Baseball

#8 the power of Thor

I said on Tuesday that I was planning on writing about Noah Syndergaard but my plans were changed at the last second. It was just pushed back a couple days so I’m going to spend today writing about Noah Syndergaard and his hot start. In case you didn’t know Noah Syndergaard’s nickname is Thor mainly because he looks like him with the long blonde hair and being tall and in great shape. That’s where the title comes from.

He’s off to one of the the hottest starts in baseball and there a reason for it so I’m going to dive into it a little bit. He’s already 2-0 with a 1.69 and 38 k’s and the under 1 WHIP means under 1 baserunner per inning. A big part of Thor’s early success is that he’s incorporated a new slider/cutter. It’s 91-94 mph with little break so it’s not really a slider it’s more of a cutter. But regardless of what you call it, it’s doing its job and keeping hitters off his 98 mph heater. Much like Jake Arrieta in Chicago, the cutter isn’t really their strikeout pitch but it’s something the hitters won’t hit too hard plus it makes the fastball look better. Would I say it’s Noah Syndergaard’s best pitch? Of course not, he constantly hits 98-99 mph with his fastball. I wouldn’t say his curveball is great but it’s definitely not bad. So he takes the mound at 6’6″ 240 lbs pounding 98-99 inside then drops a decent 85 mph curveball after that he throws 94 mph cutter that you just miss and hit a week ground ball to second base. Yup I think that’s pretty good. Now Syndergaard is no Kershaw or anything but he’s looking pretty good right now. That being said I don’t see Syndergaard keeping this up all year, like Kershaw probably will, but him having a 15 win season with an under 3 era is not too much to ask. The right arm of Thor is looking pretty good for the Mets right now.

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Baseball

#7 a new Twin pitcher in town?

Like every blog day I spent the morning gathering my thoughts and figuring out what to write about that day. Today I was all set to write about Noah Syndergaard and why he’s off to a hot start, maybe an hour before I started writing I found out someone I really like is getting the call to the majors. So today I’m going to talk about Jose Berrios and how he can help the Twins this year now that he’s up. Maybe I’ll talk about Noah Syndergaard on Thursday.

The 21 year old right arm of Jose Berrios is (finally) getting a call up to the majors. He really deserved a September call up last year after leading the minor leagues in strikeouts but the Twins didn’t pull the trigger. At least this early in the year they’re actually calling him up its better than later in the year. He’s 2-0 with around a 1 era and 20 strikeouts in 17 innings. In other words he’s dominating down in AAA. He’s only 6 foot tall but his stuff plays a lot bigger than that, mid 90’s heater a plus curveball and a developing change up. Right now he has 2 plus pitches in the curveball and the fastball with a potential third in the change. He works hard and a very good athlete on the mound he should fit right into the MLB. I know I’ve wrote about Berrios a few times already so I’m trying not to sound like a broken record here. I just like the stuff he has and I think he’ll be a stud in the majors so someone you should keep an eye out for. He’s first start should come soon enough and my prediction is 6 innings 1 run and 7 k’s and 1 walk. Should be sound no matter who he faces.

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Baseball

#6 is it time to sell Sale?

Chris Sale is without a doubt one of the hottest pitchers in baseball right now. He’s already 4-0 with a 1.80 era this early in the the season. It’s obvious he’s hot right now but I don’t think he’ll finish the season in a White Sox uniform. So today I’m going to write about what happened this offseason and why I think Chris Sale might change uniforms this year.

Before his hot start and during the offseason something interesting happened and it made me think Chris Sale will be traded this year. The majority of people probably know about the drama that surrounded Adam LaRoche earlier this year. In case you don’t I’ll give you a quick summary. LaRoche was approached before spring training by the teams general manager, and was told not to bring his 14 year old son around all the time, and in turn LaRoche decided to retire. In my opinion there had to be some negotiations between the two sides before it got to that point but it doesn’t matter too much. So what does that have to do with Chris Sale? Glad you asked. So when the GM came down to the clubhouse to speak with Adam LaRoche about his son, either before or after I don’t know for sure, Chris Sale yelled at him (the GM) to “get out of here and never come back”. Might of thrown a F-bomb in there too. But either way you shouldn’t speak to the general manager of your team like that. That’s why I don’t think he’ll be a White Sox (or sock?) much longer. Yes, he’s without a doubt the ace of their staff and he’s probably their best player. But do you really want a player that buts heads with management like that? They have Carlos Rodon and Jose Quitana so they’ll be fine in the pitching department for the time being. But they’re not too strong position player wise in my opinion. So why not trade Chris Sale for some A+ prospects or something? Now I’m not saying it’s a guarantee he’ll be on the move but they thought about trading him before his incident with management. So his clash with the GM just might be the tipping point for his career in Chicago.

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Baseball

#5 Harper v Trout

Like Batman v Superman the new movie out? Don’t worry this won’t be a movie review just spoofing on the name. This post will be on one of my favorite subjects, Mike Trout and Bryce Harper and why they’re always mentioned together. But let me ask you this, should they actually be compared to one another? I’ll make my point as to why they shouldn’t be.

Before I get into this let me just say I am in no way a Mike Trout hater. Apparently my stance comes off as “hate” for Trout, I don’t hate him I actually like him quite a bit but I don’t consider him as great as others do. Not a hater just a realist. To answer the question I do not think Mike Trout is better than Bryce Harper. I’m a Harper fan so you can say I’m just biased, but it won’t be true I think they’re 4 players (including Harper) better than Trout. Let me explain why, baseball in general has seemed to forgotten the significance of striking out. If you get out by putting the ball in play there’s a chance you can beat the throw or the defense can make an error and you could be on base and perhaps score a run for your team. But if you strikeout you get to sit on the bench and watch someone else score runs. Strictly keeping this convo on Harper and Trout, Trout strikes out often Harper doesn’t. Through the 11-12 games they’ve played this year Bryce Harper is batting .341 while only striking out 4 times, Trout on the other hand has already struck out 14 times. Only hitting .230 too. This is not a post about who will have the better year and career for that matter I just want to simply shed light on Mike Trout’s strikeouts since I’m the only one. Mike Trout has ridiculous talent I totally get why he’s widely considered the best player in baseball but nobody is talking about his strikeout rate, it’s actually gotten better but it’s still pretty bad if you ask me. Bryce Harper is a true 5-tool player who doesn’t strikeout let that sink in. Contrary to what the “experts” say Mike Trout is not a 5-tool player (lousy arm only has 4 tools) and strikeouts way too much, so no I honestly do not consider Mike Trout the best player in baseball. And yes I really do consider Bryce Harper to be better than Trout.

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Baseball

#4 Trumbombs

Well today I couldn’t think of anything to write about and I mean absolutely nothing. So before I start talking about Mark Trumbo and his hot start I want to say sorry for the short post today. I promise I will have something to write about next Tuesday.

Like I said Mark Trumbo is off to a crazy hot start, hitting .406 with a couple homers for the Orioles. Surprisingly he even has a stolen base. Now I’m not saying he’s the reason the Orioles are winning but he’s hot start isn’t hurting anything. He’s first 9 hits were all singles and everyone was asking, “is something wrong with Trumbo?” “Where’s his usual power?” I can assure you his power is very much alive. He hit 2 “Trumbombs” during the Orioles series in Boston. In my opinion he’s average will drop a lot in the upcoming weeks but he will hit bombs like he usually does. People seem to have forgotten that Trumbo has hit 30 home runs and drove in 100 runs before. Back when he was still an Angel and 30 and 100 is not easy at all. Based on the lineup he’s in now I think he could easily do that again. With the addition of Trumbo this offseason it makes the Orioles lineup very deep. Oh you don’t want to face the left handed slugger Chris Davis? Ok you can face right handed slugger Mark Trumbo.

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Baseball

#3 is this the real year of the rookie?

Before I write about this years rookie class I want to mention a few major points after the first week. No one seems to mention this but the Nationals have only lost 1 game the same as the Cubs but yet they only talk about the Cubs. I know it’s only a week in but I can’t help but notice that they, ESPN and everyone else, seem to only talk about the teams that had serious hype coming into the year. The Orioles are the only undefeated team left in the MLB this year and yet I haven’t heard too much about them either. Rant over.

Again we’re only a week into the new season so I know not to get too caught up in the numbers within the first week. But this begs the question is this going to be the real year of the rookie? Last year was deemed the year of the rookie because we saw Carlos Correa, Kris Bryant, Noah Syndergaard, Kyle Schwarber, Fransisco Lindor, and that list goes on and on. But with the likes of Trevor Story, Tyler White, and Nomar Mazara already doing damage in the majors it just makes you wonder. The Colorado Rockies new shortstop, Trevor Story, blasted a league leading 7 homers in his first week in the majors. The Houston Astros first baseman, Tyler White, made the club out of spring and impressed this week by driving in 9 runs. Lastly the Texas Rangers right fielder, Nomar Mazara, who just got called up because of the injury to Shin Soo Choo but he ended up going 3-4 with a homer in his debut on Sunday. Last year was obviously a special year for rookies no question there but its just curious these rooks are hitting the ground running in the majors and it’s just the first week. There are some seriously talented prospects yet to make their debut. So will this year be the year of the rookie part 2? We shall see.

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Baseball

#2 a new star(lin) in New York?

Not to mislead anyone I do not think Starlin Castro is the new star for the New York Yankees, it’s just a title. With that out of the way, I will obviously be writing about Starlin Castro today and why some Yankee fans (it’s only 2 games in) think they have a new star player.

To say Starlin Castro is the new star for the Yankees is seriously jumping to conclusions. Seriously it’s only 2 games into the 162 game season, people start hot every year. Just calm your horses. The 7 rbis in those 2 games is obviously good but I would not even consider him a star. Is he playing good? Yes, very much so I just don’t like that the Yankee fans are deeming him their star player already. If you can’t tell it kind of bugs me. I believe I have already gave Starlin Castro a full post last year when he was on the Cubs so I’m not going to recite the whole post just a few bullet points. When he first got moved off shortstop by Joe Maddon and placed at second base, that seemed to be his wake up call (it’s actually pretty sad that it took so long). Started hitting better and playing better defense. When he came up he made such a splash, being a top 20ish prospect, having a 200 hit season right away. Things were looking good for Starlin, but then he kept doing the same thing over and over again while the pitchers saw him more and more and were figuring out how to get him out. On top of his bat declining he seemed to continue to get more and more lazy in the field. I’m not even a Cubs fan but most Cub fans would agree, trading him came about a half a year to a year too late. Maybe that’s just me. The move to second looks good for Castro, he looks like he’s playing like he did early in his career. So yes Yankee fans you can be excited about Starlin Castro already but please stop calling him a star so early into season.

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