2012 Outlook: Tampa Bay Rays

The Tampa Bay Rays are coming off a season where they made the postseason on the final day of the regular season, capping off the greatest final day in baseball history. Offensively they were one of the best teams in the league, Matt Joyce and Evan Longoria were both big parts to the teams’ success. The pitching was middle of the pack, but it could be one of the best in the league this season. Continue reading

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2012 Outlook: Boston Red Sox

The 2012 Boston Red Sox are looking forward to Opening Day more than any other team this year.  Unlike the Braves, the Red Sox have completely cleaned house after their September collapse, with a new GM, new manager, and long-time veterans gone.  However, three of the 15 best position players last year made their home at Fenway, so there is plenty of talent to recover.  The pitching is depleted, but there is a good core to compliment the great offense. Continue reading

2012 Outlook: St. Louis Cardinals

The St. Louis Cardinals are coming off of a season where the won the world series, unfortunately they also lost one of the best players off all-time to free agency. Their offense was one of the best in all of baseball, and was led by Albert Pujols, but since he’s gone Matt Holliday and Lance Berkman will be the offensive leaders. With the loss of Adam Wainwright in spring training their pitching was middle of the pack. Continue reading

2012 Outlook: Atlanta Braves

My poor Braves forgot how to play baseball in September, going 5-15 the last 20 games, ending up missing the wild card with an 89-73 record.  There is almost zero turnover on the roster, with all but one player on the 40-man roster being in the organization last year.  High-leverage hitting was a major factor in their late demise, hitting nearly 30% below average with runners on third base.  Two top starters also missed September due to injury, which also hurt the club.  2012 will be a challenge with such a deep NL East to compete with. Continue reading

2012 Outlook: San Francisco Giants

After winning the 2010 world series the Giants had high hopes of returning to the playoffs, in hopes of another title run. Unfortunately they didn’t even make the playoffs. They were had a strong pitching staff, led by Tim Lincecum. The offense was towards the lower half of the league, but with Buster Posey returning, they should get more run production.

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All-Decade Teams: The 1950s

The 1950s were the beginning of baseball’s Golden Age.  Integration had finally occurred, while expansion was not yet here.  The level of talent was very high since only 16 teams had all these new players to choose.  One quirky thing about the 50’s was the lack of stolen bases.  No player stole 200 bases during the decade.  Every position player chosen is in the Hall of Fame, while four of the pitchers are also inducted. Continue reading

2012 Outlook: Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim

The 2011 Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim finished 86-76, staying with the Rangers until late in September.  Starting pitching and defense were the strengths of the team, with the offense rating just below average.  That was partially resolved with the signing of Albert Pujols, but left field, designated hitter, and especially catcher needs more production to compete with Texas.  The pitching is now even stronger with the addition of C.J. Wilson, probably giving them the best 1-4 in the American League. Continue reading