As the whole entire baseball world knows - Giancarlo Stanton is now officially a member of the New York Yankees, after being traded from the Miami Marlins.
Many people critiqued the Marlins' organization for trading their generational star, including the team's CEO, Derek Jeter. Jeter, the former Yankees' superstar, is now receiving backlash by fans and members of the media for trading the team's star to the Yankees. Many believe this trade is considered to be "collusion", but what many critics are not aware of is that Jeter and Marlins had previously agreed to trade Stanton to the San Fransisco Giants and St. Louis Cardinals. Stanton, who has a full no-trade clause, was not fond of going those two organizations and vetoed the trade.
You can say whatever you want about this trade, but there is some negatives and positives from the Yankees' side of things.
From the Yankees' stand point, they are gaining even more power to their lineup filled with superstars such as Aaron Judge, Gary Sanchez, Didi Gregorious, and Greg Bird. Many are comparing Judge and Stanton to Roger Maris and Mickey Mantle of today's era. Not only does Stanton add power to the Yankees' lineup, he has been nominated as a gold glove outfielder multiple times. If manager Aaron Boone decides to put Stanton in the outfield, instead as a designated hitter, Stanton's athleticism and distant throwing range.
Even though the addition of Stanton is huge for the Yankees' organization, there is some negatives about this deal. Stanton has an opt-out clause after the 2020 season. If he does not opt out of this deal with the Yankees, he will be owed at least $208 million until after the 2027 season, when he will be 38-years-old. If you take a look at some long-term deals with players who are 35 years old or later, it did not work out with the player's organization. Take a look at Alex Rodriguez for an example:
Rodriguez was earning $27.5 million a year until after the 2017 season. He played with injuries during the 2011-2013 seasons, where he played like an average player during this time. He did not even play the 2014 due to his third PED suspension. He was able to rebound in 2015, but he was such a disaster in 2016, that he was released mid-season. Even though he was not on the roster for most of 2016 and all of 2017, the Yankees still had to pay him as if he played.
Now back to Stanton, if he plays like A-rod did in his later years, the Yankees will have a huge mess on their hands. Do not forget that Stanton has a no-trade clause, so he can basically hold the Yankees' hostage.
The Marlins should be very happy a decade from now if the Yankees are dealing A-rod 2.0. Also, regarding their return, the Marlins are getting back RHP Jorge Guzman, who has reached 103 mph with his fastball, SS Jose Devers, who has the potential to be like his cousin Rafael who is a young superstar, and 2B Starlin Castro, who is an all-star and is easy to flip for prospects.
All season Miami Marlins' Outfielder Giancarlo Stanton has been hitting home runs to the moon. All 59 of them, have awed Major League Baseball.
As the season is coming to an end, Stanton has emerged as a front runner for the National League Most Valuable Player Award. Even though Stanton and the Marlins are not in the postseason hunt, Stanton can be credited for pushing the fish from 13 games below .500 in May to an astonishing three games over .500 and 4.5 games back of a wild card spot in late August.
During the month of August, the 6'6" 27-year-old bashed 18 long balls and tied Rudy York's 80-year-old record of home runs hit in the month of August. Not only did Stanton tie this record, he became the sixth player in MLB history to hit 50 home runs before the end of August.
Stanton is highly deserving of winning the NL MVP award this season. He is in the top-five in the majority of categories across the league.
Stanton is leading the league in home runs, which he has 59 of. He has hit the most home runs in a single season since Ryan Howard did so in 2006, when he had 58. In the RBI race, he is tied with Rockies' Nolan Arenado does, with 129.
Stanton has the second most runs scored in the NL, with 121 of them. He sits behind Rockies' Charlie Blackmon, who has 136 runs scored. Stanton also leads the league with a .636 slugging percentage.
Keep in mind this is not the first time Stanton has been considered an MVP candidate. In 2014, when he hit .288 with 37 HRs and 105 RBIs, he was the runner-up behind Dodgers' pitcher Clayton Kershaw for the award. Obviously Stanton is having a much better season then his 2014 season.
Stanton deserves to win the National League Most Valuable Player Award. This is a no-brainer.
This is Stanton's year!
The Seattle Mariners have acquired late-inning reliever David Phelps from the Miami Marlins in exchange for minor league outfielder Brayan Hernandez and pitchers Brandon Miller, Lukas Shiraldi, and Pablo Lopez.
The Mariners are currently 48-48 and sit 1.5 games behind the Yankees for the second wildcard seed. Their closer, Edwin Diaz, has pitched fairly well as of recently. Earlier in the season, he was not pitching like many had expected he would. Phelps will most likely be Diaz's set up man and will most likely be used in the eighth inning.
Phelps, 30, has a 3.45 ERA this season in 47 innings for the Marlins. He is 2-4 this season with 51 strikeouts. His best pitch is his mid-90's fastball. Phelps is a strike thrower, as 63% of his pitches this season, have been called strikes. The Mariners will get a controllable arm in Phelps. He does not hit free agency until after the 2018 season.
The Marlins have been looking to restablish their farm system for a while now. With this trade, they will acquire three of the Mariners' top 22 prospects, according to MLB.com. Brayan Hernandez has the most upside of the four heading to Miami. The 19-year-old is a high-risk prospect.
How often is a no-hitter thrown in major league baseball? Well, it is rarer than a cycle occurring. There has only been 295 no-hitters recorded in baseball since 1876. That is on average of around two every season.
On Saturday, Marlins righty Edinson Volquez joined the no-hit club after going the distance on 98 pitches against the Arizona Diamondbacks. Volquez threw the sixth no-hitter for the Marlins' franchise. The first for the team, since Henderson Alvarez did it in 2013, which many may recall as the "walk off no-hitter." Volquez's no-hitter was the first since April of 2016, when Cubs' righty Jake Arrieta did it.
I was one of the 21,548 people in attendance for Saturday's gem. The Marlins, which do not have a large fanbase like the Cubs and the Yankees do, had an electric crowd for the game. Even though the ballpark was filled to nearly two-thirds of it's capacity, it felt like it was game seven of the world series.
In the fourth inning, Rey Fuentes of the Diamondbacks hit a hard grounder to the hole between first and second base. With the no-hitter looming, second baseman Dee Gordon dove with all his might, and gloved the ball before it ended up in the property of right fielder, Giancarlo Stanton. Gordon then threw the ball to first baseman, Justin Bour, to record the first out of the fourth. As a fan of the sport, I knew something was going to happen in this game. I was well alert that Volquez had something special going on...... a potential no-hitter.
I knew this feeling. I have attended a no-hitter in my past. I was at Marlins Park on the memorable day of September 29, 2013, when Henderson Alvarez no-hit the Detroit Tigers. I also attended Rich Hill's near perfect game against the Marlins, last season, which was blown when the Dodgers chose to go to the bullpen in the eighth inning.
In the seventh inning, the chemistry of the crowd seemed to change. People who do not care about baseball, begun to care. Teenagers, who are addicted to social media, put their devices away. Nobody went to the restroom or grabbed a snack when Volquez pitched. I was glad to see that people knew what was going on.
Every diehard fan has their own superstition for when an event like this is happening right in front of their eyes. Mine personally is that I can not peep the term, "no-hitter" or even if it is happening, "perfect game."
In the eighth inning, I was on the edge of my seat. I was super nervous about this potential no-hitter. The score at the time was 1-0. After one out in the inning, Volquez walked a batter, which was his second batter of the game, he walked. Now, I was even more nervous. I was really nervous because up to the plate now, was infielder Brandon Drury, who is having a nice season. One bad pitch to Drury could end up in the seats, and the score can be 2-1, just like that. Then, Volquez would have failed to pitch a no-hitter and potentially get his eighth loss of the season.
I was praying that Volquez would throw one specific pitch...... a changeup. My prayer was received and just like that, Drury hit a grounder to third, and a 5-4-3 double play happened. The crowd went nuts!
In the bottom of the eighth, the Marlins had a big inning, extending the lead to 3-0. Volquez came to the plate for his fourth at bat of the game, with the bases loaded. The crowd came to their feet. Even though Volquez struck out with the bases loaded to end the inning, every was still amped for what was to come.
Here we go - the top of the ninth. All Volquez needed was a good morning, a good afternoon, and a goodnight (3 outs). He struck Nick Ahmed on a nasty breaking ball, Two outs to go! As a fan, I was hoping to see every one on their feet. Nobody was standing except, a man wearing a Yasiel Puig jersey, and the couple sitting behind me all decked out in Marlins gear. I thought to myself, "Does anyone care about this looming no-hitter except me?"
Next up was Daniel Descalso, who was pinch hitting for Jeff Mathis. Volquez struck him out also on a breaking curve. Finally, everybody came to their feet!
Chris Owings, the 27th batter of the game for Arizona came to the plate. Volquez faced the minimum. The first pitch - STRIKE 1. The electric crowd was ready for what was to come. Next pitch - STRIKE 2! Just one more pitch and I would have seen baseball history. Volquez did his traditional-unique windup, and threw the pitch. Swing and a miss! Volquez had done it. He had thrown a no-hitter. The players ran to the mound. The fans hugged each other. The media excitingly tweeted.
The Miami Marlins were the center of the universe.
This week in baseball featured a lot of news. This past extended weekend featured a lot of Memorial Day festivities to honor the men and women who have risked their lives to protect the citizens of the United States of America.
Here is a recap of what happened this week:
Angels' superstar outfielder Mike Trout, is expected to miss 6-8 weeks of baseball action, due to a torn thumb ligament. He had surgery on Wednesday (5/31). He injured his thumb, when he was sliding into second base on Sunday.
Former Republican Presidential Candidate and the 43rd Governor of Florida, Jeb Bush, dropped out of the running to purchase the Miami Marlins. Bush was expected to be the control person of the group of investors trying to purchase the team.
Nationals' OF Bryce Harper and Giants' RHP Hunter Strickland were the leaders of a brawl, which broke out between the two teams. Strickland threw a 98 MPH fastball at Harper's hip. Harper charged the mound, leading to several punches between the duo. Harper was originally suspended 4 games for his actions, but the suspension was reduced to 3 games, while Strickland was suspended for 6 games.
The Cardinals decided to release veteran reliever Jonathan Broxton. The 33-year-old righty struggled, a lot early, as he posted a 6.89 ERA in just 15.2 innings.
The Rangers also cut one their former star relievers. They decided on Thursday to designate RHP Sam Dyson for assignment. Their intent is to trade the former closer. Dyson struggled early on, as he has allowed 20 earned runs and 31 hits in 16.2 innings. Dyson owns an ERA of 10.80.