MLBRT 10/15… MLB winners & losers

 

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Every year in MLB there are winners and losers… the crew bats around who they think are the biggest winners… and… the biggest losers this 2015 season…

As well as some more playoff talk… and…

“Must Win Game”… exactly what is that?

And… yeah… after about two months I finally got Dan an icon…

1) Since coming to the Blue Jays from the Tigers in a trade-deadline deal David Price put up a 9-1 record with a 2.30 ERA… for his 8-year regular season MLB career his record stands at 104-56 (.650); with a 3.09 ERA and a 1.132 Whip. david_price_cheat_sheet2
Then, in the first game of the playoffs he gets banged around a tad in a 5-3 loss to the Texas Rangers… his line read 7
IP; 5 ER; 6.43 ERA; 2 BB, 5 K, 2 HBP, 2 HR… not real good or what Toronto was hoping to start the playoffs. But, to be truthful Price has also shown that he doesn’t live up to his regular-season numbers in the postseason…
as a starter in the postseason, Price is now 0-6 with a 5.23 ERA and eight home runs allowed in six starts. In 2008 he did get win in relief. Overall his playoff numbers stand at Any ideas why the great disparity between his regular season’s and playoff’s numbers?

 

Dan 3Dan: Really, I don’t know. I think it’s mental. He’s thinking too much when he’s in the playoffs, taking it as too big of a game when he just needs to relax and pitch like it’s any other game against any other opponent.

He’s dominant in the regular season but is just trash in the playoffs. The only thing I can possibly think of that could effect him like this is all in his head. BBA Twins Blue Jays 20150803

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Earl: To me it could be one of two things: a loss of rhythm from missing a few starts towards the end of a long season, or, he simply cannot handle the big moments of the postseason.

Honestly? I think it’s a combination of the two. The postseason is a different animal. Everyone is watching. Some guys can handle that, and some get the yips. Price? Looks like he has got the yips.

Me (2)

Joe: Until he starts a playoff game and at least pitches well, and preferably wins the game, I have to believe he just doesn’t react to the money moments of the playoffs as well as he does to money moments in the regular seson. Because he has won important and key game sin the regular season.

I think he gets over-amped for some reason. Why? Who the hell knows but he just does and it make him a different pitcher in the playoffs than in the regular season.price2

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Steve: It’s very simple, its the playoffs. The regular season is in the past, and, what you accomplish in the regular season means nothing when you get into the playoffs. Just ask Clayton Kershaw, he has struggled in the playoffs in his career too, and, he dominates the regular season.

Plus, Price is a workhorse, and with the amount of innings he puts in in the regular season, his arm may not be the same when he is in the playoffs. 

Josh-Donaldson-knee-to-the-head2) During the first playoff game between Toronto and Texas, Jose Bautista left the game between innings and the reason given was for a cramped hamstring… Josh Donaldson was removed from the game after the trainer and manger examined him after he got kneed in the head while sliding into second base.

On the Fox studio program analyst Pete Rose had this to say… “I just don’t understand. I mean, does everybody know what we’re playing for now? I mean, get a tweak and you got to leave the game. You get a knee on the head and you’ve got a helmet on and you got to leave the game to go take a test that you pass. I mean, cause you’re a little light-headed? I got light-headed how many times in my career? I still went out there and played. Frank (fellow studio analyst and former player/Hall of Famer Frank Thomas)… I can’t see you sliding into second there and leaving the game. I really can’t. And, this guy is the MVP.”donaldson

Any thoughts on Rose’s comments… are they valid, invalid or somewhere in-between? Or, is he just muckraking?

Dan 3Dan: I think it’s somewhat valid, but, there’s a reason why teams are being so cautious. Contracts.

These contracts are millions of dollars. They don’t want to do too much damage where he’s going to miss most of the season or effect him long-term where he ends up getting severely over-paid for the type of play on the field.

But, he does have some validity because these players are being taken out for everything. It’s getting out of control in my opinion. Just let these players play. They don’t even want to get taken out of the game but they still end up going to the locker room to get checked out. 

E_J_-12-238x300Earl: I had the same thought that Pete did when I first heard Donaldson was leaving the game, but, you can’t play around with concussions. Winning is important, no doubt, but at the end of the day player health does come first.

Rose is from the old school, and I get it, but it was a bit harsh of Rose taking Donaldson to task like that.

Me (2)

Joe: First… Rose is right… back in his day unless a player was completely down and out he would do everything he could to stay in games.

Second… that was then this is now and players today… whether for health reasons or a team’s over-caution because they got big bucks invested or, the most probable reason, a combination of the two… are more likely if there is even a hint of possible aggravation of a serious injury to sit it out.

Rose 2nd from right in FS1 Studio
Rose 2nd from right in FS1 Studio

In Joeys Bats situation… I don’t know how serious his hammy was but I’ve pulled a hamstring and I know for a fact one second you be walking fine and then you can move the wrong way and the pain is excruciating. Nuff said.

In Donaldson’s situation… I heard he actually stayed in the game to play his position and he was taken out after the team came off the field. So once again… nuff said.

Rose is muckraking.

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Steve: I can understand the Donaldso situation, because you have to be very careful to make sure he didnt have any concussion like symptoms. However, I can’t make a case for Bautista, because, you have to leave everything out on the field when you are in a playoff game. Especially for a team that has not seen post season action in 22 years.

So, there are some valid points by Pete Rose, as it pertains to Jose Bautista, but then again, the team has to make that decision. 

must win3) Prior to the second playoff game between KC and Houston, some writers said that because KC, as the home team, lost the first playoff game, that, the second game was now a “must win game”.

Do you agree or disagree with that assessment? When is a game a “must win” situation?

 

Dan 3

Dan: I agree.

These games, after game 1, are a must-win in all the divisional round series. There’s only 5 games so every game is extremely important and every 1 loss matters. You lose a game, you’re just that much closer to elimination. If you lose 2 games in a row, it’s almost over for you especially if you start out 0-2.must1

Yes, Game 2 was a must-win for KC. 

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Earl: In a best of 5 series, and, with Houston coming in with some momentum after beating the Yankees in the Wildcard game, I do think Game 2 will be a must win game.

Now, considering this post is well after Game 2 is to be played, it is possible for the Royals to lose that game and still win the series but they will not be doing themselves any favors by doing so.

Me (2)

Joe: The only time it is a must win game, in my opinion, is if a team is facing elimination…Game 2 is not a must win game in a five game series.

LA vs Mets game 5... win or go home
LA vs Mets game 5… win or go home

Now, lose the first two and then game three  becomes a must win game for the team in that 0-2 hole.  

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Steve: If a team loses the first two at home, and, are forced to win three straight, two on the road. I would absolutely agree that it is a must win.

Had the Royals not have won game 2, they would have had to face Dallas Keuchel, in Houston, in Game 3. Keuchel was unbeaten, and, nearly unhittable at home this season. They absolutely had to win Game 2 in Kansas City to keep their chances alive

4) Which team was the biggest disappointment this 2015 season?

 

Dan 3

Dan: My biggest 2015 disappointment was Milwaukee.

Brewers the biggest disappointment in 2015?
Brewers the biggest disappointment in 2015?

I thought they would’ve came in and at least made the playoffs as a Wild Card with how their off-season had gone. Their team was looking promising. Not only did they start off as the worst team in the league, they continued to struggle all season after heating up for a little bit in the middle of the season.

The Brewers need to turn it around this off-season and they already look like they’re about to with the firing of all their coaches except 2. 

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Earl: It’s a tossup for me between the Mariners and the Padres, but, I’ll lean with San Diego.

Padres GM fires manager after disappointing season
Padres GM fires manager after disappointing season

The Padres made some big moves by bringing in Matt Kemp, the Upton brothers, and bolstering their pitching staff but they completely bombed this season. They were never in it, depleted their farm system to make those deals, and are stuck with some pretty rough contracts going forward. The Padres went for broke and crapped out.

Me (2)

Joe: Hmmm… Red Sox, Mariners, Padres, Orioles, Nationals… so many choices… 

Red Sox? I was not impressed with their offseason acquisitions… especially Sandoval, he just  doesn’t impress me all that much…  and they did nothing to help their starting rotation. So, I didn’t expect a lot out of them this season.

Tigers finish 20 games out
Tigers finish 20 games out

Padres did surpise me a bit because they made a lot of moves that I thought should have had them at least contending for a wild card… but not the the biggest disappointment.

Orioles had too many question marks but I thought they would be better that nt hey were and compete for a wild card… but… not he biggest disappoint.

Nationals? While many thought they were the odds on favorite to not only win their divsion but to go to the World Series, they just never really impressed me all that much.

So, who is my selection for biggest disappointment?

Comes down to the Angels and the Tigers… and the Tigers win.. (sorta)…

For them to not to win their division as well as not even contend for at least a wild card, but, to finish in last place… 20.5 games out of first in their division… is a complete shock to me. At the onset of the season if anyone had told me the Tigers would not win their divsion nor comepte for a wild card, I would have said they were nuts. So, considering all of that, the Tigers are the most disappointing team this year, followed closely by the Angels.

Disappointed Nats fans
Disappointed Nats fans

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Steve: No question in my mind, it has to be the Washington Nationals. I, along with many, thought this team was poised to win the World Series, I had them dominating the NL East and winning 100 games. I thought they had the best pitching rotation in baseball. They have the probable MVP in Harper, who had an amazing season, and, flashes of brilliance in Scherzer, who looked like he was the favorite to win the Cy Young Award at the break and this team finished with 83 or 84 wins?

I was not surprised at all to see Williams get fired, especially when his closer attacked his superstar in the dugout.

5) Which team was the most surprising during this 2015 season?

Dan 3

Dan: My biggest 2015 surprise is the Cubs.chicago-cubs-

Not only are they taking it to the Cardinals, they finished the season with 95+ wins and it’s only because the Cardinals had 100 wins that they didn’t win the division with ease. Chicago is really looking like they’ll win it all if they can get past St Louis.

They have Rizzo playing amazing and Arrieta who is having a Cy Young-like year and shutting opponents down only losing 1 game since June and has an ERA around 1. Incredible stuff.

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Earl: The Yankees overachieved this season.Yankees

I don’t think anyone thought the New York Yankees would lead the AL East like they did for a good part of the season, let alone make the playoffs as a wildcard like they eventually did.

Players like A-Rod and Teixera were having great seasons until one got old and one got hurt, and, the rest of the club stepped up in key spots. Joe Girardi might be disappointed that they lost the Wild Card game at home but they should be proud of the season that they had.

Me (2)

Joe: Gotta admit it… I didn’t give the Mets a snowball’s chance in hell of even coming close to competing for a wild card or making the playoffs.Mets

Instead they win their division outright and avoid the “win-and- you’re-in/lose and you’re done” wildcard game.

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Steve: I would have to say the Houston Astros.

I think this team is a year or two ahead of schedule. I had them finishing last in the AL West, I had no idea that they were going to be as good as they were.

Altuve had another fantastic season, Correa came up and had a stellar season, as he will likely win the Rookie of the Year.Astros

What can you say about Dallas Keuchel? Dude was lights out at home going 15-0 at Minute Maid park. Keuchel is your likely CY Young winner.

They made a few key aquisitions at the trade deadline with Gomez and Kazmir, which helped them wrap up the Wild Card berth. This team could seriously make some noise too, and, if not this year, the Astros could be claiming their first World Championship in the next couple of years.

Extra Innings…

Cubs eliminate Cardinals to advance in NL
Cubs eliminate Cardinals to advance in NL

 

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