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What We’ve Learned: Month 1 of The 2012 MLB Season

May 3, 2012

Baseball

One month into the 2012 season, and there has been no lack of stories around the MLB. Here is a recap of some of the most important story lines from April.

Bobby Valentine’s rough start in Boston

When Bobby V took the job in Boston, he had some difficult shoes to fill. Terry Francona did what no manager in Boston was able to in 86 years prior to 2004; win a MLB championship, along with another championship in 2007.

However, his departure from Boston was a bitter one. Between clubhouse controversy and the historical collapse at the 2011 season, it was time for him to part ways.

The Sox took a risk with the polarizing  Valentine, and it seemed as if it was a bad decision of historical nature in the beginning. His first controversy came after he called out team captain Kevin Youkilis stating that the third basemen was not “physically and emotionally into the game as he has been in the past”. This words stirred the already damaged clubhouse who started the season at 1-5.

Bobby Valentine donning the Red Sox jersey. So far, so average for the manager. Image courtesy of howigetit.com

Valentine later recanted his statements, but this didn’t stop the Sox from going on a 6 game losing streak which included a painful collapse against the Yankees after being up 9-0, and losing 15-9 to their arch-rivals.

However as of late , Valentine has definitely improved his job security, after recovering to a incredibly sluggish start; which included a 6 game  winning streak towards the end of the month; all of the wins coming on the road.

The Red Sox need to start building on their road success if they want to improve on their last place standing through April in the highly competitive American League East.

Albert Pujols Homerless Through April

The Los Angeles Angels were serious buyers in the offseason leading up to 2012. So far their abysmal 9-15 record and 8 game deficit to the Texas Rangers has indicated that they might not be getting much return on investment.

The biggest bust thus far is undoubtedly Albert Pujols. The Angels spent $240 million dollars over 10 years on the slugger, and as of April he is only at a .208 average and went without a home run through 92 at-bats in the month.

Pujos hasn’t adjusted well to life in the junior circuit. So far he has only accumulated 5 RBI’s and has yet to homer. Image courtesy of Getty Images.

Ryan Braun Answers His Critics

Perhaps no player had a more troubling offseason than Ryan Braun. Facing the loss of his clean-up man in Prince Fielder, along with a potential 50 game suspension after testing positive for elevated testosterone, later to be appealed successfully. With the media on his back still however the 2012 season did not look promising for the reigning National League MVP.

However he has continued to swing the bat quite well, and his critics (including myself) are beginning to eat their words.

Braun currently leads the brewers in all major offensive categories, and is second in the NL in home runs with 7.

Braun’s best performance of the season, and likely his career came in the last game in April against the San Diego Padres. Braun hit 3 home runs along with a 2-run triple, finishing the game 4-5 with 6 RBI’s.

Ryan Braun playing long ball at the less than friendly hitters park, Petco Park, in San Diego. Image courtesy of USA today

So Far So Good for Yu Darvish

With the history of big-money pitchers from Japan being far from successful there was reason for uncertainty amongst everyone with the Rangers 9 figure investment with Yu Darvish.

However through 5 starts he has accumulated a record of 4-0 and an impressive 2.18 ERA. His success may be due in part to the team batting for him, but a 4-0 record is a 4-0 record and the Rangers can only hope he continues to flourish throughout this season and seasons to come.

Darvish doing some work from the fielding aspect of the game. The Rangers hope that there $60 million signing of Darvish doesn’t become a flop. Image courtesy of The Dallas Morning News.

What in your opinion was the biggest story in April for the MLB. Leave your thoughts in the comment section!

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About Stefan Jagot

22-year-old Broadcasting and Cinematic Arts Major at Central Michigan University. The jack of all trades for TheFarmClub.net.

View all posts by Stefan Jagot

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One Comment on “What We’ve Learned: Month 1 of The 2012 MLB Season”

  1. Tim Says:

    Derek Jeter

    Reply

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