Let's get going. We'll have a short interruption at 2:30 for a radio interview I have to do, so apologies for the double-booking. But we'll try and go until 3:30 today.
I don't understand what it means when it is said that some teams that succeed in the regular season, such as the A's, are not built for the post season. Can you explain?
It's nonsense. The postseason is basically a crapshoot. Get in and you have a chance. The A's just haven't played their best when they've had to. There is no "magic" formula to winning in the postseason.
Now ... there may be minor advantages. I believe somebody did that showed if there is a big discrepancy between batting average and batting average allowed, the team with the advantage does have an edge. Not sure how the A's historically fare in those areas.
Hard to be effective when you're injured. Probably shouldn't have been out there last night.
Price,Zobrist,and Jennings to StL for Oscar Taveras,Shelby Miller,and Alex Reyes...who says no?
Tampa Bay would laugh at that offer. Not sure that's enough just for Price.
Brady Aiken....bred to be the #1 pick....has damage in his elbow. Will MLB step up and push to change to showcase culture, since it really seems to have a direct correlation to guys getting hurt, since they're throwing max effort from February through November.
The trouble is there is so much incentive for the best kids to showcase themselves, get drafted high and get huge bonuses, that I'm sure things will change even if MLB stepped in and warned those events to back off.
I love Buck! He's the best.
He's got the Orioles going right now. Looks like the team to beat in the AL East (this week anyway).
With the Peavy to St. Louis talk gaining momentum, what kind of package would the Cardinals have to put together to land him? Im assuming Wacha, Miller, Martinez, and Tavares would be off limits. Is there enough there to get a deal without including any of those?
Sure. Peavy won't cost much more than an A-level prospect. He hasn't been that good this year.
Please don't pay the sleeping person watching the MLB one thin dime. Hate to see your lawyers have to battle this. But if you fall asleep at game. Besides does not every sport ticket in America state the you could be on camera.
I blame the lawyer who agreed to take on the case.
Heyward's offensive explosion will come in _______
2010? It's one of the great mysteries of our time but Heyward has enough PAs now that I'm not sure it's ever going to come. His swing just seems so mechanical at times that I'm sure we can label him a pure hitter of sorts like he looked like as a rookie.
Do you think the cubs are on to something with stockpiling all these young hitters? In an age where pitchers are dominating it seems its a lot easier to find pitching than it is to find quality hitting
Absolutely. Much easier to build around hitters than pitchers. The Cubs know what they're doing.
With Matt Wieters out for the season, the Orioles have a huge hole behind the plate. Yes, they already picked up Nick Hundley and Dan Duquette is probably focused on acquiring starting pitching. BUT, why not pursue Kurt Suzuki? His asking price cannot be too high and he adds tremendous depth to an already great lineup.
Suzuki isn't that good.
Did you really have to write an article proclaiming that the Orioles will win the AL East??? They're bound to collapse now given that they typically play better when no one believes in them . . .
I'm sure my article has no influence!
I *can't* believe the Cubs got Addison Russell. I was thinking they'd end up with a couple of "B" prospects for those pitchers... not the 3rd best prospect. Very exciting!!!
It will be fun to see how the Cubs sort out all these infielders. I guess Kris Bryant could eventually move to the outfield -- kind of a Jayson Werth type with his size.
Heyward's offensive explosion will come in...his post retirement softball league.
The Royals are 2.5 games back of your Mariners for the wild card - you scared?
Well, sure, it's close. I think the Mariners are little better.
Since you wrote about Joey Votto today - this has got to be in the running for 'worst contract of all time', right? Only 9.5 more years, Reds fans!
Too early to make that call, but if there's a lesson here it's not give somebody a $200 million extension that doesn't kick in for two years. Same thing could happen to Miguel Cabrera.
Do you think Kershaw catchers Orel Hershiser? At this pace it looks like he will need 3 more starts to do it.
I'd bet against it but I also wouldn't bet against Kershaw. The big difference between now and 1988 is there are more home runs now, so it all takes is one mistake for the streak to end.
The Blue Jays are a mess right now. What is their ideal trade to right the ship?
David Price? But I don't see him being traded within the division. There really aren't any big difference makers out there, so most of the improvement will have to come from within.
Can we agree that no player who has a one year spike in defensive stats responsible for a large part of his WAR is in the MVP consideration?
I think that's fair. Too many strange cases popping up lately -- like Gerardo Parra last year or Heyward this year. Heyward is very good but he's on pace for one of the best defensive seasons ever via Defensive Runs Saved.
Do you think the Angels are sitting there thinking "we can take the A's if we get into the playoffs if we add ________ to our roster" - and if so, what is the fill in to the blank?
How can MLB justify that terrible replay call last night in the Mets/Braves game?
I'm just as confused as Fredi Gonzalez (who got ejected). You can't review neighborhood plays ... yet, on the other hand, they did get the call right as Simmons clearly wasn't on the bag.
Did you see the Braves-Mets "neighborhood play" last night? Whats the point of having a replay system where the umps either dont understand the guidelines or just choose to ignore them?
I didn't see an official explanation from MLB, so who knows. The only thing I can think of is since the Braves didn't turn the double play, the umps considered it a force play and not a neighborhood play. But that seems like a stretch.
But I love that we're now ripping the umps for getting a call right. Baseball in 2014!
Is it more likely that Price gets moved at the deadline or during the off-season?
Depends where the Rays are on July 31. They're 9.5 back now and rolling. I say if they're 5 games or closer on that date they end up keeping him.
What's the point of having a $6 BILLION TV DEAL (Matt Gelb Philly Inquirer) if the PHILLIES are going to BOYCOTT the MLB free agent market, the top kids in the July 2nd international market, and professional stars from Japan and Korea? Phillies have signed TWO big free agents in past 33yrs (THOME & LEE), never signed a player out of Japan and never paid the top signing bonus for a Dominican or Venezuelan teenager. And they look like a team that behaves this way. The Dodgers celebrated their TV deal by purchasing a MLB playoff team. The Angels celebrated with Pujols and Hamilton. Phillies fans are watching CAMDEN RIVERSHARKS like BEN REVERE and CODY ASCHE and in CAMERON RUPP a guy who looks like the first baseman for the Harbor Freight softball team.
Since, as you say, the post-season is basically a crap-shoot, as an Angels fan I sure hope we don't further deplete our farm system for David Price.
Well, they don't have the prospects to get him anyway.
The Orioles will take Cliff Lee please. Thanks.
Do you think the addition of Stephen Drew will put the Sox over the top? How much did they miss his intangibles?
Yeah, that didn't exactly work out for anyone involved.
Sure the Jays need Price if they get to the playoffs, but it looks like they actually need some hitting to even get a Wild Card. Not saying they are done yet, but they need some bats. Not just Joey Bats! Cheers
At this point in the season/standings, for which teams would missing the playoffs be a disappointment?
I had Tampa Bay as my preseason World Series pick and I believe they were sabermetric favorite heading into the season. Otherwise ... there haven't really been any surprises have there other than the Rangers, but they've had so many injuries we can excuse them.
Who's your pick for the AL and NL final vote?
Chris Sale and Anthony Rizzo (barely over Anthony Rendon, mainly because the NL already has three third basemen and three second basemen). As good as Garrett Richards has been, Sale is a pretty easy choice.
So, with August fast approaching and the waiver process coming up - which of the following players and their contracts most likely be claimed and their team let the player go, if put on the waiver process:Ryan HowardAlex RodriguezBJ UptonJosh HamiltonCarl Crawford
None of those players would be claimed.
Shouldn't MVP be about the current year regardless of one year spikes?
I think the argument is that defensive metrics aren't 100 percent reliable so we see extreme results. Parra was +36 Defensive Runs Saved last year and is 2 this year. Andrelton Simmons was 41 and is 9 this year.
Short break ... hold on a few minutes!
Chances Dallas Keuchel and Richards makes it since Sale is basically a given to win the final vote?
Tanaka pitches Sunday so won't be eligible to pitch. My guess is Richards replaces him. Not sure if anyone else is supposed to go Sunday.
Short break begins now ...
Chances that R. Amaro Jr tries to pick up Alfonso Soriano to help right the ship? They need some additional veteran experience.
David- If Samardzija had been the Cubs' only All-Star, would they have gotten a replacement representative after the trade?
Good question ... I don't know the answer. My guess is they probably would have replaced with another Cub.
Think the Rangers would part with Beltre and eat a significant amount of the remaining contract (1.5 years) if the Reds included top pitching prospect Robert Stephenson? Frazier can play 1B in Votto's absence, and move to LF if/when Votto comes back. And we'd just let Beltre walk after 2015.
Hmm, interesting idea but word seems to be the Rangers aren't going to trade Beltre, that they're just writing off 2014 as one of those years and will re-load for 2015.
We are ripping the umps for being inconsistent with the rules. MLB put in a new rule specifically for this situation and then, weeks later, they ignore it.
Not disagreeing. Just suggesting the umps may have ruled it a force play since Simmons was stretching for the ball and not really in danger of being stampeded by the runner.
For Jeter's last all-star game, they should honor him by playing all 7 of the fielders in the infield, since he can't hit the ball in the outfield anymore
Ryan must be a Mets fan.
Obviously randomness in the postseason is a huge factor, but I would expect teams with top heavy bullpens and rotations to fair better in the postseason in general. Teams rarely go more than 3 deep in the rotation, and the bullpen is pretty short too.
Maybe a slight edge to the rotation factor -- then again, the Braves had all those great staffs and once just once. The Tigers haven't won with their great rotations. The Phillies won in 2008 -- with Jamie Moyer and Joe Blanton, not Roy Halladay and Cliff Lee.
What would the M's have to give up to get Rios from the Rangers?
He's going to cost a pretty decent prospect since he has a $13.5M option for next year. Trouble is, he hasn't been that good. .300 average but only four home runs. Not running as much or as successfully as last year. Grounded into 16 DPs. Only 0.7 WAR via Baseball-Reference. Anyway, Rangers would probably ask for Taijuan Walker, Mariners would turn that do and then what? Seattle doesn't have any interesting prospects above A ball otherwise.
Any justification for Scherzer being on the team other than "last year's Cy Young winner should be on it"? Do the 10 wins really mean that much when your ERA is higher and your WAR are lower than 4 of the 5 Final Vote options?
I don't have a big issue with his selection. He's been pretty good other than that one horrible start against KC. But my wild theory: Scherzer is a free agent, the Red Sox may want to sign him, so Farrell stayed on Scherzer's good side by making him an All-Star.
How does Marlon Byrd go from being a corpse in Boston to being a useful player making a lot of money?
He changed his swing/approach.
People who say that "they can't trade within the division" aren't very intelligent. Make a good trade and it doesn't matter who is on the other side.
Can you guarantee you're making a good trade?
Do you think Mesoraco was a valid inclusion over the more recognizable Buster Posey? I think Meso has out-performed Posey, and shouldn't be penalized as a "one half wonder", since everyone knew he had this kind of talent.
Everyone knew he could hit .316 and slug over .600? I'd like to see evidence of that.
Simmons was taking the throw from 3rd... he had no idea the runner wasn't bearing down on him. And that the runner at first was safe is irrelevant. That happens after the pivot. So if the guy at 1st is safe it's okay to barrel through the SS? Nonsense.
Show me the rulebook definition of the neighborhood play. Look, I'm not defending the rule/call, since the rule is based on a play that has no definition itself. We shouldn't be shocked this happened. And it didn't cost the Braves, so I don't quite understand the consternation. Maybe Simmons should have kept his foot on the bag.
It was a force play, Simmons was gaining an advantage by coming off the bad early. 999/1000 times a double play does not get turned in that situation.
Am I God, or just merely a messiah???
post idea - best staff not to win a world series
If you're talking individual seasons only, probably the '97 or '98 Braves (off the top of my head).
The 1995 Braves that won wasn't their best rotation -- Avery and Mercker were the 4-5 starters and both had ERAs over 4.00.
The Phillies staff from 2011 would be right up there with peak Halladay, Lee and Hamels.
How the heck does Corey Kluber not make the team, and furthermore, not generate any buzz about being snubbed from the national media?
There are a lot of good starters in the AL.
So talking on the comment section on the Ortiz article and someone brought up how he's a first ballot HOF, which I find ridiculous. I bring up how Edgar isn't in yet and their reply was, "Ortiz has championships." Is that a legit argument for a DH going into the HOF?
It's never really been a factor in Hall of Fame voting. The only players I think really benefited from "championships" were the '70s A's -- Catfish Hunter and Rollie Fingers are marginal Hall of Famers but made it in easily, in part because of the three straight titles.
If I'm in the Derby, is there a legitimate chance that I might actually swing and miss on a pitch?
Probably not. I doubt Dunn misses batting practice pitches. Now George Springer ...
The only All-Star representative being traded right before the game happened to Jeff Shaw (in 1998) when he went from the Reds to the Dodgers. He was not replaced and the Reds had no representative that year.
via Twitter, Masterson just put on the 15-Day DL with a right knee.
Also, the A's never won with the Hudson, Zito, Mulder core
BJ Upton would have a better chance to swing and miss in the HR Derby
Tom Stella: I think what you mean to say is everyone thought he had this kind of talent (after all he was a top prospect a few years ago) but no one knew if or when he would live up to it. It's kind of like everyone thought Mike Moustakas was going to be a stud, but he has yet to show people if he will ever live up to that supposed talent level.
I don't have a big problem with Mesoraco since he's been terrific. The bigger argument is Josh Harrison over Posey.
Is Julio Teheran the most under the radar ace in MLB? It is crazy that he only made the All Star team because of the Samardzija trade!
Well, that's just how they announced the roster. If Samardzija doesn't get traded, I'm sure Teheran still makes it, probably at the expense of Pat Neshek or Tony Watson.
The Mid 90's Royals had a great staff and never won. Cone, Appier, Flash Gordon, Gubicza
1969 Orioles - McNally, Palmer, Cuellar....
Go out on the limb, will someone at the 2014 ALL-STAR game have a better career than Jeter? Who and why?
Good question, especially if you're factoring in things like fame and titles. If that's part of the question, maybe not. If we look just statistically (WAR), I'd go with Trout. Maybe Miguel Cabrera. Maybe Kershaw. But many candidates, that's for sure. Well, Devin Mesoraco.
Simmons came off the bag to receive the throw on a BUNT play. that was the difference in the call. There isn't an assumed double play attempt on a sac bunt. there ya go, shut up braves fans.
Votto "'worst contract of all time'"? I'm sure the phillies would trade votto for howard straight up right now.
Did Keuchel's last start keep him off the squad (or a few before that weren't great, just average) or just a disadvantage of being a soft tosser?
I just think a roster crunch. You can certainly argue he's been as good Buehrle and Kazmir, but the players voted those two on because they had hot starts. Remember, for making the All-Star Game, April counts more than May or June.
Tarek - a lot of them will have better careers than Jeter. We saw Jeter play in the 80's and 90's. His name was Barry Larkin. Same exact player
Barry Larkin isn't in the 2014 All-Star Game. The question still holds: How many players in this year's game will have a higher career WAR?
2005 Astros- Oswalt, Clemens, Pettitte
No fourth or fifth guy, however.
Wood and Prior...Oh wait nevermind!
OK, I get the points people are making on Mesoraco but they do nothing to address the question, which was Meso over Posey - is this a controversy? (David answered the question while I was typing this - so thank you). I don't like seeing good half-seasons rewarded if they come entirely out of nowhere - but I don't think Mesoraco's is, even though he is playing over his own head.
I see your. I guess it depends if you want to count "prospect pedigree" as part of a player's track record.
Manny Machado will be better. Has already been to the playoffs once, will again this year, and has more power, especially early on.
The guy with the greatest chance to eclipse Jeter's overall career performance is Trout IF he is fortunate enough to play on a few championship teams. Like it or not, helping your team win a championship does color how people view a player.
Do you see MLB ever having a skills competition during the All-Star Weekend? Range plays, throwing accuracy, Pitchers painting the corners of the strikezone/hitting spots, footraces, etc....
Speaking of Barry Larkin -- they did this for a few years in the '80s and Larkin got hurt (I believe on a relay drill contest). So that ended that. Probably not all that exciting. Fastest guy around the bases would be fun though.
So, don't trade Price within the division because you may face him a dozen times over the next year and a half.
Works both ways. Don't trade your best prospect to a team where he can haunt you for the next six years.
Could the O's find themselves winning the division AND potentially getting a discount on Weiters and Davis due to poor/injured years?
Both have another season before free agency. If anything, it makes it less likely that either play would sign a long-term extension because they would want better seasons heading into free agency.
If Russell is so great, why didn't the Cubs just draft him two years ago?
Because projecting amateurs is even more difficult than projecting minor leaguers.
Best staff not to win 03 Cubs - Wood, Prior, Zambrano, and Clement
Billy Hamilton vs Dee Gordon in a foot race, who wins?
Neighborhood play states that it is not reviewable UNLESS the throw is deemed to pull the runner off the base. The throw to Simmons was perfect so it shouldn't have been reviewable. There is no stipulation for how close the sliding runner is to 2b or whether the runner at 1st ends up being out. The crew chief said after the game the only reason they reviewed it is that they thought the throw to Simmons pulled him off. Which it didn't.
Anyway, the MLB statement says umpires can factor in whether or not the fielder was in danger of a collision. In the end, it's still a judgment call.
Buster Posey just recently passed the .280 mark. I can understand people being upset if he was actually having a good year. Gattis was also more deserving than Posey. There is no logical case to put him in.
He's not having a great year but he's been fine. San Fran is a lot tough place to hit than Cincy.
Worst staff to win...06 Cards we had Carpenter....and not much else. Jason Marquis was #2 and had a 5+ era
Best rotation to not win - 71 Orioles. Cuellar, Dobson, Palmer, and McNally all won 20+
While Jeter was good over a sustained period, was he a Trout, Stanton, or Cabrera, whose at bats you would never step away from the TV for?
1998 Astros- Reynolds, Randy Johnson, Mike Hampton, Jose Lima (a good year), Bergman. All had ERA+ of over 111 and I think Randy Johnson speaks for himself when he was in Houston.
Cano, Utley, and Longoria could end up with a higher WAR than Jeter as infielders, while Cabrera could top 100 with his hitting alone. Trout may be one of the best ever. Kershaw and King Felix should also be more valuable than Jeter when their careers are done . . . and Adrian Beltre (who would be on the all-star team if he didn't get hurt earlier this year), already has had a better career than Jeter.
The Simmons play and the umpires apparently ignoring the rule reminded me of the George Brett pine-tar incident. He did violate the rule and he was supposed to have been ruled out., but Lee MacPhail ruled otherwise on appeal. I guess sometimes rules are made to be ignored....
David, at the risk of sounding simple minded. Why do we not see more players taking a "contact" or just "put the ball in play" type approach? Seems like there could be great opportunity for a player to come up who has a swing that is specifically geared towards taking what the pitcher gives and going to the opposite field regularly.
One, it's hard. Two, you have to really hit for a high average if you're just a contact guy. And the pitching is so good now that's it hard to hit for a high average using that approach.
1973 Mets - Seaver, Matlack, Koosman
Fun Fact: The last 5 championship teams all came from the league that won the All-Star Game.Should the All-Star Game decide something as important as home field advantage in the World Series?
How can the Mariners whiff so horribly on drafting, trading for prospects, and player development and yet Jack Z is going to get ANOTHER free pass b/c they're playing so above their heads this season?? And this coming from an M's fan from back in the Alvin Davis/Rey Quionnes days...
Bonus points for an Alvin Davis mention! I don't have much to add other than I agree. The Mariners making the playoffs could be a bad thing for the franchise in the long run. Well, unless they win the World Series. I can see Howard Lincoln giving Jack Z a five-year extension and they'll sign three DHs in the offseason.
The above suggestions of '69 and '71 Orioles silly, since they won the 1970 World Series with the same Palmer/McNally/Cuellar core.
I think I had said best single-year rotations. Best group never to win is a different story. Maybe the '50s Indians with Bob Lemon, Mike Garcia, Early Wynn and Bob Feller. Three Hall of Famers, although Feller was past his prime.
They won in '48 with Feller and Lemon.
David, What are your thoughts on Joey Gallo, both this year and in the future? He seems to have silenced doubters.
Saw him once in spring training - he think he whiffed three or four times. Figured he'd be a Mark Reynolds type, but it appears he's going to better than that. Maybe more like a Jim Thome? Lots of K's but enough walks and power that he'll still have a good overall line. Not saying he's going to hit 600 home runs though!
Do you believe KING Felix will be the AL starting pitcher in the all star game? If the season were to end today who would win the AL Cy Young award?
I think so, especially since Tanaka starts on Sunday so isn't eligible to pitch in the game.
In your mind does Albert go down as the best 1st basemen ever? I still take the Iron Horse, since he had to die in order for him to be stopped.
Sure. Probably No. 2 behind Gehrig.
I'm just saying the umps didn't cite "no threat of a collision" as the reason they reviewed it. And besides, how is the fielder supposed to know how close the runner is when fielding a throw from the 3rd baseman? That's a judgment that should be taken out of the umps hands.
So Simmons left the bag because he was worried about a collision and not to turn the double play quicker?
Fun Fact: Only one of the last 5 championship teams (StL 2011) had played a Game 7, so let's not go nuts suggesting that the result of the All-Star Game made the difference.
But what's the home team's record in ALL decisive playoff games of late? (Game 5 OR Game 7 OR wild-card game.)
Home team has won the past nine Game 7s of the World Series. Last that didn't: Pirates over Orioles in 1979.
In that situation (9th inning, tie game, sac bunt), especially since Lagares was safe at first base anyway, shouldn't you make sure you get the lead runner and not leave it up to interpretation.
What does it take for the Dodgers to get David Price?
Joc Pederson or Corey Seager is the starting point plus something else.
What do I have to do to get called up to the majors? I can't believe I might hit 50 homers and still be behind Mike Olt. I will sign an extension early if the Cubs are afraid of me hitting arbitration one year early.
Beckett just went on the DL with hip issues. Does this increase the chances of the Dodgers trading for Price, or another starting pitcher?
I think so. Again, that's only if the Rays are out on July 31. It's clear Tampa will wait as long as possible to trade Price.
Before people go anointing Trout as eventually better than Jeter, lets keep in mind that there have been several amazingly good players that flame out due to injury or are unable to maintain their level of play over the years. Look at Grady Sizemore, who was something of a Mike Trout-lite a few years ago.
OK, have to wrap this up and take the dog to the vet. Thanks, everyone. Not sure what the plan is next week with the All-Star Game. Until then, enjoy your baseball!