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 Post subject: Long live the King?
PostPosted: Sat Apr 15, 2006 1:01 pm 
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Joined: Sat Nov 01, 2003 1:01 am
Posts: 741
Location: The Empire State
Wabber,

Just wondering what the Seattle media think of Hernandez's last outing, which was none too good. (His first outing was good, albeit short at five innings.) A mere speed bump on the road to greatness?

Not asking to be snarky. Genuinely curious.

Did you see the piece on him in the SI baseball preview? I haven't read it yet but am looking forward to it. I'll get through the baseball-preview issue eventually.

Wow--the Mariners just prevented the Red Sox from scoring in the bottom of the second with the bases loaded and nobody out. That is impressive.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Apr 15, 2006 7:00 pm 
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Joined: Mon Nov 21, 2005 12:46 am
Posts: 302
Location: Conn. -- hence the name
Sounds to me like the hitters are catching up to these sophomore phenom pitchers.

I picked up Chien Ming Wang and Ervin Santana in my rotisserie league, thinking I had two stud pitchers locked up that would help me for the next 10-plus years (if I stay in the league that long), but neither of them are getting the job done -- Santana had a 4-0 lead on Baltimore in the second inning Friday night and blew it!

That's what makes baseball so interesting -- and frustrating as heck for rotisserie geeks.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Apr 16, 2006 9:21 am 
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Joined: Mon Mar 10, 2003 1:01 am
Posts: 2266
Location: New Jersey
On that note, I highly recommend Baseball Between the Numbers: Why Everything You Know About the Game Is Wrong, just published by the guys at Baseball Prospectus. One of the many topics it tackles is "Why Are Pitchers So Damn Inconsistent?" Answer: The only things a pitcher's skill really affects are walks, hit batsmen, home runs, strikeouts and, to a lesser extent, whether a ball hit into play is on the ground or in the air. Extensive analysis shows that once a ball is actually hit into play and stays in play (i.e., isn't a home run), there is no meaningful difference among good, bad and mediocre pitchers as to that ball's probability of being a hit. At that point, the outcome is pretty much luck and defense.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Apr 16, 2006 9:31 am 
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Location: The Empire State
Connfused wrote:
Sounds to me like the hitters are catching up to these sophomore phenom pitchers.

I picked up Chien Ming Wang and Ervin Santana in my rotisserie league, thinking I had two stud pitchers locked up that would help me for the next 10-plus years (if I stay in the league that long), but neither of them are getting the job done -- Santana had a 4-0 lead on Baltimore in the second inning Friday night and blew it!

That's what makes baseball so interesting -- and frustrating as heck for rotisserie geeks.


Couldn't blame you for picking up either Wang or Santana. Most people in the game, from what I've read, expect both to have high upsides. Santana looked great against the Yanks last week, I'll say that much, and did in last year's Game 5 too.

I sure hope Wang gets untracked. He hasn't even been mediocre this year; he's been bad. The Yanks need him to be better than mediocre.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Apr 16, 2006 7:06 pm 
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Joined: Mon Feb 07, 2005 6:47 pm
Posts: 1734
Location: Washington
Not sure what to say about Felix. In his last outing, against Cleveland, he threw his two-seam fastball in the low 90s for four innings before suddenly dialing it up to 95-97 in the fifth. His location was poor throughout. I've seen virtually every start he's made and this one was so anomalous that I'm tempted to toss it as an outlier — but won't until I see if he bounces back in his next couple of starts.

His first outing was fine. He was just victimized by no run support. And he went five innings only because he's on an extremely restrictive pitching count, by orders from on high.

He's got all the stuff — and smarts — and frequently gets the desired results. I honestly don't know why he looked unlike he's ever looked before in his last start.

Give some credit to the opposition, though. Cleveland is by far the best-run organization in baseball, and is on the cusp of what I believe will be a historic dynasty of sustained dominance. Right now, the Indians have a core of brilliant young players who are outstanding right now and are nowhere near their peaks — Grady Sizemore, Victor Martinez, Jhonny Peralta, Travis Hafner, C.C. Sabathia, Cliff Lee, Jake Westbrook and others — under long-term contract. The supporting cast is made up of cannily selected castoffs — Ronnie Belliard, Casey Blake, Aaron Boone, Bob Wickman, Ben Broussard — who were obtained on the cheap and have provided value well above their megaer salaries. The farm system is loaded to bursting with ripe, leverageable top-drawer talent.

I honestly watched Felix's game more to admire the Indians. If you want to see the future of great baseball, watch this team.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Apr 16, 2006 9:30 pm 
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Joined: Sat Nov 01, 2003 1:01 am
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Location: The Empire State
Wabberjocky wrote:
Cleveland is by far the best-run organization in baseball, and is on the cusp of what I believe will be a historic dynasty of sustained dominance. Right now, the Indians have a core of brilliant young players who are outstanding right now and are nowhere near their peaks — Grady Sizemore, Victor Martinez, Jhonny Peralta, Travis Hafner, C.C. Sabathia, Cliff Lee, Jake Westbrook and others — under long-term contract.


Indeed, one of the Red Sox' radio broadcasters (Joe Castiglione, I believe) the other day nominated Hafner as his pick for Most Valuable Player this year. And the Red Sox haven't even played the Indians yet.

I agree the Indians under Mark Shapiro seem to be doing it right, just as the previous regime under John Hart did, locking up Carlos Baerga, Robbie Alomar, Manny Ramirez, Albert "Don't Call Me Joey" Belle and Omar Vizquel to long-term deals. Too bad other big-payroll teams (cough, cough) can't follow that model instead of trading for players or signing free agents whose best years are far in the rearview mirror.

Hope to see the King sometime soon on the ol' out-of-market cable-TV package. What a great innovation that is for hardball fans. There's always a game on somewhere, every day.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Apr 16, 2006 10:30 pm 
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Joined: Mon Feb 07, 2005 6:47 pm
Posts: 1734
Location: Washington
Hafner at the plate looks — and frightens — like a white David Ortiz. The man just menaces.


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