Most every baseball fan has their own personal take on the Baseball Hall of Fame ballot. They have their own standards, their own numbers to look at, their own feelings about the Hall of Fame candidacy of the eligible players. Some go more by specific statistics than by feel. There are “Big Hall” and “Small Hall” types. Performance-enhancing drugs and off-field transgressions play a role for some but not for others. All in all, it’s a big mishmash of personal perspectives.
For me, it’s more about the modern metrics, like WAR and wRC+, than by pitcher wins or hitter RBI or the nebulous “feels like a Hall of Famer.” Today, though, I’m going down a different path. Forget the actual numbers created by the players on the field. I’m going to look at the 28-man BBWAA Hall of Fame ballot through the lens of salaries, superlatives, and similarity scores.
The salaries come from a few sources, namely Cot’s Baseball Contracts, Spotrac, and each player’s page at Baseball-Reference. I put players into groups based on similar start and end dates for their careers, so we’re not comparing players who primarily played in the late 1990s/early 2000s to players who were active in the 2010s. Salaries have gone up, so I kept players in groups with similar career spans to account for this. This answers the simple question: how much did teams value this player?
The superlatives are the awards won, like All-Star teams made, Rookie of the Year and Cy Young Awards, MVPs, Silver Sluggers, and Gold Gloves. How often was this player recognized for superlative play?
Similarity scores come from each player’s page at Baseball-Reference. They were introduced by Bill James in the mid-1980s and the methodology used at Baseball-Reference was taken from The Politics of Glory (pages 86-106), as explained here. What players were this player most similar to?
Finally, in the Voting section of the graphics for these players, the “%VOTE” is the percentage of the vote each player received last year and “TRCKR” is the player’s current vote percentage based on the Hall of Fame tracker kept by Ryan Thibodaux on Twitter (@NotMrTibbs), which can be found here. The TRCKR total is based on updates through January 15.
Let’s get started with the players who have been on the ballot the longest:
Gary Sheffield, played from 1988 to 2009, 9th year on the ballot
Omar Vizquel, played from 1989 to 2012, 6th year on the ballot
Gary Sheffield and Omar Vizquel are the Odd Couple on this Hall of Fame ballot. They were contemporaries for two decades, but had wildly different skillsets. Sheffield mashed at the plate and was a butcher in the field. Vizquel’s bat was made of balsa wood, but his glove was smooth as silk. Sheffield was named to nine all-star teams and won five Silver Slugger awards, while Vizquel made three all-star teams and won 11 Gold Gloves. Sheffield earned $100 million more over his career than Vizquel earned during his. Both have Hall of Famers as their top three most similar players, but Sheffield’s trio is much more impressive than Vizquel’s.
When it comes to Hall of Fame voting, they’ve also gone in wildly different directions. Consider Sheffield’s’ first eight years on the ballot, during which he stagnated for five years, then made a big jump in year 6 and another solid jump in year 7:
Compare that to Vizquel’s first five years on the ballot:
It took Sheffield seven years on the ballot to equal Vizquel’s voting percentage in his first year and Sheffield still hasn’t reached Vizquel’s peak voting percentage of 52.6% in 2020. Sheffield’s case has been tainted by PED allegations, while Vizquel’s recent drop in vote percentage corresponds to allegations of domestic violence and sexual assault. If this were a race to the Hall of Fame, Sheffield would be the tortoise and Vizquel would be the hare, but neither looks on track to cross the finish line in their allotted 10 years.
Alex Rodriguez, played from 1994 to 2016, 2nd year on the ballot
Manny Ramirez, played from 1993 to 2011, 7th year on the ballot
Jeff Kent, played from 1992 to 2008, 10th year on the ballot
What is there to say about Alex Rodriguez? Without the PED suspension, he’s a slam-dunk, first-ballot Hall of Famer who ranks 17th all-time in FanGraphs War and 16th in Baseball-Reference WAR, among such legends as Lou Gehrig, Mickey Mantle, and Rickey Henderson. Manny Ramirez was one hell of a player in his own right, and A-Rod had almost 50 more WAR than Manny and earned more than double his salary. In fact, you could combine the WAR and salaries of Manny Ramirez and Jeff Kent and still fall short of A-Rod in both categories.
All three of these players were very close in voting percentage last year and are tracking within 10 percentage points of each other this year. Ramirez is unlikely to make the jump he needs with just three years left on the ballot and who knows what might happen with A-Rod over the next eight years as the BBWAA voters change over time. Kent will be done after this year, but he seems like a Fred McGriff-type who could make the Hall of Fame through one of the Era Committees sometime down the road.
Andy Pettitte, played from 1995 to 2013, 5th year on the ballot
Billy Wagner, played from 1995 to 2010, 8th year on the ballot
I have a difficult time justifying any non-Mariano Rivera relief pitcher from the last 40 years as being worthy of Hall of Fame status and looking at these two pitchers is a pretty good illustration why. Pettitte pitched 3316 innings to 903 for Wagner. That’s a massive difference and it’s reflected in their respective WARs, with Pettitte being worth roughly 65 WAR and Wagner around 25 WAR. Pettitte also earned $47 million more in his career and was paid 1.6 times as much as Wagner in their peak earning season.
To justify Wagner as a Hall of Famer over Pettitte, you really have to put relief pitchers in their own separate category—not as a pitcher in general, but as a pitcher used in a very specific role. For me, it comes down to this: If I was putting together a team in 1995 and could choose between Pettitte or Wagner knowing that they would have exactly the careers that they had, I would take Pettitte without question. And yet, he’s made almost no progress in Hall of Fame voting in his first four years on the ballot, while Wagner has made significant strides over the last three years, from 16.7% in 2019 all the way up to 51% last year.
Scott Rolen, played from 1996 to 2012, 6th year on the ballot
Andruw Jones, played from 1996 to 2012, 6th year on the ballot
Bobby Abreu, played from 1996 to 2014, 4th year on the ballot
Todd Helton, played from 1997 to 2013, 5th year on the ballot
Scott Rolen and Todd Helton are the only players on the ballot who are currently above the 75% needed for enshrinement based on the Baseball Hall of Fame Tracker, but it’s still very much in question whether either will remain there when all the votes are in. Rolen should finish with the highest percentage of any player this year, making him the most likely candidate to join Fred McGriff in Cooperstown in the summer.
Rolen has made big strides since getting just 10.2% of the vote in his first year on the ballot, upping his percentage to 17.2% in year two, 35.3% in year three, 52.9% in year four, and 63.2% in year five. Todd Helton actually started with higher percentage than Rolen in their respective first years on the ballot, but Rolen caught him in year four (Helton: 16.5%, 29.2%, 44.9%, 52.0%). It seems more likely than not that both will make it before their 10 years are up.
Andruw Jones slots in below Rolen and Helton when it comes to his likelihood to make the Hall of Fame through the BBWAA and Bobby Abreu doesn’t have much momentum despite being sandwiched between Hall of Famers Dave Winfield and Vladimir Guerrero in the Jay Jaffe JAWS metric at Baseball-Reference. If WAR does what it purports to do, which I think it does, then Abreu is the most underrated player on the ballot.
Carlos Beltran, played from 1998 to 2017, 1st year on the ballot
Torii Hunter, played from 1997 to 2015, 3rd year on the ballot
Carlos Beltran and Torii Hunter exemplify the difference between the Hall of Fame and the Hall of Very Good. Beltran earned $50 million more in salary over a comparable career length and time frame, made the All-Star team nine times to Hunter’s five, and is most similar to three Hall of Fame outfielders—Andre Dawson, Billy Williams, and Al Kaline—while Hunter is similar to other very good players, such as Dave Parker. Hunter does have Beltran beat in Gold Gloves and had a Hall of Fame smile, but that doesn’t make up for the difference in hitting. Beltran won’t make it this year, but it looks like he’ll earn a good first-ballot total, while Hunter may drop off the ballot altogether.
Mark Buehrle, played from 2000 to 2015, 3rd year on the ballot
John Lackey, played from 2002 to 2017, 1st year on the ballot
Bronson Arroyo, played from 2000 to 2017, 1st year on the ballot
R.A. Dickey, played from 2001 to 2017, 1st year on the ballot
Francisco Rodriguez, played from 2002 to 2017, 1st year on the ballot
Mark Buehrle and John Lackey earned about the same amount in salary over their careers, but Buehrle has a significant advantage in WAR and All-Star teams made, along with his four Gold Gloves. This has allowed Buehrle to earn enough votes to remain on the ballot for a third year while Lackey looks like a one-and-done guy.
Buehrle has Hall of Fame pitcher Jesse Haines among his most similar pitchers. Haines was 210-158, with a 3.64 ERA (109 ERA+) while pitching primarily for the St. Louis Cardinals from 1918 to 1937. He was on 12 BBWAA ballots and never received more than 8.3% of the vote, then was inducted by the Veteran’s Committee in 1970. I could see a similar path for Buehrle, who was 214-160 with a 3.81 ERA (117 ERA+). The evolution of starting pitcher usage over the last 20 years that has resulted in lower career innings pitched and win totals will need to be accounted for by Hall of Fame voters in order to prevent pitchers from this era of baseball from being woefully under-represented in Cooperstown.
Neither Bronson Arroyo nor R.A. Dickey were as good for as long as Buehrle and Lackey, but each made an All-Star team and Dickey won the NL Cy Young Award at the age of 37 in 2012 with his fabulous fluttering knuckleball, which is awesome. They were both worth about as much as Francisco Rodriguez in WAR, but neither have a vote on the Hall of Fame Tracker, while K-Rod is around 9%.
Jimmy Rollins, played from 2000 to 2016, 2nd year on the ballot
Jayson Werth, played from 2002 to 2017, 1st year on the ballot
Jimmy Rollins and Jayson Werth played together on the Philadelphia Phillies from 2007-2010, which was a very successful time for the franchise as they made the playoffs all four years and won the World Series in 2008. During those for years as teammates, Rollins won the NL MVP Award in 2007 and was worth 16.3 fWAR and 15.3 bWAR. Werth didn’t win any MVP Awards, but was actually the more valuable player, with 18.0 fWAR and 15.7 bWAR.
Overall, though, Rollins was a more valuable player than Werth, despite earning $36 million less and never coming particularly close to Werth’s peak earnings of $21 million in a season. Rollins had 9.4% of the vote in his first year on the ballot and is currently right around that mark in his second year. He has Hall of Famers Barry Larkin and Alan Trammell as his top two most similar players and the third player on the list, Lou Whitaker, belongs in the Hall of Fame in the opinion of your humble author. I don’t see Rollins as being at that level, but I believe he was better than Omar Vizquel, who had a much higher voting percentage in his first year on the ballot.
Werth hasn’t received a vote this year and probably won’t going forward, which is reasonable. It took him a long time to get established in the big leagues, but from 2008 to 2014, ages 29-35, he was 12th in the National League in FanGraphs WAR (28.1 or 4 WAR/year).
Jacoby Ellsbury, played from 2007 to 2017, 1st year on the ballot
Jhonny Peralta, played from 2003 to 2017, 1st year on the ballot
J.J. Hardy, played from 2005 to 2017, 1st year on the ballot
Mike Napoli, played from 2006 to 2017, 1st year on the ballot
Andre Ethier, played from 2006 to 2017, 1st year on the ballot
This penultimate group consists entirely of 1st-ballot position players, none of whom are likely to remain on the ballot for a second year. Jacoby Ellsbury and Andre Ethier rank #1 and #2 in salary earned, but #1 and #5 in combined WAR (average of FanGraphs and Baseball-Reference). Ellsbury famously signed a 7-year, $153-million contract with the New York Yankees that resulted in one above-average year, three below-to-average years, and three years of getting paid for nothing when injuries took their toll and his career ended after his age-33 season. Ethier was a reliable outfielder for the Dodgers who was a 2-3 WAR player during his peak.
Jhonny Peralta and J.J. Hardy were contemporaries who had similar career totals in WAR, earnings, and All-Star teams made. Peralta was a slightly above-average hitter (103 wRC+) with a fine glove, while Hardy was a below-average hitter (89 wRC+) with a great glove. For fans who vividly remember MLB in the late 1990s/early 2000s, the Alex Gonzalez who is the most similar player to J.J. Hardy is the Alex Gonzalez who played for the Marlins, Reds, Atlanta, Brewers, Tigers, and Royals from 1998 to 2014 and NOT the Alex Gonzalez who played for the Blue Jays, Cubs, Rays, Padres, Expos, and Phillies from 1994 to 2006. That was a confusing time for baseball fans, what with the multiple Alex Gonzalezes and Bobby Joneses.
As for Mike Napoli, what more is there to say than, “Party at Napoli’s!”
Jered Weaver, played from 2006 to 2017, 1st year on the ballot
Matt Cain, played from 2005 to 2017, 1st year on the ballot
Huston Street, played from 2005 to 2017, 1st year on the ballot
This final group consists of pitchers in their first year on the ballot, none of whom will make it to a second ballot. Still, making the Hall of Fame ballot is impressive in its own right, so kudos to them. Jered Weaver was good enough to make three All-Star teams and finish in the top five in AL Cy Young voting three straight years from 2010-2012. He also ranked 10th among pitchers in FanGraphs WAR during the first eight years of his career (averaging 3.6 fWAR/year).
Matt Cain also made three All-Star teams while earning $35 million more than Weaver. He was famous in the fantasy baseball world for consistently outpitching his FIP during the four-year stretch from 2009 to 2012, when he had a 2.93 ERA, 3.46 FIP, and 3.94 xFIP. Whether it was luck or ability or some combination of both, it didn’t last his entire career. From 2013 to 2017, he had a 4.82 ERA, 4.67 FIP, and 4.49 xFIP. Cain also earned World Series rings with the San Francisco Giants in 2010, 2012, and 2014.
Huston Street earned a little more than half of what Matt Cain earned in the same number of big-league seasons, and 69% of what Jered Weaver earned despite pitching one more year than Weaver. He also has less than half the WAR of either starter. He won the AL Rookie of the Year Award in 2005 despite not necessarily being any better than Joe Blanton or Scott Kazmir, who finished sixth and ninth in the voting. He ranks 20th all-time in saves, right between Jose Mesa and Roberto Hernandez.
The post <strong>Hall of Fame Ballot through Salaries, Superlatives, and Similarity Scores</strong> appeared first on Off The Bench.
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Baseball is said to be “America’s pastime.” It’s a sport that has been associated with the United States for a very long time. Is baseball popular outside of America, though? Read on to learn about regions where baseball is popular outside of the United States of America.
Baseball is rather popular in Cuba. Cuba has an incredible baseball history and has the distinction of being the first place where a formal baseball league was formed outside of the United States. Many great players have come from Cuba to play baseball in the MLB, too. In modern times, Cuba remains a place where baseball is a popular sport and people love following baseball there.
Japan is a country that loves baseball very much. Baseball became a popular sport in the country during the post-war days. There are professional baseball teams in Japan that have huge followings, and Japan is home to some very impressive ballparks. Also, high school baseball is very big in Japan.
There has been a Mexican Baseball League since 1925, but the sport has been popular in Mexico since well before that. Currently, the Mexican League has sixteen professional teams. People love baseball in Mexico even if it isn’t the most popular sport in the country. The game has been played there for a long time so it has a rich history.
The Dominican Republic
In the Dominican Republic, baseball is by far the most popular sport. Originally, the sport was introduced to the Dominican Republic by Cuban immigrants after World War II. The Dominican Professional Baseball League was established in 1951. A significant number of MLB players come from the Dominican Republic and it’s considered to be a true hotbed for baseball.
Although baseball is associated with the United States, it comes from England. There are historical documents that mention both rounders and baseball that date back to the 19th century. In 1892, baseball was made a distinct sport. British baseball declined in popularity during the late 20th century, but it does still have a presence in the UK.
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Plan for Your Companys Future Now
Any successful business owner is interested in planning for growth, modernization, and relevance in an uncertain future. There are many factors to consider, including who will take the reins of a company after the current generation of leaders. The following steps can help set some measurable goals while building the skills and resources necessary to achieve them.
Map Out the Next Five Years
Although it might be tempting to remain focused on the immediate future and how to meet the most pressing demands of a business, it is helpful to take a step back and envision what the company should look like several years down the road.
Some of the critical factors to consider during this process include creating benchmarks for growth and increased profitability, establishing clear companywide values to help shape its future, planning for investments in new technology, and clearly defining various executive and managerial positions within the business structure.
Prepare for a Transition Period
At some point, a business owner must be prepared for retirement, which means a new leader will be at the helm with a unique vision and plan for taking the company through its next period of growth. Of course, the current owner should have some significant input into the succession plan, so it is helpful to begin thinking about certain details as early as possible.
This complex plan can address a variety of important issues, such as how much money the owner would need to sell the company, what terms such a sale would require, and whether to remain part of the business even after stepping down as its leader.
Describe the Perfect Replacement
Although it might be impossible to find a prospective business leader with every talent and skill that an owner might believe is necessary for the position, it can be helpful to create a detailed list describing what characteristics will be conducive for continued success in the future.
If a company will be passed down to someone in the family, for example, such a transition will require some serious thought regarding which relative has the respect, ambition, perseverance, and know-how that will help lead the company into its next chapter.
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It goes without saying that MLB is one of the biggest sports leagues in North America. This is true from a whole range of different perspectives. And most impressively, it’s the second-wealthiest sports league on the planet. This is the case if you base that fact on overall revenue, and the MLB is only beaten by the NFL in this regard.
Why are we telling you this? Well, we’ve shared that to highlight how significant the MLB is concerning sports in the USA. And as a result, this makes Major League Baseball considerably important in the world of sports betting. That’s why you might want to check out these MLB betting tips once you’re done reading through the information presented here.
Let’s look at the state of MLB betting. Since sports wagering is exploding across North America at the moment, we want to detail three hot markets that you have to learn about.
Outright World Series Winner
As long as you are based in one of the many legal sports betting states in the USA, you can bet on Major League Baseball. Depending on where you are based, this can be done on a mobile phone as well as desktop. Besides these state-by-state details, the first of our major MLB betting markets relates to the outright winner of the World Series.
As you may already know, each MLB season concludes with the World Series. This final playoff round operates as the best of seven games, and the winning team is crowned as the MLB champions. But did you know that you can wager on who will win the World Series at any point throughout the MLB season?
That’s right. However, the best odds are available before a single ball is hit during the regular season.
Everyone knows how important it is to rack up runs in a professional MLB game. After all, it’s the runs that make the difference between winning and losing. With that in mind, it makes sense that the total runs are another exciting element that you can bet on. There are even two options for this betting market.
You can take a punt on the total runs scored for the overall game. But alternatively, you can wager on the total runs scored on an inning-by-inning basis. The latter is done through in-play betting at online sportsbooks.
The moneyline market is something you’ll find at practically every online sportsbook in the country. This is the market that you choose if you want to try and pick the outright winner of any individual game. Of course, this market is immensely popular due, first and foremost, to its simplicity.
It’s also popular because it helps to maintain your interest all the way until the final score comes in. Adding to the appeal of this MLB betting market, you’ve got thousands of games in total during the regular season. And every single one of them comes with a moneyline betting option.
So if you become familiar with this market, you will be an experienced MLB punter in no time.
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Mike Zunino, a 32-year-old free-agent catcher, and the Guardians have reportedly reached a deal. According to reports, Zunino’s deal for the 2023 campaign is for one year and is worth a total of $6 million. The Cleveland Guardians in Ohio will likely receive the top-notch defensive support they need from Zunino. In 2022, he underwent season-ending surgery to have a procedure done on his shoulder. All the Cleveland Guardian fans in Ohio and beyond will be watching to see how he performs offensively after the procedure.
Zunino’s career so far
Before having season-ending surgery in 2022, Zunino performed admirably in over 120 plate appearances for the Rays. The Guardians are counting on him to regain the 33 home runs in just 375 plate appearances from 2021 when they last saw him. Despite him having a poor batting average and earning only $6 million for a single year, his combination of attack and defense nonetheless makes him a valuable commodity. The Cleveland Guardians and the supporters who avidly give their all to the team, whether in Ohio or away from home, believe their acquisition of the seasoned catcher was a very good deal.
Just after Josh Bell (first baseman) recently sealed a $33 million contract deal with an opt-out clause that can be triggered the following year, Zunino is now the Guardians’ second free-agent acquisition. Both players are expected to provide the Guardian’s squad with some support, which had the 29th-fewest home runs in the majors in 2022.
The signing of Zunino by the Guardians in Ohio most certainly means that the team’s most talented young player, Bo Naylor, will start the 2023 season campaign at Triple-A Columbus. Naylor has only made 66 appearances at the Triple-A level and has only made eight trips to the plate for the big-league club. He will not turn 23 until February 21 of next year. With the one-year contract given to Zunino, they may be able to gradually develop the abilities of Naylor, giving him a bit more time to advance at the bat, and impress all the fans from Ohio and beyond.
Why did the Guardians sign Mike Zunino?
There still needed to be a few changes to the team, before they could the Guardians could accommodate Zunino’s signing, even after the news broke. There was no room on the Guardians’ 40-man roster for the new catcher when Josh Bell was added to the team. Soon after, the organization exchanged Owen Miller for a more practical player in the Milwaukee Brewers. As a result, the team was able to add the catcher to the roster. The Guardians now have the offensive boost and defensively-minded catcher they were seeking for thanks to this signing.
Due to shoulder surgery the previous year, Zunino was unable to play after June in 2022. Although the season prior, he was among the catchers who performed the most in Major League Baseball. In all of the statistics that were kept, he hit more than thirty home runs and finished third among catchers. As a result, he was named an All-Star in 2021. With Zunino’s performances in 2021, it was not difficult for spectators in Ohio and in other parts of the US to place wagers on him and his team. And now with the launch of legal sports betting apps in Ohio happening in just a few days, due to the legalization of the industry, bettors can be sure that they are safe when placing wagers.
For the veteran catcher, the defense also seems to be present. Zunino is tied for tenth place in defensive runs saved since his debut, and he received accolades for an amazing performance that saw him take home the Defensive Player of the Year award in 2018. Without a doubt, with Mike Zunino, the Guardians and all the fans in Ohio and in other parts of the world are hoping for a repeat of his performance from the year 2021.
However, he will still be an improvement over the team’s last season, even if he does not return to his peak form. Zunino’s power will be Cleveland’s main advantage when he joins the lineup. As he did as an All-Star player in 2021, he will provide the team with the attacking input that its catching position needed to be improved. Zunino has a good defensive run-saving percentage.
What are the predictions of Mike Zunino at the Cleveland Guardians?
A baseball player occasionally needs a change in team and environment to have a chance at performing. Making that adjustment can significantly improve performance, regardless of whether it is due to the individual’s own challenges, poor fitness, or simply the player’s desire to seek new challenges: which is why Zunino moves to Ohio, to play for the Guardians.
The power-hitting catcher’s season was cut short after 36 games when his shoulder problem forced the Tampa Bay Rays to exercise their club option for 2022 following a poor start. Zunino later developed into a significant Rays pending free agent. When they decided not to extend his contract, the Guardians snatched him up to round out their team.
The 31-year-old catcher is just one year away from slugging 33 home runs, on his way to being selected for the All-Star game and receiving some votes for the Most Valuable Player. But while there are concerns about Zunino’s health; after he played in just 36 games of the previous season before needing surgery to terminate the season due to thoracic outlet syndrome, the backup catcher thinks he will be fine for training in Spring, which should result in a healthy free-agent market for him.
Everybody has grown accustomed to anticipating a normal batting average and lots of home runs from Mike Zunino’s offensive output. In essence, this is what he produced last season, but Zunino really turned up the power. His statistics and batting average were the highest for Zunino since the 2017 season, and he set career highs in home runs.
Will Zunino be able to duplicate his best stats?
Zunino has a lot of raw power, but it is quite doubtful that he will ever come close to duplicating his best statistics playing for the Guardians in Ohio. If he keeps receiving regular playing time, he is guaranteed to hit 20 or more home runs this season. Zunino will probably play regularly for the Rays this season thanks to his excellent defense, pitch-framing abilities, and ability to manage a youthful pitching staff.
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As 2022 winds down, it’s a perfect time to reflect on the past 365 days in your personal life. It’s a time to reflect on what went well, poorly, set new goals, and change for the better. With that in mind, let’s look at what went well (and poorly) in the Major League Baseball world in 2022; call it a baseball year in review.
January--The new year began with the baseball hot stove not only not hot, but completely turned off. Since the start of the lockout on December 2, almost six weeks of nothing passed before the owners made their first proposal to the players on January 13, 2022. One would have thought commissioner Rob Manfred and the baseball owners spent those six weeks crafting a thoughtful, comprehensive, universally-beneficial proposal that would bridge the vast chasm between the two sides. Who are we kidding? They didn’t do anything of the sort.
Instead, the owners’ proposal was the equivalent of moving an inch to bridge a gap of 500 miles. On January 24 and 25, the two sides met on consecutive days and the players union rejected most of the league’s proposal, which meant baseball fans had gone roughly 55 days without any hot stove action, but at least season 4 of Ozark had dropped on January 21.
February--In ongoing lockout news, the two sides met for 90 whole minutes on February 1, with the MLBPA putting the universal designated hitter and an expanded, 12-team postseason on the table. Traditional baseball fans everywhere hate both ideas but what are they going to do, stop watching baseball? Bwahahahahahaha!
On February 10, commissioner Rob Manfred addressed the media for the first time during the lockout, which at this point had lasted 70 days, making it the second-longest work stoppage in MLB history and longer than the gestation period of a typical dog. Rob Manfred had nothing of substance to say to the media and, even more disappointing, no newly-born puppies on hand.
March--On March 1, Rob Manfred announced the first two series of the regular season were canceled. “I had hoped against hope I wouldn’t have to have this press conference where I am going to cancel some regular season games,” Manfred said following the March 1 deadline. (cue the “Who could have done this?” meme). “We worked hard to avoid an outcome that’s bad for our fans, bad for our players, and bad for our clubs. Our failure to reach an agreement was not due to a lack of effort by either party.”
Manfred failed to point out that the owners could end the lockout at any time and negotiations could continue during the season under the parameters of the previous CBA without any games being canceled. He must have forgotten that part of it.
On March 10, after weeks of negotiations that included some gripping late-night parking lot play-by-play that had Twitter all a-twitter, the two sides come to an agreement and the lockout ends at 99 days. Coincidentally, that’s the uniform number of Yankees outfielder Aaron Judge.
On March 18, free agent Freddie Freeman signed a six-year deal with the Los Angeles Dodgers after spending his entire professional career with Atlanta. Over time, this trade and Freeman’s feelings about it would prove that there is, in fact, crying in baseball.
On March 27, the Will Smith slap dominated the headlines. Oh wait, that was the actor Will Smith, not the catcher Will Smith or the relief pitcher Will Smith. Never mind.
On March 28, Albert Pujols signed a one-year deal with the St. Louis Cardinals. He’ll likely spend most of the season on the bench mentoring his younger teammates and maybe getting into a couple games a week. There’s simply no way he will hit .270/.345/.550, with 24 homers in 109 games and become just the fourth player ever with more than 700 career dingers.
April--The long, national nightmare for baseball fans finally ends when Opening Day arrived on April 7. In St. Louis, 40-year-old Adam Wainwright tossed six scoreless innings and earned a win against the Pittsburgh Pirates, who are still a Major League baseball team only because MLB doesn’t have relegation. Wainwright would finish the year with 2.8 WAR (per FanGraphs), which ranks 42nd in MLB since 1947 (post-integration) for a pitcher age 40 and over.
By the end of April, the position player leaderboard in FanGraphs WAR has a top five of Manny Machado, Nolan Arenado, Jose Ramirez, J.P. Crawford, and Mike Trout. One of these things is not like the others.
Also in April, MLB superstar Shohei Ohtani is part of a national campaign for FTX, the official cryptocurrency exchange of Major League Baseball. The Great Cryptohtani was a global FTX ambassador in November of 2021 and would be compensated entirely in crypto.
“Shohei isn’t just an athletic force, he’s a first-mover for financial autonomy” shared FTX Co-Founder and CEO, Sam Bankman-Fried, on the brand’s latest sports marketing play. As part of FTX being the official cryptocurrency exchange of Major League Baseball, big league umpires started wearing FTX patches on their uniforms during the 2021 season and continued to wear them during the 2022 season.
In the Bronx, a Yankees hitter launches nine homers in the team’s first 21 games, putting him on pace for 69 homers in 162 games, which would destroy the AL record of 61 set by Roger Maris and approach the all-time record of 73 by Barry Bonds. Unfortunately, Anthony Rizzo couldn’t keep up that pace and finished the season with just 32 homers.
May--Through May 15, the leaguewide batting line is .234/.307/.376 and there is plenty of hand-wringing as it appeared a new dead ball era was upon us. Something seemed to change in the middle of May, though. From April 7 through May 15, 3.8 percent of balls in play went for home runs. From May 16 to the end of the season, 4.3 percent of balls in play carried over the wall. Rob Manfred could not be reached for comment.
Marcus Semien’s fortunes at the dish aligned with the league as a whole, only taken to the extremes. Through May 15, Semien hit .157/.216/.213, with 0 homers in 139 plate appearances. From that point on, he hit .270/.325/.481, with 26 homers in 585 plate appearances.
Through May 24, the Los Angeles Angels were 27-18 and in 2nd place in the AL West, just one game behind the division-leading Houston Astros. Mike Trout (214 wRC+) and Taylor Ward (235 wRC+) were crushing the ball. Shohei Ohtani had nine homers, six steals, and a 2.82 ERA. Anthony Rendon had played in 39 of the team’s first 45 games and had an above-average 112 wRC+. Michael Lorenzen and Noah Syndergaard were a combined 9-4 with a 3.06 ERA. Behind quirky, lovable manager Joe Maddon, it looked like this could be the year the Angels and Mike Trout return to the playoffs. Dust off your rally monkeys, Angels fans!
An outfielder who has spent considerable time in his career playing on a team in the AL East was tied for the MLB lead with 12 home runs In May. Along with those 12 homers, Mookie Betts had 31 runs scored and a .341/.411/.746 batting line for the month.
June--June was a month of streaks. After closing out May with a walk-off loss to the Arizona Diamondbacks, Atlanta was 23-27 and 10.5 games behind the New York Mets in the NL East. Then they won 14 straight to close the gap to four games.
Life was not nearly so good across the country, where the Angels lost 14 straight games from May 25 through June 8, with an average margin of defeat of 3.2 runs per game. By the time the streak reached its course, the Angels had dropped from one game out in their division to 9.5 games out and a-little-too-quirky and not-so-lovable Joe Maddon had been fired.
Back in mid-April, when Maddon was still quirky and lovable, he ordered an intentional walk to Corey Seager with the bases loaded and the Angels down by two runs in the fourth inning. It was a move that flummoxed even the usually unflappable Mike Trout. The ensuing batter hit a sacrifice fly and another run came in on a balk to make it 6-2, but the Angels rallied for a come-from-behind victory, which just illustrated the genius of Joe Maddon, at least in April. By June, he was no longer a genius. As Ferris Bueller once said, “Life moves pretty fast. You don’t stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it.”
In the midst of what looked to be an MVP-caliber season, Philadelphia Phillies outfielder Bryce Harper, hitting .318/.385/.599, suffered a broken thumb on a hit-by-pitch. This would undoubtedly end any hopes the Phillies had of making the playoffs.
June was another big home run month for an outfielder whose team plays their home games in the Eastern time zone, as Philadelphia’s Kyle Schwarber led all of baseball with 12 dingers.
July--Following in the footsteps of Atlanta, the Seattle Mariners embarked on a 14-game winning streak that lasted from July 2 through July 17. Driving the run production during this time was, surprisingly, Carlos Santana (162 wRC+) and Eugenio Suarez (140 wRC+), which made it feel like 2019 all over again, back when Santana hit 34 homers and Suarez hit 49.
At the Home Run Derby during the All-Star Game festivities, 42-year-old Albert Pujols outslugged Kyle Schwarber in the first round, 20 homers to 19, but would go on to lose to Juan Soto in the second round, 16 homers to 15. Soto had eliminated Jose Ramirez in the first round.
Reigning two-time home run champion Pete Alonso, who was looking for a three-peat, knocked out Ronald Acuña Jr. in the first round, but couldn’t get past rookie sensation Julío Rodríguez in the second round. Rodríguez had smashed an incredible 32 homers to beat Corey Seager in the first round, then hit 31 more to beat Alonso in the second round.
That set up the finals consisting of Juan Soto versus Julío Rodríguez. The rookie hit 18 homers in his turn at the plate, but could only sit back and watch as Soto outdid him with 19.
In related July news, NASA released images captured by the James Webb Space Telescope—the most powerful telescope ever built—and baseball historians believe they spotted a baseball flying through space that was hit by Josh Gibson of the Homestead Grays back in 1943.
August--On August 11, the MLB at Field of Dreams game was back for another year, with the Chicago Cubs beating the Cincinnati Reds in Dyersville, Iowa. Ken Griffey Sr. and Ken Griffey Jr. played catch as part of the pre-game ceremonies, which was followed by the introduction of an assortment of Hall of Fame players who had played for the Cubs or Reds, including Johnny Bench, Andre Dawson, Fergie Jenkins, Barry Larkin, Ryne Sandberg, and Billy Williams.
The MLB at Field of Dreams game was a sentimental and heartwarming event for many people across the country and also a reminder to Iowans of the draconian blackout policies of MLB that prevents people in Iowa from watching the games of the White Sox, Cubs, Twins, Brewers, Cardinals, or Royals. Regarding the MLB blackout rules, Rob Manfred could not be reached for comment.
September--On September 8, Queen Elizabeth II died at the age of 96, having reigned for 70 years, making her the Connie Mack of the monarchy. She was crowned in 1952, just two years after Connie Mack managed the last of his 50 years with the Philadelphia Athletics. Queen Elizabeth is best known for throwing out the first pitch at an Angels game in 1988.
On September 11, Albert Pujols launched his 697th career home run, moving him past Alex Rodriguez into fourth place all-time, behind only Barry Bonds, Hank Aaron, and Babe Ruth. Twelve days later, he hit number 700 at Dodger Stadium.
On September 30, Seattle Mariners catcher Cal Raleigh, known affectionately as Big Dumper, hit a walk-off home run to clinch the first playoff berth for the Mariners since 2001. Big Dumper’s dinger ended the longest active playoff drought in baseball, with the Detroit Tigers and Los Angeles Angels now holding the title (8 years).
Speaking of the Angels, with a league-leading 12 homers across the combined months of September and October, American League outfielder Mike Trout had a terrific final stretch (211 wRC+). His teammate, Shohei Ohtani, went 4-1 with a 1.18 ERA in September/October while hitting .291/.341/.479 as a DH. Despite it all, the Angels still finished below .500 for a seventh straight season.
October--Leading off Game 161 against Jesus Tinoco of the Texas Rangers, Yankees outfielder Aaron Judge hit his 62nd home run of the season, to pass Roger Maris for the AL record. Judge finished the season with league-leading totals in runs, homers, RBI, walks, total bases, on-base percentage, slugging percentage, wRC+, and WAR. Per FanGraphs WAR, Judge had the seventh-best season since MLB was integrated by Jackie Robinson in 1947. Only Barry Bonds (2002, 2001, 2004), Mickey Mantle (1956, 1957), and Pedro Martinez (1999) were better.
On the other end of the spectrum, the Oakland A’s finished the year with a .281 OBP, which was the second-lowest mark by a team in the last 75 years (since 1947). Only the 1965 New York Mets were worse (.277 OBP). Not content to be second-worst heading into the 2023 season, the A’s traded away their best hitter, Sean Murphy, in December.
At season’s end, in addition to the Seattle Mariners ending their long playoff drought, the Philadelphia Phillies snagged the final wild card spot in the National League. The Phillies then breezed their way through St. Louis, Atlanta, and San Diego in the NL playoffs before losing in the World Series to the Houston Astros.
The Astros’ World Series victory earned Dusty Baker his first World Series ring as a manager. He also won a World Series as a player with the 1981 Los Angeles Dodgers. As a reward for taking the Astros to the playoffs in each of his three years with the team, including back-to-back World Series appearances and a World Series title, Dusty Baker was reluctantly signed to a one-year contract by Astros owner Jim Crane, who seemed to really really really want to fire him.
November--As the new owner of Twitter Elon Musk starts making decisions that turn the site into a daily dose of chaos and doom, baseball writers start to dip their toes in alternatives such as Mastodon, Hive Social, and Post, along with the already-established social media sites Instagram, Reddit, and TikTok, all of which suddenly became way less cool among the age 13-29 demographic.
Shohei Ohtani finished the year with 90 runs scored, 34 homers, 95 RBI, 11 steals, and a .273/.356/.519 hitting line. His 142 wRC+ is 16th in baseball, just a little lower than Mookie Betts (144 wRC+). As a pitcher he went 15-9 with a 2.33 ERA, 1.01 WHIP, and 219 strikeouts in 166 innings. His 26.5% K-BB% is the best in baseball for qualifying pitchers. He was essentially Mookie Betts on offense and Max Fried on the mound. Despite the most amazing all-around season any of us have ever seen, he doesn’t come close to winning the AL MVP Award because, well, Aaron Judge.
Speaking of Shohei Ohtani, also in November, cryptocurrency giant FTX collapses and files for bankruptcy on November 11. No word on the damage done to the finances of Shohei Ohtani, but there’s a good chance he’ll make up for any losses when he signs a 10+ year, blank check contract with the New York Mets after the 2023 season.
Because of the collapse of FTX, big league umpires will no longer wear FTX patches on their uniforms. Before you question the judgement of MLB umpires for the decision to wear FTX patches, know the blame really lies with Rob Manfred, who could not be reached for comment.
December--When Jon Heyman tweeted on December 6 that “Arson Judge” was signing a free agent deal with the Giants, only to retract that assertion later, baseball fans likely thought that would be the weirdest thing to happen in the offseason. Then the Carlos Correa debacle came along. Correa reportedly signed with the Giants for 13 years and $350 million and was preparing for the introductory press conference when it was suddenly canceled because, apparently, the Giants had some concerns about an injury Correa suffered many years ago.
Money Bags Steve Cohen then swooped in and reportedly signed Correa to a 12-year, $315 million deal. That’s one year and $35 million less than the Giants’ reported deal, but it’s still a nice chunk of change. Now that signing is in limbo as the Mets have concerns about Correa’s long-term health. On December 26, it was reported that the Mets may be looking into restructuring the deal, which Correa is opposed to. Yesterday, Off The Bench published our guesses on where Correa signs in the coming weeks.
On the bright side, if one year and $35 million continue to be lopped off the contract with each successive team that wants to sign Correa, by the time it gets down to four years and $35 million, maybe even the Pittsburgh Pirates will be interested.
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Where Carlos Correa Will Sign
The Carlos Correa Saga is the story of the 2022/2023 offseason. For a few days, he was a San Francisco Giant. They literally had him in the building, ready to officially announce the deal, then got cold feet at the altar due to an ankle injury from 2014. In the middle of the night after the canceled Giants press conference, he became a New York Met… except they haven’t officially put pen to paper either due to the same ankle problem.
Given that two different organizations seem to think his ankle is made of tissue paper, it’s worth reminding ourselves that he’s still a highly capable, athletic human being. Last season with the Twins, he slashed .291/.366/.467 with a 140 wRC+. He has 70 defensive runs saved over an eight-year career at the most agile position on the diamond. If his ankle was truly on the verge of implosion, it seems impossible that he’d have been able to produce the way he did.
Correa plans to play baseball somewhere in 2023 and beyond. Here are the possible destinations by the percentage of likelihood as well as the LOLMets rating of each outcome on the 20-80 scouting scale.
New York Mets
Since Correa agreed to terms with the Mets, there have been no public reports of him negotiating anywhere else. Even after the hiccups with his physical, it still seems most likely that he will come to New York to play third base. In fact, the club could even face a grievance if it falls through after owner Steve Cohen announced the deal. Correa certainly wants this ordeal to be over with, especially since his options dwindle if he returns to the open market. There’s a strong incentive for both sides to get this done.
So why is it only 51% likely to happen? Ask Sports Illustrated’s Pat Ragazzo:
That’s not too far off from Jon Heyman quoting a source that there’s a 55% likelihood of a deal. The longer the silence drags on, the more it seems inevitable that it’s going to fall through. Of course, not much happens in MLB between Christmas and New Year’s Day, which may be slowing things down artificially.
LOLMets: 40– At least they’ll have their man but in the goofiest way possible.
San Francisco Giants
Giants fans are frothing with rage after failing to sign Aaron Judge and then believing they had Correa, only to have him yanked away too. Other mid-tier free agents they’ve signed— Michael Conforto and Taylor Rogers— are simply known as “Not Correa.”
There’s bound to be some bad blood after the way everything fell apart, but in order to hate someone, you must also love them. They did come to an agreement in the first place after all. As this fiasco stretches on, it would be malpractice for GM Farhan Zaidi not to at least make a phone call to agent Scott Boras.
LOLMets: 60– If the Giants get him anyway, then the Mets will have just been a negotiations prop.
Correa first became a free agent a year ago. Instead of returning to the Astros, who successfully replaced him with Jeremy Peña, he signed a three-year deal with the Twins with an opt-out after each season. He triggered that opt-out after just one year, and so here we are.
Back in October, the club expressed interest in bidding on his services once again. If the Mets contract goes to pot, another one-year deal could make sense. A lot of clubs have already spent their money this offseason, with no other big-name free agents remaining. A pillow contract would allow him to reset his free agency once more and try again next year. If so, why not return to the same organization?
LOLMets: 55– There would be mild vindication for the Mets if no other team offered him a long-term deal.
Throughout all of this, Correa remains one of the best baseball players in the world. If the Mets deal collapses, it could reignite a bidding war. As evidenced by so many other huge free-agent contracts, there’s a ton of money all over the sport right now. Theoretically, every club should be able to afford him, even the ones who cry poverty all the time.
Would the Red Sox get involved after losing Xander Bogaerts? How about the Dodgers who’ve seen several free agents walk away, including Trea Turner? The Orioles are an up-and-coming franchise that is currently run by his former Astros bosses. One can never rule out the Yankees in such matters. The Mariners would be a great fit as well. The everpresent mystery team lurks in the shadows, ready to pounce.
LOLMets: 60– This rating is highly dependent on which club signs him and the terms of the deal. Still, letting him get away would be some high-quality LOLMets.
This would be the most perfect way to troll agonized Mets fans. It’s too delightfully cruel not to happen. Losing him will hurt twice as much when he pivots to their biggest rival.
After failing to sign Dansby Swanson, shortstop is one of the Braves’ few apparently lineup holes, so the glove fits. Practically everyone else on their roster is locked up long-term on an extremely team-friendly contract. Correa will probably give Atlanta a discount because it just seems like everyone else does. He’ll sign for six years, $73 million just like Sean Murphy. Would that contract make sense for Correa at all? Of course not, except as an extreme Nelson Muntzing of the Mets.
LOLMets: 80– Haha.
-Daniel R. Epstein
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MLB Legacies: Hank Aaron
America’s National Pastime has played a huge role in the formation of the nation and its culture.
As a result of this, only the best baseball players can enter and then work their way through the league with their team. You can check out MLB odds for current statistics.
One of the standout players in the MLB is Hank Aaron.
Hank Aaron, or “Hammer,” remains one of the greatest and most highly acclaimed baseball players in Major League Baseball (MLB) history. Notably, he was equally an ambassador for baseball as he was for racial equality, something that he is immortalized for.
He also accomplished far more in his lifetime than many other baseball players. Read on to learn more.
Early Minor League Career
Aaron had seven siblings and grew up loving baseball. Along with his brother, renowned MLB player Tommie Aaron, he’d go on to find major success in the MLB playing as a baseball right fielder for an impressive 23 seasons.
Aaron was just 13 years old when Jackie Robinson broke the MLB color barrier in 1947. He attended a speech given by Robinson that following year which inspired his pursuit of professional baseball.
Five years later, joined the Indianapolis Clowns for a single season, leading them to the 1952 Negro League World Series title.
Milwaukee Braves ML
In 1952, after this win, the Milwaukee Braves purchased his contract from the Indianapolis Clowns for $10,000. He immediately proved himself and, playing in the infield, was able to develop his skills as a ballplayer.
He had such a stellar performance that he was quickly promoted to Rookie of the Year, with an impressive .336 batting average. Despite his success, Aaron received a lot of racism while playing in the minor leagues.
In 1953, Aaron broke the color barrier with a promotion to the Jacksonville Braves of South Atlantic League. The Braves won the league championship that year, fuelled by Aaron’s skilled performance.
It was one of the first-ever integrated baseball teams, and Aaron continued to face problems — especially since he was one of the first African American players to appear in the league.
Prime of his Career
Aaron made his official Major League debut with the Braves in April 1954 and, after making waves and impressing with his natural ability, was signed not too long after.
He achieved many incredible things in his time with the Braves including (but not limited to) the following accolades:
In 1968, Aaron was the first-ever Braves player to hit a 500th career home run. Just two years later, he became the first Atlanta Brave to also reach 3,000 total career hits.
Eclipsing Babe Ruth
Throughout 1973 and into the 1974 season, Aaron’s pursuit of Babe Ruth’s 714 home runs record caused some controversy.
He tied Babe Ruth’s record on April 4, 1974, in his first at-bat during his first swing of the season, but did not manage to achieve another home run in the series. Aaron toppled Ruth’s long-standing record just a few days later on April 9, 1974, and would maintain his status as a career leader for over three decades.
Milwaukee Brewers (American League)
At the end of the 1974 season, Aaron requested a trade to Milwaukee. Just thirty days later, he had signed a two-year contract with the Brewers – allowing him to play as a designated hitter in games instead of simply playing in the field.
Aaron hit his 755th and final home run on July 20, 1976, and played his final game in October of that same year.
After the 1976 season, Aaron became an executive with the Braves. He’d later be named Braves’ vice president and the director of player development.
In August 1982, Aaron was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame for his incredible playing efficiency and legacy. This occurred during his first year of eligibility
He was also named to the Major League Baseball All-Century Team in 1999 for his effective hitting. During his 65th birthday celebration, Major League Baseball announced the Hank Aaron Award which honors the greatest offensive performer in the National and American League.
Hank Aaron passed away peacefully in his sleep in January 2021 aged 86, leaving behind a legacy that was far greater than the sport of baseball.
His illustrious 23-year MLB career ended with impeccable statistics, including 755 home runs, 624 doubles, 2,174 runs, 2,297 RBI, 3,771 hits, and an estimated 240 stolen bases.
Today, Aaron still holds MLB records for the most extra-base hits (1,477), total bases (6,856), and career runs batted in (2,297).
Aaron’s consistent excellency on the field established him as an unparalleled baseball legend, sure. Still, it was his civil rights activism—which occurred during a time of racial tension and deep unrest and carried on long after he left the game—that will be remembered as his greatest accomplishment.
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The previous year will be remembered as a crucial turning point in baseball as leagues, and teams from professional down to school-age rose to their feet. The devastating effects of the coronavirus pandemic threatened to cripple the game, leaving the best players unable to make a living, the brightest talent finding their path to the MLB blocked, and the dreams of youngsters hanging by a threat.
Thankfully, baseball returned with a bang due to the tireless work of players, coaches, and officials. Heading into 2023, we can look forward to another action-packed year with the MLB bigger and better than ever. More games will be shown on television and live streaming apps, stars have raised their game to help compensate for lost time, and the best betting websites offer fans odds on every match played in the coming months. The MLB just got even more exciting.
Changes to the rules regarding online sports betting in the US mean we are seeing betting kiosks pop up at various ballparks, major bookmakers investing in the league through sponsorship, and more markets than was available just 12 months ago. To welcome a new year, betting apps even offer new players a free bet on their favorite teams and players. Keep reading for our list of the two best welcome bonuses and how you can claim each one using your smartphone or desktop computer.
Why MLB gambling apps offer free bets
We will get into our list of the two best Major League Baseball free bet promotions shortly, but to properly understand how to use them, we must first understand why bookies hand out free bets in the first place. Is it out of the goodness of their heart, or is there a catch? It’s not an industry renowned for its generosity, after all.
Since legalized online sportsbook betting hit the United States, the most prominent names from the Las Vegas strip have been in a bitter battle with the top apps from the United Kingdom and Europe. They all want to achieve one thing, to collect as many customers as possible and secure a generous share of the lucrative market. Sports gambling is one of the most competitive industries in business, and getting ahead isn’t easy.
It’s a challenging time to be a bookie but a golden age for bettors who are spoiled for choice. The best-performing sites know they must stand out from the crowd and catch your eye. They achieve this by offering a welcome bonus free bet to every new member that signs up while ignoring the competition. You can stick with just one betting app and take the free bet or spread the love and join multiple apps and bag a bonus at each. You’re in the driving seat.
Best of the best
There are many different welcome bonuses, and although they may look similar, some are better than others. We have chosen our two favorite types of new customer bonuses available today. Always read the terms and conditions attached to an offer, and you will understand how it works and how you can make it work.
This is the most popular bonus with bettors and bookies, as it works well on both sides of the counter. The most generous free bets are reserved for new players. Choose a sportsbook offering this deal and register an account. Make your first deposit using a debit card and place a qualifying bet on the MLB. When that wager results, the free bet tokens will be instantly added to your account balance.
The value of the free bet depends on your first gamble after joining. In most cases, it’s a 100% matched bonus. If you deposit and bet $10 on baseball, you will recieve a $10 free bet. Deposit $100 and gamble to bag a $100 free bet. You call the shots, making your bonus as affordable or generous as you like.
The risk-free bet is another promotion that’s readily available to online gamblers wishing to register an account. But how does it work? The clue is in the name, and this wager has no risk.
Create an account, make your first deposit of $10 or more and place a bet. If your wager succeeds, you bag the profits, but the bookie will refund your stake if your selection flops.
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Ways to Award Your Employees
When you recognize employees for doing a good job, they are happier in their job. There are many different ways to implement these policies, and it is important to make sure that you get feedback on how employees want to be recognized. While some may enjoy a social gathering, others may prefer a special parking spot. Someone else may just want a note that says thank you. No matter what type of reward you choose, all employees share one thing: they do well with positive feedback.
It is easy to forget to say thank you, but it is critical to letting employees know that you recognize what they are doing. Make sure that you understand what employees are doing and how they impact your business so that you can offer a genuine thanks for a job well done. Whether you stop by their desk or send a note, if it is genuine, they will appreciate it.
When you recognize an employee for a job well done, it is important to mention specifically what they did. This makes your praise tangible and more meaningful to them. They will know what you like and work harder to keep doing it.
Everyone is different, and there is no one-size-fits-all award for employees. What makes one person happy could be painful for another, and it is important to know your employees so that you choose appropriate awards. Learn what each employee has as goals, and understand their personality and needs. This is critical to keeping your employees engaged and showing that you care about them.
Although there are people who say that cash-related awards don’t inspire loyalty, it depends on your employees. They do have to pay taxes on cash awards, but if they are strapped and need the cash, it could be a game-changer. Be sure to have solid reasons for giving out these awards so that they feel special rather than transactional. You don’t want employees to expect it, so make sure that you put some thought into how to offer this type of award.
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