What better way to get into the swing of MLB posting than to report that Felix Hernandez dazzled while going against the Second Coming of Ichiro, Daisuke Matsuzaka, tonight at Fenway Park. 9 IP, 0 ER, 1 H, 2 BB, 5 K. Incredible. To his credit, Matsuzaka was pretty solid as well, but it just wasn't good enough: 7 IP, 3 ER, 8 H, 1 BB, 4 K. Ichiro put in a poor showing on the national stage as well, failing to represent Japan well by going 0-5 on the night with a strikeout. Jose "Clutch" Vidro brought the power tonight for Seattle at the plate, going 2-5 (two singles) with an RBI in an effort that would make any Expos fan proud.
I'm not big on posting about MLB, mainly because there are just too many games for me to know everything about what's going on other than who the VORP leaders are and the highlights I manage to catch on Sportscenter or Baseball Tonight (in addition to the ever-popular live look-in of the YES Network on Wednesday Night Baseball). So I'll just be posting off and on with various thoughts on the league in general and, of course, the Braves.
Speaking of which, the Braves, picked by most (including Baseball Prospectus) to finish third in the division behind the Philadelphia Team-to-Beats and the New York Lumberyards, have come out of the gate blazing, going 7-1 for the first time since 1995, the lone championship year in the Schuerholz/Cox reign. Chalk it up to a revamped 'pen that held off the Phillies and the Mets, and the same song, second verse of an offense that was one of the best in MLB last season. Offensive heroes have been Brian McCann (1.079 OPS), Matt Diaz (1.078), Edgar Renteria (.992), and Jeff Francoeur (.927). Tim Hudson has just been filthy in two starts, while Chuck James and John Smoltz have impressed as well. Welcome to the Bigs.
A couple more thoughts:
San Francisco Giants. Ugh. We all knew they're a bunch of old fogeys, but come on, guys. Randy Winn and Omar Vizquel have just been horrid at the plate so far, with OBPs of .226 and .233, respectively. Barry Zito hasn't exactly been earning his paycheck, either, as his line for the season is: 11 IP, 10 ER, 13 H, 5 BB, 6 K. Yuck.
Last night on Baseball Tonight, I noticed that they showed a graphic comparing Alex Rodriguez' stats compared with other "Cold Corner" players from around the majors, basically contrasting Rodriguez' numbers versus other third basemen's. They must have excluded Miguel Cabrera from that second list, as he's put up a line of .414/.514/.862 through 8 games.
Shorts: Congratulations to both Josh Hamilton and Alex Gordon, as each hit his first major league home run yesterday...TFSB is officially on a David DeJesus Watch (#11 in hitting VORP)...TFSB is officially on a Zack Greinke Watch (#9 in pitching VORP).