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Posts Tagged ‘Oakland Athletics’

superman emblemIt’s Friday.  There’s people on summer hours.  So, this is probably the last post we do before POI, The Skyline and then your UFC 100 preview.  But, it’s a long one.  So sit back and strap it down.  Your MLB Power Rankings heading into the All-Star Break.

1.) Los Angeles Dodgers (54-31): They’ve got Manny back.  They didn’t struggle without him.  The Giants are playing out of their minds and the Dodgers are still 7 games clear of them.  These guys are making the playoffs obviously, but mark it down.  They are not going to the World Series.  Peak too soon in baseball and you don’t finish strong.

2.) New York Yankees (51-34): Bring it on Red Sox fans.  You’re 5-5 in your last 10, and the Yankees are 8-2.  We told you not to sell on these guys at the start of the season and we’re being validated.  In that stadium, this offense is going to excel like no other offense in the league.  The bullpen issues are starting to clear up with Phil Hughes and Coke.  “And the New York Yankees are going to the World Series!” (circa 2003.  Suck it Red Sox)

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wandy-rodriguezAstros 5 – Pirates 0: It was against the Pirates so it’s really not that impressive.  Nevertheless, Wandy (ugh) Rodriguez picked up his 8th win of the season while striking out 11 in this one.  Big Puma (anytime we can mention that nickname, we do) is only hitting .277 but that .402 OBP is very impressive.  Long shot from a season ago, but still a franchise 1B.  Do the Astros trade someone like Wandy since they in a slight rebuilding mode?  We suggested Roy Oswalt a while back.  We think it’s time to blow up that project and start over.  The NL Central is there for the taking in the next 3-5 years.  Side-note:  When you Google image Wandy – That card comes up like 900 times?  What the hell?

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ChicagoAtNight1We’re unveiling a new final post for every day that we’ll put up for folks to comment on (yeah, right) and with what’s on the tube for the evening.  We’ll give you a run down of sports, entertainment, local titty bar specials and other things to watch for while you evade the kids or shrug off your work from the day.

Tonight, there’s actually a few things that might be worth watching on the sports calendar.  Nomar Garciaparra makes his first return to Fenway Park for the first time since being traded to the Cubs in 2004 (ugh).  UFC continues its countdown of the top fights with numbers 75-51 on Spike.  And, Tommy Boy (we’ll pretty much watch it every time) is on Comedy Central.  The full slate of MLB games and probable starters after the jump (courtesy MLB.com).

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joel pineiroCardinals 3 – Mets 0: Joel Pineiro has two complete games this season, both of them shutouts.  This guy has a career 4.50 ERA and had 3 shutouts total coming into this season.  Is Dave Duncan what Leo Mazzone was supposed to be?  Just without three of the greatest pitchers of all-time?  The Mets are going to struggle mightily over the next few weeks with many of their players on the shelf.  David Wright is going to need to play out of his mind.  MetsBlog has the fans’ confidence rating at 43%.  But, Mets fans were probably jumping off a cliff long ago.  They’d rather the team collapse now than at the end of the season.  The Mets had two as many hits as Albert Pujols had RBIs.  Two.

Tigers 5 – Cubs 4: Get Kevin Gregg out of the closer’s role NOW.  We can’t say much more than that other than Micah Hoffpauir has hit two HRs in the last week that have put the Cubs ahead after the seventh inning.  The Cubs haven’t won either game.  Moving right along…

Blue Jays 7 – Reds 5: Joey Votto was activated in his home town prior to this game but it wasn’t enough for the Rainbow Coalition to beat the Blue Jays. Brian Tallet went 6 scoreless innings and even though every bullpen pitcher but Jason Frasor allowed at least one run, the Jays held on.  Bigger fantasy contributor/surprise this year:  Marco Scutaro or Aaron Hill?

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Cardinals Mets BaseballMets 6 – Cardinals 4: K-Rod picked up save number 19 and the Mets are still above the .500 mark.  After hearing about Carlos Beltran hitting the DL (fantasy, d’oh!) the Mets are going to be in trouble for run production for the next two weeks.  Beltran has been their only consistent performer all year in both the average and power department.  The middle of the Mets lineup not features a power starved David Wright, Fernando Tatis and Ryan Church.  Can someone explain to us how the Cardinals are 39-32?  Pujols is the only guy on that team has done anything of note all season.  Carpenter is bound for a DL trip at some point in the near future.  If they win 83 games in the regular season and make the playoffs we’ll take a wrecking ball to that new stadium in the gateway city.

Braves 2 – Cubs 0: Well, it’s not the warm weather that woke up the Cubs bats.  It was 95 degrees at game time and the humidity was uncomfortable but the Cubs still couldn’t score.  Javy Vasquez has had a nice season, we won’t diminish that.  But the Braves are 3 games under the .500 mark.  They are lacking consistent hitting and their bullpen has been a mess.  Ryan Dempster gave the Cubs a great effort and it was all for nothing.  Ugh.  Isn’t this the time of season where Cubs fans are treated to solid play?  Apparently not.

Rockies 11 – Angels 1: That’s 17 out of 18 for the Rockies.  If the Dodgers weren’t playing so well, the Rockies would be the class of the West.  Brad Hawpe has been a fantasy beast this year.  He drove in 3 in this game and hit his 11th homer of the year.  The Angels Matt Palmer was 6-0 coming into this game but couldn’t get through the 4th inning.  Aaron Cook has been one of the few guys in the majors to conquer pitching at Coors Field and despite this game being held in Anaheim, Cook pitched a solid game.  The only run he allowed was on a Kendry Morales home run.

Athletics 5 – Giants 1: Jonathan Sanchez has all the talent in the world but the command of a pubescent teenager.  The guy just simply can’t throw strikes.  Once he conquers those issues, the Giants will have the best young rotation in baseball.  Their biggest problem has been scoring runs all season.  The A’s are only 31-38 with this win so you have to wonder when Matt Holliday is going to get dealt.

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Astros Diamondbacks BaseballDiamondbacks 8 – Astros 1: The first part of that headline is true most of the time; the second, is not.  Dan Haren should be getting high consideration as the All-Star starter for the National League.  This guy is lights out every time he takes the bump.  What we’ve been disappointed in (and All-Star voters, too) is his win total.  Haren is 5-4 with a 2.20 ERA, 0.81 WHIP and an 8.79 K/9.  He should be 9-1.  Our fantasy team would appreciate that too.  Mark Reynolds has been white hot lately and picked up 5 RBIs in this game.  He might have a strikeout problem, but he doesn’t have a power problem.  His 3-run homer in the sixth put this one out of reach and Haren on cruise control.  This was the only non-interleague game of the day.

Yankees 9 – Mets 8: Ok, if you’re a little leaguer and you’re reading this, move on.  Haren’s game is the only game you should read about…The Mets had quiet possibly the worst error of the day as in the battle of the Rods, K-Rod got A-Rod to pop up in what should have been a game ending out.  Luis Castillo dropped the ball allowing Jeter and Teixeira to score.  What a nightmare start to the Subway series for the Mets.  Mariano Rivera got lucky in this one as he allowed a David Wright double to put the Mets on top in the eighth.  Instead, he ended up picking up the win due to the error.

Twins 7 – Cubs 4: Milton Bradley needs to pay attention.  He also needs to learn how to play the sun at Wrigley Field.  It’s getting out of hand and they’re paying him way too much money to play as poorly as he is right now.  There’s a real good chance this gets ugly if he doesn’t keep his mouth shut in the next few weeks and start hitting the ball.  We’re not going to go into too much detail on this because credit should be given to Kevin Slowey for pitching an excellent game…on my fantasy bench.  Ugh.

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Mets Pirates BaseballPirates 11 – Mets 6: Pirates prospect Andrew McCutchen went 2-for-4 in his MLB debut a day after the Pirates traded Nate McLouth to the Braves.  The Mets are reeling right now having been swept out of Pittsburgh.  They’re only four games above .500.  Their only takeaway from this game was that Carlos Beltran was finally able to start after a bout with food poisoning.  He went yard in the return.  The Pittsburgh bullpen went 4.2 scoreless innings to pick up the win.  It’ll be interesting to see who the Pirates jettison next in their rebuilding process.

Athletics 7 – White Sox 0: We were at this game and in a much less impressive debut, Gordon Beckham went 0-for-3 with a strikeout in this one for the pale hose.  This game is probably the single, quickest baseball game we’ve ever attended.  The CTA got us there 25 minutes late so we only were physically inside the ballpark for two hours.  Mark Buerhle works fast.  Even when he gets shelled.  Oakland starter Brett Anderson lowered his ERA from 6.24 to 4.97.  Good work, Brett.

Angels 6 – Blue Jays 5: Adam Lind went off in this game with a 5-for-5 effort.  Yet, he only scored twice and didn’t drive in a single run in the loss for the Jays.  We kept looking for who got the stolen base on our fantasy team yesterday and still aren’t sure the one credited to Vlad in this game is correct.  John Lackey went seven strong and struck out six but Darren Oliver gave up three earned in the eighth without recording an out.  Justin Speier snaked the win in this comeback.

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