National League Mid-Season Report

We’ve saved the worst….for last.

Yesterday, we broke down the good half (American League). Today, we’ll get to the half that still (inexplicably) lets pitchers hit (National League)….

National League

Best Team – Arizona Diamondbacks

pi-mlb-dbacks-pirates-062318_vresize_1200_630_high_55

This was harder than it looks. Figuring out the best team in the National League is like ranking your favorite diseases. At 47-34, the Diamondbacks have the 2nd best record in the National League (Milwaukee Brewers: 47-33). While the Diamondbacks, and Paul Goldschmidt, had a May to forget (Goldschmidt hit .144 in May, and the team went 8-19), they’ve bounced back to the tune of 19-7 in June.

Robbie Ray is back. Zack Godley is pitching to his abilities (again). And the other Zack (Greinke) is 5-1 since May. While the Los Angeles Dodgers and San Francisco Giants are nipping at their heels, expect the Diamondbacks to win their 1st NL West Division Title since 2011.

Biggest Surprise – Milwaukee Brewers

Cardinals Brewers Baseball

I knew the Milwaukee Brewers were a good baseball team. I just didn’t know they’d be THIS good. To have the best record in the National League, with THIS pitching staff, is no small feat. If you can name the entire starting rotation for the Brewers, I’ll make your next car payment. I’m serious. GO ahead. I’ll wait….

Even ‘The Google’ doesn’t know.

The Brewers’ roster is filled with a long list of good players. No superstars. No CY Young Award candidates. Just good, do a little bit of everything, players. Only time will tell if they can hold off the Chicago Cubs and St. Louis Cardinals in the NL Central Division.

MVP – Freddie Freeman

freddie

Until May 14th (my birthday), A.J. Pollock was running away with the NL MVP Award. And then he got hurt. Now, your guess is as good as mine….

While the aforementioned Paul Goldschmidt has turned his life around, he’s not the MVP. Freddie is. Freddie Freeman is having the best season of his career. He’s on pace for 31 home runs, 111 rbi, and 12 sbs with a .318 batting average.

Oh, and the Atlanta Braves are in 1st place in the NL East (45-34).

CY Young – Max Scherzer

max

As deserving as Jacob deGrom is of a CY Young Award, Max Scherzer is THAT much better than deGrom. If this was the ‘I Feel Really Badly For You Award’, deGrom would be the unanimous victor. However, Max Scherzer is the best pitcher in MLB.

Now, OPEN YOUR EARS AND LISTEN:

Max Scherzer has been the best pitcher in MLB for the past seven years.

Yes, I’m aware Clayton Kershaw has been in MLB for the past seven years as well. But I’m also aware that you can’t win baseball games from the trainer’s room. While Clayton Kershaw’s stuff is unparalleled, Max Scherzer’s durability makes him the best, most consistent pitcher in MLB.

 

Do you think I’m crazy?!?! Explain yourself in the comment section below….

Advertisements

April’s Lasting Impression Has NOTHING on May!!

My favorite month is HERE!!

May is awesome for many reasons:

NBA Playoffs

NHL Playoffs

MLB Season in full swing

Yeah, yeah, those are great, but here are the REAL reasons:

Mother’s Day

Actual, SUSTAINED nice weather  

Mine, my Wife, and my Dad’s birthdays (coincidentally all on the SAME DAY — May 14th)!!!!

Speaking of birthdays (we’ll get to sports at some point today..I promise), for those who watch, or listen, to my Sports Talk Radio Show, DaveTalksSports, today is my co-host, Uncle Mike’s, birthday!! Happy Birthday Brother!!

Which naturally transitions to MLB finishing April with a bang. How do I come up with these segues?! Genius….

Not 1, not 2, but 3!!

A.J. Pollock is really good at baseball. Casual baseball fans don’t know that. Pollock plays in Phoenix, Arizona, one of baseball’s forgotten cities. And he’s often injured, playing in just 524 of a potential 972 games through his first six seasons (53.9%). Pollock possesses a unique power/speed skillset and is the primary reason the Arizona Diamondbacks have the best record in the National League (20-8). His THREE home runs Monday night are a prime example of his power potential.

Pollock will hope to transition from April to May as smoothly as the transition from the introduction to the rest of this article.

I’m Going To Strike You Out!!

Brewers-Josh-Hader

Raise your hand if you know Josh Hader….

Put your hand down, liar.

Josh Hader is a relief pitcher for the Milwaukee Brewers. He’s temporarily earning saves while Cory Knebel recovers from a hamstring injury. Monday night, Hader made history. He became the 1st pitcher, since saves became an official statistic in 1969, to strike out 8 batters, in less than 3 innings, while earning a save. 8 strikeouts in 2 and 2/3 innings. That’s some nasty stuff right there.

I guess there’s a reason why it’s never been done before….

Sonny Gray Sighting!! 

sonny gray 2

Okay, quit foolin’ around. Who’s the imposter who pitched in Sonny Gray’s jersey Monday night????

While the Yankees suffered a 2-1 loss to the Astros Monday night, Sonny Gray threw his 2nd quality start of the season:

6 innings, 2 runs, 4 strikeouts, and 3 walks

Not the best start of his career, but encouraging against a powerful Astros’ lineup, on the road. Hopefully Gray will carry the positives from this start into May. Gray’s next start will be Cinco de Mayo, at home, against the Cleveland Indians.

The Yankees have announced they’ll stick with Austin Romine as Gray’s personal catcher.

From Bad To Worse

corey seager

Remember when the Los Angeles Dodgers were expected to make consecutive World Series appearances?? Remember when the Dodgers had the 3rd highest payroll in MLB?? And remember when, despite having the best starting pitcher and closer in baseball, it ALL fell apart?!

That, would be today….

As if April couldn’t get any worse (12-16), the Dodgers received terrible news Monday. All-star shortstop, Corey Seager, will require season-ending Tommy John Surgery. At just 24, the 2016 NL Rookie of the Year had become a mainstay in a strong Dodgers’ lineup. His power upside coupled with a .302 career batting average made him one of the better shortstops in MLB. We wish him luck in recovery, however, his team, may be past the point of recovery.

 

What was the best part of the last day of April?? Tell me in the comment section below.

You can find me on the Radio as well. Download the TuneIn Radio App and search OWWR. I’m on live, every Wednesday from 6:10 P.M. – 8:00 P.M EST. Each show is also broadcast on Facebook Live via: http://www.Facebook.com/DaveTalksSports.
Since you LOVE my writing, follow me on twitter @DaveEttinger2 or like my page on Facebook at http://www.Facebook.com/DaveTalksSports. You can also Subscribe to my YouTube Channel: DaveTalksSports. Thanks for reading!! NO GO TELL ALL OF YOUR FRIENDS!!

Yankees Continue Methodical Off Season

The New York Yankees are smart.

No revelation here. Just a sound observation.

Tuesday evening, the Yankees solved one of their biggest “problems”. I know, I know. Trying to decide which top prospect to play isn’t exactly a problem. Well, they don’t have to make that decision anymore following this 3-team trade:

Yankees Get

2B/3B Brandon Drury

Tampa Bay Rays Get

2B Nick Solak, P Anthony Banda, and 2 players to be named later

Arizona Diamondbacks Get

OF Steven Souza Jr. and P Taylor Widener

3 teams, 3 different perspectives:

The Rays continue their roster teardown by moving on from Souza Jr. Despite his low batting average, he enjoyed a breakout season in 2017. Souza Jr. was 1 of only 5 players to hit at least 30 home runs and steal at least 16 bases last season (Mike Trout, Wil Myers, Paul Goldschmidt and Brian Dozier). That’s decent company. 

Steven-Souza

The Diamondbacks are a weird fit for Souza Jr. They just signed Jarrod Dyson to a 2-year contract, while also having Yasmany Tomas, A.J. Pollock, and David Peralta in their outfield. Parting ways with Brandon Drury made more sense. With the emergence of Jake Lamb (27) at third base and Chris Owings (26) at second base, Drury became expendable.

As for the Yankees, this move helps immediately, and could pay dividends in the future. Drury (25) is a power hitting, infielder, capable of playing second base and third base. This will afford the Yankees time to remain patient with their talented, infield prospects, Gleyber Torres and Miguel Andujar. Now rich in minor league talent, the Yankees were able to comfortably part ways with Nick Solak and Taylor Widener. Solak was the Yankees’ 8th ranked prospect and Widener is a starting pitcher who hasn’t pitched above Single-A.

This move will also create healthy competition in the Yankees’ infield. When there’s someone nipping at your heels, trying to take your job, you tend to put forth your best effort.

Oh, and this takes the Yankees’ projected lineup from the edge of the atmosphere to another galaxy:

1.) Brett Gardner

2.) Aaron Judge

3.) Giancarlo Stanton

4.) Gary Sanchez

5.) Greg Bird

6.) Didi Gregorius

7.) Aaron Hicks

8.) Brandon Drury

9.) Gleyber Torres

So, rather than wait until May to potentially acquire Mike Moustakas, the Yankees took initiative. However, seeing this trade go through just two days after the Red Sox signed J.D. Martinez is NOT a coincidence. Brian Cashman, Yankees’ General Manager, can deny this all he wants, but the Yankees and Red Sox define Newton’s Law of Motion; any action causes an equal and opposite reaction.

 

What do you think of this trade?? Tell me in the comment section below.

You can now find me on the Radio too. Download the TuneIn Radio App and search OWWR. I’ll be on live every Wednesday from 6:10 P.M. – 8:00 P.M EST. I also broadcast every show on Facebook Live via my DaveTalksSports.com Facebook Page: http://www.Facebook.com/DaveTalksSports.

Since you enjoy my writing, follow me on twitter @DaveEttinger2 or like my page on Facebook at http://www.Facebook.com/DaveTalksSports. You can also Subscribe to my YouTube Channel: DaveTalksSports. Thanks for reading!! Now go tell all your friends!!