At first, I thought nothing of th AJ Ellis for Carlos Ruiz trade. Just a player swap for a team that needed a slightly better catcher to get ready for a playoff run. The only controversy that comes with this trade is the fact that AJ Ellis is bestfriends with Clayton Kershaw. When I heard that I was stunned the Dodgers would do something so stupid. The last thing you want to do is make a decision that doesn't sit well with the best pitcher in the league. Kershaw was told the news by Ellis himself and was just as shocked as Ellis was to hear the news. The two cried together after Ellis had told Kershaw the news he was going to Philadelpihia, that's the type of bond these two had. Kershaw isn't the type of guy to let this effect him on the surface, but his contract will be up soon and it might give him something to think about now, knowing his team might not have the respect for his wishes nearly as much as he thought they did. I don't think there's much for the Dodgers to benefit from this trade, although I do think there's a lot for them to lose.
By Nicky D
Hottest story around baseball lately has been Gary Sanchez, he's having a crazy start to his career batting .400 with 11 homers in 23 games, making him the fastest in MLB history to do so. Now the Yankees are only 2.5 games out of the American League wild card race and have the closest shot they've had all season to make the playoffs. As a Yankee fan, it's exciting to see your team win when they're not suppose to. At the trade deadline they pretty much raised the white flag and traded Aroldis Chapman, Andrew Miller, Carlos Beltran and Ivan Nova. With a little over 30 games to play this season it will be exciting to see the Yankees compete for a potential spot in this years postseason.
This happened a few days ago, but in my hectic return to the life of a college student, I didn't get the chance to blog about it; and I'd be doing Chooch, nay the world, an injustice if I didn't thank that beautiful spaniard behind the plate for his 10 years of service to the Philadelphia Phillies.
If you haven't heard, Carlos Ruiz, 37, was traded to the Los Angeles Dodgers for veteran catcher A.J. Ellis and minor league pitcher Tommy Bergjans. This move was kind of a surprise for many, swapping veteran catchers, but it appears Ruiz will get a legitimate shot at another championship ring. As a Phillie fan, it hurts to see a fan favorite like Chooch go (but as a spiteful, vindictive Phillie fan, it's nice to steal LA's fan favorite in Ellis). Chooch is the man behind the plate that I tried to emulate in my own baseball career. His calm demeanor and stout defense allowed him to excel as one of the top catchers in baseball, and his success on the field was showcased by him tying Jason Varitek for no-hitters caught by one catcher.
Ruiz has caught 4 different no-hitters, one of which was a Roy Halladay perfect game in Miami in 2010 (shit that feels like a long time ago). While Chooch never boasted the greatest offensive numbers aside from the year he was popping Addy in the dugout (so fresh), he remained permanently behind the plate as the perennial brick wall for the Phillies staff.
To the Panamanian second baseman that joined the Phils in 1998, who learned how to catch in the minors, who came up, smiled his cute little smile at his pitcher 60 feet 6 inches away, through the years of the early outs in the NLDS, through the glorious 2008 campaign, through the tough downfall, and the current rebuilding phase, thank you Carlos Joaquin Ruiz. You will be sorely missed in the red and white pinstripes. Now go win another title you beautiful, tiny bastard.
I've been saying since week one of the Sanchez effect that he's the best catcher in baseball. It was mostly jokingly when i said it, but now I'm starting to actually believe it. He's played 22 games now and he already has almost as many home runs as all the elite catchers in the game. There's catchers like Buster Posey, that i think yeah he's better defensively due to years of experience. Offensively the only catcher i could really put in same category as Sanchez right now is Wilson Ramos. Wilson Ramos, is having a career year swinging the bat and he's been a huge part of Washington's success, so yeah I say he's the more proven offensive threat this year. It's hard to make a claim for a guy that has only played 22 games because you can't argue consistency. All around, I think he's the most complete catcher in baseball, obviously basing that off what he has done so far. I don't think he'll be able to keep up this onslaught forever, but if he can play like he has consistently throughout his entire career, he'll go down as the best catcher ever easily. I expect a drop off from Sanchez at some point because he can't possibly hit .400 forever. I think he could be a lethal three hitter in one of the best lineups in baseball while being an elite backstop. I'll take the Sanchize over any catcher right now due to his youth, the cannon attached to his right arm, and his ability to just mash the ball all over the stadium. El Gary also gave us some more motivational tweets to further our confidence that a playoff run is inevitable. Get ready boys El Gary has spoken and he only speaks the truth.
I'd quit baseball right then and there. After I let up that hit with two outs in the ninth I'd take my glove off, leave it on the mound, walk off, and never return. That has got to be the most crushing feeling in the world, I'd hate to be Matt Moore right now. Even though he pitched a gem and is making millions of dollars, I still wouldn't want to be him because I know he is hurting right now. As a pitcher that's the second biggest accomplishment you can have on that mound in a single game, so every pitcher wants to experience it at least once. Matt Moore, is a young, solid pitcher, and I'm sure he will have another chance at one in the future. But, to come that far and than let up a hit with two outs in the ninth is a huge blow to his ego. He doesn't have the clutch gene and he proved it right there. Not everyone can be clutch that's why the ones that are clutch, get idolized. That's what separates the good from the elite, that last out in a no hit game situation. Matt Moore, that last out will haunt your dreams and I'm sorry you have to live with that forever.
10 months removed from a trip to the World Series and the New York Mets playoff hopes are hanging on by a thread. As most of you know if you've been watching the Mets the last 10-15 years, this is nothing new for them. Having a big season with a great a playoff run, followed by a disappointing season, that's the story of this franchise. This time it felt real though, I'm not even a Mets fan and i thought they were finally going to break through and become a consistently competitive team that was a threat to win the World Series for the next five or so years. The starting pitcher was being compared to the greatest rotations of all time, they had one of the best closers in the league in Jeurys Familia, and they signed Cespedes back so they're poised to make another postseason run right? Wrong! The uncalculated front office of the Mets didn't plan for the variables that get thrown at you throughout the course of a season. David Wright coming off a spinal injury... he'll be able to play like 120-130 games right? Wrong! They had no back up plan for him if he were to go down or have to miss some time, well he did get hurt, and they had no backup plan. Lucky for them the Rockies waived Jose Reyes and the Mets were able to pick him up since no one else wanted the wife beater on their team. Let me remind you, this is also six weeks after Wright went down. So, for six weeks of the season Terry Collins, had to try and find a plausible option to play third base, which given the talent he had on the roster... there wasn't one. The starting pitching staff was supposed to be the greatest we've seen since Maddux, Glavine, and Smoltz. Well, they didn't even come close. Matt Harvey, the "ace" of the staff, was awful to start the season and than he hurt his shoulder and is now done for the year. Probably the best thing for him and the Mets with the way he was pitching. To sum up the rest of the young pitchers and their lackluster performances this season is pretty simple, they are young arms that were overworked and just need rest because their arms aren't accustomed to throwing that many innings yet. As much as I want to sit here and bash the Mets lineup I won't because I don't think they're the problem at all. Most of those players are playing up to the standard you would expect them to, but the front office just failed to form a real major league lineup. This could've all been avoided by the Mets with one signing, Daniel Murphy. If the Mets signed him he'd be in the three hole for the Mets helping them cruise to a division title, instead of watching him do it for the Nationals. I know no one could've predicted what Murph is doing this year, but he was still a good hitter even before this breakout year and he was the ultimate teammate. The Nats are a way more fun, energetic, and explosive team than last season and that's because of the NL MVP candidate that the Mets could've signed back, but decide not to for no good reason whatsoever. A lot has gone wrong for the Mets this season, it's probably over already, but as long as this young pitching core can come back healthy in 2017 you'll be alright. Oh, and hopefully the front office will get their heads out of their asses and make some moves in the off season.
The home stretch has officially begun. These are the times that separate the boys from the men. Over the next 36 games the Yankees will face divisional opponents 30 times, this is the perfect opportunity for us to sneak our way into the playoffs. Tonight we start a three game set with the Orioles and it's going to be a home run derby. Two teams built for power, i expect a lot of dingers and a lot of lead changes.
Game 1: Luis Cessa, takes the mound tonight against Yovani Gallardo, in the first game of this weekends series. Cessa hasn't lost this season and I don't expect for that to change. Gallardo's ERA is above five and I expect for the Yankees to tee off on him at home. Cessa looked good his last outing and if he can keep the orioles under five runs through six innings we should be looking good for a win tonight.
Game 2: A young pitchers worst nightmare will be Saturday's game in Yankee stadium. You have two young pitchers in Dylan Bundy and Chad Green facing off against two very powerful lineups in one of the smallest parks in all of baseball. Dylan Bundy, has really impressed me lately, putting a string of good starts together. I think he will out duel Chad Green who is coming off his best performance of the season, but he is facing one of the scariest lineups in baseball. I expect for this one to be close, but the Orioles will prevail at the end and take game 2.
Game 3: Pineda vs. Gausman, a battle of two pitchers whose records don't reflect their actually performances. Yes, Pineda hasn't been an ace this season, the only problem has been that one inning where he just loses his ability to pitch. At home in a crucial rubber game I think he'll be able to hold it together. Meanwhile, the Yankees offense will take care of Gausman handing him a ticket to an early exit. I expect the young guns to carry the offense through this series as we collect another series win.
The Cub's Dynamic Duo is making a strong case for the first Co-MVP's in over 25 years, as they lead the Cub's to a strong lead in the NL. Kris Bryant, playing in his second full season, is hitting .301 with 33 Homeruns and 86 RBI's, and Rizzo is hitting .298 with 27 Homeruns and 87 RBI's, along with 37 doubles. The award has to go to one of them, its that simple. If it can't be both it better be one. Kris and Anthony have been terrorizing pitchers and teams this season and are allowing the Cub's to dominate the NL, holding the league's best record. The Cub's success comes primarily from their young talent, which they have long been developing, and it is all coming full circle for the Cubbies. They are the favorite to win the NL and even the World Series to some, but it all relies on how their young stars play in the crunch time of October. Just give these two the award and let them share it because they're a one-two punch like no other.
By Nicky D
After last nights homer vs the Blue Jays, Pujols has moved to 10th all-time on the home run list. Now with 584 home runs Pujols is 178 home runs away from Bonds all time record. Pujols, now 36, is also 212 hits away from 3,000, if he plays another 3 seasons he's on pace to finish his career with over 3,000 hits ,650+ home runs and a lifetime batting average over .300. Easily a first ballot hall of famer and definetly considered one of the greats, especially for his time with the Cardinals. Pujols is having a very good season in 2016, hitting 24 homers so far and batting in 99 RBIS, which is ranked 4th in all of baseball. Pujols is looking to finish the season with 30+ homers and 120+ RBIS. Even though he's 36 he still has some left in the tank to produce a few more good years.
Bad news for Boston fans, as the newest member of the roster might already be out for the year. Andrew Benintendi, while only having 21 games on his MLB resume, earned his keep with some great play during his time up. In this short span, the rook is hitting .324 with 11 runs scored in only 68 AB's. Although I have no clue how to pronounce this dudes last name, he sure knows how to play baseball. It's a shame an injury to his knee could keep him out of playing in his first playoff series come this Fall. The injury happened in Wednesday nights game while he was caught running between second and third. Originally being called "sprained knee", John Farrell and the gang have now announced they "don't know if it could be season ending worthy". It would be smart to pull the safe move and just let him rest. Knees injuries can always come back and be 10x more gruesome so there is no reason to rush his return. Although the outfielder has played like one of the best prospects in the nation, he can take a back seat with the vets led by grandpa Big Papi in his final season. Boston is going to have many great years with this guy to come, and with such a young, talented roster besides him I hate to say that they will be in the title picture for awhile.