The Red Sox head to the Bay for an interleague tilt. The Reds are still playing way over their heads. The Padres could be a key player in the Carlos Beltran sweepstakes. These and other news and notes out of Boston, Cincinnati and San Diego in today's Prospectus Triple Play.
SMACK FOR MATCHUP JUNKIES: Interleague play adds a wrinkle
to the schedule next week, as the Sox venture to previously uncharted
Colorado and San Francisco territory. It's entirely possible that the
series with the Rockies, patsies of the West, will earn a mention in
next week's edition of Prospectus
Matchups as the biggest mismatch, so let's ignore it here.
The Dodgers offense has finally come around, thanks in no small part to Adrian Beltre. The Twins have suffered through a rash of injuries, yet still refuse to bring up Justin Morneau. And the Giants can't seem to win, even with Barry Bonds doing his best impression of Superman. All this and much more news from Los Angeles, Minnesota, and San Francisco in your Wednesday edition of Prospectus Triple Play.
When You're Smiling: The Dodgers went to San Francisco over the weekend and swept the Giants in a three-game series. This leaves L.A. at the top of the NL West with a 9-3 record (conveniently, three wins ahead of the Giants), although our adjusted standings suggest they are playing closer to .500 ball.
The Angels spent lots of money on their rotation this offseason, but was it worth it? Kerry Wood is having a fantastic spring, with improved control. The Tigers have spent the past few weeks upgrading their bullpen in a search for 65 wins. A number of Expos are taking trips to ''club med.'' The Giants have failed to upgrade their offense, while the Dodgers have made small strides. And the Blue Jays traded Jayson Werth, but perhaps for good reason.
But they spent so much money (Part II)... Last time, we looked how Arte Moreno's money isn't going to buy a whole lot of runs. Apparently, Moreno's money won't save a lot of runs either. The Angels spent $66.75 millio to sign Bartolo Colon and Kelvim Escobar, who are projected to post EQERAs in the 4.00s and be worth just a few wins above replacement, apiece. The Halos' starting staff needs to beat PECOTA's projection if the club is to be playoff bound.
How many different places will the Expos call home next season? Jose Cruz Jr.--he's not quite Roberto Clemente yet. The Jays have decisions to make on some single-season temps. All this and more from Montreal, San Francisco, and Toronto in Friday's Triple Play.
Same Old, Same Old: Major League Baseball continues to drag its feet and spit on whatever shred of integrity it may have left by dragging out the Expos situation. Nutshell: The players want to play 81 games in one city next year, preferably Montreal. MLB wants a split schedule as a way to maximize team revenue; by playing a slate of games in San Juan, Puerto Rico, Monterrey, Mexico, or wherever else they can find local businessmen who'll make guarantees, Bud Selig and company have ensured that the legacy of short-sighted decisions shaped by grubbing for a few million dollars at a time will live on.
The Expos have come back from the dead to land in a tie for the NL Wild Card race. The Giants keep having trouble with right-handed pitching. The Blue Jays' Roy Halladay's in the mix for the AL Cy Young Award. These and other news and notes in today's Prospectus Triple Play.
Odds, Shmodds: When last we left the Expos, the team stood at 61-60, seemingly on the verge of exiting the Wild Card race. They trailed the Phillies by 5.5 games, and looked up at seven teams in the Wild Card race, including the NL Central leader.
Terrible performance and tons of playing time has made Endy Chavez a giant drag on the Expos' offense. The off-season's Ortiz-for-Moss deal wasn't as bad as you think for the Giants. Kevin Cash is the latest catcher-of-the-future for the Blue Jays. These and other news and notes out of Montreal, San Francisco, and Toronto in today's Prospectus Triple Play.
Hackin' Endy: For a few years now, Baseball Prospectus has put together a game called HACKING MASS. As the game's rules page explains:
The Expos are benefitting from one of the best trades of the year; the Giants have some youngsters developing in their system; and the Blue Jays will wait another year before beginning their assault on the AL East. All this and much more news from Montreal, San Francisco, and Toronto in your Friday edition of Prospectus Triple Play.
Trade of the Year: What went through Omar Minaya's mind when he called Brian Sabean late in Spring Training to inquire about embattled Giants pitcher Livan Hernandez? Minaya had to know by then that the key player acquired in the off-season trade of Bartolo Colon to the White Sox, Livan's half-brother Orlando Hernandez, wasn't progressing as hoped from a shoulder injury. He may have also noted the inexperienced candidates lined up to claim spots at the back of the rotation. If nothing else, Livan Hernandez was a veteran, one who could soak up copious innings to save the bullpen so that the relievers could take the burden off the Zach Days of the staff.
The Expos have cooled after their blazing hot start; the Giants have had their share of Good, Bad, and Ugly; and the Blue Jays pitching leaves something to be desired. All this and much more news from Montreal, San Francisco, and Toronto in your Friday edition of Prospectus Triple Play.
First-Half Review: The Expos started the 2003 season with a bang, surging to a franchise-record 32-18 start, capped by two straight dramatic victories over NL East rival Philadelphia in front of sizeable, lively crowds.
Making up for July 4, today's Prospectus Triple Play is actually a Prospectus Six Pack. The Astros have done a good job of making up for Roy Oswalt's absence. The Brewers have a beef with Questec. The Expos can rival the Diamondbacks for team heaviest hit by injuries. The A's need a bat to complement Erubiel Durazo. The Giants have opened up their lead in the NL West thanks to Jerome Williams and friends. The Blue Jays' Greg Myers deserves an Al-Star berth. These and other news and notes out of Houston, Milwaukee, Montreal, Oakland, San Francisco, and Toronto in today's Double Stuft PTP.
June Swoon: Heading into June, the Astros were in great position to take over the division by July; other than a road trip through Boston and New York, they were facing a soft interleague schedule, along with home-and-away series with Arizona. Beat up on the bad teams, do OK against the good ones, and a sizeable division lead would be in the bank.
Vlad's hurting, but his Expos mates are feeling their own kind of pain. Velocity Project Jr.: just how hard is Jesse Foppert throwing? Halladay and Escobar are shutting down offenses for the Blue Jays. All this and more on Toronto, San Francisco, and Montreal in today's Prospectus Triple Play.
The Expos bench has helped fuel the team's best start in history. The Giants bullpen's suffering through the PTP curse. Vernon Wells is earning his pay. Plus more news and notes out of Montreal, San Francisco, and Toronto.