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Chicago White Sox In Desperate Need Of An Outfielder; Could Jay Bruce Be A Fit?

The Chicago White Sox started the year as one of the hottest teams in baseball, but they are sharply declining. In their last 10 games, they are 3-7 and they now find themselves in third place in the American League Central. If the White Sox want to compete in this very tough division, they are going to need to add an impact bat near the trade deadline.

 

The White Sox are currently ranked 21st overall in run production, and a big part of that is because of their lack of power production. They have hit 49 home runs this year, which ranks as the 24th overall team in Major League Baseball. For that reason, they must trade for a power bat near the deadline to stay afloat in the American League Central.

 

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Odds To Win The 2016 MLB World Series

The Cardinals continued their great play in the MLB since the turn of the millennium - with an MLB best 100 wins in 2015. The organization has transitioned to the next core of a young nucleus, while still holding on to a couple of capable veterans. Considering they have plenty of depth, and lots of payroll flexibility coming forth, the franchise could orchestrate a blockbuster trade soon. While I would favor Chicago over them slightly for the NL Central, the RedBirds, Mets, Dodgers Tigers and Mariners have the best value, while the Angels, Giants, Padres, Red Sox and D'Backs have the worst on the board this week.

The Cardinals continued their great play in the MLB since the turn of the millennium – with an MLB best 100 wins in 2015. The organization has transitioned to the next core of a young nucleus, while still holding on to a couple of capable veterans. Considering they have plenty of depth, and lots of payroll flexibility coming forth, the franchise could orchestrate a blockbuster trade soon. While I would favor Chicago over them slightly for the NL Central, the RedBirds, Mets, Dodgers Tigers and Mariners have the best value, while the Angels, Giants, Padres, Red Sox and D’Backs have the worst on the board this week.

Hunter Stokes (BBBA Featured Writer) 

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I was all set to pounce on my 1st American League bet for the Fall Classic in 2016 earlier this week – when the O’s were at +5000, and presumably bringing both Dexter Fowler and Yovani Gallardo into the stable. 

With Fowler opting back to Chicago, the odd also dropped to +4500 in the meantime (also following the Gallardo wait time for the physical fiasco), and the value is no longer there. 

Baltimore is a low 80 wins team in my view, and will not have enough for the postseason.  Fowler would have added a few W’s for sure.

Of course with the chaos that has ensued,  the Cubs have gone from +700 to +650 prohibitive best odd.  There is no doubt in my mind they should be the consensus favorite. 

One of these years the #1 seed will capitalize and win.  I am still not plunking down cabbage at that clip though.

If I were to do my year end picks right now, I would still have Chicago ending their World Series 108 seasons drought – but I can’t place them as twice the favorite as the St. Louis Cardinals.

Still not sold on the Cubs Bullpen either, and I think Jon Lester can be had in the postseason.  The Mets also line up favorably versus Chicago based on pitching matchups.  New York has the better odds to wager with.

I am currently writing a faceoff piece between the Cubbies and Cards that I will post over the weekend.  The difference is not a whopping 8 or 10 games like FanGraphs and PECOTA say.  St. Louis should still be in the mid 90’s for victories by years end. Read the rest of this entry

Orioles Setting A Dangerous Precedent With Physicals (Circa Gallardo): Fowler Leaves To The Cubs

Dexter Fowler re-signed with the Cubs for a minimum 1 year deal of $15 MIL in 2016 (with a mutual option for 2017) if he or Chicago don't want to opt out after the upcoming season.) Fowler had been said to have a 3 YR/$33 MIL in place with the Orioles before this happened. Maybe Fowler didn't act 100% in good faith with Baltimore - however the O's don't exactly have a great track record with treating players in regards to physicals anyway.

Dexter Fowler re-signed with the Cubs for a minimum 1 year deal of $15 MIL in 2016 (with a mutual option for 2017) if he or Chicago don’t want to opt out after the upcoming season. Fowler had been said to have a 3 YR/$33 MIL in place with the Orioles before this happened. Maybe Fowler didn’t act 100% in good faith with Baltimore – however the O’s don’t exactly have a great track record with treating players in regards to physicals anyway.

Hunter Stokes (BBBA Featured Writer) 

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Wow, didn’t see that coming did you Orioles brass?  Dexter Fowler leaves his deal with you guys and re-signs with his old team in Chicago.

I have to wonder if the way things went down with Yovani Gallardo didn’t weigh on Dexter Fowler’s mind.  The track record for Free Agent’s having deals going south is about a 50/50 proposition with the O’s.

In one way I am disappointed that Baltimore didn’t land Fowler, because I think that deal would have definitely narrowed the gap in the AL East. Read the rest of this entry

The Miami Marlins In 2016: Contenders Or Pretenders?

The Miami Marlins have not had a winning season since finishing 87 - 75 in 2009. With some deft maneuvers and the right allocation of team salary - this club could contend in the NL East with Atlanta and Philadelphia both rebuilding. With a suspect ownership group I am not sure they will be bolster the club any bit.

The Miami Marlins have not had a winning season since finishing 87 – 75 in 2009. With some deft maneuvers and the right allocation of team salary (like the latest Chen signing) – this club could contend in the NL East with Atlanta and Philadelphia both rebuilding. With all questions pointing to how Jeffrey Loria will behave if they were in contention halfway through, it will be an entertaining season.

Hunter Stokes (Featured Writer) 

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The Marlins finally threw down some money on a relevant Free Agent in the past week when they signed LHP Wei-Yin Chen.  The former Oriole received a 5 YR deal worth $80 MIL – that also has a Vesting Option for a 6th year.

Financially speaking, Chen will only earn $14 MIL of that pact in 2016 – thus bringing the Fish to about $77 MIL total team salary to start the campaign.

Miami is one of the middle of the pack teams in the National League – much like the Arizona Diamondbacks are.  These teams should be predicted to be just around .500.  The rest of the clubs should be well north or south of the even record mark. Read the rest of this entry

Milwaukee Brewers State Of The Union For 2016

New Milwaukee GM David Kearns has his hands full trying to compete in the NL Central for the next several seasons. Really the club should be starting a full scale rebuild that includes trading Ryan Braun. Jonathan Lucroy and potentially Wily Peralta. With dealing with the Cubs, Cards and Bucs all in the NL Central, expect a 100 loss season coming forth for the club.

New Milwaukee GM David Stearns has his hands full trying to compete in the NL Central for the next several seasons. Really the club should be starting a full scale rebuild that includes trading Ryan Braun. Jonathan Lucroy and potentially Wily Peralta. With dealing with the Cubs, Cards and Bucs all in the NL Central, expect a 100 loss season coming forth for the club.

Hunter Stokes (Chief Writer) 

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The Milwaukee Brewers owner just sent out an open letter to all of the fans explaining to them his gratitude, and promised that the organization is committed to winning long term.  I liked his candor, but it will be some time before this team has many victory laps.

The NL Central has turned into a fierce 3 club race, with the Reds and Brewers being left in the dust.  Cincinnati has already thrown the white flag this week in trading Todd Frazier and now potentially Brandon Phillips.  They would have already traded Aroldis Chapman as well if it weren’t for a domestic dispute.

The time to rebuild for the club is now.  I would think the club should also entertain trade talks with Ryan Braun and Jonathon Lucroy over the next 6 – 8 months. 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…)

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