Projecting Yesterday’s Rule 5 Selections | FanGraphs Baseball
Goeddel’s had some trouble making contact in the past, but his combination of power and speed is intriguing. Hitters who both possess that skill set and have already succeeded in Double-A don’t grow on trees. He may not be quite ready for the show going by the numbers, but is close enough that he probably won’t embarrass himself. And at 23, there’s still room for him to improve.
Astros GM Jeff Luhnow defends drafting Mark Appel first overall after trade | For The Win
Basically, the history of the draft shows that at least 20% of the time, the guy picked first overall will do little to nothing to ever help his team win ballgames.
Projecting Mark Appel | FanGraphs Baseball
Pitchers are fickle creatures, and it’s not at all uncommon for breakouts to occur with little notice. As of this writing, though, we’re still waiting for Appel to break out. The Phillies are hoping this year’s the year it finally happens, and it very well might be. Maybe a change of scenery will help. But considering he turns 25 next summer, Appel’s running out of time.
Eagles' Zach Ertz happy for new Phillies pitcher Mark Appel | NJ.com
The two went to high school and college together.
Projecting the Arauzes in the Ken Giles Trade | FanGraphs Baseball
The Phillies signed Jonathan Arauz out of Panama with a $600,000 bonus in the summer of 2014. Although he didn’t turn 17 until August, the Phillies brought Arauz stateside to start his pro career, and he didn’t embarrass himself.
Phillies Philography: Larry Bowa
The TBOH series of Phillies mini biographies by editor Matt Veasey continues this off-season, beginning here with player/manager/coach Larry Bowa.
Phillies release 2016 player development staff | phillies.com
The Phillies announced their player development staff for 2016 on Tuesday. There are no significant changes, with every manager returning.
Around the League
Is he worth it? The downside of signing Jason Heyward | FOX Sports
The danger with Heyward is if his offense never improves from where it is now -- in the good to very good range -- and then all his skills degrade with age. That might sound farfetched, but it's exactly what happened to Crawford. Crawford is still a decent player, with some pop and some ability to cover the outfield corners, but he's now being paid lots of money to be the player he was five years ago -- not the player he is now.
Will Chicago Cubs' historic combo of young talent produce a dynasty? | FOX Sports
Based on the evidence here, expectations for the Cubs are probably right where it should be heading into the 2016 season: they just added one of the top 15 players in baseball to a strong, young core that already included two other players that ranked among baseball's best.
Celebrating the Year in Dave Stewart Comments | FanGraphs Baseball
Stewart has made a series of comments during his first year with Arizona that sound far outside what you would expect a GM to think and say. Let’s review!
Putting a Value on the Future of Yoenis Cespedes | FanGraphs Baseball
Cespedes has been an up-and-down player during his brief career, so it should not come as a surprise that he has considerable boom or bust potential as a free agent. If he can maintain his form for just a season or two more, he is likely to justify his contract. If his lack of walks persist and his power drops a bit, a team could regret this signing almost from the get-go.
Triumphant return for Cuban baseball defectors Puig, Abreu - Yahoo Sports
A lineup of Cuban-born baseball stars, including some of the most famous defectors in recent memory, made a triumphant return to the island as part of the first Major League Baseball trip here since 1999. Once the object of official disdain in Cuba for leaving the country illegally, Los Angeles Dodgers outfielder Yasiel Puig, St. Louis Cardinals catcher Brayan Pena and first baseman Jose Abreu of the Chicago White Sox were swarmed by fans and members of the state media Tuesday in the lobby of Havana's soaring Hotel Nacional at the start of a three-day mission meant to warm relations between MLB and Cuba.
Bryce Harper has the chance to become MLB’s first $500 million man | NBC SportsWorld
Baseball salaries are rising, but Washington Nationals star Bryce Harper has the chance to completely reset the market.
Mitch McConnell wants Washington Nationals to trade Jonathan Papelbon
Mitch McConnell wants the Nationals to trade Jonathan Papelbon, but GM Mike Rizzo will have a challenge making such a move because the closer has 17 teams on his no-trade list.
Hall of Fame
Mike Schmidt: Pete Rose will 'sit in rocking chair and realize he isn't bigger than baseball' | NJ.com
Hall of Fame third baseman hopes his former Phillies teammate now can move on with his life.
One Last Time: The Hall of Fame Case for Mark McGwire – The Hardball Times
by Corinne Landrey: "His production on the field as well as the way he helped breathe life back into the game that fateful summer are more than worthy of enshrinement. Context for the era belongs in the museum. Mark McGwire, one of the most significant players of all time, belongs in the plaque room."
The Hall of Fame’s Bullpen Problem – The Hardball Times
If you can only find room on your ballot for one reliever, make it Wagner. ... You can quibble with where those thresholds should be set, but by precedent alone, Wagner, Hoffman, and Smith would all be credits to their position’s standing in the Hall of Fame.
The Physics of the Most Perfect Game – The Hardball Times
So, the probability of throwing a perfect game is roughly the product of one minus the OBP for each batter each time he comes to the plate. The box scores from Baseball-Reference.com include the OBP for each batter at the beginning of the game.
A Visual History of Baseball America’s Top 100 Prospect Lists – The Hardball Times
Tries to correlate representation on the list with future success.
"Kelly Now Catching": King Kelly and Baseball’s Substitution Rules – The Hardball Times
Throughout his career, Kelly bent (or straight-up broke) the rules, by, for example, using his revolutionary "hook slide," or skipping bases on his way home when the umpire wasn’t looking. But then there’s this one oft-repeated Kelly tale, a fanciful display of cleverness and quick thinking that could exist only in the pre-modern era of baseball; one which, supposedly, changed the rules of the game forever. The story is fascinating, but what parts of it–if any–are true?