Tag:Jason Bartlett
Posted on: November 16, 2010 10:50 pm
 

Red Sox shopping Scutaro

Marco Scutaro The Red Sox are listening to offers on shortstop Marco Scutaro, FoxSports.com's Ken Rosenthal reports .

Several teams are interested in Scutaro, while the Red Sox would let Jed Lowrie take over at short if the Red Sox traded him.

The Red Sox are looking for middle relief, and Rosenthal notes the Cardinals, Padres, Reds and Pirates as a match with a need at shortstop and bullpen depth.

While there aren't many free agent shortstops on the market, the Rays are also looking to trade arbitration-eligible Jason Bartlett in favor of Reid Brignac. Bartlett made $4 million in 2010 and will be a free agent following the 2011 season.

Scutaro was somewhat of a disappointment for the Red Sox this season, hitting .275/.333/.388, down from his breakout season in Toronto in 2009, when he hit .282/.379/.409 in his only season of his career with an OPS+ better than 100 (average).

The 35-year old shortstop is due $5 million next season and has a $6 million team option for 2012 or a $3 million player option and a $1.5 million buyout.

Lowrie is younger and hit .287/.381/.526 in 197 plate appearances in 2010, playing both shortstop and second.

-- C. Trent Rosecrans

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Posted on: November 9, 2010 4:06 pm
Edited on: April 18, 2011 12:28 pm
 

Jeter wins another Gold Glove

Oh, as we complain again and again about the Baseball Writers Association of America and their votes for MVP and Cy Young, the coaches and managers once again show they're not a better committee to choose the biggest awards in the game.

Exhibit A: Derek Jeter, Gold Glover.

Derek Jeter Yep, Jeter won the Gold Glove again on Tuesday in a vote from American League coaches and managers. Derek Jeter with a -5.4 UZR/150, -13 runs saved and -17 plus/minus, was determined by the coaches and managers to be the best defensive shortstop in the American League. Among qualified players, only Tampa Bay's Jason Bartlett (-13.8) and Kansas City's Yuniesky Betancourt (-9.2) had a worse UZR/150.

Sure, Jeter had just six errors, but the idea that errors tell you much about a player's defense is preposterous. It tells you who is able to make the routine plays best. That's well and good, but it has little to do with the best all-around defensive player. Jeter has the range of, well, a mediocre 36-year old defensive player. (You know how many times you see Jeter go into the hole and doing that leaping throw, but doesn't quite get the runner? Oh, what a gutty play, he doesn't get an E. Thing is, most other shortstops don't have to make that jump and get the runner.)

Who would be a better choice? Well, who wouldn't?

The Fielding Bible Awards had Chicago's Alexei Ramirez as its third-place finisher, and best among AL players. Ramirez's UZR/150 was 10.1, he had 16 runs saved and a 20 plus/minus.

In UZR/150, Ramirez was trailed by Oakland's Cliff Pennington (8.8), Baltimore's Cesar Izturis (5.8) and Texas' Elvis Andrus (0.3), among qualified players.

The Gold Gloves have been one of those openly mocked selections since a designated hitter won one in 1999 (Rafael Palmeiro). Defense, even in this day and age of advanced statistics, is still highly subjective, with reputation playing more of a role than production. That's what the Gold Glove tells us every year. It also tells us the coaches and managers have as much of a Yankee bias as the media is accused of having.

Alex Rodriguez was the only Yankee infielder not to be awarded, even though the advanced statistics liked Oakland's infield much more.

Mark Teixeira won at first base, even though Oakland's Daric Barton was likely the best choice. Mark Ellis had the top UZR/150 among second basemen (12.7), but the winner was Robinson Cano (-0.9).  Also deserving at second would be Minnesota's Orlando Hudson (12.0 UZR/150). Hudson was the top AL vote-getter in the Fielding Bible Awards, while Ellis was behind him.

As for the outfield, that's probably where a Yankee was actually left off. Left fielder Brett Gardner had the best UZR/150 of any qualified outfielders with a 27.9. He also won the Fielding Bible Award in left field.

American League Gold Glove winners
P Mark Buehrle, White Sox
C Joe Mauer, Twins
1B Mark Teixeira, Yankees
2B Robinson Cano, Yankees
3B Evan Longoria, Rays
SS Derek Jeter, Yankees
OF Carl Crawford, Rays
OF Franklin Gutierrez, Mariners
OF Ichiro Suzuki, Mariners

-- C. Trent Rosecrans

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Posted on: September 7, 2010 1:17 pm
Edited on: October 19, 2010 12:05 pm
 

Rays test their bench

Joe Maddon How about this for a record you didn't know existed?

Monday night the Rays tied a major-league record by using six pinch hitters in one inning. It was the ninth time that's happened -- and the seventh in September, when rosters expand.

Joe Maddon did it in the seventh inning of Monday's game in Boston because his team was being blown out and wanted to give his regulars some rest and get his bench players some at-bats.

"They all looked good up there. We like our depth, we like our bench," Maddon told the St. Petersburg Times ' Marc Topkin . "I want to keep them sharp, I've got to get them out there. Hopefully as we proceed and hopefully make the playoffs we're going to have to make a lot of tough decisions regarding who those 25 people are going to be, so these guys have got to play. If they're going to contribute the rest of this month they just can't sit on the bench."

How'd it work? Well enough for six pinch hitters to get to bat -- as well as three starters -- who accounted for two of the three outs. None of the starters got a hit, with Carlos Pena walking. The pinch hitters went 3 for 4 with two walks, scoring all three runs in the inning.

Here's how it went down:

The Red Sox started the inning with Robert Coello replacing starter Jon Lester.

Dan Johnson, batting for Ben Zobrist, singled to center.

Kelly Shoppach flied out to center.

Matt Joyce, batting for B.J. Upton, singled to right.

Willy Aybar, batting for Jason Bartlett, singled to center, loading the bases.

Brad Hawpe, batting for Carl Crawford, walked, scoring a run.

Desmond Jennings, batting for Evan Longoria, walked, scoring a run.

The Red Sox pulled Coello and put in Dustin Richardson.

Carlos Pena walked, scoring a run.

Out goes Richardson, in comes Scott Atchison.

Reid Brignac, batting for Sean Rodrgiuez, pops out to first.

Rico Baldelli flied out to end the inning.

The last team to use six pinch hitters in an inning was the Mariners in 2007 and the last two do it in a non-September game was the Expos in May of 1970.

-- C. Trent Rosecrans

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Posted on: August 5, 2010 4:32 pm
 

Maddon: 'This is why we need real baseball field'

Joe Maddon
Can you imagine how this one will haunt the Rays if they miss the playoffs by a game? They score six times, including a Jason Bartlett grand slam, to tie the game against the Twins on Thursday, only to lose when a ninth-inning popup by Jason Kubel hits the upper catwalk at Tropicana Field and drops for the go-ahead hit.

 It was only the second time a ball had hit the highest "A" ring on the ceiling in a game.

The heartbreaker was bad for the Rays but might be good for the argument to build a new ballpark. Manager Joe Maddon certainly thinks so, according to his postgame comments:

"That was probably the perfect commercial advertisement, reason to have a new ballpark. There's no better reason than that. I know it works both ways, but to lose a game in a pennant situation like that because of the roof totally indicates why there's a crying need for a new ballpark in this area, regardless of where they put it. It just needs to be a real baseball field, where if you were to lose the pennant by one game and look back on a game like that becasue the roof got in the way, you’d be very upset. There's no better reason than that.''
-- David Andriesen

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Category: MLB
Posted on: June 16, 2010 1:15 am
 

Who will Bartlett bump off Rays?

The good news: shortstop Jason Bartlett will rejoin the Rays in the next few days.

The bad news: The team isn't sure who will be bumped for the All-Star shortstop.

With three catchers on the team, the decision should be easy, but it never is.

"We have two really offensive catchers [John Jaso and Kelly Shoppach]," Maddon told the Tampa Tribube . "And you're playing in the National League, where pinch-hitting is really important. When you have three of them, there are more things you can do."

While the Rays will inevitably tell one of Jaso, Shoppach and Dioner Navarro to exit stage left, it sounds as if that's not an option until interleague play is complete.

The Tribune speculates that outfielder Justin Ruggiano may be cut instead. While the move would leave Tampa with just three outfielders, the depth of Ben Zobrist and Sean Rodriguez makes Ruggiano an easy candidate to go. He has yet to register an at-bat this season after being called up to replace Gabe Kapler, who headed to the disabled list.

Looking ahead, when the team returns to American League play, the Rays may decide that Matt Joyce is a better option that Ruggiano once one of the three catchers departs. Joyce's average in Triple-A is up to .343 through play on Monday, and he is considered Tampa's right fielder of the future.

-- Evan Brunell

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Category: MLB
 
 
 
 
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