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by Steve Ehresman
Decades from today, when old-time baseball fans gather, they will still be discussing the remarkable 2016 MLB season. For the Chicago Cubs, 2016 was the year the franchise overcame the goat, the black cat, and Steve Bartman to capture their first World Series in 108 years. No more hoodoo. No more superstition. No more--excuse the expression--scapegoats. Finally, the Cubs were real, and their fans came on down to Wrigley Field to party like it was 1908.
Beyond the media buzz surrounding the Cubs, the 2016 season demonstrated that MLB itself is in great shape going forward. Young stars have taken over the game, playing dominant roles, as baseball pushes toward the front of the line to reclaim its crown as America’s favorite professional sport.
In 2016, a cast of players under the age of 25, like Manny Machado, Mookie Betts, Xander Bogaerts, Carlos Correa, Michael Fulmer (ROY), Francisco Lindor, Rougned Odor, Gary Sanchez, and Mike Trout (MVP) of the American League, along with Kris Bryant (MVP), Bryce Harper, Gregory Polanco, Corey Seager (ROY), Dansby Swanson, Noah Syndergaard, Trea Turner, and Christian Yelich of the National League, all displayed the potential for all-star careers.
Sadly, when the 2017 season dawns, the Miami Marlins will be without one of their brightest young stars. The death of Jose Fernandez has denied us the privilege of watching a potential Hall of Fame career unfold. Baseball will continue, but we all will be poorer for his loss.
Along with its budding young stars, Major League Baseball relied on a cast of proven hitters to propel it forward. Sluggers Mark Trumbo, Nolan Arenado, and Chris Carter excelled in home runs. Superb second basemen Jose Altuve and D.J. LeMahaieu captured batting titles. David Ortiz, Edwin Encarnacion, and Nolan Arenado set the pace for runs batted in. Jonathan Villar and Rajai Davis were the Robin Hoods of the base paths. Charlie Blackmon, Khris Davis, Brian Dozier, Daniel Murphy, Anthony Rizzo, Jean Segura, and Joey Votto joined them near the top of the record boards throughout the 2016 season.
Rick Porcello (A.L. Cy Young) and Max Scherzer (N.L. Cy Young) provided excellent pitching throughout the season, while aces like Kyle Hendricks, Korey Kluber, Jon Lester, and Justin Verlander gave baseball fans no shortage of superb pitchers to cheer. Closers like Zach Britton, Aroldis Chapman, Jeurys Familia, and Andrew Miller showed how bullpens can re-define baseball, especially in October.
The World Series was the highlight of the 2016 season, moving beyond the sports pages to capture the headlines of major newspapers. The Cleveland Indians and the Chicago Cubs, storied franchises joined by their years of frustration without a championship, met in a Fall Classic for the ages: a nail-biting, seven-game struggle from which only one long-suffering city could emerge a champion. Overcoming a 3-1 deficit and surviving one of the greatest World Series finales ever played, the Chicago Cubs clawed their way to baseball’s ultimate championship.
Diamond Mind has never been more pleased to present its customers with an historic season, complete with young stars, superb veterans, and a chance to replay what may be the most famous World Series in history. Order your 2016 season today, and match wits with Terry Francona or Joe Maddon any time you wish. With DMB, you can be at the helm when one of baseball’s great franchises overcomes its championship drought.
The 2016 Annual Season Database contains everything you need to play games using teams and players from the 2016 season -- a full set of ratings and statistics for every player who appeared in the big leagues this year, plus team rosters, manager profiles, ballpark ratings, transactions, and league schedules. Statistics include official batting, pitching and fielding totals with left/right splits for all batters and pitchers.
(The Diamond Mind Baseball game is required to use this product)
The 2017 Annual Season Database will be available in mid-December 2017.