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Monthly Archives: December 2015

San Francisco Giants State Of The Union For 2016

With the club pretty much being set for players all around the Infield and Outfield, and now the Starting Staff, the Giants look poised to make another run at a World Series run for an even year this decade. 2016 will see several of its Bullpen members on the last year of their contracts.

With the club pretty much being set for players all around the Infield and Outfield, and now the Starting Staff, the Giants look poised to make another run at a World Series run for an even year this decade. 2016 will see several of its Bullpen members on the last year of their contracts.

Hunter Stokes (Chief Writer/Part-Owner) 

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The only real need to upgrade could be at the Outfield level, with either a CF/LF.    Angel Pagan is also in the last year of his deal, so maybe signing a guy to man the position beyond this coming year would be an option.

The Starting Rotation will be a lot stronger in 2016 with the additions of Johnny Cueto and Jeff Samardzija

You can say what you want about Cueto’s time in Kansas City not being as effective., but he has played most of his career in Cincinnati – and pitched extremely well at Great American Ball Park.

Funny enough his best years have also come in even years with finishing 4th in NL Cy Young Voting in 2012, and 2nd   in 2014, when he led the NL in Innings Pitched with 249.2 – and Strikeouts with 241 for the Reds.

Samardzija still has great stuff, and as a #3 Starter, you could see him bouncing back with a nice year in San Francisco. Read the rest of this entry

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MLB Power Rankings New Years 2016

Perhaps the Back to the Future Prediction was off by just one year. The Cubs , who are immensely loaded with young offensive superstars added another to the mix with the Jason Heyward signing. Add that to a revamped Bullpen, strong Starters signed last year in Jon Lester and Jason Hammel, coupled with John Lackey this year, and this team is the clear cut #1 ranked team. Oh yeah..They even have depth to make another trade should they need to.

Perhaps the Back to the Future Prediction was off by just one year. The Cubs , who are immensely loaded with young offensive superstars added another to the mix with the Jason Heyward signing. Add that to a revamped Bullpen, strong Starters signed last year in Jon Lester and Jason Hammel, coupled with John Lackey this year, and this team is the clear cut #1 ranked team. Oh yeah..They even have depth to make another trade should they need to.

Hunter Stokes (Chief Writer/Part-Owner) 

Follow The MLB Reports On Twitter 

(1) Chicago Cubs: Big additions of Jason Heyward, Ben Zobrist and John Lackey.  Tonnes of young superstars only ging to get better.

(2) NY Mets:  Starting Pitching best in the Majors.  Offensive depth better in offseason.  Need David Wright to stay healthy.  NL East easiest bottom 3 teams in the bigs.

(3) Kansas City Royals:  Easiest Division in the Majors.  Back to Back AL Pennants and defending World Series Champs.  Look for some more mid year deals. Read the rest of this entry

Sully Baseball Daily Podcast – December 31, 2015

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USA Today Sports

The last podcast of the year. So much can happen in 365 days. So many legacies can be changed. So many events not foreseen at the beginning of the year can totally be flipped.

Just think of Salvador Perez, ending 2014 as the man who popped up to end the World Series… and being the World Series MVP for 2015.

Think of Pariah Alex Rodriguez leading the Yankees back to the playoffs.

Lots of changes happened. Lots more will happen in 2016.

Be sure to listen to all of it on The Sully Baseball Daily Podcast.

Read the rest of this entry

10 Detroit Tiger Wishes For The New Year

detroit tigers2

 

I’m not going to start at with a World Series ring, as we’re a ways off still in Detroit for that. However there are 10 things that I think as fans we should be hope for in the New Year…

  1. A healthy Miguel Cabrera – Cabrera enters his 14th Major League season at age 33 and coming off the his first full season in not reaching 600+ plate appearances.  Due to that, his 100+ RBI streak was broken and numbers looked down, although he did win his 4th batting title.

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Sully Baseball Daily Podcast – December 30, 2015

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Howard Simmons – New York Daily News

More of my conversation with Phil Hecken of Uniwatch where we lament the state of the New York Mets uniforms.

It is a matter of taste on this episode of The Sully Baseball Daily Podcast.

Follow Phil Hecken on Twitter by clicking HERE.

Read the rest of this entry

Tampa Bay Rays State Of The Union For 2016

The Rays have still been one of the best teams in baseball since the start of 2008. Last year marked their 1st losing season since 2007 - and that was only at 80 - 82. But with the starting positional players listed on depth chart all being below league averages on offense - except for Logan Forsythe and Evan Longoria, they will need a few breakout players from their bench. It may be time trade one or 2 Starting Pitchers to add some offensive help. If they fall out of contention, it also may not be a bad idea to trade all veterans that they can. This may include Evan Longoria.

The Rays have still been one of the best teams in baseball since the start of 2008. Last year marked their 1st losing season since 2007 – and that was only at 80 – 82. But with the starting positional players listed on depth chart all being below league averages on offense – except for Logan Forsythe and Evan Longoria, they will need a few breakout players from their bench. It may be time trade one or 2 Starting Pitchers to add some offensive help. If they fall out of contention in 2016 it also may not be a bad idea to trade all veterans that they can. This may include Longoria.

Chuck Booth (Owner/Lead  Analyst) 

Follow The MLB Reports On Twitter 

The Tampa Bay Rays failed to make it to .500 or better for the 1st time since 2008 in 2015, however with a 5 game winning streak at the end of the campaign, they made it to 80 wins or better for an 8th year in a row.  I highly suspect this year that may come crashing down.

First Boston went off on a spending spree to amp up its roster, and now the Yankees have added Aroldis Chapman to the fold, and upgraded at Second Base with Starlin Castro.

Toronto made its moves for the better in late July, and should be a team to be reckoned with again in 2016.

Only the Orioles don’t look to compete in the AL East during the 2016 campaign with the Rays thus far, and they still may be tough to play 19 times a year if they are to re-sign Chris Davis.

Tampa Bay still clearly has the best Pitching Rotation in the Division with Chris Archer, Alex Cobb, Drew Smyly, Matt Moore and Jake Odorizzi filtering in spots 1 – 5.  But will it be enough to help a fledgling offensive in 2016? Read the rest of this entry

Odds To Win The American And National League Pennants For 2016

Back to Back AL pennants and this years World Series Winners. They should the biggest favorite to win their respective division so far on the board. As such, should be the favorite to win the AL Pennant as well. franchise has most of the core nucleus all heading for Free Agency before the 2018 season. If I were a fan of this club - I would be okay with the team rebuilding after this, but for now to throw all chips in and try to cash in on a chance for a small dynasty. Dayton Moore and the Brass should use any one of their Minor League Players to acquire the next piece or 2 to make that happen in 2016 and 2017.

Back to Back AL pennants and this years World Series Winners. They should the biggest favorite to win their respective division so far on the board. As such, should be the favorite to win the AL Pennant as well.  They are truly the Rodney Dangerfield club when it comes to respect.  Keep it up fellas, and many gambling sharps will continue to pad their bank account.  Take the +1200 wager to win the American League all day long.

Hunter Stokes (Chief Writer/Part-Owner) 

Follow The MLB Reports On Twitter 

Step right up and plunk down as much money as you can on the Royals.  Tied for 6th in the AL odds, and given what other sports gambling websites are giving the defending champs for a World Series odd, it is an ultimate no brainer.

I can’t wait to see if this gambling establishment also offers a over/under for the club.  It has been fun making money on the Kansas City squad over the last few years.

There is no way that the Indians and Tigers should have parallel wager odds with KC. Read the rest of this entry

Detroit Tigers State Of The Union For 2016

The Tigers are already at a budget of near $180 MIL - and could still use another Starting Pitcher and OF to add to the mix. What if they were to sign Yoenis Cespedes and then add another Starter - this could bring them over the $200 MIL barrier. With just a penalty of 17.5%, it would not cost the club more than about $5 in fees if that were to happen. They and the Angels would have the most to gain by crossing the Luxury Tax limit.

The Tigers are already at a budget of near $180 MIL – and could still use another Starting Pitcher and OF to add to the mix. What if they were to sign Yoenis Cespedes and then add another Starter – this could bring them over the $200 MIL barrier. With just a penalty of 17.5% for one year over, it would not cost the club more than about $5 MIL in fees if that were to happen.  It is only because they are the most winnable Division – and can draw over 3 Million fans that I would even say this is a good idea to spend more money for one season.

Chuck Booth (Owner/Lead  Analyst) 

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The Detroit Tigers are getting older by the second.  The recent Free Agent signings of Jordan Zimmermann, Mike Pelfrey, Mark Lowe and Jarrod Saltalamacchia – coupled with the acquisitions of Cameron Maybin, Justin Wilson, Francisco Rodriguez have just furthered the ticking time bomb of father time.

Departing from the 2015 Roster are: Ian Krol, Rajai Davis, Alex Avila, Alfredo Simon, Al Alburquerque, Joe Nathan and Tom Gorzelanny.

If you also add 4 months from each of Yoenis Cespedes, Joakim Soria and David Price to the list from the beginning of 2015, how does the departed compare to the incoming for 2016?

It actually is pretty fair, but the difference comes down to Cespedes.  The Bullpen may be a lot stronger as well.  Simon and Avila is favorable to Saltalamacchia and Pelfrey.

Rodriguez, Lowe and Wilson compares to Soria and Albuquerque and Gorzelanny strongly.

Price and Zimmermann is at least comparable, with Price maybe holding a slight edge, but not at an extension of $107 MIL over 2 years better. Value wise, the Tigers may have the better long term deal.

So with this in mind, the 2016 club is not better on paper yet. Read the rest of this entry

Chapman To The Yanks Means ‘New York’ is In It To Win It For 2016

Aroldis Chapman is the most dominant Left Handed Reliever in the game right now - and is heading to the Bronx with the 2 other top Strikeout Ratio artists in Andrew Miller and Dellin Betances.  The Yankees will be able to hold down plenty of leads.  But this deal means more than just the player coming to New York.  It is the first time we have seen the brass step up to say we are going to win this thing in 2016.  Look for subsequent moves to be made now that this is the mindset.

Aroldis Chapman is the most dominant Left Handed Reliever in the game right now – and is heading to the Bronx with the 2 other top Strikeout Ratio artists in Andrew Miller and Dellin Betances. The Yankees will be able to hold down plenty of leads. But this deal means more than just the player coming to New York. It is the first time we have seen the brass step up to say we are going to win this thing in 2016. Look for subsequent moves to be made now that this is the mindset.  Chapman has 1 Year of Arbitration left before hitting the open market next winter).

Hunter Stokes (Chief Writer) 

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We have given Brian Cashman a lot of flak about how he has run the Yankees in the last half dozen year or so.  While I like the Aaron Hicks and Starlin Castro deals, this is the first deal where I felt the Pinstripers were serious about winning again.

Read about the deal for Chapman from MLB Trade Rumors

Everyone will be proclaiming them the best 1/2/3 knockout punch in late inning relief in the entire Majors.  You will also hear a ton of things about Strikeout Rates – and historical Bullpens.

You will also hear a lot about player integrity and character.  Since when do the Bronx Bombers ever care about whether a guy has some off field issues?

What I took out of yesterday’s deal is that the brass has given the green light to play ball in 2016.

With a payroll reaching $220 MIL now (easily payable with a team that makes as much as the Yankees), who cares if the team spends another $25 – $30 MIL after the Chapman deal? Read the rest of this entry

Sully Baseball Daily Podcast – December 29, 2015

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Scott Rovak-USA TODAY Sports

Can you imagine an alternate universe where Mike Trout and Miguel Cabrera would have been teammates?

It was possible.

Pondering parallel realities on this episode of The Sully Baseball Daily Podcast

 

Read the rest of this entry

Odds To Win The 2016 MLB World Series

The Yankees acquisition of Aroldis Chapman is great notion that the club will continue to make plans to acquire more players on the last year of their team control.

The Yankees acquisition of Aroldis Chapman is great notion that the club will continue to make plans to acquire more players on the last year of their team control.  I hope you cashed in on their +2000 odd last week.  If not, the +1500 mark is still fair to bet now.

Hunter Stokes (Chief Writer) 

Follow The MLB Reports On Twitter 

Just as predicted, the Yankees odd went from +2000 to +1500 overnight with the Aroldis Chapman trade coming down.

If you had them with one of our own best bets last week, then you capitalized on the best odd you are going to get from the Bronx Bombers this winter.

So how exactly do the oddsmakers have so much faith in the Left Handed Reliever?  Well it has more to do with the masses betting on New York with given hope.

We outlined at the MLB Reports about their coming season.  With Chapman in the fold, forthcoming suspension withstood, the Yankees will have the man even for just 4 months.

The Yankees will won a ton of games if they are leading after 5 innings, and with the top 3 Strikeout ratio Relievers, these guys could come up huge in the playoffs for next campaign.

if you bet the Yanks, or believe they are not done shopping in the Free Agent Market yet, that +1500 odd is still not a bad wager. Read the rest of this entry

Looking Back At The Pace Of Play In 2015

Clock ticking

On February 20, 2015, MLB announced a series of initiatives aimed at quickening the pace of play in Major League games, the key changes were:

  • Umpires will enforce Rule 6.02(d), which requires hitters to keep one foot in the box during an at-bat, subject to certain exceptions.
  • Timers will be used to ensure that the game resumes promptly at the end of inning breaks.
  • Managers will no longer come out of the dugout to initiate a replay challenge. A manager will also keep his challenge after each call that is overturned. Last year, a challenge was retained only after the first overturned call.

So how did those changes pan out for you? Did you notice if the pace of play sped up? Did the pace of play speed up at all?

I can’t say that I noticed if a game was any quicker or not, I did notice the new rule about stepping out of the batters box because the announcers kept harping on it.

I also became aware of the clock between innings when I missed a home run because the game resumed before the television was back to the game from its barrage of commercials.

Check out the rest of the story at Twinstrivia.com.

Sully Baseball Daily Podcast – December 28, 2015

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AP File

The man who gave me one of the greatest moments of my youth passed away.

Today I pay tribute to the immortal Dave Henderson.

RIP to the hero of 1986 in this episode of The Sully Baseball Daily Podcast.

Read the rest of this entry

Arizona Diamondbacks State Of The Union For 2016

The first big surprise of the winter came when the Diamondbacks signed Zack Greinke. The organization followed that up with trading a heavy price tag to acquire Shelby Miller to back him up. Dave Stewart has taken a lot of crap for a lopsided deal. I think that is very speculative to talk like that. Besides Free Agent Pitchers are expensive, and a way for small market clubs to negate that is to trade for a controllable player. Tony La Russa also knows that his club is setup for a winning window of approximately 3 - 4 years.

The first big surprise of the winter came when the Diamondbacks signed Zack Greinke. The organization followed that up with trading a heavy price tag to acquire Shelby Miller to back him up. Dave Stewart has taken a lot of crap for a lopsided deal. I think that is very speculative to talk like that. Besides Free Agent Pitchers are expensive, and a way for small market clubs to negate that is to trade for a controllable player. La Russa also knows that his club is set up for a winning window of approximately 3 – 4 years.  Keep the aggression when it comes to upgrading this team.

Chuck Booth (Owner/Lead  Analyst) 

Follow The MLB Reports On Twitter 

You simply couldn’t have asked for a better start to a winter in 2015 for Arizona.  They are legitimate contenders in the NL West, and still should have the wherewithal to spend another $20 – $25 MIL on salaries for 2016.

I love the aggression set forth by the management.  I hope they keep the pedal to the metal on this one.  A nucleus of a team lasts 3 – 4 years for a mid market club, and by the acquisitions the team has done here completely reflects that.

We have discussed how the Houston Astros developed their young club for a few years now.  It is clearly the best way to rebuild a team.

Another reason why the team has had the financial flexibility to create these maneuvers is that they have Paul Goldschmidt on perhaps the best valued contract in the game of baseball right now.

The other Infielders in the mix for the Diamondbacks need to step up the production for he Arizona squad in 2016.  Whether it is Chris Owings at 2B or Nick Ahmed at SS, these positions were not league average for the slots, as was third base either.

Arizona was carried offensively by Goldschmidt and a great productive OF in A.J. Pollock, David Peralta and Ender Inciarte.

The club dealt Inciarte in the Shelby Miller deal, but could pick up the slack with giving his OF position to Yasmany Tomas full time in 2016.

Welington Castillo was one of the most prolific Catchers in the Majors least year, featuring a 3 slash of .255/.317/.496 with the Diamondbacks, clubbing 17 HRs and knocking in 50 RBI during his 254 AB for the club.

In a roundabout way, he bettered what the club had previously in Miguel Montero, who incidentally was the reason why Castillo was flipped to Seattle initially.

That trade made up for the previous fiasco that was the trade for Mark Trumbo the previous season. Read the rest of this entry

Cincinnati Reds State Of The Union For 2016

The Reds management started off the rebuild project nicely with the midsummer deals of Leake and Cueto. They also got a nice haul for 2 years left of Todd Frazier. However, due to a 10/5 rule for Brandon Phillips, and a domestic dispute killing potential other deals, Cincinnati has been stymied in completing the quest. Our own Jordan Gluck ranked them as the 27th worst prospects team in 2015, and it has only slightly improved since the spring. It is going to be a long arduouas process for the brass to pull themselves out of thi predicament.

The Reds management started off the rebuild project nicely with the midsummer deals of Leake and Cueto. They also got a nice haul for 2 years left of Todd Frazier. However, due to a 10/5 rule for Brandon Phillips, and a domestic dispute killing potential other deals, Cincinnati has been stymied in completing the quest. Our own Jordan Gluck ranked them as the 27th worst prospects team in 2015, and it has only slightly improved since last spring. It is going to be a long arduous process for the brass to pull themselves out of this predicament.  Jesse Winker and Robert Stephenson join Jose Peraza as the top 3 prospects that could make the 2016 club.

Hunter Stokes (Chief Writer/Part Owner) 

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The Reds finished 64 – 98 in 2015 and the situation is going to get a lot worse before it gets any better.  I predict 100 losses for the Cincinnati club for 2016, and they could really rack up some L’s especially past the trade deadline of next year if they do their job right in managing the squad.

I like the path the management has taken for trading players, unfortunately a domestic dispute cost the chance to flip Aroldis Chapman to the Dodgers, and the 10 – 5 rule cost them another opportunity to deal Brandon Phillips to the Nationals.

Obviously there is still hope they can trade these guys before they can’t do so anymore.

Last season the club dealt Johnny Cueto and Mike Leake in separate deals at the deadline, and have 3 players on the current depth chart to show for it (Adam Duvall, Brandon Finnegan and John Lamb, while they have 2 more Minor League prospects in Keury Mella and Cody Reed.)

Cincinnati finished just 1 win ahead of the Phillies for the worst record in the Major Leagues.

There is no polite way to go about this rebuilding process.  Jay Bruce, Devin Mesoraco, Jumbo Diaz, J.J. Hoover, Tony Cingrani, Zack Cozart and Homer Bailey should all be considered to be traded in addition to Chapman and Phillips.

The only real players the club should keep are Joey Votto, Billy Hamilton, Anthony DeSclafani and all other players they traded for last season – or are in their Minor League system.

One only has to look in which Division they play in to realize that their Roster is overmatched and there is no short term solution to fix this organization.

The Cubs are set for an awesome 4 – 5 years stretch of play as all of their young offensive stars are groomed by their recent Free Agent signings over the last 2 winters.

St. Louis has reset their roster among the veteran core that aged together with Adam Wainwright, Yadier Molina and Matt Holliday. Read the rest of this entry

Max Watt: The Boston Red Sox’s Power Pitching Prospect

Scouting is an integral part of professional baseball. Teams employ and send out hundreds of employees tasked with finding the next great players. Although they monitor first-round draft talent, their bread and butter is trying to decipher the future of players who may not have quite as much polish. As a result, some come to believe so much in who they are evaluating that they continue scouting—for years if necessary— until they are able to bring them into the fold. Such is the case with the Boston Red Sox and pitcher Max Watt.

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Sully Baseball Daily Podcast – December 27, 2015

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AP Photo

It is Sunday and time for The Sunday Request.

 

Breaking down each team’s last Rookie of the Year and a few surprising facts popped up.

Let’s avoid the Sophomore Jinx on this episode of The Sully Baseball Daily Podcast.

Read the rest of this entry

Los Angeles Angels State Of The Union For 2016

The Angels could easily upgrade 2B and an LF spots, and will need to compensate for Albert Pujols to at least miss the start of the 2016 season as well. They have great depth in the Pitching Rotation, however are bogged down by the Jered Weaver and C.J. Wilson costing them a combined $40 MIL. Add in $30 MIL in buyout/dead money and the team will have a tough time competing in 2016 without nearing $200 MIL in total team payroll.

The Angels could easily upgrade their 2B and LF positions, and will need to compensate for Albert Pujols to at least miss the start of the 2016 season as well. They have great depth in the Pitching Rotation, however are bogged down by the Jered Weaver and C.J. Wilson costing them a combined $40 MIL. Add in $30 MIL in buyout/dead money and the team will have a tough time competing in 2016 without nearing $200 MIL in total team payroll.  This means that Arte Moreno will have to give new GM Billy Eppler some more money to dole out to Free Agents.  Will he do it?  I am afraid for the Halo’s in 2016 if he doesn’t bring in 2 – 3 more upgrades..

Hunter Stokes (Chief Writer/Part Owner) 

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It has been a slow but somewhat productive winter for the Angels brass, and in particular for new GM Billy Eppler.  They have done the kind of deals that will work only if they still pull the trigger on signing a premiere player.

Los Angeles acquired a 3B already in Yunel Escobar, who was only traded for by flipping Trevor Gott and a mid level prospect. Not bad for a guy who batted .315/.374/.415 over the past year, makes $7 MIL in 2016, and has a Team Option for 2017 at another $7 MIL – or the club can Buy him out for a cool million.

This came on the heels of trading for Andrelton Simmons, who has 5 years of Team Control left for a guy that only had one more year of salary on the books in Erick Aybar. Read the rest of this entry

Sully Baseball Daily Podcast – December 26, 2015

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Topps

 

Part 2 of my conversation with former big league outfielder Glenn Braggs.

We talked about his early days with the Milwaukee Brewers and how a fast food job almost interfered with his big league career.

Order is up on this episode of The Sully Baseball Daily Podcast.

Read the rest of this entry

Nats Sign Daniel Murphy: Why Not Have Just Kept Escobar And Sign Denard Span?

Daniel Murphy has a career 3 Slash of .288/.331/.424. The Nats signed him to a 3 YR deal worth $37.5 MIL - that will also cost the Nationals the 17th overall pick in the 2016 Draft next year. Some say that pick is worth $8 to $10 MIL. If this is the case, why wouldn't the Nats just have kept Yunel Escobar for $7 MIL over the next 2 years, and then sign Denard Span to the 3 Year deal that Murphy just signed. The Nats are better off today than they were yesterday, but I have to ask the question whether or not they did the right moves.

Daniel Murphy has a career 3 Slash of .288/.331/.424. The Nats signed him to a 3 YR deal worth $37.5 MIL – that will also cost the Nationals the 17th overall pick in the 2016 Draft next year. Some say that pick is worth $8 to $10 MIL. If this is the case, why wouldn’t the Nats just have kept Yunel Escobar for $7 MIL over the next 2 years, and then sign Denard Span to the 3 Year deal that Murphy just signed. The Nats are better off today than they were yesterday, but I have to ask the question whether or not they did the right moves.

Chuck Booth (Owner/Lead  Analyst) 

Follow The MLB Reports On Twitter 

The Nats finally got their First Baseman they needed in the upcoming year with a 3 YRS/$37.5 MIL deal with former Met Daniel Murphy.  It will cost the cash, plus the 17th overall pick in the 2016 as compensation for signing him.

It has been an offseason that has seen GM Mike Rizzo obtain several Bullpen pieces for the roster next year.

In the end here, I am not sure Washington wouldn’t have been better off just keeping Yunel Escobar, and signing Denard Span for the same deal that Murphy just got.

So I guess Anthony Rendon will leadoff for the Nationals in 2016?

New Manager Dusty Baker will probably see Bryce Harper move into the Starting Centerfielder position, play Jayson Werth in Left Field, and then use Clint Robinson and Michael Taylor as a platoon in RF. 

Taylor could also play CF, with Harper in Right, but the idea is have the reigning NL MVP not have to crash into fences down the foul pole line. Read the rest of this entry

Sully Baseball Daily Podcast – December 25, 2015

xmas

Recorded while everyone was asleep and waiting for Santa, I talked about how many of the things on my baseball Christmas wish list have already come through.

I have a few more wishes however, and some are very easy to fulfill.

It is the very special Christmas episode of The Sully Baseball Daily Podcast.

Read the rest of this entry

Sully Baseball Daily Podcast – December 24, 2015

Todd Radom, the famous and prolific sports graphic designer, joins the podcast.

We talk about logos, hats, our 1970’s nostalgia and I attempt one of his uniform and logo quizzes.

It is a throw back design episode of The Sully Baseball Daily Podcast.

Read the rest of this entry

Philadelphia Phillies State Of The Union For 2016

The Phillies have not had a winning season since 2011 after putting forth a decade straight of them. A promising second half to the year - coupled with full seasons by Aaron Nola and Maikel Franco could have them inch closer back to achieving that mark in the next few years. The management finally started the rebuild halfway through the year - and the financial flexibility in going forward should really be shaped up in a few more years. Philadelphia has $110 MIL in approximate Team Salary already committed for next year. I would keep the course and build through the Draft. Spending money on any premiere Free Agents is a little premature right now. In addition, the club could really trade away anything not nailed down.

The Phillies have not had a winning season since 2011 after putting forth a decade straight of them. A promising second half to the year – coupled with full seasons by Aaron Nola and Maikel Franco could have them inch closer back to achieving that mark in the next few years. The management finally started the rebuild halfway through the year, have continued it so far this winter – and the financial flexibility in going forward should really be shaped up in a few more seasons.   It may be a tough campaign in 2016 for the win loss column, however the team has a lot of young players to watch and be excited about.

Chuck Booth (Owner/Lead  Analyst) 

Follow The MLB Reports On Twitter 

I was lucky enough to watch a record 224 MLB Games live last year – spread across all 30 MLB parks in every day of the campaign last season.

Unfortunately I saw the most home games (33 Games) in Philadelphia with my brother living close by.  There is nothing wrong with Citizens Ball Park, it was the team that was tough to watch.

When you have Jeff Francouer as your #4 hitter for half of the year, there is something wrong with that. I love the guy, and Frenchy had a decent year, it just said a lot about the depth of the Roster in 2015.

At the end of the year Philadelphia’s management started to trade away Veterans from the glory days of the World Series, and you can start to see the healing begin.

The dealing continued with Ken Giles sent to Texas for a bunch of stud arms coming back. Now the Phillies are looking forward to a bunch of young talent coming to the big leagues in the next few seasons.

The old guard is still there with Ryan Howard and Carlos Ruiz holding down the Starting First Base and Catcher respectively.  Howard is an average offensive threat only now that makes $25 MIL. Read the rest of this entry

Odds To Win The American And National League For 2016

Back to Back AL pennants and this years World Series Winners. They should the biggest favorite to win their respective division so far on the board. As such, hould be the favorite to win the AL Pennant as well. franchise has most of the core nucleus all heading for Free Agency before the 2018 season. If I were a fan of this club - I would be okay with the team rebuilding after this, but for now to throw all chips in and try to cash in on a chance for a small dynasty. Dayton Moore and the Brass should use any one of their Minor League Players to acquire the next piece or 2 to make that happen in 2016 and 2017.

Back to Back AL pennants and this years World Series Winners. They should the biggest favorite to win their respective division so far on the board. As such, should be the favorite to win the AL Pennant as well. This website has them listed as +1200 to win just their league championship.  This is the best odd on the board for the entire offseason, and I have plunked down $50 on them.  It baffles me how the oddsmakers still give this club no respect.

Hunter Stokes (Chief Writer/Part-Owner) 

Follow The MLB Reports On Twitter 

I can’t express enough on the awesome value that the odds are singing to me right now.  The KC Royals at +1200 when most gambling establishments have this same odd for the World Series?!  Bet this all day long.

If you looked to the last post I did on the League Odds, you will see almost a perfect record of me dissecting the odds.

All 3 favorite odds clubs for the AL are ridiculous. Boston may be right on course for the top ranked Junior Circuit team, but at +450?  No way.  The Rangers and Astros are also not a given to be that high of an odd either.

Toronto is also an excellent odd to wager this week at +850.  Come on guys really. You have them listed at the same odd as the New York Yankees?

The Mariners, Twins and White Sox all have great odds listed for their League Championship totals.  I am not saying they will win, but all have a punchers chance.  Minnesota won 83 games in 2015, and the White Sox and M’s have decent winters thus far from acquiring talent.

Speaking about a shot based on value, the Marlins are listed as +3000 favorites to win the World Series on some sites, yet have been listed as +6000. Read the rest of this entry

Injuries To Pitchers Cost The Most Harm To Teams For Financial Flexibility

Zack Greinke makes $34.4 MIL per year with the Diamondbacks. It represents about 30% of their entire payroll. A lot of small market teams have laid off spending 9 figure contracts on Starting Pitchers because they are more susceptible to breaking down with long term injuries from their arms. 30 MLB Pitchers had Tommy John Surgery in 2015, and that comes with a 12 - 18 months healing period.

Zack Greinke makes $34.4 MIL per year with the Diamondbacks. It represents about 30% of their entire payroll. A lot of small market teams have laid off spending 9 figure contracts on Starting Pitchers because they are more susceptible to breaking down with long term injuries from their arms. 30 MLB Pitchers had Tommy John Surgery in 2015, and that comes with a 12 – 18 months healing period.

Hunter Stokes (Chief Writer) 

Follow The MLB Reports On Twitter 

Player contracts are sure to hit well over he 4 Billion Dollar mark in 2016.  While the war is waged in the trenches of General Managers offices, the MLB will tell you that there is nothing wrong with the current system in baseball in terms of parity.

After all, the Kansas City Royals just won the World Series and they were not a top 10 salaried team.  The Mets also not in the top 10, were in the Fall Classic.

Record 9 figured contracts are being doled out like Benjamin Franklin’s are going out of style.

In 2015, $579 MIL worth of cash was paid out to guys on the Disabled List, and Pitchers took 57.7% of the pie in that category.  Starters were almost worth $248 MIL – and Relief Pitchers took down the other $86 MIL of that.

$334 MIL worth of payroll is about the sum for 3 average teams.  That is a lot of dough spent to guys that only pitch 30 – 34 Starts – or produce just 4 – 70 Innings worth of work in Relief. Read the rest of this entry

Texas Rangers State Of The Union For 2016

The Rangers rose from the AL West ashes in 2015 and won their first Division Title in 4 years. It came off the heels of 2 injury riddled seasons that plagued any chance to make the playoffs. The club has about $140 MIL worth of salaries to pay in 2016 but should consider spending out another $10 - $15 MIL. They have a need for a Starting Pitcher and could use a breakout campaign from either Joey Gallo or Jurickson Profar to add depth for mid year trade to acquire a proven playoff Starter to add. The club will also hope Yu Darvish can come back at full strength. While they have 5 of the top 46 contracts of ALL - Time on their salary, 3 of them came via trade where the former team is picking up some of the dough.

The Rangers rose from the AL West ashes in 2015 and won their first Division Title in 4 years. It came off the heels of 2 injury riddled seasons that plagued any chance to make the playoffs. The club has about $140 MIL worth of salaries to pay in 2016 but should consider spending out another $10 – $15 MIL. They recently filled their need for Starting Pitching and could use a breakout campaign from either Joey Gallo or Jurickson Profar to help the cause.  The club will also hope Yu Darvish can come back at full strength.

Chuck Booth (Owner/Lead  Analyst) 

Follow The MLB Reports On Twitter 

The Rangers have done a decent job in adding depth in the last few days to the Starting Rotation.  The club has brought back fan favorite and 17 game winner for them in 2015 – Colby Lewis on a 1 Year deal worth $6 MIL.

Then John Daniels agreed to sign A.J. Griffin to the Pitching Staff even though he hasn’t pitched in the Majors of the last 2 years in recovering from Tommy John Surgery.

These are small moves in the grand scheme of things, but should help make sure that Yu Darvish can come back from his own Tommy John Surgery in his own good time.

You also have to factor that Derek Holland has faced a multitude of health issues over the last 2 years, most notably his spinal injury in 2015.  It is a good thing the club traded for Cole Hamels last year. Read the rest of this entry

Sully Baseball Daily Podcast – December 23, 2015

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Fleer

Glenn Braggs, former Cincinnati Reds outfielder, is my guest today.

We talked about his time in 1990 World Series, his dramatic catch in the playoffs and he reveals which teammate had a hand grenade in their locker.

It is a World Champion episode of The Sully Baseball Daily Podcast.

Read the rest of this entry

New York Mets State Of The Union For 2016

The Mets made it to the World Series in 2015 after a subpar start heading into the Trade Deadline. With a ton of pitching and some decent positional players still on the roster, they could set themselves up for a lengthy run in the NL East. Especially if they can coordinate a couple of trades (Pitching for hitters).

The Mets made it to the World Series in 2015 after a subpar start heading into the Trade Deadline. With a ton of pitching and some decent positional players still on the roster, they could set themselves up for a lengthy run in the NL East. After tinkering with average players in acquisitions (other than Neil Walker – who is a comparable replacement for Daniel Murphy), it looks like GM Sandy Alderson is done constructing the offense for 2016.  I think this is a critical error.

Chuck Booth (Owner/Lead  Analyst) 

Follow The MLB Reports On Twitter 

It has been a decent offseason for the New York Mets so far.  They have resigned Bartolo Colon, filled in the spot at 2B with an almost equal amount of talent for Daniel Murphy, while adding Asdrubal Cabrera is also a wise move.

The organization even resigned Jerry Blevins to the Relief Core.  There is still potential to add another arm or 2 for late innings in the Bullpen.

On Tuesday, it was announced the OF Alejandro De Aza has joined the club for a one year deal at $5.75 MIL (and $1.25 MIL in incentives).  This guy can play all 3 OF positions, but he really should be a 4th OF on a championship team caliber style of team. Read the rest of this entry

Sully Baseball Daily Podcast – December 22, 2015

Capture

Baseball Hall of Fame

I help a town in North Carolina honor Hoyt Wilhelm and finally Wade Boggs will get his number retired by the Red Sox.

Meanwhile I fight my allergies.

It is a small deed leading to good things episode of The Sully Baseball Daily Podcast.

Read the rest of this entry

Odds To Win The 2016 World Series

I agree that the recent signing of Johnny Cueto and the Dodgers failing to ink Hisashi Iwakuma leveled the playing field in the NL West, and might even slightly favor San Fran right now, but for the Giants to vault other teams that far up the chain is not right.  The 2nd best odd on the board should not be from the NL West.  The Mets, Nationals, Royals, Blue Jays and Red Sox all deserve to be slightly favored over the Giants.  As such, they go from the best odd from last week, to the worst value play this week.

I agree that the recent signing of Johnny Cueto and the Dodgers failing to ink Hisashi Iwakuma leveled the playing field in the NL West, and might even slightly favor San Fran right now, but for the Giants to vault other teams that far up the chain is not right. The 2nd best odd on the board should not be from the NL West. The Mets, Nationals, Royals, Blue Jays and Red Sox all deserve to be slightly favored over the Giants. As such, they go from the best odd from last week, to the worst value play this week.

Hunter Stokes (Chief Writer) 

Follow The MLB Reports On Twitter 

Just like we outlined here last week – the San Francisco Giants at +1600 was the best odd on the board.  They jumped all the way from +1600 to +900 in just 7 days.

Conversely we said that the Dodgers were not a great wager at +1200. and they dropped to +1500, which is now tied for 10th with the Diamondbacks, Pirates and Rangers for the best odds.

Chicago finally broke the stalemate with the Toronto Blue Jays atop the list, going from +800 to +750.  The Jays fell into a tie with the Boston Red Sox at +1000 and a tie for 3rd overall behind Chicago and San Francisco in the National League.

We also said to stay off the Rangers and Pirates, and both shifted downwards.  We continue to like the Yankees at +2000, even though they didn’t change from last weeks odd.

Baltimore did go from +4500 to +5000 over the last week.

The Cardinals took the hit with some cabbage bet on the Cubs, and at are at +1200.

The Mets also are the best odd they have been at for the whole winter. Read the rest of this entry

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