Wednesday, May 9, 2007

A Litte Over One Month In

So we're a little more than one month into the MLB season and a lot of interesting things have already happened, and will certainly happen. Here are a few observations, and approximations strait from the realm of idiocy I dwell in.

- The NL West is going to be contested down to the wire. The Dodgers and Padres are both as good, if not better than last year. While Arizona, San Francisco and Colorado have all been competitive. The D-Backs and Rockies both have a bunch of young, only going to get better talent. The Giants may end up the worst of the bunch once Barry breaks the record and the rest of the team start to show their age. As they will go long stretches without being able to score. Never a good thing. But they've got to feel good about the young arms of Cain and Lincecum.

- The Yankees may very well miss the playoffs for the first time since 1993. Boston is playing very well in the early going and while they will slump at some point. I'm just not sure it'll be a big enough slump for NY to overtake them. This is also under the assumption that the wild card comes from the Central. Where there are at least two teams better than the Yanks in my opinion.

- Ryan Howard's got some competition in the "best young first basemen" category, his name is Adrian Gonzalez. Gonzalez is tied for second in the NL in HR's (10), and RBI (30) for the West's second place team. He's been on fire, and I fully expect him to continue to get better. Nice move by SD, inking him to an arguably cheap 4-year extension April 1st. As this future star could have certainly gotten a lot more.

- The Milwaukee Brewers are pretty good. My issue with making the claim they'll win the brutal NL Central is the youth. As you never know when it might all come crashing down. This was also my issue with Detroit last year, though. As the Tigers relied heavily on 3 young players (Granderson, Zumaya, and Verlander). The Brewers rely on a lot more than just three. That said the Cardinals suck and just barely edged out the Giants in the challenge last week. The Astros really needed Clemens as Oswalt can't do it alone. They're done if Oswalt catches whatever Brad Lidge's got. No one else in the central should really contend. Unless Griffey hits 74 HR's, that is. Oh, wait. The Cubs appear to be decent.

- Joel Zumaya's injury might just cost the Tigers the AL Central, and the post-season all-together. I know he's just a setup man but even a lights out Fernando Rodney can't get the ball to Todd Jones every night by himself. While most of the other guys have been solid so far. I'm not buying until they've done it for three months. So if Detroit's out, and Minny's struggling who's in? Cleveland for sure, Chicago? Possibly.

- What the point of the Rule 5 draft? Is it so one team can prove they have a better development system than another? A few names that have changed cities via Rule 5 draft: Dan Uggla, Shane Victorino, Derek Turnbow, Joakim Soria, and of course Johan Santana. While I get that this gives guys whose teams don't have room for them an opportunity to play at the MLB level. It also robs those who have consistently drafted well and I think it should be abolished.

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