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Sully Baseball Daily Podcast – January 19, 2017

baseballhalloffame wamc.org

I revealed my Hall of Fame ballot, made my predictions of how the vote would turn out and then looked at the class that will include Ivan Rodriguez, Jeff Bagwell and finally Tim Raines.

Good things come to those who wait on this episode of The Sully Baseball Daily Podcast.

To see my Ballot Post, click HERE

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Sully Baseball Daily Podcast Archives Jan 1, 2015 – Jan 31, 2015 (Episodes 800 – 830)

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 1238 days consecutively!

Past the CLICK TO READ THE REST OF THIS ENTRY are episodes 800 – 830 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 Jan 1, 2014 – Jan 31, 2014 (Episodes 435 – 465)

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 1236 days consecutively!

Past the CLICK TO READ THE REST OF THIS ENTRY are episodes 435 – 465 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, 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

Sully Baseball Daily Podcast – January 7, 2016

VLADIMIR GUERRERO TIM RAINES

AP Photo

The day after the Hall of Fame announcement has me looking at the candidacy of Vlad Guerrero and Tim Raines for next year.

Time to campaign on this episode of The Sully Baseball Daily Podcast.

Read the rest of this entry

MLB Baseball Hall Of Fame (Class Of 2017) Voting Poll

Vladdy was an Expo from 1996-2003 and will be elected into the Hall of Fame as An Expo to join Andre Dawson, Gary Carter and potentially Tim Raines next year.

Vladdy was an Expo from 1996-2003 and will be elected into the Hall of Fame as An Expo to join Andre Dawson, Gary Carter and potentially Tim Raines next year.

Now that the 2016 Baseball Hall Of Fame Voting has come and gone it is time to turn our attention to the 2017 vote already.

There are 15 remaining names left from the 2016 Vote including:  Jeff Bagwell, Tim Raines, Trevor Hoffman, Curt Schilling, Roger Clemens, Barry Bonds, Edgar Martinez, Mike Mussina, Lee Smith, Jeff Kent, Larry Walker, Sammy Sosa and Gary Sheffield.

Out of those 15, Raines and Smith are in the final years of their names being on the ballot.

There are 21 new names that come to the 2017 selection process for the 1st time – headed up by Vladimir Guerrero, Manny Ramirez and Ivan Rodriguez.  All of these guys have the numbers to be 1st ballot Hall inductees, however Ramirez has been suspended over PED’s and Rodriguez has had whispers mentioned about him. Read the rest of this entry

Ken Griffey JR. + Mike Piazza Named To The Hall: Our Final Poll Vote Had Bagwell Joining Those Two

 

Ken Griffey was well on his way to the all-time career HR record before injuries slowed him down after the age of 30. He is also the last player in the MLB to have a HR in 8 straight contests, dating in 1993.

Ken Griffey was well on his way to the all-time career HR record before injuries slowed him down after the age of 30. He is also the last player in the MLB to have a HR in 8 straight contests, dating in 1993.  Griffey received a record 99% of the ballots vote from the BBWAA, eclipsing Tom Seaver’s old record for highest percentage of votes in his selection today.

There were the 32 names on the list for consideration for the Baseball Hall Of Fame, only 2 made were selected to Cooperstown with Griffey JR. and Piazza. Our poll also had Jeff Bagwell make it.

Mike Piazza, Jeff Bagwell, Ken Griffey Jr., Tim RainesCurt SchillingRoger ClemensBarry BondsLee SmithEdgar MartinezAlan TrammellJeff KentFred McGriffLarry WalkerSammy SosaGary SheffieldNomar GarciaparraMark McGwireJim EdmondsJason KendallTroy GlausMike HamptonLuis CastilloRandy Winn, Garret AndersonMike LowellBilly WagnerTrevor HoffmanMark GrudzielanekMike SweeneyDavid Eckstein are all on the ballot.

.Mike Piazza almost made it into the Baseball Hall Of Fame in voting for last year with a clip of 69.9% of the votes. He made it into the BBHOF this year.

.Mike Piazza almost made it into the Baseball Hall Of Fame in voting for last year with a clip of 69.9% of the votes. He made it into the BBHOF this year.

Out of 524 People Voting, Final  Results (75% would get a Hall Of Fame Induction)

Ken Griffey Jr. 519 99.04%  
Jeff Bagwell 416 79.38%  
Mike Piazza 397 75.77%  
Tim Raines 380 72.52%  
Roger Clemens 331 63.17%  
Barry Bonds 285 54.39%  
Curt Schilling 222 42.37%  
Trevor Hoffman 218 41.60%  
Edgar Martinez 203 38.74%  
Alan Trammell 190 36.26%  
Mike Mussina 188 35.88%  
Mark McGwire 169 32.25%  
Fred McGriff 130 24.81%  
Sammy Sosa 130 24.81%  
Larry Walker 120 22.90%  
Lee Smith 107 20.42%  
Jeff Kent 101 19.27%  
Billy Wagner 95 18.13%  
Gary Sheffield 81 15.46%  
Jim Edmonds 52 9.93%  
Nomar Garciaparra 35 6.68%  
Brad Ausmus 10 1.9%  
Jason Kendall 9 1.72%  
Mark Grudzielanek 9 1.72%  
Mike Hampton 7 1.34%  
Garrett Anderson 7 1.34%  
Troy Glaus 4 0.7%  
Randy Winn 4 0.7%  
MIke Lowell 4 0.7%  
Mike Sweeney 4 0.7%  
David Eckstein 4 0.7%  
Luis Castillo 2 0.35%
Despite coming 15 votes shy with the BBWAA vote, Bagwell made it to the Hall in our poll - registering almost 80% of the ballots.

Despite coming 15 votes shy with the BBWAA vote, Bagwell made it to the Hall in our poll – registering almost 80% of the ballots.

 

MLB Baseball Hall Of Fame (Class Of 2016) Voting Poll Results So Far (Last Chance To Vote)

ken griffey jr

Below the results listed so far, Pick 10 players who you believe should be in the Baseball Hall Of Fame this year.  We will post the results after the class of this year is posted.  We can see the amount of people who voted. 

So we will accurately adjust this mark once the poll ends.  A basic reference to see if a player is being voted for is to take their votes (times by 10) and then divide by the total amount of votes.

Here are the 32 names on the list for consideration. 

Mike Piazza, Jeff Bagwell, Ken Griffey Jr., Tim RainesCurt SchillingRoger ClemensBarry BondsLee SmithEdgar MartinezAlan TrammellJeff KentFred McGriffLarry WalkerSammy SosaGary SheffieldNomar GarciaparraMark McGwireJim EdmondsJason KendallTroy GlausMike HamptonLuis CastilloRandy Winn, Garret AndersonMike LowellBilly WagnerTrevor HoffmanMark GrudzielanekMike SweeneyDavid Eckstein are all on the ballot.

So Far (at 9:45 AM EST, Tuesday Jan.6, 2015) there have been 386 People who have voted, and only 6 people have left Ken Griffey JR. off of their list.  Piazza and Raines (just barely) would both join Junior on the Baseball Hall Of Fame Induction list should this come to fruition.

I think the BBWAA should really take stock on the Clemens and Bonds numbers as they are far superior to what they voted for last year.  Both of them are about 25% higher and on the fringe of making the Hall.. 

I also think that Hoffman is hurt by his 1st year on the ballot.  A lot of people may have factored this in. 

I really think Raines is going to see a big boost to his bid for the Baseball Hall Of Fame with it being his 9th year on the ballot.  Under the new rules, that means that 2017’s Baseball Hall Of Fame Class would be his last chance to be elected to Cooperstown.

Out of 386 People Voting, The Results Thus Far (75% would get a Hall Of Fame Induction)

Ken Griffey Jr. 380 98.45%  
Mike Piazza 312 80.82%  
Tim Raines 290 75.12%  
Jeff Bagwell 241 62.43%  
Roger Clemens 237 61.40%  
Barry Bonds 236 61.14%  
Trevor Hoffman 186 48.19%  
Edgar Martinez 162 41.96%  
Curt Schilling 161 41.71%  
Mike Mussina 148 38.34%  
Mark McGwire 147 38.08%  
Sammy Sosa 117 30.31%  
Alan Trammell 116 30.06%  
Lee Smith 98 25.39%  
Fred McGriff 98 25.39%  
Larry Walker 86 22.28%  
Jeff Kent 79 20.47%  
Gary Sheffield 69 17.88%  
Billy Wagner 49 12.69%  
Jim Edmonds 37 9.6%  
Nomar Garciaparra 25 6.48%  
Jason Kendall 6 1.56%  
Garrett Anderson 3 0.78%  
MIke Lowell 3 0.78%  
Troy Glaus 2 0.54%  
Mike Sweeney 2 0.54%  
David Eckstein 2 0.54%  
Brad Ausmus 2 0.54%  
Mike Hampton 1 0.27%  
Luis Castillo 1 0.27%  
Randy Winn 1 0.27%  
Mark Grudzielanek 1 0.27%

Vote up until 558 PM EST  today.

MLB Baseball Hall Of Fame (Class Of 2016) Voting Poll Results So Far (Last Chance To Vote)

Below the results listed so far, Pick 10 players who you believe should be in the Baseball Hall Of Fame this year.  We will post the results after the class of this year is posted.  We can see the amount of people who voted. 

So we will accurately adjust this mark once the poll ends.  A basic reference to see if a player is being voted for is to take their votes (times by 10) and then divide by the total amount of votes.

Here are the 32 names on the list for consideration. 

Mike Piazza, Jeff Bagwell, Ken Griffey Jr., Tim RainesCurt SchillingRoger ClemensBarry BondsLee SmithEdgar MartinezAlan TrammellJeff KentFred McGriffLarry WalkerSammy SosaGary SheffieldNomar GarciaparraMark McGwireJim EdmondsJason KendallTroy GlausMike HamptonLuis CastilloRandy Winn, Garret AndersonMike LowellBilly WagnerTrevor HoffmanMark GrudzielanekMike SweeneyDavid Eckstein are all on the ballot.

So Far (at 8:30 AM EST, Tuesday Jan.5, 2015) there have been 260 People who have voted, and only 2 people have left Ken Griffey JR. off of their list.  Piazza and Raines would both join Junior on the Baseball Hall Of Fame Induction list should this come to fruition.

I think the BBWAA should really take stock on the Clemens and Bonds numbers as they are far superior to what they voted for last year.  Both of them are about 25% higher and on the fringe of making the Hall.. 

I also think that Hoffman is hurt by his 1st year on the ballot.  A lot of people may have factored this in. 

I really think Raines is going to see a big boost to his bid for the Baseball Hall Of Fame with it being his 9th year on the ballot.  Under the new rules, that means that 2017’s Baseball Hall Of Fame Class would be his last chance to be elected to Cooperstown.

Out of 260 People Voting, The Results Thus Far (75% would get a Hall Of Fame Induction)

Ken Griffey Jr. 257 98.84%  
Mike Piazza 207 79.62%  
Tim Raines 206 79.23%  
Roger Clemens 166 63.84%  
Barry Bonds 166 63.84%  
Jeff Bagwell 166 63.84%  
Trevor Hoffman 133 51.15%  
Edgar Martinez 119 45.77%  
Curt Schilling 115 44.23%  
Mark McGwire 114 43.84%  
Mike Mussina 109 41.92%  
Sammy Sosa 89 34.23%  
Alan Trammell 84 32.31%  
Lee Smith 74 28.46%  
Fred McGriff 69 26.54%  
Jeff Kent 65 25.00%  
Larry Walker 62 23.85%  
Gary Sheffield 42 16.15%  
Billy Wagner 39 15%  
Jim Edmonds 29 11.15%  
Nomar Garciaparra 20 7.7%  
Jason Kendall 4 1.5%  
Garret Anderson 2 0.8%  
MIke Lowell 2 0.8%  
Troy Glaus 1 0.4%  
Mike Hampton 1 0.4%  
Luis Castillo 1 0.4%  
Randy Winn 1 0.4%  
Mark Grudzielanek 1 0.4%  
Mike Sweeney 1 0.4%  
David Eckstein 1 0.4%  
Brad Ausmus 1 0.4%

Vote today.

Baseball Hall Of Fame 2016: Waiting Game Must Be Gnawing At Heart Of Expos’ Great Raines

a tim raines

It must an anxiety-filled time for Tim Raines.

We would imagine he has some butterflies in his stomach. Maybe his heart is beating just a bit more than it normally does. He must be doing a lot of thinking at his home in Arizona. Must be stressful.

The former Expos’ great wonders if National Baseball Hall of Fame president Jeff Idelson will call him in the next couple of days and tell him he’s been inducted into the fabled shrine in Cooperstown, N.Y. Wouldn’t that be something if that call was made.

It will be interesting to see the results of the voting by the Baseball Writers Association of America. Raines is in the picture because we see some hope as expressed in a tracking system by several people, who are keeping tabs on public revelations by some of the voters.

READ THE REST OF THIS ENTRY

MLB Baseball Hall Of Fame (Class Of 2016) Voting Poll Results So Far

Below the results listed so far, Pick 10 players who you believe should be in the Baseball Hall Of Fame this year.  We will post the results after the class of this year is posted.  We can see the amount of people who voted. 

So we will accurately adjust this mark once the poll ends.  A basic reference to see if a player is being voted for is to take their votes (times by 10) and then divide by the total amount of votes.

Here are the 32 names on the list for consideration. 

Mike Piazza, Jeff Bagwell, Ken Griffey Jr., Tim RainesCurt SchillingRoger ClemensBarry BondsLee SmithEdgar MartinezAlan TrammellJeff KentFred McGriffLarry WalkerSammy SosaGary SheffieldNomar GarciaparraMark McGwireJim EdmondsJason KendallTroy GlausMike HamptonLuis CastilloRandy Winn, Garret AndersonMike LowellBilly WagnerTrevor HoffmanMark GrudzielanekMike SweeneyDavid Eckstein are all on the ballot.

So Far (at 7:30 AM EST) there have been 157 People who have voted, and only 2 people have left Ken Griffey JR. off of their list.  Piazza and Raines would both join Junior on the Baseball Hall Of Fame Induction list should this come to fruition.

I think the BBWAA should really take stock on the Clemens and Bonds numbers as they are far superior to what they voted for. 

I also think that Hoffman is hurt by his 1st year on the ballot.  A lot of people may have factored this in. 

I really think Raines is going to see a big boost to his bid for the Baseball Hall Of Fame with it being his 9th year on the ballot.  Under the new rules, that means that 2017’s Baseball Hall Of Fame Class would be his last chance to be elected to Cooperstown.

Out of 157 People Voting, The Results Thus Far (75% would get a Hall Of Fame Induction)

Ken Griffey Jr. 155 98.72%  
Mike Piazza 129 76.43%  
Tim Raines 129 76.43%  
Jeff Bagwell 110 70.06%  
Barry Bonds 106 67.52%  
Roger Clemens 105 66.88%  
Trevor Hoffman 84 53.51%  
Edgar Martinez 77 49.04%  
Mark McGwire 77 49.04%  
Mike Mussina 75 47.78%  
Curt Schilling 71 45.22%  
Sammy Sosa 61 38.86%  
Lee Smith 52 33.12%  
Alan Trammell 52 33.12%  
Fred McGriff 47 29.34%  
Larry Walker 46 29.29%  
Jeff Kent 41 26.11%  
Gary Sheffield 32 20.38%  
Billy Wagner 31 19.75%  
Jim Edmonds 24 15.29%  
Nomar Garciaparra 19 12.11%  
MIke Lowell 2 0.12%  
Luis Castillo 1 0.06%  
Randy Winn 1 0.06%  
Jason Kendall 1 0.06%  
Garret Anderson 1 0.06%  
Mark Grudzielanek 1 0.06%  
Mike Sweeney 1 0.06%  
David Eckstein 1 0.06%  
Brad Ausmus 1 0.06%  
Troy Glaus 0 0%  
Mike Hampton 0 0%

Vote today.  The Hall Of Fame Class of 2016 will be announced tomorrow.

2016 MLB Baseball Hall Of Fame Voting Poll

Pick 10 players who you believe should be in the Baseball Hall Of Fame this year.  We will post the results after the class of this year is posted.  We can see the amount of people who voted. 

So we will accurately adjust this mark once the poll ends.  A basic reference to see if a player is being voted for is to take their votes (times by 10) and then divide by the total amount of votes.

Here are the 32 names on the list for consideration.  Mike PiazzaJeff BagwellKen Griffey Jr., Tim RainesCurt SchillingRoger ClemensBarry BondsLee SmithEdgar MartinezAlan TrammellJeff KentFred McGriffLarry WalkerSammy SosaGary SheffieldNomar GarciaparraMark McGwireJim EdmondsJason KendallTroy GlausMike HamptonLuis CastilloRandy Winn, Garret AndersonMike LowellBilly WagnerTrevor HoffmanMark GrudzielanekMike SweeneyDavid Eckstein are all on the ballot.

The Falling Canadian Dollar Could Be A Major Roadblock In Any Montreal Bid For Another MLB Franchise

Toronto is the only team in the MLB not in the USA.  With that comes foreign currency.  For the years of 1990 - 2007, the Canadian Dollar was hovering around the 70 cents mark for the duration.  The last economic crash in the USA - had the dollar at par for the better part of the last 7 years, including once reaching $1.10 for every George Washington bill in America.  The average for the exchange rate has been in the mid 90 cents range.  The loonie has been in a nosedive since 2014 kicked in - and now it is around 90 cents for every US Dollar.  If it goes down much more, it will be just another challenge East Division.

Toronto is the only team in the MLB not in the USA. With that comes foreign currency. For the years of 1990 – 2007, the Canadian Dollar was hovering around the 70 cents mark for the duration (62 cents at its worst). The last economic crash in the USA – had the dollar at par for the better part of the last 7 years, including once reaching $1.10 for every George Washington bill in America in late 2008. The average for the exchange rate had been in the mid 90 cents range for the most part of 2014. The loonie has been in a nosedive since the end of 2014 kicked in – and now it is around 80 cents for every US Dollar. It will cost you $1.263 Canadian for $1 American on today’s market, and it If it looks to go down much more.  This economic factor could significantly derail any effort the city of Montreal has to ever regain an MLB franchise.

Chuck Booth (Owner/Lead Analyst): 

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The Canadian Dollar is in a free-fall against the American greenback.  I woke up this morning to see that to buy a US $1, it now cost $1.263 Canadian dollars.  Effectively that means any club in Canada is at 26.3% Luxury Tax before the season even starts, because the team pays out player salaries in USD, while the money brought in is Canadian currency.

So often people forget that the Montreal Expos problems became occurring not only as the 1994 Player Strike/1995 Lockout fanbase was angry at the MLB, with some of them never to return, but also a sagging loony.

At its worst price, was a 0.62 cent buck vs the USA back in the mid-90’s.  With the oil prices being what they are, this has serious ramifications for any impending groups of people wishing to bring back baseball to Montreal, Quebec, Canada.

The Expos left after the 2004 season, and in some ways it is a total injustice.  Perhaps no other franchise has been affected more by the two biggest work stoppages than the Montreal had been.

The 1981 Player strike happened when Montreal was filling Olympic Stadium to the tune of 2 Million Fans per year, and the young nucleus of players such as Andre Dawson, Tim Raines, Gary Carter, Tim Wallach and Warren Cromartie were leading the charge to an uprising NL squad.

Of course everyone remembers “Blue Monday’s” HR to knock the Expos out of the 1981 playoff chase.  The 1979 – 1994 teams carried out 12 out of 15 winning seasons, and possessed one of the greatest semblance of a drafting organization ever. Read the rest of this entry

A Early Look at Future Hall of Fame Candidates

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Craig Biggio finally got his “call to the hall” and should set an example for players who didn’t get that call on their first try. Other notable players are still on the ballot, and should receive legitimate consideration for induction in the future.

 

By Nicholas Delahanty (MLB Reports Writer)  

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The BBWAA elected four players into the Baseball Hall of Fame for the class of 2015: Randy Johnson, Pedro Martinez, John Smoltz and Craig Biggio. This is the first time that the BBWAA has elected four players in 60 years, as these four players truly exemplify what the MLB Hall of Fame is all about.

Now that the official results have been released, we can now take a look at not only some of the guys who will return on the ballot in the upcoming years, but also some future eligible players who present a very interesting case for their enshrinement into the Hall of Fame. 

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Sully Baseball Daily Podcast – January 7, 2015

High Heat Stats

High Heat Stats

Andy of High Heat Stats joins the podcast to discuss the Hall of Fame vote, Tim Raines, Edgar Martinez and putting aside any steroid policing by voters.

It is a meeting of baseball Twitter minds on  The Sully Baseball Daily Podcast.

Follow High Heat Stats on Twitter by clicking HERE.

Go to the High Heat Stats website by clicking HERE.

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2015 MLB Hall of Fame Voting: Who Deserves to Get In?

The MLB Hall of Fame will announce which players will be part of the Induction Class of 2015. The question leading up to the announcement is which players make the cut in this loaded group of talent.

The MLB Hall of Fame will announce which players will be part of the Class of 2015. With players such as Randy Johnson and Pedro Martinez being added to the ballot this year, the question remains as to which players will ultimately make the final cut this year?

By Nicholas Delahanty (MLB Reports Writer)  

Follow The MLB Reports On Twitter 

It is very possible that history is made with regards to this year’s MLB Hall of Fame induction class. In the past, the committee has been hesitant to vote in more than three players in one class, and it has been very rare to see more than three voted in at one time. In the past, the committee voted in four players twice (1947 and 1955) and five players only once (1936- the first year of the voting process).

As the decision day quickly approaches, there is speculation that the BBWAA could possibly end the long drought and elect five players this year. With this year’s ballot having a ton of players who could make a legitimate case to be inducted, I decided to go to the process of picking my own ballot (which doesn’t count for the BBWAA), and after taking the time and effort to research my ballet, I realized that it was a much harder process then I anticipated it would be. 

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Sully Baseball Daily Podcast – December 25, 2014

Topps

Topps

It is December 25th. HAPPY RICKEY HENDERSON’S BIRTHDAY!

The second best leadoff hitter of his time, Tim Raines, deserves to join Rickey in the Hall of Fame in 2015.

Did collusion help keep him out so far?

Tidings of comfort and joy in this episode of The Sully Baseball Daily Podcast.

 

Read the rest of this entry

Sully Baseball Daily Podcast – January 5, 2014

Sports Illustrated

Sports Illustrated


It is THE SUNDAY REQUEST on The Sully Baseball Daily Podcast.

With a super crowded ballot, your pal Sully thinks that 5 new members of the Hall of Fame will join Bobby Cox, Joe Torre and Tony LaRussa in Cooperstown this summer.

That isn’t necessarily good news for Jack Morris.

To subscribe to The Sully Baseball Daily Podcast on iTunes, click HERE.

To subscribe on SoundCloud, click HERE.

Sully Baseball Daily Podcast – January 5, 2014

MLB Reports Hall Of Fame Predictions: Class Of 2014 Players

The deadline of December 31st has come and gone for The Baseball Writers Association of America (BBWAA). Members were asked to submit no more than 10 names of players they "deem" worthy of induction towards this year's National Baseball Hall of Fame ceremony set for July.

The deadline of December 31st has come and gone for The Baseball Writers Association of America (BBWAA). Members were asked to submit no more than 10 names of players they “deem” worthy of induction towards this year’s National Baseball Hall of Fame ceremony set for July.

By Patrick Languzzi (Cooperstown Correspondent)

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Results are scheduled to be announced on January 8th.

Players must receive at least 75 percent of the votes in order to be inducted by a voting body of roughly over 500 eligible writers.

There are many player names worthy of discussion, however, few will see enshrinement, now or ever.

Greg Maddux Tribute:

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“Hard Cheddar” With Steve Cheeseman – My BBHOF Ballot

The members of the BBWAA will vote on the BBHOF ballot in January of 2014,

The members of the BBWAA will vote on the BBHOF ballot in January of 2014,  A player that is still on the ballot, needs to receive 75% of the vote in order to make in the Hall.  A player needs receive 5% of the votes in order to remain on the list of players eligible for the next  year.

“Hard Cheddar” – with ‘Special Guest Writer’ Steve Cheeseman 

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Hello baseball fans.  I apologize for being away so long, as my career outside of sports writing has kept me busy these last few weeks.

With that being said, let’s get going.  Since the end of the 2013 season, there are many things that crossed my mind.

However, for whatever reason, one of the things that has me extremely interested if the hall of fame ballot.

New names on this year’s ballot include Tom Glavine, Greg Maddux, and Frank Thomas.  In my mind these guys deserve to be in the hall of fame.

Big Hurt Highlights

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Triple Play Podcast Ep #9: Jays Misery, The Expos Franchise Mt. Rushmore + An Interview With Michael McKnight

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Monday, May  20th, 2013

The Triple Play Show will have 5 shows per month.  Each show will be about 1 hour

The Triple Play Show will have 5 shows per month. Each show will be about 1 hour.

By The Big Ticket Show ( AKA Triple Play Podcast on http://www.mlbreports.com)

Guests in this Podcast – Ian Hunter of bluejayhunter.com  ( and Michael McKnight [twitter-follow screen_name=’mcknight_mike_’ show_screen_name=’yes’

On this week’s show we once again find ourselves lamented the Blue Jays futility but this time Ian Hunter of bluejayhunter.com joins in the misery. Chris’ Expos jerseys inspires a trip down memory lane to pick our Expos Mt Rushmore. Finally Michael Mcknight of Sports Illustrated drops in to recount the tale of Brian Cole.  Its a must listen. Read the rest of this entry

ATR: Ask the Reports Answers Your Baseball Questions: The Yoenis Cespedes Showcase Video, Evolution of the Yankees, Swisher to Boston and More!

Saturday October 20th, 2012



Posted every Weekend: Your top baseball questions from the past week are answered. E-mail all questions to mlbreports@gmail.com, message us on Twitter, post on our Facebook Wall and leave comments on our website! There are many ways to reach us and we will get to your questions from all social media outlets!

Jonathan Hacohen: Baseball, much like life, is always full of change. Just think of all the changes that Major League Baseball has undergone during the past few years. Expansion. Realignment. Wild Card. Second Wild Card. Luxury Tax. Home field advantage in the World Series from the All-Star game. And to think, that this is just the tip of the iceberg. The Astros are moving next year to the AL West. Daily interleague play. The Athletics may move to San Jose. There is no doubt that the baseball we knew once upon a time is gone and buried. We are in a new golden era of baseball, one that promises to continue to evolve and thrive. Much like the sport it covers, MLB reports is on the same fast track. 

If you follow MLB reports daily (which you DEFINITELY should), you have noticed the changes that we have enjoyed over the past few months. New writers, pages, website format- if there is one thing that we don’t do here, is sit on our hands. We recently had Kyle Holland come on board as our Baseball Intern and Alex Mednick as a Baseball Writer and Analyst. Haley Smilow is on board as our MLB Junior Correspondent. We have a diverse stable of writers, all with different experiences and styles. That raises the bar on the content that we bring you each and every day on MLB reports. We love our team, which continues to grow all the time. We have a devoted Cooperstown page, featuring our Cooperstown Correspondent, Patrick Languzzi. Love Fantasy Baseball?  Peter Stein has you covered every week highlighting his fantasy baseball notes and advice. Our Fantasy Baseball page features Peter’s work. Lead Writer Chuck Booth, a Guinness World Record holder in baseball travel brings you exciting and informative articles every Wednesday and Friday night. The list literally goes on and on. If it involves baseball, MLB reports has you covered. 

We feature at least two articles per day, posted at the start of each day around 9:00am ET and in the evening at 8:00pm ET. Life gets busy- we know that. We strive at MLB reports to always have an article ready on your computer to go along with your morning coffee at work, and a feature in the evening while you unwind. Plus you never know when surprise bonus features will hit our site next. When we say MLB 4 Life, we meet it! Make sure to follow @mlbreports on Twitter and to subscribe to our website- http://www.mlbreports.com. The link is at the top of the site. It’s free. And it’s an excellent investment in your baseball knowledge!

With all the exciting changes at MLB reports, the truth is… that there is even more to come. We always are on the lookout for bright new talent. New concepts. New topics. Just like MLB, we always want to improve and evolve. But it’s a gradual process. Starting Monday though, you will see that we will be adding a new something to MLB reports. I can’t tell you what…I’m very sorry. But you will find out very soon. My advice? Bookmark mlbreports.com and/or make it your homepage. Get into work on Monday October 22nd. Grab a cup of coffee and turn on your computer. When your boss thinks you are working, you will be preparing for our feature of the day. At 9:00am ET, you will find a new addition to MLB reports. It is both different and exciting. The feature is called “The Interview of a Lifetime” and one that you certainly cannot miss. Get ready to be shocked, entertained and informed. The best part? This is only the beginning. I feel like the Riddler…and have already said too much….

Now let’s get to your top questions of the week: Read the rest of this entry

Top Ten Stat Of The Week: Active Career Stolen Base Leaders

Wednesday August.8/2012

Juan Pierre was one of the most prolific hitters in terms of base hits in the last 12 years along with being the Active Leader for Career Stolen Bases. Pierre has 4-200 hit seasons in his resume.

Chuck Booth (Lead Baseball Writer and @chuckbooth3024 on Twitter)- The game has been moving back towards speed, offense and athleticism since the adaptation of the steroid testing in the MLB.  I think we will see a big emphasis on the Stolen Base in the coming years.  We have Billy Hamilton coming in the near future and he could actually challenge a 100 Stolen Base in one season.  30 years ago there were several guys challenge or eventually succeed in stealing 100 bases.  Rickey Henderson and Vince Coleman both hit the century mark 3 times, while Ron LeFlore and Tim Raines cracked the 90 SB plateau.  Teams used to have several speedsters in their lineup.  Jose Reyes has the most stolen bases in one year for the active players with 78 swipes in 2007.

I omitted Luis Castillo from the list because he has not played since 2010, (much to the delight of the New York Mets fans I am sure.)  I am sure that Boston Red Sox fans are hopeful that he can regain his stolen base prowess very soon with him being only in the second year of a 7 YR/140 Million Dollar Contract.  Johnny Damon also has foraged a great career to be on this list from sheer determination.   Out of this top ten , Jose Reyes has the most steals per games played, while Omar Vizquel (who has played 2947 games) has the least amount of steals per game played.  I was most surprised by Derek Jeter cracking this list because he has never stolen more than 34 bags in one year.  I wonder how many bags Ichiro would have stolen had he arrived in North America earlier?  Johnny Damon and Omar Vizquel making this top ten is a test to their long-playing careers.  I figured Jimmy Rollins had more steals than what his totals came in as.  Bobby Abreu  has the most HRs on this list with 286  and Juan Pierre has the least. with 17.

Read the rest of this entry

The Demise of the Montreal Expos Franchise: Part 3 of the Expos Article Series

Friday June.29/2012

Note from Chuck Booth:  I am attempting to bring the history for each of the 30 MLB Franchises into a 5 part series that will focus on 1. The teams history. 2. The hitters 3. The pitchers. 4.  The Team’s Payroll going into in 2013 and 5. (The stadium articles will all be done next summer when I go to all of the parks in under a month again.)  To follow all of the updates, be sure to check my author page with a list of all archived articles here.

Chuck Booth (Lead Baseball Writer and @chuckbooth3024 on Twitter)-  The Montreal Expos were a model franchise from 1979-1994.  They only finished under .500 in 3 seasons out of 15 in this stretch of time.  The club simply drafted better than any other Major League team.  Long before the Oakland Athletics and Billy Beane came up with MoneyBall, or the Minnesota Twins, Florida Marlins and Tampa Bay Rays showed us that you can have good runs with your baseball teams on a shoe string budget, the Expos wrote the book on it.  The Expos were forced to trade away their best talent when they came up for free agency or lose them  outright.  There was no way the team could ever re-sign the players.  It wasn’t even in question.  The province of Quebec said good-bye to Hall of Famers:  Pedro Martinez, Vlad Guerrero, Tim Raines and Andre Dawson in the prime of their careers with nothing back in return as Free Agents.

Gary Carter was the 1st great player to be traded by the club after the 1984 season.  Other great players like Larry Walker, Marquis Grissom, Moises Alou and John Wetteland were jettisoned out the door as part of a 1995 Firesale after the strike/lockout because the team could not pay them after a massive loss in revenue at the end of the 1994 season. With the clock ticking on the Expos brass (financially as soon as the lockout was lifted) the ownership could not pay the bills!  It is a sad commentary on this franchise that the two big work stoppages in 1981 and 1994 stifled this franchise-perhaps the most out of any team in the MLB.  It all ended up costing the Expos the team and/or a chance to build a brand new ballpark in the downtown core to ever revitalize the interest of the avid baseball enthusiasts in Montreal.  This fan base had suffered enough and they made the baseball club pay for it at the turnstiles.  They had suffered 7 losing seasons at Jarry Park, a 2 billion dollar scam gone wrong in what was Olympic Stadium, a park that was supposed to be a modern-aged retractable roof that never materialized at all and Quebec was left with the bill.  I don’t blame the fans for walking away from the game after the 1994 strike.  They had supported the team through many of trials an tribulations-only to be disappointed time and time again by the economics of baseball.

There is a lot more of this article past the video clip, just click on: READ THE REST OF THIS ENTRY

For Part 1 of the Article Series, The Expos Hitters: click here

For Part 2 of the Article Series, The Expos Pitchers: click here

For Part 4 of the Article Series, The Washington Nationals Franchise 2005-2012: click here

For Part 5 of the Article Series, The Nats Best 25 Man Roster 2005-2012 click here

A nice tribute video to the club!

Read the rest of this entry

The Montreal Expos Draft And Signing Record Was Outstanding: Part 1-Hitters

Friday June.22/2012

Note from Chuck Booth:  I am attempting to bring the history for each of the 30 MLB Franchises into a 5 part series that will focus on 1. The teams history. 2. The hitters 3. The pitchers. 4.  The Team’s Payroll going into in 2013 and 5. (The stadium articles will all be done next summer when I go to all of the parks in under a month again.)  To follow all of the updates, be sure to check my author page with a list of all archived articles here.

Andre Dawson and Tim Raines were perennial ALL-Stars and always had the Montreal Expos in contention every year they played for the Canadian Club.

Chuck Booth (Lead Baseball Writer and @chuckbooth3024 on twitter)-I recently saw a bunch of old Montreal Expos had a celebration dinner to honor the late Gary Carter at Olympic Stadium in Montreal.  This brought me back to when I was a little kid watching the Expos on the French Channel in Canada.  I followed this team before any other in MLB.  I was a catcher in little league because of Gary Carter.  My friends and I all would ask for Montreal Expos hats and jerseys for Christmas.  I would later move on to like the Yankees when Don Mattingly, Dave Winfield and Rickey Henderson joined the club, but I always liked the Expos in the National League as my team.  They were a consistent club from 1979-1995.  They drafted extremely well and were above .500 for pretty much the entire time.  At the end of this article today be sure to watch the documentary from youtube on the Expos Franchise that the Reports has linked for you.

It was unfortunate they had the 2 billion dollar monstrosity of what was Olympic Stadium as their home venue.  It was a mistake from the beginning  to build a baseball park so far away from the downtown core.  The 1994 strike killed the franchises hopes to make their 1st World Series appearance.  The team was leading the NL East with a 74-40 record and featured the outfield of Larry Walker, Marquis Grissom and Moises Alou.  They had traded away their ALL-Star second basemen Delino DeShields prior to that year for some pitcher named Pedro Martinez.  The economics of baseball were starting to catch up on the baseball club.  When the lockout was lifted in 1995, gone were Walker, Grissom and great pitchers Ken Hill and John Wetteland.  It began a constant cycle of Montreal grooming awesome talent, only to trade the players away before they had to pay them big money.  The one constant of the team was an incredible draft record from 1985-2004.  Today is part 1 of a 3 part article series in which we will look at the history of the Montreal Expos.  I have listed 30 hitters drafted by the Expos Scouting Staff that went onto nice baseball careers.  Next week I will look at the pitchers and the third week I will cover the dissection of the proud franchise before the move to Washington. Read the rest of this entry

Looking Ahead to the 2013 Hall of Fame Ballot

Saturday February 4, 2012


Rob Bland:  When Barry Larkin was elected into the Hall of Fame, it was obvious going in that he would likely be included.  As it turned out, he was the only player voted in by the BBWAA in 2012.  Larkin received 86.4% of the vote, a jump from 62.1% the year before, when he had the highest vote total of those who did not receive the requisite 75%.  

The 2013 class boasts 13 players who received less than 75% but more than 5% of the vote to remain on the ballot.  There are also 32 new players on the list.  Players must have played in at least 10 MLB seasons, and have been retired for 5 full seasons to be eligible for the ballot.  Of returning players, the most notable are Jack Morris (66.7%), Jeff Bagwell (56%), Lee Smith (50.6%), Tim Raines (48.7%), Mark McGwire (19.5%) and Rafael Palmeiro (12.6%).  It’s hard to imagine that two of the best home run hitters of all time (McGwire and Palmeiro) could garner less than a quarter of the vote, in McGwire’s 7th year on the ballot and Palmeiro’s 3rd respectively.  However, due to steroid usage and their laughable performances in a congressional hearing, this is the case.  

2013’s ballot gets a whole lot crazier when you add baseball’s all-time home run leader, and possibly best player in history, one of the most prolific strikeout pitchers of all time, the best slugging catcher of all time, and a guy who hit over 60 HR THREE times, and totalling 609 blasts.  

Barry Bonds.  Roger Clemens.  Mike Piazza.  Sammy Sosa.  All four of these players have in some way or another been connected with steroids, whether it is pure speculation, or blatant proof.  Knowing what we know about McGwire and Palmeiro’s statuses in the Hall of Fame voting, 2013 could prove to be the most heavily debated election year ever.  Many believe that players who used steroids should never be elected in the Hall, and all records should have asterisks beside them.  Many others believe they should let them in, and that because steroids and PED usage was so rampant in the “Steroid Era” that it doesn’t affect the way they vote.  

Jack Morris’s case for the Hall has been so widely discussed that it bears not repeating.  He was a good pitcher on some very good teams that scored a lot of runs.  Bagwell put up tremendous numbers and has never been proven to be linked to PEDs but is kept out of the Hall because some suspect him of it.  Raines is inching closer to being elected, and Lee Smith is nearing the end of his run on the ballot.  Since I have already given my vote for 2012, and my opinion has not changed on any of those players, I won’t go into too much detail, other than the fact that I believe Morris will be elected in his 14th year.  

Bonds and Clemens would have been first ballot Hall of Famers, no doubt about it.  But because of this cloud of PED usage hanging over their heads, it could be a while, if at all.  

Bonds’ CAREER OPS 1.051 is higher than every player in the MLB not named Jose Bautista in 2011 alone.  His peak season in OPS+ was 268 in 2002.  268!  Career OBP of .444.  514 stolen bases.  He holds the record for most career home runs with 762.  Bonds was a 7-time National League MVP, 14-time All-Star, 8-time Gold Glover, and 12-time Silver Slugger.  Simply put, steroids or not, Bonds was a once-in-a-lifetime talent, and should be treated as such.  He should be in the Hall, but may not be elected for many years due to his links to PEDs, his perjury charges, and his overall sour disposition when it came to dealing with the scrutiny of the media.  

Clemens was one of the top 3 pitchers in a generation dominated by hitting, along with Pedro Martinez and Randy Johnson.  He has the highest fWAR of any pitcher (by a landslide) with 145.5 Wins Above Replacement.  His 8.56 K/9 ranks in the top 10 all time for starters with over 250 GS.  At age 42, (albeit possibly aided by PED) he went 13-8, 1.87 ERA, 185K/62BB, and ERA+ of 226.  Clemens won 7 Cy Young Awards while attending 11 All-Star Games and even winning the AL MVP Award in 1986.  Clemens was always known for his military-style workouts and his bulldog mentality, but as with Bonds, his links to PEDs will taint his legacy.  

Mike Piazza is another case where others have implicated him, and there has been no proof of his taking any PED.  Highest career slugging of any catcher in history; .545.  #1 in ISO; .237.  7th in fWAR; 66.7.  1st in HR; 427.  If these stats don’t make Piazza look like the best offensive catcher in history, I don’t know what else to say.  Maybe his .308 AVG and 140 wRC+, 9th and 1st all time for catchers, respectively, will convince you.  A 12-time All-Star, Piazza also won the 1993 NL MVP award with the LA Dodgers.  He also won 10 Silver Slugger Awards and was voted in the top 10 for the MVP 7 times.  Piazza should be voted in the first ballot as well, but, like Bagwell, will likely wait many years even though there has not been a shred of credible evidence that he took a PED.  

Between 1998 and 2001, Sammy Sosa hit 243 home runs.  60.75 home runs per year.  In the history of the MLB, there have been eight seasons where a player has hit 60 HR.  Sosa owns three of them.  With 609 career home runs and an OPS of .878, it is no wonder Sosa was regarded as one of the best power hitters of his generation.  Sosa played in 7 All-Star Games, won the NL MVP in 1998, and was voted in the top 10 six other times.  He also won 6 Silver Slugger Awards.  Sosa tested positive for PED use in a 2003 supposedly anonymous survey.  Also, not helping his reputation as a cheater is that he was caught using a corked bat on June 3, 2003.  

Curt Schilling needs to get a long hard look as well.  He was able to amass only 216 wins, but his career 1.13 WHIP and 128 ERA+ are very good.  Schilling also compiled over 3100 strikeouts while walking only 711 in 3261 innings.  If Jack Morris gets into the Hall of Fame with much lesser career numbers, but gets in on the merits of his Game 7 victory in the 1991 World Series, Schilling should be elected in his first 3 years of eligibility.  Before Game 6 of the ALCS in 2004, in which the Red Sox were down 3-2 to the Yankees, Schilling tore a tendon sheath in his ankle.  Doctors built a wall of stitches in his ankle to hold the tendon in place so that he could still pitch in the game.  Schilling went 7 innings, all the while blood oozed out of the wound through his sock.  He gave up 4 hits, no walks, and struck out 4 batters, and gave up 1 run.  The Red Sox won the game, and won the series the next night.  The game will forever be known as the Bloody Sock Game.  Schilling’s performance on one leg was one of the gutsiest events I have ever witnessed in this game.  

There are so many other notable names of good to great baseball players, but none should have a real chance of being elected into the Hall of Fame this year…with most likely never getting in.  These players include Craig Biggio, Jose Mesa, Roberto Hernandez, Kenny Lofton, David Wells, Shawn Green, Julio Franco, Sandy Alomar, and of course, Jaret Wright.  Remember that guy?  

2013’s ballot is littered with guys who SHOULD be in, but won’t be elected.  Not now, and maybe not ever.  Personally, I vote Bonds, Clemens, Piazza, Sosa and Schilling.  Due to their PED connections, the first four won’t get in, and Schilling may take a few years to pay his dues through the process.

***Today’s feature was prepared by our Baseball Writer, Rob Bland.  We highly encourage you to leave your comments and feedback at the bottom of the page and share in the discussion with our readers.  You can also follow Blandy on Twitter***

Please e-mail us at: MLBreports@gmail.com with any questions and feedback.  You can follow us on Twitter and become a fan onFacebook .  To subscribe to our website and have the daily Reports sent directly to your inbox , click here and follow the link at the top of our homepage.

Ask the Reports: Your Baseball Questions Answered – Sunday January 15th, 2012

Sunday January 15th, 2012

Jonathan Hacohen:  Posted every Weekend: Your top baseball questions from the past week are answered. E-mail all questions to mlbreports@gmail.com, message us on Twitter and post on our Facebook Wall!

Let’s get to your top questions of the week:

Q:  Any news on moves for Derrek Lee & Casey Kotchman? With Yanks recent pitching acquisitions, does Boston pursue Roy Oswalt more aggressively?  Rick

MLB reports:  Great questions Rick.  No and no are the answers.  Sorry!  To answer your first question: Lee and Kotchman are plans “c” and “d”, if that, for contending teams.  Teams on the rise would prefer to use younger players at first base. So the market for both is limited at best.  Both Lee and Kotchman will need to fight to get full-time jobs.  Kotchman will find something based on his solid 2011 campaign.  Perhaps a return to the Rays is in order.  Lee on the other hand, is getting on in years.  I could see him retiring at this point, or in a year from now.  It just depends on how desperate some teams are to get a veteran presence on their team and if trust is there for either player.  With regards to Oswalt, I see him signing very soon.  Boston could use him, yes, but I am not sensing a fit.  The top teams for his services appear to be the Rangers and Jays.  At 1-year and $8 million, he will likely have 20+ teams pursuing him.  Boston does need Roy Oswalt in the worst way at this point. He would help stabilize a rotation that needs his presence. But this decision will come down to geography and fit for the player.

 

Q:  Is Jesus MonteroVictor Martinez good?  How far is J.P. Arencibia or Travis d’Arnaud from Montero?  Derek

MLB reports:  The Montero questions begin!  I made the comparison on the trade of the trade that Montero was comparable to V-Mart and I stand behind that one.  Carlos Santana is another good comparison.  Extremely strong bat, will hit for high average with good pop.  Glove is questionable.  Montero will be good, I am just on the fence on whether it will happen in Seattle.  The  hope is that with a young team, he will blossom into a superstar. It will depend on whether he feels any pressure to live up to replacing Michael Pineda and ends up putting too much pressure on himself. He seems like a confident young man, so he should do well.  The V-Mart threshold is a high one to reach.  But we are definitely talking in the same category.  Now d’Arnaud and Arencibia are a different story.  Being based in Toronto, I get asked on these guys often. Here is my take put simply.  Arencibia is a good guy, with good power in his bat.  He is popular in the clubhouse and seen as a developing defensive catcher. His liabilities are his low average, high strikeouts and inability to take a walk.  A .219 AVG and .282 OBP don’t cut it in my book.  If JP doesn’t develop, he will become the Rob Deer of catchers.  Travis d’Arnaud, on the other hand, may not have JP’s power (debatable), but he will definitely hit for a much higher average.  He also will need to learn to take walks and cut down on strikeouts, but he should be more consistent offensively than Arencibia.  Defensively, I have heard mixed things- but both will stick at catcher.  So defensively, both Arencibia and d’Arnaud are above Montero.  But Montero’s bat is far superior to either of the other guys.  He is major league ready now to hit, while JP and Travis are still learning to hit consistently.  If I had to rate each, I would give Montero an 8/10, d’Arnaud a 6/10 and Arencibia a 5/10.  Montero is far ahead, with only d’Arnaud having the best chance to close the gap.

 

 Q:  Do the Phillies really expect Ryan Howard to be fully “baseball ready” before June 1st?  Old Man Mack

MLB reports:  LOL.  That is the hope sir.  If I had to be a fly on the wall, I bet the Phillies are hoping that he will be ready before that.  But if the Kendrys Morales injury has taught us anything, is that you never know how some of these freak accidents will heal.  My crystal ball sees Howard back after the All-Star break.  Unless he is 110% healed, why risk it?  His long-term health and productivity are at risk.  I would not be shocked if Howard took longer to heal and had to miss all of 2012.  But chances are that he will be back, just not till sometime in July or August of 2012. If he is back sooner, he better be ready…or a setback could be around the corner.  I would say the bigger question is how long he stays in the lineup, rather than when he is back.

 

Q:  What are the Tigers chances on Yoenis Cespedes?  Michael

MLB reports:  The Cespedes rumors are flying fast and furious. The teams that have been most linked to him are the Marlins and the Tigers.  There have been stories of 5 teams, 10, 20…all sorts of numbers thrown around about this guy.  Now, people are questioning why he is playing winter ball and in fact hurting his stock.  My gut feel is that there isn’t as high of a demand for him as people suspect and that teams are cautious at throwing big money at an unknown quantity. But even if he doesn’t put up the best numbers this offseason, it has to be considered that he is rusty and been away from the game for some time. People should not expect Babe Ruth immediately, just to view his tools and to see if the mechanics are there. I like the Marlins chances best at signing Cespedes.  Team Latino gets a 50% chance of landing Cespedes, with the Tigers at roughly 20%.  

 

Q:  Does Vance Worley come back to earth in his sophomore season?  Justin

MLB reports:  Nah man, Vance never left!  Just kidding, but I know what you mean. Vance Worley was unbelievable in 2011, with an 11-3 record, 3.01 ERA and 1.230 WHIP.  His won/loss record will depend largely on his offensive support and bullpen, so that we will leave to fate somewhat. I see Vance throwing quality strikes and keeping his walks low. He will not be an ace, but he will be very steady. He has the minor league track record and has already proven himself at the highest stage (in one of the most pressure filled environments, Philadelphia).  Expect some regression, but not too much. Vance Worley is the real deal. A sophomore jinx should be avoided, but he will still take time to develop.  Remember he is only 24-years of age.  By year 3 or 4, expect a stud 20 game winner to emerge. 

 

Q:  With the new players eligible for the 2013 Hall of Fame class (Bonds, Clemens, Sosa etc.): will any be inducted?  Ken

MLB reports:  Ken. Ken. Ken. Mr. I say that Tim Raines MUST be inducted. 🙂 He is back for more… Just playing with you Ken, you know we love ya.  48.7% of the vote Ken, I guess the voters aren’t all sold…yet.  Here is my knock on Raines- get ready.  Played 23 seasons. Not a bad thing in its own right. But definitely inflated some of his numbers. 980 RBIs.  So he averaged less than 50 a year. 1571 runs scored. For 23 years played, not fantastic. A hall of fame leadoff man should easily be scoring 100+ per year, even on poor teams. Raines only did it 6 times. .294 AVG and .385 OBP.  Very good. Like those numbers. The man did not hit many doubles or triples. He was basically a singles and stolen base machine.  Now go check out our man Vince Coleman. Both in their primes, they were one of the top stolen base threats. Raines got more hits and got caught less stealing. But then Coleman appears to have attempted more stolen bases. Raines played longer and ultimately had the stronger career. But in the prime years, I can’t say that Raines was that much more spectacular than Coleman. Raines is very good and will get into the hall of fame the Jim Rice route. But it is not the Hall of Very Good. It is the Hall of Fame. 

Now with your true question: Will any of the new eligible players be inducted into Cooperstown in 2013?  The candidates are Bonds, Clemens, Piazza, Sosa, Schilling, Biggio and Lofton.  I can tell you right now, based on Palmeiro and McGwire’s poor standings, that there is no chance in heck that Bonds, Clemens or Sosa are getting in.  No way.  No how.  The ones I see getting in are Biggio and Piazza. Secretly, I have fantasized at night about Biggio and Bagwell getting in together. It was just meant to be. If Bagwell does not get in next year, then he will have to wait for some time. I feel next year will be his year. Piazza has to get in as a 1st ballot hall of famer. The numbers he put up as a catcher demand it. Next year is the year that hall of fame voters get their true test. If Piazza is out, then the hall of fame will really have to sit down and work out a better set of criteria for voting. The writers are going to feel like they are on a raft without paddles…it is time to fix the voting mess once and for all. Are these guys hall of famers or not? Let’s lay down the law and be done with it.  No more fence-sitting. 2013 will be a big year for sure.

 

Q:   Over/under 13.5 psychotic episodes in Miami?  Sam

MLB reports:  Under.  Way under!  I think you will see maybe 5-6 big blow ups. Carlos Zambrano will get into 1-2 confrontations. Hanley will explode about the position change once.  LoMo will have one twitter incident.  Ozzie will have a couple of issues likely develop. Apparently the Miami Marlins are being considered for the baseball reality show this year. If that happens, watch out. That will be Grade A television!!!

 

Final Q:  Will the Brewers be able to win the central despite losing Prince and no Braun for first 50 games?  Eric

MLB reports: My brain says no and my heart says maybe. The reality is that the Brewers are in tough. Very tough. The loss of Prince will be huge (when it happens) and same with Braun if the suspension is upheld. But even with those guys, the Brewers would still be in tough. The Cardinals, even with the loss of the Pujols and La Russa and absence of Duncan would still be a strong team.  The Reds though are the team to beat, as they are frontrunners to take the NL Central this year. The Brewers still have Greinke and Gallardo, so they have a chance. But I just see the Reds as the class of the division this year. The Cardinals are going to regress and will have a tough time defending their title. But without their main offensive stars, the Brewers go from stars to ordinary. The window appears to be closing on the Brewers… and opening for the Reds in 2012.

 

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Please e-mail us at: MLBreports@gmail.com with any questions and feedback.  You can follow us on Twitter and become a fan onFacebook .  To subscribe to our website and have the daily Reports sent directly to your inbox , click here and follow the link at the top of our homepage.

Jonathan Hacohen is the Lead Baseball Columnist & Editor for MLB reports:  You can follow Jonathan on Twitter (@JHacohen)

Ask the Reports: Sunday January 1st, 2012

Sunday January 1, 2012


Jonathan Hacohen:  Posted every Weekend: Your top baseball questions from the past week are answered. E-mail all questions to mlbreports@gmail.com, message us on Twitter and post on our Facebook Wall!

Let’s get to your top questions of the week:

 


Q:  With just 7 weeks until spring training, which teams are looking really good for the 2012 season?  Heather

MLB reports:  Great question Heather.  I presume you mean which teams are playoff contenders for 2012.  At this point, I really like the Rays, Tigers, Angels and Rangers in the AL.  These teams have the best balanced rosters that are built to make it to the playoffs.  In the NL, it’s the Phillies, Reds, Dbacks and Braves (maybe Cards).  Those are the strongest 8 teams that I am projecting for playoff positions at this point.  There will be many improved teams to keep an eye on.  The Jays continue to be on the rise in Toronto.  The Royals are slowly preparing to make their move.  I like what the Nationals are building in Washington.  The Pirates are slowly putting together a nice stable of young prospects.  The Padres are going to be a serious force very soon, perhaps as soon as this year.  The common theme is good pitching and depth within the lineup.  The above teams are the ones that are getting it right in my book.

 

Q:  Will the Baseball Writers snub Tim Raines once again?  David

MLB reports:  Raines since 2008 has his percentage of votes rise from 24% to 37.5%.  This is a tough one for the voters.  I have studied the numbers and I don’t give Raines a vote.  He was very good…but not Hall of Fame good in my book.  Ultimately Raines will get in, as he is more deserving that say Jim Rice in my opinion.  But he is one of those slow candidates that will climb every year and get to 75% in the last couple of years of eligibility.  Raines is a fringe hall of fame candidate and it shows in his vote totals.  Keep in mind it is the hall of fame, not the hall of very good.  If we are going to put only the best of the best in the hall, Raines should not be in.  But considering the track records of some recent inductees, then yes, Raines should be in. But don’t expect it anytime soon and definitely not in 2012.  Raines will have to play the waiting game like many other fringe candidates.

 

Q:  Any chance the Mets sign Prince Fielder? I know- I doubt the money is there, but still… I’d also like to think they can win the WS…  Jon

MLB reports:  All I have to say is…huh? You must really love your Mets, but you need to get a reality check on their chances.  To answer your questions: firstly, no chance the Mets get Prince Fielder.  For so many reasons.  They cannot afford him.  Given the Wilpon financial issues and the fact that the team is looking for a minority owner for a bailout, the team cannot take on Fielder’s salary.  All the money in the budget has already been spent, so the team will go with Ike Davis again at first base.  Davis has been a pleasant surprise and should continue to develop.  Secondly, no way that Prince will want to go to the Mets.  The team is not a contender and has too many black eyes from an image perspective.  Prince would not want to get caught in the Mets mess right now.  Plus, even with the outfield dimensions changing, I doubt Prince will want to play in that ballpark.  As far as winning the World Series, pop in a DVD and watch the glory year of 1986.  It should give you some comfort until the team returns back to glory, sometime in the next 5-10 years.  I don’t mean to be hard on you Jon, but sometimes in baseball the fans need some tough love.  I am being honest because I care.  Don’t stop supporting your Mets: just be realistic so that you are not in for a letdown.  Expect nothing and you will have your expectations exceeded!!!

 

Q:  What’s your opinion on how my Kansas City Royals will fair this season? Michael

MLB reports:  Better than many people think Michael.  The Royals will not make the playoffs, but they will be a .500 squad.  The hitting is really coming together and could get the boost of Wil Myers in mid-2012 if he gets the call.  Things are on the rise in Kansas City.  The Royals will be finishing in 3rd place, behind the Tigers and Indians.  I could even see a 2nd place finish if everything falls into place.  The team just has so much talent at every position, with the rotation being the only question mark for me.  Perez, Butler, Hosmer, Giavotella, Escobar, Moustakas, Gordon, Cain and Francoeur.  A bullpen stacked by Soria, Broxton, Crow, Collins, Mijares, Wood and Holland.  On the field and in the pen, the Royals have the power to succeed.  The rotation is a little more of a patchwork job.  The team needs Danny Duffy to put it together and top pitching prospect John Lamb to return to form after a lost year to injury.  I see 2013-2015 being the Royals time to shine.  But with the team set to host the All-Star game this coming year, they should have an exciting product on the field.  This will not be their year, but the first real step towards respectability.  Enjoy this young team, if nothing else they will be fun to watch.

 

Final Question:  What are the chances of any of these guys coming to Boston: Oswalt(P) Garza(P) Saunders(P) Spilborghs(RF) Quentin(RF)? Rick

MLB reports:  Great question Rick. Fans are wondering what the Red Sox have up their sleeve.  Unfortunately, I don’t think you will like the response on this one.  Matt Garza comes at a big price of prospects that the Red Sox will not likely pay. Plus considering how long it took for Theo to make the jump to the Cubs and the negotiation of compensation and movement of front office staff, I don’t see the teams matching up well for a trade.  Roy Oswalt will have many options considering that he will only get a 1-2 year deal.  I don’t think he will be that excited to play in Boston. I see him more likely ending up back in the NL, or going to Texas or the Jays.  Carlos Quentin is already in San Diego and will be the team’s new cleanup man.  A native son, Quentin could stay long-term in San Diego.  Whether the BoSox get Ryan Spilborghs or not is irrelevant for me.  He just doesn’t excite me as a player with much potential.  I could see Joe Saunders heading to Boston as a middle of the rotation starter.  He would be an innings eater more than anything, not a real impact guy.  It looks to me like the BoSox are going with what they have for the most part, with only minor tweaks coming.  The team has the talent, so the bigger question is how the players respond to new manager Bobby Valentine.  How Bobby V gets his players prepared and focused will decide if the BoSox can return to their glory days.

 

 

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Jonathan Hacohen is the Lead Baseball Columnist & Editor for MLB reports:  You can follow Jonathan on Twitter (@JHacohen)

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