Tagged: Miguel Tejada

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.

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Position Problems

Congrats to wezz over at Major League Baseball: Through the Eyes of a UK Red Sox Fan for getting the answer to yesterday’s trivia. The question was Which pitcher holds the major league record for most grand slams allowed (10)? The answer was hall of famer, Nolan Ryan.

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So the World Baseball Classic is officially underway, yet two teams have position problems. The USA and the Dominican Republic.

United States of America

Who is going to be team USA’s closer. There are so many options. So I decided the best way to decide would be to look at every candidate.

-Brian Fuentes

The main reason that there is a hole hear is because of him and Joe Nathan. Nathan decided to skip the classic while Fuentes said he will only participate if the USA goes on to the second round due to family issues. Fuentes just signed with the Angels this offseason. Fuentes was a three time all-star with the Rockies. Odds 4-1 The fact that he will not be in the first round opens up the door to someone else but he could become the closer in the second round.

Heath Bell

Bell does not have much experience at closer. His whole carer he has been a setup man and because Trevor Hoffman signed with the Brewers he became closer for the Padres. Bell only has two saves in his five year carer. Odds 25-1 Bell might work for the Padres but he will not work for team USA.

-Jonathan Broxton

Last season the Dodgers had two closers, Takashi Saito and Broxton. Now that Saito signed with the Red Sox Broxton is the Dodgers only closer. Broxton can bring some heat and is a gamer. He handles the pressure great. Odds 7-1 The only thing that hurts his chances are the fact that he does not have as much experience as some other guys on the team.

-J.J. Putz

Putz is a great choice. He has experience which this team kind of lacks. He knows how to handle pressure and can throw heat. The Mets have a gift with Putz because now they have three all-star closers. Billy Wagner, Fransisco Rodriguez, and Putz. Odds 3-1. Putz is a lot like Broxton just Putz has more experience. It is very possible that team USA will switch off between Fuentes and Putz. 

-Brad Ziegler

You probably remember Ziegler. I mean he tossed 39 scoreless innings last year in a row as a rookie! Ziegler has a slight advantage because he throws sidearm and it is possible that some players from other countries have never seen a sidearmer pitch. The one thing that seems to kill everyone’s chances is experience. Last year was Ziegler’s first. He pitched in 47 games with eleven saves. Odds 10-1 Ziegler is very promising but I just do not think he is ready just yet to be the closer in the WBC.

Dominican Republic

All right I am sure by know that you have all seen that A-Roid will not be playing in the WBC due to a torn labrum in his hip. So that opens third base up. So here are his possible replacements.

-Adrian Beltre

Adrian Beltre is the only other third baseman on team Dominican Republic’s roster. Last season he made fourteen errors at third and won a Golden Glove. He also has a good bat. In 2008 he hit .266 with 25 home runs. Odds 6-1 The fact that he is the only other third baseman helps him a ton.

-Robinson Cano

Robinson Cano is a second baseman for the Yankees and has played a total of zero games at third base. He has a .982 carer fielding percentage at second though. His bat is decent. Last season he hit .271 with fourteen home runs. Odds 25-1 He has never played a single game at third which just ruins his chances. He he was faster or had a better glove I might make the odds 15-1 but he would still not get the job.

-Hanley Ramirez

Hanley Ramirez is a regular shortstop and has played zero games at third base. The three things that help him though are his glove, bat, a wheels. Ramirez made only twenty-two errors last season at shortstop. His bat is great too. In 2008 he hit .301 with 33 home runs, and 67 RBI’s. The last thing that helps him is he is fast. He stole 35 bases last year. Odds 8-1 I really have nothing bad to say about him but he just has not played at third base.

-Jose Reyes

Jose Reyes is the shortstop for the Mets and is another guy who has played zero games at third base. Reyes though has a great glove. He made only seventeen errors at shortstop in 2008. He is a great contact hitter and his .297 average kind of proves it. Reyes also stole 56 bases last season! Odds 17-1 Reyes has all the tools of a third baseman but just doesn’t have enough power in my opinion. He also will probably be the starting shortstop.

-Miguel Tejada

Miguel Tejada is the shortstop for the Houston Astros and has played one game of third base back in 1999 with the Oakland A’s. Not a single ball was hit to him though. Tejada did not have the best season ever last year but did manage to hit .283 with thirteen home runs, and 66 RBI’s. He also stole seven bases. Odds 4-1 Tejada played third in a game against the Cardinals and did not make an error. 

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All right here is today’s question. “Who is credited with being the first fielder to wear sunglasses at his position.”

Hint- His last name is the first name of a NFL star

Photo Credits

-Sorry guys no photos this time. Extra the next few days, I promise.

Abreu the Angel

I have had it with steroids in baseball. Sure Miguel Tejada didn’t take steroids but he lied about them. From now on the word steroid is banned on this blog unless we are making fun of the Yankees or that the one in a billion chance that David Ortiz took steroids becomes true.

Bobby Abreu
Today outfielder Bobby Abreu signed a one year five million dollar contract. The deal also includes incentives. This deal is a perfect example of the effect the economy is having on baseball. It seemed like yesterday he was getting twenty million! The deal is still pending a physical though. Abreu turns 35 in March will lead an already talented batting order with Torri Hunter and Vladimir Guerrero. The other five outfielders Hunter, Guerrero, Gary Matthews Jr., Reggie Willits, and Juan Rivera (who mostly plays D.H.) are all righties and Abreu is a lefty. Last season with the Yankees Abreu hit .296 with twenty home runs, 100 RBI’s, 22 stolen bases, 180 hits, and a .984 fielding percentage. Abreu has played thirteen major league seasons with the Houston Astros, Philadelphia Phillies, and the New York Yankees. In his carer Abreu has batted .300 with 241 home runs, 1,084 RBI’s, 1,946 hits, 318 stolen bases, and a .984 fielding percentage. Abreu mostly plays right field and Vladimir Guerrero is currently the right-fielder. Abreu will most likely move to left making Reggie Willits sit on the bench. Abreu is a two time all-star won a 2005 Golden Glove, the 2005 Home Run Derby (pictured), and a Silver Slugger in 2004. In the Home Run Derby he hit 24 home runs in the first round a record that was broken by Josh Hamilton (28) at Yankee Stadium in 2008. Hamilton though did not win because he lost to Justin Morneau of the Twins in the finals. Abreu hit six home runs in the semis and hit eleven out of the park in the finals. This is going to be a good move by the Angels who I think with this move are the favorites in the A.L. West over the Oakland A’s. The A’s signed Jason Giambi who took ste****** (hey I’m serious about what I said ay the top) back when he played with the A’s before. They also traded for outfielder Matt Holiday this offseason.
Could Bobby Abreu don Yankee pinstripes by the season's end.
Photos
1- mlbfrontoffice.com
2- nytimes.com
3- sportsillustrated.com
4-nj.com