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Wanted: Drugged and Alive

Wait? It’s June?! Isn’t all the PED talk suppose to wait until November-February? How else do we get through the baseball drought trying to avoid football, basketball, and hockey…

Braun and A-rod should have known. You can win a battle but that doesn’t mean you have won the war. And a war is exactly what the MLB office is attempting to win. A war on PED’s. And it’s going to start with a media sh!t storm.

ESPN’s Outside The Lines (the same people who broke the initial Braun case before his appeal) has recently broke news that Tony Bosch, the owner and operator of the Biogenesis clinic in Miami, is going to cooperate with the MLB’s requests.

Some are speculating that he’s trying to save his name from being tarnished by the media. Others believe he is trying to stay only moderately bankrupt and not even deeper in debt by avoiding court costs from the MLB prosecuting him. No one has even mentioned that there may be a cash incentive for him bringing MLB’s two most wanted criminals… so I’ll start that rumor here. He’s doing it for A TON of money.

But really, whether the players on that Biogenesis list are guilty or innocent, how can anyone surmount a case based on hand written pieces of paper or straight from the mouths of the lowest integrity set of business men on the planet. What if a piece of paper was found in someone’s pocket that said ‘I did it’ signed O.J. Would that be enough evidence to change the verdict? What if someone claimed they saw Lee Harvey Oswald in Seattle and not on the grassy knoll that day. Would that be enough evidence to changed the verdict (yes the original was overturned later in that case)?

How is MLB deeming there is enough integrity from these sources with very little proof of anything? I’m not arguing the players are innocent, I just thought there was a saying in the US that ‘you are innocent until proven guilty’ and not ‘you are guilty until proven innocent’.

I don’t want cheaters in the game but maybe they should enforce the basic rules first before trying to accuse people without evidence. Say, the maximum glove size for fielders (which is 12″). Or how about figuring out this replay thing for once by giving more angles and larger tv’s with High-Definition.

And at least one other writer supports the ‘lack of evidence and integrity’ theory.

It’s only day 1 of the stories… and I’m already sick of them.

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Milestone Post Informs Contestants About More Winners In 2012

Carlos Ruiz may not be a winner after running 270 feet on a single wild pitch, but more of you will be in the 2012 Home Run Derby.

There’s no catch… AND you don’t have to throw faster than Jamie Moyer to win these prizes.

Instead of paying out the HR Derby leader at the All-Star break and 2nd half totals, EVERY MONTH we will have a winner. The team that hits the most home runs from the First of the month through the Last day of the month will take home the monthly prize. That means every team will have a fresh chance to win EVERY MONTH. Plus, we will still have our prizes for the Top-5 Overall season HR total leaders.

This news comes on a milestone for our site… this post is officially the 100th post and by the time most of the readers read this April 25th, the site will have surpassed 20,000 visitors. Those milestones are thanks to you the readers and participants of the Kings of Cork over the past 3 years. And with the interest still building on the site, we don’t plan to be stopping any time soon.

Other noteworthy news:

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The Humber Games: Week Of April 16 In Review

How long before junior highs offer a class on “what NOT to post on social media”. Seriously, no one wants to know when you used the restroom or what you are thinking at every exact moment. And if you are going to tell me anyway, at least try not to offend people.

The Hunger Games is the #1 grossing movie for the fourth week in a row but the MLB has its own movie to battle for the #1 spot: The Humber Game.

We are on the cusp of history ourselves here at KingsofCork as we are about to cross some major milestones. Let’s take a look back on the second full week of the MLB season where history was actually made.

If you don’t follow the Big Show on a regular basis, you may have missed the 21st 21st Perfect Game in MLB history this past Saturday, April 21st. Phil Humber was deceptively dazzling against Seattle. He managed to throw only 96 total pitches which is the 7th fewest of the 21 perfect-os. In fact, he didn’t even got to a 3-ball count until the 9th inning when he almost blew the perfect game with a 3-0 count to Saunders before battling back and striking him out. The 26th batter sent a lazy fly ball out to right field where Alex Rios appeared to show boat and catch the fly ball one handed near shoulder height. Probably not Humber’s preferred method. Humber proceeded to work to another full count on the final batter who flailed at a final off-speed offering. Then rather than running to first-base, since the ball rolled to the backstop, he argued that he didn’t go around. The last strike call was questionable, but since the Galarraga incident, on the last strike of a perfect game looming, any bat movement from the batter is going to be called strike three and rightfully so. Now we just have to wait to see what Humber gets for a gift and what he gives as gifts.

Who Can Take Some Fastballs
That Are Letter High
Set A Yankee Record By Taking Three Big Fly
The “Grandy-Man” Can…

Curtis Granderson, aka The Grandy-Man, set a new Yankee record by being the first Yankee to accomplish a feat. Any time a player is the first Yankee to accomplish something, that is a feat in itself. What Granderson did on Thursday April 19 was take his first three plate appearances out of the park. That’s right he had 3 home runs in the first 4 innings. And he became the first Yankee to go 5-for-5 with 3 home runs in a game. Lou Gehrig is the only Yankee with more home runs in one game with the MLB record of 4. Granderson’s performance not only powered the Yankees past the Twins, but helped catapult thirteen teams in the Home Run Derby Standings. One team managed to move 28-places on Thursday.

Jamie Moyer became the oldest winning pitcher ever in the Major Leagues. He was 81-days older than the previous record holder, Jack Quinn who was a relief pitcher and not a starter. So bonus points to Jamie Moyer and his 78-mph fastball. He managed to strike out 1 batter by lulling the batter to sleep. Moyer isn’t finished either. His record age will just keep increasing this season as I project him to win a minimum of 8-games if he remains healthy. Moyer won’t quit the greatest game on Earth until his fastball speed is lower than his age, which gives him at least 10 more seasons.

Josh Hamilton continued to swing a hot stick this week but more impressively, he hit a towering home run at Fenway on Tuesday that traveled 469 ft in right-center field. What makes this home run so great is that it may be one of the closest home runs hit to the Ted Williams seat at Fenway. The seat commemorates Ted Williams 502ft home run hit on June 9, 1946.

Lastly, Matt Kemp is a beast. He has 9 home runs in 15 games which is a new Dodger record. In fact, his 9 home runs are single handedly keeping some HR Derby Teams in the hunt (Chicks Dig The Long Ball only has a 9-HR total.. all from Kemp). His record pace has him projected to hit 90+ home runs. Not to be outdone, his teammate, Dee Gordon, is on pace for 90+ stolen bases this season. For those that know me personally, I have been proclaiming (even before the season) that Dee Gordon has the best chance to steal 100+ bases this year. The record for a single team duo is a 48HR/75SB season by the 1996 Cleveland Indians Albert Belle and Kenny Lofton. Kemp and Dee got this!

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This Is The Year… What, It Could Happen

I asked “Who will win the AL pennant?”
Siri responded “The Kansas City Royals.”

People use Siri to answer all types of questions or problems.

This year, I’m using Siri to draft my fantasy baseball teams and pick my Home Run Derby team (I told her to pick a different player in Group E when she answered Nyjer Morgan). I’ll probably even let her fill out my March Madness Bracket since you can’t trust the expert picks anymore because, once again, the majority of the analysts have picked all number 1 seeds in the Final Four. How original. Well, when the basketball madness ends the true madness begins. Regular Season Baseball. And I won’t stand for obvious expectations (Yankees winning the East, Pujols hitting 40 homers, etc). So below is the Kings of Cork’s bold prediction list (warning: Some of these are outrageous).

  • A 100 steal season – No player has stolen 100 bases since Vince Coleman in 1987. But this is the year. Michael Bourn has the best shot, but Jose Reyes is a dark horse knowing Ozzie Guillen loves to run.
  • Jose Bautista doesn’t win the HR title for a 3rd straight season – Instead Giancarolo (Mike) Stanton will lead the Majors in long balls with 50. He will become the youngest home run champion since Juan Gonzalez in 1992 and he will become the youngest player to hit 50 HR in a single season.
  • Yu Darvish wins the AL CY Young – Going way out on a limb here but I do believe Yu is exceptional before the All-star break. A new pitcher with very little video footage spells disaster for opposing hitters. Yu will most likely tire and slump the second half. But if he doesn’t, it will take hitters a full season to figure out how to hit him.
  • Braun hits 0.400+ and puts hit critics to bed – No player has hit over 0.375 since Tony Gwynn and the 1994 strike (I think he would have made it to 0.400 if the season wasn’t shortened). What better way to prove his innocence than putting his name in the record books next to Ted Williams. Braun will need to change something soon in Spring Training because he is currently batting 0.111 with 1 hit. At least it doesn’t look too suspicious that his only hit is a home run.
  • Matt Moore K’s 300 – Randy Johnson was the last pitcher who struck out a dove 300+ hitters in 2002. Moore had 201 K’s in 155 innings pitched last season and rumors are he won’t be on an innings pitched limit this season. I can’t wait to see him pitch 200+ innings.
  • The Kansas City Royals win the AL Central – While the rest of the AL teams have been over paying for players past their prime, the Royals have been building a young army. With Hosmer, Butler, Moustakas, Escobar, Gordon, Cain, and Hochevar already tasting the Bigs with most of them under 26 years of age, its only a matter of time before Montgomery and Perez get their calls and makes this team elite. So the Royals may not win the Central over the defending Tigers, but the Royals will be 1 of the 2 AL Wild Cards in 2012.
  • The Yankees and the Red Sox miss the playoffs – With the Royals taking one of the Wild Cards, odds are the other Wild Card will come out of the AL East. But it won’t be the men in pin stripes for only the second time in the last 17 years. Even with their $200 Million payroll. That leaves the Red Sox winning the East right? Wrong. The AL Easy belongs to the Rays once again and the wild card goes to… the Jose Bautistas Blue Jays. No Yankees or Red Sox, the only problem with that is the post season will have the lowest TV ratings ever.

There are some of our unlikely but bold predictions. What do you think about them or which ones did we miss. Let us know in the comments section below.

Inside The Acquisitions’ Stadiums: Pineda/Montero

Sure, Target may be able to predict when you have a bun in the oven but can they predict the next hosts of the MLB Fan Cave. Probably not, but you could…

The MLB Fan Cave could be a baseball fan’s perfect dream. The opportunity to sit down and watch all 2430 games. And not only watch, but comment on each of the games. You get one roommate to share the entire experience with but the opportunity to share the experience with as many ball players who stop by (Axford, Nyjer, Big Pappi, etc…). And the lucky two roommates are simply baseball fans. MLB doesn’t choose them though, the fans do. So head on over to the MLB Fan Cave and fote for your favorite entries (don’t miss the guy who has tattoos of all 30 MLB Mascots).

Target may not be able to predict the MLB Fan Cave hosts. But if their software developers had software to emulate Jack Zduriencik’s brain, they could create an algorithm to predict the trade that occurred between the Yankees and Mariners. Did anyone see this coming? Maybe my subconscious did seeing as I dropped Pineda in a keeper league to stream pitchers in the playoffs. I forgot about the keeper option and instead of Pineda costing me a 16th rd pick (he’s currently sitting at an ADP of 89, or the equivalent of a 7th to 8th round pick), he will be on a different fantasy team this year.

So let’s go into the Acquisitions’ Stadiums on the most interesting trade of the 2012 offseason: Michael Pineda for Jesus Montero.

  • Have the Yankees won?

This may be the first acquisition that I actually like for the Yanks in years. Instead of going out and buying everyone’s middle age stars that are past their prime, they went out and got a young stud that should be a staple in their rotation for years to come. It seems the Yankee front office has finally figured out that you can’t win a championship by overpaying a bunch of middle age men. For how pathetic their pitching rotation has been in the previous years, Pineda is a step in the right direction. Pineda is a freakishly tall left hander. At 6foot7 plus 10.5 inches, he towers on the mound. His 95-mph fastball looks more like 110 coming in at a starting height of 8feet. Not to mention he has a wicked slider. But, that’s really all his repertoire has. He has a change-up but it isn’t anything special and he hardly throws it. Still, he managed to strike out 173 batters while only walking 55 in 171 innings. Before his collapse after June, his ERA was a minute 2.75 and a WHIP of 1.05. The first half of the 2011 season, this kid (he’s 23) was Strasburg but without the hype. But will he return to his first half stardom or continue his 5.00+ ERA flop from the second half? The Yankees are hoping they didn’t end up with another AJ Burnett. If they did, at least this one is cheaper.

  • Will Pineda prevail in pinstripes?

As mentioned before, Michael Pineda was unbelievable through mid-June. If the season would have ended June 20th, Pineda would have been the AL MVP instead of finishing 5th in voting last season. And now he’s moving from the pitcher friendly confines of Safeco field to the homer happy Yankee stadium. From his stats last season, you would think that Pineda must have tired and started giving up more gofer balls beginning in July. But nothing is further from the truth. In June, his GroundBall% was an awful 26.5%. Over the rest of the season, it began to climb until his GB% topped out at a whopping 46.8%. This was partially due to him beginning to rely less on his high fastball (53% to 47%) and more on his nasty slider (31% to 35%). However, not only is he changing stadiums, but his opponents in his new division are a tad bit better than the AL Worst West. The Blue Jays and Red Sox were in the top 6 in Runs scored in 2011. And all 4 of the Yankees division opponents were in the top 10 in home runs (3 of the 4 are in the top 5). Even though Pineda was a rookie last season, he did get some experience pitching against the AL East. Boston and Toronto banged him around for 18 runs in 23 innings last season. And Camden Yards also yielded 3 runs in 6 innings. His problems don’t end there. Pineda’s home vs road splits are not very favorable. Safeco, being a pitcher friendly park, was Pineda’s safe haven by yielding a 2.92 overall season ERA. While the road was unkind with a 4.40 ERA. Now apply the home run factor to Yankee stadium and this trade could be a disaster for the Yankees. In my opinion, I believe Pineda has the stuff to be a great pitcher in the big leagues. But I don’t think he will be as good as he could have been if he stayed on the West coast. I will not be drafting Pineda in any fantasy league this season unless his draft position drops considerably. I would project Pineda’s ERA to be above a 4.00 and he will only get double digit wins this season thanks to having one of the best offenses behind him. That just isn’t worth a 7th rd pick.

  • Have the Mariners sold the farm?

Griffey Power Hasn't Been Seen Since 1999 In SeattleThe Yankees have proved that a prolific offense will win you games but it won’t win you a World Series. So what were the Mariners thinking… King Felix and Pineda were one of the best young 1-2 punches in all MLB starting rotations. They would have been equivalent to the hype the 2011 Phillies rotation was suppose to deliver. However, Seattle hasn’t had a true power hitter since the Griffey, Edgar Martinez, and Arod days of ’99. The Mariners get one of the Yankees top prospects in catcher Jesus Montero. The addition of Jesus Montero brings a young bat back into town. He has limited big league at-bats, but in just 61 of them he still swatted 0.325 with 4 long balls. To put that into perspective, extrapolate that out to about 600 at-bats and he would have a line close to 40 homers and 120 rbi. He’s obviously something if the Mariners are willing to trade a pitcher finishing 5th in Rookie of the Year voting. But where will Montero get his playing time?

  • Will Montero recharge the power in the Mariners offense?

Montero WILL hit over 0.300 and WILL hit 20 home runs. Montero is that good of a young hitter. The only obstacle he has to overcome is the fact that Chone Figgens and Ichiro couldn’t get on base in 2011. The good news is that Ichiro will not be as bad as he was last season. I mean it’s Ichiro. Last season was the first year he did have 200+ hits are hit above 0.300. Montero has consistently hit around 18HR, 78RBI, and 0.290 in his last 3 seasons in the minors. And that’s only in about 120 games per year. Team him up in a younger lineup with Dustin Ackley (really, really like this kid) and Justin Smoak (finally out of Texas and getting a chance), Montero will be the powerhouse and RBI producer in the middle of Seattle’s lineup for years to come. There is only one problem in 2012. He most likely won’t qualify anywhere other than DH. Miguel Olivo only missed 32 games last season. Those 32 games could belong to Montero in 2012, but when will he get them to qualify him at catcher. As a DH only player, Montero has little value in fantasy leagues. Sure he will hit 0.300 with 20 home runs and 70+ RBI, but he’s eating up a valuable utility spot on fantasy rosters. Now if he gets catcher eligibility, he would be a top-10 catcher as a rookie. So keep an eye on Seattle’s spring training lineup. If Montero is getting more opportunities behind the plate than at DH, he may just be worth more than a 16th round pick.

– Pineda is being over valued. He’s a great young pitcher but the switch to the hitter heavy AL East and smaller ballparks are going to inflate his ERA and Whip. He isn’t worth a 7th-8th round draft pick. Still a good addition to a Yankee team who has been overspending in past years.
– The Mariners are finally dedicated to putting an offense back onto the field in 2012 and Montero will be the next great Seattle hitter. He needs to gain position eligibility to have more fantasy value in fantasy leagues. Unless your league has a DH position or multiple utility spots, hes not more than a late round flier (currently an ADP of 169). Wait for him next year if he goes before round 18. Unless he gets catcher eligibility, then he is going to be a top-10 catcher in 2012. Monitor his status in spring training.

Stay tuned for the next guest of Inside the Acquisition’s Stadiums: Yu Darvish.

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Kings of Cork 2011 All-Stars

Something to entertain you while you allegedly choke down 69 hot dogs on the Nation’s Birthday.

It’s the 2nd week of July which can only mean one thing… there’s no football, there’s no basketball, there’s no hockey, and there’s no more tennis. The last sport standing is baseball. The bad news.. the season is half over and coming soon to a city near you is a fantasy football agreement.

But, in a few days, you will be able to admire the 2011 season MLB greats. Voted on by us fans, we get to watch the league’s best duke it out for Bud Selig’s Love home field advantage in the World Series. Seriously, what ever happened to letting games end in a tie. As kids we are taught to have good sportsmanship, but all Bud taught me was that every game has to mean something ever since “the incident” from the 2002 All-Star game in Milwaukee.

With the All-Star game fast approaching, we also get to admire this season’s big boppers with a mild twist from season’s past. This year for the Home Run Derby, the MLB selected team captains to pick 3 other players each to compete in the competition (mainly because the league couldn’t convince any player to participate).

I’ll cover the Home Run Derby topic later this weekend, what this article is about is this season’s Home Run Derby All-Stars. If you only wanted to select the top hitters in the league, what would the lineup look like of the ultimate slugfest team. Forget defense, forget pitching, this is strictly about hitting the ball as far as you can every time you grab a hold of the bat.

Before I announce this season’s All-Star All-Power team, I have a little pop quiz for you. Below is a photograph of 10 positions (the batter counts as the DH). Each position has a player in the 120+ baseball history that has hit more single season home runs than any other player at that position (Centerfield had a tie but it was broke by the player who had fewer plate appearances in the season that they hit the record). To be eligible for the position, the player had to play at least 50% of his career games at that position. How many can you name? You can find the answers by simply clicking on each player’s position from the classic NES RBI Baseball game screenshot. Edit: Removed jpeg due to issues.

Back to this season. Below is your starting lineup for the MLB team that has the most power in 2011 (as of July 8th):

  • Zach Duke – Pitcher – The former Duke of Second Place!!! Pittsburgh, now of Arizona, can hardly brag. He has limited power but as a pitcher he does have this season’s current home run lead with 2. Yep, that’s correct, the league leader in home runs for a pitcher is two. What do you expect, he’s paid to pitch, not to hit. His home run total for his 6 year MLB career… also, two.
  • Brian McCann – Catcher – The backstop for the Duke is the Braves’ starting All-Star catcher. He has hit 14 homers so far which is tops for the catcher’s spot. He’s hit 8 of those round trippers in June so he may just be starting to heat up.
  • Mark Teixeira – 1B – Big Tex isn’t even going to play on July 12th. His name was left of the All-star team but his 25 home runs so far this season leads the power heavy position at firstbase. It’s no surprise that the Yankee’s have at least one name on this list, but it’s definitely not the only one.
  • Danny Espinosa – 2B – Also snubbed a spot on July 12th’s lineup, Espinosa has hit 16 dingers so far this season. Odds are if you own him in any fantasy leagues, you did not have this guy on your team after the draft. He is tied with the starter for the National League (Rickie Weeks) but Espinosa has a significantly lower amount of plate appearances this season.
  • Mark Reynolds – 3B – No surprise here. Mark Reynolds is a beast of a player and he’s paid per home run, not per strikeout (he holds the single season record of most strikeouts in a season). He also didn’t find a spot on the All-star roster but his 0.230 batting average may have something to do with it. Still, he has hit 20 home runs this season which is the most at the hot corner.
  • Troy Tulowitzki – SS – At least Tulo is a reserve this year. He’s also about to get rolling since he seems to be a second half performer. Who can forget last season’s ridiculous 15 home runs in September. He currently has 17 home runs this season and hasn’t hit more than 4 in a month besides April. It’s only a matter of time before the ball starts finding the bleachers for Tulo.
  • Jose Bautista – OF – Where did this guy come from? He hit a league leading 54 home runs last season and is currently leading the league again with 29 long balls. Fans are taking notice of this guy since he just received a record 7.4 million votes for the most votes all-time by a player. He previously had 59 career home runs and in his past two seasons he has eclipsed that mark. And has only failed to lead the league in home runs for 48 days of the past 230 regular season days (dating back to May 23, 2010).
  • Curtis Granderson – OF – I told you there would be another Yankee. Granderson is on pace to destroy his career best home runs in a single season (which is 30 in his last season as a Tiger). He currently has 25 home runs and recently has been a popular replacement for Justin Morneau in the Kings of Cork Home Run Derby. He also found a roster spot on the 2011 All-Star game (no surprise either as the Yankees win most popularity contests).
  • Lance Berkman – OF – Welcome back to relevance Big Puma. You may have been snubbed by the Yankees, but you have been reborn in the arches of St Louis. He will get to strut his stuff in the All-Star game on Tuesday and rightfully should. He has 23 home runs so far this season after posting only 14 last year. He’s threatening his career record of 45 which he hit in 2006. As long as it isn’t against the BrewCrew, I’m rooting for Fat Elvis.
  • David Ortiz – DH – The captain of the 2011 AL Home Run Derby team seems to have picked a brilliant team. All four of his team members hit home runs on July 7th, including him. He now leads the DH roll with 18 moonshots. Big Pappi is the man and I’m glad to see him swinging the big stick again after almost being left to die with 1 home run in April and May of 2009. I hope he hits well enough on Monday for a chance to win back to back Home Run Derby Championships.

Remember to tune into the slug fest this Monday, July 11th. I like all the contestants this year but I will secretly be rooting for the BrewCrew members.

A Hawk Named Randy

I think I finally have the answer to the age old question: If you were reincarnated what would you like to return as?

My answer: The Cooper’s Hawk trapped inside Milwaukee Brewers’ Miller Park.

This Hawk had the best seats in the house during the Brewers win over the Astros on Sunday April 24th. He hung out in the outfield grass for almost an entire inning. Perched himself high in the rafters for a bird’s eye view of Rickie’s home run. And he terrorized fans for some Usinger sausages and even attempted to train Nyjer Morgan to slide. He even managed to open a twitter account in between innings and is quickly learning the language of tweeting.

But the hawk’s most important trait is his name. I believe he tried to tell the world that his name is Randy. No not like creepy Uncle Randy, but more like Randy Johnson. In the middle of an inning, Randy (the hawk) swooped out from the sky to do his best Randy Johnson impersonation and made pigeon feathers fly above second base. On a scale of 0 to 10 on Randy Johnson resemblance, I give it an 8. But I’ll let you be the judge. Check out the freeze frame of the hawk Randy (or watch the video footage of the hawk’s terror here) followed by the real Big Unit’s feat in a 2001 spring training game.

A close runner-up in naming the hawk was Dion after Dion James of the Braves who hit a dove with a fly ball to left field which should have been an out but was awarded a double. A distant third was Dave after Dave Winfield who struck a seagull with a warm-up throw, but his bird was not in flight like the other two men. Winfield was arrested for this incident and as of right now Randy the Hawk is still at large.

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Don’t Touch The Big Red Button

Could life get any better on this Sunday afternoon? It finally feels like summer in the northern Midwest (temps nearing 80F). Amazing storms are rolling through the plains (everyone keep safe). Tiger is crafting a masterful comeback on the last day of the Masters climbing the leader board with ease (Tiger showing the new young guns how to play golf). The Brew Crew are playing the Cubs and I get to listen to Uecker announce the game while the Masters are on in High Def. AND the AL East is collapsing (Are the Red Sox and Rays really 1 and 7).

The only thing that could make this any better is having the Yankees and Rays switch records.

Both the Rays and Red Sox opened the 2011 season 0-6, but both got off the schnide on Friday (I dare you to click that link). The Rays did it off the ChiSox by rallying from three down in the 9th inning to score five and win by two, while the Red Sox got their first victory from their AL East nemesis, the Yankees. Boston fans finally rejoiced and thought, just maybe, that the Red Sox were finally on their way to winning games.

The best part about the Red Sox horrific start: no it’s not the fact that they spent $172MM (this doesn’t include the Adrian Gonzalez contract extension which could push $150MM), the best part is watching the entire Red Sox nation squirm in their seats that their team is starting the 2011 season this poor. I’ve already discussed the life of a fan of a sub-0.500 sports team and listening to the panic of fans from one of the big three teams gives me warm fuzzy feelings.

The worst part about the Red Sox start: having to put up with all of the major sports media covering ‘the end of the world‘. Seriously, ESPN, Yahoo, CBS, and SI need to stop being so east coast biased (click that link, it’s ESPN even calling themselves out or this one where they are called out by others). The NL Central (Cubs get it all) and the AL/NL West (Giants get it all) want some love too. Just to put all the talk to rest, there has only been two teams in MLB history have started 0-6 and made the playoffs (the ’74 Pirates and the ’95 Reds), so history says there is still a chance for the Red Sox. Plus the season is 162 games for a reason and we are through only seven. When the season hits the end of May, then everyone can start making a big deal about poor starts. No valid conclusions can be drawn from a sample size of 7 out of 162 (this also applies to Pick Me Out A Winner, Bobby and Warning Track Power in the Home Run Derby). So I beg of you major sports media… please stop covering the coasties’ sports teams and start spreading the coverage with the Royals blistering start with one of the youngest aged teams in the Majors (I try my best on covering all divisions of the MLB but may be bias towards the Brewers and NL Central, so if you see an interesting bit of MLB news, don’t hesitate to drop me an email about it). Tune in for the Red Sox 1-8 start tonight on ESPN’s SUnday Night baseball against the Yankees.

On other side notes, Casey McGehee (the golden boy of a lot of the Wisconsin based HR Derby teams) has come off the bench and the schnide by hitting a game winning 8th inning two-run home run of the Cubs’ Kerry Wood to lead take the first Brewers/Cubs series of the season!!! Thome also came off the HR schnide for all you Twins fans but not enough to beat the Billy Beane’s A’s.

It Could Be, It Might Be… It Is, A Home Run!

(If this clip doesn’t look familiar, I expect you to go to MLB.com and watch one of the greatest moments in baseball history)

With the first pitch of the season looming in the near future, its time for us to start thinking about home runs. After all, that is what this website was created for in the first place.

Opening day is on a Thursday for the first time since the 1970’s (no, I cannot remember that one) and we are blessed with five games versus the typical one game for opening day. Most of us are Brewers, Cardinals, and Cubs fans and two-thirds of us get to enjoy a game on Thursday (sorry Cubs fans).

The Braves at the Nationals and Tigers at the Yankees are the two early games on opening day and, most likely, a home run will be hit (Yankee stadium is a launching pad) in one of these games.
So what I really want to know is who do YOU think will hit the first home run of 2011:
[poll id=”4″]

Don’t agree with any of the choices? Tell me who you think will mash the first home run in the comments section below.

Well everyone was wrong (maybe the ‘other’ was right but they didn’t say who they thought it would be)… Jason Heyward for the second time in his TWO year career, hit a Homer in his first At Bat of the season. His was the first of 2011 by hitting it in the second inning off of Livan Hernandez.

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What’s The Logic Behind Rooting For Your Favorite Baseball Team?

Something to read while waiting for the spring to actually arrive during Spring Training.

Just a quick post about an item sent to me on what I thought was good enough to share with the rest of the team.

Click on the photo for a larger image.
Baseball Flow Chart

I take no credit for this. All of it goes to the InterpretationByDesign.com guys… and The Master Batters for emailing it to me.