With the ending of the All-Star break and the season now in the home stretch, what’s happening in the Baseball?
To start off, if the playoffs started today these are the teams that would be in:
Boston Redsox: 51-39
Houston Astros: 61-29
Wild Card: Tampa Bay Rays V. New York Yankees
Washington Nationals: 53-36
Milwaukee Brewers: 51-41
Los Angeles Dodgers: 62-29
Wild Card: Arizona Diamondbacks V. Colorado Rockies
If you noticed any strange absences, it’s more than likely the defending Camps the Chicago Cubs not even making a Wild Card spot. While they haven’t been at their best this season, they are showing no interest in waiting for next year.
Possibly on the move:
The fact that the Cubs have more assets to spare should not only scare competitive teams but make those who are less than and have something to trade all the more willing to deal. Particularly the Oakland Athletics who find themselves 20 games behind the Astros need to move Sonny Gray for some value.
Speaking of moving a player for Value, the Pittsburgh Pirates find themselves in a similar situation with pitcher Gerrit Cole. Cole and Gray are both great pitchers in their mid-twenties on decent contracts. The Pirates are one step away from being in a full rebuild and aren’t as prepared to deal Cole than the Athletics would be.
Although this lack of familiarity with the rebuilding process (compared to the Athletics who are perpetually in a constant state of rebuilding) may allow teams to get Cole for a lower price than Gray. However, both will likely be on the move before the July 31 deadline.
Another strong candidate for the MLB relocation program is Justin Verlander of the Detroit Tigers. The Tigers have finally hit the dumps after years of struggling to hold on to the dominance they once had. Yes Verlander is older, and his fastball has most definitely seen better days, but he still has a lot to give. He was only a few points shy of winning Cy Young last season and actually received almost double the number of first place votes.
This is the same Guy that won the MVP as a pitcher back in 2011. At 34 he’s much older than a number of the other available pitchers, but Verlander is under contract for at least another three years. Unlike Gray and Cole who are up for arbitration after this season.
While 28 million isn’t a great price for an aging pitcher, Verlander is a different breed. Adding him to a solid team will be beneficial no matter the cost.
Who should be selling at the deadline:
The Atlanta Braves: they may be in second place in the east, its all a facade created by the southern Illuminati. Trade Freddie Freeman to the Yankees for a boatload of prospects.
The Detroit Tigers: after years of their farm system being ripped to shreds the need to regroup. J.D Martinez and Verlander are available along with other Tigers roster alumni. Usher in the new era of Detroit baseball by just shipping everyone out for value, maybe even the cotton candy guy.
The SanFrancisco Giants: They don’t need to move anyone big but in this down season. A move or two off contracts like Johnny Cueto may be best for his and their future.
The Seattle Mariners: The Mariners seemingly never can quite get things together. That continues this season with a lack luster performance and are now fourth in the AL West. Slugger Nelson Cruz may be an ideal trade asset for a team that’s lacking in home run power(Boston who is ranked 26 in team home runs, could use an influx of power if they’re to keep their position in the standings).
Nelson Cruz (Ken Lambert / The Seattle Times)
Whose time is it to buy?
The Cubs: The time is now for the Cubs to go all out and be reckless. Don’t worry about the cost later if it helps now go for it. This isn’t ‘trust the process,’ this is ‘win now ask questions later.’ In baseball where so many things are up to chance that’s not a bad plan.
The Red Sox: Similarly to the Cubs, through trades Boston has already committed to the right now. They traded away Travis Shaw for a bag cool ranch Doritos. Then shipping off Yoan Moncada and the Arc of the Covenant for Chris Sale (something that has so far worked out). After David Ortiz‘s retirement, the Sox a power outage. With Hanley Rameriez the only real power hitter to speak of. Boston’s front office needs to keep their eyes open
The Angels: Something needs to happen here. Even if the team didn’t have Mike Trout, the level of mediocracy for the cost of the team is insane. Even if they hold a tryout that would be better than letting Trout’s prime go to waste.