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Top 5 Home Run Hitters In MLB For 2014: AL/NL, HR Streaks + Multi HR Games

Mark Trumbo has homered in 4 straight games, which is halfway to the ALL - Time Record held by Don Mattingly, Ken Griffey JR and Dale Long.  Mattingly owns the aggregate total of 10 HRs hit for those 8 games.  Despite his efforts, the D'Backs enter today's game at 2 - 7.  Trumbo also leads the MLB with 5 HRs overall.

Mark Trumbo has homered in 4 straight games, which is halfway to the ALL – Time Record held by Don Mattingly, Ken Griffey JR and Dale Long. Mattingly owns the aggregate total of 10 HRs hit for those 8 games. Despite his efforts, the D’Backs enter today’s game at 2 – 7. Trumbo also leads the MLB with 5 HRs overall.  The slugger has 2 more years left of Arbitration Eligibility after the 2014, and will become a Free Agent in 2017.  He was acquired in a trade from the LA Angels that saw the D’Backs part with Starter Tyler Skaggs.  Arizona also sent OF Adam Eaton to the White Sox, and received Minor Leagues A.J. Shugel and Brandon Jacobs in the deal.  Chicago parted with Hector Santiago as well to LA.

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

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Here at the MLB Reports we look to do things different.  It is one of our many motto’s.

We simply can’t look over every stat, or even chart every HR for that matter, but I have decided that we will carry the top 5 HR hitters for each the AL and NL on a page we have dubbed Stats.

For the HR feature. we will also list multiple HR games for players… Or if they have HRs in multiple games.  Once a week we will post these on the home page for the site as a regular page post.

Kemp and Ramirez Both Hit 2 HRs 4 – 6 – 14

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Angels State Of The Union For 2014: A Hot Start Is Paramount For Success

The Angels have spent almost a half of a billion in Free Agency over the last 3 years, and all they have to show for it, is back to back 3rd place finishes in the AL West.  The team also featured an anemic Bullpen in the 2013 campaign. But with AL West rivals all having significant injuries both to start the year and long-term for 2014, this has opened up the door for the start of campaign at least.  It is incumbent that their top guys stay injury free, and spend exactly no days on the DL, because they don't have suitable replacements to step in.  With poor starts to both of the last 2 years, this squad looks to break this trend in 2014.

The Angels have spent almost a half of a billion in Free Agency over the last 3 years, and all they have to show for it, is back to back 3rd place finishes in the AL West. The team also featured an anemic Bullpen in the 2013 campaign. But with AL West rivals all having significant injuries both to start the year and long-term for 2014, this has opened up the door for the start of the 2014 campaign at least. It is incumbent that their top guys stay injury free, and spend exactly no days on the DL, because they don’t have suitable replacements to step in. With poor starts to both of the last 2 years, this squad looks to break this trend this seasom.

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

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Hunter Stokes (Our chief writer) wrote a piece that was picked up by MLB Trade Rumors blogroll, stating that Jerry DiPoto has done a poor job in constructing the current team based on the roster tree here.

I agree with him 100% on this, especially on the moves, the Bullpen not being 100% finished yet, the Starting Rotation too reliant on their top 2 pitchers – and we have had several of their fans take some jabs at us for going with these notions.

The club’s brass has had a better winter in 2013 going into 2014, then they had last year, however it still doesn’t alleviate the fact, this team can’t sustain one injury to any of their top players because of said moves to deplete their depth.

The Starting Staff is composed of 60% of youth that is not used to toting long innings in Garrett Richards, Hector Santiago and Tyler Skaggs.

The team has a lot of players that will strikeout a lot, so it is also important to receive key HRs at crucial times in the game.

The club will also lose 34 HRs worth of power they received from Mark Trumbo in 2013, but it was the right time to move him.  Whether they received enough of a return is yet to be determined, but it also cut down the whiffs for 2014.

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The Boston Red Sox State Of The Union Part 1 – The Hitters: 2014 Preview

The now 30 Year Old, is the only player the team has signed for massive cash and term.  Pedroia is locked up until 2021, and his AAV is around $14.0 MIL for the duration. This was a considerable hometown discount and affords the club wiggle room in payroll each year, while the 2 time World Series champ received security.

Dustin Pedroia, the now 30 Year Old, is the only player the team has signed for massive cash and term. Pedroia is locked up until 2021, and his AAV is around $14.0 MIL for the duration. This was a considerable hometown discount and affords the club wiggle room in payroll each year, while the 2 time World Series champ received security.  This contract was similar to how the New England Patriots do business with their top players.  Maybe others will follow down the same pike.  Pedroia had an incredible run in 2013, and that was despite of a bad injury. Project him to be his usual and consistent self in 2014.

Hunter Stokes (Chief Writer): 

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The Red Sox embark on a chance to repeat a World Series win for the 3rd time in 10 years.  2005 didn’t work out so well, and Boston narrowly missed in the 2008 ALCS (TB won 4 – 3).

This year, the teams brass has decided the 2014 Roster is a lot like the 2013 Roster, and then you add in the mix of a bunch of youngsters.

There were some acquisitions brought in with A.J. Pierzynski (replacing Jarrod Saltalamacchia, and Jackie Bradley JR or Grady Sizemore will take over for departing CF Jacoby Ellsbury.

While they gave SS Stephen Drew a 1 YR/$14.1 MIL Qualifying Offer which he doth refused.

The Beantowners will go ahead with Xander Bogaerts there, and see Will Middlebrooks have another crack at the hot corner.

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Chris Duffy Contacts All MLB Teams: Will He Get A Second Chance?

Chris Duffy Looks for An MLB Opportunity

By Nicholas Delahanty (MLB Reports Writer)  

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An interesting story broke out last week, as Evan Drellich of the Houston Chronicle wrote an article on Chris Duffy, A current independent ballplayer who has been searching for a chance to sign with a Major League team this spring. 

During his senior season at the University of Central Florida, Duffy was nominated for the Golden Spikes Award, which is annually given to the country’s best amateur baseball player.

He was nominated among the likes of Bryce Harper (who won the award), Chris Sale, Drew Pomeranz, and Yasmani Grandal

Unlike the other four nominees, Duffy was not a first-round draft pick and was unable to make it to the major leagues just yet. He fell to the 26th round, where the Philadelphia Phillies finally swooped him up.
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Master List Of All Free Agents Signed In 2013 Winter – Heading Into 2014 MLB Year

Hunter Stokes (Chief Writer): 

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It has been a record setting year for contract $ doled out for players.  When you factor in the player extensions, we are talking about 7 contracts registering in the top 50 Player contracts in the history of the game.

Robinson Cano, Clayton Kershaw, Masahiro Tanaka, Jacoby Ellsbury, Freddie Freeman, Shin-Soo Choo and Homer Bailey have inked deal for between $105 MIL to $240 MIL.

Now there is word the Angels are working on an extension with Mike Trout, to the tune of 6 YRs/$150 MIL,  from 2015 – 2020.  This would be the 22nd highest contract in MLB History.

For the record, Trout’s deal for 2014 is already set at $510 K, and any extension wouldn’t have Luxury Tax Ramifications until his new deal would start in 2015. Read the rest of this entry

The O’s Add Nelson Cruz + The AL Beast Just Got Stronger!

Nelson Cruz is 34 - and has a long history of injuries -  and now of PED use.In the last 5 years, he has only played over 128 games for the season once.  Now he was on pace to top that in 2013 - before his PED suspension from the Biogenesis Scandal.  Will he go to Seattle, another AL team, or is the NL going to be his final destination for next campaign.  I thoroughly believe he should just be a permanent DH.

Nelson Cruz is 34 – and has a long history of injuries – and now of PED use. In the last 5 years, he has only played over 128 games for the season once. Now he was on pace to top that in 2013 – before his PED suspension from the Biogenesis Scandal.  I thoroughly believe he should just be a permanent DH.  He will likely be used in that role with the O’s.  With a full season of AB, this slugger should probably hit between .260 – .270, with 25 – 30 HRs and range from 80 – 90 RBI.  To sign this guy to a 1 Year Deal – worth $8 MIL, when he was already given the Qualifying Offer by Texas is a fantastic acquisition for the Orioles.  It also comes in the same week they picked up Ubaldo Jimenez and Korean chucker Suk-Min Yoon.  Baltimore just entered back into the Division race!

Hunter Stokes (Chief Writer): 

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Dan Duquette has announced his presence with authority this week.

From Suk-min Yoon (3 YRs/$5.6 MIL), Ubaldo Jimenez (4 YRs/$48 MIL), to then flat out rob Nelson Cruz for a 1 YR/$8 MIL deal, the GM has served notice that the franchise is here to compete.

Frankly, this was a long time coming.  The team has now thrust its name into the conversation with the Rays, Red Sox and Yankees.

On the clock is the Toronto Blue Jays!! Read the rest of this entry

For Those Thinking The Yankees Are So Much Older Than The Red Sox, Think Again

With spending $503 MIL on contracts this winter, however they are not as old of a club as they were last year.  That doesn't mean the problem won't come back in future years, it just means this is their best year to compete for some time.

With spending $503 MIL on contracts this winter, however they are not as old of a club as they were last year. That doesn’t mean the problem won’t come back in future years, it just means this is their best year to compete for some time.

Hunter Stokes (Chief Writer): 

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I am not a Yankees fan, and am definitely not a Red Sox fan either, however it is funny how this rivalry has captivated most baseball followers.

After this winter signings have occurred, I finally decided to do some investigating, because of all the venom fired towards the Bronx Bombers.

Immediately after Carlos Beltran signed, you saw, ‘hey, the Yankees are signing old fogies again.’

I also watched as Boston Red Sox Nation piled on the New York franchise for this.

So after reviewing both rosters, guess what….Both teams have similarly aged players.  It is almost dead on. 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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The Boston Red Sox Players In All Organizational Affiliates, Prospects + Depth Charts (MLB + MiLB)

Jackie Bradley can go a long way to help BoSox fans forget about the departure of Jacoby Ellsbury.  Known as a patient batter with tonnes of speed, and exceptional fielding, Bradley taking the next leap up to the MLB on  a permanent basis would do wonder for the Red Sox in 2014.

Jackie Bradley can go a long way to help BoSox fans forget about the departure of Jacoby Ellsbury. Known as a patient batter with tonnes of speed, and exceptional fielding, Bradley taking the next leap up to the MLB on a permanent basis would do wonder for the Red Sox in 2014. At 23, he has a Career Minor League 3 Slash of .297/.404/.876

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

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It has come time for us to flip the calendar at the MLB Reports and shift gears into all of our 2014 season previews.

Each of the 30 MLB teams will have a organizational depth chart blog, a payroll blog, and 1 or 2 State of the Union Pieces from this day – all the way until the 1st day of MLB play this campaign.

We start of with the defending World Series Champions, the Boston Red Sox.

Jackie Bradley Jr. and Xander Bogaerts Are Future Superstars

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Los Angeles Angels Of Anaheim State Of The Union: Is It Time For Jerry DiPoto To Be Fired?

Mike Trout must feel like he will receive some better help from a full season of Pujols coming.  Heading into the 2013 campaign, they looked to have almost a historic 1 - 4 lineup.  Instead. it was a disaster.  Maybe the 2014 year will be different.

Mike Trout must feel like he will receive some better help from a full season of Pujols coming. Heading into the 2013 campaign, they looked to have almost a historic 1 – 4 lineup. Instead. it was a disaster. Maybe the 2014 year will be different.  With players like Vernon Wells and Joe Blanton still collecting money on the payroll – to the tune of $26 MIL in 2014, their teams salary structure is a disaster.  Those two guys are really horrible – or not even playing for LA anymore.

Hunter Stokes (Chief Writer): 

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“Stoking The Fire” – Week 10

As someone who follows the Angels from a distance, I have had it with Jerry DiPoto.

Whether it is the direction of the team’s brass that has been affected, or Arte Moreno himself, this team is heading on a one way ticket to salary hell.

So how does the GM respond this winter?

He trades his 2nd, 4th and possibly 5th best OF on the Roster Depth away – without yielding a OF back in return.

He has added on a couple of players (David Freese and Raul Ibanez) that Strikeout as much as the rest of the clan.  Good work man!

Am I missing something? Does he not see this is the recipe for disaster?

Angels 2013 preview – 2014 wont be as optimistic:

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AL West Hot Stove Roundup – Around The Horn

Grant Balfour maybe perfectly situated to change teams in the AL West from the Oakland Athletics to the Seattle Mariners.  The PAC NW club could use a guy stopper - to mop up games from a great young pitching staff.  in 2013, Balfour has nailed down 62 Saves in the last season and a half, and has carried a great ERA in the 2.50 range - with a WHIP slightly above 1.  If Seattle is willing to pay about 3 YRs/$33 - 36 MIL, then the Aussie could be headed their way.

Grant Balfour maybe perfectly situated to change teams in the AL West from the Oakland Athletics to the Seattle Mariners. The PAC NW club could use a guy stopper – to mop up games from a great young pitching staff. in 2013, Balfour has nailed down 62 Saves in the last season and a half, and has carried a great ERA in the 2.50 range – with a WHIP slightly above 1. If Seattle is willing to pay about 3 YRs/$33 – 36 MIL, then the Aussie could be headed their way.

Hunter Stokes (Chief Writer): 

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Seattle Mariners:  Jack Z. and the brass have some money to spend, will there be any takers??  Mike Napoli, Jacoby Ellsbury, Nelson Cruz, Shin-Soo Choo should all be on the offensive list.

On the Pitching side, Bronson Arroyo is the kind of Innings eater that could favor your Bullpen.  Fernando Rodney or Grant Balfour could close games for you as I don’t think Joe Nathan or Brian Wilson are coming.

Go big with your Free Agent signings, even if it is one or 2 players.

Jacoby Ellsbury 2013 Highlights

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Texas GM’ Jon Daniels Needs To Step His Game Up! Rangers State Of The Union Fall 2013

The Rangers have cobbled together 370 wins over the last four years, however they are now 2 years withdrawn from being a solitary strike away from winning the World Series.  They have done a great job assessing their club over the last few campaigns, and with a great winter, the club's competition window should be reset for many years to come.  With Nolan Ryan leaving the franchise, the heat will be on Jon Daniels to administer such a daunting task.  The Rangers have great attendance, so more National TV dollars are also being kicked their way for 2014, it is time to go and lure the top Free Agents in the game of MLB towards The Ballpark in Arlington!

The Rangers have cobbled together 370 wins over the last four years, however they are now 2 years withdrawn from being a solitary strike away from winning the World Series. They have done a great job assessing their club over the last few campaigns, and with a great winter, the club’s competition window should be reset for many years to come. With Nolan Ryan leaving the franchise, the heat will be on Jon Daniels to administer such a daunting task. The Rangers have great attendance, and more National TV dollars are also being kicked their way for 2014, it is time to go and lure the top Free Agents in the game of MLB towards The Ballpark in Arlington!

Hunter Stokes (Chief Writer): 

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Jon Daniels is more like the “Lone Ranger” now with the brass over in Arlington being astonishingly diminished by Texas native Nolan Ryan leaving.

He is effectively on the “hot seat” now.

His team is now 2 years removed from back to back World Series Appearances, followed up with an epic collapse down the stretch in 2012, and just falling short of the playoff bar in 2012.

The Rangers actually had a pretty decent season in 2013 at 91 – 72 (losing the play in game to Tampa Bay), when you consider they lost Mike Napoli and Josh Hamilton‘s services – and really only replaced them with “Fat Elvis” AKA Lance Berkman, who like Presley, has eaten themselves out of their careers at times.

Nelson Cruz Highlights Before Suspension 2013

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MLB 50 Free Agent Predictions

It will all be following the money for many of the Free Agents this winter.  It all started when all 14 players that had Qualifying Offers politely declined them all over the weekend, and are all FA's with Draft Compensation due back to their 2013 club.

It will all be following the money for many of the Free Agents this winter. It all started when all 14 players that had Qualifying Offers politely declined them all over the weekend, and are all FA’s with Draft Compensation due back to their 2013 club.

Free Agent Predictions

By Jordan Gluck (Free Agency Correspondent)

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These are my personal predictions on where the top free agents will sign. This is the same kind of list of the top 50 free agents made by our friends at mlbtraderumors.com.

Please keep in mind there will be trades this offseason so holes will be filled that way as well (I believe the Cardinals will trade for a SS).

I am not going to estimate any dollar figures in this specific article but I do expect some overpayments this year.

Robinson Cano 2013 Highlights

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Qualifying Offers To Players 1 YR/$14.1 MIL: Who Should Take The Deal And Who Should Pass

The Red Sox made calculated Qualifying Offers to Stephen Drew and Mike Napoli, where they pretty much know that Ellsbury will decline.  It is this writer's opinion that both Napoli and Drew should accept their deals.

The Red Sox made calculated Qualifying Offers to Stephen Drew and Mike Napoli, where they pretty much know that Ellsbury will decline. It is this writer’s opinion that both Napoli and Drew should accept their deals.  Both of them would still be young enough in next year’s Free Agency Market, plus they would not be guaranteed to make much more money for their 2014 contracts, and are not guaranteed of being on a contender like the Boston franchise.

Hunter Stokes (Chief Writer): 

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When the list of Qualifying Offers first unfolded the other day, I have to admit, I was surprised to see that Stephen Drew was on the list.

By virtue of the Red Sox doing this move, they have made it impossible for any other team to bid on Drew, as the compensatory pick is probably too much to give up.

This is a smart move for Boston, who didn’t want to lose the guy, and were smart enough to only offer a year deal to him.

Obviously the cash is more than he is worth, but offsetting the cost is the mere fact it only a one year risk.

Curtis Granderson’s 3 HRs in 1st 4 Innings, April.19/2012

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Odds To Win The 2013 MLB World Series, Plus Odds To Win Game #3

After Beltran went 2 - 4 with an RBI in Game #2 - he has improved his career Post Season Slash Line to .339/.448/1.163 - with 16 HRs and 38 RBI for his 168 AB.  Beltran is in the last year of his 2 YR/$26 MIL deal with St. Louis.  He will be a Free Agent after this Series, win or lose.

After Beltran went 2 – 4 with an RBI in Game #2 – he has improved his career Post Season Slash Line to .339/.448/1.163 – with 16 HRs and 38 RBI for his 168 AB. Beltran is in the last year of his 2 YR/$26 MIL deal with St. Louis. He will be a Free Agent after this Series, win or lose.  The 36 Year Old, has a .907 OPS in the playoffs this year, with 2 HRs and 13 RBI in his 13 Games Played.

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

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The World Series resumes today at Busch Stadium.  David Ortiz takes his hot hitting to St. Louis, and will see some action at 1st Base – while Mike Napoli will be relegated tot he bench.

The Cardinals will be without Allen Craig in lineup, however Carlos Beltran made a triumphant return to the Outfield in Game #2.

Odds To Win the World Series Today:

Boston Red Sox -110

St. Louis Cardinals -110

Ortiz Homers Twice in 2 Games for the the Red Sox (Credit FOX)

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Sully Baseball Daily Podcast – October 26, 2013

TOPPS

TOPPS


Today on The Sully Baseball Daily Podcast I look at those players who almost became Gods.

Players like Marty Barrett, Mike Napoli and Sandy Alomar Jr. would have become World Series MVPs and worshipped by their fan bases if only their team got the finals outs to win it all.

An updated WOO tally can be found HERE.
To subscribe on iTunes, click HERE.

To subscribe on SoundCloud, click HERE.

Sully Baseball Daily Podcast – October 26, 2013

MLB Playoff Predictions: Who Will Win The 2013 World Series?

Boston will be at a slight offensive advantage at Busch Stadium for Games #3. #4 and #5 - with losing Napoli out of the lineup - if John Farrell decides to have David Ortiz face all of the Cards Right Handed Starting Pitchers.  Despite that fact, I can't ignore the clutch playoff performers that the Boston club have for this series.  The Cards team has fought injuries and used their system brilliantly to get this far, but I think they fall just short in the World Series.

Boston will be at a slight offensive advantage at Busch Stadium for Games #3. #4 and #5 – with losing Napoli out of the lineup – if John Farrell decides to have David Ortiz face all of the Cards Right Handed Starting Pitchers. Despite that fact, I can’t ignore the clutch playoff performers that the Boston club have for this series. The Cards team has fought injuries and used their system brilliantly to get this far, but I think they fall just short in the World Series.

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

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The last thing I wanted to be in my 2013 ALCS Prediction was right.  I am a New York Yankees fan, but I have to give it up to the Boston Red Sox.

Much like the 2001 New York Yankees made the World Series after 9/11, how could any begrudge the city of Boston having something to rally around like this?

This matchup will feature the winner laying claim to team of the time frame of 2004 – 2013.  No one will contest the Yankees were the best team in the MLB from 1996 – 2003. 

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Mr. Fielder’s Name Might Be Prince, But He Is No King Of The Playoffs!

In 39 games for his Playoff Career, he holds a miniature .194 batting average with 5 home runs and 11 RBIs.  This Playoff stretch of 11 Games in 2013 - there were no big flies and not even a solitary RBI.  Fielder had 9 Hits out of 40 AB (.225) with just one Double.fans, we cannot blame Prince Fielder for wanting to play everyday. When you are going through personal issues, you may like to keep busy to stay away from the negative. You just have to wonder that if Fielder didn’t have an active consecutive games streak, would Leyland have rested him already. The bat points towards yes.

In 39 games for his Playoff Career, he holds a miniature .194 batting average with 5 home runs and 11 RBIs. This Playoff stretch of 11 Games in 2013 – there were no big flies and not even a solitary RBI. Fielder had 9 Hits out of 40 AB (.225) with just one Double.fans, we cannot blame Prince Fielder for wanting to play everyday. When you are going through personal issues, you may like to keep busy to stay away from the negative. You just have to wonder that if Fielder didn’t have an active consecutive games streak, would Leyland have rested him down the stretch when they had a commanding lead over the rest of the AL Central?. The bat points towards yes.

Hunter Stokes (Chief Writer): 

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I am still amazed that the Boston Red Sox won the ALCS.  I mean they were leading Game #2  5 – 1 in the Bottom of the 8th, and the Red Sox players had a collective Batting Average – not much higher than their wives watching the game.

Cue in David Ortiz‘s Grand Slam HR to tie the game – and pesto, the fortunes of the Boston club were soon changed with a win in the 9th.

The Red Sox only managed to squeak a HR from Mike Napoli in Game #3 to top Justin Verlander.  They had another crazy Grand Slam HR hit against them by Shane Victorino in the Bottom of the 8th in Game #6 to seal their playoff fate

I am also at a loss for words, that throughout the ALCS/NLCS, that Clayton Kershaw, Justin Verlander, Adam Wainwright and Max Scherzer failed to win a game this round, yet other than Kershaw’s poor performance in Game #6 of the NLCS, these Cy Young Pitchers were virtually unhittable, but couldn’t win buy some run support.

Then there is Prince Fielder.  I have been friends with Chuck Booth for 20 years, and he nailed it perfectly with the Reports in their coverage on this guy for the 2013 year.

Prince Fielder 2013 Highlights – Mature Lyrics so Parental guidance is advised.

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Mike Napoli Is A Clutch Performer In The Post Season – And Is Potentially Earning A Nice New Contract!

Mike Napoli agreed to a 1 YR/$13 MIL deal prior to the 2013 season.  While he struggled at various times in the regular season, he still Slashed for .259/.360/.842 - with 23 HRs and 92 RBI.  It was his 6th straight season with 20+ HRs - and his 498 2013 ABs - still have left him without ever reaching 500 AB in any of his seasons.

Mike Napoli agreed to a 1 YR/$13 MIL deal prior to the 2013 season. While he struggled at various times in the regular season, he still Slashed for .259/.360/.842 – with 23 HRs and 92 RBI. It was his 6th straight season with 20+ HRs – and his 498 2013 ABs – still have left him without ever reaching 500 AB in any of his seasons.  The man averages a HR for every 16.38 AB in his Career. (169 HRs in 2768 AB). He will turn 32 on Oct.31/2013.

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

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If you have followed this website for very long, you will realize that we have made some great prognostications from the time of its inception.

We called the emergence of the Oakland A’s half way through the campaign last year.  We also called Adam Dunn to be the bargain of the 2012 season.

We also stated that the Tigers would make the 2012 World Series.

We said the Dodgers were going to go nuts and spend like there was no tomorrow, probably make the World Series, sign Zack Greinke.

We called every aspect of the New York Yankees season this year, including trading for Mark Reynolds, Vernon Wells and for Alfonso Soriano to thrive back in pinstripes.

Then there was the predicting of Yasiel Puig, Yoenis Cespedes, Mike Trout and Wil Myers at the verge of breaking out.

Previous Owner Jonathan Hacohen also predicted the emergence of Mike Napoli in 2011, and thoroughly admonished the Blue Jays for trading him – after having the Catcher for about a week.

Mike Napoli Game #5 HR 2013 ALCS

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Who Owns October? (WOO) Tally Updated For October 17, 2013 Games

(AP Photo/Paul Sancya)

(AP Photo/Paul Sancya)

Each winning team for every post season game gets a pitcher and a hitter who earn a full WOO.

And at my discretion, I award a 1/2 WOO to a worthy player on the losing team.

For a full explanation, click HERE.

From today’s games:

Receiving 1 WOO:

Mike Napoli hit one of the longest homers you will ever see to straight away center field. He finished a triple shy of the cycle, scored twice and drove in a run for the Red Sox 4-3 nail biter in Detroit.

Koji Uehara continued his dominance of Tigers batters. He faced 5 batters, retired them all including a pair of strikeouts as he slammed the door shut in Boston’s 4-3 win.

Receiving 1/2 WOO:

Jose Iglesias singled, scored a run and made a remarkable circus catch on an Ortiz pop fly, giving the Tigers a chance in their 4-3 loss to Boston.

Anibal Sanchez was not his no hitter self. But he cut his walks down to zero and let up only 3 earned runs in his 6 innings of work. He kept the Tigers in the game but they couldn’t catch Boston, 4-3.

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Who Owns October? (WOO) Tally Updated For October 15, 2013 Games

(AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)

(AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)

Each winning team for every post season game gets a pitcher and a hitter who earn a full WOO.

And at my discretion, I award a 1/2 WOO to a worthy player on the losing team.

For a full explanation, click HERE.

From today’s games:

Receiving 1 WOO:

Matt Holliday got a pair of hits including a massive 2 run homer in the 3rd inning that wound up being the difference in the Cardinals 4-2 win over the Dodgers.

John Lackey was magnificent, pitching shutout ball into the seventh inning. He finished with 6 2/3 innings, no runs, 4 hits, 8 strikeouts and no walks. He got the decision in Boston’s 1-0 heart stopping win in Detroit.

Carlos Martinez not only threw 2 key innings of shutout relief but also picked off Nick Punto at second base when the Dodgers were threatening to rally. St. Louis would hold on to win, 4-2.

Mike Napoli homered in the 7th inning and provided all of the offense of the game as the Red Sox beat the Tigers, 1-0.

Receiving 1/2 WOO:

Andre Ethier got on base three times and scored, giving the Dodgers some hope in their 4-2 loss to the Cardinals.

Victor Martinez was one of the only Tiger hitters whose bats were not totally dead. He went 2-4, including a single that put the go ahead run on base and the winning run at the plate in the 9th. The runs would not score and neither would Detroit who fell to Boston, 1-0.

Justin Verlander gave a performance on par with the other dominant Tiger starts in the ALCS. He finished with 8 innings, 4 hits, a single walk and 10 strikeouts. A solo home run in the 7th was his lone blemish, which was enough to lose the game 1-0 to the Red Sox.

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2013 MLB Playoff Predictions: ALCS + NLCS Matchups

The Red Sox went from 69 Wins in 2012 - to World Series favorite in one year.  The 'Beantowners' have assembled a playoff tested crew to arm them in their quest to make it to the World Series for the 1st time in 6 years.  Will the Red Sox take out the Tigers and go for the team of the decade, with a 3rd World Series Bid (out of the last 10 years) in 2013?

The Red Sox went from 69 Wins in 2012 – to World Series favorite in one year. The ‘Beantowners’ have assembled a playoff tested crew to arm them in their quest to make it to the World Series for the 1st time in 6 years. Will the Red Sox take out the Tigers and go for the team of the decade, with a 3rd World Series Bid (out of the last 10 years) in 2013?

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

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After nailing the National League straight on in picks for the LDS Round, I failed in either of my upset predictions of Tampa Bay or Oakland to advance.

I am not displeased though, I won money on the Rays losing the series (that came from a bet for them to win the World Series in June that paid +2000 or so, I bet the Red Sox to win the Series as a hedge.

Heading into last nights game, I could have still gone 3 – 1 for the Series prediction if Oakland could come up with a win.

Really the A’s failing to wrap up Game #4 was the big blow.

Thanks to a nice odd of Justin Verlander -107 @ Sonny Gray (-103), I nailed the game last for a nice little profit.

I never bet one dime on the other series in the NLCS.

So I went 2 – 2 in the Round, but plus some nice cash for my effort. Including the playoff game and Wild Card game, I am now 4 – 3 this Post Season.

The Red Sox win the LDS vs the Tampa Bay Rays

youtube=http://youtu.be/Y4m4eeyhFks

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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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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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Its Gut Check Time For The Rangers: Indians + Rays In The AL Wild Card Driver Seats

Baltimore entered last Friday night just 1 game behind the playoff bar.  They were swept in a 4 game series down in Tampa Bay, in a wraparound series, that included a devastating 18 inning loss among the tough defeats.  The club also lost Manny Machado to injury.  The magic number to eliminate the club is just 3.

Baltimore entered last Friday night just 1 game behind the playoff bar. They were swept in a 4 game series down in Tampa Bay, in a wraparound series, that included a devastating 18 inning loss among the tough defeats. The club also lost Manny Machado to injury yesterday. The magic number to eliminate the team is just 3.  The guys end the regular season with 6 straight at Camden Yards.  The only real meaningful resolutions will be if Chris Davis can crack 4 Home Runs, to tie Ken Griffey Jr. (56 HRs) for the most HRs by a LHB in the AL for the last 52 years?

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

2013 WILDCARD Race Breakdown in AL

Team                         W –  L   GBL Games Left Upcoming in Sequence

Tampa Bay Rays       87 – 69     -   ( 3 @ NYY, 3 @ TOR)

Cleveland Indians     86 – 70     –   ( 2 vs CWS, 4 @ MIN)

Texas Rangers           85 – 71    1   (2 vs HOU, 4 vs LAA)

Kansas City Royals  83 -  73   3.0  (2 @ SEA, 4 @ CWS)

New York Yankees   82 – 74   4.0   (3 vs TB, 3 @ HOU)

Baltimore Orioles     81 – 75   5.0  ( 3 vs TOR, 3 vs BOS)

We have had some clarification occur over the last week in the AL Wild Card Race as the Rays and Indians have both won 4 straight in their goal to make the playoffs.

The Yankees went 3 – 3 for the week, including a heart – wrenching loss to the Giants late on Sunday,  It must have pained them even more to see the Rays come back in the late innings versus the Orioles.

Had Baltimore won that game, the Yankees would start the series in New York versus the Rays tonight with a chance to cut their deficit to them by 3 games via a sweep.

The Bronx Bombers then waltz into Houston, where they might win their last 3 games.  However, with Tampa’s come from behind win yesterday, it makes their Magic number versus the Yanks to 3. 

Manny Machado’s Gruesome Injury – Sept.23/2013

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2 And A Hook Podcast #15: AL Wild Card Race Breakdown, NL Central Chat + The BallPark Pass-Port Inventor

The 2 And A Hook Podcast will be running 7 consecutive shows on Thursdays Sept. 19 + 26, and Oct 3,10,17,24,31) - Join us for our extensive playoff coverage from Chuck Booth, Chris Lacey, James Acevedo and many other guests!

The 2 And A Hook Podcast will be running 8 consecutive shows on Thursdays Sept. 19 + 26, and Oct 3,10,17,24,31) – Join us for our extensive playoff coverage from Chuck Booth, Chris Lacey, James Acevedo and many other guests!

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

By James Acevedo – Host (Podcast Veteran )

Guests On The Show:

On today’s show, brought to you by www.mlbreports.com 

& yours truly The Bench Warmers Show.

I start it off with talking about the Yankees chances of getting the 2nd Wild Card Spot & giving them props for having a good season no matter what happens..

CLICK THE READ THE REST OF THIS ENTRY ICON or CLICK PAST THE MLB REPORTS LOGO

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The 4 Teams Chasing Texas + Tampa In The AL Wild Card Have A Great Chance (Mon – THU Game W – L Grid For All 6 Teams)

The Cleveland Indians are in the driver seat in the AL Wild Card Race.  While they may not overtake the #1 Wild Card Spot by Thursday, they can guarantee to be in a playoff position if they can simply win 3 out of the next 4 games.  After Thursday, the Tribe has the easiest path to the Post Season out of any of these 6 clubs when it comes to Strength Of Schedule!

The Cleveland Indians are in the driver seat in the AL Wild Card Race. While they may not overtake the #1 Wild Card Spot by Thursday, they can guarantee to be in a playoff position if they can simply win 3 out of the next 4 games. After Thursday, the Tribe has the easiest path to the Post Season out of any of these 6 clubs when it comes to Strength Of Schedule!  Cleveland last made the playoffs in 2007, when they blew a 3 – 1 ALCS to the Boston Red Sox.

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

2013 WILDCARD Race Breakdown in AL

Team                         W –  L   GBL Games Left Upcoming in Sequence

Tampa Bay Rays       81 – 67     -   (4 vs TEX, 4 vs BAL, 3 @ NYY, 3 @ TOR)

Texas Rangers           81 – 67     -   (4 @ TB, 3 @ KC, 3 vs HOU, 4 vs LAA)

Cleveland Indians     81 – 68   0.5  (3 @ KC, 4 vs HOU, 2 vs CWS, 4 @ MIN)

Baltimore Orioles     79 – 70   2.5  (3 @ BOS, 4 @ TB, 3 vs TOR, 3 vs BOS)

New York Yankees   79 – 71   3.0  (3 @ TOR, 3 @ SF, 3 vs TB, 3 vs HOU)

Kansas City Royals  78 -  71   3.5  (3 vs CLE, 3 vs TEX, 3 @ SEA, 4 @ CWS)

The American League Wild Card spots #1 and #2 are  considerably up for grabs. 

To make it an even tighter race, the teams trailing Tampa and Texas can all make up ground in their own individual series this week when those clubs play each other 4 times.

This is a perfect storm for these 4 clubs to narrow the gap.

What I am going to do is make in make a grid based on how the teams will do based on the Rays and the Rangers series.

KC Royals Win the 1985 World Series – Now Sit in a 28 Year Playoff Drought (Longest in the MLB)

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The Red Sox Infield Shuffle Down The Stretch

Xander Bogaerts is ranked as the 2nd best Shortstop prospect in baseball, and the 6th best overall prospect in the game on mlb.com. Some are comparing him to Manny Machado of Baltimore due to their similar skill set and maturity at such a young age. I think the Red Sox would be very happy if he produces similarly to Machado.

Xander Bogaerts is ranked as the 2nd best Shortstop prospect in baseball, and the 6th best overall prospect in the game on mlb.com. Some are comparing him to Manny Machado of Baltimore due to their similar skill set and maturity at such a young age. I think the Red Sox would be very happy if he produces similarly to the young Orioles Third Baseman.  Boston traded away its top defense Infield prospect (in Jose Iglesias) to create room for Bogaerts.

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

As September approaches all teams have some uncertainty with their team heading towards the playoffs or the links.

Even serious contenders like the Red Sox have inefficiencies that they would like to correct.

Their decisions now will be under harsher criticism than ever as the franchise has missed out on the playoffs the past two seasons in dismal fashion.

There are certainly still big question marks on the clubs pitching staff like the health of Clay Buchholz.

The outfield also has question marks like Shane Victorino who is playing through injury right now to the point where he has dropped hitting from the left side (at the moment) because the injury affects his swing too much from that side of the plate.

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The Red Sox Left Town With A Series Win, But Left The Dodgers With So Much More In 2012

A year after the big blockbuster Red Sox/Dodgers trade, both clubs have benefited from the trade. Both clubs lead their division and are looking stronger than ever.

A year after the big blockbuster Red Sox/Dodgers trade, both clubs have benefited from the salvation is created. The Red Sox were able to hit a reset button on their finances – and spend money on key Free Agents: Mike Napoli, Shane Victorino, take on Jake Peavy’s Salary, pick up Jonny Gomes and have a slightly lower payroll overall still.  For the LA Dodgers, they received a bonafide Leadoff hitter in Carl Crawford, plus a lethal Left Handed Bat in 1B Adrian Gonzalez.  The LA club was also willing to eat the $$ owed on bust Josh Beckett.  Los Angeles could bury lots of money for little given away talent wise.  Little did all of us know, that they had an electric ballplayer like Yasiel Puig ready to bust out.  Boston is leading the AL East, and the Dodgers are killing it in the NL West.  Perhaps this might be an October showdown?

BY Enrique Rivera (MLB Reports Dodgers Correspondent)

It has been a year since that big blockbuster Red Sox/Dodgers trade that sent a loaded bank of salary to the Dodgers along with superstar players like Adrian Gonzalez, Carl Crawford, Josh Beckett and Nick Punto.

After a first half of struggles and criticism and watching the Red Sox play better baseball, the Dodgers have proven that the trade benefited them as well.

The Dodgers lead the NL West 9.5 games after being down by 9.5 earlier in the season. Meanwhile in the AL East, the Red Sox lead the division by 1 game.

Adrian Gonzalez’s first AB as a Dodger last year resulting in a HR

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MLB 30 Team Power Rankings: Week 21

42 - 8, 25 - 3, 19 - 1, 10 wins in a row.  These are all significant numbers put up with a team with deep pockets, the ability to outdraw everyone, and owners willing to do whatever it takes to bring home the 1st World Series Title since 1988.  No one can touch these guys right now. Best 3 Starters in the NL and hottest 2 NL Hitters in Puig and Ramirez.  Oh yeah, the Bullpen has been lights out for the last 50 contests!

42 – 8, 25 – 3, 19 – 1, 10 wins in a row. These are all significant numbers put up with a team with deep pockets, the ability to outdraw everyone for park attendance, and owners willing to do whatever it takes to bring home the 1st World Series Title since 1988. No one can touch these guys right now. Best 3 Starters in the NL and hottest 2 NL Hitters in Puig and Ramirez. Oh yeah, the Bullpen has been lights out for the last 50 contests!

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

It is time for the MLB Power Rankings.  These are based on my thoughts on whether who has the best chance to win the World Series.

A lot of these positions are based on who has the toughest Strength of Schedule left, who their competition is for the Division, and possibly even the League they are in,

The races for the Divisions (AL East, AL West and NL Central are starting to tighten up, while the NL West, AL Central and most notably NL East are looking to be foregone conclusions

The Braves have rattled of a 18 – 3 stretch, and have been ousted by the Dodgers for the #1 spot in the MLB Rankings .

The Rangers are trying to ricochet off of a couple of great deals, in order to flame down the Oakland Athletics.

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