Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Boomer's Diamond Notes: The First Weekend

Opening Week of the 2012 MLB season had its share of Walk-Off hits, stellar pitching performances, highlight reel defensive plays, and some unexpected (good or bad) starts by some teams. During the Diamond Notes this season, I'll provide you a little about each division and races to expect from each. I will provide you with the stat leaders (BA, HR, RBI, W's, ERA and SV's) of both the AL/NL, but wait on that for a couple of weeks :) as the season gets underway. At the end, I'll talk about my two favorite teams (Indians/Reds) and provide my insight on how both are doing and provide you with each teams schedule for the rest of the week. So all you baseball junkies, only 158 games to go...

AL East
No surprise here, with the Rays sweep of the Yankees over the opening weekend has the Rays on top of the AL East, while the other powerhouses of the division (Red Sox/Yankees) started slow, however, both were able to get their first W last night and don't expect the Orioles to be able to hang around with the big boys as the season goes along. The Blue Jays will try and fly under the radar this season.

AL Central
The pre-season favorite Detroit Tigers stormed out of the gates, sweeping Boston over the weekend (scoring 26 runs in the 3-game series). The White Sox, Royals and Indians will all battle each other for 2nd place in this division. As the Twins asked themselves why they ever left the HHH Dome to go play outdoors at Target Field...starting 0-4 and hearing the boo birds already from the Twins fans.

AL West
The Angles and Rangers will be battling back and forth with each other, as they are clearly the two best teams out West (maybe the whole AL) as the Mariners and A's will fight to stay out of last place in this division, as neither will be able to score enough runs to hang around with the top two teams.

And now let us move to the NL...

NL East
Well look what we have here, after an opening weekend sweep against the Braves, the Mets find themselves on top of the division at 4-0, with the favored Phillies starting slow at 1-3. The Marlins some how were able to win 2 of their first 5 games, even with all the distractions that manger Ozzie Guillen has brought to the team. Again, like the AL East, the standings of this division will look a lot different here in a couple weeks. Come on Braves, its Chippers last season, 0-4 start...you're better then that. Gainer is hopeful over the next 158 games they will be able to turn things around, HAHA. The Nationals want to start being contenders and not pretenders.

NL Central
So you lose your best player and Hall of Famer manger, who cares, the Cardinals are off to a 4-1 start, and want to provide they are more then just one guy. The Brewers and Reds, the two other favorites in this division are off to solid starts, at 2-2. The Pirates opened the season taking 2 out of 3 vs. the Phillies, while the Astros and Cubs will try their best not to embarrass themselves early on.

NL West
After the opening weekend, the D-Backs threw the first punch at their top competitor, the SF Giants with a 3-game sweep to start out their reign as NL West champs. The Dodgers believe they can stay up their with the top two teams as they start the season at 3-1. While the Padres and Rockies try to avoid burying themselves early.

Boomer's Clubhouse Chat

Cleveland Indians 1-3 

Games this week: 2 vs. White Sox and 3 @ Kansas City

Well, after the opening weekend, in which the Tribe lost a 16 inning game and 12 inning game to the Blue Jays, they were able to win the 3rd game of the opening series in 9 INNINGS :), thanks to the Birthday boy, Carlos Santana hitting two home runs on Sunday afternoon. However, last night the Tribe dropped the first of a three-game series vs. the archival Chicago White Sox in Cleveland, 4-2. The 1-3 start is a bite too early to start worrying, especially, with what happened to them last spring with the hot-start they had. I have liked what I have seen so far from the starting rotation, yet the Indians have struggled to manufacture runs, outside of hitting Home Runs, which they have had at least one of in the first four games. The Indians need to win the next two vs. the White Sox, then go out to KC and go for the series as they will start a 9-game road trip this weekend. It is critical for them to get off to a good start this season, as they try and hang with the Tigers in the AL Central division race. Go Tribe!

Cincinnati Reds 2-2

Games this week: 2 vs. Cardinals and 4 @ Washington

Again, like every season in recent years, how the Reds pitch will determine how the season goes. After 4 games, the starting pitching from the Reds staff: 23.2 IP, 12 ER's, 7 BB, and 17 K's with a 1-2 record. The off-season acquisition of SP Matt Latos is off to a rocky start, as he was unable to get thru 5 innings on Saturday Night, a game the Reds lost to the Marlins, 8 to 3. Opening Day pitcher, Johnny Cueto looks to be in 2011 form and will have to be the Reds ace this season. The Reds starting this week on a sour note, as they were hammered by hated-rival the St. Louis Cardinals, 7 to 1 last night in Cincinnati. The Reds will try and bounce back this week as they go on a 10-game road trip starting this weekend in Washington D.C. The pieces are there, they just have to put it all together, Lets Go Reds!

At the end of each Diamond Note, I will have a clip from either a baseball movie or an actual baseball moment from this season or seasons past, for your humor and/or entertainment for the day. ENJOY!