AFL Players to Watch and Initial Season Live Blog

by Chuck

The 20th anniversary season of the prestigious Arizona Fall League kicks off on Tuesday with rosters full of top draft picks and 2012 Rookie of the Year candidates.

As has been the norm for most of the past twenty years, I’ll be associated with the league in some capacity and will try and keep you updated not only on the players we all know, but those under the radar guys who step up and perform their way to the major leagues.

My first game of the season will be on Wednesday at 12:35 PST, as Bryce Harper and Mike Trout lead the Scottsdale Scorpions out to the West Valley to oppose the Surprise Saguaros in their home opener.

Despite my previous track record of not being able to conduct a live blog for more than three innings, I hope to have that issue resolved…I recently downloaded Google Chrome, which seems to be better than Firefox in that regard.

There is one potential glitch in my plans, however…my Media pass hasn’t arrived as yet. Normally the league waits almost to the last minute to mail them off, so I’m not entirely concerned at this point, but I may be forced to trying to get a Wi-Fi connection from the seating area, which may prove difficult.

Anyway, as is the usual, there are a handful of players on each roster I’m looking forward to seeing. The schedule this year is a bit different than in the past, with one team moving from Peoria to the far East Valley to the new Dbacks/Rockies facility at Talking Stick.

To compensate some of the teams, the AFL put together a schedule dominated by back to back home/road matchups, similar to what you see in the NHL or NBA. My hometown team, Surprise, for example, plays fourteen home road matchups throughout the season. With my days off from work being fixed, the potential is there to see one or two teams consistently more than any other, which, as it turns out, is the case.

Not that it’s a bad thing, as the team most frequent on my schedule is Scottsdale, which means, if they are here all year, I’ll see Harper and Trout more than anyone else.

Anyway, here’s my “watch list” of players for the upcoming season.

Mesa Solar Sox: Pitchers Gerrit Cole and Trey McNutt and outfielders Aaron Hicks, Xavier Avery, and Josh Vitters.

That’s right, former Cubs number one pick as a third baseman, Josh Vitters is coming to Arizona to learn the outfield.

Peoria Javelinas: Pitchers Danny Hultzen, Cody Scarpetta, Jeff Ibarra, and Collin McHugh, catcher Adam Moore, infielders Nick Franklin, Jed Gyorko and Jefry Marte, and outfielders James Darnell, Kentrail Davis, Logan Schafer and Chih-Hseing Chang.

And, yes, as it the case with Vitters, a top infield prospect (Darnell) is heading to Arizona to learn the outfield.

Phoenix Desert Dogs: Pitchers David Phelps and Tyson Ross, catcher Yasmani Grandal, infielders Adeiny Hechevarria, Corban Joseph and Ronnier Mustelier, and outfielders Grant Green, Michael Choice and Anthony Gose.

And, yes, yet again, a first rounder is changing positions (Green).

Salt River Rafters: Pitchers Casey Crosby, Andrew Oliver, Drew Pomeranz, Casey Weathers and Josh Zeid, infielders Nolan Arenado and Ryan Wheeler, and outfielders Kyle Russell and Tim Wheeler.

Scottsdale Scorpions: Pitchers David Carpenter and Sammy Solis, catchers Hank Conger and Derek Norris, infielders Brandon Crawford, Will Middlebrooks, Jean Segura and Anthony Rendonn and outfielders Gary Brown, Tyson Gillies, Bryce Harper and Mike Trout.

Surprise Saguaros: Pitchers Sean Gilmartin, Jeremy Jeffress, Dan Jennings, and Alex Sanabia, catchers Christian Bethancourt and Kyle Shipworth, infielders Tim Beckham, Christian Colon, Matt Dominguez, Mike Olt, LeuryGarcia, and outfielders Todd Cunningham, Mike Mahtook and Wil Myers.

If there is anything I’ve learned about the AFL over the past twenty years it’s that nothing is official. For example, Brett Jackson, the top positional prospect in the Cubs’ chain, was scheduled for the AFL but will instead play for Team USA in the upcoming World Cup in Panama. If the US makes it to the Gold Medal Game, the earliest Jackson could play in the league is October 18th. He could conceivably play more than half the season and in the Rising Stars game, but the level of play and stress of representing the United States over two weeks could be more impactful than seven weeks in Arizona, the Cubs could conceivably shut him down.

So, remember, set your phone alarms to remind you of Wednesday, hopefully my passes show up so I can get into the press box and get a connection.

It’s worth noting for those following the playoffs should know that Roy Halladay, Albert Pujols, Mark Teixeira, Desmond Jennings, Ian Kennedy, Austin Jackson, Elvis Andrus, Willie Bloomquist, Ryan Braun, Reid Brignac, Evan Longoria, Sean Burroughs, Chris Carpenter, Eric Chavez, Todd Coffey, Craig Counsell, Johnny Damon, Daniel Descalso, Chris Dickerson, Brett Gardner, Prince Fielder, Doug Fister, Sam Fuld (MVP), Josh Hamilton, Corey Hart, LaTroy Hawkins, Ryan Howard, Phil Hughes, Max Scherzer, Brandon Inge, Raul Ibanez, John Jaso, Derek Jeter, Brad Lidge, Jonathon Lucroy, Mitch Moreland, John MacDonald, Miguel Montero, David Murphy, Mike Napoli, Darren Oliver, Lyle Overbay, Brad Penny, Ryan Roberts, Francisco Rodriguez, Sean Rodriguez, Jimmy Rollins, Carlos Ruiz, Kelly Shoppach, Taylor Teagarden, Chase Utley, BJ Upton, Shane Victorino, Cory Wade, Adam Wainwright, Rickie Weeks, Jack Wilson, Chris Young, Delmon Young and Ben Zobrist are all AFL alumni.

Just something to think about while you’re watching.

Tags:

270 Responses to “AFL Players to Watch and Initial Season Live Blog”

  1. Cameron Says:

    Huh, KC’s sending a surpsisingly small amount of pitching, just Jeffress? No Montgomery, Odorizzi, or Dwyer?

  2. Chuck Says:

    Royals players are pitchers Nathan Adcock, Jeffress, Bryan Paukovits, infielders Anthony Seratelli and Christian Colon, and outfielder Wil Myers.

  3. JohnBowen Says:

    “I recently downloaded Google Chrome, which seems to be better than Firefox in that regard.”

    Told ya.

  4. Chuck Says:

    Yeah, you did.

  5. Cameron Says:

    Fuck, I could’ve told you that AGES ago if you were looking for a new browser. Doesn’t have the plugin support, but takes up 25% of the RAM that Firefox does.

    I’ll take the smaller memory footprint every time.

  6. Bob Says:

    Chuck, thank you.

  7. Lefty33 Says:

    Quick question for you Chuck.

    Have you seen anything at all from/about Cody Overbeck so far?

    One of the many rumors in regards to filling Howard’s shoes in April/May is to have either Mayberry platoon at 1B with a fill in or even possibly Rizzotti and then today I read one that suggests that the Phillies may bring back Gload again and that he may platoon with Overbeck until Howard returns.

    I know it’s kind of out there but I figure there must be a reason the Phillies thought enough of him to send him to Arizona. I understood why Rizz went last year after he tore up the FSL and EL but Overbeck is kind of a surprise to me as he was solid this year but not spectacular in anyway.

    Thanks in advance.

  8. Raul Says:

    617 comments is way too many in that other article so I’m posting here.

  9. Cameron Says:

    This just in: Raul’s computer is a girly man.

  10. Raul Says:

    My work computer is.

    Btw, was that your best Arnold impersonation?

    I’m here to pump (clap and point) YOU UP.

  11. Chuck Says:

    Win or lose, there should be someone standing in front of Delmon Young’s locker with a plastic cup.

  12. Raul Says:

    LOL

    He’s on that special creatine, huh?

  13. Cameron Says:

    He’s hitting well for a guy who can’t throw from the outfield. …Oh yeah, and for a guy who’s hurt, too. ZING!

  14. Cameron Says:

    Is it just me, or does the look on John Smoltz’s face when he’s covering games scream “I’m leaving as soon as the check clears.”?

  15. Raul Says:

    He doesn’t really seem like a natural in the booth.

    Being a Yankees fan, I kinda like the former players in their booth over the last few years…Jim Kaat, Bobby Murcer, Ken Singleton…those guys were pretty good.

    Keep in mind, I’m not necessarily talking about agreeing with their opinion all the time. I’m saying they carry the conversation in the booth very well. John Flaherty is alright. I like Al Leiter. Paul O’Neill is a funny guy but he’s in there only a handful of times a season and that’s just enough. He’s probably not really fit to do a full season. Once in a while (in the past, anyway), David Cone would stop by and he’s ok.

    I like Mark Grace. Funny guy.

    There’s a guy with the Twins…can’t remember his name…he’s pretty good.

  16. Cameron Says:

    I like Smoltz and he does give good insight, but I can tell the guy’s on a short leash with what he can say.

    …Considering the shit Smoltz can say with a live mic, it’s probably for the best.

  17. Chuck Says:

    “There’s a guy with the Twins…can’t remember his name…he’s pretty good.”

    Bert Blyleven?

    I think Dan Gladden does some games too.

  18. Cameron Says:

    Frank White covers practically everything on FSN KC. I like him. He’s like that friendly uncle that everybody likes.

  19. John Says:

    Good call Raul, I haven’t been in an article-writing mood the last couple days.

    Too angry.

    Get some runs boys, this is getting ridiculous.

  20. John Says:

    That’s a little more like it.

  21. Chuck Says:

    “Good call Raul, I haven’t been in an article-writing mood the last couple days.”

    Me, neither, although I have a couple of AFL games over the weekend, so maybe something will come of it.

    I really wanted to write something on that “Inside the Seams, The Stat Story”, that MLBNetwork did last month, but it’s honestly too boring to sit through again.

    Listening to retards like Jonah Keri, “..batting average doesn’t tell us everything, that’s why we have to look at things like on base percentage and slugging percentage.”

    I had it DVR’d, and when he said that, I had to rewind it a couple of times to make sure I heard him right.

  22. Cameron Says:

    Are they trying to market basic statistics to fans of the MLB Network? …Are you fucking joking me? On the postseason coverage on Fox and TBS, I’ll let it slide. But the MLB Network?

    They need to give Byrnes and Reynolds their own show. It’s the same level of stupid, but at least it’ll be entertaining.

  23. Chuck Says:

    How do you know when you’re in a slump?

    When you’re hitting fifth in the lineup and lead off the second inning and try and drag a bunt.

  24. Chuck Says:

    “They need to give Byrnes and Reynolds their own show,”

    The show would go bankrupt in a week.

  25. John Says:

    Out of sheer curiosity, why is Jonah Keri wrong?

  26. Cameron Says:

    ““They need to give Byrnes and Reynolds their own show,”

    The show would go bankrupt in a week.”

    Have you watched Intentional Talk? If they can put that on and stay on the air, I think those two are fine.

  27. John Says:

    *sigh*

    Can’t be too mad at Yuni, he’s had a helluva post-season.

    But man, you gotta do better than that with 2nd and 3rd and 0 outs.

  28. John Says:

    Intentional Talk is amusing.

    Not hugely educational or anything, but they have a good banter.

  29. Chuck Says:

    He’s not wrong, John, he’s stating something every five year old in the country knows, and acts like, in your words, he’s reinventing the wheel.

    Condescending fag.

  30. Cameron Says:

    Remember John, Yuni plays just well enough to keep a paycheck. Unless something’s important on the line, then he fucks it up for everyone.

  31. John Says:

    @29, I think a lot of casual fans think batting average is a much all-consuming statistic than it actually is.

  32. Chuck Says:

    Feeling better, John?

  33. Cameron Says:

    John, he said it on the MLB Network. That’s not exactly a casual fan friendly network.

  34. John Says:

    @30, the Brewers wouldn’t even be playing right now if not for Yuni’s clutch 2-out RBI single in game 5.

    He had a big homer in game 1.

    And he drove in the tying run of today’s game.

    But yeah, by and large he’s just been awful.

  35. John Says:

    @32, yeah.

    @33, fair point.

  36. brautigan Says:

    Nice comeback by the Brewers.

  37. Chuck Says:

    Batting average by it self is no different than OBP or SLG by itself.

    Ichiro and Pujols have the same lifetime average.

    No shit BA doesn’t tell us everything.

  38. John Says:

    Holliday’s a fantastic hitter.

    I don’t know how he has like a .997 OBP against us though.

  39. Cameron Says:

    Because Matt Holliday is awesome, John.

  40. John Says:

    “Batting average by it self is no different than OBP or SLG by itself.”

    Sure it is.

    It encompasses less, and correlates less with winning.

    Obviously it should not be ignored, but it’s silly that it’s what you see in the box score, as opposed to something that tells you more.

    Frankly, I think OPS+ – imperfect and incomplete though even it is – gets a much better message across, especially to the casual fan. Guy’s at 110? Ok, he’s above average. Guy’s at 70? He better be your catcher. Easy “average” line to go off of.

  41. John Says:

    Wow, Dotel just made Braun look ugly there.

  42. brautigan Says:

    John: I am looking at a 1962 Topps Gene Freese, card number 205. The card displays the following stats: Games, At Bat, Runs, Hits, 2B, 3B, HR, RBI, and Avg. I have a Dick Donovan, 1962 Topps card number 15, his stats are as follows: Games, IP, Won, Lost, Pct., Hits, Runs, Er, SO, BB, and E.R.A. For a generation of baseball obsessives, Topps cards were the place you went for your reliable stats. Not everyone had a Street and Smith. So, for a generation of fans, we didn’t see on base pct., base on balls by a hitter, you basically were measured by your runs, runs batted in, and of course, during the 1961 season, how many homeruns a player hit. Batting average really was a measuring stick. If you look at the old timers, they almost to a man, thought Ty Cobb’s .367 batting average was a greater feat than George Herman Ruth’s 714 home runs.

    I have a 2011 Jason Heyward Topps card, card number 510. His numbers are: Games, at bats, R, Hits, 2B, 3B, HR, RBI, SB, BB, SO, SLG. OPS. and batting average. Fourteen stats in place of nine. And, now we have baseball reference.

    This is precisely the reason Bill James was so revolutionary. He was the first to bring the conversation to his view of on base, slugging, but he also took it much further, challenging successfully many standard conventions. He was funny, he was condescending. But he got a whole generation to look at baseball in a different way.

    Jonah Keri just said “Duh”.

  43. John Says:

    My favorite brand of baseball card was 1997 Score, mainly for the glossy look (the other cards I had at the time were from the ’80’s. Bubblegum cards etc). They weirdly didn’t use capital letters on the front…I just loved having cards of guys that were actually playing and that I’d seen on TV and stuff.

    They actually included OBP and SLG, but called them OB% and SL%. They also had some basic fielding at the bottom, and splits on the side, while still including a lengthy description of the player.

    The font was really really small, obviously, but when you’re a kid with solid vision, that doesn’t matter so much.

    http://keymancollectibles.com/baseballcards/images/1997sc4.jpg

    I have a whole bunch of those; the best has to be the Vlad Guerrero rookie.

  44. Cameron Says:

    Oh, I remember those old Score cards. I used to have a fuckload of those. Never was able to find ‘em after I moved to KC.

  45. John Says:

    Man, wind is crazy tonight.

  46. Cameron Says:

    Yeah, they might be getting what KC’s been getting lately. Wind’s been fucking nuts.

  47. brautigan Says:

    Bowman. The photographer knew what he was doing. They have always been my favorite. Even in the 50’s. Especially the 1955 set.

  48. John Says:

    Score’98 was cool too, same idea, and a batshit crazy card of Doug Drabek.

    They weirdly didn’t include games played. I’m pretty sure that’s the only card not to do that.

  49. John Says:

    Since about the 1980’s, Bowman has exclusively done splits against other teams.

    Not a fan.

  50. Cameron Says:

    The ‘98 Score Doug Drabek

    http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-ZN7NnQEl60g/Tj7MHPlH1UI/AAAAAAAAIa8/dnkvEIB_gwY/s1600/1998+Score+%2523107+Doug+Drabek+signed.jpg

  51. John Says:

    Helluva start Wolfie.

  52. Cameron Says:

    Helluva play there, Salas. And by helluva play, I mean you looked like hell.

  53. John Says:

    I think Fielder caught that throw with his tits.

  54. Cameron Says:

    Hey, you use what the good lord gives you John. A skinny boy couldn’t make that catch.

  55. Chuck Says:

    “gets a much better message across, especially to the casual fan.”

    Does the average fan understand how OPS+ is formulated?

    I don’t think so.

    And I’m not convinced of it’s purpose, either.

    I see the picture, but it’s cloudy to me.

  56. John Says:

    “Does the average fan understand how OPS+ is formulated?”

    Do you think the average fan (or even hardcore fan) knows how Passer Rating is calculated? Have you ever seen that formula? It’s a mess.

    It’s the meaning that’s easy to understand. 100 = average, 200 = Babe Ruth, 150 = borderline MVP territory, 70 = Yuni.

    Not all-encompassing for sure, but MORE encompassing than batting average.

  57. Cameron Says:

    And 5 = Tyler Colvin.

  58. John Says:

    They’re really making a lot of the Brewers road losing streak in the playoffs.

    It’s like, cmon.

    Yes it’s 29 years.

    But…

    It encompasses 3 total series.

    We’re talking about the Brewers after all.

  59. Cameron Says:

    Is it just me, or is this one of the more competitive postseasons in a while?

  60. John Says:

    Yeah, the 3 game 5’s were really something.

    We haven’t had a game 7 in the World Series since 2002.

    The playoffs in 2004-2005 were incredible, followed by a bummer of a WS (competitive-ness wise).

  61. Cameron Says:

    And both LCSes are going at least to Game 6. Not bad.

  62. John Says:

    What a shot in the arm for the Brewers to know that they’re going back to Milwaukee, no matter what.

  63. Cameron Says:

    Which is why it looks like Milwaukee has the better chance to win the series now. When you go back to a place like Miller, it looks better.

    And if it’s Texas vs. Milwaukee, I’m gonna love it. First championship either way.

  64. John Says:

    The Doug Melvin Bowl.

  65. Bob Says:

    Perhaps its time for me to publish another one. You guys cool with that?

  66. Chuck Says:

    Why wouldn’t we be?

    “Best Happy Hour in Town, for details and reservations, call the Red Sox clubhouse during game times.”

  67. Bob Says:

    Shit, now I cannot use that title.

  68. Chuck Says:

    I was supposed to go to the Mesa/Peoria game yesterday to check out Trey McNutt and Danny Hultzen.

    Previous committment I couldn’t get out of prevented me from going.

    Which is good, because Keith Law was there.

    Otherwise, you’d be seeing this on SportsCenter;

    Law thrown from press box window, lands on head, is unhurt”

  69. Raul Says:

    LOL

  70. Chuck Says:

    I would imagine he’s in Mesa today watching Gerrit Cole’s debut.

    I wouldn’t go even if I was off…110 mile round trip and Friday traffic?

    For a baseball game?

    Um, no.

  71. Bob Says:

    1. Drew Pomeranz was arrested.
    2. Manny entered a plea of not-guilty.
    3. The Red Sox are balking at allowing Theo to grab some former aides.
    4. TGIF!!!

  72. Chuck Says:

    1) For what?
    2) Who cares?
    3) See #2
    4) Amen

  73. Cameron Says:

    *googles #1*

    …Disturbing the peace.

  74. brautigan Says:

    In my humble opinion, who ever wins tonight, wins the series. Huge game. Really huge game.

    Go Cardinals!

  75. Chuck Says:

    Tonight we’ll see why the Brewers traded for Greinke.

  76. Cameron Says:

    If the Cards win tonight, the Brewers still get two games at Miller. I’ve got Milwaukee no matter what tonight’s game turns out.

  77. John Says:

    “Tonight we’ll see why the Brewers traded for Greinke.”

    I’m just waiting for Chuck to write his piece about xFIP.

  78. Chuck Says:

    “If the Cards win tonight, the Brewers still get two games at Miller. I’ve got Milwaukee no matter what tonight’s game turns out.”

    Chris Carpenter on line one.

  79. Chuck Says:

    “I’m just waiting for Chuck to write his piece about xFIP”

    Planning on living forever?

  80. John Says:

    Haha.

    Grant Brisbee covered it already.

    http://mlb.sbnation.com/2011/10/14/2489442/zack-greinke-nlcs-game-5-xfip

  81. Chuck Says:

    In his first “professional” game, Gerrit Cole pitched two and a third innings, allowed three hits, three runs, walked one and struck out two.

  82. Cameron Says:

    All I’m gonna say about Zack is whether or not he’s had a good season, I knew he’d blow this postseason. If a guy’s gone on the DL and been shifted to the bullpen for Generalized Anxiety Disorder, the World Series ain’t in the cards for him.

    Also, great piece about John Axford.

    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052970204002304576629400095413850.html?mod=WSJ_NY_Sports_LEFTTopStories

  83. Chuck Says:

    “Greinke’s at the top. He was better than any pitcher in the game if you give him credit just for the things he can control”

    Pitchers don’t control anything.

    Hope you don’t pay for that puke, John.

  84. Cameron Says:

    Pitchers control stuff. Just… Not much… Or that reliably. Pitching’s tricky.

  85. John Says:

    “Hope you don’t pay for that puke, John.”

    Yeah, it’s a free website.

    “Pitchers don’t control anything.”

    Ok, buddy.

  86. brautigan Says:

    @49: John, Bowman didn’t get back into the game until 1989. They were gone from 1956 to 1988.

  87. John Says:

    Well they were bought out by Topps, who then used Bowman to release split cards, as I understand it.

    I guess they didn’t start doing it again until the year I was born.

  88. brautigan Says:

    So basically, Bill James had been writing for 10 years before you hit the ground. That explains a lot. :) Go back to post #42, there is so much truth to that. It may be hard for you to wrap your head around, but things have changed so much. I mean, today, there is no way Mickey Mantle would have gotten so many cases of sexually transmitted diseases today without it being on the front page of ESPN or Sporting News.

  89. Chuck Says:

    “Ok, buddy”

    If you believe that once the ball leaves the pitchers hand he has any say on ball, strike, fair, foul, ground, air, short, far, then this beats anything you’ve ever said.

    Even Tim Raines.

    You are bleepin’ clueless.

  90. Chuck Says:

    “there is no way Mickey Mantle would have gotten so many cases of sexually transmitted diseases today without it being on the front page of ESPN or Sporting News.”

    Oh, I don’t know about that, Braut.

    Gay players are still buried, rapists are still buried, guys going to Canada for steriods are buried.

    MLB has a lot of money and a lot of high priced lawyers, if they want to bury something, it’s getting buried.

  91. brautigan Says:

    LOL. Pitchers pitch. Once the ball leaves their hand, the only control they have is if the ball is hit back up the middle or if they have to back up 3rd or home plate. Or cover first on a ball hit to the right. That pretty much is it.

  92. brautigan Says:

    Chuck: Compare greenies to steroids. No one talked about greenies, even though it was rampant. Anyone hit over 10 homeruns greater than their career best, steroids were the usual suspect. Times have changed, writers write about inuendo, in the past, writers didn’t write about anything off the field.

    Babe Ruth’s 1925 season is a great example of that.

  93. Cameron Says:

    True, but that doesn’t mean pitchers don’t control anything. They control what pitch they throw. …Other than that, they really just hope shit works.

  94. John Says:

    What Chuck is saying in comment 89 is that, since pitchers don’t control anything, Bob Gibson was just way luckier than Chan Ho Park.

    That must be it.

  95. Raul Says:

    Jose Bautista went from Mark Lemke to Barry Bonds and I haven’t seen a steroids article ANYWHERE except on those “blog sites”.

  96. Raul Says:

    Pitchers don’t control the ball any more than a batter controls where the ball goes when he hits it.

    It’s a fairly simple thing to understand.

  97. brautigan Says:

    Raul: There is a little Wally Moses in every one of us.

  98. Cameron Says:

    When Chuck mentioned they bury gay players, I remembered that Glenn Burke invented the high-five, along with Dusty Baker.

  99. Chuck Says:

    Calling greenies a PED is like calling roadkill a Porterhouse.

    Just because it allowed Mantle to play a game with a hangover, doesn’t mean he still wouldn’t take the golden sombrero or blow a routine fly ball because he couldn’t pick up his head.

    Mantle had 536 homers.

    If he wasn’t a drunk he’d have 636.

    If he never took a greenie in his life he’d have 536.

    What a load.

  100. Raul Says:

    Mantle might have hit 700 or more if he’d taken care of himself.

    There’s a lot of what-ifs with several athletes in the last century and Mickey’s potential was as great as any of them.

  101. brautigan Says:

    Hell Chuck, I don’t think anyone ever accused Mantle of taking greenies. If they did, I’ve never read it or heard about it.

    I’m reading Jane Leavy’s book on Mantle, and she does a serious job of trashing his image, but there is no mention of greenies. He just liked to have sex with a lot of women, and frankly, who doesn’t? Well, that and he was an alcoholic at an early age.

  102. Cameron Says:

    “There’s a lot of what-ifs with several athletes in the last century and Mickey’s potential was as great as any of them.”

    The biggest what-if… And i’ll admit it has some merit but I think it’s still a load of crap, is “What if Willie Mays didn’t play in Candlestick Park?” I heard sometime ago that if he played anywhere else, Mays would hit 800 homers easy.

    …Funny thing? Willie Mays almost was a Brave and Hank Aaron was almost a Giant. Wonder what baseball would look like if they switched places.

  103. brautigan Says:

    Raul writes: “There’s a lot of what-ifs with several athletes in the last century and Mickey’s potential was as great as any of them.”

    I’d be the first to say, his potential was greater than any ball player that has played the game. His speed was a freak of nature. And because Joe Dimaggio was such a jerk, Mantle’s knee was never the same after 1951. He was such a freak that he hurt himself swinging a bat because his muscles were bigger and stronger than what his torso could carry. He basically was washed up by 1963, yet he persevered for another 5 years.

  104. Raul Says:

    LOL @ if Mays played elsewhere.

    I could say the same crap about Ted Williams playing in Yankee Stadium — even with his lost service time.

  105. Cameron Says:

    …I feel obligated to bring up the Joe Dimaggio-Ted Williams trade that almost happened.

    If Williams played in Yankee Stadium, Babe Ruth looks like a pussy.

  106. brautigan Says:

    Mays spent his first 7 years at the Polo grounds. That stadium was death to a hitter like Mays.

  107. Raul Says:

    Braut,

    What about Mantle’s knee?

  108. Raul Says:

    Over/Under 650-foot homers if Mantle played in Coors?

  109. Cameron Says:

    1951 World Series I think, DiMaggio refused to move from center field to make room for Mantle and Mantle ended up tripping over an exposed drain pipe in right field chasing a ball. That injury was the root of Mantle’s repeated knee trouble.

  110. Cameron Says:

    “Over/Under 650-foot homers if Mantle played in Coors?”

    Mantle hit it 604 feet in New York. If he was a Rockie, that ball would’ve landed in Utah.

  111. John Says:

    ” DiMaggio refused to move from center field to make room for Mantle”

    What a jerk move.

    The good thing is that no Yankee ever ever ever ever ever pulled that shit again.

  112. Raul Says:

    I’m surprised to know that Carlos Marmol is 28 years old today. He seemed younger.

    I’m even more surprised to know that Carlos Marmol has 300 career walks.
    And he walked 48 batters in 74 innings this season.

    How is that even possible for a closer?

  113. Raul Says:

    LOL @ John 111

  114. Cameron Says:

    “I’m surprised to know that Carlos Marmol is 28 years old today. He seemed younger.

    I’m even more surprised to know that Carlos Marmol has 300 career walks.
    And he walked 48 batters in 74 innings this season.

    How is that even possible for a closer?”

    Because the guy Ks 2 batters an inning and they figure they can eat the walks?

  115. brautigan Says:

    The bone exited through Mantle’s knee. This was before they could rebuild knees. The pain was such, Mantle defecated himself on the field. So basically, he stole a base infrequently (he surely would have been as good as Lou Brock or Ty Cobb on the bases).

    When a knee specialist finally looked at Mantle’s knee in the 80’s, he couldn’t beleive what he saw. He marveled this guy could walk on that leg, let alone play 17 years on the damn thing.

    Just check out any picture of Mantle swinging a bat after 1961. You’ll see him with a grimace of pain on each and every swing.

  116. Cameron Says:

    Am I the only one who thinks that arch cut into St. Louis’ outfield grass is kinda tacky?

  117. Raul Says:

    Braut’s got more stories on baseball than I’ve got on my life.

  118. Chuck Says:

    “Braut’s got more stories on baseball than I’ve got on my life.”

    What did you expect from Abner Doubleday’s roommate at West Point?

  119. Cameron Says:

    John has Old Hoss Radbourn’s Twitter feed.

    Braut has Old Hoss Radbourn’s phone number. I think it’s 7.

  120. John Says:

    Corey Hart’s well on his way to costing the Brewers his second game.

  121. Raul Says:

    Hahahahaha @ Chuck 118

  122. Raul Says:

    LOL @ cam

  123. Cameron Says:

    So Chuck, what exactly were we supposed to see from Greinke tonight? Because to me, he looks like he’s pitching like dogshit.

  124. Chuck Says:

    Maybe Greinke should have played third?

  125. Chuck Says:

    So, John, still think bunts suck?

    Say what you want..inning, runner, but that’s a run you don’t have.

  126. Chuck Says:

    Jayson Stark on Twitter;

    “Make that 2 for 10 with 8 strikeouts. But hey, Braun’s BABIP against Dotel is still 1.000.”

    I’m going make a tee shirt for John with that on the front.

    LOL.

    I defy anyone to justify that stat now.

  127. John Says:

    Because, as always, retard, you’re missing the point of it.

  128. John Says:

    @123, Greinke has gotten ZERO help from his defense.

    Are any of these runs earned? This is pathetic.

  129. John Says:

    @125, bunts are fine from the pitcher.

    If you were running things, you’d give up Braun for an extra base.

  130. Raul Says:

    John would rather have Braun walk with a runner on 3rd than swing the bat.

  131. John Says:

    I don’t want him swinging at shit pitches that he’ll likely pop-up.

    Even if there’s a .000000006% chance of an error that you’ll base your entire argument on.

  132. Chuck Says:

    “Because, as always, retard, you’re missing the point of it.”

    Actually, retard, there is no point to it, which is what Stark’s comment means.

  133. Raul Says:

    “I don’t want him swinging at shit pitches that he’ll likely pop-up.

    Even if there’s a .000000006% chance of an error that you’ll base your entire argument on.”

    So you just assume Ryan Braun is likely to swing at bad pitches with runners in scoring position? Cheers, friend.

  134. Raul Says:

    More importantly…why is Carlos Gomez playing today?
    And why is he batting 7th?

  135. John Says:

    Yes there is.

    It’s not to say, “he’s got a .330 BAbip! He’s doing great!”

    It’s to say “he’s got a .330 BAbip. His lifetime BAbip is .293. So his overall BA is probably coming down”

    Just because you don’t understand something doesn’t mean it has no point.

    Otherwise, the entire sport of baseball would be pointless.

  136. John Says:

    @134, because Jaime Garcia (a good starter that Chuck thinks is bad) started and is LH.

    Gomez, incidentally, saved two runs earlier, if you had actaully been watching.

  137. Raul Says:

    Well, I wasn’t watching. Syncing up my iPhone and working on some weekend plans.

    Guess I’m still a half game short of that 1.2 trillion game mark.

  138. Chuck Says:

    “Just because you don’t understand something doesn’t mean it has no point.”

    If you understood baseball, you wouldn’t need BABIP, dumbass.

    Why must everything be spelled out for you?

    And just so you know, a HR is a ball in play.

  139. Chuck Says:

    LOL @#137

  140. Chuck Says:

    I guess in a way, John, we all kind of owe you a gratitude of thanks, because without you dropping by with your daily dose of stupid, this site probably wouldn’t exist anymore.

    So, thanks, man.

  141. John Says:

    @138, of course you think a home run is in play.

    Of course that’s what you believe.

    holy fucking shit.

    In play for who? Ralph, and his fat buddy Rodney in the bleachers?

  142. Raul Says:

    Do you know what “in play” means?

  143. John Says:

    In the fucking field of play, you know, where a fielder can “make a play” on it.

    Ergo introducing an element of luck, which is what BAbip captures, and teams like the Mariners ignore.

  144. Raul Says:

    You know that when a ball is hit to center field, it’s in play.
    Doesn’t mean a fucking thing if it’s at the the warning track, 3 rows deep, or 30 rows deep.

  145. John Says:

    No.

    If a play can’t be made, then a ball isn’t in play.

    THAT’S WHY ITS CALLED IN PLAY.

    Not even baseball, just basic english.

  146. Raul Says:

    Guy hits a ball in the air.
    Outfielder goes to the wall. Jumps and the ball is in his glove and bounces out for a homer.

    Guess he didn’t make a play on the ball.
    My bad. I’ll respond tomorrow around the 5 inning when I get to 1.2 trillion.

  147. John Says:

    “Outfielder goes to the wall. Jumps and the ball is in his glove and bounces out for a homer.”

    Which almost never happens.

    If you knew anything about statistics – not baseball statistics, mind you, just statistics in general – you would know that rare occurrences/exceptions/anomalies don’t have a major impact on the overall sample.

  148. John Says:

    Put it like this.

    Let’s say 3 of Prince Fielder’s HR are like that.

    I don’t recall a single HR being that way, but let’s pretend there were 3, which would be a lot.

    Fielder’s BAbip this year was .306.

    If you counted those 3 HR that bounced out of the fielder’s glove, it would be about .310.

    Not a drastic difference, so quit bitching.

  149. Raul Says:

    “Which almost never happens.

    If you knew anything about statistics – not baseball statistics, mind you, just statistics in general – you would know that rare occurrences/exceptions/anomalies don’t have a major impact on the overall sample.”

    Not the point. The issue was “in play”.

  150. John Says:

    “Not the point. The issue was “in play”.”

    99.99% of HR are not in play.

    If a fielder can’t make a play on a ball, then it’s not in play.

    Period.

    End of discussion.

  151. Raul Says:

    Still not the point.

    99.99% of sperm won’t fertilize an egg. Guess they weren’t in play either.

  152. Raul Says:

    ESPN.com headline: “Tony La Russa’s unconventional ways have St. Louis on the brink of the World Series. Unbelievable.”

    That, or then there’s reality……like Chris Carpenter pitching a fucking complete game 1-0 shutout against Philadelphia on the road and Babe Ruth and Lou Gehrig being fucking reincarnated as Albert Pujols and Matt Holliday this postseason.

    But sure, I’m sure LaRussa’s been making just dynamite fucking moves.

    I fucking hate you, ESPN.

  153. Cameron Says:

    John, the point isn’t that Braun has a BABIP of 1.000 against Dotel, it’s the fact he has a 1.000, but is batting .200 on 8 Ks. So yeah, those two balls he hit made it to the field, but the 8 strike 3s he had didn’t.

    Saying a guy has 1.000 BABIP against a guy he’s struck out 4 out of 5 times on is like saying a guy shot you, but at least he shot you in the balls instead of the gut, you’ll be fine. Dumbass, you still got shot.

  154. Cameron Says:

    By the way, the formula for BABIP is as follows.

    (H-HR)/(AB-K-HR+SF)

    In other words, no, home runs aren’t in play.

  155. Lefty33 Says:

    The guys on ESPN radio were using the same talking points about LaRussa being “dangerous” and “unpredictable”.

    The examples that Eric Karros gave:

    1. He hit Freese cleanup in Game 4 and sat Berkman against Wolf.

    2. To confuse the Brewers he has twice this series gotten up two LHP in the bullpen at the same time.

  156. Lefty33 Says:

    “Ergo introducing an element of luck, which is what BAbip captures, and teams like the Mariners ignore.”

    The biggest pile of SABR-shit ever, luck.

    When you don’t understand it or you can’t quantify it then it must be “luck”.

  157. Cameron Says:

    BABIP is a stat that’s supposed to neutralize what balls can do when the defense is factored into the game. Defense can’t do shit against home runs.

    I think home runs are in play, but I can accept they’re not in play for the stat.

  158. Mike Felber Says:

    When stats vary significantly from season to season with no good reason they are likely to, & simulations can show that there is likely to be luck involved, that is the best explanation. If one giy does consistently better than his contest predicts for years on BBIP, likely it is not just luck.

    A lot of wrong info on HR lengths. Mantle is credited by the premiere researcher of ‘em, Bill Jenkinson, w/the 2nd longest ever, 551 feet-2nd to several by Ruth. Mantle said his ‘63 shot was the nardest he ever hit, & most swore it was still rising when it hit the recently erected facade, but that was likely an optical illusion-Jenkinson said if it was so, the ball would have traveled well over 700′. After a ball passes its apex, especially hit at a higher angle, it does not go a great deal further.

    Though Mantle was very good in ‘64 too, & had some value even after.

  159. John Says:

    “When you don’t understand it or you can’t quantify it then it must be “luck”.”

    No.

    I CAN understand it.

    If a batter smashes a hard line drive, he did a good job.
    He hits a weak-ass pop-up, he did a bad job.

    Guess what? Batters don’t hit 1.000 on line drives.
    They also don’t hit .000 on pop-ups.

    So if a batter has a career .324 BAbip, and he’s got a .245 BAbip for the season (and therefore a batting average of like .260 instead of his usual .300) and idiots like Chuck are proclaiming that it’s “proof” that he’s lost his stride or something, I can safely say that that sucker is coming right back up. And then, almost invariably, when it DOES come up, we get to hear a bunch of nonsense about he “got his confidence back” or something.

    You know what really happened? He got “unlucky” with a high amount of his should-be hits getting snagged.

    If you don’t think there’s any luck involved whatsoever in the game of baseball, then you’re hopeless.

    Besides, how much shit do we hear. “Bautista/Ellsbury’s season was a FLUKE.” Sounds like something you can’t understand.

  160. John Says:

    “John, the point isn’t that Braun has a BABIP of 1.000 against Dotel, it’s the fact he has a 1.000, but is batting .200 on 8 Ks. So yeah, those two balls he hit made it to the field, but the 8 strike 3s he had didn’t.

    Saying a guy has 1.000 BABIP against a guy he’s struck out 4 out of 5 times on is like saying a guy shot you, but at least he shot you in the balls instead of the gut, you’ll be fine. Dumbass, you still got shot.”

    Nobody (except Paul, whatever happened to that guy?) look at BAbip as a sign of “a player’s doing well” or “a player isn’t doing well.”

    That’s completely missing the point.

    Chuck/Stark’s comment is like seeing a guy die from a gunshot wound and thinking “hell of a job by that flu vaccine to keep him from dying! Can anyone justify that vaccination to me?”

  161. brautigan Says:

    John: Let me simplify it for you.

    A pop up foul ball is a “ball in play” until it makes it’s way into the bleachers.
    A home run is a “ball in play” until it clears the fence.

    It would help if you stopped thinking in absolutes.

  162. John Says:

    “A home run is a “ball in play” until it clears the fence.”

    Exactly?

    So, why would it be considered a ball-in-play for the purposes of calculating a statistic having to do with luck on batted balls?

    The reason why there’s a certain degree of luck on a ball in play is that there are 9 guys trying to get you out.

    You can’t get someone out on a ball that’s 8 rows deep.

  163. Raul Says:

    Reliever Juan Cruz is 33 today.

    Hall of Fame pitcher Jim Palmer is 66. Palmer is a 3-time Cy Young Award winner and in 1973 nearly won the MVP after a 22-9 season with a League-Leading 2.40 ERA. He’d lose the MVP to Reggie Jackson of the Oakland Athletics. Amos Otis (what a fantastic name) of the Kansas City Royals would finish 3rd.

    In the 4 seasons from 1975-1978, Palmer averaged 313 innings, a 2.49 ERA and completed 89 games; 25 of them Shut Outs while winning 3 Gold Gloves.

    According to Wikipedia, Palmer is the last surviving member of the 4 Orioles pitches to win 20 games in 1971. The others being Mike Cuellar, Pat Dobson and Dave McNally.

  164. Cameron Says:

    Really? Shit, that’s kinda sad about Palmer being the last one out of that ‘71 rotation. ‘71 wasn’t that long ago.

  165. Cameron Says:

    Said it before, say it again, I like Milwaukee’s chances tonight. Edwin Jackson + Miller Park = Home Run Derby

  166. JohnBowen Says:

    Shaun Marcum is one for his last 6 as far as starts go…I half expected the Brewers to spot-start Chris Narveson.

    Edwin Jackson only gave up 2 runs in his last start, but man, we were tagging him. Hopefully those drives find gaps this time around.

    And hopefully, the state of Wisconsin can deal a double-thumping to the city of St. Louis come Sunday.

  167. Cameron Says:

    Dude, it’s the Rams. You’ll win at least one of these games against St. Louis.

  168. JohnBowen Says:

    I’m not so worried about that one, especially since their passing game is weak as shit.

    Two years ago, though, we lost to the 0-7 Bucs as they were coming off a bye week.

    We went 7-1 for the rest of the year, but we should’ve taken that game more seriously.

  169. Cameron Says:

    True, but this year’s Rams look like last year’s Packers after all the injuries. You know, minus the being good at football part.

  170. Lefty33 Says:

    “When stats vary significantly from season to season with no good reason they are likely to, & simulations can show that there is likely to be luck involved, that is the best explanation.”

    That’s a fucking retarded explanation.

    Watch the game and see why something happened and then you can understand why a stat looks the way it does because you have seen the context and the situation of how something happened instead of holding your dick in your hand while looking at a bunch of numbers and acronyms and pretending to know what happened by drawing on false or half baked conclusions.

    “No.

    I CAN understand it.”

    I have never seen someone short of a leprechaun want to chalk up so much of this sport we debate to “luck” as you do.

    It’s shallow, stupid, and lazy.

    Sure some crazy luck type situations occur, but Good Lord it does NOT happen like that and anybody who plays or has played will think you’re a fucking idiot if you try to suggest otherwise.

    99.99999999999% of plays and events happen with clear and rational reasoning behind them. To suggest otherwise is asinine.

  171. Mike Felber Says:

    Why all the bomb throwing? Let’s say you are correct that John missed factors that account for variable BABIP. Not seeing them does not show laziness or any idiocy. Unlike here. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-Vw2CrY9Igs&NR=1

    Many who play at all levels acknowledge that luck is prominent in baseball. Though some great players can believe dumb things…There is a confusion of terms here. There IS a clear & rational reason behind almost everything. But that can be luck: in this case, since the batter has very limited control over exactly where well hit or poorly hit balls fall, besides something like the general direction, like pulling it, sometimes balls fall or not more than expected due to chance. Just as in gambling folks can have streaks.

    It has been shown how things like “hot streaks” can be accounted for by random variations-sometimes a lot of certain outcomes pile up randomly.

    Anyway, other explanations besides chance variation need to be presented & considered. For example, i have read that the one pitch that causes lower than expected BABIP is the knuckle ball. If so, looking at why is interesting-due to the effect of hitting a ball w/minimal spin, or that while KB hurlers do not have power pitcher K rates, they induce less solid contact?

  172. Chuck Says:

    “Let’s say you are correct that John missed factors that account for variable BABIP. Not seeing them does not show laziness or any idiocy.”

    Exactly, Mike.

    But when someone points out those factors and you continue to argue and act superior, then you’re opening yourself up to whatever comes your way.

    We may not always agree, but John’s a solid contributor here, and considering there’s not many left, all the more reason to listen to him.

    Unlike Shaun or John Q., who run home to their mommies because, instead of listening with an open mind, are more concerned with their ideas not being accepted and how that makes them feel.

  173. Lefty33 Says:

    “Let’s say you are correct that John missed factors that account for variable BABIP.”

    No bomb throwing Mike, just the simple fact that I don’t really put much of any stock in the whole “luck” argument.

    SABR minded people like to bring “luck” into the equation when one of their acronyms can’t give them the answer to win an argument or explain a stat/situation.

    Instead of admitting that maybe acronym stat XYZ is useless they like to hide behind the reasoning of “luck” instead of actually delving into what caused the issue that is being debated.

    “Just as in gambling folks can have streaks.”

    Poor analogy.

    Wade Boggs/Tony Gwynn in their primes could hit the ball where they wanted just about whenever they wanted. To compare that to a slot machine that has statistically fixed odds of winning does not even come close to meaning the same thing.

    “But that can be luck:”

    I never said it couldn’t. BUT unexplainable or truly lucky outcomes are rare and SABR-mined individuals on other sites like Bleacher and B/R love to hide behind luck to explain a wide range of things that have nothing to do with luck, but it beats actually trying to figure out the answer and it also beats admitting that a bunch of fringe acronym heavy stats that they use are useless and crap.

  174. John Says:

    “99.99999999999% of plays and events happen with clear and rational reasoning behind them. To suggest otherwise is asinine.”

    See, this is just wrong.

    Just because you smash the living fuck out of a baseball doesn’t mean you’re going to get a hit. You might have done your job 100% perfectly, but guess what? If it’s right at someone, it’s going to be an out. Conversely, just because you hit a weak-ass bloop doesn’t mean you’re definitely going to make an out, as it could land in no man’s land.

    I don’t have time to watch every single at-bat of every single player in baseball. But, if I have BAbip, I can get a pretty good idea of whether an abnormally high number of their line-drives are being snagged or a bunch of their bloops are falling in. This is why you don’t pay 36 million dollars to Chone Figgins a year after he has a .370 BAbip.

  175. John Says:

    “Wade Boggs/Tony Gwynn in their primes could hit the ball where they wanted just about whenever they wanted”

    So, the 65% of the time they made contact and made an out, they were being real jerks to their teammates, huh?

    “BUT unexplainable or truly lucky outcomes are rare”

    No, they are not. How many times a game are you like “smashed…and right at the guy, darn” ?

  176. John Says:

    Frankly, I don’t think “lucky/unlucky” is the same as “unexplainable.”

    It’s a tough game. There are nine people trying to get you out. If you do your job well, and still make an out, it has nothing to do with being “unexplainable.” I can explain it just fine: you hit the ball well, but a fielder was right there to make the play, so you didn’t win this one.

    If I had infinite time, yeah, I would watch every single PA and forget about BAbip. But, I don’t.

  177. Lefty33 Says:

    “So, the 65% of the time they made contact and made an out, they were being real jerks to their teammates, huh?”

    ??

    And that statment has meaning why?

    “No, they are not. How many times a game are you like “smashed…and right at the guy, darn” ?”

    And that is luck how?

    It’s called you hit the ball hard and the defender made the play.

    Now if the ball gets hit down the third base line and it hits third base and takes a crazy hop and a guy only gets a single instead of a double because the ball took a went towards a fielder instead of going all the way down the line for a double then sure that’s bad luck.

    But if the ball is hit on a rope to the 3B and he’s right there, that’s not luck that’s simply an L5.

  178. Lefty33 Says:

    “There are nine people trying to get you out. If you do your job well, and still make an out, it has nothing to do with being “unexplainable.””

    And it has nothing to do with luck either.

    You made an out based on a myriad of factors.

  179. John Says:

    “And that statment has meaning why?”

    Because if Boggs and Gwynn truly could control where they hit the ball every time, they would hit 1.000.

    “But if the ball is hit on a rope to the 3B and he’s right there, that’s not luck that’s simply an L5.”

    Disagree. The batter did his job well, and in the long-run, he’s going to end up with a lot of hits if he puts good wood on the ball like that.

    In the short run, not a guarantee.

  180. John Says:

    “You made an out based on a myriad of factors.”

    None of which related to how well you did your job.

  181. Lefty33 Says:

    “None of which related to how well you did your job.”

    None of which are likely related to luck either.

  182. Lefty33 Says:

    “Disagree. The batter did his job well, and in the long-run, he’s going to end up with a lot of hits if he puts good wood on the ball like that.”

    Disagree. If that batter is facing something like a defensive shift his chances of getting a hit no matter how hard the ball is hit, short of being a HR, are greatly decreased because he’s hitting into five guys on one side of the field instead of three.

  183. John Says:

    I don’t think you know what the word “luck” means.

    But it’s cool. It’ll be a month into 2012 and some shitty hitter will be hitting like .368 and some really good hitter will be hitting like .241, and we’ll hear about how the first guy really got his confidence up in the off-season and the second guy is still feeling the after-effects of last season’s collapse.

    And then when the BAbip regresses to normal, it’ll be all about confidence or some shit, when in reality, it was just lucky/unlucky breaks evening out.

  184. John Says:

    “If that batter is facing something like a defensive shift his chances of getting a hit no matter how hard the ball is hit, short of being a HR, are greatly decreased because he’s hitting into five guys on one side of the field instead of three.”

    Which is part of why NOBODY uses BAbip to compare players.

    BAbip is about comparing a player to himself, and his career norms.

    Ryan Howard has been facing that crazy overshift for like 5 years now, so if his BAbip is lower than his career average, it’s not because of a shift since HIS CAREER AVERAGE WAS ATTAINED AGAINST THE SAME DAMN SHIFT.

  185. Lefty33 Says:

    “And then when the BAbip regresses to normal, it’ll be all about confidence or some shit, when in reality, it was just lucky/unlucky breaks evening out.”

    Or more normal things like better timing and swing mechanics.

  186. John Says:

    “Or more normal things like better timing and swing mechanics.”

    Yeah, I’m pretty sure that’s what Pujols had to work on when he was hitting like .181 earlier in the year.

    It was definitely his mechanics.

  187. Chuck Says:

    “Yeah, I’m pretty sure that’s what Pujols had to work on when he was hitting like .181 earlier in the year.

    It was definitely his mechanics.”

    It was, actually.

  188. Lefty33 Says:

    “Yeah, I’m pretty sure that’s what Pujols had to work on when he was hitting like .181 earlier in the year.

    It was definitely his mechanics.”

    I’m sure that luck played a huge part in the fact that in mid-April his ground ball-flyball ratio was the worst it had ever been in his career.

    AKA he was a DP machine because instead of hitting primarily line drives like he usually does he was pounding the ball into the ground which was the cause of his sub. 200 average at that time.

    But your right that correcting mechanical flaws in his swing would have nothing to do with that. I’m sure he didn’t work on anything. Just sat back and waited to get lucky.

  189. Bob Says:

    Chuck, I sent my article to you. Hope it was worthy of Dugout Central.

  190. John Says:

    I can’t wait for next year when Yuniesky Betancourt hits like .350 for the first month and we hear about how his timing and mechanics are suddenly impeccable, and then when he regresses to form, we hear about how he forgot all about those things.

  191. Lefty33 Says:

    “I can’t wait for next year when Yuniesky Betancourt hits like .350 for the first month and we hear about how his timing and mechanics are suddenly impeccable, and then when he regresses to form, we hear about how he forgot all about those things.”

    Way to avoid the subject.

    Based on your answer and wanting to avoid the facts behind Pujols in April:

    “As for Pujols’ stunningly soft start (.150/.225/.222) is also grounded in ground balls. Normally, about 21 percent of his balls in play are line drives. This season it’s just 14 percent. His ground ball-fly ball ratio also is way out of whack: In Pujols’ first 10 seasons, that ratio was 0.69:1. This season it’s almost doubled (1.18).

    However, he’s already hit into seven double plays, that’s more than 12 teams.”

    http://espn.go.com/blog/statsinfo/post/_/id/18157/why-jeter-pujols-are-off-to-slow-starts

  192. John Says:

    Published on April 12.

    Pujols had 40 AB when this was published.

    So he had like 6 line drives, instead of 8.

  193. Chuck Says:

    “Instead of admitting that maybe acronym stat XYZ is useless they like to hide behind the reasoning of “luck” instead of actually delving into what caused the issue that is being debated.”

    If they knew, there would be no need for “acronym stat XYZ”.

    .. beats admitting that a bunch of fringe acronym heavy stats that they use are useless and crap.”

    Statheads would rather walk through a lion cage in a pork chop suit than admit their stats are crap.

    “AKA he was a DP machine because instead of hitting primarily line drives like he usually does he was pounding the ball into the ground which was the cause of his sub. 200 average at that time.”

    He was third in the NL in homers for the month of April with seven.

    He was hit with a pitch on his left forearm the last week of spring training which affected his MECHANICS the first couple of weeks of the season.

    “Chuck, I sent my article to you. Hope it was worthy of Dugout Central.”

    I’m sure it’s fine, Bob, I’ll get to it tomorrow.

  194. John Says:

    “Statheads would rather walk through a lion cage in a pork chop suit than admit their stats are crap.”

    Stark’s comment about Braun’s BAbip against Dotel proves that he/you don’t understand what it’s used for.

  195. Lefty33 Says:

    “Published on April 12.”

    And guess what continued to happen until his mechanics were finally corrected in June?

    He led the league in GDP this year with 29.

    (That number tied Ted Simmons for the all-time team record in a season.)

    He had 16 of those by the end of May.

  196. John Says:

    “And guess what continued to happen until his mechanics were finally corrected in June?”

    Care to show me corrections in his swing?

    Because I’m finding the idea that Albert Pujols’s mechanics were screwed up to be frankly laughable.

    That’s just your go-to excuse. Good player sucking? Mechanics! Bad player dominating? He fixed his mechanics! Bad player sucking again? He went back to his bad mechanics!

  197. Lefty33 Says:

    “Because I’m finding the idea that Albert Pujols’s mechanics were screwed up to be frankly laughable.”

    “Ben Badler, who writes about scouting and development for Baseball America, suggested Sunday that Pujols’ late-April hamstring tightness is still lingering, and affecting his swing more than most fans realize:

    “Pujols strides with his left leg (duh). Normally, Pujols plants and stiffens his front leg, which is what allows the hips to rotate with force and generate power. Since his hamstring injury, he doesn’t seem to be firming his front leg any more. When a hitter swings with a bent front leg, it means his body doesn’t have a base from which to rotate forcefully, which means slower hip rotation and less power. The outcome is usually weak contact out front, which is what Pujols has been doing a heck of a lot lately from what I’ve seen and from what the numbers are showing.”

    http://hardballtalk.nbcsports.com/2011/05/23/whats-wrong-with-albert-pujols/

    Still laughing?

  198. Chuck Says:

    “Because I’m finding the idea that Albert Pujols’s mechanics were screwed up to be frankly laughable”

    John, all you know about hitting is you couldn’t.

    All that’s laughable is you pretending to know whether or not they were screwed up.

    “Stark’s comment about Braun’s BAbip against Dotel proves that he/you don’t understand what it’s used for.”

    Ship sailed, dude, stay in the moment, shall we?

  199. John Says:

    “Pujols has a .313 career batting average on balls that he puts in play (BABIP). Through 48 games this season, his BABIP is just .264.”

    In the article.

    THAT YOU CITED ABOUT WHY BABIP IS STUPID.

    So, yes, I am laughing.

  200. Lefty33 Says:

    “Bad player sucking again? He went back to his bad mechanics!”

    No you dope, more than likely the “bad player” is bad because opposing teams will make adjustments to counter his success and the reason why he likely is bad is because he is unable to counter the opposition’s adjustment where as a good hitter will.

  201. John Says:

    So, he’ll regress to career norms.

    Solid.

  202. Lefty33 Says:

    “So, yes, I am laughing.”

    At what, your own illiterateness?

    So let me guess, now your smarter than a writer from BA and what he said about Pujols is just BS?

  203. Lefty33 Says:

    “So, he’ll regress to career norms.

    Solid.”

    Never said that.

    Solid.

  204. John Says:

    @202, you’re arguing for why BAbip is stupid, and you cite an article that expressly mentions BAbip…so, good work.

    @203, but he will.

  205. Chuck Says:

    ““Pujols has a .313 career batting average on balls that he puts in play (BABIP). Through 48 games this season, his BABIP is just .264.”

    In the article.

    THAT YOU CITED ABOUT WHY BABIP IS STUPID.

    So, yes, I am laughing.

    Has nothing to do with it.

    It’s a stathead site, they’re obligated to cite stuff like that.

    But that has nothing to do with why Pujols struggled, it’s just two numbers on paper.

    Joke’s on you, son.

  206. Chuck Says:

    “@202, you’re arguing for why BAbip is stupid, and you cite an article that expressly mentions BAbip”

    1) Has nothing to do with the discussion at hand.

    2) Mentioning it doesn’t make it any more or less stupid.

  207. Lefty33 Says:

    “203, but he will”

    Based on what?

    If he is unable to counter the opposing teams adjustments then no he won’t.

    @ 204 – No I’m not arguing for why it’s stupid.

    It IS stupid and I’m just telling you why.

    Why don’t you send Ben a Tweet and tell him how much smarter you are than he is and that his quote on Pujols is BS. >twitter.com/#!/benbadler<

    Pull you thumb out of your ass and take a spin on Google and you will find hundred of articles talking about Pujols's changed/different early season mechanics and why that led him to lead MLB in GDP for the first two months of the year.

    As usual John when you're wrong you argue like a twat and I fell for it again.

    My bad.

  208. Lefty33 Says:

    “Ryan Howard has been facing that crazy overshift for like 5 years now, so if his BAbip is lower than his career average, it’s not because of a shift since HIS CAREER AVERAGE WAS ATTAINED AGAINST THE SAME DAMN SHIFT.”

    “HIS CAREER AVERAGE WAS ATTAINED AGAINST THE SAME DAMN SHIFT.”

    That would be impossible because different teams employ different versions of the shift on him. It’s not a one size fits all shift.

  209. Mike Felber Says:

    The “Bonb throwing ” means the personal insults. I know that the main interlocutors here have evolved a style where it is fine, a rough habit. But also everyone has at times been personally triggered/upset & angry, not just exercising male comradery & BSing. And as for Sean & John Q.: they were part of the damage, the fallout, from such conduct. In those cases, mainly with Saen, there was a bullying, mocking aspect that was NOT reciprocal.

    if someone tells you they don’t like it, especially if there are many seemingly ganging up on another, you stop. I do not know that they listened less to reason than most others here-well, Sean sometimes, yes. But Chuck, you are just as stubborn often, & also do not like to admit being wrong, as Raul has pointed out.

    As you have pointed out, we have a paucity of posters, One reason we have significantly less than we should is this conduct, NOT confined to buddies “taking the piss” out of each other. Others have been driven away, & it would be willfully blind that they are just pussies, rather than eruptions of temper have been the problem.

  210. Mike Felber Says:

    As for Babip-be doop ba doop: it does seem reasonable that in his case, his swing was off & effected his Babip. But he has always been somewhat of a ground ball machine:L his 162 game average is 22. Jim Rice’s was 24.

    It is not either/or-usually luck plays the largest role in a player’s varying success when a ball is in play from their norm. But I accept that early in the year it seems true that A. P did worse than usual due to swing issues. How much that effected his season average is not precisely known, but yup, I am amenable to the evidence about early in the year.

    Though why does he normally have so many GIDP? I am unaware of any line up, FB/GB ratio or speed issues that would have him over mid teens for a career season average.

  211. Chuck Says:

    “One reason we have significantly less than we should is this conduct, NOT confined to buddies “taking the piss” out of each other. Others have been driven away, & it would be willfully blind that they are just pussies, rather than eruptions of temper have been the problem.”

    Disagree.

    You pointed me to the comment on BR to why John left, Mike, and if that’s truly the reason I’m glad he’s gone.

    He admitted to being “new” to the sabermetric game, and didn’t fully understand some of the new stats and how to use or apply them, if isn’t comfortable with expressing that and someone says something to him, the proper thing would be to go back and research the topic and possibly re-explain his point instead of just getting his panties in a bunch.

    I’ve read some of his most recent stuff on BR and it is abundantly clear he is much more well versed in sabermetrics and much more able to properly apply them in the right context, and is capable of writing and presenting his thoughts than he was two years ago.

    Which would be expected.

    But if you’re skin is thinner than rice paper, screw you.

    As far as Shaun is concerned, I’m convinced he was kidnapped by aliens and he was brainwashed for scientific reasons and was sent back to earth with and IQ of 8.

    He deserved everything he got, and I don’t need to remind you, Mr. Felber, that Raul and Hossrex gave it to him way worse than I did.

    So, screw him too.

  212. Chuck Says:

    “Though why does he normally have so many GIDP?”

    Um, he puts alot of balls in play and hits with alot of runners on base?

  213. Lefty33 Says:

    “from such conduct. In those cases, mainly with Saen, there was a bullying, mocking aspect that was NOT reciprocal.”

    Total mischaracterization of the truth.

    Sean around the time he disappeared from this site talked plenty of snarky shit towards anybody who disagreed with him.

    He’s also had more than a few pissing matches over on Bleacher Report with non-Braves fans who disagree with him that the Braves are not the best team in the NL or that OPS+ is not the end all be all stat to judge players by.

    You’re right Mike that it wasn’t reciprocal, in the beginning, but in the end it was more than reciprocal and over on B/R he’s said more than a few things that could have gotten him banned off the site since they have such a touchy-feely conduct policy over there.

    “One reason we have significantly less than we should is this conduct, NOT confined to buddies “taking the piss” out of each other.”

    Nope.

    The reason why this site has a paucity of posters is because there is a paucity of content. I am guilty of not contributing any articles yet in real life I write plenty life of things. I just don’t care enough to want to sit down and write a big long pieces.

    A site like Bleacher Report was always be more popular because while 95% of the articles on there are asinine at least there is always fresh content coming on to the site and the asinine quotient clearly drives eyeballs and responses.

    You want more readers/posters here? Figure out a way to get more content, period.

    “The “Bonb throwing ” means the personal insults.”

    Yes Mike I know what you mean but as I’ve said to you before, I could care less what you have to say on the topic. You don’t like it, too bad don’t read it.

  214. Mike Felber Says:

    Pujols: Other guys put many balls in play, & I see no especially large rate of DP “opportunities” for him. He is still great, just has more GIDP than I would predict he would produce.

    Chuck-you did not address John’s comment that referenced why he left, save for what he admitted. You are really being fair to admit he is much more well versed now, though folks who do not want to take what seems to amount to personal attacks & mockery are not being thin skin. Folks besides those two have occasionally SAID they were leaving & why. We have inarguable lost folks who were responsible for a great amount of feedback due to what LOOKED like casual cruelty.

    But I both never said the bad conduct was mostly yours, nor do I recall Raul & Hoss being worse-though they were mean too. I just do not know why you alone feel the need to regularly make denigrating statements about the undearly departed. Nobody deserves abuse, including you.

  215. Lefty33 Says:

    “Other guys put many balls in play, & I see no especially large rate of DP “opportunities” for him.”

    After the first two months of the season he was hitting groundballs at a rate that was almost 10% higher than his career average.

    That’s why over half of his 2011 GIDP’s (16 out of 29) were in the first two months of the year.

  216. Cameron Says:

    Wasn’t he also trying to shake off the effects of an offseason elbow surgery those first couple of months? Maybe he had a kink in his swing with one arm not being 100%.

  217. Mike Felber Says:

    Lefty. You meant I could not care less, but you should, & I think you do have a conscience here, as you have moderated things at least with me when called on it. I know you do not intend to be hypocritical, but YOU are the one who crazily cited me as a main reason you left the Blog. Someone who was never nasty nor ad hominem. Chuck all but called you out by name for being so fragile to leave due to a differing opinion. Glad you came back, but I will continue to read & continue to critique what elsewhere would be censored or by group consensus reviled.

    Now as for your comments about Sean: you reminded me of something, & thus I admit there is a big error in what I said. I DO recall that as you said, towards the end, Sean WAS snarky. True. After absorbing a lot of nasty statements for a long time & staying above it, at the end he did get sarcastic & unkind. I recall calling him on it.

    So I should say that that there was completely disproportionate personal insults & demeaning statements, but out of frustration at the end he returned a small portion of the disfavor. Small point: it cannot be seen you know what bomb throwing is when you claim not to have done it after doing so.

    I know nothing about Sean & Bleacher Report. I also do not know if he is being at all inappropriate-or is just stubborn in a way you disagree with. I do know you have long called most anything or anyone you dislike asinine! An unusual claim to continually make, which may say more about your charity &/or accuracy of perception than what was commented upon.

    An article here is not especially long, though you are not obligated to write anything. I did once.

    I read a lot of B-R threads-if their policy is putatively so P.C. they do not often enforce it. Likely they do not NEED to since by example/entrainment, & opprobrium when someone gets nasty & personal, the level of debate there is good-in conduct & complexity-whether you agree with many of the posts or not.

    I doubt Sean said anything like # 24 & 69 in this thread, & this guy has been at least occasionally making such statements for a long while seemingly uncensored. http://www.baseball-reference.com/blog/archives/15883#comments. Using similar language endorsing taking revenge by murdering umpires “at the ground”. Which he graciously amended lately by saying skull breaking may be unnecessary. A mere single eyeball destruction may be adequate to reform the recalcitrant folks seen as evil.

  218. Cameron Says:

    …Well, that’s kinda comforting. We may be assholes to each other, but at least we’re not advocating killing each other.

  219. Lefty33 Says:

    “You meant I could not care less, but you should,”

    No Mike I mean I don’t care.

    As in you can preach over and over about ethics and civility and I don’t care what you have to say on the topic. My opinions are my opinions and I’m not changing them just because you might find them “offensive”.

    Like I said, if you don’t like it don’t read it.

    “but YOU are the one who crazily cited me as a main reason you left the Blog.”

    I did and I regret doing that because I allowed your ignorance of factual understanding on the topic we were discusing at the time to briefly influence my thinking and that’s not something I’ll do again. Big mistake on my part.

    “Small point: it cannot be seen you know what bomb throwing is when you claim not to have done it after doing so.”

    First off Mike they’re words not bombs and second I’m well aware of what I say and how I say it and how YOU choose to characterize those words is irrelevant to me.

    “I know nothing about Sean & Bleacher Report. I also do not know if he is being at all inappropriate-or is just stubborn in a way you disagree with”

    Over on Bleacher Report they have a little tab that you can press to flag a posters comments as offensive and they love to suspend/ban people.

    People get suspended on Bleacher all the time. Their head Baseball guy Steve Meyer and two or three other guys in what is essentially their ethics departments simply go around suspending/reinstating accounts all day long.

    (I know because I just had someone banned last week)

    Some of what Shaun was posting on the articles of a few of the guys who are regular writers on that site about the Phillies passed way beyond stubborn and well into what you would find inappropriate.

    He has never been profane but he has been more than been snarky, highly condescending, and just an overall mental supremacist asshole.

  220. Cameron Says:

    Found this on MLBTR, made me laugh.

    “One agent says Albert Pujols should look for a six-year, $240MM deal in free agency. It’s hard to imagine anyone, even Pujols, signing for $40MM per year.”

    Glad to see Scott Boras is still full of shit.

  221. Mike Felber Says:

    Don’t tell me not to read things Lefty: I told you I will do so & call folks on it whenever useful. So get used to it, until say, oh…(looks at watch) forever. Does Forever work for you? There you go, modeling harmless, non-abusive “snark” in service of standing up for something right.

    I only indicated that your grammar was incorrect re: care/care less, a common mistake. What you meant was clear, & the “but you should” tells you I knew. Pujols: my comment Chuck quoted asked why he “normally” has such a high GIDP rate, esp. for a great hitter. I already agreed with you re: April & May, thanks for that real insight.

    You label my difference of opinion “ignorance”, & I doubt you can support that at all. But I am glad you recognize your error-we would all be unkind nervous wrecks if we left any domain where a polite difference of opinion was expressed. And intolerant, worse people for it.

    You must be aware that “bombs” is an appropriate metaphor for denigrating & cursing/showing contempt for the individual. You have made no argument that the type of politics of personal destruction is not mean, immature, ad hominem, & at best irrelevant to the point-& most with most intelligent & non-cruel folks it may undermine the credibility of an argument.

    The only thing I am surprised or wonder at is why YOU would effectively ban someone. I doubt you have the hypocrisy to ban someone for the same kind of nasty personal attacks & language you use. Because i believe you have higher principals than that. Must have been something different in degree &/or kind from your own comments. Because I assume that you do not think the kind of stuff you write should be censored.

    Do I think personal attacks should be banned? At least condemned. In a private forum I can blame nobody for banning stuff that are vicious & abusive. Though I am also sympathetic to the looser reign here, where arguably “sunlight is the best disinfectant”, as Supreme Court Justice Douglas said.

    But I do not know if it is better in the context of allowing everything in all forums. If someone only posted abuse, should he be banned? How about constant wishes for groups to be hurt, racial hate, genocide? These are extreme, but constantly calling folks names out of malice, regardless of effect/now it is received…

    Happens to be routine for some here, but is a bit extreme. And the only time not ugly & childish at best is when folks enjoy or do not mind the “banter”. but many have been hurt & some demonstrably driven away.

  222. Raul Says:

    The problem I have with people talkig up BABIP is that it assumes the player is doing everything right.

    1. Albert Pujols was hitting like crap. It’s ok. He’s got a shitty babip. He’s just been unlucky.

    ORRRRRR…

    2. Maybe his mechanics or timing was screwed up and he adjusted and started playing better.

    But some people will sit there and tell you the 2nd is bullshit or “unlikely”. And then they wonder why people ever question if they’ve ever even played baseball.

  223. brautigan Says:

    Mike:

    1) Sean gave as good as “he got”.
    2) I don’t like the bomb throwing either. I don’t like the use of foul language in here either and I’ll be the first to admit it has kept me out of this site more than any other reason.
    3) We’ve had a few new posters in here, but they didn’t last.
    4) I don’t miss Hossrex. I don’t miss Sean.
    5) If John were to leave tomorrow, I’d miss him though. I rarely agree with him, but his comments do spark commentary. And there is nothing wrong with that.

  224. brautigan Says:

    Raul: That is why baseball hires hitting instructors. They spot flaws in someone’s mechanics and they do their best to sort out the flaws. Luck has a role, but if someone is in a slump, I’ll take mechanical flaw over luck any day. You can fix a flaw, you can’t fix luck.

  225. Mike Felber Says:

    Brautigan, I think you are pretty unbiased & level headed, so I respect your opinion. But for a long while, until the end, I did not see the same language & contempt from Sean. I am sure you agree it is not even so much the langiage as the intent & direction of it-someone who just uses f-ing as a verb is very different from another who directs it & more, including personal denigration, towards those that disagree with them.

    If even you have been deterred from coming here due to the language/conduct, add that to those we know have been driven away, & all those, like you, who we did not know who come less often due to it. And over time there have been a lot of new posters-logically at least a few of them likely left for similar reasons. All of this means this site has unnecessarily alienated a host of folks over time. And if the bomb throwing did not exist we would have a lot more voices & volume of commentary-an active person here adds a lot. Not even considering other articles.

    Hoss varied over time in his approach & tone, & as i told him, seemingly grew more angry over time. There is a phenomena of a “group think”, where folks feel obliged to conform to the prevailing mores, in this case a lot is mocking machismo. I theorize that this was not a natural fit for him. Harvtig had reviewed old posts & thought Hoss was particularly brilliant. And what happened to Mr. H.?

  226. Raul Says:

    If a few f-bombs and a-holes is really what’s keeping people off this site, i’ll do my part to cut it out.

  227. John Says:

    @222, why can’t it be both? A good hitter makes necessary adjustments, sure. Maybe Pujols was a bad example, but there are plenty of examples of guys hitting plenty of line drives and generally just doing what they generally do, but a few more of those line drives have found fielders. It does happen. Very common for a good hitter to hit .240 for a month or a bad hitter to hit .300 for a month based on bleeders getting through the infield.

    @223, no worries, I’m not going anywhere. I’m a fairly confident person, by and large, so Chuck connecting my analysis to somehow liking dudes isn’t gonna do the trick.

    But I’m probably gonna be too bummed to watch the WS. I’d say good luck, but, I hate the Cardinals more than sin :)

    @226, I enjoy the assholishness, but I’d cut it out too.

  228. brautigan Says:

    Mike: Hossrex “attacked” me over some very minor things. It did not settle well with me.

    At one point, I asked him where he lived, only out of curiosity, but I think he thought I was going to find him and kick his tail (that wasn’t going to happen). Which tells me he knew he crossed a line somewhere.

    Raul: Sometimes slang/foul language has it’s place. Like the Scott Radinsky story I told. I was quoting someone, but that is likely the only time I’ll use language like that.

  229. brautigan Says:

    Kumbaya……

    Sorry, but I’m laughing at my own joke. That’s sick.

  230. Mike Felber Says:

    Yes, Hoss had times when he went berserker for no reason. See, someone w/much smarts like him but a brittle Ego feels pushed to be mean by the attitude we are discussing. And then things unravel, for him & others effected by him.

    Raul, it is not so much the cursing, hear what i am saying. That is secondary to toxic contempt & personal attacks as what the cursing may suggest. Sometimes cursing is harmless fun, sometimes the insults & effects can be worse absent any “bad words”.

  231. Bob Says:

    Perhaps my memory is somewhat foggy, but I recall Hoss as challenging people’s comments, not their personality. And to imply that he only knew 4-letter words is also unfair as his vocabulary was solid, TO SAY THE LEAST. He may have gone too far once or twice, but to blindly state he engaged only in verbally attacking you his wrong.
    But perhaps I am in the minority, and if so, I am fine with that.

  232. Raul Says:

    This date in baseball history:

    1950 – Connie Mack, at age 87, retires as manager of the Philadelphia Athletics after 50 years, and Jimmy Dykes is named to replace him. Mack, together with Ben Shibe, founded the Athletics in 1901.

    1960 – Instituting a mandatory retirement age of 65, New York Yankees co-owners Dan Topping and Del Webb relieve manager Casey Stengel of his duties. He posted a 1,149-696 record for the Yankees, including 10 American League pennants and seven World Championships.

    1977 – Reggie Jackson becomes known as “Mr. October” when he hits three consecutive home runs in Game Six of the World Series. Jackson leads the Yankees to an 8 – 4 victory and the World Championship over the Los Angeles Dodgers. Jackson’s three shots come on the first pitch off Burt Hooton, Elias Sosa and Charlie Hough. He drives in five runs and earns Series MVP honors.

    2001 – Larry Dierker, who left the Houston Astros’ broadcast booth to take over the dugout duties as the team’s manager in 1997, resigns despite tying the Cardinals for the best record in the National League (93-69) and winning the Central Division. The team failed to win a playoff series in his five-year tenure, going 2-12 in postseason action. Overall, Dierker posted a 448-362 record for a .553 winning percentage while winning four divisional titles.

    2007 – Joe Torre is out after 12 seasons as manager of the New York Yankees when he refuses to take a large pay cut to return in 2008. The Yankees have reached the postseason in all of Torre’s seasons at the helm.

  233. Chuck Says:

    “Chuck all but called you out by name for being so fragile to leave due to a differing opinion.”

    I’m not so sure about that. Yes, I do believe if anyone leaves a chat because of what someone says to them it’s probably better for everyone, but if anyone understands what Lefty says from his playing experiences, it’s me. Not likely to cut off my arm to make a point.

    The funny thing about this whole last few comments is Mike stauchly defending someone who hasn’t been here in two years and whose name he can’t even spell.

    It’s Shaun.

    I raise my hand in guilt.

    I will tone it down (except when John starts up on sabermetrics or Tim Raines..sorry, got to have an outlet SOMEWHERE, right?)

    But I’ve said this since I got here and will say it again..

    If you leave this site because of anything I’ve said…good riddance.

    Would you never go to your favorite Starbucks again because the server messed up your order?

    Would you take a different way to work because you got flipped off at a stoplight?

    We’re all passionate about baseball, yet we are strangers.

    If you’re offended by what a stranger says to you, then put your laptop or iPad on eBay and find another hobby.

    I know we’d be better off.

    I don’t miss Shaun, I don’t miss John Q, I don’t miss Hossrex.

    They were the stars of “The Real Housewives of Dugout Central” and I, for one, am glad that show got cancelled.

  234. Raul Says:

    I wouldn’t leave the site because of anything anyone says.
    I just would like to see more participation and articles.
    If a few less f-bombs lead to a few more articles, I’ll take that trade.

  235. Chuck Says:

    “If a few less f-bombs lead to a few more articles, I’ll take that trade.”

    I think if all we’re worried about is f-bombs, more articles won’t fix the problem, only make it worse.

    The fix for “you’re a fucking moron” isn’t to leave the site, it’s to stop saying stupid things.

    We’re all adults here, if you can’t take constructive criticism, then become a monk and take up a vow of silence.

    I’m sorry, but if you think Tim Raines should be in the HOF because he walked a lot or stole a lot of bases, then you pretty much deserve everything that comes your way.

    Maybe it’s me, but that’s the way I see it.

  236. John Says:

    “I’m sorry, but if you think Tim Raines should be in the HOF because he walked a lot or stole a lot of bases, then you pretty much deserve everything that comes your way.”

    Save it for January, Chuck.

    If Tim Raines drew 1000 fewer walks and had 400 more hits, while stealing half as many bases and getting caught twice as many times, he’d be in on the first ballot and you would be calling him one of the greatest ever.

    He would have been responsible for 850 more outs and been unquestionably worse. He would have scored fewer runs, his teams would have scored fewer runs, but hey! He’d have 3000 hits AND THAT MEANS SOMETHING.

    Hell, if you just replace 80 walks with singles, he would be a .300 hitter (as if that’s soooo much better than .294) and you’d be cumming your pants over him. Think about it…the difference between someone who’s not even close and someone who should be a slam-dunk (in Chuck’s mind) is basically getting a single instead of a walk once a month. About 60 of those 80 singles would have come with no one on base.

  237. Lefty33 Says:

    “Don’t tell me not to read things Lefty: I told you I will do so & call folks on it whenever useful.”

    I know you will continue read my comments Mike as you’ve made that point clear more times than I can remember.
    It was just wishful thinking on my part. Either way it doesn’t matter.

    “You label my difference of opinion “ignorance”, & I doubt you can support that at all.”

    Go back and re-read whatever thread that was from and your comments clearly speak for themselves.

    “You must be aware that “bombs” is an appropriate metaphor for denigrating & cursing/showing contempt for the individual.”

    Did I ever say that I wasn’t aware?
    In fact I just posted yesterday that I was aware.
    What I said was how YOU choose to characterize it is irrelevant to me.

    “The only thing I am surprised or wonder at is why YOU would effectively ban someone.”

    Pretty funny isn’t it?

    “I doubt you have the hypocrisy to ban someone for the same kind of nasty personal attacks & language you use. Because i believe you have higher principals than that.”

    Considering that you don’t know me at all, like Chuck said we are all strangers, your comment about higher principals is absurd as you have zero to base that on.

    You might as well believe in Santa Claus or the Boogeyman.

    There is about as much substance in believing in them as there is in you stating that you know something about the character of a person you’ll never meet.

    “Must have been something different in degree &/or kind from your own comments. Because I assume that you do not think the kind of stuff you write should be censored.”

    Don’t assume Mike it doesn’t do you or anyone else any good.

    I don’t know any other way to get this across to you but again:

    I do not assume anything about anything in terms of what I write. If it gets censored then it does. If people don’t like it, then they don’t. I don’t care one way or the other.

    I’ve made the same types of comments on Bleacher Report, the Phuture Phillies blog site, and two others sites that I post on and quite honestly 99% of the time no one cares.

    It may ratchet up the dialog a bit, but no one is making post after post on “abuse” or is trying to be the Ombudsman of that site.

    In closing Mike, just to make it clear again for you, whatever your issues are with my posts are your issues alone and not mine.

    I don’t give a toss about what you think and I accept no blame, responsibility, etc. for writing them. If you so choose to read them then you do, but don’t expect your posts and/or your assumptions to matter to me because they don’t.

    Again the problem with this site is not the occasional foul tone of the place it’s the lack of content.

    Plenty of other sites have people on them that call people idiot, stupid, dope, dumb, asshole, etc. every hour or everyday and they get more traffic than this place because they have more content and just like with any media company, group, or website content is what drives the ship.

    If you have good content then everything will take care of itself in terms of eyeballs, interest and success and people will come regardless of the “abuse” or the occasional tone of the discussion.

    If you don’t have good or frequent enough content then your site will wither and atrophy just like this site has done over the past couple of years.

  238. John Says:

    “I don’t give a toss about what you think”

    Ok, we don’t have to censor ourselves that much, do we?

    “If you don’t have good or frequent enough content then your site will wither and atrophy just like this site has done over the past couple of years.”

    You’re welcome to post here Lefty. Send anything to Chuck or Me (spry2011@gmail.com)

    I mean, that goes for anyone. The really tricky thing about this site is that the owners are nowhere to be found.

  239. Cameron Says:

    Mike, you’re coming off as a bit sanctimonious.

  240. Lefty33 Says:

    “You’re welcome to post here Lefty. Send anything to Chuck or Me”

    Thanks John but like I said yesterday, I don’t care enough to write pieces.

    So thanks again but I’ll abstain, courteously.

  241. Chuck Says:

    “Save it for January, Chuck.”

    How about never again, John?

    Although the two paragraphs you wrote afterwards are a perfect point to why there are so many “fucking idiot” comments here.

    Two years and you still don’t get it.

    “I do not assume anything about anything in terms of what I write. If it gets censored then it does. If people don’t like it, then they don’t. I don’t care one way or the other.”

    Amen.

    “Again the problem with this site is not the occasional foul tone of the place it’s the lack of content.”

    True, although nothing can be done about that.

    John, myself, occasionally Bob, and that’s it.

    With no admins there’s no way for someone to sign up for an account, so, it’s us or the highway, which, it seems, is getting closer and closer everyday.

    A month or so ago, Thomas said he was back, wrote a couple of articles, than vanished again.

    Shaun’s gone, and I’ve checked his site links, and he doesn’t write anywhere. Neither does Tyler (personally, I think he walked into a bar in Boston and ripped Pedroia based on dWar, and is now buried next to Hoffa).

    Kerry?

    Who knows?

    Joe DelGrippo?

    He left because of Tyler and Shaun’s pig-headedness over stats THEY don’t understand.

    Can’t think of anyone else off hand.

    If you think this place sucks, go somewhere else and read what people write, you’ll be thankful we’re still here, on life support or not.

    “I think the Yankees should sign Albert Pujols and put him in rightfield.”

    I actually read that on a site the other day, a site that is a Yankee blog with a lot of traffic.

    If I owned that site, I’d delete the comment and the commenter’s account.

  242. Lefty33 Says:

    “Shaun’s gone, and I’ve checked his site links, and he doesn’t write anywhere”

    He still puts out some pieces on the Braves over at Bleacher.

    He just wrote a thrilling piece about Jason Heyward last week where he debated whether Heyward should have been benched more or played more and how because of his 95 OPS+ he deserved to start the whole season.

  243. Cameron Says:

    I’ll chalk Heyward to a sophomore slump. That and something must’ve happened to him. Chipper Jones and a few other teammates said he lost his self-confidence as he slumped. If you let a slump get to you, you won’t break it.

  244. Cameron Says:

    So, with tomorrow starting baseball’s holy week, I have to ask.

    Rangers or Cardinals?

  245. Chuck Says:

    “He still puts out some pieces on the Braves over at Bleacher.”

    Last time I went to Bleacher, my computer crashed.

    So, not only does the site suck, but it’s a virus breeding ground.

  246. Chuck Says:

    “I’ll chalk Heyward to a sophomore slump.”

    How about being overrated?

    In two years, we’ll be having the same conversation about Bryce Harper.

    Write it down.

  247. Cameron Says:

    I’m not writing the kid off yet. I don’t think he’s the next Hank Aaron, but he’s not gonna wash out.

  248. John Says:

    “Although the two paragraphs you wrote afterwards are a perfect point to why there are so many “fucking idiot” comments here.
    Two years and you still don’t get it.”

    88 years in the game, and you still think that “productive outs” is the difference between winning and losing teams.

    If I told you that you could have a guy who led the league in sacrifice flies, struck out just 63 times, and drew just 16 selfish, team-damaging, me-first walks, you would take him in a heartbeat.

    http://www.baseball-reference.com/players/b/betanyu01.shtml

  249. Cameron Says:

    Lots of sac flies? I like.
    Relatively few Ks? I like.
    16 walks? I don’t like?
    His name? Brings back memories of wanting to bring a rocket launcher to Kaufman Stadium.

  250. John Says:

    Heyward’s like 14 years old.

    Let’s at least give him another season before writing him off.

  251. Chuck Says:

    A young guy comes up and has a lot of success early and people are ready to start carving his HOF plaque.

    Right, Joba?

    No one is writing him off, but Heyward’s a lot closer to Domonic Brown than he is to Mike Stanton.

    If he spends 13 years in the majors and hits .270/225/800, that won’t be so bad, but if you think he’s the second coming of Dave Parker, forget about it.

  252. John Says:

    Jason Heyward had a very good rookie year…for like, a full year.

    That’s different than Joba Chamberlain’s 24 IP of glory.

  253. Cameron Says:

    I think Heyward’s ceiling’s probably gonna be a .270/25/90 threat every year with about 20 SB and good defense.

    Superstar? Not really. Good? Hell yeah.

  254. Cameron Says:

    Unless Heyward finds a way to channel his raw strength into home run power. If he went all-or-nothing at the plate, he could be a .250 or lower hitter, but a 40 homer threat.

    As a 20 year old, he dented a Coke delivery truck in the parking lot of the Braves’ spring stadium. That kind of raw power is nuts.

  255. Chuck Says:

    I’m not writing Heyward off by any means, he’s a good player.

    But superstars don’t slump, at least not for very long.

    I think the longest hitless streak of Pujols’ career is 0-21, his next is like 17 AB’s.

    They figure things out, they don’t go to the plate with the same approach every single time, they make adjustments, however subtle, to get themselves back on track.

    You go to the plate 700 times in a season and hit .198, you fucking suck.

    The only bigger idiot than you is the dumbass manager who keeps putting your sorry ass in the lineup everyday.

  256. John Says:

    @255, so what of your prediction that Adam Dunn is going to bounce back?

  257. Cameron Says:

    Well, I guess if you’re looking for a flaw in his game… Everything roughly went down at the same rate. The OPS+ saw a 40 point dip, meaning he lost about 40% of his production.

    Across the board, the numbers just about check out. It’s a hell of a down year, but he’s still the same player, nothing really changed other than he went from good to meh. If someone can whip this kid’s ass back into shape, he’ll be fine.

    …Or basically, the same shit we’ve been hearing about BJ Upton since 2007.

  258. Chuck Says:

    Yes, John.

    This year was an aberration if there ever was one.

    Just look at his splits.

  259. Cameron Says:

    I thought you said superstars don’t slump.

    …Sorry, I have a daily jackass quota I need to fill.

  260. Chuck Says:

    “…Sorry, I have a daily jackass quota I need to fill.”

    Doing a great job, and you’d fill it a lot faster talking about wresting, and where did I ever infer I thought Adam Dunn was a superstar?

  261. Cameron Says:

    Ya didn’t. But I can hop anything vaguely resembling a connection to previous statements to make a smartass remark.

    It’s both a gift and a curse.

  262. Chuck Says:

    Be nice if they were at least relevant to each other.

    You sound more and more like John everyday.

  263. Cameron Says:

    Nah, I’d have to fellate sabermetrics every time I opened my mouth to sound like him.

    …Sorry John, quota.

  264. John Says:

    “aberration” … Like luck, but actually unexplainable

  265. Mike Felber Says:

    Chuck-you made that comment not long after Lefty said why he left the site, & I saw no other person who made a similar statement, or was talked about, you could have been referring to. If you respect his opinion enough that you liken it to losing an arm, that is a very nice sentiment.

    Still, since neither you nor Lefty nor any of us are censored here, it is easy to say we would not mind if we were. I doubt that is true. I’ll bet you all would miss the outlet, even if you did not take it personally.

    Sorry to the absent Shaun for mangling his name. Doubt he would mind, but still. As for the Starbucks or bird flipping analogy, good analogy to question. A single incident in traffic or a favorite store shows no likelihood to be a regular or serious difficulty. But if a favored place you go for entertainment becomes filled with even a small cadre of folks acting nasty, cursing & insulting each other, at least sometimes CLEARLY trying & humiliate the other, many would stop going. The clearly appropriate analogy is a local tavern that goes from Cheers-like to a haven for mean drunks.

    We have lost folks due to this, have been TOLD so, as Brautigan testifies to (& he is very even tempered & fair) & others likely left at least in part for this reason. Yes, lack of content is an important factor, they both are.

    Chuck, I appreciate your efforts, as I have noticed how you have been better with me. But it is bass-ackwards to presume anyone deserves abuse due to ideas that either disagree with someone, or even if we stipulate they are flat our wrong. I am surprised you do not miss Hoss, because after Epic Battles with you he admitted he was wrong about some things & you two were usually allies.

    Look, some sanctimony is a necessary trade off if’n dysfunctional & meanness becomes ascendent. Hoss was quite bright & interesting, but it was sad to see him careen from anger management junkie w/you, to being macho/angry overall: that was NOT his natural conduct for a long while. Many have a weakness where to fit in, like adolescents, they channel a fake-tough affect. We can so better than enable that. F-ing moron is not constructive criticism.

  266. Mike Felber Says:

    Lefty: post #173 you wrote “no bomb throwing” You must have meant your statement that followed, I thought you meant addressing what I said before. However in #213 you said “words are not bombs”, & then said nothing acknowledging the truth of my statement “…an appropriate metaphor for denigrating & cursing/showing contempt for the individual.” So you are NOT aware of what I said, only claiming “…I’m well aware of what I say and how I say it”. Saying you do not care how I characterize it shows zero admission of the mean & destructive intent behind it. If anyone felt differently they would would have defended you. If it makes you feel better I never suggested it was only or mainly you.

    You can stop saying you do not care. You care enough to respond at length.

    It is not only giving you the benefit of the doubt to think you have certain principals: I have been fairly accused of being naive that way, but it is reasonable to think it likely that a stranger who has been consistent in following his own stated principals in his statements has a certain code of honor. And since you have no problem with anyone’s verbal abuse here or foul language here, & clearly do not want it censored-poking fun at the continual bannings & reprieves elsewhere-it is reasonable to believe you would on principal not try to censor another for no worse tone or content.

    Am I being too generous here? Ironic if you assail me for that! But while some sites may do well due to the quality & quantity of dialogue, two things here:

    1) We can less afford to lose folks due to the lack of content.

    2) So what if a site is so hot that those who are alienated are not missed? It is still unfortunate to lose them, & something more-let’s use Jerry Springer as an example. I have heard him as a rational & gentle radio host, yet for years he acted innocent when hosting/enabling/provoking damaged folks making public fools of themselves, while the audience abused them & rank grade school bullying & somewhat staged violence was virtually encouraged.

    Certain things are lowering for the common good & cause others to be more brutal or just casually cruel & disdainful. Less human. Some of you see that, & that constant attempts to belittle & humiliate under the guise of toughness is anything but. Which is appreciated.

  267. Chuck Says:

    Mike,

    The real reason John Q. left is because he felt no one respected his opinion.

    He can say all day it was because of the perceived personal attacks all he wants, but if he’s a stranger, how can anything anyone says to him BE personal?

    He can say all day long it was because of the disprespect towards his new-found belief of sabermetrics, but when HE himself admitted to not fully understanding some of the stats he used in his arguments, how can we respect him?

    Bottom line Mike is no one forced him to leave, the decision to leave was his, and while he can defend that decision any way he wants, the bottom line is he can come back any time he wants and has CHOSEN to stay away.

    If he wants to know who is ultimately responsible for him leaving, point him towards the nearest mirror.

    Same goes for everyone else.

  268. Lefty33 Says:

    “You can stop saying you do not care. You care enough to respond at length.”

    Thanks for the attempt at guidance Mike but again, I don’t care what you have to say on this topic.

    Responding at length doesn’t mean that I care about what you have to say.

    It means that I keep making attempts to get you to understand that your whole PC thing doesn’t mean anything to me and my approach will not change.

    But instead you keep bringing in things like “code of honor”, “things that are reasonable to believe”, others not defending me, and you making baseless claims about my character, etc.

    It’s all wasted words.

    Since you always like to tell me what I should or shouldn’t do here’s one for you:

    Either lead (write some articles), follow (start making posts about baseball and not about being the DC PC Ombudsman), or get the hell out of the way.

    I’m done with this topic.

  269. Mike Felber Says:

    I have made many baseball related posts for years Lefty, as you must know. A few folks here who are regulars agree with me &/or will modify their conduct. There is no way I am “in the way”, For the health & credibility of this site, quite the opposite.

    By definition you care about getting me to understand what you described. Also you approach has demonstrably changed with me. It would not be wasted words even if you did not do so. Not remotely. It is peculiar that you object to my assuming you HAVE a very general code of honor. A charitable assumption that still seemed consistent with the evidence, most would consider it an olive branch of sorts.

    Otherwise I have confined my statements to your comments & what they clearly seem to communicate. Telling you what to do? There is an expression “your right to extend your fist ends where someone else’s nose begins”. And even if not said to me directly-recently-when someone is ill treated or mocked in a public, as on the street, that effects other’s sensibilities/noses.

    Let alone keeping people of the caliber of Brautigan here.

  270. Mike Felber Says:

    You really do not understand Chuck. I believe John was right most of the time, even if his knowledge of SM was limited, he made many arguments that made sense & did not require advanced knowledge of it. I was not the only guy agreeing, but there were a few who vociferously objected. But let’s stipulate for the sake of argument that John could not establish a bunch of points.

    You do not need to really know someone to be “personal”. Name calling, derision, insults-what, you need to know if he is fat or short to effectively insult someone besides flaming their brain, experience, toughness, etc?

    You conflate respect being deserved with being what you consider is right. Or being within an acceptable limit of opinions, &/or being amenable to your reason.

    Brautigan & others, especially those who have left for similar reasons of being dismayed at puerile abuse-are not pussies. Even if one is not attacked, one may not want to subject themselves to that level of “debate”. At its worse a vicious Psychodrama pissing match.

    And we have had so much more than that, even the opposite in comradery. I did not care about camera details, but it was good that Hoss & whomever could talk about that at length. Though overwhelmingly it was about sharing a love for the game. Hating those who dare differ poisons that.

Leave a Reply


RSS
Categories
Fan Duel
FanDuel - Daily Fantasy Baseball
YardBarker
Advertisement