I grew up a Cubs fan and that is how I have always seen myself but I am not one of those fans who loves his team and hates everyone else. The Cubs will always be my team but I also root for players who, I feel, play the game “the right way.” The players I root for are the ones who are diving for balls when they are down by six. The ones who jump into the stands chasing pop ups (but not this way….like this). The guys who always run out ground balls. This are the guys I want on my team, not the kind of player who only seems to play well if they are in a contract year (Yeah I’m look at you Adrian Beltre).
The first thing you will notice when you look at the National League rosters compared to the American League rosters is how young the NL players are. Weird, right? Because I thought every good baseball player was pushing 35 but maybe thats because the only games that ever get shown on TV are Yankees/Red Sox games. Its crazy to think that some teams out there are currently developing talent instead of just auctioning the same old players. How did that work out Tampa? Here are just a few, of the loooong list, of solid young players that we think are poised for a break out this year.
I don’t know if you are one of those people who sits around thinking of reasons why the National League is better than the American League, but if you are here is another one: pitching. The NL has the better pitchers by far. So picking a Cy Young winner is not going to be the easiest job in the world. I’d like to spend some time on each pitcher but there are just too many that are capable of giving Cy Young worthy performances so I’m going to have to just pick a couple. Its Friday so I am lacking in patience and motivation.
Everyone who hates the Cardinals had a great day yesterday. It was my pleasure to watch the worst closer in baseball finally run out of luck. Ryan Franklin was a below average starter but somehow he has been able to pull save after nearly blown save out of his ass. Its probably the “genius” of Dave Duncan and Tony LaRussa. When asked for comment, Adam Wainwright’s overused right elbow said, “Oh yeah. Fucking geniuses alright.”
Last night, sporting the classiest goatee outside of a West Virginia tractor pull, Franklin gave up the tying homerun in the ninth to wispy centerfielder Cameron Maybin. In Franklin’s defense Maybin is a powerhouse with a career 13 homers under his belt. In conclusion…..Go Cubs!
The Most Valuable Player award is supposed to go to the player who had the best season. Now we know that doesn’t always happen. For example, every Red Sox fan knows, even if they won’t admit it because thats just the way they are, there is no way Dustin Pedroia should have won the MVP in 2008. He didn’t even have the best numbers on his own team! But this isn’t about the past. There will be plenty of time to hammer everyone’s least favorite team. This is about this year. Who will be the new NL MVP?
Now the point of this exercise is not for me to pick who I want to be the MVP but who I predict will win. Naming a winner is not a clear cut case of who had the best season. It should be, but its not. Too much emphasis is put on how the team as a whole does. Instead of the best player winning the award it becomes the best player on the best team wins the award. So, what I am saying is that other factors need to be considered besides who has the best numbers.
Thank the ghost of Nate Dogg baseball season is almost here. With the start of the season we will be putting out some predictions about what we believe will happen in the coming season. We generally have little to no basis for our predictions other than our Frank Drebin like poor instincts and Darwin Award-like intelligence. Three dead people references in one paragraph! Anyways, we will make the predictions starting with the MVP races, followed by Cy Young, Breakout players, guy you will hate by the end of the year, division winners, and World Series Champs. Hopefully we can spark some conversation, or argument. If not, well then we’re geniuses and got it all right.
Now that Cubs have made the decision to add Andrew Cashner as the club’s fifth the starter the question becomes what do they do with Carlos Silva? Obviously, they are going to try to trade him but I don’t have any confidence that Hendry is going to pull it off. At this point in his career Silva is an emergency pitcher. He is the kind of guy you keep around in case one of your top five goes down with injury. This statement creates a couple of problems.
The first is that Silva is owed 11.5 million dollars this year. Who is going to accept that kind of salary from their 6th or 7th starter. Even if the Cubs do unload him it will most likely be under the condition that they pick up the bulk of that number.