Dear Cleveland Indians fans:
Few things. First off, if you’re going to want to make jabs at Tampa for having no fans, due to having a terrible attendance record…
Tampa was last this year in attendance. Fair enough. But Cleveland had the third worst attendance this season. They’ve been in the bottom third (21st to 30th) for a decade. That’s like a kid with down syndrome making fun of a kid with cerebral palsy. You really don’t have that much room to talk. A fanbase with a shitty attendance record making fun of another team with a shitty attendance record is counter intuitive and doesn’t make much sense.
Second off: throwing a rookie pitcher, with only 52 innings of Major League experience under his belt, out there to pitch the biggest game of your season is not always the best idea. After Delmon Young crushed his fastball over the fence, he lost all of his composure and confidence; a rookie-esque thing to do. Understandably there wasn’t much of an alternative (wait, Kluber, Kazmir, McAllister could have worked, right?), but I would have no doubt wanted a reliable veteran arm on the mound.
Third: You can’t score runs if you don’t put some clutch into your swings, or make smart at-bats in crucial moments. No, Michael Bourn, striking out on 4 pitches, two of them outside, with men on the corners and no outs does not constitute as clutch. A run should have scored in that instance. Hell, grounding out into a double play would have been a better option almost.
Plain and simple: Tampa Bay was the better team. They played the better game. They pitched better. They batted better. They fielded better. They managed better. It’s okay to be disappointed…
But don’t say the game “was fixed” because your team blew ass in the most important game of the season. Case closed. Have fun watching the rest of the postseason.
Tampa whooping on Indians the one night Cleveland can actually have a sellout crowd. Classic.
Dear Texas Rangers
Don’t be disappointed you lost yesterday. You seriously played like you wanted to lose.
Losing the most important game of your season is one thing, if the other team just flat out beats you and played a better game, but rolling over and making mistakes to basically let the other team roll all over you? Pathetic. Hope you put your heart into it next season, even if you don’t go anywhere.
David Price unsung Cy Young
Please ignore the rhyme in the title.
Throughout the talks about who could be the American League Cy Young winner in 2012, we hear a lot of the same names. Jered Weaver, Chris Sale, Justin Verlander, C.J Wilson every now and then.
But I have hardly heard any talks of David Price getting any mentions. In my opinion, he’s one of the best pitchers in baseball by far.
While a Win-Loss record doesn’t accurately tell you how good a pitcher is, it CAN tell the story of a pitcher. He’s leading the league in Wins with 14 this season. He’s also 4th in the AL in ERA, 5th in Ks, 7th in WHIP, and if you’re into WAR, he’s 5th in that.
It’s true that a pitcher can have 15 wins and an ERA of 5, meaning his team’s offense more than likely bails him out. But Price’s ERA is 2.57, almost half that. If the Tampa Bay Rays make it into the playoffs, you can bet that a huge reason was because Price won game after game for them, with strong pitching performances. In his last 10 starts, he’s only given up more than 3 runs once. In 6 of those starts, he’s given up 1 run or less.
If he keeps it up, I feel like he’ll have an even stronger case for the Cy Young Award. He already has better stuff than Wilson for it. It might not be long before he over takes Verlander, Sale, and Weaver.
Wade Boggs # retired by Tampa…why?
So I was making a random round on the internet, and I happened to read up about Wade Boggs, one of the best players of the 80’s and 90’s. I was looking at his career accomplishments and all the years he won certain awards, and I noticed something a little weird.
Tampa Bay retired his jersey number of 12. That’s cool. Then I noticed something that was out of place.
Wade Boggs was an All-Star 12 times in his career. How many times was he an All-Star while with the Rays? None.
He was a World Champion in 1996. Any baseball buff can tell you that it wasn’t the Rays who won that World Series. It was most definitely the Yankees.
He was a 2 time gold glover. Any of them for Rays? Nope! Both for the Yankees.
He was an 8 time silver slugger. Wow! How many of those were with the Rays? Oh…none.
He was the AL Batting Champ five times, and four of those right in a row! I’d also like to inform you that he did that with the Red Sox, not the Rays.
Okay…well maybe he still had great seasons with the Rays, right? Played in 150+ games, batted close to .300 or over, a decent amount of RBIs maybe?
1998: 123 games played, 7 home runs, 52 RBIs, .280/.348/.400
1999: 90 games, 2 home runs, 29 RBIs, .301/.377/.377
Now, Wade Boggs was never a home run hitter. He hit 24 home runs once, but the closest he ever came to that again was 11. But seriously? His seasons with the Rays were average to above average at best, at least for a contact hitter. His fielding wasn’t very good as well.
If you also haven’t noticed, he played a grand total of two seasons for the Rays, playing in only 213 games with them. And…they retire his jersey number?
Come on Rays. Get some better players and have them play with you for a long time, then you can justify retiring numbers. Wade Boggs was one of the best players, but don’t jump on the bandwagon like that.
AL East Predictions
I made predictions for each division as soon as the offseason started on my personal blog, but with the new signings and tradings going on, I feel like doing new predictions should be done, starting with the AL East.
1. New York Yankees - 95-67
2. Tampa Bay Rays - 92-70
3. Toronto Blue Jays - 86-76
4. Boston Red Sox - 84-78
5. Baltimore Orioles - 70-92
It’s hard to deny that the Yankees are still one of the best teams in baseball, and just barely the best in their division.
The Rays have shown to have one of the best and youngest rotations in the league, led by James “CG” Shields, David Price, ROY of ‘11 Jeremy Helickson, Wade Davis, and the young phenom Matt Moore. The only two rotations that come to mind that are anywhere near or better than the Rays would be the Angels and the elite rotation of the Phillies.
Ever since Jose Bautista exploded in Toronto, they have been a team with a postseason appearance just waiting to happen if they built around him. As he gets better, and the rotation starts to shape up with Brandon Morrow and Ricky Romero, they can play a good spoiler and may have a shot at making it into the postseason.
Boston is going downhill, and will be for some time. With the addition of Adrian Gonzalez in the 2010 offseason, it seemed that the team would shine in offense, which they did. The problem lies with the abysmal talent in the bullpen and disappointing rotation last season. With the loss of Papelbon, where the Red Sox will end up doesn’t seem promising.
And the Orioles are the Orioles; lackluster and doomed to playing in the toughest division in baseball. They are slowly getting better and more polished with their players, as Matt Wieters is proving to be a premier catcher.
I expect a good battle between the Yankees and Rays for the top spot in the division, but the Blue Jays are my “sleeper” team in the division. What are your predictions?