2012 in review… Thank You!

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2012 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

600 people reached the top of Mt. Everest in 2012. This blog got about 4,700 views in 2012. If every person who reached the top of Mt. Everest viewed this blog, it would have taken 8 years to get that many views.

Click here to see the complete report.

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Josh Hamilton to the Angels

The Los Angeles Angels, confirmed by GM Art Moreno, have signed the top free agent in this offseason’s class, Josh Hamilton. After an inconsistent 2012 season (.285, 43HR, 128RBI) the 2010 MVP signed a deal worth $125 million over the next 5 seasons, a value of $25 million per year. This deal shocks the baseball free agent landscape and for the second year in a row the Angels are in the middle of the frenzy. Limgresast offseason they signed Albert Pujols to a 10-year $240 million contract. The Angels, fourth in payroll on Opening Day last season finished 3rd in the AL west and with an 89-73 record, 3rd in the American League Wild Card as well. With a season that center field phenom Mike Trout had last year (2012: .326, 20HR, 83RBI, 49SB) and earning the rookie of the year award, if he can put up numbers close to what he had the Angels are in for a very good season.This deal, as you can expect, shakes up the AL West division. A division won by the A’s, who won on the last day of the season last year.
Josh Hamilton was also in talks with the Seattle Mariners, the Philadelphia Phillies, and the New York Yankees.

What this does to the Angels lineup is simple, Josh Hamilton will protect Pujols in the 4th spot of the lineup. A lineup that now has to figure out what to do with All Star power hitting star Mark Trumbo. Trumbo coming off of a monster second season in the league struggled mightily at 3B at the beginning of the 2012 season will either be traded or otherise benched if his fielding does not improve. Trumbo, after his mistakes became a common sight at Angels games last season, was moved to the outfield succeeded by Alberto Callaspo. I’m sure Angels manager Mike Scioscia will have no problem sitting Callaspo for Trumbo. The rest of the infield has Erick Aybar at SS, Howie Kendrick at 2B, Albert Pujols at 1st, Kendrys Morales DH and Chris Ianetta doing the catching. The outfield now has two legitimate starters with Trout and Hamilton.The other starting position will be fought between speedy outfielder Peter Borjos and the aging Vernon Wells.

The Angels pitching staff will be led by Jared Weaver who went 20-5 with a 2.81 ERA last season. Weaver, along with CJ Wilson and Garrett Richards, will be joined by the newly signed Tommy Hanson and Joe Blanton in the 5-man rotation in 2013.

Look for an incredible American League West race in the 2013 season.

Zack Greinke

You may be as puzzled as I was to see the Los Angeles Dodgers deal given to Zack Greinke last week: 6 years, $147 million (with a free agency option at the end of his 3rd season). With this new addition, the Dodgers now have the highest payroll in the league at $207.9 million. The first time since 1998 in which the New York Yankees did not have the highest payroll on Opening Day. But, is this deal really as crazy as one might think? Let us look at his statistics, career and 2012 season:
article_64f5633c-4497-11e2-8426-0019bb30f31a
Career: (9 seasons) 91-78, 3.77 ERA, 1332 K, 1.25 WHIP, 2009 AL Cy Young Award
2012 Season: 15-5*, 3.48 ERA, 200 K, 1.20 WHIP, with the Brewers and Angels

*He went 15-5 last season on two teams, and was 5-0 in his last five starts with the Angels. Let us now compare him to three pitchers:

imgres-1CC Sabathia– 2007 AL Cy Young
Salary: $23 million per year*
Career: (11 seasons) 191-102, 3.50 ERA, 2214 K, 1.22 WHIP
2012 Season: 15-6, 3.38 ERA, 197 K, 1.14 WHIP
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Matt Cain– 3-time All Star
Salary: $15 million per year
Career: (8 seasons) 85-78, 3.27 ERA, 1278 K, 1.17 WHIP
2012 Season: 16-5, 2.79 ERA, 193 K, 1.04 WHIP

Clayton Kershaw– 2011 NL Cy Young
Salary: $7.5 million per year
Career: (5 seasons) 61-37, 2.79 ERA, 974 K, 1.14 WHIP
2012 Season: 14-9, 2.53 ERA, 229 K, 1.02 WHIP

imgres-3

*CC Sabathia signed the largest contract ever for a pitcher, Greinke’s contract is worth $1.5 million more.

When comparing win-loss records, Greinke, Cain, and Sabathia nearly have identical statistics, while Kershaw makes up for it with the lowest ERA of the group, 2.53, and the most K’s, 229.

Is Zack Greinke really worth $24.5 million per year? The answer is simply NO! The Dodgers are taking a new philosophy, one which has failed for them before, “the more you spend the better you will be”. For 5 years, $80 million, they could have signed free agent RHP Annibal Sanchez (2012: 9-13, 3.86 ERA) and for 4 years, $60 million, they could have obtained RHP Kyle Lohse (2012: 16-3, 2.86 ERA). Do the math, $140 million for two pitchers over the next five years, or for one pitcher with an opt- out clause after three.

Starting Again

Dear Readers,
First of all, I would like to thank all of you for your support. Whether it was reading my posts or emailing me and supporting me with my writing. Secondly, I would like to apologize for not writing anything during the intense 2012 season. I was focused on other things; getting into college and trying to win my second championship, and I forgot what made me happiest. I’m starting my blog again because I know that I can begin to write on a consistent basis.

I am going to talk about baseball, of course, but I will begin to talk about a broader spectrum of the game. I will talk about players, teams, managers, and GMs that shaped baseball into what it is today. This blog will never focus on 1 team, it will focus on 1 league, a league we all love.

I have over 5,000 views on this little website and I plan on getting another 5,000 in the next few months.

If you want to discuss with me about anything baseball, do not hesitate to comment, email, or tweet me whenever you would like. I promise to entertain and inform you to the best of my ability.

Thank you all for your support and stayed tuned for what is to come,

Jeremy Wolf