How Well Did You Pay Attention To This MLB Offseason? (Quiz)
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How Well Did You Pay Attention To This MLB Offseason? (Quiz)

What cooked on the hot stove for the past few months.

The MLB is the only major professional sports league not in session from early November through early February. But just because the action stops on the field, it doesn't mean the action is stopped period.

This is the time where the owners, GMs and everyone else in the behind the scenes personnel get ready for the next season, as the teams look to improve upon their rosters and increase their chances of winning next year's World Series.

Many MLB fans like keeping a close eye on the Hot Stove during these winter months, waiting to see who their team lands next, or which team makes the next big move.

So, how well did you pay attention this offseason?

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Ryan Zimmerman Is Absolutely Obliterating The MLB

Can you say Triple Crown?

Up until five years ago, no MLB player had won the Batting Triple Crown since Carl Yastrzemski in 1967. It was in the year 2012 when Miguel Cabrera put an end to the 45-year Triple Crown drought by leading the American League in batting average (.330), home runs (44), and runs batted in (139).

But looking more closely at the Triple Crown trend, one thing really sticks out. In fact, while that 45-year drought was ended and now sits at just five years, there is still an active drought of 80 years. That drought is among National League players. Dating back to Ted Williams in 1942, the six batters to earn the Triple Crown have come from the American League.

Joe Medwick, a left fielder that played for the St. Louis Cardinals, was and still is the latest National League batter to win the Triple Crown having done so in the year 1937. But if there was ever a good time for that 80-year drought to end, it's now.

Two words: Ryan Zimmerman.

Washington Nationals' first baseman Ryan Zimmerman, 32, hasn't played in more than 115 of the 162 games in an MLB season since 2013. He is constantly dealing with injuries, and while he is extremely talented, this makes him unpredictable from a production standpoint.

This season, the 13-year veteran hasn't left a single trace of doubt of what he is capable of doing when healthy. And that's probably a huge understatement.

Here's a list of statistics that Zimmerman leads the MLB in through May 8th.

  • Batting Average*: (.410; next highest in MLB and NL is .372)
  • Hits: (48; next highest in MLB is 44; next highest in NL is 44)
  • Home runs*: (13; tied for MLB lead, next highest in NL is 12)
  • RBIs*: (34; next highest in MLB and NL is 31)
  • Slugging Percentage: (.855; next highest in MLB is .760; next highest in NL is .743)
  • OPS: (1.304; next highest in MLB and NL is 1.222)

*=denotes Triple Crown category

Triple Crown in the National League? How about a Sextuple Crown in the entire MLB! And some of these categories aren't even close right now. Zimmerman is 38 thousandths higher than the next best batter from a batting average standpoint, 95 thousandths higher than the next best batter from a slugging standpoint, and 82 thousandths higher than the next best batter from an OPS standpoint. Amazing.

Let's not forget, though, that there is a long way to go this season. The Nationals own the best record in the NL at 21-12, meaning they have played just 33 games and have 129 to go. But the flat-out dominance that Zimmerman has put on display so far this season has made a statement that if he can stay healthy, look out MLB.

Look out, Joe Medwick.

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Which MLB Team Are You? (Quiz)

Talkin' baseball.

It's just about time for MLB's 2017 regular season to begin.

If you're like me and have been following the game for a long time, things seem a lot different than they did 10-15 years ago. The Yankees are all about their youth once again -- for the first time since the Core Four came up around 1995/1996. The Washington Nationals were still in Montreal before 2005. And yes, most importantly, the Chicago Cubs are the defending World Series champions for the first time in over 100 years.

It's definitely quite the time to be a baseball fan with the ever-changing landscape, and all the new, amazing, young talent coming into the game. So, take this personality quiz and see which MLB team you end up drawing.

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5 Horrible Times Umps Blew The Call

Check your eyes, blue!

Well, now that baseball season is here, you really should've expected a list like this.

We trust the boys in blue will try to get each and every call right. And with baseball now more accepting of instant replay than it was 10 years ago, there's an even bigger strive to make sure plays are called correctly.

Unfortunately, plenty of things slip through the cracks. The first game of this season -- the New Yankees vs. the Tampa Bay Rays -- also saw the first instance of a call being blown this season, even with replay. With that, here are five other times the umps got it wrong.

1. 1991 World Series (Game 2) -- Ron Gant.
Did you know that a fielder can use their hands and force a runner off the bag and get the out? Oh, wait, you can't? Well then I don't know what this ump was thinking when Twins first baseman Kent Hrbek pulled the Braves' Ron Gant off the bag and got the out.

2. A normal 6-3 play...except Helton wasn't close to first.
I apologize for putting you in the middle of a compilation, but this is the only footage of this call that I can find. It was a 2012 game between the Dodgers and Rockies, and umpire Tim Welke called an out at first. But look at the space between the bag and the foot of then-Rockies first baseman Todd Helton. Some have gone on record and called this the worst call ever.

3. A probably too tired ump just gives the game away.
This is the perfect example of what I call an "I wanna go home" call (complete with little kid whiny voice). In the bottom of the 19th, umpire Jerry Meals called a Braves runner safe at the plate...when the throw beat him by a mile. It might have had to do with maybe he didn't see the tag, but look at the footage and tell me that.

Now, some of you may argue that it's good because a baseball game doesn't need to be 19 innings, but what if the whole season came down to this call? What if this was a playoff game? Jerry Meals would have cost a team and its players a lot.

4. A World Series momentum shifter.
Imagine going down in history for your blown call that saw things in the World Series suddenly swing in favor from one team to another. Don Denkinger doesn't have to imagine it because he lives it.

With the St. Louis Cardinals three outs away from the 1985 World Series title, he ruled that Jorge Orta was safe at first. But, look at the footage again. Kansas City would go on to win Game 6 and force a Game 7, which the Royals won as well to win the 1985 World Series.

5. Perfection ruined.
For everyone my age, this is the blown call EVERYONE remembers. In June 2010, Detroit Tigers pitcher Armando Galarraga had achieved baseball immortality...except the umpire with the deciding call, Jim Joyce, said he didn't.

To Joyce's credit, he did feel like sh*t after the game, taking all blame in ruining the kid's history. His pitching performance instead goes down in MLB history as the "28-out perfect game." This play also was a significant catalyst in MLB eventually choosing to institute a replay system quicker.

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The Most Exciting Players To Watch In Baseball

Wonder if Bryce Harper is on the list....

Now that Opening Day for the MLB season is here, let us take a look at those players who make us hold in using the bathroom and silence conversations for a minute to watch them play. These aren't exactly the best players in the sport, just the players that any baseball fan enjoys watching perform.

Yoenis Cespedes
From being the Zack Lavine of the Home Run Derby over the past few seasons to pushing the New York Mets all the way to the World Series two years ago, Cespedes has been the best and most enjoyable player from the recent crop of Cuban exiles who have made their way to the MLB over the past few seasons.

His swing is so powerful, he makes the pitcher friendly confines of Citi Field look more like the hitter friendly Yankees Stadium. Oh yeah, he also has a cannon for a right arm. He is the closest thing we have to Bo Jackson today in baseball.

Bryce Harper
Very similar to Cespedes, Harper has the ability to put the baseball into the upper deck at any given time or pitch. If he gets on a hot streak, he can make the game comically easy.

He has been one of baseball's largest personalities since his 19-year-old self entered the big leagues five years ago. On the bases and in the outfield, he plays with a little more abandon then Cespedes, leading to both great and face palming plays. All this, and with a great head of hair.

Madison Bumgarner
Who says a pitcher can't hit? Honestly, we have a player out in San Francisco who can throw a complete, 10 strikeout game on the mound and then rip a ball 400 feet at the plate.

Forget comparing him to hitting pitchers in the past like Kerry Wood or Warren Spahn, compare this man to Babe Ruth! With the three time World Series winner, you get both flavors: A power hitter and a fantastic pitcher. Also, he drinks beer like this.

Giancarlo Stanton
The most powerful man baseball has ever seen! This is not hyperbole. On a daily basis, Stanton has the ability to hit balls 500 feet and line drives that get out the park in less than five seconds.

I demand a home run derby this year between Stanton and Cespedes. With the golden money ball they use for charity, they bats could feed every homeless person in the US. You couldn't sculpt a better power hitter for baseball than the Marlins outfielder.

Bartolo Colon
There aren't many people who look like Stanton, Cespedes, Bumgarner, and Harper, but anybody can look like Bartolo Colon: A pudgy man in his mid 40's who looks like he should be in the buffet line, not on the mound.

Yet, he's still kicking (or throwing) it after two decades, having the time of his life. And he can still play with any of these male models and workout fiends. He's everyone's favorite uncle playing a game he loves. Who can't root for that?

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Stephen Piscotty Hit By Baseball Three Times On His Trip Around The Diamond

That is..... unfortunate.

Some players get hit once at the plate and storm the mound to beat the living hell out of the pitcher. Stephen Piscotty doesn't seem like that type of guy.

He got hit three separate times on his way around the bases. Once at the plate, once going from first base to second base, and one as he is sliding into home. Piscotty tooks the shots like a man and didn't whine or complain like some of those one hit mound chargers out there (like this Little League girl).