P.K's Take: Sports, Music, TV and More

I am a sports and music fanatic from Farmington, CT, currently attending Saint Joseph's University in Connecticut. I am mainly interested in College Basketball, CIAC High School Basketball, and Major League Baseball, though I follow just about all sports closely.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Top Five AL Cy Young Candidates

I'm back, and still previewing the awards candidates for this year's MLB Season. The next two I will be doing are the Cy Young Awards, which are awarded to the best pitcher in each league. This year has been so dominated by good pitching that this award is even more coveted than usual. Last year Zack Grienke of the Royals won the award, but he has no chance this year as he sports a losing record with a relatively high ERA. Here are the candidates.

#5 Trevor Cahill SP Oakland Athletics
When anybody think of the best young pitcher in baseball right now, the name Stephen Strasburg pops into just about everyone's head. But 22 year old Trevor Cahill, who is just two months older than Strasburg, may be the most underrated young star in the game. Cahill had a solid first half, earning his first career all-star bid, and has been absolutely dominant since then. He currently comes in at 12-4 with a 2.56 ERA and an incredible WHIP of .98, which is 2nd in the AL. One of Oakland GM Billy Beane's few early draft picks straight out of high school, Cahill will have many opportunities throughout his career to pick up a Cy Young Award, even if it doesn't quite happen this year.

#4 David Price SP Tampa Bay Rays
Keeping up with the youngster theme on the list, 24 year old David Price has emerged as one of the best pitchers in baseball this year. Most people expected him to be a front-end starter at some point when he was drafted #1 overall in 2007 out of Vanderbilt, but little expected it to come this quick. Price showed his dominance in the 2008 ALCS vs. the Red Sox as a rookie, but struggled to stay consistent as a rookie last year. This year, he was the starter in the All-Star game for the AL, and currently sports a league leading 15 wins, just 5 losses and a low 2.84 ERA.

#3 Cliff Lee SP Texas Rangers/Seattle Mariners
Typically when someone spends the first few weeks of the season on the DL, and then changes teams in early July they are not up for postseason awards consideration, but then again most people are not as dominant as Cliff Lee. Lee started the season with Seattle, but after starting the year injured and the team starting extremely slow, he was dealt to Texas for their playoff run. Lee at the moment leads the league in ERA (2.44), WHIP (.916) and Complete Games (7), while showing a 10-5 record between the two clubs. The 2008 AL Cy Young winner should be right back in contention again this year.

#2 C.C. Sabathia SP New York Yankees
When you think about the ultimate workhorse for a rotation, C.C. Sabathia's name always come to mind. The consistency and endurance that Sabathia has shown throughout his career, as well as his excellent arsenal of pitches and his command, have been what have made him among the greats in the league. This year, the 2007 Cy Young Award winner has just been rolling along to a 14-5 season with a 3.14 ERA. He is also the rotation ace for the best team in baseball. Sabathia's best part of the season is ahead of him, which makes him a prime candidate to pick up his 2nd award.

#1 Clay Buchholz SP Boston Red Sox
I think we all knew Buchholz had this type of season in him after he threw a no-hitter in his 2nd career start in 2007, but many Sox fans (myself included) did begin to worry when he was absolutely horrid in 2008. Now, I can only imagine where the Sox would be if 2008 Buchholz was still in uniform. For a guy who was fighting for a rotation spot in spring training, Clay has emerged as arguably the ace on one of the strongest and most experienced pitching staffs in baseball. Clay currently stands at 13-5 (should be 14-5...damn Papelbon), with a sub 2.5 ERA. He has matured as a pitcher more than anyone could ever imagine and his confidence is now through the roof. If Buchholz can lead the beaten up Red Sox into the playoffs, he could very well add a Cy-Young award to his cabinet.

Honorable Mention
Jered Weaver, LAA
Carl Pavano, MIN
Jon Lester, BOS
C.J. Wilson, TEX
John Danks, CHW
Mariano Rivera, NYY
Andy Pettitte, NYY (injury)
Jeff Niemann, TBR (injury)
Rafael Soriano, TBR
Daniel Bard, BOS

EDIT: I took Buchholz's start tonight into consideration, but not Lee's. Buchholz is now the AL leader in ERA, while Lee struggled a bit, and his dropped.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Top Five NL MVP Candidates

Here we go with the NL MVP Candidates as Robinson Cano's recent struggles have opened up the AL MVP race. Albert Pujols won the award last year, and the most dominant player in baseball has a very strong chance to repeat this year.

#5 Albert Pujols 1B St. Louis Cardinals        
Albert may very well be the Most Valuable Player in the National League once again this season, but I'll give some other guys a chance for now, especially since Pujols hasn't been quite as good as last year. The average is down from .327 to .302, while he isn't even a lock to hit 40 HR's this year, as compared to his 47 HR year last year. That being said, he is tied for 2nd in the NL in Home Runs, and is still probably the most feared hitter in the league. Also, he is a Gold Glove caliber fielder at First Base. Albert has to be in consideration to three-peat in this prestigious award.

#4 Aubrey Huff 1B San Francisco Giants
Possibly the most surprising contender for this award is Aubrey Huff, who is quite possibly the best bargain free agent signing in baseball, just making three million dollars this year. With Pablo Sandoval suffering a bit of a sophomore slump, Aubrey has been a major force on a playoff contending team. Right now he is hitting .310/.399/.551 with 20 HRs and the ability to play multiple positions for his team. It's a longshot, but if Huff keeps up this incredible production and leads his team to the playoffs, he could be a serious contender for the honor despite not even making the all-star game.

#3 David Wright 3B New York Mets
The resurrection of David Wright should have been enough to propel the Mets into play-off contention, but the fact that they just can't make that leap may hurt Wright's chances at this award. Wright is hitting at .299/.372/.509, with 17 HRs and 77 RBIs in a tough hitters ballpark. He is the franchise player for this Mets franchise, and has been since he came up in 2005 as a 22 year old rookie. David, along with Evan Longoria, is the face of the third base position in the MLB, where he also plays superb defense. It'll be tough for him to get much serious consideration unless the Mets make a late run, but you never know

#2 Adrian Gonzalez 1B San Diego Padres
 It truly has been a Cinderella season for Jed Hoyer's San Diego Padres (see back in April when they started the season #30 in my power rankings), and I truly don't believe they would have close to enough offense to contend if it weren't for Gonzalez. Adrian is hitting in at .292/.388/.509 in a very tough hitters ballpark, and has anchored an offense that has surprised people and done just enough to support their brilliant pitching staff. Gonzalez has hit 21 HRs in a true pitchers park, and without him the Padres lineup would really struggle.

#1 Joey Votto 1B Cincinnati Reds
 Aside from the Padres, the other surprise team in the National League has been without a doubt the Cincinnati Reds, who have been neck-and-neck all year with St. Louis in the NL Central. The main reason for this has been famous all-star snub Joey Votto, who is making a case for the National League Triple Crown. Votto is hitting .322/.421/.600, leading the NL in all categories, while also leading the league with 26 HRs, If the Reds can find a way to squeak into the playoffs, Votto is a shoe-in for the award, but even if they don't Votto's numbers don't lie.

Honorable Mention
Josh Johnson SP Florida Marlins
Ubaldo Jimenez SP Colorado Rockies
Jayson Werth OF Philadelphia Phillies
Carlos Gonzalez OF Colorado Rockies
Matt Holliday OF St. Louis Cardinals
Ryan Zimmerman 3B Washington Nationals
Adam Dunn 1B Washington Nationals
Brian McCann C Atlanta Braves
Scott Rolen 3B Cincinnati Reds
Martin Prado 2B Atlanta Braves                                                                                             

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

The Red Sox Ranking

I was sitting in bed one night and wondered...what would it look like if every player who had played for the Red Sox this year was ranked in one list on how well they've performed. So I got my computer out and made a list using baseball-reference.com as a guide. All 45 players who have played in a game (Alan Embree doesn't count) get on the list, which is now constantly being updated. Here it is.

45. Boof Bonser (what an honor, the worst Red Sox player of the year. That's what 4 ER in 2 IP will get you.)
44. Fernando Cabrera
43. Gustavo Molina (definately not a real Molina)
42. Ryan Shealy
41. Niuman Romero (look it up, he did play for them this year)
40. Angel Sanchez (now starts for the Houston Astros)
39. Joe Nelson
38. Josh Reddick
37. Dusty Brown
36. Scott Schoeneweis (remember him???)
35. Jonathan Van Every (or him????)
34. Jeremy Hermida
33. Kevin Cash
32. Robert Manuel
31. Hideki Okajima
30. Michael Bowden (anticipating a steep increase for him come September)
29. Ramon Ramirez (now a San Francisco Giant...thank god)
28. Jacoby Ellsbury (anticipating a steep increase from him too. he'll be back tomorrow)
27. Felix Doubront
26. Eric Patterson
25. Manny Delcarmen
24. Mike Cameron
23. Mike Lowell (jumped about 6 spots after tonight)
22. Dustin Richardson
21. Jason Varitek
20. John Lackey
19. Daisuke Matsuzaka (the two underachieving pitchers get to go back-to-back)
18. Jed Lowrie (seems like a different player so far this year)
17. Josh Beckett (moved up a bunch tonight)
16. Scott Atchison (unheralded hero of the 2010 bullpen)
15. Daniel Nava
14. Darnell McDonald
13. Jonathan Papelbon
12. Ryan Kalish (maybe a bit high...but the kid's a stud and should help us down the stretch)
11. JD Drew
10. Bill Hall (he's been so valuable this year...really, no joke. Best offseason acquisition if it weren't for Beltre or maybe Scutaro)
9. David Ortiz
8. Marco Scutaro (most solid shortstop since Nomah)
7. Victor Martinez (most damaging of all the injuries)
6. Dustin Pedroia (if it weren't for Hall and Lowrie, would have been right there with Victor)
5. Daniel Bard (plain filthy)
4. Kevin Youkilis
3. Adrian Beltre (don't touch his head, Mr. Martinez)
2. Jon Lester
1. Clay Buchholz

Yes, the two rocks of the rotation come in at #1 and #2. We built this team around the rotation and they are the two who have consistently delivered. They should be back and forth the whole rest of the year, hopefully ending in a Cy Young Award for one.

Top Five AL MVP Candidates

I will be starting a series on the top five candidates of each of the major awards in baseball.  

First will be the American League MVP Award, which was won by Joe Mauer last year. Mauer is in contention again this year, but will need to get real hot, and hope his team makes the playoffs, in order to attempt a repeat. Here we go:

#5 Josh Hamilton OF Texas Rangers
After his magical 2008 season with Texas, which included his unbelievable performance in that year's Home Run Derby, I sensed a possible drop-off in Hamilton's performance throughout the rest of his career, as it seemed like pitchers were starting to figure him out by the end of 2008. After an injury ridden 2009 made my prediction seem like a good one, Josh is back as one of the most scary hitters in the Major Leagues. He leads all of major league baseball with a .362 average, and has contributed 23 HR's as well. Josh's contribution has largely helped his team be one of the best in the AL this year.

#4 Adrian Beltre 3B Boston Red Sox
It's obvious Adrian couldn't stand hitting in Seattle, because everybody who knew baseball knew he was a better hitter than he showed in his tenure here. As a Sox fan, I was expecting Beltre to be a major contributor, but I don't think anyone could have predicted this. Adrian is hitting .336 with 19 HRs, and has been the steady piece for a Boston offense that has been injured all year. Also, the guy, despite his relatively high error numbers, is no less than a magician at third base, where he displays an incredible amount of range.

#3 Evan Longoria 3B Tampa Bay Rays
While Evan's numbers may not necessarily stack up with the other member's of this list, his value for his team is right with the best of them.  Longoria is only hitting .292 with just 15 HRs, but he is the best position player on the best team in the American League. He is a strong candidate for the Gold Glove at third base, while he also strikes fear in every American League pitcher, and is a leader in the clubhouse. Longoria has pretty much been the one player who turned around this franchise, and he deserves to be honored for that. Oh yeah, and Longoria only made 950,000 dollars this year.

#2 Miguel Cabrera 1B Detroit Tigers
Miguel Cabrera battled back from alcoholism to become pretty much undoubtedly the most dominating hitter in the American League this season. He is 2nd in baseball with a .351 average, and is also in the top two in the league in both the other triple crown categories. The only things holding Miguel back from his first of possibly many MVP awards is his average defense, and average team. If he can lead the Tigers into the playoffs somehow then the award is definitely his, but for now it will go to...

#1 Robinson Cano 2B New York Yankees
 In a year in which the overpayed, aging veterans that were supposed to be on this list have struggled (Alex Rodriguez, Derek Jeter, Mark Teixiera), their young Dominican second baseman has been the one to lead them back to another fantastic season. Cano has supplied all five tools from the second base position, one that only recently has seen five-tool players with power play there, and has consistently been a force in the Yankees line-up. Robinson's youthful energy was a big part of the changing of personality in the Yankee clubhouse, and a reason why they have a good chance of repeating in 2010.

Honorable Mention: 
Justin Morneau 1B Minnesota Twins (injury)
Kevin Youkilis 1B Boston Red Sox (injury)
Dustin Pedroia 2B Boston Red Sox (injury)
Nick Swisher OF New York Yankees
Carl Crawford OF Tampa Bay Rays
Joe Mauer C Minnesota Twins
Jose Bautista 3B Toronto Blue Jays
Paul Konerko 1B Chicago White Sox
Michael Young 3B Texas Rangers
Alexei Ramirez SS Chicago White Sox


Monday, May 3, 2010

MLB Power Rankings: 5/3/2010

The Yankees and Rays keep rolling, while the Twins fall off a bit due to the injury of the franchise, Joe Mauer. Also, the New York Mets have emerged as a possible contender in the NL East, as their chemistry has never seemed better. Here are the latest power rankings:

1. Tampa Bay Rays (18-7)- I hate to say it but they're the best team in baseball right now. Their pitching staff looks real solid, and Evan Longoria is emerging as a possibly MVP candidate. LW: 2

2. St. Louis Cardinals (17-8)- Jamie Garcia looks to have outdone the production they lost from Joel Piniero. If he keeps pitching like an ace, St. Louis is scary. LW: 4

3. New York Yankees (16-8)- Robinson Cano is on a tear, and is emerging as an MVP candidate for this team. Once Mark Teixiera heats up the offense should get a major boost. LW: 3

4. Minnesota Twins (16-9)- They're still a good team without Mauer, but need him healthy in order to be a playoff quality team. With Mauer and Morneau healthy, they're a World Series contender. LW: 1

5. Philadelphia Phillies (14-10)- Joe Blanton will be back soon, and that should definately help, but their rotation still needs to improve to hold off the streaking Mets. LW: 5

6. Detroit Tigers (16-10)- Who would've known Austin Jackson would actually be better than Curtis Granderson. Dave Dombrowski is making Brian Cashman look like a fool. LW: 12

7. San Francisco Giants (14-10)- Their pitching is definately among the best in baseball, but we knew that coming into the season. Someone's going to need to step up offensively. LW: 7

8. New York Mets (14-11)- The Mets haven't looked this good in years, with everything seeming to be clicking after that 20-inning win in St. Louis. Pelfrey and Santana getting rocked in back-to-back games may be a concern though. LW: 14

9. Texas Rangers (13-12)- The Rangers are starting to come around after a slow start. C.J. Wilson's made a very smooth transition from the bullpen to rotation. LW: 18

10. San Diego Padres (16-9)- They're seven games above .500. I can't really ignore that anymore. LW: 13

11. Florida Marlins (13-12)- Hanley Ramirez's bat is starting to wake up, and that will hopefully be the spark the Fish need to break from the middle of the pack. LW: 9

12. Colorado Rockies (12-13)- The potential emergence of youngster Jhoulys Chacin, should help bolster an injury-ridden starting rotation. LW: 6

13. Atlanta Braves (11-14)- They look like their coming back after that dreadful seven game losing streak, with a three game sweep of the Astros. They should look to continue this momentum in Washington. LW: 16

14. Boston Red Sox (11-14)- It's the Red Sox. There's no way this team is so bad that they would get swept by the Orioles, is there? Think again. LW: 11

15. Chicago Cubs (13-13)- The Cubs look pretty good right now, but I don't know if Marlon Byrd and Kosuke Fukodome can keep up their success at the plate for much longer. LW: 19

16. Los Angeles Angels (12-14)- This definitely isn't the same team that was considered the best in baseball for most of last year. We'll see what they can do in Boston early this week. LW: 10

17. Oakland Athletics (13-13)- Brett Anderson going down really hurts this rotation, especially as Ben Sheets continues to struggle. LW: 8

18. Seattle Mariners (11-14)- The AL West is so completely wide open right now, that anybody has a chance to win. Seattle was my early favorite, but they are struggling right now. LW: 15

19. Toronto Blue Jays (13-13)- Vernon Wells has been dominant offensively so far, but even if he keeps it up, this team will have little chance to make the playoffs in their division. LW: 17

20. Washington Nationals (13-12)- Stephen Strasburg recently got called up to AAA Syracuse and looks to be right around the corner. Maybe, just maybe this team is legit. LW: 22

21. Los Angeles Dodgers (11-14)- Andre Ethier is flat out raking, but isn't getting much help. The rotation is in complete shambles right now for Joe Torre. LW: 20

22. Arizona Diamondbacks (11-14)- This team just seems to strike out way too much to contend in the NL West. Justin Upton and Mark Reynolds need to hit for a higher average. LW: 21

23. Cincinnati Reds (12-13)- The Reds were looking real good going into a three game series in St. Louis, where they got beat two out of three. I still don't really see them contending. LW: 27

24. Milwaukee Brewers (10-15)- They recently got swept by the struggling Los Angeles Dodgers. It's really looking bad in Milwaukee right now. LW: 25

25. Cleveland Indians (10-14)- Austin Kearns has emerged as a bigtime hitter for this team, but let's be honest. It is Austin Kearns, and it is the Cleveland Indians. LW: 23

26. Chicago White Sox (10-15)- I promise this writeup will not be about Ozzie Guillen. Mark Buehrle does not look like a guy that has two career no-hitters. LW: 26

27. Kansas City Royals (10-15)- They've kind of hung in there with Tampa Bay, but in all honesty the Royals once again just aren't very good. LW: 28

28. Houston Astros (8-16)- Lance Berkman is back, but has not been very impressive at the plate. Carlos Lee, though, has been worse, hitting just .191 so far this year. LW: 24

29. Pittsburgh Pirates (10-15)- Jeff Karstens is not the answer to that miserable rotation. End of story. LW: 29

30. Baltimore Orioles (7-18)- They did sweep the Red Sox, but I'm putting that 100% on the Red Sox playing terrible baseball, rather than the Orioles actually playing good.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Rewriting the Draft: Major League Baseball 1998
I have decided to do a series that will "re-write" different draft classes from certain major league sports. Baseball, to me, is the most interesting because it is the most difficult to pick. I will be rearranging the picks of the 1st round (including the compensation picks) of the somewhat unspectacular 1998 draft. I will only be looking at those players chosen in the 1st round, although there are definately some more deserving picks later in the draft. The players who did not sign, will be placed at the end of the draft.

1. Philadelphia Phillies
Who They Picked: 1B Pat Burrell- Miami (FL)
Who They Should Have Picked: SP C.C Sabathia- Vallejo High School (CA)
Why: Burrell was far from being a bad pick, or a draft "bust" with the #1 overall. He was a superstar for Miami in College and was the obvious pick. C.C., on the other hand, was a highly touted high school pitcher, who had already signed to play Tight End at Hawaii. That being said, while Burrell has turned in a solid career for the Phillies and Rays, Sabathia has developed in to the most dominant (and expensive) pitchers in baseball.

2. Oakland Athletics
Who They Picked: SP Mark Mulder- Michigan State
Who They Should Have Picked: SP Mark Mulder- Michigan State
Why: Mulder's career was short, during his prime with the Oakland Athletics he was a dominant part of their "Big 3". Mark finished 2nd in the 2001 Cy Young after winning 21 games, and made it to two all-star games in his injury-shortened career.

3. Chicago Cubs
Who They Picked:  CF Corey Patterson- Harrison HS (GA)
Who They Should Have Picked: 1B Carlos Peña- Northeastern
Why: Patterson was an incredibly talented centerfielder, who, despite underachieving throughout his career, was still a reliable player at times for the Cubs and Orioles. Peña, though, has developed into one of baseball's premier sluggers, after struggling to live up to his bigtime prospect status early in his career.

4. Kansas City Royals
Who They Picked: SP Jeff Austin- Stanford
Who They Should Have Picked: RF J.D Drew- Florida State
Why: Drew's character and passion for the game have been questioned ever since he failed to come to terms with the Phillies after the 1997 draft. But despite that, he has turned in quite a solid career while managing to get both the cities of Boston and Philadelphia to despise him. Jeff Austin was a bust, playing just parts of three seasons in the big leagues, with little success.

5. St. Louis Cardinals
Who They Picked: RF J.D. Drew- Florida State
Who They Should Have Picked: CF Aaron Rowand- Cal State Fullerton
Why: Aaron Rowand has been the ultimate dirt-dog for all three teams he's played for so far in his career. Despite running into injury problems because of his hard play, Rowand has had a quality career, especially during his years with the White Sox and Phillies.

6. Minnesota Twins
Who They Picked: SP Ryan Mills- Arizona State
Who They Should Have Picked: LF Pat Burrell- Miami (FL)
Why: First player picked that did not ever play in the majors, Mills can be described as a "bust". As mentioned before, Burrell has turned in a solid, but unspectacular career.

7. Cincinnati Reds
Who They Picked: OF Austin Kearns- Lafayette HS (KY)
Who They Should Have Picked: RP Brad Lidge- Notre Dame
Why: Kearns was a big-time high school prospect for the Reds, that made his way to a few solid big league season, but never fully lived up to his complete potential. Lidge on the other hand, has been the most inconsistent reliever in baseball, but has been an all-star and helped win a World Series for the Phillies.

8. Toronto Blue Jays
Who They Picked: SS Felipe Lopez- Lake Brantley HS (FL)
Who They Should Have Picked: SS Felipe Lopez- Lake Brantley HS (FL)
Why: Felipe has been a very reliable, and underappreciated infielder in the majors for the last decade or so. He had an all-star appearance in 2005, and has over 1,000 career hits. He is by no means a superstar, but definately a quality big leaguer.

9. San Diego Padres
Who They Picked: 3B Sean Burroughs- Woodrow Wilson HS (CA)
Who They Should Have Picked: OF Austin Kearns- Lafayette HS (KY)
Why: Burroughs, similar to Kearns, was a big high school position player who looked to be a future star. While neither really panned out, Kearns hit 107 HR's to Burrough's 11.

10. Texas Rangers
Who They Picked: 1B Carlos Peña- Northeastern
Who They Should Have Picked: SP Jeff Weaver- Fresno State
Why: Jeff Weaver, though the weaker of two brothers, has been in and out of major league rotations since being called up in 1999. He should win his 100th game this year, and while he's been shaky at times, he has had a long, solid career.

11. Montreal Expos
Who They Picked: SS Josh McKinley- Malvern Prep (PA)
Who They Should Have Picked: CF Corey Patterson- Harrison HS (GA)
Why: McKinley was the 2nd player drafted who never reached the big show. Patterson, as mentioned before, turned in a few solid seasons with the Cubs despite never reaching his true potential.

12. Boston Red Sox
Who They Picked: SS Adam Everett- South Carolina
Who They Should Have Picked: RP Matt Thornton- Grand Valley State (MI)
Why: Thornton didn't get the call to the big leagues until he was 27 years old with Seattle, but has developed into a very solid reliever for the White Sox.

13. Milwaukee Brewers
Who They Picked: SP J.M. Gold- Toms River North HS (NJ)
Who They Should Have Picked: SS Adam Everett- South Carolina
Why: J.M. Gold was a promising young pitcher who fell victim to arm injuries, therefore losing all of his stuff and struggling in his minor league career. Everett has been a big league shortstop with three teams, and while unspectacular offensively, he has played solid enough baseball to stay at the big leagues.

14. Detroit Tigers
Who They Picked: SP Jeff Weaver- Fresno State
Who They Should Have Picked SP Kip Wells- Baylor
Why: Wells had a decent career bumping between the rotation and bullpen of a number of different teams. His best year probably came in 2003 with Pittsburgh, when he finished 10-9 with a 3.28 ERA.

15. Pittsburgh Pirates
Who They Picked: 1B Clint Johnston- Vanderbilt
Who They Should Have Picked: LF/1B Brad Wilkerson- Florida
Why: The Pirates never seem to make very good decisions on draft days, and Johnston was one of those mistakes. Wilkerson had some good years as a power hitter for the Montreal Expos in the early 21st century years.

16. Chicago White Sox
Who They Picked: SP Kip Wells- Baylor
Who They Should Have Picked: CF Jason Tyner- Texas A&M
Why: Tyner made things happen throughout his career despite displaying absolutely no power. He only had one career home run in 1358 at-bats, but was a key member of the speedy "piranhas" on the Twins in 2006-2007.

17. Houston Astros
Who They Picked: RP Brad Lidge- Notre Dame
Who They Should Have Picked: 3B Sean Burroughs- Woodrow Wilson HS (CA)
Why: Burroughs was a bust for the Padres because of his lack of power, but put up a solid average during his two years as the starter.

18. Anaheim Angels
Who They Picked: SP Seth Etherton- Southern California
Who They Should Have Picked: SP Seth Etherton- Southern California
Why: Etherton was never very good, but made starts for four different teams in four different years from 2000-2006.

19. San Francisco Giants
Who They Picked: OF Tony Torcato- Woodland HS (CA)
Who They Should Have Picked: RP Nate Bump- Penn State University
Why: Well, Bump would still be picked by the Giants later in the 1st round, but his three average seasons as a major league reliever bump him up to their first pick.

20. Cleveland Indians
Who They Picked: SP C.C. Sabathia- Vallejo HS (CA)
Who They Should Have Picked: SP Nate Cornejo- Wellington HS (KS)
Why: I think Cleveland is happy about how their 1998 draft went. Sabathia looks a bit better than Cornejo right now.

21. New York Mets
Who They Picked: OF Jason Tyner- Texas A&M
Who They Should Have Picked: OF Bubba Crosby- Rice
Why: Crosby was a solid bench player for the Yankees for a few years, but didn't do much afterwards.

22. Seattle Marines
Who They Picked: RP Matt Thornton- Grand Valley State (MI)
Who They Should Have Picked: OF Choo Freeman- Dallas Christian School (TX)
Why: Not only does Raphael Freeman have an awesome nickname, he also played three seasons as a speedster off the bench for Colorado.

23. Los Angeles Dodgers
Who They Picked: OF Bubba Crosby- Rice
Who They Should Have Picked: OF Eric Valent- UCLA
Why: Valent himself admitted that his college success was in large part due to the aluminum bats used, but still managed to become a solid pinch hitter for the Phillies and Mets.

24. New York Yankees
Who They Picked: OF Andy Brown- Richmond HS (IN)
Who They Should Have Picked: SP Chris George- Klein HS (TX)
Why: Andy Brown was a high school prospect that bombed for the Yankees, hitting .228 in 8 minor league seasons. George made it to the major leagues, but struggled as a member of the Royals rotation, and hasn't been back to the big show since.

25. San Francisco Giants
Who They Picked: RP Nate Bump- Penn State
Who They Should Have Picked: RP Matt Roney- Edmond North HS (OK)
Why: Roney made it to the major leagues on a few different occations, but never did enough to cement his spot there, and spent most of his time dominating in AAA.

26. Baltimore Orioles
Who They Picked: 1B/OF Rick Elder- Sprayberry HS (GA)
Who They Should Have Picked: SP Jeff Austin- Stanford
Why: Elder bombed as a prospect for the Orioles, never making it past A+, but Austin at least hit the big leagues.

27. Florida Marlins
Who They Picked: OF Chip Ambres- West Brook HS (TX)-----DID NOT SIGN
Who They Should Have Picked: OF Tony Torcato- Woodland HS (CA)
Why: Torcato was the last available player who made it to the major leagues. He spent parts of four seasons on the Giants bench.

28. Colorado Rockies
Who They Picked: RP Matt Roney- Edmond North HS (OK)
Who They Should Have Picked: SP Mike Nannini- Green Valley HS (NV)
Why: Nannini had a long career in the minor leagues with a number of organizations, but never cracked the majors.

29. San Francisco Giants
Who They Picked: OF Arturo McDowell- Forest Hill Community HS (CA)
Who They Should Have Picked: SP Jeff Urban- Ball State
Why: The 6'8" Urban was a top prospect for the Giants, but never got the call to the big leagues after two years in AAA.

30. Kansas City Royals
Who They Picked: P Matt Burch- Virginia Commonwealth
Who They Should Have Picked: SP Ryan Mills- Arizona State
Why: Mills, the #6 overall pick, was the last available to even play at the AAA level.


31. Kansas City Royals
Who They Picked: SP Chris George- Klein HS (TX)
Who They Should Have Picked: SP/1B Clint Johnson- Vanderbilt

32. St. Louis Cardinals
Who They Picked: P Ben Diggins- Bradshaw Mountain HS (AZ)- DID NOT SIGN
Who They Should Have Picked: SS Josh McKinley- Malvern Prep (PA)

33. Montreal Expos
Who They Picked: 1B/OF Brad Wilkerson- Florida
Who They Should Have Picked: SP Matt Burch- Virginia Commonwealth

34. Detroit Tigers
Who They Picked: SP Nate Cornejo- Wellington HS (KS)
Who They Should Have Picked: OF Mamon Tucker- Stephen F. Austin HS (TX)

35. Chicago White Sox
Who They Picked: CF Aaron Rowand- Cal State Fullerton
Who They Should Have Picked: RP Chris Jones- Mecklenberg HS (NC)

36. Colorado Rockies
Who They Picked: CF Choo Freeman- Dallas Christian School (TX)
Who They Should Have Picked: OF Andy Brown- Richmond HS (IN)

37. Houston Astros
Who They Picked: SP Mike Nannini- Green Valley HS (NV)
Who They Should Have Picked: C Jeff Winchester- Archbiship Rummell HS (LA)

38. San Francisco Giants
Who They Picked: RP Chris Jones- Mecklenberg HS (NC)
Who They Should Have Picked: SP J.M. Gold- Toms River North HS (NJ)

39. Baltimore Orioles
Who They Picked: OF Mamon Tucker- Stephen F. Austin HS (TX)

Who They Should Have Picked: 1B/OF Rick Elder- Spraysberry HS (GA)

40. Colorado Rockies
Who They Picked: C Jeff Winchester- Archbishop Rummell HS (LA)
Who They Should Have Picked: OF Arturo McDonnell- Forest Hill Community HS (FL)

41. San Francisco Giants
Who They Picked: SP Jeff Urban- Ball State
Who They Should Have Picked: SP Mark Prior- University HS (CA)- DID NOT SIGN

42. Philadelphia Phillies
Who They Picked: OF Eric Valent- UCLA
Who They Should Have Picked: OF Chip Ambres- West Brook HS (TX)- DID NOT SIGN

43. New York Yankees
Who They Picked: SP Mark Prior- University HS (CA)- DID NOT SIGN
Who They Should Have Picked: P Ben Diggins- Bradshaw Mountain HS (AZ)- DID NOT SIGN    


Monday, April 26, 2010

MLB Power Rankings: 4/26/2010

Week #4 Power Rankings:

1. Minnesota Twins (13-6)- Most people probably have Tampa Bay here, but I love everything Minnesota does. The already strong fan base is rejuvenated by the superb new stadium, and there's Joe Mauer. LW: 3

2. Tampa Bay Rays (14-5)- Tampa's absolutely loaded, both with their lineup and pitching staff. Unfortunately for my Red Sox, there's no reason why they should choke again and not make the playoffs. LW: 5

3. New York Yankees (12-6)- It's seriously getting kind of late in the season for Mark Teixiera to be hitting .119, and Javier Vazquez looks shaky at best. LW: 1

4. St. Louis Cardinals (11-7)- Pujols is in a bit of a mini-slump, but finally came out of it with a homer on Sunday. On another note, where the heck was this last year Brad Penny? LW: 4

5. Philadelphia Phillies (11-7)- Somebody besides Halladay is going to need to step up as a #2 pitcher, or else this team may not be playing in October. Their offense isn't THAT good. LW: 2

6. Colorado Rockies (10-9)- Jimenez followed up his no-hit bid with another gem and is cementing himself as an all-star, and possibly Cy Young quality pitcher. Things are looking up in Colorado. LW: 7

7. San Francisco Giants (10-8)- No excuse for getting shut out by Brad Penny, but even with Cain struggling a bit they have arguably the best pitching rotation in baseball. Barry Zito looks close to his Cy Young form from 2001. LW: 6

8. Oakland Athletics (12-8)- I'm starting to think that this team has a chance to do something special. For a team so young, they play really smart, winning quality of baseball, led by 22 year old ace Brett Anderson. LW: 10

9. Florida Marlins (10-9)- Florida had a bit of a tough time in Colorado, but look poised to have a big series at home against San Diego. LW: 8

10. Los Angeles Angels (10-10)- I always like it when a team brings the Yankees back down to Earth by winning 2-out-of-3. Kendry Morales can flat out rake. LW: 17

11. Boston Red Sox (8-11)- Terrible loss against the Orioles on Sunday, but things are starting to look a little better in beantown. They are still going to need to make a big change to compete in the AL East. LW: 12

12. Detroit Tigers (10-9)- Maybe the Tigers knew something didn't when they swapped center fielders with the Yankees. Austin Jackson looks better (and younger) than Curtis Granderson right now. LW: 11

13. San Diego Padres (11-7)- The only reason their so high up is because they've won 8 out of the last 10. I would be shocked if they kept a winning record up for much longer. LW: 26

14. New York Mets (10-9)- Maybe they aren't as bad as I've been giving them credit for. Mike Pelfrey is emerging as an ace to compliment Santana. LW: 25

15. Seattle Mariners (9-10)- Cliff Lee looks to be with the Big club soon, which should propel this team back into conention in the AL West. LW: 14

16. Atlanta Braves (8-10)- The Braves are struggling, Jason Heyward is proving he's human, but I still see this team making a strong push for the playoffs. LW: 9

17. Toronto Blue Jays (10-9)- What a huge series coming up this week for Toronto as they host the struggling Red Sox, as both try to make a case for being team #3 in the AL East. LW: 15

18. Texas Rangers (8-10)- Scott Feldman struggling could be a big downfall for this team. He was one of the most underrated pitchers in baseball last year. LW: 14

19. Chicago Cubs (9-10)- Name to Watch: OF Tyler Colvin. The #13 overall pick in the 2006 draft is hitting the ball real well so far in his first full season in the majors. Could challenge Heyward for ROTY. On another note, the 2006 class is looking real strong so far (Lincecum, Longoria, Bard, Kershaw, Scherzer, Coghlan). Too bad the Rockies took Greg Reynolds with the #2 overall pick.

20. Los Angeles Dodgers (8-10)- The team just can't the ball on the road. No reason why any team should get shut out by Scott Olsen, Tyler Clippard and Matt Capps. LW: 13

21. Arizona Diamondbacks (8-10)- Kelly Johnson lighted up the Phillies, and is adding his name to the list of elite second baseman, a position that has become more and more about offense, thanks to Chase Utley, Robinson Cano, and Dustin Pedroia. LW: 19

22. Washington Nationals (10-9)- Hey, they still have a winning record, and have Strasburg coming up soon.
Former Yankee great Tyler Clippard looks like a stud in the bullpen. LW: 23

23. Cleveland Indians (8-10)- I really, really like Shin Soo Choo, but Cleveland may not have enough talent to compete right now. It's coming though, they did trade away their whole team for prospects last year. LW: 21

24. Houston Astros (8-10)- Wouldn't it be quite a story if the Astros climbed out of an 0-8 whole to make the playoffs. They look real good now, but you still can't ignore the start. LW: 27

25. Milwaukee Brewers (8-10)- The Beermakers, especially Ryan Braun, are hitting the ball pretty well, but their pitching staff has looked mediocre at best. LW:  20

26. Chicago White Sox (8-11). I'm not a big fan of Ozzie Guillen. Hopefully you know that by now. At least Paul Konerko is scoring big for my fantasy team. LW: 28

27. Cincinnati Reds (8-11)- It's really sad but unfortunately the Reds really have nowhere to put their best pitcher (Aroldis Chapman) into the rotation. Aaron Harang, Bronson Arroyo, and Homer Bailey are all stuck in the big leagues, while Mike Leake has been by far their most consistent starter. Their fifth guy, Johnny Cueto, has been their 2nd best despite his 5.73 ERA. I wouldn't be suprised to see Harang, Arroyo, or Bailey to head to the 'pen soon, like Zambrano and Suppan. LW: 24

28. Kansas City Royals (7-11)- They were able to squeeze out a win from Minnesota on Sunday, but don't expect much more from the Royals. Just another year in the cellar for them. LW: 29

29. Pittsburgh Pirates (7-11)- Boy, did the Pirates look bad this week. That is all. LW: 18

30. Baltimore Orioles (3-16)- I think the record speaks for itself. LW: 30