Texas Rangers at the Trade Deadline

By Lindsey Jones
Texas Rangers and Dallas Cowboys Writer

The Texas Rangers find themselves in an interesting position after today’s 4-3 loss to the Kansas City Royals. They are currently 16.5 games back in the division and 3 games back in the wild card race to the Rays and Yankees. The Rangers have several impending free agents, including Yu Darvish, Andrew Cashner, Jonathon Lucroy, and Carlos Gomez, many of whom would be coveted by contending teams should the Rangers decide to sell. They also have veterans such as Mike Napoli, Cole Hamels, and Adrian Beltre who teams would also likely be interested in.

[Read more…]

Chris Davis Committed to Busting Slump

Special to ProjectShanks.com

Baltimore Oriole Chris Davis has seen a lot in his short baseball career.

In 2013, he saw the highest of heights as he turned a blistering start into a .286 season average with 53 home runs and 138 RBIs to lead the major leagues.

It’s hard to top those numbers and Davis is struggling to do so in 2014. [Read more…]

5 Best MLB Over/Under Bets

By Matt Conley
PSDC Contributor

The first thing you notice when you look at Over/Under bets on a sportsbook is that the people who set the lines are very good at what they do. If you pick a number for a team, then cross reference that with the actual line, chances are your guess will be within a couple games of the line. If it isn’t, chances are it’s because you are misjudging something, not them. None of this means there isn’t money to be made. Bookmakers tend to undervalue certain types of teams. Lines get swung too high by flashy free agent signings that the public thinks will help a team more than they actually will. If you have a good understanding of what makes a team successful, you can jump on some value. The hardest part is waiting six months for your bet to pay off.

All lines from sportsbook.ag

Toronto Blue Jays (Over/Under 79.5 wins)

jose-reyes

Under- I have never bought into this team. The pitching is never there. Last offseason, they made a big splash by trading for Cy Young winner RA Dickey, and most of the Marlins veterans. That didn’t work out the way GM Alex Anthopoulos thought it would. Sure, if Brandon Morrow and Jose Reyes stay healthy, Brett Lawrie breaks out, Jose Bautista and Edwin Encarnacion keep thumping and RA Dickey can get back to his elite form, this team will make noise. How likely are all those to happen in the same season, though? This team isn’t deep enough to have struggles from their top players. The back of the rotation isn’t pretty, and there are questions about the readiness of their AAA pitchers. A good rule of thumb: if a team seems to be getting the benefit of the doubt on their major question marks, jump on their under. [Read more…]

PSDC Random Stat of the Day

By Johnny Griffith
PSDC Stat Man 

From Elias: Chris Davis’s 50th home run of the season was the difference in the Orioles’ win against the Blue Jays. It’s the 43rd time in major league history that a player hit at least 50 home runs in a season. Davis, who entered 2013 with only 77 career home runs, became the 11th player with fewer than 100 career home runs entering a 50-homer season. The lowest total was 23 by Ralph Kiner, who slugged 51 home runs in his sophomore season in 1947. The only other Orioles player with a 50-HR season, Brady Anderson in 1996, had 72 career homers prior to that year.

5 Things We Know About the American League East So Far

By Johnny Griffith
PSDC Stat Man

5 things we know about the American League East so far…

1. Toronto is in trouble early. Chemistry was the buzzword in spring training for the Blue Jays as GM Alex Anthopoulos was opening the purse strings and assembling an all-star roster of talent to put on the field for opening day. As good as the team looked on paper, there was the ghosts of the Marlins and Phillies teams past that had all the makings of pennant contenders and just could not get it together when it counted. Toronto is making a believer out of me, but not in a good way. The offense is horrible, next to last in the AL in on-base percentage. The pitching staff is 28th in the majors for ERA led by an epic collapse of reigning Cy Young winner Dickey. Only one team has committed more errors, and they aren’t manufacturing runs at a prolific rate as 51 of their 106 runs have come by the long ball. The season is obviously still early and there is time for the ship to get right, but with an early 8.5 game deficit in the division, fans can officially start to get nervous.

Grade so far: F…I’d give an F minus here but you can’t really quantify absolute suckage.

[Read more…]

Chris Davis is Your AL Player of the Month

Congratulations to a guy that hails from the same town as ProjectShanks.com on being named AL Player of the Month for April. Keep up this baseball party, Chris Davis.

2013 MLB Team Preview: Baltimore Orioles

By Johnny Griffith
PSDC Writet

“Love is in the air, exciting and new…”

This could very well be the theme song for the Baltimore Orioles after a 2012 campaign that saw them flip the numbers on a 69-93 2011 season to finish 93-69, beating the Texas Rangers in the Wild Card Game, and taking AL East Champs New York Yankees the distance before falling in Game 5 of the ALDS. Understandably, management and the fan base are anxious to see if Buck Showalter’s club can build upon their late success last season. The 2012 Orioles were a .500 ball club in a .742 club’s clothing. When you look at their season in aggregate, there is nothing to suggest that this team would have ended up second place in a division race that came down to the last couple of games in the season. They were 15th in runs scored at 712, 14th in runs scored against at 705. The starting pitching was not spectacular by any definition of the word, there was only one starter with double-digit wins. Compare that to the Yankees, the team that barely beat them for the division, who are second in runs scored at 804 and 21st in runs against at 668, had 4 pitchers with double digit wins.

[Read more…]

PSDC Random Stat of the Day

By Johnny Griffith
PSDC Writer 

With Opening Day rapidly approaching, the AL East is projected to be as convoluted and competitive as ever, if not more so than usual.  Since the Yankees and Red Sox seem to be always demonized for their willingness and ability to spend the almighty dollar for a win, I decided to take a little deeper look at the pecking order of the division and salaries to see exactly who is getting the most bang for the buck.   I went back to the 2008 season as this was the first time Tampa had won the division and having been little more than a bottom dweller before then and have been the most successful turning dollars into wins ever since.

Average Opening Day Salary Since 2008 (cumulative salaries)*

New York: $208,134,203 ($1,040,671,015  yes that’s BILLION)
Boston: $152,463,492 ($762,317,460)
Toronto: $82,301,711 ($411,508,557)
Baltimore: $75,831,065 ($379,155,328)
Tampa: $56,917,307 ($284,586,535)

Record Since 2008**

New York: 479-331 (.591)
Tampa: 458-352 (.565)
Boston: 438-372 (.540)
Toronto: 400-410 (.494)
Baltimore: 360-449 (.445)

Salary Cost Per Win Since 2008

New York: $2,172,590
Boston: $1,740,450
Baltimore: $1,053,209
Toronto: $1,028,771
Tampa: $621,368

*Salary information Courtesy of BaseballProspectus.com
**Records Courtesy of MLB.com

MLB Playoffs Preview: Intensity in 10 Cities, Volume II (American League)

By Chris Patton
PSDC MLB Correspondent 

Under the new MLB postseason format, the intensity levels just got kicked up a notch in 10 different cities. With apologies to Ted Nugent, I decided to rank all ten potential matchups in each league on a scale of 1 (matchup with the least history and backstory) to 10 (matchup with all the ferocity of a steel cage match between Hulk Hogan and “Macho Man” Randy Savage). [Read more…]