For the 90th year of the Midsummer Classic, baseball turns its sights to Progressive Field (formerly Jacobs Field or “The Jake”) in Cleveland, Ohio. The last time the mid-summer classic was played in Cleveland was in 1997. Now every year there is always a lot of discussion and some of it a little dated about how the teams are put together. No system will ever be perfect. Fans don’t always get it right and managers won’t either, nor the commissioner’s office. The fact that the players are able to vote for participants was a great choice and they know who is deserving. Regardless of who should or shouldn’t be in the game lets just accept that the best players will always be involved one way or another. Here are my all-stars keeping with the rules that every team be represented and a total of 32 players for each league.
AVG – Batting Average
ERA – Earned Run Average
HR – Home Runs
RBI – Runs Batted In
SV – Saves
BAA – Batting Average Against
WHIP – Walks/Hits Per Innings Pitched
K – Strikeouts
Stats are accurate as of July 5
* – asterisk indicates starter Continue reading
NL MVP – 1B Paul Goldschmidt – St. Louis Cardinals
AL MVP – OF Mike Trout – Los Angeles Angels
NL Cy Young – Aaron Nola – Philadelphia Phillies
AL Cy Young – Gerrit Cole – Houston Astros
NL Rookie of the Year – OF Victor Robles – Washington Nationals
AL Rookie of the Year – OF Eloy Jimenez – Chicago White Sox
NL Manager of the Year – Craig Counsell – Milwaukee Brewers
AL Manager of the Year – Rocco Baldelli – Minnesota Twins
NL Division Winners – Los Angeles Dodgers, Philadelphia Phillies, Milwaukee Brewers
NL Wild Card Winners – Colorado Rockies, St. Louis Cardinals
AL Division Winners – Houston Astros, New York Yankees, Cleveland Indians
AL Wild Card Winners – Boston Red Sox, Minnesota Twins
NLCS – Dodgers over Brewers
ALCS – Yankees over Astros
World Series – Dodgers over Yankees in 6 games
* – indicates new to team
+ – indicates injury
1. Los Angeles Dodgers
Two straight World Series appearances, but no title to show for it. Third time’s the charm?
2. Colorado Rockies
With a pitching staff that is quickly developing into a force they should be contenders with their stacked lineup as well.
3. San Diego Padres
While the pitching staff isn’t expected to match what their lineup is capable of, they should push for a .500 record this year.
4. Arizona Diamondbacks
They quickly traded away Paul Goldschmidt once the offseason started and it immediately sucked the life out of the franchise.
5. San Francisco Giants
This is going to be the last time we see Bruce Bochy in the dugout managing a baseball team. Too bad it wasn’t under better circumstances.
Player to Watch: 3B Nolan Arenado – Colorado Rockies
Best Acquisition: 3B Manny Machado – San Diego Padres
New Kid on the Block: SS Fernando Tatis Jr. – San Diego Padres Continue reading
Normally when a team from Boston meets a team from Los Angeles for a title series, it involves the Celtics and the Lakers in the NBA. This time will be a bit different in that it’s never happened in baseball. Well, technically it did when the Red Sox played the Brooklyn Robins (affiliated with the now LA Dodgers) in the 1916 World Series, but we will overlook that for now. Boston looks to win their fourth World Series in the last 15 seasons and the Dodgers have returned hoping to remedy their 7-game series defeat from last years World Series. Continue reading
Houston Astros vs. Boston Red Sox
It really wasn’t even close, but the defending champion Astros showed why they should still be considered the favorites with their sweep of the Cleveland Indians in the Division Series. Continue reading