Mike Bauman has been a national columnist for MLB.com since 2001 and has covered Major League Baseball for more than three decades.
|It is a good time to give thanks for labor peace in baseball. What was once a competition between labor and management now often looks much more like a partnership.
More»Commissioner Selig talks Marlins signing Stanton|
|Free-market economics are working out extremely well for Pablo Sandoval. The free-agent third baseman had three legitimate, lucrative offers for his services. That's as good of a starting point as one could hope for.
More»Ian Browne on Sox's deals with Hanley, Panda|
|With the Red Sox in high pursuit of Jon Lester and Pablo Sandoval, the club seems to view this offseason as a chance to reload and regroup and get back to where it once belonged.
More»No shortage of suitors for Jon Lester this offseason|
|As we speak, the most balanced, deepest and quite possibly toughest division in baseball is the National League Central. No other division can claim to have this much talent, established or youthful, spread throughout its five clubs.
More»Heyward looking forward to joining the Cardinals|
|Imitation being the sincerest form of flattery, every team wants a bullpen just like the Kansas City Royals or the San Francisco Giants. The problem is, these bullpens aren't particularly available. But these World Series clubs underscored just how indisputably important relief pitchers have become in the contemporary game.
More» Affeldt earns win with scoreless relief|
|Signing one guy to an immense contract doesn't solve all of a franchise's problems. But signing the right guy to an immense contract could solve one set of problems for the Marlins. The right guy, in this case, would be outfielder Giancarlo Stanton.
More»Giancarlo Stanton and Miami Marlins talk extension|
|In the normal free-agency story, the questions are: Where is he going? And how much is he getting? These elements are obviously present with Max Scherzer. But in his case you also get the answer to another question that just won't go away: Was turning down that six-year, $144 million deal from the Tigers a smart move?
More» Scherzer whiffs nine over six innings|
|By the end of October, reasonable people who followed baseball with reasonable regularity could fairly and logically conclude that Bruce Bochy was the best manager, not only in the National League, but in the Major Leagues.
More»Bochy finishes third in NL Manager of the Year voting|
|The Giants very much want to re-sign Pablo Sandoval. The problem is that there will be other suitors for Sandoval's services. Given the robust nature of baseball's current economy, those other suitors will have considerable money to spend.
More»Hot Stove discusses Sandoval and Soriano|
|You have heard that run differential is an exceptional predictor of baseball outcomes. Not this October, when the team with the better regular-season run differential lost four of seven postseason series.
More» Giants last team standing at the end of 2014|
|The Kansas City Royals deserve all the credit in the world for breaking their 29-year postseason drought and coming within one victory of a World Series championship. But along the way, the Milwaukee Brewers might deserve at least a polite note of thanks. They provided the Royals with lots of help.
More» Escobar backhands, goes to first for out|
|What the Cubs are getting in Joe Maddon is a skipper who is superb in clubhouse chemistry, blending both the analytical and humanistic sides of managing.
More»Jim Duquette discusses the Cubs' hiring of Joe Maddon|
|Paul Molitor will be another rookie big league manager when he assumes his post in the Twins' dugout next year. But his pedigree is still unmatched for this line of work with this particular franchise.
More»Hagen on reports of Molitor being named Twins manager|
|The Giants winning three World Series in five seasons is not exactly the same as the Yankees winning five straight from 1949 to 1953, but that era and this one don't much resemble each other. The current era is one of parity in baseball. Winning three World Series in five seasons is not supposed to happen. So when it does, we are witnessing history.
More» Baer, Sabean and Bochy on winning Series|
|Here are 10 reasons why the San Francisco Giants will win Game 7 and the 2014 World Series tonight.
More» Bochy on Hudson and Bumgarner in Game 7|
|Everybody, everybody, everybody talks about the three fellows at the back end of the Kansas City bullpen. And they deserve all the attention, not to mention the "oohs" and the "aahs" for their high-octane, super-charged stuff. On the other hand, operating with just a bit more subtlety, but with every bit as much success, we find the members of the San Francisco Giants bullpen.
More» Bochy on Bumgarner's effect on bullpen|
|Madison Bumgarner has done all that could be expected of one pitcher in one postseason. He has created a performance that can fairly be mentioned with some of the best October work in the history of baseball. And in the process, he has placed the San Francisco Giants on the brink of their third World Series championship in the past five seasons.
More» Bumgarner discusses shutout victory|
|Giants manager Bruce Bochy made the intelligent decision by sticking to his rotation plan for Game 4, keeping ace Madison Bumgarner on regular rest for Sunday night's fifth matchup in the World Series.
More» Bumgarner on rumors of starting Game 4|
|The Giants have seen this before, this being a stretch when enough runs couldn't be bought, borrowed, leased or imported. But they have also survived these stretches to find themselves in the World Series for the third time in five years. So this is no time to abandon hope.
More» Giants on trailing Royals 2-1 in WS|
|The Giants are the classic case of the whole being greater than the sum of its parts. Put them up, man-for-man against some other teams, and maybe the other guys seem more impressive. But put the Giants together and they're in the World Series for the third time in five years.
More» Hudson on Pence's impact in clubhouse|