Batter Up: Fans Guide To Spring Training

Batter Up: The Fan's Guide To Spring Training
Source: Sports Management Degree Hub

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Member Blog Hosts Fantasy Baseball Challenge

Through The Fence Baseball still has room left in their eight league fantasy challenge! Each league features bragging rights and a $20 purse. There’s a bigger kick that just got added: each league winner will be added to one league next year and the winner will take home the big prize that features a $100 prize.  All that to play a free game! Head here to play now!
Here’s the league rundown.

TTFB National League – Draft: March 13th – 6PM – Head-to-Head Scoring [LEAGUE FULL]

TTFB American League – Draft: March 14th – 8PM – Rotisserie [six spots left]

TTFB Division League – Draft: March 27th – 8PM – Hall of Shame (Worst teams wins!) [eight spots left]

TTFB Conference League – Draft: March 12 – 8:30PM – Triple Crown (Only triple crown categories!) [ten spots left]

TTFB Singles League – Draft: March 20 – 8PM – Pitchers Duel (Do we have to explain this?) [11 spots left]

TTFB Homers League – Draft: March 25 – 8PM – Homers (Just the long ball!) [seven spots left]

TTFB Wins League – Draft: March 22 – 5:15PM – Head-to-Head One Win [nine spots left]

TTFB Finals League – Draft: March 19 – 4:15PM – Total Points [six spots left]
Read more at http://throughthefencebaseball.com/join-ttfb-fantasy-baseball-leagues-open-now/29095/#sw1zLRjucsjBei15.99

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Baseball Bloggers Alliance Selects One As Hall Worthy

Every season, the BBA polls it’s membership to cast a ballot for the players eligible for Hall Of Fame induction.  Following the same rules as the official vote cast by the Baseball Writers Association, a player must receive votes on at least 75% of the ballots in order to be recommended for inclusion in the hallowed halls of Cooperstown.

Typically, the blogger’s alliance has been very similar to the official votes cast for awards and hall induction.  In one of the few moments of disagreement, the BBA voted last year to induct Barry Larkin and Jeff Bagwell.  Barry Larkin would be voted in by the official body, leaving Jeff Bagwell to return to the ballot again this year after a 56% showing last year.

The Bloggers Alliance opinion has not changed and the lone person to be selected on the BBA ballot this season is Jeff Bagwell.

The 1991 Rookie Of The Year, Bagwell spent his 15 year Major League career in Houston, primarily playing first base for the Astros during a time period that the team enjoyed some substantial success.  A part of the “Killer B’s”, Bagwell would hit 449 home runs and collect 2,314 hits while driving in 1,529 runs during his career.  He would put a Most Valuable Player Award on his shelf in 1994, be selected for four All Star rosters and pick up three Silver Slugger and one Gold Glove award.

Per the requirements of the official vote, a player would need to appear on at least 75% of the ballots cast in order to be elected to the Hall Of Fame.  While a few players were able to come close this season, Bagwell was the only player to reach the required amount.  The full list of players that received votes follows:

Jeff Bagwell 76%

Craig Biggo 69%
Mike Piazza 69%
Barry Bonds 62%
Tim Raines 62%
Roger Clemens 56%
Edgar Martinez 41%
Alan Trammell 40%
Mark McGwire 35%
Curt Schilling 34%
Dale Murphy 32%
Larry Walker 32%
Jack Morris 32%
Lee Smith 25%
Kenny Lofton 21%
Sammy Sosa 21%
Don Mattingly 18%
Fred McGriff 15%
Rafael Palmerio 15%
Bernie Williams 4%
David Wells 4%
Sandy Alomar 3%
Julio Franco 1%

The Baseball Bloggers Alliance’s vote has no impact on the official vote taken by the Baseball Writers of America.  However, the BBA has often been a predictor of major awards granted by the writers.

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BBA Announces Stan Musial Award Winners For 2012

The final award given annually by the Baseball Bloggers Alliance, the Stan Musial Award, is given every year to the premier player in each league.

In what proved to be the easier of the two decisions, the Alliance pulled together to award Buster Posey for his stellar season leading the San Fransisco Giants to an eventual world championship.  Posey had an amazing season for any player, let alone a catcher.  Posey’s hard fought season earned him a batting title, an impressive slashline (.336/.408/.549), 24 home runs and 103 runs batted in.  His impressive numbers earned him 70% of the BBA vote and the acknowledgement as the premier player in the National League.

The American League vote was a bit more of a debate and a fairly close one.  As the blogs weighed in, only two players received votes.  The vote split leaving Mike Trout of the Angels with a decisive 62% of the vote, edging out the Tigers’ Miguel Cabrera.  Mike Trout becomes the first player to be acknowledged by the BBA with the Stan Musial and Willie Mays Awards in the same season.  As impressive as Miguel Cabrera was winning the triple crown, the bloggers of the BBA were quick to point out how impressive Trout’s all around numbers were.

Previous Stan Musial Award Winners
2011: Jose Bautista, Toronto; Matt Kemp, Los Angeles Dodgers
2010: Josh Hamilton, Texas; Joey Votto, Cincinnati
2009: Joe Mauer, Minnesota; Albert Pujols, St. Louis

The Baseball Bloggers Alliance was formed in the fall of 2009 to encourage cooperation and collaboration between baseball bloggers of all major league teams as well as those that follow baseball more generally. As of this writing, the organization consists of 232 blogs spanning all 30 major league squads as well as general baseball writing.

The BBA is organized under a similar structure as the Baseball Writers of America, where blogs that follow the same team are combined into “chapters” and only two votes from the chapter on an award are counted. The blog chapters that are focused on general baseball were allowed two votes as well, which they could use both on the same league or split between the two leagues.

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BBA Announces 2012 Walter Johnson Award Recipients

As we near the end of the award presentations for the Baseball Bloggers Alliance, the award for the top pitcher in each league is awarded today.

The Walter Johnson Award honors the pitcher in each league that excelled far beyond anyone else.  This year’s vote was not unanimous like last season’s, but it was a decision that many of the group could still agree on.

Earlier this year, Craig Kimbrel became the first person to repeat in an award category for the BBA and he was closely followed by this year’s American League Walter Johnson Award winner.  Justin Verlander grabbed his second consecutive nod as the top hurler in the American League.  Verlander led his league in numerous categories including complete games (6), innings pitched (238.1), strikeouts (239), and ERA+ (160).  He continues to be the premier hurler in the American League and the bloggers acknowledged this with 67% of this year’s vote.

The bloggers recognized Mets’ knuckleballer RA Dickey’s 2012 season by awarding him the Walter Johnson Award in the National League.  After compiling 20 wins and leading the league in strikeouts (230), innings pitched (233.2), games started (33), complete games (5) and shutouts (3).  Dickey’s career revitalization in 2012 has led him to the apex of the league.

Previous Walter Johnson Award Winners
2011: Justin Verlander, Detroit; Clayton Kershaw, Los Angeles Dodgers
2010: Felix Hernadez, Seattle; Roy Halladay, Philadelphia
2009: Zack Greinke, Kansas City; Tim Lincecum, San Francisco

The Baseball Bloggers Alliance was formed in the fall of 2009 to encourage cooperation and collaboration between baseball bloggers of all major league teams as well as those that follow baseball more generally. As of this writing, the organization consists of 232 blogs spanning all 30 major league squads as well as general baseball writing.

The BBA is organized under a similar structure as the Baseball Writers of America, where blogs that follow the same team are combined into “chapters” and only two votes from the chapter on an award are counted. The blog chapters that are focused on general baseball were allowed two votes as well, which they could use both on the same league or split between the two leagues.

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BBA Announces Goose Gossage Award For 2012

The third award in the five award series, the Goose Gossage Award honors the best relief pitchers in Major League Baseball.

This year’s vote was an easy decision for the members of the group and they honored a player for a second consecutive year in the same category for the first time.

In 2011, Atlanta Braves closer Craig Kimbrel was awarded both the Goose Gossage and Willie Mays awards.  This season, Kimbrel received 87% of the vote to claim his second consecutive award as the National League’s premier relief pitcher.  He would make his second consecutive All Star appearance this season while leading the Senior Circuit in saves with 42.

The American League vote was equally lopsided as Fernando Rodney of the Tampa Bay Rays received an identical 87% of the vote in his league.  Rodney would not lead his league in saves, finishing with 48 to Jim Johnson’s 51, but he would do so with a minuscule 0.60 earned run average and prove to be dominant throughout the season.

Previous Goose Gossage Award Winners
2011: Jose Valverde, Detroit; Craig Kimbrel, Atlanta
2010: Rafael Soriano, Tampa Bay; Brian Wilson, San Francisco

The Baseball Bloggers Alliance was formed in the fall of 2009 to encourage cooperation and collaboration between baseball bloggers of all major league teams as well as those that follow baseball more generally. As of this writing, the organization consists of 232 blogs spanning all 30 major league squads as well as general baseball writing.

The BBA is organized under a similar structure as the Baseball Writers of America, where blogs that follow the same team are combined into “chapters” and only two votes from the chapter on an award are counted. The blog chapters that are focused on general baseball were allowed two votes as well, which they could use both on the same league or split between the two leagues.

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BBA Announces Willie Mays Award For Top Rookies

The Baseball Bloggers Alliance continues their announcement of award winners for the 2012 season, naming the top rookies in both leagues by awarding the Willie Mays Award.

This year’s vote yielded the only unanimous decision in all five categories for the group.

In the American League, Mike Trout was awarded the honors by every voting member of the BBA.  Trout, who maintained his rookie status in Major League Baseball for 2012, led the league in runs (129), stolen bases (49) and OPS+ (171).  In addition, his slash line of .326/.399/.564 kept him among league leaders.  Trout caps an all star season with recognition from the group as the top youngster in the American League.

Searching for a counterpart in the National League led to some discussion.  When the dust settled, however, it was Washington National’s phenom Bryce Harper that walked away with 66% of the vote and the recognition of the largest collection of bloggers online. Harper’s season was impressive, with a slash line of .270/.340/.477 and an All Star appearance of his own.  His 22 home runs and 59 runs batted in were impressive for the 19 year old outfielder, despite being overshadowed by Trout’s impressive rookie campaign.

Previous Willie Mays Award Winners
2011: Eric Hosmer, Kansas City/Jeremy Hellickson Tampa Bay (tie); Craig Kimbrel, Atlanta
2010: Neftali Feliz, Texas; Buster Posey, San Francisco
2009: Andrew Bailey, Oakland; Andrew McCutchen, Pittsburgh

The Baseball Bloggers Alliance was formed in the fall of 2009 to encourage cooperation and collaboration between baseball bloggers of all major league teams as well as those that follow baseball more generally. As of this writing, the organization consists of 232 blogs spanning all 30 major league squads as well as general baseball writing.

The BBA is organized under a similar structure as the Baseball Writers of America, where blogs that follow the same team are combined into “chapters” and only two votes from the chapter on an award are counted. The blog chapters that are focused on general baseball were allowed two votes as well, which they could use both on the same league or split between the two leagues.

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