Musings: Coronavirus and Baseball

The whole sitting-around-and-doing-nothing thing has gotten me thinking about a handful of things related to baseball and the coronavirus, though. I’m going to run through some thoughts and discussions I’ve had over the past few weeks and if you disagree with any of it, my Twitter handle is @metsfanmax. Please let me know if you think I’m dead wrong—I’d love nothing more than to talk baseball with you right now.

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Yes, Mike Trout is Actually Underrated

I know it sounds ridiculous, but it’s true. Mike Trout, the best player in the history of baseball, is underrated.

The seven-time All-Star selection, two-time MVP, and six-time Silver Slugger is underrated.

Mike Trout is the highest-paid player in the game of baseball. He just inked a 12-year, $430MM contract extension. That money doesn’t do justice to just how good he’s been.

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Players to Watch in 2019

This is one of my favorite articles to write each year because, when all is said and done, I can go back to this article and pat myself on the back for the correct calls I made. And usually, I just ignore the misses and say “hey, who can really predict this stuff anyway?”

Last year, I made some good calls and some not-as-good calls. The two most notable picks were Miles Mikolas and Mike Clevinger. Mikolas threw 200.2 innings with a 2.83 ERA and 5.03 K/BB ratio after not throwing a major league pitch since 2014. Clevinger threw exactly 200 innings, setting career bests in ERA (3.02), K/BB ratio (3.09), WHIP (1.155), and FIP (3.52).

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The Case for the Hall: Todd Helton

Helton’s career was, for the most part, quietly great. He was not the subject of any controversy and once he earned the starting gig after the departure of Andres Galarraga, he just stayed on the field and hit. He was, without question, one of the best hitters in baseball during his tenure in the bigs—from 1999 to 2005, a span of seven seasons he triple-slashed .341/.442/.621—but never won an MVP award and only finished once in the top five. In 2000, unquestionably his best season, he triple-slashed .372/.463/.698 (!!!!), each leg of which led all major league players, and also hit 42 home runs and drove in a league-high 147 runs.

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