Red Sox Add Pablo Sandoval to Pre-Black Friday Spree

Within hours of officially bringing Hanley Ramirez on board, the Red Sox have also decided to pluck Pablo Sandoval from the ranks of the free agents, which isn’t easy given the strength it takes to pluck a man of his physical stature. Sandoval is expected to get a deal somewhere in the five-year/$100 million range, although specifics are not available at this time. Despite the details not being within our reach at the moment (and we’ve often heard dramatically that the devil in fact resides in the details!), the general framework for the money and years doled out to everyone’s favorite/least-favorite panda seem to be fairly concrete. Continue reading

The Backup Catcher, Offseason Episode 3

Dokken

Nothing has ever been more epic in the history of the Backup Catcher podcast than the things contained in this episode. There are explosions, Triple Slash, Giancarlo Stanton, dynasty league rankings, Megan Fox, and aliens. This is basically Michael Bay’s wet dream all condensed into two hours of the greatest podcasting the Earth has ever seen.

Surprise special co-host Nathan Dokken joins Van for a non-stop thrill ride sure to leave you clamoring for more!

Offseason Episode 3

Around the Horn: 11-23-14

We ask the greatest minds in baseball about hot topics from around the league.


Sandoval

“I actually suffer from a debilitating condition which causes patches of fat to grow on my body, so I have to eat to balance them out. Mmmmphh, grmmph, oh god yes, mmmph.”

-Pablo Sandoval, on his weight issues, and then eating a mouthful of canned cheese

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Shelby Miller, The Cardinal

Shelby Miller is an Atlanta Brave. This has been a turbulent roller coaster of a half-year for Cardinal fans ever so used to the same young nucleus guiding the team to postseason play each and every year, as a number of key members find themselves elsewhere. It’s almost too much to take, and in one case it just is too much to take. Now it’s Shelby Miller, Shelby Miller with the Big Fastball, who finds himself on another roster months in advance of the 2015 season. Continue reading

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Billy Beane Signs Billy Butler

So much Billy! After a particularly dreadful 2014, designated hitter and pancake-downer extraordinaire Billy Butler found himself without a real extension offer from his lifelong team, the now-fancy Kansas City Royals. Butler wound up testing the open market, and the result is Butler taking a three-year, $30 million deal from Billy Beane‘s Oakland A’s. As a result of moving to a more regular contender, Butler has asked the media to change his official nickname from “Country Breakfast” to the more stately “Ante-meridian Consumption Period.” Catchy, no?! Continue reading

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Blue Jays Add Russell Martin, Are From Canada

It’s been well-documented in the hours following his contract signing, but Russell Martin wasn’t a guy anyone felt good about going to a fifth year on. Toronto’s front office, I imagine, looked around at one another, shrugged, and pulled the trigger on a half-decade of Mr. Martin for $82 million. The contract seems inflated based on the incarnation of Martin we’d all become used to seeing, but his new approach emphasizes contact and selectivity (.290/.402/.430 in ’14), which for this player is absolutely a good thing. Hiis receiving skills have also only improved over time, so kiddos like Marcus Stroman and Aaron Sanchez should reap the benefits in the coming years.. Martin turns 32 just prior to the 2015 season, so the last couple of agreed-upon years represent legitimate question marks, but the deal seems a reasonable one so long as it was made by a team with serious motivations, and the Blue Jays seem to have them now. Continue reading

Marlins Ink Giancarlo Stanton to Forever Deal

After days of rumors that the Marlins would lock up super-slugger Giancarlo Stanton for all eternity by paying him all the money there is, we officially have a contract. Not only is this a contract, this is the contract, a 13-year pact that will give the monstrous Stanton a record $325 million. This is the largest contract in major American sports history by sheer dollar amount, and it will just about ensure that Stanton remains a Marlin for the duration of his remarkable career. Stanton will also be able to veto any trade and potentially opt out around the time he turns 30 and suddenly goes into an existential crisis about what it means to have lost another decade to Father Time’s clutches. Continue reading

Say-Hey

Jason Heyward Dons Cardinal Red

You can already picture Jason Heyward in Cardinal red. You know that lithe six-foot-five frame is bursting with athleticism, and you know he’s capable of doing just about everything in a baseball uniform. You know he was a former first-round pick, a prospect that once caused scouts to hyperventilate when they imagined his future, and now you’re certain he’s set to put it all together in his age-25 season. He’s going to play that same otherworldly defense in right, he’s going to fly around the bases, and he’s going to hit like he never has before. He’s going to cement himself into the Cardinal legacy with an unreal 2015 season, and then he’s going to sign a massive contract and stay with the organization through the rest of his electrifying career. Fast forward 25 years, and you can already see him in a red jacket.

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The Backup Catcher: Offseason Episode 2

stanton

Cutting and splicing ensues in this edition of the Backup Catcher Podcast! Regular host Brian Vaughan is on hiatus due to his pending court case against the Koch brothers, the LGBT association, and Fisher-Price company (sorry, we aren’t allowed to discuss details), so Van brings you some MLB news all by his lonesome. Then you get to hear some prerecorded stuff about the boys’ selections for the top awards, a few games like Which is More and Triple Slash, and the boys enter their selections for the top 25 free agent destinations (hint: they were both wrong so far).

Kevin Agee joins for some action packed segments that are sure to keep your baseball-hungry nether regions satisfied!

Offseason Episode 2

The Backup Catcher: Offseason Episode 1

fat kid

Do you like baseball? You better. Because baseball is here for you! Van and Brian bring you baseball like no one else can simply because they have a secret weapon. And the secret weapon’s name is Kevin Agee. A true Royals fan through and through, this special guest superstar brings his insight into the amazing run by the blue-blooded Royals, helps Van and Brian talk about the Hall of Fame (or yell about in Van’s case), Brad Radke again, and even play a new game called Fat or Fiction!

Offseason Episode 1