The Standards of Today Would Create a Very Different Hall of Fame - The Hardball Times
If you have been searching for the most sensical and complete explanation as to why Larry Walker is deserving of a spot in the Hall of Fame, this is it. In this article, Adam Darowski breaks down the Hall and reimagines it according to the Hall of Stats — a site and process that presents the top 215 players in the history of the game.
Darowski examines in great detail the Hall of Fame cases for Walker, along with Jeff Bagwell, Curt Schilling and others. Darowski uses the comparable career stats of Al Simmons to demonstrate Walker’s eligibility, but according to the formula used by Hall of Stats, Walker’s 61st overall far exceeds even Simmons’s 98th. For every claim of inflated offensive home numbers, there are road game percentages, base running and defensive statistics to solidify Walker’s case.
Hall of Fame candidate breakdown: Larry Walker - CBS Sports
Matt Snyder’s Larry Walker Hall of Fame rundown echoes many of the same sentiments found in Darowski’s. However, Snyder allows a bit more room for skepticism regarding the Coors Field bias and 90s era power hitters.
Opt-outs are so hot right now - Sports on Earth
The opt-out clause is quickly becoming a trend in the high profile free agent market, with four players landing opt-out equipped contracts in the last month, out of the nine that have done so in the past four years.
The benefit tips heavily in favor of the player, who, if successful can exercise the option in favor for a larger contract, or if unsuccessful, can play out the remainder of their contract at above market value.
As Jamal Collier points out, opt-outs allow for smaller market teams to make a run at available stars. A club can use an opt-out to increase the chances of landing a free agent, but are then left to hope the player performs well — but not better — in order to keep them.
For the Rockies, this trend is intriguing in terms of signing free agent pitchers. It adds incentive to come and pitch at the most stigmatized park in the game, with the option to run away screaming a few years down the line if one so chooses.
James Shields will be the next player to reach his opt-out opportunity at the end of the 2016 season. In February, Shields signed a four-year/$75M deal with San Diego. In what turned out to be an underwhelming year for both Shields and the Padres, the righty posted a 3.91 ERA and tied Kyle Kendrick in home runs allowed with 33. It will be interesting to see what Shields decides if this season is an improvement from last. Shields will make $21M for each of the next three seasons, and will be 34 tomorrow. The only player ever not to exercise their opt-out was Vernon Wells, who elected to stay with the Blue Jays after the 2007 season.
Cardinals' Rumors: Carlos Gonzalez would be a great get for the St. Louis Cardinals - Redbird Rants
Today in Carlos Gonzalez trade rumors, Dan Buffa of Redbird Rants considers the cost of bringing CarGo to theCardinals. Knowing the return will be substantial, and heavy with young arms, Buffa throws around Tim Cooney, Luke Weaver, Austin Gomber, and Kevin Siegrist as non-Alex Reyes options.
The problem with this line of thinking is that the acquisition of CarGo would require a sizable haul with the intention of shoring up an injury prone outfield with an elite player who is also quite well known for his time on the sidelines.
Yard Goats tweeted their way to an identity- MiLB.com
This is another great read on the Twitter prowess of the Rockies’ double-A affiliate Hartford Yard Goats. Make sure you’re following and enjoy it while you can, Benjamin Hill warns that @GoYardGoats will see a change in demeanor when the team’s inaugural season opens and it is back to baseball business as usual. The account’s humorous, individualized persona will not remain after the brand is attached to a team.
Listen to Vin Scully tell a Dodgers holiday tale - MLB.com
I’ll be honest: This is weird. It stars the voice and bobblehead of Adrian Gonzalez and everyone’s least favorite Dodger, Justin Turner. But it’s a seasonally appropriate tale as told by Vin Scully and who doesn’t love that guy.