MLB Week in Review (Aug. 26-Sept. 1)

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The postseason is one week closer and the last major marker has passed to let everyone know what season is approaching.

That last marker was the expansion of the team rosters as September 1 gave new life to many minor league players.

The MLB is one of the more complicated roster systems in sports as they have one of the biggest development systems of any major sports league.

On an MLB team the roster totals 25 players but along with those 25 players is the 40-man roster.

This 40-man roster is filled with the 25 players that are on the main roster for the majority of the season.

Beyond that are those players in the minor league system, usually in Triple-A, who are regularly called up when the team makes a roster move or a player is injured.

The 40-man roster is essentially like the main minor league team that the major league team can call on at any point in time.

Anyone beyond that roster needs to be signed to a major league contract before they can be moved up and down through the system.

The teams in the MLB play almost their entire season with their 25-man roster with the occasional call-up from the minor leagues.

On September 1 the 25-man roster expands as teams are then able to call up their entire 40-man roster, would they wish to do so.

Teams rarely call up everyone from the roster but every team takes advantage of the expanded roster, many for different reasons.

For the teams sitting at the bottom of the standings with little hope of making the postseason, the expanded roster is a chance to take a look at their best prospects.

These teams need to start looking to the future and the expanded roster gives them the opportunity to do so without sending a major leaguer through waivers to get a look at a prospect.

They get to see some of their best young players take on real major league pitching or batting and get a better idea of just how far along they are in their development.

For the teams in the postseason hunt the expanded rosters provide a bit of relief for the players that have been through the grind this year.

The MLB season is a long one with 162 games and 6 months of gbaseball-sidebarames which can wear on players who play every day.

Bringing up prospects can either give these stars a rest before the postseason, especially for the teams with a very good chance of making the postseason.

For some other teams, it is a chance to bring up some extra firepower in big hitters or pitchers that can help them in different situations.

Finding a speedy player to run the bases in a close game or a big hitter who can come in to pinch hit when a run is needed could be the difference between making the postseason or not.

For the players, this is their biggest chance to make a team in the years to come.

If they can make an impression they may get a much longer look next season.

If they can pull out a big play or a few big plays they may very well be on the roster in the near future.

That is the chance that many players have now as they get their first real taste of the MLB in one of the biggest times of the year.

There is not a lot of room for mistakes on many teams as the battle for the postseason is only heating up.

The extra players can provide managers with a lot more to play with and plenty of chances to use unique players in key situations.

As the season comes to a close every game becomes much more important making this one of the best times in the season and a whole set of players gets to experience it for the first time.

Extra Innings
(More on this week in baseball)

Tebow Time?
Tim Tebow made headlines for his MLB workout where he swung the bat well but struggled a little with his footwork in the outfield but the consensus is that someone will give him a shot in the minors just for his raw talent

Puig’s Exodus Over
Yasiel Puig has spent much of the end of the season in the minor leagues after the Dodgers sent him down but he might be returning as reports have surfaced that the Dodgers will be bringing him up with the expanded rosters

Looking for Back-up
Although the trade deadline is over there are still ways to get players through waiver trades and the Dodgers are one of the teams trying to do just that as they are looking to acquire Zach Greinke for the stretch run although the Diamondbacks don’t seem willing to move him

standings-w30

Key Series:
Los Angeles Dodgers 2-1 Chicago Cubs
– The Cubs and Dodgers could very well be headed for a big postseason series and they sized each other up in this series with the Dodgers getting a one-game advantage over the league-leading Cubs

Texas Rangers 3-1 Cleveland Indians
– Texas made a statement in this weekend series as they showed everyone that they could be the team to beat in the American League beating one of the best second-half teams in the league

Toronto Blue Jays 2-1 Baltimore Orioles
– The Blue Jays and Orioles were headed for a battle at the end of the year until the Red Sox jumped into the division race but the Jays still needed the wins against a divisional opponent and they got two which kept them at the top of the east

Texas Rangers 3-0 Seattle Mariners
– Seattle had hopes of making the postseason this year and breaking the league’s longest postseason drought but a good middle of the season has given way to struggles including this sweep against the Rangers

Upcoming Series:
San Francisco Giants vs. Chicago Cubs [Sept. 1-4]
– With the postseason race heating up the Cubs are looking to solidify their spot and with one win in this series already they will look to finish off the Giants who are trying to hold on to a wild card spot

Houston Astros vs. Texas Rangers [Sept. 2-4]
– The AL West seems to be the Rangers’ to lose but that won’t stop their in-state rivals from trying to chip away at their eight-game lead as they hope to make it a good fight in the last month while also trying to secure a wild card spot

St. Louis Cardinals vs. Pittsburgh Pirates [Sept. 5-7]
– Both the Pirates and Cardinals had been used to fighting for the division but this year it seems like their budding rivalry will need to be for the wild card as the Pirates try to chip away at the Cardinals’ lead for the final wild card spot

Toronto Blue Jays vs. New York Yankees [Sept. 5-7]
– New York has not been a great place for the Blue Jays as the Yankees seem to always give them their toughest test no matter how the Yankees are playing but the Jays will need to get over that and take this series if they want to stay on top of the division

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