Monday, August 31, 2015
You have to feel bad for the Dodgers. They've been no-hit by the Astros and the Cubs in successive weeks. They're lucky that this is a season where both of those teams are good, so it isn't as embarrassing.
It's a shame that a team this high up in the rankings can be rendered hitless twice in a row. People like Yasiel Puig, Adrian Gonzalez, Chase Utley and Andre Ethier play for this team. Those guys can definitely hit. Only problem is none of them were for two nights this season.
And that's sadly the problem with this team. They can have enough young players to be trendy, enough pitching to be fearsome, and enough strong hitting guys to be in first, but if there's a moment where nobody is on, they suffer. And even though the Dodgers are in first right now, the Giants, who ARE hitting, are coming in fast.
This is kind of sad, because this is a fun Dodgers team, and when they're good, they're amazing. But if they have more of the same stuff they've been dealing with recently, they could be screwed. Besides, I'm really not in the mood for another Giants Championship. At least not yet.
So, hopefully the Dodgers can rebound and continue to play like, well, the Dodgers.
Coming Tonight- The Red Sox may be down for the count, but at least they've gotten their star attraction to start hitting again.
Not even a week after Mike Fiers shut down the Dodgers, Jake Arrieta took a bigger stage, and a bigger team, to take them down at a bigger moment. Now the Cubs look even scarier than they did before, all because they have a team where the #2 starter can pitch a no-hitter and still have it be his 2nd-biggest accomplishment.
Congrats Cubs, and Jake Arrieta. And Dodgers fans, you have my condolences. (Again.)
Sunday, August 30, 2015
I feel bad for the Athletics. Every once and a while, like in 2012 or 2013, the Moneyball strategy works, but when it doesn't, they purge big time and wind up starting from anew. They've had so many purges that it's become almost routine.
This season we've seen people like Stephen Vogt, Marcus Semien, Mark Canha and Max Muncy. Other than Semien, who was starting in Chicago last year, you haven't really heard of these guys before. They're brand new, young, spiffy, and Billy Beane is intent on bridging the team around them so that if this fails again, he can just throw new ones in there.
Billy Burns is the one guy, other than Vogt, who's been making second-half progress, making some definite strides in some unlikely categories, like defense, stolen bases, and triples. This is the kind of fringe player that Oakland needs. Billy Burns isn't gonna set the American League afire with his home run ability. He's gonna be a fun little hits guy. Unfortunately, fun little hits guys aren't really going to get the A's anywhere. And the guys they're paying to hit...aren't hitting.
Hopefully Billy Burns will eventually become a bright spot in this lineup, because there are too many things wrong with it right now.
(EXTRA- WOULD YOU LIKE TO SEE FOOTBALL CUSTOMS ON THIS BLOG THIS SEASON? There is a poll on the sidebar that will decide the fate of football customs. Vote now and you'll make a decision for me. How fun!)
Coming Tomorrow- A strong, tatted pitcher for a strong-looking NL East team.
I'd like to use this incredibly cool and blue custom of a fairly irrelevant baseball player to say that I, Jordan of Mint Condition, am officially back at Purchase College for the year.
I'm officially moved in, unpacked, and ready for a couple months away from home, where I can continue to do things that can work towards getting up off my ass for a living.
Only thing about this year is I'm gonna be up for an internship on campus, so if I get it, my free time might be a tad limited. I can definitely try pre-programming posts out the wazoo, like I have been doing lately, so that it won't really matter.
Bottom line is I'm back at college, and will continue making awesome customs.
Coming Tonight: The speedy new outfield prospect for a struggling A's team.
Saturday, August 29, 2015
(The Following Preview has been deemed appropriate for All Baseball Audiences by the Commissioner of Major League Baseball)
(Dark, mysterious music plays)
Underneath the shadows on the South Side of Chicago, a threat looms in the distance.
It may look meek...it may look harmless...and it may not get a ton of attendance...but here lies the ground roots for the most powerful threat in the country.
This was a team that didn't get any respect. A team that spent too many years being ridiculed for what they didn't have. A team...that had been watching...waiting...formulating the perfect comeback...retooling the roster...patiently awaiting the right time. A time which is coming very soon.
Oh, they could be beat now. They could be ripped apart. Why? To make those other teams think they had a chance.
From the people who brought you the 2005 White Sox, and from the same people who won't stop talking about the 2005 White Sox, even if it's ten years later...comes the most shocking thing your mind will ever fathom.
Starring Jose Abreu! Alexei Ramirez! Chris Sale! Avisail Garcia! Robin Ventura! Jose Quintana! And many, many more.
It's growing stronger by the second! It's taking over everything you love! And it's closer than you might think!
SEE...THE CONTENDING CHICAGO WHITE SOX!!!
Coming Next Summer...or the Summer after that...or a summer season that occurs sometime soon after that one...To a Ballpark Near You!
I don't know how the Mets did it, but they pulled away from the Nationals and sped ahead of the competition in the NL East, using a July-August boost of power on their side. And Jeurys Familia has been absolutely stellar closing games, making the fans forget about Jenrry Mejia. So it's gotta be nice to be Familia right now, because he's been untouchable in the ninth, and he's got the support of the fans.
Heck, this team has got to be doing something for the fan base, who've been pretty nonchalant since around 2007, and they've been waiting for a good squad. I feel bad for them, because they've had a lot of close calls, and a lot of crappy teams, and now, when that team is absolutely killing it, they've got to feel good. I was at CitiField for a game this year, and I saw what the fans were saying, and the optimism mixed in with the cynicism. People knew that there was something going on, that people were getting hot at the right time. People were getting behind the pitching staff.
Even better, David Wright's back, and that's gotta be great for the fan morale. He's the hero, he's the captain, and the fact that he gets back and hits a home run in his first at bat has gotta be amazing. I know those fans have been through a lot, and the fact that Wright and everybody is back to hitting has gotta be great on them.
I just hope the Mets' winning train keeps going a bit longer, because they're a pretty fun team to root for.
Coming Tonight: The shortstop for a struggling AL central team.
I may talk a lot about how I want the Blue Jays to just stop it with all of these 'we're really good at baseball' things, but I can still appreciate David Price. Why? Because somehow he's managed to have an even better 2nd half than his first, and his first half was pretty nice.
He's had a number of very nice, strikeout heavy starts for Toronto, and is the ace that the Jays definitely needed this year. Like, he even kills the Yankees and still has my respect. Why? Because he's David Price. He's a tough, tough pitcher. He's been one a few postseason teams before, but none that have gotten farther than one or two rungs in (except the 2008 Rays). I'm not saying that the Blue Jays' postseason run will be that deep, but it has the potential to be, if they stay this hot.
No matter what happens to the Blue Jays, I do feel like David Price has been worthy of his amazing season.
Coming Today- The closer for a still-red-hot Mets team.