• 04/01/2012, 11:18PM ET

Thoughts on the NL Central.

Marlins Fan (156-78-31) vs Assassin: Simile Next year (69-116-27)

Real quick, I've been wondering about this for a while: Assman, why did you change from Assassin: Smile to Assassin: Simile? Not a big deal, of course, but I would like the backstory on the subtle change, please.

The Cardinals are going to miss A-Pu more than they think.

I know they won the World Series last year; I know they kept basically everybody with the exception of Pujols. But that's a HUGE exception. The Cards made the right move for the long term future of the franchise, but in the short term it's bound to hurt, and probably fairly badly. St. Louis still has some good hitters, like Berkman, Holliday, etc, but apart from that they're relying on WS hero David Freese and a few other guys with minimal experience as big-time hitters (Yadier Molina, Allen Craig) to carry the offense and IMO it just won't be enough.

The Brewers offense is going to fall off more than people think.

Braun has been dreadful this spring, and although that doesn't always mean much, in this case I think it might be PED-fatigue. Braun no doubt feels pressured to prove he's still got it and it seems to be causing him to press. Losing Prince also hurts big time, obviously.

I'm not really sure what you are talking about, my dear Marlins Fan. But hey, let's talk about it. Let's be open about this. For everyone to see. Oh, hey, Dr. Phil.

Okay, okay, (this is just a way to eat up space). Alright here we go..

The Cardinals are going to miss Tony LaRussa more than they think.

Losing one of the best managers in baseball is going to hurt any ball club, but this will leave the Cards in a bad place. Even with the loss of Albert, I believe Tony would pull something out of his **** and have the Cards contending (again). Now they turn to a former catcher without and managing experience. Can Lance Berkman really be relied on to have another nice season? The dude could be my grandpa. (not really but you understand the point.) Niw Holliday has to be the number hitter and replace Albert. Let's see how he does.

How will Braun respond this season?

This is similar to your second point, but whatever. He was suspended then he wasn't and now he can play. Can A-Ram give him the protection he needs since Prince is gone? Who knows!


Is Pedro Alvarez ever going to be a good player?

This guy had tremendous amounts of hype attatched to his name ever since the Pirates drafted him decond overall back in 2008. Since then he has been a complete bust. His career slash stats read as follows:


Pretty pathetic for a guy who was supposed to ressurect the Pirates franchise. Apart from Alvarez the Pirates seem to be headed in the right direction anyway, but if Pedro could ever get his act together Pittsburgh would really be in a nice sport, since they already have some really promising young talent like McCutchen, Walker and Tabata.

Can Mat Latos be an effective pitcher at Great American Ballpark?

The Reds' stadium is considered to be a very hitter-friendly park; in 2011 more homers were hit in Great American Ballpark than any other stadium but two, the Ballpark in Arlington and Coors Field. Petco Park, on the other hand, is not at all hitter-friendly and less runs were scored there in 2011 than any other park but two, Tropicana Field and AT&T Park.

Latos is a flyball pitcher and he no longer has the Petco homefield advantage. His ERA could soar this upcoming season.


I'm sure I'm one of the only ones who care about this, but what will happen to the Cubs this year? Theo and Jed Hoyer have already made their presence felt with trading away longtime Cubs and certain prospects. And they said they aren't done yet. Garza is on the block (and has been for his entire Cub career basically), There has been calls about Marlon Byrd from the Nats, Braves, Phillies, and Geovanny Soto's name has been to trade talks. Oh, the madness! I could write 3 TDs worth of my thoughts here, but I will keep it short.


Just kidding.

When will Anthony Rizzo be called up to the big leagues? The current 1B, Brian Lahair is just a AAAA hitter so he is just there until Rizzo is ready. Brett Jackson, Josh Vitters, Rizzo are all prospects that could be called up this year. Trey McNutt is a pitcher that throws cheese that can help the bullpen this year. Exciting, huh?!

Will the Theo compensation saga start again, since Chris Carpenter, the player traded to the Red Sox, will need to have shoulder surgery? I sure hope not, but it may happen.

This is fun, MF.

How long til Theo rights the ship?

You know he'll get the Cubs back on track at some point. Epstein is a brilliant baseball mind and he knows what to look for; sooner or later the Cubs will be contending again. But when?

Probably not for a few years. First of all, the dead weight has to go. Soriano's ridiculous contract needs to come off the books. Since he's making 19 mil a year he has to play, but playing him isn't good for the team. He's a terrible defender, he can't get on base to save his life and he strikes out a ton. Showing Soriano the door is Step One on the road to relevancy.

Votto just got a contract for WHAT???

I know, I know... he's a great player. Excellent hitter both for average and power and he's a wizars with the glove. But he's 28 and the Reds basically just gave him a 12 year contract when you include the 2 years he has left with the 10 years he just signed up for. 12 years and a quarter of a billion dollars. Great player, but that's a TON of money for a TON of years. Resigning Votto was the right call, but at some point this albatros of a contract is going to completely cripple the Reds organization.

Fun TD, ****!!


Will they win more than 50 games?


Who will win the Central?

Now, this isn't the thoughout division talent wise, but 3 teams have a legit shot at wining the division. What other division can say that then the Central and Al East? Not many. The Brewers, Cardinals, and Reds all have loads of talent but each have their own flaws so it will be interesting to see who pulls out into the lead. Cards lost their best player and manager, while the Brewers also lost their best player in Prince Fielder. Reds just gave their best player Joey Votto a mammoth contract. He's the class of the Central now unless you count Brian LaHair from the Cubs. Now it's time to see if he lives up to the expectations.

You took all the good headlines! ;)

Thanks for the TD, MF.

Comment #1 has been removed
April 1, 2012  11:32 PM ET

Vote right, how dare you besmirch my beloved Brewers good name!

Vote for Flambo for using the word besmirch.

Comment #3 has been removed
April 2, 2012  09:08 AM ET

I think the Cards will miss Dave Duncan more than AP or TLR.

Comment #5 has been removed
April 2, 2012  03:01 PM ET

I think the Cards will miss Dave Duncan more than AP or TLR.


April 2, 2012  08:30 PM ET

Pirates are a lock to finish over .500 for the first time in 20 years.

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Comment #9 has been removed
April 3, 2012  08:12 AM ET

MF, last I heard, it all depends on how his wife (brain tumor) is doing as to what DD does.

April 3, 2012  08:58 AM ET

MF, last I heard, it all depends on how his wife (brain tumor) is doing as to what DD does.


Comment #12 has been removed
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Comment #14 has been removed
April 3, 2012  10:37 PM ET

I forgot to mention it in my second argument, but didn't your name uses to say Assassin: Smile, ****?Now it says Assassin: Simile. Just wondering why.Or did it always say Simile instead of Smile?

It's always been that way. I like to throw people for a loop. ;)

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Comment #17 has been removed
April 4, 2012  10:45 AM ET

Thanks for the TD, Assman. I really enjoyed this one.

Very fun. I'll get the 3rd up this afternoon.

Comment #19 has been removed
April 4, 2012  11:54 AM ET

Thoughts on the NL Central? Okay it totally suucks?

We are talking the NL Central, not the Indians!


Remember to keep your posts clean. Profanity will get filtered, and offensive comments will be removed.


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