I've been talking quite a bit about trading the last few volumes of Around the Bases - let's try to shake it up a little bit - or I hope to. Here is just a random blog of baseball stuff, slow news week this week.
First, Xavier Nady and Demaso Marte have been traded away from the Pittsburgh Pirates organazation to the New York Yankees. I am really to stunned to talk about what Pittsburgh got in return for this trade - a dime-a-dozen lousy relief pitcher in Ross Ohlendorf and a pretty good prospect in Jose Tabata but still, Marte and Nady were dirt cheap. Tabata could grow up to be a decent player one day and maybe make an All-Star Game or two but I seriou sly thought that the Pirates would be able to contend for the next couple of years if they wanted too. I guess they don't want to and they are just going to wait it out for their big prospects to come up - Tabata and Andrew McCutchen, a center fielder drafted in the 2005 MLB Draft. Maybe the Buccos philosophy is to suck this year and the next two or three years and then contend after that for the next few years then trade all of their good players for prospects. Common strategy, just the circle of sucking and then not sucking. C'mon though Pirates, mean as well actually get a good pitcher in the deal such as Chris Britton.
Now we look at one of baseball's hottest teams, the New York Mets. Don't know how they really started doing good, they just did. Jose Reyes is back to his old self, I knew that it would happen sometime, and Reyes is now a major contender for MVP. Johan Santana is finally started to get in his groove - I was about to think that 20+ million dollars was invested in a pitcher for nothing. As baseball's second highest payroll, I will be laughing my **** off if the Mets lose the division and I actually think they will. The Philadelphia Phillies have a great offense led by Jimmy Rollins, Pat Burrell, Chase Utley and Ryan Howard and their pitching is very good as well, led by Joe Blanton and Cole Hamels. The Florida Marlins are also in this thing still, don't forget about them. Florida could be the most dangerous of all, I have always been very high on Andre Miller, a pitcher for Florida, who is currently on the DL. He got off to a slow start but once he gets off the DL, look for him to do well.
As the season is starting to close in (compared to what it was, if that makes sense), people are starting to look at MVP contenders or Cy Young contenders - here is a Cy Young contender that you may have counted out early in the season when he wasn't doin well, that's right, Justin Verlander. Verlander started out the season 2-9 with an ERA over 6.00. This was probably when most of you checked him off your Cy Young contenders. Look where he is at now - he is 6-0 ever since he got off to that poor start and hasn't allowed more than two earned runs in a start since the beginning of June. His ERA is finally under 4.00 (3.95) and he has 99 strikeouts to add to that. Overrall, his record is 8-9 - average but he still has a ton of time to improve on it. If he keeps riding the tear that he has been on, I can see him winning at least 15 games and having an ERA under 3.50.
Sorry for the short version, just not a lot going on in baseball this week.