Anthony Rizzo: The Chicago Cubs locked this youngster up for 7 years to he is that good already. Size, power, and athleticism are just a few of the great qualities that Rizzo has. Rizzo was born in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. However, he does have Italian roots and he did play in the WBC for team Italy. So far, he has 26 home runs in 204 career games. We can expect that number to increase dramatically. He is a first baseman and bats left. It looks like the Cubs will try to hang on to their centerpiece for as long as possible.
Jurickson Profar: From Willemstad, Curacao, Profar has already been selected once this past WBC. He played for the Netherlands, who managed to go to the final four in the WBC, only to lose against the WBC champions, Dominican Republic.
Profar is a switch hitter, and the Texas Rangers are trying to move him from the infield to the outfield so that he can have the opportunity of being an every day player.
Profar is the number one prospect in all of baseball, and that comes with no surprises. What makes Profar so great is his versatility, speed and power. If the Rangers are able to move him to the outfield, I expect Profar to stay there for a long time. Continue reading
The voting has taken full swing for the 2013 Major League All-Star game. Many fans will vote for their favorite players regardless of how well or poorly those players have performed. As a Chicago Cubs fan, I want to see many Cubs in the All-Star game, including my favorites Darwin Barney, Starlin Castro, and Anthony Rizzo. However, when I look at the players around the National League more objectively and consider that the Cubs have a 28-40 record on June 18, I conclude that the Cubs have only two legitimate All-Star candidates: Travis Wood and David DeJesus.
All statistics are as of the beginning of play on June 18.
Starting pitcher Travis Wood has a 5-6 record, but that does not tell the story. Wood has an ERA of 2.74 in 14 starts, which leads the team.
This ERA is also 12th in the National League among ERA qualifiers. Having watched nearly every Cubs game, I can say that low run support, poor bullpen support, and shoddy defense have kept Wood’s numbers from getting even better. Uncharged errors turn into earned runs charged against him. Continue reading
Posted in Baseball, Cubs, Raymond Bureau
Tagged Chicago Cubs, Citi Field, Clayton Kershaw, Cub, Darwin Barney, David DeJesus, Raymond Bureau, Starlin Castro, Travis Wood
After losing three-of-four games to the Kansas City Royals over the weekend the Rays wasted no time in calling up their prized acquisition in the offseason to debut on Tuesday against the Boston Red Sox. Wil Myers is batting .283 with 14 homeruns and 57 RBIs with the Durham Bulls this season and the Rays will see what Myers can provide for the big league club. His bat is definitely needed right now as the Rays have lost ground in the American League
East race and the series in Boston is followed by a series with the New York Yankees, so if the Rays plan on making a move in the division now would be the time.
Tampa Bay enters play on Tuesday with a 36-33 record while the Red Sox are now leading the East with a record of 42-29. Boston has been able to forget the futility of last season and have played well enough to possess the best record (along with the Oakland A’s) in the American League. Continue reading
Posted in Baseball, Curtis J Roberts, Rays
Tagged Alfredo Aceves, Boston, Boston Red Sox, Curtis Roberts, James Shield, Kansas City Royals, New York Yankees, Ryan Dempster, Wil Myers
The San Francisco Giants are currently carrying two relievers and a marginal fifth starter in the rotation. The two relievers are Chad Gaudin and Tim Lincecum, and the fifth starter is Barry Zito.
Gaudin had two really good starts in place of the injured Ryan Vogelsong. For two turns through the rotation, he was Chad Gaudin, Staff Ace. That was fun while it lasted, but it was never likely to last long.
After all, Gaudin has 426 innings under his belt as a starter and a career ERA of 4.70.
Over five-plus innings in his third start, he allowed eight hits, a walk, two dingers and four runs while failing to strike out a single hitter. That’s more in line with his career track record as a starter than the 12 brilliant innings he delivered over his first two starts.
Tim Lincecum’s failures aren’t for a lack of effort as they were back in August of 2010 when his current troubles were foreshadowed so well. After winning back-to-back Cy Young Awards in the previous two seasons, Lincecum went 0-5 with a 7.82 ERA in August of 2010. He started working out harder to help propel the Giants to the NL West crown and eventually the franchise’s first World Series title since coming west to San Francisco. Continue reading
Posted in Baseball, Giants, Mark Reynolds
Tagged Barry Zito, Brian Sabean, Chad Gaudin, Lincecum, Mark Reynolds, Matt Cain, Ryan Vogelsong, San Francisco Giants, Tim Lincecum
The two leading vote getters in the National League for this year’s All-Star Game are Cardinals catcher Yadier Molina and Giants backstop Buster Posey. The two catchers have already combined for over 5,000,000 votes, but there can only be one starter on July 16 at Citi Field.
Whoever does not win, will become the most voted for backup in All-Star Game history, along with the creation of some very harsh feelings in either the Bay Area or Midwest.
As of June 16, Posey was leading Molina by just over 600,000 votes, which is not as much as it seems.
Both players are having career years, excelling in different elements of the game and among the top of different stat categories. As the MLB’s leading hitter, Molina has a far higher batting average at .352, while Posey is at a modest .316. As of June 7, Molina had thirteen hits in thirteen more at bats than Posey. Continue reading
Posted in Anthony Colucci, Baseball, Cardinals, Giants
Tagged Anthony Colucci, Buster Posey, Cardinal, Citi Field, Major League Baseball, Molina, National League, Posey, Yadier Molina
Statistically speaking, the Chicago Cubs should find themselves with a much better record. Following the weekend action that ended on June 16, the Cubs are in fourth place in the National League Central at 28-39, 15 games behind he division-leading St. Louis Cardinals. Very few expected the Cubs to contend for the next few years as team president Theo Epstein and general manager Jed Hoyer rebuild the team.
However, I did expect them to fare better than 11 games under .500 after 67 games.
Here is my Chicago Cubs mid-June report card. All statistics are entering play on June 17.
Starting pitching: A-
The Chicago Cubs’ starting pitching is one of the few strengths of this team. Using six starters this far into the season makes the rotation strong, and only Matt Garza’s absence until mid-May caused the necessary sixth man. Starters are 7th in the league in ERA at 3.74 and 8th best in total runs allowed. They have kept the ball in the ballpark (39 HR), and they are fairly stingy in letting runners on base (1.20 WHIP). That is a far cry from recent years in which Cubs’ starters typically had among the highest WHIP and ERA in the National League. Continue reading
Posted in Baseball, Cubs, Raymond Bureau
Tagged Chicago Cubs, Cubs, David DeJesus, Kevin Gregg, Kyuji Fujikawa, National League Central, Raymond Bureau, Starlin Castro, Welington Castillo