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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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Wishful Thinking – Chicago White Sox Style!

2013 was, by far, one the worst years for the Chicago White Sox, but one of many in a long run of disappointments for the organization. Teams in major markets should have contending on the field regularly. The Sox have a ways to go in order to shore up their poor farm system, and put home grown talent on the field.

2013 was, by far, one the worst years for the Chicago White Sox, but one of many in a long run of disappointments for the organization. Teams in major markets should have contending on the field regularly. The Sox have a ways to go in order to shore up their poor farm system, and put home grown talent on the field.

By ‘White Sox Correspondent’ Brian Madsen 

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As much as I enjoy watching the MLB postseason, it’s a constant reminder of my favorite team’s failures.

Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy watching Juan Uribe hit a game winning HR, sending the Dodgers to the NLCS.

I just wish that was MY team headed to the League Championship Series.

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White Sox 2014 Questions

This season was Flowers first chance at being the every day catcher, and he has also disappointed. Flowers was part of the Javier Vasquez trade to the Atlanta Braves a few years ago, and at the time, was a highly touted prospect. But, Flowers has fought through mediocrity ever since his acquisition. He has since hurt his shoulder, and will miss the rest of the 2013 season. While Tyler Flowers continued to struggle this season, the Sox called up catching prospect Josh Phegley from Triple A Charlotte in July.   Flowers is Arbitration Eligible in 2015 - and under team control until 2018

This season was Flowers first chance at being the every day catcher, and he has also disappointed.Flowers was part of the Javier Vasquez trade to the Atlanta Braves a few years ago, and at the time, was a highly touted prospect. But, he has fought through mediocrity ever since his acquisition.  Flowers has since hurt his shoulder, and will miss the rest of the 2013 season.
While the young backstopper continued to struggle this season, the Sox called up catching prospect Josh Phegley from Triple A Charlotte in July. Flowers is Arbitration Eligible in 2015 – and under team control until 2018.

By ‘White Sox Correspondent’ Brian Madsen 


As a very disappointing 2013 season winds down for the Chicago White Sox, several questions arise heading into 2014. Who will be the starting third baseman?

Who will be the starting catcher? Who will be in center field? Who’s at first base? And, maybe even, who will be the White Sox manager?

Let’s start at third base. Jeff Keppinger was signed during the 2012-2013 offseason with the expectations of being the every day third basemen, and a quality bat in the lineup.

A career .281 hitter, Keppinger has disappointed in 2013. While he’s come around the passed month or so, he’s hitting just .244, well below expectations.

Jeff Keppinger Highlights

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The White Sox Post Non Waiver Trade Deadline + Possible Aug/Offseason Trade Candidates

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Thursday, August.08, 2013

You almost have to be bitter about the Sox recently sweeping the New York Yankees.  While it was fun to do, and booing A - Rod was right up the Southsiders alley, this team just put itself too many wins away from the Astros from the 1st overall pick in 2014.  They should extremely active in the August Trade Market - and perhaps the offseason.  It is time for the rebuild to commence!

You almost have to be bitter about the Sox recently sweeping the New York Yankees. While it was fun to do, and booing A – Rod was right up the Southsiders alley, this team just put itself too many wins away from the Astros from the 1st overall pick in 2014. They should extremely active in the August Trade Market – and perhaps the offseason. It is time for the rebuild to commence!  Chicago enters play today at 43 – 69, tied with the Marlins for the 2nd worst record in the MLB.  This was a team that was within a week of playing in the Post Season in 2012.  A major shakeup is needed in going forward.

1st part by Brian Madsen (MLB Reports White Sox Correspondent

It was all but certain that the White Sox were going to be sellers come the trade deadline in 2013.

The question was, were they selling everybody? Well, they didn’t trade everybody, but they still traded more players than they have during a season in recent memory.

And, there could be more to come during the August waiver period.

Matt Thornton was the first to go, traded to the Boston Red Sox for the young Brandon Jacobs. A staple in the White Sox bullpen since 2006, Thornton was a quality reliever for quite a while.

And he has fit in just fine in the Boston bullpen, accumulating a 2.70 ERA since his acquisition.

The second chip to fall was the still-DLed Jesse Crain. Crain was sent to the Tampa Bay Rays in a very unique “player-to-be-named” scenario.

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Who’s On Third? White Sox Edition.

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Friday May 10th, 2013

When Gordon Beckham broke a bone in his hand and required surgery, many White Sox fans weren't overly concerned. After all, Beckham's offensive struggles have been well documented throughout his young career. Simply move Jeff Keppinger to second base, and then.... Wait. Who's going to take Keppinger's place at third?

When Gordon Beckham broke a bone in his hand and required surgery, many White Sox fans weren’t overly concerned. After all, Beckham’s offensive struggles have been well documented throughout his young career. Simply move Jeff Keppinger to Second base, and then…. Wait. Who’s going to take Keppinger’s place at third?

By Brian Madsen (White Sox Correspondent): 

Who’s on Third Base for the White Sox you ask…Connor Gillaspie. Who? Connor Gillaspie. The same new guy that’s hitting .291, the highest current batting average for any White Sox player with more than 80 AB.

The same  that hit CLEAN-UP in the Sox lineup in Wednesday night’s inter-league game against the Mets. The man from Omaha, Nebraska has been a revelation, so far. He’s played solid defensively, and swung a pretty hot bat.

As I mentioned above, he hit cleanup for the Sox on Wednesday, and went 2 for 4, with 2 RBI.

Connor Gillaspie’s Diving Catch:

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Chicago White Sox Payroll In 2013 And Contracts Going Forward

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Sunday, January.27/2013

Former GM 'Maverick  Kenny Williams has rolle the dice on some big contracts with Rios, Dunn  and Peavy..  There have been some moments of prosperity and failure for each, however the results have been ok overall.  The team should be competitive with both payroll - and on the field in 2013

Former GM ‘Maverick Kenny Williams has rolled the dice on some big contracts with Rios, Dunn and Peavy.. There have been some moments of prosperity and failure for each, however the results have been ok overall. The team should be competitive with both payroll – and on the field in 2013

By Brian Madsen (White Sox Correspondent):  

Considering the collapse of the 2012 White Sox, the team losing A.J. Pierzynski and Kevin Youkilis to Free Agency, one might not expect the 2013 White Sox to fare any better. But, looking on the bright side, they should have a solid starting staff, with Chris Sale having another year of experience under his belt, and, hopefully, the return of a healthy John Danks. That’s a pretty good 1-2 punch. Next is Jake Peavy. Not a bad 1-2-3 punch, if you ask me. Follow those 3 with Gavin Floyd and/or Hector Santiago/Jose Quintana, not too shabby. An “expert” may look on the not so bright side, and see a “whole lotta outs in the lineup”.

Between Gordon Beckham, Alexei Ramirez (both struggled in 2012) and the newly anointed starting Catcher, Tyler Flowers, that’s a combined average of .237 (which equals a whole lotta outs). While some say Beckham’s and Ramirez’s defensive prowess make up for their offensive deficiencies, many White Sox fans disagree. But, if Alex Rios and Adam Dunn can carry over their production from 2012 into 2013, the Sox could be in the running for the division title again. The addition of Jeff Keppinger at third base, while not a high-profile move that White Sox fans had grown accustomed to with former GM Kenny Williams, he is solid at the plate and in the field. Let’s take a look at the Sox payroll for the 2013 season….

DeWayne Wise’ catch to preserve Mark Buehle’s perfect game:

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Paul Konerko Has Asserted Himself As An ALL-Time South Sider

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Sunday, January.13/2013

Paul Konerko heads into the last year of a contract.  At 37, Konerko has hit 415 HRs as a White Sox Players and is 33 Round-Trippers short of Frank Thomas for the ALL-Time Franchise Lead.  Will he reach the 'BIG HURT' in 2013?

Paul Konerko heads into the last year of a contract. At 37, Konerko has hit 415 HRs as a White Sox Player – and is 33 Round-Trippers short of Frank Thomas (448) for the ALL-Time Franchise Lead. Will he reach the ‘BIG HURT’ in 2013? Better yet, if he re-signs with the team past 2013, he may enter the top 10 of ALL-Time HRs for one team.  Currently Lou Gehrig and Eddie Matthews sit tied in 9th with 493 HRs each for one club.

By Brian Madsen (White Sox Correspondent):  

The South Side of Chicago. U.S. Cellular Field. You’re likely to have heard chants of “Let’s go White Sox!!”, “Ozzie!! Ozzie!!, and maybe even “Oh-E-Oh, Magglio!!”, over the years at this beautiful, yet underrated ball park. But, for the last 14 seasons, you probably would have heard “Paulie!! Paulie!!”, more than any other. No, not Paulie from Rocky fame. Paul Konerko, the 6 time ALL-Star and 2005 World Series Champion First Baseman of the Chicago White Sox. Some would say he’s underrated, much like the stadium he’s called home since 1999. Acquired via trade from the Cincinnati Reds in late 1998 by the White Sox for Mike Cameron, Konerko has been a consistent producer for them for 14 seasons.

He’s averaged more than 32 HRs and 101 RBI in that time frame for the Sox – and has combined for a few quality 1-2 punches over the years with some big hitters. Frank Thomas, Carlos Lee, Magglio Ordonez, and now Adam Dunn, to name a few. He is said to be one of White Sox owner Jerry Reinsdorf’s favorite players of ALL-time. He should be, as he helped guide the White Sox to their first World Series Championship in 88 years back in 2005. Konerko even presented the “3rd and final out ball” to Reinsdorf at the victory parade, bringing the owner to tears in front of thousands of screaming Sox fans.

Paul Konerko 2012 Highlights:  Mature Lyrics – Parental Guidance is Advised:

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What Is In Store For The 2013 Chicago White Sox: State Of The Union

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Tuesday December 18th, 2012

awhite

Bernie Olshansky (Baseball Writer):

If I had to describe the 2012 White Sox in one word, I would describe them as underperforming. Although they improved on their 2011 season, the White Sox still performed below expectations in the 2nd Half and it cost them a trip to the playoffs. In a division with the Detroit Tigers, who signed Prince Fielder last winter, the White Sox were not favored. They finished with an 85-77 record, which was not bad—I just expected better.  After all, the Tigers ended up in the World Series.

I’ll start with Adam Dunn. Dunn had one of the worst seasons in baseball history in 2011, the year that he signed a Four Year deal worth $56 Million. He hit .159 with only 11 HRs and 42 RBI. He was poised for a great comeback in 2012. I guess you could call hitting .204 with 41 HRs and 96 RBI a comeback, but it still was not the normal Adam Dunn. The HRs and RBI were there, but the .204 average was well below what he hit in previous years. If Dunn were to have hit for a higher average, one might be able to say that the White Sox would have made the playoffs. Read the rest of this entry

A.J. Pierzynski: Going for the Gold in 2013

Thursday,  September 20th 2012

Alex Mednick:  A.J. Pierzynski has undoubtedly done himself a great justice by having a career year in 2012.  Given that he plays the sport’s most physically demanding position and is encroaching on his, “golden years” in this game, the veteran catcher will meet free agency in 2013 with a lot going for him.  All he has done this year, in his 435 at bats so far, is hit .280 with 26 home runs, 15 doubles and 73 RBIs.  Those number are not something to take lightly, and it goes without saying that AJ and his agent are going to have a lot of leverage while negotiating with various front offices this off-season.

A.J. Pierzynski is a “heart and soul” player that drives the White Sox. He works well behind the plate with one of baseball’s top rotations, and has proven consistent offensively while having a career year in 2012.

The White Sox have had the career .284 hitter as their back stop for 8 years now, including the 2005 season (AJ’s first season in Chicago), when the then 28-year-old played an integral role in the franchise winning a world championship.  Since Pierzynski began his tenure in the south side, he has played no fewer than 128 games behind the plate and has been a beacon of consistency.  Part of this durability can be attributed to A.J.’s conditioning regiment that he participates in 365 days a year, including after every single game.  Pierzynski has been very open with the fact that as he has gotten older, he has put more mind into the importance of staying in great shape, especially being that he is required to remain in a squatting position for over 1000 innings a year. Read the rest of this entry

Top Ten Stat of The Week: Team Wins Since The Start of the 2003 Season

Monday  July 23, 2012

With only one World Series Win and a 2003 Loss to the Florida Marlins, it hasn’t stopped the Yankees from raking in wins every year. They have averaged 95 wins a season since 2003.

Chuck Booth (Lead Baseball Writer and @chuckbooth3024)-  This weeks installment is actually a top 11. I bent the rules a little to accommodate the A’s.  It is hard to maintain a great franchise in today’s Major Leagues.  Sure the heavy hitters like New York and Boston will always be sniffing around the top of the league with their huge payrolls, but most teams don’t have the luxury to spend like these two teams do because of their limited revenue streams.  In the last few years, the Phillies, Angels and Tigers have entered the echelon of top spenders.  Spending money doesn’t always equal great results.  The Texas Rangers have only had success lately and were often victim to heavy payrolls and not great results.  How many years did Peter Angelos try to buy a contender with Baltimore?  He has dedicated himself back to the right way of building a team the last couple of years and it has worked through player development.

Minnesota and Oakland have been run incredibly well for a long time.  If this list was for a five-year stretch, you would have seen the Tampa Bay Rays as part of the top 10.  These are the small market teams that have been consistently playing well against the  big boys.  The Twins have only faded back in the standings in the last couple of seasons.  The Atlanta Braves finally had their consecutive playoff years stopped in 2005 and they were only mediocre for a few seasons.  Right now, they might be the best team in the National League. The Angels, Twins, Dodgers, Athletics, Dodgers and Braves did not make any World Series appearances since 2003.  Out of these teams, the Angels have the most wins.

According to the movie ‘The Natural,’ losing is a disease, and like other diseases, (insert disease here) it is curable.  Most of these teams have not even struggled in the last 10 years.  The Yankees have only won one World Series in this time frame, despite dominating the win total every year.  In fact, the last time the Yankees has a losing season was 1991.  The Cardinals and the Red Sox both have won 2 World Series, and the Cardinals are the only team  to have appeared in the Fall Classic 3 times during  this stretch. Read the rest of this entry

Rate the GM: The Kenny Williams Report Card

Friday March 2nd, 2012

 

Rob Bland:  How long does a GM have job security after winning a World Series?  I get asked this fairly often, as teams tend to stick with a general manager for longer than they should, especially when they have won a championship in the past.  Even though a team may struggle and writers, experts and all of the pundits question every move they make, owners often stick with a GM if he has won “the big one”.  Assembling a Major League quality team is not an exact science, even if the sabermetricians will have you believe it is.  Sure, calculating OPS and WAR and FIP can help put you in a position to win, but there is something to be said about the culture of an organization.  It may be a myth, but you always hear about winning teams having winning attitudes.  They exude confidence. For example,  is often said that there is an aura about the New York Yankees and Yankee Stadium.  That being said, there has to be a mixture of personalities in a clubhouse.  A general manager’s job is to put the best ballplayers on a roster, and the manager’s job is to utilize those players in ways that will maximize their talents and win games.  A winning record should not directly reflect a GM’s performance. But then after all, he chose the players and hired the manager. Read the rest of this entry

The Future of Gio Gonzalez and Mark Buehrle in the NL

Wednesday January 4th, 2012

 

Peter Stein (Fantasy Baseball Analyst – MLB reports):  Aside from their pitching style and repertoire, Mark Buehrle and Gio Gonzalez have a lot in common. They are both left-handed and have also made the shift to the National League during this 2011 offseason. However, their connection dates back even further.

The Chicago White Sox selected Gonzalez in the first round of the 2004 draft. The following season, the White Sox earned a World Championship, thanks in large part to Mark Buehrle’s regular and postseason contributions. Buehrle, a 36th round pick of the White Sox in 1999, continued to be a model of consistency and success, winning at least 10 games and throwing at least 200 innings for 11 consecutive seasons for the White Sox.  Forever a legend in the White Sox community, Buehrle joined his second major league franchise this offseason with the Miami Marlins. The move is one I saw coming when Ozzie Guillen became the manager of the Marlins. Clearly the left-hander is comfortable with Guillen, and the National League is truly where Buehrle belongs at this point of his career. He has amassed a 24-6 win loss record with a 3.32 ERA in 39 Interleague starts. However, before we look at his 2012 value, I must continue with the Buehrle-Gonzalez narrative.

Ironically for the White Sox, it was a 36th round pick and not the first round pick that became the face of the franchise. Such is baseball and is an example of what makes the game so interesting.  In fact, Gonzalez has never even pitched an inning for the White Sox. He was traded in 2005 along with Aaron Rowand to the Phillies for Jim Thome. Remarkably, The White Sox reacquired him along with Gavin Floyd for Freddy Garcia in December 2006 and still never got him into a major league game while a part of their organization.

It should be noted that 2008 marked a breakout year for White Sox left-hander John Danks (12-9 win loss record). Gavin Floyd also flourished that year, winning 17 games.  Going into that season, there did not appear to be room for Gonzalez in the White Sox rotation. Particularly with Buehrle in place and Floyd/Danks set to emerge (as they did), the White Sox felt that it did not make sense to try to add a third left-hander to the starting staff. Obviously high on the team’s radar, the White Sox had to make a tough decision and trade Gonzalez…again. In a regrettable move, Kenny Williams sent Gonzalez, Ryan Sweeney, and Fautino De Los Santos to the Oakland Athletics for one miserable season of Nick Swisher. As a member of the A’s, Gonzalez came into his own, finishing 2011 with a 16-12 record and a 3.12 ERA with 197 K’s in 202 innings.

Now- going into 2012, both Gonzalez and Buehrle land in the National League for the next stage of their respective careers.

Looking at Gonzalez, his value remains high in 2012. Although he leaves the friendly pitching confines of Oakland, he is going to another pitching friendly park in Washington. His 2011 XFIP indicates that his ERA should have been closer to 4, rather than an even 3.00. Therefore, I expect Gonzalez’s ERA to hover right in the middle of those two numbers. He has an incredible ability to miss bats, but the walk rate, which he has yet to show any improvement at any level, prevents him from being a fantasy ace. With 4 walks per 9 innings, he is prone to give up high run totals and also have trouble pitching deep into games. He does do a great job of keeping the ball on the ground. But the only way for Gonzalez to really improve upon his 2011 campaign is if he can cut down on the free passes. His control is simply not that good, but he is also a player that can be categorized as effectively wild. I simply do not see any signs of Gonzalez improving his walk rate, especially as he his mainly a fastball/curveball pitcher.

In a sharp contrast, Mark Buehrle relies on command and mastery of the strike zone to retire batters. He has really shown no signs of true decline and he will still only be 33 years of age in 2012. He is not much different that the pitcher he was in 2004. He strikes out enough batters to be effective and has a stellar career 2.05 BB rate. He strikes out about half as many batters as Gonzalez, but also walks half as many. The two pitchers do have similar groundball rates. However, the change of scenery may have a much bigger impact on Buehrle than it does for Gonzalez. As I have mentioned, the Interleague numbers speak for themselves and Buehrle is finally leaving the hitter friendly confines of U.S. Cellular Park. He will surely benefit from facing the National League lineups most nights and is in a better position to succeed in Miami in 2012.

Overall, Mark Buehrle is the guy to keep an eye on during draft day in 2012. Most people view him as an aging soft throwing left-hander with a falling stock. However, he has potential to put up above average numbers for perhaps a below average price. Now while I say to keep an eye on Buehrle, it is not to say he will outperform Gio Gonzalez. Gonzalez is clearly the better fantasy option, but he will likely come at a higher cost. This is a 26-year-old pitcher who has posted 3.23 and 3.12 ERA in his last two seasons, respectively. However, do not expect him to necessarily improve upon these numbers due to some of the luck he experienced in 2011 and his inability to improve his walk rate. He will most likely be valued as an ace in many fantasy circles, when he is truly more of a number three-type starter. Buehrle, who will be off many people’s radars, could produce as a cheap yet quality four/five type of pitcher.


2012 Predictions:

Mark Buehrle: 206 IP, 14-9 W/L, 3.69 ERA, 120 Ks

Gio Gonzalez: 208 IP, 14-12 W/L, 3.43 ERA, 206 K

 

***Today’s feature was prepared by our Fantasy Baseball Analyst, Peter Stein.  We highly encourage you to leave your comments and feedback at the bottom of the page and share in the discussion with our readers.  You can also follow Peter on Twitter (@peterWstein).***

 

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