Category Archives: MLB

How the Yankees Should Approach This Offseason

This is the worst time of the year. The Yankees’ season is over, and other teams are still playing baseball. It’s exponentially worse when one of those teams is the Boston Red Sox, who eliminated you by outscoring you 20-4 in two consecutive nights at Yankee Stadium. I was at Game 3, still not even close to over it. Regardless, aside from rooting hard for the Astros this week (which hurts bad enough after last year’s ALCS, but anything to keep the Sox out of the World Series), us Yankee fans have already started to look towards 2019. No, I’m not suggesting we have a classic old-school Yankees offseason and throw money at everyone. I actually saw a guy on Twitter who suggested we sign both Harper AND Machado, while also trading for Paul Goldschmidt. Unfortunately, this isn’t MLB 2K, this is real life. And while many are discussing the possibility one of those two star free agents ends up in the Bronx next season, there are much more pressing issues with the Yankees than adding another power hitter to the lineup. Here are the main issues Brian Cashman & Company are going have to address this offseason to ensure that the Yankees are still playing baseball at this time next year.

  1. Starting Pitching

Image result for patrick corbin yankees

Current Situation: You’ve heard Yankee haters say it all year, and while I honestly didn’t think our rotation was too bad, they did nothing to silence their critics in the postseason this year. Luis Severino was a Cy Young candidate in the first half and awful for most of the second half, followed by an underwhelming start in the Wild Card game and a dreadful start in ALDS Game 3. Regardless, Sevy will be back next year, and will be called upon to perform as this team’s ace. Maybe they need to work in some extra rest for him during the year so he isn’t burned out later in the season? Who knows. Behind him, Masahiro Tanaka had somewhat of an opposite season. Underwhelming first half, strong second half, and a great performance in ALDS Game 2. Those two are locked into the 2019 rotation, but beyond that is a question mark. I would think Jordan Montgomery would be given the opportunity to start at some point after a strong 2017 rookie season and great start to 2018, but he had Tommy John surgery in June after leaving a start against the Astros in May. I doubt he would be back for the start of 2019. Will CC Sabathia come back again? He was still effective at times, and really showed his age at others, especially late in the season. I would love for JA Happ to come back, as aside from his disappointing ALDS Game 1 start, he was great for the Yanks after they acquired him at the deadline. Oh, and Sonny Gray is still technically around, but Cashman has already more or less said he will be traded this offseason.

Offseason Plan of Action: Sign Arizona’s Patrick Corbin. He’s been tied to the Yanks for months, growing up a Yankee fan. Plain and simple, he’s the best starting pitcher on the market, and a damn good one at that. Corbin went 11-7 with a 3.15 ERA and 246 strikeouts in 200 innings in 2018. He would immediately be expected to anchor the rotation along with Sevy and Tanaka. Step 2 in my opinion should be re-sign Happ, at the right price. He’s shown the ability to pitch in the AL East, and was great down the stretch for the Yanks. To fill out the rotation, do they sign a low-risk high-reward veteran like a Garrett Richards or Tyson Ross? Or try and have a youngster like Justus Sheffield or Chance Adams win a spot? I think they do both. You can absolutely NEVER have enough starting pitching. If that isn’t Cashman’s #1 priority this offseason, he’s doing something wrong.

2. Left Field

Image result for clint frazier yankees

Current Situation: After being acquired in August, Andrew McCutchen effectively replaced Brett Gardner completely in the starting lineup. Gardy was having a dreadful second half, and McCutchen was definitely a spark for the Yanks down the stretch. Ideally, Clint Frazier would take over this role, but his 2018 was riddled by concussions.

Offseason Plan of Action: I love Gardy, but not at $11 million next year. If he’s willing to take a pay cut, great. If not, I wouldn’t mind the Yanks cutting ties with him. If McCutchen would come back at the right price, I would love him back too. Like I said, I would absolutely love for Clint Frazier to be in here. His bat, speed, and hustle would be fantastic at the top of our lineup. But concussions are no joke. Look for the Yankees to have a veteran in this role, either Gardy, Cutch or someone else, in case Frazier isn’t 100% for 2019.

3. BullpenImage result for david robertson yankees

Current Situation:

You know Aroldis Chapman, Dellin Betances, Chad Green, and Jonathan Holder will return to anchor the bullpen in 2019. I could definitely see young lefty Stephen Tarpley joining them as well. The main question? What to do with David Robertson and Zach Britton.

Offseason Plan of Action:

I thought Britton did a great job for us for the most part after acquiring him. That being said, I’m not sure I want to pay him the money he’s going to want, especially with Chapman’s contract and his injury history. I think Robertson makes more sense because he’s three years older and kind of a career Yankee, so he will likely come cheaper. However, a la Happ and McCutchen, I would love to see Britton back at the right price. Also, kind of a hot take, but can we move Luis Cessa to the bullpen please? He’s actually got some pretty good stuff. Good enough that for the first 1-2 innings of every start, he makes you go “wow he actually looks good,” only to get absolutely lit up the second time through the lineup and remember he’s actually trash. Make him a middle reliever with the ability to be a long guy in mop-up duties. Will it work? Who knows, but it can’t be worse than him getting called up a few times a year to lose us every game he starts.

4. Didi’s InjuryImage result for gleyber torres

Current Situation: The Yankees’ middle infield when healthy is a strength. Didi Gregorius is a great player (GREAT, not good), and despite a disappointing postseason, Gleyber Torres will be a star in this league. However, Didi is having Tommy John surgery, and will likely be out until at least the All-Star break. So now what?

Offseason Plan of Action: The easy answer is sign Machado, have him play short, and slide him over to third when Didi comes back. Not sure if I’m sold on dishing out another $400 million for Machado, especially when Miguel Andujar is a certified stud at third. Sure, Andujar could potentially learn first base or outfield, but a lot would have to go right for that plan to work. Here’s a more realistic plan: bring back Neil Walker, have him play second base every day, and slide Gleyber to short. Walker proved that when he gets consistent at-bats, as he did in the second half, he’s a solid every day player. He just can’t play once a week and be effective because he’s never done that. Gleyber is a great shortstop, as that’s his natural position. He’s no Didi, but he’s certainly not the worst replacement. Walker will be cheap, and when he comes back he can go back to his utility role getting time at first and third base in addition to spelling Gleyber and Didi when they need days off.

5. First BaseImage result for paul goldschmidt

Current Situation: I love Luke Voit. Guy was great for us down the stretch. Not good, great. But how long will that last? I’m not ready to hand him the job yet. Besides, another boom-or-bust righty power hitter in this lineup isn’t great. We’re too righty-heavy and too strikeout-heavy. That came back to bite us in the playoffs. Greg Bird could still come back and win it in spr… just kidding can’t even get through that one. My Bird-defending days are over. So where do the Yanks turn?

Offseason Plan of Action: Obviously the easy choice is do nothing, and hope either Voit continues to mash, or Bird maybe somehow taps into some alternate universe where he’s even half the player we once thought he could be. Can I have fun for a second and think about these two ideas?

  1. Sign Machado, move Andujar to first: I mean, that lineup would be insane. Miggy’s glove at third was never the issue, it’s his throws. If he could learn first base, man that infield would be insane.
  2. Trade for Paul Goldschmidt: I don’t know what it would take, or if the D-Backs would even move him, but Goldschmidt has quietly been one of the best players in baseball the past five years. After his $14.5 million team option in 2019, he will be a free agent. Maybe the Yankees can pry him loose? A 3x Gold Glove, 6x All-Star, .297 career-hitting first baseman does not sound too shabby to me.

Summary

In short, there are moves to be made this winter. If I had to pick what I want the 2019 Yankees’ Opening Day lineup to look like, while still being realistic, here’s the final product:

Lineup

  1. Andrew McCutchen
  2. Aaron Judge RF
  3. Paul Goldschmidt 1B
  4. Giancarlo Stanton DH
  5. Aaron Hicks CF
  6. Gary Sanchez C
  7. Miguel Andujar 3B
  8. Gleyber Torres SS
  9. Neil Walker 2B

(with Didi returning to play short when healthy and Gleyber moving back to second)

Rotation

  1. Luis Severino
  2. Patrick Corbin
  3. Masahiro Tanaka
  4. JA Happ
  5. Justus Sheffield/Chance Adams

Bullpen: Luis Cessa, Stephen Tarpley, Jonathan Holder, Chad Green, David Robertson, Dellin Betances, Aroldis Chapman

Bench: Austin Romine, Luke Voit/Greg Bird (if not traded for Goldschmidt), Ronald Torreyes, Clint Frazier

 

Will this be the outcome? Maybe not even close, but what the hell do I know?

In terms of the 2018 Yankees, it just sucks. Sucks having that high of expectations, to essentially shit the bed all year, still win 100 games, get the split you needed at Fenway, and be embarrassed by your rivals on your home field to be eliminated. No 27 rings arguments, no excuses. They were the better team this year, or at least they sure did play like they were. For now, Go Astros, and then we’ll see what this offseason brings us.

P.S. Shoutout to my wonderful girlfriend for putting up with me losing my mind during this year’s postseason, my superstitions are beyond real when it comes to Yankees baseball.

Anybody Who Thinks Giancarlo Stanton Should Be Traded Is a Fool

The Yankees were eliminated from the 2018 ALDS this past week, and wrapped up a season that was filled with records, yet overloaded with disappointment. It ended the way it should’ve, with a too-little-too-late rally coming up short, an impressive lack of hitting with runners in scoring position, bad starting pitching, strikeouts, and horrible, horrible managing from Aaron Boone. Every flaw the Yankees were worried about coming into the season absolutely came back to bite them in the ass. Regardless, the Red Sox were clearly the better team, or at least were able to perform like it, and they move on while the Yankees can start to work on their offseason golf hacks.

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The worst person about the end of every season is the overreactions. Yankee fans immediately jump to “When is Cashman gonna fire Boone?”, “Why didn’t we get deGrom at the deadline?”, “We need to sign Harper and Machado this offseason”, and the worst one “Giancarlo Stanton needs to be traded”.

People who want to trade Giancarlo Stanton after a year of 38 HR and 100 RBI are the same type of people who watched the video of Kobe jumping over a car, tried to do it themselves, then miserably failed and had to go to the hospital because they broke their foot. They think that just because some people hit home runs and bat .300 that everybody should. They think that just because Aaron Judge got on base the at bat before, Giancarlo Stanton needs to as well. They think that just because Kobe jumped over a car, they can too. It doesn’t work like that, and it never will. No two players are the same, and you definitely can’t jump over that BMW.

And to be fair, I don’t want to defend Giancarlo too much either. He was not effective this postseason, and does strike out a hefty amount. His best game in the series came in the blowout loss when he hit the ball hard three times. He struck out on three pitches TWICE in massive, game-deciding situations. He wasn’t good, but don’t even act like when he stepped up to the plate every time you didn’t have a feeling he was going to hit a ball all the way to Moron Mountain (Space Jam reference for you uncultured folks out there).

You don’t give away a guy like that. Last year, he was a player who anybody in baseball would have been blessed to have on their team (as a player, ignoring contract issues). He is a guy who instantly makes your lineup more dangerous simply by writing his damn name on the lineup card. People don’t think about it, and maybe it’s because the Yankees never had a consistent #3 hitter and Judge was hurt for 2 months so the results weren’t as clear, but those top of the lineup guys are going to see MUCH more strikes with Giancarlo in that 4 spot over Andujar, Bird, Didi, Hicks or whoever else was going to bat there at the beginning of the season without him. Point at his final numbers all you want, which still are better than most of the players in the league, but his name alone makes him an asset. You cannot deny that.

See the source image

The worst part is…the same people who are yelling to trade Stanton are probably the same ones who criticized the Marlins for trading him. They’re like a bunch of people who eat Milky Ways instead of Snickers…never satisfied (ha). No, I don’t think the Yankees needed him to be successful this year. Perhaps they could have waited and gotten Yelich, who likely would have been a better fit for the lineup. But he fell in their lap, and Cashman did what anybody would have done.

Let me put this into a simpler perspective as to why he should not be traded:

-The Red Sox recently offered Mookie Betts a HEFTY extension that he turned down. They did this because they see his potential. He is 26 years old  (as of October 7) and on his way to his first MVP.

-When Giancarlo Stanton won the 2017 NL MVP, he was 27 years old (one year older than Betts for those of us without a calculator nearby).

-BUT, if next year Betts hits, oh I don’t know, 38 HR, has 100 RBI, and bats .266 in his age 26 campaign, should the Red Sox then trade him? Were they stupid to offer him a massive contract extension? NO!

If you didn’t get the analogy, I’m basically saying that the only difference (in terms of player impact) between trading Stanton this year and trading Betts next year (if he runs into a bad campaign) is the age difference of two years. Players have down years, it happens. Pitchers adjust, or they throw them less pitches to hit. You cannot be blind to the other ways a player impacts a roster besides general stats, and if you give up on an MVP-caliber player after ONE SEASON, you are an irrational, uneducated thinker. The Yankees have TWO franchise players nearing/in their prime, with a heavy youth movement on the way. Stanton will come around, and the argument that he should be traded is absolutely absurd.

Wait a week or two before you say stupid things.

100 Wins Ain’t Bad, Now the Real Season Starts

I know the Wild Card game wasn’t what we had hoped for, or even expected, coming into 2018. After coming within one win of the World Series and adding Giancarlo Stanton, nearly everyone picked the Yankees to win the AL East. But they didn’t. The Red Sox were the better team this year, hands-down. The Sox only won the season series by a game at 10-9, but the main thing they did was take care of business against the bad teams, namely the Baltimore Orioles. Throw in the dagger that was the four-game sweep at Fenway in early August, and the Red Sox are your AL East champs.

But all things considered, this Yankee team overcame a lot to reach 100 wins, besting last year’s total of 91 by nine. Their best player, Aaron Judge, missed nearly two months with a broken wrist. Gary Sanchez followed up his stellar first two seasons in the bigs with one of the most disappointing seasons for an athlete I have ever seen, batting just .186. Stanton went through huge slumps, hearing boos from the Bronx crowd during his first homestand in Pinstripes. Didi Gregorius missed a month with injury, and had a dreadful month of May. Luis Severino had an underwhelming second half. Aroldis Chapman missed time with injury. Jordan Montgomery was out for the year. Sonny Gray pitched his way out of the rotation. We started two rookies in the infield. Greg Bird forgot how to hit a baseball. Brett Gardner finally showed his age. And yet, this team still won 100 games.

Miguel Andujar emerged as not only baseball’s best rookie, but one of the best hitters in the game in the second half. Gleyber Torres showed he could be a star in this league for years to come. Luke Voit burst onto the scene to become a fixture in this lineup. Stanton carried us for periods of time. J.A. Happ pitched better than we could ever ask for after being acquired at the trade deadline. Neil Walker was the best hitter on the team for a short stretch. Masahiro Tanaka pitched like the ace we know he can be down the stretch. Didi Gregorius had another career year. Aaron Hicks continues to quietly become one of the best outfielders in the league. And maybe, just maybe, this team is finally healthy together for the first time all year.

Am I trying to say this team is a success because they won 100 games even with a lot of injuries and underperformance? Absolutely not. But they have shown the ability to overcome adversity for sure. Finishing eight games behind the Red Sox is not a success. But even if we were the ones finishing with 108 wins and the AL East crown, that is not a success either. Ever since the Yankees were eliminated last year, it was clear the 2018 Yanks are World Series or bust. Anything short of a parade down the Canyon of Heroes, and the season is a failure.

Not winning the division and having to play yet another Wild Card game is a huge obstacle on the way to that goal. In just one night, a season’s worth of work can come to an end. But anything is possible. No one thought we would beat the Indians last year. We gave away Game 2 to fall behind 2-0, and still won the series. We looked lifeless in Houston, only to win three in the Bronx and then come up just short. All I’m saying is, anything can happen in October. This train is still rolling, and you better believe anything short of a title is a failure. Let’s go Yanks baby.

The Red Sox Have the Most Insufferable Fan Base

I know Yankee fans get a lot of hate and I will admit in some ways we suck. There are a ton of Yankee fans out there that probably never/rarely watched before Aaron Judge made the Bronx fun again in 2017, fans that will jump to the “27 rings!” argument faster than David Price jumping to find an excuse to not pitch against the Yankees, and fans that probably don’t even realize Joe Girardi was a World Series winning Yanks catcher before he gave us this legendary line as manager.Image result for joe girardi its not what you want

 

That being said, the most insufferable fan base on this planet is that of the Boston Red Sox. Yes, in my mind they’re worse than Warriors fans, Patriots fans, even Duke basketball fans. That’s a very biased opinion as I’m a Yankee fan myself, but I actually cannot stand Red Sox fans. My hatred began as an 8-year old at Fenway, being cursed at and told to go back to the Bronx while wearing my Gary Sheffield t-shirt. I’m all for heckling fans of the opposing team, but if I’m ever heckling an 8 year old punch me in the face because I’ve had about three too many.

I don’t even care about that now though. It’s a fond memory of mine, my first real taste of the Yankees-Red Sox rivalry. I even respect that about them. Too many fan bases are too nice in my opinion. I went to a game in Cleveland this summer, and I really anticipated getting more hate, especially after how we beat them in the Division Series last year. Nope, the people couldn’t have been nicer to us; an Indians fan even bought my friend and I beers at the bar before the game. You come into Fenway or Yankee Stadium, and you know the fans are gonna be going crazy. Red Sox fans are definitely dedicated and I respect them for that. But they are insufferable.

They’re insufferable because I’ve never met a fan base that loves to make excuses as much as they do. The Yankees have not played their best baseball in the second half. And yeah it hurt losing Judge, but he is far from the only reason we have been flat. Bottom line, a ton of our guys have underperformed, and that’s why we’re playing for home field advantage in the wild card right now and not battling the Sox for the AL East, as most assumed we would be. But if the Red Sox lose a game? Even to the Yankees, the team with the third-best winning percentage in baseball? Their fans can’t believe it. It’s like losing isn’t even a possibility in their minds. There has to be something wrong.

On Tuesday, the Yanks beat the Sox in the series opener 3-2 thanks to a huge three-run homer from Neil Walker and six strong innings from J.A. Happ. A great game, and one that the Yankees nearly gave away. They totaled only three hits in the ballgame, and botched two game-ending double play balls in the 9th before finally turning one the third time. What was Sox fans’ excuse for why they didn’t win this one?

JV lineup?! You sat Mookie and Benintendi (who later pinch hit), but otherwise EVERYONE else was in there. Obviously Mookie Betts is a game changer, and one of the best players in baseball. But am I supposed to feel bad that Alex Cora opted to give him an off-day against the Yankees? For sure not, especially when we’d been without our best player for almost two months prior to that game. If you wanna say the Red Sox outplayed the Yankees, I’d agree with you. But them not being able to cash in on two Yankee errors in the 9th has nothing to do with them sitting Mookie, get outta here with that bullshit.

Last night was a huge game for the Yankees. Again, I know the division is over, but at this point it’s all about getting our guys back on track and building momentum for the Wild Card game. They did just that last night with a 10-1 drubbing of the Red Sox. Most importantly, Luis Severino looked more like the Cy Young candidate we saw in the first half of the season. 10-1, that’s a huge margin of victory. What kind of excuse could Sox fans make this time? They jumped to their favorite, “Yankee Stadium is a Little League field.”

I can’t even wrap my mind around this one. Do both teams not get nine innings of at bats… in the same stadium? Do they push back the fences when the Red Sox hit? Of course Voit’s homers and Andujar’s solo shot would be fly outs in most stadiums, they barely got out to the short porch. But what was stopping the Red Sox from doing the same thing? A homer is a homer. If you wanna argue and tell me that over the course of a season a Yankee player’s stats are inflated because he plays half his games with the short porch in right, then fine. I agree with that. But to complain about the results of an individual game because of the dimensions of the stadium is blasphemous. Fenway is legendary, but how many times does the Green Monster turn what would be easy fly outs in any other park to doubles or home runs? Multiple times a game. You lost 10-1, just live with it.

The Red Sox have been the better team this year, no doubt about it. They completely derailed our division hopes with the four-game sweep at Fenway in early August. You didn’t hear us Yankee fans making any excuses back then (anyone who said Judge alone would’ve made that series much different is an idiot.) It’s pathetic that Sox fans need to try and come up with an excuse for every loss they have.

I need the Yanks to win tonight. Can’t let them beat Tanaka and win the division on our own turf. And I NEED a Yankees-Red Sox ALDS like I need air to breathe. I know that getting eliminated by them would be absolutely brutal. But this season has been so weird that it needs to end with one of these teams knocking out the other. It’s the only way.

Buck Foston go Yanks, Tanaka time tonight.

The Most Silent NL MVP Candidate

Maybe it’s just me, but MVP, Rookie of the Year, and Cy Young discussions are some of my favorite discussions to have in baseball. Pretty much anyone that has a clue about the sport can speak on the topic, and you won’t get any showoffs trying to make outrageous statements because the conversation pretty much writes itself. If you try and tell me somebody like Andrelton Simmons should be a candidate just because he’s batting .296 and is good on defense, I will tell you that you should learn how to not talk anymore.

This year, the NL MVP has been notoriously close, but mostly for the fact that nobody has broken away from the crowd with ridiculous seasons. The AL is looking at J.D. Martinez and Mookie Betts competing for a batting title on the same team, Jose Ramirez is having another crazy year as the quietest superstar in baseball, and Mike Trout continues to be baseball’s messiah. In the NL, you have a few players that experts are suggesting, but there’s one player I simply don’t understand why he isn’t in the discussion.

Trevor Story. The guy that hit a baseball that is currently in orbit around Earth.

I have not heard many people use his name in the discussion, but the Rockies are currently one game ahead of the Dodgers and Story is a big reason why. Here’s are some of the top NL MVP Candidates and their most focused-on stats:

Matt Carpenter, STL .270 AVG, 35 HR, 77 RBI
Freddie Freeman, ATL .306 AVG, 21 HR, 84 RBI
Javier Baez, CHC .294 AVG, 30 HR, 100 RBI
Nolan Arenado, COL .297 AVG, 32 HR, 95 RBI
Max Scherzer, WAS 17 Wins, 2.31 ERA, 271 Ks
Aaron Nola, PHI 16 Wins, 2.29 ERA, 196 Ks
Jacob deGrom, NYM 8 Wins (lol), 1.68 ERA, 230 Ks
Christian Yelich, MIL .316 AVG, 18 HR, 61 RBI

And here is Story’s line:

Trevor Story, COL .293 AVG, 31 HR, 96 RBI

Not to mention (but I will), he also has 25 stolen bases, the most of any of the other candidates. Now, I certainly believe stats don’t tell the entire story (no pun intended). There are factors that make a player an MVP Candidate and factors that don’t. For example, some players stats might be better because they are part of a more dangerous lineup. The Rockies have 2 MVP-caliber players, Charlie Blackmon, and former batting champ D.J. LeMahieu all in the top 5 positions in their lineup. That is going to inflate your RBI stats, as well as get you more hitable pitches because pitchers have to get outs somewhere. Matt Carpenter, on the other hand, is not part of as dangerous of a lineup with the only fearful hitters being Jose Martinez and Marcell Ozuna. Therefore, his RBI total and average will depreciate. For a reason as simple as this, that makes Carpenter that much more valuable to his team than Story, and a large reason why he’s on the consistent discussion list as opposed to the Rockies shortstop.

Image result for trevor story
Image via USA Today

But, I believe Story’s numbers are too good to be ignored. As a middle infielder that is going to finish with 35+ HR and 100+ RBI with an average floating around .300, that cannot be played off as a slightly above average season. Baez is supposedly the front-runner and he’s having the same season as Story, just on the other side of the second base bag.

I’m not saying he needs to be crowned the winner right now, but in a year that nobody is running away with the title, it would be cool to see an underdog pull away in September and walk away with the award. It should be an interesting battle for the rest of the season to see who comes out on top.

Are You a Bad Fan for Rooting for an Opposing Team’s No-Hitter When It’s Already Happening?

So I’d like to enter into an embrace debate with the BTB readers for this post. Earlier this month, I attended a Yankees vs. Red Sox game at the always Yankee-friendly Fenway Pawk. There was constant calking from the loyal Red Sox fans, who told me on multiple occasions (I was wearing a Judge BP top) that I sucked, was worthless, and that I should take a seat. I should note, I was never standing when they told me to sit down, but as Mr. Walker would say, I digress.

Through all that, there was a game going on. A game where Rick Porcello, pitcher for the Boston Red Sox, threw a complete game one-hitter. While his no-hitter effort was spoiled early in the game due to a Miguel Andjuar home run, nobody else (obviously) got a hit the rest of the time. He was dominant, and the Red Sox won 4-1.

His performance got me thinking. In the 9th inning, when it seemed inevitable the Yankees were going to lose the game, I said to myself, “I kinda wish Andjuar didn’t get a hit so I could have seen a no-hitter in person”. Immediately, I retracted that statement in my mind with the thought that I should feel guilty for wishing negativity on my favorite team. Since then, I’ve battled back and forth with my thoughts.

Image result for rick porcello

So, the reason I come to you all is to try and figure out if I’m a bad fan or not. If you’re in the presence of a potential opposing pitcher no-hitter, do you root for that to happen?  Let it be noted, the chances of seeing a no-hitter in person, according to the Chicago Tribune and ESPN, is 1 in 806, or .00124069%.

Here’s my view, and tell me if I’m wrong:

We go to baseball games to see something incredible happen. Most times, we go with the thought of that incredible moment happening for our team. Playoff tickets, and not that this is any news but it pushes forth the argument, are so heavily desired because history could happen before your very eyes. You could be at the game where Jeter becomes Mr. November. You could be at the game where the Red Sox complete the greatest comeback in baseball history. You could watch Madison Bumgarner come out of the bullpen to close out Game 7 and compile a 3-0 record in a single World Series. My mom and uncle were at the Bill Buckner game. History happens, and if you’re there to see it, you feel a part of it. If somebody were to ask us what we want to see when we go to baseball games, the only proper response I can think of is this:

Image result for the incredibles something amazing gif

Now obviously, expectations are rarely heightened for your average regular season game. At best, you realistically expect and hope for your team to walk away with a solid win and maybe you see a couple home runs, have a few beers, and get home safe. But when you have an opportunity for “something amazing” to actually happen, to literally witness history, even if it means going against your team for one night, I take that 10/10.

It’s selfish, and it puts your role as a fan of the game above a fan of the team, but when I look back on my life as a baseball fan, I’m 100% going to wish Miguel Andujar did not put that ball 60 feet over the Green Monster and I got to see Rick Porcello throw a no-hitter. I’ll see plenty of more Yankee wins in my life, and probably see Rick Porcello get shelled the next time he plays against them, but if for one night I could put a once-in-a-lifetime moment into my Hall of Fame Memory Bank, I’ll gladly tip my cap to him and root for it…once the game is out of reach.

I Can’t Decide If This Is a Good Idea or Not

At the Home Run Derby, Bryce Harper showed us why he may be worth $400 million dollars come the offseason. Hitting 8 home runs in 47 seconds is not something most normal people can do. Not even the power aspect, but the fact he wasn’t even getting tired? Usually people have to break after a couple swings that deep into the contest, just to take a breathe.

He looked like human version of this gif:

fail world series GIF by Looney Tunes

But something else interesting happened that night that I think should be considered, or at least discussed:

I really cannot tell if this is a good idea or not. On one hand, how cool would it be to see some of the top pitchers throw as hard as they can to a poor catcher who will have to ice his hand until the next year when he has to do it all over again. On the other hand, this is basically writing off the rest of the season because Tommy John might as well be a lock for one of these guys. It’s only a matter of who will fall victim to the injury.

So there’s a question to be answered: Is it worth it?

For sure, all-time records for hardest ball thrown would be broken in this contest. Guys totally gearing up with everything they got to be crowned the “hardest thrower in baseball”. We’d see 104, 105, and maybe even the untouched 106 MPH. But, we could also see some young arms derail their career very early.

Another side to argue is the chicken and the egg, “which came first” question. If a player slumps after the Home Run Derby, was that just bound to happen based on the premise that everybody falters at some point in the season, or is it guaranteed that because the player was dipping and jacking for an hour on a Saturday night that the rest of his season is screwed. It’s hard to tell. Similarly, if a pitcher gets injured from throwing his hardest, which ideally he’s doing two to three times a week regardless, isn’t there a chance he was already hurt and this contest might have put him over the edge? Again, difficult to pinpoint.

Bottom line, if you came here for an answer, I don’t have one. As I stated, I have no clue if it’s a good idea. There’s a good amount of pros, and a good amount of cons.

I’d love to see more action on All-Star Weekend. All baseball has is their version of the Dunk Contest. A little more diversity and appreciation for players with other skills would be cool to see for the die-hard baseball purists. Show me the fastest runner, let me see which duo can turn the fastest double play, who’s got the best arm from the outfield, which guy has the best baseball IQ. If baseball has a problem marketing their players, giving all of them more of a chance to perform on the big stage is a great opportunity to let everyone know their name. But at the risk of a potential injury, who knows what the right call is. I guess it should fall under the same category as the Home Run Derby…enter at your own risk.