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#BaseballJourneyman to Cooperstown Part II

I got to turn into #BaseballJourneyman to Cooperstown earlier this year. Over spring break I took off to the Hall of Fame so I could do some research. While there I had the chance to walk around the Hall of Fame and check it out. However, I did not get to spend as much as I would have liked in the Hall of Fame itself checking out the displays because I lost 2 days due to a snowstorm.

However, I saw some of the coolest things I’ve ever seen on my trips through the museum. And I thought I would share a few with you here. Forgive the not-so-great photos. I did not take  my good camera with me since it was more of a work trip, so all of my photos come with my phone. Besides if any of you have ever taken a nice camera into a museum it doesn’t always work out. There are usually too many reflective surfaces and not a lot of light. So without delay, here we go.

#BaseballJourneyman Cooperstown

One of the first things you see as you make  your way through the museum is a locker with things from each team. Being a die hard Atlanta Braves fan, thank you TBS, I couldn’t pass up a chance to snap a quick photo of their locker.

#BaseballJourneyman Cooperstown

It may be hard to read the plaque but it tells information about the team including year founded (1871), former locations, retired numbers, and world championships (4 times). Each team has this along with various items from the team which include Brian McCann’s bat, Tyler Flowers mask, and Billy Wagner’s shoes.

Keeping with the Braves theme, one of the coolest things I saw was a jersey made of baseball cards. It is a full-size replica of a Phil Niekro jersey made out of thousands of baseball cards cut and arranged just right. It comes from collage artist LaVern Brock, and I thought it was quite amazing.

Phil Niekro card jersey

Speaking of cards, I collected baseball cards when I was younger. I even had a small side business where I would sell cards at card shows. This was late 90s early 00s and it was a lot of fun. One card I would love to have come across, even just to see one, was the Honus Wagner T206.

Background of Wagner T206

The card was made by the American Tobacco Company as part of its T206 series between 1909 and 1911. However, Wagner did not want the production of the card to continue. I’ve read stories that said he did not like the fact it was a tobacco company making the card and others saying he simply wanted more money. For whatever reason, the card became very limited with just 50-200 being released. The exact number is unknown. While the card is not the rarest, it is among the most sought after. The most recent sale that I could find came in October 2016 when it sold for $3.12 million.

So as you can see there are extremely famous items in the museum and works of art. I will come back to art in a later post, but right now I want to talk about perhaps one of the strangest things I saw.

History in Cooperstown

I love history. In fact I am a high school history teacher, and I love my job. History encompasses so much, and I love historical places. And there are two places in Baltimore I’d love to visit that are no longer around. One is the St. Mary’s Industrial School for Boys, and the other is a saloon on Frederick Street. Both no longer exist and both deal with George Herman “Babe” Ruth.

Ruth attended the school and this is where he began to play organized baseball. The saloon was once owned by Ruth’s father. Both places hold history that I would love to learn more about. However, both are long gone. But the Hall of Fame somehow has a piece of each building which I found interesting.

The top brick was part of the saloon owned by Ruth’s father. The stone came from the school Ruth attended.

I don’t want to make this an extremely long post, so I am going to end it here. However, I have more in the works including some things about women in baseball, the sport in Latin America, and I want to talk about some of the plaques I saw.

Read up on our other posts on the Hall of Fame here.

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Travel to Cooperstown, NY: Hall of Fame

This past March I was fortunate to be able to travel to Cooperstown, NY and visit the Baseball Hall of Fame. The main reason I went was to do research for my master’s thesis at the Giamatti Research Center which is inside the Hall. And it turned out to be a crazy week.

Despite getting there on Monday, I was not able to get into town until Monday evening, so I missed one day of possible research. But at least I missed the snow, all 30+ inches of it.

Monday night the snow came and it just kept coming. I wound up being snowed in at my hotel for 2 straight days. I had rented a very small car and after the snow stopped it was completely covered.

I don’t know how much snow actually fell, but I heard reports from people at the hotel of upwards of 40+ inches. The Holiday Inn Express was where I stayed which was fortunately near a grocery store that was open. Twice I walked to the store since I could not get my car out until late Wednesday. I really liked the hotel and would recommend it to anyone traveling there. The only issue I had was the internet was not fast enough to stream MLB.tv which drove me nuts since the World Baseball Classic was going on and the hotel did not have MLB Network.

I spent the last two days of the week in the research library which was an amazing experience. The staff there was very helpful having pulled a lot of items I’d requested weeks before I arrived.

Food/Coffee in Cooperstown

It was a very quiet time to be in Cooperstown. Most stores weren’t even open, but the town has some fantastic spots. I really enjoyed Stagecoach Coffee which is in downtown Cooperstown. I loved the food here and the coffee was good too, and I am admittedly a bit of a coffee snob. But my favorite place, and I ate lunch here more than once, was the Doubleday Cafe. The food was fantastic, the beer was cold, and the staff was very nice.

Stagecoach Coffee

My breakfast sandwich at Stagecoach Coffee – it was amazing!

Since I was on a trip more to research than be a tourist, although I was both, I did not even bring my camera. So all my photos came from my phone unfortunately. With that in mind I want to close out this post with some photos of the Hall of Fame. I will be back to talk more about some of the things I saw inside the Hall, but for now I leave you with some photos of one of the coolest places I’ve ever been.

 

This is the first post in a series on the Baseball Hall of Fame and my trip there. Stay tuned and check back for more. You can stay up to date on all Hall of Fame posts here.

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2017 MLB Futures Game Rosters

Today the MLB Futures Game takes place as part of All-Star Weekend in Miami. Over the course of the event’s history the US team leads the series going 11-7, including a 6 game winning streak between 2010-2016. The World team is the defending champion winning last year in San Diego 11-3.

Yoan Moncada returns after winning the MVP award last year. He is currently having a nice season in AAA-Charlotte. He will be joined by a stout team from players all around the world. Players hail from Canada, Brazil, Honduras, Haiti, Bahamas, and other major baseball havens like Cuba, Dominican Republic, and Puerto Rico.

2017 MLB Futures Game Rosters

U.S. Team

Pitchers

NAME ORG LEVEL B T HT WT BIRTHDATE BIRTHPLACE
Beau Burrows DET AA R R 6-2 200 9/18/1996 Fort Worth, TX
Jon Duplantier ARI A+ L R 6-4 225 7/11/1994 Newark, DE
Jack Flaherty STL AAA R R 6-4 205 10/15/1995 Burbank, CA
Foster Griffin KC AA R L 6-3 200 7/27/1995 Orlando, FL
Jimmy Herget CIN AAA R R 6-3 170 9/9/1993 Tampa, FL
Brett Honeywell TB AAA R R 6-2 180 3/31/1995 Carnesville, GA
Michael Kopech CWS AA R R 6-3 205 4/30/1996 Mount Pleasant, TX
Triston McKenzie CLE A+ R R 6-5 165 8/2/1997 Brooklyn, NY
A.J. Puk OAK AA L L 6-7 220 4/25/1995 Cedar Rapids, IA
Tanner Scott BAL AA R L 6-2 220 7/22/1994 Mogadore, OH

Catchers

NAME ORG LEVEL B T HT WT BIRTHDATE BIRTHPLACE
Zack Collins CWS A L R 6-3 220 2/6/1995 Pembroke Pines, FL
Chance Sisco BAL AAA L R 6-2 195 2/24/1995 Corona, CA

Infielders

NAME ORG LEVEL B T HT WT BIRTHDATE BIRTHPLACE
Brian Anderson MIA AA R R 6-3 185 5/19/1993 Edmond, OK
Bo Bichette TOR A+ R R 6-0 200 3/5/1998 Orlando, FL
Nick Gordon MIN AA L R 6-0 160 10/24/1995 Avon Park, FL
Rhys Hoskins PHI AAA R R 6-4 225 3/17/1993 Sacramento, CA
Scott Kingery PHI AAA R R 5-10 180 4/29/1994 Phoenix, AZ
Ryan McMahon COL AAA L R 6-2 185 12/14/1994 Yorba Linda, CA
Brendan Rodgers COL AA R R 6-0 180 8/9/1996 Winter Park, FL
Nick Senzel CIN AA R R 6-1 205 6/29/1995 Atlanta, GA

Outfielders

NAME ORG LEVEL B T HT WT BIRTHDATE BIRTHPLACE
Lewis Brinson MIL AAA R R 6-3 195 5/8/1994 Fort Lauderdale, FL
Derek Fisher HOU AAA L R 6-3 205 8/21/1993 Lebanon, PA
Corey Ray MIL AA L L 5-11 185 9/22/1994 Chicago, IL
Bryan Reynolds SF A+ S R 6-3 205 1/27/1995 Baltimore, MD
Kyle Tucker HOU AAA L R 6-4 190 1/17/1997 Tampa, FL

World Team

Pitchers

NAME ORG LEVEL B T HT WT BIRTHDATE BIRTHPLACE
Domingo Acevedo NYY AA R R 6-7 240 3/6/1994 Villa Los Almacigos, D.R.
Yadier Alvarez LA A+ R R 6-3 175 3/7/1996 Matanzas, Cuba
Jaime Barria LAA AA R R 6-1 210 7/18/1996 Panama City, Panama
Luis Escobar PIT A R R 6-1 155 5/30/1996 Cartagena, Colombia
Tayron Guerrero MIA AA R R 6-8 210 1/9/1991 Bocachica, Colombia
Jonathan Hernandez TEX A+ R R 6-2 175 7/6/1996 Santiago, D.R.
Jairo Labourt DET AA L L 6-4 205 3/7/1994 Azua, D.R.
Cal Quantrill SD A+ L R 6-2 165 2/10/1995 Port Hope, ON, Canada
Mike Soroka ATL A+ R R 6-5 225 8/4/1997 Calgary, AB, Canada
Thyago Vieira SEA AA R R 6-2 210 7/1/1993 Sao Paulo, Brazil

Catchers

NAME ORG LEVEL B T HT WT BIRTHDATE BIRTHPLACE
Francisco Mejia CLE AA S R 5-10 180 10/27/1995 Bani, D.R.
Tomas Nido NYM AA R R 6-0 205 4/12/1994 Oviedo, FL (Puerto Rico)

Infielders

NAME ORG LEVEL B T HT WT BIRTHDATE BIRTHPLACE
Yordan Alvarez HOU A+ L L 6-5 225 6/27/1997 Las Tunas, Cuba
Rafael Devers BOS AA L R 6-0 195 10/24/1996 Sanchez, D.R.
Mauricio Dubon MIL AA R R 6-0 160 7/19/1994 San Pedro Sula, Honduras
Lucius Fox TB A S R 6-1 175 7/2/1997 Nassau, Bahamas
Vladimir Guerrero Jr. TOR A R R 6-1 200 3/16/1999 Montreal, QC, Canada
Yoan Moncada CWS AAA S R 6-2 205 5/27/1995 Abreus, Cuba
Josh Naylor SD A L L 6-0 225 6/22/1997 Mississauga, ON, Canada
Amed Rosario NYM AAA R R 6-2 190 11/20/1995 Santo Domingo Centro, D.R.

Outfielders

NAME ORG LEVEL B T HT WT BIRTHDATE BIRTHPLACE
Ronald Acuna ATL AA R R 6-0 180 12/18/1997 La Guaira, Venezuela
Estevan Florial NYY A L R 6-1 185 11/25/1997 Port Au Prince, Haiti
Eloy Jimenez CHC A R R 6-4 205 11/27/1996 Santo Domingo Centro, D.R.
Victor Robles WAS AA R R 6-0 185 5/19/1997 Santo Domingo Este, D.R.
Alex Verdugo LA AAA L L 6-0 205 5/15/1996 Tucson, AZ (Mexico)

 

For more BaseballdeWorld posts on the All-Star Game, click here.

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All-Star Weekend – Home Run Derby Prediction

All-Star weekend begins today in the MLB with the Future’s Game kicking off the festivities. But today we are here to talk about the Home Run Derby that will take place tomorrow.

First of all, I love the changes they have made with the bracket format. I will miss seeing the likes of Josh Hamilton hitting 28 in a single round, but as Giancarlo Stanton showed us last year it can still be done. However, the changes do not seem as conducive to that happening much anymore.

There is just something about seeing guys hit 500+ foot bombs, and if you have never swung a bat you may not know just how hard something like that is. But what the new format does is allow talk about match ups and possible showdowns between sluggers.

Perhaps the biggest match up would be a finals match between defending champion Stanton vs. new superstar Aaron Judge. This could be a possible match in the finals, but I’m calling for a third member of the event to pull out the win.

I’m going to make the call for the no. 3 seed (players are seeded by current home run totals, except Stanton who is the no. 1 seed based on his championship last year) Cody Bellinger. There are a few reasons why I’m calling for the Dodgers rookie to pull out the upset. Firs of all, he has a swing to produce home runs which he has proven this year hitting 25 through his fist 69 games this year. Secondly, he isn’t one of the top two seeds. The top two seeds are the two guys that most are calling to win it all. Not to mention most people want to see the Stanton/Judge match in the finals. But most times things just don’t work out the way people want them.

No matter what happens, it is going to be a fun showcase on Monday night.

For more BaseballdeWorld posts on the All-Star Game, click here.

All-Star weekend

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Wild Finish with Cuba Coaching Staff Ejected

Cuba Coaching Staff EjectedA Cuban national team and the Can-Am League Rockland Boulders were mixed up in quite a finish the other night. The Cuban team is on a tour with several Can-Am League teams which they have done since 2016. Last year Cuba went 11-9 on its tour. But this year the most memorable thing will be the game with Rockland a few nights ago when its entire coaching staff got tossed.

It all started in the top of the 9th inning with Cuba trailing 6-5. There was 1 out and a runner on first. Victor Mesa hit a grounder to Rockland shortstop Mike Fransoso who flipped the ball to second baseman Dylan Tice. Yoeklis Cespedes running from first appeared to have beaten the throw, but he did not slide and bumped into Tice as he was trying to field and throw. Cespedes was called safe and Rockland manager Jamie Keefe quickly came out to argue interference.

All Hell Breaks Loose

After a brief meeting between the umpires, Cespedes was called out for interference. That’s when the chaos began. Cuba manager Roger Machado argued the call as well as coach Victor Mesa Sr. And before you know it there was dirt kicking, chest bumping, and the entire Cuba coaching staff being ejected from the game. Eventually you can see the umpires being chased into right field by the Cuban staff, and the umpires had to seek refuge leaving the field through the stands.

The game would end after 8.2 innings with a 6-5 Rockland win. Cuba began its tour in early June finishing it off with a series against Rockland which the Boulders won 2-games-to-1. It remains to be seen if the series will continue next season after the incident. Cuba was joined on tour by an independent minor league team from South Korea, the Yeoncheon Miracle.

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Sugar Land Skeeters Constellation Field #BaseballJourneyman

I had the chance to check out Constellation Field in Sugar Land, Texas last night to see the Sugar Land Skeeters play the Long Island Ducks. Both teams are members of the top independent league, the Atlantic League.

The Atlantic League has been around since 1998 and employs the top talent on the independent circuit. With eight teams spread out around the country, Sugar Land is the one team not in the east, and the only one nowhere near the rest of the league. However, they are the defending league champions defeating none other than Long Island in last years championship series. It was their first title in the league since joining in 2012. Long Island has won 3 league titles.

Sugar Land is a suburb of Houston, so there is potential for huge crowds. But on the night I was able to get down for a game only 3,498 showed up. The stadium holds 7,500 and it felt pretty empty, but it is a really nice stadium. So here is my short review of the stadium and my seats. Forgive the not so great photos. I did not take my camera in and just used my phone.

Sugar Land Skeeters Constellation Field

I chose to sit in the club level which is called the Insperity Club. The tickets, which I purchased for $55, included an all-you-can eat buffet for the first 2 hours after the gates open.

What’s on the buffet?

From what I understand the menu changes from game to game, but on this night it included some decent food. The buffet included baked ham, pulled pork quesadillas, hot dogs, sausages, nachos, a salad bar, and some sort of pasta. I wasn’t interested in eating pasta so I did not get a close look. There was also a station with popcorn and peanuts plus two soda machines.

I tried a few of the different items on the menu. The pork quesadillas were very good. They had sour cream and guacamole too if you like that sort of thing. I opted for just a little bit of barbecue sauce which was really good. I also tried the hot dogs which were big a very good. However, I do have one recommendation. Do not get the hot dogs when you first arrive. I got one right away and it did not have time to fully cook and was cold. Later on I went back and got one during the game, and it was great.

An hour after the game starts, or two hours after the gates open, the buffet shuts down. But that does not mean it just ends. Around the top of the 5th inning they pull out the ice cream cart, Blue Bell. There were about 4 different flavors to choose from. To top it off you could choose a number of topics, but I just went with good old cookies and cream. It was a nice touch. They also had baked cookies and what looked like peach cobbler, but I opted for just the ice cream.

The Insperity Club is very nice too. It is air conditioned so if it is too hot outside, or too humid given where the stadium is, you can watch the game inside. There are some comfortable seats, including a few couches as well. Tables are abundant and several of them line the windows where you could sit and watch the game. Here is the view before the game where I had dinner.

 

Insperity Club Sugar Land Skeeters

There were two televisions in the club. One was showing the Astros game and the other the Skeeters game. There was also a pool table and a shuffle board table.

There is also a bar. The bar seemed fully stocked and had a good selection of draft beer. I did not look too closely at all it had to offer, but I did grab a beer at the start of the game. There were about 6 or so draft options including a few from Karbach Brewery in nearby Houston. This was a nice touch and I was glad to see they had some craft beer options and not just your normal Bud Light. The cost wasn’t too bad but still a bit high. A Karbach draft was $7.50.

The seats in the Insperity Club were nice. They were wider than normal, cushioned, and had a nice rail in front for drinks and food. The club sits above the press box right behind home plate and has the best views in the house. Is it worth the money? It might be. It would definitely be worth it if the weather was horrendously hot and humid. I was lucky that the night I was there it was very nice out.

Overall the stadium is very nice. There is a pool in left field, a playground with rides in center field, and a Pavilion in right. You can also bring a blanket and sit out on the berm in right field. There is a lot to offer families at the park, and there is so much for kids to do.

I enjoyed my trip to Constellation Field in Sugar Land. The level of play was good and included several former Major Leaguers including Lew Ford, Rafael Perez, David Aardsma, and Scott Maine. Not to mention that the manager for the Skeeters was Gary Gaetti. The stadium made the game though. It has a lot to offer and a regular seat is a great value. I’d highly recommend the trip if you are in the area.

You can get tickets by visiting SugarLandSkeeters.com or check out the team on Twitter @SL_Skeeters.

Sugar Land Skeeters Constellation Field

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Stadium Travels with #BaseballJourneyman

One thing I want to begin here is reviewing ballparks that I have been to. This summer I will be going over some of the old ones that I have visited, both overseas and here at home in the United States. These will include MLB, minor league, and other stadiums that I have or will visit. Some are no longer in use so it will be a look back. Eventually I hope to make it to all MLB stadiums, and ideally most if not all of the minor league stadiums.

With this I intend to include the history of the ballparks and any little tidbits I find along with any photos that I take. Sometimes I take my camera into the park and really get some good shots, and sometimes it is just with my phone. But either way I like to walk around the park and take it all it has to offer.

I will start with the new stadiums I have/will see this summer. Those include stadiums in Washington D.C., Charlotte, Houston, and Sugar Land. I hope to add a few more new stadiums later in the summer but time will tell.

Sugar Land Skeeters – Atlantic League

Tonight I will be Tweeting from the Sugar Land Skeeters game and sharing some of the things that I see inside their Insperity Club on the 2nd level. I’m excited to see what the club has to offer, along with the rest of the stadium. I’m excited to see my first Atlantic League game. It is not my first independent league game, but with this being the highest level in independent ball I am excited to see how it plays out.

So with that I will bid you farewell for today. Over the next few days you will see some posts about stadiums. I hope you enjoy them.

Follow along with me on Twitter and share your thoughts on stadiums under hashtag #baseballjourneyman.

#baseballjourneyman

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International Players – MLB Top 100 Prospects List, Nos 1-10

We have reached the final part of our 10 part segments on breaking down the international players on the MLB Top 100 Prospects list. We have seen a lot of talent so far, but these guys are at the top of the heap and will be interesting to watch for years to come. So without further ado.

No. 10 Ozzie Albies, 2B/Atlanta Braves – Albies is one prospect that many Braves fans are both high on and will defend at every move. The speedy infielder who could play short or second will most likely end up paired with another Top 10 prospect in Dansby Swanson up the middle for Atlanta. He just turned 20 where he will most likely spend the season at AAA Gwinnett where he struggled a bit last year. He tore up AA at only 19. While the Braves traded for Brandon Phillips to hold down second base, the veteran is really holding down the spot until Albies is ready for the big leagues, so there is no need to rush him this season. Albies ranked no. 12 in 2016.

No. 7 Victor Robles, OF/Washington Nationals – Signed out of the Dominican Republic in 2013, Robles spent the 2016 season split between the South Atlantic League and the Carolina League. He possesses great speed and even stole 37 bases last season but is still learning the art of the stolen base after getting caught 14 times. He might be a few years away from the big leagues, but he could be a franchise type player. However, he won’t turn 20 until May, so he has to be given time to learn. Robles ranked no. 10 in 2016.

No. 5 Amed Rosario, SS/New York Mets – The Top 10 of the list is full of shortstops with Dominican Rosario being one of the brightest. He will play this season at just 21, and he is the future of the Mets at short, but there is no need to rush him to the big leagues. However, if he continues to impress he may force their hands. He spent half of last season at AA Binghamton impressing big time. He hit .341 with a .392 OBP in 54 games. While he might not turn out to be a 30+ home run hitter at the big league level, he plays above average defense and hits with contact and extra-base power. Rosario ranked no. 11 in 2016.

No. 3 Gleyber Torres, SS/New York Yankees – Torres is the top rated shortstop prospect in the game, and he will play the 2017 season at just 20-years old. Signed out of Venezuela in 2013, Torres was the biggest prize for the Yankees in the Aroldis Chapman deal. He is advanced at the plate and could turn into a 20+ homer type shortstop. There is no need to rush him to the big leagues with Didi Gregorius holding down the spot in New York. Torres looks to be the centerpiece of the Yankees for years to come though when he is ready. Torres ranked no. 17 in 2016.

No. 2 Yoan Moncada, 2B/Chicago White Sox – Last season’s no. 1, Moncada is just 21-years old. The switch-hitting infielder out of Cuba has lived up to his big price tag to sign, $63 million by Boston. The big piece for the White Sox in the Chris Sale deal, Moncada could pair quite well with fellow youngster Tim Anderson up the middle in Chicago. He has the tools to be an impact player at the big league level with speed, power, and the ability to hit for average. He may not start off in Chicago to begin the season, but look for him to be there at some point this summer.

If you missed the first segments you can check them out here:

International Players – No. 11-20
International Players – No. 21-30
International Players – No. 31-40
International Players – No. 41-50
International Players – No. 51-60
International Players – No. 61-70
International Players – No. 71-80
International Players – No. 81-90
International Players – No. 91-100

International Players - MLB Top 100 Prospects List

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MLB Top 100 Prospects List International Players – Nos. 11-20

Today we have the penultimate step on our list of international players in the MLB Top 100 Prospects list. So here we go with nos. 11-20.

If you missed the first segments you can check them out here:

International Players – No. 21-30
International Players – No. 31-40
International Players – No. 41-50
International Players – No. 51-60
International Players – No. 61-70
International Players – No. 71-80
International Players – No. 81-90
International Players – No. 91-100

No. 20 Francis Martes, RHP/Houston Astros – Martes, out of the Dominican Republic, is a hard throwing righty who had a solid year in 2016 at Double-A Corpus Christi. he threw 125.1 innings allowing just 104 hits and striking out 9.4 per 9. He has a plus fastball that sits between 93-96, touching 98 at times. It is his secondary pitches that still need polishing, and he will need to work on his command. While he struck out more than one hitter per inning, he also walked 3.4 per 9 which is way too high to be an effective front line starter at the big league level.

No. 17 Rafael Devers, 3B/Boston Red Sox – Devers, out of the Dominican Republic, is just a 20-year old with power to all fields. Last season he played for Salem in High-A ball where he showed some power (32 doubles and 11 home runs) but more than anything he bounced back after a slow start to finish strong. Whether or not he stays at third will remain to be seen as he continues to grow as a player with a possible shift across the diamond to first.

No. 13 Eloy Jimenez, OF/Chicago Cubs – Jimenez, who hails from the Dominican Republic, will be just 20 this season. Last year he spent the entire season in Single-A ball with South Bend in the Midwest League. There he hit .329 with 14 home runs winning the leagues MVP award. He has plus power, even drawing comparisons to Giancarlo Stanton by some. He spent most of his time in left last season, but has the arm for right as he continues to improve his defense.

MLB Top 100 Prospects List International Players

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MLB Top 100 Prospects List International Players – Nos. 21-30

We move another step closer to the Top 10 in the MLB Top 100 Prospects List international players. Today we look at nos. 21-30

If you missed the first segments you can check them out here:

International Players – No. 31-40
International Players – No. 41-50
International Players – No. 51-60
International Players – No. 61-70
International Players – No. 71-80
International Players – No. 81-90
International Players – No. 91-100

No. 25 Anderson Espinoza, RHP/San Diego Padres – Espinoza signed for just under $2 million. This was a new record for a prospect out of Venezuela. He impressed last season, which was his first full season in A-ball. He split time between two leagues after being apart of the trade that sent Drew Pomeranz to Boston, where Espinoza was drafted. A power right arm that sits between 94-97, Espinoza has to improve on his secondary pitches though he will pitch this upcoming season at just 19-years old.

No. 23 Manuel Margot, OF/San Diego Padres – Margot is another former Red Sox farmhand to be traded to San Diego. This time it was for Craig Kimbrel. Margot is out of the Dominican Republic and was named a Pacific Coast League All-Star in 2016 before making his MLB debut in San Diego in September. He has shown great speed. Last year he stole 30 bases and hit 12 triples in AAA. With that speed he will be able to patrol centerfield in San Diego with the possibility of that coming as soon as 2017.

No. 21 Willy Adames, SS/Tampa Bay Rays – Adames worked his way to Double-A ball at just the age of 20. The Dominican prospect was named a Southern League All-Star in 2016 and played in the annual All-Star Futures Game for the World Team.  Last season in Montgomery Adames showed a little pop with 11 home runs, 31 doubles, and 6 triples. Many feel he has the makeup for a middle of the order shortstop at an All-Star-caliber. He looks to contribute to the big league club in 2018.

MLB Top 100 Prospects List international players

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MLB Top 100 Prospects List International Players – Nos. 31-40

Today we move closer to the top 10 of the MLB Top 100 Prospects List international players. Last time we took a look at nos. 41-50, and today go through 31-40.

If you missed the first six segments you can check them out here:

International Players – No. 41-50
International Players – No. 51-60
International Players – No. 61-70
International Players – No. 71-80
International Players – No. 81-90
International Players – No. 91-100

No. 40 Francisco Mejia, C/Cleveland Indians – The 21-year old out of the Dominican Republic has a bright future ahead of him. Last season he split time between the Single-A Midwest League and the High-A Carolina League. He hit well in both leagues. He had a 50-game hitting streak that stretched over two leagues. The switch-hitting catcher has a strong arm from behind the plate. While he might need another year of seasoning in the minors, he could compete for a spot in the big leagues as early as 2018. He ranked no. 85 on the 2016 list.

No. 34 Vladimir Guerrero Jr., 3B/Toronto Blue Jays – Born in Canada to future hall of famer Vladimir Guerrero, Jr. is only 17-years old and already ranks at the no. 3 third base prospect in the game. Guerrero posses speed (stole 15 bases in 62 games in 2016), power (hit 8 home runs and 12 doubles), and shows plate discipline having almost as many walks (33) as strikeouts (35). He spent all of the 2016 season with Bluefield in the Appalachian League. It will remain to be seen if he can stay at third base or possibly move to first or the outfield.

No. 33 Jose De Leon, RHP/Tampa Bay Rays – The 24th Round pick in 2013 struggled a bit in his pro debut, but the Puerto Rico native found his strike in 2014 in the Rookie-level Pioneer League. He tore up AAA last season before getting the call from the Los Angeles Dodgers making his MLB debut. In AAA he struck out 11.6 per 9. That did not translate over to his MLB debut, but the righty has a plus fastball that can top out at 96. He projects to be a mid-rotation starter which is why the Rays traded for him in January where he might get a shot at the rotation this spring. He will also be part of the designated pitcher pool for Puerto Rico in the upcoming World Baseball Classic.

No. 32 Kevin Maitan, SS/Atlanta Braves – The 17-year old from Venezuela has not played a game yet in the Braves farm system, but he is already being heralded as the next big thing bout of Venezuela. With a plus arm, the switch-hitter is already being compared to Miguel Sano. He has pop from both sides of the plate and excellent range. Some think he might move off shortstop eventually with a move to third base. If that does happen, he should make the transition easily when it comes to defense.

MLB Top 100 Prospects List international players

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2017 National High School Invitational Teams Announced

The teams for the 2017 National High School Invitational have been announced. The annual tournament will be in its 6th season this year when the teams converge on Carey, North Carolina and the USA Baseball National Training Complex. The tournament will take place from March 29-April 1.

Back again from last year will be the 2016 NHSI champion Huntington Beach High School (Huntington Beach, CA). Several other schools are back for a second time, but none other has won a title.

Florida and California are the most represented states with the two combining for half the field. Illinois has its first ever contestant in the tournament with the invitation of Brother Rice High School out of Chicago.

The schedule for the 2017 edition of the tournament will be released February 21 as part of a pre-event video series that can be found at USABaseball.com.

2017 National High School Invitational Participants:
American Heritage High School (Plantation, Fla.)
Archbishop McCarthy High School (Southwest Ranches, Fla.)
Arlington High School (Arlington, Tenn.)
Brother Rice High School (Chicago, Ill.)
Canterbury School (Fort Meyers, Fla.)
Cullman High School (Cullman, Ala.)
Dana Hills High School (Dana Point, Calif.)
Hamilton High School (Chandler, Ariz.)
Hough High School (Cornelius, N.C.)
Huntington Beach High School (Huntington Beach, Calif.)
Malvern Preparatory School (Malvern, Pa.)
Merritt Island High School (Merritt Island, Fla.)
Orange Lutheran High School (Orange, Calif.)
Rocky Mountain High School (Fort Collins, Colo.)
South Hills High School (West Covina, Calif.)
Winder-Barrow High School (Winder, Ga.)

2017 National High School Invitational

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International Players on the MLB Top 100 Prospects List – No. 41-50

We are halfway through our list of the international players on the MLB Top 100 Prospects List. Today we start the final 50 by taking a look at nos. 41-50.

If you missed the first five  segments you can check them out here:

International Players – No. 51-60
International Players – No. 61-70
International Players – No. 71-80
International Players – No. 81-90
International Players – No. 91-100

No. 50 Yadier Alvarez, RHP/Los Angeles Dodgers – Alvarez, who hails from Cuba, signed for a $16 million bonus in 2015. The hard throwing righty peaks in triple digits with his fastball while sitting between 94-97. Last season, his first in the US, he struck out 12.3 per 9 innings. He pitched well in his call up to A-ball in the Midwest League. He is still only 20 but is working on commanding his great fastball. While he may still be a few years away from the Dodgers rotation, he is one to really keep an eye on because he may be electric when he arrives.

No. 47 Jorge Mateo, SS, 2B/New York Yankees – Mateo comes out of the Dominican Republic and will be just 21 for half of this season. Last season he played 113 games in the Florida State League (A+) and showed some of his tools. He stole 36 bases, a year after swiping 82. He has the speed, although he might still need to learn the art of stealing. With his raw power, which might project out to about 15 home runs a year, he has enough tools to make him an exciting player to watch. With the arrival of Gleyber Torres from the Aroldis Chapman trade, Mateo might be forced into a second base only role.

No. 46 Reynaldo Lopez, RHP/Chicago Whitesox – Lopez comes out of the Dominican Republic and since 2014 has really proven himself in the Washington Nationals system before moving to Chicago in the Adam Eaton deal this winter. Lopez made his MLB debut his past season getting into 11 games at the big league level, including 6 starts. The hard thrower posted a 4.91 ERA over 44.0 innings and struck out 8.6 per 9. He has a power fastball, a solid curve, and a workable change but at times can struggle with control.

MLB Top 100 Prospects List

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International Players on the MLB Top 100 Prospects List – No. 51-60

Today we continue our look at the international players on the MLB Top 100 Prospects List for 2017. We have gone through segments look at nos. 61-100 and today we look at 51-60.

If you missed the first four segments you can check them out here:

International Players – No. 61-70
International Players – No. 71-80
International Players – No. 81-90
International Players – No. 91-100

No. 56 Yohander Mendez, LHP/Texas Rangers – Mendez hails from Venezuela where he was signed as a free agent in 2011. The 22-year old is one of the Rangers top prospects and even made his Major League debut last September pitching in 2 games out of the bullpen. Last season was a year of moves for Mendez. He started out in High-A ball and moved his way through AA, AAA, and then to the big league club. While he might not have the breaking stuff of some, his change up is quite good. Add that to his sinking low to mid-90s fastball and he could be a solid starter for years to come. Maybe not ace material, but could be a solid no. 3 starter for a long time. It remains to be seen where he will start the 2017 season, but he should contribute to the big league club very soon. This is his second straight year at no. 56 on the list.

No. 55 Leody Taveras, OF/Texas Rangers – Taveras is just 18 having played his first season at 17 last year. A legitimate 5-tool center fielder, he showed his speed last season in the Arizona League (Rookie) stealing 11 bases in just 33 games. He played at 3 different levels last year but struggled a bit at Spokane. He still has some things to learn and he is still filling out since he is still so young, but he could be a force to reckon with in the coming years if he lives up to his potential. He will definitely be one to watch as the years progress. On a side note, he is the cousin of former big league Willy Taveras.

No. 54 David Paulino, RHP/Houston Astros – The Astros took Paulino in a trade even though he was going to miss the entire next season with Tommy John surgery. It might turn out to be a great move. Paulino comes out of the Dominican Republic and at 6’7″ he has the power (tops out at 98) to go with a power curveball. He spent most of his 2016 season at AA Corpus Christi, but threw a few starts at AA Fresno before getting the call to the big leagues. He has started and finished games in the same season, but has never pitched 100 innings in a season. Last year was his high at 97 innings pitched, so health is a concern moving forward. Last season Paulino checked in at no. 70 on the list.

No. 52 Franklin Barreto, SS,2B/Oakland Athletics – Barreto was one of the key pieces in the deal that sent Josh Donaldson from Oakland to Toronto. The 20-year old middle infielder out of Venezuela has impressed at every level. He spent most of 2016 at AA Midland for Oakland where he played 119 games hitting .281 with 25 doubles, 10 home runs, and 30 stolen bases. The tools are there, but Barreto would benefit from more time in the minors to hone in on some skills like basestealing. He was thrown out 15 times last year at AA. He had a brief, but impressive, stint at AAA Nashville last year. And with him being blocked at the big league level by both Marcus Semien and Chand Pinder, look for him to gain some more experience at AAA next year. In 2016, Barreto was no. 43 on the list.

MLB Top 100 Prospects

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International Players on the MLB Top 100 Prospects List – No. 61-70

Continuing our look at the international players on the MLB Top 100 Prospects List, today we will look at nos. 61-70 as we get closer to the top 10 on the list.

f you missed the first three segments you can check them out here:

International Players – No. 71-80
International Players – No. 81-90
International Players – No. 91-100

No. 65 Isan Diaz, SS,2B/Milwaukee Brewers – Diaz, who hails from Puerto Rico, is a middle infielder who played in the Midwest League in 2016 (A-ball). He was the MVP of the Pioneer League in 2015 as a 19-year old after being lured away from Vanderbilt. He was drafted by Arizona in the 2nd Round of the MLB Draft in 2014 then traded to Milwaukee in the deal that sent Juan Segura to Arizona. Diaz possesses raw power showing that off last year by hitting 20 home runs. Many scouts profile him as a second baseman at the big league level where he could be a power hitting middle infielder. However, he is a few years away from having any impact for the big league club. He clocked in at no. 97 on the list in 2016.

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International Players on the MLB Top 100 Prospects List – No. 71-80

Lately we have taken a look at the international players on the MLB Top 100 Prospects List that recently came out. We have taken a look at nos. 81-100 and today we will look at 71-80.

If you missed the first two segments you can check them out here:

International Players – No. 81-90
International Players – No. 91-100

No. 73 German Marquez, RHP/Colorado Rockies – Marquez, originally from Venezuela, will turn 22 later this month before heading into season number 5 for the hard throwing righty. He was apart of a trade that brought prospect Jake McGee to the Rockies. He was a bit overlooked but quickly made a name for himself. He won the Eastern League (AA) pitcher of the year award last season after posting a 2.85 ERA over 21 starts. After a short stint in AAA, Marquez made his MLB debut last year pitching in 6 games with 3 starts. While he may not continue his 12.2 K/9 that he had over 20.2 innings in Colorado, he has a shot to be an impact starter for the big league club for years to come.

No. 72 Jorge Alfaro, C/Philadelphia Phillies – Alfaro was once a highly thought of prospect in the Texas Rangers farm system out of Colombia. Now after a trade that brought Cole Hamels to Texas in 2015, Alfaro went east to join Philly’s farm system. Last year marked Alfaro’s rise to the big leagues after a great season in AA. In Reading Alfaro showed off his power (21 doubles and 15 home runs) and showed he can be more consistent at the plate as he hit .285. While his strikeouts are still a bit high, he is still only 23. He has the defense to play at the big league level to the point that the talk of moving him out from behind the plate has slowed down. He has a high upside and might just earn a few more at bats sometime this season with the big league club. Alfaro ranked no. 59 on the 2016 Top 100 List.

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International Players on the MLB Top 100 Prospects List – No. 81-90

Yesterday we took a look at the international players from 91-100 which contained four players from across the globe. Today we will take a look at the only international player from 81-90.

International Players – 91-100

No. 90 Raimel Tapia, OF/Colorado Rockies – Tapia signed out of the Dominican Republic in 2010. The lefty will be 23 for this season when he will look to continue his strong hitting. He won the Pioneer League (Rookie-level) MVP in 2013. This past season he played at AAA Albuquerque where he hit .346 over 110 at bats. He spent most of the year tearing up the Eastern League where he posted a .323/.363/.450 line with 20 doubles, 5 triples, and 8 home runs. He has speed but hasn’t quite learned the art of the stolen base being only successful in 17/31 attempts last season in AA. He did make his MLB debut last September where he played in 22 games hitting .263 over 41 at bats.

Last season Tapia landed on the top 100 list at no. 71.

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Penalties Handed Down by MLB for Illegal Hacking of Astros’ Database

The Houston Astros have been awarded two draft picks and $2 million in compensation after former employee Christopher Correa hacked into the Astros’ baseball operations database while working for the St. Louis Cardinals. But I wondered, is this enough of a punishment to deter something like this from happening again.

First of all, let’s take a look at what punishment was handed out today. The Astros are to be paid $2 million dollars by the Cardinals. While this is not peanuts it is a drop in the bucket for a team such as St. Louis. However, it appears that is the maximum the commissioner is allowed to penalize a club. In addition, the Astros will recieve pick numbers 56 and 75 in the 2017 MLB Draft from the Cardinals.

So what exactly can you get at the nos. 56 or 75 pick. Here are a few players drafted in those spots over the years.

No. 56

1997 Scott Linebrink

1999 Rob Bowen (Brandon Phillips at no. 57)

2001 J.J. Hardy

No. 75

1993 Matt Perisho

1994 Brian Rose

1996 A.J. Hinch

1997 Jason Grabowski (Chase Utley at no. 58)

2000 Grady Sizemore

2004 Wade Davis

2005 Yunel Escobar

*I only looked at the drafts from 1990-2016.

The way it was worded when it was released was it was the first two picks of the Cardinals, which just happened to be the nos. 56 and 75. So if they would have had a 1st round pick, would they have given that to the Astros?

There is definitely talent at these positions, and it is all based on scouting and let’s face it a little luck. But another way to look at is why the picks were not just forfeited but actually given to the Astros. If I work for one of the 28 other clubs, I am not too happy here with the decision from MLB.

Correa wsa sentenced last summer to 46 months in federal and ordered to pay almost $280,000 in restitution.

So what do you think? Was this harsh enough? Was it too harsh? Hit us up here by leaving a comment or shoot us a message on Twitter – we are @BaseballdeWorld.

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International Players on the MLB Top 100 Prospects List – No. 91-100

One of my favorite days of the year is when MLB releases its Top 100 Prospects list. I love to see which teams have the most on the list (Braves/Yankees with 7 each), and I love to see who is moving and of course the top 10.

However, one exercise that I love to do is look at the foreign players on the list. After all, most of what we cover here are foreign leagues. So I will leave the debate up to  you as to whether or not Andrew Benintendi should be no. 1 or not, and I will take a look at the foreign players on the list starting with 91-100. Each day over the next week or so we will look at another set of players from the MLB Top 100 Prospects list. In total there are 27 that come from international markets.

MLB Prospects 91-100:

No. 97 Cal Quantrill, RHP/San Diego Padres – Quantrill, out of Port Hope, Ontario, Canada) might be a name you already know. His father, Paul Quantrill, pitched in the big leagues for 14 seasons. But despite Paul’s solid career, Cal’s might overshadow dad’s one day. Cal was drafted this summer 8th overall out of Stanford University despite not pitching in 2016 due to Tommy John surgery. He showed why the Padres drafted him so high late in the summer when he returned to the mound finishing the year in A-ball after a few starts in Rookie League and Low-A. While he might not project to be a no. 1 starter, he has the chance to have a long solid career with his solid three-pitch-mix. I got to see him in 2012 at the 18U World Baseball Championship in Seoul, and while he did not have the best tournament (1-1, 5.63) he did enough to impress upon me that he has a long future ahead of him.

No. 96 Jeimer Candelario, 3B,1B/Chicago Cubs – Candelario was born in New York but was raised in the Dominican Republic where his father ran a baseball training center. Signed in 2010, Candelario made his MLB debut this past July. However, he remains hopelessly blocked by 2016 NL MVP Kris Bryant. A switch-hitter with some pop, and the ability to walk, he has the bat to make it in the big leagues but where will he play. He has had some time at first base as well, but is blocked there as well by Anthony Rizzo. He could possibly be moved to a corner outfield spot, or he might be trade bait later in the year should the Cubs need a piece to make a run at a second title. Jeimer moves up from no. 100 on the list in 2016.

No. 94 Richard Urena, SS/Toronto Blue Jays – Urena comes out of San Francisco de Macoris, Dominican Republic. He will turn 21 in just under a month. Signed in 2012, Urena reached AA at the age of 20. After fellow Blue Jays short stop prospect Franklin Barreto was traded away in the Josh Donaldson deal, Urena appears to be the heir to the shortstop thrown north of the border. Lack of focus at times causes Urena to commit a few too many errors. He does have the range and arm to stick to shortstop and has been a switch-hitter for just three years now. Despite falling from no. 74 on the list in 2016, Urena might be ready for his MLB debut in 2018.

No. 91 Delvin Perez, SS/St. Louis Cardinals – Delvin Perez comes in this year at no. 91 on the list. A newcomer on the list, Perez was drafted just last summer (1st Rd, no. 23) out of the International Baseball Academy in Ceiba, Puerto Rico. He played in just 43 games after signing, but already showed flashes of why he is in the top 100. With the Gulf Coast League Cardinals (Rookie), Perez hit .294 with 8 doubles, 4 triples, and 12 stolen bases. Despite his good offensive showing, his defense is where he will impact the game more right now. His speed allows him to cover a lot of ground defensively, and when  you add in his strong arm he will be a solid short stop where he projects to stay. However, he is already been the talk of controversy having tested positive for performance-enhancing drugs prior to the draft.

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Three More Players Confirmed for Team USA

Three more players have been announced to pitch for Team USA in the 2017 World Baseball Classic. The Colorado Rockies Jake McGee has been confirmed to play alongside teammate Nolan Arenado.

The 30-year old lefty had 15 saves in 19 attempts a year ago for the Rockies. He wound up moving out of the closer’s spot after a few rough outings and stint on the disabled list.

Joining McGee on the Team USA pitching staff will be Chicago White Sox closer David Robertson. Last season the 31-year old hurler saved 37 games in 44 attempts. That was the third straight year he had 30+ saves in a season.

And finally Giancarlo Stanton has been confirmed to play for Team USA. This will be the second time Stanton will suit up for Team USA in the WBC. He was apart of the team in 2013 as well.

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Cleveland to host 2019 MLB All-Star Game

Various news outlets are reporting that Cleveland’s Progressive Field will host the 2019 Major League Baseball All-Star Game. It is being reported that the Indians will announce this on Friday.

Cleveland last hosted the Mid-Summer Classic back in 1997 just three years after it opened.

This will make the first American League park to host the game since Minneapolis did so in 2014 ending four straight years in the National League.

This summer Marlins Park will be the host when the two leagues face off on July 11th. Next year it moves to our nation’s capital at Nationals Park before returning to Cleveland in 2019.

This will be Cleveland’s 6th time to host the all-star game which trails only Chicago (7) and New York City (9). The game this summer will be the first one in Miami

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The Colorful Montreal Expos and Some Great Music

I just finished watching a short MLB Network show on The Colorful Expos which detailed, in an hour anyway, the history of the franchise. What a ride that hour was.

I was too young for Blue Monday, but seeing the heartbreak on the fans and players faces was hard to see knowing now that they would never come that close again.

One thing I do remember well was 1994. I grew up an Atlanta Braves fan, so I knew all too well how great, not good but great, that 1994 Montreal Expos team was. It was loaded, but we never got the chance to see that team make a run at a World Series title.

Looking back that team was stacked. They had power – 6 players with more than 10 home runs. They had speed – 7 players with more than 10 stolen bases. They had Larry Walker, Moises Alou, Cliff Floyd, Marquis Grissom, Rondell White, Ken Hill, Pedro Martinez, John Wetteland, and Mel Rojas. Up and down the lineup and from starters to bullpen they were good.

But by 1995, they were done. They were back to 66-78 and 5th place in the NL East. Gone were Walker, Grissom, Hill, and Wetteland. The magic was gone from the great ’94 run never to be seen in Montreal again unfortunately.

But the thing that stood out most from the show was the end when they showed hip-hop artist Annakin Slayd who has recorded several songs about the Expos over the years. That is what I want to share today.

The first one is my favorite. This is about the Expos history and the song they played in the show tonight. Enjoy.

But that is not all he has done. He also has a really cool song about “The Kid” Gary Carter who was a fan favorite and one of the greatest catchers of all time. So here you go with Kid by Annakin Slayd.

Lastly Annakin Slayd wrote a song about the 1994 season called ’94 Fall.

I’d love to hear which of these songs is your favorite. Personally, I love the first one – Remember. Hit us up on Facebook or Twitter and let us know.

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Congratulations to the Baseball Hall of Fame Class of 2017

First of all, let me say congratulations to the class of 2017. Jeff Bagwell, Tim Raines, and Ivan Rodriguez are all worthy and deserve this honor. I want to focus on these three for the time being, then I will come back in a later post and talk about those that did not make it in.

Jeff Bagwell

Bagwell joins his fellow “Killer Bees” companion Craig Biggio. While there were others that joined these two in the rotating Killer Bees, these two were the constant force for the Astros for many years. Bagwell had some great years in Houston, but 1994 really stands out.

Even though the season was cut short, Bagwell did some amazing things in just 110 games. That year he was an all-star, Silver Slugger winner, Gold Glove winner, and the National League MVP. In those 110 games, Bagwell scored 104 runs, drove in 116, slugged .750, and had an OPS of 1.201. Not to mention the 39 home runs and while you are at it 15 stolen bases.

With 449 home runs and a lifetime .297 hitter, he was one of the most feared sluggers through the 90s. Bagwell fell just 15 votes shy of induction in 2016, but his 7th time was a charm. If you go back and look through the previous six years of voting, there was a steady climb for Bagwell. He started out with just over 41% of the vote in his first try, then slowly started creeping up. He mixed in a few years with big 15% or more jumps in the voting till finally getting in this year.

Tim Raines

One of the best lead off hitters of all-time was elected in his final year of eligibility by the writers association, and it is well deserved. A 7-time all-star and 3-time World Series champ, Raines set the table for some of the best teams in the game.

For four straight years in the early 80s Raines led the National League in stolen bases, and stole 70+ in six straight years. He ranks 5th all-time in stolen bases and ranks as one of the best all-time in stolen base percentage. But one thing that stands out to me when looking at his stats are that he walked 1330 times and struck out only 966. For a lead off hitter that is exactly what you want. Raines had a lifetime .385 OBP.

Ivan Pudge Rodriguez

Pudge Rodriguez was one of the best catchers to ever play the game, and he becomes only the second catcher of all-time to be elected on the first ballot. The 14-time All-Star, 13-time Gold Glove winner, and 1999 American League MVP was one of the most exciting players to watch both in the batter’s box and on defense.

Making his Major League debut at only age 19, Pudge quickly established himself as a defensive force. He threw out 45% of would be thieves on the bases and led the league seven times in throwing out runners.

While he was known for his defense perhaps first and foremost, Rodriguez was quite the hitter as well. A lifetime .296 hitter, which is more impressive when you realize he didn’t walk much, slugged 572 doubles and 311 home runs over his 21 year career.

All three players are definitely well deserving of this honor. Tomorrow I want to get into those that didn’t make and where they are headed. As always please give us your thoughts either here or on social media somewhere.

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2017 Preseason College Baseball Poll

Collegiate Baseball newspaper released their 2017 Preseason Poll recently with TCU at the top. The Horned Frogs finished 3rd last season and return eight position player starters including five Collegiate Baseball All-Americans. Throw in some key returners on the hill and TCU is poised to make a run at a national title.

Some familiar names are at the top just behind TCU. LSU ranks no. 2 going into the 2017 season, but they will have another tough road through the SEC as fellow conference mates Florida (no. 3), South Carolina (no. 4), Vanderbilt (no. 6), and Texas A&M (no. 20) are all in the Top 20.

The ACC also has a strong showing in the top 20 with Miami (no. 8), Florida St (no. 9), Louisville (no. 11), Clemson (no. 12), North Carolina (no. 15), and Virginia (no. 16). This makes for another exciting year in the ACC where Clemson will look to defend their 2016 conference tournament title.

2017 Preseason NCAA Div. 1 Poll

Rank Team (2016 Record) Points
  1. Texas Christian (49-18) 496
  2. Louisiana St. (45-21) 494
  3. Florida (52-16) 491
  4. South Carolina (46-18) 489
  5. Oregon St. (35-19) 485
  6. Vanderbilt (43-19) 482
  7. Arizona (49-24) 480
  8. Miami, Fla. (50-14) 478
  9. Florida St. (41-22) 475
10. Cal. St. Fullerton (36-23) 472
11. Louisville (50-14) 470
12. Clemson (44-20) 469
13. East Carolina (38-23-1) 465
14. Louisiana-Lafayette (43-21) 463
15. North Carolina (34-21) 460
16. Virginia (38-22) 458
17. Long Beach St. (38-22) 456
18. U.C. Santa Barbara (43-20-1) 454
19. Coastal Carolina (55-18) 450
20. Texas A&M (49-16) 448
21. Washington (33-23) 445
22. Mississippi (43-19) 443
23. Sam Houston St. (42-22) 440
24. Stanford (31-23) 438
25. Arizona St. (36-23) 435
26. Dallas Baptist (44-19) 432
27. Rice (38-24) 429
28. Oklahoma St. (43-22) 426
29. Texas Tech. (47-20) 424
30. Texas (25-32) 420
31. N.C. State (38-22) 417
32. Michigan (36-21) 415
33. Nebraska (37-22) 412
34. Tulane (41-21) 410
35. Houston (36-23) 407
36. Southeastern La. (40-21) 404
37. Gonzaga (36-21) 401
38. Georgia Tech. (38-25) 398
39. Kent St. (44-14) 394
40. Florida Atlantic (39-19) 390


Other Teams Receiving Votes:
New Mexico (39-23), West Virginia (36-22), Utah (26-29), Southern Mississippi (41-20), Wake Forest  (35-27), Fresno St. (36-22), U.C. Irvine (31-25), Maryland (30-27), Central Florida (26-33), Oklahoma (30-27-1), Cal. Poly (32-25), UCLA (25-31), Nevada (37-24), Nevada-Las Vegas (24-32), San Diego St. (21-38), Oregon (29-25), Southern California (28-28), California (32-21), Washington St. (19-35), Auburn (23-33), Mississippi St. (44-18-1), Kentucky (32-25), Georgia (27-30), Tennessee (29-28), South Alabama (42-22), Alabama (32-26), Arkansas (26-29), Missouri (26-30), Georgia Southern (36-24), Troy (32-26), Arkansas-Little Rock (26-28), Texas St. (31-28), Brigham Young (37-17), San Diego (27-29), Pepperdine (29-24), St. Mary’s (33-25), San Francisco (22-34), New Mexico St. (34-23), Oral Roberts (38-21), Seattle (37-21), Grand Canyon (25-28-1), Michigan St. (36-20), Indiana (32-24), Minnesota (36-22), Ohio St. (44-20-1), Illinois (28-23), Iowa (30-26), Western Michigan (22-34), Central Michigan (24-37), Missouri St. (38-21), Southern Illinois (31-25-1), Ball St. (32-26), Louisiana Tech. (42-20), N.C. Wilmington (41-19), Morehead St. (32-27), Kennesaw St. (28-27), Florida Gulf Coast (27-32), North Florida (39-19), Lipscomb (31-27), Rhode Island (31-27), St. Joseph’s (31-23), Virginia Commonwealth (38-19), Xavier (32-30), Creighton (38-17), Seton Hall (38-20), St. John’s (28-26-1), Gardner-Webb (37-21), High Point (32-24), College of Charleston (31-26-1), William & Mary (31-31), Wright St. (46-17), Princeton (24-21), Dartmouth (18-25), Fairfield (32-27), Miami, Ohio (27-29), Florida A&M (31-21), Alabama St. (38-17), Indiana St. (35-21), Wichita St. (21-37), Bryant (47-12), Southeast Missouri St. (39-21), Austin Peay St. (30-23), Jacksonville St. (34-24), Tennessee Tech. (31-24), Navy (43-16-1), Lehigh (25-29), Mercer (38-23), N.C. Greensboro (38-21), Western Carolina (31-31), Lamar (35-19), McNeese St. (31-25).

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FanDuel

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Who will win the 2017 World Baseball Classic?

  • Puerto Rico (31%, 27 Votes)
  • Dominican Republic (13%, 11 Votes)
  • USA (13%, 11 Votes)
  • Mexico (11%, 10 Votes)
  • Other (8%, 7 Votes)
  • Cuba (8%, 7 Votes)
  • Venezuela (6%, 5 Votes)
  • Netherlands (5%, 4 Votes)
  • Japan (5%, 4 Votes)
  • Chinese Taipei (1%, 1 Votes)
  • South Korea (1%, 1 Votes)
  • Canada (0%, 0 Votes)

Total Voters: 88

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