Friday, June 27, 2008
*Aramis Ramirez, LSWTF player of the week*
Please forgive my absence in not providing you all with the Power Rankings you all deserved last week. Its been a rather stressful past 2 weeks for the Kid, due in part by work and my transition into a new field starting Monday. My bits of advice to you all.....
1- Never check your bags while taking any kind of flight. TSA will ROB YOU BLIND!
2- Don’t piss off a TSA Officer. They will make your life a nightmare and you WILL miss your flight
3- Do not taunt happy fun ball
4- NEVER EVER WORK FOR TSA!!!!! I have given a name to my personal hell and it is the Transportation Security Administration.
But don’t pay any mind to my issues, its baseball time!! The AL is dominating the NL in inter-league play. The AL is making its mission to utterly humiliate another NL team in the all-star game and the World Series………On we go…
1 (2) Boston Red Sox (49-32) – Let us all welcome back Saux Nation to the top of the board. Terry Francona is proving to me that he knows what it takes to manage good baseball, for example: replacing a struggling Hideki Okajima as setup man with Manny Delcarman without hesitation. Oh, and Dice-K is back. Good times in the "Land of the Bland".
2 (1) Chicago Cubs (49-30) – They have way too much talent to lose to the AL cellar-dweller. Not only did they lose the series at Wrigley, but they gave up a boat load of runs (25) to a team that cannot score. However, the Cubs are minus their ace (Carlos Zambrana), their Superstar (Alfonso Soriano), and possibly the man with the oddest name in baseball (Kosuke Fukudome).
3 (3) LA Angels (48-31) – Some will argue that they deserve the 2 spot and I couldn’t agree more. But, the Angels are banged up and unlike the Cubs, lack the depth to compensate for missing stars. I’m mainly referring to Vlad and “the shits”. They may have one of the more exciting series coming up as they play the dreaded Dodgers. Go Angels!!
4 (5) Tampa Bay Rays (47-31) – The Rays are only ½ game behind the Sox!! YES, my prediction is slowly coming true; that being a wildcard bid. You and I know the Sox have the talent to swat away any Ray aggression, but no other team in baseball can say the same. Oh and the Rays managed to sweep the #2 best team in baseball Cubs and the Marlins.
5 (6) St Louis Cardinals (45-35) – Sure, they got trounced by the Tigers, but they managed to give the Sox a beating prior to that. I don’t know where this team came from but they are amazing. The pitching isn’t sexy by all means but they manage to get people out. Oh, and ace Adam Wainwright should be back sometime soon. The weekend series with the red hot Royals should also make for some great baseball.
6 (7) Oakland A's (43-35) – Perhaps the most debatable shift of the week but I say bring it on. I know they lost the series with the Dbacks last week but the offense did put up 15 runs in one game. They also took the series vs. the Marlins and the Philly’s. BUT, my revenge shall be slow and painful for my counterpart, Doctor Jack Gonzo, as the Giants play the A’s this weekend. Vengeance shall be mine!! Muuuhahaha! Side note- To all of you doubters, The CC Sabathia trade rumors are flying in Oakland!!! My prediction: Mark Ellis, Daric Barton, Joe Blanton, and 3 other minor leaguers for C.C!!
7 (8) Chicago White Sox (43-35) – Jermaine Dye is a man beast! Or at least he is in fantasy when I play him. But the rest of the team needs to step up. Outside Dye and Quentin, nobody else is hitting the ball. Certainly not prize acquisition Nick Swisher (.232AVG), Jim Thome (.228AVG), or Orlando Cabrera (.273AVG).
8 (4) Philadelphia Philly’s (43-37) – Losing 8 of your last 10 games is simply unacceptable for a 1st place team. On top of that, your superstar Chase Utley is in the worst slump of his career (1-22 I believe). The Philly’s allowed themselves to be shutout TWICE in a row by Oakland and yes, this is bad news for a team that relies on offense; especially when they play the mother of all powerhouses this weekend, the Texas Rangers.
9 (15) Minnesota Twins (34-36) – The Twins are definitely the shocker team of the week winning 9 straight in a row. This includes sweeps over the Padres, Diamondbacks, and Nationals. JM’Squared (my moron nickname for Justin Morneau and Joe Maur) have been playing like champions during this streak and I have my doubts that the weekend series vs. Speed Racer and the Brewers will end it.
10 (11) New York Yankees (42-36) – Let us all welcome the Yanks back into the top 10. Joe Girardi has proven that he can keep his cool under adversity and make his team winners again. He can thank Joba for re-energizing the entire team though. Hell, even Damon, Jeter, Posada, and Arod are playing like their all-star selves. Heed warning Sox and Rays: The Yanks will make you earn the post-season.
11 (12) Milwaukee Brewers (43-35) – Did anyone but me manage to watch Prince Fielder hit that in-the-park-homerun? It’s funny to see a short fat man run, but that’s just me. The Crew found gold with Russell Branyan’s red hot bat and it looks like the rest of the team found theirs as well. Rickie Weeks is healthy and even though he can’t his for shit, he can still get on base and score runs. They swept the Jays and took 2 of 3 vs. the Orioles and Braves. Not to bad in a 2 weeks work.
12 (9) Arizona Diamondbacks (40-39) – Oriole fan has every right to give me crap for this one, but the Dbacks are a first place team. They might be a terrible first place team but they are there none the less. Micah Owings arm has turned into garbage as has the rest of the rotation not named Dan Haren. The offense is crap as well and this is with a now healthy Eric Byrnes (who has managed 1 hit in his last 12AB’s since his return from the DL)
13 (14) Baltimore Orioles (40-37) – Before you give me crap, know that you are a 4TH PLACE TEAM! No matter the argument, you’re one spot away from last place. So please don’t give me this “Any other league we would be 1st place” bullshit!!! That being said, you’re a damn good 4th place team. The offense re-learned how to hit as Brian Roberts and Nick Markakis have now put up good batting averages. Hell, even Luke Scott and Aubrey Huff found theirs. The only kink in the armor now is the rotation. They have stalled and it’s not pretty. Brian Burress leads the team with 6 wins; hardly all-star worthy.
14 (13) Texas Rangers (40-40) – Its panic time in Arlington and the good people of Texas should be worried. Josh Hamilton may or may not be injured (Fuck you Yahoo and your ambiguous player updates). If he did damage that knee of his, the Rangers will be in huge trouble. The Rangers lack the depth to compensate for his loss and its unlikely the pitching will get any better also. Their weekend series with the Astros followed by the Yankees will definitely test their metal.
15 (10) Florida Marlins (40-38) – We all knew their winning ways was too good to be true. Losing 4 straight is not a good thing, however, the Phills are sucking right now so it’s not panic time just yet. The pitching is still absolute shite and that’s an issue that needs to be addressed.
16 (18) Detroit Tigers (38-40) – They are so close to a .500 record they can taste it. After listening to the game last night my opinion is that they don’t deserve it. Sure, they are winning but the talent is playing well under their potential. Cabrera is mediocre and Ordonez’s batting AVG is 50 points lower than it should be. On top of that the pitching is non-existent.
17 (21) New York Mets (38-39) – I may have hated Willie Randolph but the way he was fired was complete bush league, even to my standards. I think the firing was too little to late as the Mets still struggle to play as a team. They lost 2 of 3 vs. baseballs rag doll team, the Mariners and the Rockies before that.
18 (17) Atlanta Braves (39-41) – It appears the injuries’ have finally crept up on the Braves as they struggle to keep pace in a weak division. Jair Jurrjen’s is the rotations saving grace right now as he has stepped up recently. Oh, is it just me or are these Mark Texiera trade rumors getting out of hand??
19 (12) Toronto Blue Jays (38-42) – “CITO SUCKS”……”CITO SUCKS”….”CITO SUCKS” is still and may always be the mantra in Baltimore. And yes, Cito Sucks is the new skipper. There is no doubt that Oriole fan loves this new move as it is surely to energize O fans when the Jays are in town. So far Cito Sucks is no better than John Gibbon’s as Cito truly is sucking. Shaun Marcum is out and long time Oriole John Parrish will take his spot. Oh happy days in Baltimore!!
20 (19) Pittsburgh Pirates (37-41) – It does appear that the Pirates are poised to reach .500 by the end of the season. Its just a shame that’s all they have to look forward to as they are 11 ½ games out of first. But Pirate fan has to be happy with the improvement, and resurgence of one time superstar Jason Bay.
21 (20) Cleveland Indians (36-43) – We can officially add Cliff Lee to the list of excellent pitchers in the Indian stable as he single handedly tore up the Giants. Sigh!! But the problem rests with the offense. Nobody is good right now and you know things are bad when Casey Blake is this team’s offensive spark.
22 (21) Houston Astros (37-42) – Props to the Astro’s for defeating the mighty Ranger offense. But, good news is overshadowed by retard news, as Shawn Chacon did his Latrell Sprewell impersonation by choke slamming GM Ed Wade. I wish I could choke clam someone right now and get away with it.
23 (23) LA Dodgers (36-42) – They moved up in the rankings only because everyone was that much worse. Before Dodger fan can rejoice, know that the future of your club is not looking so hot right now, that being Clayton Kershaw. Sure he is a kid, but so was Homer Bailey, and we all know what happened to him not to long ago.
24 (22) Cincinnati Reds- (36-44) – Cincinatti has a problem. No, its not the trade rumors involving Dunn and Griffey, its that top rookie prospect and former ROY candidate Jay Bruce is flopping. He started off molten lava hot and has since tapered off. But at least Edison Volquez is still good. I did manage to watch him destroy the Yankee bats last week.
25 (29) Kansas City Royals (36-43) – I don’t know how they did it, but they did it; 9wins in their last 10 games. Where the hell did that come from? Perhaps my motivational comment the other week? Oh, and I might have a new favorite rookie, that being SS Mike Aviles. The kid has some serious talent.
26 (24) San Francisco Giants (34-45) – Bring it on Oakland!! Im ready, and so is RED HOT Barry Zito (2 straight wins is as hot as Zito will get). Of course I’m kidding here. The Giants have slipped a tad but due to a crappy division, we still have a chance. We lost the series vs. the Tigers and Royals but managed to regain our composure by taking 2 of 3 vs. the Tribe.
27 (27) Colorado Rockies (32-47) – They almost proved me wrong by sweeping the Indians, but that was all for none as they ride another losing streak. This time the 4 game variety. The pitching is God awful and one time all-star no brainer, Todd Helton, is in an awful slump. But at least Barnes is back, which means hot hitting Jeff Baker, is benched.
28 (25) San Diego Padres (32-48) – Trevor Hoffman blew yet another save. When will Bud Black put on his pitching cap and replace him?
29 (26) Washington Nationals (31-49) – Id love to chalk their losing up to injuries so I will. It’s hard to win when the stars are out. But there is some reason for hope and that is the potential that Lastings Milledge is showing us. I could be a believer in this kid after all.
30 (30) Seattle Mariners (28-50) – You thought things were bad before then your wrong. King Felix is hurt and it looks like Erik Bedard might be also. The 2 crown jewels of the organization on the DL?? It could happen, and then what??