Tag Archives: Alex Rodriguez

Who is winning the AL East

Since 1990, the AL East has been the most dominant division in the sport. Over the past 22 World Series, an AL East constituent has competed in 13 of the Fall Classics. However, this season the AL East is incredibly weak because the Rays are rebuilding, Yankees and Red Sox have many of question marks, Blue Jays have not achieved success in years, and the Orioles lost key contributors in free agency.

1. Toronto Blue Jays

Record: 89-73

Even before the addition of Russell Martin and Josh Donaldson, the Jays ranked 5th in MLB in runs scored. This year, they should contend for first, if they can remain healthy throughout the season. However, the biggest question is their starting pitching. If their impressive young arms, Marcus Stroman, Drew Hutchinson, and Dan Norris, can acclimate to the AL East quickly, the Jays should be ready to contend for the AL East crown

2. Boston Red Sox

Record: 88-74

Over the past two seasons, the Red Sox have been a team that goes from worst to first and back to worst. However, this offseason, they made numerous moves, acquiring Hanley Ramirez, Pablo Sandoval, Rusney Castillo, Rick Porcello, Wade Miley, and Justin Masterson. Although the pitching and defense will be suspect at times, they should possess one of the best offenses in baseball.

3. Baltimore Orioles

Record: 86-76

Like the Jays and Sox, the O’s have a formidable offense, but lack a true ace or a deep rotation. Although the O’s won 96 games last season, they lost their best hitter, Nelson Cruz, to the Mariners and Nick Markakis was signed by the Braves. They must hope that Manny Machado and Matt Wieters will be able to return from injuries without missing a beat. In addition, they will be without the services of Andrew Miller, who was one of the five best relievers last season.

4. New York Yankees

Record: 84-78

The Yankees may possess the best bullpen in the entire Major Leagues with Betances and Miller, but it is unknown if they will handing the game to these stoppers with many leads. With the injury concerns that surround the starting rotation, CC Sabathia, Michael Pineda, Masahiro Tanaka, and Ivan Nova, it is likely that each of these starters will spend time on the DL. In addition, the lineup is littered with players on the wrong side of 30 and dissipating skills, Mark Teixeira, Alex Rodriguez, Brian McCann, and Carlos Beltran. If every thing goes right for the Yankees, they likely will reach the playoffs and win the division, but right now those odds seem to be stacked against them.

5. Tampa Bay Rays

Record: 75-87

This past year marked the end of the Rays’ greatest era in their short history as an organization. Joe Madden left for Chicago, Andrew Friedman joined the Dodgers, and David Price, Ben Zobrist Jeremy Hellickson, and Wil Myers were traded. However, the Rays should contend to remain competitive in the AL East as they boast the best rotation, Alex Cobb, Jake Odorizzi, and Chris Archer. In addition, they still have Evan Longoria, James Loney, Desmond Jennings, and prospect Steven Souza in the lineup.

 

 

How the MLB suspensions will affect the MLB playoff race

By: Jon

Tomorrow, August 5, 2013, will be remembered as one of the best and worst days in MLB history. Bud Selig suspended twelve players for 50 games and one player for 211 games, I bet you could not guess this player. Although it will always be remembered because so many talented players were suspended for such a long time. Some of the influences already occurred during the trade deadline. However, some of these repercussions will affect future outcomes like free agency, teams chances of making the playoffs, and teams chances of winning the World Series.

Commissioner Bud Selig Courtesy of NY Daily News
Commissioner Bud Selig
Courtesy of NY Daily News

The Detroit Tigers were one of the teams affected by the Biogenesis saga because their starting shortstop, Jhonny Peralta, was suspended for the rest of the season. Although the loss of Peralta would not have affected their chances of making the playoffs, the Tigers will not have a solid bat at shortstop during their playoff run. The Detroit Tigers are 65-45 and hold a four game lead over the Cleveland Indians. ESPN predicts that the Tigers have a 95.1% chance of making the playoffs and I agree with the prediction. Jhonny Peralta was having a great year for the Detroit Tigers. Peralta is batting .309 with 11 HR and 54 RBI and was voted to his first All-Star Game this season. Since the Tigers are a win now team and have spent millions on their current team. The Tigers cold not go into the postseason with a bad shortstop, who has little talent. Since the Tigers did not have a replacement for Peralta, the Tigers were forced to give up one of their best prospects for Peralta’s replacement, Jose Iglesias. In a trade that netted the Red Sox Jake Peavy, the Tigers were forced to trade Avisail Garcia, a possible future All-Star. Besides for having to play a worse player on offense, the Tigers needed to forfeit one of their best prospects for Peralta’s replacement. The Tigers can blame Jhonny Perlta and the White Sox should thank Jhonny Peralta if Avisail Garcia fulfills his talent and becomes a future star for the next decade.

Jhonny Peralta
Jhonny Peralta

The Texas Rangers are another team that will be greatly affected by the Biogenesis suspensions. ┬áBesides for the Yankees, the Rangers are the team most affected by the suspensions. The Rangers lost Nelson Cruz, their starting right fielder, for the rest of the season. The loss of Nelson Cruz will be a huge loss for the Texas Rangers because he is a good hitter and a leader of the team. Nelson Cruz is the second best hitter on the team and the best power hitter on the Texas Rangers. The Rangers are two games behind the Oakland A’s and a half a game ahead of the Cleveland Indians for the second Wild Card position. However, unlike the Detroit Tigers, the Texas Rangers did not acquire a back up for the All-Star left fielder. The Texas Rangers will be forced to start Daniel Murphy at right field for the rest of the playoff race. Although Daniel Murphy is a solid fourth outfielder and a good pinch hitter, Murphy cannot be the starter at the corner outfield position for the playoff team. Daniel is currently batting .227 with 12 home runs and 34 RBI. Many people did not think favorably of the Rangers trade deadline activity because they did not acquire a solid outfielder who could play when Cruz was suspended. The Rangers have one of the deepest farm systems in MLB and could have spared a few prospects for a half a year rental. The Rangers could have traded for Hunter Pence and Alex Rios.

Texas Rangers
Texas Rangers

Nelson Cruz was one of the three All-Stars from this year to be suspended for the rest of the season. Unlike the other players, Cruz will be a free agent by the end of the season. The free agent class for the upcoming winter is abnormally weak, which will be great for the few good All-Stars. Nelson Cruz is one of the few All-Stars and was inline for a huge contract. Cruz is having the best season of his career. This year, Cruz is batting .269 with 27 HR and 76 RBI. Nelson Cruz could have received a deal for about $15 million per season over about three or four years. However, the recent steroid news will drop Cruz’s value during the offseason. Many owners and managers would not want to disrupt their team’s clubhouse. Many players have spoken out against steroid users and cheaters, which would create an awkward situation in the clubhouse with Nelson Cruz. Also, GMs and managers will wonder if Cruz can reestablish himself as a player without steroids. As seen in the case of Melky Cabrera, Cruz will probably not be given a long term deal because of the question marks and controversy that follows him.

Nelson Cruz
Nelson Cruz

The team that was and will be most effected by the Biogenesis suspensions was the New York Yankees. Besides for having the most players suspended, the media has been zeroed on the Yankees over the past months because of Alex Rodriguez. The Yankees future is largely uncertain because Alex Rodriguez will appeal his suspension. Although Alex Rodriguez’s suspension will probably be reduced, his suspension will probably last long into next season. As I wrote in my other piece, the Yankees will be given a lot of flexibility and they can sign new players this offseason. (If you are interested in that article just search my name in the search window) The Yankees will continue to be heavily covered by the media as long as Alex Rodriguez is on the field. During Rodriguez’s first game, the Yankees had the best rating of the season because everyone wanted to see A-Rod play. Continue reading our articles and keeping up with the situation because it will become increasingly juicy and capitative.

Alex Rodriguez
Alex Rodriguez

More pics and stats from ESPN.com

How Baseball’s Punishments will affect the Game’s Future

By: Jon

 

Over the past 24 hours, there has been a lot of news about PED, punishments, and suspensions. On Monday July 22, MLB suspended the first Anthony Bosch patient, Ryan Braun. After recovering dozens of articles of evidence, Ryan Braun was suspended 65 games, which is the rest of the season. Many people may wonder how Braun was suspended 65 games, even though the MLB states that PED punishments are 50, 100, and life ban. However, if a player never officially fails a drug test, but if there is enough evidence, Bud Selig may suspend a play for any number of games. Reports from different networks are reporting that the MLB wants to ban Alex Rodriguez for life. Although the Yankees would want this to occur, Rodriguez will probably reach a deal similar to Braun’s deal. I would not expect A-Rod to play this season and probably most of the next year because he is constantly injured and the suspension that is looming.

Ryan Braun
Ryan Braun

Ryan Braun’s suspension is a giant step forward for the MLB’s attempt to clean the sport and rid PEDs from the game. Since Ryan Braun accepted his suspension, Anthony Bosch is instantly deemed a credible source because the public knows he did not lie about Braun. Players who will be punished cannot go to court and discredit Anthony Bosch. Over the next couple of days, expect players such as Nelson Cruz, Bartolo Colon, and Alex Rodriguez to be suspend for their involvement with Bosch. Although some players may appeal the suspension, they only will appeal so that they can continue playing baseball this season and help their teams reach the playoffs and win a championship. Ryan Braun and Alex Rodriguez will be the first MVP ever to be suspended by MLB for their involvement with PEDs. Although this currently leaves a black eye on MLB, it is in the best interest of the sport if the cheaters are banished from the game of baseball. Unlike football, baseball is a more civilized sport and players who test positive for PEDs are subject to more humiliation and punishment.

Alex Rodriguez
Alex Rodriguez

MLB actions hopefully will preclude major league players from taking steroids and cheating the game. As the punishments and humiliation increase, players will think twice before taking these illegal substances. Although players are willing to take steroids after they were punished, Colon and Cabrera, the increased awareness and threats will eventually change the game forever. During the next CBA agreements, the Players Union and the Owners may agree on a contract that will allow teams to cut players who cheat the game. For the first time, the Players Union are supporting Bud Selig and the suspension that he gave Braun, although he did not fail a test. The cooperation between the Players Union and the owners may make players fear the consequences and stop taking the PEDs. Along with Selig, the players’ peers want the game to be clean and fair for all the players. Recently, players such as Matt Kemp have expressed their discontent with players who cheat the game. As seen in the NLDS two years ago, if Braun was suspended and could not play during the series, the Diamondbacks probably would have won the series, since Braun went 9-18. The pressure brought on by the players will keep some players from cheating, although they may earn more money. Along with losing money from suspension, many players who become suspended will lose a lot of endorsement dollars like Braun and Rodriguez. Unlike other sports, baseball is attempting to totally rid the game of cheating and drugs with the help of the players, Player’s Union, and owners.

Anthony Bosch courtesy of NY Daily News
Anthony Bosch
courtesy of NY Daily News

 

Stats and Pics from ESPN.com