Monday, May 28, 2007

Checking In: Baseball Picks

In the ongoing quest for accountability (totally lacking in today's world of sports media), I'm checking in on my baseball picks. Once the NBA Playoffs wrap, I will go over those picks as well (I'm guessing that won't go well, since I picked the Rockets to win it all).


American League

West - Anaheim
Central - Cleveland
East - Boston
WC - Minnesota

Comments: All the division winner picks are right so far, but it is Detroit and not Minny that is leading the WC chase. Still, I am feeling very good about this set of picks.

MVP: Grady Sizemore
Cy Young: Johan Santana
Rookie of the Year: Daisuke Matsuzaka
Breakout Star: Nick Markaksis
Bust: Gary Sheffield
Manager of the Year: Eric Wedge

Comments: This is not so good. Dice K is probably leading the ROY chase and I'm sure Wedge is looking good, but that is all I have going for me. Sizemore isn't playing poorly as he is over .400 in OBP and is fourth in MLB in steals (16-for-17) and fifth in runs (40) while also providing some pop (8 HR, 24 RBI) at the top of the order, but he is WAY behind Guerrero, Ordonez, A-Rod, and Big Papi. Not to mention some of his teammates. Santana has never been an early starter and I wish his 5-4 record was better, but he's not looking too shabby. His 3.09/1.06 ratios look good and with Beckett on the DL and Lackey's WHIP inflated, it leaves only Danny Haren positioned well in front of him. As for breakout and bust, I was way off. Sheff has been pretty mediocre (.247/.804) but there are guys going worse. Markaksis though has been brutal, while B.J. Upton is running away with the "breakout player" distinction.

National League

West - Los Angeles
Central - Chicago
East - New York
WC - Philadelphia

Comments: Not as good as the AL picks, but not bad, thanks to Philly's recent hot streak. The Dodgers and Mets are winning their divisions, but the Brewers and Padres have the other two spots. Luckily, Milwaukee is coming back to the pack and the Cubs are only five out (and Soriano has yet to heat up), while Philly is just three back in the WC chase. These could be better, but a week ago it was a lot worse when it looked like the Brew Crew and Bravos were going to be world beaters.

MVP: Jose Reyes
Cy Young: Cole Hamels
Rookie of the Year: Homer Bailey
Breakout Star: Rickie Weeks
Bust: Carlos Lee
Manager of the Year: Lou Pinella

Comments: Yikes. Reyes is right in the mix for MVP (even with his recent slump, he's still be my choice today) and Hamels has a shot (improved to 7-1 today, but is way behind Jake Peavy and others), but the others are pretty bad picks. Weeks is still mediocre and adding insult to injury is that either of two teammates - Prince Fielder and JJ Hardy - would have made GREAT picks. Lee has been quite solid for Houston. Pinella is going to need to do a whole lot of work. And Bailey has yet to make a big league appearance this year.

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