Daily Archives: June 24, 2011
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MLB reports: Welcome to Technology Field, where baseball and technology meet. Our mission: to discover the advancements in the greatest sport on the planet, baseball.
In Technology Field, we will be introducing you to the latest inventions, gadgets, toys, bells and whistles in the world of baseball. Anything that can be used to play baseball, watch baseball, write about baseball etc., we will find it. At MLB reports, our first love is baseball. But reporting baseball in style is even better. All the technological developments in the game that we can get our hands on, will find their way to Technology Field.
Tuesday September 18th, 2012
Jonathan Hacohen: An important tip for all the diehard baseball fans out there. I know there are millions of you all over the world! Do you have a vehicle equipped with a Sirius or XM satellite radio? Double check if you aren’t sure. Most cars/trucks to my understanding, from 2008-2009 and newer usually have this option built into their models. If your particular vehicle has a Sirius or XM option, please continue to read this piece.
If you are anything like me, your brain thinks baseball 24/7. That means 100 or 900 channels on satellite radio have little meaning to you. After all, you just want to listen to baseball! The MLB options on satellite radio are as follows: baseball games are broadcast on XM channels 176-189 (Sirius 840-869). From there, for your never-ending need for a baseball fix, MLB Network Radio is broadcast on XM 89 (Sirius 209). So when there are no games being played, leave your dial on 89/209 whenever you jump into your vehicle.
With the MLB playoffs almost upon us, what a great time to try out satellite radio! Depending on where you live, my understanding is that Sirius XM will give a three-month free trial subscription to a new subscriber. No risk and all baseball on your radio! Then once the baseball season ends, just listen to MLB Network Radio all offseason long. After all, you will only have to wait four short months until Spring Training games start again.
For those of you with smartphones, you can always play games over the MLB At-Bat app. But that means using wires to get the games being broadcast over your vehicle’s radio in most cases, which can be a pain. Also, you won’t get MLB Network Radio without a Sirius XM subscription. That one channel makes a subscription worth it. Plus who knows, maybe you will actually have an interest in the 900 or so channels that satellite radio has to offer. For me: sign me up to a baseball only package (if only it was available)…and I am good to go!
I will leave you with these final words: do you know that feeling of despair and helplessness during early morning or late afternoon traffic? Feel like ripping out your hair? Put some baseball on your satellite radio and you will be in no rush to get to work or home. Try it out and let’s hear your thoughts!
MLB reports – Jonathan Hacohen: Greetings baseball shoppers! As I sit in anticipation of receiving my Mike Napoli red Texas jersey-t in the mail and ready to talk baseball gear, I will start off this review with a disclaimer. Sports Swags, the clothing line being reviewed today is actually an-all around sports company. They are more than a baseball line- they include football, basketball and are moving into many other arenas. But this being MLB reports and talking baseball 24/7, we are going to focus on the baseball-end of the Sports Swag operation. But even though it is all about baseball at the end of the day, I had to throw it out there that they are sports-clothing-diversified.
So why do I bring up the Napoli jersey-t? Partially because I love talking Mike Napoli. The man is a baseball beast. But mostly due to the fact that I have a big weakness for baseball gear. Shirts, hats, jackets…everything. But if you are anything like me (is that a good or bad thing)…you probably had your fill of baseball jersey-t’s. I have about two drawers full of them, with no end in sight. Unless you are getting your fave player/team, the jersey-t’s start to get a little stale. I own about a dozen Tigers and Yankees dark blue jersey-t’s for example. I love them, but except for the player on the back, they are the same. The same old thing. On hot spring/summer days, I don’t want to wear jerseys to the ballpark. I like putting on a nice fresh t-shirt. But again, I want something unique. Something that will be comfortable to wear but still stand out at the ballpark. Welcome to Sports Swag.
Here is a little something about the company and its founder:
Created in 2011 by Kabir Chimni, Sports Swag is an urban sports lifestyle brand committed to providing every single one of our customers with the best possible experience. The idea for a clothing brand came to me after I had designed a logo for Sharks defenseman Brent Burns, which would eventually lead to our first product, the Brent Burns snapback hat. We are also working in conjunction with former A’s All Star, current Washington National Gio Gonzalez for his official shirt, which has already been designed and in the process of creation. We are also in cooperation with him for future clothing products . We are working with all sorts of athletes around the world to provide them with their own custom clothing that will be available to the public!
To read the rest of the review, please click here
MLB reports – Jonathan Hacohen: Happy Mother’s Day Everyone! Today’s feature has the special women in our lives in our mind. Whether it be our own mothers, grandmothers or the mothers of our children, today is the day that we give thanks to women. Giving us life and helping us all grow. Thank you moms!
Now what is the best way to thank moms you ask? Most people go the traditional route, with flowers and chocolate. Good presents…but not great. If you really want to blow away mom and send your appreciation, jewellery is your ticket. Now I now that today is actually mother’s day…so you could be late on the present. But if there is one thing I know about women, it is this: they tend to be very selective in their jewellery choices. Necklaces, bracelets and earrings can be a very personal choice. Not just for moms and women, but men love their jewellery as well. Especially baseball jewellery for us die-hard fans. So to meet the jewellery needs of everyone, you will need a place with a large selection that customize to all tastes and preferences.
Enter: Marla Barfield. Marla??? Wait a minute. You know Jesse Barfield. The 2-time gold glove winning, home run hitting, arm for a cannon outfielder with the Jays and Yankees. You know Josh Barfield. Second baseman with both the Indians and Padres. You know Jeremy Barfield. Huge prospect with the A’s (no joke, the kid is 6’5″ and 220!) But do you know Marla? Guess what… you do now. Marla Barfield is her name. Ooh La La Gems is her game. To read the rest of the review, click Here
December 13, 2011
MLB reports – Jonathan Hacohen: I will start off this review by admitting some very key points. While I write and review the game of baseball and everything surrounding it, I am also a fan of the game. You have to love this sport to be able to talk and write about it every day. I have no problem admitting it: I love baseball. But when you love the game to this degree, you start to lead a very baseball-centric life. Baseball apps on the smartphone. Baseball birthday cake. Libraries filled with baseball DVDs and books. Are you sensing a baseball theme in my life? That is the reality of a true blooded, 110% focused baseball fan. So what do baseball fans need more than anything else? Good baseball gear. From shirts to hats and everything in between, baseball fans require good apparel. That is where I got introduced to Routine Baseball.
To read the full review of Routine Baseball gear, click here
July 11, 2011: For our inaugural Technology Field report, we will be taking a look at the BlackBerry PlayBook. After years of reporting baseball on laptops, we have been hearing about the Tablet invasion in the world of computers. We were provided with a review unit of the BlackBerry PlayBook tablet and are now ready to venture into the next stratosphere of baseball reporting. Over the past few weeks, we integrated the PlayBook into the MLB reports world and utilized it for all our baseball needs. Along the way, we reviewed what the PlayBook is all about, including its features and benefits.
Here is our review in analyzing the combination of the PlayBook and baseball and finding the PlayBook’s place in Technology Field:
Monday, July 11, 2011
MLB reports: The BlackBerry PlayBook, what a terrific name to give a tablet. For a baseball fan, it’s optimal! Imagine a coach of a Little League baseball team keeping track of plays and scores on the PlayBook. It just works. The BlackBerry PlayBook has been on the market for the last three months. It’s gone through a lot of transformations which will be covered in this entry. I will be analyzing the overall look of the PlayBook, Functionality and Apps. From the perspective of a BlackBerry smartphone user, I will be comparing the PlayBook to laptops and other tablets generally on the market. Finally, from a baseball functionality perspective, I will be delivering the verdict of whether the PlayBook is a winner and should be a part of your technology field.
Please click here to review the full BlackBerry PlayBook review on MLB reports!
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Friday, June 24, 2011
MLB reports: June has apparently become the month in baseball to fire your coach if you are a MLB General Manager, or to quit your team if you are a manager. Follow along the coaching carousel:
June 8th: Texas Rangers fire hitting coach Thad Bosley and replace him with Scott Coolbaugh
June 9th: Florida Marlins fire hitting coach John Mallee and replace him with Eduardo Perez
June 10th: Oakland Athletics fire manager Bob Geren and replace him with Bob Melvin
June 14th: Houston Astros fire pitching coach Brad Arnsberg and replace with him Doug Brocail
June 17th: Cleveland Indians fire hitting coach John Nunnally and replace him with Bruce Fields
It looks like where there is smoke, there is fire. A lot of it apparently in the coaching ranks of baseball. Teams were getting nervous and to help jump-start their slumping players, several teams decided to change a coach rather than making wholesale roster moves, or let go of the manager and/or General Manager. On June 19th, the baseball world was stunned as manager Edwin Rodriguez of the Florida Marlins resigned and was replaced with 80-year old ex-Marlins manager Jack McKeon. Then yesterday, Jim Riggleman, manager of the Washington Nationals, got the same itch from the “quit bug” suffered by Rodriguez and announced that he was resigning his post. The captain jumped ship in Washington but unlike the Florida situation, Riggleman made his decision for all the wrong reasons. As a result, he may never coach again in baseball.
The inside story behind Riggleman leaving the Nationals was that he requested some sort of meeting from General Manager Mike Rizzo to discuss his long-term future in Washington. When Rizzo refused to discuss his contract status, Riggleman departed from the team and resigned his position as manager. Essentially Riggleman did not like the rules of the game, so in a childlike manner he took his ball and went home, so to speak.
“It’s been brewing for a while,” said Riggleman. “I know I’m not Casey Stengel, but I do feel like I know what I’m doing. It’s not a situation where I felt like I should continue on such a short leash.”
No Jim. You are certainly not Casey Stengel. Let’s take a look shall we, at Riggleman’s career managerial record:
|1992||39||San Diego Padres||NL||12||4||8||.333||3|
|1993||40||San Diego Padres||NL||162||61||101||.377||7|
|1994||41||San Diego Padres||NL||117||47||70||.402||4|
|San Diego Padres||291||112||179||.385|
Jim Riggleman in his twelve-year managerial career has a record of 661-824, .445 winning percentage. During his three years in Washington, Riggleman finished with a 139-172 record. Riggleman’s best year was 1998 with the Cubs, where he had a 90-73 record and his team finished second in their division. He had a 73-71 record in 1995 with the Cubs and was floating at .500 this year, with a Nationals team sitting at 37-37. The man is clearly no baseball Houdini. While some may argue that Riggleman was not given much to work with at each of his stops for the most part, the man clearly was not able to get much out of his teams at most stops. A great manager should be able to turn out something out of nothing. But alas, this was not one of Riggleman’s gifts as a manager.
The reality of baseball is that coaches and managers get let go by teams all the time, as evidenced by the amount of activity among teams this month. Managers and coaches also quit sometimes. Rodriguez left his position in Florida, as did Riggleman in Washington. But when a coach leaves a team, the intention and circumstances behind the resignation are crucial. For it is the story behind the announcement that will ultimately dictate if and when said manager receives another crack at a big league post. Gonzalez left his position for the better of his team. The Marlins were floundering and in the interests of having his team recover, Gonzalez felt that a change was needed. While that should have been up to the team to decide, at least Gonzalez acted in what he felt was best for his team. His compassion and sentiments to the organization means that Gonzalez should continue coaching in baseball. In the case of Jim Riggleman, that door has been shut close in my opinion.
The Nationals were not happy to say the least with the news. “I was always taught that one of the cardinal rules of baseball was that no individual can put his interests before those of the team,” was the sentiments expressed by Mike Rizzo. The GM is right in this case. Many MLB managers are on one-year contracts like Jim Riggleman was in 2011. Some have a chance at long careers with their teams, while others are seen as more temporary solutions. In Riggleman’s case, he was likely more of the temporary variety. But players, coaches and managers are in this position all the time. Many veteran players sign for one-year deals, knowing full well that they will not be with a team beyond the period. The same goes for managers, who can often be brought in to manage a young team and eventually be replaced with a fresh voice as the team looks to grow and change direction. That is the rules of the game and Jim Riggleman is not better than the system. If a player was to leave his team mid-season due to contractual issues, he would be seen as selfish. Jim Riggleman as manager is no different. He let his organization, players and fans down, by jumping ship. He put his own financial and security needs ahead of those of the people around him. So Riggleman wanted a long-term contract? The best way to do it was to right the ship and lead the Nationals to their strongest possible record this year. Instead, Riggleman has likely blacklisted himself from the game and lost the chance to manage again.
The 58-year old Riggleman does not have any excuses in my book. He was a bench coach for several years, including stints with the Dodgers and Mariners following his departure from the Cubs in 1999. He did not receive another managerial opportunity until 2008, where he was an interim manager with the Mariners. Again Riggleman received an interim managerial job with the Nationals the following year, but stayed on with the team until yesterday. Was he a lame-duck manager so to speak? Probably. But that had more to do with his managerial skills and overall record than anything else. Sure many people want job security, especially in baseball. But let’s keep this in perspective. There are only thirty MLB manager jobs out there. Period. Jim Riggleman had one but he threw it away. He wanted to be a long-term manager but yet was not prepared to do what it takes to get there. Nobody should be above the system. I would not expect the Nationals to give Riggleman a strong recommendation, or any sort of reference in that regard. Teams have long memories and will likely be very cautious with Riggleman, who is today seen as having acted as a “jilted lover.”
In looking to the future, it is interesting to read Riggleman’s take. “I’m not sure if I’ll get another opportunity,” Riggleman said. “But I’ll promise you I’ll never do a one-year deal again. I’m 58. I’m too old to be disrespected.” His comments show that he clearly does not get “it”. This is not a question of respect. There is no entitlement. The Nationals did not owe you a thing Jim. They named you manager by removing the interim label. You were working year-to-year. Your lifetime managerial record did not entitle you to more. You were very lucky to have a MLB manager’s position. Your actions were selfish and disrespectful. The truth is that the Nationals team and its fans are better off for this move. They did not want to have a manager in the dugout who did not want to be there. That would not benefit anyone and a fresh voice and style could prove to be beneficial in the long-term. There are rumors that team is looking at Davey Johnson for the position. Personally, I think that Bobby Valentine should be considered for the job. But no matter who the Nationals hire, the team will be heading in a new direction. Jim Riggleman has committed baseball treason. For that reason, it is time for him to walk the plank and plunge into the waters of baseball oblivion.
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