Thursday, September 10, 2009

Weekend Baseball Preview: As Much As I Like the NFL, Baseball Still Comes First

Well, we're another weekend closer to the playoffs.....yet there is more baseball yet to be played...some of it relevant....some of it not so much. As always, games are rated on a scale from 1-5....with that, let the games begin.

Mets vs. Phillies -Saturday FOX/Sunday ESPN =2
Saturday [Pelfrey vs. Happ]
Sunday [Redding vs. Martinez]

Well these two teams are heading in opposite directions. It's tough to tell what's been more disapointing this season for the Mets, their team or their new stadium. The Phillies look to be headed to the playoffs for the third straight season. They have a solid chance to win the title for the second straight year (although I have a gut feeling that Brad Lidge will pitch the Phils out of it at some point)

Saturday the Mets start Mike Pelfrey who has had an uninspring season. He goes up against J.A. Happ who is having an excellent season and looks to be a star in this league for years to come. It is definitely easy to see why the Phillies would not give him up (even for Roy Halladay)

On Sunday the Mets start Tim Redding (who's somehow made 13 starts this year....seriously he's still pitching in the bigs?)....the Phillies counter with ex-Met Pedro Martinez who has pitched solid since coming back from injury.

White Sox vs. Angels- Saturday FOX
(Danks vs. Santana)= 2.5

White Sox management seems to have thrown in the towel by trading Jim Thome, but they have shown a strong ability to play well against teams fighting for a post-season spot as evidenced by them taking 3 of 4 from Boston last weekend. The Angels have a 4 1/2 game lead over Texas in the west and seem headed towards another post-season appearance.

The White Sox are starting John Danks who has had a solid season. Even though the White Sox are the weaker team, anytime Danks starts the White Sox have a chance to beat superior competition. The Angels start Ervin Santana who has followed up a strong 2008 by having a horrible season. Even though the Angels are the better team, the White Sox definitely have the upper hand for at least Saturday.

Braves vs. Cardinals =3
(Hudson vs. Lohse)

The Braves are fighting for their NL East and Wild Card lives while the Cardinals are cruising with a large lead over the joke that is the rest of the NL Central.

The Braves start Tim Hudson who is making his 3rd start of the season. Hudson's return bolsters an already strong Braves rotation....unfortunately for the Braves, it seems to be too little too late. The Cardinals counter with Kyle Lohse who is doing what Kyle Lohse has always innings at the back of the rotation and making sure the 4/5 spot is in decent shape.

Dodgers vs. Giants---Saturday MLB Network/Sunday TBS

(Padilla vs. Sanchez)
(Billingsley vs. Penny)

The Dodgers are struggling at the wrong time of the season and have seen their once insurmountable NL West lead sink to 2 1/2 games. The Giants have also picked a bad time to struggle and are quickly fading behind the Rockies for the Wild Card lead.

Saturday, the Dodgers start Vicente Padilla who has actually pitched well since being cut by the Rangers. The Giants counter with Sanchez who has pitched well in the second-half and is coming off a strong no-decision versus Milwaukee last weekend.

Sunday, the Dodgers start Billingsley who has quietly had a solid season (even though he leads the NL with wild pitches), the Giants start Brad Penny who pitched terrible in Boston, but has pitched like a star in his first two Giants starts. Come to think about, a lot of AL pitchers have gotten cut for being terrible only to factor in NL teams playoff hopes.....even Vicente Padilla.....point being the Giants need Penny to continue his hot streak to keep the Giants postseason hopes alive.

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