Week 1 is in the books for the 2011 MLB season, so what have we learned? Nothing. It's baseball and the season goes on forever. But that would be a really short post, and I'm bored. So let's take a look at what happened and what trends can expect to continue or reverse.
Boston Red Sox start 0-6
It's a lot of fun to watch a team analysts drooled over all offseason get off to their worst start in 65 years. Lots of fun. Too bad it won't last. The team will eventually win a game – probably 90 to 95 – when they start hitting. On the bright side, Josh Beckett and John Lackey will continue their declines.
Tampa Bay Rays start 0-6
What's scary about the Rays' start is that they haven't led at any point this season. B.J. Upton is the only one hitting, which is a scary thought. And unlike Boston, I don't think they recover from this start. They just aren't deep enough. One injury to a major play, which we're already seeing with Evan Longoria, cripples this lineup. Who knew that Manny Ramirez and Johnny Damon would suck so bad? Probably everyone.
Pittsburgh Pirates win two consecutive road series
Everyone who watches baseball knows this team has been terrible for 18 years. What they may not have known is that Pirates only won 17 games on the road last year and hadn't won consecutive series on the road since 2007. So it's safe to say this team should not be called road warriors.
|Maybe the Pirates will transform |
into Road Warriors some day.
This year should see multiple road series wins, though. Just look at their division and schedule. There are several times this season they get crappy teams back-to-back. They are going to do it again.
Neil Walker leads NL in RBIs
It's been a fun ride. It's sad it has to end this weekend. Walker is swinging a hot bat right now, but he is not a big run producer. He strikes out too much and doesn't walk enough. Guys are going to figure him out. Expect around 70 to 80 RBIs for him this year. Did you notice how I added the "s" to RBIs? All of you RBI people can suck it.
Baltimore Orioles lead AL East
This team is going to finish fourth in the division. Their improved lineup is going to get hurt. It's not a matter of if, but a matter of when. The pitching staff is also young and unproven. They are going to hit some bumps and it's uncertain how they will respond.
Texas Rangers hit 754 home runs this season
That might be a bit of a stretch, but they are absolutely crushing every pitcher they face. And Josh Hamilton hasn't even got in on the action. It's scary that this team has the potential to have four guys with 30 home runs when the season ends. Scary.
No one misses Brad Lidge
Did anyone even notice he didn't play the first week and probably won't play until July? Do Philly fans actually like him? I don't think so. They can find plenty of scapegoats to blame for any losses. Fans will probably forget he's on the team when he comes back.
Big Four in Philly rotation becomes Big Three
Cole Hamels was lit up in his season debut. He didn't last three innings. So was it a bit premature to lump him in with Roy Halladay, Roy Oswalt and Cliff Lee? After all, Buster Olney thinks Hamels will win the NL Cy Young because he faces other teams No. 4 pitchers. Never mind that the opposing pitcher plays no role in the lineups Hamels pitches against. That's not as important to Buster as the other team's pitcher.
The quick answer is no. Hamels is a very good pitcher and will be fine this year. He won't be as good as Halladay or Lee, but he and Oswalt will have very similar numbers.
Toronto's young rotation finishes in the top five for ERA in the AL
As much as I love Ricky Romero, Kyle Drabek and the rest of the young guns, this hot start won't last. Next year they might be the best rotation in the AL, but this year they will hit some roadblocks that will knock them out of the top five.
Jackson Browne - Before the Deluge