Oakland is the best team in Major League Baseball, plain and simple. There is no other way to put it, and to say another team easily better would be a mistake. Statistics, the eye test, they all demonstrate how the Athletics are the best team in baseball, which is why they once again come in at number one in Grandstand U’s MLB Power Rankings. Once again playing second fiddle are the Los Angeles Angels, who continue to sit just two games behind Oakland.
Coming in third-place for a second consecutive week are the Washington Nationals. As long as Washington continues to produce at a decent rate from the plate, it will have no problem reaching the postseason. Moving up one place from last week into the fourth spot are the Baltimore Orioles. Baltimore continues to impress and lead the A.L. East. They was those teams continually beat up on each other, it’s hard to imagine the Orioles will run away with the division. Rounding out the top-five are the Detroit Tigers. Detroit’s lack of consistency continues to befuddle experts; and yet, in a weaker A.L. Central, the Tigers should have no problem taking the division title.
This week’s voter is Christian Zylstra. Read More »
On July 23, 2009, Chicago White Sox pitcher, Mark Buehrle, tossed Major League Baseball’s 18th perfect game in a 5-0 home victory over the Tampa Bay Rays.
The game was over after shortstop Alexei Ramirez fielded the ground ball struck by Jason Bartlett and threw it to first baseman Josh Fields for the force out. It took 116 pitches and six strikeouts to earn the perfect game.
Fields assisted offensively when he hit a grand slam off of Scott Kazmir in the second inning, bringing Ramon Castro, Carlos Quentin and Paul Konerko in to score. Alexei Ramirez hit a double in the fourth, driving in Scott Podsednik for another run. Read More »
Staten Island has won five of their past six games and moved above .500 (via Grandstand University)
The rooster crowed early on Monday as the Staten Island Yankees and Jamestown Jammers played the final game of a three-game series. Not only did Staten Island sweep Jamestown, but won five of their last six games. After Monday’s win, Staten Island (20-17) were seven games behind McNamara Division leader Hudson Valley Renegades.
The start time of the game was 11AM. “There is a difference (from playing a morning game). For one, we didn’t take BP (batting practice) on the field. I was interested to see how we were going to come out; what kind of energy we were going to play with and I think we did a nice job, ” Staten Island Yankees manager Mario Garza said after the game. Read More »
On Tuesday morning, the Toronto Maple Leafs announced an unexpected hiring for their front office that will drastically change the franchise’s direction. They fired assistant general managers Claude Loiselle and Dave Poulin; these firings were to make room for Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds (of the Ontario Hockey League) general manger Kyle Dubas. Dubas is widely seen as the NHL’s wunderkind at 28 years old, and he also bases a lot of his team philosophy upon analytical, also known as “advanced stats.”
The inclusion of a statistical genius in Toronto’s front office serves a stark change to the club’s old ways. As Toronto collapsed down the stretch following a red-hot start, many people within the Maple Leafs organization lamented the message coming from various statistical thinkers saying their late season struggles were predictable. Poulin especially showed his lack of knowledge in statistics in his attempts to defend the front office’s actions. Dubas brings forward the exact opposite mindset, an approach that involves both the “intangible” aspects of the game along with statistical context. This mindset is growing rapidly, especially amongst the blogging world, and some teams are starting to notice the benefits of this approach. Read More »
Racing has concluded, but spectators were left with plenty to remember (via dragzine)
After twelve years gone, the IHRA Summer Nationals Nitro Jam Event returned to Cordova Dragway, and the results were massive.
Racing began on Friday, with the professional show beginning at seven. The weather could not have been more beautiful the entire weekend—sunny and 80 degrees—for both the massive number of spectators and the racers. Read More »
Archie Griffin is the only player to ever win the Heisman Trophy twice (via toptenz)
Last year Jameis Winston had to work for everything earned. It all started in the spring and preseason when he battled for the starting quarterback job with Jacob Coker. Although Coker put up a good fight Winston was able to impress head coach Jimbo Fisher just enough to start. When the season opened up Winston led the Florida State Seminoles to a 41-13 victory over Pittsburgh. After that win Jameis Winston and FSU didn’t look back. They went undefeated during the Read More »
Excellence is going to be a necessity to claim the AL West. The Oakland Athletics have dominated baseball thus far, and with recent additions to further bolster the squad’s pitching staff, this division is all but wrapped up. The Los Angeles Angels continue to trail the A’s closely, while the Seattle Mariners have made a case for the playoffs. The Houston Astros and Texas Rangers have taken a back seat in the competitive division and the American League. Read More »
Boston continues to falter and can find no offense (via bosoxinjection)
After a slight breather, the second half of the AL East race has picked up right where it left off. The Baltimore Orioles have managed to pull ahead with a slim lead over the rest of the division. Meanwhile, the New York Yankees have managed to limp through significant health issues while the Toronto Blue Jays are looking to recover from a major collapse before the All-Star festivities. Also, the Boston Red Sox are just ahead of the Tampa Bay Rays near the bottom of the division, but neither team is out of the pennant race. Read More »
The Spurs made probably their biggest splash in free agency by keeping Gregg Popovich (via thefumble)
Ever since the creation of the modern-day “Big 3″ (Ray Allen, Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett) each free agency period has become less about finding a player that fits the mission of a particular team and more about finding the best available superstar to pair with your current superstar in order to have the best chance at claiming a title. The new vibe around free agency is keeping up with the Jones’; almost every team in the league gets better during the free agency period, especially those who fell just short of winning a championship the previous season. Teams need to keep up, they need to sign better players while keeping the good and great players they have now, and every team seems to operate the same way, except for one. Read More »
Will Todd Gurley be the first player from the University of Georgia to win the Heisman Trophy, since Herschel Walker? (via sportsworldreport)
In the past four seasons the Heisman Trophy has gone to a quarterback. This has been especially tough on running backs. The last running back to win the award was Mark Ingram in 2009. Since 1990 there have been only six running backs who won the award if you count Reggie Bush’s vacated one. If there is a running back that should win the award it has to be Georgia running back Todd Gurley.
In just two seasons at Georgia Todd Gurley has been nothing short of spectacular. As a Read More »