Love 'em all. Even Miranda after today's whooping.
TOMORROW'S NEWS TODAY
The Peoria Mariners started off 5-1 and we warned you, we WARNED you, that the "Mariners" :: finger quote marks :: were about to go 7-19 while the Dominican ran roughshod over the Global Series. As a group, you doubted me. But again Sunday, the Angels crushed the Mariners like a juice box. Lowering the Mariners' record to 10-6, which is more or less 7-19. Are you ever going to stop questioning us?
It'll turn around. Global baseball is contracting soon, and the Dominican Republic is merging with the Pacific Rim Mariners to form one galactic-class Real Madrid type of baseball empire. So the 7-19 should be 20-20 by next time we reference it.
WHAT DO THESE FIVE THINGS HAVE IN COMMON
Baobab, Dachschund, Youngberry, Hopscotch, Dumbfounded.
Nothing. Except that they illustrate "legerdemain," the stage magician's ability to distract you with cute ideas that mean nothing. This is, of course, part of the Detect-O-Vision brand. Joyful tongue-in-cheek baseball X-Ray shtick which, in the end, dumbfounds and leads nowhere. At least it doesn't lead to the MLB playoffs.
Okay, second chance. What do the next five things have in common?
Yesterday we sorted the M's player stats by the "HITS" column. (If you have to ask, you wouldn't understand.) It yielded those names at the top of the list. - Heredia, Haniger, Boog, 'Bach, Gamel. Yes, yes, they got their chances because of the WBC. Check the on-base percentages, Buttercup. :: mickey rooney museum guard ::
In Saturday's ballgame, Haniger was able to C the Z and therefore G the Hs. The coaches speak in hushed tones of Those Hitters Who Take 2-Strike Pitches Breaking Outside the Zone. Take Dr. D's word for this, Mitch Haniger is laying some awfully wicked takes on those meat sacks out there. His swing right now is controlled ... Sock! Biff! Zam! 97-MPH line drives up the middle and out to the fence on 3 bounces. We believe he'll Eomer-signal for the 454 Titanium after he's hitting .300 in May.
Arte, do not trust to Smoaks and Ackleys. They have forsaken these lands.
POVSE MAXES OUT AGAIN
GameDay didn't have the intel on this shutout op and, outrageously, the TV was blacked out. What possible benefit to society is there in failing to offer a Mariner game for home viewing? State it. No? That's because there is none.
Andrew Moore was most assuredly on TV and the Mainframe ... inputting the Moore images it sputtered, popped, and started smoking slightly. We're talking 6 parts of a POTD here before the Mainframe cast showers of sparks all about the la-bor-atory. We could grok this much, that Andrew Moore goes to the front of the SSI line. Ahead of Povse, ahead of Heston, ahead of ever' body. Especially ahead of Ariel Miranda, who was given a starting pitcher's warmup routine and promptly caused us not to love him any more.
But Andrew Moore!
Those are the 3.5 guys we grok so far, and wow, we laaaahhk um uh LOT :: dumb and dumber :: Dumb question. If Andrew Moore actually WERE a leprechaun variation on Doug Fister 2011 (that Doogie being one of the AL's twelve best SP's) how long would it take for Yovanni Gallardo to grade-3 strain his incus?
Idea One: Moore, Heston, and Povse look real good; that's fine. Idea Two: From 1-3 of those pitchers (roll 1d6, divide by two) are 14-game winners already. --Those are two different ideas.-- What happens on Idea Two? I mean, what ensues?
Love 'em all. Even Miranda after today's whooping.
This rant isn't directed at anyone specifically. I just boggle sometimes at certain positions.
Gallardo was a predictable fizzle, no question about it, but the *direction* DiPoto wanted to go was one in which the OF got more athletic and glove-y. Smith doesn't provide *anything* in that regard, so a 20% draw at a bounce-back season from Gallardo didn't seem like a bad idea to me.
The idea of spaghetti-against-the-wall-with-reckless-abandon only works--I mean REALLY, TRULY WORKS--if even the Entitled Vets are demonstrated to be On The Block at all times. Bringing in a guy like Gallardo, using him in ST to get the most out of the youngsters--and out of Gallardo's own self--before, if said youngsters work out, dropping him like a bad habit makes all kinds of sense to me. Obviously things might not play out that way, and we might be looking at a 3-7, 5.20 ERA performance out of Gallardo midway through the season (at which point none of us would have much hair left) but if he's used as a catalyst to get the most out of the rest of the spaghetti, that's a par-bordering-on-birdie Stars & Scrubs move if ever I've seen one.
But as it is, you're married to him. Or so would be the angst.
And how good is it to have Jonezie back! Hopefully he'll tell us the Mariners DON'T care about blowing off $14M minus $2M paid by the Orioles. Twelve million dollar bills laid end to end stretch 1,164 miles, a bit longer than the Seattle-LA distance of 1,135 miles. Granted that's in ones, but I dare you to stoop over and lay 'em down from here to LA.
Which, hopefully, will be Senor Gallardo's destination in return for Ricky Nolasco?
Nah. Some o' dese guys tell me that the M's won't hesitate to swap out Gallardo for a better pitcher. That theory is shortly to be tested, seeing as the M's have very many pitchers like that.
You're spending the $12M for something. A healthy org would consider it a sunk cost if he tanks, but can also justify the investment if it indeed does have the effect of galvanizing the back end of the staff for competition.
If they hit Keno on Gallardo (lottery would be young Gallardo), great. If you don't and you are willing to jettison him, the message to the waves on the way is that your performance matters. Entitlement can still be a factor (which it should - you don't jettison Cano because of a bad April/May), but it doesn't preclude you from always looking to put your best 25 out there. If a $12M investment gives the competitive atmosphere you want, do you do it?
From the outside, it's easy for us to want to control the M's money based on what we think they should do. In a vaccuum, the Gallardo contract makes no sense. In context, it still may not make sense, but if it has other desireable consequences for the team, it just might.
If we're purely talking ROTO/WAR value, trading Smith for Gallardo essentially made no sense. But this isn't ROTO. This is real-life team-building which involves maximizing the talent distribution curve, not just the total value presented by our collection of baseball cards (a Seth Smith card is DEFINITELY worth more than a Yovani Gallardo card at this point in their respective careers--but to this real-life TEAM I think it's debatable whether or not that's true from any real-world perspective/position).
So if you think that managers CAN instill a significantly different competitive culture, having a guy like Gallardo around *seems* like the *ideal* type of Example Waiting To Be Made to the rest of the guys.
Obviously I could be looking at this through rose-colored glasses, but to *me* Gallardo was a sublime (if low-direct-impact) maneuver that I would *expect* to see from someone like Beane near the end of the trade season.
On Gallardo with the idea that maybe they had a plan to fix him. That patience is running out but I haven't given up entirely.
The problem is if he's helped to improve and is still only the 8th best option or so. Well, maybe he's tradeable at that point. I find it difficult to see him being top 7 even if 3 ahead of him went down or were struggling. Smiley, Overton and De Jong were acquired after him, but it seems Smiley or similar was going to happen if they had their way. I'm left hoping he has a run that impresses someone who trades something for him.
I'm afraid to see another Carlos Silva ruin the beginning of a season. Safeco does not magically improve all pitchers.
I totally "get" Gallardo, from the innings-eating perspective, and am not beefing about that at all. Said so the day we got him. Generally he's been a 180-200 inning, league average type of starter. From '07-'15, the highest FIP he ran was 4.09! As a #5, he's pretty dang ducky. True, last year he was terrible, and the year before he ran his highest WHIP (up to that point), but he's a durable MLB starter with some past success. He probably won't get us $11M of WAR, but it was the innings we were buying, not brilliance.
My "Gallardo whom?" comment was intended to be smart-alecky in pointing out that if he doesn't find his old form relatively early, we will likely look at younger options.
I said it badly, didn't I?
I sincerely hope I come across as credible on that claim. If I ruffled feathers, I apologize.
I'm one of those borderline-autistic types who has MUCH greater difficulty than most people in sniffing out subtle non-verbal/contextual cues, which is part of why I love engaging on the internet. It's much easier to clarify and refine ideas, to my mind, in this forum.
Again, wasn't pointing fingers at *anyone.* I find your comments, including the one referenced, in eminently good taste and to contribute to the dialogue more often than my own do.
So, all of that in the rearview ;-) I wholeheartedly co-sign your analysis on his value as MLB Innings Eater (tm) rather than any kind of piece you orchestrate the roster around. He's a peripheral piece at BEST and cannon fodder at worst. Obviously there's a 10-20% chance (from my view) that he could bounce back and become a usefuly #4/#5 innings eater for a year or two before the wheels finally come off. But honestly, if all he does is serve as a leverage point for a coaching/management team that's interested in maximizing his potential as the aforementioned example to the youngsters...you could spend $12mil worse than as part of a motivational package for the rest of the scrubs.
Prime Gallardo was an ideal #2, and he held that level for a loooooong time.