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01-18-2019, 06:20 AM,
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NEW YORK (AP) Adam Jones chose to stay with the Baltimore Orioles Eddie Robinson Jersey , using his contractual right to block a trade from a team dealing veterans and going into a rebuilding mode.”It’s my decision. It’s my life,” Jones said following Tuesday night’s 6-3 loss to the New York Yankees. ”No one’s going to tell me what to do. I earned every single bit of it. People before me fought vigorously, tirelessly, to get rights like this.”Infielder Jonathan Schoop, and pitchers Kevin Gausman and Darren O’Day were the latest departures in the payroll purge ahead of Tuesday’s deadline for trades without waivers, joining Manny Machado, Zach Britton and Brad Brach among the jettisoned from a team that dropped to a major league-worst 32-75.A five-time All-Star who can become a free agent after the season, Jones for now chose to remain with the club where he’s spent the past 11 seasons. He said he doesn’t care about criticism of his decision.”Well here’s the thing about society, everyone thinks that they know what’s best for the next person,” the 32-year-old said. ”Now if someone wants to pay all my bills, trust me, they can tell me what to do. But until then, shut the hell up.”Baltimore acquired 14 prospects, one major leaguer and $2.75 million in international signing bonus allotment in exchange for six veterans. The Orioles cut nearly $29 million in payroll obligations for this year and next.Schoop had strolled into the visiting clubhouse at Yankee Stadium unsure whether he should suit up or stay in his street clothes. Signed by Baltimore at just 16 years old, Schoop played parts of six seasons with the club and was an All-Star last year, when he hit .293 with a career-high 32 home runs and 105 RBIs. He had regressed a bit this season, hitting .244 with 17 homers.”It’s difficult,” Schoop reflected. ”This is the team that gave me the chance.”The Orioles obtained $2.5 million in international bonus allotment from Atlanta for the pitchers and also received four prospects: right-hander Evan Phillips, infielder Jean Carlos Encarnacion, catcher Brett Cumberland and left-hander Bruce Zimmerman.”The overall talent that we got, we think we got some big leaguers from that group and we’ll continue to add to our talent base to develop our future teams here http://www.indiansfanproshop.com/authent...sle-jersey ,” general manager Dan Duquette said.Baltimore acquired infielder Jonathan Villar along with a pair of minor leaguers from Milwaukee for Schoop, getting right-hander Luis Ortiz and infielder Jean Carmona. The Orioles raised their international signing bonus allotment to $8,273,500.”Villar is a very capable major league infielder who had a great year in 2016. That was an opportunity to add an infielder and then also some young talent, a young pitcher in Ortiz,” Duquette said. ”And we really like the switch-hitting shortstop, Carmona.”Although a bit melancholy about leaving the only organization he’s known, Schoop was looking forward to playing meaningful games down the stretch.”It’s exciting to go there into a pennant race,” Schoop said of the Brewers, who hold the NL’s top wild-card spot. ”They’re rolling right now.”The 27-year-old Gausman was also an O’s lifer, drafted fourth overall in 2012. He was 39-51 with a 4.22 ERA over six seasons.”We’re in a rebuild, obviously,” Gausman said. ”It’s kind of a sad day. You see the band kind of broken up.”The right-hander is going from the basement into the heat a pennant race, as well, a change he’s already embracing.”After talking to their GM, they felt real strongly about my presence,” Gausman said about the Braves, just a half-game out of first in the NL East.Baltimore began the sell-off on July 18 by sending Machado, a four-time All-Star, to the Los Angeles Dodgers for outfielder Yusniel Diaz, infielders Rylan Bannon and Breyvic Valera Mike Napoli Jersey , and right-handers Dean Kremer and Zach Pop.Six days later the Orioles dealt Britton to the Yankees for right-handers Dillon Tate and Cody Carroll, and left-hander Josh Rogers. And on Sunday they traded Brach to the Braves for $250,000 of allotment.”If we played better we wouldn’t have to do this,” manager Buck Showalter said. ”I look at it as there’s a certain accountability for that.”The Orioles cut this year’s payroll by $20,077,929 with the deals of the six plus $9 million from 2019, and they added $836,290 for this year with Villar. The Orioles started with a $151 million payroll for their 40-man roster.Machado’s departure saved $6,365,591 from his $16 million salary, Britton’s $4,387,097 from his $12 million, Brach’s $1,749,435 from his $5,165,000, Gausman’s $1,836,559 from his $5.6 million Carlos Baerga Jersey , O’Day’s $2,951,613 of his $9 million and Schoop’s $2,787,634 of his $8.5 million. Schoop also has a guaranteed $9 million salary for next year.Villar is owed $836,290 from his $2.55 million salaryCarroll and Valera were brought up from Triple-A Norfolk for Tuesday’s game.— Traditional baseball card statistics don't do Lorenzo Cain any favors. He's hit .300 a few times, but he's peaked at 16 home runs and 72 runs batted in, and he's yet to steal 30 bases in a season.And yet, he's more than justifying an $80 million contract by playing like an MVP in his first season with the Milwaukee Brewers.It's par for the course for Cain in the traditional categories in 2018. He has only 10 homers and 35 RBI, and his 26 steals are two off his career high of 28. There's no frowning at his .311/.403/.432 triple-slash line, though. Nor at his 6.1 wins above replacement, according to Baseball Reference. Those lead all National League position players:1.Lorenzo Cain: 6.12.Paul Goldschmidt: 5.6T3.Christian Yelich: 5.4T3.Javier Baez: 5.4T3:Freddie Freeman: 5.4Thanks in part to their 32-year-old center fielder's efforts, the Brewers hold the NL's top wild-card spot. They're also only one game off the Chicago Cubs' pace in the NL Central race.This doesn't mean Cain has the inside track at the NL MVP award. If there's a takeaway from an August 30 MLB Network discussion on the topic, it's that he's worthy of acknowledgment in the crowded race for the award but difficult to elevate in it:MLB Network MLBNetworkWhere do you think ChristianYelich should rank as an NL MVP candidate? How about his Brewers teammate Lorenzo Cain? #MLBNow 8Ifoa03f9iHowever, former Colorado Rockies general manager Dan O'Dowd hit the proverbial nail on the head: That Cain is in the MVP discussion at all reflects how much baseball has changed in recent years.A few exceptions aside, the MVP has typically honored guys with the biggest sticks. But as WAR has become a bigger part of the conversation, appreciation has grown for players who can do it all.Hence Cain's impossible-to-ignore candidacy. He's one of the National League's most valuable baserunners and defenders. And despite his 10 dingers and 35 RBI, he qualifies as a well-above-average hitter by way of his 122 OPS+.Whether going over all of this is still necessary in the year 2018 is a good question. The battle for the future of baseball was won by the number-crunchers many years ago, and there are many W-based statistics with which their victory is honored. Every time somebody mentions WAR, wOBA, wRC+ or WPA Yonder Alonso Jersey , a sabermetrician gets his/her wings.Still, the special place that Cain has found himself in feels like a singular achievement.Consider Cain's contract. He's one of only 32 free-agent hitters who've signed a contract worth at least $80 million, and he got his despite being relatively old, inexperienced, unproductive and undecorated.Cain didn't become an everyday player with the Kansas City Royals鈥攚ho acquired him from the Brewers as part of the 2010 Zack Greinke trade鈥攗ntil his age-28 season in 2014. By the time he entered free agency, he was 31 and his record included just 756 career games, a 106 OPS+ and 57 homers.Among other $80 million free-agent hitters, those figures rank 29th, tied for 29th and 32nd. To boot, Cain had made only one All-Star team, and his defensive reputation wasn't underscored by any Gold Glove awards. To these extents, he entered the open market as less of a Torii Hunter and more of a Gary Matthews Jr.But Cain had racked up more WAR from 2014 to 2017 than every outfielder except Mike Trout, Mookie Betts, Kevin Kiermaier and Giancarlo Stanton. Despite his age, that enabled strong projections for his contract. For example, MLB Trade Rumors and FanGraphs predicted something in the four-year, $70 million range.That the Brewers were willing to beat those projections with their five-year, $80 million offer speaks to how optimistic they were about Cain."As we examined Lorenzo's career arc this offseason, we thought that he was still improving as a player," GM David Stearns told Ben Lindbergh of The Ringer. "It's odd to say that about someone on this side of 30, but we thought that was the case."The readings on Cain's athleticism must have helped Milwaukee reach that conclusion. His average sprint speed was holding steady. While metrics like defensive runs saved and ultimate zone rating cast some doubt on his defense http://www.indiansfanproshop.com/authent...rez-jersey , Statcast was over the moon with it. He had recorded 18 outs above average in 2017, more than even Betts could muster.As for Cain's bat, what it lacked in power, it made up for in gradual advancement. He had established himself as an above-average contact hitter, and his walk rate was on the way up.Even if the latter trend abated, the former promised to bring a welcome dynamic to a Brewers offense that undercut 224 home runs (tied for tops in the NL) with MLB's highest strikeout rate in 2017. Sure enough, Cain has kept hitting for contact and helped the Brewers lower their K% from 25.6 to 23.7.But the real revelation has been his increased patience. He's working on a career-best 11.9 BB%, and it's rooted in a dramatic plate-discipline improvement. According to the most advanced strike zone available at Baseball Savant, his out-of-zone swing rate has cratered:Some of this is circumstantial. After bouncing all around Kansas City's lineups, Cain now mostly bats out of the leadoff spot in Milwaukee. There's a greater emphasis on putting up quality at-bats.But it's no small feat that he's played his part as well as he has. Likewise, it's been no small boon to the Brewers.Their on-base percentage in the leadoff spot has increased from .320 to .357. Meanwhile, Cain's elite .471 OBP with runners in scoring position has helped them raise their collective OBP in those spots from .326 to .336. Thus, they're keeping the line moving a lot better than they did a year ago.The Brewers have also benefited from Cain's baserunning and defense. His aggression has helped raise their rate of extra bases taken on hits from 35 percent to 40 percent. They've also gone from the middle of the pack in defensive efficiency to fourth-best.Maybe Cain won't be named the NL MVP in November, but his 2018 season is about as complete a success story as he or the Brewers could have hoped for. He's a late bloomer who's still blooming, and they're all the better for it.In a bygone era, it might have been hard to notice as much. But in this era, there's no excuse not to. Stats courtesy of Baseball Reference, FanGraphs, Baseball Savant and Baseball Prospectus.
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03-07-2019, 07:33 PM,
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03-27-2019, 03:10 AM,
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