Monthly Archives: August 2015

MLB to consider upgrades to netting

Major league baseball is now considering improving fan safety at games.920x920

Though some parts are protected by netting, such as the stands behind the plate,  other parts, such as the foul lines remain un-protected and are now seen as a hazard to fans.

After a Freddy Galvis ball hit someone the other day, Commissioner Rob Manfred has made his way to PNC park to look over the fan safety.

It would appear that something would be coming soon. With a constantly changing MLB, it would be no surprise to me if we started off next season with nets or some safety device along the foul lines to provide additional protection to fans.

The Mets are for Real

When blog posts are written about the Mets, we are typically talking about either an 538577373jm157-philadelphiainjured player, or a player who may be on the trading block. Well i’m afraid those days are over.

The Mets are clearly here to stay.

For the first half of the season, it was safe to say that the Mets were “in contention.”

There are always teams who no one expects to be atop a division or two for a period of time. From a fan’s perspective, it is just a matter of time before the team collapses and falls to where they belong. In the Mets’ case, many people waited and pondered wether or not the Mets would fall. People, coaches, teams, and scouts kept waiting and waiting but not only did the Mets not fall.. They got better.

Detroit Tigers v New York MetsAfter missing out on Brewers outfielder, Carlos Gomez at the deadline, they shipped some minor leaguers to the Tigers in exchange for Yoenis Cespedes, who cost very little, compared to who the Brewers wanted for Gomez (Wheeler and Flores)

Gomez, who has been brutal for the Astros, has not been nearly as good an investment as Cespedes. Cespedes has already hit 6 homers and is giving the Mets a middle-of-the-order that is to fear right now. Not only that, but Curtis Granderson and Lucas Duda have been stepping up big time for the Mets.

Yeaterday, perhaps the Mets made their best acquisition yet. It didn’t cost them any prospects or big-time contract. They got David Wright back. Wright, who has been on the DL for the majority of 2015 returned to the Mets lineup, and hit a home run in his first at bat.

That may have been just what the Mets needed.1400718470315717926

The Mets currently hold a firm 5.5 game lead over the Nationals in the NL east. If teams play like they are, it looks like the Nats will not find themselves in the postseason, as it looks like the wild card will go to the Pirates and Cubs.

After going 15-6 in the month of August, the Mets chances of making the playoffs has shot up from 48% to 86%. Im no math major, but I’m pretty sure thats almost twice the chances they had going into the month.

I believe that many would agree with me when I say that the Mets are here to stay and will not only be contenders this year, but will be a major threat in the NL east for many years to come.

The AL East Just Keeps Getting More Interesting

There is no other way to put it.

The AL east has been the most crazy division this year.

Teams expected to dominate, such as the Red Sox find themselves 13 games back at this Jacoby-Ellsburypoint in the season. While on the other hand, the Yankees, who many expected to finish in dead last, find themselves just a half game behind the Blue Jays in the AL east.

Which brings me to my next point.

The Blue Jays have been the most fun team to watch this season. Even before their major deadline acquisitions, they had a team that was fun to watch. The Blue Jays, who acquired David Price and Troy Tulowitzki at the deadline, overcame a 7-game deficit to regain the first-place position in the AL east.

Though just a half game lead, The Jays have a team that has the power to finish atop the division. The teams we’re not really talking about, The Orioles and Rays, have flown under the radar.

Both Teams have a chance to be AL Wild Card teams.

It seems as if this AL east is like the NL Central. What I mean is that they both have teams Encarwhere 2 or more teams can find themselves in the postseason.

The NL Central, which boasts the MLB’s best, Cardinals, also includes the Cardinals and Pirates, who all will make a postseason push.

The AL East, can have a winner, as well as two teams that find themselves in the Wild Card game.

In Conclusion, though tight, the AL east is a very fun team to watch. Only time will tell at this point, but it looks as if the Blue Jays will make a very strong push at the end of the season.

Why The Utley Move Makes Sense

Wednesday night, word was released that the Dodgers had acquired long-time Phillies icon, Chase Utley.

The deal was that the Dodgers would send some mid-level prospects to the Phillies in chase-utley-action-bb8e211c6313537breturn for Utley. One of the two was Triple-A infielder/outfielder Darnell Sweeney and the other was Class A RHP John Richy.

Why I am writing this article is because I feel that this move was necessary for the Dodgers. Why it is necessary is because the Dodgers have been in a bit of a “2B drought”

Ever since they missed out on Cano, they have tried signing international free agents (Alex Guerrero), as well as trading for stars that haven’t panned out due to injury (Howie Kendrick).

They need a solid offensive second baseman like Utley. He is healthy now and he will only cost the Dodgers around $4 million for the rest of this season.

MLB: San Francisco Giants at Philadelphia PhilliesNot only that, but he will be alongside his former battery-mate Jimmy Rollins. For the past decade, they have played SS and 2B together.

In conclusion, I feel that this move will add immediate impact to the Dodgers lineup and will help their hunt to October.

The Ichiro Argument

Saturday night, Ichiro stepped into the box with 4,191 career hits, which was tied for 2nd Ichiro Suzukiall time with the great Ty Cobb.

Ichiro got a hit in his first at bat, which makes him now behind only the great Pete Rose.

Ichiro does not have all of his 4,192 hits for Major League Baseball. The 4,192 is a combination of his hits here and his hits in Japan.

1,278 of his 4,192 were from Japan. Which leads to the question, “should all of his hits count from Japan”

In my opinion, they should not. Here’s why.

Not only is the pitching in Japan much easier than it is here in America, but the balls are Marlins+Signs+Ichiro+Suzuki+Press+Conference+ABGvRcQ_Qd5lalso smaller, and the fences are shorter. Not only that, but if a third of his hits there should count towards the MLB, than how come the Japanese league can’t say “Ichiro has 4,000 hits in Japan.”

All that the MLB is doing is combining his Japan hits and his MLB ones. So why shouldn’t Japan be able to do the same thing. It wouldn’t make much sense would it?

That is why I stand firm in my belief that Ichiro deserves every single one of his 2,915 hits in the MLB, but he should not be granted all of his Japanese hits for his MLB consideration.

Last Night was the MLB’s best game this season

Although there are always people who differentiate with my views, I believe that the 7:00 game between the Yankees and Blue Jays on August 14th was the game of the year. And here’s why..

First of all, The Blue Jays came in on an 11 game winning streak – 11 games!d1b452d2aa868829ffa709f363c58a9d_crop_north

The Yankees, who held a firm lead in the AL east as of two weeks ago, watched their lead slowly disappear. At the trade deadline, The Yankees were 7 games above the Toronto Blue Jays. The Blue Jays started playing good baseball, and the Yankees started playing sloppy. Next thing you know, the Yankees are in 2nd place behind the Jays.

Coming into Friday night’s game, The Blue Jays’ best starter, David Price took the hill, to face Ivan Nova from the Yankees.

The Blue Jays held a slim .05 game lead in the east coming into the game. And it looked like that lead was going to become a 1.5 game lead, as the Jays were up 3-0 in the 7th, with Price on the mound.

carlos-beltranChase Headley hits a ground rule double that scores a run off price. Now, there is 2nd and 3rd with Carlos Beltran to the plate. John Gibbons signals over to the pen and calls on righty Aaron Sanchez. Beltran is in the hole, after swinging and missing at two straight Sanchez heaters. Then suddenly, Carlos Beltran takes the next pitch just over the right-center field fence.

Yankees fans everywhere rejoiced. The Yankees held on and won by the score of 4 to 3. The Yankees now have a slim first place lead over the Blue Jays in the AL East

Utley Placed on Waivers

According to foxsports.com, The Phillies have placed veteran 2B Chase Utley on waivers.user58872_pic2514_1227654446

As the rules go, any team can do 1-of-3 things. First, they can claim him and play the remaining salary of his contract (if the player and original team agree). Second, the original team (The Phillies) can revoke the waiver request and simply keep the player on the team. Or thirdly, they can negotiate a trade with the team in 2 business days.

It would appear likely that Utley get moved. He is having a dreadful season. Before being placed on the DL, he was hitting a brutal .179/.257/.275.

Teams such as the Cubs and Giants are expected to be potential suitors.

An Amazing Day In The Bronx

My awesome day started off with a subway ride to the Bronx. Being a Florida native, it wasIMG_8512-1 definitely an interesting experience for me to do something like that.

Once I got to the stadium, I had the amazing honor of seeing a long-time friend and role model, Ray Negron. Ray has been a part of the Yankees since he was my age. He is a bestselling author and is working on a TV show that will be about his life around the Yankee clubhouse and more. The pilot will be filmed in October, and they are aiming for over 60 episodes! I got a picture with Ray

Ray Negron and I
Ray Negron and I

and his original Yankees World Series ring. I tried putting it in my pocket after the picture, but he noticed and jokingly put me in a headlock.

After we went to our seats, I got a text from Buck Martinez, who is the head TV announcer for the Blue Jays. Buck wanted me to come and see where it all happens.

I met Buck in the announcers booth and man, was it cool. There is so much that goes on behind the scenes that we, as viewers, never see. For instance, you may have heard Buck say, “Justin Smoak hit his first grand slam today.” IMG_8518

But what we don’t see is that there are people along side Buck that are working hard on giving up-to-the-minute information to Buck about the game.

As you may know, there is no real way to study for a baseball game. There is no way to prepare yourself for a game as an announcer. The only real way is to know how to give relevant, interesting information on the fly. That is why you may think Buck Martinez may just be watching the game while speaking into a microphone. That’s what I thought happened before I saw what really happens. But in reality, Buck is surrounded by hand-written papers which are covered in highlighter. He is reading notes, as well as taking them. He is multitasking and it looks impossible, but somehow, he does it.

FullSizeRender-1He talked to me about how he has a head piece on and how he hears stuff coming in through one of the headphones while he is speaking. He added that it was tough to get used to, but now he has the hang of it.

After I talked to Buck, I had to leave. Even though my Yankees lost, Blue Jays fans got to leave happy.

It was an incredible day that I will never forget.

Old Rangers –> New Rangers?

We all remember the Rangers before they were.. the Rangers they are now.

The Rangers that were a threat to win 90+ games every year.

After Nelson Cruz went elsewhere, C.J. Wilson also signed elsewhere. Josh Hamilton josh-hamilton-angelsJoined Wilson and went to the Angels. Old Catcher, Mike Napoli went to the Red Sox.

Derek Holland has been injured so we haven’t seen him much, as well as Yu arvish.. But after Josh Hamilton admitted to a drug relapse, the Angels sent him back to the Rangers.

There’s one third of the original outfield. Earlier today, the Red Sox traded Mike Napoli back to the Rangers. And looking at where Derek Holland stands, it is likely we will see him opening next year’s opening day.

Yu-Darvish-RangersRemember the old Rangers? Beltre at third, Andrus at short, Moreland at first, and Napoli behind the plate. Hold on those guys are now all on the Rangers. As well Hamilton in the outfield.

Recently acquired LHP Cole Hamels will be ready to take the ball for them and give them a legitimate rotation next season that will consist of Yu Darvish (remember him?), Cole Hamels and a (healthy) Derek Holland. Top it off with Martin Perez and you’ve got yourself a quality rotation.

If everyone lives up to their potential, which is much easier said than done, The Rangers could be the formidable threat they once were.

RALLY SQUIRREL!

The Tigers-Royals game was tied 6-6 in the bottom of the eighth inning. Royals’ formidable set-up man, Wade Davis was on the mound.

Wade Davis stepped off the mound when he realized that a small black rodent had made its way onto the field. The Announcer thought it was a black cat at first glance, but it turns out that it was a black squirrel.

Being a Florida native, I have never seen a black squirrel.

Many fans thought of the squirrel as a possible “good luck charm” as the game could easily be broken open with just a run.

If you were a Tigrers fan who thought it was a good luck charm, you may be right. As it turns out, the Tigers’ 2B, Ian Kindler hit a walkoff home run, which gave the Tigers the victory.

“Thanks Mr. Squirrel”

-Detroit