This Week in Baseball

-Taylor Ballinger, Matt Korte, Jeff Gangloff

Good morning, Nation. We’re back with our weekly installment of “This Week in Baseball”, where Taylor, Matt, and Jeff will highlight interesting and/or important stories happening throughout baseball. Jeff’s getting married this weekend (congratulations, Jeff!) and will be off the next couple weeks. As always, hope you enjoy – and let us know what you’ve been reading by posting in the comment section below.

What if MLB altered playoff seeding to give top teams another edge? Dayn Perry, CBS Sports

With the NBA revamping its playoff seeding, is it time for MLB to do the same? Perry advocates allowing the 1-seed in each league choosing the team they wish to play in the Division Series. Would certainly be interesting, and would provide some great ‘bulletin board fodder’ for the selected team. I’d rather see MLB do exactly like the NBA has done, where seeding is now done based on win-loss record alone. If the season ended today, the Cubs, despite holding a better record than the West-leading Dodgers and East-leading Mets, would have to play on the road in the one-game wild card playoff. That doesn’t seem particularly fair to me. (Ballinger)

In Bartolo they trust, Erik Malinowski, Sports on Earth

If you’re the Mets, what do you do with Bartolo Colon when the playoffs roll around? He’s been their best pitcher in the second half (HE’S 42 YEARS OLD!), but does he have the dominant stuff that’s needed to succeed in the postseason? I don’t know. But, if they put it up to a vote, I’d vote for as much Bartolo as possible. He’s one of the more entertaining players in baseball…and isn’t that what this is? Entertainment? #longlivebartolo (Ballinger)

Hot Seat!  Should these MLB Manager be Fired? By Jesse Spector via Sporting News

As the MLB regular season comes down the back stretch, it’s the perfect time to start thinking about next year; and who will be leading each team through the next set of 162 games.  For the past month, several names have come up over and over as current managers most likely to be let go by their current team; Matt Williams in Washington as his team fades into the distance behind the Mets, Bryan Price as the Reds were the first team this year statistically eliminated from contention, and Fredi Gonzalez as the Braves have gone through a 20 game stretch of being absolutely pummeled by opponents.  But who else tops the list of Managers on the hot seat?  This article lists nine managers likely out for next season (Korte).

MLB Ace Cole Hamels’ Star Power Stretches 9,000 Miles Away to Africa by Scott Miller via Bleacher Report

Almost every day we read or see a story of a pro athlete doing something, well, stupid…drugs, violence, acts or arrogance or privilege…so it’s always nice and appropriate to highlight a story of a pro-athlete putting their celebrity and wealth to good use.  The article details Cole Hamels and his wife and how their honeymoon nearly 10 years ago put into motion a life-long passion to help those less fortunate.  The article highlights Hamels’ charity and his work to bring help to those in desperate need (Korte).