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Thursday, June 16, 2005

Too Disgusted to Blog, Too Annoyed Not To

Quit Calling Into Radio Talk Shows

Memo to all of the idiots I heard call in after today's game, quit it. I'm tired of hearing the same stupid and mostly wrong assertions.

2004/2005 Comparisons

I keep hearing them. I'm tired of it. That isn't because there's nothing to be gained, it's because it's done incorrectly. I won't get into what people have done wrong, but I'm going to attempt to do it right.

You can't help but be struck by the return of seven starters to a third place team. This wouldn't be so bad if it weren't for the fact that of the seven, six of them are playing worse this year than last. Only Brian Giles has improved. The rest have fallen off. Some have been more/less consistent. Klesko and Burroughs have suffered relatively small drops. Greene and Hernandez have seen somewhat bigger declines. Loretta and Nevin are completely different players and not for the better. On the new starter, Roberts has been a big, big improvement offensively over Payton.

The bench is perhaps the most talked about "improvement" to the team. While Sweeney, Fick and Nady have been much better than any of last year's bench players, it's worth noting that both Nady and Fick were part of that group. Ojeda is the other holdover from last year and I think we'd all consider ourselves lucky if he could capture last year's mediocrity. Eric Young has been injured. Jesse Garcia and Adam Hyzdu were terrible. Neither Damian Jackson nor Geoff Blum has been league average. In fact, neither one has been as good as Kerry Robinson was last year. Terrence Long and Rich Aurilia were both more productive at the plate last year as well.

Granted, last year's bench had some amazingly bad performances. That includes the likes of Darren Bragg, Brian Buchanan, Jeff Cirillo, Jon Knott, Humberto Quintero, and Ramon Vazquez who were all better last year than Jesse Garcia and Adam Hyzdu have been this year. Only Alex Gonzalez and Dave Hansen were worse.

Don't misunderstand me, the bench is better, but that's really only because of Mark Sweeney.

The pitching staff underwent about as much change as the bench and is also considered to be better. Eaton, Peavy and Lawrence returned to the rotation. Peavy and Lawrence have not been as productive as they were last year; Peavy is still pitching very well, though Lawrence not so much. Eaton, on the other hand, has been much better than last year. The new additions this year are Woody Williams and Tim Stauffer. Neither has been as good as Boomer Wells, but both have been much better than Ismael Valdez. Many think the rotation is lacking, but it is as good as any in baseball.

The bullpen is supposedly a great deal better than last year. It certainly has greater depth. Hoffman, Linebrink and Otsuka have all faired no where near as well as they did last year. All are still very good, but they are not what they were last season. The rest of the bullpen is much improved. Chris Hammond and Rudy Seanez are both much better than any of last year's relievers that weren't part of the three-headed monster, with the exception of Antonio Osuna who we allowed to walk. Brian Falkenborg has been a disaster as has Darrell May and Tim Redding. Fortunately, Falkenborg has continued to improve and both May's and Redding's numbers have been better out of the pen than when starting. Of the 16 middle relievers and fifth starters employed last year, only Osuna and Witasick could have made this year's club. The top guys aren't quite as good, but the rest are better and by a lot.


Blogger Lance Richardson said...

I couldn't agree more about the call-in shows. The hosts (even former players) don't have a clue, and the callers haven't the slightest idea how baseball games are won.

4:01 PM, June 16, 2005  
Blogger Peter said...

Excellent post bud!

10:24 PM, June 16, 2005  
Blogger Richard B. Wade said...


10:39 PM, June 20, 2005  

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