Picks of the Pen: The Fall of King Felix

Ryan Braun received his MVP trophy this week at Miller Park, which looked sort of like a thick metal frisbee, or an old “Simon Says” game that lit up and taunted you.  Fortunately for Ryan, the media was mostly distracted by Phil Humber’s perfect game and Fenway’s centennial to talk about what a page-view collecting controversy it all was.

Blaine Blontz

One of the pleasant happenings of the early MLB season has been the hitting of former top prospect Matt Wieters. Prior to 2012, Wieters hadn’t lived up to the ridiculous expectations placed on him by fans and analysts alike. While he was solid behind the plate, as evidenced by his 2011 Gold Glove award, Wieters hasn’t shown the same promise he portrayed in the minors at the major league level until this season. Fan Graph’s Matt Klaassen takes a look at whether or not Wieters has arrived.

The Red Sox are bad, but they were able to make a fairly significant trade this weekend. However, Derek Stykalo of BoSox Injection doesn’t consider the Marlon Byrd deal to be an answer for the Red Sox problems.

Justin Klugh

Not everybody truly “gave a shit” about Fenway park’s 100th birthday this weekend.  Granted, the place is a baseball landmark and it is easy to respect how much history and legacy it contains.  Now that we have that out of the way, let’s get to how the rest of us really feel, especially with FOX’s broadcast of the Red Sox-Yankees game really shoving the whole spectacle down our throats without mercy.  Sure, Dustin Parkes’ article may have been a bit harsh.  But I think taking the word “fucking” out of the headline was his way of tipping his cap.

The aforementioned Sox-Yanks game ended humiliatingly for Bobby Valentine and his new squad, after they gave up a nine-run lead to lose 15-9.  But baseball’s other Sox came through in a big way, as 2012’s Dallas Braden, Phil Humber, threw a perfect game in Seattle.  This should keep him out of the minors.  For a few weeks.  Matt Adams at Southside Showdown has the congratulatory post.

And for those looking to escape reality should turn to Ryan Woodward’s Bottom of the Ninth.

Matt Musico

David Wright has been hot…like red hot. He’s finally looking like the player that we’ve all come accustomed to seeing back when he was manning third base at Shea Stadium, and Jerry Crasnick wrote a great article about how Wright has slowly become the elder statesmen in the Met Clubhouse. Even though his long-term future with the team is relatively unknown, he’s embraced his role with the club.

On CttP this week, there were lots of great articles that I enjoyed reading, but the one that caught my attention the most was Joe’s analysis on King Felix’s reduced velocity and whether or not anyone should be concerned. I mean, the guy is still pitching just fine, but if I were the Mariners, I would be a little concerned.

Joe Soriano

Doug Miller of MLB.com wrote a truly heart-warming piece profiling the guy who got me into advanced statistics; Dave Cameron of USS Mariner and FanGraphs.

Here on FanSided, Joel Condreay of SoDo Mojo gave us a thorough update of the 2012 MLB Draft.

Justin Hunter

Bruce Markusen took Jamie Moyer‘s milestone as inspiration for a piece about Satchel Paige’s last days in baseball and his infamous appearance for the A’s at 59 years old.

Our own Ken continues his Radical thoughts with a discussion on the Designated Fielder. His abstract thoughts on baseball continue to impress and intrigue me

Chris Carelli

Ben Heller of Grantland.com comes to the defense of the Reds’ extensions for Joey Votto and Brandon Phillips. He says that despite the fact that each player will probably be a shell of their current (or former in Brandon Phillips‘ case) self the Reds will have lifetime stars on the field and the gates will be overflowing with fans no matter how the Reds are playing at the time.

Tom Smith over at Rum Bunter gives his thanks for recent New York Yankees pitchers who have become Pirates starters and have been able to contribute to the club. He is high on A.J. Burnett especially after Saturday’s start against the Cardinals. Tom mentions that it was one of the more enjoyable games he’s watched in some time.

Kyle Davis

Jordan Campbell of Cubbies Crib examines the hot start of former Top Prospect and current Hope of the Future Anthony Rizzo, discussing how the Cubs might best chose to handle the development of their current crop of minor league baseball players. Please note that while Anthony Rizzo is indeed, currently raking, he’s using a baseball bat to do so. Try and keep up.

Jonah Keri of Grantland fame produces yet another excellent feature concerning the sport of baseball, this time conducting an interview with super underrated and definitely awesome Padres third baseman Chase Headley. Get on the bandwagon while you still can, bandwagon jumpers!


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