Game 45 Thread / Cubs @ Padres (3 of 3)

Game Chat Jason Marquis vs. Chris Young Lineups:
Soriano LF Giles 2B
DeRosa 2B Cruz Jr. RF
Lee 1B Cameron CF
Ramirez 3B Gonzalez 1B
Floyd RF Greene SS
Barrett C Bard C
Jones CF Kouzmanoff 3B
Theriot SS Sledge LF
Marquis P Young P
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Comments

I read where Lou has used something like 35 different lineups this year. Is this a new one?

WTF? The Riot hitting 8th?

http://www.baseball-reference.com/teams/CHC/2...

Go to the TCR sponsored 2007 team page and click on batting order to find out. :)

And according to BR, this is the 35th different batting order.

35th different batting order? I didn't know it was mathmatically possible.

Thanx for the link Rob

Hey, but batting orders don't matter, right? It doesn't matter if players can feel comfortable right? It doesn't matter if players are always on edge, right? Ugh.

Iowa beating up on Round Rock, 7-1 in fifth, rain delay. The usual suspects, but Hill with 3 hits and Coats, 4 RBI.

CWTP:
"I read where Lou has used something like 35 different lineups this year. Is this a new one?"

It is funny, that was one of the big complaints by some about Dusty, too many different lineups. But Lou is doing the same thing. Hmm....

No Izzy...Woo!!!

A PERFECT GAME against us thru 4

jock-o-meter: .246 and falling

Yay! We scored our nightly run! Now the bats can go back to sleep, and so can I.

Leadoff triple by Soriano. #2, #3 and #4 coming up. Cubs get 0 runs. HA HA Go Cubs!!!

love the automatic take by all three guys on strike one...2 hangers down the middle and a brutal non-strike on ramirez. yeesh.

jock! attaway!

jock-o-meter: .245 (makin multiple outs per AB).

What happened to Soriano that he got out at 2nd, but DeRosa got a hit???

how come barrett didn't move up on jones grounder to right side in 5th? giles was never looking at him? he'd have scored on the wild pitch

Bob fucking Howry batted in the top of the 9th... why?

Trans was in no mood tonight for the recap, so I’m filling in. Sort of.
W - Howry (2-3), the RALLY CAPS!
L - Meredith (1-2); Marquis, who pitched well enough to win; my beauty rest
S - Dempster (10), our collective sanity

The scoring
2nd inning (SD): Gonzalez doubles, Greene flies out, Bard singles (SD, 1-0)
5th inning (CHC): Ramirez doubles, Barrett doubles (Tied, 1-1)
6th inning (CHC): $(%*#(&#??!!! (Still tied)
9th inning (CHC): Lee singles, Ramirez singles, Floyd singles, Barret bunts, Theriot fielder’s choice (CHC, 3-1)

Things to take from the game.

1. Young was coasting
Young is a decent pitcher (and on my fantasy team!), so watching him go through our line-up was not as painful as others in recent memory. At least we tagged a couple of runs on the bullpen.

2. Another day, another line-up.
Perhaps our offense would be a bit more productive and consistent if Lou could stop tweaking it. Hendry is partly to blame for his roster construction, but Lou is not helping matters much. It was nice to see a rare 9th inning rally. And have it hold up.

3. Avoiding the sweep.
We’ll take it.

Parachat recap (R)

1st inning: avoiding the sweep; Soriano’s plate discipline in parallel universes; how Lou’s facial hair makes him look like an “old schizo homeless WW II Vet” (courtesy of Crunch); being in dad-mode; the Lucky Charm leprechaun

2nd inning: living in a nursing home; mice breasts; how real men live in debt (so says RobG); Jesus’ plate discipline and his hitting coach, Sarah; “Hey Dad, Wanna Spend $300 to Play Catch”; how ugly kids grow up to be DJs (again, courtesy of Crunch); Cartoon Network ads; Marquis matching the hit total of the rest of the team; the legendary Floyd cannon; how Cotts was offered 3/44; game over at 0-1; Pink Floyd covers; loving Alyssa Milano circa 1986; exterminating Izturis

3rd inning: the area code 643; something about Dijon mustard; if Pat were shirtless with Ron on his lap; jinxing Chris Young’s soon-to-be perfect game; Jacos’ tacos; the Marcus Giles life-size action figure

4th inning: Sori’s Neifi-like patience; the teets-teats dilemma; Trans shows up—cranky; stupid moist southern Californian air; the promised stop at Disneyland; how “Barf” is the U of A motto; Lou crapping on the mound; the San Diego Chicken; the Van Buren Boys

5th inning: Gimpy, the hibernating bear; how Ronnie Woo Woo is what’s wrong with this country; Crunch’s manifesto; vodka; Fontenot and tonic; Tater Tots; CHiPs; molesting collies; overrated hitters—Ichiro, Ripkin, Biggio, etc. (I think that was actually baseball talk)

6th inning: a bunch of expletives after Young strikes out the side and we (predictably) waste Sori’s lead-off triple; infidels, crack; nihilistic ABs; warm beer and hemorrhoids; Khalil Greene as a 70s sit-com child star

7th inning: offensive tension, sexual tension, and circle jerks; Squidbillies; Alabama escapism; Venture Brothers; Ren and Stimpy; slugging percentages; fish tacos

8th inning: Bob Dylan; Dicks’ Sporting Goods; the wave?!; sex with Japanese transvestite spies; Athletics’ offensive woes; Carlos’ neighbor’s tackle box

9th inning: ways in which we might lose the game; burning in hell for having AJ on your fantasy team; brussel sprouts; ice cream sandwiches; RALLY CAPS!; the Dumpster; Frosty the Snowman; post-game chaos

btw, howry did not bat in the 9th, murton did. struck out looking.

manny, the NUMBER of lineups dusty always used never bothered me.....using patterson and neifi as 1-2 reallllly bothered me.

that was a large win, for my sanity. i agree CT steve. let's not play these pads ever again ok?

Ladies and Gentlemen,
Your National League All star starting pitcher

Jason Marquis

Nice work Steve!

Nice AB by Murton in the 9th. Come and get me, lovers of the red-headed man.

Nice going, CT Steve!!

It was too much work... no wonder Trans wanted a break!

CT wrote a very good recap but he's probably sleeping with Chow Yun Fat.

Hey, I was just taking notes!

i was listening to this game. i heard the lead-off triple, and then three pathetic outs debacle and then gave up. i mean i cannot take this shit any longer. when i got home, i was listening to xm and the night's results, and the cubs win 3-1. how the fuck does one deal with this team? i mean i drink too much already, but these bastards are gonna kill me.

Hahahaha Johann. That was brilliant. And CT_Steve, great job.

Tarzan Wallis said (sarcastically): Nice AB by Murton in the 9th.

Actually, four lousy at bats in the ninth, Floyd, Jones, Theriot and Murton. The Cubs scored two runs because Lee and Ramirez led off with singles, Lee hustled (twice) and Kouzmanoff tried to field Theriot's double-play grounder with the heel of his glove.

Thanks, CT Steve.

We scored three runs when we should have put up seven or eight and I hate seeing Jacque Jones in that lineup and I wish there was some way to get Murton some regular at-bats...

BUT...

I hope we stick with this lineup for a few games and give the players a chance to establish some roles and from that, maybe develop some rhythm and--could it even be possible?--some momentum.

Terrific outing by Marquis. And I'd rather see him at the plate than Jones.

All of you calling out Marquis after his last outing ("regressing to the mean and all of that")... raise your hand.

Marquis pitching like a bad-ass again.

Also, I need to be pissed at Theriot for hitting a DP ball in the 9th, even though it wasn't turned. If I was pissed at Izzy the day before, it's only fair I should be pissed at Theriot.

BTW, Thanks for the parachat recap, CT Steve.

Oh, I forgot I was pissed about this, too. The leadoff triple and 3 Ks were a kick in the balls. Not cool. Young didn't even bother with throwing good pitches, he just put them a foot off the plate and our batters chased them all.

Great to get the win but a rotten shame that Marquis gets a no decision.

Rynox said: Young didn’t even bother with throwing good pitches, he just put them a foot off the plate and our batters chased them all.

I didn't see it, but it sounds like a good example of why you don't want too many right-handed hitters in a row. They're all suckers for the same pitch. Get your slider working to a certain spot and you've got a three-fer.

I feel the need to add Shin Chan to the sixth inning animation chatter. Other than that (and it is a miniscule item), great recap Steve!

And a good win that could have been a lot less stressful if Soriano's triple hadn't gone uncashed. That was just sad.

Thanks very much, Steve, very nice job.

If you don't see me around, (or even if you do) anyone and eveyrone is encouraged to share in the work. Good community-building exercise!

The problem with the triple then strikes outs is people were trying for the HR as opposed to just putting the ball in play, especially ARam. He does that on a consistent basis though, so it's not surprising.

Also, it just needs to be repeated over and over I guess. Murton does not do well off the bench, and it's silly to use him as a PH because he doesn't do well off the bench. You need to use Ward in that situation.

So, the Trip is reporting that the Cubs lead the league in hitting with runners in scoring position. Can that be right?

er, the Trib

More info: we're 7th in the league in RBIs, OBP, total bases, and runs scored.

And our bullpen sucks.

The Cubs are tied for the NL lead in batting average with runners in scoring position, tied with the Giants with a .284 BA.

Didn't we already use Ward before Murton hit?

They also have the second best BA in the NL with RISP and 2 outs.

In the NL:
RISP - 1st in BA, 6th in OBP, 3rd in SLUG

RISP, 2 outs - 2nd in BA, 8th in OBP, 5th in SLUG

Yeah, the stats and the W/L record don't really add up, which is why I'm trying to remain cautiously optimistic.

dave, that's a good example of why you can't always believe the stats. The Cub's have consistently come up short in some big clutch situations. I'm starting to think it's a chemistry thing, though, and the team will come around. I base that on 1, the stats, and 2, the fact that so much of the team has changed since last year.

Sullivan brainstorming on ways to "save Wrigley".

I have to admit, at first I'm like, just leave it alone, Sully... but he actually has some really good ideas.

Buy out a couple of the rooftop owners, take down the portable stands and install a Jumbotron on one apartment on Waveland and another on Sheffield. Wrigley would stay video-free, and fans would still get their replays.

Btw, I'm all for traditions and stuff... I really like the simple Wrigley "feel", but the organ has always annoyed me. I liked his idea of kicking the tires on the new sound system.

dave said: The Cubs are tied for the NL lead in batting average with runners in scoring position, tied with the Giants with a .284 BA.

I wonder if this helps explain the anomaly: We have a bunch of slow, tentative baserunners and a safety-first 3rd base coach. Getting a hit with a runner in scoring position does not mean that you scored a run.

Don't forget, we invented the concept of clogging the bases!

We have a bunch of slow runners?

In our starting lineup, the only people would be characterized as slow would A-Ram, Barrett, and the pitcher.

How are you supposed to develop lineup chemistry when you don't know where you're hitting or playing the field, or even if you are, on a given day?

It's not like these guys don't get along with each other. It's just that their strengths often cannot compliment one another because what they're expected to do can be so radically different from day to day.

Arnedeo Avogadro couldn't help this siutation with chemistry.

Amedeo, lo siento.

*Lou’s facial hair makes him look like an “old schizo homeless WW II Vet” *

Someone ought to contemporize their insults. WW2 vets are now in their 80s--Lou doesn't look *that* old.

*I really like the simple Wrigley “feel”, but the organ has always annoyed me. I liked his idea of kicking the tires on the new sound system. *

Anything louder would probably cause parts of Wrigley to crumble--OH WAIT, that's already happening!

Interestingly, the Cubs are second in the NL in defensive efficiency, behind only the Mets (link)

I'm all for the video screens I don't know why they just don't put them on the roof at the end of both stands.

One Cub and one ex- Cub makes Jayson Stark's overrated MLB players list-

http://sports.espn.go.com/mlb/columns/story?c...

VA Phil:
"We have a bunch of slow, tentative baserunners and a safety-first 3rd base coach."

I don't think we have many slow runners, maybe 1-2, but at the same time we only have 1-2 regulars with above average speed runners.

*Lou’s facial hair makes him look like an “old schizo homeless WW II Vet” *

truly a despicable comment at any time but especially on Memorial Day Weekend!

jerk

"Someone ought to contemporize their insults. WW2 vets are now in their 80s–Lou doesn’t look *that* old."

it was in jest, yeah. lou is in pretty bad shape, though. with his bright eyes and worn as hell, abused, and recently diabetic body...going without shaving a couple days makes him look...well...i'd give him a dollar.

especially after his own health diagnosis and what recently happened to hendry, hopefully he's gonna reverse that look.

"truly a despicable comment at any time but especially on Memorial Day Weekend!"

whatever. its a damn day. i got family in the military and family that faught in WW2.

words arent dispicable but the treatment 1 of my uncles, my stepdad, and my grandfather i got was. am i right to go blow up some VA administration hospitals?

hell, its words. and its an easily identifiable joke.

if you're more concerned with words and jokes in the scope of our history of war and the people who fought them you're off base in what's more insulting to a vet who's gone through the ringer.

on the flip, one of my cousins injured in desert storm part 1 is one of the soldiers who's "non diagnosable injuries" actually are still being actively treated by the VA rather than being given a stack of pills and told to come back every few months.

my step-dad's cancer was revoved by the VA after they finally reached a settlement vs. the governement on whether they'd cover his cancer as a result of agent orange. that only took 25-30 years of bitching. how's that for being a jerk?

man i hate these filters that capture like 1/10th+ of my posts.

exactly what IS in the filter for this board anyway?

neat. my post asking about why my posts disappear...disappeared.

woah. database lag?

...and still missing a post. =p

a combo of both, neat.

dave said: We have a bunch of slow runners?

I should have said slow and/or tentative. Tentative: Jones, Murton.

DeRosa, although I admit he hustled on the triple the other night, has averaged 1.1 stolen base per year in his career. Would you call that speedy? Floyd is certainly slow.

Lee has been looking slow this season but was quick last night (which was why we won). I guess his neck was bothering him for a while, but it's better now. That's good--I had been thinking that our only five-tooler was losing one of his tools. But some of the numbers were derived when Lee wasn't running well.

We've had games when our only good baserunner was Theriot. And you never know when Quade's going to obstruct you rounding third, or fail to "communicate" the instruction to tag up and score.

"Buy out a couple of the rooftop owners, take down the portable stands and install a Jumbotron on one apartment on Waveland and another on Sheffield. Wrigley would stay video-free, and fans would still get their replays."

I had this idea years ago. The logical place for a jumbotron is on top of the "Budweiser" building. It currently has no bleachers, and it's in such a position that it could be seen from anywhere in the ballpark (except way back under the awning).

As for getting rid of the organ? No way. I hate going to games and hearing whatever the latest shitty hip hop song of the moment is. Keep Gary Pressey on the organ.

I should have mentioned Soriano and his hamstring. For some strange reason, when I go down a list of Cub players in my mind, I tend to forget him.

wrigley's gonna have to go eventually. its only saving grace right now is its landmark status and the fans who hold it in a high regard. the land is worth a ton, stadium or no stadium...but the building on top of it is protected.

the bathrooms are shot, the concrete wont last forever...it experiences extreme cold and heat fluctuation over the course of a year. there's interior rooms that are abandoned because of their condition vs. lack of need of use.

we're probably gonna have to say g'bye to wrigley one day. buying up buildings around is something the cubs could have done years ago, but failed to. now their value is tied, in part, to the ballpark in front of it more than ever. it would take a commitment to the upkeep of wrigley and keeping it in professional playing condition (both the physical field and its capacity to make money) in order to make buying the buildings make sense at this point.

wrigley's just not set up for modern baseball. part of its charm is based on how oldschool it is. part of that oldschool means very limited parking to charge for and the expensive upkeep and red tape involved in keeping a historical landmark up. they cant even replace a doorknob there without filing paperworks first.

If they can fix Fenway, they can fix Wrigley.

good article below, makes you realize how much a difference a good versus average outfielder can make.

Andruw Jones is getting to and catching over 100 less balls that he used to . Can you imagine how many less runs would score if it were Jones in his prime? This is why Pie or Pagan should be starting in CF everday for the Cubs. I like Pie, we should be able to generate enough power from the rest of our lineup and we need his speed. Our "mini hot streak" all started with having this guy get some ab's and playing D in our CF. Makes our team fun to watch, better at defense, and faster. Pie needs to be up!

http://sports.espn.go.com/mlb/news/story?id=2...

they can do anything with the right amount of money. the city is big enough to handle the increased ticket prices. cubs do have more competition, though.

the new owner will probably get a question about the future of the cubs in wrigley pretty early in his tenure. hopefully he/she/they wont be vaugue.

Jumbotrons?! Ugh! One of the real joys of Wrigley is that the focus really is on the field. Most of the new stadiums I've been in feel like they're designed for sugared up kids with ADD.

c_murder: I don't know, those guys are having a lot of fun at Iowa these days.

Maybe he can come up and bring a few of his friends!

Phil:

Honestly though, didnt the team... when Pie was in the lineup give you that "feeling" that this team could do something. I felt like the chemistry was finally there. Energy was there.

I felt we could have avoided this whole 35 different lineups by just keeping Pie in the lineup everyday....having Riot at short (until he proves he cant do it) Rosa at 2nd, Pie in CF, Floyd in left, Murton in right. I believe Pie's defensive upside would make up for Murton getting the hang of RF (which he would if he could play 7 straight games at some point) and Riot at short.

Um... c murder, what about Soriano. You definitely can't be proposing that he sit...

c_murder, Jones is a $6 million man, and if you bench him his value starts dropping. Of course it's dropping anyway because he stopped hitting; but now I guess you have to play him so he can start hitting before you try to trade him in July.

I don't expect Jones to come close to duplicating last season's numbers but Lou and many TCR folks are going to have to learn that the hard way. It's been pretty quiet around here lately concerning Jones's "27 home runs."

At contract time, Hendry seems a bit generous with an extra million or two and an extra year or two. So now we have Jones blocking Pie, Blanco blocking Koyie Hill, and DeRosa blocking Fontenot and Eric Patterson.

DeRosa blocking Eric Patterson through 2009. Imagine that. What could Hendry have been thinking?

Blanco rarely plays. Piniella must hate the idea of putting a guy in the lineup who can't hit. (Blanco's career BA is .224. Even Izturis is .260.) So what's he going to do with Blanco for three years?

Something's gotta give around here.

well what's wrong with jones, then? what's causing the power outtage?

i think its weird, but the only thing ive seen that's really different looking to me is he's hitting more line drives and not pulling for as much power. he's still making contact when pulling, its just not going as far.

even with his shoulder issues last year he didnt really show any kind of bat slowing or loss of pop.

this year his contact has been weak.

um, re: Jones - could it be after a season that national league pitchers have figured out that you really don't even need to throw a strike to get him out?

just a brutal desperation signing last year...

if jones was earning all his outs inside/low and/or just verses lefties, i could buy it.

this is a guy who's power has been consistently intact, though. he even kept his power vs. the lefties, though he hit them like crap.

could it be after a season that national league pitchers have figured out that you really don’t even need to throw a strike to get him out?

Funny... because he produced for several years in the AL. he averaged about 20 home runs and 80 rbi and has a career line of .278/.327/.456.

So I guess what you are saying is that the NL pitchers are just smarter than the AL pitchers? Come on... last year he was only slightly better than his career numbers, and it is not like NL pitchers don't watch film on what Jones did in the AL.

I still say that the Jones signing last year was not a bad one. And while he has had a pretty pathetic start to the year, I still expect him to revert back to the mean. If he hits his career line, he is worth his contract.

Crunch,

Well, I've conjectured that a lot of pitchers are skeptical that there's a lefty hitter who makes a living on low, outside fastballs. After he hits a couple over the wall in left, they wise up and learn how to pitch to him.

His last year at MN he hit .249. The year before, .254. The Twins didn't want to find out where that trend was going.

He's not a bad hitter, but most teams think they can do better and don't want to pencil him in for 2008, which is when the contract with Hendry's signature on it runs out.

But he also had a .319 OBP and a .438 SLUG, which are 25 points and 100 points better than what he is doing this year.

So sure... you can look at one stat and say that Jones sucked the year before the Cubs, and now will suck again. But I don't think it is just because the pitchers "figured him out." Jones appears to have completely lost his power, which as Crunch stated, has been consistent for the last several years.

sorry... my comment #78 was replying to this:

His last year at MN he hit .249. The year before, .254.

Jones is a loser. I dont care if we dont play him that means we wont be able to trade him. Bench him, and get some damn consistency with this team. Bring up Pie, put Riot at SS, and lets see if we can make a run at this thing. If Riot blows up at SS, we will bring in Itzturis, but not until we see Theriot play one position for at least a week.

eli18: just a brutal desperation signing last year…
---
I agree on this notion.

It's all fallout from having to go without a viable long term plan when after 2004 they decided a divorce from Sammy was needed and the 2006 season when they decided that CPat was a hitter they could no longer teach. So they go with the last minute plan the next season (Jeromy Beernuts) and when he was clearly not a solution, the next season they went after the next lefty free agent OF that was affordable (ie. not Beltran, as the notion of spending alot of money on one player wasn't happening as long as McFail was around given the salary mess Sosa's contract caused).

They've been burned (so often) for not developing a position player from their minors (for so long) that the notion that one of their prospects might (one day) become a real mlb player BUT is blocked by the salary one of their bandaid solutions became a foreign concept. Hence, Neifi, Walker, Burnitz, Hollandsworth, Jock, Pierre, DeRosa...some bigger roadblocks than others.

They say their know when Pie is ready, but I doubt it. I hope I'm wrong on this. They just got lucky with Theriot succeeding but if he struggled early like many prospects do, they would have buried him too. And the guy told to hold the burial shovel was supposed to have been DeRosa.

I sense the positives that Pie brings now would help the team more than the "veteran experience" that JJ brings. Dusty's famous line about clogging the bases should be extened to our issues with clogging the roster.

Dave, Crunch said something about his power when he pulled the ball last year. I would dispute that he has shown much power pulling the ball.

I could be exaggerating slightly--maybe someone knows where to get stats on this--but I would say Jones hit three or four home runs to right and right-center last year and the rest to center, left-center and left, with the highest number to straightaway left.

So if you pitch him outside, that's his strength. If you pitch him inside, he may have trouble adjusting. That's what we're seeing.

For all of you who hate the Jones signing, who would you have signed to play right field last year?

they say they will know when...

BTW, I traded Cuddyer for Zambrano this past week. I went to last Sundays game and Z looked a lot better than the 7er would indicate. I hope he wakes his ass up because that trade SHOULD be a really nice steal for me.

3 year deal with Jones is what sucks. You dont give a temporary fix with no arm, no brain, and no ability to hit off speed pitches a 3 year deal.

Crunch, your comments about Wrigley is what I've been trying to say for a long time. You can put all the new bells and whistles on it you like, but the fact is, it's crumbling and the Cubs, if they haven't all ready ,should make some alternate venue plans. It's a museum, folks. I love Wrigley and will be there next weekend, but it ain't what it use to be.
I for one, hate players' "theme music." It's the same old shit.

c murder... you didn't answer my question.

who would you have signed instead of jones?

dave:
For all of you who hate the Jones signing, who would you have signed to play right field last year?

Encarnacion? Just kidding!

I don't care about Jone's numbers. When he comes up to bat in big situations he chokes. Ok for fantasy league, not ok for reality league. I don't know who I would have signed... FWIW Jones did fine last year.

FWIW Jones did fine last year.
----
Well sort of...like Pierre and ARam, when DLee went down it took them till July to remember how to hit. So by the end of the year their numbers looked fine, but then the season (last May) rapidly went down the tubes, they were out generating machines.

Cubster, I agree with you pretty much. Remember when Hendry signed Neifi and said, "I've decided I really like the guys who catch the ball"?

That was in November '05, before the free-agent signing period. Hendry always likes to sign his utility players early, so there are no open roster spots going into spring training.

As far as "guys who catch the ball" is concerned, every team cuts several of them, including catchers and infielders, in the last week or two of spring training. They're a dime a dozen.

I've never been a Hendry basher but this contract situation is driving me crazy. Maybe I should stop looking at Iowa Cubs box scores.

it took them till July to remember how to hit.

Jones didn't hit until July? Are you serious?

May: .310/.343/.510
June: .337/.358/.538

yea... those are some pretty crappy numbers.

try again.

I’ve never been a Hendry basher but this contract situation is driving me crazy.

Why do the contracts matter? It is not like the Cubs are hurting for money.

Sure... a 3 yr, 17 million contract may be tough for a team like KC to handle if the player struggles, but not the Cubs.

FWIW Jones did fine last year.

So Jones did fine last year, but because he has struggled in the fist month and a half this year, the Cubs should not have signed him?

btw... here is Jones' line from the day after Lee was injured last year through July 1st, when he was supposedly an "out generating machine."

.318/.344/.547 - 13 HR, 38 RBI, 27 R.

When Lee went down, Jones stepped up.

The Cardinals tried to get Jones first, didn't they?

after 2005 season that is

Trivia Question for today (I heard a good one the other day and thought I'd post it for your consideration):

In 1920 and 1921, Babe Ruth had 35 more home runs than the player with the second highest number of home runs in his league. (1920: Ruth 54, George Sisler 19; 1921 Ruth 59, Bob Meusel & Ken Williams 24.)

What home run king, other than Ruth, has had the greatest differential between his home runs and the runner-up's home runs?

(Ruth, by the way, has six of the top ten such differentials in baseball history. In addition to 1920 and 1921, he beat his closest competitor by 28 in 1926, 27 in 1928, 19 in 1919 (while he was with the Red Sox) and 19 in 1924. For extra credit, name the other three players (in addition to the one referred to above) who are in the top ten.

dave asked: who would you have signed instead of jones?

Probably nobody. I think our scouts identified a pretty good player in Jones. He was also lefthanded, which was important with Aramis and Lee the other power hitters.

The question I'm asking is, did we have to give him three years? Were we competing with another team that was willing to do that?

I think Hendry is just comfortable locking in players for a long time. Okay, that takes care of right field for a while. Check!

This is unrealistic. Teams are volatile. Careers are unpredictable. The Braves--who are my model--know that outside of a few franchise players, the entire team has to be rethought every year.

Was there another team willing to offer Henry Blanco three years? Or Mark DeRosa?

Wow... That's a really tough one, DCF.
Hank Aaron?

The question I’m asking is, did we have to give him three years? Were we competing with another team that was willing to do that?

Well... none of us here really know the answer to this, but we do know that other teams were looking at similar players (the Cardinals). So yea, there is a decent chance there was some competition for Jones.

As to the three years, again, it is and was a very affordable contract. If Jones would went on the open market this last off season, he would have gotten more money.

OKay, time to talk lineup...
Facing a RHP, so this is always more interesting...
Soriano
Floyd
Lee
Ramirez
Jones
Barrett
DeRosa
Theriot
Lilly

Lou seems to be experimenting with the 2nd slot, and I don't think DeRosa exactly came through there last night. Putting a lefty 2nd breaks things up more evenly, too... I don't think Floyd is exactly your prototypical 2nd hitter, though.

you can go to Jones hit chart on his mlb.com page to see where he hit them.

At Wrigley alone, he hit 5 to right, right-center, 1 to center and 4 to left, left center.

http://chicago.cubs.mlb.com/stats/individual_...

dave said: Why do the contracts matter? It is not like the Cubs are hurting for money.

The Cubs are going to have to keep putting lipstick on Jones until they trade him. It's a business.

If Eric Patterson hits .300 this year with 18-20 home runs, the Cubs are going to have to go through the same thing with DeRosa. Dress him up, pretend he's their guy, etc., etc., until they trade him, which won't be easy.

It's a business!

the Cubs are going to have to go through the same thing with DeRosa

Right... because we would really want to get rid of a 2b with an OBP of .360 and an OPS over 800 and plays very good defense.

I can understand the dislike for Jones, as he has been downright lousy this year. But it baffles me how people constantly underrate DeRosa.

I think they're going to sit his ass tonight! At least I think they should...

I agree a little about DeRosa, dave. I think that he has done a respectable job. Although his average is not very good, his OBP is still pretty good, and his versatility in the IF is a good thing to have around.

Rob, in away venues I counted 5 to left, 2 to left center, 3 to straightaway center, none to right center and 2 to right.

If you draw a line from the plate to dead center, 9 of 12 were to the left of that line, and one (Minute Maid) was too close to call.

We're missing about five home runs. Some of those would have been St.Louis where the result says "No data," probably because of confusion about old Busch versus new Busch.

Thanks for pointing out the great tool!

So basically, when looking at both home and away games, Jones hit his homeruns everywhere.

Away:
Opposite - 9
Pull - 3
Center - 1
Home:
Opposite - 4
Pull - 5
Center - 1

that gives us 13 opposite field home runs, 8 pulled homeruns, 2 to straight away center, and five unaccounted for.

So while it is weighted towards opposite field homeruns, it is relatively evenly distributed.

I like DeRosa. I don't like his contract. It's too much money for too long and it gives him an unfair advantage over a younger player who has some star potential, which I don't think DeRosa ever had.

Dave:

me bad on JJ (so thanks for your post), at least to lump him in with Pierre as an out machine in may and june 06. Of course his weakest months were April(.228/.274/.474-4HR) and July (.237/.260/.419-3HR); so maybe he might just start hitting next month but I'm not holding my breath.

ARam in April 06: .197/.321/.394-4HR
in May 06: .266/.296/.495-5HR
in June 06: .276/.325/.476-5HR...not aweful, just disappointing without DLee to help.

JJones in April 06: .228/.274/.474-4HR
in May 06: .310/.243/.510-5HR
in June 06: .337/.358/.538-4HR

Pierre in April 06: .258/.289/.333
in May 06: .226/.267/.290...now that's an out machine.

in May and June 06, the problems were not related to JJones but his April certainly made a bad first impression.

Answer to the above trivia question:

Mickey Mantle hit 52 in 1956 and the next highest total was Vic Wertz with 32, for a differential of 20.

Rounding out the top ten are:

1923 Cy Williams of the Phillies with 41; Jack Fournier (never heard of him) of Brooklyn had 22.

1940 Johnny Mize of the Cardinals with 43; Bill "Swish" Nicholson of the Cubs had 25.

1949: Ralph Kiner of the Pirates hit 54, Stan Musial hit 36

All stats aside, Jones chokes. I don't mean avg w.risp, I mean when the game is on the line. There isn't a stat for that.

I'm not saying to trade him, in fact the Cub's desperately need another lefty bat in the lineup. I'm just saying he's being regarded a little too highly by the stat people.

in May and June 06, the problems were not related to JJones but his April certainly made a bad first impression.

Agreed... and I think that a lot of the hatred of Jones is based off of his first month with the Cubs and not the reality of how he produced last year.

I’m just saying he’s being regarded a little too highly by the stat people.

I am assuming that was directed at me, being that I am the only one defending Jones right now. I don't value Jones "highly;" I just believe that he is undervalued around here. As I said in the previous post, people seem to hate Jones because he had a terrible first month of the year last year.

With that said, he has been quite bad this year, and it is disappointing.

I am not saying that Jones is a great player. But he is a decent player, and I do not think that we can make any judgments based on the first month or two of this year.

dave:
I think that a lot of the hatred of Jones is based off of his first month with the Cubs and not the reality of how he produced last year.

I think you are right. Personally, however, I was a big fan until recently. In some very key situation, he's looked like he wanted to be the hero and ends up putting ridiculous swings on pitches in the dirt. In situations where it doesn't matter he puts a nice easy swing on the ball and hits it hard.

DeRosa has been a mediocre player for most of his career. He had one good year last year and we signed him for expensive money.

He's doing far better then I expected this year, but it is still generally stupid to sign players because of one career year. The overall trend will be to revert back to the mean, not to move to the outlier.

Let's not forget also all the back loaded contracts. We have this year and next to do anything financially, past that we are going to have some very expensive contracts given to aging guys like Soriano and Floyd. Their skills are only going to detoriate at this point, so we pretty much had to sign aging players instead of playing the young guys while we could still use Soriano et al.

And all of this was because we brought in Lou who was insistent on winning right away.

The young guys are not going to come on to the team as long as Lou still is driving for a World Series this year or next. I doubt he cares what happens past then because he didn't come here to rebuild, he came here to win now. So meanwhile this team is going to sink cash into aging guys who will eventually cripple us.

There was nothing we could have done at RF really, but that tells me we never should have believed we could win with this team. We had some major holes, and an honest team would have taken that into consideration.

I just wish this team had a real philosophy they were building around. We just have a bunch of guys we plug into holes and tell them to go out and perform. And if they don't perform we switch them into other holes. There's no batting or pitching philosophy, there's nothing like the Red Sox pseudo rebel philosophy, there's no players all shaving their heads to bond, there's no real focus on contact hitters or hitters that walk or scrappy players. I just see nothing that can bind this team together and make them a winner.

Ugh, this team is making me way too pessimistic. I dislike being this way.

Rynox: All stats aside, Jones chokes. I don’t mean avg w.risp, I mean when the game is on the line. There isn’t a stat for that.
___________________________________________

Johann: Sure there is. Here's Sportsline, for example:

They have RISP w/Two Out, late inning pressure, LIP-runners on.

He's hitting .273 with LIP-runners on, but only .200 if there aren't any runners on.

Also, the team stats were skewed by some lopsided wins, so let's not forget that.

Ernie Harwell is filling in for the regular color guy on the Tigers broadcast.

He's sharp, and it's great to hear his voice again during a game.

The Braves setup pitcher acquired from the Pirates, Mike Gonzalez is out for the year with ulnar collateral ligament reconstruction surgery (Tommy John Procedure).

TV broadcast, that is.

Jack Sparrow and Will Turner are brothers.

A. Soriano lf
M. DeRosa 2b
D. Lee 1b
A. Ramirez 3b
C. Floyd rf
M. Barrett c
J. Jones cf
C. Izturis ss

...abreu at 3rd/ethier in RF for LA.

hey dave, are you gay for bad baseball players that are named Jacque Jones?

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