Dec 18

Puig! Puig! Puig!

Okay, that’s overdone. Nonetheless, here’s some video of the young man performing his offseason workout.

Update: Puig has been arrested in Florida for reckless driving, going 110 mph on I-75 on the West-East section of the road known as Alligator Alley.

That can’t make the Dodgers very happy. Reckless driving endangers more than just the driver, it endangers others on the road. They need to get this kid’s driving habits under control before he hurts himself or someone else. He was charged with a similar infraction back in April of this year but the charges were dismissed.

Dec 17

‘Tis a high price to pay

News item: The Yankees and the Dodgers are the only teams which have to pay a luxury tax on their payroll for 2013. The threshold for this season is $178 million, the Dodgers’ payroll was $243 million, and they pay at a 17.5 percent rate and owe $11,415,959.

Checks are due in the Commissioner’s Office by January 21.

But what does all that money get used for? From Article XXIII of the Collective Bargaining Agreement:

(1) The first $2,375,400 of proceeds collected for each Contract Year shall be used to fund benefits to Players, as provided in the Major League Baseball Players Benefit Plan Agreements.

(2) 50% of the remaining proceeds collected for each Contract Year, with accrued interest, shall be used to fund benefits to Players, as provided in the Major League Baseball Players Benefit Plan Agreements.

(3) 25% of the remaining proceeds collected for each Contract Year shall be contributed to the Industry Growth Fund and, with accrued interest, used for the purposes set out in Article XXV.

(4) 25% of the remaining proceeds collected for each Contract Year, with accrued interest, shall be used to defray the Clubs’ funding obligations arising from the Major League Baseball Players Benefit Plan Agreements.

Okay, but what’s the “Industry Growth Fund?”

The objective of IGF is to promote the growth of baseball in the United States and Canada, as well as throughout the world. To this end, IGF will be operated jointly by Players and Clubs in furtherance of the following purposes:

(1)to enhance fan interest in the game;
(2)to increase baseball’s popularity; and
(3)to ensure industry growth into the 21st Century

(See Article XXV of the CBA, linked above.)

So now we’re smarter than we were several hours ago. Isn’t that a good thing, class?

Dec 12

A retirement and other notes

In case you missed it:


If the Dodgers and Uribear can’t compromise (last I saw he wants a two-year deal, the Dodgers want to give him only one), maybe Mr. Hairston Jr. could be persuaded to come back and play third. That’s if they don’t want Hanley Ramirez to play there, with newcomer Alexander Guerrero playing what we’re told is his natural position of shortstop. Mark Ellis is still looking for a job, too. And then there’s the rather more intriguing idea of Kevin Youkilis, whose agent expressed a belief that he’d like to play on the West Coast.

How does one acquire a “natural” position, anyway? Doesn’t that really just mean “he’s played more games there than anywhere else?”

Dec 09

Reboot

Jon revealed his new employment situation to me over the weekend and asked me if I wanted him to put a pointer in his post to this blog, and I said sure, after I congratulated him on what must a dream job he never anticipated landing.

So here we all are. The winter meetings are beginning, Matt Kemp’s name may be on the trading block, the Dodgers may or may not be trying to acquire David Price from the Rays, they’ve already gotten Dan Haren on the free agency market, and looming over everything is getting Clayton Kershaw signed to a long-term deal.

Whoops. I forgot. They’ve also added Orel Hershiser and Nomar Garciaparra to their TV broadcasting team.

Chat away, Dodgers fans!

Oct 30

World Series Game Six

One way or another, the Series will end at Fenway Park for the first time since 1918. Either the Sox win tonight in six or the Cardinals win tonight to force a Game Seven. But it too will be played at Fenway, and as a fan I’d like to see it. Game Seven is evocative of so many previous ones — Mazeroski’s home run in 1960, McCovey’s line drive caught by Bobby Richardson in 1962, Koufax’s win in 1965 on Lou Johnson’s home run in the fourth inning, Lolich outdueling Gibson in 1968, Jack Morris’s ten-inning 1-0 win in 1991, and Luis Gonzalez’s dunker off Mariano Rivera in 2001.

So I’m rooting for the Cardinals tonight. It’s hard, but I’m gonna do it. They send out rookie star Michael Wacha, and the Sox counter with John Lackey. Ortiz goes back to DH for the Red Sox and Napoli plays first base. For the Cardinals Allen Craig is the DH while Mike Adams plays first base.

St. Louis at Boston 2:00pm HST, 5:00pm Pacific, 8:00pm Eastern on Fox.

Oct 28

World Series Game Five

“On paper, this projects as a low-scoring game. The Cards are batting just .235 as a team this series. The Red Sox are even worse at .189.”

Boston at St. Louis, 1:30PM HST, 4:30PM Pacific, 7:30PM Eastern on Fox.

The Sox’ pitcher is Jon Lester; the Cardinals’ pitcher is Adam Wainwright.

In two World Series starts, Lester has yet to allow a run, including pitching 7 2/3 shutout innings against the Cards in Game 1.

[snip]

Wainwright . . . struggled in the opener, allowing five runs (three earned) in five innings.

Oct 27

Ouch!

Young Mr. Wong had a wonderful career at the University of Hawai’i, and if he learns to hit in the big leagues he’ll have a long career there, I’m sure. But this was not the best memory he’ll take away from the 2013 World Series. The worst of it is that his run was meaningless; the Cards needed two to tie the game, so there was no need for him to be stretching his lead.

So now we go to Game Five tomorrow in St. Louis, all tied up at two games apiece.

Oct 27

World Series Game Four

Shake it off, Boston. If you want to win this Series you have to get over that ninth-inning calamity. Hey, if David Ross had been catching he might not have thrown the ball into left field in the first place, which would have ended the play right there.

The Red Sox and the Cardinals are back at it at 2:00pm HST, 5:00pm PT, 8:00pm ET on Fox.

Clay Buchholz apparently has a tired arm, but he gets the start for the Sox regardless. The Cards send Lance Lynn to the mound on 11 days rest.

Oct 26

Wotta ending, huh?

The Cardinals’ Allen Craig was awarded home plate after an obstruction call at third base kept him from advancing cleanly on a wild throw from Saltalamacchia and the Cards won Game Two 5 – 4 to take a two games to one lead in the World Series.

That last play is going to be remembered in World Series lore for quite a while.