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nmigliore

2014 General MLB Thread

34 posts in this topic

About time to kick this off, I think. Miguel Cabrera just signed a monster extension. My 2014 predictions:

 

AL East: Red Sox

AL Central: Tigers

AL West: Angels

 

AL Wild Cards: Rays, A's

 

AL MVP: Mike Trout (easiest player award pick; should've won it the last two years, I say he wins it this year as he leads the Angels to a division title in what should be a competitive 3- or 4-team race)

AL Cy Young: Danny Salazar (part of this is me wanting to be unique, but everything about Salazar screams future ace; the future is now)

AL Rookie of the Year: Masahiro Tanaka (lots of other good candidates such as Jose Abreu, Xander Bogaerts, Yordano Ventura)

 

 

NL East: Nationals

NL Central: Cardinals

NL West: Dodgers

 

NL Wild Card: Pirates, Braves

 

NL MVP: Bryce Harper (see Salazar explanation, although this one doesn't feel nearly as bold; with good health, Harper seems ready for an MVP-caliber breakout as the Nats win the East)

NL Cy Young: Jose Fernandez (I'm a fool for not picking Kershaw, but Fernandez is among rarefied air as a pitcher who skipped AA and AAA and then dominated the Majors to a 2.19 ERA/2.73 FIP at the age of 20)

NL Rookie of the Year: Gregory Polanco (like the AL, lots of other potentially good candidates in Archie Bradley, Jameson Taillon, Javier Baez, Billy Hamilton.... but I say Polanco comes up and displaces Jose Tabata pretty quickly and helps lead the Pirates to an NL Wild Card)

Edited by nmigliore

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The Trout deal is interesting. Takes him until 29, when the best players could be making $35 million a year.

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Mike Trout just homered in his first AB of the season.

 

I love this guy. 

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curious nmig why no Yankees for either the WC or Division

 

they have age, but man are they deep in the rotation and lineup. McCann is in the perfect ballpark. Beltran I'm sure is declining but will still be good. They'll prob get something out of Roberts or Johnson (another perfect NYS pull hitter)

 

Tough to put them at anything less than 94 wins

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Honestly I'm skeptical of the Yankees chances too although you figure Jeter'll somehow will them into contention his final season.  They really aren't the powerhouse offense everyone thinks they are - they have Texiera who IF he stays healthy will hit .240 with 30-100.  Soriano's a hundred years old, but he can go 30-100.  Maybe Beltran goes 30-100 and McCann goes 25-80, but with those four guys you're talking about three old farts and a catcher (i.e. all health risks) plus they've got huge question marks at third base, second base and one of their outfield positions.  It's not a classic AL lineup, and their starting pitching has a lot of potential issues too.  That's not even bringing up Robertson filling the big shoes this year.

Edited by NJDevs4978

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curious nmig why no Yankees for either the WC or Division

 

The infield could be downright awful, lots of age on the roster, toughest division in baseball (could seriously make a case for all 5 teams to make a playoff run). Sabathia was apparently struggling to top 90 mph in spring, which is a little alarming in light of last season; at the very least I think his days as a frontline guy are over. They were still a really close call along with Texas for me, so I'm not all that down on them. I like their playoff odds more than I do other decent-looking playoff hopefuls like Cleveland, Kansas City, and Seattle. 

 

Rough start to the season for the Jays; Dickey really struggled (5 IP, 6 ER, 6 BB) and Reyes hit the DL with hamstring issues after being removed after 1 AB.

Edited by nmigliore

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Exciting to kick off the yankee season tomorrow. Hope to see CC in his old form early

Of course Trout parked one in his first AB how can you not love the guy

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Rough start to the season for the Jays; Dickey really struggled (5 IP, 6 ER, 6 BB) and Reyes hit the DL with hamstring issues after being removed after 1 AB.

 

Hate both of those, I thought Dickey would really bounce back this year after he picked it up in the second half last year when healthy.

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ESPN is obsessed with Mike Trout.  Angels get destroyed last night, but Trout is the cover story because he went 2 for 4 with a homerun. 

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Warning, some Captain Obvious here, but goodness, how freakin' good is Clayton Kershaw? 28 straight scoreless innings after his start today. 2.04 ERA, 0.92 WHIP, 107 strikeouts to 11 walks in 79 innings this season. That's a 12+ K/9. Incredible.

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Holy sh!t what a trade between Oakland and the Cubs:

@jonmorosi: Deal is Jeff Samardzija and Jason Hammel for Addison Russell, Billy McKinney and Dan Straily, source confirms to @FOXSports1. No PTBNL.

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Cubs are pretty well stocked now at SS. Castro, Baez, Russell. Somebody might be getting traded, and somebody else might be undergoing a position change. Russell is prob a few years away. Baez may be moved to 3rd which means they keep Castro.

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22 Jaw-Dropping Factoids about Kershaw's Scoreless Streak by Jonah Keri. Some crazy stuff in here, my favorite might be this:

 

10. Kershaw held opponents to a .305 OPS (.123/.160/.145) during the streak. For context, MLB pitchers have a .303 OPS at the plate this season

 

 

http://grantland.com/the-triangle/clayton-kershaw-scorless-innings-streak-historic-2014-season/

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22 Jaw-Dropping Factoids about Kershaw's Scoreless Streak by Jonah Keri. Some crazy stuff in here, my favorite might be this:

 

 

http://grantland.com/the-triangle/clayton-kershaw-scorless-innings-streak-historic-2014-season/

 

If Clayton turns in 2-3 more years like this, is he a HOFer based on short-term dominance?  That's a hell of a 6-8 year run.  Old-timers will probably scoff at Koufax comparisons because Koufax threw so many more innings and completed so many games (137 for his career), but Kershaw can't help what era he's pitching in.  We won't even see four-man rotations, 300 IP guys, and 20+ complete game per season starters ever again.

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If Clayton turns in 2-3 more years like this, is he a HOFer based on short-term dominance?  That's a hell of a 6-8 year run.

 

Yeah, I think so. Scary part is that, health willing, he could be Hall of Fame worthy before he reaches his 30th birthday. 

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Yeah, I think so. Scary part is that, health willing, he could be Hall of Fame worthy before he reaches his 30th birthday. 

 

Short-term guys are always fun...so much more so than the compilers (there's something to be said for being consistently good for 20 years or so, but it's always kind of weird to see those guys get in with the ones who truly dominated their era).  If Pedro Martinez never threw another pitch after 2003 (he was 32 by the end of that year), I don't see how he wouldn't have gotten in...from 1997-2003, his numbers were insane (and this is in the thick of the 'roid era to boot):

 

118-36, 2.20 ERA (he was the ERA leader in five out of seven seasons), 1408 IP, 1009 H, 344 ER, 315 BB, 1761 K, 0.94 WHIP, only 93 HR allowed.   

 

And then there's Randy Johnson...obviously had terrific years before he went to Houston (and then Arizona) at the age of 34, but what he did from the ages of 34-38 was obscene:

 

91-28, 2.39 ERA, 1115.1 IP, 844 H, 296 ER, 314 BB, 1533 K (?!), 98 HR (not bad but surprising considering how dominant he was), 1.04 WHIP, won the CY Young all four seasons from 1999-2002 (to give him five for his career).  Like Pedro, even with "just" 224 wins (against 106 losses), I'd have to think Randy would've been a shoo-in for the HOF if he hadn't thrown another pitch after 2002.   

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Watched my 2nd postseason game today. Royals had a chance to tie it in the bottom of the 9th. 2 out and nobody on and a base hit to center that gets misplayed twice rolls to the wall. Have to wonder...was Gordon hustling out of the box? He may have had a chance to score. Can you imagine game 7 of the World Series being tied in the bottom of the 9th on an inside the park home run? Would've been the stuff of legend.

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Bumgarner one of the best ever. Much respect due to thr Royals though one hell of a run!

 

Indeed. Though as a Mets fan I couldn't help think "sh!t, who the hell ever thought the Royals would win another WS before we did!?"

 

I think this Royals team has the look of a 1 trick pony, though their farm system is sort of above average

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Watched my 2nd postseason game today. Royals had a chance to tie it in the bottom of the 9th. 2 out and nobody on and a base hit to center that gets misplayed twice rolls to the wall. Have to wonder...was Gordon hustling out of the box? He may have had a chance to score. Can you imagine game 7 of the World Series being tied in the bottom of the 9th on an inside the park home run? Would've been the stuff of legend.

 

I was looking for that too on the one replay I saw...he only stopped briefly at first base when it looked like the fielder was going to get to the ball (since he obviously wasn't going to second on that if the ball was handled cleanly) then had to crank it up again after the misplay.  I'm still surprised he only got to third though since that ball rolled all the way to the wall and was misplayed again.

 

People talk about Schilling and Jack Morris as big-game pitchers, but Bumgartner trumped even them this postseason and particularly this series.

Edited by NJDevs4978

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You can argue that Bumgarner just submitted the best overall post-season performance by a pitcher in baseball history.

Edited by MadDog2020

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Indeed. Though as a Mets fan I couldn't help think "sh!t, who the hell ever thought the Royals would win another WS before we did!?"

 

I think this Royals team has the look of a 1 trick pony, though their farm system is sort of above average

 

Hey...Royals won in '85, Mets in '86.  Maybe history repeats.  God I hope so, though at this point, I'll take 80+ wins and being in a race. 

You can argue that Bumgarner just submitted the best overall post-season performance by a pitcher in baseball history.

 

Always appreciate the guys who come through in the big spots.  The "cornerstone" of the Mets usually doesn't.

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I really think the MLB Hall of Fame writers should set up some kind of process where a player that suspects he is not being admitted because of steroids can submit to questions under oath, which you can do outside of a court or Congressional setting.

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I don't understand some of the voters.  Curt Schilling has very similar career numbers to John Smoltz, and was also a terrific postseason pitcher.  I guess because he didn't spend a few years closing in the middle of his career (and how many successful starting pitchers really ever get asked to close...not many...and in Eckersley's case, it saved his career), he's somehow not considered to be nearly as H-O-F worthy as Smoltz.  Just because Smoltz is the only pitcher to rack up 200+ wins and 150+ saves in his career doesn't mean other guys couldn't have done it. 

 

Pedro Martinez gets only 91.1% of the vote?  How the hell wasn't he damned near unanimous?  I know he wasn't a high-innings guy, but from 1997-2004, he was a beast...as dominant as anyone else in his era. 

 

Not sure if I really think of Biggio as a H-O-F guy...of course, once you reach 3000 hits, for a lot of guys, it's only a matter of time before they're inducted.  Biggio was durable as hell and managed to stay away from truly dreadful years almost right up until the end of his career (a big reason he got to 3000 hits), and was definitely a good (occasionally very good) player, but I just don't look at him and think greatness (didn't do much in the postseason either).  Fine player for sure.

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