MLB Commissioner office dismissed the MLBPA’s complaint charging the Pirates and the Marlins with misusing the revenue sharing funds they receive for being small market teams.
MLB’s Basic Agreement stipulates revenue-sharing receipts must be used by a team “in an effort to improve its performance on the field.”
Both team’s lowered payroll means an increase in the amount of shared revenue they receive in the future. Big market teams don’t particularly want to give more money to Pirates and Marlins than they already have to.
In the Pirates defense, their revenue sharing money has decreased in seven consecutive seasons, while their payroll has doubled. The Marlins don’t even have enough major league ready players to fill a lineup at this point, making it quite hard to defend them.
Jose Martinez will likely begin the season as the Cardinals starting first baseman, with Matt Carpenter starting at third. Carpenter only qualifies at first base in most leagues but will gain eligibility at third after five regular season appearances. Last draft season, Carpenter qualified first, second and third base, and may be a bargain at your draft with the loss in position eligibility.
One day we are going to have to face the fact that this guy either can’t stay healthy or can’t get his act together. Due to biceps bursitis, which isn’t even a real thing by the way, Rodon did not make his season debut until June 28. He made 12 starts before getting shut down once again with shoulder or elbow problems. Nobody really knows.
He had arthroscopic surgery on his left shoulder in September, with an expected return in six to eight months. Plan on him throwing a baseball in May – not in games, in general.
Charlie Blackmon became the first leadoff hitter to amass more than 100 RBI since at least 1999. Darin Erstad had 100 in 2000. Blackmon also smacked 37 home runs, stole 14 bases and maintained an AVG/OBP of .331/.399.
Jerad Eickhoff is one to watch this spring after a disappointing 2017 season. He was shut down in September with nerve irritation in his pitching hand, which may have been at least partially responsible for his ERA jumping from 3.65 in 2016 to 4.71 in 2017 through 24 starts. It could also account for the fact that his walk rate nearly doubled.
Eickhoff spent the offseason reviewing his mechanics with the Phillies’ new pitching coach, Rick Kranitz, looking for a smoother delivery and adjusted the placement in his hand
White Sox top prospect, Michael Kopech, finished last season 9-8 with a 2.88 ERA, 172 strikeouts and a .193 batting average against over 134 ⅓ innings in 25 starts across two minor league levels. He got better as the season went along, a 1.29 ERA and 71 strikeouts over 56 innings in the second half. His fastball has been clocked at 110 mph.
Kopech will likely start the season at Triple-A Charlotte, working on his changeup. He already has an explosive breaking ball and fastball, which has been clocked at 110 mph.
Kopech said he is focused on perfecting his changeup, but feels he is ready to pitch in the majors:
I’m ready. I’m not going to say that I should be there, and I deserve to be there, because I haven’t earned anything yet, But I feel like I’m ready if I get the call. I don’t want to be someone who — when I get the call — is shaken up, nervous, overwhelmed, whatever. I want to feel prepared, and I feel that I am.Michael Kopech
Royals prospect, Bubba Starling, had a horrible first half in 2017 before he changed the position of his grip on the bat. It seems like that tweak worked for him, as he finished the season strong. There happens to be a big hole in center field now that Lorenzo Cain is gone, so expect a call up should Starling begin 2018 like he finished 2017
Dayton Moore said he sees Paulo Orlando, Alex Gordon and Billy Burns as options in center. Maybe a late FA if the price is right. Bubba Starling will start season in Omaha, but … “we wouldn’t hesitate if he gets off to a really good start,” Moore said.
— Rustin Dodd (@rustindodd) December 12, 2017
The Mets moves this offseason may not be making front page news, but they did make some real changes to their medical staff. They hired a director of performance and sports science, who will oversee athletic training functions, physical therapy, mental skills, strength and conditioning, nutrients and sleep management. They also replaced their head trainer, Ray Ramirez, with former assistant trainer, Brian Chicklo. Joseph Golia is the new assistant trainer.
While we’re certainly not going to eliminate injuries, we will have the capacity, the expertise, organization and communication among our medical staff as well as field staff and front office to optimize performance on behalf of the playersSandy Alderson
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