With one summer course finished last night, I’m like 95% done with my Master’s. Woo. Okay done with the semi-cool brag. Onto the baseball…
During the series with the Cubs, I was annoyed with the constant Wrigley-fapping. This series, it was (as it usually is when they’re together) the Michael Kay and Paul O’Neill Show. This time, though, it wasn’t so much about their constant discussions of food, or golf, or texting but the harping on Drew Stubbs and how he needs to “figure out what kind of hitter he’s going to be” since he strikes out a bit and hits for power. To both Kay and O’Neill, he is unsuited for the leadoff roll because of those strikeouts…and the power. Sure, the strikeouts are bad out of the leadoff spot, but he clearly backs it up with a power bat. And, he works walks. Going into last night, his walk rate was 9.0%, a solid mark for anyone. Kay does this ignoring walk shtick a lot, especially with guys like Mark Reynolds and Carlos Pena. It’s frustrating as hell and does casual fans a disservice as it does not necessarily give them an accurate picture of the player.
Also annoying was something Michael Kay said at the start of yesterday afternoon’s game. They led off with a bit about Brett Gardner being very hot for the last 40 or so games. They stacked up his first 30 games to his last 40, which were obviously much better. Kay commented that Gardner’s .323 OBP in the first 30 games was “unacceptable” for a leadoff hitter. Yet, later in the game with (the ever-awesome-needs-more-airtime-now) Jack Curry in the booth, Kay thought that Derek Jeter should still bad leadoff. What’s Derek Jeter’s OBP? .324. That one point must make a huge difference. I won’t go further into it because it’s been done to death but the level of cognitive dissonance is frustrating.
You guys….Jason Giambi IS COMING BACK TO THE STADIUM THIS WEEKEND. This will be Giambi’s first return to the Bronx since his contract expired after the 2008 season. I am SO PUMPED for this. I always liked Giambi a lot and thought he got a bad rap during his time in New York. Sure, his contract was worth $114.8M and he only played to a $69.2M value per FanGraphs, but that mostly comes from the negative position adjustments and horrid defense. Offensively, Giambi was a beast for the Yankees. His line with New York was .260/.404/.521/.965. The injury shortened 2004 definitely sucked and hurt the Yankees in the 2004 playoffs, but as a hitter, the Giambino was always a lot of fun to watch. I hope he gets a big ovation when he comes to the plate in Yankee Stadium.
After last night, how many more starts do you guys think Brian Gordon will get? I’m thinking one more.
There isn’t much going on in terms of trade talks, so I think I’ll take this opportunity to laugh at some WFAN callers. I haven’t been listening lately, but over the last few weeks they’ve come up with some ridiculous trades involving the Mets and the Yankees. I can’t quite remember the specific trades proposed, but they usually start with “Well (host’s name), I think this could help both teams!” and is followed by something like…”Okay, I was thinking Bay and Beltran for Swisher, Gardner and Nova. I’ll hang up and listen to your response!” A few things…
1. With Nick Swisher and Jorge Posada starting to hit like themselves again, the necessity to trade for Carlos Beltran is pretty low right now.
2. No one is trading for Jason Bay, Mets fans. It’s not happening.
3. The Yankees are not going to give up a bunch of team controlled guys for guys who are rentals or have big contracts. Please, WFAN callers, just stop. You probably aren’t reading this but on the off chance you are, just stop.