Cubs Try to Avoid the Sweep

As expected, Prior hit the DL yesterday with shoulder issues although surgery isn't expected (at the moment). He won't be throwing for at least 10 days and really what's the point of trying to bring him back this season. Shut him down! Another one of the "Cubs Young Guns" (&copy TCR Inc, All Rights Reserved) hits the mound today. Anyone want to take the over on Marmol hitting 110 pitches in 6 innings? Go Cubs! GAME ONE HUNDRED-SEVENTEEN IN-GAME DISCUSSION THREAD [PARACHAT] CHICAGO CUBS (48-68 (Div) 5th - 14.0 GB; (Wild Card) 12th - 11.5 GB) AT COLORADO ROCKIES (57-59, (Div) 4th - 3.5 GB; (Wild Card) 4th - 2.5 GB) Coors Field, 2:05 pm CDT Weather: Cloudy, TV: WGN Radio: WGN, XM 188
Byung-Hyun Kim, RHP 7-7, 4.57 ERA, 106.1 IP 86 K, 40 BB, 11 HR 291/357/445 sgainstCarlos Marmol, RHP 5-5, 5.09 ERA, 63.2 IP 51 K, 47 BB, 10 HR 230/367/465 against

*Juan Pierre, CF #Cesar Izturis, SS *Jacque Jones, RF Aramis Ramirez, 3B *John Mabry, 1B Michael Barrett, C Matt Murton, LF #Neifi Perez, 2B Carlos Marmol, P Jamey Carroll, 2B *Todd Helton, 1B Garrett Atkins, 3B Matt Holliday, LF *Brad Hawpe, RF Ryan Spilborghs, CF Yorvit Torrealba, C Clint Barmes, SS Byung-Hyun Kim,P

Cubs vs Kim: Juan Pierre: 4-19, 211/286/211, 2 K, 1 BB Phil Nevin: 1-14, 071/071/071, 6 K, 0 BB Neifi Perez: 4-14, 286/333/571, 0 K, 1 BB, 1 2B, 1 HR Aramis Ramirez: 3-12, 250/308/500, 4 K, 1 BB, 1 HR Rockies vs. Marmol: No Rockies with more than 10 AB's
NEIFI!, oh we missed you so. Barrett gets a rare day game start after a night game.


I would put Kim out there as a possibility for the rotation next season. Always liked the guy, seems his velocity is back up.

Only 27 years old believe it or not.

Kim's good. Except for that road ERA.

Hey Rob G.: As it seems the regulars have taken the day off, this might be the time to have you give, in your usual rational manner, an explanation as to how Dusty has wrecked the arms of his pitchers, particularly Prior and Wood as claimed on these pages August 9th. I don't see it, nor, from the article that David Grassko wrote for the Hardball Times, does he see it. An extra 3.67 pitches per start since 2000 doesn't seem like a lot over the course of a season. Also, I recall (but cannot find) an article written in the N.Y.Times Magazine earlier this year about a former pitcher now turned sports pitching doctor who claims that Priors and Woods deliveries are all screwed up and that this is what has caused their injuries. Please cut me a little slack on this guys name as brain freeze or early dementia occasionally takes over in these later years. Thanks in advance for your comments.


I'm not Rob G., but i can give a counter-argument to the Gassko piece that you're referring to. Gassko first looked at the 17 pitchers who joined or left a Baker-managed staff, and then compared the pitch counts of Baker's starters to those predicted by a least squares regression model. Results can be found in the following two quotes:

In fact, these 17 pitchers did indeed throw more innings per start with Baker at the helm, though the magnitude of the difference was not as great as might have been expected. In total, Dusty Baker added 3.09 pitches to each start, or about 100 pitches a season. Basically, pitching for Dusty was the equivalent of making an extra startóprobably not a killer...

Nevertheless, even after we control for all these variables, Baker's pitchers still throw 3.68 more pitches per start than expected. That's maybe an extra start-and-a-fifth a year. It's about 5-10 extra innings.

My problem with each of these is that they examine Baker's rotation as a whole. Baker has not been criticized for overusing all his starting pitchers. Rather, the criticism is he leans on his best pitchers too much. Thus, it may be that his 3-5 starters throw less pitches than would be expected and his best pitchers throw significantly more pitches than would be expected. I would like to see the results of Gassko's model for individual pitchers, in particular Zambrano, Prior, and Wood; the latter two before they were beset with injury problems. If they average more than 5 pitches over the predictions form Gassko's model, and other pitchers such as Maddux, Clement, Estes, etc. come in at or below the model predicted pitch counts, then the argument that Dusty leans on his best hurlers to the point of causing damage has validity again.

You know, Gassko did publish the model itself. If i get the free time, i'll try to do this myself...

Another small problem i had with the Gassko piece is it just looked at one variable of pitcher damage, namely pitch counts. It seems to me a better study would look at pitcher abuse points, which takes into account more factors than just total pitches thrown per start. This may make the verdict on Dusty more damning because of how Dusty seems to coach his pitchers.

Baker is well known for his encouragment of young positional players to hack at the first good offering they see, since it may be the only good offering they get all day. Much has been written about the team's OBP woes that may have resulted from this. However, i feel there is a flip side to this coin: that Dusty and Larry Rothschild, in an attempt to use a hitter's aggressiveness against him, teach their pitchers to nibble more than is necessary. The result of this approach is that Cubs pitchers pile up both strikeouts and walks, which lead not only to high pitch counts but high pitch counts per inning. Since some think a few innings of high pitch counts do more damage than a lot of innings with low pitch counts. Therefore, Dusty's management may lead to a higher PAP for a given number of pitches.

ShawnDGoldman: Thanks for the response. I did not go back to the article by Grassko but somewhere in there I seem to recall that the best pitchers (Z, Wood, Prior) would naturally go longer, especially the strikeout pitchers. Since all three fit that mold, and since it is highly unlikely they can be taught to throw more pitches for ground balls early instead of strikeouts, we, along with Baker, have to live with what we have and take these injuries with the the K's. Tho as Grassko points out, this seems to be a coincidentially bad string of luck with one starting rotation. This is not to say that Dusty's time on the north side of Chi would best be extended. Time to go and take Neifi and the umbilical cord along with.

Marmol: 5 IP, 8 BB...UGH!!!

Why can't Cubs pitches throw stikes? Cub lead the MLB in BB allowed with 489. And with all these youngsters pitching, one can't all blame Rothschild as he really hasn't worked with them very much.

Meanwhile, Barrett is up to .330 now and can make a serious run at the batting title. At least that will be soemthing good to watch down teh stretch instead of only watching our pitchers walk every other batter.

Haven't the Cubs been at or near the top of most walks allowed in the NL for the past several seasons? It might not all be Rothschild, but its really hard to pin it on the rookies when it appears to be an organization issue that's been around at least as long as Baker and Rothschild have been coaching the pitchers.

LOL @ Bob Brenly: "The Cubs need to put those collars around their pitchers' necks when they go out there. Anytime you throw a ball, you get an electric shock."

Too true! Someone call Legal, let's get on this.

Bleeding Blue:
"but its really hard to pin it on the rookies when it appears to be an organization issue that's been around at least as long as Baker and Rothschild have been coaching the pitchers."

AND as long as Hendry has been GM.

But this year is WAY worse than past years:
2004 - 545 BB (ranked 14th worst)
2005 - 576 BB (ranked 7th worst)
2006 - on pace for 685 BB

In 1971, Fergie Jenkins pitched 325 innings and gave up 37 walks.

In 2003, Kerry Wood pitched 211 innings and gave up 100 walks.

Larry Rothschild is NOT the answer here. Our guys just don't throw strikes.

Kerry Ligtenberg has 4 walks in 49 innings.
The coveted Donald Veal has 30 walks in 58 innings.

Philosophy? Instruction? Results?

Before we go out and trade all these young arms, I say we bring in a new pitching coach. Oh yea, a new manager too.

I haven't seen Dusty's latest pressers...Are we "out of this thing" yet?

woo and stuff.

woo and stuff, indeed. come from behind victory. ncie.

I was very pleased with the way Izturis moved Pierre to 3rd with one out and how he vacuumed up that grounder to end the game. We need to wrap this guy up quick before he starts thinking about free agency riches!

the fact izturis was even in the screen on that grounder up the middle in the 9th is pretty awesome...that wasnt a slow roller.

Neal that was the dumbest thing ever posted. Did you notice the two run single in the third. Are you only going to cherry pick the negative? Well I am only going to cherry pick the positive.

Wow guys did you see Izturis range deep in the hole and gun down Barmes in the 5th or see that two run single. This guy looks like an all star based on those two plays. Glad we have him under contract.

Oh and matt murton was 0 for 3. He's sucks. We should get rid of him. Right Neal?


If you watch the play, you'll notice it wasn't actually up the middle it was about 6 feet to the right of the bag (from the CF camera). Neifi would have had it.

Was it Manny T that came up with the estimate of around 79 million locked up for next year?

When it comes to acquiring high profile players, it seems Hendry never goes after marquee free agents (except when overpaying for relievers). This offseason, we need to bolster our rotation with at least one top of the rotation starter to be competitive in the division. With Zambrano the only quality, dependable, and bona fide ace we have very little depth. Schmidt has some injury history, but he's easily the best starter on the market. Personally, I'd rather see Hendry use free agent money to lock up Soriano or Lee for left field, and trade for an established front or middle of the rotation starter. I think Freddy Garcia or Javier Vasquez would benefit from a move to the National League, even though Vazquez wasn't so hot his 2004 year in Arizona. Garcia has thrown 200 innings every year of his MLB career except 2000.

We're dead in the water without adding at least one established, top tier starting pitcher, regardless of what happens to the offense.

"If you watch the play, you'll notice it wasn't actually up the middle it was about 6 feet to the right of the bag (from the CF camera). Neifi would have had it."

i disagree. it may have been wide out...but if it was 6' out it wasnt until it was hitting the OF grass, not the bag...that ball was pretty smoked.

"(except when overpaying for relievers)"

wait til you see this offseason.

suddenly getting 2 quality guys and paying a few hundred K more than the competition and having them around 3 years makes a lotta sense if it didnt before.

this year's relief FA gleened from parachat just today:

_______ (???)

and how many teams are looking relief?? ow.

Also, while you try to nit pick the play in the ninth, Izturis was positioned in the hole. And that was probably not his choice but that of Baker or whomever positions the infield.

"Was it Manny T that came up with the estimate of around 79 million locked up for next year?"

It was me, but it was actually $76 million. We still need to fill 6 positions (backup C, SP, SP, backup 1B/3B, CF and 5th OF) here it is again:

Michael Barrett - $4.73MM ($4.6MM base + $130K prorated signing bonus)
Ryan Dempster - $5.0MM
Scott Eyre - $3.5MM
Bobby Howry - $4.0MM
Cesar Izturis - $4.15MM
Jacque Jones - $5.33MM ($4.0MM base + $1.33MM prorated signing bonus)
Derrek Lee - $13.0MM
Neifi Perez - $2.5MM
Aramis Ramirez - $11.0MM
Glendon Rusch - $3.25MM
TOTAL (10) - $56.46MM

Ronny Cedeno - $350K
Sean Marshall - $350K
Matt Murton - $350K
Roberto Novoa - $350K
Angel Pagan - $350K
Michael Weurtz - $350K
TOTAL (6) - $2.1MM

ARBITRATION (Guesstimates):
Will Ohman - $800K
Mark Prior - $6.8MM ($6.0MM base + $800K prorated signing bonus)
Carlos Zambrano - $10.0MM
TOTAL (3) - $17.6MM

TOTAL PAYROLL (19) - $76.16MM

***These figures do not count any possible incentive/performance bonuses & does not count the $3.0MM buyout of Kerry Wood contract***

I agree with much of what you said. I think at minimum, we need to get one top the line starting pitcher, 1 inning eating 4th starting pitcher and one serious upgrade in LF, SS or 2B. That is at minimum in my opinion for this team to be truly competitive next year.

As for next year, it would be nice to see Angel Pagan get some innings this year at 1st.

Len was questioning Dusty going with Dempster to start the 9th. He mentioned Ohman and Eyre as better matchups with Helton. Start the watch...

Bobby Howry was awesome today. You don't realize how good he is until you see him right after Novoa. The guy is our best pitcher. By the way, he only has 14 walks all season.

Last but not least, would you give Theriot a start at second? What does he have to do?

theriot's stock is definately up. while 1 outta 3 doubles (possibly 2 if you count today's) are debatable as far as a quality double-like hit...he's still hitting.

the fact he plays 2nd/SS makes it more interesting.

just being a singles hitting ob% machine wont get you much (b.hill SD AAA), but if you show you're hitting anything in the majors consistantly enough you become interesting again...and people wonder how much those minor league #s really show. the fact he plays 2nd and SS helps a ton, too.

if nothing else he's raising his trade and/or keep value.

but, if cedeno is really expected to play 2nd next year...unless theyre busting his ass drilling him at 2nd during the morning/day he needs to play, too.

". And that was probably not his choice but that of Baker or whomever positions the infield."

Or he could maybe take a step or two to his left when the hitter gets two strikes on him - just a thought.

Manny et al.

I think you can go ahead and adjust that Prior salary down and whipe out the signing bonus part for him, that would have come out of the player development account by now. It's going to be hard to argue for a big raise given his season, $4 strikes me as realistic.

It looks like Aram is going to renegotiate for at least a million more though.

$75 + 8 million for Pierre - $100 = $17 million, that's not enough to get Schmidt, a left fielder and a LAIM starter.

Shedding Izturis and/or Pierre is essential to fixing the offense and creating some payroll wiggle. Maybe you could turn Barrett and a prospect into Willis or Haren and sign Molina or LaRue to replace him, but then you'd have the problem of catcher for 2008+. Or Barrett to Toronto for Wells in a trade of 'problems'. Maybe get the Braves to pair Hudson and A.Jones, like the Marlins, did for Cedeno and their pick of 3 pitchers - I am not sure whether they are going to be in a re-tool or rebuild mold, though.

Wells/Gallagher etc - whoever pitches well in ST


Ought to at least score some runs and catch some balls. Filling out the bench puts at us around $100 million by my head math, and would give us 3 starters with Cy Young aspirations and playoff experience (admittedly not good playoff exp).

Which part of Cedeno's play this year impressed anyone? His defense has been inconsistent, he has a low OBP with a lot of Ks and little power, and for a "speed" guy, he's a lousy base stealer. Also, to me, he is one of the worst at getting a runner home from 3rd with less than 2 outs. No stats, just from watching.

At least Theriot has shown some promise with the bat, the glove and his speed (4/4 in SB). Let 'em each play half the time over the balance of the year -- maybe they could rotate every series -- and may the best man win. Let' save some competition. Don't hand the job to Cedeno --I fear we will regret that decision.

"Or he could maybe take a step or two to his left when the hitter gets two strikes on him - just a thought."


If he is told to play in the hole, then that's where he's supposed to be. No one would have gotten that ball.


Because hitters tend to shortern their swings and go up the middle or to the opposite field with two strikes. Basic baseball knowledge there - free of charge.

Mark Prior-

The Cubs will be lucky to have him his to be good enough to be a fifth starter next year. I believe he will be under the knife by October.

I'd hate to see the Cubs give Pierre more than 2 years 14 million and I think the market is going to command it. This is actually a good offseason to go get a centerfielder. Pierre, Edmonds, Lofton are all free agents. Cameron could be if the Padres don't take his option. And all indications have Andruw Jones and Vernon Wells obtainable from their respective clubs this year. Jones and Wells would be great, but if Hendry couldn't get one or the other done, Cameron would be a nice backup plan if he becomes available. (the option is for $7 M)

Trade some young pitching, or Pagan or Murton, or Cedeno, or someone, and get us an all star or two (or three).

"Because hitters tend to shortern their swings and go up the middle or to the opposite field with two strikes."

Completely UNTRUE. You have no idea of Matt Holiday's tendencies with two strikes and you totally made that up.

Maddux threw a gem tonight -- I'm sure you know by now.

8 IP 3 H 0 ER 0 R 0 BB 3 SO - 69 pitches. Yes, sixty nine pitches in eight innings.

JAM= just another moneyballer, face it Izturis gives us defense we havent seen at ss since Don Kessinger or before, go ask our pitcher what they think of Cesar!

"face it Izturis gives us defense we havent seen at ss since Don Kessinger or before, go ask our pitcher what they think of Cesar!"

Should I ask them before of after they walked 10 batters today (499 on the year thru 117 games on pace for 691) and gave up a Grand Slam?

I am far from a moneyballer and I do not like the idea of Izzy at SS, unless major upgrades are made at 2B or LF.

unless you're a lugo fan, there is no 2nd base upgrade that's of impact to have.

dunno anyone who might be dealing 2nd basemen worth a damn.


the corner OF seem to be the only point of power upgrade...unless they go for T.Hunter in CF and someone else in LF and etc etc too many possible combinations at this point... assuming soriano's 2nd base days are done in all of this.


"Completely UNTRUE. You have no idea of Matt Holiday's tendencies with two strikes and you totally made that up."

First of all, I was, you know, observing the game. So I watched him shorten up his stroke once he got down what was it, 1-2? How many pitches did he foul off down the left field line?

Second of all, I am going to do something that you're unfamiliar with, I am going to back up my observations with facts. Please, pay close atttention.

Count 0-2 35 AB's, 0 HR's
Count 1-2 74 AB's, 2 HR's
Count 2-2 47 AB's, 0 HR's
Count 3-2 40 AB's, 0 HR's
Total 196 AB's 2 HR's
Without 2 Strikes 249 AB's 20 HR's

May-July, Maddux had 17 starts and a ERA of 5.77.

In 3 starts with the Dodgers, he has an ERA of less than 1.00, and is pitching late into games.

Day Baseball? Lousy clubhouse/facilities? The Goat? It's gotta be something...

Crunch, having seen Soriano play second and left, you definitely want him in left. He is actually a decent left fielder defensively and his offense, in a pitcher's ball park, is vastly better than it was the last two seasons in Arlington, Texas. As a second baseman he does kill you defensively, although today's game is a demonstration of the three factors that make a winning club, offense and pitching (throwing strikes and keeping the ball in the park) are of more importance since the best defense in the world does can't defencd against the walk and home run.

I am glad the White Sox have rallied from their recent slump to get back in the hunt. Now that the worse has happen, it appears to me that nothing causes more pressure on the Tribune Company and Cubs management then a winning White Sox team. Then the whole business plan of Wrigley Field and once in a decade contention and a lot pretending might to attract the hordes of fans might start to fail.

Real Neal.

Point of physics......and experience.....with two strikes......the batter tends to choke up to PROTECT the plate.

What happens with a shorter bat? Ask Barry Bonds with his 33 inch bat!!!

You get AROUND ON THE BALL QUICKER......the ball is PULLED, to LF for a RH batter, and vica versa for a left....

Seems Izturis may have been playing where he should have?????

Just a thought.

People seem to want to blame Rothschild for the pitchers' lack of command. Someone help me out it an organizational (i.e., Rothschild) philosophy to try to limit strikes? This sounds like a smart-ass question, but I'm serious here. Someone who knows, please explain it to me/us. How is Larry to blame for this?

I don't think its a philosophy to limit strikes, I think its a philosophy to only focus on the strikeout as a means of getting batters out. While the Cubs are usually near the tops in walks, they are also typically near the tops in Ks too.

Its a high risk/high reward approach. When it works its great, but it also means that pitchers are trying to nibble at the corners instead of having batters put the ball into play, which means more walks. The even bigger problem in my book, is that this strategy also leads to higher pitch counts, which makes it more difficult for your pitchers to work deep into games.

Fair enough, but to me, a guy like Marmol isn't nibbling. He just has no command. Same with Guzman. Same with Hill (most of the time). Seems less the approach than a lack of execution.

I have been reading many posts recently on the issue of resigning pierre and the probably blocking issue with Felix Pie's projected full-time gig in 2008. The other issue is that people are concerned we will probably lack enough $$ to sign a LF power bat, and 2 SP with the money that will go to Pierre (~$8MM).

I wonder why a guy like Dave Roberts has not been brought up. He could be easily had with a 2 year deal (maybe only 1 year w/ option is needed), which fits into the Pie plan, and he will be at around $5MM cheaper than Pierre. Also, last I checked, Roberts had OBP of about .390...but he is almost being exclusively platooned against righties and he tends to be fragile. But a CF platoon of Roberts vs. RHP for 130 games and Pagan in CF for the other games against LHP will save us lots of $$...and I think we might even see an UPGRADE in production at the plate and no real decline on the basepaths.

With Roberts in CF, we could have another $5MM to make a hard run at Schmidt and still be able to sign or trade for another #3/4 starter. As I have posted before, I would prefer to skip the Carlos Lee sweepstakes and focus on pitching. A trade with the south side for either Garcia/Vazquez would be a good match if we started the package with Howry and Mateo.

Below is a VERY PROBABLE 2007 opening day roster if the right moves are made:

1. *Roberts CF
2. Murton/#Pagan LF
3. Lee 1B
4. Ramirez 3B
5. Barrett C
6. *Jones RF
7. #Izturis SS
8. Cedeno 2B

BN Blanco C
BN Neifi IF
BN #Pagan
BN 1B FA (Mientkiewisz)
BN Theriot 2B

SP Zambrano
SP Schmidt
SP Garcia/Vazuez
SP *Marshall
SP Prior/Hill/Guzman/Marmol

CL Dempster
RP *Eyre
RP Weurtz
RP Wood
RP *Ohman
RP Marmol/Hill/Guzman/Prior
RP *Rusch

The bottom of that lineup (Cedeno/Izturis) is ugly, but that is the hand Hendry dealt himself. Theriot should be given every opportunity to win the 2B job for 2007 in my mind. Even without Howry, that is an above-average bullpen...Weurtz will only get better and can step into the RHP set-up man. The rotation is strong, and both Garcia and Vazquez would benefit with the move to the NL. The 5th starter would be an open competition between the 4 rookies in the rotation now and Mark Prior...someone HAS TO EARN THE SPOT, even Mark Prior.

This seems like a team that will be able to compete for the postseason in my mind by signing Roberts, Schmidt, and trading for Garcia/Vazquez (one will be on the trading block).

As for payroll, I took several things into account. I counted ARam at $13MM (assuming extension), Roberts at $3MM, Blanco at $1.35MM, Mientkiewisz at $2, Garcia/Xazquez at $10MM, Schmidt at $13, Wood at a $1MM base, Prior at $6MM, AND extended Z with a 5/$70MM deal (or $14MM per year). This 25-man roster will cost (assuming these HIGH ESTIMATES) $108MM. Deals can be front and backloaded to move that figure down to $100 if that is the Tribune's wish.

What do you guys think?

Also -- does anyone know anything about Ryne Malone in Peoria. Based on the stats available, he looks like an interesting player to watch as a 2B and an OBP over .400 now.

"it appears to me that nothing causes more pressure on the Tribune Company and Cubs management then a winning White Sox team."

What are you talking about???? The Chicago White Sox WON THE WORLD SERIES last year. In what way did Jim Hendry or the Trib show any pressure? They went this past offseason and laid a big egg. I said it last year and I will asy it now, people are very much mistaken if they think the CHW winning is going to light a fire under Hendry or the Trib. If it didn't do it this past winter, WHICH IT DID NOT, then the CHW leading the WC is not going to do it. KEEP DREAMING!!

"Day Baseball? Lousy clubhouse/facilities? The Goat? It's gotta be something..."

How about a pennant race?

This is Bernie Miklasz' column in the St. Louis Post Dispatch. Pretty fascinating, as a column like this would never appear in a Chicago newspaper.
Fans are questioning the Cards' players effort and desire. Miklasz defends the players. He says they're just not good enough.
He doesn't say that small ball sucks, but he says (as I interpret it) that it doesn't work with this year's Cardinals personnel. Again, you would never read a Mike Downey column, just to throw out a name, that would say anything negative about small ball. compares the '06 Cardinals to the '04 Cubs (sort of) ñ good record, in position to make the playoffs, but frustrating the hell out of their fans.

Seems less the approach than a lack of execution.

Well, if you don't have control, its almost impossible to execute the approach. It seems to me thats one of the reasons why we're seeing such hit and miss performances by the rookies. The days when they've got their control, they do very well, and the days they don't (which is too often) then get crushed.

This approach doesn't really leave much room for middle ground. You'll either mow down players or they'll crush you, and we've seen quite a bit of both from the rookies this year.

And keep in mind, its not just the youngsters who are driving up the walk numbers. Look at Zambrano, he leads the Majors in walks allowed. He's also 2nd in MLB in strikeouts, just like Prior and Wood used to be among the tops in both categories.

History has shown us that Mark Prior shutting down (i.e. October-March) doesn't solve his health fact it may very well exasperate (sp?) the problem.

Whether he throws again this year or shouldn't be on the big league team. The Cubs should cut their losses right here and now and either trade him for a prospect or designate him for assignment. I wouldn't be surprised if he'd easily clear waivers at this point.

Whatever the reason his "potential" isn't worth the real life risk with this guy. Get rid of him and free the roster for someone who some games?


Shortening your swing doesn't necessarily include choking up on the bat. It can mean moving your hands farther into your swing arc, or farther back if you're a 'cocker', essentially trading power for response time. The consequence of that is that you are more likely to hit the ball, but less likely to hit it with authority or wrap the bat around the ball and "pull" it.

WPZ and Junior,

I don't think Edmonds will be a free agent. I doubt the Cards will think they can replace him for less than the $7 million it will cost to keep him. Roberts intrigues me too, but with his age and tendency to miss time, you're going to have to be comfortable with the possibilities of long stretches with Pagan or Pie in center. That's why I prefer the Jones or Wells "option", plus both of them have bats that will play in left or right if Pie ever earns CF. With any of the three of them, though, it just depends on how much it costs. I think Schmidt is likely to get $75 to $80 over 5 years if he goes mercenary.

Hendry is going to have a chance to shine this off-season, and I am hoping he takes it. One more year of re-arranging the deck chairs is going to send me to Tribune Towers with a torch and a rope.

As a Cubs fan, I should know better, but I do have a feeling that Hendry is going to do some major stuff in the off-season. This year has been too desultory and embarrassing not to.


I hope so to. I remember when the Cubs resigned Grace to his annuall one year contract, and the Cubs brass considered that as fa signing.

Good times.

Why dump Prior now? Catharsis? I don't think the benefit of shaving $4-5m off the payroll is worth the risk that Prior--who is just twenty-five, mind you--gets healthy this offseason and goes somewhere else to earn his plaque.

Hendry - great deadline deal (ARam, Nomar) / low-hanging fruit trader (Lee), horrible roster builder.

Why should we assume this will change?


It's ok. Just take a deep breath and step away from the ledge.

"Whatever the reason his "potential" isn't worth the real life risk with this guy."

Is he bringing loaded weapons and hand grenades to the clubhouse or something? Just look at it this way: the $4 million we pay him next year will mostly be covered on the money we save with Dusty's replacement. Admittedly, you have to go all the way back to 2005 to find a stretch where he's a dominate All-Star caliber pitcher, maybe you're getting a little carried away?

I am not saying build the team around him, but you seem to be getting awful upset by his not being able to lead us to 12 games under .500.

don't think its a philosophy to limit strikes, I think its a philosophy to only focus on the strikeout as a means of getting batters out.

Cubs like power pitchers, power pitchers tend to throw more pitches, not just Cubs ones. Even Roger Clemens throws a lot of pitches in most of his starts. It's not just bad control, which a lot of Cubs pitchers exhibiit, but I would venture a solid guess that power pitchers tend to have a lot more foul balls hit off them, thus driving up pitch counts. I remember Maddux making this point a few years back (and he could have just been joking), but something to the affect of I don't throw it hard enough for them to foul it off.

And I think I read some articles where they showed that power pitchers tend to throw more pitches, which is one of the big fallacies of PAP by the way.

Rob G,

"And I think I read some articles where they showed that power pitchers tend to throw more pitches, which is one of the big fallacies of PAP by the way."

Don't power pitchers tend to get injured more, though?

"Count 0-2 35 AB's, 0 HR's
Count 1-2 74 AB's, 2 HR's
Count 2-2 47 AB's, 0 HR's
Count 3-2 40 AB's, 0 HR's
Total 196 AB's 2 HR's
Without 2 Strikes 249 AB's 20 HR's"

This chain of stats has no meaning what so ever, other to show that its hard to hit home runs with two strikes. Nothing else can be gleaned from this little chart here.

But none the less, I can't tell if you really think that pointing to that certain play is some sort of smoking gun or if you are just trying to piss me off. You are NEVER going to convince anyone that Izturis is not one of the best fielding shortstops in baseball. Why don't you try to focus on the real knock against him, his bat. At THIS point all they doubters look correct on that one. Stick with that, its a better argument.

Don't power pitchers tend to get injured more, though?

according to?

From today's bright one-
"Baker started Neifi Perez at second base instead of Ryan Theriot, who has had just 24 at-bats this season. But Baker didn't agree the inactivity will stunt Theriot's development or that he should have stayed in Class AAA.

''We needed someone up here,'' Baker said. ''I get him in when possible.''

I imagine Dusty said the last line while biting his lip to stop laughing ala Dreyfus doing Closeau's eulogy in the Revenge of the Pink Panther.

Season is over, okay? We know what Neifi can do, put him back in his shoe box and play Cedeno and Theriot at second the rest of the way.


In what way did Jim Hendry or the Trib show any pressure?

Well, he turned over the lineup. Replaced half of the position players. Openly tried to get Dusty two leadoff men, Furcal and Pierre and thought he had 'em. He also plugged the leaky bullpen with Eyre, Howry and Dempster.

Dusty said he needed a real leadoff man - got it, wanted more speed at the top of the lineup -got it, wanted a solid pen - got it, wanted to be stronger defensively up the middle -got it (and continued to get it with the addition of Izturis to replace the missing Furcal).

You may not like his response to what the Sox did, but he did respond to the pressure.


I know it's not possible to convince you of anything, it's like talking to a rock. I agree Izturis is one of the top fielding SS's in the majors, as long as you define top as top 25% or so. He has shown a nice isolated OB rate this year, maybe he will turn into an 80 walk guy and not be such an anchor to the offense.

Rob G,

I haven't done any study on it. Anedoctally the Braves had 4 Aces, 2 hard throwers and 2 non-max effort guys. Glavine and Maddux have had much fewer injuries and much more long term success than Smoltz and Avery. I can't really even think of one junkballer that had arm issues, though I am sure there have been. The list of power pitchers is almost endless.

Top 25% of MLB = @8

There are not 8 better gloves in all of baseball at the shortstop position.

Statistically or in Chad world?

Actually in our solar system. I heard that over in the Crab nebula, the middle infielders are SOOO good that two players can play 1st second short and 3rd. They play with five outfielders.

Dear MannyTrillo:

One year of being in the post season and winning, very unexpectedly a world series, did not turn Chicago into a White Sox town again. But a sustained run of 3 or 4 seasons, with the Cubs floundering in last or near last place, could well do it for the generation of young fans coming up. It happened before and it it could happen again. Furhter, as CubswinthePennant points out, Hendry did respond to pressure with moves, just not necessarily the right ones.

When I was very, very young, in the early 1960s, Chicago was a White Sox, not a Cub, town - a good weekend Saturday or Sunday crowd at Wrigley in 1966 and 1967 was 17,000 people. The White Sox would draw that for weekday night game (in the 1960s those were considered good crowds). But then after 1967 the Cubs had their best run of competitive seasons since the 1930s, including second place finishes in 1969, 1970, and 1972, and third place finishes in 1967, 1968, and 1971. Meanwhile, after 1967 the White Sox record-wise fell on their faces. Lots of bad baseball. The Sox were also hurt by the 1968 riots, changing city demographics, and going off WGN just as color TV was becoming common. So even though the Cubs became pretty bad after 1973, they held sway over the town's media and the demographics of the Chicagoland area.

Two more bad seasons like the one we have seen this season while the White Sox battle in those same seasons Yankee, Boston, Detroit, Cleveland, and Minnesota teams for AL playoff spots, could reverse the swing of forty years ago. Further, unlike the Cubs, the Tribune has to pay market rates for the White Sox to fill programing spots on WGN and their other cable outlets. Of course the Tribune would have to be a well run company to respond and I, as well as apparently the Chandler family, have grave doubts about that matter.

I don't know about the Cubs pitching philosophy but it seems to me, they like the radar gun.


Thanks for that impromptu history lesson. I never thought that Chicago was ever a Sox town but with the CRAP the Cubs put out there post 1945 - 1968, it seems to make sense. However I don't see Chicago going back to the Sox for the mere fact that until 35th and Shields totally gentrifies people won't want to go down there.

Having said that, I would not be surprised to see that neighborhood turned into a Starbucks/Potterybarn haven, maybe then.

Chad nailed it. The Sox don't have much going for them outside of the glamour of winning, where as (for good or ill) the Cubs are able to weather the unending losing seasons because of Wrigley, Wrigleyville, and the large Cubs fanbase outside of Illinois.

"You may not like his response to what the Sox did, but he did respond to the pressure."

No I don't like it one bit. If adding JJ, Howry, Eyre and Pierre was Hendry's big response to the CHW winning the WS, then yes he did respond, he reponded poorly. He folded under that pressure.

Hendry built around Dusty. He was/is under the illusion that Dusty can make any team better.
He brought in "good chemistry" and "good clubhouse guys", speedy, versatile guys. This is just as much Dusty's team as Hendry's.
Once Hendry lets the ego-driven shithead leave, maybe he'll start thinking for himself and make more moves like he made in 2003-2004.


Lets see if I've got this straight. (1) Dusty told Hendry what moves he wanted Hendry to make this offseason; (2) Hendry made those moves (got the top leadoff hitter, solidified the bullpen, better defense, lefty bat for RF, etc.); (3) you say Hendry made the wrong moves; (4) you think this is all Hendry's fault and Dusty should still be our manager.

You notice the logical disconnect there?

Here you go Chad,

Since you weren't able to pick a objective way to determine how to rate the SS's - here is a list of all MLB SS's with at least 10 games played, their fielding Runs Above Average as calculated by BP (aka the Devil) and that number converted to a per 162 total.

Player Games RAA Per 162
Counsell 70.7 13 30
Young 114.7 21 30
Bruntlett 11.9 2 27
Peratla 108 17 26
Hardy 29.3 3 17
Everette 102.7 10 16
Drew 25.4 2 13
Sanchez 15.1 1 11
Vizquel 106.9 7 11
Rollins 109.1 7 10
Betancourt 113.1 5 7
Wilson 98.3 4 7
Tejada 107.5 4 6
Jeter 103.9 3 5
Castro 45.9 1 4
Eckstein 107.8 2 3
Barmes 102.6 1 2
Renteria 102.7 1 2
Uribe 88.3 0 0
McDonald 44.2 0 0
Cintron 27.8 0 0
A. Cora 24.7 0 0
Betemit 10.3 0 0
Castro 10 0 0
Cabrera 110.5 -2 -3
Cedeno 94.9 -2 -3
Furcal 111.7 -3 -4
T. Perez 27.3 -1 -6
Reyes 107.1 -4 -6
H. Ramirez 106 -4 -6
A. Gonzalez 91.3 -4 -7
Guillen 103 -5 -8
Easley 19.5 -1 -8
Bartlett 54.3 -3 -9
Punto 16.4 -1 -10
Clayton 103.3 -7 -11
Lugo 70.7 -5 -11
Hall 81.2 -6 -12
Zobrist 11.9 -1 -14
Izturis 11.7 -1 -14
Lopez 108.7 -10 -15
Berroa 100.8 -11 -18
Crosby 88.5 -11 -20
Adams 30.7 -4 -21
Hill 35.6 -5 -23
N.Perez 11.7 -2 -28
Scutaro 25.7 -5 -32

I'll save you the counting, Izturis has 39 shortstops ranked above him.

I think the only mistake Hendry made was counting on Wood/Prior. I don't blame him for that either. He addressed the biggest complaints we all had, leadoff hitter and bullpen.

And I truly think that if DLee didn't get hurt, this would be a different team. Not that we'd be 20 games over, but I would say, much much closer to .500 with an outside shot at the WC.


When the Cubs do well, it's because of Dusty. When the Cubs do poorly, it's because of Hendry. What is that so difficult for you to grasp?

Or better yet, let me save Manny the trouble of responding. Hendry is Dusty's boss, so if he takes Dusty's input on roster decisions, he is only supposed to accept the good input (aka none) and reject the bad input (aka bring back Neifi and trade what it takes to get me Pierre to go along with Jaque Jones).

In Dusty's defense, he's been pretty good at calling pitch-outs lately.

Yeah you're right Neal. Craig Counsell is probably the best fielder out there.

Oh brother, now I have seen everything! There is an article over at in which Dusty proclaims that the Cubs still have a chance for the playoffs! I just about fell outta my chair. They are 9.5 games out of the wildcard with, get this, 11 teams in front of them. And, no, Dusty does not just mean that mathematically speaking we are still in it. He is quoted as saying he believes that the Cubs still have a chance. I had given up on this team too soon!

"Yeah you're right Neal. Craig Counsell is probably the best fielder out there."

Well we know one thing, Izturis sure isn't.

Real Neal:

What do you expect from a guy who believes Sosa is the greatest player in the history of baseball?

"(1) Dusty told Hendry what moves he wanted Hendry to make this offseason;"

I am sure Dusty was involved in organization meetings in the offseason, but the manager does not "tell" the GM what moves to make. Hendry is the GM and the person who makes the final personnel decisions. I am sure he asked Dusty and his coaches what he thought, but Baker was not the one making final decisions, and if you think so, then there really is no need to talk any further on the subject.

BTW the Cubs are advertising one of their fantasy camps or whatever the hell they do....

Want to work out like a Chicago Cub? Cubs Care and Equinox Fitness Clubs are teaming up to host a Workout at Wrigley on Saturday, September 9th.

I like the first line. In fact that first line scares me. Would you want to work out like a Chicago Cub with the way they drop like flies during the season?

Four sessions will take place during the day, starting at 9 a.m. and on the hour until noon. Tickets cost $50 per person and space is limited, purchase your tickets now at


Dusty and Hendry have both said that Dusty provides Hendry with a list of the players he wants going into the offseason, and Dusty has said repeatedly that Hendry does a good job of getting him those players. So no, Dusty does not make the "final decisions" (nice strawman), but he most certainly does play a significant role in deciding which players Hendry pursues.

So to repeat the question, how is it that you place all the blame on Hendry for roster construction when we know Dusty plays a major role?

..."there really is no need to talk any further on the subject..."

because MannyTrillo has spoken, and we all know MannyTrillo has never been wrong on anything since the very moment of his birth--and if you don't believe it, he will tell you he is right over and over and over again--but only after he has complained that your's or anyone else's questioning of him is a personal attack

Sorry Bambino. Never said Sosa was the greatest of all time. I think you are the greatest of all time. Sosa was merely the best Cub ever.

I took Manny's comment about "no need to talk further" as "there's no way I'm going to change your opinion, so there's no need to discuss it." Pretty cheap shot by DiMag.

And to think even on my birthday, I get cheap shotted...

That's what happens when you assume a player can play another position because you think stats tell you that. Julio Lugo has never been able to play 2b, just ask the Astros and Devil Rays, its been said by some that Lugo has big fear at 2b because he cant see the runner. Maybe that's why the Dodgers had Lugo in Rf last night!!

"how is it that you place all the blame on Hendry for roster construction when we know Dusty plays a major role?"

First and foremost, when or where did I say Hendry should get "all the blame"? Where?

The GM is ultimately responsible for the roster, after consulting the manager. I can't believe Dusty (or any manager) says I want this guy that guy and this guy and Hendry (or any GM) says OK I will get them. If the GM did not agree with those players or the philosphy, why would he go along?

Again, I don't believe Baker makes the roster and Hendry says OK, if that was the case, why even have a GM?

Oh brother, now I have seen everything! There is an article over at in which Dusty proclaims that the Cubs still have a chance for the playoffs! I just about fell outta my chair. They are 9.5 games out of the wildcard with, get this, 11 teams in front of them. And, no, Dusty does not just mean that mathematically speaking we are still in it. He is quoted as saying he believes that the Cubs still have a chance. I had given up on this team too soon!

I think they've got a shot (sip Kool-Aid). They just need to go about 40-5 the rest of the way to have a shot. I suppose it may be tough for a team that has one just 49 in 117.

(Sip some more) Hell, we have a better chance for the division with only 4 teams to just over in just a few more games (13 back). (Sigh) If only they would've have dropped 2 games further back in the WC this weekend.....

Oh yeah, thanks Joltin' Joe (post #85)!!!

I love you too...

I can't criticize Dusty for saying that the Cubs still have a chance. That's his job -- if he doesn't think they can do it, who will?

I seriously doubt that Baker really honestly believes that they have a chance, but it's his duty to feed a clubhouse culture that is focused on winning.

There is plenty to criticize Dusty for; we don't need to jump on him for saying positive and optimistic things. (At least not on Manny's birthday...!)

I was not really jumping on Dusty for saying the Cubs are still in the playoff hunt. I just thought it was funny. Like Vegas Brian said, it has taken us 117 games to win 45 and now we are gonna go 40-5 the rest of the way?? Sure, I realize a manager may feel he nees to say his team is not out of it but when the Titanic was 99% submerged, I doubt there were many on board still predicting the boat would ever see dry land again!

no offense, but dusty's reading list should tell some people about what he will say to the media.

to just cut the point...almost NOTHING he says, especially projection-based...matters when it comes to talking to the press.

this is a guy who's probally read more books on revolutionaries, warlords, and philosophers than huey freeman (that little revolutionary on the Boondocks...use google if it doesnt make sense...the cartoon is a killer piece of satire, btw.)

the 'art of war' doesnt include a chapter on how to admit defeat with 2 months left in your job.

''We needed someone up here,'' Baker said. ''I get him in when possible.''

That's probably the funniest Baker quote all year. Why was it impossible to keep Neifi on the bench yesterday? Maybe Darren Daulton has convinced Baker to buy into his numerology and the world would have ended if Neifi didn't play last night?

but...its ryan theriot. who cares whether he plays or not? might as well play _________ (rookie #8212-A) or whatever. buck coats...hell, give him some AB's in RF or something cuz well, he's there.

dusty's made it pretty clear he doesnt really care for the kid, but hendry keeps bringing him up.

i dunno what the big deal is about whether he plays or not cuz he's not that much of a ballplayer, anyway.

if his speed holds he might be a bench option for someone. i wouldnt mind him, but i find it hard to bitch about whether he gets ab's or who he's taking them from.


McGruder is a racist.
Huey will grow up and sell out, just like his hero Spike Lee
And Reily is a punk ass little bitch who will end up dead.

mcgruder isnt a racist...some of his characters are.

he's actually a pretty nice dude...midget, though.

he's not affraid to talk about shit that isnt being talked about...from male on male prison rape to the stupidity of thug life (something the "uh, non racist" media tends to vilify or glorify without getting to the substance of it.)...and he does it all with humor.

why is it when someone makes a point with humor it become so so much more dangerous and/or upsetting?

some people take mike moore WAAAAAAAAAAAY too seriously.

btw, huey's hero isnt spike lee...they've poked fun at him more than once for his nike fetish.

I'll believe that McGurder isn't racist when he has a white character that isn't evil or show a black guy who acts white (their neighbor who is afraid of rape) as anything but an Uncle Tom.

I can't criticize Dusty for saying that the Cubs still have a chance. That's his job -- if he doesn't think they can do it, who will?

Honestly, I won't criticize him either. I do think it would make more sense if he said "we're really focused on trying to finish well to carry into next year." I think shooting for 75 wins, .500, or about 5 games out of a playoff spot would be reasonable goals. Perhaps that's enough motivation for this team like it was for the Bernie Mac in 'Mr. 3000'...

there are plenty of white characters in his tv show who arent evil. i dunno what show you're (not) watching. as far as his strips go..there's plenty of that going around to...such as today's re-run strip from 1999.

tom kinney does the voices of a lot of the "cheerful white bystandard" voices in almost every episode.

and btw...just cuz a guy write a novel about abe lincoln doesn't make them abe lincoln...theyre CHARACTERS.

there is a bit of huey in mcgruder, but he's not huey...and he's not uncle rucus (who, btw is the real uncle tom...maybe your view of how the DA character *SHOULD* act in your eyes makes him the uncle tom character.)

the dialogue that BUILDS these characters shows tom (the DA) was brought up separated from the people and lifestyle that causes the "thug" characteristics associated with some other characters on the show.

tom is a YUPPIE...not uncle tom. rucus is uncle tom, and uncle rucus is one of the most vile characters in the show/comic purposely.

there is a "clueless white person" character, but i cant remember her name...its the classmate of huey/jasmine that's socially racist...aka, she says stuff that most adults learn to supress about observations, and all her views are culled from media.

this character is a foil for huey, who fights against the media image constantly.

she is never vilified, but oft used to show these society issues through characters who still have their innocence of "not knowing better yet" cuz theyre kids.

go cubs.

"cindy" is her name...the blonde cheerleader stereotype little girl.


You said in a thread a few days ago that Hendry deserves to go, and that if you were the GM you'd keep Dusty. I took that to mean you put all the blame on Hendry, especially since you never answered questions as to what Dusty had done wrong. Maybe you'd like to clear that up now?

And yes, I'm sure Hendry's views come into play in roster construction as well; that's why I've said I'd like to see Hendry get one year without Dusty to show what he can do, and if it's more of the same he should be sent packing. But returning to the question you keep refusing to answer: if Dusty plays a big role in deciding which players Hendry pursues, doesn't that mean Dusty deserves at least as much blame as Hendry?

Tom the DA is a complete and perfect "Uncle Tom". Even down to when uncle Rucus (who is insane) gets beaten up and shot at for being black, Tom looks right into that camera and says that he didn't think that there was any racism going on.

Izturis @ .238!

Well - while I think Izzy really is a terrific fielder, he obviously CAN'T HIT A LICK! This might be O.K. on the WHSX or the Mets...but the Cubs are last in offfense in the NL!

His current stats denote that he strikes out very little - but why no walks to help him out???

I hope this stuff gets figured out before next year. It seems as if either Cedeno or Izzy will HAVE to be gone.

Two auto-outs out of 8 everyday players is NOT a good thing.

the "insane" uncle rucus in the strips doesnt serve the same function as the one on the tv show.

the rucus on the tv show is a presense of an "anyman" rather than the man, himself.

different jobs, no clear definition of where he comes from or why he's at the places he's at...his only consistant trait is his hatred of his own race and how he expresses it...from common stereotypes to just straight up over the top racism. he isn't "uncle rucus" as much as he is a vessel for a message without a static role.

There is no question that uncle rucus hates black people. He even goes as far as to wish he can go to White Heaven. With no Oprah, I may add. But in the show, which is what i watch since i'm hooked on Adult Swim, he's no uncle tom.

"You said in a thread a few days ago that Hendry deserves to go, and that if you were the GM you'd keep Dusty. I took that to mean you put all the blame on Hendry..."

I don't believe I said that at all. 433 asked me if I had the choice would I rather have Baker or Girardi as manager in 2007. I said Baker. Then RobR asked if I were a new GM (assuming Hendry got let go) would I keep Baker. I said "probally not". If you can find that quote from me saying Hendry deserves to go and we should keep Dusty, please post it.

Typical Manny, He's asked a very simple question about what Dusty Baker does, and since he can't simply blame Hendry for Dusty's mistakes, he dodges the question because it isn't set up using his exact words.

Manny, you said you would have no problem allowing Dusty to return next year if Hendry was fired. You also said that you "had not lost confidence" in Baker, so its quite clear you still think he's doing a good job.

So why don't you answer Vorare's very reasonable question: if Dusty plays a big role in deciding which players Hendry pursues, doesn't that mean Dusty deserves at least as much blame as Hendry?

I remember asking Manny whether Dusty should go if Hendry is fired this offseason, and he said Yes. He has been fairly consistent about the "tied at the hip" thing, even if you don't agree with it.

TCR has been somewhat Manny-obsessed lately, even more than usual. I can't figure it out. Apparently people care a lot about what Manny thinks -- Manny, maybe you should start a newsletter?

"Manny, maybe you should start a newsletter?"

Will you be my first subscriber?

433 - Manny's response has been clear as mud, refusing to answer questions most of the time, so he can trick people like you into defending him.

While Manny has repeatedly used the 'tied at the hip' phrase, when pressed on it, he has actually admitted he would have no problem if Dusty returns. That's not being tied at the hip, that's just a front to use when anyone tries to suggest Dusty should be held accountable for anything.

Manny says that a new GM shouldn't be forced to take Dusty, but Manny also says he has no problem if he does bring Dusty back. Furthermore, Manny has said he has not lost confidence in Dusty's abilities (although he won't say what those abilities are).

Don't fall into his trap. Manny's only agenda is to say Hendry should be fired. There is no tied at the hip. In Manny's world there is no responsibilty or accountability for Dusty Baker whatsoever, despite what he'll try to say about being "partly responsible" and being "tied to the hip".

Bleeding Blue-
For my responses being "clear as mud", you seem to supposedly know exactly what I am thinking. Kudos to you...

Are you going to be my 2nd subscriber to my newsletter? In fact, I will be generous and give you a free 1st year subscription. How's that sound? :)


I'm not sure why I am bothering to respond, but here goes. I was merely pointing out to you that I asked him a specific question last week -- if Hendry is fired, should Dusty be? And his answer was one word: Yes (so that the new GN could bring in his own guy).

Maybe he changed his mind since; Manny can speak for himself. But that was pretty clear, at least at the time.

Don't let your anti-Manny obsession cloud your vision. I haven't been tricked by anyone. I asked Manny those questions last week because I was curious what a Dusty defender believed, and he answered. I don't agree with everything he says, but his answers to my questions were clear.

Manny, I'll be glad to subscribe to your newsletter, if you'll use it to start answering the very simple questions you've been asked repeatedly about what reponsibilty Dusty Baker should take for this team.

433- I'm sure his answers were clear. I'm just saying they are very different from how he's answered the same question on other occations. So as a whole his answers are as clear as mud, because they are quite contradictory.

As far as other people being interested in what Manny has to say lately, you've had a couple people ask him very simple questions to back up his points, but they've been strung into thread long discussions because instead of answering the questions, Manny does everything he can to get the converstation onto a different tangent, most often by complainging that his words haven't been repeated verbaitum. In fact, that's exactly what has happened here, again.

Blue -- That may be the case, you have obviously been paying more attention to it than I have. What I am most curious about -- and in fact, in awe of -- is why people care so much about what Manny thinks?

Recent comments

The first 600 characters of the last 16 comments, click "View" to see rest of comment.
  • Greinke still in for the 8th. 3 up, 3 down. After 8. 108 pitches, ERA still at 1.66 according to mlb boxscore and he's in line for a 19th win.

  • Greinke 95 pitches through 7. Gives up one run (solo HR to Hedges). ERA at 1.66. Doubt that they will let him give up 5 runs in the 8th.

    Dodgers ahead 2-1.

  • 96 wins with one game to go. Who woulda thunk it.

    Cubs 96 wins have clinched a better record than any AL team and the NL West/East division winners too.

  • cubs win, pirates lose...

  • the curse is now yours.

  • cog a HR away from the cycle after a single in the 6th.

  • Hendricks: 15 up, 15 down.

  • he strongly separates his post-playing career from his playing career, though he loves to visit the barrier of player and fan. many ex-players don't put up this barrier.

    he's not interested in going back to the clubhouse or pretty much anything field/game related, but he'll grab a ticket and observe with the fans and visit ex players on "neutral" ground. he's written 3 pieces for the new yorker and other pieces elsewhere. i remember one photo/bio piece he did, but don't remember where i read it (years ago).

  • ?
    I find your comments rather obtuse. He recognized he didn't want to pursue baseball anymore and went back to school to learn how to become a better writer - opening up a new chapter in his life.

    I don't know where you find a "sad disconnection" because he is writing about his experiences? He pursued a ball career for a long time so no doubt there is some meloncholy in his tone, but I just don't know what the fuck you are talking about.

  • he has an almost sad disconnection from the game based on his writings. even though he's "been there" (no matter how much of a minor role) he doesn't seem to feel like he belongs or deserves to belong in the boy's club.

    he seems to go to great lengths to enjoy the game from an arm's length while occasionally getting close enough for a high-5 from those who affirm him that he belongs.

  • I read that guy's article about why he quit baseball and it was really well done too. In terms of Rizzo, I have seen multiple references to how this is Rizzo's team just as much as Madden's and it makes that pick up that much better that we have someone that is not only a great player but a leader and all around great guy (been reading about all the charity work he does too). There is really nothing not to like about Rizzo.

  • Nice article on Rizzo

    Written by ex teammate

  • JD concurred with Ariettas second at bat

  • Hey AZ, Chesny Young made raised some eyebrows with his minor league season. What do you think of him?

  • AZ Phil, why are Beeler and Parker in Mesa? Are they still recovering from injury?

  • Meh, Bucs win. Magic number down to 1 for Pirates home WC game.