words // Luis Sanchez
Miguel Cabrera continues to tear up the league with the bat as his Detroit Tigers took home to AL Central Crown for the second season in a row last night.
Aside from the Tigers’ division-clinching victory, Miguel Cabrera continued to move that much closer to officially taking home the elusive Triple Crown. Taking down the Royals 6-3 for the big win, Cabrera was the difference maker with four hits and a sixth inning homerun.
Cabrera currently leads the league with a .329 batting average, 44 homeruns and 137 RBI’s. The Tigers 3rd baseman’s stellar play has led a late-season surge by the star-studded Tigers, who were under .500 going into July and chasing the Chicago White Sox atop the division all season long.
Enjoy a look back at the Tigers’ division-clinching victory below, as part of our latest Eastbay MLB Watch.
images via ESPN
Miguel Cabrera takes batting practice in the New Balance NBGruve 1157.
Alcides Escobar misplays a ball in a pair of PE Air Max Gamer Nike Baseball cleats.
Miguel Cabrera belts one of his four hits in 823 Mid New Balance baseball cleats.
Tigers’ Pitcher Rick Porcello fields a bunt in the Under Armour Ignite III.
Andy Dirks slides into third with his Nike Diamond Elite Pro Batting Gloves.
Jose Valverde celebrates the Tigers’ division-clinching win in 823 Mid New Balance baseball cleats.
Miguel Cabrera celebrates with Tigers’ Manager Jim Leyland.
Tigers’ ace Justin Verlander is showered with champagne during the post game celebration.
The Detroit Tigers celebrate their second division title in a row.
words // Brennan Hiro Williams and Luis Sanchez
The 83rd MLB All Star Game took place this week in Kansas City, Missouri, pitting the Senior Circuit against the Junior Circuit in front of a sold out Kaufmann Stadium crowd.
Detroit Tigers slugger Prince Fielder kicked things off on Monday night by winning his second Home Run Derby. Fielder became only the second player to win multiple Derbies, following all-time great Ken Griffey Jr.
On Tuesday night, the National League reigned supreme in an 8-0 All Star Game victory, led by the four San Francisco Giants representatives. Melky Cabrera was named All Star Game MVP at the conclusion of the night, proudly hoisting his trophy above his technicolor orange Nike Air Max MVP Elite cleats.
Check out what was on the feet of this year’s All Stars in the photos below.
Prince Fielder wins the 2012 Home Run Derby in the Home Run Pack edition Nike Air Max MVP Elite.
Fernando Rodney jokes around in the Spine Highlight Under Armour baseball cleats.
The Kung Fu Panda, Pablo Sandoval, ropes a bases-clearing triple in the top of the first inning wearing Under Armour baseball cleats.
Andrew McCutchen wears the newest signature Nike baseball cleats from the Nike Swingman line.
Bryce Harper wears the National League version of the new Highlight Under Armour Baseball cleats.
Cole Hamels delivers to the plate in an upcoming pair of adizero adidas baseball cleats.
Curtis Granderson swings through pitch in his New Balance MB4040 All Star Player Exclusives. Buster Posey is entertained.
Matt Holliday wears a special PE version of the Air Max MVP Elite Nike Baseball cleats.
Cubs shortstop Starlin Castro wears an all blue PE version of the Air Max MVP Elite Nike Baseball cleats.
The Salvelinus of Swat, Angels rookie Mike Trout, steps in the box wearing the Air Max MVP Elite Nike Baseball cleats.
Like his teammate Brian Wilson before him, Melky Cabrera shut it down in his all orange Air Max MVP Elite Nike Baseball cleats.
words // Brennan Hiro Williams
Baseball fans witnessed several brilliant pitching campaigns in 2011, though none were more spectacular than the season-long clinics put on by Cy Young award winners Justin Verlander and Clayton Kershaw.
Who will win the Cy in 2012? Be sure to leave your predictions in the comments below. Now let’s take a look at some of the premier arms from around the league:
Images via Y! Sports
Big Time Timmy Jim switches things up again with the New Balance 40/40.
The 2011 AL MVP and Cy Young, Justin Verlander wears Reebok baseball cleats.
Doc Halladay (Nike) leads the stacked Phillies pitching staff in their hunt for another NL East pennant.
Under Armour athlete and 2011 NL Cy Young winner Clayton Kershaw delivers a two-seam fastball.
Vallejo, California’s own CC Sabathia stretches out in his player exclusive Jordan Diamond Cat baseball cleats.
One of two Cy Young winners on the Phillies staff, Cliff Lee sets out for his second award in the Nike Air Show Elite 2.
David Price, Nike athlete and ace of the talented Rays staff, takes his long stride towards the plate.
Jered Weaver looks for another 6-0 start in 2012 wearing the Nike Air Show Elite 2.
words // Brennan Hiro Williams
The 2012 MLB season officially kicks off tomorrow when the Oakland Athletics and Seattle Mariners start a two game-series in Japan at the famous Tokyo Dome.
The tour of Japan started for the two teams earlier this week, including exhibition games against Japan’s two most beloved teams, the Hanshin Tigers and Yomiuri Giants, and an important goodwill visit to the city of Ishinomaki, which was devastated by the 2011 earthquake and tsunami (the MLB is donating $500,000 towards the city’s reconstruction efforts).
The series features several interesting storylines, including the MLB debut of Cuban defector Yoenis Cespedes and the return of Mariners superstar Ichiro Suzuki to Japan.
The Mariners will send ace Felix Hernandez to the hill against resurgent A’s pitcher Brandon McCarthy in game 1. Your baseball fandom will be tested, however, as tomorrow’s game starts at 6:00am ET.
Photos via Y! Sports.
A’s catcher Kurt Suzuki (Nike Shox Gamer) launches a solo home run against the Hanshin Tigers.
Highly touted prospect Dustin Ackley (Nike Air Huarache LWP90) goes deep against the Yomiuri Giants.
The A’s have a super prospect of their own at second base – Jemile Weeks fields grounders with his new Wilson A2000 series glove.
Newly acquired A’s outfielder Josh Reddick (New Balance 40/40) slides home past Hanshin catcher Akihito Fujii.
Former Tohoku Golden Eagle and 2008 Sawamura Award winner Hisashi Iwakuma delivers a pitch wearing Nike Baseball gear.
A’s speedster Coco Crisp takes a hack in the new adidas adiZero 5-Tool.
The man, the myth and the legend – Ichiro returns to Japan.
words // Brennan Hiro Williams
Tonight we learned that the Texas Rangers won the right to negotiate with Japanese superstar pitcher Yu Darvish, placing a record $51.7 million bid on the posted player.
For those out of the loop, Yu Darvish has established himself over the past seven years as the best baseball player outside of the MLB. The half-Japanese, half-Iranian phenom took the Nippon Pro Baseball league (NPB) by storm in 2006, leading the Nippon Ham Fighters to a Japan Series title under then-manager Trey Hillman. Darvish was two years removed from high school.
Darvish’s 2011 campaign resulted in a jaw-dropping 276/36 K/BB ratio, 18 wins — 10 coming by complete game with 6 shutouts — and a 0.83 WHIP in 232 innings. The 25-year-old hurler will leave the NPB with a Japan Series title, two gold medals (Olympic and WBC) and two MVP awards under his belt.
An athletic 6-foot-5, 220 pounds, with an expansive repertoire and an aggressive approach on the mound, Darvish is well-suited for the American game. The question now is if he will be able to help the Texas Rangers get over the hump. The team has lost in back-to-back World Series, lacking, appropriately enough, the elite pitching to compete when it counts the most. The addition of Darvish could be game-changing.
The Rangers now have 30 days to work out a contract with Darvish. Adding Yu to a rotation with a reconverted Neftali Feliz and a surging Derek Holland has scary potential – all are 25 and under. If a deal cannot be worked out, Darvish will return to the Fighters in 2012.
Photos via Y! Sports.
Darvish delivers to the plate in Nike Baseball cleats at the 2009 WBC.
Derek Holland had a great 2011 World Series, pitching in Under Armour cleats.
Neftali Feliz, wearing 3N2, will make the full-time switch from closer to starter in 2012.