MLB Week 4 Sluggers and Slugs
The first month of the Major League Baseball season has given us excitement and some welcome surprises.
If someone would have asked me to bet my life on a southern California team that would have the best record a month into the season, the San Diego Padres would have been my fourth choice. I would have said the Los Angeles Dodgers, Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim, the N. Hollywood Boys & Girls Club 12 under team, and then the Padres.
Some old names have left big impressions in the early going, and when I say “big” I’m not referring to Andrew Jones waistline.
The New York Mets made a run at joining the elite in the “Penthouse & Cellar” power rankings, but fell short after losing two out of three to the Philadelphia Phillies. Who is on the guest list for the party, and who is digging in the dumpster this week?
This week is a special edition of “Heros & Zeros;” it will be the best and worst players from the first month of the season.
Penthouse Pimpin’ and Cellar Dwellers
No. 1 – For the third straight week the Tampa Bay Rays are the first team in the penthouse. The Rays are 9-1 on the road and have a +67 run differential as they have increased their AL East lead to 1.5 games.
No. 2 – The Padres have been the biggest surprise thus far through the first month of the season. Great pitching has been the key to taking a 1.5 game lead over the San Francisco Giants in the NL West. Terrible Padres fans may actually have to give up some beach time and go support these guys this summer.
No. 3 – The St. Louis Cardinals are starting to run away with the NL Central. Lead by Albert Pujols and supported by the amazing pitching staff coached brilliantly by Dave Duncan. Cards hitting coach Mark McGwire might want to join the roster mid-season when he realizes that this team is filled with guys who were better hitters than he was.
No. 28 – The Kansas City Royals stay strong at this spot for two weeks in a row. I know it doesn’t sound like a compliment, but when your team continues to get beaten like a red headed stepchild you can’t go up, but you could be beaten worse.
No. 29 – The Baltimore Orioles caught a lucky break and played a three-game series against the pathetic Boston Red Sox, who they have now beaten four consecutive games. The Os won five of seven against the New York Yankees and Red Sox, which is like getting hit on by a super model; its amazing, but you know she’s just teasing you.
No. 30 – The Houston Astros made it out of the cellar by having a solid third week and returned by losing six straight. The Astros can’t score runs and they can’t stop them. It’s a bad combination; it’s like fat people and spandex.
First Month Heros and Zeros
As if the Yankees needed another guy who can make a run at the Triple Crown, Robinson Cano has stormed out of the gates. Cano is hitting .387 with 9 HRs and 21 RBIs. They’ve got too much money, cocky-greasy-cannoli-eating fans, and now another MVP candidate.
The horrible year that Toronto Blue Jays Vernon Wells had in ’09 lead most baseball fans to believe that he had been arrested by the Mounties. Wells is hitting .330 with 8 HRs and 18 RBIs. Too bad most of Canada won’t even see his great play because he’ll probably cool off by the end of hockey season.
Francisco Liriano of the Minnesota Twins has returned to dominating form with four wins and posting a 1.50 ERA. It’s unfortunate that he’ll probably be traded or sign with the Mets and become a shell of his former self (i.e. Johann Santana).
Paul Konerko – 12 HRs
Evan Longoria – 23 Runs Scored and 6 HRs
The facts are that Yankees Mark Teixeira gets off to a slow start every season, that doesn’t mean he’s exempt from talking about the garbage first month he had. Teixeira is hitting .189 with only two HRs in a stadium that allows more players to park it than a Manhattan call girl.
The Yankees Javier Vasquez has failed to make a quality start all season, and for the second time, proves he can’t pitch in New York. Vasquez has only one win and 9.28 ERA. I can’t believe Vasquez has tricked the Yanks into paying him to suck again.
The Milwaukee Brewers Ryan Braun, or to the women of Milwaukee a less handsome version of Scott Baio, is off to a hot start. Braun is hitting .354 with 5 long balls and 20 RBIs. If he has to continue to carry Prince Fielder’s fat-ass, his back will give out.
The Dodgers Andre Ethier has been hitting the ball like Ike hit Tina, hard and often. With Manny Ramirez on the DL (Disabled List), DL isn’t short for some female steroid; Ethier has hit .365 with 9 HRs and 26 RBIs.
Roy Halladay, Tim Lincecum and Ubaldo Jimenez have combined for 14 wins in the first month, impressively eclipsing the IQ of former President George W. Bush. Jimenez threw a no-hitter; Halladay has two complete game shootouts, and Lincecum has 43 strikeouts.
Kelly Johnson – .310 BA and 9 HRs
Marlon Byrd – .354 BA and 19 RBIs
Aramis Ramirez at times this season looks like he couldn’t hit a parked car with a garbage truck. Ramirez is hitting .155 with an on base percentage of .215. Ramirez had better turn it around before he actually ends up driving a garbage truck.
Edwin Jackson from the Arizona Diamondbacks appears to be a worse acquisition than anyone who bought stock in MySpace over the last year. Jackson has only pitched well enough to muster up one win and has an ERA of 8.07.