The magic number is 41.
And I’m not referring to Hall of Famer Tom Seaver who sported the number on his jersey. This is how many days are left until the first pitch will be thrown out across America and every baseball fan across our great nation will rejoice in the commencement of a new season.
For me, a new season is synonymous with a new year. A time for new goals and resolutions. A time in which anything is defined as ‘possible.’ Even the most lackluster teams from the previous year stand a chance as different acquisitions throughout the off-season have been made, injuries have been treated and the proverbial ‘slate’ has been wiped clean. On the contrary, the biggest threats from previous seasons have to enter on a new stage in an effort to remain the force that they have been in seasons past and reprove themselves again.
Although the race is addictive to watch in all divisions I am particularly interested to see what will transpire in the NL West this season. The West presents a more opened door for the division than it has in years past and there is clearly no forerunner or favorite as there are in other divisions.
The universal fight over Manny Ramirez is incessant and driving me crazy. I go to bed every night praying that someone will offer him the 3rd year he desires in his contract so I can wake up the next morning a NEVER hear about it again. If he finds a home in the NL West, with the Dodgers for another year OR in rumored San Francisco, the division will become slightly weighted. Nonetheless, the division presents to the league an interesting race to follow.
Check in during the following weeks as I dissect the NL West and allow you to take a scientific look into the division’s teams. We will look at strengths, weaknesses and other variables that might allow us to answer the question, “Who looks to be the favorite in the NL West?”
Holler Back. StatDragon.
According to Big Papi, the lefty says he’s far from sloppy. He had a few choice words to say about steroids and those people who think he’s old at the age of 33. Oh Papi, I’m with you my man, let’s get the bat going, see some sun and maybe bring back an old friend.
When asked about steroids Ortiz spoke out and said; “I would suggest everybody get tested, not random, everybody,” “You go team by team. You test everybody three, four times a year and that’s about it.”
If the tests proves positive Ortiz said,”Ban ’em for the whole year.”
It makes sense in my eyes. Rid the game of the continued users and only allow the clean players a chance to play. The 50 game bans didn’t send a powerful enough message. They allowed the player to rejoin the team after the games were played and remain a name in the game. It’s just a logical, forceful approach to clean up the tarnished image and right the wrong. I know we’ve had plenty of steroid talks but it’s time you face the issue and clean it up. As Jonny Dakota was supposed to say on Saved by the Bell, “There’s no hope with dope.” Jonny (TV star)was actually doing the drugs in the episode, you could say acting like an A-Rod for Bayside students. Endorsing the game and pretending to be an activist in the fight. Let’s hope with his message, Papi has steered away from the dope. In a Bayside world Papi would say, “In one word, would I do dope? Nope.” Yes, I compared steroids in baseball to a Saved by the Bell episode, but don’t worry he’s Big Papi not Wicked Big Papi.
I’m just hoping he comes up wicked big this season. After a sub par 2008 season, Papi’s got his confidence and swagger back this according to him. He’s lost 15 pounds going into Spring Training and looks noticeably fit. People have been saying he’s too old and he’s on the downfall of his career, well don’t tell him that. “Sometimes I listen to comments and it just does nothing but make me stronger,” don’t mess with the bull, here come the horns. He needs to produce in order to get these Sox deep in the pennant run. Papi spoke out about getting another power hitter to help in the middle of the lineup. When the name Manny popped up, of course he said “Why not?”
Let’s hope what Papi’s preaching all comes true. From 1-year bans for steroid use, no pains in the wrist and a power hitting display fueled by media hatred in 2009. According to Papi we’re in for some changes in the game but hopefully a rebirth of his ongoing legend.