December 5, 2013
Get It Now!Hardball Times Annual is now available. It's got 300 pages of articles, commentary and even a crossword puzzle. You can buy the Annual at Amazon, for your Kindle or on our own page (which helps us the most financially). However you buy it, enjoy!
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Wednesday, June 23, 2004
So San Francisco has managed to climb into the lead of the NL West, and Tampa Bay has won twelve straight games (plus they're 17-3 in their last twenty games). Proving that you never know. I haven't updated them for two days, but you can still view the rise of these two teams in the American League and National League divisional race graphs.
I did a quick review of Doug's stats for the last twenty games, and was surprised to see that offense has been the key for the Giants. They've scored by far the most runs in the NL over the last twenty games, averaging seven runs a game, thanks to a surprising cast of characters, notably Deivi Cruz, Michael Tucker, A.J. Pierszynski, Dustin Mohr, Edgardo Alfonzo and, of course, Mr. Bonds. All these guys have an OPS over .800, and Cruz (8 doubles) is over 1.000. The Giants also been helped immensely by the return of Jason Schmidt.
Things are falling right for Tampa Bay, but they're also getting great pitching from Mark Hendrickson and some good hitting from Julio Lugo, Jose Cruz Jr., Carl Crawford, Aubrey Huff and Tino Martinez.
Tuesday, June 22, 2004
Yesterday, Royals GM Allard Baird traded grab-bag reliever Jason Grimsley to the Orioles for Denny Bautista, a very solid righty pitching prospect. This looks like a steal for the Royals. I think Rany Jazayerli sums it up best over at Rob and Rany:
"What Allard has done here is exactly what Dave Littlefield didn't - sign veterans for cheap, then flip them for prospects once it became clear his team was out of the race. The way this season has gone, Allard won't get the credit he deserves for turning one of his lemons into a pretty sweet lemonade."
The Royals aren't my favorite team (they rank #3 behind L.A. and Boston), but it's very cool to see such obvious intelligence running the show. It's been said all over the place already, but it's like they got a smart new GM over the '02-'03 offseason... except it's the same guy, Allard Baird. The fact that he's a legitimately great guy is just icing on the cake.