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The MLB Good, Bad & the Ugly is back & for July of the 2015 MLB Season. Thanks to ESPN.com & MLB.com for stats that are included in this article.
The Good#1: Cole Hamels No Hitter vs. the Cubs on Saturday– If this was Cole Hamels’ last start with the Phillies, it was a beauty. A prime target for teams looking for starting pitching prior to Friday’s non-waiver Trade Deadline, the left-hander threw a no-hitter in the Phillies’ 5-0 victory over the Cubs on Saturday at Wrigley Field. After all, Hamels had more hits himself — he doubled in the eighth — than Chicago did in the game. It was the third no-hitter in the Major Leagues this season (Chris Heston andMax Scherzer) and first time the Cubs have been no-hit since the Dodgers’ Sandy Koufax did so on Sept. 9, 1965, throwing a perfect game in a 1-0 win. That was 7,920 games ago. The last no-hitter at Wrigley was Sept. 2, 1972 by the Cubs’ Milt Pappas.The game ended with Kris Bryant flying out to center fielder Odubel Herrera, who dove at the warning track to make the grab. It was Herrera’s second hit-saving catch of the game as he robbed David Ross of a potential double in the eighth. Once the Phillies realized Herrera had caught Bryant’s ball, they mobbed Hamels in the infield to celebrate. This was the 13th no-hitter in Phillies history in a season which the Phillies & fans hasn’t had much to cheer about.
The Good#2: 2015 HOF Weekend– Three pitchers who became dominant after trades and a rock-solid catcher-turned-second baseman have a new moniker — Hall of Famer.
Randy Johnson, Pedro Martinez, John Smoltz and Craig Biggio were inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame on Sunday and basked in the spotlight one more time with at least 40,000 fans cheering from the sun-drenched field beyond.
For Martinez, the last to speak, the moment was magical as scores in the crowd waved Dominican flags for one of their own. Martinez, who delivered part of his speech in Spanish, and former Giants great Juan Marichal, elected in 1983, are the only Hall of Famers from the Caribbean nation, although Martinez expressed confidence that more would join in the near future.
Playing through an era tainted by steroids and ruled by offense — compliments of bulked-up sluggers, a smaller strike zone and smaller ballparks — Johnson, Martinez and Smoltz proved indomitable. They combined for 735 wins, 11,113 strikeouts and nine Cy Young Awards.
Biggio, who played four positions in his 20-year career, all with the Houston Astros, was indefatigable, becoming an All-Star at second base and behind the plate. Martinez, 219-100 for his career, helped the Boston Red Sox break an 86-year-old World Series drought in 2004 and is the first Boston pitcher inducted. He grew up with five brothers and sisters in a one-room home on the outskirts of Santo Domingo and credits brother Ramon, a starter with the Dodgers during Pedro’s rookie season in Los Angeles, as a key to his career.
Johnson became a 20-game winner in 1997 and won four consecutive Cy Young Awards with the Arizona Diamondbacks, leading them to the World Series championship in 2001. He finished with 303 victories in 22 seasons.
Smoltz won the 1996 Cy Young award and reached the playoffs 14 times with Atlanta. The Braves won five pennants and the 1995 World Series with Smoltz on the roster. He’s the first pitcher to win more than 200 games and save at least 150 games. He is also the first player inducted with Tommy John surgery on his résumé.
The Bad: Tampa Bay Rays Batting after All Star Break– Since the start of the 2nd half the Rays continue to struggle on offense, since the end of the All Star Break the Rays have only scored 24 runs, 24 RBI’s, .227 Batting Average & .289 OPS, only the Atlanta Braves are worse since the start of the 2nd half, just bad.
The Ugly: The Red Sox are officially fading after All Star Break- The Red Sox from their last game in the 1st half to now, the Red Sox are 2-10 & have lost 8 straight. The Sox have only scored over 4 runs once since the start of the 2nd half. The Red Sox are 44-56 & should be sellers before the Non-Waiver Trade Deadline of Friday. Just Ugly.