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March 2017
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‘MLB’ Articles

Much-traveled veteran pitcher Jason Hammel now pitching for Kansas City Royals

Jason Hammel pitching for Cubs By Julie Fennell on Flickr, CC BY 2.0, https

The Kansas City Royals announced recently that they have signed right-handed pitcher Jason Hammel to a two-year free agent contract, with a mutual option for the 2019 season. Per club policy, terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Hammel, 34, has spent the last two seasons with the Chicago Cubs, going 15-10 with a 3.83 ERA in 30 starts last season, posting 144 strikeouts in 166.2 innings. His 15 wins were a career high, while he ranked sixth in the National League with a 2.42 ERA at home. He allowed one run or less in 13 of his 30 starts, while he surrendered three runs or less in 23 of his 30 outings. Hammel also posted the third-fewest pitches per start (87.4) in the National League, throwing 100 pitches on seven occasions, with the Cubs winning all seven of those games. Over the last two seasons with Chicago, his 25 victories are tied for 11th in the NL.

The right-handed pitcher is entering his 12th Major League season, going 84-87 with two complete games, one shutout and a 4.42 ERA in 306 career appearances (248 starts). He’s made 20 or more starts in eight-straight Major League campaigns (2009-16), while he’s topped 30 starts in each of the last two seasons. Among active big league pitchers, Hammel ranks 41st in wins, 33rd in starts (248), 34th in innings (1,503.0) and 41st in strikeouts (1,191).

Originally selected by Tampa Bay in the 10th round of the 2002 First-Year Player Draft, Hammel resides in Chicago, with his wife, Elissa, and sons, Beckett and Colby.




“The Mayor” former Red Sean Casey named Grand Marshal for Findlay Market Opening Day Parade

Sean Casey at 1B for Reds in 2004 By Rdikeman at the English language Wikipedia, CC BY-SA 3.0, https

The Reds and Findlay Market have announced that Reds Hall of Famer Sean Casey will be the Grand Marshal of the 98th Findlay Market Opening Day Parade, which kicks off at Noon on Monday, April 3, 2017.

One of the most popular players to ever wear a Reds uniform, Casey became known as “The Mayor” to fans throughout Reds Country. The first baseman hit .305 during his eight-year Reds career, which included three All-Star appearances.

Casey was inducted into the Reds Hall of Fame in 2012 and is currently an analyst for the MLB Network.

The announcement was made earlier on Friday at the Findlay Market Opening Day Parade press conference. In attendance was Cincinnati Mayor John Cranley, Reds COO Phil Castellini, Parade Chairman Neil Luken and representatives from the Cincinnati & Northern Kentucky Toyota Dealers.

On display at the press conference was the new 2017 Toyota Tundra Double Cab 4×4 truck that will be given away on Opening Day for the Toyota Tundra Sweepstakes.

Eight lucky fans will win a pair of tickets to the Reds Opening Day game. The eight will be welcomed onto the field at Great American Ball Park with one of them winning the Tundra after a spin of the prize wheel.

Fans can register for the sweepstakes at any of the six Cincinnati & Northern Kentucky Toyota dealers until March 24, 2017. One last chance to register will be at the Toyota booth at the Reds Community Fund Opening Day Charity Block Party.

This is the 10th year in which the Cincinnati & Northern Kentucky Toyota Dealers have given away a Toyota Tundra to lucky fans and local charities.

The sponsoring dealers are Kings Toyota, Joseph Toyota, Performance Toyota, Beechmont Toyota, Kerry Toyota and Dry Ridge Toyota.

Official rules of the Toyota Tundra Sweepstakes can be found at




MLB names Roberto Alomar Special Consultant in Puerto Rico focusing on youth baseball development

Roberto Alomar By Mental Lint from North Creek NY, CC BY 2.0, https

Hall of Famer will advise Commissioner and represent MLB in the commonwealth


Baseball Commissioner Robert D. Manfred, Jr. today announced that he has named Hall of Famer Roberto Alomar as a Special Consultant to Major League Baseball who will focus on youth baseball development and other league goals in Puerto Rico.

Alomar’s duties will include advising the Office of the Commissioner on issues related to youth baseball in Puerto Rico and serving as an ambassador at events and development initiatives on the island, including youth clinics and tournaments. The 2011 Hall of Fame inductee will assist in MLB’s efforts to attract and develop Puerto Rican players, coaches, managers and front office personnel. Alomar, 49, will also serve as a spokesperson for MLB’s Pitch Hit and Run program in Puerto Rico.

Commissioner Manfred said: “I look forward to Roberto playing a role in our youth initiatives in Puerto Rico and contributing to our Pipeline Program. With many exciting young Puerto Rican players in our game today we have a great opportunity to take strides forward in the years ahead. I am pleased that Roberto will be a part of building on Puerto Rico’s rich baseball tradition.”

Alomar said: “I am honored to partner with Commissioner Manfred and Major League Baseball on this important initiative. We have a proud history and a great passion for the game of baseball in Puerto Rico and I am very excited to play a role in the development of our youth”

Alomar assembled a 17-year Hall of Fame career in the Major Leagues from 1988-2004. The standout second baseman helped lead the Toronto Blue Jays to consecutive World Series Championships in 1992 and 1993. He made 12 consecutive All-Star Game appearances between 1990-2001. Alomar earned 10 Gold Gloves in his career. He was the Most Valuable Player of the 1992 American League Championship Series and batted .480 (12-25) with six RBI and four stolen bases in the 1993 World Series. Overall, Alomar’s Clubs (TOR, BAL and CLE) participated in the Postseason seven times in 10 opportunities between 1991-2001. Before he entered Cooperstown in 2011, the Blue Jays retired Alomar’s number 12 – the first time that the franchise had ever so honored a player in its history.

Alomar was born in Ponce, Puerto Rico and attended Luis Muñoz Rivera High School in Salinas. Roberto’s father Sandy and brother Sandy Jr. have both been longtime Major League players and coaches. Sandy Jr., Roberto’s former Cleveland teammate, is currently on the Major League coaching staff of the Indians.




Reds announce Opening Day tickets to go on sale March 18; only at GABP ticket windows

Great American Ball Park view behind home plate (2012 photo by Ayingling via wikipedia commons)

A limited number of Cincinnati Reds Opening Day tickets will go on sale Saturday, March 18 at 9 a.m. only at the Great American Ball Park ticket windows.

Ticket Prices for the Reds vs. Philadelphia Phillies Opening Day game on Monday, April 3:
• $35 for Standing-Room-Only tickets (500 available)
• $50 & $55 for View Level tickets (500 available)
• Plus, a limited supply of $45-$75 tickets for other ballpark seating sections

There is a limit of four Opening Day tickets per person. An additional game purchase is not required. Cash and major credit cards will be accepted.

Fans will be permitted to form a line for tickets beginning Friday, March 17 at 9 a.m. Fans will receive wristbands indicating their place in line and may not hold spots for friends or family who are not in attendance. Fans will be expected to remain on-site and random checks will be performed until the ticket sale begins. The Opening Day ticket sale will happen rain or shine.

The consumption of alcoholic beverages on the property of Great American Ball Park is a violation of state law and violators will be asked to leave the premises by police. Open flames and propane heaters will not be permitted on the ballpark premises.

Reds Authentics ‘Spring Sale’ – 9 a.m. to Noon
The Reds Authentics Shop inside the main gates at GABP will be open to the public on Saturday, March 18 from 9 a.m. to Noon for an exclusive sale of authenticated, game-used and autographed Reds memorabilia, including:
• Game-used and team-issued jerseys, hats, baseballs, helmets, bats, lineup cards, locker tags and batting gloves
• Autographed baseballs, jerseys, helmets and photos from current and former Reds players
• Unique and one-of-a-kind signage from around the ballpark and inside the clubhouse

Additionally, Reds Authentics will offer $50 “Opening Day Ticket Mystery Bags,” providing fans a 1-in-10 chance of selecting a pair of Opening Day tickets. All other mystery bags will contain authenticated items valued from $50-$400. (only 100 bags available, while supplies last)

All Reds Authentics sales benefit the baseball and softball outreach programs of the Reds Community Fund.

Reds Fan Clubs
The Reds Fan Clubs Corner inside the ballpark will also be open from 9 a.m. to Noon where fans can purchase memberships to the following clubs:
• Reds Rookies Baby Club ($20, ages 0-3)
• Reds Heads Kids Club ($30, ages 3-12)
• Club Red ($10, ages 13-17)

Each club includes exclusive Reds gear, tickets, and members-only experiences. Join now to enjoy the benefits all season long.

Reds Team Shop by Majestic
The Reds Team Shop will be open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m with new Reds gear arriving daily. The Authentic Collection for 2017 by Majestic includes a pullover hooded sweatshirt for men, ¼ zip pullover for ladies, ¾ sleeve batting practice trainer and a large collection of On Field and fashion caps by New Era.




Attendance records being set during 2017 World Baseball Classic

The 2017 World Baseball Classic set numerous tournament attendance records after the completion of the first round of play. The tournament reached record attendance for games played through the first round with 621,851 fans marking a +34% increase over the previous record of 463,017 which was established during the 2013 Classic.

Pool B, held at the Tokyo Dome in Tokyo, Japan, registered the largest attendance of any pool in the history of the tournament with a total of 206,534. The average attendance for Japan’s three first round games was 42,123. Japan’s 11-6 victory over Cuba on March 7, which drew a crowd of 44,908, was the largest attendance of the first round and the third-largest crowd in the tournament’s history.

Pool C, held at Marlins Park in Miami, drew a total of 163,878, which was the highest first round total for a U.S. pool in the tournament’s history. The top game from Miami was the sold out USA vs. Dominican Republic thriller which the DR captured 7-5 in front of 37,446 fans, marking the largest crowd in Marlins Park history.

The fourth installment of the premier international baseball tournament features the world’s top 16 National Teams competing over a 17-day span. Rosters for the 2017 World Baseball Classic feature tournament record totals of 63 MLB All-Stars and 259 players under contract with MLB organizations. The tournament is being distributed via media platforms in 182 countries and territories worldwide with a global reach of more than 415 million households.

Second Round play in the United States starts today featuring the Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico, United States and Venezuela from San Diego’s Petco Park. The Second Round in the Tokyo Pool is underway with Cuba, Israel, Japan, and the Kingdom of the Netherlands competing at the Tokyo Dome. Two teams from each pool will advance to the Championship Round for single elimination match-ups taking place at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles from March 20-22.

Tickets for the remaining games are available at In the United States, tournament games will air live exclusively in English on MLB Network and on an authenticated basis via; while ESPN Deportes and WatchESPN will provide the exclusive Spanish language coverage.




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