Welcome to the MLB roundtable, with Archie and Steve throwing heat and the knowledge on Yasiel Puig, the Indians, Freddi Gonzalez and the All Star game
ARCHIE: The sample size one has to measure the true talents of Puig is very, very limited. He only has 89 TOTAL games as a professional player and that includes the 63 minor league games. His numbers do show that he hit at every level he played and coming from Cuba, there is not much to be found about his playing years prior to arriving in the U.S. I for one however, find myself believing that he is the real deal with a very bright future in MLB.
STEVE: This kid is the real deal. He reminds me a lot of Mike Trout from last year. Puig is doing everything right, and to me looks like the next Albert Pujols. This is a true storybook type of thing that MLB needs to get out from the light of the steroid controversy. I am really excited to watch players like Puig, Chris Davis, and Paul Goldschmidt to name a few. I think we may be seeing a new era of baseball.
2. The Cleveland Indians are in first place in the AL Central. Are they pretenders or contenders?
ARCHIE: I am still not buying Indian stock. I still feel the Tigers will undermine their dream of winning the central. I also feel like once that happens the Indians will not even make on of the two wild card teams.
STEVE: I still like the Tigers to come out of the Central by at least 6 games. The Indians are an up and coming team, but they are not quite there yet. Right now they are pretenders, and I think they will continue to hover around the .500 mark for the whole season. They will not get over the hump this season.
ARCHIE: I have long expressed my displeasure over the exorbitant amount of strikeouts proliferating MLB. It strikes twice as bad when the epidemic hits your favorite team, and for my beloved Braves I simply cringe every time one of the batters strikes out, especially with RISP. IF Freddi does NOT do something to help these guys over the hump with this problem, I don’t see how they can possibly make a run in the playoffs.
STEVE: Call me crazy, but I don’t see a problem. I mean strikeouts are just another out. Players are going to make outs. With the number of Home Runs the Braves are tallying, they will have no problem staying in the race and competing for a World Series title. They are also striking out batters, and Julio Teheran is in my opinion, the next big star pitcher to come out of Atlanta. Should Freddi be concerned? No, and out is an out.
4. Look at these numbers first: 28 Homeruns, 132 base-on-balls, . 480 OBP, 169 OPS+, All Star. So why could Barry Bonds NOT get a job the next season?
ARCHIE: Conspiracy Theory. I firmly believe that every Owner in MLB blackballed Bonds because of the whole steroid debate. There is really no other way to explain it other than maybe Bonds overpriced himself and no one was willing to sign him. However, when you use the whole argument that for many years for many years has been the basis to keep the DH in the AL, why in the hell would some AL team NOT want him in that role?
STEVE: Bonds will never step foot on a MLB field again in an active role. He is linked to too much controversy with his legal woes, and the steroid issue. Baseball is moving in a new and more positive direction, and is doing everything they can to limit the amount of publicity that the steroid era has caused them.
ARCHIE: This one is pretty clear to me at this point, Buchholz for the AL, Harvey for the NL. These two have not just won games for their teams, they have been dominating in doing so.
STEVE: Clay Buchholz of Boston SHOULD get the nod. However, I think that Yu Darvish of Texas will start for the AL. In the National League I like Matt Harvey due to his pure domination of hitters so far this season.
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