Dusty Baker Can Bring Back Two Things For The Houston Astros This Postseason…A Championship and Respect

Dusty Baker Can Bring Back Two Things For The Houston Astros This Postseason…A Championship and Respect

Well, Dusty Baker and the Houston Astros are back on their postseason grind to win their first World Series championship since their infamous “sign stealing” stained one back in 2017. Let’s just say that Dusty Baker’s postseason start had some drama…in a good way of course.


Yordan Alvarez sent everyone home happy with a two-out, three-run home run to cap off a classic 8-7 win in Game 1 of the American League Division series over the Seattle Mariners. MLBbro JP Crawford helped Seattle build a lead by contributing his first postseason homer. But a managerial gaffe by Seattle manager Scott Servais turned a 7-3 Mariners lead into a heartbreaking loss.

What’s the difference between this Houston Astros team and the 2017 squad?

The manager. Dusty Baker wasn’t there.

It seems the MLBbro icon, Dusty Baker has spent his whole life playing the game of baseball. He’s been a manager for so long, most forget that he played 19 years in the big leagues for four teams. His lone World Series championship was with the Los Angeles Dodgers when the world was caught up in Fernando-mania when rookie pitcher, Fernando Valenzuela looked into the heavens and aced the New York Yankees in 1981.


But few players in the history of MLB have dominated the managerial profession the way Dusty Baker has. As good a player as Dusty was throughout his career, his shine as skipper will be what fans will always remember in the realms of history. Baker is the first manager to make the playoffs and win division titles with five different teams. He’s the ninth manager to win pennants in both the National and American Leagues. But there’s one honor, our MLBbro manager wants to erase from the record books…

He’s at the top of the list of managers WHO HAVE NOT won the World Series.

Even though he led the San Francisco Giants to the 2002 World Series and the Houston Astros to the 2021 World Series, his teams came up just short of the grand prize. The 2021 loss probably means more to Baker and the Astros than baseball fans realize. A victory would have brought redemption and respect back to the franchise.

Despite the franchise’s recent success culminated by a 2017 World Series win over the Los Angeles Dodgers, the eye-rolling continues not only from fans but from fellow players after Major League Baseball sanctioned the Astros for sign stealing on the base paths. How bad did this get? Check out how this year’s MLBbro MVP, Aaron Judge, felt about it after finishing second in the MVP voting in 2017 to Houston’s Jose Altuve via The New York Times in 2020…

“I was pretty mad, pretty upset,” Judge said. “To hear that you got cheated out of that opportunity, that’s tough to kind of let go.”

Judge added, “I was sick to my stomach.”

Fast forward to last week, when San Diego Padres pitcher Joe Musgrove, who was on that Astros 2017 World Series winning team showed that the embarrassment of the scandal was in-house as well.

“I still don’t feel great about wearing that ring around or telling people that I was a World Series champion on [that Astros team],” Musgrove said via The Associated Press. “I want one that feels earned and that was a true championship. So that’s the goal.”

Here’s where an MLBbro icon in Dusty Baker can make history in ways few in sports are able. He can exorcize some demons on one of the most embarrassing scandals in recent baseball history by bringing home a clean World Series championship to garner some respect for the Houston Astros.



Dusty Baker was brought in to stabilize a franchise that was supposed to sink back into oblivion. After the franchise was fined $5 million and stripped of several future top draft picks, Baker took over in 2020 and still found a way to lead the team to the ALCS in the pandemic-shortened season despite finishing the season under .500.

While most believe that the Los Angeles Dodgers will ease their way into another World Series title, the Houston Astros’ ascension to being one of the best teams in the American League has been overshadowed by the Aaron Judge record-breaking home run watch. The baseball Gods are shaping up a rematch of the 2017 World Series showdown that has been historically controversial.

If this rematch happens, the Astros have two advantages.


Sure the Dodgers have pitching, but the Astros are loaded. Justin Verlander is eyeing his second ERA title, (1.80) and has dominated all season long. With Lance McCullers Jr (2.27 ERA), Luis Garcia and Christian Javier, the Astros are top-ranked in innings pitched by their starters (940 innings) and second in ERA (2.98).

The bullpen consisting of Ryne Stanek, Ryan Pressly, Rafael Montero, Bryan Abreau and Hector Nerris is the best bullpen in baseball and it’s not even close.

The Dodgers have been so good it covers up the closer concerns that have arisen at the end of the season. The Astros are ready.


Sure it’s easy to mention Dusty Baker in the battle of the MLBbro managers in the final series but pay attention to the aforementioned words. Dave Roberts took over an established winner and kept the winning going along. Dusty’s situation required patience and a ton of adjustments that may have saved a franchise. If it comes down to adjustments in the World Series, look for Baker to make the biggest one.

This is a huge year for Dusty Baker and the Houston Astros. Baker is not getting any younger being one of only three managers to coach past the age of 70 and this could be one of his final chances. The Astros want to be known more for raising a championship trophy and not for this infamous video…


If the Astros win, it’s Dusty Baker that will own the spotlight.

Triston McKenzie Was Dominant In His MLB Playoff Debut As The Guardians Shutout The Rays

Triston McKenzie Was Dominant In His MLB Playoff Debut As The Guardians Shutout The Rays

Cleveland Guardians starting pitcher Triston McKenzie anchored a pitching gem on Saturday at Progressive Field that turned into a 15-inning marathon, as the Guardians defeated the Tampa Rays 1-0 to win their AL Wildcard series 2-0 and advanced to play the New York Yankees in the American League Division Series.

Picked by many to finish last in the American League Central, 2022 marks the fifth time in seven years that Cleveland has made the playoffs under Terry Francona. Triston, who has been a key part of the Guardians’ success this season, took to the mound Saturday in his playoff debut, looking to close out the Rays.

McKenzie was dominant all day, allowing only two hits and two walks over six innings while striking out eight batters. He didn’t allow his first hit until the fifth inning and collected 13 swing-and-misses.

Former Cleveland Ace CC Sabathia was on hand for McKenzie’s gem and has been extremely supportive of the young stud looking to make his own name in The Land. Triston spoke on their relationship earlier this season.

“It just kind of blew my mind to see how some of the people that came before me really just pay attention to the game now and look at guys like me, or look at guys around the league, and are really invested in their careers,” said McKenzie.



One current player who has also offered support to Mckenzie is Chicago Cubs starter and fellow Black Ace Marcus Stroman. Stro made a bet in January that if Triston could finish the season with over 160 innings pitched and an ERA of 3.70 or lower that he would buy him a Rolex.

Easy money. McKenzie cruised past both numbers, posting a 2.96 ERA over 191.1 innings pitched. Stroman, always a man of his word, made sure Triston got his Rolex.

First Baseman Josh Naylor had a tough day at the plate but was able to contribute in the field. He made two big plays, first an amazing scoop on a Jose Ramirez throw that saved a run & ended the top of the 12th inning, then another to end the 13th.

The Guardians would walk the Rays off in the 15th, with rookie Oscar Gonzalez getting to be the hero after taking former Guardians starting pitcher Corey Kluber deep to end it. The walkoff may have won the game, but it was Mckenzie and the Guardians pitching staff that dominated this series. 

In 24 innings, the Cleveland Guardians pitching staff surrendered just one run while striking out 29 Rays. Clinching in two games allows Mckenzie and fellow starter Shane Bieber the opportunity to get their normal rest before facing Aaron Judge and the New York Yankees, who received a bye as the number two seed.

Game one of the American League Division Series is October 11th.

Josh Bell went oppo for a first-inning, two-run blast to open up the scoring in the Padres 7-1, Friday night Wildcard win at the Mets.

Josh Naylor, October Baseball Has Certainly Missed You

Josh Naylor, October Baseball Has Certainly Missed You

As the 2022 playoffs have arrived, the Cleveland Guardians have taken stride in September, as they pulled away from the Twins and the White Sox late to earn the third seed in the AL playoff bracket. A huge thanks can be made to their starting first baseman and middle of the lineup hitter.

Naylor played a total of 122 in the regular season, and has been a super consistent and reliable piece to Cleveland’s puzzle. He batted .256, with 20 home runs and 79 RBI. He had a .319 on-base percentage and a .452 slugging percentage. He had a total of 115 hits, while only striking out a total of 80 times. 

He only had one more strikeout than RBI, which just shows the terrific discipline he has and how much in control he is up at the plate.

The Cleveland Guardians began their postseason run with a 2-1 win against the Tampa Bay Rays, after a 2-run home run hit by Jose Ramirez. Naylor ended up going 1 for 3 with a base hit in the fourth inning.

Ramirez is the Guardians best player, and is arguably the best third baseman in all of the MLB. However, as we all know, in order to win those 13 games to be the last team standing, it takes everyone. While Ramirez will get all the praise, it is players like Naylor who are the unsung heroes of why this ball club is where it is.

And the postseason stats back it up too, as in October, he turns into an unstoppable wrecking force. As of game one, he has played only three games in the playoffs, with a total of 10 at bats in those games, and has gotten a hit six times in those 10 chances. Out of his six hits, four of them have been for extra bases. He has one home run, three RBI, and has scored three runs in the three games he has played.

A lot of people are expecting the Rays to make a solid run this postseason, meaning that they expect Cleveland to just take their beating from them and have their season end. But with Naylor, Ramirez, the terrific duo of ace Shane Bieber and young stud Triston McKenzie, as well as rookie sensation Steven Kwan, and led by one of the best managers in baseball Terry Francona, they have a very underrated squad.

It is important to note that it is not like the Guardians got a free bid into the playoffs because of a weak AL Central division, they did win 92 games this year, which is tied for third most in the AL this season. They are not some pushover that people may see them as, they are where they are because they earned it.

The AL better be very careful. If they keep overlooking them, Believeland can certainly make some noise, as they already have a 1-0 lead in their Wildcard matchup. And with Naylor’s smooth swing and electric energy he brings to the dugout, he will help lead the charge of the Guardians.

Central Hospital:  Once MLBbros Tim Anderson & Byron Buxton Went Down, Their Squads Didn’t Stand A Chance

Central Hospital:  Once MLBbros Tim Anderson & Byron Buxton Went Down, Their Squads Didn’t Stand A Chance

Chicago White Sox shortstop Tim Anderson and Minnesota Twins center fielder Byron Buxton are two of the biggest names in baseball, and with that type of fame comes great expectations. Unfortunately for both superstar MLBbros, this season failed to meet lofty expectations for one reason or another.  


MLBbros Beginning Key Series With Major Playoff Implications | Crunch Time


Both clubs will miss the playoffs this year, but how does that happen? 

Now of course the White Sox were the favorites entering the season, but after the Twins hot start turned into a hot couple of months there were some around baseball who thought Buxton and Co. could shock everyone and win the AL Central. First, let’s take a look at what went wrong in the Twin Cities.

Injury Bug Bites Buxton, Again

Buxton’s injury history has been well documented, especially here on MLBbro.com. It looked like we were finally about to get a full season of production out of Byron. He was hitting bombs and playing a Gold Glove caliber defense in center, and most importantly the Twins had jumped out to an early lead in the division.



That was until Buxton’s annual trip(s) to the injured list began yet again. Byron spent over a month on the shelf with a hip strain, and without their superstar, the chinks in Minnesota’s armor was quickly revealed. The Twins would slowly lose their grip on the division, and his return to the lineup was short-lived. After attempting to play through the pain of a sore knee, the first thing to send him to IR this season, Byron chose to undergo season ending knee surgery on Tuesday.

Buxton only played in 92 games this season, bringing his grand total of seasons with less than 100 games played to seven. That’s alarming when you consider the fact that he’s been in the league eight seasons and Minnesota opened the bank book for him with a $100M contract, expecting his injury woes to be behind him. Despite losing another season to injury, Byron seems optimistic about his season being done.

White Sox Stumbled and Never Recovered

Now injuries may have cut Tim Anderson’s season short as well, but the Chicago White Sox were mediocre at best even with TA in the lineup. They struggled to get to .500 on the season, and even when they did reach the mark they didn’t elevate much further. As it stands, the White Sox will most likely finish nearly 20 games under their projected 98 game win total. 



Anderson, much like Buxton in Minny, played well to start the season despite his teams struggles. He was still arguably the best leadoff hitter in the game, although his power numbers began to plummet. Now that we know torn ligaments in his hand were the cause of his season ending surgery, there should be some optimism around his power returning. 

Even if his power returns, chances are high that the White Sox will look like a completely different ball club. Their owner Jerry Reinsdorf is known for only wanting to win on his terms, and those terms never involve paying a high premium for mediocre results. Look for the Sox to make some changes this year, from the Hall of Fame manager on down. 

Although free agency is a few years away for Anderson, Sox fans should begin to wonder if Reinsdorf will even pay to keep him in Chicago. The White Sox have never given out a contract valued over $100 million in team history, and with his cache in the game today it’s safe to say that won’t be enough to keep TA7 in Chicago.