Analysis. History. Perspective.

Sports Then and Now



MLB Mid Season Report Card: Part 3 – NL West 2

Posted on July 15, 2010 by Don Spieles

San Diego Padres (51-37): A+

San Diego Padres' Adrian Gonzales watches his pop fly to Seattle Mariners' third baseman Mat Tuiasosopo in the third inning at SAFECO Field in Seattle May 23, 2010. The Padres beat the Mariners 8-1. UPI/Jim Bryant Photo via Newscom

Once predicted to be the major trade piece for later in July, Adrian Gonzales is going to stay put with the first place Padres.

There are lots of surprises in the standings right now, but none as astounding as the first place Padres. Leading in to the season, the Pads were on a lot of radar screens, but only because the general consensus was that by this point in the season there would be an on going circus of teams trying to get Adrian Gonzalez. Low and behold, here we sit, about sixteen days from the trade deadline and one this is pretty certain: Gonzalez is going nowhere.

Gonzalez is having a productive year (18 home runs, .301 average, 56 RBI) as most everyone thought he would. The thing is that, even though no one else on the team has more than 8 homers, and even though the Padres are 12th in the NL in runs scored, they are at the top of the West (closely followed by the Rockies.)

The Padres pitching is the reason. San Diego has given up the fewest runs in the NL (304), they are 3rd best in strikeouts (603) and 3rd best in bases-on-balls (279). Their bullpen has 18 wins and 25 saves to their credit, which bolsters the starting five, all but one of which (Kevin Correia) have a sub-four ERA.

The Padre’s are not too shabby on defense. Their top nine position players (by innings played) have a total of 25 errors over 88 games. (For a little perspective, compaired to the other NL division leaders, the Pads are tops. Using the same formula, the Braves have 47errors, the Reds have 27.)

Don’t be fooled into thinking that the Padres are a post season surety. If the Padres cannot stay ahead of the Rockies, the Dodgers, Met’s and Phillies would all be within 1.5 games of the wild-card – if it were decided today, that is. Read the rest of this entry →

MLB Mid Season Report Card: Part 2 – NL Central 1

Posted on July 15, 2010 by Don Spieles

Cincinnati Reds (49-41): A+

Cincinnati Reds Scott Rolen watches his three run home run clear the wall aghainst the St. Louis Cardinals in the first inning at Busch Stadium in St. Louis on June 1, 2010. Rolen hit two home runs in the game defeating St. Louis 9-8. UPI/Bill Greenblatt Photo via Newscom

Scott Rolen had been born again in Cincinnati.

Very few people foresaw the possibility of the Reds sitting atop the NL Central at the All-Star Break. Though, as of today, their lead is a single, tenuous game, they have exceeded all realistic expectations.

Bronson Arroyo, Johnny Cueto, and Mike Leak have all posted winning records thus far, though in 53 combined starts the Reds top three have a combined 30 no-decisions, a testament to a mediocre bullpen. While has 24 saves, he also has 10 blown saves and a 4.40 ERA. The lone releif star is 40 year old Arthur Rhodes who is posting an awesome 1.54 ERA in his 41 appearances. He’s averaging about 6 strike outs per nine innings with a WHIP of .943. His appearance on the All-Star roster was the stuff of Hollywood, even though he did not make it onto the field.

Cincinnati’s offense is leading the NL in runs (437), hits (843), batting average (.272), slugging (.441), and OPS (.779). With the resugence of veteran Scott Rolen and outstanding first half work from Joey Votto (22 home runs, .314 average) a Reds squad in the post season is a real possibility. Read the rest of this entry →

Opening Up The “Last Time The NL Won An All-Star Game” Time Capsule 0

Posted on July 14, 2010 by Ryan Durling

Last night, for the first time since my baby sister was born, the National League won the Major League Baseball All-Star game. For those of you who missed my running timeline of things that happened the last time the NL won an All-Star Game because you don’t follow me on Twitter (shameless plug: www.twitter.com/HubSportsLive), here’s the complete version:

  • Last time the NL won an All-Star game, they didn’t play hockey in AZ and baseball’s most cherished records were held by guys named Maris and Aaron.

One of 1996's greatest highlights was also the scene of one of its greatest tragedies

  • Last time the NL won an All-Star game, Bret Michaels was a musician, Tom Cruise wasn’t a theologist and Tiger Woods was a golfer.
  • Last time the NL won an All-Star game, MTV played music videos, AOL was the preferred ISP and @UmpJoeWest didn’t have his own twitter handle
  • Last time the NL won an All-Star Game, Kirby Puckett was loved by everyone and Derek Jeter, Chipper Jones weren’t yet household names.
  • Last time the NL won an All-Star Game, “Macarena” was on top of the Billboard charts. Who Let The Dogs Out was, sadly, still four years out.
  • Last time the NL won an All-Star Game, Betty White was a ripe, young 74 and Joe Torre was in his 1st year with the Yankees
  • Last time the NL won an All-Star Game, the Yankees hadn’t won a World Series in 18 years and we thought we were done with Bush as President
  • Last time the NL won an All-Star Game, neither Kobe Bryant, Peyton Manning nor Alex Rodriguez were world champions. There’s a happy thought.
  • Last time the NL won an All-Star Game, Conan O’Brien wasn’t the name of the gum on Jay Leno’s shoe and Seinfeld was still filming new episodes
  • Last time the NL won an All-Star Game,  “The Rachel” was a popular hairstyle, leggings and cords were trendy and Blink 182 wasn’t yet famous
  • Last time the NL won an All-Star Game, the Cowboys were America’s team, Nintendo 64 was released and a sheep named Dolly was a celebrity
  • Last time the NL won an All-Star Game, Robert Dole was a presidential candidate and not a Pepsi spokesperson

This look familiar? You must have been born after the NL won its last all-star game, then.

  • Last time the NL won an All-Star Game, OJ was a free man, Clinton wasn’t impersonating Kennedy and Tupac was still alive
  • Last time the NL won an All-Star Game, Britney wasn’t a MILF, Miley was in diapers and nobody knew about Megan Fox.

Sad but true. Sad, but true.

MLB Mid Season Report Card: Part 1 – NL East 2

Posted on July 14, 2010 by Don Spieles

We’ve made it through the July 4th weekend and we’ve reached the official midway point of summer: The All Star Game. That’s the Major League Baseball All Star Game. Far and away the best of the breed, perhaps because of timing, perhaps because of the much argued “home field advantage” gambit, far above similar offerings from the NBA, NFL, or NHL.

Congrats to the Senior Circuit for finally eeking out a “W”.

This week marks the midway point of the baseball season, itself. With each team having played eighty plus games, let’s take a look at how they are doing.

NL East

Atlanta Braves (52-36): B+

May 11, 2010- Milwaukee, WI. Miller Park..Atlanta Braves Jason Heyward runs to third base, Heyward had 2 hits a RBI, and 2 walks at the plate..Milwaukee Brewers lost to the Atlanta Braves 3-11..Mike McGinnis / CSM.

Jason Heyward: The biggest thing to hit Atlanta since Sherman.

Atlanta has outperformed most expectations, the average of which had them around third in a tough division. Their pitching has been pretty much what was predicted. Their top three starters (Tim Hudson, Derek Lowe, Tommy Hansen) all boast +.500 records while their bottom two (Kenshin Kawakami and Jair Jurrjens) have a total 2 wins in 22 starts.

The biggest story for Atlanta has been Jason Hayward, rookie phenom with 11 home runs, .251 average, and 45 RBI. The newest addition (to an offense that leads the NL in OBP (.343) and boasted a robust 37-19 in May and June) has given a bit of spark to both players and fans alike.

Pardon the cliche, but Atlanta seems to find a way to win this season, despite only slightly above average pitching and offense. They have also had some good luck by way of a Phillies squad that is sorely underacheiving. Read the rest of this entry →

  • Follow Us Online

  • Vintage Athlete of the Month

    • Sid Luckman: Chicago Bears Legend
      September 28, 2019 | 7:09 pm
      Sid Luckman

      After years of struggling to find a consistent quarterback, the Chicago Bears now hope third-year player Mitchell Trubisky will be their quarterback for years to come. As the Sports Then and Now Vintage Athlete of the Month we are recognizing the best quarterback in Chicago Bears history.

      Chosen out of Columbia–where he played tailback–with the second pick in the 1939 NFL Draft, Sid Luckman spent 12 seasons as the quarterback for the Bears and led them to five NFL Championship Game appearances and four titles.

      Read more »

    • RSSArchive for Vintage Athlete of the Month »
  • Sign up for Email Updates

    Sign-up to get daily updates of all the great articles and information on Sports Then and Now.

    Enter your email address:

    Delivered by FeedBurner

  • Check out the best free bets at freebets4all. Learn how to convert online bookmakers free bets into guaranteed cash using the matched betting technique.

  • Affordable Satellite TV Great prices on Dish network packages.

  • Gear up for your next trip with new North Face Backpacks from SportsUnlimited.com. Shop great Field Hockey Sticks from Grays & Gryphon.

    Football Jerseys

    8mm film to digital
  • Current Poll

    Will Antonio Brown Play in Another NFL Game This Season?

    View Results

    Loading ... Loading ...
  • Post Categories



↑ Top