If the Playoffs Started Today
Tampa Bay Rays (55-36) vs. Texas Rangers (53-39)
Chicago White Sox (50-41) vs. New York Yankees (58-33)
Colorado Rockies (50-41) vs. Atlanta Braves (54-38)
St. Louis Cardinals (51-41) vs. San Diego Padres (54-37)
- The Braves traded SS Yunel Escobar and P Jo-Jo Reyes to the Blue Jays for SS Alex Gonzalez and minor league prospects Tim Collins and Tyler Pastornicky.
Top Stories and Weekly Links
- The All-Star Game festivities were this week, so there were only 4 days with games on them. The National League finally managed to get off the bench and win one, as they defeated the American League 3 to 1 on Tuesday. Brian McCann had the deciding hit, and was named the game’s MVP. Manager Joe Girardi of the American League received a small ration of grief as well for not pinch running Alex Rodriguez for David Ortiz in the bottom of the 9th inning, but overall the game was pretty well played and well managed.
- The Home Run Derby on Monday was won by David Ortiz, and since the majority of the players participating had very little home run derby experience, it was nice to see them get so much national exposure.
- Sadly, the Yankee family lost a titan on Tuesday, with the passing of owner George Steinbrenner from a massive heart attack. I wrote up my thoughts on the Boss here.
- The All-Star break ended with a surprising trade, as the Braves sent their starting SS Yunel Escobar to the Blue Jays for their starting SS, Alex Gonzalez. It appears that Escobar was not well liked in the Braves’ clubhouse, and there seemed to be constant concern with a lack of effort from Escobar. A true challenge trade, it remains to be seen which side will win this trade in the end, but I actually think it could be good for both teams.
- It had been widely discussed that Padres’ ace Mat Latos would be on an innings limit, and there was talk that he might be placed on the disabled list so that he could be skipped for his next start and help to keep him near that innings limit. The surprise was the “injury” that he sustained to put him there. Apparently he tweaked a muscle trying not to sneeze. At least it’s not a deer meat injury.
From the Twitter Followers and Friends
If you aren’t yet, you can follow me over at Twitter here. These are some of the better reads I found from the previous week.
- From Wezen Ball – A guest post by Bill from the Daily Something about the Best Seasons by Players Who Never Made an All Star Team
- From the Kings of Kaufmann – They did a write up on what’s next for prospect Eric Hosmer now that he has been promoted to AA. I wrote about Hosmer in the offseason, and I think he’s really turned the corner at this point.
- From Colorado Springs Fantasy Baseball Addict – Daniel Aubain posted a link to an article by Eriq Gardner of Fantasy Ball Junkie where he talks about the two types of Fantasy Analysts, and I think his points are pretty dead on about it actually.
Upcoming Posts This Week:
Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday: I will be continuing on with my series of posts about the 2003 BA Almanac, going over both the Minor League All-Stars the Top 20 Prospects by League, and the 2002 Top 100 Prospect List
Friday: Trade Retrospective of Nomar Garciaparra to the Cubs. This one is a huge trade, since 4 teams were involved in it, and also clearly had an impact on the pennant races as well.
I also wanted to let everyone know that in addition to writing for Fake Teams, I am also now a member of the Baseball Bloggers Alliance. The group of over 200 blogs has writers who cover nearly every aspect of baseball you could think of, and honestly a couple I had not thought of yet.
The BBA has, as a secondary aim, the goal of producing year-end awards in a similar fashion to the Baseball Writers of America. These awards can be found here in October with links back to the voters, ensuring transparancy and, most likely, the onset of some good baseball arguments.
Over the coming weeks, I will be taking a look at a lot of them (there are so many!), and may potentially writeup a few of them. We’ll see what happens, but I’m really excited to be here!
One Other Thing
Lastly, I wanted to bring up a charity that the Baseball Bloggers Alliance has taken up. Here’s the official word, and what you can do:
Pitch In For Baseball is delighted to have been selected to participate in State Farm’s ‘Go To Bat’ campaign. Now we need your
‘Go To Bat’ was launched nationally during the State Farm Home Run Derby. ’Go To Bat’ gives entrants a chance to win tickets to the upcoming World Series and selected charity partners the chance to receive significant financial support.
Here’s how to play and how to help Pitch In For Baseball:
* Go to www.statefarm.com/gotobat to register for your chance to win World Series tickets.
* As you register, you will get a chance to designate a charity that could win up to $25,000/week.
* To designate Pitch In For Baseball as your charity, select PUBLIC GOOD as the charity category and then choose Pitch In For
Baseball from the drop down list.
* Revisit www.statefarm.com/gotobat each day and play the ‘Go To Bat’ online game to increase your chances for tickets and Pitch In For
Baseball’s chance at financial support
Thanks to all the readers who help out with this. You can find a lot more information about Pitch In For Baseball at their website