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Tag:Eli WHiteside
Posted on: December 11, 2011 6:35 am
 

Homegrown Team: Baltimore Orioles

Erik Bedard

By C. Trent Rosecrans


What if players were only permitted to stay with the team that originally made them a professional? No trades, no Rule-5 Draft, no minor or major league free agency ... once you are a professional baseball player, you stay in that organization. This series shows how all 30 teams would look. We give you: Homegrown teams. To view the schedule/past entries of this feature, click here.

The Orioles haven't had a winning season since 1997, and part of that has been the team's inability to draft, sign and cultivate its own players. Even the teams with the biggest payrolls, like the Yankees and Red Sox, have learned the lesson that you need to have a steady crop of homegrown players, not only to keep costs down, but also to have the commodities to trade if needed. The Orioles' Matt Wieters emerged as an All-Star in 2011 and Brian Roberts has had a solid career, but the team has still struggled to produce a consistent pipeline to the majors, and when those players have gotten there, they've often disappointed.

Lineup

1. Brian Roberts, 2B
2. Mike Fontenot, SS
3. Nick Markakis, RF
4. Jayson Werth, 1B
5. Matt Wieters, C
6. Nolan Reimold, LF
7. Jerry Hairston Jr., 3B
8. Willie Harris, DH
9. Darnell McDonald, CF

Starting Rotation

1. Erik Bedard
2. Zach Britton
3. Jake Arrieta
4. Brad Bergesen
5. Brian Matusz

Bullpen

Closer - David Hernandez
Set up - Arthur Rhodes, Jim Johnson, Koji Uehara, Jason Berken, Pedro Beato, D.J. Carrasco

Notable Bench Players

Eli Whiteside is the backup catcher, and a pretty good one. But other than that, the Orioles' bench is thin. Brandon Snyder? Ryan Adams? That's about all the team has to offer.

What's Good?

The middle of the lineup -- Markakis, Werth and Wieters is solid and the bullpen is deep. Other than that? Not much.

What's Not?

Take your pick -- the rest of the team's lineup isn't up to snuff. The rotation, minus Bedard, is similar to the real team's rotation in 2011. And then there's not much depth, either in the rotation or the lineup.

Comparison to real 2011

Only the Astros, Twins and Mariners had a worse record than Baltimore's 67-95 mark in 2011, and this team could be even worse. The rotation is about the same and the offense isn't as good without J.J. Hardy, Adam Jones and Mark Reynolds. The Orioles once were known for throwing money at free agents and not developing their own players, now they just don't develop their own players. A team of homegrown Orioles could challenge the 100 loss mark and maybe even the worst record in baseball.

Next: Washington Nationals

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Posted on: August 28, 2011 11:35 pm
 

3 Up, 3 Down: White Sox youth movement



By Matt Snyder


Dayan Viciedo/Tyler Flowers, White Sox. The White Sox moved one game over .500 and to within six of the AL Central-leading Tigers with a 9-3 win over the Mariners Sunday, and the young guys were front and center. White Sox fans have clamored for Viciedo's promotion from the minors all summer and he finally made it to the show Sunday. In his first start of the 2011 season, Viciedo hit a three-run home run to give the Sox a 3-0 lead. Later, 25-year-old catcher Flowers must have felt a bit left out, because he clubbed a grand slam in the sixth inning, as part of a six-run rally that would put the game away.

Zack Greinke, Brewers. Greinke worked 7 2/3 innings, allowing just four hits and one run while striking out seven in the Brewers 3-2 win over the Cubs, but that's not why he's here. No, Greinke's getting the nod as an "up" for stealing a base. It was a straight steal, too. Meanwhile, the Brewers are actually only five games behind the Phillies for the best record in baseball. It's been quite the amazing run (27-5 in last 32 games).

Zach Britton, Orioles. Britton has shown flashes of brilliance this year as a rookie, giving the Orioles hope their future ace is soon to emerge, and Sunday he put forth one of his strongest efforts of the season. The young left-hander threw seven shutout innings against the powerful Yankees, allowing only four hits and a walk in a 2-0 Orioles victory. It marked the sixth straight win for the Orioles, though that streak would stop with the nightcap. Still, a very solid effort for Britton.



Jered Weaver, Angels. The Angels went all in during a three-game visit to Texas this weekend, as they brought Ervin Santana and Jered Weaver to the hill on short rest. Santana fared well enough to get the Angels a win Saturday -- along with some offensive help -- but Sunday Weaver did not. The Rangers' offense pegged him for eight hits and seven earned runs in six-plus innings. Weaver even walked four guys, so his command may have been affected by the short rest. Also, a lot of damage was done in the seventh, when Weaver was pulled before recording an out and was charged with his last three earned runs. So it's possible his stamina was also affected by the short rest. Whatever the reason, the Angels lost 9-5 and fell to three games out in the AL West.

Brad Penny, Tigers.
Maybe all the cussing is getting him off his game? Penny was roughed up by a Twins lineup that was missing Joe Mauer and Michael Cuddyer. Plus, they just traded Jim Thome. Still, in five innings Penny gave up eight hits and seven runs en route to an 11-4 loss.

Eli Whiteside, Giants. How much do the Giants continue to miss Buster Posey? The offense has been an issue all season, as the Giants rank dead last in the NL in runs scored. Sunday, catcher Whiteside went 0-for-4 with four strikeouts. To make matters worse, Whiteside could have made it to first base on a wild pitch on his fourth strikeout but didn't run (Extra Baggs). When you lose 4-3 in extra innings to the hapless Astros, that's a tough pill to swallow.

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @EyeOnBaseball on Twitter or subscribe to the RSS feed.
Posted on: August 19, 2011 5:07 pm
Edited on: August 19, 2011 5:11 pm
 

On Deck: Tigers, Indians face off

OD

By C. Trent Rosecrans


Follow all games live with CBSSports.com's GameTracker.

Big series: The Indians enter this weekend's three-game set in Detroit a game-and-a-half behind the American League Central-leading Tigers. As if that wasn't enough, Cleveland dodges Justin Verlander during the series, which is always a good thing if you're not the Tigers. The Indians took two of three in Cleveland earlier this month and the Tigers have lost six of their last 10, while the Indians have one four of their last five to tighten the race in the Central. However, the Tigers are 17-3 in their last 20 games against Cleveland at Comerica Park and won two of three against the Indians there in June. Indians at Tigers, 7:05 p.m. ET

Derek LoweLowe struggling: Braves right-hander Derek Lowe is 4-7 with a 6.30 ERA in his last 12 starts and 7-11 with a 4.89 ERA on the season. He's been even worse at home, going 2-3 with a 5.34 ERA in 10 starts at Turner Field this season. Arizona right-hander Daniel Hudson followed a disastrous start on Aug. 8 in Houston with an eight-inning outing against the Mets last Saturday, improving his record to 12-8 with a 3.76 ERA. Diamondbacks at Braves, 7:35 p.m.

Just what the doctor ordered: San Francisco may be struggling, but the Giants get a nice shot of the lowly Houston Astros, facing the game's worst team for the first time this season tonight. Houston could be the gift that keeps on giving, as the Giants will face the AStros in seven of their next 10 games. The Giants have won just six of their last 20 games while putting Carlos Beltran, Andres Torres, Sergio Romo, Eli Whiteside and Barry Zito on the disabled list, while dealing with injuries to Brian Wilson and Jeff Keppinger. The Giants, though, hit the easy part of their schedule before starting a series with the first-place Diamondbacks on Sept 2. In addition to the Astros, the defending champs also face the Cubs and Padres before their three-game series against Arizona at AT&T Park. Giants at Astros, 8:05 p.m. ET

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter or subscribe to the RSS feed.
Posted on: August 18, 2011 5:03 pm
 

Victorino's suspension reduced by one game

Shane VictorinoBy C. Trent Rosecrans

Phillies outfielder Shane Victorino's suspension has been reduced to two games following an appeal, David Murphy of the Philadelphia Daily News reports. He was originally suspended three games.

Victorino was the only player suspended after an Aug. 5 incident in San Francisco in which Victorino was hit by Giants pitcher Ramon Ramirez and benches emptied. Victorino had to be restrained by home plate umpire Mike Muchlinski and made contact with the umpire. Victorino tackled a Giants coach, but claimed he was coming to the aid of a teammate.

Ramirez, Giants catcher Eli Whiteside and Phillies infielder Placido Polanco were also fined as a result of the incident.

Victorino's suspension begins with Thursday night's game against the Diamondbacks and he will also miss Friday's game with the Nationals.

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Posted on: August 8, 2011 5:42 pm
Edited on: August 8, 2011 6:18 pm
 

Victorino suspended 3 games, 3 others fined

By Matt Snyder

Phillies center fielder Shane Victorino has received a three-game suspension for his role in a Phillies-Giants brawl Friday night, Major League Baseball announced Monday. Teammate Placido Polanco and the Giants' Eli Whiteside and Ramon Ramirez were fined, but not suspended. Victorino has appealed the suspension, meaning he'll continue to play until the appeal is heard by Major League Baseball.

Victorino was hit by a Ramirez pitch in the sixth inning and began walking toward the mound. The pitch came soon after a Jimmy Rollins stolen base, with the Phillies sporting a six-run lead. As Victorino approached Ramirez, Polanco started to run in from second base, when he was tackled by Whiteside -- the Giants' catcher, setting off the fracas.

According to MLB, "Victorino's aggressive actions prolonged the bench-clearing incident."

The Giants have denied the HBP was intentional while the Phillies have maintained it was.

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Posted on: July 30, 2011 1:01 am
 

Hernandez could go even if Reds don't sell

Ramon HernandezBy C. Trent Rosecrans

The Reds were just swept by the Mets in Cincinnati and welcome the defending champions to Great American Ball Park this weekend, but general manager Walt Jocketty told reporters the team still considers itself a buyer.

"We are not selling," Jocketty told reporters, including MLB.com's Mark Sheldon.

The Reds enter Friday in fourth place in the National League Central, 6 1/2 games behind Milwaikee and five games behind both Pittsburgh and St. Louis. The Reds have six games left with the Pirates and three each with the Brewers and Cardinals, but just 19 of their remaining 54 games are against teams with winning records, and only six games in August are against teams currently with a winning record.

Even if the Reds do consider themselves still in the race despite the mountain ahead of them, that doesn't preclude a trade at the deadline that sends off a member of their roster.

The Giants are reportedly interested in Reds catcher Ramon Hernandez, a free agent after the season. Jocketty said he hasn't listened to offers for Hernandez -- yet.

"I haven't no, and I don't know if I would," Jocketty said. "I still think he's a guy that can help us with this year. I think his value is greater to us now than if we were to move him. You're not going to get the value in return for him that he gives our club. That's why we would hold on to him."

Of course, the Cardinals had no plans on moving Colby Rasmus, either. At this time of the year, anything a general manager says should be taken with a grain of salt -- it can always be a smokescreen or something he wants other to hear. Even if the Reds are buying and not selling, that doesn't necessarily rule out a Hernandez deal.

Hernandez, 35, is having a fantastic season offensively for the Reds, hitting .308/.368/.500 with 10 home runs. That's a vast improvement over Giants catcher Eli Whiteside (.225/.312/.370) and Chris Stewart (.211/.294/.276).

And as good as he's been, he's expendable because the Reds not only have one of the game's top catching prospects, but that prospect is knocking down the door of the majors. Devin Mesoraco is hitting .305/.376/.496 with 10 home runs and 59 RBI at Triple-A Louisville. The team also has veteran Ryan Hanigan at the big-league level, who is a good defensive catcher and under contract through 2013 for just $3.25 million over the next two seasons. Hernandez is a free agent after the season for the Reds.

But if the Reds do deal Hernandez to the Giants, they may wait until right at Sunday's 4 p.m ET deadline, as Cincinnati hosts San Francisco all weekend and wouldn't want to a lineup that had Hernandez in it instead of either Whiteside or Stewart. Hernandez has also caught every inning Sunday's starter, Johnny Cueto, has thrown this season. The teams play at 1:05 p.m. ET on Sunday.

Henry Schulman of the San Francisco Chronicle tweeted the Reds want pitching in return for Hernandez -- and a San Francisco official said "That, we got a lot of." Keep in mind the Reds could likely get compensation for Hernandez if he left as a free agent. One name to keep an eye on, left-hander Eric Surkamp of Double-A Richmond. Surkamp is 8-3 with a 2.05 ERA and 140 strikeouts in 114 innings for the Flying Squirrels. He's also a Cincinnati native and a graduate of Moeller High School, the alma mater of former Reds Barry Larkin and Ken Griffey Jr.

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Posted on: June 20, 2011 9:00 pm
Edited on: June 21, 2011 4:13 pm
 

Brewers make catcher Kottaras available

By Evan Brunell

KottarasThe Milwaukee Brewers have made catcher George Kottaras available, the San Francisco Chronicle reports.

Simply by virtue of being available, Kottaras will attract the Giants' attention. The Giants continue to reel from the loss of Buster Posey and are looking for someone, anyone, to take over behind the plate.

Their new starting catcher, Eli Whiteside, has had both offensive and defensive struggles; backup Chris Stewart is a 29-year-old who entered the season with 54 total plate appearances in the majors.

Kottaras, for his part, was just recalled from the minors to serve as Jonathan Lucroy's backup. While Kottaras, 28, struggles to make regular contact with the ball, he has fantastic plate discipline as evidenced by his .220 career average and .306 OBP, generated on the strength of a .213/.306/.393 line the last two seasons with the Red Sox and Brewers, amassing 90 percent of his career plate appearances.

This season, over 34 PA, Kottaras has flashed power with two home runs and has collected nine hits for a .290/.324/.516 line. It's a very small sample size to draw conclusions from, but Kottaras has always been thought to have some home-run power in his bat. He knocked 22 balls out of the park for the Triple-A Red Sox club back in 2007, following that up with 18 long balls the next season. Kottaras hasn't gotten a chance to play much this season, but if he continues to hit, the Giants will come calling. Kottaras won't cost much in a trade as well, given how he seems to have fallen out of favor in Milwaukee.

The Giants could opt to stay internal, however.

They recently promoted catcher Hector Sanchez, 21, all the way from high-Class A to Triple-A. In eight games at Triple-A, Sanchez is hitting .310/.375/.448 and, if he keeps that up, will earn a promotion as the Giants are high on him.

Even with a Sanchez promotion, the Giants could still strike for Kottaras as the club has been rumored to be looking for two catchers.

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Posted on: June 8, 2011 3:01 pm
Edited on: June 8, 2011 3:58 pm
 

Who could Giants pursue at catcher?

By Evan Brunell

Now that the Giants have had some time to evaluate Eli Whiteside as a starting catcher, they're readying to acquire a new catcher -- if not two, the San Jose Mercury News reports.

Whiteside has been the Giants' backup catcher since the beginning of 2009 but hasn't shown any capability with the stick. He's at .164/.266/.255 in 64 plate appearances and as the Mercury News days, has fared poorly on throws to second base and allowing too many passed balls or dropped pitches.

Now, it appears the Giants are ready to move on. One name being mentioned is Ivan Rodriguez, awho is transitioning into a backup role and would find more playing time in San Francisco. However, there are two major roadblocks: Rodriguez is struggling at the plate himself and reportedly told the Nationals he does not want to be traded. While I-Rod would contribute to the Giants on defense and intangibles, the combination of no stick and desire to be traded despite being moved into a backup role could be enough to scare San Francisco away, at least for now.

Not counting the flotsam that's floating around (lookin' at ya, Matt Treanor), here's a look at what catchers could be considered for San Francisco:

SnyderDoumitChris Snyder and Ryan Doumit, Pirates: Snyder (left) was acquired from the Diamondbacks last season and has a .263/.371/.389 line in 118 plate appearances and has been battling Doumit for playing time all season. Snyder was a bit of a contract dump last year, but has rebounded nicely after two sub-par seasons. He is due $5.75 million this year with a $750,000 buyout of a $6.75 million club option. The Pirates also have $3 million in their pocket from the Diamondbacks to help defray both his 2010 and 2011 salaries. While his power still hasn't returned, he's a strong defensive catcher with a great OBP that would profile well with the Giants and their miserable .306 OBP. Doumit (right) isn't as good a fit as he's defensively challenged and injury prone but does have a .269/.333/.441 mark in 103 plate appearances. He wouldn't be that bad as a stopgap if the club really wants power. But Snyder's defense and on-base pop should outweigh the added power Doumit brings. The Pirates would accept a minor-league player or young major leaguer, so a fit wouldn't be difficult to find.

BarajasRamon Hernandez, Reds: Hernandez is working on just a one-year deal for $3 million and has a career-best .902 OPS in splitting time with Ryan Hanigan. The 35-year-old has a .312/.374/.528 line and solid defensive production, so it's hard to argue that he wouldn't be the perfect fit. But the Reds are trying to win games themselves, and Ryan Haniganhas yet to deliver on the promise of 2010. Devin Mesoraco is ripping apart Triple-A, but Cincy is no hurry to move on from Hernandez and it will take a competitive offer for the Reds to part with Hernandez -- an offer that is probably out of the Giants' price range.

BarajasRod Barajas, Dodgers: Yeah, the Dodgers are a division rival and are hanging tough in the division at 29-33 and 5 1/2 games out, one of -- if not both -- the win-loss record or games behind figures will likely dip and put L.A. into selling mode the closer the deadline arrives. It doesn't hurt that owner Frank McCourt is scrambling to cut corners in order to meet payroll and keep his team. Barajas is at .208/.271/.371 on the year, putting him squarely in the flotsam category, but really, he's the best of that grouping as he's capable of knocking 20 home runs. If he starts hitting better, the Giants could be interested. Dodgers GM Ned Colletti was Sabean's right-hand man for many years so there is a rapport there.

MathisJeff Mathis, Angels: Manager Mike Scioscia loves Mathis, even though Mathis couldn't hit the broad side of a barn if he tried. Owner of a career 48 OPS+ (that's OPS relative to the league, with 100 average, so he's miles worse than the average league hitter), he's been especially putrid this season with a .207/.237/.279 line while splitting time with Hank Conger and making Bobby Wilson get splinters on the bench. As much as Scioscia values Mathis's defense, Conger is the catcher of the future and the Angels may still be able to extract some value for Mathis in a trade given his defensive reputation. If the Giants can't find a bat to replace Posey, they can at least find an elite defender.

FloresJesus Flores, Nationals: A bit of a surprise name here. Flores was a Rule 5 pick of the Nationals way back in 2007 and received the bulk of playing time in 2008 with 324 plate appearances. He hit for a .256/.296/.402 line. He broke out in 2009 with a .301/.375/.505 mark in 29 games before biting the dust with a right shoulder stress fracture that finished his 2009 season and kept him out of the 2010 season as well. He's been predominantly playing in Triple-A this year but has struggled to get back in the groove with a .243/.262/.360 line in 36 games. He offers upside and could get better as the season goes on and is just 26. He could be a flier for Sabean and provide some depth at the position once Posey returns. He could also offer insurance should Posey not return as catcher. The Nationals wouldn't want to deal him at such a low trade value, though, which could affect things.

That's really it for catchers who currently have significant roles and could be considered a significant upgrade. It's very difficult to find an elite catcher like the Giants had in Posey, which makes it all the more devastating a blow. It's going to be impossible for the team to replace Posey's production behind the plate, which means it needs to look elsewhere for upgrades, like cutting bait with Miguel Tejada, which may occur shortly.

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The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com