The 2016 MLB season is already off to an exciting start. The guys making the most headlines so far are the rookies. There’s been some good stories so far, with the most exciting one being Trevor Story. Trevor Story has hit 7 home runs in his first 6 big league games to start the season. 4 on the road in Arizona, and 3 at home in Colorado. Obviously his pace will slow down, but the fact he plays in Colorado gives him a chance to hit a scary amount of home runs this season.
Another big headline that took place in this first week of baseball was Dodgers starting pitcher, Ross Stripling. Ross Stripling made his MLB debut this past Friday night. Saying he did well would be an understatement considering he took a no hitter into the 8th inning. But after he gave up a 1 out walk (his 4th of the game) made his pitch count go up to 100 for the evening. For those of you who don’t know, Ross Stripling had Tommy John surgery forcing him to not pitch last season. So before the game started they had already said he was going to be on pitch count. With that said does that mean I agree with the decision to pull him? Absolutely not! This is a once in a lifetime moment to have a chance to throw a no hitter. I understand his pitch count was a little high but he was only 5 outs away from history. The moment he gave up a hit, then sure, pull him, but until then I think he deserved to stay in the game. Worst case if he did end up going the whole 9 innings and threw roughly 125-130 pitches then just skip his next start and give his arm an extra week to recover. The baseball gods obviously disagreed with Dave Roberts to take Stripling out of the game because the next batter hit a game tying home run, and the Giants would eventually win 3-2 on a walk off home run in the bottom of the 9th inning.
I know it’s only been a week, but let’s take a look at who’s been the early surprise team and who’s been the early disappointment team. The Earliest surprise team has to belong to the Baltimore Orioles, for the simple fact they’re the only undefeated team left in baseball. The Orioles were predicted to get last in the AL East but quickly shown they’re for real thus far. Their starting pitching has potential with pitchers like Tillman, Gallardo, and Jimenez. They also have one of the most powerful lineups in baseball. Unfortunately they also have a lot of guys who strike out a lot. With over 150 games left I don’t have the “baseballs” to say they’re going to win this division, or even make the playoffs, but I don’t think they’ll be as bad as they were expected to be this season.
One of the early disappointing teams has to be the Minnesota Twins. The Twins have started the season off 0-7. Their hitting just looks awful as Joe Maur, Eduardo Escobar, and Kurt Suzuki all lead the team with 2 RBI’s. The Twins weren’t suppose to be that good, but a start like this is just awful. They do have some potential on this team so to not win a game in your first 7 games is just terrible. Again, there’s still over 150 games left this season but I can confidently say the Twins won’t really turn this around. They won’t finish with the worst record in baseball, but they’ll definitely be down there. Hopefully the WNBA comes back soon so they can cheer on their Minnesota Lynx.