Party like it’s 1985!…or ’86.

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Here we go again. The World Series is set up with the Kansas City Royals playing the New York Mets and it just seems like it’s going to be a good one. For some good predictions on not just the World Series, but all the awards being given out at the end of the season as well, you should check out this blog. 

So I predicted the Chicago Cubs playing the Toronto Blue Jays in the World Series. I was obviously wrong. I didn’t think the Mets inexperienced rotation could take their team this far into the postseason and I thought the Jays line up was going to be too much for the Royals ball club to handle.

So here we are. You have two teams hungry for a championship. Neither team has hoisted the World Series trophy in over 20 years. (The Royals winning in 1985 and the Mets winning in 1986.) What do you think? The Mets have 4 young guns with Matt Harvey, Jacob deGrom, Noah Syndergaard, and Steve Matz facing an experienced Royals line up including Eric Hosmer, Lorenzo Cain, Salvador Perez, and Ben Zobrist.

As you read in my last article, the Royals lost in an unforgettable World Series last year in 7 games to the San Francisco Giants. They were the Cinderella story last year, but the clock struck midnight just too soon on them, and they don’t want that to happen again this time around.

Now you have the Mets being the underdog because let’s face it folks…no one really thought they were going to even make the playoffs this year. Me, along with many other baseball fans, thought the Washington Nationals were going to take that division. But the Mets pitching and timely hitting is what brought them here and they will ride the momentum from here on out, or will they?

Making a prediction for this World Series match up is definitely a tough one. But I’m going to go with my gut and say that pitching wins championships, and the Mets rotation  definitely has the upper hand in that category. If, however, the Royals can get to the starting pitcher early and it becomes the bullpen’s game, you never know.

I will sign off by saying that the New York Mets will be winning the 2015 World Series in 7 games. It’s going to be a great 7 games, but the Big Apple will be partying like it’s 1986.

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The New York Mets…how?

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As I sit here typing, I keep shaking my head with confusion because I’m about to talk about how the New York Mets are one win away from going to the World Series. Yes, I said that right, the New York Mets. This is the team that has been known as a joke for the past few years now. I didn’t think they were going to be anything special.

Looking at their opening day roster this year, I wouldn’t have thought they would be in the position they are today. Needless to say, their pitching has been absolutely lights out behind Matt Harvey, Jacob deGrom, and Noah Syndergaard. Also, the acquisition of Yoenis Céspedes was nothing but a success. You can say he put the team on his back and brought them to the postseason. But really… the Mets?

When the postseason was about to begin, I was having the Mets out in the first round. Granted, their pitching rotation was stacked, but you have two rookies in there with Syndergaard and Steven Matz, who I didn’t think was ready to take on the powerful Dodger squad. Also, you had Matt Harvey ending the regular season with question marks because no one knew if manger Terry Collins was going to let him pitch without a pitch count since he just had Tommy John a year ago and he surpassed his inning pitched mark this season. So now you have Jacob deGrom being your true ace that you can rely on and can guarantee a W. With deGrom being the only confident arm in the rotation in my eyes, I didn’t think this was going to be the Mets year.

And the offense? Really? Was anyone expecting Daniel Murphy to be having this type of postseason? He is hitting home runs left and right. Also, I just wouldn’t feel confident having to put Travis d’Arnaud, Wilmer Flores, and Michael Conforto in my line up against a very strong Cubs line up. But what I’ve mentioned before, pitching wins championships and the Cubs strikeout a lot.

It’s just… the Mets.

I don’t know, maybe it’s just me. Maybe I just think the Mets are a boring team to watch. Their pitching is exciting because they have made this Cubs team look foolish but I don’t know, I may just want this dreaded 107 year old curse to end. I got excited with everyone else because the Cubs just beat the unstoppable St. Louis Cardinals and now they’re having trouble with… the New York Mets.

But we can have the World Series determined tonight if the Royals beat the Blue Jays and the Mets sweep the Cubs, so tune in because I’m sure all four teams will give it their all.

It’s just… the Mets.

Are the Cubs the real deal?

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IS THIS THE YEAR!?

I can picture it now. Game 7 of the World Series, Jon Lester is working on a complete game shut out, and the fans are about to witness history. Lester hurls his go-to cutter and rings up the batter. THE CHICAGO CUBS ARE THE 2015 WORLD SERIES CHAMPIONS!!!!

Not so fast.

This young team is very talented. 97 wins to back that up. Also, they have two big time pitchers with Cy Young candidate, Jake Arrieta, and postseason star, Jon Lester. The Cubs spent the big bucks this season to pick up Lester and this is exactly why they got him, to bring his postseason success to the Windy City and end this dreaded curse. But they first have to get by Pittsburgh in the N.L. Wild Card game. That’s going to be a challenge with Garret Cole on the mound. On a cool October night in Pittsburgh, the only thing that will be hot is Cole’s flame throwing, 98 mile per hour fastball.

Now don’t get me wrong here. The Cubs have a pretty good pitcher throwing for them tonight with Jake Arrieta. He will be bringing his sub-2 ERA to Pittsburgh and I will be shocked if either team scores more than 3 runs.

So let’s say the Cubs grind out a win in the Steel City and they head to the NLDS where they will play the Cardinals. This is the one series where I can see them being pretty successful. The Cardinals are missing Adam Wainwright and Carlos Martinez from their starting rotation and, as we all know, pitching wins championships. So I personally think they will beat St. Louis and face the Dodgers or Mets.

This is where it gets interesting.

The Dodgers and Mets have a pretty stacked rotation. While the Mets have Jake deGrom, Noah Syndergaard, and the Dark Knight, Matt Harvey, the Dodgers carry Clayton Kershaw and Zack Greinke; all of those pitchers I have mentioned have strikeout stuff. If you check out this stat, the Cubs don’t do well with pitchers that seem to have the ability to strikeout any hitter they see. This makes me worried that the Cubs magical season may end in the NLCS. It’s pretty simple, if you don’t score, you don’t win.

So there you have it. I have to break it to all the Cub fans out there, but you have to wait another year to win the glamorous championship. But I don’t think you have to worry because it may be coming in the next few years.

M-V-P! M-V-P!

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As the 2015 regular season is coming to an end and we all gear up for yet another great postseason, where legends are made, and many tears will be shed, we also have to get ready to see who the MVP’s will be in each talented league.

For the American League, Josh Donaldson is my front runner. If it wasn’t for him, I don’t think the Blue Jays would be saying they came in first place in their heavy-powered division. His 41 home runs, 123 RBI’s, and batting average just below .300, you have to believe there is no one else in the American League that is even comparable to Donaldson’s 2015 season. You can say that Chris Davis, Nelson Cruz, and even Miguel Cabrera can be mentioned in the MVP race. But Davis and Cruz weren’t really consistent in the big three categories (batting average, home runs, and runs batted in). Also, Cabrera was injured for some of the season, so I believe he is out of contention. For what Donaldson did for the city of Toronto and the numbers he put up, there is no question in my mind that he will be smiling to the cameras with the MVP trophy in his hand.

Now for the National league, there are a couple names to be talked about. I will first mention the player I think should get the award, and that’s Bryce Harper. Granted that the Washington Nationals don’t have a lot to smile about after this season’s meltdown, Harper was the fan favorite down in D.C. Before this season began, many sport writers believed that he was one of the most overrated players in all of Major League Baseball.

Let’s just say he proved them wrong.

His .331 batting average, 42 dingers, and 99 RBI’s was the only constant offensive power the Nationals had all year.

One other player you should think about spoiling Harper’s MVP parade is Colorado Rockies’s third basemen Nolan Arenado. He exploded with 42 home runs and a Major League leading 130 RBI’s with a .287 batting average. No one really knows about his career year because his team was in the basement of their division.

So there are my predictions. Love em’, hate em’, disagree with em’? Feel free to comment back and share your opinions!

Big Bucks Spent, No Reward…again

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With the 2015 season ending and everyone getting ready for the offseason rumors to heat up like the oven on Thanksgiving, let’s go back to the 2015 season for the Boston Red Sox and see what the biggest disappointment was for this ball club. I’ll just start off and talk about the big, large, slow, and… did I mention big? third baseman for the Boston Red Sox, Pablo Sandoval. I will try to keep it PG here when I talk about the Panda. I will admit that when I first found out about the signing, I thought he was going to be fine. This was before I knew what the pitching rotation was going to look like on opening day, but with his playoff experience, I hopped on the Panda Bandwagon and believed he was going to be a more positive signing than a negative one.

Boy, was I wrong.

Seeing him bat righty was laughable to say the least. His 3 singles and one walk in 47 at bats was just not doing the job. I think a chicken with its head cut off would probably make better contact than Pablo hitting righty. But don’t say the word “chicken” in front of him, because he will probably get hungry. It came to the point where near the halfway point of the season, the coaching staff finally made him bat from the left side permanently. That still didn’t help him because at the end of the 2015 season, he hit a mediocre .245 batting average, just edging out his weight at 240lbs. His weight has always been a problem in his career, but this looks like an all time high. After leaving San Francisco where they were watching his weight, it seems like Boston didn’t say they were going to do that. He looks bigger, slower, and not someone I would want as my everyday third baseman. Has he won three World Series? Yes. Is he one of the best playoff hitters in the game? Yes. But has there been former teammates saying that he is cancer in the locker room? Yes. Just ask Aubrey Huff. And if the team he plays for doesn’t watch his weight, will he just eat anything he sees? Just watch the Red Sox and you will see for yourself. Can you tell I don’t like Pablo Sandoval?

As I am cooling off about the Sandoval struggle, I began to notice a specific trend. A trend that isn’t really a good one to hear if you’re a Red Sox fan. Back in 2011, the Red Sox decided to go “sexy” and get some big time players and spend the big bucks for them. Speedy outfielder Carl Crawford and power hitting first baseman Adrian Gonzalez were both players from small market ball clubs (Tampa Bay and San Diego, respectively) and coming to Boston. An organization where if they aren’t contenders, the entire season is a failure. If you don’t know how the 2011 season went, I recommend you look it up at your own time because I don’t think you would want to hear about it from me.

What I am getting at is that the “sexy” approach hasn’t worked well for the Boston Red Sox. Crawford and Gonzalez weren’t ready for the media, expectations, and overall atmosphere in Boston. Now let’s fast forward to the offseason before the 2015 season began. The Red Sox decided to spend 88 million dollars on the injury prone, streaky hitting, and NON OUTFIELDER Hanley Ramirez. A shortstop/third baseman that was turned into a left fielder. Ramirez will be entering the 2016 season as the starting first baseman for the Red Sox, another experiment where we are all going to have to and wait and see if that will be a disaster like Hanley trying to take on left field and that big wall out there. And then 95 million dollars on Pablo Sandoval…you know the issues there.

So, is getting big named players the best idea for the Boston Red Sox? It clearly wasn’t the plan in 2013. They got good clubhouse guys for cheap money and they all meshed perfectly. No new big names added, but merely players that did their job, did what they were told to do without any issues, and played the game hard every day. That plan won a World Series. They also had a pitching staff that the one we were forced to watch night in and night out this season couldn’t compare to.

With the off season among us and block buster deals hoping to be made for your favorite team, the Red Sox have a lot of work to do. Let’s say I was in charge of the Boston Red Sox. What do you think I should do first? Ooooh I don’t know…*cough cough* trade Sandoval *cough cough.*, but that is just a dream of mine, so we are just going to have to wait and see.

Steroids in Baseball: Illegal or Entertaining

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Barry Bonds, Mark McGwire, and Sammy Sosa. These players are known to be villains in baseball for their use with steroids. They have lied about taking them and then got caught. So not only are they known as villains because they cheated their way to fame, they are also known to be liars.

But what if I said that these players actually helped baseball when they were destroying baseballs and cranking them out of the stadiums. Let’s be honest here, baseball was much more popular in the late 90’s when juiced up muscle heads would step into the box and the fans were just waiting to see the ball take liftoff. But first let’s talk about the fans. The stadiums still get filled and will continue to get filled, but not with true fans. It’s sad to say that people go to a game to post a “selfie” with the field in the background to post it on social media. They don’t go to appreciate the game anymore. IT’S AMERICAS PASTIME, PEOPLE. Back in the 90’s and early 2000’s, people went to see all the big meaty hitters show off their skills.

Now I may get some nasty thoughts on this, but what if I said that it would be a good idea to allow steroids in Major League Baseball? Think about it, it would bring the electricity and excitement back onto the field. Now a days, you see more dominance in pitchers than in hitters. When I go to a baseball game, I appreciate every aspect of the game. Whether it’s a pitchers duel or a slugfest, I will be satisfied either way when I walk out of the stadium. But when someone who doesn’t know much about baseball strolls into the stadium and doesn’t know what is going on, they will find a ball hit into the crowd more entertaining than two pitchers being on their game and getting everyone out. Now I am NOT promoting kids to start taking steroids, but if players who make it to the show willingly decide that they want to take steroids even though it will may cause the risk of injury later on, great, let them do it. You have to remember that this is a business and if you aren’t successful, you may have to find another profession. So if this drug allows them to be successful in this league, let them use it.

Also, if you’re trying to tell me that players aren’t taking steroids any more because the league is now “becoming more strict,” stop lying to yourself. It amazes me how players still have ways to hide the drug in their system.

Do I think that Major League Baseball will ever allow players to use steroids whenever they want? Absolutely not. But do I think that if they did, would the teams be making a lot more money due to their stadium getting sold out every game because fans want to see a home run derby? Yes, not doubt it my mind.

 

We peaked in high school, so now we blog.