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Bat571Jesus Montero is spending the winter (with his family) in Peoria and will be working out under supervision. If he takes this in the right spirit, and his wife realizes that they won't make the big bucks until Jesus proves he can stay in shape physically and emotionally, maybe Z will salvage him yet. If he could turn himself around and take the DH spot and (~) run with it, that would solve one problem and leave more resources for a corner OF. It may be my inner Pollyanna talking, but an .800 OPS from him at DH, with closer to .900 against LHs would sure solve some issues. Boy, Jesus with his head on straight and JJ hitting bendy stuff -- c'mon, Santa!!!4 hours 19 min ago
Bat571Brandon Finnegan was a revelation. A LH Leone? What a performance by that kid!4 hours 55 min ago
DaddyOOne of those games that makes all the boring ones worthwhile. Yes, baseball is frequently boring. But when it's good, it is very VERY good!5 hours 7 min ago
Bat571With JJ, Taylor, Miller, Ackley, Jackson, Saunders, and Kivlehan, Marte, and even Hicks coming, M's team speed is a strength going forward. Smoak and Morales may not be around next year, which means a significant net gain as well. Good things ahead.5 hours 10 min ago
SABR MattBat571 won the internet with his James Jones nod - "learn to hit bendy stuff, JJ" indeed. Get him hitting .285 and drawing a few walks every now and then and he can lead off or hit 9th for me anytime.5 hours 12 min ago
SABR Matt7 different Royals stole bases today.5 hours 14 min ago
SABR MattDerek Norris is the worst defensive catcher in baseball.5 hours 14 min ago
SABR MattGoodness...what do you suppose Billy Beane is thinking right now? He's tried to win every way imaginable and keeps getting immediately blitzkrieg'ed out of the post-season. Still no World Series appearances for Chokeland.5 hours 15 min ago
Bat571Royals again prove Billy Beane's stuff doesn't work in the playoffs. Oakland doesn't leverage Lester's fine start into anything. The A's are gonna think about this one for a while. And KC proves speed can still kill. Learn to hit bendy stuff, JJ!5 hours 15 min ago
SABR MattYES! EAT IT, OAKLAND!!5 hours 17 min ago
SABR MattOrcs continue to struggle under the lights...got an 8-7 lead int he 12th and immediately gave it back. :D5 hours 29 min ago
rick82I saw the ump burn the Royals with two borderline strike non calls, resulting in a three run homer by the Orcs. Glad to see the Royals tie it up.5 hours 55 min ago
DaddyOThis AL Wild Card game is something else...going to the bottom of the 10th tied 7-7. Love that the A's coughed up a lead that looked like a sure thing.6 hours 18 min ago
Bat571WWPD? -trade for Kemp and Butler, sign Lester, and win 117.6 hours 26 min ago
MtGrizzlyThere is probably a decent argument for a good old fashioned Pat Gillick style off season. WWPD? (What would Pat do?)6 hours 37 min ago
bsrThe best thing about this season is it put us back on the map as a non-joke franchise. I mostly credit McClendon and Cano for that. I think we'll have an easier go selling players on getting on board the bus this year than we've had in the past. The travel, weather, and soul killing stadium for hitters still don't help, but at least we look like a winner on the upswing with some talent and resources now.6 hours 42 min ago
bsrHa well, how about that. Good timing in the shout box I guess. I have just learned that when it comes to deciphering what the M's are doing, it's best to follow the cash flow and everything else follows from that. Payroll was $78M in 2013. In 2014 they got +$25M from MLB national TV contract, and payroll wound up around $100M. Attendance was +300K, I don't know what the net margin per attendee is but let's say $30, that's another $9M. Project another +300K in 2015, and you are at $121M (78+25+9+9). That is without adding any benefits of the M's own TV deal (I've never seen good detail on how this deal works accounting-wise, so I leave it out). So, that is where I expect them to budget payroll, $120M +/-, depending on what talent is available, and how season ticket sales are trending early on. $110M payroll would be extremely conservative IMO, I think it will be higher. I could see $115M and keep some powder dry for a big add midseason.6 hours 47 min ago
SABR MattI also do not believe we will make any trades that require us to deal someone Jack Z likes from the prospect depth. This year taught us that his wheel of AAA movables (guys who can come up and go down whenever he wants) can be an effective way to keep more relievers up, to rotate through options for the bench, to shake up the roster etc. I don't think Z will want to give that up.7 hours 54 min ago
SABR MattI think payroll will go up. By whatever ity takes to add two bats that the Mariners can spin as being significant upgrades at least slightly believably. I'm guessing our big adds will be of the caliber of Cuddyer or Willingham.7 hours 56 min ago
mojicianZ Interview: Dan Hultzen is pitching and receiving favorable scouting reports. He is being shut down until January.9 hours 12 min ago