Facts & Flukes

Dan
Becker
March 19, 2012 12:03 AM GMT
Last summer, it appeared that the Cardinals were making a big mistake by sending Colby Rasmus (OF, TOR) to the Blue Jays less than a year after he posted a breakout season. In the short term, the trade worked just fine for the Cards as they went on to win the World Series, while Rasmus went into the tank not long after joining his new team.
Dave
Adler
March 16, 2012 12:03 AM GMT
Coming off of an MVP season in which he took his team to the World Series in 2010, there were questions about whether Josh Hamilton (OF, TEX) could stay healthy long enough to produce a solid encore performance. Despite missing six weeks early in the season with a shoulder injury, the answer was a resounding yes.
Jeffrey
Tomich
March 15, 2012 12:01 AM GMT
At certain times last year, James McDonald (RHP, PIT) pitched like a budding ace—the kind of arm that led him to be considered a very solid prospect in the Dodgers organization. But he also saw the wheels come off all too often during starts. Two-thirds of his nine losses were PQS-0 outings. At 27, he should be in his prime. Is there a step up coming, or has he plateaued?
Dave
Adler
March 14, 2012 1:02 AM GMT
It sucks to get old – just ask Alex Rodriguez (3B, NYY), who turns 37 this summer. Rodriguez’s aches and pains have included hip surgery in 2009, groin and calf issues in 2010, and oblique tightness, a torn meniscus in his knee, and a sore thumb last year. Those injuries have taken a toll on his bottom line.
Brent
Hershey
March 13, 2012 1:03 AM GMT
While so many backstops come with some sort of caveat, Brian McCann (C, ATL) has been the rare catcher with the combination of batting average, power, and importantly, health. As he enters his age-28 season, is another repeat in the offing?
Dan
Becker
March 12, 2012 12:04 AM GMT
Throughout his MLB career, Matt Joyce (OF, TAM) had shown flashes of his ability but never managed to produce consistently enough to stick on the big league roster. Everything changed in 2011 as Joyce consolidated his versatile talents and enjoyed a mini-breakout season. So what's next for Joyce?
Joe
Hoffer
March 10, 2012 12:03 AM GMT
The last three seasons have arguably been the worst of David Wright's (3B, NYM) career. Coming off a season where he was struck with his first major injury (stress fracture/lower back), which cost him more than two months playing time, what can we expect in 2012?
Thomas
Kephart
March 09, 2012 12:03 AM GMT
Ervin Santana (RHP, LAA) appeared to be on his way to becoming one of the game's elite pitchers after his 2008 season. Elbow problems derailed him in 2009, but he has rebounded to establish himself as a solid workhorse starter. After consecutive seasons of skills recovery, there might even be more to come.
Jeffrey
Tomich
March 08, 2012 12:02 AM GMT
Over the last three years, Matt Cain (RHP, SF) has averaged 220 innings, an ERA just under 3.00 and 13 wins. At age 27, he's in his prime. Is it safe to assume another season like the last?
Dave
Adler
March 07, 2012 12:03 AM GMT
With 18 wins and an ERA well south of 3.00 in 2011, Jered Weaver (RHP, LAA) was rightly called the Angels’ ace and factored into the Cy Young discussion. After making a big splash in the off-season, the Angels are looking to go deep into the post season in 2012. Can Weaver deliver an encore performance?
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