Monday, September 28, 2009

Looking Back at 2009 Predictions

PeteAbe took a look back at his predictions today, so I thought I'd do the same. I'll admit, this is probably my worst year for predictions, which you can read here.

Let's break it down:
NL East:
I'll call this one correct. I thought the Mets would have been a lot better than they are, and undervalued the Marlins, but other than the Mets I had the order correct.
NL Central:
Whiff. Who could have predicted the Cubs would fall apart so badly? Not I, it would seem. The "going out on a limb" prediction of last-place Pittsburgh paid off though!
NL West:
Win, except the Rockies were obviously a lot better than I thought they'd be. The Marquis turnaround had a lot to do with that, as well as contributions from guys from the farm like Fowler. The Dodgers were the class of this division however and there was no denying that.
The Metropolitans killed me in two categories. Obviously a big miss.
MVP: David Wright
Cy Young: Johan Santana
ROY: Cameron Maybin
Hoo boy. Ok yeah, I didn't pick Pujols because he was the obvious choice. Big mistake. Santana isn't even in the discussion (see how badly the Mets screwed me here?) Maybin's not on the radar wither, as Coghlan and Happ and Hanson and Wells have proven. Epic fail, this one.

AL East:
Red Sox
Blue Jays
I expected more from Tampa and less from Boston. I saw Ortiz in heavy decline, and a team of overachievers in 2008 that didn't change much in 2009 in Boston. Well, they proved me wrong. I can't call this a complete failure as I did get the division winner right, but will take the hit later on in the wildcard outcome.
AL Central:
White Sox
Has there ever been a more disappointing team than the 2009 Indians? Weak division, quality ballclub, MVP type player (Sizemore) and Cy Young type pitcher (Lee)... wow. Totally off here. Tigers, Twins.. congratulations for making me look foolish.
AL West:
The West were by far the easiest divisions to pick. I underestimated the Rangers (who didn't?) and their pitching, but all in all this isn't that far off.

White Sox
Buzz. Wrong color.

MVP: Grady Sizemore
Cy Young: Mariano Rivera
ROY: Travis Snider
Oh you Indians continue to confound me. Rivera has had a fantastic year, but let's face it - voters choose starters. I can't call that one a failure though, because of how good Rivera has been. Snider's not even in consideration for the ROY.

All in all, not the best year I've ever had, but maybe a Yankees-Dodgers World Series can help me save some face. At least they have the best records in their respective leagues.

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posted by Mr. Faded Glory @ 12:13 PM   1 comments


Thursday, September 24, 2009

Collective Sigh of Relief

So it looks as if Hairston is going to be OK for the postseason.

Now I know he's not a big bat or fantastic player, but he gives Girardi a lot of flexibility in that he can play any position except catcher - very useful in creating matchups and pinch hitting and double-switching in a National League park.... where the Yankees will hopefully play in October.

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posted by Mr. Faded Glory @ 5:20 PM   1 comments


Wednesday, September 23, 2009


The situation: tie game, men on first and second, no outs. Johnny Damon (he of the 25 home runs and the poor bunting history) is at the plate.

Damon bunts: foul, strike one.
Damon bunts: foul, strike two.
Damon bunts!!!!!!: sacrifice

The runners move up, everyone congratulates Damon... and the Angels promptly walk Mark Texieria with first base open.

If it were Brett Gardner, Ramiro Pena, or say Jose Molina at the plate, OK, fine, sacrifice away. Damon has a shot to win the game there, and even a deep fly gets the man to third with one out.

The double-play will still be in effect because of course the Angels walk Tex.

Sometimes this year it seems Girardi has fallen in love with the bunt (especially with Jeter) but it's such a poor percentage play that he needs to knock it off.

Also it could be just me, but it seems they mostly bunt against the Angels and Rays, teams built on small/Ozzie/slap/speed-ball.

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posted by Mr. Faded Glory @ 4:38 PM   5 comments


Monday, September 14, 2009

Lou Gehrig was Unknown for 60 Years

At least, Curt Schilling seems to think so.
Nineteen years ago Shonda and I met a man named Dick Bergeron. Dick had been recently diagnosed with ALS (amyotrophic lateral sclerosis), better known as Lou Gehrig’s Disease.

ALS, today, is still 100 percent fatal. However, in the past 19 years Lou’s name has gained notoriety and recognition in many positive ways.

His life story has been written about many times over. This is the best book I’ve ever read on it.

Why is this relevant? For two reasons, really. The first was the nation becoming aware of Lou during the previous decade, when Cal Ripken broke Lou’s consecutive game streak. Cal did it with a blue collar work ethic unmatched in anyone I ever played with. Knowing Cal’s father, it was easy to see how and why he was who he was.
Look Curt, I know you named your kid Gehrig (and then pretended to be a big Yankee hater when the opportunity presented itself for you in Boston). But to claim that the nation "became aware" of Lou Gehrig in the late 90's is fucking asinine. It appears you think his name just appeared "19 years ago" when you met someone with ALS. Gehrig was one of the greatest player in history. Gary Cooper starred in a highly popular movie about him. They named a disease after him.

If anything, the nation became aware of Cal Ripken.

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posted by Mr. Faded Glory @ 11:41 PM   2 comments


Wednesday, September 09, 2009

Joe Still Clueless

What a gem of a post by friend-of-this-blog Rob Neyer.

Torre talking lineups, nonsense

September 8, 2009 7:41 PM

Mark Newman asks three (future) Hall of Fame managers -- along with Henry Chadwick, risen from the grave -- about lineup construction, and I couldn't help siezing upon this bit from Joe Torre:

    With certain people, it's easy. You know where the leadoff guy goes. I used to have trouble and Don Zimmer gave me a great hint-start from the bottom. He was right. All of a sudden I realized when you put the names down that way, it makes the rest of it easier. With our current lineup, you know where (Matt) Kemp, (Andre) Ethier, Manny (Ramirez) and (Rafael) Furcal will be. Those guys will be in the top four or five spots. It becomes pretty simple, and occasionally it's a matter of how to attack a certain pitcher with right-handed hitters or left-handed hitters. But when you have players who play every day regardless, it's not that tough a call.
(Sorry, I can't resist ...)

Umm, Skipper? Have you forgotten already that Matt Kemp has spent more than half his time this season in the bottom third of the lineup? And have you failed to notice that Rafael Furcal, who simply must be near the top of your lineup, has a .320 on-base percentage and has stolen only six bases all season? Russell Martin, who's spent most of the season in the bottom third of the order, has a higher OBP and more steals than Furcal, who at this point is suited to just one spot: eighth.

Look, I know that batting orders are relatively unimportant, and that the difference between any two moderately reasonable lineups is just a few runs over the course of the whole season. But everybody loves to talk about lineups, and I'd love to hear from a manager, future Hall of Famer or not, who's coming close to actually putting together the best lineup possible. 'Cause Joe Torre hasn't been close this season.

Maybe he'll get it right next month.

Torre admits that even though he started managing in 1977, he was still unsure how to even fill out a lineup card in 1996 and had to rely on Zimmer. How many duties does a manager really have that are more basic than setting a lineup? It also goes to show he doesn't even remember what he's done in the past by forgetting about Kemp's placement. Maybe that explains certain things, like the fact that he forgot he used Proctor the previous 25 days so he summoned him again.

I am so glad this guy is out of the Yankee dugout. Let's not forget how "successful" Torre has been without Popeye sitting next to him.

(Hat tip to Stan for the heads up).

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posted by Mr. Faded Glory @ 12:07 PM   1 comments


Thursday, September 03, 2009

Onion Thursday


Starting Pitcher Not Allowed To Start, Pitch

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posted by Mr. Faded Glory @ 11:02 AM   0 comments

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