Friday, April 11, 2008

Flyers Lose First Game

The Flyers have just concluded their first playoff game with a 5-4 loss to the Washington Capitols. They will play again on Sunday in Washington. The Flyers played well in the first period and excellent in the second. But they played extremely sloppy in the third as they gave up three goals, including the winning one by Capitols' star Alexander Ovechkin. The Flyers are a horrible defense team and that showed tonight. They also back up and back up until they inevitably let in the goalie. If they continue to play such atrocious defense, coach John Stevens might as well send out no defensemen (at least nobody would screen Biron). Speaking of Stevens, if I were general manager Paul Holmgren, I would fire Stevens mid-series. Stevens has effectively taught the Flyers how to play ineffective defense. They make Phillies shortstop Eric Bruntlett look like a Gold Glove award winner. I like what Stevens has done with the offense (they have great depth). Maybe they should hire a defense coordinator and keep Stevens as a offensive coordinator (I'm looking at former Steelers coach Bill Cowher as a possible candidate). I still think the Flyers will win the series but if they don't, it will be because of their defense.

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Phils Open Season with Loss

The Phillies started their 2008 campaign yesterday with a 11-6 loss to the Washington Nationals. No reason to panic yet (well, maybe if you're Tom Gordon). Brett Myers didn't do well in his second career Opening Day start. He didn't do that bad either, but I'd like to see him go a little longer into games (he gave up 4 runs in 5 innings). J.C. Romero looked great in his perfect half inning. Tom Gordon got an out (but he also gave up five runs). Chase Utely and Jimmy Rollins both homered.

Here is how I expect the season to go:

American League East: This is a very competitive division. You know it's either going to be the Yankees or Red Sox winning the division. I like Toronto, but feel bad for them because they have to compete with the two teams with the highest payroll. The Yankees will have a shot, but they don't have enough pitching. The Red Sox have almost the same lineup as last years championship. Winner- Boston Red Sox

American League Central: The Tigers made the big news trading for Miguel Cabrera and Dontrelle Willis. They have a potent lineup that contains bats such as Magglio Ordonez, Gary Sheffield, and Curtis Granderson. Add Cabrera to that lineup and you got one of the best lineups ever. Justin Verlander is a proven ace. I like Cleveland and Minnesota but they won't be able to catch the Tigers. Winner- Detroit Tigers

American League West- Los Angeles is clearly the better team in this division. They added Torii Hunter and have a good lineup that includes superstar Vladimir Guerrero. The will run away easily with the division crown. Winner- Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim (or whatever)

American League Wild Card: New York Yankees

Cy Young: Josh Beckett

MVP: Miguel Cabrera

National League East: The big change in this division is, of course, the Mets trading for Johan Santana. The Mets had a big collapse last year and even Johan can save them this year. The Phillies potent lineup and the combination of Cole Hamels and Brett Myers will beat out the Mets. Winner- Philadelphia Phillies

National League Central: I think this is between two teams: the Brewers and the Cubs. The Cubs have a very good pitcher in Carlos Zambrano and a strong lineup. They will beat the Brewers but good times are not far down the road for the young Brewers. Winner- Chicago Cubs

National League West: This is one of the toughest divisions in baseball. You've got the Padres, D-Backs, and the Dodgers. Oh wait, I forgot about last years N.L. pennant winners: the Rockies. This division will come down to the wire, but in the end I think the D-Backs will win. They have the best rotation in baseball. Pitching wins you games. Winners- Arizona D-Backs

Cy Young: Dan Haren

MVP: Chase Utely- but the close runner-up (very close) will be David Wright.

World Series: Cubs Vs. Red Sox

Winner: Chicago Cubs