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Matthew Pouliot

  1. Red Sox, Bay shelve talks… again

    Jul 17, 2009, 6:51 PM EDT

    Boston’s contract talks with free-agent-to-be Jason Bay have ended, one week after the Red Sox made a new offer to their left fielder. The decision was termed mutual, and Bay still seems to want to settle in Boston: “I’d still love to get something done here,” Bay told the Boston Globe. “I like it here.…

  2. What we're watching – Lincecum vs. Pirates

    Jul 17, 2009, 4:13 PM EDT

    – Tim Lincecum will make his start Friday on two days’ rest after throwing 35 pitches in the All-Star Game. He’ll be facing the Pirates for the second time in his career after losing to them when he gave up six runs in six innings on Aug. 11, 2007. He’s made 57 starts since and…

  3. With Bruce out, it's time for Reds to sell

    Jul 16, 2009, 5:06 PM EDT

    The situation hardly seemed rosy a week ago. While the standings said the NL Central title was still very much in reach, the Reds mostly sported a lineup with just two above average regulars and a rotation that seemed to be fading quickly after such a promising start. Trades for outfielders or a third baseman…

  4. Any takers for Boston's Lugo?

    Jul 16, 2009, 4:30 PM EDT

    The day has been approaching for some time, and FOXSports’ Ken Rosenthal is now claiming that the Red Sox are trying “desperately” to move Julio Lugo, who is in the third year of a four-year, $36 million contract. Boston’s reasoning is obvious: Jed Lowrie is ready to return from wrist surgery, and Nick Green has…

  5. Midseason NL Most Valuable Player

    Jul 15, 2009, 7:01 PM EDT

    Fortunately, this one is going to be a lot easier to figure out than the AL ballot. Let’s start with the NL’s top position players according to VORP: 1. Albert Pujols – 62.62. Hanley Ramirez – 46.63. Chase Utley – 46.04. Prince Fielder – 43.45. Pablo Sandoval – 37.86. Raul Ibanez – 34.07. Ryan Braun…

  6. Midseason AL Most Valuable Player

    Jul 15, 2009, 4:29 PM EDT

    I went with Zack Greinke as AL MVP one-third of the way through the season, but he’s fallen back to the pack by posting a 3.97 ERA since the beginning of June. The focus will return to the position players this time around. Here’s the top 16, according to VORP: 1. Joe Mauer – 46.22.…

  7. Who wants some?

    Jul 15, 2009, 4:01 PM EDT

    As mentioned a few weeks ago, I participate in a fantasy contest over at ESPN, named Baseball Challenge. The game gets broken up into first- and second-half segments, so if you want to join in the fun, I’ve created a public group called “Circling the Bases.” You can join the group anytime, but if you…

  8. Midseason AL Cy Young Award

    Jul 14, 2009, 6:34 PM EDT

    It was the easiest call of all of the awards when we looked back one-third of the way through the year, but things have tightened up a bit since, as Zack Greinke is no longer sporting a 1.10 ERA. Here’s the top 10 in ERA: 1. Zack Greinke – 2.12 ERA in 127 1/3 IP2.…

  9. Midseason NL Rookie of the Year

    Jul 14, 2009, 5:00 PM EDT

    The NL Rookie of the Year race has changed little since we checked in one-third of the way through the season. Randy Wells and J.A. Happ were neck-and-neck then, and I gave the nod to Wells, even though I expected more from Happ the rest of the way. At least a few hitters have started…

  10. All-Star Game live blog tonight

    Jul 14, 2009, 1:48 PM EDT

    Just a quick note: I’ll be doing a live blog tonight during the game. Questions and comments will be welcome.

  11. Midseason NL Cy Young Award

    Jul 13, 2009, 6:14 PM EDT

    This was a difficult call one third of the way through the season, when I went with a top three of Dan Haren, Chad Billingsley and Johnny Cueto, and not a whole lot easier now. First, here’s the top 10 in ERA. 1. Dan Haren – 2.01 ERA in 130 IP2. Tim Lincecum – 2.33…

  12. Midseason Awards: AL Rookie of the Year

    Jul 13, 2009, 4:22 PM EDT

    The AL ROY class looks a little stronger now than it did a third of the way through the season, when I had Rick Porcello edging out Elvis Andrus for the top spot, but it’s all because of the pitchers. The rookie position players have been a truly dreadful lot. According to VORP, not one…

  13. All-Star Futures Game preview

    Jul 11, 2009, 2:57 PM EDT

    Unfortunately, the All-Star Futures Game, while a great idea, still hasn’t really caught on as an event because of MLB’s insistence on playing it while all of the major league games are going on the Sunday afternoon before the All-Star Game. On the plus side, at least they treated it like a real game for…

  14. Division rivals make challenge trade: Church for Francoeur

    Jul 10, 2009, 6:41 PM EDT

    Now this one was positive stunning. One-for-one trades involving established players at the same positions are unusual enough. To see division rivals making such a deal in the middle of the season when they’re separated in the standing by a half-game makes this one of the most unusual trades in memory. This seems like a…

  15. Royals add to collection of terrible shortstops by acquiring Betancourt

    Jul 10, 2009, 4:57 PM EDT

    Two and a half years later, the Royals finally got their man. It’s believed that they offered Billy Butler to the Mariners for Yuniesky Betancourt after a 2006 season in which Betancourt, then 25, hit .289/.310/.403 in his first full year as a big leaguer. The Mariners saw Betancourt as a future Gold Glover who…

  16. What we're watching – Joba takes on the Halos

    Jul 10, 2009, 4:27 PM EDT

    – A pair of surging seven-game winners will face off with the White Sox in Minnesota tonight. John Danks has pitched seven scoreless innings in back-to-back victories and has a 1.51 ERA over his last five starts. Nick Blackburn is coming off his third complete game of the season, a 6-2 win over the Tigers.…

  17. What we're watching: Rangers run up against King Felix

    Jul 9, 2009, 4:39 PM EDT

    – Felix Hernandez will attempt to cool off the Rangers, who have won seven of their last eight games and have gone 5-0 against the Mariners this season. He’s 4-9 with a 4.35 ERA lifetime against Texas, but he did pitch seven scoreless innings in a no-decision versus the Rangers back on May 14. The…

  18. Jays release Ryan, eat $15 million

    Jul 8, 2009, 4:45 PM EDT

    Even though there was no financial incentive for doing so, the Jays opted to release former closer B.J. Ryan on Wednesday. The move comes after Ryan gave up three runs in two-thirds of an inning against the Yankees on Sunday. It was the only appearance he had made this month. While his stuff still hadn’t…

  19. What we're watching – Ollie rejoins the Mets

    Jul 8, 2009, 4:22 PM EDT

    – Oliver Perez makes his much-anticipated return to the rotation versus the Dodgers. Of course, most of the anticipation comes from National League hitters, rather than Mets fans. Perez had a 9.97 ERA in five starts before the Mets shelved him for nine weeks with a knee injury. The left-hander had a 3.12 ERA in…

  20. White Sox pick up reliever Pena from Diamondbacks

    Jul 7, 2009, 8:42 PM EDT

    So much for that idea of Brandon Allen being sent to the Blue Jays in a Roy Halladay trade. The White Sox just used him to bolster their bullpen with the acquisition of Tony Pena from the Diamondbacks. Pena, once known as Adriano Rosario, was considered a future closer for Arizona when he debuted in…

  21. Friday's quick hits – Sheets doubtful for 2009

    Jul 3, 2009, 5:27 PM EDT

    – According to ESPN.com’s Jayson Stark, teams interested in free agent Ben Sheets have learned that he won’t be ready to pitch this year after surgery to repair a torn flexor tendon. When Sheets had the procedure in Feburary, the hope was that he’d be ready to pitch in August. However, he obviously isn’t progressing…

  22. Royals ban blogger Jazayerli

    Jul 2, 2009, 6:33 PM EDT

    Evidently, I picked the wrong target last week in suggesting that the Royals fire general manager Dayton Moore. If I wanted attention, I should have instead recommended the dismissal of trainer Nick Swartz. That’s what Baseball Prospectus writer and huge Royals fan Rany Jazayerli did recently. As a result, he’s been banned by the team:…

  23. Stick a fork in 'em – The 2009 Diamondbacks

    Jul 2, 2009, 5:35 PM EDT

    While they have a slightly better record than the Indians, the Diamondbacks are the second team we’re declaring dead for 2009. Wednesday’s loss dropped them 18 1/2 games back in the NL West. Even the lowly Nationals, the recipient of the first fork of the year, are a mere 17 1/2 games in the NL…

  24. Wednesday's Quick Hits – Get ready for two more All-Stars

    Jul 1, 2009, 5:23 PM EDT

    – MLB announced Wednesday that it has expanded All-Star rosters to add 13th pitcher. Because who could reasonably be expected to get by with 12? From now on each All-Star team will have 33 players, including 13 pitchers. Obviously, the decision is a response to what happened last year, when George Sherrill was asked to…

  25. Home runs, steals still up through three months

    Jul 1, 2009, 4:45 PM EDT

    With June in the books, I wanted to again check out the league-wide scoring trends. All stats courtesy of the wonderful Baseball Reference, of course. It seems like even the dimmest announcers are coming to grips with the fact that home runs aren’t truly down this year, but the spike we saw in April does…

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