Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Adios Mulvey (+Athlon Sports Gopher preview)

-  I missed this until Aaron Gleeman posted it yesterday, but the Twins completed the Jon Rauch trade by sending Arizona the player to be named later; Kevin Mulvey.  I have mixed feelings.

On one hand, there is part of me that says the Johan Santana trade suddenly looks better (blown game yesterday by Rauch aside) with him in there instead of Mulvey, who looked terrible in all of the one and third innings he pitched for the Twins.   On the other hand, Mulvey is still just 24, was ranked as the Mets #4 prospect at the time of the trade, and put up ok numbers at Rochester this year - his first at AAA.

He has already been promoted to the big club in Arizona, and has made two appearances since they acquired him late last week, totaling three innings and giving up just one hit and a run while striking out three and walking three.  So maybe he's fallen to the point where his upside is a middle reliever, I don't know.  I'm picturing him suddenly with a name change to K.J. Mulvey (middle name = John) and becoming a shut down 8th inning guy.  In any case it's a bit disheartening to know the team has already given up on part of the Johan deal - which continues to look worse and worse.

-  In a completely unrelated note, "early season fluke" Jason Bartlett has continued his fluky ways all season long, and is still fourth in the AL in batting average at .331 (just 20 points lower than O-Cabrera's slugging percentage).  He also leads all AL shortstops in average, OBP (higher than Morneau), slugging (higher than Cuddyer's), and OPS (would be third on the Twins behind Mauer and Kubel) and is second in steals, third in home runs and triples, and fourth in doubles.

God dammit.    

-  Since we are talking about MLB prospects and who did and didn't work out, I might as well bring up the unfortunately named but fortunately gifted Madison Bumgarner, a super prospect for the San Francisco Giants who made his debut last night after being a top ten prospect on any list you could find.  It was undoubtedly a success, with Bumgarner going 5 and a third, giving up just five hits and walk while striking out four.  Two of those hits given up were home runs, unfortunately, but both were solo, so he currently sits with an ERA of 3.38 and a WHIP of 1.13.

The original plan wasn't to bring him up until 2010 at the earliest, and more likely 2011, but the combination of being in a Wild Card race along with his stunning success scuttled that idea.  He put up some very impressive numbers in his two years in the minors between A and AA - in 49 games he compiled a record of 27-5 with an ERA of 1.65, WHIP of 0.97, and 256 Ks compared to just 55 walks - so at age 20 he's skipping AAA and hitting the bigs, and it looks good so far.  And think on this:  The Giants have Bumgarner, 20, Lincecum, 25, and Matt Cain, 24.  They're pretty much guaranteed to be contenders for years.

-  On the Gopher front, Athlon Sports College Basketball Preview Magazine is out, and they have the Gophers slotted as a 10 seed in the NCAA tournament this season.  Without having broken anything down yet on my own, that seems a bit low.  I would hope for something more in the 5-8 range.  Some other bits from the mag:

Big Ten tournament teams:  Minnesota (1 & done), Illinois (2 & out), Michigan (2 & out), Michigan State (Nat'l Runner-Up), Ohio State (2 & out), Purdue (Final Four), and Wisconsin (1 & done).  If that comes to pass it will be a very, very succesful conference season.

They predict the Spartans lose in the championship to Kansas - no real shock - with Texas the other Final Four team along with Purdue.  Villanova (ick), Kentucky, UNC, and Tennessee round out the other Elite 8 teams.

All American Team is Cole Aldrich, Devan Downey, Luke Harangody, Patrick Patterson, and Kyle Singler, with Evan Turner on the second team, Manny Harris and Kalin Lucas on the third team, and Talor Battle, Kevin Coble, Robbie Hummel, and E'Twaun Moore getting honorable mention (what!  No Ralph Sampson or JaJuan Johnson!!  Travesty!).

No Gopher makes the mag's All Big-Ten first, second, or third team, but Royce White is their predicted newcomer of the year, and they call out Al Nolen as the most underrated player in the conference (*bring hand to mouth, make fart sound here*).  Evan Turner is their conference player of the year.

With the mag out and the weather turning to fall, expect an increase in college basketball posts as I get ridiculously excited for the millionth season in a row.

-  Finally, as much as it pains me to praise Patrick Reusse, take the time to check out this very well done article by him on Minnesota Amateur Baseball, something very near and dear to me.  If you pay close enough attention (and you know me personally), you may catch a familiar name in there.  Way to go Old Man, maybe you weren't all talk after all.

Check back again tomorrow.  At some point before the NFL season kicks off I will have my wildly popular NFL predictions.  And they're all yours FREE OF CHARGE!!!  All I ask in return is that you go click an ad on the right side over there.  Go do it now.


bobby said...

Athlon Sports College Basketball Preview Magazine. Isn't that the magazine you basically cut and paste into your blog every year and pass off as your own "analysis"?

WWWWWW said...

Yep, sure do.