the Tampa Bay Devil Rays were when the Houston Astros traded Ben Zobrist with Mitch Talbot to the Tampa Bay Rays for Aubrey Huff and cash on July.12/2006.

The team was in the 8th season out of 9 years of under .500 ball.  The guy he was traded for had great offensive acumen, and was the franchise leader in several career categories as he departed the door.

Zobrist had an auspicious beginning with the Rays, struggling during the 2006 – 2007 years.  His OPS numbers for those years were .572 and .391 respectively.

Joe Maddon was not as worried as others were about the 6th Round Drat Pick of the Houston Astros back in 2004,because the guy would be a Maddon type of player.

Ben Zobrist 2 Part Interview

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MLB’s Payroll Matters Part 2: Just Because Some Low Payroll Teams Have Bucked The Trend – Doesn’t Mean It Will Continue

It seems the only to way to build a team successfully - is to be atrocious for several (talking 6 - 8 seasons), stockpile top 5 Draft Picks, and have them all become your nucleus for a matter of a few seasons. The reason is because of Team Control Salaries.  Teams like the Rays and Pirates have also held players in the Minor Leagues longer than needed - due to salary and Arbitration implications.  I can think of Desmond Jennings, Wil Myers, Chris Archer for the Rays, while Gerrit Cole and Jeff Locke come to mind for the Bucs.

It seems the only to way to build a team successfully – is to be atrocious for several (talking 6 – 8 seasons like the Twins, Nationals, Pirates, Rays in recent years – and now the Astros are following suit), stockpile top 5 Draft Picks, and have them all become your nucleus for a matter of a few seasons. The reason is because of Team Controllable Salaries. Teams like the Rays and Pirates have also held players in the Minor Leagues longer than needed – due to salary and Arbitration implications. I can think of Desmond Jennings, Wil Myers, Chris Archer for the Rays, while Gerrit Cole and Jeff Locke come to mind for the Bucs.  If a player is ready for action in the Majors, he should playing – end of story.

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

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Lets just take a look at the teams that have played well above their value.  The Twins are a story much like the Marlins in 1997 and 2003.

The Twins had a good team in the late 80’s, and won 2 World Series Titles in 1987 and 1991.  However the economics of the game hit them hard, and they struggled for an 8 year stretch in the AL Central.

For Part 1 of the MLB’s State Of the Union Part 1:  Click here.

Major League Contraction Talk Again?

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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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Odds To Win The 2013 MLB World Series + ALDS/NLDS Series + The ALCS/NLCS

In my view, the Rays are the best odd on the board at +800.  With David Price, Matt Moore and Alex Cobb all pitching so well, and the team have the best coach in GM, I am really surprised that they are tied with Oakland for the 3rd in the AL in terms of longshots to win the whole Fall Classic.  The Rays won a Game 163 vs the Rangers and the Wild Card Game versus the Indians.  It was their 9th straight game on the road.  This team just finds a way to win.

In my view, the Rays are the best odd on the board at +800. With David Price, Matt Moore and Alex Cobb all pitching so well, and the team have the best coach in Joe Maddon, I am really surprised that they are tied with Oakland for the 3rd in the AL in terms of longshots to win the whole Fall Classic. The Rays won a Game 163 vs the Rangers and the Wild Card Game versus the Indians. It was their 9th straight game on the road. This team just finds a way to win.

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

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Odds To Win the World Series:

Boston Red Sox +360

LA Dodgers +450

Detroit Tigers +475

St. Louis Cardinals +500

Atlanta Braves +700

Oakland Athletics +800

Tampa Bay Rays +800

Pittsburgh Pirates +1150

ODDS Courtesy of http://www.bet365.com

Rays Take Out The Indians 4 – 0

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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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Pirates, Dodgers, & Rays Improve Team With Good Deals

Justin Morneau is a great addition to the Pittsburgh Pirates. The team is hoping that he can propel  them to a division title along with the other new faces to their squad. Morneau is having a very productive with him hitting .259 to include 17 HRs and and 74 RBIs. He is not the guy who was the AL MVP in 2006 that hit 34 HRs while driving in 130 RBIs and had an average of .321. He can still provide a team with solid at-bats in a game and is a good guy to have in the clubhouse. The left-hander can hit righties as good as southpaws. He has a .286 average facing right-handers and hist .282 against left-handed pitchers. He still knows how to handle the bat with runners in scoring position, as indicated by him having 54 RBIs in this situation.

Justin Morneau is a great addition to the Pittsburgh Pirates. The team is hoping that he can propel them to a division title along with the other new faces to their squad. Morneau is having a very productive season with him hitting .259 to include 17 HRs and and 74 RBIs. He is not the guy who was the AL MVP in 2006 that hit 34 HRs while driving in 130 RBIs and had an average of .321. He can still provide a team with solid at-bats in a game and is a good guy to have in the clubhouse. The left-hander can hit righties as good as southpaws. He has a .286 average facing right-handers and hist .282 against left-handed pitchers. He still knows how to handle the bat with runners in scoring position, as indicated by him having 54 RBIs in this situation.

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

The waiver wire during the month of August is way for teams that are either contending for a playoff spot or leading their respective division to improve their team.

Since we are in the final month of the baseball season, there are a couple of teams that made moves to ensure that they have players to help them for the stretch run.

Justin Morneau Career Highlights- Parental Guidance Is Advised 

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Sully Baseball Daily Podcast July 7, 2013

Photo: Chris O'Meara - AP

Photo: Chris O’Meara – AP

Today is the Sunday Request Episode of The Sully Baseball Daily Podcast.

Today Ben Mankiewicz ( @benmank77 ) asked…

Today, I answered his question.

Wade Miley, Torii Hunter, Andrelton Simmons and Matt Moore all owned baseball on July 6, 2013.

To see the up to date tally of “Who Owns Baseball?,” click HERE.

Subscribe on iTunes HERE.

Sully Baseball Daily Podcast July 7, 2013

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Tampa Bay Rays Organization: 2013 Team Payroll, Depth Charts + Rosters, (MLB + MiLB)

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Thursday, June.20/2013

The Rays had a horrible string of seasons from 1998 - 2007 in terms of Won - Loss Record.  Because of their futile showings, they were able to draft high.  Since 2008, they have posted a winning record every season since, have made the playoffs 3 times, and have turned over the Roster several times.  They are competitive, cost effective and play in the vaunted AL East with powerhouse teams like the Yankees and Red Sox

The Rays had a horrible string of seasons from 1998 – 2007 in terms of Won – Loss Record. Because of their futile showings, they were able to draft high. Since 2008, they have posted a winning record every season since, have made the playoffs 3 times, and have turned over the Roster several times. They are competitive, cost effective and play in the vaunted AL East with powerhouse teams like the Yankees and Red Sox.  The brass of the organization has done a commendable job.

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 Rays Organization click here

David Price 2012 Highlights – Rays Song:

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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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MLB Team Power Rankings

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Sunday June.02/2013

Miguel Cabrera is absolutely unconscious this season so far;.  He has a 3 Slash Line of .369 (Leads AL)/.445 (Leads AL/1.121 (2ndi n AL), with 17 HRs (2nd AL) and a mind - blowing 65 RBI through 54 Games Played.  He is on pace for 51 HRs. 195 RBI and about 250 Hits.  He keeps getting better every single year if possible. Despite his prominence - and a lineup full of ALL - Star hitters and Pitchers, the Tigers are limping along at just a few games over .500.  It certainly isn't this 30 Year Olds fault.

Miguel Cabrera is absolutely unconscious this season so far; He has a 3 Slash Line of .369 (Leads AL)/.445 (Leads AL/1.121 (2nd in AL), with 17 HRs (2nd AL) and a mind – blowing 65 RBI through 54 Games Played. He is on pace for 51 HRs, 195 RBI and about 250 Hits. He keeps getting better every single year if possible. Despite his prominence – and a lineup full of ALL – Star hitters and Pitchers, the Tigers are limping along at just a few games over .500. It certainly isn’t this 30 Year Old’s fault.

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

Featuring the Podcasters the Big ticket Show in the Audio Portion

I will be doing a stat fueled rankings list on this Thursday.  These rankings will have some stats and  random thoughts of what I will be talking about in today’s podcast with the Big Ticket Show (AKA, Triple Play Podcast.)

Games Prior to Sunday June.02/2013

Cardinals 2013 30/30 Preview

Click the READ THE REST OF THIS ENTRY ICON to continue… or scroll past the Triple Play Podcast. Read the rest of this entry

2 And A Hook Podcast Episode #6: Fantasy, Phillies And Rangers Expert Interviews + Notes

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Friday, May.31/2013

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) 

People in this Podcast:

On today’s show, brought to you by MLB Reports (www.mlbreports.com) & The Bench Warmers Show (thebenchwarmers.podomatic.com), I started by paying respects to a follower of mine on twitter (the great late Kiley)   who passed away last week…not only she was a great Yankee fan who loved Derek Jeter – but also was the most sweetest giving person ever, R.I.P….

I start to talk about the Subway Series then I interviewed my first guest Derek Jackson (10 Minute Mark  – 20 Minute Segment.   who is a fantasy expert for MLB Reports! We talked about which callups to watch midway through the season,a look at the rookie crop of players & second year players…check out his latest fantasy article here Read the rest of this entry

Current Top 5 MLB Home Run Leaders in the AL + NL: Home Runs Hit May 19th

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Monday, May.20, 2013

Miguel Cabrera has hit 332 HRs, 398 Doubles and 13 Triples in his 11th year in the Major Leagues. With 1170 RBI , and just barely being 30 Years of age, the man has a serious chance to chase the ALL - Time RBI record of 2297 By Hank Aaron. After his 3 HR night on Saturday, he has a 2013 3 Slash of .387/.457/1.116 (all lead the AL). He has added 11 HRs (tied for 2nd) and 47 RBI (1st in the MLB). He could challenge a 2nd straight Triple Crown in 2013. Something that hasn't happened since Honus Wagner in the 1920's

Miguel Cabrera has hit 332 HRs, 398 Doubles and 13 Triples in his 11th year in the Major Leagues. With 1170 RBI, and just barely being 30 Years of age, the man has a serious chance to chase the ALL – Time RBI record of 2297 By Hank Aaron. After his 3 HR night on Saturday, he has a 2013 – 3 Slash of .387/.457/1.116 (all lead the AL). He has added 11 HRs (tied for 2nd) and 47 RBI (1st in the MLB). He could challenge a 2nd straight Triple Crown in 2013. Something that hasn’t happened since Honus Wagner in the 1920’s.

DH on our home site pages – Stands for Daily HR Hitters in the Majors.

We are going to run the gauntlet on the previous days HRs for all MLB Players.

I loved it when MLB XM Radio used to do a running total every night on their Roundtrip with Mike Ferrin (Laser Show).  So I am bringing it every day on this website.  To view every nights big boppers for the whole year (from May 8th on) visit the DH page!

Click beyond the Youtube link or click  the READ THE REST OF THIS ENTRY ICON to see who hit yesterdays big flies.

Cabrera’s mammoth night May.19th/2013

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The Pitching Artist Formerly Known As Fausto Carmona Needs To Be DFA’d!

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Sunday, Apr.28/2013

Through five outings Hernandez is 1-4 record with a 5.28 ERA in just over thirty innings of work. His kryptonite this season has been the long ball in almost every start Hernandez gives up at least one long ball.The long ball has been a big issue for Hernandez this season, giving up eighteen earned runs in a little over thirty innings this season. One good spot is that even though the sinker baller is not getting many of those groundballs he is used to, he has been striking hitters out at a good rate.  In three out of his five starts, Hernandez has struck out seven batters and in the other two he struck out at least four per start. While only walking an average of three per start.

Through 5 outings, Hernandez is 1-4 record with a 5.28 ERA in just over 30 IP of work. His kryptonite this season has been the long ball.  In almost every start Hernandez gives up at least one long ball – giving up 18 ER in his time thus far in total.  One good spot is that even though the sinkerballer is not getting many of those groundballs he is used to, he has been striking hitters out at a good rate. In three out of his five starts, Hernandez has fanned 7 batters and in the other two Game Starts – he punched out at least four per start. He is also walking an average of 3 hitters per start.

By Jake Bullington (Rays Correspondent): 

Roberto Hernandez,  ( AKA Fausto Carmona), was supposed to be insurance for the Tampa Bay Rays this year.  The club was supposed to have Jeff Niemann re-assume his spot in the Starting Pitching Rotation – along with David Price, Jeremy Hellickson, Alex Cobb and  Matt Moore to round out the top 5.

James Shields and Wade Davis. were dealt away to acquire Wil Myers on the basis of this assumption.  However, Niemann was been hurt – and we are still a few weeks away before Chris Archer is brought up for good.  Thus the club has had to use the beleagured ex Indians chucker.

Roberto Hernandez lone good start for Tampa Bay:

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The Rays Need To Call Up Wil Myers Pronto!

2 And A Hook Podcast Talks About Calling UP Wil Myers – 25 Minute Mark

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Thursday Apr.18/2013

Myers ascended onto the PCL scene last year and ripped out 24 HRs in just 99 Games at Omaha. The Rays will be counting on him for their offensive future for many years to come. The club has featured a futile attack with the bats - hitting for a 3 Slash Line of .204//284/.588. They have scored only 39 Runs - while allowing 59 Runs through 13 Games.

Myers ascended onto the PCL scene last year and ripped out 24 HRs in just 99 Games at Omaha. The Rays will be counting on him for their offensive future for many years to come. The club has featured a futile attack with the bats – hitting for a 3 Slash Line of .204//284/.588. They have scored only 39 Runs – while allowing 59 Runs through 13 Games.

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

First off, I wanted to say that I completely respect the Tampa Bay Rays – and especially am an avid supporter of the head office – including GM Andrew Freidman.  I will get to all of this in this article.

It is time to call up Wil Myers to the big club! 

The club is mired in a slow start at 4 – 9 and are already 5 Games Behind the AL East Division Leaders ‘Boston Red Sox.

The team traded away Veteran Pitchers James Shields and Wade Davis to Kansas City in order to acquire the top hitting prospect.

Here is why the time makes sense.

Service time for Super 2 Arbitration Status and Free Agency Year aside, this clubs current offense is abysmal despite having great pitching ability.

Wil Myers Highlight Reel:

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Rays Say No Time To Panic: It Has Just Been 10 Games

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Sunday, Apr.14/2013

Ben Zobrist has quietly tuned into one of the best all around players in the game.  He has finished in the top for WAR in 3 of the 4 years - including 1st in 2011 and 2nd in 2009.  At Age 31, Zobrist goes into a contract year.    Ben Zobrist has been a big bright spot for the Rays this season. Zobrist who continues this season with his musical chairs role on the team has not let his bat cool down 10 games into the season. Rays fans need not worry this early. With only 10 games played in the young season now is not the time to start throwing in the towel and saying that GM Andrew Friedman and his staff have lost their touch.

Ben Zobrist has quietly tuned into one of the best all around players in the game. He has finished in the top for WAR in 3 of the 4 years – including 1st in 2011 and 2nd in 2009. At Age 31, Zobrist goes into a contract year. Ben Zobrist has been a big bright spot for the Rays this season. Zobrist who continues this season with his musical chairs role on the team has not let his bat cool down 10 games into the season. Rays fans need not worry this early. With only 10 games played in the young season now is not the time to start throwing in the towel and saying that GM Andrew Friedman and his staff have lost their touch.

By Jake Bullington (Rays Correspondent): 

Ben Zobrist aside, the Rays have started this season with a four and six record and are currently in last place in the American League East division, but this is not cause for concern.

Sure David Price does not have his first win of the season and has an ERA up to almost six ( 5.82 to be exact), but the Rays are not worried so why should we be.  

The club started at 0 – 6, before making the playoffs in 2011, so there is no way Joe Maddon will hit the panic button in 2013.

David Price Highlights 2012 – Mature Lyrics so Parental Guidance is Advised:

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Put That Coffee Down! Coffee Is Closers Only: Top 5 Closers Projected For 2013

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Tuesday February 12th, 2013

Fernando+Rodney+Tampa+Bay+Rays+v+Minnesota+DsZ1C9fAXm_l

Fernando Rodney had one of the best seasons for a reliever in baseball history in 2012. It will be interesting to see if he can build on his strong season in 2013.

MLB Reports:

From the movie Glengarry Glen Ross came one of the most compelling scenes ever – when Alec Baldwin took the stage in an office setting – spewing out some of the greatest and powerful insults over a failing sales crew that included Jack Lemmon and Ed Harris.  In the scene, Baldwin himself is a powerful corporate executive that has been sent down to yell at these guys – from the powers to be of the operation.  At the beginning  point in Alec Baldwin’s lecture, old sales veteran (Lemmon) goes for a cup of coffee. Baldwin yells out “Put the coffee Down!  Coffee is for closers! 

The same can be said for closers that are not doing the job in nailing down games.  Many teams have bullpens that blow games at the most inopportune times.  Nothing is as deflating as losing a lead in the late Innings.  It is bad for team moral, the players and managers try to not play the blame game, however it is a tough pill to swallow when your team can’t close down baseball leads….  Just like the guys in Glengarry Glen Ross the movie couldn’t.  After you view this clip, you can move past it and read on who the best players that nail down victories.  The last part of the speech also works:  A.B.C.:  Always Be Closing.  It is Close or hit the bricks!  Great movie BTW…

Glengarry Glen Ross – Explicit Language so Parental Guidance is advised (Not for the Weak Of Heart):

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The Tampa Bay Rays: The Hitters 1998-2012: Part 2 Of A 5 Part Article Series

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Friday, December.21, 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.

Carl Crawford Leads as the ALL-Time Club Record Holder in most offensive categories.  Will Evan Longoria run him down..or will the club trade him?

Carl Crawford Leads as the ALL-Time Club Record Holder in most offensive categories. Will Evan Longoria run him down for all of the team records..or will the club trade him in a few years when his contract escalates in pay?

Chuck Booth (Lead Baseball Writer/Website Owner):

The Rays have only been around for 15 years, however they have seen their share of talent grace the club.  In their inaugural year, the club signed Free Agents Fred McGriff and Wade Boggs.  A few years later when Boggs retired, they added Vinny Castilla, Jose Canseco and Greg Vaughn all to the club.  This movement did not work out.  It was the drafted talent of the club that started to surface in the early 2000’s.  Aubrey Huff and Carl Crawford emerged as AL offensive threats.  Other picks like Rocco Baldelli, Jorge Cantu and Jonny Gomes started out on fire, yet quickly flamed out.  The club saw other guys come and go before the 2007 started to show what the team was really capable of.  Carlos Pena gave them a bonafide HR guy.  Soon Evan Longoria was called up to the Major Leagues and the club featured one of the best attacks in all of Major League Baseball.

The offense has suffered a bit of a drop-off in the last few years, but newly acquired Wil Myers is one of the best offensive prospects in the game of baseball.  Longoria is signed through 2023 and Ben Zobrist is a great all-around offensive talent signed for the next 3 seasons.  While the team will still be predominantly based with great pitching, the club should see some well-rounded offensive players. 

Tropicana Field is one of the harder places to put up great numbers, so we will see what the future holds.  We must look at the past.  In these Series I have been doing for the teams, a lot of criteria had to be met to be included in the Franchises best hitters or pitchers.  Obviously with a 15 Year Old team, the stakes are not raised as high.  I still looked for significant contributions to the team.  Of course if anyone ever leads the American League in any category, that is usually grounds for inclusion.

Franchise Series Article Links:

The Tampa Bay Rays: The Franchise 1998-2012: Part 1 Of A 5 Part Article Series

The Pitchers:  The Tampa Bay Rays: The Pitchers 1998-2012: Part 3 Of A 5 Part Article Series

2013 Team Payroll Part 4:  Tampa Bay Rays Payroll 2013 And Contracts Going Forward: Updated for Myers Trade Dec.11/2012

Tropicana Field Expert:  An Interview with Tropicana Field Expert Kurt Smith

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The Tampa Bay Rays: The Franchise 1998-2012: Part 1 Of A 5 Part Article Series

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.

The many Rays Logo's over the years.  Is the best of this franchise yet tom come

The many Rays Logo’s over the years. Is the best of this franchise yet to come?

Chuck Booth (Lead Baseball Writer/Website Owner):

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:

The Hitters:  The Tampa Bay Rays: The Hitters 1998-2012: Part 2 Of A 5 Part Article Series

The Pitchers:  The Tampa Bay Rays: The Pitchers 1998-2012: Part 3 Of A 5 Part Article Series

2013 Team Payroll:  Tampa Bay Rays Payroll 2013 And Contracts Going Forward: Updated for Myers Trade Dec.11/2012

Tropicana Field Expert:  An Interview with Tropicana Field Expert Kurt Smith

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