Posted on: October 23, 2010 7:37 pm

Worst AL MVP season of the past decade?

The following are the stat lines of each of the past 10 MVP campaigns in the American League. 
2009: .365/.444/.587 28 Home Runs, 96 RBI, 94 Runs 170 OPS+2008: .326/.376/.493 17 Home Runs, 83 RBI, 118 Runs 122 OPS+2007: .314/.422/.645 54 Home Runs, 156 RBI, 143 Runs 176 OPS+2006: .321/.375/.559 34 Home Runs, 130 RBI, 97 Runs 140 OPS+2005: .321/.421/.610 48 Home Runs, 130 RBI, 124 Runs 173 OPS+2004: .337/.394/.598 39 Home Runs, 126 RBI, 124 Runs 157 OPS+2003: .298/.396/.600 47 Home Runs, 118 RBI, 124 Runs  147 OPS+2002: .308/.354/.508 34 Home Runs, 131 RBI, 108 Runs 128 OPS+2001: .350/.381/.457 8 Home Runs, 69 RBI, 127 Runs 56 SB 126 OPS+2000: .333/.476/.647 43 Home Runs, 137 RBI, 108 Runs 187 OPS+
Now, if we're want the worst MVP season, we should automatically include the 2 players who did no lead their league in any of the major stats, Miguel Tejada in 2002, and Justin Morneau in 2006. Let's add one more team to the argument. I'm going to say Dustin Pedroia's 2008 season, taking him as one of the worst over Ichiro in 2001.
Now let's take a look at those seasons. The 2006 and 2002 statlines are quite similar, but let's toss out 2006. Morneau's OPS+ is considerably higher because his season was no in the middle of the PED age of baseball. But do compare his season to Pedroia's in 2008. The only thing he led his league in was runs and also doubles. His OPS+ was 122, not even in the top ten of the AL that year. Sizemore was 10th at 133 OPS+. WARP suggests that Joe Maur was actually the MVP that year. His WARP was a full 2.7 points higher than the next position player, Kevin Youkilis (8.7-6.0). Again Pedroia doesn't make the top 10.
Now there's the interesting case of Alex Rodriguez, who won 3 MVP awards this decade. And yet, never has there been a player more unlucky than Alex Rodriguez when it comes to MVP voting. In 2008, A-rod had the second highest OPS+, the third highest WARP, and drove in more runs and hit more Home Runs than Dustin Pedroia, and in 140 less At Bats. Now, I'm not saying he should have won the MVP that year, because he shouldn't have. Kevin Youkilis or Joe Mauer should have. I am saying he should have won it in 1996, 2000, 2001 and 2002. Here's a brief analysis of those seasons.
Alex Rodriquez lost the 1996 MVP by 3 votes. 290-287. His WARP that year was 9.4, Juan Gonzalez won the MVP, his was 2.8, a number bested by some 25 players in the league. Statlines...
Gonzalez: .314/.368/.643 47 Home Runs, 144 RBI, 89 RunsRodriguez: .358/.414/.631 36 Home Runs, 133 RBI, 141 Runs
Oh, and Rodriguez did this as a shortstop. Probably the greatest season a SS has ever had. Now in 2000, A-rod's WARP was 11.0, tied for the second highest WARP since Mickey Mantle in 1956, non-bonds division. Now this was a full 2.3 points above Giambi's 8.7. Think Pedro Martinez's CY Young campaign of 2000 was one of the best pitching seasons ever? Rodriguez was worth a full win more than Martinez that year.
In 2001, he put up the following statline:
.318/.399/.622 52 Home Runs, 135 RBI, 133 Runs
The MVP that year should have gone to him, Giambi or Brett Boone. But Rodriquez gets the vote because of his position and fielding over stonewall Giambi at first.
In 2002, Rodriquez again led the league in WARP. His 8.2 WARP was 3 full wins greater than Tejada's. His statline:
A-rod.300/.392/.623 57 Home Runs, 142 RBI, 125 Runs 158 OPS+Tejada: .308/.354/.508 34 Home Runs, 131 RBI, 108 Runs 128 OPS+
So Alex Rodriguez was robbed of at minimum two, possibly three MVP awards. It's no surprise that he is the active leader in WARP, a full 18 wins higher than 2nd place Albert Pujols, who actually has a chance to catch him. Rodriguez sits 26th on the career list,just ahead of Cap Anson and just behind Joe Morgan.
Posted on: September 13, 2010 7:54 pm

Top ten AL players by WAR

Quick, name the two Yankees that rank in the top ten of fan graphs WAR. Robinson Cano? Good, that's one. Rodriguez, no. Teixiera no. Swisher? Good Guess. Brett Gardner...? Yes. Gardner is the second highest rated fielder next to Carl Crawford (in both leagues for that matter). So good in fact that his value as a fielder outweighs his value as a batter. Now, to be fair, the drop off between Cano at number 7 and Gardner at number 8 is precipitous. Cano has a WAR of 5.9, Gardner's is 4.9. But still, Brett Gardner is more valuable right now then two guys getting paid a combined $500 million. Which moves me to my next point. The Yankees have 6 players in the top 25 players by WAR. The Rays have 3, the Red Sox have 1. That right there is the difference in standings. And also the dominance of the A.L. East. Three teams together have the 10 of the 25 best players. The Rays have two in the top 5.  Things change when you look at Pitching though. The Yankees only have a single starter in the top 35. The Blue Jays and Twins each have 4. The Ranger have 3. Want to know why the Rangers swept the Yankees over the weekend, there you have it. The Rangers balance of excellent pitching and hitting is superior to the Yankees. Consistency wins in Baseball. The Yankees pitching staff has fallen apart due to injuries (Pettitte), innings (Hughes), and ineptitude (Burnett, Vazquez). The Yankees need Pettitte to return healthy or their season long dominance will matter little during the post season.
Category: MLB
Posted on: April 5, 2010 11:46 pm

MLB: Predicted Standings:

American League

  1. New York Yankees
  2. Boston Red Sox
  3. Tampa Bay Rays
  4. Baltimore Orioles
  5. Toronto Blue Jays
The Yankees are the team to beat obviously. The return a large part of the team that one this division by 8 games, despite losing the first 9 games of its season series with the Sox. The loss of Matsui and Damon will hurt, but Granderson has already shown why he's a valuable addition. And Vazquez shores up a pitching staff that sorely needed a solid 4th starter. They might not win by 8 games again, but they'll win
  1. Chicago White Sox
  2. Minnesota Twins
  3. Detroit Tigers
  4. Kansas City Royals
  5. Cleveland Indian
I thought about putting the twins in front, but they severely lack anything resembling an Ace, while the White Sox have one of the deepest staffs in the league. I don't see the Twins scoring enough to make up for the staff, especially with the loss of Nathan. I do expect the top three teams to finish within 2-3 games of each other
  1. Texas Rangers
  2. L.A. Angels
  3. Seattle Mariners
  4. Oakland Athletics
I'm being honest here. I don't know for sure which of the top 3 teams will win this division. Each team has severe weak points. I don't know where the Mariners will get their runs from, and the injury to Lee scared me away. They're built for the post season however, with Hernandez and Lee, so if they do make it, they could easily make the ALCS. The Angels also have lost a lot of good players the last few years, I think they're finally beatable. The Rangers are an up and coming team with loads of talent. I say it arrives early ala the 2003 Marlins.
Wild Card: Boston Red Sox
Red Sox over White Sox in 4 gamesYankees over Rangers in 3 games
Yankees over Sox in 6 games

National League
  1. Philadelphia Phillies
  2. Atlanta Braves
  3. New York Mets
  4. Florida Marlins
  5. Washington Nationals
The Phillies will be pushed by the Braves. But they are undoubtedly the best team in the National League as I write this. I just don't think they will be at the end of the season.Central
  1. St. Louis Cardinals
  2. Chicago Cubs
  3. Milwaukee Brewers
  4. Cincinnati Reds
  5. Pittsburgh Pirates
  6. Houston Astros
The Cardinals are the class act of this division with the best 1-2 starters in baseball, and their 3-4 hitters rank right there with Rodriguez and Teixeira of the Yankees as the best, with Pujols being slightly better than Rodriguez and Teixeira having the edge on Holliday. With the pairings of Braun and Fielder, and Utlet and Howard behind them.
  1. Arizona Diamondbacks
  2. Colorado Rockies
  3. San Fransisco Giants
  4. L.A. Dodgers
  5. San Diego Padres
I have no faith in the Dodgers as an elite team. Their opening day pitcher was Vincent Padilla (who hasn't had a season with an ERA below 4.46 since 2003) and he got slammed by the mighty Pirates. The Rockies are good, they have depth pretty much everywhere. But does anyone in their lineup actually scare you? Troy Tulowitzki will not keep you up at night. Gallardo could be ready for stardom. Butt I can't get over how good the Diamondbacks look, and I don't know why they are overlooked. This is a team loaded with Young talent that will only get better.  And they have Dan Haren and Brandon Webb. There's risk with this pick, but this is a talented bunch, they just need to bring it together.
Wild Card: Braves
Cardinals over Phillies in 4Braves over Diamondbacks in 4
Braves over Cardinals in 7
World Series
Yankees over Braves in 6 games
Not many people predict the Braves to get this far. But, they scored 16 runs today without Chipper Jones. They'll score runs, and their pitching is deep. I say they unseat the Phillies at seasons end.
Posted on: March 17, 2010 10:05 am

MLB Team Rankings- Pre-Season

The following rankings are based off of mock draft rankings for each position. The assigned dollar values for all of a team's players were added up to figure out each team's overall worth
Overall Rankings:
  1. New York Yankees- $183
  2. Philadelphia Phillies- $169
  3. Boston Red Sox- $157
  4. Tampa Bay Rays- $138
  5. Arizona Diamondbacks- $126
  6. Texas Rangers- $114
  7. Seattle Mariners- $111
  8. St. Louis Cardinals- $107
  9. L.A. Dodgers- $102
  10. New York Mets- $100
  11. Florida Marlins- $93
  12. Atlanta Braves- $90
  13. L.A. Angels- $89
  14. Colorado Rockies- $87
  15. Milwaukee Brewers- $86
  16. Chicago White Sox- $84
  17. Minnesota Twins- $83
  18. Detroit Tigers- $81
  19. Baltimore Orioles- $75
  20. Houston Astros- $75
  21. San Francisco Giants- $71
  22. Cincinnati Reds- $60
  23. Cleveland Indians- $59
  24. Kansas City Royals- $58
  25. Chicago Cubs- $54
  26. Washington Nations- $43
  27. San Diego Padres- $40
  28. Toronto Blue Jays- $36
  29. Oakland Athletics- $31
  30. Pittsburgh Pirates- $31
  • Don't sleep on the Diamondbacks in the NL West, they're loaded with talent
  • The so called "talent-rich" cubs have almost none.
  • It's easy to see why the AL Central is so hotly contested, the White Sox, Tigers and Twins are all within $3 of each other.
  • Mariano Rivera is worth $15. Without him, the Yankees rank second to the Phillies by exactly $1.
  • The Phillies are the best team in the NL by a large margin...right now. The Diamondbacks stars are all in their low to mid-twenties. The Phillies window is closing.
  • Albert Pujols, Hanley Ramirez and Alex Rodriguez are each separately worth equal or more than two teams.
Top 5 Infields:
  1. New York Yankees- $106
  2. Philadelphia Phillies- $77
  3. Boston Red Sox- $63
  4. Tampa Bay Rays- $63
  5. Arizona Diamondbacks/Texas Rangers- $56
Bottom 5 Infields:
  1. Houston Astros- $14
  2. Toronto Blue Jays- $14
  3. L.A. Dodgers- $9
  4. Pittsburgh Pirates- $7
  5. Oakland Athletics- $2
  • Anyone else surprised to see the Dodgers ranked in the bottom 5?
  • The Yankees infield, comprising of 2 future hall of famers (Rodriguez and Jeter), someone with a fighting chance (Posada), and two All-Stars who, while young, have an outside chance at the Hall of Fame someday (Teixeira and Cano.), is far and away the best in the league, and quite likely one of the best of all time.
  • The Yankees infield would rank 9th among teams.
Top 5 Outfields:
  1. L.A. Dodgers- $58
  2. Tampa Bay Rays- $45
  3. Philadelphia Phillies- $44
  4. Houston Astros- $40
  5. Baltimore Orioles- $39
Bottom 5 Outfields:
  1. Chicago Cubs- $8
  2. Oakland Athletics- $7
  3. San Diego Padres- $2
  4. San Francisco Giants- $1
  5. Kansas City Royals- $0
  • Astros and Orioles make a surprising cameo in the top 5
  • The Yankees were ranked 23. Seems odd, considering last year they had Damon out there last year
  • It looks like the Giants offense is yet again going to be historically awful.
Top 5 Pitching Staffs (Closer included):
  1. Boston Red Sox- $62
  2. New York Yankees- $60
  3. San Francisco Giants- $51
  4. Philadelphia Phillies- $48
  5. Seattle Mariners- $47
Bottom 5 Pitching Staffs:
  1. Baltimore Orioles- $5
  2. Cleveland Indians- $4
  3. Pittsburgh Pirates- $4
  4. Toronto Blue Jays- $1
  5. Washington Nationals- $1
  • Toronto's Rankings seem odd. Seems like only a few years ago they had loads of young talent. Keep in mind that Shaun Marcum is coming off Tommy John, but the year before had a 3.39 ERA in 151 innings. And then there's Ricky Romero.
  • The Red Sox are the only team that had 5 pitchers with a price tag. 4 other teams had 4, and 7 more had 3.
  • Four teams did not have a single starter worth money. Those 4 teams did have closers though.
  • The Athletics Closer is worth $12 of their $31
Divisional Rankings (With the per team average in parenthesis):
AL: 1226 (87.57) NL: 1334 (83.375)
  1. AL East- $589 ($117.8)
  2. NL East- $495 ($99)
  3. NL West- $426 ($85.2)
  4. NL Central- $413 ($68.83)
  5. AL Central- $365 ($73)
  6. Al West- $345 ($86.25
  • No surprises here. Except maybe the much maligned NL west suddenly being not so bad.
  • NL Central has 6 teams, yet can't even break the top 3.
Closing Thoughts:
  • At the moment, it looks unlikely that any team can eclipse the Phillies in the NL. Arizona seems like the dark horse to do so however.
  • The AL East will be another dog-fight, but Tamba Bay looks like it will have the short stick, in large part due to pitching.
  • The two central divisions are the weakest by far. NL Central especially, with the Cardinals posed to take the division with ease.
  • The Angels will be thwarted by a pitching staff that severely lacks an Ace. This will be beaten into everyone's head for the entire season. The Mariners, with excellent pitching, appear to have an edge there.
  • The Central division as always is up for grabs. Look for the Twins to capture it in the first season of their new stadium.
Posted on: February 7, 2010 2:00 pm

Top rotations in the AL..

Best Rotation 1-3: 
The prohibitive favorites:
Boston Red Sox: The Sox top three pitchers are Jon Lester, Lackey and Beckett. At this point, Lester still has room to develope, but we pretty much know what you're going to get from Lackey and Beckett. Lackey will "workhorse" his way through a solid 200 innings with an ERA between 3.50 and 3.75. You could also reasonably expect him to need a month or two to adjust to the quality of hitters in the AL East, which is effectively on another league when compared to the rest of the AL. Beckett will provide pretty much the same stats, though there is the chance he gets a little magic together and drops his ERA into the 3.25 range, and there is a chance he could jump above 4.00, it's how he is. Lester is the Sox best pitcher, and he could still get a little better. He has seen a marked improvement in his SO/BB ratio over the past few seasons, which is a good sign of things to come.
Seattle Mariners: With the resigning of Eric Bedard, the Mariners top three are Cliff Lee, Felix Hernandez and Eric Bedard, Since his first full season, Hernandez has improved each year, to the point where he was the second best pitcher in the league last year. And he's 23. Barring his arm falling off, he goes into the season as one of the top 5 pitchers in the league, though he could easily finish as the best. Hernandez has pitched 800 innings already in his major league career, so there is a chance that he might eventually regret that, but for the time being, there shouldn't be much need to worry. Cliff Lee is coming off his second consecutive CY Young caliber season, and pitched great for the Mariners in the post-season last year, but he is getting older. I still don't have complete faith in him because he's had some awful seasons in his career to go along with the brilliant and in some cases historic years. But he does enter the season as one of the top 5-10 pitchers in the league at the least. My biggest hit on him has always been he just doesn't have "it". In the World Series, you want your best pitcher on the mound as often as possible, and you want your best pitcher to want to be on the mound. C.C. Sabathia wanted it, and was set up to pitch games 1-4-7 should it get that far, he'd have none of any other option. Lee was content to pitch just two games. That makes a big difference to me. Bedard is a tough call because healthy he is equal or better than any pitcher the Sox have, but his healthy is an issue. And he's already going to miss the first month of the season. That said, he had his best season against the dogs of the AL East. Should he remain healthy in the west, expect dominance.
New York Yankees: The Yankees top 3 is a bit up in the air right now. At the moment, it looks like C.C Sabathia, Javier Vazquez and A.J. Burnett, but the Yankees have options behind them that no other team does. Hughes or Chamberlain could easily break into that trifecta. That said, the Yankees top 3 definitely looks like it ranks a little behind the Mariners. C.C is one of the top 5 pitchers in the league, and quite possibly number one. He's been that consistent, and with a year to get acclimated to New York, could get better. Of note is the lessening of the quality of hitters in the AL East this upcoming season. The Yankees lineup will be as dangerous as ever, but the rest of the division has experienced a marked decline. Boston lost Manny a few years ago, and just lost Bay. Ortiz has declined. Victor Martinez just isn't as dangerous as either of those three were. Pedroia doesn't scare anyone, his MVP was undeserved, just another MVP robbed from Joe Mauer. From the standpoint of a Yankee fan, the Sox don't scare me anymore. Javier Vazquez will not be as good this season as he was last season. Let's just get that out of the way now. I really don't know what to think of him right now, but he will win games, and most likely pitch above average, that's more than good enough with the Yankees batting order. Burnett is feast or famine. But he's been fighting in the AL East for a while now, so he has the stuff, his mental game just isn't as good.
Best top 3: Mariners
Best Pitching Staff (1-5)
Seattle Mariners: They enter the season as the favorite because of they led the league in ERA last season...and then added Cliff Lee. But the problem for them is the drop off after the top 3, it's precipitous. Ian Snell is the only other pitcher besides Hernandez who pitched more than 20 games for the Mariners last year, and they weren't pretty. Jason Vargas will presumably be the Mariners 5th starter. Both Vargas and Snell can be expected to pitch below league average, with ERAs close to 5.00. The Mariners main issue is that games pitched by starters 4 and 5 count just as much as games pitched by 1-2.
Boston Red Sox: Behind Lackey, Lester and Beckett, the Sox have No-hit Clay Bucholz and Daisuke Matsuzaka. Bucholz is still 25, so he will improve upon his slightly above-league average performance of 2009. But don't expect Daisuke to bounce back to the years he had an ERA below 3.00, the writing has been on the wall for his 2009 performance since he got here, and it wasn't all injuries. He walks an appalling number of batters, yet it's gone unnoticed because it's been masked by his good luck. The **** hit the fan in 2009. Tim Wakefield is also still there to provide his consistent league average innings eating performance. A veteran pitcher that will undoubtedly be needed to stabilize the back end of the rotation.
New York Yankees: After their top 3, the Yankees have Andy Pettitte, Phil Hughes, Joba Chamberlain and Chad Gaudin as options.  Chamberlain has yet to gain control of his often overpowering stuff, as shown by his 75 walks in just over 150 innings last season.I fully expect Phil Hughes to beat him out for a rotation spot this spring. Hughes pitched quite well as Rivera's set-up man last season, but that is a spot more suited to Joba time anyway. Pettitte at this point is an innings eater that pitches slightly above average baseball. Out of all the teams in the AL, the Yankees have the most potential in the back end of the rotation, mostly due to Joba Chamberlain and Phil Hughes.
Best Pitching Staff: Yankees. The Mariners are going to have a lot of trouble winning games with Vargas and Snell in the back end of the rotation. The Red Sox have health issues in the back end of the rotation, with Daisuke Matsuzaka, but still expect to have no pitcher worse than league average, unlike the Mariners. The Yankees don't have any injury concerns in the back end rotation and have two of the most hyped young pitching prospects in recent years. They'll have the best rotation 1-5 in the league because of that. They also will have no pitcher worse than league average.
Category: MLB
Posted on: January 14, 2010 7:41 pm

MLB leads the way in disaster relief

There are times where, as a Baseball fan, I lose faith in this great game of ours. But then there are times that remind me of how great this game really is. For a prime example, you can look no further than the recent crisis in Haiti. Baseball has gotten a bad rep in recent years for the Steroid Era, and rightfully so. It's a stain on the game's great history. But today, I got onto CBS sports to find an article about MLB donating $1 million in aid to Haiti, mostly through Unicef. The Yankees, as they did with the Tsunami a few years back, followed suite and donated $500,000. A quick look at the MLB website shows a front page with information on how to donate and help the cause displayed prominently in the middle of the page. Quick looks at the websites for the NFL and MLS display nothing as to the tragedy. The NBA did mention the tragedy on their website, it was listed as the 5th most important news item in the rotation. There was a blog entry on the NFL website about the NFL partnering with the Red Cross to aid relief efforts. It mentioned a $10,000 donation by the Colts to jump start things. Ten thousand dollars. There has been no mention of the NFL, NBA or MLS donating money themselves to help. Let's do a little math. The base price for a ticket to the Superbowl the past few years has been $1,000, and the game is usually held in a stadium that holds anywhere from 75k to 100k people. So for one game, the league makes $100 million, yet they can't donate anything at all? Considering the profit made by most teams in the NFL, this is deplorable. Yes, the NFL and NBA have partnered with charities to raise money, but it just does't seem like they're doing their part. Say whatever you like about the Steinbrenners, but just as they did for Hurricane Katrina and the Indonesian Tsunami, the Yankees have showed themselves to be an example of how a Major League sport team should act. Props to Major League Baseball for mobilizing so fast and trying to do some good. And to the NHL, which donated $100k to Haitian relief efforts. And shame on the other leagues for not doing their part. Not everyone is as fortunate as you.
Category: World Sports
Posted on: January 8, 2010 3:42 pm

Does Texas have a chance to rise from the ashes?

By now, everyone and their grandmother knows what happened in yesterdays's BCS Title Game. College Football's own Ironman, Colt McCoy, went down with an injury seven plays into the game. True Freshman Garrett Gilbert came in and by halftime, the Crimson Tide had built what seemed like an insurmountable lead. What we saw in the second half of the game was both Magical and Heartbreaking. For a while, we actually thought he would lead the Texas Longhorns to victory. Those hopes were dashed by two desperation passes that became touchdowns. But going forward, the score doesn't matter. The game is already over. What Longhorn fans need to realize is that in Garrett Gilbert, they have a Quarterback worthy of succeeding Colt McCoy. Game Experience and practice will fix Gilbert's miscues from the title game. It would be unreasonable to expect a freshman with little game experience to be able to lead his team to victory in the National Title game. What can't be taught, and what Gilbert has, is a laundry list of superlatives: Determination, Willpower, Guts, whatever you want to call it. Leadership. Those things cannot be taught. Garrett Gilbert has it, he proved it. As far as make-up goes, he seems about as good as you could hope for. When asked about the game, he responded that it was something to build upon. And with three years of time to do just that, I think we just might see him back here again before he graduates. Is it to early in a career to call a Heisman? Cause I think he'll win one.
Category: NCAAF
Tags: Longhorns, Texas
Posted on: January 5, 2010 10:46 pm

The Big Unit wrongly goes out underappreciated

The man who, for a long time, cast the largest shadow in Major League Baseball saw his shadow shrink measurably when he retired today. Sports. I can only scrape the iceberg in this column, in relation to the greatness of Randy Johnson. The top story at as we speak is the Orange Bowl between Iowa and GT, Randy Johnson's retirement comes in second in front of a Point of Interest piece about the Kansas Jayhawks. SI is mostly the same, though they at least list Johnson first. Most criminally, apparently ranks the potential height of Yao Ming's offspring as more important than the retirement of the greatest lefthander on the history of Major League Baseball. The likes of the Kansas Jayhawks and Yao Ming do not deserve to be ranked ahead of Randy Johnson. When it broke that Roger Clemens used steroids, it prompted ESPN.con to forego their usual news rotation and devote the entire page to the story. The same with Alex Rodriguez, Barry Bonds and the like. When Chris Henry died a month back, the entire page of both SI and ESPN were both devoted to his passing. Is this what Sports Media has been reduced to, reporting solely on those stories about ruined lives and ruined dreams? Why not acknowledge the many flaws that humans have and celebrate the great ones. Randy Johnson is a great one. In an age where at least one of his few peers (Roger Clemens) used steroids, and a large number of the batters he faced used Steroids, Randy Johnson stood alone. A man who fought nature's natural downward progression with will and sheer spite. Someday, baseball fans will look back at the 1990's in awe, and wonder how Johnson, Pedro and Maddux did it (I leave out Roger Clemens on purpose, I was a huge fan in his Yankee days, but the revelation of his steroid use and how he handled it, particularly in regards to his treatment of Andy Pettitte has changed that). How they dominated the greatest hitters era in baseball history. How Randy Johnson made Hall of Fame sluggers look like Ramiro Mendoza with a startling ease. It's a startling feet, what these three men accomplished. Which makes it an even larger travesty that he's not being properly celebrated for his accomplishments. ERA+ will tell you that Koufax's famous 5 years really weren't all that great, it was a pitchers era. Johnson played in a hitters era and a hitters park. He'll go down as the greatest left hander ever to play the game. Shame on them for forgetting that. Hopefully, the HOF voters will right this 5 years down the road. It's about time somebody entered Unanimously, isn't it?
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or