Thursday, November 16, 2017

MVPs: Well Deserved Edition

Now, I know what you're thinking. How am I not pissy about Aaron Judge not getting MVP? I mean, it's been 7 years since CC Sabathia got robbed for Cy Young, and you still go on about that, but why not this?

...Because I kinda knew that Aaron Judge wasn't gonna be MVP from his August alone. Like, unlike Jose Altuve, Judge was human this year. Judge made mistakes. He struck out a ton. But throughout the entire season, Jose Altuve hit for average, hit home runs like hell, played great in the field, and did a tremendous all-around job of playing baseball, as he's done every year since 2012. So, of course, he deserved the MVP over Judge, and I ain't mad.

With Giancarlo Stanton winning, you also need to talk about the fact that Joey Votto was trailing him the entire time, and almost won had it not been for 2 Stanton votes. I mean, both Stanton and Votto are among baseball's best, and while Votto has kind of already made his Cooperstown case clear, Stanton had a HUGE all-around year, hitting like hell the entire time, and still being able to hit for average. His 59 homers have drilled him into the records until somebody, probably him again, chases Ruth, Maris (and those other guys).

These two deserved to be the 2017 MVPs. For both, it was about damn time.

Cy Youngs: Repeat Offenders Edition

These were slightly less predictable than the Rookie of the Year picks, but...I could have guessed these. Unlike the last few years, there wasn't really one 'oh my god this guy needs to win' for these categories. Kluber deserved his, thanks to Chris Sale buckling in August, as well as doing (arguably) better work than he'd done in 2014 when he won his first one. Scherzer's THIRD (!!!) Cy Young is just proof that he's one of the best pitchers in baseball, especially considering he has as many as Clayton Kershaw now.

Tonight, we get some MVPs announced. I'm not a betting man, but if I was, I'd be putting money on Altuve and Stanton.

Monday, November 13, 2017

Rookies of the Year: Was There Even a Doubt Edition

You could have called this in June.

There's no real discrepancy. No fraudulent voting. The two best rookies of 2017 won. They also happened to be among the best PLAYERS of 2017, so it made it really easy. Judge had an insane season, made a case for New York monarchy. Bellinger made it to the World Series, hit home runs off the strongest rotation in the bigs.

Both should have tons of congratulations in order. Tomorrow night, we get the managers of the year, so I won't mind if people take tomorrow night off.

Natural Departure

Last season, around July everyone was screaming about the Yankees' decision to put Carlos Beltran on the block, basically saying 'HE NEEDS TO WIN A WORLD SERIES, HE NEEDS TO SEE OCTOBER', bla bla bla. That was the most intense argument of the 2016 trade deadline, which proves, if anything, how week that deadline was.

Anyway, Beltran got traded, and he didn't get to a World Series. But...he signed with the team that, ironically, last acquired him with the sole purpose of getting to a World Series...and he got to a World Series, and won. So for a guy whose ring-search felt so urgent in 2016, the fact that he got one without a whimper in 2017 was kind of impressive. Which goes back to the sort of unheralded, impressive quality that Beltran seems to have.

Today, Carlos Beltran announced, with the ring on his finger I'm guessing, that the quest was over, and he'd be hanging up his spikes indefinitely, which definitely makes sense. The guy's 40 years old, he had a down season as a DH in Houston, and they literally had a funeral for his fielding glove this year. His best days were behind him and everyone knew it.

Plus, Beltran has had a whirlwind career, with a Rookie of the Year award, some monster seasons with the Mets, Cardinals and Yankees, and some impressive consistency in the heart of his career. In 6 years, when the Cooperstown cases show up, people will be citing his injuries as a way of stopping him from getting in, but I honestly think he has a really nice Hall of Fame case, and I think he's had a very full career, with the perfect ending.

Gonna miss him 'round the leagues, but if there was any correct point for Carlos Beltran to make his exit, now might be the perfect one.

Tuesday, November 7, 2017

Thursday, November 2, 2017

Finality: 2017 Edition

After 50+ years of existence, the Houston Astros have finally won a World Series. How crazy is that? What's even crazier is the fact that they deserved it.

Five years ago, when the Astros were the butt of every joke in the league, I never could have thought a day like this would show up. This is pretty incredible, and well-deserved for everyone on the team. Plus, now Carlos Beltran, Jose Altuve and Justin Verlander have rings to take with them to Cooperstown.

That's the end of our regular MLB coverage for the year. I'm gonna try and keep updating the blog this month with box breaks, card prompts and stuff, but it might get a smidge quieter in a bit. Just know that I'm still gonna be following the game, and preparing for Uncustomed Heroes in December.

Tuesday, October 31, 2017

World Series Update: This Could be it Edition

Tonight, in LA, Game 6 of the World Series begins. If it's anything like the last few, we're probably going to be watching until 6 AM ET.

I can't even begin to describe how insane this series is, be honest, these are the two best teams in baseball. So it's kind of expected that they keep ping-ponging back and forth for all 10+ innings every time. One moment Yasiel Puig's hitting a home run, the next minute Brian McCann's responding with another one. The pitching has been exemplary, the lineups have been ferocious. The only weakness has been the Dodgers' bullpen, and that keeps doing them in every time.

Still, the Astros could finish things out tonight, with Justin Verlander on the mound, and Jose Altuve surging...

But you can never count out the Dodgers. Not with Enrique Hernandez on the bench and Yasiel Puig waiting on deck. Plus, tonight they'll be starting Rich Hill, and he's been fairly awesome at keeping down surging offenses lately...but tonight could be his breaking point.

It could honestly go either way, but...I'm expecting something truly scary to happen tonight in Game 6.