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FE_McFly

We got anyone looking forward to 2019 MLB Baseball?

Favorites to win the NL and AL Pennants for the 2019 season  

4 members have voted

This poll is closed to new votes
  1. 1. Favorite to win the NL Pennant

    • Atlanta Braves
      0
    • Washington Nationals
      0
    • Philadelphia Phillies
      1
    • New York Mets
      0
    • Miami Marlins
      0
    • Milwaukee Brewers
      0
    • Chicago Cubs
      2
    • St. Louis Cardinals
      0
    • Pittsburgh Pirates
      0
    • Cincinnati Reds
      0
    • Los Angeles Dodgers
      1
    • Colorado Rockies
      0
    • Arizona Diamondbacks
      0
    • San Francisco Giants
      0
    • San Diego Padres
      0
  2. 2. Favorite to win the AL Pennant

    • Boston Red Sox
      1
    • New York Yankees
      0
    • Tampa Bay Rays
      0
    • Toronto Blue Jays
      0
    • Baltimore Orioles
      0
    • Cleveland Indians
      1
    • Minnesota Twins
      0
    • Detroit Tigers
      0
    • Chicago White Sox
      1
    • Kansas City Royals
      0
    • Houston Astros
      1
    • Oakland Athletics
      0
    • Seattle Mariners
      0
    • Los Angeles Angels
      0
    • Texas Rangers
      0

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  • Poll closed on 03/20/2019 at 05:00 AM

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As we enter the year of 2019, America is only a few months from Spring Training. Leaving behind 2018 season and the domination that was the 108-54 World Series Champion Red Sox, we enter an offseason with still unsigned free-agents such as Bryce Harper and Manny Machado; two players with a possibility to get some of the biggest contracts to date. Though teams like the Astros and Yankees will still most likely be titans in their respective divisions, teams re-building may have a stack in their divisions with the impressive free-agent class this offseason. Which teams are you all looking forward to seeing/following and which team do you think will be the victors of this year's Fall Classic?

As for me, I can only hope that my beloved Philadelphia Phillies can land Harper or Machado and add to their interesting offseason signings. Do I think they can win the NL East? Perhaps. They will have some competition with the up and coming Braves and the Jacob DeGrom-led Mets. The Nationals may be a challenge, but the Marlins are still finding their way with new(ish) owner, Derek Jeter.

I will even post a poll asking for your favorites to win the NL and AL Pennant for the heck of it. Here's to a new season, all you baseball fans!

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I just hope the Diamondbacks can be a bit more consistent this year we did resurge a bit in the previous one but kind of faltered towards the end.

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I've been a Pirates fan for my whole life and I'm not stopping anytime soon, even through the hard times because that's what it means to be loyal to a team. Here's hoping they can stay consistently on top as opposed to zig-zagging.

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17 hours ago, NoirCore said:

I've been a Pirates fan for my whole life and I'm not stopping anytime soon, even through the hard times because that's what it means to be loyal to a team. Here's hoping they can stay consistently on top as opposed to zig-zagging.

On top? Last I checked, they haven't been making the playoffs lately. I'm not a baseball fan, but living in the Pittsburgh area does let me hear and see some things.

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14 minutes ago, Anacybele said:

On top? Last I checked, they haven't been making the playoffs lately. I'm not a baseball fan, but living in the Pittsburgh area does let me hear and see some things.

What I mean is stay consistently good throughout next season, though I would like them to keep strong for more seasons in the future. The Pirates had spells of both supreme play and sluggishness last year that ultimately left them with at least a winning season yet distantly short of the playoffs.

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1 minute ago, NoirCore said:

What I mean is stay consistently good throughout next season, though I would like them to keep strong for more seasons in the future. The Pirates had spells of both supreme play and sluggishness last year that ultimately left them with at least a winning season yet distantly short of the playoffs.

I see then. Yeah, that would be nice.

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I've been a Cubs fan all my life, and hope they do well this year.  The last few years has been the longest sustained "good" streak for the Cubs, even with the anticlimactic end last year.  If the can stay healthy, unlike last year, they should be in a good position.

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Everyone's talking about who Bryce Harper will go to, but I'm somewhat hoping the Cubs don't get him, so they don't get the albatross of a contract he'll undoubtedly command, and after last year, he might be another bust signing, like Darvish last year.

I do hope Darvish turns it around this year.  If he does, the Cubs rotation is looking very good.

Jon Lester

Kyle Henrdicks

Jose Quintana

Cole Hamels

Yu Darvish

If all 5 of those guys are at their best, I can't think of a better rotation in the NL.  Without Darvish, it's still good, but Chatwood being the number 5 guy brings it down a bit, unless he stops walking every other batter.

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On 1/7/2019 at 5:02 PM, Rezzy said:

I do hope Darvish turns it around this year.  If he does, the Cubs rotation is looking very good.

Jon Lester

Kyle Henrdicks

Jose Quintana

Cole Hamels

Yu Darvish

If all 5 of those guys are at their best, I can't think of a better rotation in the NL.  Without Darvish, it's still good, but Chatwood being the number 5 guy brings it down a bit, unless he stops walking every other batter.

Cole...please come back to Philly...

But seriously, I am in a similar boat but with the Phillies. I think the Phillies have a decent rotation at its core. It may not be as good as the Cubs', but with Cy Young candiate Aaron Nola leading the charge and Veteren Jake Arrieta alongside, I think the Phillies can be a decent pitching team this season. I just wish they would spend their money already. Sure, I would like Bryce Harper or Manny Machado, but they have NO left-handed starters. They should try and get free-agent lefty Dallas Keuchel while his still available. 

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Less than a month until pitchers and catchers report now.

It will be nice to work listening to a game back into my daily routine, when I can.

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On 1/20/2019 at 8:05 PM, Rezzy said:

Less than a month until pitchers and catchers report now.

It would appear that this offseason is almost repeating what happened last year... The top free-agents on the market are taking a long time to sign with a team. Thank goodness the pitchers and catchers report soon. With more and more rumors surfacing, its almost like MLB is teasing me with the idea of something exciting happening. Hopefully now that it is that time of the year, free-agents will sign so they can get ready for Spring Training. 

I'll take anything at this point. Anything to make life in my humdrum college dorm more exciting.

Edited by FE_McFly

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As of Tuesday, February 19, 2019, star free-agent Manny Machado has reportedly signed a 10-year, $300 million contract with the San Diego Padres.

I personally did not expect Machado to sign with San Diego. Given the competitor he is, along with his open and vocal desire to play in New York, I expected him to sign with the Yankees, even if it meant a smaller paycheck. Thus, we are about three days from the start of Spring Training and the final star in the market, Bryce Harper, remains unsigned.

Which team do you think Harper will join, and how close do you all think San Diego is to making their postseason run?

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15 minutes ago, FE_McFly said:

As of Tuesday, February 19, 2019, star free-agent Manny Machado has reportedly signed a 10-year, $300 million contract with the San Diego Padres.

I personally did not expect Machado to sign with San Diego. Given the competitor he is, along with his open and vocal desire to play in New York, I expected him to sign with the Yankees, even if it meant a smaller paycheck. Thus, we are about three days from the start of Spring Training and the final star in the market, Bryce Harper, remains unsigned.

Which team do you think Harper will join, and how close do you all think San Diego is to making their postseason run?

I've heard rumors of Harper signing with the Yankees, but who knows.

For the last couple years, I've heard rumors of Harper signing with the Cubs, but I never thought that made much sense, since the Cubs are pretty loaded with position players, especially in the corner outfield positions.

I'm ready for baseball!  Listening to the game on the radio makes my daily paperwork much more bearable.

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As of Thursday, February 28, 2019, the race to acquire star free-agent Bryce Harper has finally come to a close. Harper reportedly agreed to a 13-year, $330 million deal with the Philadelphia Phillies; no official contract has been signed as of yet.

About a week ago, it seemed that the Phillies were the only team in the running for the young outfielder. However, late resurgence from West Coast teams such as the Dodgers and Giants made it clear that other teams were not done with their own pitches for Harper. While some believed that he would simply take the highest offer, others thought he would want to sign somewhere closer to his Las Vegas home. But after weeks of mystery and speculation, it would seem that the hunt and dealings have finally come to an end.

In all honesty, when I heard that teams like the Giants were presenting serious offers, I felt like Harper would in fact sign there given how much closer San Francisco is to his Las Vegas home compared to Philadelphia. I even thought the Dodgers had a very good chance as well given their already impressive play-off capabilities. Though I heard they were never interested in the high-paying, long-term contract Harper was looking for. Even though Harper has reached an agreement, the free-agent market still has a few notable names available for other teams to snag. Perhaps the most notable of which being Closer Craig Kimbrel and Starter Dallas Keuchel. As for the possible landing spots of the remaining free-agents, I have no clue which teams could be in the mix. I guess the offseason deals have not quite come to a close just yet.

Regardless, only 1 month until Opening Day! 

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8 hours ago, FE_McFly said:

As of Thursday, February 28, 2019, the race to acquire star free-agent Bryce Harper has finally come to a close. Harper reportedly agreed to a 13-year, $330 million deal with the Philadelphia Phillies; no official contract has been signed as of yet.

About a week ago, it seemed that the Phillies were the only team in the running for the young outfielder. However, late resurgence from West Coast teams such as the Dodgers and Giants made it clear that other teams were not done with their own pitches for Harper. While some believed that he would simply take the highest offer, others thought he would want to sign somewhere closer to his Las Vegas home. But after weeks of mystery and speculation, it would seem that the hunt and dealings have finally come to an end.

In all honesty, when I heard that teams like the Giants were presenting serious offers, I felt like Harper would in fact sign there given how much closer San Francisco is to his Las Vegas home compared to Philadelphia. I even thought the Dodgers had a very good chance as well given their already impressive play-off capabilities. Though I heard they were never interested in the high-paying, long-term contract Harper was looking for. Even though Harper has reached an agreement, the free-agent market still has a few notable names available for other teams to snag. Perhaps the most notable of which being Closer Craig Kimbrel and Starter Dallas Keuchel. As for the possible landing spots of the remaining free-agents, I have no clue which teams could be in the mix. I guess the offseason deals have not quite come to a close just yet.

Regardless, only 1 month until Opening Day! 

The 13 year length was a big gamble.  If Harper trends downward like his numbers from last year, that could be a big millstone around the Phillies payroll for a long time.

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On 3/1/2019 at 6:28 AM, Rezzy said:

The 13 year length was a big gamble.  If Harper trends downward like his numbers from last year, that could be a big millstone around the Phillies payroll for a long time.

The year that Harper had in the 2018 season was actually something I worried about when I heard he had signed with the Phillies. His numbers last year certainly did not replicate his stats presented in '15 or '16 for example, that's for sure. Whenever a team forks out that much money for a single player, the expectations for the player are incredibly high. Will he able to replicate his Rookie of the Year or NL MVP numbers from the start of his career? Honestly, I am unsure. He certainly did not have a "bad" year in 2018 with 34 HR and 100 RBI, but his .249 batting average is certainly a downgrade from previous seasons. I am very excited to see him play, but people shouldn't be 100% positive that he will have a record-breaking season(s). I am sure he will do well, but I am unsure if he will be the next NL MVP like some believe. We will just have to see what the next couple of years have in store.

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9 minutes ago, FE_McFly said:

The year that Harper had in the 2018 season was actually something I worried about when I heard he had signed with the Phillies. His numbers last year certainly did not replicate his stats presented in '15 or '16 for example, that's for sure. Whenever a team forks out that much money for a single player, the expectations for the player are incredibly high. Will he able to replicate his Rookie of the Year or NL MVP numbers from the start of his career? Honestly, I am unsure. He certainly did not have a "bad" year in 2018 with 34 HR and 100 RBI, but his .249 batting average is certainly a downgrade from previous seasons. I am very excited to see him play, but people shouldn't be 100% positive that he will have a record-breaking season(s). I am sure he will do well, but I am unsure if he will be the next NL MVP like some believe. We will just have to see what the next couple of years have in store.

34 HR and 100 RBI are good, but coupled with a mediocre .249 batting average, I don't think it's $30Million a year good.  That's 15% towards salary cap on one player.

It reminds me a bit of the Jason Heyward contract.  (I actually like Heyward, but I can't deny his contract is questionable in hindsight, given his performance.)  His first year in 2016 with the Cubs was pretty subpar, apart from his Rain Delay Speech.  He made $21.5M last year, with better numbers, but still only 1.6 WAR.  Thankfully, the Cubs have a lot of young players under cheap contracts, so they're able to eat the cost, but under the best of circumstances, the Phillies having a 36 year old player under contract for $30M a year in a decade is not going to bode well for them.

Unless MLB drastically increases the Luxury Tax threshold in the next year years (or teams decide to ignore it, like the Dodgers), I can't say I'm in favor of dedicating that many resources to one guy.

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18 hours ago, Rezzy said:

34 HR and 100 RBI are good, but coupled with a mediocre .249 batting average, I don't think it's $30Million a year good.  That's 15% towards salary cap on one player.

It reminds me a bit of the Jason Heyward contract.  (I actually like Heyward, but I can't deny his contract is questionable in hindsight, given his performance.)  His first year in 2016 with the Cubs was pretty subpar, apart from his Rain Delay Speech.  He made $21.5M last year, with better numbers, but still only 1.6 WAR.  Thankfully, the Cubs have a lot of young players under cheap contracts, so they're able to eat the cost, but under the best of circumstances, the Phillies having a 36 year old player under contract for $30M a year in a decade is not going to bode well for them.

Unless MLB drastically increases the Luxury Tax threshold in the next year years (or teams decide to ignore it, like the Dodgers), I can't say I'm in favor of dedicating that many resources to one guy.

Combining Harper's poor batting average last year with a 13-year contract is definitely cause for concern, in my opinion. If he continues this trend the next decade, the Phillies will end up paying way too much money. If Harper breaks out of his slump and has a great contract with the Phillies, then he MIGHT be worth the money. However, the odds of him being the legendary player that some may expect him to be are not guaranteed. Honestly, if he can have at least 3-5 quality years with the Phillies, I think I would be happy. I would love it if he performed well every year of his contract, but as you said, if he continues his slump into his 30's, it will be a big financial burden for Philadelphia. They took a big risk with such a big contract, that's for sure. I am very excited to see Harper play, but I agree with you; the contract could very well be too big of a risk.

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Massive rule changes noted for the upcoming baseball seasons

-Pitchers must face a minimum 3 batters or until the end of the inning

-They increased the Disabled List back to 15 days from 10.  This is what it used to be.  They also increased the amount of time a player had to spend in the minors after getting sent down.

-Reduce the amount of time between innings.  They carve up to half a minute off between inning breaks.  It's not much, but would carve about 9 minutes off the time of a game.

-Trade deadline of July 31 is absolute now, no waiver trades anymore

-All-star game changes, there will now be a run-off vote with the top 3 vote getters, and extra innings will start with a man of second.

 

Some of the changes are nice.  Cutting the commercial break time will help run time for games.  Pitchers being required to face three batters should help the massive bullpen micromanaging making games take forever, but it's hard to say how it will affect the game.  Increasing the DL and Minor League assignment time will help curb the crazy bullpen cycling that I've noticed the last few years, but we'll see if it has the intended result.

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On 3/14/2019 at 4:49 PM, Rezzy said:

Massive rule changes noted for the upcoming baseball seasons

-Pitchers must face a minimum 3 batters or until the end of the inning

-They increased the Disabled List back to 15 days from 10.  This is what it used to be.  They also increased the amount of time a player had to spend in the minors after getting sent down.

-Reduce the amount of time between innings.  They carve up to half a minute off between inning breaks.  It's not much, but would carve about 9 minutes off the time of a game.

-Trade deadline of July 31 is absolute now, no waiver trades anymore

-All-star game changes, there will now be a run-off vote with the top 3 vote getters, and extra innings will start with a man of second.

Among these rules, I REALLY like the rule where pitchers must a minimum of three batters. I know managers like to swap out pitchers according the stance of the opposing batter to get an edge, but it's simply obnoxious watching three different relief pitchers come into one inning. I am sure the managers may not be too happy about this rule change, but I think it will decrease not only the time of a game, but also the frustration of the fans. 

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16 hours ago, FE_McFly said:

Among these rules, I REALLY like the rule where pitchers must a minimum of three batters. I know managers like to swap out pitchers according the stance of the opposing batter to get an edge, but it's simply obnoxious watching three different relief pitchers come into one inning. I am sure the managers may not be too happy about this rule change, but I think it will decrease not only the time of a game, but also the frustration of the fans. 

I like seeing steps made to limit the amount of pitching changes, since every pitching change is another 2-3 minutes of commercials, too. A hard limit of 3 batters might seem a bit high.  Maybe being two batters, or maybe limiting the one-hitter-specialist to one per game, a bit like how replay challenges are limited.

Another change could have been limited the number of pitchers a team can keep on its roster.  When I was young, the bullpen was usually 6 guys, give or take.  Now, it's crazy, and you see teams with 8 or 9 guys in the bullpen, which leaves the bench very barren.  Limiting the number of pitchers might make them more reluctant to switch guys in every other batter.

 

I also saw a change to the roster limit going to 26 for most of the season, then 28 in September, which is a change from 25 for most of the year, then up to 40 for September.  I don't know if that's for this season or takes effect next year.

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