OhGizmo! Lightning Review: The Trioo Prescription Glasses

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I was offered an opportunity to review some prescription glasses from a company called Trioo, and since I’m blind as a bat without my contacts, and since I’ve been wearing that exclusively for 17 years with no alternatives, I decided to finally give eyeglasses a try. The company offers a variety of models made from cool materials, like Titanium, aluminum-magnesium alloys, and carbon fiber. The frames I chose were called Coney Silver Night Prestige, and cost all of $97. These were of the carbon fiber variety, although they have a definite silver tint and aren’t like the traditional carbon fiber anthracite hue. They look good.

Ordering from them is simple; simply enter your prescription details, and place your order. I received my package within 10 days. And I have to say I’m completely satisfied with them. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, sure, but I think they look cool. They’re lightweight. They’re comfortable and don’t feel flimsy. The lenses are crystal clear and don’t scratch easily. There might be an anti-reflective coating on them, but I have never worn glasses without such coatings so I can’t say how they compare. Overall, I’m very satisfied with the product.

There isn’t really a whole lot to say about prescription eyeglasses. So the conclusion to this quick review is that if you’re not hung up on wanting expensive brands, you can get a good quality pair of glasses online for a fraction of the price you’d normally pay in store. They look good, don’t fall apart, ship quickly and get the job done.

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[ Trioo Website ]

The post OhGizmo! Lightning Review: The Trioo Prescription Glasses appeared first on OhGizmo!.

Nationals’ Gio Gonzalez Records 1,000th Strikeout of Career

Washington Nationals pitcher Gio Gonzalez recorded the 1,000th strikeout of his career in Sunday's 5-4 win over the Milwaukee Brewers, putting a lone bright spot on what was otherwise a poor outing.

Though his team ultimately got the win, the 28-year-old lefty lasted just 3.1 innings, marking his second-shortest outing of the season. He did strike out five of the 18 hitters he faced but also allowed three runs on four hits and three walks, needing 88 pitches to retire just 10 batters.

While only 489 of his punchouts have come as a member of the Nationals, Gonzalez became the first player in franchise history to record his 1,000th career strikeout in a Nats uniform, per MASN Sports. The other 511 strikeouts all came with the Oakland Athletics, for whom he played from 2008 to 2011.

According to Baseball-Reference.com, Gonzalez is one of 53 active players with 1,000 or more career strikeouts. He's the fourth-youngest player on the list.

While younger than Gonzalez by a bit more than five months, Felix Hernandez of the Seattle Mariners incredibly has 1,866 career strikeouts to his name.

Read more MLB news on BleacherReport.com

Dodgers’ Adrian Gonzalez Hits 250th Home Run of Career

Los Angeles Dodgers first baseman Adrian Gonzalez went deep in the seventh inning of Tuesday's 12-7 loss to the Pittsburgh Pirates, recording the 250th home run of his career.

Gonzalez's two-run milestone blast plated teammate Justin Turner, cutting an 8-4 deficit to 8-6 in a game that the Pirates would later break wide open in the eighth inning.

Though his home run wasn't enough to lead the Dodgers to victory, Gonzalez finally seems to be turning things around, after struggling for much of the season. He hit eight home runs in April and finished the month with a .317 batting average, but has since added just seven homers over his last 72 games, all while watching his average dip to a middling .259.

The 32-year-old first baseman owned a .250 batting average as recently as Sunday before registering three hits in three at-bats in Monday's 5-2 win over the Pirates. He then produced a second straight multi-hit game Tuesday, adding a single and sacrifice fly to supplement his milestone homer.

Only 40 of Gonzalez's home runs have come in a Dodgers uniform, as his power has dropped off noticeably over the last few seasons.

After hitting 40 long balls for the San Diego Padres in 2009, he smacked 31 in 2010. He then hit 27 in 2011, his first season with the Boston Red Sox. The trend continued in 2012, when Gonzalez hit just 15 homers in 123 games for the Red Sox before joining the Dodgers in a blockbuster August trade.

While still an above-average hitter by most measures, Gonzalez has just 40 home runs in his 292 games as a Dodger.

Read more MLB news on BleacherReport.com

Grading the 10 Biggest Moves of the 2014 International Signing Period

Though the 2014-15 international signing period began earlier this month, July 2, most teams have already locked up the best players in this year’s class.

As I detailed in a previous article, the New York Yankees and Boston Red Sox are already considered the big winners this year, as both teams blew past their allotted international bonus pools so as to procure a variety of high-end prospects. 

However, after looking at each team’s international class for the current period, today we’ll be breaking down some of the top individual player signings by issuing grades based on the strengths of those signings.

The grade for each signing is based on the player’s pre-signing period ranking (as determined by Baseball America, Scout.com and MLB.com), his reported signing bonus and his potential long-term impact with his new organization.

Here are the 10 biggest moves of the 2014 international signing period.

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They’re Out to Get You: Horror Movie Action Figures

Horror Movie Action Figures

You probably shouldn’t get kids any one of these action figures–unless you want to give them the gift of nightmares. The figures from Funko’s Horror Series features some of the most horror-inducing characters from incredibly popular horror franchises, like Freddy Krueger, Jason Voorhees, and Pinhead.

Each one is only 3.75 inches tall, but think of that as being almost four inches more than you can take of pure horror. That Sam figure is particularly creepy.

They retail for $10 each.

[ Product Page ] VIA [ Werd ]

The post They’re Out to Get You: Horror Movie Action Figures appeared first on OhGizmo!.

Chase Headley Meets Yankees Teammates in Dugout, Hits Walk-Off Single

Chase Headley arrived fashionably late to Yankee Stadium on Tuesday, but he was still able to make a good impression with his new team.

The New York Yankees acquired Headley from the San Diego Padres on Tuesday afternoon. The trade meant that the third baseman's schedule was a bit crazy. He had to get from Chicago, which is where the Padres were playing, to New York.

Headley didn't make an appearance in the Yankees dugout until after the team's game against the Texas Rangers had already started.

He made his team debut as a pinch hitter in the eighth inning of the game, and while he struck out in his first at-bat in pinstripes, he would make an impact later on.

The game was scoreless through nine innings and went to extras. Both teams scored a run in the 13th inning, which sent the game to the 14th. That's when the newest Yankee was able to come through in the clutch.

With runners on the corners and only one out, Headley sent the New York crowd home happy.

The switch-hitter went 1-for-4 in the game, and it was his walk-off single that gave the Yankees a 2-1 victory. Headley may not have been too familiar with his new teammates before the hit, but that didn't stop anyone from mobbing him.

He talked about his wild day after coming up with the game-winning hit:

Headley woke up on Tuesday as a member of the Padres, but he finished the day winning a game for the Yankees. Not a bad day.

[MLB.com]

Read more MLB news on BleacherReport.com

Cold Hard Fact for Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Fact: San Francisco Giants pitcher Tim Lincecum is the first pitcher since Sandy Koufax to pitch a no-hitter and earn a save in the same season.

Bleacher Report will be bringing sports fans the most interesting and engaging Cold Hard Fact of the day, presented by Coors Light.

Source: San Francisco Giants (h/t BreakingNews.com)

Read more MLB news on BleacherReport.com

MLB Trade Rumors: Latest Chatter on David Price, Alex Rios and More

Front offices around Major League Baseball are nearing decision day as the non-waiver trade deadline approaches at month's end. The high number of close playoff races around the league could make it a seller's market for teams out of the mix.

The biggest question general managers must answer is whether the available assets are good enough to make a major difference down the stretch. Teams will often move a package of prospects for a mediocre veteran who isn't enough to swing the race in their favor.

Based on the current buzz, it definitely seems like some truly impact players are available. The exact cost, and how much a potential bidding war will drive it up, is the unknown. Let's check out some of the big names who could be on the move if the asking prices are met.

 

David Price

Price is no stranger to the rumor mill. His name has been mentioned quite frequently in recent years as somebody the Tampa Bay Rays could sell high on instead of trying to lock up with a lucrative extension. The talk is intensifying this time around, though.

Bob Nightengale of USA Today reports a decision on Price will depend on how Tampa Bay, which is riding a six-game winning streak, plays leading up to the deadline.

He states that if the choice is made to make a move, one team is seemingly in the pole position: "Yet, one-high ranking American League club executive predicts that if the Rays trade Price, one team stands out from the rest. Yes, St. Louis."

One thing Price has done in recent seasons is help the Rays' cause by pitching extremely well in July as the trade talk has taken center stage. He's 4-0 with a 0.85 ERA this month. Over the last two seasons his July ERA was 1.68 and 1.78.

Perhaps the biggest reason for that success is his understanding the situation. Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times passed along comments from the ace, who says he's thought about a potential trade for a while now: "To be honest, I've prepared myself for that day for a couple years now. I didn't want it to happen, but it's something I've definitely thought about. It's been in the back of my mind if not the front of my mind at times."

Price is right up there with Clayton Kershaw and Felix Hernandez among the best pitchers in baseball. For the Cardinals, he's certainly a player capable of shifting the balance of power in the NL Central race with four teams currently within five games of the division lead.

 

Alex Rios

Rios is on pace for his lowest homer total since his rookie season with just four through 96 games. All of his other offensive numbers are right in line with his career averages, though. That makes him a coveted commodity in a trade market that doesn't feature star hitting power.

Jon Heyman of CBS Sports reports the Toronto Blue Jays have emerged as a surprising contender for the outfielder's services. Rios spent the first five-and-a-half seasons of his career in Toronto before moving to the Chicago White Sox and now the Texas Rangers: "Yet, it is a bit ironic since the Blue Jays were thrilled in 2009 when the White Sox shocked folks and claimed the outfielder off waivers, taking a $69.835-million contract many believed was untradeable at the time."

The report mentions the Kansas City Royals, Seattle Mariners and possibly the San Francisco Giants as other potential landing spots for Rios. He recently missed a stretch of games due to an ankle injury, but it's not expected to hamper him moving forward.

Toronto is another one of those teams seeking a player to change the course of a division race. The Jays are four games behind the Baltimore Orioles in the AL East and could desperately use an offensive infusion with Edwin Encarnacion among their banged-up hitters. Rios would provide it.

 

Cole Hamels

The Philadelphia Phillies are in a difficult position. They have the fifth-worst record in baseball but have a roster with a lot of veterans that would make a complete rebuild tough. Hamels is one player capable of bringing back a sizable haul of young talent.

Whether the Phillies would move him is a question mark. Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe reports he could be moved if the price was right, but that price is very steep, and the team would also want no part in paying for the rest of his current deal: "One major league source said if the Phillies get a taker on the full contract and they get three top prospects, he's gone, and Hamels, according to another major league source, wouldn't mind."

His availability hasn't reached a consensus, though. He may not be a trade chip after all. Buster Olney of ESPN notes teams from around the league that have called Philadelphia to talk about the starter have been turned away, at least so far:

If the Phillies do trade Hamels, it would likely mark the start of an extended retooling of the roster. So the decision may come down to whether the front office is ready to begin that process or instead wants to try to patch up the squad for a quicker turnaround next season.

 

Read more MLB news on BleacherReport.com

Han Solo Frozen In Carbonite Toilet Seat

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We sense a disturbance in the force. It’s… it’s as if a new Star Wars movie is being made… and suddenly the market is flooded with all kinds of merchandise. What else can help explain the fact that you’re looking (and even perhaps contemplating buying) a toilet seat sporting the iconic Hal Solo Frozen In Carbonite image? Brushing aside the indignity of having Han preside over your smelly expulsions, the seat itself is carefully hand-painted by an artist in New Hampshire. It’s made from wood and should feel like a quality product. There’s also a Satisfaction Guarantee on the purchase, so if you don’t feel right about the $60 you’ll have to spend to own this, you can easily get a refund. Each one is custom made, and takes between 7 and 14 days to ship out.

[ Product Page ] VIA [ TechnaBob ]

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Old School Style NES30 Gamepad Works With Devices Today

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The time is 1985. You’ve just come back home from a gruelling day at kindergarten. You just want to unwind with a nice cup of milk and your favourite gaming system in front of you. That was bliss. Fast forward 30 years, and you sadly contemplate your modern life with all its stale responsibilities and obnoxious obligations. But for a few minutes a day, you can still relive some of that former glory. The NES30 gamepad pictured above is a 1:1 replica of the Nintendo Entertainment System controller from the 80′s. This one connects to several devices through Bluetooth, however, allowing you to game with more freedom than anyone can with the on-screen controls seen on most mobile device games. Ok, there are four extra buttons that weren’t part of the original, so exact faithfulness was overlooked in favour of modern usability. But it’s still a pretty good approximation to what the original looked like. The battery will last 20 hours between charges, and it will work with just about any device capable of playing games, except consoles. It’ll cost you $40 to own.

[ Product Page ] VIA [ Engadget ]

The post Old School Style NES30 Gamepad Works With Devices Today appeared first on OhGizmo!.

Stock Up, Stock Down for the San Francisco Giants’ Top 10 Prospects

The San Francisco Giants are fighting for a playoff spot.

Meanwhile, the Giants' farm talent is fighting to break into the big leagues—and the Giants have plenty of talent waiting in the wings.

Keeping an eye on prospects is of vital importance, especially at this juncture of the season. GM Brian Sabean may be able to deal one or two in a blockbuster trade or else choose to keep them close because of their potential. 

Here's how some of the Giants' top prospects fared this past week.

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Best Trash Cans Worth Considering at Faveable

Every weekday, our friends at Faveable compile a list of awesome gadgets and gear that men would love to discover.

best-trashcans

Welcome back to another edition of partnered content at OhGizmo! from Faveable. This time around Faveable team has compiled a list of awesome trash cans in all shapes, sizes and functions. The article covers selections which are collapsible, hidden in the cabinet or where in the lids open with the nudge of the knee. Featured image above is of the iTouchless Deodorizer Touch-Free Sensor Automatic Stainless-Steel Trash Can. Find out more about all top trash cans worth considering by hitting the link below.

Check out: Yes, Taking Out the Trash Can Be Sexy (Finally)

The post Best Trash Cans Worth Considering at Faveable appeared first on OhGizmo!.

What the Los Angeles Dodgers Should Do for 2014 MLB Trade Deadline

The 2014 MLB trade deadline is less than 10 days away. Some teams are putting together rosters to propel them into the postseason while some are looking to sell talent to stock up on prospects. 

The Los Angeles Dodgers are currently neck and neck with the San Francisco Giants for first place in the NL West. Should the Dodgers add some roster insurance to help them as the season winds down or stick with what has been working thus far?

Check out Los Angeles News Group Dodgers beat reporter J.P. Hoornstra break down the latest news as the trade deadline approaches.

 

All stats accurate as of July 22.

Read more MLB news on BleacherReport.com

Boston Red Sox Rumors: Playing Fact or Fiction with the Latest Trade Chatter

The July 31 trade deadline is now just eight days away, and rumors surrounding the Boston Red Sox are popping up left and right.

Despite a recent hot streak that's seen the Red Sox win eight of their past 10 games, Boston still finds itself 8.5 games out of first place in the AL East. Baseball Prospectus gives the Sox just a 5.8 percent chance at making the playoffs, and they'll need to dominate against division opponents to make up significant ground.

Boston's recent resurgence has some wondering if the Sox should look to be buyers instead of sellers at the deadline, while others argue that the Sox should simply stand pat and let the chips fall where they may.

But regardless of which path they choose, one thing is certain: We're going to hear all sorts of crazy rumors over the next eight days.

With that in mind, let's play a quick round of Fact or Fiction with some of the latest gossip the Internet has to offer when it comes to the Sox and July 31.

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MLB Rumors: Latest Trade Rumblings on Cliff Lee, Bartolo Colon and More

With the second half of the MLB season in full swing, one huge date for every franchise is coming in just eight days.

On July 31, the MLB trade deadline will arrive with several teams looking to make deals to build for the future. Some have their visions set on the distant future while others are looking short term at a postseason run.

As the deadline fast approaches, rumors about multiple players are swirling around the league. But apparently, pitchers are all the rage in recent rumblings with myriad starters on the market.

Here's an updated look at some of the buzz around the MLB over the last few days.

 

Cliff Lee On the Yankees' List of Targets

Since re-signing with the Philadelphia Phillies back in 2011, Cliff Lee has been to just one postseason with the team. While he has collected a hefty amount of money from the club, the now 35-year-old has barely sniffed a chance at a World Series.

After being denied by Lee in favor of the Phillies prior to 2011, the New York Yankees are apparently still interested in his services, according to Tim Brown of Yahoo Sports. But that might come at a large price, as Brown explains:

According to sources appraised of Amaro's hopes and dreams, the Phillies would expect a team to take on Lee's entire contract. He is due the remainder of $25 million this season, another $25 million in 2015 and either $27.5 million or a $12.5 million buyout in 2016.

Brown goes on to note that Lee also has a no-trade clause that includes New York on that list. So not only do they have to convince Philadelphia to trade him, they must also wine and dine Lee—oh, then pay him over $25 million this season and next.

With the Yankees currently climbing back into the AL East standings, Lee would provide an ace to potentially fill in for an injured Masahiro Tanaka and the loss of C.C. Sabathia. Luckily, his numbers prove he has the capabilities to at least replace one of the lost starters:

The huge price tag for Lee makes this deal daunting, but when has that ever stopped the Yankees in the past? If there's any chance of getting back into the playoff hunt in Derek Jeter's final season, Lee or another ace on the market will have to be the answer.

 

Giants Interested in Bartolo Colon

The legacy of Bartolo Colon continues.

Some 16 seasons after his first All-Star selection at the age of 25, Colon is still chugging along for the New York Mets at 41 years old. Though he currently sits at 8-8 with a 4.12 ERA, he has provided consistency and stability in the Mets rotation.

Now, the San Francisco Giants want his services to fill in on the starting rotation. ESPNDeportes.com's Marly Rivera reported the rumors citing a source close to the situation, via Adam Rubin of ESPNNewYork.com.

Unfortunately, his numbers have dipped just slightly after a strong June. Over his last four starts, Colon is 0-3 with a 5.88 ERA after carrying the team last month by going 4-1 with a 2.57 ERA.

But the Giants are still apparently willing to bank on the fact that he'll return to form with Matt Cain's struggles and recent trip to the disabled list. Clearly, it's worth the risk for San Francisco as they fight with the Los Angeles Dodgers for the division.

On the Mets side, they are well out of the postseason hunt—again—and have a wealth of pitching. With Matt Harvey set to return next season and Noah Syndergaard and Rafael Montero in Triple-A, there will likely be no need for the ageless wonder in the future.

Adding another starting pitcher or offensive piece in the minors would be beneficial in return for the 41-year-old. This one seems like an obvious deal that needs to get done for both sides.

 

Tommy Milone Requesting Trade Following Demotion

Following his third demotion from the Oakland Athletics in the last 12 months, Tommy Milone wants out. Can anyone really blame him?

Oakland traded for both Jeff Samardzija and Jeff Hammel earlier this month, creating a limited amount of spots in the rotation. After becoming the odd man out again with the Athletics, Milone has requested a trade, according to Fox Sports' Ken Rosenthal

Left-hander Tommy Milone has asked the club to trade him, major-league sources tell Fox Sports. ... The Athletics have received trade inquiries on Milone, but the team is not eager to move him, knowing he might be needed due to injury or ineffectiveness, sources say.

Rosenthal goes on to note that Milone would have been eligible for arbitration if he was in the majors the entire season. His return to the minors now puts that in question and just heightens the reasoning for Milone to find a team that will keep him in the majors.

Since the rumors surfaced, manager Bob Melvin spoke about Milone's requests, per Carl Steward of the San Jose Mercury News:

I don't think there's any softening to it. I think he just wants to pitch in the big leagues. He'd much rather do it (with Oakland), but when you've had the type of success he's had and you're pitching in the minor leagues, that's not somewhere he wants to be.

... It doesn't mean he doesn't want to be here. He does want to be here. He's well thought of and respected by his teammates and he respects the situation going on here, but he wants to be in the big leagues. I don't blame him for that.

The same pitcher who registered 25 wins over the last two seasons with Oakland is now only 27 years old and putting together another great year. Here's a look at his numbers over the last three years with Oakland:

A 6-3 record and 3.55 ERA gives any team hope that he can contribute in the postseason. There's just one problem: The A's likely won't be getting rid of him anytime soon.

Sure, they can respect his wishes, but at what cost? Milone is still 27 and has shown he can excel at the MLB level and would serve as an excellent insurance policy if any starter does go down. 

Then there's the fact that the A's will more than likely be in the postseason. At 61-37, they are currently the best team in baseball and hold a two-game lead over the Los Angeles Angels.

The only feasible option here would be for a team to offer the entire farm for the young starter, but that likely won't be the case. While Milone might want out, it simply doesn't make logical sense for the A's to do so.

Can anyone blame them?

 

Follow @RCorySmith on Twitter.

Read more MLB news on BleacherReport.com

A new site lets you help pay Detroit residents’ water bills

A drop in the bucket.

Congressman John Myers joins protestors in Detroit at Friday’s protest. Photo: Getty

It’s now almost a year since Detroit became the largest US city ever to file for bankruptcy. One stubbornly persistent hole in its finances comes from the $5.7bn of bad debt its Water and Sewage Department is sitting on. So, city officials have decided to address the problem by letting residents go thirsty.

Since last year, the department has stopped supplying water to around 41,000 households who owe $150 or more: that’s about 100,000 people affected by the shutoffs so far. Many families have turned their water back on illegally, risking further fines if they’re found out.

The reception to this hasn’t exactly been positive. On 25 June, the UN office for Human Rights called on the city government to end the shutoffs, and released a statement saying: “Disconnection of water services because of failure to pay due to lack of means constitutes a violation of the human right to water.” Meanwhile, a local attorney has filed a class action suit against the city on behalf of residents, claiming that the shut-offs – which fall overwhelmingly on black households – are racially motivated. And last Friday, 2,000 people including the Hulk himself, Mark Ruffalo, took to Detroit’s streets in protest.   

Two women, however, have taken a more digital-first approach to the problem. Last week, Kristy Tillman and Tiffani Bell launched a site called Turn On Detroit’s Water which matches up donors willing to pay part or all of an overdue water bill with those struggling to pay.

Donors sign up by submitting an email address and the amount they’re willing to pledge, while residents enter their water department account information. Bell and Tillman redact residents’ names and pass on the payment information to donors.

According to Bell’s Twitter feed, over 1,000 donors have already signed up:

Both women have also tweeted screenshots of bills successfully or partially paid, implying that the donors have actually come up with the goods.

The site isn’t likely to be a long term solution, especially as the city authorities are planning to raise water prices by another 8 per cent. But for now at least, it may help keep the water flowing. 

This is a preview of our new sister publication, CityMetric. We'll be launching its website soon - in the meantime, you can follow it on Twitter and Facebook. 

The Best and Worst Trade in the History of Every MLB Team

As the 2014 MLB trade deadline draws ever closer, now seems like the perfect time to look back at some of the best and worst trades in the history of the game.

Every team has some truly memorable deals that have been made in its franchise’s history, but while some give hope for a deadline jackpot, others serve as a cautionary tale.

The game itself is so unpredictable; you never know who could turn a corner in his development and break out or fall off significantly and no longer produce as expected. That's what makes things like the trade deadline and the winter meetings such an exciting time, as you never quite know what you're going to get, even after a trade is made.

With that said, what follows is a look at the best and the worst trades in the history of each MLB team. Obviously, we have the luxury of hindsight when assessing these moves, something the respective general managers involved were not afforded.

 

*Note: This list covers each team's franchise history, not just team history, so deals for the Montreal Expos are included with the Washington Nationals, for example.

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Assessing the Value of MLB’s Top Trade Deadline Targets

Value is all in the eyes of the beholder. As Major League Baseball's July 31 trade deadline rapidly approaches, general managers must decipher how much certain players are worth.

Exchanging a human being for another human being is cruel when you think about it, so try not to think about it. Instead, let's determine which available players will provide the most fruitful contribution on the baseball diamond.

Around this time of year, a select batch of veterans on downtrodden teams appear all over the rumor mill. Even now and then someone else will get dealt without warning, but fans following all the buzz know the names to monitor in the week before the deadline.

I'll round out the analysis of these top targets with an easily digestible number grade encapsulating each player's trade value on a scale from one to 10. Along with past and present production, age and contracts are also taken into account.

Most players on the trade market are veterans due for a raise either this offseason or next winter. After all, why else would their respective teams want to dump them? That hurts their value since they'll either command a higher salary or leave for greener pastures.

Also take into account that I'm not going to toss out 10s willy-nilly like T-shirts at a minor league game. The perfect score is reserved for young, affordable superstars like Mike Trout, Andrew McCutchen, Paul Goldschmidt and Bryce Harper.

Basically, someone who deserves a 10 won't find themselves on this list, because a general manager would have to be insane to trade him.

The value metrics and assorted order are based on how I gauge their worth, even though the old guard will devote more attention to wins, saves, RBI and name recognition. Yes, Jonathan Papelbon will garner more attention than Joaquin Benoit, but I'm taking the latter if presented the choice.

You might also ask who makes a nine-person list. Blame the New York Yankees for selfishly acquiring Chase Headley on Tuesday. For what it's worth, the former San Diego Padres' third baseman originally ranked No. 6 with a 7.0 rating before getting scooped off the market.

That's enough setup already. Let's get to it before the deadline passes.

 

Note: All advanced statistics courtesy of FanGraphs. Contract information obtained via Cot's Baseball Contracts.

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Under the Knife: MLB Injury Analysis on Tulowitzki, Teixeira, Wacha and More

Brady Aiken will go down as one of the most intriguing draft stories in the history of the MLB, no matter how it goes. Like most draft picks, it will be years before we know whether the Houston Astros missed out on a top talent (or three) or whether they dodged a bullet.

Aiken's physical cost him an agreed-upon $6.5 million as he elected to walk away. That's confidence or folly, and no one knows which.

The reason, however, is known. Aiken was found in the physical to have a smaller-than-normal UCL. That's the ligament that would be replaced in Tommy John surgery.

Many compared Aiken's situation to that of R.A. Dickey, who lost a bonus when he was discovered to have no UCL at all. The situation is different; it's not apples to apples, it's apples to no apples.

Aiken's "small" ligament is still functional, and that's the key point here. While it is demonstrably smaller than expected, it's not demonstrably weaker. The fact that it handles 97 mph stuff tells us that either Aiken is exceptionally efficient or the small ligament is stronger than it's size would indicate. 

Aiken was checked by three doctors, including Dr. James Andrews, who cleared him to pitch. However, the Astros' doctor (or doctors, more likely) indicated that the ligament was an issue.

Now, let's be clear—it is not known whether the Astros "failed" Aiken, and it's frankly semantics. They used the adverse finding to try to get a discount above what they had already negotiated, and Aiken walked.

That's a risk for both.

Are there tests that would check the strength of the ligament? Not really. I spoke with several doctors, including one that examined Aiken, and none seemed confident in any extant test. More than one of them suggested a biomechanical evaluation, but it seems that neither the Astros nor Aiken wanted that. Aiken's camp was already perturbed about leaks from the Astros about his physical. 

Aiken has some decisions, but this one will be an interesting one to follow. Maybe Aiken is another Gerrit Cole who goes to college, matures and succeeds. Maybe he'll be back in the draft next year. It's unlikely that he'll be a free agent, but we do know he won't be an Astro. Everything else is unknown, but very, very intriguing, in many ways, including medically.

There are plenty of major leaguers with injuries this week, so let's look around the league...

 

Garrett Richards

Jerry DiPoto told the media that the L.A. Angels weren't going to put any specific restrictions on Garrett Richards this year, as noted by Alden Gonzalez MLB.com. Part of the reason is that he doesn't have "a violent delivery." I'm not disagreeing with DiPoto here, but the fact is, he doesn't know.

The Angels aren't a team that does much with biomechanics, so he's guessing based on looks. DiPoto certainly knows pitching and has people around him that know as much, so it's a very educated guess but nonetheless a guess. He could be right, he could be wrong, and he could be gambling with Richards' arm.

I'm not advocating for an innings restriction or a shutdown here, but I'm advocating not guessing. Without biomechanical data, the Angels could measure Richards' fatigue in a number of ways. If they're doing that, awesome, but all my sources indicate that like most teams, they're not. 

Richards is facing a major innings increase if he continues at this pace, but there's no other evidence of fatigue that's noticeable. The Mariners saw 98 last time out, so his fastball isn't tired. Until Richards gets north of 180 innings, he's not in dangerous territory, and at age 26, he's not the type that's most at risk either.

 

Troy Tulowitzki

Another season, another injury for Troy Tulowitzki. "Tulo" stayed healthy enough to play opposite his hero, Derek Jeter, in last week's All-Star Game, but he quickly ran into more problems, literally. Tulowitzki was placed on the disabled list by the Colorado Rockies on Tuesday due to a strained hip flexor, noted by Cody Ulm of MLB.com.

The injury, suffered last Saturday, is just the latest in a string of injuries that have kept Tulowitzki off the field. When on it, he's great as all his numbers show. The downside is that these recurrent leg injuries indicate some sort of movement problem that isn't being corrected.

I asked Lenny Macrina of Champions Physical Therapy in Boston, one of the top sports PTs around, about this, and he agreed:

He most likely has some form of hip or lumbopelvic dysfunction with imbalances in ROM or core strength leading to his recurrent hip-flexor strains. If he doesn't stabilize well through his pelvis and has a dysfunctional movement pattern, then he will over-stress and overuse the surrounding musculature leading to injury.

What Macrina is saying is that Tulowitzki keeps having the symptoms fixed but not the problem. Without that, he'll continue to have similar, related issues. It's a very difficult fix, especially given his on-field success. The injury doesn't really affect his trade possibilities, since all the sources I've spoken with over the last two weeks have indicated that Tulowitzki was essentially untouchable. 

His return to the lineup will be conservative, especially if the Rockies fade further without Tulowitzki in the lineup.

It's going to be a very interesting offseason in Denver. 

 

George Springer

The Astros have plenty of other problems, but few of them are as important as keeping George Springer healthy. Springer has been solid for the Astros since coming up, putting up great power numbers but missing a lot of balls. The floor on Springer is pretty high, but to keep that floor stable, he'll need a solid base.

That base is the problem. Springer is having lower-body issues, if you listen to the Astros' hockey-like statements. The real problem is not dissimilar to what Joey Votto is going through. Springer has a problem in his lower quad, near the knee. This kind of soreness is often akin to "jumper's knee" but really prevents a player from getting a solid base.

Springer still has plenty of power, but even more than Votto, it's key to the Astros' future to keep this from becoming a chronic problem. Not only could it sap power, but it could hurt his range and his speed.

The Astros can afford to be very conservative with Springer, and they'd be right to do so. While he's a nice Rookie of the Year candidate, they'd rather he be on the field healthy next year than take home a trophy this year.

 

Michael Wacha

The Cardinals got some good news on Michael Wacha. Not great news, but good. Wacha had an MRI on his shoulder, and things look like they're healing up on his scapula. The stress reaction is less stressed, and Wacha is a bit closer to throwing.

At this point, he's still got a couple weeks of healing, and even then, this is the kind of problem that could quickly recur. Aside from letting it heal up, there's not much the St. Louis med staff can really do here. The root cause is likely throwing, and it's not like Wacha can stop doing that. 

This type of injury has been recurrent in the small number of pitchers that have had similar injuries. The plus for Wacha is how quickly they caught it, so there's hope there. What we don't know is how much hope. Once Wacha starts throwing, every day of pain-free and injury-free throwing is a major plus.

I feel pretty positive about it, but since it's nearly impossible to make significant changes, there's just no way to have Wacha be anything but risky. Risk is fine if it's matched with reward, and Wacha has the kind of upside to make buying all the Maalox worth it. 

 

Mark Teixeira

"Injury prone" is a word that is thrown around too easily. It's not even the right term for Mark Teixeira. Usually a durable player, Teixeira has actually followed a nasty pattern that I hadn't seen coming. I call it the "Iron Man" effect, after Cal Ripken. Once a very durable player starts to have physical problems, things can get out of hand quickly. Ripken is one example, as is Johnny Damon. 

Teixeira hasn't been as durable as those two, but he's been above average. He was a 162-game guy a couple times and a 150-game guy otherwise, until he wasn't. Expecting him to come back to those levels now, after wrist, back and other minor problems, is folly. 

His latest issue is a minor lat strain, which is not related to his other back problems, at least not directly. The Yankees are going to try to let him have a few days off to heal up. They think he can avoid the DL, but the option is open. Joe Girardi normally doesn't like to play short, so that's a positive sign.

The downside here is that it's one more piece of maintenance work that the New York med staff has to do day to day as it tries to keep the entire team healthy. Adding in a player like Chase Headley and his back maintenance really taxes the staff even more.

If the trainers can hold this team together with the equivalent of duct tape and get it to the playoffs, that will be a feat.

 

CC Sabathia

CC Sabathia will have his surgery on Wednesday, and all is expected to go to plan in Los Angeles. Dr. Neal ElAttrache is doing the surgery and seems confident, as does Sabathia, that he can be back next year.

It will be tough to track this until the spring, but if Sabathia is doing normal, daily activities this offseason, that's a very good sign.

What's less clear is whether Sabathia needs to lose weight.

Weight on its own is not the best indicator of stress on the knee. It's much more biomechanical, which is something we just can't know until after the surgery and the healing. We simply won't know until January, just ahead of spring training.

 

Michael Pineda

The Yankees are getting some positive signs from Michael Pineda. In what some called a last chance, Pineda has made progress, though he's still having issues with his shoulder.

He'll throw two batting-practice sessions this week to gauge how much pain and inflammation he has. If they can get him through that, he'll head out on a very short rehab assignment. He won't get up to full stamina on the rehab assignment but can help a short staff with even four or five innings. He'll build up on the fly, if possible.

Pineda's issue has been between-start recovery, so the Yankees appear to be a bit desperate to get any kind of value out of him.

 

Yasiel Puig

It's not easy for players to switch to wearing a padded glove. Troy Renck, the longtime Denver beat writer, and I had a discussion about it, and it's as much about mental comfort as physical. Players get very comfortable with certain things, in a lucky-sock kind of way. Even when it's in their best interest, as a padded glove would be, it's hard for someone to change.

Maybe Yasiel Puig will consider it after taking a hard fastball off his hand. He got away with nothing more than a bruise, but it could have been worse.

Without changing gloves, next time might be.

 

Josh Beckett

Josh Beckett isn't healthy, but the hope is that the hip impingement has been helped enough by a cortisone shot that he can be effective. The Dodgers will have to watch this one closely, but Beckett isn't your normal pitcher at this stage. He understands the risks and is hoping to push for one more chance at a ring. Watch to see if he's able to get full extension or is shortening his stride or follow-through.

If he does start well, there's also the question of keeping him healthy between starts, so Stan Conte's going to have some long nights.

 

Michael Cuddyer

The Rockies lost Tulowitzki for a while, but that doesn't appear to change the timeframe for Michael Cuddyer. The latest MRI on his injured shoulder showed some progress, so he'll amp up his work and build towards a mid-August return.

The team may not want to trade him, as it's said, but he could be a nice waiver-trade guy for a contender who needs a bat. He could always re-sign with the Rockies if they want him that badly. That kind of "boomerang deals" happen all the time. 

 

Joey Votto

Dr. Tim Kremchek was on WLW with Lance McAlister on Tuesday and discussed Joey Votto. Kremchek said that Votto was doing well, but that while he wanted to be on the field, they had to keep a long-term horizon for his quad issue. Kremchek acknowledged that the Reds are going to have to stay in the race to get Votto back for September.

The bigger question now is whether Votto's situation can be kept from going chronic. At this stage, he couldn't even DH, and the Reds don't even have that option.

 

Late Scratches: Both Manny Machado (Orioles) and Pedro Alvarez (Pirates) left Tuesday's games with what are thought to be minor injuries. Keep your eye on both of these key players for playoff contenders.

You can follow me on Twitter (@injuryexpert) for updates.

Read more MLB news on BleacherReport.com

MLB Trade Rumors: Fact or Fiction on All the Wildest Rumors out on the Web

With the trade deadline rapidly approaching, it's time to highlight and examine the rumors and the speculation that have been surrounding players who are on the block and could be on the move in the coming days.

On Tuesday, the San Diego Padres traded third baseman Chase Headley to the New York Yankees, as Daniel Kramer of MLB.com writes, but that certainly won't be the last transaction between now and July 31. Not by a long shot.

Not every rumor becomes a reality, however, so here's a rundown of a handful of the latest potential moves and whether the whispers are fact or fiction.

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