Tagged: Cubs

Spending Limit

* Here is my persuasive essay for school and as you can imagine, I wrote it about sports. 

Spending
Limit

Small market teams don’t stand a chance against
the big spenders in Major League Baseball.


         At New Yankee Stadium,
Yankee fans cheer for “their” team, a team that had a payroll of $206,333,389
in 2010. One of their many star players, Alex Rodriguez, made thirty-three
million dollars last year.

However, at PNC Park, home of the Pittsburgh Pirates, Pirate
fans don’t cheer for a star player, because they don’t have one. In fact their
payroll last year was “just” $34,943,000. Is it fair that Alex Rodriguez made
nearly as much money as the entire Pittsburgh Pirates last year?

            Much like their
payroll, the Yankees were at the top of the list when it came to winning. The
Pirates on the other hand, had one of the worst records in baseball. Major
League Baseball needs a salary cap.

          A “salary cap” is a
limit on how much money teams can spend and/or how much money a player can
earn. It would level the playing field, increase fan attendance, and increase
team and league revenue.

However, if a salary cap was implemented, the
large market teams wouldn’t have enough money to have ten superstars on their
team. As a result of this, more superstars would have to play on “bad” teams
and the overall talent level would become more evenly divided among all thirty
teams.

Many casual baseball fans go to a game to see the
superstars. With the talent being more evenly divided, fans in Baltimore,
Pittsburgh, etc. will get to see more superstars play; thus increasing fan
attendance. Due to this increased interest and attendance of the game, the
league’s revenue would increase.

Personally, I’m a fan of the Boston Red Sox, who are a big
spender. With that said, is it fair that the Red Sox can out spend the Pirates
by over 160 million dollars?

Not everyone agrees on the topic of a salary cap. Some say
the fact that some teams can spend ridiculous amounts more money than other
teams is just a part of the game.

On one side, just because you have a high payroll doesn’t
mean you are going to be good. Despite having the third highest payroll in
baseball last year, the Cubs finished fifth in their division.

Then there are always teams like the Rangers and Rays, who
despite being in the bottom ten in payroll, made the playoffs.

However, there is one roadblock, the Players Association.
They would most likely reject anything about lowering player salaries. However,
I’m sure Alex Rodriguez can afford to give up a couple million dollars.

               So, Bud Selig (the commissioner of the MLB), if you
know what is good for the league you need to try to implement a salary cap
immediately. 

The Big Puma Goes To The Big Apple

*Sorry I forgot to post this a few days ago.

After 1,648 hits, 326 home runs,
1,090 runs batted in, 1,592 games, and parts of twelve seasons, Lance “The Big
Puma” Berkman is leaving Houston to play with Derek Jeter, Alex Rodriguez,
Mariano Rivera and the rest of the New York Yankees in the Big Apple.

It’s a bittersweet day in Houston.
On one side, the team is starting over and getting younger. On the other side,
you are losing a franchise player who played his college career (with the Rice
Owls) and pro career in Houston. Berkman has given the city of Houston so many
memories, good ones and bad ones.

Personally, I have two distinct
memories about Lance Berkman. The first autographed baseball I ever got was
Lance Berkman’s on my ninth birthday. However, In spring training of 2008,
while I was trying to get autographs, he went off the field, in a golf cart,
into the clubhouse, (the Astros clubhouse at their spring training park,
Osceola County Stadium, is on the other side of the left field fence) totally
ignoring the fans.

That day, Miguel Tejada, Jose
Valverde, Hunter Pence, and Wesley Wright, among others came a signed for the
me and the rest of the fans. I understand that fans do get a little crazy
sometimes. Ex-Astro Roy Oswalt use to only sign to small groups of fans while
with the Astros but spring training is different. Which, I understand.

Anyway, it has been a gradual
decline in power since 2006 when “Fat Elvis” hit 45 home runs. Since then, he
has hit 34, 29, 25 and 13 (in 85 games this year). And with the exception of
2008 when he drove in 106 runs his RBI totals have gone done every year since
2006 when he had 136 of them.

Now, I expect his power numbers to
increase with the dimensions of Yankees stadium and not having to face Josh
Johnson, Ubaldo Jimenez, Roy Hallady, or Mat Latos (who has a 0.99 WHIP) along
with the rest of the National League pitchers. However, the one thing that
could make his disappointing season even more disappointing would be if he
can’t play ball in the spotlight of New York City.

0801berkman.JPG

Continue reading

We Better Not Have Another Traitor

Pedro Martinez has not pitched in the majors since September 25, 2008 but that has not stopped Pedro. Martinez pitched for the Dominican Republic In the 2009 World Baseball Classic and in six innings he gave up one hit, walked none, struck out six, and hit one batter.
Martinez “auditioned” for a roster spot along with Sidney Ponson and Ivan Rodriguez. Ponson signed with the Royals but is currently on the D.L. Pudge signed with the Astros and yesterday passed Carlton Fisk for the most games played by a catcher.
Before the season the Cubs and Rays had showed interest in Pedro. I thought the Cubs would be a bad fit because I thought he might have to pitch in the bullpen. Chicago though already has six starting pitchers. However Martinez would give the Cubs depth incase Rich Harden gets hurt again or Carlos Zambrano gets suspended again for having a tantrum.
The Rays though would be a good fit because Pedro is an experienced veteran and the Rays have a lot of injuries. However  with Scott Kazmir soon to be back and David Price getting called up Pedro would probably be pitching in the bullpen there.
Now that the season has started the Angels and Yankees have joined the Pedro talks. Yep the Rays, Yankees, and Angels all want the former Red Sox great. What do the Rays, Yankees, and Angels have in common with each other? All are rivals with the Red Sox on some level.
If Martinez went to the Yankees he would probably get the most money but he would have to work out of the bullpen and I believe that Pedro wants to leave New York after four “terrible” seasons with the Mets, in which he pitched in just 79 games and went 32 and 23.
Going to the Angels Martinez would have the biggest chance of pitching in the rotation but the odds are he will not because Matt Palmer, who is the fifth starter, is six and zero with an ERA of 4.13. Even with Kelvim Escobar on the D.L. the Angels do not really need Pedro because they have one of the best bullpens in baseball.
According to a report by Ken Rosenthal on Foxsports.com the Cubs, Rays, Yankees, and Angels will go to watch Martinez Friday in the Dominican Republic. Every team is now downplaying their interest in the 214 game winner. One executive said his team is sending scouts as a courtesy to Pedro’s agent, Fernando Cuza.
Which team do I think that is. Well I doubt it is the Cubs or Rays because they where the first teams to talk about signing Martinez. That leaves the Yankees and Angels. The Yankees have one of the worst bullpens in baseball while the Angels have a good rotation and bullpen. So I bet the Angels are the team that is being nice to Pedro and his agent.
However Cuza’s clients include Yankees closer, Mariano Rivera along with Angels slugger Valdimir Guerrero and Cubs outfielder, Alfonso Soriano. However I still think the Angels are doing it to be nice.
Martinez who turns 38 in October was seeking five million dollars at the start of the season but Martinez now would take three million for the rest of the season. However if Martinez goes to the Yankees he could get four million or maybe that “elusive” five million dollars. Heck maybe even six million but that is very unlikely.
Pictures: Pedro Martinez Photo
If Martinez would agree to sign a minor league deal he could attract more teams like maybe the Rangers, Astros, Blue Jays, and Brewers. Martinez would probably also be able to start at all four locations. The Rangers though just signed Orlando Hernandez to a minor league deal. The Rangers and Brewers are first in their respective divisions while the Blue Jays are in third in the A.L. East by five games and even though the Astros are last in the N.L. Central by six and a half games the Astros hate to give up. 
But should Pedro come back. All the signs point to yes but look into the numbers more. Pedro only has 99 career loses. I believe that having less then one hundred losses helps you get into the Hall of Fame and the three time Cy Young winner wants to get in. What if though he gets hurts. I do not want to see one of the best pitchers ever go out like that. 
The seventeen year veteran who spent time with the Dodgers, Expos, Red Sox, and Mets has a career record of 214 and 99 with an ERA of 2.91 and has struck out 3,117 in 2,782.2 innings. He is tied for thirteenth on the all-time strikeout list. Of the sixteen members of the 3,000 strikeout club Martinez has given up the east amount of earned runs with 901. One thing though about the 3,000 strikeout club is today it does not seem like it puts you in the hall. Just look at Bert Blyleven. Who also finished his career thirteen wins shy of 300.
So Is Pedro Hall Of Fame Worthy? Well he was not as good of a post season pitcher as Curt Schilling and he has three more wins then Pedro. martinez though does have one more strikeout for Curt so you could make a pretty good argument for either. I see both getting in though. But I am getting off topic.
We could go on and on and on about Pedro and how great he is and what team he will pitch with this year if any and all kinds of stuff. Heck if I wanted to I could write an entry about his fastball. But that might be kind of boring. 
Anyway the bottom line is I think Pedro will sign with the Rays for a three million dollar deal. I also think that if Tampa Bay signs Pedro then they can win the WIld
Card because Boston has already won the East. (Wow that was one of my best sentences ever in my opinion) Once your a Red Sox your a Red Sox for life, Pedro is not going to the Yankees. (Sorry but man I’m on a roll) Even though the Rays are rivals with Boston as of the 2009 season I do not care if a former Red Sox player that is 37 played for the Rays. Okay I do and Pedro would kill me but I want Pedro to be back and I want him to pitch and I want him to be happy even if he does play with the Rays. Now if it was with the Yankees well we might have some issues. (Dang best paragraph of my blogging career. 🙂
Anyway the game is in a rain delay right now and the BoSoxs are losing but I did get a new Red Sox hat about an hour ago. (It is the new alternate ones with the hanging soxs.) So even though we are losing it does not “sting” as much as it does some days. Anyway I am getting off topic again. Okay where ever Pedro pitches I wish him good luck . . . unless it is against the Red Sox.
************************************************************************************************************
Photo Credits
1- theinsider.com
2- purplerow.com
3- redsoxworld.mlblogs.com

#4- Lou Boudreau

PRO BLOGS

12. *touch* ’em all (Alyssa Milano)
16. MLBlogosphere lol
28. Bally’s Blog (Collin Balester)
33. Perk’s Place (Glen Perkins)
44. Behind the Mask (Bengie Molina)


FAN BLOGS

21. Statistician Magician
22. sittingstill
23. THE BOSTON RED SOX BL
OG
24. Blogging Dodgers and Baseball
25. 66ers Baby Blue Blog
26. Pick Me Up Some Mets!
27. Life and Indians Baseball through the Eyes of a Clemson Girl
28. Yankees Chick
29. Unfinished Business- Congrats Kaybee
30. The Redbird Media
31. Mets’ Main Man
32. Flair For The Dramatic
33. Redbird Chatter
34. Cambios y Curvas
35. I Live for This
36. Yawkey Way Yaker
37. Baseball Bats
38. Plunking Gomez
39. LA NACION MEDIAS ROJAS
40. Bringing Diamond Back(s)- Congrats Caroline
41. Perfect Pitch
42. Phillies Red Pinstripes
43. San Diego Wannabes
44. Rants, Raves, and Random Thoughts
45. Displaced Tribe Fan
46. Red Sox Hen
47. This Fan’s Life
48. King Yankees
49. The Brewer Nation
50. Baby Paul’s Baseball Blog- Congrats Baby Paul


As you might have noticed I wrote two or one word sentences to some of my favorite bloggers. Sorry if I missed you.

So I got forth again. I already dedicated my first 4 to Joe Cronin so this time I going with another hall of famer. This one didn’t play with the Red Sox as long though.

Lou Boudreau

Lou Boudreau was born on July 17, 1917 in Harvey, Illinois. His carer stats include a .295 batting average, 1,779 hits, 68 home runs, 789 RBI’s, and 51 stolen bases. Boudreau spent two seasons as a player/manager and two seasons just as a manager with the Red Sox. He played  13 seasons of his carer with the Cleveland Indians. He also managed the Kansas City Athletics and the Chicago Cubs. Boudreau played four different positions, first base, shortstop, third base, and catcher. His primary position was shortstop. He made 230 carer errors and had a .973 fielding percentage. Boudreau was a seven time all-star who won a World Series and a MVP in 1948 while with the Cleveland Indians. That same season he hit .355 with three stolen bases, eighteen home runs, 106 RBI’s, and 199 hits. In 1970 Boudreau was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame with 77.33 percent of the vote on his ninth try. Later in that year he had his number 5 retired by the Indians. Boudreau also had a great announcing carer. He was the announcer for the Chicago Cubs from 1958-1959 and from 1961-1987. The one year he was not in the broadcast both he was in the dugout as manager of the Cubs. He also announced the Chicago Bulls on the radio from 1966-1968. He died on August 10, 2001. Even though he wasn’t a Red Sox legend he should be honored.

Lou Boudreau Autographed / Signed Post Card BWPC067

Lou Boudreau and his wife before 1948 World Series game

Photos
1- wikipedia.com
2- hollywoodcollectibles.com
3- clevelandseniors.com
Also before I leave go check out Mets’ Main Man’s big project.

Fantasy Baseball Help- Tip 1

I know Cob is starting a fantasy baseball league so I thought for all you first timers I thought I would give you some tips.

Draft Players on Good Teams

When drafting your team try to draft great players on average or great teams. The Mariners lost 101 games in 2008 year. In 2007 years ago they won 88 games. In 2007 Felix Hernandez won 14 games an in 2008 he won nine and lost 14. For pitchers run support is key. A baseball team with great sluggers and average pitchers will do fine. In 2007 the Tampa Bay Devil Rays won 66 games. In 2008 the Rays won 97 games. Every single one of their pitchers did better because of run support. When drafting sluggers you can afford to break this rule for a really good player. Playing on a better team for a slugger means more runs, RBI’s, and a higher on base percentage. You get more runs because people will drive you in more. You get more RBI’s, because more people will be standing at third base. Lastly you will get a higher on base percentage because if a pitcher walks someone they will then have to face a better hitter next. Lets use the Mariners and the Rays again. In 2007 Ichiro hit had 111 runs, 68 RBI’s, and a .396 on base percentage. In 2008 he had 103 runs, 42 RBI’s, and a .361 on base percentage. Akinori Iwamura, of the Rays had 82 runs, 34 RBI’s, and a .359 on base percentage in 2007. In 2008 he had 91 runs, 48 RBI’s, and a .349 on base percentage. Sure his on base percentage dropped by .010 but he had a much better year. When you drafted players on good teams their confidence is higher which means a better year most of the time. So my list of teams I would draft from are the Blue Jays, Red Sox, Yankees, Rays, Twins, White Sox, Indians, Angels, A’s, Rangers, Braves, Marlins, Mets, Phillies, Astros, Cubs, Reds, D-Backs, Giants, and Rockies. I don’t plan on drafting any one from the Rays or Yankees though. Also I left the Brewers and Cardinals off for two reasons their pitchers and the fact that their not that heathy.

Young Guns- Dodgers

Andre Ethier

Andre Ethier has batted at least .300 during each of his four months in the big leagues.
Sportsillustrated.com
Andre Ethier is 26 years old. He graduated from Arizona State University in 2003. He was drafted by the Oakland A’s in the second round in 2003. Ethier has a carer batting average of .299, with 44 home runs, 196 RBI’s, 409 hits, and eleven stolen bases. He has a .981 fielding percentage in the outfield. He became a Dodger when he was traded on December 14, 2005 from Oakland for Milton Bradley, who is now with the Chicago Cubs. In his rookie year Ethier hit .308, with 11 home runs, 55 RBI’s, 122 hits, and five stolen bases in 126 games. He finished tied for fifth in rookie of the year voting behind Hanley Ramirez the winner, Ryan Zimmerman, Dan Uggla, Josh Johnson, and tied with Matt Cain. This season he hit .305, with 20 home runs, 77 RBI’s, 160 hits, and six stolen bases in 141 games. He was nominated as the Dodgers nominee for the 2008 National League Hank Aaron Award. He lost to Aramis Ramirez of the Chicago Cubs though. After Manny Ramirez was traded to the Dodgers Ethier and Ramirez became on fire. Ethier batted in the three hole and Manny batted cleanup or vis versa. It seemed like every day he or Manny was hitting a home run! He Ethier is 6’2 and weighs 210 pounds. Ethier has an MLBlog called Dining With Dre’ where he is a food critic. Ethier has never been an all-star. He went to the postseason twice in 2006 and 2008. In 2006 he had one at bat where he didn’t get a hit or walked. In 2008 he played in the divisional series and the NLCS. He batted .188, with zero home runs, zero RBI’s, six hits, and zero stolen bases in eight games. Andre may not have better stats than Russell Martin or Chad Billingsley but I think in the future he will best. It is to early to predict his carer because he hasn’t had his breakout year yet, but some could argue that 2008 was his break out year. I think though Ethier will get 3,000 hits.
Andre Ethier Photo
allposters.com
pe.com
dodgers.com 
Honorable Mentions
2. Russell Martin
3. Chad Billignsley
4. James Loney
5. Matt Kemp

World Baseball Classic- Red Sox Style

First- I’m sorry I didn’t blog yesterday I am taking this boring five day test over math, writing, reading comprehension, science, and tons more.
Second- The real news in baseball isn’t the World Baseball Classic, it is Barry Bonds! Click here to read this shocking story about him.
Third- Jeff Kent the legendary second baseman retired today. Kent has a pretty good shot at getting into the baseball hall of fame. More on that soon hopefully.
Forth- Jonathan Pabelbon avoided arbitration by signing a one year, $6.25 million dollar deal. Boston also signed Javier Lopez. Theo Epstein has yet to go in to arbitration with any player since becoming G.M. of the Red Sox. More on that soon.
Fifth- The Dodgers signed Jonathan Broxton and Russell Martin avoiding arbitration.
Sixth- The Red Sox traded David Aardsma to the Mariners for Fabian Williamson.
The Boston Red Sox have eleven major league players and five minor league players on the World Baseball Classic provisional rosters.
Jason Bay- Bay played for Canada in the 2006 World Baseball Classic. In three games Bay hit .455, with zero home runs, drove in none, and had five hits. Last season Bay hit .286, with 31 home runs, drove in 101, and had 165 hits. Bay will be a great move for team Canada. While he didn’t have great stats in 2006 I think he will have a good 2009 World Baseball Classic. 
George Kottaras- Kottaras will join Jason Bay on team Canada. Kottaras didn’t play in the 2006 World Baseball Classic. Last season in three games with the Red Sox he hit .200, had one hit, with no home runs, RBI’s, or stolen bases. The Red Sox will watch Kottaras carefully as a test to see how he does against major league talent.
Javier Lopez- Lopez will play for team Puerto Rico. Lopez did not participate in the 2006 World Baseball Classic. Last season with Boston he had a two and zero record, with a 2.43 ERA, and 38 strikeouts. Lopez should help team Puerto Rico. He would give team Puerto Rico a pretty good relief pitcher.
Mike Lowell-  Lowell will join Javier Lopez on team Puerto Rico. Lowell will play in the World Baseball Classic for his first time. Last year with Boston he hit .274, with 17 home runs, 73 RBI’s, and had 115 hits. The Red Sox will watch Lowell closely to see how his hip is. If it gets bad they may tell Lowell to sit out a game or sit on the bench for the rest of the tournament. I think his hip will be fine though.
Daisuke Matsuzaka- Dice-K will play for team Japan. Dice-K played in the 2006 World Baseball Classic. He had three wins no losses, an ERA of 1.28, and ten strike outs. Dice-K was a vital part in helping Japan win in 2006. He also won MVP in the 2006 World Baseball Classic. Last year with the Red Sox he had a record of 18-3, with 154 strikeouts, and an ERA of 2.90. I think Dice-K will do fine in the 2009 World Baseball Classic.
Hideki Okajima- Okajima will join Dice-K on team Japan. Okajima didn’t play in the 2006 World Baseball Classic. Last season he had a three and two record, with an ERA of 2.61, 60 strikeouts, and one save. Okajima will be great playing for Japan. he could help them to win another title, but the USA will win.
David Ortiz- Ortiz will play for team Dominican Republic. In 2006 while playing in the 2006 World Baseball Classic he hit .150, with three home runs, five RBI’s, and three hits in twenty at bats. Having three hits and three home runs means that all of his hits were home runs. In 2008 with the Red Sox he hit .264, with 23 home runs, 89 RBI’s, and 110 hits. Ortiz has a hurt wrist so he might not be able to play. He also is listed on the list of Red Sox players in the classic but not on the list of players for team Dominican Republic on MLB.com which is strange.
 Designated hitter David Ortiz of the Dominican Republic celebrated after hitting a home run in the second inning against Venezuela during the first round of the World Baseball Classic at The Ballpark at Disney on March 7 in Kissimmee, Fla.
Dustin Pedroia- Pedroia will play for my favorite team, team USA! Pedroia did not play in the 2006 World Baseball Classic. Last season he hit .326, with 17 home runs, 83 RBI’s, and stole twenty bases. He also won a golden glove, a silver slugger, and a MVP. Pedroia should be a  upgrade for team USA. In 2006 the USA had Chase Utley at second base.
Ramon Ramirez- Roman Ramirez will possibly join David Ortiz on team Dominican Republic. Ramirez didn’t play in the 2006 World Baseball Classic. Ramirez was traded from Kansas City to Boston for Coco Crisp this offseason. While with the Royals last year he had a record of three and two, with a 2.64 ERA, one save, and 70 strikeouts. The Red Sox will look at him if David Ortiz plays to see if any chemistry forms between them. As we all know ( Well not the Y*****s) chemistry wins championships.
Kevin Youkilis- Youkilis will join Dustin Pedroia on team USA making the left side of the infield all Red Sox. Youkilis did not play in the 2006 World Baseball Cassic. Last season Youk hit .312, with 115 RBI’s, 29 home runs, and stole three bases. He also started at first base in the 2008 all star game at Yankee Stadium. Youk will be a great ascent to team USA in 2009.
The World Baseball Classic is a time where Cubs and White Sox, Dodgers and Angels, and even Red Sox and Y*****s (Hey I’m serious about not putting the Y word in my entries) unite and cheer for Pedroia, Jeter, Derrek Lee, Carlos Quentin, Joe Saunders, and Jonathan Broxton on team USA.

Ortiz watched his second inning home run clear the fence as his team faced Venezuela in their World Baseball Classic first round game. At left is Venezuela's catcher Ramon Hernandez.Team USA shortstop Derek Jeter blew a bubble after throwing to first for a double play while forcing out Mexico's Luis Alfonso Garcia. Team USA won 2-0 on Tuesday.