The New York Mets finished the 2016 season with a record of 87-75, good for second place in the NL East Division. In addition, they earned the first wild-card position but ran into the brick wall that is Madison Bumgarner, despite an outstanding pitching performance from second-year starter Noah Syndergaard. While this year was a downgrade from last year’s division title and World Series appearance, the Mets do deserve credit, considering three of their five starters ended up on the disabled list, and they had to utilize parts from their AAA team to stay competitive.
Since Sandy Alderson has taken the reigns as Mets general manager, the culture of the Mets has dramatically changed. In Alderson’s initial years with the organization, the team was hampered by financial constraints that stemmed from the Madoff Ponzi scandal and subsequent court-ordered repayments in the settlement. This scandal forced Alderson to place more emphasis on building rather than buying, which led to a repopulation of the farm system by selling off once-prized assets.
While it may not feel like spring is on the way in certain parts of the country, it’s closer than you think. Why? Well, the start of Spring Training is less than three weeks away, and we all know that the mere sight of players on a baseball field gives people the warm and fuzzies — no matter what the thermometer says.
Another year of MLB action means there will be lots of money earned by the league’s best players. But who gets the honor of being the top earner at their position this season? That was a question we wanted to answer with the 2017 All-Money team.
Thanks to Spotrac, it was easy to check out the payroll salaries at each position to see who is bringing home the most bacon over the next few months. Here’s a squad that would be pretty darn good overall, but just a tad bit expensive.
They went a disappointing 74-88 and missed the playoffs for the fourth time since 2012, which was Trout’s rookie season. To make things worse, it’s also been hard to feel optimistic about the organization’s future in recent years.
It’s getting better, though.
ESPN’s Keith Law (subscription required) no longer views them as baseball’s worst farm system, but coming in 27th out of 30 teams isn’t anything to party about. On the big-league level, big contracts to C.J. Wilson and Jered Weaver have come off the books, leaving just one more year of paying Josh Hamilton and another five years (womp womp) of Albert Pujols.
Without the financial means to throw money at a free agent or the farm system to offer a boatload of intriguing prospects in a trade, general manager Billy Eppler had to get creative this winter, which is exactly what he’s done.
Are the Angels now playoff contenders? Probably not, but they look better on paper for 2017 than they did in 2016.
Let’s see how much of a lift the roster could have with a series of moves that haven’t grabbed a ton of headlines over the past few months.
Moving on to the last position in the outfield, we’ve already anointed Bobby Veach the Greatest Tiger left fielder, and Ty Cobb the greatest Tiger center fielder. The question now is, will Sam Crawford make an early 1900’s sweep of outfield greats, or will Al Kaline or possibly Harry Heilmann, or another Tiger take home that crown? To be eligible for the list, a player must play at least 5-years for the Tigers with a majority of games coming at that position. Unlike the infielder however, I do look at stats across all outfield spots.
The pitching top prospects at the minor league levels look to be some of the best in baseball. Triston McKenzie and Brady Aiken both hold potential as possible aces on the pitching staff, though they are a couple of years away from making an impact. Cleveland also has the comfort of having four or five players like Shawn Morimando, Rob Kaminsky, Ryan Merritt, and Adam Plutko all hoping to see Major League action in 2017.
it’s that time again, baseball fans! time to rank the best of the best in Major League Baseball by position. MLB Network began airing their annual Top 10 lists last Sunday, which was oddly changed from Thursdays in past years, i might add. and tonight, on January 22 at 10 pm ET, their “Top 10 Right Now: Left Fielders” show premiered.
Brian Kenny, who was joined by Eric Byrnes, hosted the reveal of this year’s Top 10 Left Field players currently in baseball going into the 2017 season as ranked by MLB Network’s Shredder. an analytic methodology known as The Shredder, which operates without emotion or bias, assembles these rankings based on a player’s recent performance and projected performance for the coming season.
If the general premise of this sounds familiar, it’s because we’ve talked about this before.
On the heels of the Texas Rangers returning to the playoffs in 2015, I noticed they had similar roster uncertainties in advance of 2016. All they did once Opening Day rolled around was win the American League West with ease by posting an AL-best 95-67 record.
While they proved to be masters of winning one-run games, having just a +10 run differential made some wonder if they’d be able to hang in the playoffs. And before there was an answer, they were packing up for the winter after getting swept by the Toronto Blue Jays in the ALDS.
The 2017 season is fast approaching, and the AL West will be interesting to follow. After all, Seattle Mariners general manager Jerry Dipoto won’t stop making trades and the Houston Astros are doing whatever they can to make Sports Illustrated look like a bunch of geniuses.
The Rangers still have some roster questions to answer ahead of Spring Training — like, is this Mike Napoli reunion happening or not? — but one area that’s set is the outfield.
Texas will go to battle with 21-year-old Nomar Mazara in left, Carlos Gomez in center and Shin-Soo Choo manning right. This looks good on paper, but it’s far from a sure thing judging from each player’s recent history.
Yesterday, Ivan “Pudge” Rodriguez, Tim Raines and Jeff Bagwell were voted into the HOF. For the first time, a steroid user has been voted into the Walhalla of baseball. I had to let that sink in. You can only wonder why a bunch of cheaters has been voted into the HOF.
It all started with the induction of a commissioner who used to turn a blind eye to the steroid use during the homerun race between Mark McGwire and Sammy Sosa in the late nineties. Baseball had lost ground due to the player strike in 1994 and fans had turned away from the game. This homerun race between McGwire and Sosa was heaven sent as it helped to get the fans back to the stadiums.
Only around 2004, Selig stepped up against steroid use so he would be remembered as the commissioner that fought steroid use….
In case you missed the news last night, the Tigers most likely just traded for their center fielder. In a move that isn’t going to get a ton of coverage, Detroit traded a player to be named and cash to Tampa for right handed hitting Mikie (pronounced Mike-ee) Mahtook.
The move doesn’t come as a big surprise as General Manager Al Avila mentioned that Detroit would be searching all avenues for a center fielder and had been connected to cheaper options recently.