Mostrando entradas con la etiqueta Pelota. Mostrar todas las entradas
Mostrando entradas con la etiqueta Pelota. Mostrar todas las entradas

domingo, septiembre 28, 2014

Derek Jeter's final at-bat

So he retires with 3,465 career hits and 1,311 career runs batted in. Special moment there at Fenway Park.

jueves, abril 24, 2014

Five Ways to Cheat at Baseball Without Using Steroids

Give Michael Pineda of the New York Yankees credit for this much: He cheated the old-fashioned way.
The nervy Pineda was caught Wednesday night with an obvious smear of sticky pine tar on his neck — meant, he said, to get a better grip on the ball on a cold night in Boston. It was Pineda’s second offense in the first month of the season.
So, hey, who needs steroids? Creative ways to cheat are as old as the game itself. Here are five examples — some simply slippery, others more elaborate, and at least one that reads like something out of “Mission: Impossible.”

Master of the Spitball

Gaylord Perry was well-known for slicking up the ball to make it dive and curl. You name it, he used it: Vaseline, hair tonic, his own spit.
His reputation was so established that Perry used it to mess with hitters’ minds.
Before every pitch, even the legal ones, he went through such a series of contortions —running his fingers along the inside of his cap, behind his ears, down his sleeves — that he looked more like a sleight-of-hand magician or a mime than a pitcher.
Gene Mauch, the legendary manager, once said of Perry that if he was ever elected to the Hall of Fame, he should be enshrined “with a tube of K-Y jelly attached to his plaque.”
Perry got the last laugh. He won 314 games — and did indeed go to Cooperstown.

The Corked Bat Caper

The irascible Cleveland Indians slugger Albert Belle had his bat confiscated on July 15, 1994, when the manager of the Chicago White Sox raised the possibility that it was corked.
Corking a bat — hollowing out the business end and replacing the wood with material like cork or even ground-up superballs — makes the bat lighter and thus the hitter’s swing quicker.
The accepted wisdom that it helps the ball travel farther has been questioned by physics experts. But no matter: What happened next in that 1994 game is what elevates the Belle story from time-honored cheating to slapstick hilarity.

First base umpire Joe Brinkman, left, and home plate umpire Dave Phillips inspect a bat confiscated from Cleveland Indians' Albert Belle so it could be checked for cork during a game against the Chicago White Sox in Chicago in 1994.

The bat in question went to the umpires’ room. Then one of Belle’s teammates, pitcher Jason Grimsley, wriggled through an air duct, dropped down from the ceiling, took the Belle bat and replaced it with a legal one.
This was not exactly James Bond-level spycraft. The replacement bat had another player’s name on it. Belle served a seven-game suspension.

The Even More Famous Pine Tar Episode

Say the words “pine tar” or the name “George Brett” to baseball fans, and they think of the greatest thermonuclear meltdown in the history of the game.
On July 24, 1983, with his Kansas City Royals down 4-3 to the New York Yankees with two men out in the ninth inning, Brett hit a home run against Goose Gossage, putting the Royals ahead 5-4.
Billy Martin, the Yankees manager, who elevated paranoia to an art form, called for an inspection of the bat. Using home plate as a ruler, the home plate umpire, Tim McClelland, found that Brett had pine tar too far up the handle.
Pine tar helps hitters grip the bat, and Rule 1.10(c) specifies that it can’t go farther up the bat than 18 inches. Brett was called out. Final score: Yankees 4, Royals 3.
The memorable part came next: Brett charged out of the dugout in a vein-popping, expletive-peppered, arm-flailing fit of rage.
But Brett had been busted on a technicality. The reason for the 18-inch rule wasn’t an unfair advantage for the hitter — it was that pine tar was getting on too many batted balls and ruining them.
The Royals filed a protest, and the American League president found that Brett had violated the letter, but not the spirit, of the law. He reinstated the home run and ordered Brett ejected for the outburst.
The game was resumed 25 days later. The Yankees offered free admission to anyone who was there the first game. They went quietly in the bottom of the ninth. Final score: Royals 5, Yankees 4.

Where Did That Come From?

On Aug. 3, 1987, Joe Niekro was on the mound for the Minnesota Twins and threw a slider that knifed through the air so fiercely that it looked suspicious to the home plate umpire, Tim Tschida.
He went out to the mound and ordered Niekro to empty his pockets. Niekro turned them inside out. As he raised his arms — nothing to see here — a small object fluttered out and fell to the ground.
It was an emery board, perfect for scuffing a ball and changing its aerodynamics. Niekro had a plausible explanation: He threw a knuckleball, and knuckleballers need to keep their nails precisely manicured to throw the pitch with precision.
Nobody bought it. In any event, Niekro was found to have sandpaper, too. He wasn’t running a nail salon. The league president suspended him for 10 games. Niekro got a gig on Letterman out of it.
“The guy was so blatant,” second base umpire Steve Palermo told Sports Illustrated at the time, “it was like a guy walking down the street carrying a bottle of booze during Prohibition.”

Grand Theft

The 1951 New York Giants have a special place in baseball history: They won the deciding game of a playoff against the Brooklyn Dodgers on a walkoff home run by Bobby Thomson.
It is known as the Shot Heard ’Round the World and is arguably the greatest home run in history. But there was more to the story.
Fifty years later, Joshua Prager, a reporter for the Wall Street Journal, uncovered an elaborate scheme:
The Giants had set up a telescope in the clubhouse beyond center field and stationed a coach there to intercept the signs flashed by the opposing catcher to signal what the next pitch would be.
An electrician set up a buzzer, enabling the Giants to relay the signs to the bullpen — one buzz for a fastball, say — and from there they could be relayed to the hitter. The relay code was as simple as crossed or uncrossed legs.
Prager detailed the scheme in a 2006 book, “The Echoing Green.”

Thomson Durocher Stoneham 
Bobby Thomson of the New York Giants is hugged by Giants owner Horace Stoneham, left, and manager Leo Durocher in the dressing room after their championship playoff victory over the Brooklyn Dodgers at the Polo Grounds in New York. Thomson's ninth-inning homer gave the Giants a 5-4 victory and a trip to the World Series.

It is impossible to know how much the trick helped the Giants erase a 13-game deficit that summer and pull even with the Dodgers, setting up the playoffs. As for Thomson and his home run: Did he know what pitch was coming?
“I’d have to say more no than yes,” Thomson mysteriously told The Journal in 2001. “I don’t like to think of something taking away from it.”
but don't forget sammy sosa with his corked bat:

sábado, abril 19, 2014

What happens when a 90-mph ball hits your face

This is pretty unbelievable.
Astros prospect Delino DeShields, Jr. was hit in the face by a fastball last night while playing with Double-A Corpus Christi. He was taken to a hospital, where Brian McTaggart of reports that he was diagnosed with a fractured cheek bone. Double-A Corpus Christi manager Keith Bodie said it’s going to be a “very uncomfortable road back.”
DeShields took a picture of his injury and sent it to a friend, who decided to share it with the world on Twitter. I’m warning you, this is pretty scary-looking:

lunes, marzo 17, 2014

He's 17. He Throws 98. And He Wants to Pitch for the Dodgers Before He Can Legally Vote

Most seventeen-year-old ball players worry about whether they will make the varsity nine or not. Julio Urias strives to start on the Los Angeles Dodgers.

The Mexican teenager threw nine strikes in fourteen pitches in the first inning of a split-squad Dodgers victory over the San Diego Padres yesterday. Urias struck out two batters on route to a perfect inning. He allegedly clocks in at 98 miles-per-hour.
The Dodgers signed Urias on his sixteenth birthday. Unfortunately, most of his $450,000 sweet-sixteen present went to the Mexican club that had employed him. Urias compiled a 2-0 record with a 2.48 earned-run average in single-A ball last season. Baseball Prospectus ranks him at 35 among MLB wannabes. Urias expects to pitch in the big leagues in 2014. The Dodgers, who limited his innings to 54 1/3 last season, may have other ideas.
Stats nerds, of which baseball boasts many, go back a half century to find a pitcher so young entering a major league game. On his eighteenth birthday, Larry Dierker struck out Willie Mays in his first appearance in the majors. How long ago was that? He played for the Houston Colt .45s. 
Just how young is the Dodger phenom? I would consult with Beloit College's famous Mindset List but he's too young for their latest entry for the class of 2017. Kerri Strug won Olympic gold, the Boston Garden had hosted its last sporting event, O.J. took his ride in the white Bronco, and baseball endured its last labor stoppage all before Urias entered into our world. As the Mindset List says of college freshman a year older, "Their parents' car CD player is soooooo ancient and embarrassing," "Captain Janeway has always taken the USS Voyager where no woman or man has ever gone before," "They have known only two presidents," and "they may well have seen Chicken Run but probably never got chicken pox."
Jamey Wright may want to keep all that in mind before he enters into a conversation with Urias. Should the seventeen-year-old pitch for the Dodgers this season, he might find a fatherly influence in fellow pitcher Wright. One month before Urias's birth, Wright made his major-league debut for the Colorado Rockies. Wright allowed just one run in six innings pitched. He didn't earn his first win until later that month when he lasted seven innings against the Giants. Eighteen days later, Julio Urias was born.
Fernando Valenzuela, still precariously clinging to a pitching career at the time of Urias's birth, made his first start in Dodger blue as a teenager. In his 1981 rookie season, he helped the Dodgers defeat the New York Yankees in the World Series. So, the Los Angeles Times naturally reached out to the retired Mexican pitcher to get his sense of the fledgling Mexican pitcher. "It's hard to say we're the same," Valenzuela told the Los Angeles Times. "I don't even remember what I was like at that age. But I can tell you he's a gamer. He likes to pitch. That's the main thing. He likes the game, he likes to challenge the hitters."
The Times naturally asked Urias about Venezuela, too. Did his father tell him about Fernando? "My grandfather did."
Jeff Reese

martes, febrero 25, 2014

Jose Dariel Abreu's work ethic stands out

Jose Abreu
AP Photo/Paul Sancya
GLENDALE, Ariz. -- The news of Jose Abreu's six-year, $68 million contract with the Chicago White Sox sparked the inevitable comparisons from baseball writers and scouts looking for insights on the type of player he is and ultimately can be in the major leagues.

Latin American talent evaluators observed that Abreu has more raw power and significantly less athleticism and speed than fellow Cubans Yoenis Cespedes and Yasiel Puig. Some scouts and journalists brought up Ryan Howard, Mike Piazza, Kendrys Morales or White Sox outfielder (and fellow Cuban) Dayan Viciedo as players with similar attributes, while Cespedes created a stir when he mentioned Abreu in the same breath with Miguel Cabrera.
No one really knows where Abreu will fall in that talent spectrum. But if you judge a man by his handiwork before the game begins, Miami Marlins outfielder Giancarlo Stanton might be the most telling comparable.

Abreu, 27, possesses what one scout calls "monster power," so it stands to reason that his batting practice sessions should be replete with tales of smashed car windows and disrupted cloud formations. It would be understandable if he wanted to make a big first impression with his new coaches and teammates and fell victim to the temptation to grip it, rip it and send baseballs to regions where they're tiny specks.

Yet a different picture is emerging early in White Sox camp. When his fellow White Sox watch Abreu in action, they see a diligent, focused, incredibly disciplined hitter. He's similar in that respect to Stanton, who concentrates more on hitting the ball to the opposite field than unleashing his inner Jose Canseco in batting practice and feeding the "wow" factor.

"For me, it's just a professional batting practice," White Sox manager Robin Ventura said. "He's not trying to overwhelm you with hitting homers on every pitch. He moves it around. He's always hitting it on the barrel. He's just very consistent about what he does and understanding what it takes. He's not out there to showcase anything. He's just preparing to be as good as he can be."

Mixed opinions

Although countrymen Puig and Cespedes helped pave the way for Abreu's big payday with their splashy debuts, Abreu brought some big-time credentials from Cuba. He flirted with two Triple Crowns while posting cartoonish numbers in Cuba's Serie Nacional, and hit .360 with three homers and nine RBIs in six games during the World Baseball Classic last March. When Abreu scheduled a workout for teams in the Dominican Republic in September, it was considered must-see viewing in MLB front offices.

Nevertheless, some scouts who watched Abreu in international tournaments slotted him in as more of a .260, 25-30 homer type than a world-beating slugger. The skeptical take: He's a "slider speed bat" guy who will wear out back-of-the-rotation starters, but will have trouble against the Max Scherzers and Justin Verlanders of the world.

Those assessments elicit a chuckle from Ventura, for obvious reasons. Who doesn't have trouble with Max Scherzer and Justin Verlander?

"You hear stuff like, 'You can jam him,'" Ventura said. "Well, I hope so. Usually the really good hitters get jammed, because they're staying through the ball and not flying open."

If Abreu struggles with the adjustment to the big leagues, it won't be for lack of preparation. The consensus in camp is that he has spent more time in the cage than any hitter on the Chicago roster this spring. Abreu arrives early in the morning, and lingers after everyone is gone to either reinforce good habits or iron out the kinks when his swing doesn't feel right. Amid the sweat and the calluses, he finds comfort in his routine.
More on ESPN >>

miércoles, febrero 12, 2014

Derek Jeter to retire after the 2014 season

Simultaneously surprising and not surprising: Derek Jeter has announced that 2014 will be his last season.
Surprising because it’s going to be hard to imagine baseball without Derek Jeter’s presence. His injuries last season aside, the New York Yankees shortstop has been baseball’s constant for nearly 20 years.  Not surprising because he turns 40 in June and that’s a couple of years beyond even the greatest, longest-lived and most durable shortstops in the game.  He sounds like he’ll be ready for the upcoming season, but there cannot be too much more gas left in the tank.
As it stands entering his final year, Jeter has five World Series rings, five gold gloves and 3,316 hits and a career line of .312/.381/.446. He punched his first-ballot ticket to the Hall of Fame years ago. Now he’s playing for the right to go out healthy, on his own terms and, if things break right for the Yankees, a winner.
Prepare for six months of “Let’s win one more for the Captain.” And a lot of retirement gifts.
Here is Jeter’s announcement, as posted on his Facebook page

lunes, enero 13, 2014


selig sordo
Por Andrés Pascual
Hay animadversión prefabricada contra Alex Rodríguez por los cronistas que lo encumbraron; tal vez porque el tipo los hizo quedar mal ante el público lector, se han dedicado a crear estados de opinión para cambiar ciertas cosas o ciertos nombres.
Alex Rodríguez recibió ayer una andanada de upper-cuts al plexo de parte de Johnny Damon, quien dijo que “ahora el trofeo de ganadores de la Serie Mundial del 2009 se verá manchado”, pero no habló del Boston-2004, que tuvo dos “cheaters” que reventaron la bola ese año, Manny Ramírez y David Ortiz; según consta, en el 2003 “dieron positivo” y nadie está a la disposición de creer tontamente que solo ese año, porque Manny no paró de consumir y “lo trabaron en el brinco” con los Dodgers.
manny y ortiz
Pero es a la prensa a quien más le duele el fracaso del hombre que, según muchos cronistas americanos, “estaría en Cooperstown UN METRO más arriba que Ruth”.
Hoy leí un material que se las trae “¿Será Alex Rodríguez el 1er villano del beisbol?” bueno, eso quisieran, por lo que pudieran “estar trabajándolo” como lo peor moralmente nacido para el juego jamás.
El defecto conceptual es que resultaría una dulce venganza contra quien echó por tierra su carrera y perderá el dinero que ganó con abogados, que le van a quitar hasta los calzoncillos, más el que no va a cobrar cuando inicie el cumplimiento de la sanción como retribución a los Yankees, porque no los ayudó a ganar con batazos decisivos más que por cualquier agresión a la moral del club.
A fin de cuentas, los neoyorquinos no son el tipo de franquicia a la que se le puede ofender con facilidad por lo que representan para el beisbol: contra los Yankees, como contra el Imperio Británico, la culpa nunca es de la institución y ¡Mucho cuidado, que intentar cosas feas cuesta bastante, contra ambos!
yankees logo
El primer villano del beisbol de hoy no juega pelota, incluso no es de carne y hueso, sino una figura política: el liberalismo izquierdista influyente en todo, expandido, oficializado y radicalizado judicialmente desde los últimos 5 años ¡He ahí la principal corriente corruptora no solo del beisbol, por el desenfreno y el relajo socio-político que ha generado desde antes de Ronald Reagan! que ha dado al traste con el cambio estructural del país en cuanto a la destrucción de los valores morales necesarios para mantener el orden tradicional.
De carne y hueso Selig (que parece que creó este torbellino del Biogénesis para quitarle de arriba a los Yankees a un jugador que no decide en el terreno, pero gana lo que ni el Aga Kahn con lo de “su peso en oro”), Marvin Miller, Orza, las oficinas de los clubes, los jugadores que se dejaron manipular cuando creyeron la casi promesa “silenciosa” de que sería aceptado su delito eternamente; traicionados cuando los verdaderos responsables enseñaron otra vez sus caras hipócritas, justificándose con el débil compromiso hacia el público a que dicen haber llegado, es decir, hacia la decencia, tratando desvergonzadamente de restituir el respeto violado por ellos mismos que más nunca se podrá, por la duda histórica que recae sobre un período superior a 20 años de todos los jugadores de esta era.
Y Barry Bonds, que lo etiquetaron como lo mejor nunca visto, que ofendió al Bambino cuando ya este no era el dueño del récord de jonrones, sino alguien de su color, Hank Aaron, que también utilizó anfetaminas durante los 60’s, lo dijo y lo esconden a propósito estos amanuenses del deporte nacional americano.
bonds flaco y esteroirizado
Todavía Ruth es el récord de cuadrangulares, no por la cantidad, sino porque tiene el mejor  promedio por veces al bate y, sobre todo, porque, en el caso de este jugador, lo que importa es el nombre, no el guarismo: BABE RUTH SIGNIFICA EL BEISBOL.
ruth y bush
Al liberalismo, germen pernicioso de la sociedad americana, se le debe culpar como el villano principal en todos los acontecimientos que han pisoteado la imagen del beisbol moderno, al extremo de desacreditarlo de su función principal: influir en niños y jóvenes con la autoridad moral necesaria para construir una sociedad sana de hombres dispuestos a hacer el bien y… a defenderla.

miércoles, diciembre 25, 2013

Liván Hernández pone en subasta sus trofeos
El ex estelar pelotero cubano de Grandes ligas, Liván Hernández, ha puesto en subasta varios de sus premios, trofeos, anillos y pelotas, obtenidos como jugador en la Gran Carpa, por un monto cercano a los 40 mil dólares, según publica el sitio digital

Hernández expone su anillo de campeón de 1997 con los Marlins de Florida por 7,320.50 dólares, así como la primera bola lanzada por los Nacionales de Washington en su nueva época a 5 mil. Otros trofeos más están a subasta, y aunque su límite es el 10 de enero, ya presenta contendientes que están ofreciendo cifras muy superiores a las que se han impuesto como salida.

Liván había informado un tiempo atrás que intentaba colocarse como empleado de grandes ligas como funcionario de esa organización. Hernández escapó de la isla en un viaje de entrenamiento a México, en 1996, y un año más tarde hacía ganar a los Marlins la corona en la Serie Mundial y se agenció el título de Jugador más valioso.

El trofeo como Jugador más Valioso (MVP) de la serie de 1997 está en venta por un valor de 5, 500 dólares.

martes, octubre 22, 2013

Yasiel Puig 2.0: What to Expect from Dodgers' Absurdly Talented Phenom in 2014

Courtesy of Andrés Pascual
By Zachary D. Rymer (MLB Lead Writer) on October 21, 2013

Stephen Dunn/Getty Images

Vin Scully, the legendary announcer of the Los Angeles Dodgers, refers to Yasiel Puig as "the Wild Horse." As far as nicknames go, it was the perfect one for Puig in 2013.
Puig is indeed a powerful, majestic creature. Hence the "horse." But in his rookie season, he basically lived by his own rules. Hence the "wild."
But what about in 2014? Will Puig still be a wild horse, or will he be too refined for that nickname to make sense? Will he stay the same, or will he change?
Puig shouldn't want to change too much. When one hits .319/.391/.534 in one's first full regular season and .333/.366/.410 in one's first postseason, one should be focused on keeping things the same more than on undergoing a complete overhaul.
Nonetheless, 2014 Puig should be a different player than 2013 Puig in several different respects—and a different all-around player as a result.
Let's break it down.
Puig at the Plate

Getty Images
If there's one thing that defined Puig's approach at the plate in 2013, it was his aggressiveness. 
Puig saw only 3.57 pitches per plate appearance, according to, a low number by today's standards. One reason for that was Puig's tendency to swing at the first pitch. Whereas the rest of the league swung at the first pitch only 27 percent of the time, Puig swung at the first pitch 43 percent of the time.
Ordinarily, this is finger-wagging time. Swinging at the first pitch generally isn't the best idea, as the odds of success are usually in the pitcher's favor. And of all the things batters can do, there's nothing worse than giving a pitcher an easy one-pitch out.
But some players are special. Puig, as it happens, is very special.
Puig hit .551 with a 1.072 slugging percentage when he swung at the first pitch in 2013. Per, his 1.642 OPS when swinging at the first pitch was the best in the league.
The amazing part is that it's not like he was just crushing first-pitch fastballs. He was crushing first-pitch everythings, as these numbers from Brooks Baseball can vouch:

Yasiel Puig on the First Pitch
Brooks Baseball
If Puig was only crushing first-pitch fastballs, the writing on the wall would be instructing pitchers to pitch Puig backwards. For Puig, that would mean spending the winter preparing for that to happen.
But since this isn't the case, don't be surprised when Puig continues his habit of being a first-pitch hacker in 2014. He's proven he can be monstrously successful at it against all types of pitches, so more power to him.
Courtesy of MLB Advanced Media via
One offseason project Puig should be interested in, however, is preparing for Uncle Charles.
You can see in the above table that Puig did fine against first-pitch sliders, and that's part of a larger trend. He hit sliders to the tune of a .323 average and a .333 ISO, clubbing 10 of his 19 homers against sliders. Eight of those came against right-handed pitchers, meaning he was dangerous against a pitch that might be the biggest weapon for right-handed pitchers against right-handed batters. 
But curveballs? Puig liked those about as much as Pedro Cerrano.
If you look up Puig's pitch values on FanGraphs, one thing you notice is that he generated exactly zero runs above average against curveballs in 2013. And if we use Brooks Baseball to take a closer look, we notice that he was particularly out of his league against two-strike curves:

Yasie Puig vs. Curveballs
SplitSeenSwing %Whiff/Swing %HRBABIP
Two-Strike Counts4564.4441.380.125
Brooks Baseball
Puig did a good job of laying off curveballs in most counts, but not with two strikes. It's therefore not good that he wasn't able to make contact with them as well as he did in other counts and not the least bit surprising that he wasn't able to do anything with the ones he did make contact with.
This, mind you, is but a primary symptom of a larger problem: Puig was not a good two-strike hitter in his rookie season.
Puig had just a .509 OPS in two-strike counts, according to The league average was .514, so Puig wasn't even average when he had two strikes on him.
Part of the problem was that Puig was predictable. As his zone profile over at Brooks Baseball can show, pitchers loved to throw Puig breaking and off-speed junk off the outside corner, and he couldn't do anything with these pitches when he decided to swing.
If there's a bright side, however, it's that Puig did a better job laying off this junk in August and September than he did in June and July.
That he was able to make a midseason adjustment to what the scouting reports were telling pitchers to do suggests pretty clearly that the Wild Horse isn't a brainless horse. Ben Lindbergh of Baseball Prospectus noticed as much in early August when he noted that Puig had begun to adjust to adjustments pitchers had begun making to him, and this is a case where the numbers fit the narrative.

Courtesy of MLB Advanced Media via
In Puig's debut month of June, he had a 1.180 OPS. In July, his OPS regressed to .789, and he struck out in nearly 30 percent of his plate appearance. But then in his next 49 games, Puig posted an .897 OPS and struck out in only about 20 percent of his plate appearances. That covers the period when he was better at laying off the junk pitchers were throwing him off the outside corner with two strikes.
So in looking forward to Puig's hitting in 2013, you can expect to see one thing stay the same and a couple things change.
The thing that will stay the same is Puig's aggressiveness, particularly on the first pitch. It worked for Puig because he proved capable of hitting all sorts of first pitches. Since pitching backwards isn't a clear option, pitchers don't have a clear avenue to pursue in this case. That works in Puig's favor.
As for what will change, expect Puig to fare better against curveballs. That's an area where simple experience could help the most, as Mike Trout told me recently that having a year in the big leagues "definitely" helped him improve his own production against curveballs in his second season.
Then there's Puig's two-strike approach. The latter end of the regular season saw him adjust to what pitchers liked to do with him in two-strike counts. If he's smart—and he's indicated that he is—he'll continue to work on the adjustment he made and become a better two-strike hitter.
It's a bit much to expect Puig to win a batting title or lead the league in on-base percentage in 2014, as he's not going to be able to go from being the Wild Horse to being Joey Votto or Miguel Cabrera in one offseason. He's also due for a BABIP regression after posting a .383 BABIP in 2013.
But after achieving a .925 OPS on raw talent in 2013, an OPS in that same neighborhood in 2014 is fair game if he does what must be done.
That takes care of what Puig has to do at the plate. Goodness knows, however, that the plate isn't the only area of concern with him.
Puig in the Field
If you buy into the defensive metrics, Puig was a very good defensive outfielder as a rookie.
Per FanGraphs, Puig posted a 9.7 UZR/150 in 2013. Among right fielders with at least 700 innings in the field, that was good for sixth in between Jay Bruce and Jose Bautista.
Fielding Bible metrics also approved of Puig's defense. He tallied 10 defensive runs saved (DRS) in 2013, good for seventh among right fielders.
We just don't tend to think of Puig as a very good outfielder, however, because...Well, because of stuff like what happened in Game 6 of the National League Championship Series:
Courtesy of MLB Advanced Media via
That's some lowlight reel. It contains a halfhearted throw that had no chance of getting the runner at home and allowed a runner to advance, another poor throw that went way over the catcher's head and allowed two runners to advance and a misplay that resulted in a runner going to second when first might have been the extent of his journey.
That last misplay was Puig's second such misplay in as many games, as he also turned what could have been an out off the bat of Matt Holliday into a double in Game 5.
It's plays like these that drove all of us crazy when watching Puig, and they did indeed happen too often.
The good news, however, is that Puig's throwing problem is really a "problem," per se. It's merely something that can be improved.
It's not a problem because Puig's arm did more good than harm in 2013. He tallied eight outfield assists, and he saved more runs above average with his arm than all but five other right fielders.
That's as good an indication that Puig shouldn't want to completely overhaul his approach to throwing, as his arm strength is a weapon that's going to come in handy a lot over a full season.
However, Puig must get better about picking his spots. Poor decisions with his throwing did cost the Dodgers on occasion in 2013. Poor decisions are likely to bite the Dodgers even more in 2014, as the scouting report on Puig's arm being out is likely to result in fewer baserunners giving him a chance to unleash his arm. Him nabbing baserunners will have to be the result of smart thinking more so than sheer arm strength.
Courtesy of MLB Advanced Media via
Assuming he's willing to respond to their efforts, this is an area where the Dodgers can help Puig. They can work with him on being better about reading situations as they're unfolding, which in turn will give him a better understanding of when to unleash his arm and when to holster it. 
How exactly will Puig get better with his throwing? Look at it this way: Since his M.O. in 2013 was basically to be aggressive with his throwing 100 percent of the time, the only way to go is up.
Where things are less hopeful is in the department of misplays. For unlike with his throwing, there was no way Puig could do more good than harm when it came to misplays.
Puig officially made three fielding errors all season, but these played a part in him finishing third from the bottom among right fielders in error runs above average. That's bearing in mind that not every single one of his misplays was charged as an error. The Holliday double is a good example.
There's not much the Dodgers can do to help Puig in this regard. Helping him with throwing plays is basically a matter of them peddling fundamentals. Puig's tendency for misplays is more about focus.
The Dodgers can't teach him to be focused. It's an effort only Puig can make, and he has to want to make it.
There's, admittedly, not a whole lot of projection that can be done with Puig's defense. But if he responds to efforts to refine his throwing habits and takes it upon himself to be focused 100 percent of the time in the field, an already very good outfielder is going to become a great outfielder.
With hitting and defense covered, that just leaves baserunning.
Puig on the Bases
Whether Puig was an effective baserunner in 2013 varies depending on who you ask.
If you ask FanGraphs, he wasn't. In the eyes of their metrics, Puig logged minus-4.2 baserunning runs above average in 2013, making him one of the worst baserunning outfielders in the league.
But if you ask Baseball Prospectus, Puig was pretty good on the basepaths.
By BP's metrics, Puig accounted for 0.8 baserunning runs (BRR), technically making him an above-average baserunner. The only area where he did more harm than good was in stolen bases.
And it's easy to see why.
Getty Images
Puig did steal 11 bases in 2013, but he also got caught eight times. That's not a good success rate, and it obviously speaks to recklessness.
Consider this anecdote from's Richard Justice about a July game against the San Francisco Giants:
For instance, on Sunday afternoon, he singled against the Giants and promptly stole second. And then almost without a thought -- actually with no thought at all -- he was thrown out attempting to steal third.
'I could smell it in the air,' Vin Scully said. 'The wild horse wanted to run.'
That was one of two times Puig was caught stealing third in 2013. He was successful once.
There's also the matter of the pickoffs. Puig was picked off four times in 2013, including twice while trying to steal. That's a few too many.
Puig has to pick his spots better with stolen bases, which is yet another project the Dodgers can help him with. And if he really wants to make a name for himself as a base stealer, he needs to take the time to study pitchers so he has more than just his athleticism to rely on. 
Or, Puig could just decide to take it easy on stealing bases and stick to being a specialist at taking extra bases.
This is something Puig is already good at. He went first to third 12 of the 26 times he was standing on first base when a single was hit. All told, says he took an extra base or two over half the time he had a chance on base hits. BP's metrics say that the only Dodger better than Puig at turning baserunning plays on hits into runs was Carl Crawford.
Like with his fielding, this is an area where it's hard to project how Puig is going to be different in 2014. But he can certainly be a better base stealer if he makes the needed effort to be one, and all he has to do to be a productive baserunner otherwise is just keep doing what he's doing.
So All Told...
It's going to be a shocker if Puig ends up being the same player in 2014 that he was in 2013. There should be changes, and these changes should be for the better.
Puig is one of the rare ones who can make a hyper-aggressive approach at the plate work, but 2014 should see him be less overmatched against curveballs and in two-strike counts. It's hard to project a massive improvement in his production, but sharpening up his hitting habits should at least help him stave off a regression.

What will Yasiel Puig be in 2014?

Submit Vote vote to see results

    What will Yasiel Puig be in 2014?

  • A better player

  • About the same

  • A worse player

As for defense and baserunning, Puig improving in those two areas will depend on him working with the Dodgers in adding a method to his madness. Because there basically was no method to his madness in 2013, it's perfectly fair to expect him to get better in these two areas rather than worse.
In all, Puig should be a better all-around player in 2014 than he was in 2013. That might come off as being overly optimistic, but it must be kept in mind that there are some unusual circumstances at work here.
Puig didn't get to play baseball in Cuba during the 2011-2012 season due to disciplinary reasons. After he defected, he only got to play 23 minor league games in the Dodgers organization at the end of 2012. With his age-21 season basically wiped out, Puig arrived in the major leagues as a highly inexperienced 22-year-old. It's only natural that his inexperience humbled him on numerous occasions.
It was Puig's talent that made him a star. And while his 2013 season may have been a rocky road that had a particularly rocky end, it did serve to arm him with some much-needed experience.
As 2013 Puig showed, talent is good. What 2014 Puig should show is that talent plus experience is even better.
Note: Stats courtesy of unless otherwise noted.

viernes, agosto 09, 2013

Expertos: Variables fisico-mecanicas del exito de Yasiel Puig

Los Dodgers de Los Ángeles han reconocido públicamente el enorme talento que posee el pelotero cubano Yasiel Puig Valdés, de 22 años, quien según aficionados y periodistas se ha echado sobre los hombros el equipo californiano para situarlo en el primer lugar de la División Oeste de la Liga Nacional de las Grandes Ligas.

Los expertos estadounidenses afirman que el pelotero de Los Ángeles tiene las cinco herramientas del béisbol: tacto, fuerza, velocidad, defensa y potente brazo.

El canal deportivo de televisión ESPN analizó cuidadosamente a Puig. El periodista investigativo John Brenkus indicó que su jonrón más largo ha sido de 443 pies comparado con los 397 pies que promedia este año un pelotero en las Grandes Ligas. Sus batazos viajan a una velocidad de 107.9 millas por hora.

Las filmaciones han mostrado que Puig inclina su hombro izquierdo hacia dentro 10 grados más que un bateador regular en las mayores, lo que al hacer el swing le permite rotar su cuerpo con una velocidad angular de 675 grados por segundo, que se traduce en una velocidad al bate de 85 millas por hora, comparado solamente con el dominicano Albert Pujols, quien saca el bate a 86 millas por hora.

Según Brenkus, la velocidad que imprime Puig (245 libras de peso) a sus piernas en el jardín derecho para capturar las pelotas que batean por su territorio es impresionante: ¡20 millas por hora!

Además, destaca el estudio, que Puig lanzó una bola desde el jardín derecho (250 pies) a tercera base a una velocidad de 100 millas por hora y sólo tardó en llegar a su destino 1.033 segundos… con una precisión impresionante para sacar out al corredor.

Pero, lo más importante de todo esto, es que el esfuerzo de Puig no ha pasado inadvertido. El público lo premia con prolongados aplausos todos los días, y la gerencia de los Dodgers ha sacado por televisión varios anuncios comerciales en los que resalta las cualidades deportivas del cienfueguero, quien desertó en 2012 y firmó un contrato por siete años y $42 millones de dólares con el equipo californiano.

Puig debutó en las Grandes Ligas el 3 de junio de 2013. Batea en este momento para un promedio de .373, con 11 jonrones. Batea y lanza a la derecha.  

jueves, agosto 01, 2013

When did A-Rod turn into a villain?

Joe Posnanski/
My best guess is that this happened in May 2002, but the thing is it could have been one of a half-dozen other days. I clearly remember it was the day when Alex Rodriguez hit two home runs against the Kansas City Royals. But when I went back into the archives to find that particular game, I saw that Rodriguez actually hit two home runs against the Royals SEVEN times. That doesn’t include the time he hit three home runs against the Royals.
Fun (or not so fun) fact: Alex Rodriguez had 60 multi-homer games in his career. SIXTY. That’s more than Miguel Cabrera and Prince Fielder COMBINED. It’s more than Mickey Mantle and Roberto Clemente COMBINED. It’s a lot.
Anyway, I’m pretty sure this game happened in May 2002 because, as I scramble for details in my mind, I think Kansas City had just hired Tony Pena to be it’s manager.
Ah, Tony Pena: one of my all-time favorites. You know, the day he took the job he told the Kansas City players: “I’m the new DJ. I play the music. You are to dance. If you don’t know how to dance, get off the dance floor.” No, nobody knew what the heck he was talking about, but it was inspiring all the same.
A few days after he started, the Royals went down to Texas to play in a weekend series against the Rangers -- who were lousy -- but A-Rod was their shortstop. Friday night, the Royals’ starter was Jeff Suppan, and in the first inning Rodriguez launched a long home run -- one of those high fly balls that sail deep into the stands.
Then, in the fifth inning, Rodriguez came up again against Suppan and he hit another home run. If I have my date right, this is the homer I think about all the time. Rodriguez was kind of fooled by the pitch, did not get a good cut at the ball and he appeared to pop it up.
Only, the ball would not come down.
The outfielder -- Carlos Beltran, I think -- coasted back for the ball like he was going to make an easy catch. Then he kept going, but still in an unhurried way, as if the ball was going to come down on the warning track. Beltran kept going, now getting ready to time his jump, climb the wall and try to steal the home run. However, the ball probably went 25 feet over Beltran’s glove and landed in about the 33rd row.
It remains one of the most amazing things I have ever seen on a baseball diamond. I think about it all the time -- the easy swing, the way the ball repelled off that bat, the way that baseball kept going like it was one of those remote control helicopters. Yes, of course, I know that Alex Rodriguez was cheating. Yes, I know that his strength was, literally and figuratively, unnatural. Yes, I can -- everyone can -- draw a pretty simple timeline from that moment when A-Rod was a superhero to the present, where Alex Rodriguez is disgraced, despised and doomed.
2003: Alex Rodriguez hits 47 homers, wins a Gold Glove at shortstop and takes MVP award for last-place Texas Rangers. He is, at this moment, making a clear case for himself as one of the 10 best players in baseball history.
2004: A-Rod willingly takes a large pay cut so he can be traded to the Boston Red Sox. The Players Association scotches the deal. Instead, A-Rod is traded to Yankees. He moves to third base in deference to Derek Jeter.
2005: A-Rod hits .321 with league-leading 48 homers and 124 runs to win MVP for the Yankees. He becomes the Yankees first MVP in two decades. But he hits .133 in playoffs as Yankees are beaten by the Los Angeles Angels in five and he is booed.
2006:  A-Rod hits 35 homers, makes All-Star Team, and hits .071 in playoffs as Yankees lose to Detroit. He develops a reputation -- fair or unfair -- as a postseason choker. He is booed.
2007: He wins his third MVP Award in five years with 54 home runs. He also goes on 60 Minutes to say that he never used steroids or any other performance-enhancing drug because, “I’ve never felt overmatched on the baseball field. I’ve always been a very strong, dominant position.”
At the end of the year, Rodriguez opts out of the richest contract in baseball history to go for an even richer one -- an announcement made right in the middle of Game 4 of the World Series between Boston and Colorado. Eventually, he signs a 10-year, $275 million deal making nobody on earth happy, except himself and his agent.
2009: Sports Illustrated reports that Rodriguez tested positive for performance enhancing drugs in 2003.  Two days later, Rodriguez admits that he used steroids while in Texas because, essentially, he felt overmatched on the baseball field. But he’s quick to say he no longer feels that way and did not use when he was with the Yankees.
The Yankees win the World Series for the first time in almost a decade, and A-Rod hits .365 with six home runs in the postseason.
2010: A-Rod hits .190 in the playoffs. He is booed.
2011: A-Rod hits .111 in the playoffs. He is booed.
2012: A 36-year-old and obviously-injured Alex Rodriguez hits .120 in the postseason and is pinch-hit for twice and finally benched. Yes, of course, he is booed.
2013: The Biogenesis stuff. The injury stuff.  The squabbling. At last check, it is being reported that Major League Baseball has evidence Rodriguez not only used PEDs but steered others toward it and tampered with the Biogenesis investigation.
The Yankees, stuck with an insane contract they never should have signed, want Rodriguez out. Major League Baseball, stuck with a player who is even more unpopular than Barry Bonds (at least HOMETOWN FANS like Bonds) want A-Rod out. Fans want him out, of course. Story after story advise him to get out. Baseball is reportedly threatening Rodriguez with a lifetime ban if he doesn’t leave quietly. There are conflicting reports about what Rodriguez will do, though the latest suggest that he will cut a deal to salvage as much of his contract and self-respect as he can. It seems the prudent move if MLB really has as much evidence as they suggest.
After all that, we are left with a shell of the superhero. There never was going to be a happy ending for Alex Rodriguez, but now (and this is true no matter where this goes from here) he is doomed to be discharged from the game as one of baseball’s all-time villains.
On that day in May, just more than a decade ago, Alex Rodriguez was unlimited. He was 26 years old. He was a brilliant defensive shortstop. He could draw “oohs” from the crowd by simply throwing a baseball across the diamond -- that’s how strong his arm was. He could run. He was a .300 hitter. He was seemingly invulnerable -- playing every day.
And he could hit fly balls that just kept going and going and going. He was as thrilling to watch as anyone. We will never know how much of that genius for baseball was his own talent and hard work and how much of it was in the chemicals he injected into his body. The sad part is that most people don’t care to know. They don’t care enough about him to think about it. They just want him to go away.

viernes, julio 26, 2013

Objetivo Curt Schilling

Hialeah, Florida.- Por Andrés Pascual
La maldición de Babe Ruth”  la hizo tierra el derecho Curt Schilling, que llegó a un club históricamente poco corajudo para ganar “el último”, e impuso su personalidad de pitcher valiente contra la actitud de “rabo entre las piernas” del equipo para el que bateaba Ted Williams.
       La historia del Boston de la Americana se recrea alrededor de “la guerra a muerte contra los Yanquis”, hasta cierto punto buena, pero, no absoluta, porque hubo épocas en que los Elefantes Blancos de Filadelfia o el Detroit cumplían a cabalidad y mucho mejor, porque ganaban, el papel de eternos rivales de los Mulos.
       Casi nadie que escribe quiere acordarse de un pitcher de nombre Frank Lary, de los Bengaleses, cuyo récord contra la novena de Mantle, Ford y Berra fue 28-13, en una etapa (los cincuentas), en que el club de la ciudad automotriz no fue un serio contendiente por “el trapo” de campeones del Joven Circuito, pero se comportaron como “el Tata Cuñengue” del club del Bronx.
       La tremendísima actuación de Schilling en la Serie Mundial que rompió “el maleficio” y obligó a jugar pelota a los paisanos de Ted Kennedy fue de tal impacto, que su media ensangrentada está en un museo con los spikes que calzó.
       Curt Schilling tiene etiqueta de inmortal, sin embargo, parece que se le está “enyerbando el solar” que debe atravesar para instalarse en Cooperstown.
       Comúnmente se oye decir, cuando no le conviene al interesado, que, “no se debe mezclar lo política con lo deportivo”, a sabiendas de que todo es político y que cualquier consecuencia se deriva de actos originados, muchas veces, en oficinas políticas, por lo que nunca podrá nadie separar una cosa de la otra.
      Ahora mismo, hay una conspiración orquestada contra Curt Schilling, a partir de cierta investigación federal sobre préstamos que recibió; el pitcher, como se sabe, está en quiebra financiera por malas inversiones.
     Pero, porque le conviene poner sobre la mesa en contra del pitcher “lo político”, Bryan Gumpbell, presentador izquierdista-liberal de Real Sports de la cadena HBO, no solo colocó a Schilling entre “las vergüenzas del mes” junto a Mayweather jr y Lance Armstrong, sino que aderezó la ensalada con “es miembro del Tea Party y se opone a préstamos bancarios y al crecimiento del gobierno”, después lo llamó bocón.
     El colmo de los liberales está llegando tan lejos que han echado a rodar otra historia sobre el calcetín y los spikes ensangrentados que usó el lanzador en la Serie Mundial del 20003, consistente en que no fue verdad lo de la sangre, con el objetivo de crear duda y malestar sobre la integridad del pitcher y poder hacer lo que les dé la gana a la hora de dar a conocer los resultados de la votación al Templo, sin que nadie se moleste. Curiosamente, nada dicen del Boston, que, si ocurrió el fraude, seguramente fue elucubrado en las oficinas políticas del partido que atiende a los Medias Rojas, como refuerzo de impacto a la actuación del club, después de tanto tiempo sin ganar.
     Para concluir, Wade Boggs fue a Cuba con su esposa y se desvivió más por Castro que la fea anciana que le  acompaña desde hace 45 años.
     Firmó una pelota para el tirano y le solicitó a este que le firmara otra, a mi juicio, tiene derecho, a fin de cuentas, Castro no le robó nada, no le fusiló a nadie ni le puso en prisión por largas sanciones a ningún familiar ni a él mismo.
     Pero hay un problema, los Castro son una dinastía familiar de esencia asesina durante 54 años de dictadura y eso debería saberlo el ex tercera base y nadie puede hacerme creer que, oriundo de Tampa, desconozca la tragedia cubana.
    La noticia del viaje a la Cuba oprimida de Boggs está en todos los sitios y periódicos liberales (la mayoría del país), sin críticas ni sugerencias.
    Por el mínimo respeto a la libertad de opinión, que tan bien manejan a favor del filo-comunismo los editores izquierdistas del deporte en Estados Unidos, espero no tener problemas con este “derecho a réplica”, redactado bajo el mismo manto y con más derecho que el que encubre la inmundicia  que se genera aquí, lo mismo en el terreno de juego que en la oficina de la sección deportiva de editores de periódicos y revistas impresas, de televisión o de internet.

miércoles, julio 24, 2013

Beisbol: Estados Unidos barrió en el tope a Cuba

Oscar Sanchez Serra, enviado especial

DURHAM, Carolina del Norte.— Ayer la diferencia entre el equipo nacional universitario de Estados Unidos y la selección cubana se acrecentó a favor de los anfitriones, lo cual, además, acuñó la barrida de cinco victorias en el tope bilateral de béisbol que concluyó en esta ciudad.

Foto: Ricardo lópez heviaEstados Unidos robó 14 bases en 15 intentos.
Jim Schlassangle, mentor de los locales, le dio la pelota al mejor prospecto de su equipo, el zurdo Carlos Rodón, quien tenía con los aficionados del Durham Bulls Park el compromiso de regalarles su gran pitcheo. Y el hijo de esta localidad no los hizo quedar mal.
Este fue el regalo a su afición: se enfrentó a 22 cubanos, a la mitad los ponchó, no dio boleto, le pegaron solo dos jits. Nadie le pisó segunda y solo tres les sacaron la bola del cuadro. Se fue con seis y dos tercios y el juego tres por cero, para darle al también carolinero Morrison la posibilidad de lucirse, pero Cuba, apagada durante siete entradas durante dos horas y media y con el marcador castigándola 5-0, cargó jits consecutivos de Edilse Silva y Yulieski, de emergente por el receptor, para dejar la escena lista.
El jonrón de Lázaro Herrera, el único de esta serie, y con un estadio que temblaba por la euforia de ver brillar a sus ídolos, apuntalan su condición de pelotero corajudo que señalábamos la víspera, cuando decepcionó a todos por su pésima actuación en la receptoría. El aplauso de sus compañeros fue el reconocimiento a esa importante cualidad y a la oportunidad de cerrar el choque 5-3.
Con el juego con dos de desventaja, la dirección del conjunto optó porque no se le despegara más el rival y envió a la lomita a Raciel Iglesias, quien cumplió la misión.
Pero ya no había remedio, el dominio de Rodón y la mejor ofensiva de los estadounidenses en este tope no permitieron la remontada, pero sí que no quedara la imagen que estaba dando la escuadra cubana ayer, totalmente desinflada, hasta ese octavo episodio, cuando el propio graderío le pidió ver sus mejores atributos.

Fue la segunda barrida norteamericana en la historia de estos topes.

jueves, junio 06, 2013

Alex Rodriguez releases a statement about the Biogenesis stuff

Alex Rodriguez was one of several players implicated in the ongoing Biogenesis investigation by Major League Baseball. He released a statement through a publicist today which reveals that he is not exactly pleased with the specifics of the investigation being leaked to ESPN by Major League Baseball for its report on Tuesday evening:
“Myself and others are being mentioned in a media report before the process is even concluded.  I would hope this thing would follow the guidelines of our Basic Agreement.  I will monitor the situation and comment when appropriate. As I have said previously, I am working out every day to get back on the field and help the Yankees win a championship.  I am down here doing my job and working hard and will continue to do so until I’m back playing.”
A-Rod is referring to the terms of the the Joint Drug Agreement which require all parties involved to maintain the confidentiality of all drug investigations. Whoever from MLB leaked the information about the league’s investigation to ESPN violated the confidentiality required. But as I noted the other night, MLB is not really good at learning from history.

¿De qué huye Bud Selig ahora?

Por Andrés Pascual
Este Comisionado del Beisbol que ha “estremecido las bases de juego” no se parece al Selig que conocemos, adicto a “tapar los escándalos y desviar la atención de sus fullerías” ¿Tendrá remordimientos? ¿Estará próximo su encuentro con el Creador, por lo que decidió comenzar a purgar sus pecados para llegar “más ligero de equipaje”?
El individuo siempre fue ventajista, cuando se interesó por el beisbol, lo primero que hizo fue ganarse “el cariño de los Bravos de Milwakee” para que lo ayudaran en su presentación en sociedad.
Para lograrlo, le ofrecía gratis por un año la renta de un automóvil de su dealer a todos los jugadores del club… después compró a los Cerveceros de la Liga Americana. En la foto de abajo, el antesalista cubano Mike de la Hoz, que fue beneficiado por esa política.
Cuando los dueños decidieron liquidar la moral del juego botando al entonces Comisionado independiente Fay Vincent, los propietarios, gangsters de los tiempos modernos, sabían a quién debían colocar que los representara indignamente, entonces Selig renunció a la presidencia de su equipo, nombró a su hija al puesto y aceptó acabar con el pasatiempo… En la foto Fay Vincent con George W Bush, durante su época como dueño del Texas Rangers:
Yo no sé cómo no se produjo una intervención federal para salvar por segunda vez al beisbol, porque, del Escándalo del XIX lo sacó dando tumbos y casi noqueado, precisamente, un comisionado independiente nombrado al efecto: el juez Kennesaw Mountains Landis (foto debajo), que gestionó y logró la representación del mismo por un senador en el Comité de Relaciones Exteriores.
Todos los esfuerzos que se han hecho en 93 años para mantener el juego limpio de lacras, han tenido como finalidad que continúe cumpliendo su papel social como influencia de importancia, según el perfil vocacional, en la formación de la niñez y la juventud americana. Incluso sobre este negocio pesa la exención impositiva, que necesita ser revisada y eliminada.
Cuando los pandilleros que asaltaron la dignidad del beisbol, tan duramente sostenida en el tiempo, decidieron tomar las riendas del Beisbol Organizado, pisotearon el legado social del deporte sin importarles en lo absoluto el papel positivo para una sociedad necesitada de grandes cosas y mejores hombres como ejemplos.
Si se enumera, de “su carrera” repleta de MVP’s sucios y desleales, lo peor posible contra el beisbol tanto como perfecta en la gestión de acumular dinero y poder, buena para todos los propietarios, para el Sindicato y para los jugadores-fraudes del tiempo actual, nadie puede dejar fuera una suspensión del Juego de Estrellas, decretada a libre albedrío con la justificación de “no quedaban pitchers”, ni lo peor: asociarse con el partido demócrata y retrasar el comienzo del primer juego de una Serie Mundial para que Obama pusiera un material de propaganda electoral, en la foto con el Presidente presenciando un Juego de Estrellas:
Y quedan los otros, los raros y sospechosos que provocaron la explosión del Montreal y casi la del Minnesota pese a la fidelidad de su público, que involucró 10 millones de dólares y, en ambos casos, a Jeffrey Loria como acompañante.
Ahora se aparecen las Grandes Ligas reactivando el caso de una clínica de Coral Gables de un tal Tony Bosch (foto con jugadores que asistieron al local), de lo que nadie se acordaba y reinician el escándalo… debajo, descenso del rendimiento de Josh Beckett según un reporte de scout:
Y no es que no se deba, al contrario, pero esta forma de actuar, jugando a Mr Justicia, no es la normal de estos elementos, a ver ¿Por qué no dan a conocer el grupo de positivos que falta y son más de 100? Los 6 ó 7 primeros tampoco fue un gesto del grupo asolador del beisbol, sino responsabilidad de un periódico por cuenta propia.
Hay algo que tal vez no deseen los “padrecitos del beisbol” si dan a conocer los nombres delincuentes que faltan y estaría relacionado con que el 80 % de los estrellas del juego, quizás estén, lo que traería como consecuencia la pérdida de la poca credibilidad y prestigio que queda.
Si cualquiera es justo consigo mismo y analiza la actuación de Al Pujols en sus últimos tres años completos más este, tiene que estar de acuerdo en que pudiera ser uno de los pecadores protegidos por el Comisionado y su pandilla, porque no es posible la espiral descendente de su bateo desde que comenzaron a temerle al test por sorpresa y abandonaron, otros también, el consumo de sustancias prohibidas.
Yo no sé la razón por la que Selig armó este aspaviento con los peloteros que estuvieron en la clínica de marras, sin embargo, supongo que no sea por nada trascendental para el beisbol, incluso ni para dar una imagen de honestidad.
Para mí lo han hecho con el fin de quitarle a Alex Rodríguez de arriba a los Yankees, que no saben cómo hacerlo ni pueden por las cláusulas y la millonada, porque algo si está claro: los MULOS NO PUEDEN SUFRIR EL EFECTO NEGATIVO prolongado provocado por nadie ni porque sea un bandido, ni porque se hubiera metido la pata hasta la rodilla, como hicieron con el antesalista y la cantidad que le regalaron.
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Retratos de fusilados por el Castrismo - Juan Abreu


"EN TIEMPOS DIFÍCILES" - Heberto Padilla

A aquel hombre le pidieron su tiempo

para que lo juntara al tiempo de la Historia.

Le pidieron las manos,

porque para una época difícil

nada hay mejor que un par de buenas manos.

Le pidieron los ojos

que alguna vez tuvieron lágrimas

para que contemplara el lado claro

(especialmente el lado claro de la vida)

porque para el horror basta un ojo de asombro.

Le pidieron sus labios

resecos y cuarteados para afirmar,

para erigir, con cada afirmación, un sueño


le pidieron las piernas

duras y nudosas

(sus viejas piernas andariegas),

porque en tiempos difíciles

¿algo hay mejor que un par de piernas

para la construcción o la trinchera?

Le pidieron el bosque que lo nutrió de niño,

con su árbol obediente.

Le pidieron el pecho, el corazón, los hombros.

Le dijeron

que eso era estrictamente necesario.

Le explicaron después

que toda esta donación resultaria inútil.

sin entregar la lengua,

porque en tiempos difíciles

nada es tan útil para atajar el odio o la mentira.

Y finalmente le rogaron

que, por favor, echase a andar,

porque en tiempos difíciles

esta es, sin duda, la prueba decisiva.


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La columna de Cubanalisis

NEOCASTRISMO [Hacer click en la imagen]

NEOCASTRISMO [Hacer click en la imagen]
¨Saturno jugando con sus hijos¨/ Pedro Pablo Oliva


Carta desde la carcel de Fidel Castro Ruz

“…después de todo, para mí la cárcel es un buen descanso, que sólo tiene de malo el que es obligatorio. Leo mucho y estudio mucho. Parece increíble, las horas pasan como si fuesen minutos y yo, que soy de temperamento intranquilo, me paso el día leyendo, apenas sin moverme para nada. La correspondencia llega normalmente…”

“…Como soy cocinero, de vez en cuando me entretengo preparando algún pisto. Hace poco me mandó mi hermana desde Oriente un pequeño jamón y preparé un bisté con jalea de guayaba. También preparo spaghettis de vez en cuando, de distintas formas, inventadas todas por mí; o bien tortilla de queso. ¡Ah! ¡Qué bien me quedan! por supuesto, que el repertorio no se queda ahí. Cuelo también café que me queda muy sabroso”.
“…En cuanto a fumar, en estos días pasados he estado rico: una caja de tabacos H. Upman del doctor Miró Cardona, dos cajas muy buenas de mi hermano Ramón….”.
“Me voy a cenar: spaghettis con calamares, bombones italianos de postre, café acabadito de colar y después un H. Upman #4. ¿No me envidias?”.
“…Me cuidan, me cuidan un poquito entre todos. No le hacen caso a uno, siempre estoy peleando para que no me manden nada. Cuando cojo el sol por la mañana en shorts y siento el aire de mar, me parece que estoy en una playa… ¡Me van a hacer creer que estoy de vacaciones! ¿Qué diría Carlos Marx de semejantes revolucionarios?”.


¨La patria es dicha de todos, y dolor de todos, y cielo para todos, y no feudo ni capellaní­a de nadie¨ - Marti

"No temas ni a la prision, ni a la pobreza, ni a la muerte. Teme al miedo"
Giacomo Leopardi

¨Por eso es muy importante, Vicky, hijo mío, que recuerdes siempre para qué sirve la cabeza: para atravesar paredes¨Halvar de Flake [El vikingo]

"Como no me he preocupado de nacer, no me preocupo de morir" - Lorca

"Al final, no os preguntarán qué habéis sabido, sino qué habéis hecho" - Jean de Gerson

"Si queremos que todo siga como está, es necesario que todo cambie" - Giuseppe Tomasi di Lampedusa

"Todo hombre paga su grandeza con muchas pequeñeces, su victoria con muchas derrotas, su riqueza con múltiples quiebras" - Giovanni Papini

"Life is what happens while you are busy making other plans" - John Lennon

"Habla bajo, lleva siempre un gran palo y llegarás lejos" - Proverbio Africano

"No hay medicina para el miedo" - Proverbio escoces

"El supremo arte de la guerra es doblegar al enemigo sin luchar"
- Sun Tzu

"You do not really understand something unless you can explain it to your grandmother" - Albert Einstein

"It is inaccurate to say I hate everything. I am strongly in favor of common sense, common honesty, and common decency. This makes me forever ineligible for public office" - H. L. Menken

"I swore never to be silent whenever and wherever human beings endure suffering and humiliation. We must always take sides. Neutrality helps the oppressor, never the victim. Silence encourages the tormentor, never the tormented" - Elie Wiesel

"Stay hungry, stay foolish" -
Steve Jobs

"If you put the federal government in charge of the Sahara Desert , in five years ther'ed be a shortage of sand" - Milton Friedman

"The tragedy of modern man is not that he knows less and less about the meaning of his own life, but that it bothers him less and less" - Vaclav Havel

"No se puede controlar el resultado, pero si lo que uno haga para alcanzarlo" -
Vitor Belfort [MMA Fighter]


A la puerta de la gloria está San Pedro sentado y ve llegar a su lado a un hombre de cierta historia. No consigue hacer memoria y le pregunta con celo: ¿Quién eras allá en el suelo? Era Liborio mi nombre. Has sufrido mucho, hombre, entra, te has ganado el cielo.

Para Raul Castro

Cuba ocupa el penultimo lugar en el mundo en libertad economica solo superada por Corea del Norte.

Cuba ocupa el lugar 147 entre 153 paises evaluados en "Democracia, Mercado y Transparencia 2007"

Cuando vinieron

Cuando vinieron a buscar a los comunistas, Callé: yo no soy comunista.
Cuando vinieron a buscar a los sindicalistas, Callé: yo no soy sindicalista.
Cuando vinieron a buscar a los judíos, Callé: yo no soy judío. Cuando vinieron a buscar a los católicos, Callé: yo no soy “tan católico”.
Cuando vinieron a buscarme a mí, Callé: no había quien me escuchara.

Reverendo Martin Niemöller

Martha Colmenares

Martha Colmenares
Un sitio donde los hechos y sus huellas nos conmueven o cautivan


Donde esta el Mundo, donde los Democratas, donde los Liberales? El pueblo de Cuba llora y nadie escucha.
Donde estan los Green, los Socialdemocratas, los Ricos y los Pobres, los Con Voz y Sin Voz? Cuba llora y nadie escucha.
Donde estan el Jet Set, los Reyes y Principes, Patricios y Plebeyos? Cuba desesperada clama por solidaridad.
Donde Bob Dylan, donde Martin Luther King, donde Hollywood y sus estrellas? Donde la Middle Class democrata y conservadora, o acaso tambien liberal a ratos? Y Gandhi? Y el Dios de Todos?
Donde los Santos y Virgenes; los Dioses de Cristianos, Protestantes, Musulmanes, Budistas, Testigos de Jehova y Adventistas del Septimo Dia. Donde estan Ochun y todas las deidades del Panteon Yoruba que no acuden a nuestro llanto? Donde Juan Pablo II que no exige mas que Cuba se abra al Mundo y que el Mundo se abra a Cuba?
Que hacen ahora mismo Alberto de Monaco y el Principe Felipe que no los escuchamos? Donde Madonna, donde Angelina Jolie y sus adoptados around de world; o nos hara falta un Brando erguido en un Oscar por Cuba? Donde Sean Penn?
Donde esta la Aristocracia Obrera y los Obreros menos Aristocraticos, donde los Working Class que no estan junto a un pueblo que lanquidece, sufre y llora por la ignominia?
Que hacen ahora mismo Zapatero y Rajoy que no los escuchamos, y Harper y Dion, e Hillary y Obama; donde McCain que no los escuchamos? Y los muertos? Y los que estan muriendo? Y los que van a morir? Y los que se lanzan desesperados al mar?
Donde estan el minero cantabrico o el pescador de percebes gijonese? Los Canarios donde estan? A los africanos no los oimos, y a los australianos con su acento de hombres duros tampoco. Y aquellos chinos milenarios de Canton que fundaron raices eternas en la Isla? Y que de la Queen Elizabeth y los Lords y Gentlemen? Que hace ahora mismo el combativo Principe Harry que no lo escuchamos?
Donde los Rockefellers? Donde los Duponts? Donde Kate Moss? Donde el Presidente de la ONU? Y Solana donde esta? Y los Generales y Doctores? Y los Lam y los Fabelo, y los Sivio y los Fito Paez?
Y que de Canseco y Miñoso? Y de los veteranos de Bahia de Cochinos y de los balseros y de los recien llegados? Y Carlos Otero y Susana Perez? Y el Bola, y Pancho Cespedes? Y YO y TU?
Y todos nosotros que estamos aqui y alla rumiando frustaciones y resquemores, envidias y sinsabores; autoelogios y nostalgias, en tanto Louis Michel comulga con Perez Roque mientras Biscet y una NACION lanquidecen?
Donde Maceo, donde Marti; donde aquel Villena con su carga para matar bribones?
Cuba llora y clama y el Mundo NO ESCUCHA!!!

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