MLB

HOT AUGUST BASEBALL (8/15/07)

I’m back from vacation, and I’m just as dissapointed to see that only one person voted on their favorite movie-athlete of all time (and no Brandon, the cool runnings guys aren’t even on the list, try again) as I am excited to see the MLB standings.

In the AL, the seemingly always-awful M’s are at the top of the Wild Card race, only percentage points ahead of the were-counted-out-in-June Yankees.  Meanwhile, the “doninators” of the AL central, Detroit and Cleveland (in that order, thank you) are a combined 18-32 since July 20, and battling it out head-to-head in a two game series as I type.  After the Tigers won yesterday, they pulled a game ahead of the tribe. 

In the National League, Cubs fans have something to talk about this late in the year for the first time since the year that one guy pulled in a so-called catchable foul ball that spaked a Cubbie collapse in the would-have-been series clinching game of the 2003 NLCS (you know who you are, Steve).  We all know how that story ends, but Cubs fans believe this is their year for redemption, and they might be right. 

Elsewhere in the NL, the Padres, Phillies, Braves, Rockies, and Dodgers have Wild Card hopes, as Milwaukee, Arizona and the Mets hold under-three game leads in their respective divisions.

So, with all that said, the only conclusion I can draw is that this late in the season, it’s still too early to draw conclusions. There are legitimitely 16 teams fighting for 8 playoff spots.  Nobody in baseball is safe right now (except maybe the Red Sox), which should make for one of the most exciting MLB finishes in recent memory. 

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A-ROD: T-MINUS 257 (8/8/07) 

Time to brush the dust off  the keyboard and post something again.  And what better time than the day after one of the greatest records in sports is broken? 

Last night Barry Bonds finally broke Hank Aaron’s all-time home run record of 755 with his 756th career home run, hopefully putting an end to all the Barry Bonds talk.  Well, I’m going to be the first to stop talking about Bonds.  All I’m going to say is this:  A-Rod will own the record within a decade, and Bonds will be forgotten. 

 That’s it.  That is the last time I will mention Barry Bonds’ name.  Okay, I lied, This is.  Bonds.  

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WALK OFF (7/28/07)

While pondering the ever-decreasing possibility that Barry Bonds won’t reach 755 home-runs, it hit me, why does anybody pitch to Bonds?  If I were pitching against the Giants everyday, he would never swing the bat again in his career. 

Seriously, why not intentionally walk Bonds every single time he comes to the plate for the rest of the season?  And if he comes back next year, take the bat out of his hands some more.  It’s not like the Giants are so good that teams can’t afford to put him on base 100 percent of the time.  With about 55-60 games left this season, I bet it would only cost opponents 2-3 games tops. 

How great would it be if Bonds never recorded another Major League at-bat?  His stat-line would be 0-0, 5BB every game for the rest of his career, and he’d finish at 754, and baseball’s most sacred record would be saved.  So to all the NL pitches who read the sportsgarage daily, take the bat out of Bonds hands.  Put him on first.  Save the record.

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 BONDS AWAY (7/26/07)

My optimistic side is still clinging to hope that there’s a chance Barry Bonds will never hit another home run, and never hold the title “Major League Baseball all-time home run king.” However, my realistic side knows that will not happen, and it is only a matter of time before Barry Bonds ties, then breaks Hank Aaron’s all-time home run record of 755.

The good news for Bonds haters? A-Rod. And believe me, I’m an A-rod hater too. But a day shy of his 32nd birthday, the guys is a homer shy of 500, and has already matched last years home run total (35) this year. You just have to respect it from somebody who’s head hasn’t grown from the size of an apple, to the size of a watermelon.

When it’s all said and done, nobody will remember Barry Bonds as a great baseball player. People are going to remember the steroids controversy, and think of Bonds as a cheater. While A-Rod may get a hard time for being a money-hungry player whose personal goals are nearly as important as team goals, his status as a great baseball player will never be in jeopardy. Unless of course his head doubles in size during his mid-30’s.

 

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DON’T TAKE IT PERSONALLY (7/15/07)

Ok, so I’m eating my words a little bit.  Since I proclaimed the M’s doomed to mediocracy, and outside of the playoff picture for the rest of the season, they’ve shut me up with a 6-2 record, and are still a game and a half back of the AL wild card. 

But don’t get excited, I’m not saying I was wrong, I’m just saying I haven’t been right yet, which makes me wonder, are the Mariner’s for real this year?   Is there a chance they sneak into the wild card, or even beat out the Angles for the AL West?  Or even be in the playoff talk the last week of September?  I still say no.  It’s hard to expect anything more than a meltdown from them. 

What do you think, are they in the playoffs this year? If so, do they win the division, or get the wild card? 

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THANKS A LOT, SKIPPER (7/4/07)

Just when Mariners fans were starting to get excited about baseball, something like this happens.

After winning eight straight games, and pulling to within a game and a half of Detroit in the AL wild card race, Seattle manager Mike Hargrove decided it was time to retire.  He claims he had lost the passion that he had always demanded from himself and his players. 

Former bench coach John McLaren has since taken over as manager, and is still looking for his first win.  His 0-2 record as skipper might not be as scary for Seattle fans as the fact that those two losses came to the Kansas City Royals.  This is huge sign the Mariners have forgotten how to win.

This might not be as big of a meltdown as the Mariners 119 win season in 2001 that resulted in an early playoff exit at the hands of the Yankee’s, but if the M’s finish the season around .500 and out of the playoff hunt by the first week in September, which they will, it will be known in the Pacific Northwest as the season that should have been, and Seattle fans have nobody but Mike Hargrove to blame.   


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