12
May 10

Where would we be without Casey McGehee?

I can't say that I've ever actually believed in Casey McGehee. You look at his career in the minor leagues and you just don't see the player that we see everyday. In 2005 at Triple-A Iowa he had 497 at-bats, hit 12 homeruns and had a .774 OPS. That was the best season he ever had in the minors. Last season he hit 16 homeruns with a .859 OPS in only 355 at-bats and was the Brewers 3rd most valuable player. It didn't seem right. It seemed like a fluke, it was like if someone told you that after all these years of terrible programming Tyra had suddenly became a great talk show. That isn't to say that Casey was the minor league equivalent to Tyra, but that's about how much sense it made.

Yet here we are, 2010 and Casey is still doing it. He currently leads the Brewers in homeruns, RBIs, people saying what a great guy he is and looking like some guy that'd be in my softball league. He also ranks second in OPS, batting average, doubles and hits. As well as third in jerseys worn at Miller Park. (Seriously, those things are everywhere.) The point is that guys who are doing what Casey McGehee is doing aren't supposed to be guys like Casey McGehee. They are supposed to be studs like Jason Heyward of the Braves, you're supposed to see them coming. They aren't supposed to be guys claimed off waivers that make the team out of spring training. I'd love to set the Doug Melvin haters straight and credit him with this move, but honestly even he didn't see this coming. No one did (especially Tyler). Continue reading →


06
Nov 09

Carlos Gomez: What the people are saying

Royals Twins BaseballI don't want to talk about Carlos Gomez. Not tonight. Let me just say that my first word was "gross" when I heard about it. GROSS as in "b. Offensive; disgusting." Yeah.

So I'm not talking about this. To properly explain my feelings I will post a few things that other people have said about this trade and you can get where I am coming from.

Bernie's Crew

Carlos Gomez is a young player who swings at too many pitches at the plate.  This handcuffs him from taking too many walks and also causes quite a high strikeout rate.  From personal experience, Gomez also rarely makes solid contact at the plate, either.

In all aspects, he is a black hole offensively.

Dave Cameron

To acquire Hardy, the Twins gave up Gomez, an outstanding defender in his own right. Milwaukee apparently wanted a premium defender to replace Mike Cameron in center field, but they’re taking a pretty big hit offensively in the swap. Gomez strikes out too often to make the slap hitting gig work, and his inability to bunt himself on base in 2009 caused his average to sink to unacceptable levels.

Even with his elite range in the outfield, Gomez is going to have to improve offensively in order to be worth a starting job. With infields taking away the bunt, he’s going to have to get himself on base in other ways, because it’s nearly impossible to justify starting an outfielder with a .286 career wOBA when you’re trying to make the playoffs.

Tom Haudriourt

J.J. Hardy is a good player who had a down year. I'm not sure what Carlos Gomez is. Thus far, a pretty big underachiever.

The Hardball Times

Gomez has been a poor hitter, but is still just 23 with plenty of possible fruitful years ahead of him. The cachet here that the Brewers liked was his defense, which should help the Brewers and their flyball pitching staff. A leap forward offensively may be a long shot to ask for, but perhaps Doug Melvin is hopeful Gomez can experience a Michael Bourn-type breakout.

Rob Neyer

Yes, he's just now turning 24. But however young, you'd like to see a bit of progress, right? Gomez's seasonal OBPs: .288, .296, .287. That looks like a guy who just doesn't get it, at all. Sure, he did much better while still just a baby in both Double- and Triple-A, but those seasons are starting to seem like a long time ago.

Doug Melvin

"He's still learning; he has areas to work on,"

Aaron Gleeman

I'm far from convinced that Gomez will develop into an above-average hitter, but combined with his defense even something as modest as .275/.325/.400 would make him All-Star caliber.

Robert @ Al's Ramblings

It's not just a bad OPS, every indication is that he has a horrible approach at the plate. His terrible OBPs are the result of a terrible approach at the plate. 4:1 K to BB rates tell me that he has no clue what's a strike and what's a ball. Nobody develops really until they stop swinging at balls and start swinging at strikes. Batters like that are just too easy to get out. See Jeff Francoeur. Or Corey Patterson.

Sabernomics

The down side is that one injury, and this kid is toast. He can’t move over to a corner. You’ve just got to hope he learns how to hit (unlikely) or stays healthy.

Twins GM Bill Smith

He's still learning to play the game.


Alright, fine. I'll say something. This isn't an outright terrible trade. It saves the Brewers a lot of money and that helps them. My favorite player was expensive. Sorry. He was expensive because he was good. This guy is better than Cameron at defense so he's probably an upgrade, but he's just not good at hitting and unless they go out and get some really awesome pitchers it's going to be pretty hard to sell me that this was a good idea. Why? Look what the bottom part of our lineup might look like:

6. Kendall (or new catcher)
7. Gomez
8. Escobar
9. Pitcher

That's not even including the suddenly average Corey Hart or whoever ends up playing third (does McGehee decline? does Gamel stumble?). As of today this lineup leans more on Braun, Fielder and to a lesser extent Weeks/McGehee/Hart than ever before. One wrong move and then what? Our defense will be great, but does that even matter when the team is giving up homeruns? (Which, by the way, gave up more than any other team last year.) Sure we save money, but if we spend it on Jarrod Washburn (Jeff Suppan 2.0) or some other mediocore piece of crap then who gives a rip?

Look, the Yankees and Phillies just played in the World Series. Yes, they both have more money than us, but you know what? They each led their league in homeruns. (The Brewers were third.) What does that tell you? The homerun is king and they've removed 35 homeruns from last year's team for two guys who will play better defense, but will be lucky to hit 10 combined. Can this really be considered a good thing?


28
Oct 09

2009 Milwaukee Brewers team awards

weirdotrophyIn case you didn't hear the Brewers recently announced their team awards and the results weren't that surprising. From the JSONLINE:

First baseman Prince Fielder and right-hander Yovani Gallardo were named the Milwaukee Brewers' most valuable player and most valuable pitcher, respectively, for 2009 in balloting conducted by the Milwaukee chapter of the Baseball Writers Association of America.

Other award winners were closer Trevor Hoffman as top newcomer, reliever Todd Coffey as unsung hero and veteran infielder Craig Counsell as recipient of the "Good Guy" award.

(Quick tangent: The Milwaukee chapter of the BBWAA? We have ONE daily newspaper here, how many people can be in it? Seriously, is this just Tony W, Tom H and Mike Hunt voting? Is this a joke? I mean, it's not like they allow broadcasters in here and Uecker got a vote. Who are the people voting on this? I can't find one of them on the BBWAA Wikipedia page. It has to just be the guys at the Journal Sentinel, there is nobody else. So why not just say that?)

Anyways, since this is America and it's full of PC crap where everyone gets a trophy and little league games end in a tie these weren't the only awards handed out. In fact, everyone gets an award! Why let anyone feel left out? These are millionaire baseball players that get tons of adulation and hook up with different women every night, we don't want to hurt their feelings! We need to coddle them and what better way to coddle them than by awarding them for things? Seriously, I want an answer.

Luckily, I have sources and they were able to get me the complete list of Brewers awards handed out to the players and I now present them here for you. Continue reading →


20
Oct 09

Why Felipe Lopez won’t be back

felipelopezAdmittedly I am the internet's biggest Rickie Weeks fan (check out this post that looked so awesome on Opening Day) so perhaps I am a bit biased, but I don't think Felipe Lopez will be back next season and I don't even think there is a chance. Why do I think this? It's simple. This quote from Doug Melvin:

"We view Rickie as our second baseman at this point."

Or in other words, Felipe Lopez won't be back.

Now, make no mistake about it the Brewers WILL offer him arbitration. I think that could be part of the reason they traded for him in the first place. (Last season when the Brewers traded for CC Sabathia they had a plan. Make the playoffs and then replace the farm system they lost through picks from Sabathia and Sheets signing elsewhere. Only one of those two things happened and the system wasn't as deep as it might have been therefore they weren't as free to make a move this season. That's just a theory of mine though.) The fact is he's a Boras client coming off a great season and Boras thinks he can get more than a one year deal in the open market, but for a second let's just say he accepts arbitration. Could he be back? Continue reading →


19
Oct 09

A quick word on trade rumors

zack-greinkeEarlier this week a rumor got started that the Brewers trading for Zack Greinke was IMMINENT. Not only that, but JJ Hardy, Manny Parra, Mat Gamel and Angel Salome were all going to Kansas City in exchange for him! Fox6 reported this on twitter and it was picked up by a few other outlets. I even had one of my good friends call me on the phone and ask me if I had heard we were getting Zack Greinke. My reply? "That's the stupidest thing I've ever heard." And now, shockingly, it's all gone. There is no trade, it was just a silly internet rumor. Who could have seen that one coming?

Now, on paper this trade sounds great for the Brewers (well, not really because the team would still need someone to replace Parra's production and that's a lot of offense to let go of but let's just roll with this.) The Brewers would acquire the person who should win the 2009 Cy Young award. The player who was the best player at his position in the league last year and he would fill a position that the Brewers sorely need help in. They wouldn't give up a single player of their 2010 Brewers starting lineup and they'd have a great, young pitcher who is locked up for the next few years. The Brewers absolutely nailed this fake trade and we can just go ahead and pencil them in for the 2010 World Series.

Here's the thing Continue reading →

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