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August 28, 1:00 PM ET
Chat with David Schoenfield

David Schoenfield
  (1:07 PM)

Sorry about the delay. Ran up to Subway and the guy in front of me ordered eight sandwiches.

Peter (Brooklyn)

I never understand when people make the "It's not the Hall of Very Good, it's the Hall of Fame" argument. For starters, the name of the museum does not indicate any certain skill level enshrinees must have. Secondly, there are plenty of players (ex: Rabbit Maranville) who are in the HoF solely because of their popularity as a person, not as a ballplayer. Thirdly, again, the HoF is a museum of baseball history; the more exclusive you make it, the less it is a museum and the more it is a shrine to the baseball gods of yore.I know it's not HoF voting season yet, just felt the need to air my thoughts. What're yours?

David Schoenfield
  (1:11 PM)

A large percentage of Hall of Fame voters don't really understand the history of the museum. If you look at who is enshrined there are really two categories: The generally obvious selections that the BBWAA elects (with rare exceptions, like Jim Rice) and then everyone the various Veterans Committee elect (including some notoriously bad choices). But I'm with you: If we elect ONLY the obvious superstars, what's the fun in that? We know that Willie Mays and Tom Seaver and Roberto Clemente were great players. But the writers generally don't vote in the borderline guys.

q (bay area)

So, Dodgers just have unlimited money. Money doesn't even matter. Just the best players please. Yet: Juan Uribe remains. What gives here? Isn't anyone on the 40-man an upgrade from Uribe? Wouldn't a minor league pitcher be a better pinch hit option at this point? Also, couldn't I just re-post this and replace Uribe's name with Adam Kennedy? The only answer is that Colletti still thinks these guys are better than the alternatives. Sure, it's not like there are at bats for these two anymore, but I'm still distressed by having Ned Colletti in charge.

David Schoenfield
  (1:12 PM)

Agreed. The Mariners have kept Chone Figgins around as well. Why? They're both useless.

Tarek (NYC)

Let's get this over with King Felix for random Yankee prospects.

David Schoenfield
  (1:12 PM)

You're banned, Tarek.

Alex (Anaheim)

Eric Chavez is pretty productive for a nominal backup, isn't he?

David Schoenfield
  (1:13 PM)

And with Teixeira maybe out for a spell with a calf injury from last night, he'll have to continue to keep hitting. Let's hear it: Do the Rays catch the Yankees? (Or the Orioles ...)

Bill (Davidson NC)

David, I read Matt Meyers' August 15 SweetSpot piece on King Felix, and hope that you were able to catch the end of his perfect game! (That will teach you to take a vacation...) The Yanks are scuffling right now, but as long as they can hang on and get folks healthy without any more injuries, shouldn't I feel good about their chances in October? Or has the fact that three of their starters are only good for 5-6 innings finally taking its toll on their bullpen?

David Schoenfield
  (1:15 PM)

I was on a plane! When we landed my wife says, "I got some text message about King Felix ..." So I check my phone and ... wow. Watched the end of last night's game. He set a career high with 18 groundball outs. Five shutouts now and three have come against the Yankees, Red Sox and Rangers. Is he the best pitcher in baseball now?

David Schoenfield
  (1:18 PM)

As for the Yankees, it's all about getting healthy for them. IF they are healthy -- and I'd throw Andy Pettitte into that mix, they're still strong, but I'll rate the Rangers as the team to beat in the AL right now. Home field advantage could be key here. Yankees and Rangers both tough to beat at home.

Mike (San Diego)

I would probably still take Verlander over Felix, but it's literally by about a half a hair.

Jason (Seattle)

Felix is 26 and switched from a power pitcher to a straight pitcher, do you think this will help him get into mid to late 30s. 100 wins at 26 with the M's offense is crazy and he is 3rd in active career era behind the best closer ever....

David Schoenfield
  (1:19 PM)

Best predictor of career length is strikeout rate. He can still generate K's throwing 91-93 instead of 94-96. I think the biggest issue will be that he's racked up a lot of innings at a young age (although handled carefully). But he could end up being one of those guys who never gets hurt. Never had an arm issue yet.

Sean Potter (New York, NY)

Everyone wants to harp on the Orioles horrible run differential, but does it not mean anything that if you take away the Rangers and LA Angels, their run differential is actually positive. i.e. for some reason they don't play those two teams well (or at least prone to being blown out by them), but everyone else their actually reasonable against?or to put it differently, if they are expeted to be a .500+ team against the rest of the league (minus the Angels/Rangers, who they don't have to play the rest of the way), why would one expect them to drop away. going 500 the rest of the way will give them 87-88 wins.

David Schoenfield
  (1:22 PM)

I think at this point we can dismiss the Orioles' run differential. They've gone this far and are still in the race, so no reason they can't play well enough to secure a wild card. Not saying they WILL -- at some point, luck and randomness suggests they'll lose a few one-run games. I think they've won 12 straight one-run games after last night?

Mike (San Diego)

Another September is about to roll around with the Cardinals looking at the playoffs. And now there is buzz that with Lance Lynn's demotion, that Shelby Miller might be someone to take that spot in the rotation. Is it possible that they might be the NL favorites despite being a wild card team?

David Schoenfield
  (1:23 PM)

I don't think I'd say that. The 50/50 nature of the wild card game means you'd have to pick a division winner as the "favorite," no? Hasn't Shelby Miller been terrible in Triple-A? Can't see him getting the call.

David Schoenfield
  (1:24 PM)

OK, I see Miller has been much better of late. Still has 130 innings, so not sure how much he has left in HIS arm.

Bawb (Fairview, UT)

Why is it that the Braves offense looks like the best in MLB one day and the worst in MLB the next? The inconsistency is going to give me an ulcer as a Braves fan!

David Schoenfield
  (1:25 PM)

Welcome to baseball!

Patrick (Chicago)

Since you opened up the HOF discussion, I will ask you the question I asked Klaw last week. Who are some current Tim Rainesian players? That is, players who should be in the HOF but will likely find difficulty generating support amongst the writers. For reference, Klaw responded with Adrian Beltre. Thoughts?

David Schoenfield
  (1:27 PM)

I wrote about Beltre last night/this morning. His career numbers are starting to mount and since he reached the majors so young (19) he actually has an outside shot at 500 home runs and 3,000 hits. Others: Tim Hudson (what if he gets up to 250 wins or so?), Carlos Beltran (underappreciated all-around game), Andruw Jones (power, one of the greatest defenders of all time).

David Schoenfield
  (1:28 PM)

The difference in comparing those guys to Raines: There were a few years there in the mid"80s where Raines was one of the best 3-5 players in baseball. You can't really make that argument about any of those guys.

Elijah (Seoul)

I for one think that taking team record into account when voting for MVP is downright silly, but apparently the voters don't think so. So David, do you think Trout wins the AL MVP (as he really should without question, and this is coming from a Rangers fan) if the Angels fail to reach the playoff this season?

David Schoenfield
  (1:30 PM)

I think it becomes a *very* close race between Trout and Cabrera if the Angels don't make it and the Tigers do. There have only been a few MVP winners from non-playoff teams since the wild-card era. I believe four -- Pujols one year, Bonds twice and Larry Walker. So as great as Trout has been (and he's the clear MVP right now in my book), his chances go down if the Angels don't make it.

ZK (London, England)

Since we haven't heard them yet, your thoughts on the whole Melky situation? In my opinion his ban should have been extended for the attempt to fake that product thing.

David Schoenfield
  (1:31 PM)

I was on vacation so missed the particulars of the story, but I don't think you can or should change the terms of the suspension based on the particulars of the situation. Either you test positive or you don't. Well, except in the case of Ryan Braun ...

David Schoenfield
  (1:32 PM)

By the way ... Braun is having a pretty good year. You can make the case that he's been the best player in the NL, not that he'll finish in the top five in the MVP voting.

Studebaker (NJ)

If RA Dickey didn't have a club option for 2013, how much in years/dollars do you think he'd command on the free market?

David Schoenfield
  (1:32 PM)

3 years, $45 million?

michael (DC)

Is it time for the phillies ownership to clean up the front office and introduce some more modern-thinking execs? it seems the team does not do a good job developing talent or evaluating trades or contracts

David Schoenfield
  (1:35 PM)

It's much harder to develop talent when you're drafting at the bottom of the first round every year. I think Amaro gets a little bit of a bad rap; he's been building to win each year, has traded away prospects to do so, and has been successful before this year. At some point the natural cycle catches up to you. Not saying he's one of the 10 best GMs, but not sure he's one of the bottom 10.

Brian (Fremont)

Broken pitcher most likely to rebound (this season? next?): Ricky Romero or Tim Lincecum?

David Schoenfield
  (1:37 PM)

I've watched a lot more of Lincecum, and there are still signs -- he still gets a lot of swinging strikes, for example. So I'd say him. Not sure there's anything positive to say about Romero -- he was always a guy who lived a little on the edge with his control.

Jason (Seattle)

King Felix Cy Young14 games 8 innings 1 or less runs..... unreal run

Tarek (NYC)

How long is my ban for? The next time the Rays get a no-hitter thrown against them? That will be sometime this week.

Todd (Philly)

Say Beltre makes the HOF....what impact does that have on Scott Rolen's potential to make it? Should Scott Rolen be on your list of players that maybe should make the HOF?

David Schoenfield
  (1:40 PM)

Rolen is a classic borderline guy. Hall voters have not been kind to borderline third basemen -- Ron Santo, Ken Boyer, Graig Nettles, etc. I'd have to look at Rolen a little closer -- his career WAR is higher than Beltre's right now, right up there with Santo. A large percentage of that derived from his fielding, but at his best he's been a much better hitter than Beltre (other than Beltre's monster 2004). I'd probably vote for Rolen, but his relatively low counting totals will work against him.

Jim (Chicago)

Please, please, please give me hope about my Cubbies future.

David Schoenfield
  (1:41 PM)

Well, Theo did great work with the Red Sox! Oh, wait ...

ben (texas)

do the Rangers call the season a sucess if they don't win it all?

David Schoenfield
  (1:42 PM)

Sure. The playoffs a crapshoot. You win 95 games you've had a good season, no matter what happens in October. Not sure Nolan Ryan would agree with that, however ...

Brian (Fremont)

Biggest surprise to you about the blockbuster deal over the weekend: Red Sox dumped $200+ in salary or they got prospects back in the deal?

David Schoenfield
  (1:43 PM)

Mostly that ANYONE would be willing to take on Carl Crawford's contract. Let's see ... he hasn't been good in two years, is getting old, AND JUST HAD TOMMY JOHN SURGERY. Incredible.

Adam (Chicago)

How would you rank the top 5 for AL CY young right now?

David Schoenfield
  (1:44 PM)

So tough ... Verlander, Felix, Price, Sale, Kuroda? I would really have to break down game-by-game performances, etc. Verlander and Felix have the edge in innings, but Felix gets to pitch half his games in Safeco. Price's stock took a little hit last night. Sale doesn't have the innings, but has been every bit as good. Great race.

MeisterNJ (Mendham)

Best predictor of career length is handed-ness. If you're lefty and are any good at all you will pitch forever.

David Schoenfield
  (1:45 PM)

LaTroy Hawkins, defend yourself.

Jason (St Louis)

I'll be surprised if Braun ever wins another MVP.

John (Cincinnati, OH)

What September call-up has biggest impact? I guess Bundy!

David Schoenfield
  (1:46 PM)

Can't wait to see if the Orioles call him up. They would have major stones if they do.

John (Seattle)

If MLB wanted roids out they would void any deal if caught and you lose all games that player was in. Colon put the A's way ahead its weak.

David Schoenfield
  (1:47 PM)

Well, they're not going to take away wins. And the Players Union would never agree to voiding a contract if a player is caught, but that WOULD be the best way to eliminate PED use.

MeisterNJ (Mendham)

If the best predictor of career length is K rate, explain Jamie Moyer.

David Schoenfield
  (1:48 PM)

Well, first, Moyer is probably the most unique pitcher in major league history. Secondly, his K rates were always acceptable. Even this year, he averaged 6 K's per nine.

David Schoenfield
  (1:50 PM)

Moyer had a higher K/9 rate than Jeremy Hellickson, Ross Detwiler, Matt Harrison, Bartolo Colon or Mark Buehrle, to name just a few.

Mike (NYC)

What do you do if you are the DBacks? Bauer/Skaggs/Miley look like the future but how much can you count on them to carry the team next year? The rest of the pitching staff is fairly blah and the offense is good but doesn't appear to be able to hit the team to the playoffs. Do you trade Kennedy, Upton, and Montero this offseason and start over or just roll the dice and hope for the best next year?

David Schoenfield
  (1:52 PM)

I think you hit it: Unless Upton rebounds, Arizona's biggest problem is they don't appear to have a star-type player. Upton and Kennedy were there in 2011, but not this year. They don't really have any major holes (other than SS), but not many outstanding strengths. That said, I think you keep Upton and Kennedy and hope the young pitchers develop.

Brian (NJ)

"I think at this point we can dismiss the Orioles' run differential." What now?!? The Orioles are essentially tied with the Rays and A's for the wild card. I will be picking the O's to miss the playoffs. Why? B/C research has revealed that the O's run differential means they aren't as good as the Rays or A's. Why again should I dismiss the O's run differential?

David Schoenfield
  (1:55 PM)

I'm saying we can't necessarily say JUST because the O's have a big run differential it will eventually catch up to them. There are only 35 games left. Maybe they can stretch this out for five more weeks. And maybe their true talent is better than their -45 differential would indicate. In fact, I believe they've narrowed that difference in recent weeks? Look, I'm not picking them either, but I don't think we just write them off at this point.

Brian (NJ)

Andrew Jones top 7 in the NL in WAR 5 times in his career, including 1st in 2005 and 2nd in 2000. Pretty good.

David Schoenfield
  (1:57 PM)

Thanks, Brian. I should have amended that to "perceived to be one of the top players." Although I guess Raines never was either. Realistically, of course, Jones has no chance at the Hall of Fame, but he *should* be a classic borderline guy.

Joe (Jacksonville)

Another reason the MLBPA would never agree to voiding contracts of PED users: what's to stop management from tainting samples in order to get out of bad deals?

David Schoenfield
  (1:58 PM)

I love the conspiracy! The Red Sox pay the indepedent testing lab $20 million to taint Carl Crawford's sample and boom! they're out of the contract.

Gavin (Maryland)

More importantly.. will Bundy throw the cutter?!

Tarek (NYC)

Did you care even a little bit about Clemens start? He is MLB's Brett Favre, just go away already.

David Schoenfield
  (1:59 PM)

I'm a sucker. If he starts for the Astros, I'll watch.

q (bay area)

funny thing about Braun's MVP is that some other guy really deserved it in the first place. I think the whole ped thing is ridiculous, but just as ridiculous is withholding a vote from a guy because his team didn't make the playoffs.

Lookmaan (San Francisco)

As a lifelong giants fan, it really hurt me to see the dodgers upgrade its team this substantially so late in the season. With that said who do you have as the favorite coming out of the west? Who will be favored the next 3 years?

David Schoenfield
  (2:01 PM)

I'm still picking the Giants this year. I just don't think Beckett is going to bring much to the table. Hard to gauge off last night's start since it was in Colorado, but I watched quite a bit of that game and there was nothing that suggests, "Hey, he's suddenly going to turn it around" (at least this year). Moving forward, it's hard to say. So much is predicated on Lincecum's comeback or how the Giants will improve their outfield next year.

Patrick (Alabama)

I have heard a lot of different perspectives on the Dylan Bundy debate including the front page of espn/mlb today. What are the potential negative side effects of bringing someone like Bundy to the Orioles rotation or even in the back of the Pen? Also what did you think of the saunders move?

David Schoenfield
  (2:04 PM)

I'm not sure what the downside is. He's only pitched 98 innings in the minor, so fatigue/innings shouldn't be an issue. A kid that good isn't going to be lacking confidence, so even if he gets beat up for a few starts, I don't see long-term psychological damage being inflicted. I'd call him up and hope you catch lightning in a bottle. Saunders pickup is fine -- he's not great, but he's better than Tommy Hunter and adds depth. Good move.

Paul (Philadelphia)

FYI -- Phils did not make the playoffs the year Howard won the MVP. Pujols then did a few interviews complaining that you should not win MVP if your team did not make the playoffs.

David Schoenfield
  (2:06 PM)

That's right. It was five times. Point being: Still rare. I have to believe the voters realize how good Trout has been, but if Miggy hits .330 and drives in 130 runs or even if Hamilton knocks in 140, it could be a close vote.

Nick (Ohio)

Does Jay Bruce ever hit consistently or is he a streaky guy that gets himself out too much?

David Schoenfield
  (2:06 PM)

I think he is what he is at this point. Too many years and ABs to expect major improvement now.

Bobba (Denver)

How about another player creeping into the fringy HOF discussion: Tim Hudson.

David Schoenfield
  (2:08 PM)

I wrote about Hudson a couple weeks. He is starting to enter that gray area. Trouble with starting pitchers: Voters are VERY reluctant to vote for anyone who doesn't get 300 wins. Blyleven, a far superior pitcher to Hudson, took forever. Kevin Brown, similar in career value to Hudson (actually, much better at this peak), got knocked off his first year. So Hudson will have to win a lot more games to start warranting realistic chances.

Jack (San Diego)

If Scott Rolen is in the HOF, then DALE MURPHY needs to be in. I can't believe a back to back MVP winner isn't in the HOF. That amazes me....

Jason (St Louis)

Did you see Jonah Keri's piece about the high revenue baseball teams? It was very intriguing. Who knew the Yankees could be made out to be cheapskates? Even with their salary, revenue sharing and luxury tax they're still most likely clearing 200 million a year.

David Schoenfield
  (2:10 PM)

Yep, great piece by Jonah. I agree with his premise. The luxury tax threshold has become a great excuse for teams to self-impose a hard cap when they don't have to.

Bobby Thigpen (Comiskey Bullpen)

Speaking of Buehrle, has anyone else noticed that he is having a typical (good) Buehrle year for that Miami debacle?

Aron (STL)

Matt Holliday has a 4.3 oWAR and getting NO MVP love!

Patrick (Washington DC)

If the Pirates fail to make the playoffs and the Giants do does that make Posey the NL MVP favorite?

David Schoenfield
  (2:11 PM)

Yes. Seems neck-and-neck right now as Cutch has slowed down.

Greg (Seattle)

What's your take on the M's moving in the walls next season (or similar teams doing something like this)? How does this work, does the team have to tell the league of their plans, is there a vote, etc?

David Schoenfield
  (2:12 PM)

I believe they just have to inform the league; no vote. I do think they should move the fences in, if only for the reason that Safeco has now acquired such a stigma that you'll never sign a premium free agent hitter.

Mike (San Diego)

BREAKING NEWS: Albert Pujols just gave back his 2008 MVP award when he realized the Cardinals didn't make the playoffs that year. Oh wait, no he didn't. Dumb argument then, dumb argument now.

Mitch (NJ)

Harvey and Wheeler start next year in Mets rotation?

David Schoenfield
  (2:14 PM)

I could see Wheeler spending a couple months in Triple-A. Then again, he's likely better than other options they'll have.

ben (texas)

how do you feel about shutting down Strassberg, is it fair to the fans, or does that matter. Where's the stats to show early shut down is beneficial to post Tommy John patients?

David Schoenfield
  (2:15 PM)

There are, to my knowledge, no stats that say shutting him down will be better for his career length. I'd pitch him: You have a chance to win it all. Isn't that the objective?

dc (dc)

Keep in mind that the O's run differential is also influenced by repeated terrible performances by the likes of Tommy Hunter, Brian Matusz, and Jake Arrietta. None of those guys are in the rotation any longer.

David Schoenfield
  (2:15 PM)

Right. Or Jim Johnson gave up 11 runs over two appearances. That probably won't happen again.

BK (LA)

Are there any top 100 prospects left in the Angels cupboard? Also how can a pitching staff be so extremely jekyll and hyde?

David Schoenfield
  (2:17 PM)

Nobody in Keith Law's top 50 midseason update. I wonder if the Angels now have the worst farm system?

Larry (Hartford)

Theres a difference between being in the Hall of fame and Being a Hall of Famer. Lots of players are in the Hall of Fame(the Musuem). Not so many players are HAll of fameRS(the room with Bronze Plaques) Pete Rose is the perfect example of this. Hes in the Hall of fame as the all time leader in hits and as a memnber of the big red Machine. Buts is ineligible to be a Hall of FamER. The museum gets its history right.

dc (dc)

Speaking of Tommy Hunter, he is so bad that it's possible the O's run differential is actually +45 if you ignore his starts. ZING!

David Price (Tampa)

I want to win the Cy Young....I got called up early, threw out of the bullpen and I turned out okay. Bring up Dylan Bundy!!!

David Schoenfield
  (2:18 PM)

You weren't 19 years old, however.

Brian (Greensboro, NC)

when will Dustin Ackley live up to the advanced billing?

David Schoenfield
  (2:20 PM)

Baseball-Reference has Ackley at 3.0 WAR. That's largely due to good fielding and park effects, so his offense isn't regarded as terrible.

David Schoenfield
  (2:22 PM)

That said ... Ackley hasn't really hit on the road either. .605 OPS at Safeco, .662 on the road. Seven of nine home runs on the road. Safeco does kill the little power he does have.

Dean (Balto)

Jim Palmer was 19 years old when he was called up, I believe. He turned out OK.

Mike (Mision Viejo)

saw an interview where the Dodgers ownership said they still have lots of money to spend. If they take hte payroll to 220+ million are we looking at the start of a NL dynasty? This lineup is stacked and I'm sure they will look to upgrade the pitching in the off-season.

David Schoenfield
  (2:24 PM)

How many superstar players do they have? I would say two: Matt Kemp and Clayton Kershaw. Gonzalez hasn't been that great this year, Hanley hasn't been Hanley in a couple year, Either is more "solid" than "great." Crawford never really was a star, except maybe in 2010. So ... no ... I don't see a dynasty developing here.

Matt (Boise)

So where to the Red Sox go from here? They may have free up quite a bit of money with the trade but what FA is likely to sign there? Considering the media pressure and the way the club has treated players would any big name FA want to play in Boston?

David Schoenfield
  (2:25 PM)

The players will always go where the money takes them. Always. It may mean the Red Sox have to outbid somebody else (if that's what they do), but I don't think the whole idea that they'll have trouble attracting free agents is legit.

Sandy (Flushing, NY)

If the Mets ate all of Bay's contract and threw in a couple of Katz's salamis, could they get a young bust in return like Smoak?

David Schoenfield
  (2:26 PM)

Why would they trade for Smoak? He's worse than Ike Davis. And, no, Seattle wouldn't want Jason Bay even if he's free.

Mike (Long Island)

Name the three best ownership groups in MLB.....

David Schoenfield
  (2:29 PM)

Hmm ... good question ... I'd say something like Rangers, Cardinals and ... hmm, Angels? Phillies? White Sox?

AJ (Toronto)

David, talk a Jays fan off the ledge. Is the team still on the right track?And since starting pitching is obviously a need, do you think the Jays have any shot at guys like Haren, Sheilds, Grienke? Or will the Jays be looking at players with injury histories like Scott Baker, Jorge Del La Rosa or Brandon McCarthy?

David Schoenfield
  (2:32 PM)

Blue Jays don't seem any closer than they were 3-4 years ago, do they? Morrow isn't durable, Romero is awful, Hutchison had TJ surgery ... I mean, I guess if Morrow and Romero come back and some of the young pitching prospects develop, but do they have one starter right now that you know you can count on for 2013? How does that sound like a contending team? As for free agents, Jays haven't acted like a big-market franchise in many years, so I think you're right in that they'll look at the reclamation projects.

Ben (Texas)

As a lifelong Angel fan, one of the problems with the staff could be no catcher with the skills to handle all this talent, with all their moves they haven't looked for a top notch catcher in a long time, look at he difference Soto has made withe the hated Rangers.

David Schoenfield
  (2:34 PM)

Never should have let Jeff Mathis go! I heard MLB Network guys mention this the other day. Forgot who it was -- Joe Magrane, I think. Not sure if he got that from a source or was just thinking out loud. Still not sure how the catcher is responsible for Ervin Santana throwing a hanging slider.

Kevin (Phila)

The most amazing stat about Buerhle is this will be his 12th consecutive year throwing 200+ innings.

Brian (NJ)

That was a pretty poor job of talking the Jays fan off of the ledge Dave.

David Schoenfield
  (2:35 PM)

OK, OK .. Lawrie, Bautista, Encarnacion, D'Arnaud, Rasmus ... that could be the best lineup in the league next year.

Tarek (NYC)

Best Owner ever, Boss George from 1982-1990. I hate my fellow Yankee fans.

Mike (Long Island)

I've been a Yankees fan for 50 mostly positive years (the so-called Horace Clarke years and the Mike Pagliarulo years notwithstanding). But I can't help but think that my interest in following the Yankees will diminish greatly after Jeter and Mariano retire. Despite what Cashman has promised, the Yankees still aren't in a position to bring young players through their system and have them hit the MLB with at least a decent hope of sticking long term. I know it's a cliche that fans root for the laundry, rather than the players in the uniform, but I will certainly miss following guys like Jeter and Mo, and not just for their play on the field.

David Schoenfield
  (2:36 PM)

I'm not a Yankee fan, but totally understand your point. Let's all hope Mo comes back for at least one more year.

Brian (NJ)

If you had to bet: is this the best year of Mike Trout's career?

David Schoenfield
  (2:36 PM)

No

Matt (Boise)

You've talked AL Cy Young. Who do you have for the NL? Cueto or Dickey? Kershaw and Bumgarner have come on off late as well.

David Schoenfield
  (2:38 PM)

Chatters? I think Cueto is the clear leader right now. Leads NL in ERA, tough park to pitch, 16 wins (for what that's worth).

Mike (Mision Viejo)

So the Dodgers having an unlimited supply of money and Magic Johnson to help recruit players doesn't get them in the top three of ownership groups but a guy giving a ten year deal to an already declining Pujols does. Makes sense

David Schoenfield
  (2:40 PM)

Well, wake me up when the Dodgers make a smart move. In two years, that could be terrible outfield: A right fielder player center (Kemp), a first baseman playing right (Ethier) and a platoon left fielder with a .315 OBP making $20 million a year. Congrats, Magic.

ZK (London, England)

Since I brought this up yesterday on Twitter, might as well as you what you think of Daisuke Matsuzaka's start yesterday and him going forward? Do the Red Sox believe in him enough to give him an extension?

David Schoenfield
  (2:40 PM)

Very unlikely. I would predict he goes back to Japan.

Jim (Polkton, NC)

Roger Maris is another back-to-back MVP who's not in the Hall of Fame.Jack (San Diego)If Scott Rolen is in the HOF, then DALE MURPHY needs to be in. I can't believe a back to back MVP winner isn't in the HOF. That amazes me....

David Schoenfield
  (2:41 PM)

And Maris isn't really close to owning Hall of Fame numbers.

David Schoenfield
  (2:41 PM)

Juan Gonzalez also won two MVPs in three years. He's not making the Hall of Fame.

Ike (PA)

Does Posada get into HOF? He was a very good offensive catcher, but his defense was sub-par. Piazza got killed for his defense (throwing our runners), but Posada wasn't too much better (too many past balls).

David Schoenfield
  (2:44 PM)

Slim chance. Career counting numbers (275 HR, 1065 RBI) are a little short. Late start to his career, platooned for a few years, never considered the best player on his team.

Patrick (Chicago)

What are the odds that Paulino and Duffy give KC enough next year to make them the Pirates of 2013?

David Schoenfield
  (2:46 PM)

Will either one return? I would guess midseason returns at best, so I guess it's possible you could 15 starts from each of them. Royals really need to go out and sign a good starter. How about Zack Greinke? Make it happen!

Mitch (NJ)

Should be Dickey. Besides ERA, Dickey beats him in WHIP, K's, win % and Innings for a much worse team.

David Schoenfield
  (2:47 PM)

Other than K's, though, the numbers are pretty close. But pitching in Cincy is much tougher than Citi Field.

Todd (Philly)

Well...you have to give the Dodgers ownership group SOME credit...they managed to not take John Lackey in the package....

Brian (NJ)

Derek Jeter has the same OWAR this year as Josh Hamilton and is also slightly better than Pujols. Crazy.

Mike (Long Island)

I think most Yankees fans would agree that Posada was an outstanding Yankee, but not a HOF-caliber player. The difference between him and Piazza is that Piazza was a monster offensive player, whereas Posada was very, very good.

Tarek (NYC)

Hey, LA has the best manager in baseball. Don't you say one bad word about Donnie. Don't do it.

Mike (Long Island)

When I asked the question about the "top 3 MLB ownership groups," perhaps I should have established the criteria, namely, fielding a team that consistently competes at a very high level, regardless of the obstacles (tough division, low payroll, weak marketplace, etc.) I was actually thinking that the Rays ownership has really done some very impressive work over the past 5-6 years.

David Schoenfield
  (2:50 PM)

True. Hard to separate the front office from the ownership group with the Rays. They haven't figured out how to successfully market the club and improve attendance, but that could just be because of the Tampa fan base (and ballpark) and no fault of the ownership group.

Gary (SC)

Could Heyward steal the MVP with an amazing September?

David Schoenfield
  (2:52 PM)

Hmm, if the Braves catch the Nationals ... I'd say outside shot if the Pirates and Giants both end up missing the playoffs. And don't forget Matt Holliday. He's in the hunt, especially if the Cards catch the Reds. Gotta love that quality of teammates is such a big factor in the MVP debate.

Alex (OH)

Cueto no doubt! He owns visiting teams when pitching at GABP.

David Schoenfield
  (2:53 PM)

OK, let's wrap it up. Everyone send me your thought of the day.

AJ (Toronto)

Brian from Jersey, thanks. I was beginning to look for gaps in traffic.

Lue (Las Vegas)

If it comes down to Heyward Posey for MVP could be a repeat of the 2010 ROY award where the voters decide that Posey playing a much more important position in Catcher determines the award.

Mike (Long Island)

Good point about the fine line between the ownership group and the front office. But part of being an excellent owner is hiring great people in the key roles (GM, player development, field manager), which is why I think the Red Sox ownership is vastly overrated and the Rays are very underrated.

David Schoenfield
  (2:54 PM)

True. Great point, Mike. The Steinbrenner have also been a big surprise in that appear to pretty much stay out of the way. (Unfortunately; I hoped Hank would turn into Crazy 1980s George.)

Mike Scioscia (LA)

If my underachieving team doesn't make the playoffs... am I coming back next year???

David Schoenfield
  (2:55 PM)

Yes

Will (Parkersburg)

I think therefore I am

Tarek (NYC)

Chone Figgins for MVP. Am i banned again?

Mitch (NJ)

Dickey .221 BAA vs. Cueto .245

David Schoenfield
  (2:56 PM)

Cueto: .337 SLUG vs. Dickey .353.

ZK (London, England)

How does Miguel Cabrera figure into the MVP talk when he isn't even MVP on his own team? I'd argue Verlander's more valuable to Detroit

Gary (SC)

Adult books. Young adult books. Completely different.

Marty (Fairfield, CT)

'The Extra 2%' by Jonah Keri gives some good insight into the uphill battle the current Rays ownership had to climb to even get people to not HATE the team. Naimoli and Sternberg present a good contract in good and bad ownership.

Mike (Long Island)

True/false: The single individual most responsible for setting the Yankees back on track in the mid-1990s was Gene Michael. (Steinbrenner would have traded both Jeter and Mo, but Michael talked him out of both...and he kept the ship headed in the right direction during one of George's, uh, "short-term retirements."

David Schoenfield
  (2:57 PM)

True. Michael was also a proponent of the importance of OBP.

Alex (OH)

In Dusty we trusty!

cp (reno)

Ask any Dodger fan after going through the Mccourt years if this is a good deal

David Schoenfield
  (2:58 PM)

Haha. True. Believe me, I didn't intend for that to sound like I was ripping the Dodgers ownership grouip as much it seemed. You have to love guys who weren't afraid to spend and make a big move. I just don't think that deal is franchise-altering in any way.

Brian (NJ)

A package with Profar as the centerpiece for Felix? I know trading someone like Felix stinks, but I think it would be the smart move for Seattle.

David Schoenfield
  (2:58 PM)

He's not going anywhere. And certainly not within the division.

todd (philly)

Free Vernon Wells to the Dodgers!

ZK (London, England)

Mike Trout for AL MVP + ROY. That is all.

Patrick (Chicago)

Over/Under for MVPs in Mike Trout's career: 4?

David Schoenfield
  (2:59 PM)

Under. Only player to win more than three: Barry Bonds.

Will (Parkersburg)

Reds GoodMets BadCueto Win Dickey Lose

Lue (Las Vegas)

Honestly don't care about the post season awards right now, that will work itself out in the end. Who do u think will make the playoff's in the NL. You have to figure that 1 team from the NL west or the Cardinals won't make it in the end.

David Schoenfield
  (3:00 PM)

I was asked by my editor to vote on this today: I went with Nationals, Reds, Giants (division winners) and Braves, Cardinals (wild cards).

Erc (Chicago)

Why no love for AJ for MVP...on a first place team! who cares if everyone hates him

David Schoenfield
  (3:01 PM)

What a season. No doubt.

Mike (Long Island)

It would be interesting to know what team(s) baseball fans would be most likely to follow other than their natural geographic alliance. Like, if you love baseball but live in Hawaii or Montana.....

David Schoenfield
  (3:02 PM)

I'm pretty sure Mariners games are broadcast in Montana. Have to guess Hawaii would be Dodgers country (with maybe a touch of Padres/Angels/Giants/Yankees).

Brian (NJ)

Im sure the answer to Mike's question is the Yanks and Red Sox. #eastcoastbias

Mike (Long Island)

AJP is certainly having an excellent year. But why do I always wish that someone would punch him in the face?

David Schoenfield
  (3:03 PM)

And with that ... time to call it a day! Thanks, everyone. Enjoy your baseball tonight!