Thoughts that went through Dallas Braden’s mind while he threw the 19th Perfect Game in MLB history. This is great:

 

fbpod-b-w
May 25, 1999

Hitters
Fred McGriff – 4 for 5, Double, RBI
Bret Boone – 4 for 5, Double
Alex Rodriguez – 3 for 5, 3 Runs, Double, RBI, Walk, SB
Kenny Lofton – 3 for 3, Run, Walk
Shannon Stewart – 3 for 5, Run, 2 RBIs
Damien Easley – 3 for 4, Run, Double, HR, RBI
Paul O’Neill – 3 for 4, Double, Triple
Tom Goodwin – 3 for 5, Run, RBI, SB
Royce Clayton -3 for 3, Run, RBI
Matt Mieske – 3 for6, 3 Runs, HR, 4 RBIs
Travis Lee – 3 for 4, Run, HR, 2 RBIs
Jose Hernandez – 3 for 4, Run, RBI
Richard Hildago – 3 for 5, 3 Doubles
Mike Piazza – 3 for 5, Run, Double, HR, 3 RBIs
J.T. Snow – 3 for 4, 2 Runs, Double, HR, 3 RBIs
Jeff Kent – 3 for 4, 2 Runs, Double, HR, 3 RBIs
Stan Javier – 3 for 5, Run, 2 Doubles, 2 RBIs, Walk
Scott Servais – 3 for 5, 2 Runs, Double, 2 RBIs
Darren Bragg – 3 for 4
Ken Griffey, Jr. – 2 for 4, Run, HR, 3 RBIs, Walk
Brian McRae – 2 for 3, Run, HR, 3 RBIs
Preston Wilson – 2 for 4, 2 Runs, 2 HRs, 3 RBIs
Mike Stanley – 2 for 4, Run, HR, 3 RBIs
Bill Mueller – 2 for 5, 3 Runs, HR, 4 RBIs, Walk
Butch Huskey – 2 for 5, 2 Runs, HR, 3 RBIs
Garrett Anderson – 2 for 4, 2 Runs, 2 HRs, 3 RBIs

Pitchers
Randy Johnson – W, GG, Shutout, 9 IP, 0 Runs, 6 Hits, 12 Ks
Omar Olivares – W, 8 IP, 1 Run 
Steve Parris – W, 7 IP, 1 Run, 5 Hits, 9 Ks
Charles Nagy – W, 7 IP, 1 Run, 5 Hits
Brian Rose – W, 6 IP, 1 Run, 3 Hits
Chris Brock – W, 6 IP, 1 Run, 4 Hits
Mike Oquist – W, 6-2/3 IP, 2 Runs, 2 Hits
Masato Yoshii – W, 6-2/3 IP, 2 Runs, 6 Ks
Brian Meadows – W, 6 IP, 2 Runs
Darryl Kile – ND, 7 IP, 0 Runs, 4 Hits, 5 Ks
Greg Maddux – ND, 7 IP, 6 Ks
Mike Hampton – ND, 9 IP, 1 Run, 5 Hits, 6 Ks
Dustin Hermanson – ND, 7 IP, 2 Runs, 8 Ks
Chad Ogea – ND, 6 IP, 2 Runs
Jim Abbot – ND, 6-2/3 IP, 2 Runs
Kevin Brown – CG, 8 IP, 1 Earned Run, 12 Ks

Once again Ryan Zimmerman took care of extending his hitting streak early. He singled in the first inning.  His streak is now up to 26 games.

Another Third Baseman made headlines today.  None other than Alex Rodriguez.  A-Rod smacked a three-run HR in the first Inning.  He was 1 for 4 in the game.  He struck out twice.  He must have inspired C.C. Sabathia because he threw a Complete Game four-hit Shutout.

a-rod
Image courtesy of Icon SMI

A-Rod went 1 for 5 with a Single and a Walk as he continues his rehab assignement.  He also slid for the first time on his surgically-repaired hip.  A-Rod said he felt good after the slide.  He is scheduled to play in one more game tomorrow before possibly rejoining the Yankees on Friday to face Baltimore.  For the full story, check out this ESPN.com article.

dontrelle-willis-toledo
Image from MudHens.com

Dontrelle Willis was back on the mound as well.  He pitched much better today.  The D-Train threw 7-2/3 Innings for Triple A- Toledo allowing two Runs on 5 Hits.  74 of his 118 pitches went for strikes, but he still managed to walk four batters.  He was on the losing end of a Pitchers’ Duel as Michael Bowden led Pawtucket to a 2-1 victory.  For the full story, check out the Mud Hens’ site.

Here’s a look at how Willis fared is his previous three starts:

A+ Lakeland:  L, 7 IP, 4 Runs, 8 Hits, 0 Walks, 2 Ks, 5.14 ERA, 1.14 WHIP
AA Erie:  W, 6 IP, 2 Runs, 3 Hits, 3 Walks, 6 Ks, 3.00 ERA, 1.00 WHIP
AAA Toledo:  ND, 5 IP, 3 Runs, 7 Hits, 2 Walks, 4 Ks, 5.40 ERA, 1.80 WHIP

a-rod
Image courtesy of Icon SMI

Alex Rodriguez’s rehab assignment rolls on despite the beating he has taken in the media of late.  Like it or not, he’s going to be playing baseball soon.  It doesn’t appear that Selena Roberts’ book A-Rod: The Many Lives of Alex Rodriguez will do anything to effect his playing status.  The court of public opinion is a different story, but the show must go on, both for the Yankees and for fantasy baseball teams with the man everyone is learning to hate.

A-Rod hit leadoff every inning for seven innings.  He was 1 for 6 with a HR and a walk.  The HR came off the Phillies’ J.C. Romero who ironically has been banished from the Bigs for fifty days as he serves a PED suspension.  He got popped taking Andro, which was Mark McGwire’s drug of choice.  At least that’s what he wanted to lead everyone to believe.

A-Rod remains on schedule to return to the Yankees by May 15th or sooner.

albert-pujols david-wright-jose-reyes
Images courtesy of Icon SMI

It’s pretty common knowledge that Hanley Ramírez is going to be the #1 pick.  What’s not to like about him?  He has 30/30 potential at the shallow Shortstop position.  Once he’s plucked out of the draft pool, the question is what do you do with the second pick?  Not long ago, before a steroid scandal, a bad hip, an affair with an aging Pop star, a link to an infamous madam, the list goes on, that answer would have been simple.  Now that A-Rod and his tarnished image is on the shelf, three other names  (Albert Pujols, José Reyes, David Wright) rise to the surface.

Naturally Albert Pujols is going to generate some heavy consideration.  Why not?  The dude can mash.  He shrugged off an elbow scare last year to put up another monster year (.357, 100 R, 37 HR, 116 RBI).  His 1.115 OPS was the highest of his career.  While his numbers are amazing, his Run, HR, and RBI totals of the past two seasons make up the worst two-season stretch in his career.  He’s getting walked more.  He had a career high 104 BBs last year, which was up five from his previous career high set in 2007.  Aside from a minor dip in his production, the other main reason to pass on Pujols in the two-hole is his position.  He’s easily the best First Baseman in the league, but he isn’t ahead of his competition by leaps and bounds.  You have Lance Berkman, Mark Teixeira, Ryan Howard, Miguel Cabrera, Adrián González, Justin Morneau, and Prince Fielder to name a few.  While they aren’t Prince Albert, they’re close. 

That leads me to José Reyes.  He is part of a Big Three Shortstop group of the aforementioned Hanley Ramírez and Jimmy Rollins.  Reyes is rock solid, but he leaves you hanging in the HR, RBI, and Batting Average departments compared to Pujols and teammate David Wright.  He scores a lot of Runs, but he gets little (if any) separation from Pujols and Wright there.  He swipes a ton of bases, but I contend that they can be made up later.  I’d love to have Reyes on my fantasy team, but not before Pujols and Wright come off the board.

That leads me to David Wright.  He has averaged 106 Runs, 29 HRs, 112 RBI, 22 SBs, and .311 over the past four seasons.   His numbers have looked even better the past two years (114 R, 32 HRs, 116 RBI, 25 SBs, .313).  He has topped Pujols in Runs, RBI, and SBs without losing much in HRs or Average.  He has topped Reyes in HRs, RBI, and Average without losing much in Runs.  He doesn’t touch Reyes SBs, but he’s pretty good for a Third Basemen.  Which brings me to the second part of my argument.  With A-Rod hurt and Miguel Cabrera switching to 1B, Wright doesn’t really have any peers.  Kevin Youkilis and Aubrey Huff had great seasons, but I see them taking a step back.  Chipper Jones is solid, but he’ll turn 37 in a month and he hasn’t played 150 games since 2003.  Aramis Ramírez is real good, but he doesn’t score Runs or steal bases like Wright, and his HR, RBI, and BA numbers are slightly lower.  Evan Longoria has the potential to make the leap, but I see much lower R, SB, and BA for him.

This debate was sparked by the Rotoprofessor’s First Round Rankings.

Friday, July 18th
Garrett Anderson
went 4 for 4 with 2 Runs, a HR, and 5 RBI.  Ivan Rodriguez went 4 for 4 with 2 Runs, a HR, and 2 RBI.  Delmon Young also had 4 Hits.  Nomar Garciaparra went 3 for 5 with 2 Runs, 2 HRs, and 3 RBI.  Luke Scott hit a pair of HRs and had 3 RBI.  Raul Ibanez went 3 for 4 with 2 Runs, a Grand Slam, and 4 RBI.  Billy Butler had 4 RBI.  A-Rod, Miguel Tejada, Hunter Pence, Alexi Casilla, Jermaine Dye, Jody Gerut, Brian Giles, Albert Pujols, Rick Ankiel (3 RBI), Conor Jackson, Orlando Hudson, and Jamie Burke each had 3 Hits.  Robinson Cano, Ryan Ludwick, Jose Lopez, Prince Fielder, Mike Cameron, and Brian McCann each had 3 RBI.

C.C. Sabathia threw a Complete Game allowing 1 Run on 4 Hits with 10 Ks to improve to 3-0 with a 1.87 ERA with Milwaukee.  Overall, he’s 9-8 with a 3.51 ERA.  Glen Perkins tossed 6 scoreless three-hit Innings to improve to 7-2 with a 3.84 ERA.  James Shields gave up 1 Run on 4  Hits in 7 Innings to improve to 8-6 with a 3.69 ERA.  A.J. Burnett gave up 2 Runs in 7 Innings with 6 Ks, but lost.  Mike Mussina gave up 1 Run in 6 Innings with 6 Ks to improve to 12-6 with a 3.49 ERA. Bronson Arroyo gave up 2 Runs on 4 Hits in 8 Innings to improve to 8-7.  Jamie Moyer gave up 2 Runs on 4 Hits in 6 Innings to improve to 9-6.  Brian Moehler (7 Innings, 1 Run, 4 Hits) and Ted Lilly (7 Innings, 1 Run, 6 Ks) each got no-decisions.  Felix Hernandez gave up 2 Runs on 4 Hits with 8 Ks to improve to 7-6 with a 2.95 ERA.

Wednesday, July 2nd
Jason Giambi
hit a Grand Slam and drove in 6 Runs.  Grady Sizemore went 3 for 4 with 4 Runs, 2 HRs, 2 RBI, a Walk, and a SB.  Dustin Pedroia went 4 for 5 with 3 Runs, 2 Doubles, a Triple, a HR, and 2 RBI.  Xavier Nady went 3 for 5 with 2 Runs, 2 HRs, and 3 RBI.  Jay Bruce and Troy Glaus each hit 2 HRs and had 4 RBI.  A.J. Pierzynski hit a pair of solo HRs.  A-Rod scored 4 Runs and drove in 3.  Orlando Hudson had 4 Hits.  Carlos Gomez, Delmon Young, Jimmy Rollins, David DeJesus, Ramon Hernandez, Johnny Damon (3 Runs), Frank Catalanotto, Carl Crawford, Evan Longoria (3 RBI), Andre Ethier, Ichiro Suzuki, Garrett Atkins (4 RBI), Jose Reyes, David Wright, Ray Durham (3 RBI), and Damion Easley (3 RBI) each had 3 Hits.  Juan Rivera, Ryan Howard, and Miguel Cairo each had 3 RBI.  Ryan Doumit and Bobby Abreu each scored 3 Runs.

Nick Blackburn tossed 7 Innings of three-hit scoreless ball to improve to 7-4 with a 3.78 ERA.  Hiroki Kuroda also threw 7 scoreless Innings allowing 5 Hits to improve to 4-6 with a 3.73 ERA.  Daniel Cabrera pitched a Complete Game allowing 2 Runs to improve to 6-4.Ricky Nolasco gave up 2 Runs on 3 Hits with 8 Ks to improve to 9-4 with a 3.94 ERA.  He beat Odalis Perez, who allowed 2 Runs in 6-2/3 Innings.  Joe Saunders gave up 2 Earned Runs in 6-1/3 Innings to improve to 12-4 with a 3.04 ERA.  Ubaldo Jimenez gave up 1 Run in 6-1/3 Innings to improve to 3-8.  Yusmeiro Petit gave up 1 Run on 2 Hits in a 6 Inning no-decision.  Jarrod Washburn gave up 2 Runs in 6 Innings to improve to 4-7.  Ryan Dempster gave up 2 Runs with 7 Ks in a 6 Inning no-decision.

Friday, June 27th
Carlos Delgado
hit a Double, a pair of HRs, and drove in 9 Runs in the first game.  Luis Castillo scored 5 Runs in the first game.  Carlos Beltran scored 4 Runs and had 3 RBI in the first game.  Bobby Abreu had 4 Hits and 3 RBI in the second game.  Evan Longoria had 4 Hits, 3 Runs, and 3 RBI.  David Wright (first game) and Curtis Granderson each had 4 Hits and 3 RBI.  Carlos Quentin and Kevin Youkilis also had 4 Hits.  Corey Hart hit a pair of HRs and had 3 RBI.  A-Rod (first game), Geovany Soto, Jermaine Dye (3 RBI), Delmon Young, Clete Thomas, Ryan Braun, Carl Crawford (3 Runs), Troy Glaus, Ichiro Suzuki, Jose Lopez, David DeJesus, Ian Kinsler (3 Runs), Dustin Pedroia, Adam “Not Pacman” Jones, Brian Giles, and Jamey Carroll each had 3 Hits.  Grady Sizemore, Mark Teixeira, J.D. Drew, Robinson Cano (2nd game), Adrian Beltre, Andre Ethier, and Jack Wilson each had 3 RBI.  Nick Swisher and Pedro Feliz each hit a Grand Slam.  Eric Hinske scored 3 Runs and had 3 RBI.  Alex Gordon had 4 RBI.  Russell Martin scored 3 Runs.

C.C. Sabathia gave up 4 Hits in 8 scoreless Innings with 11 Ks to improve to 6-8 and lower is ERA to 3.78.   Jair Jurrjens tossed 8 scoreless Innings allowing 3 Hits to improve to 8-3 with a 2.94 ERA.  Eddie Bonine gave up 1 Run on 5 Hits in 8 strong Innings as he improve to 2-0 with a 3.98 ERA.  Ricky Nolasco gave up 1 Run on 6 Hits in 8 Innings with 9 Ks to improve to 8-4.  Daisuke Matsuzaka  gave up 2 Hits in 5 scoreless Innings to improve to 9-1 with a 3.21 ERA.  Gil Meche gave up 1 Run in 7 Innings to improve to 6-8.  Sidney Ponson gave up 5 Hits in 6 scoreless Innings as he improved to 5-1 with a 3.50 ERA.  Dana Eveland gave up 1 Run on 5 Hits in 7-1/3 Innings to improve to 6-5 with a 3.34 ERA.  Jarrod Washburn gave up 2 Runs in 7-2/3 Innings to improve to 3-7.  Chan Ho Park gave up 4 Hits in 6 scoreless Innings with 7 Ks to improve to 3-2 with a 2.52 ERA,

Wednesday, June 18th
J.D. Drew
went 4 of 5 with 2 Runs, a Double, a HR, and 4 RBI.  Placido Polanco went 4 for 4 with 3 Runs, a Double, 2 RBI, and a Walk.  Dustin Pedroia, Johnny Damon, A-Rod, Wilson Betemit, Craig Counsell, Andre Ethier, Vernon Wells, Cristian Guzman, Elijah Dukes, Carlos Gomez, Stephen Drew, Orlando Hudson, Chad Tracy, Jose Vidro, and Jose Reyes (3 Runs) each had 3 Hits.  Gregg Zaun, Chris  Young, Dan Haren, Mike Jacobs, and Justin Morneau had 3 RBI.  Jeff Baker, Jorege Cantu, and Hanley Ramirez each scored 3 Runs.

Armando Galarraga allowed 2 unearned runs in 6 Innings with 5 Ks to improve to 7-2 with a 3.03 ERA.  Jeremy Guthrie (8 Innings, 1 Run, 3 Hits, 8 Ks) and Brian Moehler (6-1/3 Innings, 1 Run) battled to no-decisions.  Derek Lowe gave up 1 Run on 3 Hits in 5-1/3 Innings with 6 Ks to improve to 5-6 with a 3.90 ERA.  Ben Sheets gave up 2 Runs on 4 Hits in 6 innings with 5 Ks to improve to 8-1 with a 2.74 ERA.  Jo-Jo Reyes gave up 1 Earned Run on 5 Hits in a 7 Inning no-decision.  Kevin Slowey gave up 1 Run in 6 Innings to improve to 4-6.  Jason Bergmann gave up 1 Earned Run in 6 Innings, but took the Loss.  Mark Buehrle gave up 2 Runs on 4 Hits in 8 Innings to improve to 4-6.  Brian Banniser gave up 2 Runs in 7 Innings to even his record at 6-6.  Braden Looper gave up 1 Run on 5 Hits in a 7 Inning no-decision.  Jeff Francis gave up 1 Earned Run on 5 Hits in 6 Innings to improve to 3-6.  Dan Haren gave up 1 Run on 4 Hits with 8 Ks in 7 Innings to improve to 7-4 with a 3.26 ERA.  Jon Garland gave up 2 Earned Runs in a 6 Inning no-decision.  Ryan Tucker gave up 2 Runs in 6 Innings to improve to 2-1.


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