Thursday, August 5, 2010

Six Very Important Things this Morning 8.5.2010

1.  An ugly win is still a win.  And any win over a team like the Rays is a good thing, but man did they do everything they could to lose this one.  They wasted a monster outing from Scott Baker, the kind that reminds us that when he is on he is nearly unhittable.  They missed countless opportunities to get more runs across, and ended up heading into the ninth with just a 1-0 lead that was promptly squandered by new closer Matt Capps, with a healthy assist to the piss-poor outfield that seemed to make mistakes all game long, only to have Baker pitch around them - something Capps couldn't do. 

But despite their stunning ability to strike out on pitches out of the zone last night, they managed to squeak out a win over the Rays thanks to Delmon Young's big single in the 13th.  Of course, that hit came with runners on the corners and nobody out, so you would have thought a big inning was coming, but this was the Twins, and much like the rest of this series they were unable to get anything resembling a timely hit after Young, ending up on the right side of the 2-1 victory thanks to Matt Guerrier's six straight outs.

I do realize I've been a bit hard on this team in this series, and if they can win tomorrow they end up with a split, and you can't really expect anything better on the road against a team like Tampa, but they have just been so close in every game.  When two good teams matchup it's often the little things that make the difference, and do you really feel good with Gardy out there being the difference between a win and a loss (hello Guerrier vs. Upton two nights ago).  He clearly does some things right, enough to make the playoffs more often than not, but he is not a good game manager.  Sometimes that makes the difference.  I'm not calling for his head or anything, but sometimes he can really piss me right the hell off.  Seriously, go ahead and start keeping track of all the really good game decisions he makes.  I'll wait.

2.  Is it weird that nobody cares about this?  A-Rod finally hit his 600th career home run yesterday afternoon, just a mere 12 games and 46 at-bats since he hit #599.  I know everybody hates A-Rod, and for some reason the fans boo whenever he comes to bat, but I've never quite understood that.  Because he makes a ton of money?  They all make a ton of money.  Because he used steroids?  They all used steroids.  I mean, 600 HR, even in this day and age, is still a pretty special thing.  Only six other people have done it, with A-Rod being the youngest to reach that mark, and before you go spouting off about cheaters know that two other members, Bonds and Sosa, are cheaters too.  And doesn't A-Rod's cheating seem slightly less grievous somehow than Bonds or Sosa.  Bonds went from a great hitter to probably the second best of all-time, while Sosa went from a AAAA player to a home run hitting machine who still sucked.  A-Rod, to me, just doesn't seem anywhere near that level.  I actually kind of like the guy.  I'm not saying I want to go pick out curtains or anything, but if he threw some money at me and there was a little wine and maybe a back rub involved, who knows?  

3.  There is no way Bud Selig will be able to handle this.  You have probably heard the Texas Rangers are having all kinds of financial troubles, which is really too bad since they could make a run at the World Series this year.  What you may not have heard is that they are currently up for auction and it's basically Nolan Ryan vs. Mark Cuban.  So it's stoic, professional, respects the game ex-stud pitcher and maybe the most famous baseball name in history Nolan Ryan versus trashy, spazzy, do it his own way, insult every in power and get fined every five minutes Mark Cuban.  Now I think Cuban would be good for baseball - he would treat his players great, spend on a Yankee-level for payroll, and give MLB its best villain since John Rocker - but I'm guessing Bud Selig disagrees.  Of course, this is the same guy who thinks the All-Star game should mean something and almost wrecked the game twice (strike, steroids), so I like my chances.

4.  This is what Carlos Gomez should have been.  Sigh.  Back in 2007, Carlos Gomez was one of the Mets top prospects while Carlos Gonzalez was one of the top prospects in the Arizona system.  Both were centerfielders.  Both were fast as all hell.  Both were toolsy.  Both were plus defenders.  And neither understood the strike zone.  Both have been traded since then (Gonzalez twice), but while we've seen Gomez struggle to become more than a fast, inconsistent player, Gonzalez has become one of the best in the game.  After hitting two home runs today he now has a line of .319/.349/.559 with 23 home runs, 72 RBI, and 15 steals, numbers that rank him as #2 in the NL in batting average, #4 in slugging, #6 in RBI, #7 in homers, and #6 in OPS.  Take heart though, Carlos Gomez fans (all one of you), most defensive metrics have Go-Go as a much better defender than Gonzalez.  Take that!  Although Gonzalez did have one unfair advantage - he go to learn from the great Todd Helton.

5.  Edwin Jackson made me look like an idiot.  Remember how I was all like, "Jackson will suck in the AL he's not even good in the NL" and "Chicago is so stupid they totally got stuck with Jackson" and "I'm smart"?  Well I'm still an idiot.  Jackson led the White Sox to yet another stupid win, which makes them something like 50-1 in the last two months, pitching seven very good innings, allowing just one run on nine hits and a walk while striking out six.  Not a masterful shutdown performance, but pretty solid, even if it was against the suddenly punchless Tigers.  Seriously, what is going on with the Sox pitching?  It doesn't even matter who they throw out there, they are all Cy Young candidates.  I don't know what kind of magic elixir they have in Chicago, but I suspect it has something to do with Dayton wings.

6.  Brett Favre is a creepy perv?  Favre retirement talk, with him finally coming out and saying it's all about the health of his ankle and that he hasn't made a decision yet, but that's not important.  More interesting is that Jenn Sterger (pictured below), famous for having a large rack and being a Florida State fan in a cowboy hat, has told Deadspin that Favre used to send her pictures of his ding-dong when they were both employed by the Jets.  Now, I'm all in favor of people sending each other pictures of themselves in various stages of undress, but generally only when it is something both parties are interested in (or the sender is a woman).  When it's a dude sending pictures of his crank (or of him holding his crank while wearing crocs) to a chick who isn't interested, not to mention to a not interested chick who is 20 years younger than him, I get a little skeeved out.  Like, Pete Rose in his underwear skeeved out.  But doesn't this also seem like something Rose would do?  Looks like my Favre = Rose comparison just continues to get more and more accurate.


snacks said...

Is it too early to start the bench Span in favor of Repko movement?

p. anderson said...

Those boobs are totally fake. You'd think a real american down home country boy like farve would only be interested in real cans.

rghrbek said...

Repko is a much better fielder, at CF than Span, but Repko cannot hit. Wait until the AL realizes he can only hit a fastball. He absolutely cannot hit any breaking stuff.

Span s/b a corner outfielder, where he has made a difference the last two years. Young s/b in RF, the only position he has posted a positive fielding metric. Unfortunately, who plays center???

Wwww...agreed on gardy

snacks said...

Ha! I got my wish today - Repko in center and Span on the pine. With the HUGE caveat of small sample size, Repko is holding up just fine at the plate. He also only has 471 career at bats, so even his previous career totals (which are ugly) aren't necessarily a good predictor. And let's face it, Span isn't exactly tearing it up this year. I can't seriously suggest we replace Span with a 29 year old career minor leaguer.....yet.

The Todd said...

If I had Sterger's number, I'd send her pics of my ding dong too.

WWWWWW said...

Repko. Yard.

rghrbek said...


Repko comes through big, I am amazed that he is still getting fastballs when it's clear he can't hit the breaking stuff.

Good for us. Nice bullpen. Why would you pitch Mahay against any righty? Even Bartlet.

Dawg said...

Bartlett pinch hit after the pitching change.

snacks said...

Better questions - why would you pitch Mahay against anybody? There's a reason he was unemployed before we came calling. I don't think he even does that well against lefties. I know Gardy doesn't realize it, but it's actually better to have a quality righty face a left handed batter than a shitty lefty.

WWWWWW said...

Man this was a lot of Jason Repko talk.