It’s the end of the year 2012, and it was another great and memorable year in baseball. The San Fransisco Giants won their 2nd World Series in 3 years after going 56 years and a city change from New York since winning their last World Series in 1954 when Willie Mays was catching fly balls there. The last out of the World Series on a called third strike was Miguel Cabrera as his Detroit Tigers got swept by the Giants. But Cabrera had a pretty good year capturing baseball’s first Triple Crown in 45 years since Carl Yasztremski won the honor in 1967 and Frank Robinson in 1966. Someone has tough shoes to fill this season if there is to be a repeat Triple Crown winner in baseball. His teammate pitcher Justin Verlander was pretty good winning the AL CY Young Award and he did good dugout interviews leading to Tiger rallies. What he couldn’t do was get batters out in the All Star Game and World Series mainly to San Fransisco Giants batters like Pablo Sandoval who hit a triple off him in the All Star Game, and then 3 home runs in the World Series Game 1. Also his Giant teammate Melky Cabrera hit a home run off Verlander in the All Star Game and won the MVP giving the National League home field advantage in the World Series. But Cabrera wasn’t able to share in the Giants joy after being suspended for 50 games for PED (Performance Enhancing Drugs). And later he was released and ended up with the Toronto Blue Jays. There were three perfect games in baseball as well. Phillip Humber of the White Sox, Mait Cain of the Giants and Felix Hernandez of the Mariners which was the first time that three perfect games had happened in one season of baseball. Bobby Valentine was fired by the Boston Red Sox for poor managing and volitale behavior. Ozzie Guillen was fired by the Florida Marlins for poor managing and insensitive comments about Cubans. The Chicago Cubs and Houston Astros lost over 100 games each and the New York Yankees got swept out of the playoffs by the Detroit Tigers in the ALCS before shortstop Derek Jeter their captain had his season ended with a broken ankle. Ouch I know what that feels like as I have been recovering from a broken foot this fall. The Texas Rangers after two tough World Series losses in 2010 and 2011, blew a big AL West lead to the Oakland A’s and then lost a wildcard game at home to the Baltimore Orioles one of the surprise teams in baseball. And then the Rangers lost free agents Josh Hamilton, Michael Young and Mike Napoli. Some big bats to fill and the Rangers will likely be the Texas Strangers this year. And a team I like and will be focusing on Basebook here this next year, the Milwaukee Brewers didn’t play well until August after winning the NL Central and going to the NLCS in 2011. But the Brewers caught fire the last month in a half of the season and made a late playoff run behind 2011 NL MVP Ryan Braun and a load of bats and improved pitching which could be even better in 2013. So we’ll see what happens in 2013. The Washington Nationals formerly the Montreal Expos made their first postseason appearance since 1981 when they were in Montreal. They lost a tough deciding game to the 2011 World Series Champion St Louis Cardinals who had another great year, but their miracle comebacks and finishes were finally finished in a pouring rainstorm down 9-0 to the San Fransisco Giants in Game 7 of the NLCS. And as I write this catcher AJ Pierzynski formerly of the White Sox has signed a 1 year 7.5 million dollar contract with the Rangers. So maybe they’ll be a little less strange after although AJ can be a volitaile and feisy character and catcher having been in a few brawls, but he also helped lead the White Sox to the 2005 World Series Championship. So we’ll see what happens this coming season and their will be more moves ahead before spring training for sure. Finally before I go a tribute to a legendary player, who many of us younger fans never saw other than highlights Roberto Clemente who died or disappeared in a tragic plane crash 40 years ago on New Years Eve in 1972 while delivering relief supplies to Nicaragua struck by an earthquake. from his homeland Puerto Rico. Clemente was only 38 years old . In an 18 year career with the Pittsburgh Pirates he played and won two World Series in 1960 and 1971. In the 1971 series he batted .414 in a 7 game Series win over the Baltimore Orioles. His last regular season hit was his 3000th so he’s the original and true Mr 3000. Also what I liked about Clemente was he had power, speed and a great arm. He always hustled and more impressively he did it while playing hurt with chronic back pain and other injuries. Roberto Clemete. I would have loved to see him play and his body was never found which adds to his everlasting mystery and mystique. We’ll remember the great Latin #21 player Roberto Clemente always. RIP. Talk soon and Have a Happy New Year and I look forward to Playing Ball Soon!! Best wishes Doc.