We now bring you part two of our e-mail conversation with Al of Al's Ramblings for The Miller Park Drunk E-Mail Show. Part two is a bit longer than part 1 as we get into Rickie Weeks, Mike Cameron, post-2009, potential trades, JJ Hardy, Manny Parra and the future of the team. We started to hit a groove towards the end there and we're happy with the results. This is probably the most actual analysis you'll ever see us do, so enjoy it while you can.
MPD: Bill Hall is a great example of casual fans not thinking things through. Bill Hall was beloved for hitting those 35 home runs, then was considered an overpaid let down (both with the bat and the glove) as a center fielder. Last season he was routinely booed, the fans wanted Branyan and his numbers didn't do much to prove anyone wrong. Now here we are in 2009 and he's the same player he was last year, but now he should be the starting second baseman. How does that make sense? Continue reading →
Rickie Weeks is now out for the season. The recovery time on his injury is 4-6 months meaning that even in a best case scenario he won't be back for the playoffs. If there are a playoffs. One of my best friends claims that this is the best thing to ever happen to the Brewers. My friend is an idiot. Outside of the golden trio of Braun/Fielder/Gallardo, Weeks is the last person this team wanted to get hurt. Hart, Hardy and Hall are all replaceable. There isn't a single player on this team that can take his place at leadoff. Counsell is better at defense and matches his eye, but the power/speed combo isn't there. You can lead off Corey Hart, but you lose some OBP (perhaps a lot of it). You can lead off Kendall, but you lose every single thing Weeks does well and gain nothing except whiteness and metal knowledge. You can lead off... that's about it actually. Does a team need a true leadoff hitter to win it all? Not at all, but it certainly helps and it certainly hurts to have one and lose him.
Unfortunately, this isn't Baseball Mogul(which is probably a good thing because Baseball Mogul HATES the Brewers for some reason) and you can't just move Hardy to second and call up Escobar to play SS. You have to work with what you have and deal with players feelings. Hardy doesn't want to move and if he doesn't want to, you probably can't make him. Then even if you could do that, who knows if it would even work? It's not like Escobar is hitting in AAA. Weeks is gone and as of right now the best replacement for him is a Counsell/McGehee platoon. Call it whatever you want, but this is not a good thing. It's bad. Bad for the team. Bad for Rickie. Bad for me.
I am emotionally invested in Rickie Weeks. I saw him play in Double A. I watched his debut. I tracked his career. I've had him on fantasy teams. Most of all, I believed in him when no one else did. I knew the talent he had and I knew that if he ever figured it out, he'd be a pretty damn good second baseman. Guess what? He figured it out. This was the season that he became a pretty damn good second baseman and now it's over. Will he be good next year? He should be and I can't wait to bust out my Weeks jersey on Opening Day 2010, but it's still 2009. The race is too close to call and losing Rickie Weeks for the season hurts this team more than any of the other NL Central contenders have been hurt thus far.
The Brewers are a great team, but without Rickie? We'll see.
Now if you'll excuse me I am going to induce a seizure and swallow my own tongue.