President Obama to join Nationals rotation!

President Obama is starting for the Nationals in their home opener on April 5th. He will be relieved after one pitch, in order to build up his arm strength for the grueling season ahead. This unprecedented event, is the first signing of a President of the U.S. to a major league contract. The Illinois native will inevitably be the number 3 starter in the Washington Nationals rotation this year. The late signing gives the Nationals a nice looking lefty, righty, lefty 1-3 in their rotation. Nats fans everywhere are psyched of the new and improved rotation beginning with lannan, Marquis, Obama!!! Play Ball!

 

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National League East 2010

Just a quick entry since it has been a while i have posted anything, since the Mets signed Kiko Calero about a month ago. I figured a month or so when i wrote my previews and predictions that my opinion would vastly differ as opening day approached. However, my thoughts on the National League East remain the same in order of finish. Although the Braves do have better starting pitching than the Phillies, I do believe the Phils will prevail with a fourth straight division title. The Braves will be a close second and represent the National League wild card. I think the Mets may edge out the Marlins for third with the improved Nationals, sans Strassburgh finishing last. The top four teams may be separated by 9-10 games when all is said and done.For these teams to be at their best, the Phils need Cole Hammels to regain his form of two years ago. The Braves need health from Glaus and Chipper and a solid rookie season from Jason Heyward. The Mets need Reyes and Beltran to be healthy and for the starters to at least finish 6 innings. The Marlins need to vastly improve defensively and hope for Anibel Sanchez to remain healthy…and the Nats will improve based on their upgrades in the field as well as their signing of Jason Marquis alone.

Mets sign Calero

 The New York Mets upgraded their bullpen today by signing righthander Kiko Calero. Although, he does have a history of shoulder issues and even missed 18 games last year, he has low-risk, high-reward potential. Coming off a 2009 season with the Marlins, he was 2-2 with a 1.95 ERA and 69 K’s in 60 innings while giving up only one homer. The signing is for one year at $850,000 with performance bonuses equaling an additional $ 650,000. Good job, Omar!

Phillie Four-peat?

Well here we are again… spring training. With it comes a sense of optimism and hope for all teams, no matter how the year before played out. For this Philadelphia Phillie team, it isnt a stretch to expect good things for the upcoming season. This team is coming off of three straight NL East first place finishes and back-to-back World Series appearances. They are for the most part, an identical roster of the 2009 team but will it be enough to lead the division in 2010?

Their pitching rotation says good-bye to Cliff Lee who was great in the second half for the Phillies last year. He was downright dominant in the post-season in 2009 as well. But they did bring in arguably the best pitcher in the game in one, Roy” Doc” Halladay. If the Phillies had decided to keep Lee this team would have easily won 100-plus games this year. The rest of the rotation rounds out with apparently a now very hittable Cole Hammels, a young and consistent J.A. Happ, Joe Blanton and 47 year-old Jaimie Moyer. The rotation is not strong unless Hammels rediscovers himself. But with the offense this team brings to the plate once again they should get by with mediocre starting pitching.

This team can flat out rake! At home or on the road it doesnt matter. And clutch? Well, everytime i watch, they play the game intense and smart for 27 outs. This group is relentless and whatever they dont have in starting pitching aside from Halladay, they’ll make up for with their killer instinct and desire to win. No need to mention stats here. The lineup speaks for itself. Rollins, Victorino, Utley, Howard, Werth, Ibanez, Polanco and Ruiz. Bringing in Polanco was a great move and fits the Phillie mold. The defense is very solid all the way around, except maybe for Ibanez in left field.

The relief pitching is ok, but will be upgraded if both J.C. Romero and Brad Lidge can return to full strength from their injuries.

This team made minimal upgrades in the offseason, but may have done just enough to clinch a fourth straight division title. The Braves will definitely give them a run for their money  and make for an exciting finale to the regular season when the teams meet in Atlanta October 1-3.

Predicted Finish: First in the NL East (89-73)