MLB Week in Review (June 2-8)

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Sports are big business around the world as they bring in massive revenues with ticket sales, TV Deals, and Merchandise bringing in billions of dollars a year. In North America it is different though as they have taken sports to a new level and this can be seen in the NFL. The National Football League is one of the best marketed sports in the world and they have been on the cutting edge of the sports world. They created money-making ideas out of things that would never have been able to make money in the past. One of the best examples is what they do in the offseason as they create an event out of everything from the NFL Combine to the beginning of Training Camp. A lot of this became popular thanks to the NFL Network that has given them the ability to broadcast all of these offseason events. The NFL has been extremely successful as they have become the leader in North American sports. Many leagues are taking note and looking to do the same as the NFL including the MLB. The MLB introduced their own network last year that reflects the same style and content as the NFL Network but with a baseball focus. This has freed the MLB up to begin introducing new events to continue to produce content throughout the season and through the offseason. The network has been a source of credible information throughout the end of the 2011 season and the throughout the offseason. With the network in place the MLB was free to create big events out of things that were rarely noticed. One of these events has become a staple for every league as the draft in each league has become one of the biggest events of the year. For many leagues it is an easy prospect as the drafts are in the heart of the offseason and their players have an impact almost immediately. For the MLB it is different though as they hold their draft at the beginning of the season and the development in the league take much longer. The MLB has seen some immediate impact recently though has Stephen Strasburg and Bryce Harper have given some life to the draft. This year the MLB network was able to breathe even more life into the draft as they went through every pick to analyze the needs and wants of the teams and if their picks met these needs and wants. The MLB Network did what they could but the fight to make the MLB Draft a big event is an uphill climb because of two main reasons. One of the reasons is that it during the season when teams are playing and still fighting to figure themselves out in a young season. That means that the average fan is not paying attention to who their team drafts. Another reason is that the players that are drafted will likely not make an impact in the major leagues for years. There are the few occasions like Bryce Harper, Stephen Strasburg, and Mike Trout who do make an impact at a young age but the majority of picks will not be seen for years to come. This makes it hard to get excited for the draft picks as they will not impact your team anytime soon. With these challenges the MLB is still looking to make the draft an important event and the MLB Network is the first step towards that goal. This year the MLB Draft received a lot more attention than usual showing that the appetite just might be there if they continue on. Although the MLB is a league stuck in the past they are looking to the future as they follow the NFL model to become a powerhouse in the sports industry.

With the draft over and Carlos Correa going first to the Astros, despite what some say were better prospects that were available for them, the MLB continues on. Fans will look to their current team and hope that these prospects can make a different in the future. Some fans may even hope that these players make an impact sooner rather than later. It is rare to see an impact player come into the MLB in his first few years but there is a trend that seems to be forming thanks to some special athletes. Athletes like Bryce Harper, 19, and Mike Trout, 20, are two of these athletes. Trout was drafted in 2009 and spent 2 years in the MLB before making his debut with the Angels. After remaining a fringe player in 2011 Trout has earned a full-time spot on the Angels and has made a major impact.  Trout is currently hitting .329 with 22 RBIs and 5 HRs in 36 games this year. Trout is quickly becoming a favorite to take the Rookie of the Year this year and represents the young talent that is moving faster through the minor league system and becoming a key part of the team. He has tough competition though as another player up for the Rookie of the Year is Bryce Harper. Harper was one of the most highly touted prospects in years as he was drafted in 2011 and has shot through the minor league system to make his debut a year after being drafted. Harper is currently hitting .276 with 14 RBI and 5 HRs. Both Trout and Harper look to be mentioned for the entire season as the two players up for the Rookie of the Year and both represent what seems to be a new trend of young players advancing quickly to become great players. The only question now is if the 2012 draft will see a player like that and who will it be? Time will tell as the MLB continues to get younger and more exciting with great young talent.

 

MLB Standings:

American League

East:

1. Tampa Bay Rays (.569)

2. New York Yankees (.561)

3. Baltimore Orioles (.552)

4. Toronto Blue Jays (.517)

5. Boston Red Sox (.500)

Central:

1. Chicago White Sox (.552)

2. Cleveland Indians (.544)

3. Detroit Tigers (.448)

4. Kansas City Royals (.429)

5. Minnesota Twins (.404)

West:

1. Texas Rangers (.576)

2. Los Angeles Angels (.508)

3. Seattle Mariners (.450)

4. Oakland Athletics  (.441)

 

National League:

East:

1. Washington Nationals (.589)

2. Atlanta Braves (.569)

3. New York Mets (.542)

4. Miami Marlins (.534)

5. Philadelphia Phillies (.483)

Central:

1. Cincinnati Reds (.561)

2. Pittsburgh Pirates (.526)

3. St. Louis Cardinals (.508)

4. Milwaukee Brewers (.466)

5. Houston Astros (.431)

6. Chicago Cubs (.328)

West:

1. Los Angeles Dodgers (.627)

2. San Francisco Giants (.559)

3. Arizona Diamondbacks (.483)

4. Colorado Rockies (.421)

5. San Diego Padres (.322)

 

Key Scores:

New York Mets 5 – 0 St. Louis Cardinals

– The New York Mets are playing some very exciting baseball with a no-hitter on Friday and this game where the best pitcher in the MLB right now RA Dickey took care of the defending champions using his Knuckleball

 

Atlanta Braves 11 – 0 Miami Marlins

– The Braves continued to climb up the standings as they blew out the Marlins but this was more than a regular blowout as Dan Uggla hit his 200th career HR on the night to add to an already big lead by the Braves

 

Oakland Athletics 12 – 1 Texas Rangers

– The Rangers continued to cool off after an amazing start to the season as they lost to the Athletics as starting pitcher Jarrod Parker only allowed one-hit on the night, unfortunately that one hit was a HR by Mike Napoli

 

New York Yankees  9 – 1 New York Mets

– The Subway Series kicked off in the second weekend of Interleague play as the Mets and Yankees met again in the regular season with the Yankees coming out on top thanks to a 4 run 3rd inning

 

Next Week:

Texas Rangers vs. San Francisco Giants (June 9th; 4:50 pm ET)

– In a rematch of the 2010 World Series the Rangers look to get revenge on the Giants who beat them in 2010 but with both teams playing well it could be a challenge to get that revenge that the Rangers are looking for

 

Los Angeles Angels vs. Los Angeles Dodgers (June 11th; 10:10 pm ET)

– The Freeway series kicks off as the NL West division leading Dodgers take on the Angels who are looking to get to the top of their division as both teams face off for bragging rights in LA that has recently become the centre of the sports world

 

Cleveland Indians vs. Cincinnati Reds (June 13th; 7:10 pm ET)

– The history of the Ohio Cup has made this rivalry a good one and it moves into the regular season as the Buckeye Series is featured in this set of interleague play as the Reds and Cards battle for state supremacy

 

Kansas City Royals vs. St. Louis Cardinals (June 15th; 8:15 pm ET)

– Known as the Show-Me Series this rivalry based in Missouri came to be after the 1985 World Series when the two teams officially met for the first time, The Royals won the series, and since then have met every season in interleague play

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