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Odds To Be The 1st MLB Manager Fired In 2016: Who Is On The Hotseat?

a hot seat

Hunter Stokes (BBBA Featured Writer) 

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Every year there are certain managers that have a ton of pressure to win.  This is always a tough process to think of who will be nixed first.

On one hand, many clubs that should be in contention for the playoffs will see an axe come to their tenure, however sometimes clubs are so bad record wise (even though they were projected to be) that the franchise will just slay the field general in the name of mercy.

As far as under the gun goes. guys like Brad Ausmus, John Farrell and John Gibbons.  are tops on the list. 

Ausmus doesn’t have a track record of any postseason series wins like the latter two here, so he is going to be the #1 favorite out of this group of skippers that could go fast with playoff aspirations if their teams struggle out of the starting block.

Gibbons did a great job with Toronto in 2015, but a slow start would really put his name on the block. Say if they are 6 or 7 games behind the playoff bar near Memorial Day.

Farrell has put up back to back 5th place finishes in the AL East after winning the World Series Title in his 1st year of being the skipper in 2013.

Then there is a perennial bad losing club that have long tenured coaches like Walt Weiss and Robin Ventura. I am not sure they should not have been shown the door following last years campaigns. 

Weiss has losing years for every year under his belt, and Ventura rode out 2013 with his late season collapse, but his club has underachieved in every other year.

Still the two most managers on the hot seat are Fredi Gonzalez of the Braves on top of the favorite list at +331, followed by Bryan Price at +441. But I hate putting money on either of these gentlemen with their clubs both being on track to challenge for the worst record in the Majors this year.

Heck, Gonzalez’s predecessor Bobby Cox was the well into his 3rd decade with the “Tomahawk” Choppers when he finally stepped down to a front office job. Gonzalez at least had the Braves in the playoffs in 2012. 

Price can’t really be expected to do anything with this anemic Pitching Staff, and all veterans except for Votto may be available for trade at any point.

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Baseball’s Biggest “Get Out Of Jail” Financial Contracts Over The Last Few Years

Several player have either retired for variou reasons, or have served suspensions in which their organization has receeived an unexpected benefit of salary relief for it.  This will need to be addressed in the new Collective Bargaining Agreement to be forthcoming after this next season.

Several players have either retired for various reasons, or have served suspensions in which their organization has received an unexpected benefit of salary relief for it in recent years. This will need to be addressed in the new Collective Bargaining Agreement to be forthcoming after this next season.

Hunter Stokes (BBBA Featured Writer) 

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The new CBA forthcoming should be addressing on how player contracts work towards team salaries when it is due for suspension or retirement.  Last week’s sudden packing in the cleats from Adam LaRoche will actually benefit the White Sox with $13 MIL in salary relief.

It is not the 1st time a guy has retired during a contract, and it is the latest where a team may be drawing a sigh of relief.

It wasn’t even the 1st instance of the winter.  Earlier this off year, Mets OF Michael Cuddyer retired with one year of service left on his deal.  This move led the Mets to have a few extra dollars in their seat cushion to re-ink Yoenis Cespedes to a 1 Year $27.5 MIL deal

Cuddyer was still expensive for New York with a 1sr RD Draft pick forfeit, but at least he only cost the club $8.5 MIL on 1 season, as opposed to an additional $12.5 MIL this upcoming campaign.

If the Mets are still under contract with this guy it makes re-signing Cespedes a tougher deal.  Not only cash wise, but it was also clogging up another spot on the Roster if  New York had to keep the under-performing former Rockies and Twins player.

Instead, all of the fans wishes were granted when Cespedes came back to Flushing Meadows, and you can add the fact they also re-upped with Bartolo Colon for another year as yet another extension of the Cuddyer decision. Read the rest of this entry

The White Sox Need To Sign 1 Of Fowler Or Desmond To Stay Competitive

The White Sox have had a decent offseason however every team that was near or beneath them in the standings have also upgrade their rosters going into 2016. With a need for an upgrade for the OF, and the chance to out forth an incredible homer centric Infield, I would love to see them go after Ian Desmond, and/or Dexter Fowler.

The White Sox have had a decent offseason however every team that was near or beneath them in the standings have also upgrade their rosters going into 2016. With a need for an upgrade for the OF, and the chance to put forth an incredible homer-centric Infield, I would love to see them go after Ian Desmond, and/or Dexter Fowler.

Hunter Stokes (BBBA Featured Writer) 

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I like the moves the White Sox have done in the offseason.  The only problem is what the Royals and Tigers also have done this winter will make it tough for Chicago to keep up.

The Pale Hose finished a disappointing 76 – 86 in 2015 and almost 20 games behind Division winner KC for the AL Central.

2014 winter moves of Adam LaRoche, Jeff Samardzija and Melky Cabrera just didn’t work out like they thought.

Despite the poor results off those player acquisitions Rich Hahn acquired Todd Frazier and Brett Lawrie so far in the hot stove this year, and also inked catchers Alex Avila and Dioner Navarro as key moves.

I love this aggression – and even believe that LaRoche and Cabrera will have bounce back seasons for the White Sox this season.  Cabrera was pretty decent in the 2nd half, and LaRoche suffered the Adam Dunn NL to AL syndrome.

Having said this already, the Royals are sitting with a talented squad as reigning World Series Champs, and the Tigers added Jordan Zimmermann, Justin Upton, and bushel full of relievers and Cameron Maybin.

There is no doubt in my mind that Detroit will be much better than their cellar dweller 2015 campaign.

The White Sox have a decent pitching staff in its entirety. Maybe not as talented as the Cleveland Indians, but the Tribe doesn’t have the sticks as Chicago either.

KC has the best bullpen in the Division, and will rely heavily on it again with their grinder offense backing it up.

Minnesota has a ton of young offensive superstars in Miguel Sano, Brian Dozier and Byron Buxton, yet also lost team leader Torii Hunter.

Chicago is still spending at a decent clip – having a budget of near $123 MIL so far, but Detroit has crept up to near $200 MIL, and KC has paid for its title, by going near the $140 MIL team salary barrier. Read the rest of this entry

Players With Potentially Expiring Contracts In 2016: Trade Bait, CBA + Payroll Implications

In the last year of the current CBA, there is potentially only one more year to take advantage of a feeble penalty as a first time abuser in 2016. With Boston set to join the Dodgers and Yankees as abusers, I took a look at other teams who should consider the 2016 campaign as a rare gamble to dole out some cash in seeking a World Series trophy before the new CBA is authored in prior to the 2017 season.

In the last year of the current CBA, there is potentially only one more year to take advantage of a feeble penalty as a first time abuser in 2016. With Boston set to join the Dodgers and Yankees as abusers, I took a look at other teams who should consider the 2016 campaign as a rare gamble to dole out some cash in seeking a World Series trophy before the new CBA is authored in prior to the 2017 season.

Hunter Stokes (Chief Writer/Part-Owner) 

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The Boston Red Sox might just be on to something.  They will be penalized for the 1st year of going over the new $189 MIL limit in 2016, but it is also the last year the CBA may have the percentages.

Currently right now, there is a 17.5% penalty for spending dollars over $189 MIL.  The Dodgers and Yankees are the only other teams that are budgeted over the mark in addition to Boston.

On the cusp are the Detroit Tigers, sitting at around $177 MIL – while the Giants and Angels are nearly at $170 MIL.  The Cubs are also near the $165 MIL area.

Why not spend like crazy in 2016 – and take advantage of the system as it is presented towards you? (more…)

Chicago White Sox State Of The Union For 2016

The White Sox should be decisively better in 2016, however to lump them in with the Royals right now for the Division is just not practical yet. However the team could hit on all cylinders and then add players as the year goes on. Chicago only stands to lose four player to Free Agency after 2016 in John Danks, Adam LaRoche, Al Avila and Dioner Navarro. The latter 2 were brought in on one year deals to provide the Catching tandem in 2015.

The White Sox should be decisively better in 2016, however to lump them in with the Royals right now for the Division is just not practical yet. However the team could hit on all cylinders and then add players as the year goes on. Chicago only stands to lose four player to Free Agency after 2016 in John Danks, Adam LaRoche, Al Avila and Dioner Navarro. The latter 2 were brought in on one year deals to provide the Catching tandem in 2015.

Chuck Booth (Owner/Lead  Analyst) 

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Chicago has finally thrown their hat into the ring for the AL Central Race.  They have pulled off a trade to acquire Todd Frazier in as 3 way deal with the Reds and Dodgers.

The end result is they get 2 years from the former Reds, while parting with Trayce Thompson, Frankie Montas and Micah Johnson away from the club. It is a quality versus quantity deal.

This comes on the heels of the club picking up Brett Lawrie for 3 years worth of service for a couple of Minor Leaguers.

Before these deals, the club really only hand secured a tandem of Catchers with Alex Avila and Dioner Navarro for the offense.  Now they have much more depth, and are asserting themselves with one of the better lineups in the AL Central.

If Adam LaRoche can bounce back with his usual 25 HRs and  80 RBI power, you could have 3 Infielders and the Designated Hitter all crack 20+ HRs in the 2016 campaign.

Jose Abreu also stands to benefit with bringing in a hitter like Todd Frazier.  You could see a lineup that goes Adam Eaton, Melky Cabrera, Jose Abreu, Adam LaRoche, Frazier, Lawrie, Avisail Garcia, Avila or Navarro and Tyler Saladino.  This looks a lot lengthier than a few days ago.

By the moves they made, they could also trade LaRoche to another club if they were so inclined.  There is no reason to think the Avila and Navarro couldn’t see some DH action for their roles in the 2016 club. (more…)

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