Sunday, January 29, 2012

MLB 1 Finger Salutes

Nyjer Morgan tells some fans they're #1.

Jay Bruce throws up some digits.

Pat Burrell sends a warm greeting to the opposing dugout.

Jose Canseco shows us his IQ.

Andre Ethier does NOT want to bunt.

Milton Bradley flips off the world, because the world is against him.

Kerry Wood tells the opposing Chicago bullpen to f*ck off.

Jason Giambi celebrates a homerun with class.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Best Minor League Contract Signing?

Every offseason general managers rummage through the free agent market in hopes of striking it rich with a minor league contract signing. Last year Freddy Garcia and Bartolo Colon were integral members of the Yankees rotation. Ryan Vogelsong garnered Cy Young votes and was an All-Star with the Giants. Casey Kotchman manned 1st base, hitting .306 for the AL Wild Card Rays. Listed below are some of the more notable minor league contracts signings so far this offseason. Who do you think will turn out to be the biggest bargain?

Miguel Batista/Mets - he will be 41 years old by the time Spring Training begins, but over the past 3 years he's made 149 appearances with a 3.79 ERA and 1.45 WHIP over 214 innings. That type of durabilty is always useful in a bullpen.

Casey Blake/Rockies - he is now 38 years old and coming off an injury plagued 2011 season (63 games). However, his bat remains above average and his defense adequate. Moving his home games to Colorado should help too. He's likely the Rox starting third basemen in 2012.

Brad Hawpe/Rangers - he was a beast in Colorado (.280/.866 over 7 seasons), but a lamb in San Diego (.231/.645 last year). He's unlikely to post an OPS north of .850 again, but going to a stacked lineup in hitter friendly Arlington Park in Texas should help his bat recover from its slumber.

Rodrigo Lopez/Cubs - over the past two seasons he's amassed 297.2 innings with a 4.81 ERA and 1.44 WHIP (which are in line with his career averages). He's not flashy, but he's a cheap 5th/6th starter.

Kevin Millwood/Mariners - had success in a brief stint with the Rockies last season (4-3 with a 3.98 ERA and 1.22 WHIP in 9 starts). He's only had 1 good season out of his last 6 though, but remember Safeco Field is a pitcher's friend.

Peter Moylan/Braves - in 6 seasons with Atlanta he's made 287 appearances with a 2.60 ERA. Impressive. He's coming off a lost cause in 2011 due to injuries (13 G, 8.1 IP), and that's why he only got a minor league deal. If healthy, this guy is an absolute steal.

Vicente Padilla/Red Sox - okay, he's a bit of a headcase and hasn't been healthy since 2009, but reports have his fastball speed in the 95 mph range in winter ball. The BoSox need pitching and taking a flier on Padilla seems like a good idea (3.84 ERA, 1.14 WHIP in 33 games over past 3 seasons with the Dodgers).

Joel Pineiro/Phillies - a durable starting pitcher, who had a miserable 2011 season with the Angels (5.13 ERA, 1.51 WHIP). However, in the previous two seasons, he was a quality arm in the rotation (25-19, 3.64 ERA, 1.18 WHIP, 366.1 IP, 5.2 WAR). Pineiro pitches to contact and is unlikely to crack the rotation in Philly, but he's an excellent insurance policy.

Brian Sanches/Phillies - over the past 3 years in the Marlins bullpen he has made 147 appearance with a 2.92 ERA and 1.29 WHIP (although his ERA balooned to 3.94 in 2011). Still, those are quality numbers for a reliever.

Monday, January 23, 2012

Minor League Melee

Here's some minor league melee for your manic Monday morning.

Sunday, January 22, 2012


Today the country's focus turns to the National Football League, as the NFC and AFC's championship games are being played. The winners make their way onto the Super Bowl. Football and baseball are America's most popular sports. Deion Sanders and Bo Jackson have been two players that were successful in both. Cubs pitcher Jeff Samardzija didn't go the same route as Neon Deion or Bo Knows, instead he chose baseball over a likely 1st round choice as a wide receiver in the NFL draft. There have been numerous players over the history of each sport to dabble in each.

Friday, January 20, 2012

Baseball is Gross

Baseball is not typically thought of as a gross sport, but the following players buck that mindset. Don Gross, Gabe Gross, Greg Gross, Kevin Gross, Kip Gross, Wayne Gross, Emil Gross, and Turkey Gross have all made baseball gross over the years. Emil started the trend way back in 1879. Next came Ewell, or as his friends called him "Turkey", in 1925. Then there was Don in the 50's, followed by Wayne and Greg in the 70's and 80's. Kevin, Greg's brother, took the Gross tradition into the 90's, where he overlapped with Kip. Lastly, Gabe carried the Gross torch until 2010. Currently there are no Gross players in the Majors, but maybe Gabe will make a comeback or Billy Gross, previously of the Orioles organization will attempt to revive is baseball career.

This is More Harball's 1000th post. Thanks to all who have contributed over the years (since 2006).

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Plan for Mets to Draw Fans

Lets be honest, the New York Mets are going to suck in 2012, likely finishing in a distant 5th/last place in the National League East division. The Phillies have the tremendous trio of Roy Halladay, Cliff Lee, and Cole Hamels. The Braves have Jair Jurrjens, Tommy Hanson, Brandon Beachy, and Tim Hundson. The Marlins just added Heath Bell, Jose Reyes, and Mark Buehrle. The Mets...David Wright and a highly questionable Johan Santana. Yep, times are tough in Queens. So how do the Mets plan on drawing fans to Citi Field? I propose hiring some of these hotties to be permanent fixtures in the stands.

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Baseball Themed Vehicles

There must be industrial design schools in these baseball cities...

Cubs fans actually do this? That's a sledgehammer to door waiting to happen...

What the hell happened to the doors?

For the Canadians...

The ultimate tailgating truck, and also my dream vehicle...

For the punch buggy fan...

Saturday, January 07, 2012

Miami Marlins Reality TV

What do you get when you put the flamboyant Jose Reyes, whiny bawl-baby pissy-pants Hanley Ramirez, the combustible and highly volatile Carlos Zambrano, Twitter-happy Logan Morrison, and fellow Tweeter and explicit mouthed Ozzie Guillen all in the same clubhouse? A humongous f'n disaster!!!

The new look Miami Marlins are likely to be competitive in 2012, but all these strong personalities on the same team is sure to lead to some reality tv worthy moments. This should prove to be interesting...

Friday, January 06, 2012

Cubs Hit With Another Whammy

Just as Theo Epstein traded away one albatross (Carlos Zambrano) another one might be blooming. Chicago Cubs shortstop Starlin Castro has been accused of sexual assault. I hope that this matter turns out to be nothing, but it certainly is another black eye on the face of the Cubs organization.

WBBM News Radio in Chicago says an unidentified woman in her mid 20's was at a River North nightclub on September 29 last year when she met Castro. After 3 AM she went with a friend to his apartment, where she alleges the assault took place. The woman then went to a hospital the next evening. Police became involved, in the meantime Castro left for his offseason home in the Dominican Republic.

From Castro's attorney:
"We are aware of certain allegations that have been made against our client, Starlin Castro. We have thoroughly investigated this matter, and we are confident that these allegations are baseless. Given the sensitive nature of this matter, we cannot comment any further. We'll surely hear much more on this matter and will pass along updates as they come."

From the Cubs:
"We are aware that a police report was filed regarding an incident involving Starlin, but we have received limited information. While this is something we take very seriously, there is not enough information to make any further comment or take action at this time. We are hopeful when the facts are brought to light, Starlin will be cleared of any wrongdoing."

Thursday, January 05, 2012

Check Out His Bat...

Coming to the plate with two bats should be illegal.