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A Brief History of Women’s Baseball

Everyone knows that baseball is a huge sport played by men but what about the women’s equivalent? Is there even such a thing? The truth is women’s baseball was around in the 1860’s but went through much tougher and sadder times than the men’s game.

 

In 1866 Vassar College organized the first two women’s baseball teams. Over the next few years other colleges followed suit. Then in a similar way that women’s basketball later faced problems women’s baseball was mostly gone by the mid 1870’s. It faced a backlash not only from the press and the general public but also from the girls’ mothers.

 

Two teams competed in 1875 and were the first women to actually be paid for playing the sport. Unfortunately early teams were considered a novelty and anytime they tried to be taken seriously they were shut out. In the 1890’s things improved and teams started to become more prevalent. Because of the style of uniform these players were known as bloomer girls.

 

The beginning of women’s professional baseball

Ironically there were more opportunities for women to play baseball in the 1940’s and 50’s than there are now. In 1943 The All American Girls Professional Baseball League was formed. The league lasted 12 years and was very popular for a few reasons including a momentous event that happened two years earlier.

 

In 1941 Pearl Harbor was attacked and America was drawn into the Second World War. Star players across all the teams enlisted or were conscripted to go and serve their country. The men’s league continued to compete but with a much lesser array of talent. Interest dwindled and so did the crowds.

 

The Lipstick League

Philip K Wrigley was the owner of the Chicago Cubs and their home was Wrigley Field. A big ballpark that needed to be filled. The Cubs General Manager at the time worked with Wrigley to devise options to raise revenues. They looked at softball and even light opera according to some sources. However it was the women’s league that became a reality.

 

Over 500 women would play in the league over the next dozen years. For the initial tryouts in Chicago nearly 300 women travelled from Canada and all over the states. Clearly there was a demand there to play. Four mid-west teams formed the initial All American Girls Baseball League (the word Professional was added later). The South Bend Blue Sox, The Racine Belles, Kenosha Comets and the Rockford Peaches.

 

Femininity was a big part of this league. They didn’t want women to act like their male counterparts and the league became known as the Lipstick League. The players were sent to charm school by Wrigley where they had to learn the right way to apply makeup and get out of a car in a feminine manner. They were encouraged to wear skirts at the hotel and slacks were frowned up.

 

This isn’t to say the league was a novelty. Far from it. The girls wore skirts but they were talented professional ball players. The popularity of the league grew and at its peak in 1948 it had a million paying fans. Like men’s baseball the women’s sport was segregated and only white players could compete in the AAGPBL.

 

The rise and fall and rise of women’s baseball

Sadly the sport didn’t survive long. In the 1950’s crowds dwindled and revenues dropped. More people were starting to get televisions in their homes and travelling to a stadium was not the only way to watch a game. The league collapsed and there were very few opportunities for women to play baseball. The Bloomer Girls had gone and the Lipstick League disappeared. Players packed up and returned home.

 

It would take decades for women’s baseball to rise again. Many sports witness league collapses and teams disappearing. Basketball is no stranger to this but women’s baseball seems particularly hard done by.

 

In 1984 Bob Hope attempted to bring women’s baseball back with a minor league team but was shot down by the Florida State League. He tried again in 1994 this time backed by Coors Beer. They established the Colorado Silver Bullets who would travel the states and play minor league and men’s college teams for the next few years.

 

2004 saw the first US Women’s National Team formed by US Baseball and there are signs for optimism with women’s baseball continuing to grow albeit slowly. Many young players end up switching to softball instead.

 

Betting on women’s sports

If you are a fan of women’s sports you may also like to have a flutter sometimes. Not surprisingly you cannot really gamble on women’s baseball. Online kaszino allow for a multitude of different ways to gamble though and include sports betting. You should check the regulations in your state or region to make sure online sports betting is allowed as there are different laws in place for each state. Women’s basketball is a popular way to bet women’s soccer is getting bigger too.

 

Before choosing a casino to play in, read the reviews to see recommendations and choose which games you want to play. Many land-based casinos will let you place sports bets on site and basketball season is very popular in Las Vegas. Search out your favorite games in Wazdan kaszinójátékok such as poker, blackjack and roulette and find the best odds for your sports bets. Online casinos are a great way for sports fans to stay entertained.

 

Future of women’s baseball

It is to be hoped that women’s baseball will continue to grow. The Peaches were immortalized in the Tom Hanks and Madonna movie; A League of Their Own. A story of the Lipstick League and the struggles those players faced and also their achievements. It is sad to see that 80 years on since the league was formed there isn’t now a professional established league like the NBL. If a girl or woman wants to play baseball it seems that they are encouraged to switch to softball instead.

Braves Beat Marlins 29-9…

On 9/7 and 9/8, the Marlins beat the Braves in Games 1 and 2 of their 3 game series. On 9/9, the Braves proceeded to break the NL-record for runs scored, beating the Marlins 29-9. Yes, 29-9. Pablo Lopez started for the Marlins before quickly falling apart against a strong Braves lineup. The Marlins hitting actually continued to stay relevant, putting up 9 runs, but sadly that was nowhere near close enough.

Pitching? The Marlins barely knew her last night

 

Looking at what happened last night, it is easy to get down on the Marlins pitching. Let’s remember this team has been carried by their pitching throughout the year. In reality, it is better for the pitching to allow 29-runs this game then it is for them to allow 8 over the next 4. Pablo Lopez allowed 7 earned runs, Jordan Yamamoto allowed 12 earned runs, and Alex Vesia and Josh A. Smith both allowed 4 earned to top it off. There really is no silver lining to look at revolving around last night’s pitching. As long as they can get back on track versus the Phillies, this can be considered a blip in a great season.

Hitting? The Marlins kind of know her now

 

I briefly mentioned the statistic that the Marlins longest streak of scoring 4+ runs was 3 games. They have now scored 4+ runs in 6 games. The Fish are starting to heat up, and although they aren’t “keeping up with a 29-run avalanche” hot, there is still progress to be seen. Jazz Chisholm hit his first career home run and is showing more and more promise as a future star. Lewis Brinson continues to swing the bat better, and the rest of the lineup looks the best it has all year.

What’s next? 

 

A good ole’ 7-game series between us and our division rivals? With the Marlins only sitting 3.5 GB of the Braves and 1.5 GB of the Phillies, the Fish can make a splash in the current standings with a solid series. Currently, the Marlins sit in the second Wild Card spot. Sandy Alcantara (2-1, 3.78) takes the mound in game 1 versus Jake Arrieta (3-4, 5.67 ERA) (the game is free to watch today at 6:40 pm on MLB.TV).

 

Tough Loss for the Marlins

Yesterday, the Marlins played the Rays in their series finale. Trevor Rogers took the hill for the Marlins against Tyler Glasnow of the Rays. After a series of missed opportunities for the Marlins, the Rays ended up walking it off with a 5-4 win in the 10th. The Marlins competed but lacked the extra fire to steal a win when they could have. 

What more can the pitching do?

 

Trevor Rogers is a 22-year-old kid who pitched 6 innings of 3 run baseball against arguably the best team in the American League. Brad Boxberger and Yimi Garcia combined for 3 scoreless innings. Allowing 3 runs over 9 innings shouldn’t be a guaranteed loss for any team, but for this Marlins squad every night it looks more and more like it’s the case. The pitching shows up and puts the Marlins in a position where they can win, but the hitting falls short. 

What is going on with the hitting?

 

Starling Marte hit a 2-run bomb in the first, but past that, the bats were quiet. The dichotomy between this team earlier in this season and now is evident. Lately, the Marlins have struggled to play small ball, resulting in lost opportunities and lost games. Before the 10th inning last night, the Marlins had a runner on 2nd base with nobody out in the 8th and 9th innings. In both cases, the Marlins failed to even move the runner over to third. I’m guessing Don Mattingly will not be happy with that sequence of events. 

Tough losses can have silver linings

 

Jazz Chisolm finally got on the board with his first MLB hit! Congratulations to him as he navigates his first few weeks in the bigs. He looks like an extremely talented young player who has fun on the field and loves what he is doing. Jazz Chisholm and Brian Anderson made two of the team’s best defensive plays back-to-back yesterday, which was good to see.

What’s next?

 

The Marlins need to pick up the pace if they are going to make a run for the playoffs. They can start doing so today against the Braves, where Jose Urena makes his season debut against the Braves’ Ian Anderson.

Marlins Lose 2-1, Split Series With Blue Jays

One mistake was enough to give Sixto Sanchez (1-1, 2.37) his first loss in the MLB. On a dominant night from Sixto, one hanging slider to Lourdes Gurriel Jr. was enough to make the difference. The Blue Jays managed to hold on to their relatively early 2-0 lead off the Gurriel Jr. blast and win the game 2-1. The Marlins fell to 16-16 and the Blue Jays improved to 19-16 on the season. 

Positive Takes

The pitching remains stellar. Sixto had a lot of swagger on the mound and showed high levels of confidence for the young 22-year old that he is. He managed the game with a low pitch count and went 7 strong innings allowing only the 2 runs on the home run. Boxberger and Garcia pitched scoreless innings in the 8th and 9th, respectively. Marlins’ pitching continues to look extremely special with the combination of effective young arms in the starting rotation and the wily veterans in the bullpen. After almost every game (barring some of the games which the bullpen was working on low rest), Marlins’ pitching has been a positive post-game topic. At least they are consistent.

Negative Takes

Speaking of inconsistency, the Marlins’ lineup has continued to struggle. Adding Marte to the mix proved to be the difference on Tuesday, but as seen on Wednesday one guy cannot shift the momentum of 8 guys lacking. These hitting woes have been a consistent fixture on this team. Their ability to get back on track will be the driving factor in whether this Marlins team can continue their run. The hitting has been inconsistent all season, but there have been solid spurts mixed in. The Fish will look to have a 28 game “spurt” to finish off the season.

Looking Ahead

The Marlins have Thursday off. On Friday they head to the Trop to take on the Tampa Bay Rays, who they were just swept by a series ago. Pablo Lopez (3-2, 2.10) will take the mound on Friday versus Josh Fleming (2-0, 1.74).

Marlins outbreak

Updates on Marlins COVID Outbreak

The Miami Marlins are in uncharted territory. The team landed in Philadelphia last Thursday and haven’t left since. They could be there through Sunday considering MLB has paused Miami’s season as the Marlins deal with this COVID outbreak.

The details of this story continue to change, but here’s what we know so far.

15 of the 33 players on the Marlins roster, and two members of the staff, have reportedly tested positive for the virus. MLB Network’s Jon Heyman reported Miguel Rojas as one of the new positives. Rojas leads the NL with a .700 batting average, .750 OBP, 1.300 slugging percentage, 2.050 OPS and .476 OPS-plus.

The team remains quarantined in their Philadelphia hotel awaiting results of the latest round of testing. The Marlins took the opening series of the year against the Phillies 2-1. They won’t play again until at least next Tuesday.

MLB’s Statement

In a statement this afternoon, the league said: “Given the current circumstances, MLB believes that it is most prudent to allow the Marlins time to focus on providing care for their players and planning their Baseball Operations for a resumption early next week.”

MLB postponed this week’s series between the Phillies and the Yankees. New York will instead play the Orioles on Wednesday and Thursday.

The Marlins are scheduled to host the Phillies in Miami Tuesday, but it remains unclear whether they’ll be allowed to play.

Andy Slater reported earlier today that Miami-Dade Mayor Carlos Gimenez said the Marlins should follow the quarantine protocols (14 days) upon returning to South Florida. However, Florida governor Ron DeSantis put an exception in place for sports teams to travel in and out of the state without quarantining.

 

MLB said in their statement that more than 6,400 tests have been conducted since July 24th and, other than Miami, no franchise has seen a positive test. However, to think this will be unique to one club seems naïve.

Marlins Roster Moves

If the Marlins get to their game next Tuesday and have to play, they’ll need to fill out their roster. Over the last few days, the team has claimed three relief pitchers off waivers and signed a minor league free agent. All four of these new players have been added to the team’s 40-man roster.

The Marlins will need to move additional players to the IL in order to create more space on the 40-man. So far, only Jorge Alfaro, Garrett Cooper, Harold Ramirez and Jose Urena have been placed on the 10-day IL.

The players added so far are: OF Travis Snider, RHP Justin Shafer, LHP Josh D. Smith and RHP Mike Morin.

Snider last played in MLB in 2015. He signed as a minor league free agent and could play either corner outfield spot. Over an eight-year career, Snider played 630 games and hit 54 home runs. His slash line in 2015, his last year in the Majors, is .232/.315/.350.

Miami claimed a pair of pitches off waivers from the Cincinnati Reds. Shafer is a South Florida native and played collegiately at the University of Florida. Shafer made 40 relief appearances for the Blue Jays over the last two seasons. He sports a 3.75 ERA with 41 K and 32 BB over 41 IP.

The other Red added to the roster is a former Marlin. Josh D. Smith pitched six games for Miami in 2019 and posted an 8.31 ERA. He surrendered four earned runs over 4.1 IP. The Marlins have another Josh Smith, Josh A. Smith, in the 60-man player pool as well.

Morin comes to the Marlins via Milwaukee. Over a six-year MLB career, the righty Morin has appeared for five different clubs, posting a 4.65 ERA.

Possible Call-Ups

A number of position players at the team’s alternate training site in Jupiter awaited a call-up. Lewis Brinson has worked out after missing all of the summer camp due to COVID-related issues. He’s almost certainly to be among the call-ups.

The same can likely be said of Jordan Yamamoto. A surprise option to Jupiter, Yamamoto started 15 games for the Marlins in 2019. He had a blistering start to his career, with back-to-back starts of seven scoreless innings, but he struggled to end the year. He finished 4-5 with a 4.46 ERA and couldn’t win the fifth starter spot out of summer camp.

Monte Harrison could make his MLB debut. One of the last cuts of summer camp, Harrison sports power and speed as an outfield prospect. A wrist injury late in 2019 kept Harrison from joining the team last September.

Among the other position prospects on the 40-man roster are 1B Lewin Diaz, RF Jesus Sanchez and SS Jazz Chisholm.

Marlins CEO Derek Jeter’s Statement

On Tuesday, Marlins CEO Derek Jeter released a statement as well.

“We continue to take this entire situation very seriously. All of our players, coaches and staff are, understandably, having a difficult time enduring this experience. After receiving additional test results on our Major League team this morning, we reached out to the Commissioner’s Office with concern for the health and safety of our team as well as our opponents.

“We have moved to a daily testing schedule while we isolate and quarantine appropriately, along with enacting additional preventive procedures with our traveling party. We look forward to safely returning to Miami where we conducted a successful and healthy Spring 2.0 before departing on the road and experiencing challenges. For the time being, we will remain in Philadelphia and gather information in order to make informed decisions and prepare for our return to action next week.”

Beyond all of this, another frustrating element of the coverage has been the lack of respect for the Marlins. Both ESPN and Twitter have published content with Miami’s old logo. The team switched its logo and primary colors in November of 2018.

Check out our discussion on YouTube from this afternoon:

Marlins 2020 Schedule

Miami Marlins Covid-19 Outbreak Rocks Baseball

With major league sports starting up again, Major League Baseball is at the forefront, but it re-started prior to the re-openings of the NBA, NHL or NFL seasons.

Unfortunately, the Miami Marlins are at the forefront as well, the site of the sport’s first Coronavirus cluster.

The Marlins’ home opener against the Baltimore Orioles has been canceled, after reports that as many as a dozen members of the organization have tested positive. The team is remaining in Philadelphia today.

The Marlins did play, and win, against the Phillies on Sunday, to go to 2-1 on the season. They did so even after a group of players tested positive and was removed from the lineup — and Jose Urena was scratched from his scheduled start. Marlins manager Don Mattingly said that the team “never really considered not playing.” Shortstop Miguel Rojas told the media on Sunday that the team did have a meeting to discuss whether to continue to play. Rojas said not playing was “never our mentality.”

Now, the fallout begins as the Marlins have provided Major League Baseball with a tricky situation.

Could the Marlins be stopped from continuing their season?

Could they be forced to call up more players from Jupiter, home of their temporary minor league camp?

And what now, after the Yankees’ Monday game with the Phillies was suspended as well?

What might not get much attention, regarding baseball, in Miami will get plenty in the Northeast, especially New York.

As one can imagine, there were several reactions and analysis from media members following these reports.

 

It will be interesting to see how this situation unfolds. With the NHL and NBA set to begin this week, this situation provides an interesting backdrop for major league sports.

And what is the NFL thinking, as it plans to resume its full-contact sport, with more players, and no bubble?

Marlins win

Alcantara Dominates, Leads to Marlins Win on Opening Day

The Miami Marlins hadn’t won on Opening Day since 2014. The last time they did, Jose Fernandez took the mound for Miami and struck out nine Rockies en route to a 10-1 win. For the 2020 season, Sandy Alcantara toed the rubber, becoming the youngest Opening Day starter for Miami since Fernandez. His seven strikeouts were also the most since Fernandez’s nine in 2014. Alcantara’s performance helped spur the Marlins win.

Alcantara entered the game with a 3-1 with a 2.81 ERA versus the Phillies, including a 2-0 mark with a 1.32 ERA at Citizens Bank Park. He’s a breakout candidate for the Marlins this season and his performance on Friday showed why.

Over 6.2 innings pitched, Alcantara posted seven strikeouts, surrendering just three hits, two walks and one earned run. He induced seven ground-ball outs including one double play. He relied mostly on a fastball-changeup-slider combination and kept hitters off balance all night.

Alcantara particularly flummoxed the middle of Philadelphia’s lineup. He dominated Rhys Hoskins, Bryce Harper and J.T. Realmuto, keeping them 0-for-8 with four strikeouts and just one walk.

Marlins manager Don Mattingly pulled Alcantara from the game in the seventh after 87 total pitches.

“I was ready [to finish it],” Alcantara said after the Marlins win. “I see [Mattingly come to the mound] and I’m thinking ‘Oh my God. I’m done, but I don’t want to give him the ball. I want to be on the mound.’ But I respect his decision.”

“His stuff is overpowering, when he stays aggressive and attacks the strike zone,” Mattingly said. “Then we were able to get him some runs, which takes the pressure off and gives us some breathing room.”

New Additions Contributed to Marlins Wins as well

The breathing room for Alcantara came thanks to the Marlins offseason additions. Jonathan Villar‘s sac-fly in the third inning drove in the first run of the year for Miami. Then Jesus Aguilar broke a 1-1 tie in the sixth inning when he deposited an 0-2 breaking ball from Aaron Nola 409 feet away in left-center.

Corey Dickerson helped chase Nola from the game when he lined a double to right field three pitches later. Dickerson finished the game 2-for-4, scoring a run on a wild pitch in the sixth.

Francisco Cervelli, subbing in for Jorge Alfaro who landed on the 10-day IL prior to the game, played well, too. He registered the first hit and scored the first run of the year. Cervelli finished 1-for-3 with a walk and run scored. He called an excellent game for Alcantara.

The addition of the DH to the National League also paid dividends for the Marlins. In what would have been the pitcher’s spot, Miguel Rojas went 2-for-3 with a walk, stolen base and run scored. Garrett Cooper manned the DH spot went 1-for-4 with a two-out RBI double in the sixth inning.

“It’s good to get on the board,” Mattingly said of the Marlins win. “Feels like a big win, to be honest with you.”

The Marlins are back at it this afternoon at 4:05 PM. Caleb Smith starts for Miami versus Zack Wheeler. Smith was 10-11 with a 4.52 ERA and 168 K in 2019. He surrendered 33 HRs, which is something he’ll need to improve upon in 2020. In four career starts versus the Phillies, Smith is 1-2 4.50 ERA with 19 K over 18 innings pitched.

Marlins breakout candidates

5 Marlins Breakout Candidates for 2020

For the Miami Marlins, the 2020 season arrives with new faces and renewed hope. While not the normal spring beginning by any means, this optimism feels real and is largely tied to a number of potential Marlins breakout candidates.

The 2020 MLB season arrived last night in rainy Washington, D.C. For the Marlins, they’re a few hours north in Philadelphia awaiting their first tilt of the truncated season. The landscape of MLB transformed this year thanks to COVID-19, new rules and an eleventh-hour agreement to expand the playoffs. Everyone has a chance, and for Miami, their opportunity to break a 17-year postseason drought could be decided by a handful of players.

So here’s a look at five Marlins breakout candidates for the 2020 season.

Marlins Breakout Candidates: Sandy Alcantara

Miami’s Opening Day starter is 24-year-old Sandy Alcantara. A first-time all-star in 2019, Alcantara finished 6-14 with a 3.88 ERA, 151 strikeouts, 81 walks and two complete-game shutouts. His best work came over an 11-game stretch to end the season. Over his final 74.1 innings, Alcantara posted a 2.74 ERA and 1.05 WHIP with 62 strikeouts. He hit seven innings in seven of his last 11 starts.

“I think that’s the biggest thing in my life, being the Opening Day starter. I feel great about that,” Alcantara said. “I’m ready to go.”

In 2019, Alcantara went 2-1 with a 3.86 ERA versus Philadelphia. He sports a five-pitch arsenal which includes a solid fastball-sinker-slider combo. His changeup and curve are weapons versus lefties.

“His stuff is as good as anyone,” Marlins manager Don Mattingly said recently. “I don’t care who you want to put out there. His stuff is as good as anyone’s.”

For the Marlins, if Alcantara can ascend to top-line starter level, the 2020 season will be a success.

“I think we’re going to surprise a lot of people,” Alcantara said. “They want me to be a leader. That’s what I’m trying to do. Keep preparing myself. Keep getting better. Become an ace.”

Marlins Breakout Candidates: Pablo Lopez

If the Marlins are going to contend for a playoff spot, they’ll need Pablo Lopez to make a leap. In 2019, Lopez sported a 4.23 ERA through mid-June, allowing four earned-runs or less in 13 of his 14 starts. But after he went down with strained right shoulder, he wasn’t the same pitcher.

Marlins pitching coach Mel Stottlemyre Jr. has been impressed by Lopez throughout the spring and summer, particularly considering the tragic passing of Lopez’s father recently. He said Lopez is the pitcher he’s “most excited about.” And Lopez has worked tirelessly to develop his game, adding a cutter to his arsenal, which already includes a top-level changeup.

Following an impressive performance during a simulated game last Thursday, Mattingly noted that it was “the best I’ve ever seen Pablo look as far as being that aggressive guy.”

Lopez also looked good against the Braves. He dispatched Ronald Acuna Jr., Ozzie Albies and Freddie Freeman on six pitches in the first inning of that game. Lopez will start the home opener versus the Baltimore Orioles next week.

Starting him in Marlins Park is a nod to Lopez’s struggles on the road in 2019, where he went 2-5 with a 7.36 ERA and 1.44 WHIP. At home, Lopez was much better, going 3-3 with a 3.39 ERA and 1.08 WHIP.

Marlins Breakout Candidates: Isan Díaz

The hype surrounding Isan Díaz seemed well worth it when he took Jacob DeGrom deep in his MLB debut. That memorable moment, though, was followed by uncharacteristic struggles at the plate for the 24-year-old. Díaz finished his first year in the Majors with a .173 batting average, five home runs and 23 RBI.

“There were a lot of things going on mentally,” Díaz said of the struggles. “I wasn’t allowing my ability to evolve in the game. Those are things that happen.

“I had a great group of guys here who told me to take it as a learning curve and come back ready for next year,” he said. “Here we are for this 2020 season and already there’s a big difference with how I’m mentally feeling and how I’m going at this. I think that last year’s failure actually is going to help me for this year.”

Mattingly sees Díaz as the team’s second baseman now and of the future. He said Díaz’s “track record show that he’s gonna hit.”

Díaz should find the addition of new bench coach/offensive coordinator James Rowson hugely beneficial. Díaz has raw power but was too patient as a rookie, falling behind often. He’s already demonstrated strides at the plate in the exhibitions versus Atlanta. Although he only had one hit and one walk, there were productive at-bats.

Marlins Breakout Candidates: Jorge Alfaro

The player who could enjoy the most gains from the addition of Rowson is Jorge Alfaro. The 27-year-old catcher flashed his potential with the bat in 2019, connecting on 18 home runs, 14 doubles and 57 RBI. What hurt Alfaro was a 38.4-percent swing-and-miss rate, a 48-percent chase rate and a 33.1-percent strikeout rate.

Rowson says he wants Marlins hitters to take “swings to do damage,” and Alfaro can certainly do that. He sported a 44.8 percent hard-hit rate (a ball with an exit velocity of at least 95 mph) last season.

Alfaro demonstrated the new aggressive approach on Tuesday when he punched the first pitch he saw over the leftfield fence at Truist Park. In the two games, Alfaro went 3-for-5 with a homer and two RBI.

He’ll also need to improve defensively. Alfaro posted the fourth-most errors by a catcher (11) and the third-most passed balls (11). He’ll be mentored this year by Francisco Cervelli, who’s well known for his defensive acumen.

Marlins Breakout Candidates: Brian Anderson

Although the Marlins added higher profile names to their lineup (Jesus Aguilar, Corey Dickersonand Jonathan Villar), Brian Anderson remains a key component to this offense. Anderson’s second year ended in August after a hit-by-pitch fractured his left hand. He slashed .261/.341/.468 with 20 home runs, 33 doubles and 66 RBI.

“I think he’s been getting better and better,” Mattingly said. “I think he’s got all the attributes. I’ve talked about him a lot from the standpoint of he sees the ball good and controls the strike zone. He’s got a good swing. He uses the whole field. Everything’s there in place.”

Anderson does have the tendency to get frustrated at the plate, evidenced by his 0-for-4 performance in the first exhibition versus the Braves. But Anderson bounced back with a solid 2-for-3 outing, including a double and run scored.

Adding Villar, Dickerson and Aguilar around Anderson should also provide the 27-year-old third baseman with lineup protection he’s never received in Miami.

“Those types of guys are definitely gonna make our lineup just more well-rounded and just tougher to pitch to,” Anderson said. “For me, I’m hoping that means I get more pitches to hit. It’s my job to make sure that I get those good pitches and I hit them.”

Recent reports indicate that Miami and Anderson have discussed a long-term contract extension.

“They’ve obviously given me an incredible opportunity here so I would love to stay here,” said Anderson, who the Marlins drafted in 2014 (third round).

“I love the direction that we’re going. I love getting to hear Derek talk about expecting to win,” he said. “That’s something that can grow and build and we can start making something special here.”

How to Watch, Bet the 60-Game Baseball Season

Since its inception in 1903, the Major League Baseball is the home to some of the best baseball players in the world. The last few seasons have been extremely interesting and the new season has some changes which are worth looking at since they might be confusing to some fans.

We are going to discuss this topic into detail and give you an insight into the shortened 60-game season, the biggest favorites, and share some interesting intel on betting. As you may know, many baseball fans are more than happy to place a bet or two and we are going to provide you with the best platform for betting. After all, sports and betting are separate industries that always went side by side.

Betting With Online Bookies

There are plenty of baseball betting lines that you should check out. The odds are great and you might end up with a nice prize. Even though some people prefer to place their bets in land-based bookies, a new and revolutionizing way has become popular in the last few years.

Online bookies are favored by millions of people around the world. The reason for that is that they have numerous advantages over the land-based bookies. They are available at any time and place, offer better odds and rewards, and most importantly – they are far more efficient.

We all know that in sports, placing bets fast, especially with live betting, is important. And since baseball is one of the sports where each second matters, placing bets at online bookies is a far greater option than walking to a land-based sportsbook. But, there are some rules that you need to know about sports betting, so make sure you check them out.

Now, let’s see what the shortened MLB season has to offer us.

When Does it Start and How Will it Work?

The MLB season starts on July 23 with a split Opening Day. The Yankees will face the Nationals, while the Dodgers will face the Dodgers. The rest of the schedule is still unknown, but there are some games scheduled on July 24.

Each team will play 60 games – 40 of them will be against their division rivals and 20 interleague games. The 2020 MLB All-Star Game is sadly cancelled, but the next game will take place at Truist Park in Atlanta (2021). 

Rosters will be different and some rule changes will be implemented. The new rule which allows position players to pitch in certain situations is abandoned. Games that are stopped due to rain before the fifth inning will be considered as suspended. The National League will have a designated hitter and extra innings will begin with a runner on the second base to reduce the chances of long games.

Even though the whole situation is new and it looks challenging, some quirks will come out. Teams won’t have to travel as much as before, the season ends with seven Interleague series, and some of the monotony will be lifted. Some of the games that were standard for over a century in the League will not take place. 

Many teams will have some benefits with the way this season is scheduled, which is why we are excited to see what the outcome will be.

 

The Biggest Favorites

Minnesota Twins are the biggest favorites to win the American League Central. The Yankees are the number 1 team in the American League East, while Houston Astros are considered as favorites in the American League West. 

As far as the World Series, The New York Yankees top the list of biggest favorites to win it. The Los Angeles Dodgers and Houston Astros are ranked second and third. Atlanta Braves and Minnesota Twins conclude the top 5 list. But, there are some teams that are worth watching. One of those are the Miami Marlins.

Why Did The Deal Came So Late?

The reason why the solution for a shortened season came so late is that the MLB and the Major League Baseball Players Association were unable to make an agreement in May and July. The MLB owners drafted the first plan in mid-May and it featured a schedule of 82 games with no fans in the attendance.

MLBPA countered with another proposal, which was unacceptable for the MLB and the negotiations went on and on. During the end of June, the 60-game plan was finally voted unanimously and players reported to training camps on July 1. The plan was released on July 6 and slight changes were implemented in order to cut costs on the teams.

All in all, we are in for a treat. Although the start of the season might be a bit slow and teams will need a bit time to adjust to the changes in the rules, we do not doubt that the level of excitement will be no less than the previous seasons. 

Marlins Players

5 Marlins Players to Know for 2020

The Miami Marlins have finished their summer camp training this week and are in Atlanta for a pair of exhibition games. The two contests versus the Braves will be the finial tune ups for the 60-game season sprint, which starts Friday. New Marlins players and roster holdovers alike are competing for spots on the roster.

The Marlins will travel with 41 players to Atlanta but will need to pare down to 30 for Opening Day. The unique nature of this season could see roster changes happening regularly. So even if a player doesn’t initially make the team, ala Jordan Yamamoto, they could play a role later in the season.

For Opening Day, the Marlins will be in Philadelphia. According to SportsBettingDime.com’s odds page, Miami enters the game as an underdog versus the Phillies. Sandy Alcantara will toe the rubber for the Marlins to start the year, but there’s still some uncertainty regarding the rest of the roster.

With that in mind, here’s a look at five under-the-radar Marlins players who could play a role in 2020.

Marlins Players to Know: Jordan Holloway

Jordan Holloway has been something of a surprise during summer camp. The 24-year-old right-hander comes in as the No. 20 prospect for the Marlins according to MLBPipeline. At 6-foot-6, Holloway stands as an imposing figure on the mound and has found success working at Marlins Park this summer.

“What he’s done in a couple of outings here has been pleasantly surprising and has put him kind of in the mix,” Marlins pitching coach Mel Stottlemyre Jr. said. “We have to stay open-minded. We’re going to be able to expand our roster, and there are going to be some guys that are given an opportunity that maybe in a regular season wouldn’t have been given that opportunity.”

Holloway boasts a fastball that touches triple-digits and sports an above-average curveball. Also, he’s fully healthy after a 2017 Tommy John surgery.

Stottlemyre said Holloway is “probably the nastiest guy we have in our bullpen.”

Holloway’s electric stuff and three-quarter delivery could make him a viable option in the bullpen, despite his starter pedigree. The major point of emphasis for him, though, will be command. Holloway walked 66 batters over 95 innings at Single-A Jupiter in 2019.

Marlins Player to Know: Alex Vesia

Another electric arm who could help in the ‘pen in 2020 is Alex Vesia. Listed as the No. 24 overall prospect for the Marlins by MLBPipeline, Vesia posted a 1.62 ERA with 138 strikeouts over 100 innings while advancing to Double-A over his last two seasons. He finished 2019 on a 35-inning scoreless streak and pitched six scoreless innings this spring. At 24-years-old, the lefty reliever has turned heads with his work this summer.

“Everywhere he went he had success,” Don Mattingly said of Vesia. Miami’s manager went on to say Vesia has “pitched with confidence” and “has some moxie about him,” noting “[h]e’s on the attack; he’s not afraid; he’s a strike thrower.”

Vesia’s fastball flies at 92-95 mph and touches 97. His deceptive delivery and high spin-rate gets on hitters quickly, helping those strikeout numbers.

The Marlins are limited with left-handed relievers and Vesia is the highest-rated lefty prospect in Miami’s system. If he can consistently throw strikes, the rookie could find himself pitching meaningful innings in 2020.

Marlins Player to Know: Nick Neidert

When the Marlins optioned Yamamoto to Jupiter, most assumed Elieser Hernandez had won the fifth starter competition. While that may ultimately prove to be true, one of the names still in the running is Nick Neidert.

The 23-year-old righty stands as the Marlins No. 10 overall prospect according to MLBPipeline. And throughout the summer, Mattingly hasn’t hesitated to throw Neidert into the mix for the 2020 roster. He said he’s in a “position to stay.”

In five minor league seasons, Neidert sports a 3.20 ERA, 1.14 WHIP and an 8.1 K/9 rate over 460.2 innings pitched. He features a 90-93 mph sinking fastball that pounds the bottom of the zone. His deceptive delivery can fool hitters and he was sharp in the Arizona Fall League.

Over six innings this spring, Neidert gave up just one earned run. He’s been up-and-down in recent intrasquad games and could ultimately slot in as a long reliever or piggyback option out of the bullpen.

Marlins Player to Know: Eddy Alvarez

The Marlins’ bench seems set, but local product Eddy Alvarez continues to make a late push for the 30-man roster. The 30-year-old Miami native and Columbus High graduate seeks to make his Major League debut in 2020, which would add to a resume that includes a 2014 Winter Olympics silver medal in speedskating.

Alvarez is a roster wildcard. He’s another player with positional versatility and he’s a switch hitter. At the Triple-A level in 2019, Alvarez hit .323 with 12 home runs and 43 RBI over 66 games.

“I like the kid,” Mattingly said of Alvarez. “I think he’s got a chance to help us depending on what happens during this this camp.”

Should Alvarez make the team, the Marlins would have to make a roster move, as he’s not currently on the 40-man roster.

“We’re pieces of the puzzle,” Alvarez said in March. “If I fit in a certain algorithm, then it’ll be time for me to go. It’s tough as a baseball player, it really is, not knowing much, but you just have to play.”

Marlins Players to Know: Magneuris Sierra

One of the decisions the Marlins must decide in the next few days is what to do with Magneuris Sierra. The big hitch in this question is the fact that Sierra is out of minor-league options. Should the team elect not to put Sierra on the Opening Day roster, he would have to pass through waivers before being reassigned within the organization.

Sierra’s best weapon is his speed. The 24-year-old should serve as Miami’s top pinch-running option this season after he stole 36 bases in 50 attempts in 2019. Working in his favor in the 60-game season are the expanded rosters and the new extra-innings rule.

“We think there is a role for a guy who can steal a bag on this club right now,” Mattingly said. “You’ll see teams in pennant races going down the stretch [looking for speed].”

For the 2020 season, MLB has implemented a new rule for extra innings: each half-inning will start with a runner on second base.

“That creates a different role, not just for him, but a few other guys as well,” Mattingly said of for Sierra, who can also be used as a defensive replacement.

Sierra, a left-handed hitter, also showed strides at the plate in limited action with the Marlins in 2019. He hit .350 over 40 at-bats. He has eight stolen bases (in 15 attempts) over his 91 MLB career games.