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Angels Expected to Bid Hard for Free Agents PDF Print E-mail
Written by The Staff   
Sunday, 12 November 2006 20:48

AngelsArte Moreno and the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim missed out on the opportunity to land Aramis Ramirez, but that doesn't mean that today they won't go hard after the likes of Alphonso Soriano or Barry Zito, and that's on top of the fact that they have a bid in for Japanese pitching sensation Daisuke Matsuzaka.

The Angels said almost a month ago that they were going to be aggressive this off-season, and they appear to still be in that frame of mind. As the LA Times reports:

The auction starts today, and the Angels already have their hands up. Today is the first day teams can bid upon free agents, and the Angels plan to submit opening bids so high that a player or two will accept right away and other teams will take their money elsewhere.

Sometimes that strategy works, and you win Mo Vaughn. That didn't work out so well for the Angels.

Sometimes that strategy doesn't work, and you lose Paul Konerko. That didn't work out so well for the Angels, either.

But they're back, with owner Arte Moreno's wallet wide open. The last time the Angels missed the playoffs, Moreno spent $145 million on free agents, including Vladimir Guerrero and Bartolo Colon, the best position player and best pitcher available that winter.

How aggressive and flexible will the Angels be? "We've got Plan A, B, C, D and E," Angels GM Bill Stoneman said, referring to free agency and trades. "We've got five ways of doing what we want to get done. There's a lot of stuff we could be tackling. There won't be much time wasted."

 
Report: Acta to Become Nationals Manager PDF Print E-mail
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Written by The Staff   
Saturday, 11 November 2006 19:17

Manny ActaManny Acta, the former third base coach for the NY Mets will become the second manager for the Washington Nationals, succeeding Frank Robinson. The report of the selection by Howard Fendrich of the AP goes on to say:

The official, speaking on condition of anonymity because the Nationals hadn't made an announcement, said he had been told that Acta is getting the job.

He also said that, as of Saturday night, Acta had not formally informed the Mets he would be leaving.

Acta -- the Montreal Expos' third-base coach from 2002-04, before the franchise moved to Washington -- had been scheduled to interview with the Oakland Athletics on Sunday for their managerial opening, but he withdrew from consideration for that job.

 MLB.com has reported that Acta will be announced as the new manager on Tuesday. As Bill Ladson reports:

"[The Nationals] want to keep this quiet [until the announcement]," the source said. "Acta has the job. Manny is there."

This will be Acta's first managerial job in the Major Leagues. He spent the last two years as the Mets third-base coach and three years with the Expos in the same capacity from 2002-04.

Acta, 37, is considered one of the brightest young minds in baseball, and it showed during his interview with the Nationals in late October, according to a source familiar with the meeting. The club came away impressed with Acta, who spent most of the morning interview talking to Bowden. He also had afternoon conversations with Kasten and assistant general managers Bob Boone and Mike Rizzo. Acta would later meet with the Lerner family, owners of the Nationals.

 
Acta Withdraws Name from Consideration as A's Manager PDF Print E-mail
Written by Press Release   
Friday, 10 November 2006 10:41

Oakland A'sFrom the Oakland A's...

A's Managerial Interview Schedule Update
 
Manny Acta has withdrawn his name for consideration for the A's managerial position. The club does not have any more interviews scheduled at this point but will not be commenting on any part of the interview process until a manager is named.


 
Padres Name Bud Black as new Manager PDF Print E-mail
Written by Press Release   
Thursday, 09 November 2006 18:21
San Diego PadresThe San Diego Padres announced that Bud Black has been named the team's 16th manager in franchise history. Black, who will officially be presented to the media prior to tonight's awards banquet at 6 p.m. at the Marriott Hotel & Marina (Chicago Room), signed a two-year contract with a club option for a third year. Padres Executive Vice President/General Manager Kevin Towers made the announcement.

"Pitching has been the key to our success and a big reason why we have won back-to-back National League West titles," said Towers. "Bud is a proven 'pitching guy,' and I admire his approach in preparing for games and his attention to details. He will be committed to putting a fundamentally sound team on the field, and I think our guys will respond well to his competitive nature."

Black, 49, comes to the Padres after spending the last seven seasons as the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim pitching coach. Originally appointed to the position on November 23, 1999, the Angels won two American League Western Division titles (2004-05) and, as a Wild Card entrant in 2002, the franchise's first World Series Championship during Black's tenure.

"We're very pleased to name Bud as the club's new manager," said Padres CEO Sandy Alderson. "He's a thoughtful, poised and quietly confident individual with an instinctive feel for the game. Bud understands what we're seeking to accomplish, which is to win as well as develop young players. He has the right package of qualities for us."

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Diamondbacks unveil new logo and unis PDF Print E-mail
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Written by The Staff   
Wednesday, 08 November 2006 14:30

New Diamondbacks logo unveiled

Gone is the teal, purple and pinstripes. Welcome brick, black and white. Welcome the new Diamondbacks logos and uniforms. While the official logos have not been released on MLB.com, there is plenty of merchandise available for purchase to give people the new view. Check MLB.com for the new DBacks website and more details.

 New DBacks Jersey

 

 New DBacks Uniforms New DBacks Unis New Diamondbacks Uniforms
 
 
 
 
Uhlich Named Royals Senior VP of Business Operations PDF Print E-mail
Written by Press Release   
Wednesday, 08 November 2006 01:58
RoyalsThe Kansas City Royals announced yesterday the hiring of Kevin Uhlich as the club's Senior Vice President-Business Operations. Uhlich joins the Royals with 30 years of baseball experience, most recently with the Washington Nationals where he served as Executive Vice President for the past two years. In his new role, Uhlich will oversee the entire business side of the Royals organization.

"You will not find a more experienced and respected person in the industry as Kevin," said Royals President Dan Glass. "Kansas City and the Royals will benefit from his leadership."

Uhlich spent 28 years in the Angels organization, starting as a batboy in 1976. He worked his way through the Angels organization, serving as Vice President of Stadium Operations and Vice President of Sales, Marketing and Operations. He was then appointed as the club's Senior Vice President of Business Operations in 2002, a position he held for two years. The Angels won their first World Series title in 2002 with Uhlich at the helm of business operations.

During his tenure with the Angels, Uhlich spearheaded the renovation of Anaheim Stadium that was completed in 1998. He also implemented the club's change in uniforms and color scheme to predominately red and helped create the "Rally Monkey" craze during the Angels playoff runs.

He joined the Nationals organization as the team made the move from Montreal, Canada, to Washington, D.C., prior to the 2005 season. He assembled the club's business department while the club was owned by Major League Baseball and continued to lead the business efforts as the Nationals transitioned to the Lerner family ownership group. He also was instrumental in plans for the new ballpark in Washington D.C., which is scheduled to open during the 2008 season.

"My years in baseball have been great," Uhlich said. "It has been my life, my livelihood. I look at this as a great opportunity to join a quality organization that is committed to its fans. I see the potential for the Royals to accomplish great things and I am excited to be a part of it."

For the past two years, Uhlich has been commuting between Washington and his home in Foothill Ranch, Calif. He and his wife, Juanita, have twin boys, Chase and Cody, and a daughter, Katie. The family plans to relocate to the Kansas City area.
 
Chat with Maury Brown on Baseball Prospectus Weds. PDF Print E-mail
Written by The Staff   
Tuesday, 07 November 2006 18:33

Maury BrownMaury Brown, the editor of Biz of Baseball.com, will be conducting a chat on Baseball Prospectus on Wed., 11/8 at 2pm ET (11am PT). Brown is an author for Baseball Prospectus covering the business of baseball.

The chat does not require a BP subscription, and questions can be asked in advance.

To ask questions, or view the chat at 2pm ET, go to the following link:

Baseball Prospectus Chat with Maury Brown  

 
Nationals Add 10 to Scouting Staff, Including LaMar PDF Print E-mail
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Written by Press Release   
Tuesday, 07 November 2006 18:07
Washington NationalsThe Washington Nationals today bolstered their scouting department by adding 10 experienced scouts to their staff and extended the contract of their scouting director.

The Nationals bolstered their scouting department by naming Chuck LaMar (Special Assistant to the General Manager and National Crosschecker), Moose Stubing (Special Assistant to the General Manager), Bill Singer (Special Assignment Scout), Kris Kline (Special Assignment Scout), Bart Johnson (Special Assignment Scout), Jimmy Gonzales (Western Supervisor), Jeff Zona (Eastern Supervisor), Tim Kelly (Scouting Supervisor in Southern California), Tyler Wilt (Scouting Supervisor in Texas and Louisiana), and Steve Arneiri (Scouting Supervisor in IL, IN, WI, MI, MN) to their scouting staff.  Nationals Vice President and General Manager Jim Bowden, Nationals Assistant General Manager and Vice President of Baseball Operations Mike Rizzo and Scouting Director Dana Brown made the joint announcements.

The Nationals also announced they have extended the contract of Scouting Director Dana Brown. Instrumental in each of the franchise’s last four drafts, Brown’s efforts have rendered signature players such as Ryan Zimmerman and Chad Cordero, as well as the Nationals’ highly-regarded 2006 draft class, which includes right-handed pitchers Colton Willems and Zechry Zinicola, as well as, outfielder Chris Marrero.

“It is our stated goal to have the best scouting and player development departments in Major League Baseball,” said Bowden.  “Dana Brown’s extension and each of today’s 10 additions represents a significant stride toward that end.”

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More Details Surface on Potential Collusion Settlements PDF Print E-mail
Written by The Staff   
Tuesday, 07 November 2006 17:56

MLBMore details are surfacing regarding management and the Players' Association settling potential claims that management may have colluded to keep salaries down in the 2002-2003 free agency period. The reports first surfaced last week, and have been followed up with details showing that the agreement between the parties was done to remove the issue during the duration of the new Basic Agreement. No admission of guilt was made by management.

Ronald Blum of the AP provides more details on the agreement:

Under the deal, a lump-sum $12 million payment from money already earmarked for players will be made to settle unfiled claims of collusive activity from those two offseasons along with many of the backed up grievances that were pending.

While several agents accused teams of acting in concert with free agents after the 2002 and 2003 seasons, the clubs denied those allegations and formal grievances were not filed. The sides previously reached an interim settlement in which the commissioner's office both continued to provide advice on free agents and reminded clubs that they had to act individually.

"As part of the overall agreement, there was competitive-balance tax money left over from the last agreement, and we saw an opportunity to clean up the grievance procedure," Rob Manfred, baseball's executive vice president for labor relations, said Monday. "It put us in position to go forward without a lot of old disputes hanging around." 

 
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