Category: MLB

According to an story, Major League Baseball is close to announcing the expansion of baseball’s playoff field to 10 teams.

Commissioner Bud Selig said he hopes the move will allow more teams to be in the playoff race longer.

This is one of the dumbest moves baseball is doing. By expanding the field in most years, you’re taking all the drama out of the regular season. That great end last year with teams collapsing and others surging? Under the proposed rule, that wouldn’t have mattered because everyone would have gotten in.

Baseball’s regular season already suffers from a severe lack of drama. This will just make the last couple months pointless as almost every year we know who’s going to get in by August. And that was before this move was being considered.

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Here’s the problem I have with the MLB season. One, the regular season is way too long. People get excited for opening day. And then? I stop paying attention until September. Why? Because a 162-game season that results in maybe two teams fighting for one last playoff spot for the final month of the season (like this year in the AL and NL). Then, its playoffs are in the middle of football season. I think it’s true for most of America Saturday is a college football day, Sunday is NFL day and Monday night is football night. Which leaves the MLB playoffs with what?

It’s an afterthought in the sports world. Who cares when Derek Jeter and Alex Rodriguez and the Yankees lose in the first round? Who cares when the other teams, maybe with the exception of Philly, barely got any prime-time coverage during the season, so no one really knows or cares about those teams? Who cares when there’s no transcendent baseball stars? The MLB would do well to make some big changes. Otherwise, it will continue to be nothing more than a minor distraction for sports fans.

To make matters worse, baseball wants to add a wild card team. If that had been in effect this season, there would have been no great drama at the end of the regular season. In fact, the regular season would be come even more meaningless than it already is.

Lukas Eggen can be reached at

Jim Thome reaches 600 home runs

It’s a sad casualty of the steroids era in baseball. Jim Thome reaches 600 career home runs. He’s never failed a drug test. Never been linked to any performance enhancing drugs. By all accounts, he’s done things the right way. And yet, almost no one cares about his accomplishment. Eight players now have reached that mark And yet, there was little fanfare. Why? Because people have become disillusioned with baseball. It doesn’t matter Thome has never failed a drug test. He’s lumped into an era where we assume people cheated somehow.

It’s sad really. A player who actually has done things right. And yet, people are debating whether he’ll even get into the Hall of Fame. Thome’s accomplishment was a fantastic achievement. Don’t let your disillusionment cloud the fact that the 600-home run club is exclusive. Don’t let the fact that Barry Bonds tops that list. Thome isn’t Bonds.

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Carlos Zambrano needs to grow up

Chicago Cubs pitcher Carlos Zambrano is pathetic. Walking out on your team during the middle of the game because you stink? That’s bad enough on its own. Cleaning out your locker and say you’re considering retirement? Well, I wish Chicago could just release him, but the Cubs have placed him on the disqualified list and held him without pay for 30 days. Zambrano’s actions are immature and childish. His actions against the Atlanta Braves and Chipper Jones were despicable.

The MLB wonders why its suffering in popularity? Aside from a season that lasts way too long, a regular season that doesn’t matter and a playoffs that are boring until the World Series, it’s because you have players like Zambrano who are making tens of millions a season and act like this.

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I’m not sure quite what to make of this story. But, the NFL and MLB has warned its players against using deer antler supplements, which can be used as performance enhancing drugs. The problem is there’s no real test to detect it, so it’s a little hard to enforce.

I know athletes are always looking for a way to get ahead. But, you’ve got to be kidding me about this. Deer antler supplements? I mean, the whole thing sounds a bit, ridiculous. I suppose, however, if I had millions at stake I might consider doing stuff like this. However, I mean, do they realize they’re taking deer antler supplements. Deer antlers. My gosh, is this what sports has come to?

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Major League Baseball said it would investigate New York Yankees player Alex Rodriguez for an apparent illegal poker game.

I know that major league sports are against gambling and that it’s not supposed to happen. But, short of A-Rod playing in some back alley betting houses and peoples’ lives, I don’t really care if he takes pl;ace in a high stakes poker game somewhere. Heaven knows he’s making enough money to afford it. I know, gambling is “wrong”. It shouldn’t happen. But, after the whole steroids scandal, a poker game is the least of baseball’s worries.

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The San Francisco Giants finalized a trade with the New York Mets for Carlos Beltran. By now, if you’re a big baseball fan, you know the parts involved. But, the debate as to whether Beltran can fix an inconsistent Giants’ offense and be a key piece in another deep run in the postseason is just beginning.

There’s no question San Francisco needed someone. As soon as catcher Buster Posey went down, the lineup needed an upgrade. And, to give the Giants credit, they make big moves in an attempt to win. Beltran is batting .289 and has 15 home runs and 66 runs-batted in. Is he the key? I think he can be. He’ll provide a dangerous bat in the middle of the lineup for the Giants. And, any consistent bat that San Francisco can throw in there will make the team more dangerous.  However, Beltran, who has been healthy this season, has battled knee injuries over the past two seasons. If he can stay healthy, San Francisco can be a contender again. If not, San Francisco’s gamble will backfire.

Lukas Eggen