Blog Archives

ALL – Time Tommy John Surgery List 1974 – Present

For all the talk of baseball players (pitchers mostly) that will be undergoing Tommy John Surgery, we will be keeping a running list!  E-mail us at mlbreports@gmail.com if you have any names to add to our totals.

How many players are having or had TJ in history? You are about to find out: Read the rest of this entry

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How All Of The Pirates Hitters Were Acquired: 2014 Roster Tree

The Pittsburgh Pirates organization is looking a lot better over the last few years.  They have had 20 Losing seasons in a row - and are one of the 3 teams to not make the playoffs since the 1994 Player Strike (KC and Toronto) and are the the only National League team to hold this distinction.  The club were one of the best franchises around the game of the MLB in the 1970's.  Their recent struggles have been because of drafting prior to the Huntington reign as GM.

The Pittsburgh Pirates organization havebeen looking a lot better over the last few years. They had 20 Losing seasons in a row finally end in 2013, – and at the time were one of the 3 teams to not make the playoffs since the 1994 Player Strike (KC and Toronto) and were the only National League team to hold this distinction until they clinched a wildcard berth in last year’s postseason. The squad even won a game at PNC Park for the 1st time ever in playoffs against the Reds in the NL Wildcard game.  They were ousted by the St. Louis Cardinals in 5 games during the NLDS round.   The club was one of the best franchises around the game of the MLB in the 1970’s. Their recent struggles (prior to 2013) have been because of drafting prior to the Huntington reign as GM.  This Roster Tree will show you they have done well via the trade route for several years.

How All Of The Pirates Hitters Were Acquired:

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

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Neil Huntington has done a great job assembling this Pirates team – and has spun some great trades in order to see his club actually be competitive over the last few years.

He may have taken some flak over not spending any money over the 2013 off season, but let’s see if he is active towards the Trade Deadline.

If the club has money to spend, they could really do some damage with picking up some help to bolster the squad.

Making the playoffs is just not good enough anymore.

You have been given a gift with the longterm deals that Andrew McCutchen and Starling Marte have inked, and with the service clock just starting on Gregory Polanco.

It is an OF that hasn’t seen this much talent in Steeltown since the days of Barry Bonds, Bobby Bonilla and Andy Van Slyke. Read the rest of this entry

30 MLB Team Power Rankings: Week 6 – May. 2014

The Motown Boys won all 4 games they played this week and have opened up a 4 game lead on the Royals.  This team has the easiest schedule left on the board.  The squad also announced they have picked up Reliever Joel Hanrahan,  This is a great depth move on their part, and insurance for the Closers position.

The Motown Boys won all 4 games they played this week and have opened up a 4 game lead on the Royals. This team has the easiest schedule left on the board. The squad also announced they have picked up Reliever Joel Hanrahan, This is a great depth move on their part, and insurance for the Closers position.

Hunter Stokes (Chief Writer): 

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As we enter the 2nd month of play in the Major League Baseball, we really start to delve into who is playing good and who is playing bad.

How about we begin with the National League holding a 26 – 17 record versus the American League in Interleague play. 

The last stat is the main reason why there is only 3 teams out of the 15 with a positive Run Differential.  (No team in the AL East has a club in the plus, and only the Tigers have one in the AL Central.

The Angels and A’s also yield nice Run Differentials – however a lot of that was from beating up the Houston Astros.

The NL possesses 9 clubs with a positive mark.

The NL East has all 5 teams with a .500 clip or better heading into today’s action. 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

MLB Reports ‘Junior Reporter’ Haley Smilow Interviews Marlins Slugger Giancarlo Stanton

The Marlins have one of the most prolific young power hitters in the game of baseball in Giancarlo Stanton.  After this recent campaign, the  24 Year Old has a 3 Slash Line of .265/.354/.899 - with 117 HRs and 294 RBI in 1792 Career AB.  The toughest challenge the ownership has - will be to lock up this Slugger long - term, as he has frequently commented on the direction of the franchise in a negative light.  Stanton has 3 years left of Arbitration - before he will be eligible for Free Agency heading into the 2017 season.

The Marlins have one of the most prolific young power hitters in the game of baseball in Giancarlo Stanton. After this recent campaign, the 24 Year Old has a 3 Slash Line of .265/.354/.899 – with 117 HRs and 294 RBI in 1792 Career AB. The toughest challenge the ownership has – will be to lock up this Slugger long – term, as he has frequently commented on the direction of the franchise in a negative light. Stanton has 3 years left of Arbitration – before he will be eligible for Free Agency heading into the 2017 season.

Chuck Booth (Lead Baseball Writer/Website Owner):

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Haley Smilow is a lucky baseball fan/writer/reporter.  Recently last summer, she was able to interview Giancarlo Stanton of the Miami Marlins.

Interviewing MLB Athletes is nothing new for our Junior Reporter.  Over the last few years, Haley has interviewed Curtis Granderson, A.J. Pierzynski, Cody Ross, Barry Enright, Justin Turner, Casey Janssen and 2013 NL MVP Andrew McCutchen.

The MLB Reports is very happy with the hard work and dedication Haley puts forth for her interviews.  She has a great future in the business!

The MLB’ers like Haley because she doesn’t act cookie cutter questions.  She asks them to delve into their own personal lives, and for this, she is able to crack up these guys from their usual monotanous answers. Read the rest of this entry

The Boston Red Sox Payroll In 2014 + Contracts Going Forward

Dustin Pedroia is an example of how to handle your own talent as far as payment.  He was signed from 2009 - 2015 , which is 7 YRs/$55 MIL, and then they extended him from 2016 - 2021 (6 YRs/$85 MIL).  Being a bit of a bargain on a yearly basis, this natural leader - and former MVP, has given the franchise money flexibility for every year during the duration of his deal.

Dustin Pedroia is an example of how to handle your own talent as far as payment. He was signed from 2009 – 2015 , which is 7 YRs/$55 MIL, and then they extended him from 2016 – 2021 (6 YRs/$85 MIL). Being a bit of a bargain on a yearly basis, this natural leader – and former MVP, has given the franchise money flexibility for every year during the duration of his deal.  The now 30 Year Old, has a Career 3 Slash of .302/.370/.823.  His numbers are great for his 162 game average, with 104 Runs Scored and 194 Hits.  Pedroia is pesky with his 46 Doubles, 16 HRs per year.

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

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The Boston Red Sox pulled of a major “Hoodini Act” by freeing themselves of the long term contracts of Carl Crawford, Adrian Gonzalez and Josh Beckett in an Aug, 2012 trade.

The club used the dollars saved to reel in Mike Napoli, Stephen Drew, Shane Victorino and Jonny Gomes in 2013.  All of these guys were massive contributors to the 2013 World Series team.

The Beantowners still live and die by their Starting Pitching.  Jon Lester and unpredicted Jon Lackey had renaissance campaigns – while Clay Buchholz cobbled enough health together for a 12 – 1, 1.74 ERA season.

Replicating their championship season will be tougher in 2014.

David Ortiz Highlights

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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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Pirates’ Will End The Playoff Drought This Season

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Saturday, July.06, 2013

Grilli has done a phenomenal job in closing game for the Pirates this season. He has saved 28 games for the Pirates this season, and has a chance to possibly save 60 games.

Grilli has done a phenomenal job in closing games for the Pirates this season. He has saved 28 games for the Pirates this season which is first in the NL, and has a chance to possibly save 60 games. Grilli has a 2.15 ERA with only one blown save, and  has only surrendered two home runs in 37.2 innings pitched. The right-hander has struck out 60 batters, and has a strikeout rate of 14.3 SO/9. He also has a terrific SO/BB ratio of 8.57. The opposition is only hitting .187 against him this season, with right-handers  hitting just .155. The Pirates know that with a lead in the ninth inning, he is the guy they trust the most.

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

Who can remember the last time the Pittsburgh Pirates were in the playoffs, because it seems like it has been a long time. The reason that I can’t remember is that it happened in 1992, when they went 96-66.

This is a long time for a sports franchise to go without at least making the playoffs. The Pirates in the past seasons have started out fast, only to fade away in the second half of the baseball season.

Pittsburgh Pirates Early 2013 Season Highlights- So Parental Guidance Is Advised

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Boston Red Sox Organization: 2013 Team Payroll, Depth Charts + Rosters, (MLB + MiLB)

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Thursday, June.27/2013

The Boston Red Sox started out the season 21 - 8 after their 1st 29 games, they have since gone 26 - 25, can they rectify their recent pedestrian play and hold off their 4 Division Counterparts to make the playoffs?

The Boston Red Sox started out the season 21 – 8 after their 1st 29 games, they have since gone 26 – 25, can they rectify their recent pedestrian play and hold off their 4 Division Counterparts to make the playoffs?

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 Red Sox Organization click here.

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The Pittsburgh Pirates Roster Tree Part 2: The Hitters

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Monday, June.17/2013

McCutchen is signed for about an average of 8.5 Million Dollars a year until he hits FA in 2018.  If he can be amongst the running for NL MVP every year like 2012, this will bode well for the Pirates value in his salary.  He is the best player the franchise has drafted since Barry Bonds.

McCutchen is signed for about an average of 8.5 Million Dollars a year until he hits FA in 2018. If he can be among the running for NL MVP every year like 2012, this will bode well for the Pirates value in his salary. He is the best player the franchise has drafted since Barry Bonds.

Chuck Booth (MLB Reports Owner/Lead Analyst)

Neil Huntington has done a great job assembling this Pirates team – and has spun some great trades in order to see his club actually be competitive over the last few years.

At the MLB Reports, we intend to show you the Roster Tree for the Bucs – and how they assembled their current rosters.  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 w here 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.

Listed Below is Part 1 of the Roster Tree

Pittsburgh Pirates Roster Tree Part 1: The Pitchers

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MLB Team Power Rankings: Week 8

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Monday May.27/2013

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

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

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

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

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

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

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Buyer’s Remorse: The Failed Joel Hanrahan Experiment

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 Thursday May.16/2013

It seemed like everyone was so much more excited about Hanrahan joining the Red Sox this offseason than any of their other acquisitions. Turns out his time in Boston was not only short, but memorable for all the wrong reasons. Where is Mark Melancon when you need him...Oh wait.

It seemed like everyone was so much more excited about Hanrahan joining the Red Sox this off-season than any of their other acquisitions. Turns out his time in Boston was not only short, but memorable for all the wrong reasons. Where is Mark Melancon when you need him…Oh wait.

By Ryan Dana (MLB Reports Writer and Red Sox Correspondent): 

While some people in Red Sox Nation have had concerns about the team’s offense recently, it is clear that the major worry at the moment is the bullpen.

Their starting rotation is no longer at the top of the league statistically, but it has still been good, and the offense is still at the top of the league in most categories. The Sox are 4th in the MLB in Runs Scored, and 2nd in Doubles, AVG, OBP, SLG, and OPS. They’re also 1st in Triples.

The Bullpen was supposed to be a strength for the Red Sox entering the 2013 season, but it has been in shambles recently. At the forefront of the mess is Joel Hanrahan who I will talk about in-depth in a moment. First let me run through some of the other pitchers.

The Red Sox are 26th in the Majors with a 4.47 ERA from their relievers. Their BAA is .250 which is 23rd in the Majors, and they have 6 blown saves which is tied for 6th most in the MLB.

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Pittsburgh Pirates Roster Tree Part 1: The Pitchers

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Sunday, May. 12/2013

What 3 current Pirates players can be traced back to Ricardo Rincon?  Read this article and you will find out how all of the players have arrived in a Bucs uniform - and we dissected the Pirates brass for each move.

What 3 current Pirates players can be traced back to Ricardo Rincon? Read this article and you will find out how all of the players have arrived in a Bucs uniform – and we dissected the Pirates brass for each move.

By Brad Cuprik (Pirates Correspondent) and Chuck Booth (MLB Reports Owner/Lead Analyst

Neil Huntington has done a great job assembling this Pirates team – and has spun some great trades in order to see his club actually be competitive over the last few years.

At the MLB Reports, we intend to show you the Roster Tree for the Bucs – and how they assembled their current rosters.  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.

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MLB Reports ‘Junior Reporter’ Haley Smilow Interviews Boston Red Sox Reliever Craig Breslow

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Saturday May 11th, 2013

Craig Breslow is one of the better LHP specialists in the whole game of baseball.  He has appeared in 361  Games and has lugged 344.1 IP - yielding a 3.01 ERA.  With Hanrahan and Bailey hurt for the Boston Red Sox, his role in the present future will be vital,  He just returned to the lineup from a inflamed shoulder.

Craig Breslow is one of the better LHP specialists in the whole game of baseball. He has appeared in 361 Games and has lugged 344.1 IP – yielding a 3.01 ERA in his Career spanning 8 seasons. With Joel Hanrahan and Andrew Bailey hurt for the Boston Red Sox, his role in the present future will be vital.  He just returned to the lineup from an inflamed shoulder.  So Far the 32 Year Old from New Haven CT has a 4.50 ERA in 3 Appearances in 2013. The LHP was signed to a 2 YR Contract worth $6.25 MIL – with a Team Option for 2015 before the season began.

Chuck Booth (Lead Baseball Writer/Website Owner):

Haley Smilow was a busy reporter last year.  So much so, that we probably wont  be able to keep up with her to post them in time.  In her latest interview  –  Haley talked to Craig Breslow (of the Boston Red Sox)… She asked him about being a Yale Grad.. Also, who is the biggest prankster he has ever encountered.

Haley pulls no punches in asking the Relief Pitcher about his life in this candid interview.  Amongst other topics discussed were:  What Breslow  does for charity work and what advice he might have for young people.

 Yale Grad Craig Breslow:

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Sully Baseball Daily Podcast – May 11, 2013

299

This is the 200th episode of The Sully Baseball Daily Podcast!

I break down some tendencies of Who Owned Baseball (WOB) and figure out how the Red Sox can salvage the awful Joel Hanrahan trade. (It involves infielder Brock Holt!)

Brandon Phillips, Lyle Overbay and one hit artists Jon Lester and Shelby Miller owned baseball on May 10, 2013.

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

Sully Baseball Daily Podcast – May 11, 2013

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Felix’s Flaw: The Boston Red Sox Starter May See Some Bullpen Time

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May.08/2013

Felix Doubront had 167 K's in 2012 in just 161 IP, but he also had 71 BB's in that same span. His K/9 and BB/9 rates have both climbed slightly in the small sample size that has been his 2013 season to this point.

Felix Doubront had 167 K’s in 2012 in just 161 IP, but he also had 71 BB’s in that same span. His K/9 and BB/9 rates have both climbed slightly in the small sample size that has been his 2013 season to this point.  Surprisingly, Doubront was the clubs best pitcher in 2012.  He hasn’t been so lucky in his second go around of the Major Leagues.

By Ryan Dana (MLB Reports Writer and Red Sox Correspondent): 

Per usual, I had a good start on an article for the week that I had to put on hold. Something always seems to come up, and this week it is the Starting Pitcher from Friday night’s game.

Felix Doubront, 25 Year Old southpaw from Carabobo Venezuela, had a rough night this past Friday. He lasted just 3.2 IP and exited after surrendering 12 Hits, 6 Earned Runs, 1 Walk, and managing only 2 Strikeouts on the night.

Doubront now has a 5.67 ERA through 5 Starts this year. During his promising rookie campaign in 2012 his season ERA was only 4.86. 

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MLB Monthly Power Rankings May 2013 (Podcast Version)

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Sunday, May.05/2013

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)

Chuck Booth (Lead Baseball Analyst/Website Owner):

One month down in the MLB season and that means it’s time for some Power Rankings! Chuck Booth the czar of MLBreports.com joins us in studio to rank every team from worst to first. Where does your team rank? Read the rest of this entry

Boston Red Sox Payroll In 2013 + Contracts Going Forward

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 Tuesday April.30/2013

The Red Sox dumped about $250 Million in player salaries during the 2012 campaign and have put it to good use. The remarkable thing is, not only did they dump all that salary on the Dodgers, but they also acquired some solid arms that are now honing their skills in Pawtucket. The Red Sox payroll looks much better than it did a year ago.

The Red Sox dumped about $250 Million in player salaries during the 2012 campaign and have put it to good use. The remarkable thing is, not only did they dump all that salary on the Dodgers, but they also acquired some solid arms that are now honing their skills in Pawtucket. The Red Sox payroll looks much better than it did a year ago.

By Ryan Dana (MLB Reports Writer and Red Sox Correspondent): 

As it stands now, the Red Sox payroll is at about $157 Million. Below I will show a list of player salaries which comprise most of the budget.

We must also remember that last summer’s blockbuster deal/salary dump on the Dodgers holds Boston responsible for $3.9 Million of the salaries in 2013 of players they traded away.

On top of that there is about $10 Million that must be figured in for benefits/incentive purposes. This list will be in descending order of salary (average annual salary to be more specific) among players on the Red Sox payroll.

David Ortiz:  This Is Our —— city – Mature dialogue so Parental Guidance is  a must.

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Boston Strong

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Monday, April.22/2013

While many people weren't giving the Red Sox a chance in the AL East this season, the Red Sox were just taking a 2 game lead in the stacked division. I have a feeling this is a team you should never count out.

While many people weren’t giving the Red Sox a chance in the AL East this season, the Red Sox were just taking a 2 game lead in the stacked division. I have a feeling this is a team you should never count out.

By Ryan Dana (MLB Reports Writer and Red Sox Correspondent):  with an assist to Kyle Holland (Boston native)  

As I’m sure you can imagine, writing this weeks Red Sox article was a little difficult. Figuring out what to say after a tragedy like what Boston has experienced over the past week is no easy task. I’ll just roll with the theme of the City and the Team over the past week. Boston Strong.

The Red Sox have stuck by their city and the rest of baseball has been great amidst this week’s events. The Red Sox are giving a hurting community something to root for.

Outside of the Red Sox organization other teams have also showed their support for the City of Boston after the tragic events at the Boston Marathon.

Just one example would be the Red Sox’ biggest rivals, the New York Yankees, playing Red Sox favorite “Sweet Caroline.” It doesn’t stop there though.

Other teams including the Chicago White Sox, the Cincinnati Reds,the Oakland A’s, and the San Francisco Giants also played “Sweet Caroline.” A little stranger, but just as meaningful, the Milwaukee Brewers played the theme song from the Boston based show “Cheers.”

And perhaps the greatest gesture of them all, after the Red Sox beat the Indians 7-2 on Tuesday evening the staff at Progressive Field played “Dirty Water,” the song played at every Red Sox win at Fenway Park. That’s not all Boston fans are cheering about: Winning keeps Red Sox Nation cheering night after night.

The team has been off to a strong start this season leading the AL East with a record of 12-4 after play on 4/20 thanks to another masterful performance by Clay Buchholz and a clutch Home run by Daniel Nava. They’re currently riding a 7 game winning streak.

Neil Diamond shows up unannounced to sing “Sweet Caroline” to Boston fans:

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Opening Series Win: Red Sox vs. Yankees – A Sign Of Things To Come For Boston?

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Sunday April.07/2013

Dustin "Laser Show" Pedroia is the most vital part of this Red Sox team if not for his play on the field, for the hustle and tenacity he plays every game with. Hopefully Don Orsillo is yelling "to the moon" a lot this season.

Dustin “Laser Show” Pedroia is the most vital part of this Red Sox team if not for his play on the field, for the hustle and tenacity he plays every game with. Hopefully Don Orsillo is yelling “to the moon” a lot this season.  The man has started the year with a 2 Slash Line of .318/.400/.764 with 7 hits in the 1st 5 games.  The 2008 AL MVP  has a Career 3 Slash of .303/.369/.830.  His average season (per 162 Games) is 194 Hits, 17 HRs, 43 Doubles and 77 RBI.  His  most important stat of this column is his 106 Runs Scored mark for a full year.

By Ryan Dana (MLB Reports Writer and Redsox Correspondent): 

I dare you to find a more exciting way to start a season than facing your bitter rivals? Taking 2 of 3 games from them on their field is even better. The start to the 2013 Boston Red Sox season has been good all things considered; much better than the starts to their past 2 seasons.

They spent the start of 2012 getting swept by the Tigers in 3 games, then losing 2 of 3 to the Blue Jays (This was before the Blue Jays had talent on their roster). The year prior, in 2011, the Red Sox came in with high expectations only to start the season 0-6 with series sweeps at the hands of the Rangers and Indians.

To take a quote from rap legend turned sports agent, (hint: he just stole Robinson Cano away from Scott Boras, uh-oh) “moral victories is for Minor League coaches.” Yes that would be Jay-Z.

In the Major Leagues it is all about where you stand in your division. After the 1st series of play for Major League teams the Red Sox were tied with Baltimore atop the AL East. I know I’m getting carried away; it is after all, only 3 games into the season, (Now a little bit further). In the end a win is a win, and a loss is a loss.

However, I want to look at how the Red Sox won (and lost). I want to do this because I think it sheds light on what they are poised to do in 2013.

Red Sox vs. Yankees Opening Day Recap:

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3 Reasons That The Pirates Will – Or Won’t End 20 Years Of Consecutive Losing Records

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Tuesday, April.2/2013

The Pirates are hoping to bring winning baseball to beautiful PNC Park in 2013.

The Pirates are hoping to bring winning baseball for the beautiful PNC Park in 2013.

By Brad Cuprik (Pirates Correspondent)

The statistical improvements are easy to decipher in Clint Hurdle‘s first two years as manager of the Pittsburgh Pirates. In 2011, the Bucs were 72-90, scored 610 Runs and gave up 712 Runs. Those were improvements of 15 victories, 23 Runs Scored and an impressive 154 less Runs Allowed.

This past season, Pittsburgh improved in all three categories again – earning 79 victories with 651 Runs Scored and 674 Runs Allowed. If it seems like an excruciatingly long time since Barry Bonds, Bobby Bonilla, Andy Van Slyke and Doug Drabek were leading the Pirates to a winning season and a third consecutive NLCS, that’s because it has been – two decades to be exact.

Bill Clinton was just starting his first term as President of the United States and something called Color Me Badd was popular on the radio.

Questionable music aside, if the Pirates want to put an end to all that losing, another year of similar improvement will get them over the .500 hump.

Here are three reasons why 2013 will be the year it happens for them and three reasons why the longest consecutive streak of losing seasons in professional sports will reach 21 years.

Sid Breams 1992 NLCS Game 7 Slide kicked off a 20 Year Consecutive Losing Records Streak

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Why The Orioles And Lohse Make Sense

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Saturday February 16, 2013

Lohse has had an up-and-down career since making his debut in 2001. He has bounced around cities and has experienced some good seasons, and some less than impressive seasons. He was a big part in the middle of the rotation during their 2011 World Series run finishing 14-8 while posting a 3.39 ERA.

Lohse has had an up-and-down career since making his debut in 2001. He has bounced around cities and has experienced some good seasons, also with  some less than impressive seasons. He was a big part in the middle of the Cardinals rotation during their 2011 World Series run – finishing 14-8 while posting a 3.39 ERA.

By Kyle Holland (MLB Reports Writer):

2012 was a career year for the Cardinals’ RHP Kyle Lohse. At Age 34, Lohse has become one of the most inconsistent pitchers in the game of baseball. Since making his debut in 2001 at 21 years old with the Minnesota Twins, Lohse has had some stellar years, and some not-so-great years. This includes a 2008 season – where he went 15-6 with a 3.78 ERA. He followed that great season with ugly 2009 finishing 6-10 while posting a 4.74 ERA.

In 2012,  Lohse turned back to his ace pitching ways. Coming off a solid 2011 season – with a 14-8 record, it didn’t look like Lohse could improve too much. He proved everyone wrong and pitched his way to a 16-3 record. His .842 W-L% lead the National League – while his 2.86 ERA wound up eighth in all of the Majors.

Why the Cardinals will not sign Kyle Lohse:

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Pirates Payroll In 2013 And Contracts Going Forward

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Friday, February.8, 2013

Pittsburgh GM Neil Huntington has found creative ways to help the Budget out - by taking risks on Wandy Rodriguez and A.J. Burnett.  They are both being paid portions of their contracts by their previous teams.

Pittsburgh GM Neil Huntington has found creative ways to help the Budget out – by taking risks on Wandy Rodriguez and A.J. Burnett. They are both being paid portions of their contracts by their previous teams.  Signing Andrew McCutchen to a long-term contract has also given the franchise the ability to add players in 2013 if need be.

By Brad Cuprik (Pirates Correspondent)

On August 8 of last season, the Pittsburgh Pirates were 63-47, 2.5 games back of the First-place Cincinnati Reds, securely into the second Wild-Card Spot – and had the fourth-best record in the National League. The wheels came off, the Bucs finished on a 16-36 slide, 18 games back of the Reds and with the 10th-best record in the NL. Reality could have caught up to a overperforming squad, or a youthful team took the next step in learning how to win. Either way, the Pirates enter 2013 with breaking a streak of 20 losing seasons on their minds.

General Manager Neal Huntington has been shrewd and active, signing MVP candidate Andrew McCutchen to a long-term deal in 2012 and getting other clubs to eat up significant chunks of their largest contracts when acquiring their top two starters. Starting pitching depth has been added and Huntington is even taking more high-priced risks, landing Catcher Russell Martin as a Free Agent.

Pittsburgh Pirates 2012 Highlights:

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Pittsburgh Pirates Roster in 2013: State Of The Union

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Wednesday, January 23, 2013

The Pirates have not made the playoffs since the 1992 Season. That year, Barry Bonds could not throw out Sid Bream from deep Short - and he subsequently left the team for the SF Giants.  20 Losing Season have since occurred.

The Pirates have not made the playoffs since the 1992 Season. That year, Barry Bonds could not throw out Sid Bream from deep Short in Game #7 of the NLCS versus the Braves – and they were eliminated for the 3rd straight year in the playoffs before reaching the World Series.  Bonds subsequently left the team for the SF Giants in 1993 – and 20 losing seasons have since occurred. Only the Kansas City Royals have a longer streak of not making the playoffs (1985). Will this change in 2013?

By Brad Cuprik (Pirates Correspondent)

Although the Pirates made significant strides in 2012, they still finished in fourth place in the National League Central – with a 79-83 mark – extending their professional sports record for consecutive losing seasons to 20. After being active at last season’s trading deadline, the Bucs added two key Free Agents in the offseason. One of those signings, LHP Francisco Liriano, agreed to 2 YR Deall for just under $13 Million – but broke his arm from an undisclosed injury in late December. The two sides agreed to a deal that lowers the first-season payout if Liriano misses any time due to the injury.

That has not dimmed the enthusiasm swelling around Pittsburgh and very few roster spots are up for grabs as the 2013 season nears. With the Houston Astros moving to the American League West, the division is down to five teams, but the Pirates still have numerous questions surrounding their ability to compete for a Post Season Berth.

Andrew McCutchen hitting mechanics: Mature Lyrics Content – Parental Guidance is Advised

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Boston Red Sox Pitching Roster in 2013: State Of The Union Part 2

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Sunday, January.20, 2013

For the the Boston Red Sox State Of The Union Part 1:  The Hitters blog,  click here.

Clay and Jon Had Better Be On!

Lester had started his career 61-26 (.709) before he has pitched to a 24-22 record the last two seasons (.522). Lester still led the active pitchers in Winning Percentage before the 2012 year - but now has fallen to 7th with a Career Record of 85-48 (.639)

Lester had started his career 61-26 (.709) before he has pitched to a 24-22 record the last two seasons (.522). Lester still led the Active Pitchers in Winning Percentage before the 2012 year – but now has fallen to 7th with a Career Record of 85-48 (.639).

By Saul Wisnia,  Red Sox Correspondent (Read his blog ‘Fenway Reflections’ here):

The fate of the 2013 Red Sox may very well lay in two sets of statistics:

Pitcher/Wins-Losses/WHIP/ERA
Jon Lester: 33-15, 1.19, 3.17
Clay Buchholz: 23-10, 1.233, 2.70

Lester: 9-14, 1.383, 4.82
Buchholz: 11-8, 1.326, 4.56

The first numbers cover the period from April 2010 through August 2011, when Lester and Buchholz were two of the best starting pitchers in the American League. “WHIP” — walks plus hits per innings pitched — has become a popular measuring stick for effectiveness.

Jon Lester Highlights:

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MLB Reports Junior Reporter Haley Smilow Interviews Joel Hanrahan

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Saturday January 5th, 2013

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Chuck Booth (Lead Baseball Writer/Website Owner):

Haley Smilow was a busy reporter last year.  So much so, that we couldn’t keep up with her.  In her latest interview from last summer, Haley talked to Joel Hanrahan (of the Pirates back then) about his favorite Ball Parks to Play in, who he doesn’t like to face, what he does for pre and post game rituals, what he likes to cook, what he does on the road.  Haley pulls no punches in asking the Relief Pitcher about his life in this candid interview.  Amongst other topics discussed were:  What Hanrahan does for charity work, what his favorite animal is…etc Read the rest of this entry

Best And Worst Red Sox Christmas-Time Transactions

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Saturday, December.29, 2012

Can Joel Hanrahan Light up Fenway? Time will Tell

Can Joel Hanrahan Light up Fenway? Time will Tell

By Saul Wisnia,  Red Sox Correspondent (Read his blog ‘Fenway Reflections’ here):

Now that it appears the Red Sox have “wrapped up” their big Christmas week trade with the Pirates, it got me thinking about how the Sox have fared in past late-December moves. It’s too early to say how this swap is going to shake out; if closer Joel Hanrahan pitches in Boston like he did during most of the past two seasons, he’ll be a huge step in the rebuilding effort. Here’s a look back at the success of some other Christmas-time transactions by the Red Sox:

Dec. 28, 2011: Promising outfielder Josh Reddick and minor leaguers Miles Head and Raul Alcantara traded to Oakland for closer Andrew Bailey and outfielder Ryan Sweeney.

Reddick probably doesn’t feel this way anymore.

Result: Not looking good so far. Bailey was injured most of the season and ineffective upon his return. The Hanrahan trade makes it pretty clear Sox management believes Bailey won’t bounce back strong, and Sweeney was allowed to go to free agency after a lackluster .260, 0-homer year with Boston. As for Reddick, he was one of the biggest MLB surprises of 2012, hitting 32 homers and earning a Gold Glove with the A’s. HO-HO-HO Meter — (1/2 HO)

Dec. 24, 2004: Catcher Jason Varitek re-signed as free agent.

A direct result of Tek’s re-tendering — another title.

Result: Strong move for two reasons. Although Varitek turned 33 in April 2005, he remained a productive offensive and defensive performer for most of the four-year deal. More importantly, the captain stabilized an ever-evolving pitching staff and helped lead the Red Sox to another World Series title in 2007. (HO-HO-HO)

Dec. 21, 2001: Outfielder Johnny Damon signed as free agent.

What would Johnny do? Plenty for the Sox.

Result: Idiot’s delight. Damon delivered in every way for the Red Sox over the four-year contract, as a speedy lead-off man with power, an excellent defensive outfielder (minus his throwing arm), as a tough, enthusiastic leader in the clubhouse, and as a clutch performer in the postseason. His grand slam in Game Seven of the 2004 ALCS is one of the biggest hits in team history. (HO-HO-HO-HO) 

December 19, 2000: Outfielder Manny Ramirez signed as free agent.  Over 8 years, Sox fans enjoyed Manny happy moments.

Result: Best free-agent signing in team history. Even at eight years and $160 million, Manny was worth it — teaming with David Ortiz to form a devastating one-two punch and averaging .313/.412/.594 with 36 homers and  114 RBI from 2001-2007 as a major cog on two World Series champions. (HO-HO-HO-HO)

Dec. 22, 1980: Postmark date stamped on a contract mailed to Red Sox catcher Carlton Fisk, two days after a deadline expired — making Fisk a Free Agent. 

After switching Sox and his number, Fisk kept hitting.

Result: Holy Cliff Clavin. Fisk signs with the White Sox and over next 13 more seasons hits 214 home runs. (No HOs)

Dec. 26, 1919: Outfielder/pitcher Babe Ruth sold to Yankees for $125,000 plus a $350,00 loan.

Harry Frazee ate crow on this move.

Result:  Owner Harry Frazee’s folly. Frazee didn’t like Ruth’s wild ways, or his demands for a $20,000 contract. So he sent the Babe packing, then watched him hit 659 homers for New York through 1934. (No HOs)

*** The views and opinions expressed in this report are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of www.mlbreports.com and their partners.***

A big thank-you goes out to  Saul Wisnia for preparing today’s featured article. Saul shares his Fenway Reflections at http://saulwisnia.blogspot.com. Born just up the street from “America’s Favorite Ballpark,” he is a former sports and news correspondent at The Washington Post and feature writer at The Boston Herald. He has authored, co-authored, or otherwise contributed to numerous books on Boston and general baseball history here, and his articles and essays have appeared in Sports Illustrated, Red Sox Magazine, Boston Magazine, and The Boston Globe. His most recent book, Fenway Park: The Centennial, was excerpted on http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/.  Wisnia lives in Newton, Massachusetts, 5.94 miles from America’s favorite ballpark, with his wife, two kids, and Wally (the cat, not the Green Monster).  Feel free to follow Saul on Twitter .

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Joel Hanrahan Looks To Be Headed To Boston

Sunday, December 23rd,2012

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Sam Evans (Baseball Writer): 

Rumors began to spread on Saturday that the Pittsburgh Pirates were close to trading Joel Hanrahan to the Boston Red Sox. Assuming this deal becomes finalized, Boston would help answer some of the questions regarding their inconsistent bullpen. Hanrahan is the kind of pitcher that a team can rely on to close the door in the ninth inning. By trading Hanrahan, Pittsburgh sheds some salary and acquires a few talented players. This trade benefits both teams, but at first glance, it seems as if Boston might be getting the better side of the deal.

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2012 Top Ten MLB Saves Leaders

Monday October 8th, 2012

Sam Evans: With the 2012 regular season completed, bullpens will become even more important during the postseason. Closers in particular will be under more pressure than usual during these next few weeks. Before these pitchers make a name for themselves in the postseason, let’s admire what the top closers in baseball did during the 2012 regular season.  Some closers helped many fantasy teams, and their real-life teams, by their outstanding performances in the ninth inning. Here is a look at the top ten closers in baseball this past year in terms of saves:

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MLB Reports Monthly Power Rankings: September 2012

Monday, September.3/2012

Chuck Booth (Lead Baseball Writer):   To say that this year has been a good year for baseball is an humongous understatement.  I thought after last years finish, that nothing was going to duplicate the experience.  Everyone forgets (or maybe not) that there should not even have been many races last year with Atlanta and Boston having such substantial leads on playoff spots.  The Red Sox and Braves collapsed like a couple of bowling pins with King Kong Bundy splashing down on them!  

This year, there are 15 teams still vying for 10 playoff spots.  So far the only probable locks are Washington for a playoff spot-and Cincinnati to probably win their division  The player races for all of the categories is almost as fascinating.  Will Andrew McCutcheon catch Melky Cabrera for the Batting title? Or will 2012 be forever cemented in baseball folklore by a stained player like Cabrera?  He could still end up determining who wins the World Series in the Fall Classic by his Testosterone filled antics in his MVP ALL-Star Game.  The big question is, will the San Francisco Giants fans cheer for him if he comes back in the playoffs?  They cheered for another league leader before when it was obvious he was guilty.  Right now if you are the Giants, you will take an opportunity to boo or cheer for Cabrera because that means you would  be in the playoffs.

Will the spending happy Dodgers have to wait another year to capitalize on their new plan to make the playoffs? If they ultimately  miss the playoffs outright, are they going to buy every player they can in the off-season?  I sure hope Magic knows that there are Luxury Tax penalties for spending over 178 Million Next Year.  1st year fine is 22.5%, 2nd year is 30%, 3rd year and beyond is 40%.  So if they plan on having a 250 Million Dollar Payroll in 2013 (by adding 2 or 3 more top Free Agents) will the Dodgers just forego the worry of any financial penalties on a yearly basis– just to dominate the whole National League (plus baseball for that matter.) Every other team has to consider the urgency in cashing out a World Series right now while the Dodgers have not had a full off season with the new management yet.  Can Oakland and their ‘New Money Ball philosophy’ make it to the playoffs for the first time since 2006? 

The Best Players over the last month were:  Buster Posey, Prince Fielder, Giancarlo Stanton, Adrian Beltre, Josh Hamilton, Yovani Gallardo, Kris Medlen, Adam Wainwright, Aroldis Chapman and Felix Hernandez.  The best teams have been Oakland, Washington, San Francisco, San Diego, Baltimore and Texas.  The worst teams have been Houston (at least its better to go down hard and stockpile #1 Draft Picks guys.)  I have a feeling you will be there for a while with the division you are heading into and may even challenge the 120 Loss Single Season Record.  At least you are not going into the NL West  to compete with the LA Dodgers!  The Cleveland Indians have fallen to an epic drop-off as well.  Toronto misses their top sluggers.  What has happened to the Minnesota Twins? The Mets have ownership and payroll problems, so at least they have an excuse.  Plus they lead the world in guys being hurt.  When David Wright has been your healthiest player, you know the season has been backwards!  So sit back, get your notebook and popcorn ready for this Month’s Rankings! Read the rest of this entry

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