At least one Philly fan — Corey Seidman at Phillies Nation — fears the Feesh more. After an extensive breakdown of the two challengers’ rotations which he thinks to be more or less equal, he offers something short and pithy to make it clear where he comes down on the matter:
We’ll discuss hitting another day, but I’ll let it be known now that I
don’t trust a Braves offense relying on the aging Chipper Jones, a
has-been Troy Glaus, an undeveloped, crowned-too-early Jason Heyward, an
enigmatic Yunel Escobar, an unsustainably hot Martin Prado, and an
overrated Nate McLouth, to make it through a full season.
I’ll buy his take on the rotations — especially his righteous takedown of Derek Lowe — but I think he’s sleeping on the Braves’ offense a bit. The Braves and Marlins have had fairly similar overall production so far this year despite the fact that Atlanta has gotten zero from first base, shortstop, center field and left field. No, Jason Heyward and Martin Prado aren’t going to sport OPSes of 1.000+ all year, but the Braves have a lot of offensive upside to look forward to this season.
Ultimately all that matters is what happens on the field, of course, and today begins the first Braves-Phillies series of the season. I’m curious to see how they matchup. But I also want to know from Phillies fans: who do you think will give the team more trouble over the course of the season: Atlanta or Florida?
(thanks to resident Phillies Pfan Jonny5 for the link)
CC Sabathia‘s contract with the Yankees expires after the 2017 season but the lefty feels that he has enough left in the tank to pitch in 2018 and beyond, Mark Feinsand of the New York Daily News reports.
Sabathia said, “I just know myself. I know I feel like it’s not my time yet. Barring any crazy injuries I know I can pitch past next year. I feel like this is just the beginning of what I’m trying to do. I feel like there’s a lot more still to learn and a lot better to get. It’s exciting.”
The 36-year-old lefty currently holds a 4.02 ERA and a 144/63 K/BB ratio in 172 1/3 innings. It’s his best and healthiest season since 2012. He battled a knee injury last season and checked into rehab for alcohol addiction last October. Sabathia said that being treated for his addiction put him “in a good spot.”
Sabathia is owed $25 million through a vesting option for the 2017 season.
The Red Sox can thank the Orioles for not having to fight to clinch the division on Thursday or later. The Orioles came from behind to defeat the Blue Jays 3-2 on Wednesday evening, clinching the AL East for the Red Sox.
A few minutes after that game went final, the Red Sox squandered a 3-0 lead taken in the eighth inning, culminating in a walk-off grand slam by Mark Teixeira in the bottom of the ninth inning. Closer Craig Kimbrel started the ninth, but didn’t have control over any of his pitches. He allowed a leadoff single followed by three consecutive walks to force in a run. Joe Kelly relieved Kimbrel and seemed to be close to wriggling out of the jam, getting Starlin Castro to strike out looking and Didi Gregorius to pop up. But after starting Teixeira with a first-pitch curve ball for a strike, Teixera clobbered a 99 MPH fastball, sending it over the fence in right-center to end the game.
For the Yankees, the come-from-behind victory was crucial as it staved off Wild Card elimination for one more day.
This is the first time the Red Sox have clinched the AL East since 2013, also the last year they won the World Series.