Thursday, June 19, 2008

All-Star Bonanza - The NL

Ok, loyal WMHG? readers, here comes part II of the MLB All-Star roster preview, NL edition. In case you didn't notice, I used the All-Star logo with the white out background, as opposed to Doc's solid blue background. I thought this would be a fitting way to foreshadow the stark differences between the fledgeling AL and God's true favorite, the senior circuit, the NL. And awaaaaaaaay we go...

1st Base

Will Start: Lance Berkman
Should Start: Lance Berkman
This is about as much of a no brainer as there can be. I hate for the first position to be a short write up, but what do you want me to say. He's an animal.

2nd Base

Will Start: Chase Utley
Should Start: Chase Utley
He's 0 for his last 20 and he's still the best 2B in the NL by far. The kid can hit. I hate the Phillies. On a related note, if you ever have the unfortunate opportunity to see a Phillies game on TV, watch carefully if they show Chase in the dugout. When he takes his hat off, he exposes his soaking wet, slicked-back hair that he somehow never allows to dry. He looks like a vampire. It's creepier than Giambi's moustache.

3rd Base

Will Start: Chipper Jones
Should Start: Chipper Jones
If you read the 'Leading Off:' weekly post, you know why he's starting. Good work NL fans, so far so good.

Shortstop

Will Start: Miguel Tejada
Should Start: Hanley Ramirez
I spoke too soon. Listen, hat's off to Miggy for triumphing to this point of the season under the adversity he heaped on himself (Steriods, lying about age, etc.) and he is having a great year, but Hanley should not be overlooked. It's close, but Hanley's got a better OBP and SLUG, with 6 more HR and 11 more SB. Like I said, it's close but this kid's got it all.

Outfield

Will Start: Alfonso Soriano (Inj.), Kosuke Fukudome, Ken Griffey, Jr., Carlos Lee
Should Start: Nate McClouth, Ryan Braun, Ryan Ludwick
Here's the biggest problem so far. Chicago fans all got drunk one Friday day game and stuffed the ballots till there were no ballots left to stuff. It's insanity if Soriano and Fukudome are voted as starters. Soriano is out with a broken hand and won't even be back by the All-Star game. He was having a good season but still shouldn't start over any of my 3 picks. McClouth, Braun and Ludwick are head and shoulders better than any other OFs in the NL. They're all raking and have been consistant for the entire season. The lowest stat for each player combined into 1 line would be .291 BA/18 2B/15 HR/48 RBI/42 R/4 SB. That's the worst of each category and that fake stat line would be good enough to start.

Honorable Mention - Injured Ryan Church. He was making a run at it before that 2nd concussion. Who gets 2 concussions in the same season? Really? This is baseball.

Catcher

Will Start: Geovany Soto
Should Start: Bengie Molina
Glaring Chicago problem #2. Soto started off red hot, but his pace has slowed down considerably. He's hitting .256 over the last month and he's not even one of the top 3 offensive catchers in the league. I'd put Brian McCann or Russell Martin in over Soto. But my pick is Bengie, partly because he's hitting .315 with 44 RBI (tops among NL backstops) and partly because he's putting up with playing for the Giants. He must want to peg Zito in the forehead every time he has to throw a pitch back to him on the mound. Luckily, most of the pitches Zito throws never make it to Molina.

Pitchers

Who Should Be Picked: Edinson Volquez, Brandon Webb, Tim Lincecum, Ryan Dempster, Johan Stanana, Brad Lidge, Kerry Wood, John Rauch, Matt Capps

Edinson Volquez - The piece that came to the Reds in the Josh Hamilton trade (best trade for both teams since Beckett and Lowell for Hanley Ramirez and Annibel Sanchez (who threw a no hitter)(can you put parenthesis inside parenthesis...I wonder)) is also the odd's on favorite to win the CY Young so far. His numbers are staggering, with his only shortcoming being his control. 105 K's/59 hits in 88 IP, but he's also walked 44. The only SP in the NL this year with a K/9 above 10 (10.9 to be exact), he's given up only 3 dingers so far, has a .190 BA against and he sports a 1.64 ERA. SCARY.

Brandon Webb - He's nasty. I still remember his MLB debut start against the Mets. I'm sitting in the common room of my dorm in my underwear on a Saturday watching the game on a shitty antenna TV, and through the snowy reception I watched this rookie strike out 10 in 7 innings, all the while after every K the people upstairs could hear me scream, "Who the F*CK IS BRANDON WEBB!?" Well, he sure showed me, and he's never looked back.

Tim Lincecum - Who would also make the "Ugliest All-Stars of All-Time" team. Really take a good look at Timmy...if you dare. Equally as dominant this season as he is hideous, here's the line: 8-1/97.2 IP/95 K's/82 Hits/38 BB/2.21 ERA. Here's the kicker: He's on the Giants. I wonder what would happen if he was on a real baseball team. Yikes.

Ryan Dempster - I know, I know, it's hard to believe. Trust me, it's hard to say it and mean it. But he's got to get his due. I'm sorry, but an 8-2 record, 2.76 ERA and 1.09 WHIP with 81 K's through 94.2 IP and a .192 BAA for a first place team after being a heart-attack closer for the past 3 years? That gets you on the All-Star team.

Johan Santana - Am I a homer? I've been accused of worse. Fact is this slot could go to Johan, Sheets, Haren or Hudson and it's too close to call. What does that all add up to? The Met gets the nod in my book. For God's sake, we deserve 1 ray of light this season.

Relievers - They're all nasty, the whole lot of 'em. Lidge is re-born in the cesspool known as Philadelphia. I pray he faces the Cards in the first round of the Playoffs and Pujols knocks one off the roof of Pat's and Gino's again. Wood is in the role he was born to play and has so far been sick. 7-footer Rauch stepped in for Chad Cordero and has been lights out. Capps is the guy no one is talking about but go take a gander at his numbers. He doesn't walk anyone. He's the real deal on a Pittiful (pun) team.

1 comment:

Doc Holliday said...

I agree with the Fukudome shit, he should not be an All-Star. Don't blame it solely on fat Midwesterners either, you're forgetting the absolutely insane Japanese fans. They might be worse than anyone. They treat any one of their players who plays in America like a fucking god.