Robinson Cano and his five consecutive 25-HR seasons are on its way to Safeco Field in Seattle, where he will have zero competition for the title of Best Offensive Player on the Seattle Mariners, unless the Mariners get Carlos Beltran or Shin-Soo Choo, then Cano will have some competition. There are probably quite a few old-fashioned (and new-fashioned) fans that might struggle with the idea that Matt Carpenter was worth more than Robinson Cano in 2013, but Carpenter had a season for the spreadsheets, as they say. Back to Cano, he’s getting ten years, which is ridiculous, but if there’s a team that can do something stupid right now, Seattle is one of those teams. Paying and getting Cano will be smart for probably the first three to six years, but then after that who knows. Can he Barry Bonds baseball once he hits that later stage in life? The Magic Eight Ball is telling me “IT’S NOT LIKELY,” but what does that thing know? I got married, so in your face, “Magic 8.”
Robinson Cano may not be the ALDS MVP (it’ll be a thing then, tru$t me) or the ALCS MVP when the Mariners make it to the World Series once all their pitchers plus Felix Hernandez, Hisashi Iwakuma, and David Price are pitching with their eyes closed against the upstart Houston Astros and Detroit Tigers (yea, still). However, all it takes is a short series for one person to make their mark on history. Ask Pablo Sandoval, Marco Scutaro, Cody Ross, or Edgar Renteria, you know they know. Here’s a preview from my 2017 World Series Preview — San Francisco Giants vs. Seattle Mariners: Everybody’s Cheering for Seattle.
Thanks, Dodgers, that was fun. Four games, and we thought you’d get at least two with Clayton Kershaw pitching Games 1 and 4 but no, you just got swept by Kyle Crick, Madison Bumgarner, and David DeJesus. That’s going to be a tough one to live down. Now the Giants have to face a team a little better on paper than them in pitching, and more impressively coming back from 3-1 down against Jarrod Parker and the Tigers. Pretty impressive, and Giants fans will remember how monstrosous the 2012 Champs were after they went down 3-1 against St. Louis. Remember how they used to be a thing? Poor #BFIB. The series even starts in Seattle, we all remember Robinson Cano’s grand slam in the All Star Game off of Craig Kimbrel, boy was that an impressive shot at Petco…
There’s your preview, because it’s still slightly believable, though totally October baseball, you know? Cano will still be good in 2017, and that’s going to be a problem even if the Mariners lineup still has Jesus Montero and Chone Figgins/totally Seattle Mariners player in it. This will be a series full of so many ups and downs, Giants fans will wonder if they should’ve signed Robinson Cano and ditched Marco Scutaro and forgotten about Joe Panik. Let this post be a reminder to you Giants fans in 2017: no, the Giants did the right thing in the offseason of 2013-2014. You’re going to see how bad the Mariners are in 2020, and it’s not going to look good. You’ll be glad Brian Sabean stayed out of it.
Earlier I wrote about how you could validate voting for each Giant on the MLB All Star Ballot, now it’s probably an appropriate time to list my actual All Stars. Since voting doesn’t close until the 4th of July, there’s going to be plenty of room for hot streaks, and hot piles of slumps. As with the online ballot itself, I’ll give you my players for each position, and we’ll leave it at that for now.
1B — Chris Davis (14 HR, .420 OBP, .458 wOBA, 190 wRC+, 2.3 fWAR)
SS — Jhonny Peralta (4 HR, .379 OBP, .364 wOBA, 127 wRC+, 1.7 fWAR)
OF — Mike Trout (9 HR, 9 SB, .400 wOBA, 157 wRC+, 2.4 fWAR)
OF — Jose Bautista (11 HR, .408 wOBA, 158 wRC+, 1.9 fWAR)
DH — David Ortiz (7 HR, .397 OBP, .429 wOBA, 168 wRC+, 1.1 fWAR)
C — Buster Posey (6 HR, .395 OBP, .385 wOBA, 152 wRC+, 1.8 fWAR)
OF — Carlos Gonzalez (11 HR, 8 SB, .390 OBP, .413 wOBA, 154 wRC+, 2.1 fWAR)
OF — Justin Upton (14 HR, .387 OBP, .410 wOBA, 165 wRC+, 2.0 fWAR)
Feel free to put your ballot or changes in the comments because I can see how you might like player B over player A. Short season so far, lots of time left before I have to decide who I’m voting in 35 times.
A lot has happened in the World Baseball Classic over the past 24 hours, and you’ve probably seen it all, but you like to visit my blog and see the stuffs, right? Right.
Beginning with the wild one in Italy and Mexico, and no doubt Edgar Gonzalez has become a household name in households that watched this game, had a pitch hit by Anthony Rizzo to him off of San Francisco Giants closer Sergio Romo. All Gonzalez had to do was catch the ball, and the damage would be limited to a tie ballgame. Instead…
However, this game did end with one team being happy, and everybody loves it when an underdog team is really happy (as long as they’re not being happy against your team), and Italy was plenty happy.
Oh, by the way, they just mercy ruled Canada 14-4 in 8 innings to make them 2-0 and are on their way to a trip to Miami for the next round.
I take you next to San Juan, Puerto Rico where the Dominican Republic and Venezuela locked horns in a battle of recognizable names. Robinson Cano had a nice beginning of a double play to glove flip it to Jose Reyes. Watch and love:
Hanley Ramirez also destroyed a baseball in the game and decided to watch it go:
…and you know I love the bat flips:
Fernando Rodney also doesn’t care what you think of how he wears his cap.
A good response from Keith Law to people that are upset about how Rodney wears his lid:
— keithlaw (@keithlaw) March 8, 2013
The beautiful thing about this tournament at this stage of it is that there’s so much going on right now, and what day of baseball wouldn’t be complete without some call for instant replay? Curt Smith of the Netherlands had himself a moment:
My favorite part being the, “K, let’s get on with the gam–out? out. OH OUT! Yes! Ahem. Yes.”
Baltimore Orioles prospect Jonathan Schoop also had himself a day, including this 3-R HR that put the Netherlands up for good:
Talk about someone that’s had his stock get a bit raised in the eyes of the public, and he is already on the Orioles’ 40-man roster.
The game after that one that saw some see-sawing late in the game from Chinese Taipei and Japan ended with some fun for Japan, and a way of thanking from the Chinese Taipei squad that I really liked.
First, Sho Nakata acknowledges the crowd as he jogs out to the outfield in the bottom of the 10th, who were celebrating his go-ahead sacrifice fly (Japan was the visiting team, being the #2 seed from the Pool they advanced from).
After the game, Chinese Taipei thanks the fans in a fashion I wouldn’t mind seeing more often:
As for the action today, Italy beat Canada 14-4 in 8 innings at Chase Field (moved indoors due to rain outdoors), and Spain and Puerto Rico are squaring off in San Juan right now. the US and Mexico will begin play at 6PM PST tonight on MLB Network.
Idea: Rank the best individual seasons of the 2012 MLB regular season (Spring Training, Minor Leagues, and Postseason are not included), while considering offensive and defensive facets of the game.
Consider: Using the individual metrics to measure individual performance; full avoidance of projecting results for shortened seasons, and past years performance to justify or dictate standings.
This is not: “Most Valuable” anything. Rather, this is “best,” like Baseball America does, so there is no confusion as to what I am ranking. It is also not a “this is a ranking of who I want in 2013, or wanted in any other year.”
This is: My opinion, and will be disagreed with by many.
20. R.A. Dickey (233.2 IP, 8.86 K/9, 3.39 tERA, 4.6 fWAR, 5.6 rWAR) – Had I considered age in this ranking, maybe Dickey would have been higher, but I’ll let someone else do that ranking. I think it’s still cool that we could have some more years to experience his dominance over hitters though.
19. David Price (211.0 IP, 8.74 K/9, 3.23 tERA, 5.1 fWAR, 6.4 rWAR) – Really had trouble ranking 19-21 with the three pitchers, but in the end, I just liked Price’s numbers the best
18. Aaron Hill (26 HR, 14 SB, .375 wOBA, 6.2 fWAR, 4.6 rWAR) – What a change of scenery can do for you, Aaron Hill looks like he’s found his comfort zone in Phoenix after being traded from Toronto.
17. Cliff Lee (211.0 IP, 1.19 BB/9, 3.21 tERA, 4.9 fWAR, 4.2 rWAR) – Poor Clifton didn’t get a lot of love because of the W-L record he sported, but it’s not his fault his team didn’t score runs for him, even if he was on for most of the season.
16. Michael Bourn (26 2B, 42 SB, .326 wOBA, 6.4 fWAR, 6.0 rWAR) – The speedy center fielder does his job tearing up the basepaths and covering his part out in CF. Jim Bowman suggested the Giants could be a fit, I think not. ($)
15. Felix Hernandez (232.0 IP, 8.65 K/9, 3.21 tERA, 6.1 fWAR, 4.6 rWAR) – The King may be the only true royalty in Seattle now, but he should have an army of arms coming to help out soon.
14. Aramis Ramirez (27 HR, 50 2B, .384 wOBA, 6.5 fWAR, 5.4 rWAR) – May be the most underappreciated season of the guys listed in this top percentage, but the BBWAA recognized it, and he finished 9th in NL MVP voting.
13. Yadier Molina (22 HR, 12 SB, .375 wOBA, 6.5 fWAR, 6.7 rWAR) – I know what you’re thinking: A Molina that steals bases, not just prevents SB? Yea, he does that, too.
12. Adrian Beltre (36 HR, 33 2B, .388 wOBA, 6.5 fWAR, 6.7 rWAR) – I felt Heyward edged the 3B of Texas in the way he manned his position, and in the way he contributed on the bases, but still a great year for the guy that loves the headrubs.
11. Jason Heyward (27 HR, 21 SB, .351 wOBA, 6.6 fWAR, 5.5 rWAR) – Should Heyward be able to step up his game to another level in his age 23 season, he could get real scary.
10. Clayton Kershaw (227.2 IP, 9.05 K/9, 2.95 tERA, 5.5 fWAR, 6.2 rWAR) – I also struggled between JV vs. CK, but in the end, felt other peripherals not listed evened things out, giving the edge to Justin over Clayton with IP being the tiebreaker.
9. Justin Verlander (238.1 IP, 9.03 K/9, 3.43 tERA, 6.8 fWAR, 7.5 rWAR) – I really struggled where to start to include the pitchers, but here seemed like a good spot. Verlander is still good.
8. Chase Headley (31 HR, 17 SB, .378 wOBA, 7.5 fWAR, 6.0 rWAR) – If this were a “best second half of 2012” post, Headley might be #1.
7. David Wright (21 HR, 15 SB, .376 wOBA, 7.8 fWAR, 6.7 rWAR) – If this were a “best first half of 2012” post, Wright might be #1.
6. Miguel Cabrera (44 HR, 40 2B, .417 wOBA, 7.1 fWAR, 6.9 rWAR) – The dude’s just oozing power, and while the change of positions is a great story, the playing of the position itself must be considered in this ranking.
5. Andrew McCutchen (31 HR, 20 SB, .403 wOBA, 7.4 fWAR, 7.0 rWAR) – Worthy of being on the cover of a video game, I’m just glad Pittsburgh has had someone to cheer about.
3. Ryan Braun (41 HR, 30 SB, .413 wOBA, 7.9 fWAR, 6.8 rWAR) – Probably got a lot of flack for the PED-related stuff at the end of the season in 2011, but a 40-30 season will never stop being impressive.
2. Buster Posey (24 HR, .406 wOBA, 8.0 fWAR, 7.2 rWAR) – It’s no secret that the catcher position is an incredibly important one, and when your backstop is producing at the levels Posey is, well that warrants some respect. Bias possible.
1. Mike Trout (30 HR, 49 SB, .409 wOBA, 10.0 fWAR, 10.7 rWAR) – If 21 year olds are just getting started, in the Majors, it’s difficult to fathom where he goes from here.