My thoughts on what Detroit fans should expect from Jhonny Peralta this year.
In case you didn’t know, I recently started a new blog which will be entirely dedicated to fantasy baseball. Although most baseball related articles I post on this blog aren’t too in depth, this new blog will give readers a chance to better understand my thoughts on baseball. Even if you don’t play fantasy baseball but enjoy learning about baseball, check it out!
Much to my surprise, Major League Baseball and 2K announced today that they will be releasing MLB 2K13 for the Xbox 360.
It wasn’t too long ago that 2K’s contract with MLB had expired, and I honestly thought there was little to no chance it would get picked up again. For those who played the games, you should be pretty well aware of where I’m coming from.
As a baseball fanatic (that’s probably putting it mildly), I have yet to be overly impressed with any of the 2K baseball games. Although they’ve come a long way since MLB 2K9 (trust me, it wasn’t pretty), there still is plenty of room for improvement.
My biggest concern is the fact that this deal was placed at the last minutes. Three months is not a lot of time for a game development company to make signficant changes. What does that mean? We may very well be getting MLB 2k12, just with David Price on the cover, and updated rosters.
Overall, that wouldn’t be such a terrible thing, although there are a few things I would very much like to see get changed. There’s several glitches, such as the replaying of animation (such as when a batter swings and misses). Although their minor details, I really hope they can get them fixed before they release the game.
Another huge improvement would be if they can keep up with the roster changes during the season. As the 2012 season progressed, it seemed like 2K Sports was sometimes a bit slow when it came to adding new players (due to injuries, being called up from the minor leagues, etc.), and also adjusting their player ratings based on what’s going on currently in baseball.
Yet, I have hope that Major League Baseball cares enough, and they will demand that 2K Sports finally get it right. They owe it to the fans who have suffered through the last few years, since there have been no other options for people who only own a Xbox 360.
So as it stands, the game is expected to be released on March 5th for both the Xbox 360, as well as Playstation 3. You can be sure that I’ll be there on “opening day” to pick it up and give it a try.
Justin Verlander flirted with history tonight and just missed pitching the third no hitter of his career. A one out single in the ninth inning may have cost him a no hitter, but he still pitched a complete game shutout, and got the Tigers a much needed victory.
Verlander has continually showed that he’s without a doubt one of the most dominant pitchers in Major League Baseball, and tonight was certainly a fine example of just that. For nine innings, the Pittsburgh Pirates looked puzzled and baffled at the plate.
Sure, the Pirates were only hitting .221 as a team entering tonight, but shutting down any team for nine innings is still an impressive feat. There’s not too many pitchers in baseball that are so good, that a part of you can’t help but think they’re able to throw a no hitter on any given start.
Justin Verlander is that good.
Although it’s disappointing that he didn’t get the no hitter, the Tigers were able to put a win in the books. Hopefully this will help give them the jump start that they need to start turning the season around.
It was announced today that the Tigers have optioned starting pitcher Andy Oliver to Toledo, meaning that only Drew Smyly and Duane Below remain as candidates for the 5th spot in the Tigers starting rotation.
For what it’s worth (which I’ll admit isn’t much), I sincerely think that the nod has to go to Smyly. My biggest concern with Below is his lack of having any plus-level pitches, and that’s why I think he’s better suited to either be a long reliever for the Tigers, or he needs to work on further developing his pitches in Toledo.
The biggest advantage that I think Below has at this point, is the mere fact that he’s already pitched in the Major Leagues. Below started two games for the Tigers in 2011, pitching in 12 other games out of the bullpen. In 29 innings of work, his numbers weren’t lights out, but they weren’t terrible either. Even though I think Smyly has better stuff, it wouldn’t shock me if Below gets the rotation spot. Keep in mind that both pitchers make still break camp, with Smyly in the rotation, and Below in the bullpen.
One of the most interesting parts of this whole competition for the 5th starter, is the fact that no one predicted that Smyly or Below would be the front runners before Spring Training began. For those who say that performances in Spring Training are overrated or don’t matter, please take note.
Although yesterday started out a bit early, I shouldn’t complain too much, since today started about an hour earlier then that.
Today is the final installment of the Japan series between the Mariners and Athletics, so that meant setting the alarm clock for 4:30 in the morning. Much to my surprise, I’ve been joined by several of the Fan Cave finalists, and we’ve been tweeting and tiny chatting a bunch already.
That’s really the beautiful thing about baseball. No matter where you’re from, what social class you are, how young or old, baseball has a way of bringing people together. I can’t think of too many things outside of sports, and religion that have a similar effect on bringing together the masses.
Through four innings so far, Bartolo Colon has done an excellent job of keeping the Mariners off balance at the plate, not yet allowing a base runner. We’ll see how long that lasts, though. With a win today, I’m pretty sure the Mariners will have the biggest lead in the AL West since Ken Griffey Jr. played there (the first time, not the second).
And no, that wasn’t meant to be a factual statement, but it sure does seem like it’s been a while.
Call me passionate, dedicated, or perhaps crazy, but I set my alarm clock today for 5:30 AM to make sure I’d wake up in time for opening day. No, I don’t have a rooting interest in the Mariners or Athletics specifically, but I do love baseball.
I always make it a goal of mine to watch the first game of every season, even if that means waking up two hours earlier than I would on days that I have to work. I told everyone a few days ago that my goal is to watch at least 500 games this year. During the course of the season, I’ll do my best to keep you all updated on how many games I have watched.
The best part of this game so far, has to be the homecoming of Ichiro Suzuki. It’s the top of the 6th inning right now, and Ichiro has already gotten three hits. One can only imagine how exciting of an experience that has to be for him. It also makes you wonder what kind of career Ichiro would’ve had if he had came to Major League Baseball a few years earlier than he did.
There’s so many things I’m looking forward to this season, that I can’t help but be excited. I’m like a kid in a candy store right now, and I wouldn’t trade that for anything in the world.
My alarm clock is set, I bought a fresh pack of big league chew, and I’m so ready for opening day. No, it’s not exactly fun to get up at 5:30 in the morning on my day off, but I can’t help it, baseball is back!
I’m very excited to see the kind of reception Ichiro Suzuki gets when his name is announced, and it’s always interesting to see the different cultural differences in baseball around the world. Here’s a fun fact for you, players do not spit tobacco or sunflower seeds on a baseball field, as it’s basically considered sacred ground.
I really don’t have too much of a vested interest in the game, although I do hope for a few hits from Ichiro (for both his homecoming, as well as my fantasy team), and I’m also very intrigued to watch Yoenis Cespedes make his Major League debut.
It should be fun, and it’s going to be early, but it’s baseball…so you know I’ll be watching.
I just wanted to give a final reminder to all of those who expressed interest in the fantasy baseball league I created this year. It’s simple, easy, requires nothing once the season begins, and best of all…it’s free!
The whole concept behind This or That Fantasy Baseball is trying to do your best to make various predictions on how the season will unfold. This includes statistics such as batting averages, ERAs and wins. There are also questions that will test your ability to determine who will make it to the playoffs, and who will not.
It is 100% free to join, no strings attached. If you’re interested, simply send me an e-mail to email@example.com and I will send you the official questionnaire. The winner of the league (assuming you can beat me) will receive a prize of some sort (could be a pair of tickets to the see your favorite team next year, or a free shirt. The more people who join, the better the prize will be). In order to qualify for contest, I do need to get your list submitted to me before the first pitch on opening day, which is this Wednesday morning at 6:10 AM EST.
If you have any questions, feel free to e-mail me at the above e-mail, or send me a tweet @brjeffers13. Thanks again, and best of luck!
I always try to treat my fantasy baseball teams similarly to how I would if I was a general manager for a baseball team. Of course, that doesn’t include payroll, staffing, corporate sponsorships, ticket sales, promotions…well, you get the idea.
What I can do however, is find ways to improve my team. So when I lost one of my two closers for the year (Ryan Madson), I immediately tried to find a replacement. Unfortunately, free agency left me only with Jonathon Broxton as a somewhat viable option. My next idea was to find a trade to bolster my roster.
When I looked at my team, I noticed that I have a very dominant pitching core. My biggest weakness is going to be home runs, and slugging percentage, and I’m okay with that. When playing a head to head league, I always suggest trying to build your team to be dominant in at least half the categories, while giving yourself a chance to win a few of the others.
Ultimately, I was offered a trade of David Price and Billy Butler for Joey Votto. After a bit of deliberation, I decided it was definitely going to make my team better in the long run. There’s no doubt that I’m losing a bit of value at first base, but a lot of people aren’t aware of how good Billy Butler is, and will be for quite a while. Throw in the fact I got a dominant starting pitcher in Price, I felt like there was no way I could turn this offer down.
Sure, Butler probably won’t hit as many home runs, or have as many RBIs as Votto, but the falloff isn’t that significant. I was already convinced my roster wasn’t going to be dominant in those categories, which I still will be competitive in, especially since no player on my team hit less than 10 home runs (David Freese in 333 at bats) last year.
I even did some number crunching, and if swap Votto’s offensive numbers with that of Billy Butler (and using all the 2011 statistics of all 14 of my position players), it comes out to: .282 batting average, 72 runs, 19 home runs, and 71 RBIs. If I can get a similar offensive production from all the players in 2012, I’ll consider myself to be in fine shape. Not to mention the fact having pitchers that include: Roy Halladay, Doug Fister, Rick Porcello, David Price, Max Scherzer, Tim Hudson and Jose Valverde certainly won’t hurt much, either.
Sorry Votto, but you got to go.