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April 2017
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‘MLB’ Articles

Blue Jackets head coach John Tortorella named finalist for Jack Adams NHL Top Coach Award

John Tortorella after win over Blues back on November 12, 2016 ( photo)

Tortorella won the award with Tampa Bay in 2003-04, was runner-up in 2002-03 and 2011-12
COLUMBUS, OH – Columbus Blue Jackets Head Coach John Tortorella has been named a finalist for the Jack Adams Award, presented annually to the NHL’s coach of the year as voted on by the National Hockey League Broadcasters Association, the club and League announced tonight.  Mike Babcock of the Toronto Maple Leafs and Todd McLellan of the Edmonton Oilers are the other two finalists.


Tortorella led the Blue Jackets to the best season in the club’s 17-year history in 2016-17 with a 50-24-8 record and 108 points, which was the fourth-best mark in the NHL.  The club’s 108 points was a 32-point turnaround from 2015-16 when Columbus finished with a 34-40-8 mark and 76 points.  This past season, the Blue Jackets ranked second in the League in goals-against average (2.35 per game), sixth in goals-for (3.01), ninth in penalty killing (83.3 percent) and 12th in power play efficiency (19.8 percent).  The club also boasted the third-best goal differential in the League at +54.
Tortorella joined the Blue Jackets on Oct. 21, 2015 and has led the club to an 84-57-16 record (.586 points percentage).  On Dec. 18, 2016, he became the first U.S.-born coach and the 24th in NHL history to record 500 wins in a 4-3 overtime victory at Vancouver.  The Boston-native is the winningest U.S.-born coach in NHL history as he has compiled a 530-432-131 record (.545) in 1,093 games with Columbus, Vancouver, NY Rangers and Tampa Bay.
Tortorella previously won the Jack Adams Award in 2003-04 after leading the Tampa Bay Lightning to a 46-22-14 record, Southeast Division title and Stanley Cup championship.  He was runner-up in 2002-03 after guiding Tampa Bay to the first division title in club history with a 36-25-21 mark and in 2011-12 with the New York Rangers, whom he led to an Atlantic Division title with a 51-24-7 record.
Tortorella is the third Blue Jacket to be named a finalist for a League award this season.  He joins Sergei Bobrovsky, who is a finalist for the Vezina Trophy, given to the NHL’s top goaltender; and defenseman Zach Werenski, who is a finalist for the Calder Memorial Trophy as the League’s top rookie.
The 2017 NHL Awards and NHL Expansion Draft will celebrate the League’s top talent from the 2016-17 season and reveal the initial roster of the League’s 31st team, the Vegas Golden Knights, on Wednesday, June 21, at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas.  The event will be televised live in the United States on NBCSN at 8 p.m. ET.



“Trader Jack” McKeon named lone 2017 Padres Hall of Fame Inductee

SAN DIEGO – The San Diego Padres today announced Jack McKeon has been elected to the Padres Hall of Fame, the lone member of the class of 2017. The former Padres manager and general manager will be inducted on Saturday, August 19, 2017, in a special pregame ceremony ahead of that night’s game against the Washington Nationals. The election was made by the Padres front office in collaboration with the San Diego chapter of the Baseball Writers’ Association of America (BBWAA) and local sports media.

“The Padres Hall of Fame is dedicated to the players, executives and broadcasters who have impacted the club in ways that left an indelible mark, often at the most pivotal moments in Padres history,” said Padres Executive Chairman Ron Fowler. “By that definition, ‘Trader’ Jack McKeon is beyond deserving of his election and upcoming induction into the Padres Hall of Fame. As the architect of a team that won this organization’s first National League pennant, a general manager/manager hybrid, and a larger-than-life personality, McKeon had a remarkable tenure in San Diego.”

Jack McKeon in Marlins uniform (courtesy Marlins)

McKeon will be honored for his 11 seasons as general manager of the Padres (1980-90), including the parts of three seasons he spent in the dual role of GM and manager (1988-90). Dubbed “Trader Jack” for his renowned ability to instigate and mediate transactions, McKeon was 49-years-old when he began his role as general manager. McKeon made a multitude of the trades and signings that helped lead to the club’s 1984 National League title, including a 11-player trade with the St. Louis Cardinals. His most notable trade acquisitions included Garry Templeton, Terry Kennedy, Graig Nettles, Carmelo Martinez and Dave Dravecky. McKeon also signed Steve Garvey and Goose Gossage as free agents, and was responsible for drafting Tony Gwynn and Kevin McReynolds, as well as acquiring Alan Wiggins in the Rule 5 Draft.

During the 1988 season, with the Padres record sitting at 16-30, McKeon assumed the managerial title, becoming the 12th manager in franchise history. For parts of three seasons, he led the Padres to 193 victories, boasting a .541 winning percentage. Following his career in the Padres organization, McKeon went on to manage the Cincinnati Reds and Florida Marlins, spending four seasons with each club. In 2003, McKeon led the Florida Marlins to their second World Series title. In his 16-year management career, McKeon accrued a record of 1051-990, and he received National League Manager of the Year accolades in 1999 and 2003. McKeon has penned two books, Jack of All Trades and I’m Just Getting Started, and on May 26, 2015, the New Jersey native was named to the Irish American Baseball Hall of Fame.

“Speaking on behalf of the San Diego chapter of the BBWAA, I am delighted that the Padres have chosen to honor ‘Trader’ Jack McKeon this summer,” said Scott Miller, chairman of the San Diego chapter of the Baseball Writers’ Association of America. “Not only was he instrumental in creating one of the seminal moments in club history in his role as GM of the 1984 World Series team, he was a classic, crusty, old-school baseball man who operated in a haze of cigar smoke, pulled the trigger on trades at all hours of the day and night and stoked the imagination and passion of Padres fans everywhere. A natural showman, I cannot think of another GM who hosted his own radio show before an enthusiastic live audience of baseball fans during the Hot Stove season. In the annals of Padres history, Jack McKeon stands tall as an all-timer.”

McKeon and members of his family are expected to be in attendance as he becomes the 14th person to be enshrined in the Padres Hall of Fame, which was created to honor the club’s 30th anniversary in 1999. He joins (in order of induction) Randy Jones (1999), Nate Colbert (1999), Ray Kroc (1999), Dave Winfield (2000), Jerry Coleman (2001), Buzzie Bavasi (2001), Tony Gwynn (2002), Dick Williams (2009), Trevor Hoffman (2014), Benito Santiago (2015), Garry Templeton (2015), Ken Caminiti (2016) and Ted Williams (2016).

The new Padres Hall of Fame presented by Sony opened at Petco Park in July 2016 on K Street behind the left field seating area. The exhibit showcases the full history, not only of the San Diego Padres, but also of baseball in San Diego. Its many features include an 80-foot-long in-depth timeline, starting with baseball in San Diego in the era before the Padres (1871-1935), moving into the Pacific Coast League Padres (1936-68), and finally transitioning into the Major League Padres (1969-present). Visitors also experience interactive displays and individual tributes to the players, broadcasters and executives who have made a tremendous impact on baseball in San Diego.




Pirates President Frank Coonelly comments on Starling Marte suspension

Starling Marte at bat By Sports Crazy, CC BY-SA 2.0, https

Press Release

“The Pittsburgh Pirates fully support MLB’s Joint Drug Agreement, including the very tough penalties for violations of its prohibitions. We are disappointed that Starling put himself, his teammates and the organization in this position. We will continue to fight for the division title with the men who are here and will look forward to getting Starling back after the All-Star break.”





MLB disciplines Cardinals 3B Matt Carpenter

Matt Carpenter smiling By d-deee, CC BY-SA 2.0, https

St. Louis Cardinals first baseman Matt Carpenter has received a one-game suspension and an undisclosed fine for making contact with Umpire John Tumpane following his ejection during the top of the seventh inning of Sunday’s game against the Milwaukee Brewers at Miller Park. Joe Torre, Chief Baseball Officer for Major League Baseball, made the announcement.

Unless appealed, Carpenter’s suspension is scheduled to be served tonight, when the Cardinals are to host the Toronto Blue Jays. If appealed, the discipline issued to Carpenter will be held in abeyance until the process is complete.




Phillies to honor Pete Rose with 2017 Toyota Wall of Fame Inductee on August 12

Pete Rose 2008 by Kjunstorm from Laguna Niguel, CA, US. Licensed under CC BY 2.0 via Wikimedia Commons

It’s official. Phillies legend Pete Rose will be bestowed with the team’s highest honor.

On Saturday, August 12, Rose, a four-time Phillies All-Star and MLB’s all-time hits leader, will become the 39th inductee into the Phillies Wall of Fame during an on-field ceremony before that night’s 7:05 p.m. game against the New York Mets.

Many special guests will return to honor the former first baseman, including past Phillies Wall of Famers. A 14″ x 20″ cast bronze plaque of Rose will be added to the Toyota Phillies Wall of Fame display located in the Memory Lane section of Ashburn Alley.

“I am very honored to be inducted into the Phillies Wall of Fame. My baseball years in Philadelphia were amazing, not just because we won it all in 1980 and came close in 1983, but also because the fans welcomed me from day one,” said Rose. “The team’s great ownership and talented roster attracted me to Philadelphia as a free agent. I knew we could experience great success.”

As the 2017 inductee, Rose will be honored at the annual Alumni Luncheon on Friday, August 11, at noon in the Diamond Club. In addition, all fans in attendance at the 7:05 p.m. game on Friday will receive a Toyota Pete Rose bobble figurine. On Saturday, August 12, all fans attending the 7:05 p.m. game will receive a commemorative Toyota Pete Rose print. The weekend will culminate with Toyota Alumni Day pre-game festivities on Sunday, August 13 at 1:35 p.m.

One of the most popular figures in Phillies history, Rose signed with the team as a free agent in December 1978. He played for the Phillies from 1979-83 and made quite an impact. During those five seasons alone, the Phillies were in a Division Series (1981), two League Championship Series (1980, 1983), two World Series (1980, 1983) and won their first World Championship (1980).

Rose was a National League leader with the Phillies on more than one occasion: on-base percentage, .418 (1979); singles, 159 (1979) and 117 (1981); doubles, 42 (1980); hits, 140 (1981); games, 162 (1982), and most assists as a first baseman, 123 (1980). He was also an NL All-Star from 1979-82 and broke the NL hits record in a Phillies uniform on August 10, 1981. Some more notables from Rose’s Phillies career: he batted .326 in the five postseason series, finished second in the NL batting race twice, .331 (1979) and .325 (1981), and was selected as the first baseman by the fans on the Centennial Team (1983).

Rose was selected to the Wall of Fame through fan voting on Tickets to all Toyota Phillies Alumni Weekend events are available at, with the Alumni Luncheon honoring Rose on sale at



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