Tag:Arizona Diamondbacks
Posted on: August 13, 2008 7:34 pm

The Complete Game - A Dying Art

I think one of the biggest changes in the sport of major league baseball over the past century has become the role of the starting pitcher.  I'm sure managers, like they have for the past 100 years have wanted their starters to go out and pitch the whole game and bring the team to victory, but a starting pitcher in 1907 was at least 12 or times more likely to go the distance in a game than a starter in 2007.  What I decided to do to illustrate how complete games have declined over the past century, I took a look at the league leaders by team in complete games for every tenth year from 1907 to 2007.  The results are interesting

1907 - (152 games played) St. Louis AL 129 CG,    (153 games played) St. Louis NL 127 CG

1917  - (152 games played) Boston AL 115 CG,*  (153 games played) Boston Braves NL  105 CG   *=Babe Ruth led the AL with 35 CG.

1927  - (153 games) Chicago White Sox, AL 85 CG, (154 games) Pittsburgh NL 90 CG

1937  - (154 games) NY Yankees, AL 82 CG,  (152 games) Boston Braves NL 85 CG

1947  - (154 games) Detroit Tigers, AL  77 CG, (154 games) Boston Braves NL 74 CG

1957  -  (154 games) Chicago White Sox, AL 59 CG,  (154 games) Milwaukee Braves NL 60 CG

1967  - (162 games) Minnesota Twins, AL 58 CG,  (162 games) S. F. Giants NL 64 CG

1977 - (162 games) Baltimore Orioles, AL 65 CG (J. Palmer, 22), (162 games) Houston Astros, NL 37 CG

1987  - (162 games) Boston Red Sox, AL 47 CG, (162 games) LA Dodgers 29 CG

1997  - (162 games) Toronto Blue Jays, AL 19 CG (162 games) Montreal Expos 27 CG

2007  - (162 games) Toronto Blue Jays, AL 11 CG (162 games) Arizona Diamondbacks, NL 7

I'll comment about how I feel and my beliefs on this later.  I just want to let you know that of all these league leaders in complete games listed that those teams finished the season everywhere from last in the league to World Series champions, so as far as attaching importance on who throws the most complete games is sort of moot. 

Anyway, happy reading, and please discuss what you think.     

Posted on: August 1, 2008 4:35 pm

Trading is over. Who Won? Who Lost?

The 2008 trading frenzy has reached its deadline in historical fashion.  I say historical, because no other season in the history of baseball have more sure fire hall of famers been traded in the same year.  Ken Griffey Jr goes to the White Sox to the Reds, Manny Ramirez goes to the Dodgers from the Red Sox and Ivan Rodriguez goes to the Yankees from the Tigers.  I believe I heard that never has more than 2 hall of famers been traded in the same season.  If the futures of C. C. Sabathia and Mark Texiera are as bright as their pasts, there could be as many as 5 Hall of Famers traded this season.  A number of prospects were also involved in the trading, but it doesn't appear that any club parted with their very best prospect.  So what teams did the best to improve their chance this year or the upcoming years and which clubs went backward?  I'd like to know what you all think.  Also, let me know your assessment of how YOUR team helped or hurt themselves over the past couple of weeks on the trading front.   Of course, I'll render my opinions.

Biggest winners.   New York Yankees, Milwaukee Brewers, Chicago Cubs and Pittsburgh Pirates and Los Angeles Dodgers.

The Yankees took immediate action to make up for the loss of Jorge Posada by acquiring Ivan Rodriguez from the Tigers.  Although Pudge's power numbers are down this year, he doesn't need to hit for a whole lot of power in a line-up  that already features Alex Rodriguez and Jason Giambi.  They also picked up Xavier Nady and Marte from the Pirates.  Nady is a solid bat which covers them with the injury to Hideki Matsui and they needed Marte due to trading away Kyle Farnsworth and LaTroy Hawkins.  The Yankees being aggressive at the trading deadline with the Rays standing pat and the Red Sox being losers in the trading game, really boosted their chances for making the playoffs.

The Milwaukee Brewers got C C Sabathia from the Indians for prospects.  C C is the reigning Cy Young award winner in the AL and has already hurled 3  complete games for the Brewers.  No need to explain this any further.

Rich Harden has been phenominal in his 4 starts for the Cubs.  Tough to fathom that he's only won one of those four games, yet he hasn't allowed more than 1 earned run in any of those games yet.

The Pittsburgh Pirates traded away two outfielders and a 33 year old relief pitcher.   They still have a solid outfield remaining on the club and have picked up 8 prospects, 3 or 4 of which will probably see major league action this season.  For a rebuilding team that can't spend much on payroll, they did what they had to do.  Jason Bay was a popular player in Pittsburg, but getting 4 prospects for him will soften the blow for his loss.

The Dodgers got Casey Blake in a trade with the Indians.  Blake's having a very good season and maybe the Dodgers bought a bit high on him, however, picking up Manny for a two month rental was a bargain for a pennant run where the Diamondbacks stood pat at the expense of 2 prospects.  Expect Manny to give good effort in August and September since he'll be a free agent at the end of the season.  If you havn't figured it out by now, Manny's a bit selfish.

Biggest Losers....Boston Red Sox and Arizona Diamondbacks.

You can't blame the Red Sox management for this.... mainly Manny Ramirez.  Over the past couple of weeks, Manny showed the Red Sox that he'd show up if he wanted to and he'ld hurt the team if he wanted to and he created enough doubt within the organization that he cared enough about the Red Sox winning, that they felt it necessary to trade him.  A number of Red Sox veterans told the general manager to get rid of Manny, so he felt he had too.  They spent Brandon Moss and another key prospect plus the remainder of money owed Manny for the rest of the season to trade him to the Dodgers to get Jason Bay.  Because of this they didn't have good enough prospects available as trade bait to address other needs such as relief pitching.

The Arizona Diamondbacks are currently only 2 games in front of the Dodgers.  The Dodgers made 2 sweet trades to upgrade their offense and the offensively challenged Diamondbacks sat  on their hands.  Arizona probably has the best 1-3 starters in baseball with Brandon Webb, Dan Haren and Randy Johnson, but if one of those three gets injured in the next 2 months, its my humble opinion that they'll regret not making a deal to enhance their offense.

As far as my Kansas City Royals go, we made no trades at the deadline.  Of all the trade rumors I heard concerning Royals players, the only one that sounded fair was Ron Mahay for Brandon Ross of the Red Sox, however, with Ross being traded away so that the Red Sox could trade Manny away, that never happened.  Since I didn't see a real good trade offer to benefit the Royals, I'm happy we stood pat.

Okay, now discuss your opinions on the trades everyone!

Posted on: July 19, 2008 3:42 pm

AT THE BREAK - AL/NL MVP, Cy Young and Royals MVP

Now that the All-Star game has come and gone, who are the front runners for the best of awards in MLB?  I want to know what my readers think.   I'll give the categories and who I think the mid-season front runner is.  Whether you agree or disagree, your comments will be appreciated and rewarded, I'll give you a five and enter you into a drawing for a 7 day, 6 night vacation to one of three luxurious resorts.  Shortly before the drawing you will be notified that you have indeed won 1 of 5 wonderful prizes if you attend the drawing.  At the time of the drawing you will be entertained to a 90 minute presentation by one of my cordial sales staff offering you a bargain to own a piece of these 3 wonderful resorts.      Without further ado....

AL MVP?   Ian Kinsler, Texas Rangers.   Honorable mentions, A. Rod, Josh Hamilton, Grady Sizemore

AL Cy Young?  Cliff Lee

Top AL Closer?  Mariano Rivera.  No blown saves, best ERA and WHIP among closers.  Joakim Soria IS the second best.  2nd best ERA and WHIP among closers, only 2 blown saves.

NL MVP?  Lance Berkman, Houston Astros.  Honorable Mentions, Hanley Ramirez, Chase Utley and Albert Pujols.

NL Cy Young?  Brandon Webb, Arizona DiamondbacksCole Hamels, Tim Lincecum and Edinson Volquez are right there with him.

Top NL Closer?  Kerry Wood, Chicago CubsBrad Lidge is arguably as good, but I gave Wood my vote because of his better WHIP.

KC Royals Best Player?  David DeJesus.  Although Jose Guillen led the Royals in HR and RBI, DeJesus is hitting over .300, leads the Royals in OBP, is hitting over .400 with RISP and has played all 3 outfield positions this season without committing an error.

KC Royals Best Pitcher?  Joakim Soria, closer.  I had to give the Mexicutioner the nod over Zack Greinke.  Soria has been consistently overpowering this season, with special emphasis on the word "consistent". 

Any comments on the all-star game.  Great pre-game introduction with all the living HOF players that could make it on the field.  I would have loved being there.  When in the history of the game, has there ever been greater talent , past and present, on a baseball diamond?  The game was a classic itself.    

The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com