Baseball History Notes for June 10, 2013

Braun

The big news of the week in baseball was an ESPN Outside the Lines report that Major League Baseball is seeking to suspend 20 or more current players for their involvement with the now defunct Biogenesis of America clinic. Tony Bosch, the company’s founder, agreed to provide MLB with documents to help their cases. Players including Ryan Braun, Alex Rodriguez and Melky Cabrera are all reported to be those in the crosshairs, with more details of the whole mess still to come.

The report indicated that suspensions could be as long as 100 games if MLB gets its way. However, want and reality could be two completely different things. The MLB Player’s Union immediately issued a statement declaring their intent to vigorously defend the players in the investigation, and will use their considerable power to minimize any punitive damage. It’s a situation that is highly unlikely to be determined quickly, but will probably play out in courtrooms and boardrooms for an indeterminable amount of time.

Regardless of the length of possible suspensions, the damage has already been done to the reputations of the players involved in the scandal. No matter how much you believe or don’t believe steroids and PEDs are cheating, the amount of lying and general scumbaggery (I made this word up specifically for this situation) on the part of these players has completely impugned their character. No matter how far they can hit a ball or fast they can throw a pitch, their greatest attribute as players and human beings has been irrevocably shattered. Continue reading

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Advice For The Mets

Mets

The Mets Should Target Soriano

If the Mets were considering bringing Michael Bourn into the fold at $12 million per season, then perhaps they should target Alfonso Soriano.  The Cubs are in total rebuild mode, and they are more than willing to deal Soriano.  If the Mets are willing to pay about $7 million of his $18 million annual contract, the Cubs would be willing to deal him.  His defense is suspect, but his bat still has plenty of life left in it.  And the Mets certainly have a need for right-handed power.  The Mets would only be on the hook for two more seasons, and at $7 million per season, they could manage that contract, and he would provide more pop than Bourn would have supplied.  Mike Baxter could come in and play defense late in games.  It’s a move that makes baseball and financial sense for the Mets…as well as the Cubs.

Similarities Between These Mets and the 83’ Mets Continue reading

Best Regular Season Finishes

The final standings of the baseball season often come down to the last month of the season. Which ever team is hotter typically comes out on top. With every late season run by a team, there are also notable players that are doing their best to help their team win. To find out which players have had the best finishes to a season, I used the Fangraphs’ splits and found the five best WAR performances in the last month of the season. The stats date back to the 1974 season because Fangraphs does not provide season splits for earlier years.

I have listed the top 5 performances, by both fielders and pitchers based on the players’ WAR in the final month of the season. I am aware that there are allegations behind some of these players but nonetheless these players really performed well.

Batters:

Rank/Player Year WAR PA Triple Slash HR RBI
1. Barry Bonds 1992 3.4 136 .392/.537/.833 11 27
2. Richard Hidalgo 2000 3.3 124 .477/.532/.953 11 32
3. Barry Bonds 2001 3.2 117 .403/.607/1.078 16 25
4. Alan Trammel 1987 2.8 147 .417/.490/.677 7 20
4. Amos Otis 1978 2.8 125 .411/.476/.701 6 29

 

Pitchers:

Rank/Player Year WAR IP ERA/FIP K BB
1. Roger Clemens 1987 3.1 59.2 1.51/1.61 70 13
2. Pedro Martinez 1999 2.9 42.0 0.86/0.78 71 6
3. Steve Carlton 1982 2.7 64.0 1.83/1.70 75 11
4. Dwight Gooden 1984 2.6 42.0 1.29/0.53 62 10
4. J.R. Richard 1979 2.6 58.0 1.24/1.40 69 15