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The San Francisco Giants Should Sign Matt Wieters, Play Posey At 1B + Belt In LF

Matt Wieters accepted the 1 Year Qualifying Offer with the Baltimore Orioles last year - and he payed his first full campaign since 2013. At Age 30, he is still a decent Catcher both offensively and defensively. I first came up with this idea a few years ago, but Posey was still putting world class numbers out of the backstopper position, and they and several Outfielders. Now.there is an opening beyond the grass, so Brandon Belt could move there - freeing up Posey to play First Base.

Matt Wieters accepted the 1 Year Qualifying Offer with the Baltimore Orioles last year – and he played his first full campaign since 2013. At Age 30, he is still a decent Catcher both offensively and defensively. I first came up with this idea a few years ago, but Posey was still putting world class numbers out of the backstopper position, and they had several Outfielders on the depth chart. Now.there is an opening beyond the grass, so Brandon Belt could move there – freeing up Posey to play First Base – and the team to sign Wieters.

The Giants are one of the best franchises at fostering their home grown talent.  It has culminated in 3 World Series from 2010 – 2014, and the franchise has several of its core players locked up for the next 3 – 5 years.

With the recent news of the Luxury Tax Threshold penalizing the Dodgers something fierce for obliterating their payroll, the NL West has come back to the Giants to win – considering the LA squad has taken down 4 straight Division Titles.

San Francisco started the process of healing their Bullpen this winter. by forking out some big dollars to secure Closer Mark Melancon ( 4YRs/$62 MIL).  There is still a long way to go in shoring up the Relief Core, but they should have the funds to do it.

Which brings me to my next point.  Beyond the suspicion that Eduardo Nunez may not be a great long=term fit in the Bay Area, the Roster is pretty secure in the rest of the lineup – except for say the LF position.

There are not a lot of prime Free Agents on the open market that can play the OF.  Michael Saunders will cost too much money…Angel Pagan..well the Giants should just say no…Colby Rasmus…yikes…Brandon Moss….um….should be a 1B/DH type in the American League.

As for the depth chart currently for Bruce Bochy‘s squad…..Mac Williamson, Jarrett Parker and Gorkys Hernandez…Not sure that cuts the mustard on a playoff caliber squad.

My thought is – why not sign Matt Wieters to a 3 – 4 year contract worth about $33 – $44 MIL ($11 MIL AAV) – to be the prime Catcher for the Giants – then move Posey to First Base and Brandon Belt to LF? To me it makes sense. Read the rest of this entry

Boston Throws Down A Hell Of A Haymaker To The Rest Of The American League With Acquiring Chris Sale

Chris Sale has been as about as dominant as a pitcher as there as been in the American Leaue since he entered intothe rotation

Chris Sale has been as about as dominant as a pitcher as there has been in the American League since he entered into the rotation.  He is 74 – 50 with a clean 3.00 ERA over his career thus far – wtth 5 straight top 6 Cy Young Finishes and ALL – Star Appearances.  Sale set career highs in Wins (17) CG (6) and IP (226.2) during the last campaign.  He is only set to earn $38 MIL over the next 3 seasons total, so the cap hit is even better news for the Red Sox, who are already nearing the Luxury Tax Threshold Limit, and are subject to a 50% penalty as 3rd time abusers in 2017.

Hunter Stokes (Chief Writer/Part Owner) 

The Red Sox have landed an ace in the winter for the 2nd straight winter.  Boston has acquired Chris Sale from the White Sox in exchange for Yoan Moncada, Michael Kopech – with two other prospects Alexander Basabe  and Victor Diaz also heading to the Pale Hose.

This is the type of trade that brings a championship.  For a MLB club that was right up against the Luxury Tax Threshold already of $195 MIL for 2017, having Sale only making $38 MIL over the next three years is the biggest plus to this pact going down.

Boston loses a young player like Moncada for sure. and he may be World Class in the future, but you have to give something up to get something.  The Beantowners will still also be alright for their future with the likes of Mookie Betts, Xander Bogaerts and Jackie Bradley JR. just kickstarting their young careers, while they also held onto other great prospects like Andrew Benintendi and Blake Swihart.

They still have plenty of colorful veterans (with plenty of postseason experience) in talking of Dustin Pedroia, Hanley Ramirez – and yes even Pablo Sandoval. Read the rest of this entry

These 6 MLB Hitters Have a lot To Prove in 2017

Now that it’s been about a month since the Chicago Cubs won the World Series and we’re assured there won’t be a work stoppage related to Collective Bargaining Agreement negotiations, baseball’s full focus can officially shift to 2017.

With MLB’s Winter Meetings on the horizon, we’ll soon be engulfed in countless rumors as front office executives attempt to improve for next season.

While that’s all taking place, players — who are obviously the subject of these impending rumors — are likely at home watching it all happen as they mentally and physically prepare for 2017 themselves. Some are feeling confident after a solid showing over the past several months, but others are looking to regain their old form.

Just as we recently pointed out a handful of starting pitchers who are entering next season with a lot to prove, we’ve chosen six hitters also feeling that same kind of pressure. However, unlike those hurlers, not all of the below hitters are coming off disappointing campaigns. 

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Is it Time for the Joey Gallo Era for the Texas Rangers?

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Over at Off the Bench we’ve written a lot about where this offseason’s free agents might end up. Some of the bigger names that generate all sorts of buzz are the likes of Aroldis Chapman (who threw an incredible pitch), Kenley Jansen, and Yoenis Cespedes, whom we think might end up back with the New York Mets, we were right. We even pondered about the final destination of lower profile players like Michael Saunders, but we never got so deep in the weeds as to discuss the fate of free agent first basemen Mitch Moreland.

Moreland has spent the last few seasons manning first base for the Texas Rangers, taking his place as the lowest profile position player on a team full of offensive studs. With Prince Fielder’s tragic forced retirement this summer, Moreland became the answer to the oft-posed question ‘So who’s the Texas Rangers first basemen these days anyway?’

READ THE REST OF THIS ENTRY

 

Odds To Win The 2017 World Series:

The Nationals feature 3 potential MVPs and 2 Cy Young Pitchers as their top talent - while the rest of the Division struggles with overcoming roster hauls, rebuilding and tragedy. The Cubs are the expected overwhelming favorite, however they don't pay nearly enough, and nothing is ever certain in the playoffs. Give me the Nats as the best on the board currently.

The Nationals feature 3 potential MVPs and 2 Cy Young Pitchers as their top talent – while the rest of the Division struggles with overcoming roster hauls, rebuilding and tragedy. The Cubs are the expected overwhelming favorite, however they don’t pay nearly enough, and nothing is ever certain in the playoffs. Give me the Nats as the best on the board currently.

Hunter Stokes (Chief Writer/Part Owner) 

If you bet with your mind and not your heart in the last 12 months, than you would have lost on the World Series predictions.  I prognosticated in my yearly preseason bets that I thought the Cubs would win the Fall Classic, but profusely hated the odds of +500 to begin the campaign.

I still fully capitalized on my preseason wager of picking the Dodgers at +1500 for $50, along with the Mets and Nationals at +1100 for $50 a piece as well. 

That, coupled with my Baltimore Orioles AL pick to win the AL Pennant at 28/1 Odds served to put me into a position to hedge several bets in the playoffs to turn a nice profit.  Later in the week we will delve into the websites entire wagers for the whole calendar season.

The reigning champions are also extreme favorites again heading into 2017 – at a +280 clip.  I may pick them to win another World Series again in my actual predictions, however those are still horrible odds to throw some cabbage down on.

Read the rest of this entry

Who Owns October in MLB Playoffs 2016 (#WOO) Tallies Updated for October 17, 2016

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AP Photo/Charlie Riedel

So many relievers to pick from… but one name towers over the rest. Meanwhile a former Boston Strong slugger has brought Cleveland to the brink of the World Series.

Time to see who owned October.

Each winning team for every post season game gets a pitcher and a hitter who earn a full WOO (Who Owns October.)

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

At the end of the post season, we will see who had the highest WOO total as a pitcher and a hitter.

A complete description of the rules can be found HERE.

From October 17th.
ALCS Game 3:

Receiving 1 WOO’s 

Andrew Miller highlighted a brilliant performance by the Cleveland bullpen, who combined for 8 1/3 innings. Miller earned the save by recording the final 4 Toronto outs, 3 by strikeouts, giving him 20 K’s in 9 post season innings, as the Indians won, 4-2.

Mike Napoli homered and later scored a key insurance run to help Cleveland beat Toronto, 4-2.

Receiving 1/2 WOO’s 

Michael Saunders launched a game tying homer in the second inning. The Blue Jays would end up dropping the game to Cleveland 4-2.

Current ‘WOO’ Totals MLB 2016:

Hitters ‘WOO’ MLB 2016,

Josh Donaldson – Blue Jays 2 1/2, Adrian Gonzalez – Dodgers 2 1/2, Francisco Lindor – Indians 2, Daniel Murphy – Nationals 2, Javier Baez – Cubs 1 1/2,  Edwin Encarnacion – Blue Jays 1 1/2, Conor Gillaspie – Giants 1 1/2, Justin Turner – Dodgers 1 1/2, Mookie Betts – Red Sox 1,  Coco Crisp – Indians 1,  Dexter Fowler – Cubs 1, Brandon Guyer – Indians 1, Shawn Kelley – Nationals 1,  Jason Kipnis – Indians 1, Miguel Montero – Cubs 1, Mike Napoli – Indians 1, Joe Panik – Giants 1, Joc Pederson – Dodgers 1, Troy Tulowitzki – Blue Jays 1, Jayson Werth – Nationals 1, Ben Zobrist – Cubs 1,  Elvis Andrus – Rangers 1/2,  Andrew Benintendi  – Red Sox 1/2, Gregor Blanco – Giants 1/2, Kris Bryant – Cubs 1/2,  Ian Desmond – Rangers 1/2, Curtis Granderson – Mets 1/2, Rougned Odor – Rangers 1/2, Buster Posey – Giants 1/2, Carlos Ruiz – Dodgers 1/2, Michael Saunders – Blue Jays 1/2, Mark Trumbo – Orioles 1/2,

Pitchers ‘WOO’ MLB 2016,

Kenley Jansen – Dodgers 2, Clayton Kershaw – Dodgers 2, Corey Kluber – Indians 2, Jon Lester – Cubs 2Andrew Miller – Indians 2,   Roberto Osuna – Blue Jays 2, Josh Tomlin – Indians 2, Marco Estrada – Blue Jays 1 1/2,  Madison Bumgarner – Giants 1, Aroldis Chapman – Cubs 1,, Derek Law – Giants 1,  Mark Melancon– Nationals 1, Marcus Stroman – Blue Jays 1, Travis Wood – Cubs 1, Jake Arrieta – Cubs 1/2,  Johnny Cueto – Giants 1/2, Kyle Hendricks – Cubs 1/2, Matt Moore – Giants 1/2, Darren O’Day – Orioles 1/2, Max Scherzer – Nationals 1/2, Noah Syndergaard – Mets 1/2,

Who Owned Baseball August 30, 2016 (Daily #MLB AL/NL Pitcher + Hitter MVP’s) + 2016 #WOB Standings

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TONY GUTIERREZ/AP

Rougned Odor collected 3 hits, the final was a walk off come from behind 2 run homer that redeemed a baserunning blunder as Texas stunned Seattle, 8-7.

Curtis Granderson came off the bench to homer twice and help the Mets stay alive by beating Miami, 7-4.

Collin McHugh threw 6 shutout innings and got the 3-1 win for Houston over Oakland.

Max Scherzer struck out 11 Phillies, allowing 3 hits and 2 runs over 8 innings as the Nationals prevailed, 3-2.

They All Owned Baseball on August 30, 2016.

To view the Yearly Leaders for Who Owned Baseball Standings, plus see who gained 1/2 WOB’s – Click the READ THE REST OF THIS ENTRY ICON OR SCROLL DOWN.

Daily Fantasy MLB DFS Picks For DraftKings 8/13/16

P- Tyler Anderson (Philadelphia Phillies): $9,500. Anderson is coming off a very strong start, which he gave up one run, on two hits, and five strikeouts over seven innings pitched against Rangers. Over his last three starts, he has given up a total of four runs (1.80 ERA) with 16 strikeouts in 20 innings pitched. Philadelphia has the worst OPS and OBP against left-handed pitching this season, which is clearly favorable for Anderson.

P- Zach Davies (v. Cincinnati Reds): $7,600. Davies has faced Cincinnati twice this season, which has has done quite well in those starts. In 12.2 innings, he has given up only two earned runs to the Reds. Over his last three starts, he has a 2-0 record, 3.32 ERA, and 12 strikeouts in 19 innings pitched.

 

SEE THE REST OF THE ARTICLE

Who Owned Baseball July 23, 2016 (Daily #MLB AL/NL Pitcher + Hitter MVP’s) + 2016 #WOB Standings

 

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(Fred Thornhill / AP)

 

Nelson Cruz homered twice, one being a grand slam, and drove in 7 to lead the Mariners in a 14-5 slug fest over the Blue Jays.

Trevor Story went 4 for 4, homered twice, drove in 5 and stole a base to help the Rockies top Atlanta, 8-4.

Kevin Gausman threw 7 shutout innings, striking out 7 Indians and earned the 5-2 victory for Baltimore.

Max Scherzer struck out 10 Padres in 7 innings, walking none and allowing just 2 runs. He did not get a decision but Washington walked off 3-2 winners.

They All Owned Baseball on July 23, 2016.

To view the Yearly Leaders for Who Owned Baseball Standings, plus see who gained 1/2 WOB’s – Click the READ THE REST OF THIS ENTRY ICON OR SCROLL DOWN.

In Memoriam Video For all baseball family who have passed since 2015 ASG.

Who Owned Baseball June 27, 2016 (Daily #MLB AL/NL Pitcher + Hitter MVP’s) + 2016 #WOB Standings

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JOE ROBBINS/GETTY IMAGES

Kris Bryant went 5 for 5 with 3 homers, driving in 6 and scoring 4 to lead the Cubs in a wild 11-8 slugfest in Cincinnati.

Jon Gray struck out 8 Blue Jays over 7 innings, walking none and worked around a pair of homers to get the 9-5 victory for Colorado.

Nick Franklin singled, doubled and homered, driving in 5 runs as the Rays snapped their losing streak, 13-7 over Boston.

Danny Duffy pitched 8 innings, allowing 2 runs, walking none and struck out 8 Cardinals batters to earn the 6-2 decision for the Royals.

They all owned baseball on June 27, 2016.

To view the Yearly Leaders for Who Owned Baseball Standings, plus see who gained 1/2 WOB’s – Click the READ THE REST OF THIS ENTRY ICON OR SCROLL DOWN.

Who Owned Baseball June 26, 2016 (Daily #MLB AL/NL Pitcher + Hitter MVP’s) + 2016 #WOB Standings

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RICH SCHULTZ/GETTY IMAGES

Tyler Duffey did not allow a hit until the 6th and finished with 8 innings, 2 hits, 8 strikeouts and 1 run as the Twins clobbered the Yankees, 7-1.

Jose Fernandez struck out 13 Cubs and allowed just 4 hits and 1 run to earn the 6-1 decision for the red hot Marlins.

Lonnie Chisenhall collected 9 total bases with his 4 hits, including a homer and 3 RBI as the Indians continued to roll, 9-3, in Detroit.

Freddie Freeman reached base 4 times, including a homer and a pair of runs scored in the Braves 5-2 victory over the Mets.

They all owned baseball on June 26, 2016.

To view the Yearly Leaders for Who Owned Baseball Standings, plus see who gained 1/2 WOB’s – Click the READ THE REST OF THIS ENTRY ICON OR SCROLL DOWN.

Who Owned Baseball June 17, 2016 (Daily #MLB AL/NL Pitcher + Hitter MVP’s) + 2016 #WOB Standings

 

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CHRIS O’MEARA/AP

Jeff Samardzija threw a complete game, allowing 4 Tampa Bay hits and 1 run, getting the 5-1 victory for San Francisco.

Justin Turner homered twice and got the walk off hit in extra innings, sealing the Dodgers 3-2 win over Milwaukee.

Cole Hamels pitched a shutout into the 8th, finishing with 7 2/3 innings, allowing just 3 hits and earning the razor thin 1-0 decision for the Rangers over St. Louis.

Michael Saunders hit 3 homers, driving in 8 and led the Blue Jays in a 13-3 romp over Baltimore.

They all owned baseball on June 17, 2016.

To view the Yearly Leaders for Who Owned Baseball Standings, plus see who gained 1/2 WOB’s – Click the READ THE REST OF THIS ENTRY ICON OR SCROLL DOWN.

Daily Fantasy MLB DFS Picks For FanDuel 5/4/16

fanduel

Hunter Stokes (Chief Writer/Part Owner) 

There is a sneaky bargain dollar deal on Wednesday night.  If you search really good already – you probably know that Justin Smoak is a fantastic value at $2300 against Colby Lewis.

Not only did the big switch hitting 1B club 2 HRs on Tuesday to win me some money, but he has done yard twice vs his opponent at the Rogers Centre – with a 1.438 OPS in 16 AB.

Jose Bautista has also fared well against Lewis, with a pair of HRs against him, with a ridiculous 9 Walks as well.  Joey Bats has a .619 OPS versus the man.

To help the stack even further, Michael Saunders has a HR and a .898 OPS in 20 AB.

In order to create the dollars needed to play the best pitcher on the board (Felix Hernandez), I put in Russell Martin at C as the 4th Jays player.

In case you haven’t noticed – Twins OF Danny Santana has been bringing in 8.7 PPG as a $2400 cost to the budget.  Give me that production any time.  I also added his teammate Brian Dozier to the fold tomorrow.

At 3B – I have enlisted Anthony Rendon for a 2nd straight day, as he hit his 1st HR of the season Tuesday.

Francisco Lindor had 3 hits Tuesday – and despite me wanting to play Troy Tulowitzki, he was was ineligible as a 5th Toronto player is prohibited. Read the rest of this entry

Who Owned Baseball April 25, 2016 (Daily MLB AL/NL Pitcher + Hitter MVP’s) + 2016 #WOB Standings

 

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BRANDON WADE/AP

Nathan Eovaldi started the game with 6 no hit innings, finishing with 7 shutout frames, allowing 2 hits, 2 walks and 6 strikeouts to lead the Yankees past Texas. 3-1.

Jeff Locke struck out 8 Rockies in 6 shutout innings in Coors Field and picked up the 6-1 decision for the Pirates.

Miguel Cabrera went 4 for 4 with a pair of homers, 11 total bases and 4 RBI as the Tigers topped Oakland, 7-3.

Jean Segura singled twice, doubled and homered, driving in 3 in the Diamondbacks wild 12-7 win over St. Louis.

They all owned baseball on April 25, 2016.

To view the Yearly Leaders for Who Owned Baseball Standings, plus see who gained 1/2 WOB’s – Click the READ THE REST OF THIS ENTRY ICON OR SCROLL DOWN.

Who Owned Baseball April 20, 2016 (Daily MLB AL/NL Pitcher + Hitter MVP’s) + 2016 #WOB Standings

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Anthony Souffle / Chicago Tribune

Chris Sale allowed 2 hits and 1 unearned run over 7 innings and led the White Sox to a 2-1 defeat of the Angels.

Mookie Betts reached base 4 times, including a homer and a stolen base, scoring three and driving in two and helped the Red Sox top the Rays. 7-3.

Carlos Martinez threw 7 strong innings against the Cubs, letting up just one earned run and earned the 5-3 decision for St. Louis.

Chris Carter homered and doubled, driving in thee as Brewers clobbered the Twins, 10-5.

They all owned baseball on April 20, 2016.

To view the Yearly Leaders for Who Owned Baseball Standings, plus see who gained 1/2 WOB’s – Click the READ THE REST OF THIS ENTRY ICON OR SCROLL DOWN.

Sully Baseball Daily Podcast Archives Dec 1, 2015 – Dec 31, 2015 (Episodes 1134 – 1164)

sunkenDFiamond

Paul Francis Sullivan (please call him Sully) does a podcast 365 days a year – unless it is a leap year – then he will do another 1. He has done a show everyday since Oct.24/2012. This to date represents a streak of 1235 days consecutively!

Past the CLICK TO READ THE REST OF THIS ENTRY are episodes 1134 – 1164 of the Sully Baseball Daily Podcast.

We will also archive all of his podcasts to date (in coming weeks) so they are easily accessible for all his fans. Check out all his Archived info here.

Our website followers have grown larger each year for his podcast.

Follow Sully Baseball On Twitter

To subscribe on iTunes, click HERE.

To subscribe on SoundCloud, click HERE. Read the rest of this entry

Sully Baseball Daily Podcast Archives Dec 1, 2014 – Dec 31, 2014 (Episodes 769 – 799)

sunkenDFiamond

Paul Francis Sullivan (please call him Sully) does a podcast 365 days a year – unless it is a leap year – then he will do another 1. He has done a show everyday since Oct.24/2012. This to date represents a streak of 1235 days consecutively!

Past the CLICK TO READ THE REST OF THIS ENTRY are episodes 769 – 799 of the Sully Baseball Daily Podcast.

We will also archive all of his podcasts to date (in coming weeks) so they are easily accessible for all his fans. Check out all his Archived info here.

Our website followers have grown larger each year for his podcast.

Follow Sully Baseball On Twitter

To subscribe on iTunes, click HERE.

To subscribe on SoundCloud, click HERE. Read the rest of this entry

Odds To Win The 2016 MLB World Series

The Cardinals continued their great play in the MLB since the turn of the milennium - with an MLB best 100 wins in 2015. The organization has transitioned to the next core of young nucleus, while still holding on to a couple of capable veterans. Considering they have plenty of depth, and lots of payroll flexibility coming forth, the franchise could orchestrate a blockbuster trade soon. St. Louis could always sign 1 - 2 Starters via Free Agency as well. As it stands right now, the club has a payroll of around $133 MIL In 2016 listed. They can afford to add about $15 - $17 more million without batting an eye.

The Cardinals continued their great play in the MLB since the turn of the millennium – with an MLB best 100 wins in 2015. The organization has transitioned to the next core of a young nucleus, while still holding on to a couple of capable veterans. Considering they have plenty of depth, and lots of payroll flexibility coming forth, the franchise could orchestrate a blockbuster trade soon.  While I would favor Chicago over them slightly for the NL Central, the RedBirds, Mets, Dodgers Tigers and Mariners have the best value, while the Angels, Giants, Padres, Red Sox and D’Backs have the worst on the board this week.

Hunter Stokes (Chief Writer/Part Owner) 

Follow The MLB Reports On Twitter 

I was all set to pounce on my 1st American League bet for the Fall Classic in 2016 earlier this week – when the O’s were at +5000, and presumably bringing both Dexter Fowler and Yovani Gallardo into the stable. 

With Fowler opting back to Chicago, the odd also dropped to +4500 in the meantime (also following the Gallardo wait time for the physical fiasco), and the value is no longer there. 

Baltimore is a low 80 wins team in my view, and will not have enough for the postseason.  Fowler would have added a few W’s for sure.

Of course with the chaos that has ensued,  the Cubs have gone from +700 to +650 prohibitive best odd.  There is no doubt in my mind they should be the consensus favorite. 

One of these years the #1 seed will capitalize and win.  I am still not plunking down cabbage at that clip though.

If I were to do my year end picks right now, I would still have Chicago ending their World Series 108 seasons drought – but I can’t place them as twice the favorite as the St. Louis Cardinals.

Still not sold on the Cubs Bullpen either, and I think Jon Lester can be had in the postseason.  The Mets also line up favorably versus Chicago based on pitching matchups.  New York has the better odds to wager with.

I am currently writing a faceoff piece between the Cubbies and Cards that I will post over the weekend.  The difference is not a whopping 8 or 10 games like ‘FanGraphs’ and ‘PECOTA’ say.  St. Louis should still be in the mid 90’s for victories on the campaign.

I have them as one of my best bets again this week.

New York Yankees have been taken off the best odds list with their injury to Brett Gardner.  It is absolutely paramount that he and Jacoby Ellsbury set the table this campaign – and stay healthy. 

All of the incoming help with Starlin Castro, and internal improvement from Didi Gregorius will be for not.

Mark Teixeira, Carlos Beltran and Alex Rodriguez also will not hit a combined 79 dongs this year like in 2015.  The club is also substantially thinner in the Starting Rotation. 

They are a 85 win club as presently constituted, which should have them in the race for a Wild Card, but it is not worth betting at the +1600 odd. Read the rest of this entry

Toronto Should Trade For Ryan Braun

Ryan Braun has been the starter in RF for the Brewers for almost a decade. Greeted warmly at the team's convention recently, a multitude of fans gathered for autographs. Speaking to MLB.com's Adam McCalvy, Braun said that he has felt embraced in Milwaukee since his suspension, insisting he had only one "challenging conversation" with a fan while calling around last year to apologize to season-ticket holders. "It wasn't surprising in any way," Braun said of that one tough talk. "I made a mistake; I made a big mistake. I don't expect everybody to be supportive or everybody to be understanding or everybody to understand where I was coming from. I certainly didn't anticipate the amount of support I received." Before the Biogenesis scandal took center stage, he was hitting .298 with 9 HRs and 38 RBIs. Expect those numbers to climb dramatically and be much closer to his career .312 average, and tack on 30-40 HRs.

Ryan Braun has been the starter in RF for the Brewers for almost a decade. However, he has battled several thumb injuries, and is now 32 Years Old.  Since Milwaukee will not likely be contenders for the next 3 – 4 years in a tough NL Division, they should really start to rebuild.  Toronto also needs to look past 2016 – when both Encarnacion and Bautista are Free Agents.  If they can’t come up with the funds to sign either of them in extensions, they should pursue Braun in the next 6 – 8 months.

Hunter Stokes (Chief Writer) 

Follow The MLB Reports On Twitter 

The Toronto Blue Jays have played it conservative for 2016, but still have a realistic shot to win in 2016 because of their offense.  Going beyond 2016 looks extremely difficult when you factor in they may lose both Edwin Encarnacion and Jose Bautista following next year.

This would be a shame, but both players should be able to command around $20 MIL per year for at least the next 2 – 3 years after this upcoming one.  That may be too much for the Canadian club to afford.

Our website has spoken at length of how Toronto must capitalize on this opportunity.  As of right now, I don’t think they have enough pitching to get it done in the playoffs either.

Free Agency will be a tough sell for the franchise to bring in any ace pitchers or premiere offensive stars in the coming years.  You also may have a tough time to crack those deals when the Canadian dollar is hovering around 70 cents for every American Greenback right now.

I say go after Ryan Braun via a trade in the next 6 – 8 months. Read the rest of this entry

Toronto Blue Jays Payroll In 2016 + Contracts Going Forward

The Blue Jays are at the unique crossroads where they have grown massively in attendance - but are exponentially growing in cost of payroll each year. Based on some great front office decisions on Bautista, Encarnacion and Donaldson - the club as their best chance to in a championship is right now. Push all of your chips in, sign some more players - and take on salary. You may just lead the American League in attendance if you do (just like in the early 90's). The Jays have talked about cutting payroll in 2016. That would be a grave mistake. Right now they are at about $130 MIL in total team salary for next season.

The Blue Jays are at the unique crossroads where they have grown massively in attendance – but are exponentially growing in cost of payroll each year. Based on some great front office decisions on Bautista, Encarnacion and Donaldson – the club has their best chance to in a championship is right now. Push all of your chips in, sign some more players – and take on salary. You may just lead the American League in attendance if you do (just like in the early 90’s). The Jays have talked about cutting payroll in 2016. That would be a grave mistake. Right now they are at about $140 MIL in total team salary for next season.

Hunter Stokes (Chief Writer) 

Follow The MLB Reports On Twitter 

The Blue Jays have $94 MIL in guaranteed contracts already in commitments for Troy Tulowitzki, Russell Martin, Jose Bautista, Marco Estrada, R.A. Dickey J.A. Happ and Edwin Encarnacion.

The club also will have about another $35 – $38 MIL in Arbitration dealing with another 10 players.

This would mean the team is hovering around the $130 MIL already before they pull the trigger on any moves this offseason.

We made it abundantly clear in our Toronto Blue Jays State Of The Union that this is no time to slow down in going for a championship.

One of the biggest things we mentioned there was the lack of an ace in the AL East.  For Toronto to win the Division they may not need a #1 guy again.  They will only need another #1 guy in the postseason. Read the rest of this entry

The Toronto Blue Jays Payroll In 2015 + Contracts Going Forward

Alex Anthopoulos had done a nice job of assembling his club with players from other teams.  To construct a team with this type of caliber, it can be traced all the way back to the Jose Bautista and Edwin Encarnacion brilliant extensions, while the Jays GM were able to break free from albatross contracts from Vernon Wells and Alex Rios.  He is close to the finish line, but with a flailing Canadian Dollar, and his many guys with 1 or 2 years left on the club signed, he must go one step further to gun for a championship.

Alex Anthopoulos had done a nice job of assembling his club with players from other teams. To construct a team with this type of caliber, it can be traced all the way back to the Jose Bautista and Edwin Encarnacion brilliant extensions, while the Jays GM were able to break free from albatross contracts from Vernon Wells and Alex Rios. He is close to the finish line, but with a flailing Canadian Dollar, and his many guys with 1 or 2 years left on the club signed, he must go one step further to gun for a championship.

Hunter Stokes (Chief Writer): 

Follow The MLB Reports On Twitter 

What a difference from just a few seasons ago.  Toronto is on the cusp of contention, and is yielding the best club they have probably since their 1993 World Series run.  The payroll has crept up incrementally – and they are in the top 10 of the game.

The only Canadian franchise is estimated to have a budget of $127.3 MIL this year.   This would slate them 10th in the Majors.  The clubs ahead of them include:  Dodgers, Yankees, Red Sox, Phillies, Nats, Angels, Giants, Rangers and Tigers. This total still only puts them 3rd in their own Division.

Having signed Russell Martin to a 5 YR deal worth $82 MIL jumps the teams salary big time, but one could argue he will help the team lower its ERA.

For a Year to Year Breakdown For all of the Jays players salaries please visit here. Read the rest of this entry

2015 Regular Season Win Over/Unders In The MLB + Best Bets

What are your best Over/Under Bets for the upcoming 2015 MLB Season?  We have selected our top 10.

What are your best Over/Under Bets for the upcoming 2015 MLB Season? We have selected our top 10.

Hunter Stokes (Chief Writer) 

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Over/Unders for the year, based on odds given by http://www.bovada.com sports book

Arizona – 71.5 (over is -115) (under is -115)

I gotta go with the under.  San Diego, LA and SF are all much better, and even Colorado is tough on the road. Like them at just around 70 wins.  Is a rebuilding year, and they might fetch a heavy ransom if Mark Trumbo can have a bounce back 1st half.  2016 maybe the year the can contend again.

Atlanta – 73.5 (over is -115) (under is -115)

I like the over on this one big time.  This club lost a ton of offense, yet I like their run prevention more than ever.  Shelby Miller was a great acquisition, and they still have a nasty Bullpen.  I am not as bullish on the rest of the NL East as a lot of clubs are too.  Wouldn’t call this a best bet, however, like them to win 75 – 77 games. Read the rest of this entry

Sully Baseball Daily Podcast – December 3, 2014

Photo - Troy Taormina

Photo – Troy Taormina

Nobody cares if you report a trade or signing first. Meanwhile the Happ for Saunders deal is odd and why weren’t the Yankees in on Nick Markakis?

It is a first reported episode of The Sully Baseball Daily Podcast.

Read the rest of this entry

Who Owned Baseball For 2014 – The Final Regular Season Tally

Getty Images, USA Today Sports and The Seattle Times

Getty Images, USA Today Sports and The Seattle Times

Andrew McCutchen of the Pirates… Clayton Kershaw of the Dodgers… Mike Trout of the Angels… Felix Hernandez of the Mariners.

They all owned baseball in 2014.

After a full year of checking each game and determining which player owned the game for that day, there were 4 winners.

McCutchen beat out Atlanta’s Freddie Freeman by a 9 to 7 1/2 final.

Kershaw had the highest overall WOB total, 14 1/2, topping Johnny Cueto‘s 11.

The American League races were razor thin.

Trout beat Oakland’s Josh Donaldson by a final of 9 1/2 to 9. Meanwhile King Felix squeaked past Corey Kluber of the Indians 11 to 10 1/2 (with Chris Sale close by at 9)

If I turned in a ballot with McCutchen winning NL MVP, Kershaw winning NL Cy Young, Trout winning AL MVP and Hernandez winning the AL Cy Young, could anyone protest?

Sure I could make valid arguments for Giancarlo Stanton winning the NL MVP. (His WOB total was a surprisingly low 4.) And of course Kluber and Hernandez is basically a coin toss right now. But the above ballot would certainly be acceptable.

WOB works. Adding the 1/2 WOB dynamic made it more accurate than last year.

Thanks for following it for the year. For the post season, I will have new tallies for “Who Owned October?” (WOO) and “Who Owned the World Series?” (WOWS.)

To view the Final Tally of Who Owned Baseball Standings, plus see who gained 1/2 WOB’s – Click the READ THE REST OF THIS ENTRY ICON OR SCROLL DOWN.

Who Owned Baseball Sept 28, 2014 (Daily AL/NL Pitcher + Hitter MVP’s) + FINAL 2014 #WOB Standings

Photo: Alex Brandon/AP

Photo: Alex Brandon/AP

Jordan Zimmermann threw the first no hitter in Washington Nationals history (and the franchise’s first since Dennis Martinez‘s perfect game for the Expos in 1991). He allowed only 1 walk while striking out 10 Miami hitters en route to his 1-0 masterpiece.

Sonny Gray provided relief for 2 months of Oakland frustration with a post season clinching 6 hit complete game shutout of the Rangers, striking out 5 and walking none.

Anthony Rizzo went 3-4 with a homer and 2 RBI, helping the Cubs win against Milwaukee 5-2.

Ian Kinsler homered, hit an RBI single and added another hit to lead the Tigers to the Division Title with a 3-0 victory over Minnesota.

They all owned baseball on Sept 28, 2014.

To view the Yearly Leaders for Who Owned Baseball Standings, plus see who gained 1/2 WOB’s – Click the READ THE REST OF THIS ENTRY ICON OR SCROLL DOWN.

Who Owned Baseball Sept 27, 2014 (Daily AL/NL Pitcher + Hitter MVP’s) + 2014 #WOB Standings

 (AP Photo/Carlos Osorio)

(AP Photo/Carlos Osorio)

Eduardo Escobar got 4 hits, including a 3 run homer, and drove in 6 runs, helping the Twins spoil the Tigers hopes of clinching with a 12-3 blow out.

Mark Trumbo got on base 3 times and drove in 4, including a tie breaking 3 run homer in the 7th that was the difference in Arizona’s 5-2 win against the Cardinals.

John Danks gave the White Sox 7 strong innings, scattering 5 hits and allowing just 2 runs, earning the 5-4 decision over Kansas City.

Wily Peralta finished his season with 17 wins following his 7 innings, 1 run and 13 strikeout performance against the Cubs for a 2-1 final.

 

They all owned baseball on Sept 27, 2014.

To view the Yearly Leaders for Who Owned Baseball Standings, plus see who gained 1/2 WOB’s – Click the READ THE REST OF THIS ENTRY ICON OR SCROLL DOWN. Read the rest of this entry

Who Owned Baseball Sept 26, 2014 (Daily AL/NL Pitcher + Hitter MVP’s) + 2014 #WOB Standings

Chuck Crow/The Plain Dealer

Chuck Crow/The Plain Dealer

Corey Kluber helped his Cy Young cause with an 8 inning, 5 hit shutout performance, striking out 11 Rays, walking 2 in a 1-0 pitchers duel in Cleveland.

Doug Fister gave the bullpen a rest for the first game of a double header as he threw a 3 hit complete game shut out as the Nationals blanked the Marlins, 4-0.

Dalton Pompey  Doubled and hit 2 triples (that is rare) driving in a pair, helping the Blue Jays top the Orioles, 4-2.

J.T. Realmuto missed the cycle by a homer, finished going 3-5 with 4 RBI in the Marlins wild 15-7 win in Washington.

They all owned baseball on Sept 26, 2014.

To view the Yearly Leaders for Who Owned Baseball Standings, plus see who gained 1/2 WOB’s – Click the READ THE REST OF THIS ENTRY ICON OR SCROLL DOWN.

Who Owned Baseball Sept 25, 2014 (Daily AL/NL Pitcher + Hitter MVP’s) + 2014 #WOB Standings

ROBERT SABO/NEW YORK DAILY NEWS

ROBERT SABO/NEW YORK DAILY NEWS

Derek Jeter went out in Hollywood style, getting a double and a walk off single in the 9th, driving in 3 runs all together and giving Yankee fans one last thrill with a 6-5 win over Baltimore.

Pablo Sandoval went 3 for 3, driving in 4 runs, including one in the wild 3 run come from behind rally as the playoff bound Giants topped the Padres, 9-8.

Hiroki Kuroda let up homers to the first two batters he faced and then let up 1 hit and no walks the rest of the way. The bullpen blew his lead but he set up the Yankees dramatic 6-5 walk off victory over Baltimore.

Edinson Volquez inched the Pirates closer to the Division Lead with 7 brilliant innings, allowing 4 hits, 1 walk and 10 strikeouts, blowing out the Braves 10-1.

They all owned baseball on Sept 25, 2014.

To view the Yearly Leaders for Who Owned Baseball Standings, plus see who gained 1/2 WOB’s – Click the READ THE REST OF THIS ENTRY ICON OR SCROLL DOWN.

Who Owned Baseball Sept 24, 2014 (Daily AL/NL Pitcher + Hitter MVP’s) + 2014 #WOB Standings

ANDY LYONS/GETTY IMAGES

ANDY LYONS/GETTY IMAGES

Kyle Lohse kept the Brewers dim playoff hopes alive with a complete game 2 hit shutout with 6 strike outs and no walks, blanking the Reds 5-0.

Carl Crawford got on base 4 times, broke open the game with a 2 run double in the 6th and scored 3 more runs as the Dodgers clinched the NL West with a 9-1 blow out of the Giants.

Mark Buehrle pitched 8 shutout innings, allowing 3 hits, 1 walk and 10 strikeouts as the Blue Jays snuck past the fading Mariners, 1-0.

Ryan Flaherty collected 3 hits, including a 2 run double, and helped the Orioles come from behind to beat the Yankees, 9-5.

They all owned baseball on Sept 24, 2014.

To view the Yearly Leaders for Who Owned Baseball Standings, plus see who gained 1/2 WOB’s – Click the READ THE REST OF THIS ENTRY ICON OR SCROLL DOWN.

Who Owned Baseball Sept 23, 2014 (Daily AL/NL Pitcher + Hitter MVP’s) + 2014 #WOB Standings

JAE C. HONG/AP

JAE C. HONG/AP

Justin Turner hit a pair of homers off of Bumgarner and led the Dodgers to a 4-2 victory over the Giants.

Zack Greinke pitched 8 strong innings, allowing just 2 runs and walking no San Francisco batter, bringing the Dodgers a little closer to the NL West title with a 4-2.

Nick Markakis went 4-5 with a homer and 3 RBI, helping Baltimore top the Yankees, 5-4.

David Price pitched a shutout into the 9th and was an out from a complete game. While he blew the lead, he pitched 8 2/3, striking out 8 and walking none. The Tigers would walk off in the 9th 4-3 winners against the White Sox.

They all owned baseball on Sept 23, 2014.

To view the Yearly Leaders for Who Owned Baseball Standings, plus see who gained 1/2 WOB’s – Click the READ THE REST OF THIS ENTRY ICON OR SCROLL DOWN.

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