Hanley Ramirez is probably the best hitting shortstop in the game today, hitting .292 with 17 home runs as a rookie and pushing it to 29 home runs last season with a .332 average. And now?
Dan Uggla has shown himself to be one of the most powerful bats at his position, logging over 25 home runs for two straight seasons. His bat is starting to heat up again this season.
Yet both are unproven.
Josh Willingham has steadily had an OPS over .850 these past two seasons. He has always shown himself to be a patient hitter, but his offense hasn’t translated into a .300 batting average. Right now he is showing that.
And according to the Braves, he is unproven.
Mike Jacobs, Jorge Cantu – if they are unproven, then that should be a compliment. Because they are actually working on proving themselves to be much better hitters than they have shown in the recent past. For Jacobs, it is about hitting better in situations and manufacturing runs. Cantu just has to show his 2005 season was not a fluke.
As with the rest of the Marlins, they are all, collectively, showing signs of massive improvement. So, if they are unproven, then perhaps that could be construed as a good thing as the Braves found out just how unproven the Marlins offense is – to a tune to a 7-2 rout.
The Marlins jumped out with 3 early runs in the first inning – a home run from Hanley Ramirez and another from Mike Jacobs. Both have 7 on the season.
This Marlin offense has proven something after 21 games – they are confident and they are not just about the longball. They are starting to generate runs the old fashioned way, too.
The Braves, in their arrogance, represent what the rest of the baseball media has become – a bunch of money chasing prognosticators. Gone are the days when the talking heads would actually talk about baseball skill, instead they focus on who spends the most money. As if that were a testament to worth. Check 2003 when the lowly Florida Marlins shocked the world – except for this fan – and won the World Series.
Funny thing is, I picked this team to grab 87-90 wins this season. After 21, they are well on the pace.