What to watch in 2007

If you bet on baseball, chances are you are a baseball fan. I’m sure there are just some opportunists, but this one is for the fans. As we capitalize on the MLB season, we should also take some time to admire the milestones and intriguing stories along the way. Here are some things to keep in mind in 2007.

I must start with Barry Bonds’ search for the Hammerin’ Hanks home run record. Although controversies over illegal substances have marred Barry’s career, feel privileged to be able to witness history this year. Bonds is not a media darling by any means, but he is certainly one of the greats. It can be argued that many great players were not without controversy, but over time all this fades and we remember how great the player was. Ty Cobb was a notorious villain, but mostly known as one of the game’s all-time greats. You may not know that Bonds will pass Cobb for sixth on the all-time RBI list with just eight this season, and 66 will put him in fourth place overtaking Lou Gehrig.

In addition to Bonds’ quest for power, Houston’s Craig Biggio can join the 3,000-hit club with 70 more base hits. Bonds is the next close member to join the elite 3,000-hit club with 26 current members. Barry is 159 hits away, but hasn’t had that many hits in a season in nine years. Just to show you how elite this company is, the next closest is Julio Franco, 48, at 2,566. Steve Finley, 42, has 2,531, and Omar Vizquel, Ken Griffey Junior and Gary Sheffield are next on the list. I don’t think any of these guys have a serious chance. Look for Derek Jeter, who will need 850 more hits, to be the next 3,000 hitter after Biggio.

What about release milestones? Tom Glavine entered the 2007 MLB season just 10 wins shy of 300 wins to join his former Braves teammate Greg Maddux on the elite roster. This shouldn’t be a problem on a loaded New York team. With only 22 current members, this roster is even more elite than the 3000 roster. The Big Unit, Randy Johnson, returns to Arizona to try and reach the milestone and needs 20 wins at the start of the season. Next season Randy.

Going forward with launch, as the All-Star break approaches, we’ll start to wonder where The Rocket will land. He is the winningest pitcher in the history of the game with 348 wins, but with his half-season break Maddux continues to inch closer with 333 wins. Clemens is almost four years older than Maddux, who has found a home in a great pitcher’s park. He could be the little trader instead of the big Rocket at the top of the roster when all is said and done. Clemens’ second all-time strikeout total isn’t a sure thing either with Randy Johnson just 60 behind. The second is the best any pitcher can do, since no one is catching Nolan Ryan, who has 1,110 strikeouts vs. Clemens.

Well, that should keep us busy on both sides of the coin this season, which is going to be one you shouldn’t soon forget.

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *