The American League playoff race is a little less crowded than the National League race. The Los Angeles Angels have already clinched their division but will be playing for home field advantage throughout the postseason. AL East The surprise team in Major League Baseball continues to hold off their big money spending division rivals. The Tampa Bay Rays have built a contender by drafting wisely and plugging in veterans where they are needed. The story of the Rays’ season starts and ends¬†with pitching. The starting pitching staff has five starters with 11 or more wins and that has much to do with the staff staying pretty much healthy all year. The Rays have only had two pitchers make starts outside of their regular five-man rotation which has led to the third best team ERA in the majors. Offensively, the Rays rank in the middle of the pack in most statisticalRead More »
The longest of seasons is coming to a close and none to quickly for the hometown Pirates. But for those of you who are staying¬†until closing time, you are being treated to a very interesting playoff race. All of the divisions are up for grabs¬†especially the wildcard spot.¬†Breaking down the division and wildcard races, you will see that there are many storylines going into the last, on average,¬†seventeen games. NL East The New York Mets are riding the hot bat of Carlos Delgado who has thrust himself into the NL MVP race. Delgado, going into last night’s game,¬†is batting .423 with5 HR and 10 RBI in¬†the month of September. He¬†hit¬†four home runs in seven at-bats in¬†his last two games. The problem with the Mets is that they lost Billy Wagner for the rest of this year and possibly all of next year.¬†Losing your closer¬†leaves a big hole on the back-endRead More »
The Chicago White Sox have just been dealt a huge blow. According to Baseball Prospectus, WSCR radio in Chicago is reporting Chicago White Sox centerfielder Carlos Quentin has a broken wrist and is done for the season. Quentin is a M.V. P. candidate and has (36 hr ‚Äì 100 rbi) in 130 games played. The White Sox have a 1.5 game lead in the Central division over the Minnesota Twins.
Times couldn‚Äôt be any worse for the Pittsburgh Pirates. The team is on the verge of possibly losing their first round pick Pedro Alvarez and to make matters worse the Pirates have lost 11 out of 13. The Pirates got out to a 5 run lead this afternoon but the Reds scored three runs in the eighth inning off of reliever Craig Hansen. The Reds comeback was led by Joey Votto who hit a solo homer and a tiebreaking, bases-loaded single in the eighth inning Thursday, completing the Reds’ rally from a five-run deficit to an 8-6 victory.
Nothing new to report on the Pedro Alvarez front. The Pirates have a very good offer on the table that I’m being told exceeds the signing bonus Tim Beckham received. (Speculation – $6.27 – $6.4 million range) Alvarez continues to seek a MLB contract under the advice of Scott Boras. Pittsburgh has been warming up to the idea of giving Alvarez a MLB contract but they want him to take a physical before hand. Even if the Pirates and Alvarez don‚Äôt reach an agreement on a MLB contract, Alvarez will most likely go against the advice of Boras and take the Pirates offer. There is just too much money on the table for Alvarez to pass up. Update 11:50 a.m. The Pirates remain in discussions with 20th round selection Quinton Miller. Discussions with Zachary Wilson are on going but his asking price remains very high. The team has an offerRead More »
4:33 p.m. It’s official – TIOPS has learned Jason Bay to Boston; Manny to LA. Could be others involved. John Heyman of CNNSI first reported the deal. 4:25 p.m. Dodgers to acquire Bay? More to come. Looks like the Dodgers late inquiry might have payed off – From the 1:00 p.m. hour – 1:44 p.m. “Jayson Stark is confirming the Blue Jays have inquired about Bay with the Cardinals being unconfirmed. The Dodgers made a inquiry I’ve been told.” 3:58 p.m. There’s has been something brewing with the Red sox for the past hour. Rosenthal is reporting talks may be back on. 3:48 Despite reports from Carrol and Goldstein, a deal has not been struck. As I reported at the 2:00 p.m. hour, the Pirates were targeting Wade Davis or Jeremy Hellickson to be included into the deal. Jonathan Mayo of MLB.com is reporting Brignac may not be available. 3:28Read More »