Jayson Stark of ESPN.com is one of my favorite sportwriters. His baseball columns are always interesting, thought provoking and also filled with trivia & great historical baseball data. He also is a voter for this years National League MVP award. And as he wrote in a recent piece, "its never easy" and this year promises to be one of the toughest ballots ever" And if you just went by the numbers it wouldnt be that hard. Ryan Braun is putting up better numbers than last year when he won the award. He has been consistently good all season. Andrew McCutchen of the Pirates was smoking early and looked to have the award sewn up but he has crashed back to earth lately. Buster Posey of the Giants has a case. He has put up big numbers while leading his team to a probable division title and did it while coming back from a broken leg. He probably will win. because there will be voters that won't even put Braun on their ballots. Stark isnt one of them. He makes the point and its a good one. that last year should have nothing to do with this year. The MVP award is for a particular season and anything that came before shouldnt be an issue. Especially since he was exonorated for the positive PED test and has put up better numbers this season. But there are voters who look at any drug taint as a disqualifier...for the Hall of Fame and for individual awards. Stark thinks that that at least 1/3 of this years MVP voters won't even put him in the top ten. And as he wrote, it wont just be the "ban em for life crowd that cheers...so will people who work in the sport." as he was working on the column he asked a scout who was quoted in the story who should win the Nl MVP award and he answered "anybody but Ryan Braun".
The Brewers have moved Yovanni Gallardo's next start to tonight. This will allow him an extra start at the end of the season incase the team need to win that final game to get into the playoffs. The season will be decided in the next week and half with a 10 game road trip at Pittsburgh, Washington & Cincy.
The Brewers were 13 games back on August 6th. Only one team in major league history waqs that far back on that date and made the playoffs. That would be the Bobby Thompson New York Giants of 1951. And only two teams have ever been as much as 13 games out anytime in August and made the playoffs. those Giants and the 1995 Seattle Mariners. This new second wild card has made the 2nd half more interesting since many of the races for the division titles were decided awhile ago.
Songs of The Day (from my I-pod)
Kentucky Woman-Neil Diamond (1967) one of his early classics
Kicks-Paul Revere & The Raiders (1966) The Raiders were one of America's answers to the British Invasion and although not as inventive as the Beatles they certainly rocked hard for the day and Mark Lindsay was as charismatic a frontman as you would find.