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Old 12-24-2003, 03:50 AM   #1
Mr RedBird
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Who is the most improved team this off season?

Angels have strengthened their rotation with Colon and Escobar to go with their strong bullpen.

Orioles have to be better with the acquasitions of Tejada and Lopez.

Astros deserve some consideration as well as they have notched up Andy Pettitte and soon will have Roger Clemons as well giving them a scary starting four.

Yankees - always look stronger after an offseason and this year is no exception. Signing Sheffield and trading for Brown, and Vasquez once again makes them the preseason favorites to win it all. Fortunately the games still have to be played though.
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Old 12-24-2003, 01:08 PM   #2
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I must admit that I like what the Angels have done. When the AROD deal was first talked about, Nomar was supposed to go to the Angels for Washburn, which would have also strengthen the team.

Orioles probably need to get another pitcher along with Vlad to be able to contend with the Yanks and Sox. My understanding is that they are trying to get Ponson back and even if they sign Vlad to a big contract, they will still have enough left to do just that.
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Old 12-24-2003, 03:01 PM   #3
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The Blue Jays have addressed thier porblems too. They have a good rotation now... but still need some more players in the bully.
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Old 12-25-2003, 02:21 AM   #4
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Don't forget the Cubs moves. They have addressed their bullpen woes (with the signing of Hawkins), strengthened their team at 2B with Todd Walker, and at 1B with Lee. They are in the race to sign Greg Maddux and are not out of the IRod sweepstakes yet, either.
In the AL, the Red Sox have done as much as anyone to strengthen their team.
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Old 12-27-2003, 11:11 AM   #5
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....and what about the Phillies going out and getting Billy Wagner....is just what the doctor ordered in Philly land. So freakin' glad to get rid of Mesa!
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Old 12-27-2003, 01:33 PM   #6
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Good point, Bobby. By the way, welcome to the boards. I hope you can put up with the Yankee fans here (just kidding guys).
Wagner could have made the difference for the Phillies last season and they should be right in the hunt for the divisional title next season. They got a good starter in Milton (I hope his body holds out -- he's what we call an "over-trainer" at times). He should fit in nicely with the young guys that they have in their rotation.
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Old 12-27-2003, 02:47 PM   #7
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Thanks catman Gotta feel good about the Phillies chances this year. Pat has to have a better year, and I think he will. He has talked to McGwire, and evidently Mark told of his exploits early in his career when he had a similar type year.

Bell continues to be a question mark at third!...and really time will tell if he can regain his prowess that he had in San Fran

If they can stay healthy, you gotta believe that they compete for the nl crown.
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Old 12-28-2003, 04:36 PM   #8
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Bell was solid last year with the glove...when he wasn't injured. Even if he doesn't hit as well as he did in San Fran, you gotta figure he's going to be the eight hitter in the line up.

As for Burrell talking to McGwire, just because you talk to somebody doesn't mean you are going to change your game. He had Mike Schmidt to talk to last season and Schmidt has more hitting knowledge in his left toe than McGwire has.
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Old 12-28-2003, 05:45 PM   #9
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Well Doug I have to repectfully disaree with you there. Mark's career at the plate is very much as impressive as Mikes! If you look at the numbers, both are very similar. If I am not mistaken, Mark hit about 40 homeruns more than Schmidt. I think Schmidt had more bi's but also played in quite a few more games then Mark. Where I believe Mike left Mark in the dust was in the field!

As far as fielding, in only 85 games Bell had the 3rd highest error total for the team. I am sure playing with injuries had an effect on his play. He hit below the Mendoza line, as well!
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Old 01-01-2004, 09:08 PM   #10
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The key focus I would say was the bullpen.


Pitchers----2004

Francis Beltran
Joe Borowski (Closer)
Matt Clement (SP)
Juan Cruz (SP) ??
Kyle Farnsworth
Angel Guzman
LaTroy Hawkins
Jon Leicester
Kent Mercker
Sergio Mitre
Renyel Pinto
Mark Prior (SP)
Mike Remlinger
Felix Sanchez
Steve Smyth
Carlos Vasquez
John Webb
Todd Wellemeyer
Kerry Wood (SP)
Carlos Zambrano (SP)

Plus:

Derek Lee, Michael Barrett, Todd Hollandsworth, Jose Macias, Todd Walker

AND still looking for Pudge Rodriguez

Departures:

RHP Antonio Alfonsucka, 1B Hee Seop Choi, LHP Shawn Estes, OF Doug Glanville, LHP Mark Guthrie, 1B Eric Karros, OF Kenny Lofton, C Damian Miller, OF Troy O'Leary, RHP Dave Veres, IF Tony Womack.

(Cubs.com)
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