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Twins Fan

Jared Burton posted by Twins Fan

Born June 2, 1981, Jared Burton is an MLB pitcher and plays for the Minnesota Twins. Burton started his professional baseball career when he was selected by the Oakland Athletics in 2002, in the eighth round of the draft. With the Athletics, he played for Vancouver Canadians, which is their affiliate and a Single-A team. In this team, he posted 3.58 ERA in 13 games, and had 0-4 record. In 2003, he played for the Kane County Cougars, making 15 appearances. Here he improved his record to 2-1, and 2.27 ERA. In 2004, Burton split his time, playing for Modesto A's and Arizona League Athletics. With Modesto, he had 3-2 record and 4.78 ERA, whereas with Athletics he managed 1-0 record and 4.16 ERA. Burton spent the 2005 season mainly playing for Stockton Ports, making 4-4 record, and 2.60 ERA.

In 2006 Rule 5 Draft, Burton was selected by Cincinnati Reds, and made his debut into the Major League in April 2007, when he pitched for a third of an inning and walked three. However, during the same month, he suffered a hamstring injury and was in the disabled list. During the rehab assignment, he was sent to play with Chattanooga and Louisville teams. During the season, Burton made 47 appearances and posted overall record of 4-2, and ERA of 2.51.

In November 2011, Burton joined the Minnesota Twins, signing a contract for minor league. His spring training was impressive and in 2012, he was on the roster on the opening day. In the first season with the new team, he played in 64 games and made 55 strikeouts, posted 3-2 record, and an ERA of 2.18. In 2013, he made good progress, and he finished with 71 games, with a career high of 2-9 and 3.82 ERA.

Continue reading "Jared Burton"


Twins Fan

MLB Baseball Bets and the Minnesota Twins posted by Twins Fan

MLB baseball events are proving to be quite lucrative for placing bets, and online sports book websites provide the opportunity of placing bets anytime, conveniently from home. Opening an account is very easy, and these websites are quite secure to make online transactions for depositing money into your account. Additionally they also provide various payment options, which make it easy to place various bets without much fuss. Due to advancement in Web technologies, your personal information and credit card number remains safe, without falling prey to hacking attempts. Withdrawals are also safe and secure, and you do not have to wait a long time to enjoy your winnings. 
A good knowledge about the teams and clever betting strategies can improve your winnings quite dramatically. Information pertaining to MLB baseball players and teams is available on many websites including the latest news. Various betting websites also explain various strategies that have worked for many players in the past. However, having proper knowledge about your team is a distinct advantage in placing bets. Consider the Minnesota Twins, which has small revenues, but is considered one of the major teams in MLB. The team is known for its excellent farm system, which has developed many prospects into top players. However, this system may not have delivered for the current season and has taken a major beating. The only prospect worth considering was Miguel Sano, the third baseman; however, he still lacks the required experience and discipline. 
In the minor league the new talents lived up to what was expected, and many of the prospects that were sidelined came back to form. In a surprising move during the offseason, the Twins let go of Ben Revere and Denard Span who were MLB outfielders, and acquired starting pitchers like Trevor May and Alex Meyer from Philadelphia and Washington respectively. This seems to be a smart move, as enhanced pitching depth was necessary. The team also saw the resurgence of Kyle Gibson last year, after he had missed quite a bit of the previous season due to surgery. Minnesota Twins also netted during the start of the season, Byron Buxton an excellent outfielder, and Jose Berrios, who is a right-hander. 
Continue reading "MLB Baseball Bets and the Minnesota Twins"


Richard Kagan

Twins blowing out ChiSox, 17-4 posted by Richard Kagan

This game was ugly when the Twins scored 7 runs on seven singles in the 2ns inning.  Twins 7-3...then Sox tacked on a run to make it 7-4, and then the Sox pitchers seemed to forget how to get three outs.  10 more runs.  The Twins have battered arround more than Hurricane Isaac.  You could see the wind formation on the field.  Ouch. Continue reading "Twins blowing out ChiSox, 17-4"


Richard Kagan

Rios' 19th Leads HR Attack vs. Blue Jays posted by Richard Kagan

Balls were flyin' out of Toronto's baseball field left and right Thursday night, as the ChiSox hit five HR's in the game, paced by Alex Rios' three-run blast.  The Sox are piling up the HR numbers and have hit 27 HR's in the last 13 games, give or take a number.  I haven't seen a Sox team with this much power in a long time.  And, tonight, Dunn, Pierzynski, or Konerko (DNP) didn't hit one.  It was Dayan Viciendo who has caught fire of late, Ramirez, Flowers, and DeWayne Wise who connected.  This isn't the go-go Sox.  This is smashmouth baseball. 

Even Francisco Liriano was the beneficiary of the Chicago onslaught.  Liriano pitched over 6 innings to come away with his first Sox win since being traded by the Twins a few weeks ago.  It was the first time the Sox had won a series in Toronto since the Bronze Age.  That means a long time.  Hey, I'll say it now, Alex Rios is my candidate for AL Comeback Player of the Year.  He is hitting the ball so well and driving in runs.  He is having a great season at the plate.  When he hits, the Sox usually win.  He has over .530 slugging %, not bad for a player whom many thought had seen his bettter days.  If the Sox do advance to the playoffs, Rios will be a big reason why.  Hopefully he can keep doing it.

Continue reading "Rios' 19th Leads HR Attack vs. Blue Jays"


Richard Kagan

Sox nip Twins 4-3 posted by Richard Kagan

White Sox new acquistion, Francisco Liriano pitched against his former team, the Minnesota Twins and didn't get the decision, going 6 strong innings fanning five.  The Sox tied up the game in the 8th and A.J. Perzynski blasted a 2 run HR in the top of the 9th inning to take a 4-2 lead.  Addison Reed came in and gave a up a run and was able to close the door on the Twins.   So the Sox get a road win.  At this time of the season, a road win is a big win.  And, if you want to be a contender, you have to play well on the road.  Hey, the White Sox are becoming road warriors.Continue reading "Sox nip Twins 4-3"


Richard Kagan

The Cubs Are Not Good posted by Richard Kagan

Yippee, The Chicago Cubs beat the Minnesota Twins 8-2 behind the solid right arm of Ryan Dempster (2-3), who may be on the trading block.  Dempster bolstered his status with an excellent outing, his second win in a row.  I have been a long-time cubs fans.  I was there for Don Cardwell's no-hitter in the second game of a DH.  I fell asleep and missed most of the game, as a child.  I was more alert for Kenny Holtzman's gem vs. the Atlanta Braves in 1969, when the Cubs looked so good.  I was sure they were going to win the pennant.  But....stuff happens, if you're a Cubs fan.

What still surprises me is that 32,000 fans come of the park every home game if the weather is decent.  The Cubs draw well over 2.5 million.  In a good season, it could be 2.8 million.  In this tiny ballpark in Wrigleyville...The fans still come out and root for the Cubbies.  Who are as lovable as ever, even if they are on pace to lose 100 games this season.  And, that is not a laughing matter.  How do you get paid, and get up in the morning and come to the park?

The Cubs were picked by most baseball experts to finish 4th or 5th in the division.  Unfortunately, they make the Pittsburgh Pirates look good.  Manager Dale Sveum looks like he is on an out of control train in that Denzel Washington thriller.  That train threatened to cause disruption all over the landscape.  It's a stretch to say this team could win 4 or 5 games in a row.  They don't have the players to do that.  And, coming from a fan, that is a sad thing to say.

Continue reading "The Cubs Are Not Good"


Jeff Ponder

Twins Sign Jason Marquis to 1-Year Deal posted by Jeff Ponder

The Minnesota Twins are looking to improve their dismal starting rotation numbers in 2012.

Last season, the Twins starters combined to post the third-worst ERA (4.64), while also striking out just 617 batters in 961 innings-pitched.

The Twins have outsourced to fix this problem, signing veteran right-hander Jason Marquis to a one-year, $3 million contract. 

Marquis, 33, posted an 8-5 record with a 3.95 ERA as a member of the Washington Nationals last season.  He was then sent to the Arizona Diamondbacks on July 30, where he was 0-1, posting a 9.53 ERA in just three starts.  Marquis missed the last month and a half of the 2011 season with a broken right fibula after being hit by a line drive. 

Marquis was a National League All-Star in 2009 as a member of the Colorado Rockies.  His best season came in 2004 when he posted a 15-7 record and recorded a 3.71 ERA as a member of the St. Louis Cardinals.

Marquis has a career .455 ERA in 12 MLB seasons.  He has played for the Braves, Cardinals, Cubs, Rockies, Nationals and Diamondbacks.

The righty will likely be the fourth or fifth starter as lefthander Brian Duensing is expected to be in the bullpen to start the season.

Continue reading "Twins Sign Jason Marquis to 1-Year Deal"


Richard Kagan

Almost Perfect Game for Stewart posted by Richard Kagan

Chicago White Sox pitcher Zach Stewart threw a 1-hitter in blanking the Minnesota Twins, 4-0 in the second game of a day-night doubleheader.  Stewart retired the first 21 batters he faced, a perfect game for 7 innings, until Danny Valencia hit a double to lead off the 8th inning for the Twins.  Stewart kept his composure and retired the next six hitters he faced for a 1 hitter in a terrific outing tonight.  Stewart was almost unhittable.  Where was that pitching in the Detroit series?

The White Sox got lambasted vs. Detroit and looked out-classed by a better team.  Then their pitching comes together and this team looks pretty good.  Stewart (2-3) struck out 9 and walked none in his first career complete game.  His effort was almost historic.  And, it was a night he won't forget. 

Continue reading "Almost Perfect Game for Stewart"


Richard Kagan

Sox Still Alive After Seattle Sweep posted by Richard Kagan

There is good news an bad news if you are a long-time Chicago White Sox fan.  The good news, the White Sox moved into 2nd place ahead of the Cleveland Indians by a half game when the Sox won and the Indians lost on Sunday.  Now, the bad news, the Sox face Minnesota Twins, who have the Sox's number in recent years.  The last time they played, the Sox swept the Twins in Minnesota.  The Twins will be seeking to return the favor.

The ChicSox got strong piching from Gavid Floyd who pitched into the 8th inning and left the game with a 9-2 lead.  Chicago got that lead courtesy of Dayan Viciendo's three-run blast, his first home runs as a member of the Sox.  Ty Flowers, the backup catcher to A.J. Pryzienski, hit his first grand slam over the walll in left field.  Chicago scored 6 runs in the inning to take a commanding 9-0 lead.  When you get good pitching and a productive offense, you will win games.  The problem is can the White Sox get enough run production against good teams? 

If they can, this may be a memorable September run.  If not, start looking for golf dates.  The Sox trail Detroit by 6 games and will face them 6 timed before the season ends.

Continue reading "Sox Still Alive After Seattle Sweep"


Johnny Matheis

Bluegrass and Arkansas 2011 posted by Johnny Matheis

Major preps for the Derby, one with a huge favorite, the other with many who could vie for the role.

11TH RACE OAKLAWN PARK 04/16/2011 1 1/8 GRADE 1 ARKANSAS DERBY

PROJECTED ORDER OF FINISH:

PROGRAM NUMBER-NAME OF RUNNER-PROBABLE ODDS-COMMENTS

11 JW BLUE 20-1 Overlooked, but has the best forward move, and worth a shot. If the favorite is truly class, the favorite will take it, but a fourth of the time this one will win this race, so worth a shot.

4 THE FACTOR 7-5 Anything higher is betable, anything lower is an underlay, but the obvious class here.

1A ALTERNATION 6-1 Solid, but reaching the boundaries of his endurance, as 49er is a sprint breeder

1 CALEB'S POSSE 6-1 Solid as other part of entry

9 ARCHARCHARCH 10-1 One of many who look solid for part

2 NEHRO 10-1 My pick in Rebel had his shot, and is still solid.

3 ELITE ALEX 20-1 another in the group of "solids" that are hard to seperate 

6 SWAY AWAY 15-1 actually ran better than I thought he would at underlay price last out. Finishes out the contenders

7 TRUMAN'S COMMANDER 30-1 Zito is one of the best, but this would be a surprise 

8 DANCE CITY 20-1 worth a look as it is fourth lifetime start for hard trainer

5 BRETHREN 30-1 would be a surprise 

12 SARATOGA RED 20-1 Never know when Lukas has one ready

10 J P'S GUSTO 30-1 Outgunned here.

BETS: WPS on 11: Exacta box on 1-4-11, Trifecta Box on 1-4-9-11, Superfecta Box on 1-2-4-9-11, Superfecta Wheel 4,11 with 4,11 with 1,2,3,6,9 with 1,2,3,6,7,9.

Continue reading "Bluegrass and Arkansas 2011"

Minnesota Twins News

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The Walk Off: Late rally propels White Sox to best record in AL (Big League Stew)

Welcome to The Walk Off, the nightly MLB recap from Big League Stew. Here we'll look at the top performers of the night, show you a must-see highlight and rundown the scoreboard. First, we start with a game you need to know about. The Chicago White Sox might be much better than anyone anticipated. Even doubters of the team's early success had to be impressed with the club's comeback win over the Toronto Blue Jays on Monday. [ Join a Yahoo Daily Fantasy Baseball contest now ] Things didn't look great early, as the Blue Jays offense went to work against Miguel Gonzalez. By the time the third inning had ended, the White Sox trailed 5-1.  For a while, things looked bleak, but the team came together for a huge rally in the seventh. After giving up two singles and a walk to load the bases in the inning, Jays starter Marcus Stroman was removed from the contest. With two outs, Adam Eaton slapped a single up the middle, scoring two runs. Jimmy Rollins would follow that up with a single, making it a 5-4 game. Sox slugger Jose Abreu then walked, loading the bases once again. At that point, new acquisition Todd Frazier delivered. Frazier clubbed a two-run double off the wall in left, giving the White Sox the lead. The team managed to pick up another run in the ninth, running the score to 7-5. David Robertson entered in the bottom of the frame to shut down Toronto, but things didn't go all that smooth. After picking up a quick out, Robertson allowed Jose Bautista to double to center. Edwin Encarnacion grounded out, putting the Sox one out away from a victory, but Robertson walked Troy Tulowitzki to bring the possible go-ahead run to the plate. With two outs, outfielder Michael Saunders hit a slow ground ball to second that took a high hop on the infield grass. Tulowitzki attempted to slow down to avoid the ball, but mis-timed the play. He was hit on the arm as the ball bounced off the grass. The bizarre play gave the White Sox a win after a crazy game. With the victory, the team is now 14-6 on the season. TOP PERFORMERS Albert Pujols: After a slow start to open the year, Albert Pujols finally showed some signs of life Monday against the Kansas City Royals. In his second at-bat of the contest, Pujols drilled a solo home run to center field off Ian Kennedy. That hit gave him 564 home runs in his career, passing Reggie Jackson. He added to that in the fifth, clubbing another solo shot off Kennedy. Pujols finished 2-for-4, with three runs scored and two RBI during the 6-1 victory. Chris Archer: This is the Chris Archer we all know and love. Archer dominated the Baltimore Orioles on Monday, tossing 6 2/3 innings of shutout ball. He allowed just five hits during the outing and struck out 10. Archer did not walk a batter in the 2-0 win. After getting off to a rough start to begin the season, this must have been a sigh of relief for the Tampa Bay Rays. [Elsewhere: Mike Trout is the Angels new meteorologist ] Miguel Cabrera: Speaking of slow starts, it looks like Detroit Tigers slugger Miguel Cabrera will be just fine as well. The 33-year-old smashed two home runs during Monday's game against the Oakland Athletics. The first came in the first inning, giving the Tigers a 1-0 lead. The second came in the fifth, and plated three more runs. The A's attempted a late comeback, but couldn't overcome the early offensive outburst by Miggy in the 7-3 win. Taijuan Walker: The Seattle Mariners sit atop the American League West and Taijuan Walker is to blame. Walker had an excellent start against the Houston Astros on Monday. Walker gave up one run on six hits over seven innings. He issued just one walk and struck out 11 during the 3-2 win. MUST-SEE HIGHLIGHT Oswaldo Arcia has done it again. Just a few days after lifting the Minnesota Twins to a walk-off victory over the Los Angeles Angels, Arcia replicated the feat against the Cleveland Indians. Instead of settling for a single, this time he sent the ball way out of the park. With the contest tied 3-3 in the bottom of the ninth, Arcia sent a 93 mph fastball out to right off Zach McAllister for the walk-off home run. THE SCOREBOARD Red Sox 1, Braves 0: Rick Porcello turned in a scoreless performance over 6 2/3 innings while Jackie Bradley Jr.'s homer was enough to get the job done for Boston. Mets 5, Reds 3: The Reds managed a late comeback in the seventh, but a Neil Walker two-run shot in the bottom of the frame proved to be the difference for New York. Yankees 3, Rangers 1: Nathan Eovaldi carried a no-hitter into the seventh before Nomar Mazara broke it up. He still managed to turn in a scoreless performance over seven innings, striking out six. Pirates 6, Rockies 1: Jeff Locke tossed six shutout innings while Matt Joyce smacked a home run in the seventh inning to give the Pirates the win. Diamondbacks 12, Cardinals 7: The Diamondbacks scored an amazing nine runs in the sixth inning to complete the comeback, and pick up a big win over St. Louis. Marlins 3, Dodgers 2: Giancarlo Stanton homered and doubled during the contest, but it was Derek Dietrich who drove in the eventual game-winning run for Miami. Giants 5, Padres 4: The Padres nearly pulled off a late rally, but Santiago Casilla managed to shut them down for the four out save. More MLB coverage from Yahoo Sports: The StewPod: A baseball podcast by Yahoo Sports Subscribe via iTunes or via RSS feed - - - - - - - Chris Cwik is a writer for Big League Stew on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at christophercwik@yahoo.com or follow him on Twitter! Follow @Chris_Cwik [read full article]

From Yahoo Sports


The Walk Off: Chris Heisey lifts Nationals over Twins in the 16th (Big League Stew)

Welcome to The Walk Off, the nightly MLB recap from Big League Stew. Here we'll look at the top performers of the night, show you a must-see highlight and rundown the scoreboard. First, we start with a game you need to know about. Washington Nationals slugger Bryce Harper was supposed to have the day off Sunday, but the Baseball Gods had other plans. Harper did not start the game, and only received one at-bat, but he played a key role in the Nationals 6-5 win over the Minnesota Twins. [ Join a Yahoo Daily Fantasy Baseball contest now ] With his club down by one run in the ninth, Harper was called upon to work his magic. He would deliver. On the seventh pitch of his at-bat against Kevin Jepsen, Harper sent a game-tying solo home run into the seats in center. Harper, however, was replaced in the 10th inning by outfielder Chris Heisey. While normally that move would never pan out, baseball has a silly way of focusing in on those types of things. Harper was just warming up the crowd for Heisey's future theatrics.  In the bottom of the 16th inning, Heisey blasted a 79 mph slider from Michael Tonkin out to left center for a walk-off home run. Yes, the man who replaced Harper wound up winning the game for the Nationals. With the win, Washington is now 14-4 on the season. TOP PERFORMERS Paul Goldschmidt: The Diamondbacks may not have won Sunday, but it wasn't Goldschmidt's fault. He did everything in his power to help his club. Goldschmidt started things off by giving his team the lead with a solo home run in the first inning. With his club trailing by two in the ninth, Goldschmidt hit a game-tying two-run blast off Pittsburgh Pirates closer Mark Melancon. At that point, the Pirates no longer wanted to take their chances with the slugger. Goldschmidt was intentionally walked the next two times he came to the plate. That worked, as the Pirates managed to pull out the 12-10 win in a crazy game .  Steven Souza Jr.: Souza had plenty of success against New York Yankees pitcher Michael Pineda on Sunday. In the first inning, Souza tagged the big righty for a two-run shot, giving his team a 5-0 lead. He would pile on just a few innings later. In the fifth, Souza against went deep, this time adding a solo shot off Pineda. He finished two-for-four, with two runs scored and three RBI in the 8-1 victory. Jason Hammel: The Cubs may not have had one of their big three on the mound, but Jason Hammel came through. Hammel tossed six strong innings, giving up three hits and two walks during the scoreless outing. He struck out seven. Through four starts this season, Hammel is 3-0 with a 0.75 ERA. That third win came during the Cubs 9-0 drubbing of the Cincinnati Reds on Sunday. [Elsewhere: Shelby Miller saw time in the outfield during Sunday's crazy game ] Jedd Gyorko: Gyorko found a way to get some payback against his former club during the St. Louis Cardinals' 8-5 win over the San Diego Padres. Gyorko went 3-for-5, with a single, triple and home run. He finished just a double shy of the cycle. MUST-SEE HIGHLIGHT Heisey may have played the hero for Washington on Sunday, but none of it was possible with Harper's game-tying blast. And, let's face it, watching Bryce Harper destroys baseballs always makes for entertaining highlights. Harper only received one at-bat during his off day, but made it count in the biggest way. He's so locked in right now that you can't help but respect the performance. The 23-year-old is hitting .323/.405/.855 with nine home runs and just nine strikeouts(!) in 74 plate appearances.  THE SCOREBOARD Blue Jays 6, Athletics 3: Jose Bautista hit an early two-run shot, andthat was enough to propel Drew Hutchison to a win. Indians 6, Tigers 3: The Indians won, but Carlos Carrasco left early with a hamstring injury. Trevor Bauer came on in relief and managed to pick up the victory. Mets 3, Braves 2: Jacob deGrom wasn't dominant, but pitched well in his return. He allowed one run on eights hits in 5 2/3 innings during the win. deGrom struck out three and did not issue any walks.  Brewers 8, Phillies 5: Ryan Braun smacked his fifth home run of the season in the fourth inning. He also had a single during the contest. After being limited in the spring due to offseason surgery, Braun is hitting .364 through 74 plate appearances. White Sox 4, Rangers 1: Offseason reclamation project Mat Latos pitched another gem for Chicago. The righty lasted six innings, giving up just one run on seven hits. He struck out two and walked two during the outing. Latos now has a 0.74 ERA with his new club. Royals 6, Orioles 1: Alex Gordon and Eric Hosmer each hit their second home runs of the season while Yordano Ventura gave the Royals seven strong innings during the win. Mariners 9, Angels 4: Kyle Seager's first inning home run padded the Mariners lead, while Leonys Martin and Seth Smith each added long balls of their own later to put the game out of reach. Marlins 5, Giants 4: J.T. Realmuto's eighth inning home run provided the go-ahead run for the Marlins. Giancarlo Stanton also homered earlier in the contest. Dodgers 12, Rockies 10: Jake McGee collapsed in the ninth, allowing five runs on five hits and one walk in just 2/3 of an inning. He received a blown save and a loss. Red Sox 7, Astros 5: A late Colby Rasmus home run couldn't save the Astros. Jackie Bradley Jr. managed a knock in a run in the 12th and Ryan Hanigan scored on a wild pitch, giving Boston the win. More MLB coverage from Yahoo Sports: The StewPod: A baseball podcast by Yahoo Sports Subscribe via iTunes or via RSS feed - - - - - - - Chris Cwik is a writer for Big League Stew on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at christophercwik@yahoo.com or follow him on Twitter! Follow @Chris_Cwik [read full article]

From Yahoo Sports


Fredi Gonzalez tops list of MLB managers at risk of being fired (Big League Stew)

We’re nearly two full weeks into the Major League Baseball season and it seems like a good time to speculate about which managers are in danger of losing their jobs. It just so happens the online sportsbook Bovada has the latest odds on this topic and there are few surprises. Atlanta always was expected to be awful this season as the franchise has gone with a youth movement in an effort to rebuild. The Braves haven’t disappointed those who expected them to finish at or near the bottom of the National League but they are disappointing their fans with an 0-9 start, which might be a little worse than expected. Being winless through nine games has Fredi Gonzalez as the manager most at risk of being fired sooner rather than later. He is sitting at even odds at the top of Bovada’s board at 1/1 odds of losing his job. The Braves start a three-game series Friday night at Miami. [ How MLB players came to wear No. 42 on Jackie Robinson Day ] Many thought Colorado manager Walt Weiss might have managed his final game for the Rockies when the 2015 season ended, but the organization decided to bring him back for a fourth season. Weiss is second on Bovada’s list at 7/2 odds. Weiss hasn’t come close to going .500 in his three previous seasons, but much of that really is attributable to a lack of talent, especially on the pitching side, than his decision-making and philosophies. Weiss is the sixth manager in Colorado history and he always was considered somewhat of an experiment. Sure, he had 14 years of experience in the Major Leagues as a player, but he had no managerial experience in professional baseball prior to being hired after coaching his son’s high school team in suburban Denver for one season. [ Adrian Beltre's reaction to this Chris Tillman pitch is priceless ] The Rockies went into Friday’s game 5-4 and in third place in the NL West Division. So he’s in no immediate danger and considering the Rockies aren’t expected to contend this year, if he can coax improvement over last season’s 68-94 finish, he might be back for a fifth season in 2017. Minnesota Twins manager Paul Molitor is third on the list at 4/1 odds of being fired, which seems somewhat dubious considering he’s only in his second season as manager and he’s a beloved figure in that city and organization. But Molitor and the Twins are in the same boat right now as Gonzalez and the Braves. They’re still looking for a win nearly two weeks into the season at 0-9.  The fourth manager on the Bovada list is somewhat surprising. Bovada gives Terry Collins 8/1 odds of being fired after he guided the New York Mets to the World Series last season with one of the best pitching staffs in baseball. However, the Mets are just 3-5 to start the season and Collins comes into the season with big expectations after last season’s results and a two-year contract extension. New York Yankees manager Joe Girardi is at 10/1 odds of being fired, Los Angeles Angels manager Mike Scioscia is 12/1 and first-year Miami manager Don Mattingly is at 25/1. More MLB coverage from Yahoo Sports: The StewPod: A baseball podcast by Yahoo Sports Subscribe via iTunes or via RSS feed - - - - - - - Kyle Ringo is a contributing writer to Big League Stew on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at kyle.ringo@yahoo.com or follow him on Twitter! Follow @KyleRingo [read full article]

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The Walk Off: Cubs win again and are off to best start since '69 (Big League Stew)

Welcome to The Walk Off, the nightly MLB recap from Big League Stew. Here we'll look the top performers of the night, show you a must-see highlight and rundown the scoreboard. First, we start with a game you need to know about. It's safe to say there's no early-season disappointment with the Chicago Cubs. And Thursday's game against the Cincinnati Reds just reinforced that. [ Join a Yahoo Daily Fantasy Baseball contest now ] The Cubs won their fifth straight game, beating the Reds 8-1 to complete a three-game sweep. The Cubs have the same record as the score — 8-1, which is their best start since 1969. That year, the Cubs won 11 of 12 games to start the season. Things didn't end so well that season , of course, but that team didn't have Kris Bryant and Addison Russell.  Bryant hit his second homer of the season while Russell had three hits and scored two runs. Cubs starter Jason Hammel threw six scoreless innings too. Perhaps most impressive about these Cubs is just how forceful their wins have been. Their run differential is +43, by far the most in MLB. The Cardinals are +24 and nobody else is even in the 20s. Enjoy these additional factoids about the Cubs' early-season onslaught: Highest Run Differential - 1st 9 Games of Season In Modern Era 1999 Indians +44 1905Giants +43 2016 @Cubs +43 Via @EliasSports — ESPN Stats & Info (@ESPNStatsInfo) April 15, 2016 The last @Cubs team to post a better run differential through 9 games played in 1885 … as the White Stockings. pic.twitter.com/7wYq1k5T4p — MLB Stat of the Day (@MLBStatoftheDay) April 15, 2016 The Cubs have a +43 run differential through 9 games. Last year, only 11 teams had a run differential that good over 162 games. — Matt Clapp (@TheBlogfines) April 15, 2016 These are all nice things. TOP PERFORMERS • Jaime Garcia: What's the best-possible scenario for the St. Louis Cardinals and starter Jaime Garcia? Exactly what happened Thursday. Garcia threw a one-hit shutout and struck out 13 as the Cards beat the Brewers 7-0 . He did it all in 104 pitches. • Vince Velasquez: Get this: Garcia's performance might not have even been the best of the day. Vince Velasquez, the 23-year-old Philadelphia Phillies starter, K'd 16 San Diego Padres while throwing a three-hitter that put him in the record books . The Phils won 3-0 and Velasquez went the distance, hitting 97 mph on his final pitch of the day.  Vince Velasquez, wow. He'd be the 5th-youngest pitcher to have a scoreless start of 14+ K, 0 BB behind Gooden, K. Wood, J. Fernandez, Blue. — Andrew Simon (@AndrewSimonMLB) April 14, 2016 • Ian Kennedy:  We'll end this trifecta of pitchers with Kennedy, the new Kansas City Royals starter, who kept the Houston Astros offense quite most of the night. In fact, he carried a no-hitter into the sixth inning. All told, he gave up two hits and one run while striking out seven as the Royals beat the Astros 6-2 . MUST-SEE HIGHLIGHT This is Bryce Harper's 100th career homer and his first career grand slam. Nice, both of them. He's also 23, so that's important to note. One more thing: This gave the Washington Nationals enough offense to beat the Atlanta Braves, 6-2 . The Braves, by the way, still haven't won a game this season. THE REST OF THE SCOREBOARD •  Los Angeles Dodgers 5, Arizona Diamondbacks 2 : Dodgers score five in the seventh, as Ross Stripling throws six innings in his second MLB start. • Detroit Tigers 7, Pittsburgh Pirates 4 : New Detroit Tigers starter Jordan Zimmermann has yet to surrender a run with his new squad, including his Thursday start against the Pirates.  • Chicago White Sox 3, Minnesota Twins 1 : The Twins have still won as many games as you this MLB season. Nada. • Cleveland Indians 6, Tampa Bay Rays 0 : The Indians hit three homers and rough up Rays ace Chris Archer.  • Colorado Rockies 11, San Francisco Giants 6 : Matt Cain gave up the six runs in 4.2 innings, not getting out of Colorado's nine-run fifth inning. • Toronto Blue Jays 4, New York Yankees 2 : Josh Donaldson and Troy Tulowitzki homered, while Marcus Stroman went eight strong innings.  • Texas Rangers 6, Baltimore Orioles 3 : Rougned Odor lands the go-ahead double as the Rangers rally for five in the sixth inning to beat the O's. More MLB coverage from Yahoo Sports: The StewPod: A baseball podcast by Yahoo Sports Subscribe via iTunes or via RSS feed - - - - - - - Mike Oz is the editor of Big League Stew on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at mikeozstew@yahoo.com or follow him on Twitter! Follow @MikeOz [read full article]

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Twins agree to minor league contract with OF David Murphy (The Associated Press)

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) -- David Murphy and the Minnesota Twins have agreed to a minor league contract, and the 34-year-old outfielder will report to Triple-A Rochester. [read full article]

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