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Pitching Prospects Key to Blue Jays Future

As the Major League Baseball season reaches towards  the July 31st trade deadline, the Toronto Blue Jays remained in the hunt for their first playoff berth since claiming back-to-back World Series titles in 1992 and 1993. The Jays have regularly demonstrated their dominance at the plate this season, leading the majors with over 5.2 runs per game this year. But while the Blue Jays have had little difficulty running up the score, the club has struggled at times on the mound, leading to calls from fans and baseball writers alike for general manager... 
 

Los Angeles Dodgers Flexing Offensive Muscle

Despite several injuries to the pitching staff, the Los Angeles Dodgers own a 21-10 record, the second best mark in baseball behind the St. Louis Cardinals. The Dodger offense has carried them, as the club is showcasing the embarrassment of riches they have accumulated. Even with Yasiel Puig sidelined with a hamstring injury, the Dodger bats haven’t missed a beat. As a group, the Dodgers boast a .363/.348/.479 slash line. They lead baseball in on-base percentage and slugging percentage, and their 127 wRC+ is also tops in baseball. Though... 
 

Joey Votto is Healthy and off to a Blazing Start

Cincinnati Reds first baseman Joey Votto struggled with injuries in a 2014 campaign that lasted just 62 games. After playing in all 162 games in 2013 and slugging 24 home runs with a .435 on-base percentage, Votto hit just six longballs with a batting line of .255/.390/.409 before injuries ended his season. Consequently, the Reds suffered, finishing 28th in the major leagues in runs scored and posting a batting line of .238/.296/.365. Household names Brayan Pena, Neftali Soto, Donald Lutz and Jack Hannahan all manned first base. The Canadian has... 
 

Yankees Need to Remember Own History

The New York Yankees have won 27 world championships spread out across 92 years. Babe Ruth, Lou Gehrig, Yogi Berra, Joe Dimaggio: The team in pinstripes has no shortage of greatness from greatest to simply “Hall of Famer”. Fifty three different players have played for the Yankees and sit in Cooperstown and 26 of them entered with the Yankees as their primary team. This isn’t a lesson in statistics, it’s a lesson in just how special the Yankees’ past has been. Before the 1990’s dynasty, the Yankees had 17 players... 
 

New York Yankees Made the Smartest Decisions This Winter

With pitchers and catchers due to report this weekend and James Shields firmly planted on the Padres’ roster, the majority of the heavy and impactful lifting is complete for the 2015 winter. The New York Yankees used the past three-and-a-half months trying to get younger, trying to sure up the defense, trying to cover both holes on the left side of the infield, trying to sort out the second base competition and trying to rebuild some of the innings lost with Hiroki Kuroda‘s departure. It was a long to-do list to not only maintain what... 
 

Yankees Defense Good Enough for Playoff Contention, The Rest?

If there’s one underlying theme to the New York Yankees’ winter, it’s been improving the defense. Whether that means addition by subtraction with Derek Jeter‘s retirement, keeping together another strong bullpen lead by strikeout machine, Dellin Betances, or simply getting younger and more athletic, it has all contributed to the same cause. Keeping runs off the board. Last season, the Yankees’ average age was 30.2, trailing only the Boston Red Sox and Philadelphia Phillies for oldest team in the majors. Of course, this... 
 

New York Yankees: Five Possible Outcomes in 2015

It seemed like such a dismal failure, but the New York Yankees actually finished as the second best team in the American League East last season. We discovered: Masahiro Tanaka, Dellin Betances and what Brett Gardner‘s power looks like. We said goodbye to: Brian Roberts, Alfonso Soriano and, by the end, Dave Robertson and Hiroki Kuroda. By the end, we were excited about: Jacoby Ellsbury, Michael Pineda and Chase Headley and disappointed in: Brian McCann, CC Sabathia and Carlos Beltran. There were a lot of moving parts, ups and downs and most... 
 

Pitchers Under Pressure in 2015: Red Sox Clay Buchholz

As we head into Spring Training there are always questions when it comes to your favorite Major League Baseball team.  Today I want to begin to  take a look at some pitchers that are going to be under the microscope this spring because a lot of the their ball clubs fortunes will begin and end with their performance as we preview the 2015 MLB season. Some are going to be asked to fill the void left by a free agent like the Kansas City Royals Edison Volquez, others will be asked to carry more weight since the team did not add any fresh arms like... 
 

Bud Selig’s Last Day as MLB Commissioner, Game in Better Shape Now

Today is the last day in the reign of the Commissioner of Baseball.  Like all leaders there are those that love him and those that hate him.  Believe me in the beginning of his tenure the easiest day in sports talk radio was to open the mike and say Bud Selig’s name then sit back and take hour after hour of calls from angry baseball fans screaming their hatred of the man who ran Major League Baseball.  His tenure started as shaky as it could possibly be. He was supposed to find the next MLB commissioner and when the owner of the Brewers... 
 

New York Yankees Prospects Who Could Have an Immediate Impact

The New York Yankees have had issues developing offensive farm talent for the better part of two decades, at least in using that talent to help its own roster. Much has been written about the potential prospect battle at second base but it quickly had cold water tossed on it when Stephen Drew was brought back in the mix. While the roster has trended significantly younger this winter, New York still has performance and health concerns and the most promising offensive talent at the higher levels of the minors in years. Let’s look at which of... 
 

Washington Nationals on the Rise, Detroit Tigers Window Closing?

The Washington Nationals have their man, Max Scherzer.  Scott Boras has done it again.  Just when you thought Scherzer was going to be cooling his heels while everyone else was reporting to spring training, he signed a contract with a deferd cash deal that makes everyone happy.  Scherzer got his cash he was looking for and the Nats become even better while not blowing up their bank accounts right now.  Vegas has spoken and moved the Nats to the odds on favorite to win the 2015 World Series. With the signing of Scherzer they have a horse they... 
 

Texas Rangers get Yovani Gallardo from Milwaukee Brewers

The Texas Rangers acquired pitcher Yovani Gallardo from the Milwaukee Brewers. In exchange the Brewers received a group of young players, infielder Luis Sardinas and right-handed pitchers Corey Knebel and Marcos Diplan. Milwaukee will also contribute $4 million towards Gallardo’s $14 million salary for 2015. Gallardo, who turns 29 in February, will be eligible for free agency next offseason. He’s been very durable, logging the sixth-most innings in baseball over the last six years. That characteristic is surely appealing to the Rangers,... 
 

Red Sox Should Stay the Course With Jackie Bradley Jr.

In Major League Baseball, producing difference-making young players is crucial to building an annual contender. Even the big market teams cannot fill every position with premium names carrying salaries north of $20 million a year. Typically, the cornerstones to any team that advances deep into October are prospects who develop into All-Star caliber performers or fill valuable roles in the lineup, rotation or bullpen. Boston Red Sox General Manager Ben Cherington understands all of the above. It is why, even after the club struggled through a 2014... 
 

Seattle Mariners Positioned as Early Favorites in AL West

In 2014 the Seattle Mariners notched 87 wins, their highest total since 2009. It marked a 16 game improvement on the previous season. Still, the Mariners were unable to end their playoff drought, which has continued since they won an MLB record 116 games in 2001. Going into 2015, the Mariners look like the favorites in the American League West. The Mariners aren’t short on star power. With Robinson Cano, Felix Hernandez and Kyle Seager, they own three of the top players in the division and all of baseball. Cano, who was signed to a whopping... 
 

New York Yankees from 2014 to 2015: Position by Position

Finishing 2014 with an 84-78 record meant a distant second place in the American League East for the Yankees. It also meant four games back from playing in a one game playoff which produced a team who would finish two runs from a World Series title. While four games is surely not a death sentence, New York would have to pass a minimum of three teams this season to make it happen and hold back the Toronto Blue Jays, who finished one game worse. All of that is said, without the possibility of a team like the Boston Red Sox, owners of dropping the... 
 

Giants’ Buster Posey Still Looking for his First Extra-base Hit

Heading into a three-game stretch at home, the San Francisco Giants are tied at one game apiece with the Kansas City Royals. Giants catcher Buster Posey, the best player left in this postseason, has struggled to provide punch to the middle of the Giants order. 12 games into the postseason, Posey has yet to record his first extra-base hit. Since winning the starting catcher job for the Giants in 2010, Posey has established himself as the best catcher in baseball, and one of the top handful of players overall. As a 23 year-old rookie he helped... 
 

Royals Salvador Perez Bouncing Back in the World Series

Salvador Perez helped propel the Kansas City Royals to victory over the San Francisco Giants Wednesday night. His two-run double off Hunter Strickland helped the Royals break open a 3-2 game. The next batter, Omar Infante, slammed a two-run home run, giving the Royals a 7-2 edge which would hold up. Perez struggled mightily in the ALDS and ALCS. He had just one hit in the wild card game, but his line drive past a diving Josh Donaldson would give the Royals a walk-off victory. In 29 plate appearances between the ALDS and ALCS he reached base... 
 

Alcides Escobar’s Reemergence Key for Royals

After earning a Wild Card berth, the Kansas City Royals have gone on a tear. They bested the Oakland Athletics in a dramatic comeback, and have proceeded to sweep the Los Angeles Angels and Baltimore Orioles. The bullpen has been dominant, and Lorenzo Cain had a huge ALCS, recording eight hits and reaching base 10 times. However, the solid play of shortstop Alcides Escobar has been key to the Royals‘ success both in the regular season and the postseason. A native of Venezuela, Escobar was signed by the Milwaukee Brewers as an international... 
 

Kansas City Royals: Lorenzo Cain’s Star Shining in ALCS

With a 2-1 victory on Tuesday night, the Kansas City Royals have taken a 3-0 series lead on the Baltimore Orioles. Seven games into the postseason, the Royals have yet to lose a game. Outfielder Lorenzo Cain has emerged as a star this postseason. A former 17th round draft pick out of Tallahassee Community College, Cain was acquired from the Milwaukee Brewers in the Zack Greinke trade in the 2010 offseason. That trade, which cost the Royals Greinke and Yuniesky Betancourt, also netted the Royals starting shortstop Alcides Escobar and Jake Odorizzi,... 
 

St Louis Cardinals: Matt Carpenter’s Big October

The St. Louis Cardinals downed the San Francisco Giants 5-4 Sunday night, knotting up the NLCS at one game apiece. Once again Matt Carpenter played a huge role in a Cardinals postseason victory. After hitting eight home runs in 158 regular season games, the Cardinals infielder has drilled four in six postseason matches. Carpenter burst onto the scene in 2013, his first full season as a second baseman. He led the National League in hits, runs score and doubles. The former 13th round draft pick posted a gaudy .318/.392/.481 slash line and played... 
 

Minnesota Twins Phil Hughes’ Record-Setting Season

2014 has been another rough year for the Minnesota Twins, who will miss the playoffs for the fourth consecutive season. Still, there were some bright spots. Brian Dozier emerged as a solid all-around player, Trevor Plouffe had a nice season, and Danny Santana hit .319/.355/.477 in 97 games at the shortstop position. But, the most impressive year of all was had by Phil Hughes, who the Twins signed to a three year deal this offseason. Prior to signing with the Twins, Hughes had a seven year tenure with the Yankees. He was a very highly hyped prospect,... 
 

Little Jose Altuve’s Big Season for Houston Astros

It’s been a season of controversy for the Houston Astros. They showed some real promise in June, with rookie right fielder George Springer making a big splash, and pitchers Dallas Keuchel and Collin McHugh posting ace-like numbers. However, shortly after Sports Illustrated declared them the “2017 World Series champs“, things began to unravel. Top prospect Carlos Correa was lost for the season with a broken ankle, and they failed to sign the top pick Brady Aiken, in what turned out to be a messy dispute. In the midst of these issues,... 
 

Detroit Tigers Victor Martinez’ Fantastic Season

The Detroit Tigers have endured several bumps in the road during the 2014 season. Nevertheless, they have a one game lead on the Kansas City Royals with six games remaining, and are virtually assured of at least a wild card berth. Designated hitter Victor Martinez has been a rock in the middle of their lineup. After an unimpressive 2013 season, Martinez has turned in one of the top offensive seasons of 2014. Martinez was signed to a four year deal worth $50 million in the 2010 offseason. His power numbers took a hit in his first year in Detroit,... 
 

Washington Nationals Lineup Makes Them Favorites in the NL

Despite some injury-fueled early season struggles, the Washington Nationals are sitting pretty. With a 91-64 record, they own the best record in the NL, and will rest their starters as they head into the postseason, where they will await the winner of the wild card game, which will likely feature the San Francisco Giants and the Pittsburgh Pirates. The Nationals rotation has received a lot of attention, and it features four starters who are having strong seasons in Jordan Zimmermann, Stephen Strasburg, Doug Fister and Tanner Roark as well... 
 

Boston Red Sox Youth Movement – Largely Disappointing

A year ago the Boston Red Sox had the oldest roster in the major leagues. That season ended with them winning the World Series. Then, they allowed center fielder Jacoby Ellsbury to depart in free agency, Stephen Drew went unsigned until June and Jarrod Saltalamacchia signed with the Miami Marlins. Youngsters Xander Bogaerts and Jackie Bradley won starting jobs out of spring training. After a host of trade deadline activity, the Sox dealt away pitchers Jon Lester, John Lackey, Jake Peavy and Felix Doubront and replaced them with an array of young... 
 

AL Cy Young Candidates: Chicago White Sox Chris Sale

Pitchers have dominated in 2014. The average ERA for a major league starting pitcher is just 3.86, and strikeout rates are just a shade under 20 percent. A host of pitchers are having excellent seasons, including Felix Hernandez, Corey Kluber and Jon Lester. One pitcher that might be getting overlooked in the American League Cy Young conversation is Chicago White Sox ace Chris Sale. Sale was dominant in his first four starts of the season, allowing only seven runs in 27.1 innings, with 29 strikeouts. However, he suffered an elbow injury, and missed... 
 

Jose Bautista Keeping Blue Jays in Wild Card Race

The Toronto Blue Jays got off to a hot start in the 2014 season. One June 6 they owned a 38-24 record and enjoyed a six game lead in the American League East. As late as July 2 they were in sole possession of first place. However, things have unraveled from there. The Baltimore Orioles have all but clinched the division, while the Jays are clinging on to slim hopes in the Wild Card race. At 76-69, they are 3.5 games behind the Detroit Tigers for the second wild card berth. One player that has helped the Jays stay in the race is right-fielder... 
 

Pittsburgh Pirates Offense Is Carrying Them Towards the Playoffs

After enduring a difficult start to the season, the Pittsburgh Pirates have fought their way back into the second Wild Card spot. At 75-68, they have a 1.5 game lead on the Atlanta Braves and the Milwaukee Brewers for the last playoff berth. A big reason for their success has been their offensive prowess. In terms of runs scored, the Pirates rank ninth in the major leagues, and third in the National League. by wRC+, a park-adjusted batting metric, the Pirates 107 mark is third-best in the major leagues. However, the fact that they carry a... 
 

Buster Posey Riding Extended Hot Streak for Giants

The San Francisco Giants have a three game lead on the Pittsburgh Pirates for the first Wild Card spot. With 19 games remaining, their playoff odds sit at a cool 94 percent. Buster Posey has been instrumental in helping to lead the Giants to October. Posey started off the season slowly. On June 13, the 27 year-old catcher and first baseman was hitting a rather pedestrian .267/.329/.401. Those are decent numbers to be sure, but far below his career standards. Considering that he posted a .244/.333/.310 line in the second half of 2013, fans and... 
 

AL Cy Young Candidates: Cleveland Indians Corey Kluber

Cleveland Indians pitcher Corey Kluber turned in a dominant performance Saturday night, hurling a complete game against the Chicago White Sox. Kluber registered eight strikeouts without issuing a walk, and allowed one unearned run on five hits. It was the latest in a string of dominant performance for Kluber, who has posted a 1.49 ERA in the second half, with a 28.6 percent strikeout rate. While Seattle Mariners ace Felix Hernandez has seemed to have a death grip on the Cy Young award, Kluber is a legitimate challenger. Hernandez has struggled... 
 

Josh Donaldson Solid AL MVP Candidiate

The Oakland A’s have hit a bit of a rough patch after dominating the American League West for most of the season. At six games behind the Los Angeles Angels, their sights appear to be set on the first Wild Card spot. While it’s faltered as of late, their deep roster has given opposing pitchers fits for most of the season. The A’s feature several solid players, and one bona fide superstar in Josh Donaldson. A former catcher, Donaldson made a name for himself with a sensational 2013 season. In his first full season in the big... 
 

Kyle Seager Having a Career Year for Seattle Mariners

At 76-63, the Seattle Mariners entered play Friday just a half-game behind the Detroit Tigers for the second Wild Card spot. If they can squeeze in, this would be their first playoff appearance since 2001, when they won 114 games. Most of the attention has surrounded Felix Hernandez and Robinson Cano, and both players are having excellent years. Hernandez is the front runner for the AL Cy Young award, and after a somewhat slow start, Cano is playing up to the 10 year, $240 million contract he signed this offseason. However, third baseman Kyle... 
 

Michael Wacha Returns to Rotation for Cardinals

After missing nearly three months with a shoulder injury, Michael Wacha returned to the St. Louis Cardinals rotation on Thursday night. He was limited to three innings, over which he allowed one run on three hits with one walk and three strikeouts. Rookie pitcher Marco Gonzales three 2.1 innings in relief of Wacha, helping to bridge the gap to the back of the bullpen. With the victory over the Milwaukee Brewers, the Cardinals increased their lead in the NL Central to four games. Losing Wacha was a big blow for the Cardinals. The 23 year-old... 
 

NL MVP Candidates: Andrew McCutchen

Last season, Andrew McCutchen led the Pittsburgh Pirates to their first playoff appearance in 21 years. The Pirates centerfielder produced a .317/.404/.508 batting line, drilled 21 home runs, stole 27 bases, and played excellent defense. Overall he totaled 8.3 fWAR, the most in the National League. Only Mike Trout had more. For his efforts, McCutchen was named the NL’s Most Valuable Player. Despite missing time with a rib injury, McCutchen is having another great year. Through the first two months of the season he hit just four home runs.... 
 

AL MVP Candidates: Mike Trout Leads Deep Angels Lineup

Photo By Keith Allison Following a four game sweep of the Oakland Athletics, the Los Angeles Angels own a commanding 4.5 game lead in the American League West with 26 games to play. A season-ending injury to ace pitcher Garrett Richards has not slowed the Angels down. While the Angels are lacking in pitching depth, their lineup is stacked from top to bottom. A familiar face, Mike Trout, has been the star of the show for Los Angeles. After posting consecutive seasons of at least +10 fWAR in his age-20 and 21 seasons, Trout is having another phenomenal... 
 

American League Cy Young Candidates: Jon Lester

Jon Lester couldn’t have asked for a better year heading into free agency. The 30 year-old workhorse enjoyed a phenomenal 2013 postseason, as he helped lead the Boston Red Sox to a World Series title. Despite Lester expressing his desire to stay in Boston long-term, the Red Sox were not able to come to terms with the left-hander on a contract extension. Thanks to his performance this season, he’ll earn far more in free agency. In 21 starts with the Red Sox, Lester posted a shiny 2.52 ERA, which was almost three-quarters of a run lower... 
 

Adam Jones Leads Baltimore Orioles Towards October

2014 wasn’t supposed to be the Baltimore Orioles year. The Boston Red Sox were coming off a year in which they won the World Series, the Tampa Bay Rays returned a very strong roster, and the New York Yankees went on a spending spree over the offseason. However, the Rays suffered an early season collapse and the Red Sox quickly fell apart and subsequently made a series of trades at the deadline. Meanwhile the Yankees infield has been predictably unproductive and they were dealt a major blow as ace Masahiro Tanaka was lost to an elbow... 
 

Alex Gordon Leading Surging Royals in Hunt for October

The Kansas City Royals last playoff appearance occurred in 1985, when they defeated the St. Louis Cardinals to win the World Series. That gives them the longest active playoff drought among the four major American sports. As of Tuesday, they are owners of a 72-58 record, which gives them a 1.5 game lead over the Detroit Tigers in the American League Central. Their playoff odds sit at 63 percent, with the division race being a coin flip between them and Detroit. The Royals have been helped by a phenomenal defense. They have the fewest home... 
 

Rick Porcello Is Helping to Stabilize a Detroit Tigers Rotation in Flux

Thanks to a post All-Star break skid and a surge by the Kansas City Royals, the Detroit Tigers playoff odds are in jeopardy. Their rotation is missing Anibal Sanchez and Justin Verlander only just returned from the disabled list. As a consequence, rookies Robbie Ray and Buck Farmer have been thrust into starting duty. One rotation member who has helped keep the Tigers‘ heads above water is Rick Porcello. Despite being in the midst of his 6th big league season, Porcello is just 25 years of age. Prior to this season, his lowest ERA was 3.96,... 
 

MVP Candidates: Miami Marlins Giancarlo Stanton

Despite losing pitching phenom Jose Fernandez to season-ending elbow surgery, the Miami Marlins are still hanging around the fringes of the National League Wild Card hunt. At 64-65, they are just four games behind the San Francisco Giants for the second Wild Card berth. While their .465 rest-of-season projected winning percentage doesn’t inspire much hope, this season has been much more successful than most baseball analysts predicted. A big reason for why the Marlins are still in the hunt is the performance of Giancarlo Stanton. The Marlins... 
 

Chris Archer Stepping up for the Tampa Bay Rays

It’s been something of a lost season for the Tampa Bay Rays. They got off to a terrible start, and at one point owned the worst record in baseball. A mid-season tear gave them a distant shot at playoff contention, but they went on a skid just prior to the trade deadline and sent ace pitcher David Price to the Detroit Tigers in a three-team deal. In a season where they were expected to content for the American League East title and possibly the pennant, the Rays will struggle to finish at .500. However, there have been bright spots to... 
 

Jhonny Peralta is Having a Career Year for the Cardinals

Thanks to a recent surge, the St. Louis Cardinals are in position for the first wild card spot. They sit in second place in the National League Central, 2.5 games behind the Milwaukee Brewers. Though the team has the fewest home runs in the NL, shortstop Jhonny Peralta has supplied power to the Cards lineup. Peralta had an excellent year for the Detroit Tigers in 2013. He hit .303/.358/.457 for a 123 wRC+ with 3.6 fWAR. However, his involvement in the Biogenesis scandal earned him a 50 game suspension, and he appeared in just 107 games. When... 
 

Los Angeles Angels’ Garrett Richards Emerges as an Ace

Entering play on Monday, the Los Angeles Angels are locked in a tie with the Oakland Athletics for the best record in the American League East and all of baseball. Mike Trout captures most of the headlines for the Angels, and the 23 year-old is the best player in baseball. A huge reason for the Angels success has been the dominant performance of 26 year-old right-hander Garrett Richards. Richards has always possessed elite fastball velocity. Prior to this season, his fastball has averaged just under 95 miles per hour. However, over his first... 
 

Carlos Gomez, Jonathan Lucroy Keeping Brewers atop NL Central

In one the season’s biggest surprises, the Milwaukee Brewers are enjoying a three game lead in the National League Central division. While 2014 was supposed to be the St. Louis Cardinals‘ year, Milwaukee’s convincing lead makes them the favorite to take home the division crown. The Brew Crew has been lead by two MVP candidates, Carlos Gomez and Jonathan Lucroy. The 28 year-old Gomez has been in the major leagues since 2007 when he made his debut for the New York Mets. In his first five seasons, he managed just a .243/.291/.357... 
 

Dodgers Yasiel Puig Can’t be Stopped

A year ago, Yasiel Puig took baseball by storm. In his first month in the big leagues, the Los Angeles Dodgers outfielder collected 44 hits, the second most for a new big leaguer behind Joe DiMaggio. Of course he cooled off from that ridiculous start, but by season’s end he had an excellent .319/.391/.534 batting line for a 160 wRC+. Despite his phenomenal debut season, there were some holes in Puig’s game. His strikeout rate of 22.5 percent was very high, and he possessed the highest swinging strike of any player to receive at least... 
 

Josh Donaldson Leading Formidable A’s Squad

The Oakland Athletics have the best record in the American League at 38-24, and they enjoy a 4.5 game lead in the AL West. More impressively, they have baseball’s best run differential at +113. Third baseman Josh Donaldson is a big reason why. A former 1st round pick of the Chicago Cubs, Donaldson came over to the A’s in 2008 in the Rich Harden trade. For much of his professional career, Donaldson spent most of his time behind the dish. However, he started transitioning to third base in 2012, and since last year that’s been... 
 

Don’t Sleep on the Los Angeles Angels

The Los Angeles Angels are sitting at 16-15, which puts them in third place in the AL West, 2.5 games behind the Oakland Athletics, and a half game behind the Texas Rangers. Their record doesn’t accurately portray how well the Angels have played thus far. They have the third best run differential in baseball, and only the Colorado Rockies and Chicago White Sox have scored more runs. The Steamer projected standings have the Angels finishing at 86-76, giving them a 53 percent chance of making the playoffs. With the way their offense... 
 

Nationals Stephen Strasburg Racking up Strikeouts

The Washington Nationals rotation is piling up strikeouts at a historic rate, and Stephen Strasburg is leading the pack. Through his first seven starts the right-hander is fanning hitters at a 33.3 percent rate, which is the second highest mark in baseball behind Jose Fernandez. While his ERA of 3.60 is unspectacular, Strasburg has an xFIP of 2.24, which is the fourth best in the big leagues. Strasburg’s fastball velocity is averaging right around 94 miles per hour, which is a drop off of about one mile per hour from last year. Pitchers... 
 

Jose Abreu: Hot Start for Chicago White Sox

Chicago White Sox first baseman Jose Abreu had his second multi-home run game in three days, helping the Sox down the Minnesota Twins 7-3. Through the first ten games of Abreu’s 2014 season, he’s hitting .300/.383/.725, for a 189 wRC+. The White Sox signed Abreu, who defected from Cuba in October of 2013, to a six year, $68 million deal this offseason. Abreu, who turned 27 in January, put up big numbers in Cuba, and he went 9-25 with three home runs in the 2013 World Baseball Classic. However, you don’t have to go far to find... 
 

Josh Hamilton Reaping Rewards of Disciplined Approach

While Los Angeles Angels outfielder Josh Hamilton had to leave Tuesday’s game against the Seattle Mariners with a thumb injury, the 32 year-old is off to an outstanding start. Through the Angels first eight games, he’s hit an astounding .444/.545/.741. Sure it’s only eight games into the season, but Hamilton has already amassed 0.7 fWAR, which is as much as he produced in the first half of last season. What is perhaps more significant than the ridiculous slash line is that Hamilton has already drawn five unintentional walks... 
 
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