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Week ending on Friday, September 28 2012.

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Friday, September 28

Overthinking It: Mourning Manny Acta

by Ben Lindbergh

Manny Acta has never done anything but lose. Is this the sort of thing that should get a manager fired?

Raising Aces: Four of a Kind: Diagnosing Disappointment

by Doug Thorburn

Can mechanical changes help explain what went wrong with Dan Haren, Tommy Hanson, Jon Lester, and Ricky Romero this season?

Pebble Hunting: The Increasingly Optimistic Outlook for Pitching Prospects

by Sam Miller

There was a very good reason that Baseball Prospectus championed the idea that There's No Such Thing As A Pitching Prospect. But is that an outdated idea?

Prospects Will Break Your Heart: Fall Instructional League Report: Part 2

by Jason Parks

Jason has some scouting notes on Miguel Almonte, Taylor Jungmann, and Bubba Starling.

Baseball Therapy: A Sabermetric Case for Miguel Cabrera's MVP Candidacy

by Russell A. Carleton

The best way to win a debate is to make the argument for the other side better than your opponent does. To support Mike Trout's MVP case, Russell tries taking the opposite stance.

Transaction Analysis: Astros Try Bo

by R.J. Anderson

The Astros have their next manager, the Pirates have their old GM, and Adam Greenberg has another chance.

Value Picks: Outfielders Review

by Paul Singman

Paul recaps his best and worst VP picks for the 2012 fantasy season.

Collateral Damage Daily: Friday, September 28

by Corey Dawkins

Andrew McCutchen's sore knee could keep him out a couple days.

The Prospectus Hit List: Friday, September 28

by Matthew Kory

The Diamondbacks' playoff odds hit zero, and exactly half the league is now out of it.

BP Unfiltered: Tim Lincecum and the Worst Regular Seasons By Playoff Starters

by Ben Lindbergh

If Oliver Perez can start in the postseason, surely Tim Lincecum can too.

BP Unfiltered: The Week of Setting Strikeout Records

by Ben Lindbergh

The strikeout rate is still rising, and strikeout records are dropping like flies.

BP Daily Podcast: Effectively Wild Episode 52: Oakland's All-Rookie Rotation/Baseball's Ever-Rising Strikeout Rate

by Ben Lindbergh and Sam Miller

Ben and Sam discuss whether the A's all-rookie rotation bodes well for their future, then talk about whether the average strikeout rate has risen too high.

What You Need to Know: Friday, September 28

by Daniel Rathman

The Rays find themselves in an extremely familiar position at this point in the season.

The BP Wayback Machine: Oops, They Did it Again?

by Christina Kahrl

A closer look at some of the most improbable pennant race comebacks and collapses in baseball history.

Thursday, September 27

On the Beat: McClatchy Comes Out

by John Perrotto

Former Pirates owner Kevin McClatchy recently revealed he was gay, a difficult step in the professional sports environment.

Premium Article Overthinking It: The Injuries That Decided Divisions

by Ben Lindbergh

Health can play a big part in which teams win and which go home. In the AL East and AL Central, lost WARP can help explain the standings.

Baseball Prospectus News: Announcing the PITCHf/x Matchup Analysis Tool

by Dan Brooks

A new way to visualize and analyze every batter-pitcher matchup from the PITCHf/x era.

Premium Article In A Pickle: Free to Be We

by Jason Wojciechowski

A forgettable book raises a timeless question.

Premium Article Prospect Profile: Kaleb Cowart

by Hudson Belinsky

While he's not yet tested at the upper levels, the Angels might have something in third baseman Kaleb Cowart.

Fantasy Article Resident Fantasy Genius: Revisiting the Foreign Imports

by Derek Carty

Earlier this year, Derek wrote about what to expect from the most-hyped foreign players. Did the players comply?

Premium Article Collateral Damage Daily: Thursday, September 27

by Corey Dawkins

An MRI reveals that Randy Wolf has a torn UCL.

Premium Article The Prospectus Hit List: Thursday, September 27

by Matthew Kory

The Angels (18.3 percent playoff odds) and Dodgers (3.4 percent) are still hanging in it.

BP Unfiltered: Jeff Ballard Award

by Geoff Young

Who are the most effective pitchers who can't strike out batters?

Wezen-Ball: The Race for the Triple Crown, Pt. 2

by Larry Granillo

With only a week to go, Miguel Cabrera's Triple Crown challenge is getting tighter.

BP Daily Podcast: Effectively Wild Episode 51: What the Rockies Knew About Ubaldo/The Eternal Torii Hunter/Declining Dan Haren

by Ben Lindbergh and Sam Miller

Ben and Sam discuss the decline of Ubaldo Jimenez and whether the Rockies saw it coming when they sent him to Cleveland, then talk about the Angels' off-season plans for Torii Hunter and Dan Haren.

Wednesday, September 26

What You Need to Know: Wednesday, September 26

by Daniel Rathman

Tim Lincecum takes a big step backward in his quest to regain Bruce Bochy's trust before October.

Premium Article The Platoon Advantage: Is 12 Enough for Ichiro?

by Michael Bates

Ichiro Suzuki's major-league career has been great, but, because of where he was born, it will be short. Will it be enough for Hall of Fame voters?

Premium Article Punk Hits: A Not Altogether Helpful Primer to the World Baseball Classic

by Ian Miller

In which Ian tries to answer a question that seems like it should be simple but is not: What is the World Baseball Classic?

Premium Article Prospects Will Break Your Heart: Fall Instructional League Notes, Part I

by Jason Parks

Do the fall instructional leagues make Arizona feel less hot?

The Lineup Card: Nine Awards that Should Be Given Out

Baseball Prospectus

It's almost awards season, but the BP staff has some extra hardware that should be handed out.

Premium Article Pebble Hunting: A Closer Look at Relievers and Leverage

by Sam Miller

Which relievers were added to or removed from the managerial circle of trust between April and September?

Premium Article Sobsequy: The Orthodoxy of Winning

by Adam Sobsey

When it comes to fandom, can it really be true that it's not whether you win or lose but how you play the game?

Premium Article Collateral Damage Daily: Wednesday, September 26

by Corey Dawkins

Brett Gardner returns after missing most of the season.

Premium Article The Prospectus Hit List: Wednesday, September 26

by Matthew Kory

With hot and unexpected offseason rumors about the Astros.

BP Unfiltered: A Modest Point About the AL MVP Race

by Colin Wyers

One question that seems to have gone unasked.

Wezen-Ball: Cliff Mapes and Questionable Umpiring

by Larry Granillo

New York outfielder Cliff Mapes had his own theory about a call he didn't agree with on this date in 1949.

BP Daily Podcast: Effectively Wild Episode 50: Travis Snider Tells All/Should the Giants Bring Melky Back in October?

by Ben Lindbergh and Sam Miller

Ben and Sam discuss what we can learn from Travis Snider's revelations about his relationships with his former manager and hitting coach, then talk about whether they would bring Melky Cabrera back for the NLCS.

Tuesday, September 25

Premium Article Painting the Black: What's Brewing in Milwaukee

by R.J. Anderson

The Brewers seemed to wave the white flag in July. Ever since they've been white hot.

Premium Article Overthinking It: The 2012 All-Fringe-Prospect Team

by Ben Lindbergh

Which minor-league full-season statistical leaders were mostly mirage?

Premium Article Western Front: Portrait of a Hacker

by Geoff Young

The Sultan of Swing, the man more allergic to walks than most players in major-league history, drew three walks in a game. Here's the epic story of Miguel Olivo.

Out of Left Field: Rooting for Roger

by Matthew Kory

If Roger Clemens isn't ruling anything out, then Matthew isn't ruling anything out.

Fantasy Article Value Picks: First, Third, and DH Review

by Michael Street

Michael looks at his best and worst Value Picks for the 2012 season.

Premium Article Collateral Damage Daily: Tuesday, September 25

by Corey Dawkins

Matt Capps makes his return from the disabled list.

Premium Article The Prospectus Hit List: Tuesday, September 25

by Matthew Kory

The Phillies are the 14th team to reach 0 percent playoff odds; the Rangers are the fifth to reach 100 percent (again).

Tater Trot Tracker: Trot Times for September 24

by Larry Granillo

The tater trots for September 24: Josh Hamilton (and a bunch of other players) are suddenly challenging Miguel Cabrera for the HR crown.

BP Announcements: BP Partners with MLBAM to Present Playoff Probabilities at MLB.com

by Ben Lindbergh

BP announces a new partnership with MLB Advanced Media.

BP Daily Podcast: Effectively Wild Episode 49: Another Attempt to Explain Why You Don't Need an Ace in October/The New Old Ichiro/The Steve Johnson Story

by Ben Lindbergh and Sam Miller

Ben and Sam revisit their discussion from last week on aces in October, talk about the new old Ichiro, and tell you more than you need to know about Orioles starter Steve Johnson.

What You Need to Know: Tuesday, September 25

by Daniel Rathman

After an awful first half, Ike Davis has shown a solid power stroke in the second half.

Monday, September 24

Premium Article Monday Morning Ten Pack: September 24

by BP Prospect Staff

Time for instructional leagues, and time for a number of players to take a step or two forward.

Baseball Therapy: Reading Lolita in Teheran, Part 3: Smoking, Hitting, and the Search for an 80 Brain

by Russell A. Carleton

Is changing a player's approach at the plate like getting someone to quit smoking? And how does learning ability affect development?

Premium Article Bizball: Astros Will Use Money to Pay Down Debt, but Is That a Bad Thing?

by Maury Brown

A look at Houston's decision to use television money to pay down debts instead of putting it toward player payroll.

Premium Article Transaction Analysis: Lewis, Texas Re-Up

by R.J. Anderson

With an injury hanging over his free agency, Colby Lewis inked an extension with the Rangers

Fantasy Article Value Picks: Second, Short, and Catcher Review

by Josh Shepardson

Josh looks back on his VP picks that panned out and those that floundered in the final VP of the year.

Fantasy Article Resident Fantasy Genius: Low-Cost Saves for Your Keeper League

by Derek Carty

Investing in top non-closers now could save you loads of money next draft day.

The Week in Quotes: September 17-23

by Hudson Belinsky, Jonah Birenbaum, Andrew Koo and Matthew Rocco

Running through the notable quotes of the week that was.

Premium Article Collateral Damage Daily: Monday, September 24

by Corey Dawkins

Giancarlo Stanton is having difficulty hitting, but he could still return this season.

Premium Article The Prospectus Hit List: Monday, September 24

by Matthew Kory

Ten days to go, and 17 teams still have at least a thump in their playoff odds.

Tater Trot Tracker: Trot Times for September 23

by Larry Granillo

The tater trots for September 23. Geovany Soto and Brendan Ryan find themselves on the outside looking in - but just barely.

BP Daily Podcast: Effectively Wild Episode 48: What We Would Pay James Loney/Are the Dodgers Trying Too Hard?

by Ben Lindbergh and Sam Miller

Ben and Sam size up this winter's free-agent first basemen and estimate how much money James Loney will make, then talk about whether the Dodgers' pursuit of a playoff spot is leading to dangerous decisions.

What You Need to Know: Monday, September 24

by Daniel Rathman

Despite facing the Twins for two games yesterday, the Tigers couldn't take advantage.

Sunday, September 23

BP Unfiltered: A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to Home Plate

by Ben Lindbergh

Jose Valverde practices the pull-out method of pitching.

Tater Trot Tracker: Trot Times for September 22

by Larry Granillo

The tater trots for September 22. Miguel Cabrera takes the Triple Crown lead.

Wezen-Ball: The Race for the AL Batting Crown

by Larry Granillo

Miguel Cabrera and Mike Trout have less than two weeks in the season to settle what might be the final leg of the Triple Crown this year...

BP Unfiltered: How Unusual Was Bobby Valentine's Decision to Pinch-Hit for Jose Iglesias?

by Ben Lindbergh

Looking for examples of a similarly strange managerial move.

Saturday, September 22

BP Unfiltered: The Emotional Ups and Downs of a Major-League Debut

by Ben Lindbergh

Melky Mesa rides an emotional rollercoaster and lives to tell the tale.

BP Unfiltered: An Update on Curtis Granderson's Non-Home Run Hitting

by Ben Lindbergh

Curtis Granderson says he's not a home-run hitter. The stats say otherwise.

Tater Trot Tracker: Trot Times for September 21

by Larry Granillo

The tater trots for September 21: Darwin Barney makes things difficult for the Cardinals, Adam Eaton joins the top ten.

BP Fantasy Podcast: Episode 20: Where Are We At In Society?

by Jason Collette and Paul Sporer

Jason and Paul discuss some 2012 surprises, disappointments, the Oakland A's pitching, a new tool in the BP toolbox, and some possible off-season trades.

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