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Because there has been a lot of talk of the "The Nishioka error" today (Losing a ball in the overcast sky while wearing sunglasses) and it was a day game and a lot of people did not have a chance to see it happen, I am presenting a still picture of the[...]
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From Erik Boland:
Experience has taught Brian Cashman to be cautious with these things, but the news continues to be positive regarding Pedro Feliciano , apparently ready to take another significant step in his rehab that could lead to a September call-up.I almost forgot he was even on the team. He'd certainly be a nice addition to the team if healthy, and as we've seen lately the bullpen could use the help.
The lefthander, signed to a two-year $8-million contract (with a club option for 2013) before the 2011 season, has been throwing batting practice sessions for the last two weeks in Tampa and will be set for his first rehab outing "very soon," Cashman said by phone Tuesday.
Indications are that Feliciano, who had rotator-cuff surgery last September, will appear in a Gulf Coast League game Friday. He threw another BP session Tuesday.
"He might become someone who's available to us," Cashman said. "We'll have to see."
Joba Chamberlain , activated from the disabled list last week, spent a lot of time working out with Feliciano in Tampa .
"I saw him throw in the bullpen and he looked pretty damn good," Chamberlain said before Tuesday night's game here. "He's worked his ---- off. I'm looking forward to seeing him up here."
Wednesday, Aug 8, 2012, 7:10 PM EDT
Partly cloudy. Winds blowing from right to left field at 5-10 m.p.h. Game time temperature around 80.
The Miami Marlins pulled off a nice 4-2 win last night against the New York Mets, and tonight the team looks to strike again in its second evening with Giancarlo Stanton in the middle of the lineup. Facing them is the comeback of Chris Young, who has shown himself to be a competent major league rotation piece. The Marlins will counter with Nathan Eovaldi and hope he is more competent than he was last time around.Pitching Matchup
I like Nathan Eovaldi, but I did not like Nathan Eovaldi's last start. Eovaldi was hammered by the Atlanta Braves, allowing six runs on six hits. He didn't walk or strike out many guys, mostly because there were so many hits that he wasn't even allowed to do that. Eovaldi struggled badly enough that he could not survive the game before the rain delay, forcing the Marlins to throw out mop-up reliever Chad Gaudin before and after the delay. Hopefully he fairs better against New York.
Chris Young is exactly who you would like him to be if you are the Mets. He was signed on to be a fifth-starter type, and he's done just that. This acquisition was much like what the Marlins wanted and eventually did not get out of Carlos Zambrano, so the Mets have to be happy with Young's performance. In many ways, Young is similar to a righty Wade LeBlanc in that he does not strike out many guys, tries to limit walks, and gives up way too many fly balls. If Giancarlo Stanton can make some contact, watch out, because Young can allow home runs due to his extreme fly ball rates.
I'll post the lineup when I return around 6 pm.
Bold Prediction: Marlins def. Mets 4-3
BOSTON (AP) — Adrian Beltre had a tiebreaking sacrifice fly in the ninth inning after Texas blew a late four-run lead and the Rangers beat the Boston Red Sox 10-9 Wednesday.
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MILWAUKEE (AP) — Ryan Braun snapped an 0-for-18 slump with an RBI double in the eighth, lifting the Milwaukee Brewers to a three-game sweep with a 3-2 win Wednesday over the Cincinnati Reds.
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CLEVELAND (AP) — For the first time in 13 days, there were actually some smiles in the Indians’ clubhouse following a game.
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Going into this off-season, the Royals glaring point of emphasis has to be and will be improving the starting rotation. That is a no-brainer, even for this sometimes priority challenged organization.
The bullpen, after all, has been very good despite losing Joakim Soria to injury before the season started. Even after trading Jonathan Broxton and giving Jose Mijares away, the pen is still one of the strengths of the ballclub.
In the field and at the plate, for better or worse, the Royals are set at eight positions. Butler is a fixture at DH, as is Gordon in left field. Escobar at short and Perez behind the plate are the future, both in talent in because of their long-term contracts, at those two positions. Moustakas and Hosmer own the corners of the infield. Whatever happens with Lorenzo Cain the rest of 2012, the Royals will need to see more of him in center next season to be sure what they have (right now, it looks pretty good). As for right, at some point the organization will simply have to move from Jeff Francoeur to Wil Myers.
Perhaps 'set' is not the right term, but the 'plan' for the immediate future is clear at eight out of nine positions.
That leaves second base. What should the Royals do? Your options are after the jump.
The incumbent is Chris Getz, who is not near as annoying as in past seasons. A triple slash of .280/.320/.372 and an OPS+ of 89 all add up to a career year for Getz. In a baseball world where offensive second basemen are few and far between, Getz remains a touch below average, but not hideously awful. Probably had the Royals not dallied with Yuniesky Betancourt much of the first half, Getz might well end up giving the team 1.5 or soWAR by the end of the season. That of course, assumes that Getz could stay healthy playing every day: something he has not done in any of his four major league seasons.
That's kind of the rub with Chris Getz - even the new improved batting stance Getz: he might be almost average in a good year if he could stay healthy, which he never has. In addition, Chris is going to start to cost noticeable money. After making just under a million in 2012, Getz will be in line for some type of raise via arbitration (his first time) this off season. He won't make a lot (something less than $2 million, more likely something around $1.5 million), but that begins to be a number for a guy you're not exactly sold on, has trouble staying healthy and basically plays just one position.
With the promotion of Christian Colon to Omaha, the AAA roster offers two 'second basemen of the future'...sort of. Colon, who has mostly played shortstop since being drafted fourth overall in 2010, profiles in the majors as either a second baseman (if he can play everyday) or as a utility infielder. In 200 games at AA, Colon walked as many times as he struck out. A .289/.364/.392 line this year in Northwest Arkansas is the best Colon has managed at any stop, but not exactly light the world on fire stuff, either. For what it's worth, Christian committed 17 errors at shortstop in 54 games, but no errors playing second in 17 games.
Also in Omaha is Johnny Giavotella. The organization hates his defense and I don't believe that is an understatement. In limited time in the majors, Johnny has certainly done little to change their mind. That said, having watched Esteban German wander the field with a glove in his hand and seen Alberto Callaspo (not to mention the Yunigma) pretty much show one-step range at second, one has to wonder why the organization is so completely fearful of giving Giavotella time at second. Perhaps he really is horror-show bad.
Still, this is a guy who has put the following lines in his last three seasons (counting 2012) in the minors:
.322/.395/.460 in AA
.338/.390/.481 in AAA
.331/.414/.491 in AAA
Giavotella has not come close to replicating those numbers in the majors. Over 260 plate appearances, Johnny has a putrid .239/.269/.344 line and, after walking as much as he strikes out in the minors, has walked just 10 times and struck out 44. There is reason to be skeptical of Giavotella, but there are plenty of reasons to give him a chunk of regular playing time in the majors to actually find out.
Other in-house options would be the utility duo of Irving Falu and Tony Abreu. I kind of like both of them, but in a utility role and likely not as an everyday second baseman. That said, if one is not going to give up on Giavotella after 260 at-bats, it is probably not fair to discount Falu and Abreu, either.
Truthfully, the Royals have options at second: not necessarily good options, but not horrific options, either. However, in typical Royal fashion, the organization has wasted time with Yuniesky Betancourt (a known quantity) and Chris Getz (a better option, but basically a 'he is who he is' guy) in a season in which they publicly stated they probably would not contend when they could have had a very good idea of what Giavotella or Falu or Abreu had to offer as a regular.
Lately with the Miami Marlins, the talk has been about hitting streaks, and particularly Jose Reyes's current 25-game hit streak. Now, I don't know about you, but I always thought it was odd that hitting took full-on precedent over other aspects of baseball. It's not like, in a hit streak, we ask about the type of hits. If we don't care about the type of hits, why should we care about how the hitter got on base?
It is with that in mind that I thought about going through an interesting historical list for the Marlins: a series of lists based on the times on base statistic. We always hear about who has the most hits in franchise history or who has the longest hit streak, but why not discuss who has gotten on base more often than anyone else? Which Marlin holds the franchise's longest times on base streak? Which Marlin played the longest on the team and got on base the least amount of times?
Let's go over some of these historical feats of times long past, shall we?
The Times On Base Streak
Since Marlins fans have been more interested in Jose Reyes's hit streak than many of the team's other actual accomplishments (or lack thereof), we'll start with discussing an interesting streak: the times on base streak. Who has reached base at least once, including hits, walks, hit-by-pitches, or reached on errors, in the most consecutive games in Marlins history? Here is the top ten list of streaks.
Luis Castillo once again tops the Marlins' record books in this category. His hit streak in 2002 overlapped with a set of games with walks that allowed him to get on base in 49 straight games, a team record. To put that mark in perspective, it is the 21st longest streak since 1993, tied with such venerable names as Manny Ramirez (2000), Phil Nevin (2000), and Chad Curtis (1995). The longest such streak from 1993 to 2012 was Derek Jeter's 63-game mark in 2006 to 2007.
The second greatest mark in Marlins history came from Kevin Millar in the hit streak of 2002, which was carried well into September when you account for other instances of getting on base. Surprisingly, the third highest ranking streak came from Logan Morrison in his rookie year of 2010. In that year, Morrison drew walks in more than 16 percent of his plate appearances, which helped to explain why he got on base so often.
Hanley Ramirez owns the most number of top ten streaks with three different streaks from three different seasons listed here. His rookie streak stretched into three different months, and he hit an impressive .342/.393/.564 in that stretch. The best hitting from one of these streaks came from Ramirez's 2008 streak, in which he hit .330/.478/.613 during that span. In comparison, Luis Castillo's streak was among the weaker hit streaks in the top ten, as he hit .376/.423/.438 during that span.
What was the weakest streak? It should come as no surprise that it came from Juan Pierre, who had the fourth longest streak of being on base at 39 games. Pierre hit just .306/.355/.400 in that time period in 2003, which matched up pretty well to his .305/.361/.373 season at the plate that year.
Jose Reyes has quite a ways to go to match Castillo's streak as of right now. Reyes has reached base in 29 straight games and hit a very good .342/.379/.547 (reminiscent of Ramirez's longest streak). His streak is currently tied for 12th all-time with, of all people, Greg Colbrunn (1996) and Dave Magadan (1993).
Reyes's Streak Odds
Just like this from earlier this afternoon, we can calculate how likely Reyes is to break Castillo's streak. Based on his ZiPS rest-of-season projection, he's expected to get on base at a .349 clip. Tack on his chances of getting on with a reached on error and that expected OBP goes up to .361.
This adjusted OBP gives Reyes an 86.7 percent chance to reach base each game. He has to reach base in 20 more consecutive games to reach Castillo's record. What does that make his odds of reaching that 49-game streak? The odds are at 5.8 percent that he reaches it and 5.0 percent that he can break Castillo's record!
Marlins All-Timers On Base
Now this brings up the question of the best all-time Marlins seasons and careers in terms of getting on-base. In terms of seasons, one of the best all-time offensive campaigns in Marlins history is at the top.
Gary Sheffield's spectacular 1996 leads all campaigns at getting on base. Ten years later, Miguel Cabrera's top-notch 2006 season fell just thirty trips to the bases shy of Sheffield's mark, in part because Sheffield drew an astounding 147 walks (only 19 intentional!) that year. Juan Pierre's plate appearance-loaded 2004 season (he led all players in plate appearances) puts him third on the list, three ahead one of Hanley Ramirez's three elite offensive seasons.
As for the overall leaderboard, the name at the top should not surprise either.
Luis Castillo was the longest-tenured Marlin in team history, and his elite on-base skills helped him get on base more than 300 more times than the next competitor, Hanley Ramirez. No current Marlin is even close to the record, though Ramirez had a shot at it if he played out his contract in Miami. Regardless of plate skill, most of these names got on via longevity; Alex Gonzalez and his career .291 OBP in Florida sits at eighth on the list.
There you have it, a quick trip down memory lane in an unusual hitting category. Next time, make sure you think about and discuss times on base when you think of the great Marlins records of all-time. Who will one day dethrone Luis Castillo at the top of the list?
The Evolution Of My Collection ? Part 13 As I officially start the fifth year of ’30-Year Old Cardboard’ today, I thought it would be fun to look back at my very first post that showcased the collection from my … Continue reading →
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