New baseball season scouting reports

Now that baseball season has started, what I need from you are scouting reports.  What are the developments, prospects, promising new players, and issues for your favorite team?

It looks like Philadelphia is playing a hand with four aces (maybe five aces, but then the card game metaphor breaks down).   The Brewers seem poised to make a run, what with acquiring pitchers Zack Greinke and Shaun Marcum, two serious pitchers.  Washington is positioning itself to be good NEXT year, when the two first-round draft pick prodigies Stephen Strasburg and Bryce Harper might be ready.

So, all of you Cranach sports correspondents, please report.

You may also include predictions.

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About Gene Veith

Professor of Literature at Patrick Henry College, the Director of the Cranach Institute at Concordia Theological Seminary, a columnist for World Magazine and TableTalk, and the author of 18 books on different facets of Christianity & Culture.

  • http://www.greenleafblog.net Caleb Land

    The Braves don’t have any glaring weaknesses. As usual, they run the risk of losing major production from Chipper Jones when his inevitable injury occurs. If that happens, they will likely need Jason Heyward to turn into the monster he’s supposed to become or at least have new 1B Freddie Freeman have a similar year to Heyward’s last year. They also need similar production from Dan Uggla to what he has put up in years past.

    Other than that they have a solid young bullpen. A starting rotation with depth who is far cheeper and not much worse than the Phillies a stronger lineup and fewer injury problems than the Phillies. I think they will push them all year and at least wind up with the wild card, if not stealing away the division.

  • http://www.greenleafblog.net Caleb Land

    The Braves don’t have any glaring weaknesses. As usual, they run the risk of losing major production from Chipper Jones when his inevitable injury occurs. If that happens, they will likely need Jason Heyward to turn into the monster he’s supposed to become or at least have new 1B Freddie Freeman have a similar year to Heyward’s last year. They also need similar production from Dan Uggla to what he has put up in years past.

    Other than that they have a solid young bullpen. A starting rotation with depth who is far cheeper and not much worse than the Phillies a stronger lineup and fewer injury problems than the Phillies. I think they will push them all year and at least wind up with the wild card, if not stealing away the division.

  • http://enterthevein.wordpress.com J. Dean

    Go Cubs Go!

  • http://enterthevein.wordpress.com J. Dean

    Go Cubs Go!

  • D S

    The Brewers gave up four runs in the bottom of the ninth to lose the opener. The season is lost.

  • D S

    The Brewers gave up four runs in the bottom of the ninth to lose the opener. The season is lost.

  • DonS

    The Phillies (my hometown team as a child) will hold the NL East if its starting rotation stays healthy. Their run production and defense could be substantially down, however, with Jayson Werth gone and Chase Utley indefinite. The Braves, and even perhaps the Marlins, may well give them a good run.

    The Angels (my adopted hometown team since we live in Orange County) have been completely written off this year by the pundits. Several have them third in the AL West. That’s not going to happen. Oakland has formidable young pitching, but I don’t think they are ready for a division run yet. The Angels will duke it out with the Rangers for the division. The Angels’ rotation is solid, with Jared Weaver and Dan Haren solid, if not spectacular, anchors, and its bullpen has a bunch of good, hard throwing young pitchers. They just need to settle on a closer. Offensively, last year marked career lows for a number of solid hitters, plus the loss of Morales to a freak ankle injury. They should rebound offensively this year, and have more speed in the lineup, with Peter Bourjous in center every day now. Defense should be much improved.

  • DonS

    The Phillies (my hometown team as a child) will hold the NL East if its starting rotation stays healthy. Their run production and defense could be substantially down, however, with Jayson Werth gone and Chase Utley indefinite. The Braves, and even perhaps the Marlins, may well give them a good run.

    The Angels (my adopted hometown team since we live in Orange County) have been completely written off this year by the pundits. Several have them third in the AL West. That’s not going to happen. Oakland has formidable young pitching, but I don’t think they are ready for a division run yet. The Angels will duke it out with the Rangers for the division. The Angels’ rotation is solid, with Jared Weaver and Dan Haren solid, if not spectacular, anchors, and its bullpen has a bunch of good, hard throwing young pitchers. They just need to settle on a closer. Offensively, last year marked career lows for a number of solid hitters, plus the loss of Morales to a freak ankle injury. They should rebound offensively this year, and have more speed in the lineup, with Peter Bourjous in center every day now. Defense should be much improved.

  • EGK

    Comments from the Cactus League said that the best team there this year was “The 2015 Kansas City Royals.” It looks like the Royals farm system is about the bear fruit, but the key players will not be quite ready this year. Still, the young pitchers in the bullpen did quite nicely yesterday. Probably another 90 to 95 losses this year, either the cellar or barely out of it. But hope springs eternal!

  • EGK

    Comments from the Cactus League said that the best team there this year was “The 2015 Kansas City Royals.” It looks like the Royals farm system is about the bear fruit, but the key players will not be quite ready this year. Still, the young pitchers in the bullpen did quite nicely yesterday. Probably another 90 to 95 losses this year, either the cellar or barely out of it. But hope springs eternal!

  • Porcell

    With the addition of Carl Crawford in left field and Adrian Gonzalez at first (that allows Youklis to play his favorite position, third base) along with Elsbury and Pedroia back in good physical shape, the Red Sox look good on paper. Most pundits favor the Sox over the Yankees.

    The joker is pitching, both the regular lineup and the bull pen. Becket and Papelbon both had a bad year in 2010 and are questionable for 2011.

    Personally, knowing that most years the Sox will break your heart, I’m skeptical of this ill fated team’s chances.

  • Porcell

    With the addition of Carl Crawford in left field and Adrian Gonzalez at first (that allows Youklis to play his favorite position, third base) along with Elsbury and Pedroia back in good physical shape, the Red Sox look good on paper. Most pundits favor the Sox over the Yankees.

    The joker is pitching, both the regular lineup and the bull pen. Becket and Papelbon both had a bad year in 2010 and are questionable for 2011.

    Personally, knowing that most years the Sox will break your heart, I’m skeptical of this ill fated team’s chances.

  • SKPeterson

    The Rangers will win it all defying the machinations of the Red Sox and the Phillies, but I’ll be watching the Smokies, the AA affiliate of the Cubs. Interesting that the Cubs have done so poorly when their AA farm team has been at the top, if not winning, the division for the past several years. There must be some sort of force field at Wrigley that reduces player abilities for those whose uniform has a big C on it.

  • SKPeterson

    The Rangers will win it all defying the machinations of the Red Sox and the Phillies, but I’ll be watching the Smokies, the AA affiliate of the Cubs. Interesting that the Cubs have done so poorly when their AA farm team has been at the top, if not winning, the division for the past several years. There must be some sort of force field at Wrigley that reduces player abilities for those whose uniform has a big C on it.

  • Orianna Laun

    The new developments at Busch stadium are that they are now offering a kiosk selling yogurt, fresh fruit and wraps; a new item is some Food Network-inspired recipes. Included in the lineup from last season is the bacon-wrapped barbecue hot dog and pulled-pork potato skins.
    I also think there might be some baseball going on and perhaps something about a contract and Pujols.

  • Orianna Laun

    The new developments at Busch stadium are that they are now offering a kiosk selling yogurt, fresh fruit and wraps; a new item is some Food Network-inspired recipes. Included in the lineup from last season is the bacon-wrapped barbecue hot dog and pulled-pork potato skins.
    I also think there might be some baseball going on and perhaps something about a contract and Pujols.

  • Simone

    Caleb Land @ 1,
    I agree! The Braves look strong this year. It will be interesting to see how things go under Fredi Gonzalez’s managment. Go Braves!!

  • Simone

    Caleb Land @ 1,
    I agree! The Braves look strong this year. It will be interesting to see how things go under Fredi Gonzalez’s managment. Go Braves!!


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