Good Morning everyone!
Well, yesterday was a harsh day for me, physically. I didn't even
make it in to work. Seriously, I want nothing more than for this
stone to come out of me! But, I guess it'll go at its own pace, huh?
So today, I really don't have much for you, and again, I apologize
for that. I just thought I would touch on a couple of topics and
then rest and call it an evening.
First, thank you again, so
much, to Jeff Dooley, the Radio Voice of the New Britain Rock Cats.
What a fun and informative interview. I hope that you enjoyed it as
much as I did.
MORE ON, JOHAN
Secondly, you know I promised
not to talk about the AL Cy Young vote anymore, but I can't help it.
Yestrerday, the Strib's Patrick Reusse again called out all "stat
freaks" for daring to think that the Cy Young Award should go to the
league's best pitcher over the full year. Here is
he wrote on the subject:
followers and statistical freaks continue to
complain that Johan Santana was robbed in
voting for another major award: AL's Cy
want Santana to receive full credit for
going 6-2 with a 1.09 ERA in his final 10
starts -- domination that took place in
garbage time of a lost season for the Twins.
It was in his
previous 10 starts the Twins needed Santana
to dominate. That's when they were going
from 35-22 and 4 games behind the White Sox
in the AL Central to 58-56 and 16 ½ games
behind the Mighty Whities (and from 7 ahead
to 4 behind Cleveland).
3-4 with a humdrum 4.64 ERA in that decisive
stretch of the season, making a third-place
Cy Young finish a generous reward.
As the great
Aaron Gleeman pointed out yesterday:
Odd, isn't it, that a guy who calls
people "statistical freaks" would then use statistics to support
The best counter-point I have
seen was an excellent e-mail I received from Travis Brunson
that throws it all back in Mr. Reusse's face:
Saw in the fish wrap that
Patrick is still chiming in trying to defend his crappy
third-place vote and the votes of others about how Santana
was not robbed of the Cy Young. His argument was that his
last 10 starts were in "garbage time" when the Twins were
out of it. How about those 10 starts?
4 of the 10 against the White
Sox. 32.1 innings, 2 ER's, 33 K's (0.56 ERA) (aka WOW)
2 of the 10 against the
Indians. 13 innings, 5 ER's, 12 K's (3.46 ERA) (still 1
full run better than league average)
1 start against the A's. 9
innings, 0 ER's, 9 K's. (aka, a little dedication to all my
homeys in Oaktown I like to call the "nine-oh-nine")
So, 7 of the 10 starts were
against legitimate playoff calibre teams during August and
September. And with the exception of one mediocre start
against Cleveland, he completely shut them down. I am quite
certain that those three teams didn't view these games as
garbage time as the playoff spots were well up for grabs at
Reusse can harass the
"statistical freaks" crowd all he wants (although he still
uses stats to make his argument, which I think is mildly
interesting). He argues that Santana's previous 10 starts
were "humdrum." Yet in that stretch, Santana gave up a
league average 4.64 ERA in the 10 games with 7 of them being
against Boston, New York, Angels (twice), Oakland, San Diego
and Tampa Bay (a good offensive team). He had two bad
starts in the 10 and the rest were above league-average.
How the best pitcher in baseball
gets a "generous reward" for finishing third is beyond me.
When he is on his game, the best hitters on the planet are
completely clueless. That makes Santana's "A" game
world-beating, and his "B" game nearly unbeatable. His "C"
game or worse allows 3 runs to the Red Sox in 6 innings.
Ask any hitter in MLB and I bet they'd tell you that there
is almost any starting pitcher they would rather face than
him; if they were interesting in succeeding anyway. Three
starting pitchers like him throwing their "A/B" game and the
New Britain Rock Cats lineup would win the World Series.
Right now he is the best
starting pitcher in MLB. Meaning that in the entire world,
no one does what he does better. And Reusse and everyone
else knows it as well. They just don't have the balls to
admit it; its just easier to rip the pocket protector crowd.
Now that is actually doing
some research, and that is the beauty of being able to have a blog
like this. Sure, we could all read what Mr. Reusse said and just
accept it. And, truth be told, I am guessing that 90% of the people
who read that in the newspaper actually did buy it as acceptable.
However, a little research later, and we see that it is a ridiculous
statement. Thanks Travis!
And finally, remember last
week when Roger used his formula to
calculate the score that the Cy Young candidates would have
received? In that, he showed that Santana was far and away better
than Bartolo Colon:
Johan Santana - 142.462
Mariano Rivera - 135.751
Mark Buehrle - 128.762
Bartolo Colon - 122.402
Cliff Lee - 113.102 points
Well, let's add another Twins
starter who was very good in 2005 to this list and see where he ends
Carlos Silva, using all of the same information, would have
had a point total of 128.178, also significantly better than
Colon's. Of course, Silva was just 9-8, so he wasn't even worth
looking at by the voters.
And then we realize that the
voters not only vote the post season awards like Rookie of the Year,
Cy Young and MVP, but they also vote for the Hall of Fame. And yet
some of us still wonder why Bert Blyleven isn't already in
the Hall of Fame!
NL MVP - Albert Pujols
Well, I have to say that the
voters did get both MVP votes right. Yesterday, Albert Pujols
edged out Andruw Jones for the trophy.
Jayson Stark had some interesting thoughts on the awards,
and Stick and Ball Guy disagreed with him greatly. I actually
don't. I happen to believe in intangibles, but only as a
tie-breaker. I don't believe it should simply go to the most
outstanding player, otherwise, you just pick out your stats and
don't even need a vote.
Pujols received a $200,000
bonus for winning the award. Did you know that Alex Rodriguez
got a $1 million bonus for winning the AL MVP award? I'm sorry, but
if you have a salary of $25 million, shouldn't you pay the team $1
million if you DON'T win the MVP award?
MLB and the Player's Union
finally agreed upon some punishment for failed steroid (and
amphetamines) tests. First offense will be 50 games. Second offense
will be 100 games. And for a third offense, the player will be
banned from baseball... with the right to appeal in two years.
I hate talking about this. However, I am glad it is done. Hopefully
after a few days we won't have to hear any more about this!
The TOPPS Contract
Pat Neshek discusses
the contract that Topps tries to get all minor leaguers to
sign. It is really rather interesting; how much the contract is for
and how that changes, and more. Hopefully we can see Pat with his
own Topps or Bowman cards in 2006 sets!
More Awards For Liriano
At MiLB.com, they
gave three awards to the Twins Francisco Liriano. He was
named the Overall Foreign-Born Player of the Year, Triple A Starting
Pitcher of the Year, and Triple A Foreign-Born Player of the Year.
Comparing Brandon McCarthy
and Scott Baker
John Sickels takes a look at the two AL Central pitching prospects
on a number of categories including Background, Tools, Performance
and more. It is a very interesting read, and these two will likely
match up against each other for the next few years. There is also a
poll to choose who will have the better, longer career.
Glen Perkins - Cy Young?
The Baseball Analysts say that if there would be a Cy Young
for the Arizona Fall League, the Twins Glen Perkins likely would be
WHAT I'M WATCHING
When I first started this site
two-and-a-half years ago, I used to write about a lot more topics.
One prominent one was the TV shows that I was watching. As a matte
of fact, on the left of the screen with the other links were the
links to all of the shows I watched each night. There were anywhere
from three to six shows a night. I know. I was pathetic. I would
watch one channel of shows and tape other channels so I could watch
those shows later.
Well, a little over a year
ago, I moved out of my apartment and into a house. Since that time,
I have gradually reduced the number of shows I watched. On one
level, I feel pretty good about that. I did watch too much TV (a
term you never would have heard me say in the past). On another
level, I kind of miss knowing what was going on with so many shows.
OK, to the point of this
section, I wanted to discuss what I am watching now. I am really
down to just a few shows that I actually watch with any regularity.
Of course, Thursday night is the big night. Friends was
always my favorite show, and
Joey has replaced it. I think that it is excellent. I really
can't watch Will &
Grace since it isn't funny very often anymore, so I flip
over to CBS and watch the second half of
I then really enjoy
only the Donald Trump version though. And
ER is still a very good
show. On Tuesdays, I really like watching
The Biggest Loser.
That show could be very inspirational to a lot of people, I'm sure.
Then I also watch
My Name is Earl, which is very funny! I thought I would like
The Office more
than I do, but it's humor is frequently too dry for me. That is
about it! Actually, after a long day of football on Sundays, I do
enjoy the Fox lineup. The
Simpsons are alright, but
Family Guy is hilarious.
The War at Home
is great, and I really like
American Dad is
another excellent cartoon comedy worth watching.
Of course, like so many, I am
eagerly anticipating the new season of
American Idol. And, ok,
I really enjoy the show
And that is it! I am
sure there are other excellent shows that are not sports. When the
Twins are on, that's what I watch. Even with the two TVs, the focus
is on the Twins game. Are there any other shows that I should be
watching or that you enjoy? Let me know,
send me an e-mail.
And on that note, I am going
to go get some sleep and try to get comfortable. If you have any
thoughts or ideas, or if you would like to contribute a guest column
or a Why Baseball essay, it would be great for me. Please
e-mail me if
Have a great day!