July102012
June102012
June52012

2012 MLB Draft: When Will Byron Buxton debut for the Minnesota Twins?

Byron Buxton
The Minnesota Twins chose outfielder Byron Buxton (Appling County HS, Ga.), arguably the nation’s most talented amateur baseball player, with the No. 2 overall selection in the 2012 First-Year Player Draft.

So when will he arrive in the big leagues?

Not this season, I assure you.

The 18-year-old Buxton is a five-tool prospect. So far, though, only his speed and throwing arm are MLB-ready. His swing is still pretty raw and he’ll need to add more muscle to become a legitimate power hitter.

Still, his ceiling is incredible.

He has been closely compared to established outfielders Justin Upton and Adam Jones. Both were also drafted out of high school and debuted in the majors a few weeks shy of their 20th and 21st birthdays.

If Buxton begins his professional career in the coming months, Minnesota would likely assign him to the Gulf Coast League Twins (a rookie league). That’s where they placed fellow teenage outfielder Ben Revere after selecting him in the first round in the 2007 draft.

Starting in 2008, Revere spent one season apiece at Single-A Beloit, High-A Fort Myers and Double-A New Britain prior to earning regular playing time with the Twins in 2011.

I see no reason why Buxton will require the same three-plus years in the farm system. Already 6’2” and 190 pounds, he is a superior physical specimen to Revere (5’9”, 170).

In speculating his estimated time of arrival, the minor-league journeys of Upton, Jones and Revere must all be taken into consideration. Upton’s and Jones’ because their skills are so similar to his, and Revere’s because he was developed by the same franchise that will groom Buxton into a potential superstar.

The Twins could logically—and this is assuming that Buxton stays healthy—play him at Beloit in 2013, Fort Myers and New Britain in 2014, and give him a final, brief trial at Triple-A Rochester in 2015 before adding him to the 25-man roster early that summer (first week of May, let’s say).

But this is just one possibility. Leave a comment with your own projection.

(Source: bleacherreport.com)

May222012

With 6-Man Starting Rotation, Washington Nationals Can Win NL East, Protect Stephen Strasburg

Stephenstrasburg1_crop_650x440

Haraz N. Ghanbari/AP 

Stephen Strasburg (biceps tightness) is fine. Adam Kilgore of the Washington Post reports that he will make his next scheduled start.

This was just a false alarm, but as a precaution, the Washington Nationals ought to adopt a six-man starting rotation for the remainder of 2012. With it, they can finish atop the National League East.

Spacing out each individual’s appearances reduces the likelihood of serious injury for all rotation members.

Also, it would allow the franchise’s prized 23-year-old—who will be shut down upon reaching an unspecified innings limit—to pitch in meaningful games through September.

And he would be more effective, too. Baseball-reference.com provides this comparison of his career numbers on regular, four days’ rest versus his success when given five-plus days to recover.

Obviously, the current starting five—Ross Detwiler, Gio Gonzalez, Edwin Jackson, Jordan Zimmermann and Strasburg—would be included in the expanded group. They have contributed greatly on a pitching staff that surrendered an MLB-low 138 runs through its first 42 contests.

Chien-Ming Wang would round it out.

The 32-year-old is completing his rehab from a badly strained hamstring.

Chien-mingwang1_original_original_original_crop_340x234
Julio Cortez/AP

His stats in five outings against minor-league competition were typical of the Taiwanese right-hander: 3-0, 3.52 ERA, 30.2 IP, 18 SO, 6 BB, 2 HR allowed, 1.27 WHIP.

Wang didn’t miss many bats, but he consistently attacked the strike zone and induced harmless contact.

He has always had a reputation for working efficiently and providing length to spare the bullpen. I do not doubt that he still possesses such ability.

The take-away is that Wang—a former 19-game winner with the New York Yankees—would give the Nationals opportunities to win.

But are his services worth the trouble of altering everybody’s routines?

A recent trial of the six-man rotation takes us to the Windy City. Ozzie Guillen experimented with it in 2011 as manager of the Chicago White Sox.

With half a dozen starting pitchers on the active roster between May 11 and June 25, the team went 24-17 (.586).

Now that’s worth noting. Consider the club’s overall record of 79-83.

Washington needs every possible advantage to compete with the first-place Atlanta Braves and the surging Miami Marlins in the NL East.

A sixth starter would help the Nationals in both an immediate and future capacity.

(Source: bleacherreport.com)

May182012

This video recognizes the 17 members of the 2012 College Football Hall of Fame class. It also features former players who were snubbed by voters and previews enshrinement, which is scheduled for July 20-21 in South Bend, Indiana.

May172012
May142012

While many of the nation’s top men’s basketball players (Anthony Davis, Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, etc.) are taking their talents to the NBA this summer, other highly-touted prospects have passed on the 2012 draft. C.J. Leslie and Cody Zeller highlight this group of underclassmen who are returning to school and putting their professional careers on hold.

May112012
May42012
April302012
April262012
April252012
April242012
April222012
4PM

A look inside the life of Malcolm Grant, former University of Miami point guard with NBA aspirations. He’s an undercover singer/rapper and genuinely kind individual.

← Older entries Page 1 of 10