Tuesday, June 12, 2012

The Genius Maker 6-11-12

I haven’t written in about a week so I will just get down some of my impressions over the past 5-6 games.

  • We are tied for 1st place after (hopefully in the beginning) a nice stretch of going 14-4 over the last 18.
  • Pettitte became a much better pitcher when he went to the NL.  His movement has been excellent and his curve has been sharp and he uses both sides of the plate far more than he did before he went to the NL.  Age or not, with movement like he has now, changing speeds and being able to command his fastball to run or cut he will be very effective for us. 
  • Good to see Martin providing some offense!  He is actually doing a pretty well and his .781 OPS is actually better than Swisher’s .772.
  • While on Swisher, his issue is that he is simply swinging at far too many balls.  He has walked only 17 times which are 2 less than Cano.  Swisher is leading the team in RBI’s, but this is why I disagree with the people who talk about knocking runs is all that matters.  Runs will get knocked in when more people are on base, something he is not doing for the people behind him.
  • Tex is getting respectable with an OPS the same as ARod at .796 and is one RBI behind Swisher.  Of course, both ARod and Tex need to be in the mid .800’s in their OPS.
  • Jeter has not been hitting well since his torrid start in April.  His may OPS was .696 and June has been .586 so far.  He also has been hitting a lot of grounders and this has led to 10 DP’s in his last (roughly) 150 AB’s.  He hit into only 1 DP in his first 100 AB’s or so.  Finally, and I said this last year, Jeter’s platoon splits are so great, that against a righty he should not be leading off.  Jeter’s OPS is .696 for the year against righties.  When Gardner was healthy he should be leading off against righties and Jeter should bat last and they should swap against lefties (Jeter leading off).  Of course Gardner is still out and I am starting to get concerned about him…if Gardner has an issue that is worse than originally thought we will need to find a replacement from another team because playing Ibanez and Jones is not a long term solution in my view; even if both have been fine at a .798 and .795 OPS.
  • Jayson Nix drew some raves for his play in eighth inning a few nights ago, getting the lead runner at third base on a fairly routine grounder to shortstop.  It was a very heads up play with some risk to it but even though he hasn’t played a lot of SS this year he made the play.  I say this because if Jeter made the play, it would have been one of those where people talk about all the intangibles he brings to the table.  But, here was a pretty weak major league player getting it done…either way, nice job Nix and good job so far this year as he has filled in pretty well.
  • Kay was killing Swisher for bunting with 1st and 2nd nobody out in the Mets game down by 3 runs.  I think Kay was wrong.  Sure, it didn’t work and I don’t think Swisher was trying to sacrifice as much as trying to bunt for hit, but I think it was a smart move.  It was still early in the game and Swisher has not been swinging well.  The idea there is to get the lead down and moving two runners over is NOT a bad play there.  While the bunt didn’t work, what if he hit into a DP?  I actually think trying to bunt for a hit was a good idea.  The odds of getting one run across would have been very good and 2 runners would have been in scoring position.  If the score gets cut to 3-1 or 3-2 it is a new ball game.  Like I said, if he doesn’t beat it out but moves the runners along I would have been fine with that.  The hindsight managing is silly and from what I heard Girardi had a “talk” with him and that scares me because I don’t think Girardi understands it either.  Would he have that talk with him if he beat it out or maybe just got the sac and the next hitter singled in 2?  Doubtful, Girardi’s comment would have been, “it’s a heads up play because even if it didn’t beat it out, he would have moved two runners over” or “getting two runners over got us back in the game.”  But because he bunted poorly, he had to get spoken too?  I am not buying that.
  • While on Girardi, I liked that he pulled Soriano in the Mets game.  He had nothing and his curve was not sharp.  Honestly, I said this before, Soriano’s stuff has not been sharp, but he has been getting the job done since taking over the closing role.  He can throw any pitch on any count which is good, but when his fastball is 91 and his curve is not sharp, he won’t be good.  I know Logan got a little lucky, but Girardi showed me something pulling Soriano there.  Girardi also showed he was concerned about Soriano last night using Wade to get the1st out in the 9th and Logan for the final two to save the 3-0 game.
  • Oh, Cano made a very nice play to finish the Mets game Sunday…he did boot one earlier, but the game was saved by Cano there…and Cano is now leading our team in OPS.
  • The starting pitching had a very good run through the last two times and that is encouraging.  Hughes and Nova have been better and obviously Kuroda.  CC hasn’t been as sharp, but the guy is a horse.  BTW, even though he gets the run support and it is the reason, Nova leads our team in wins at 8-2…and he did have a nice line drive hit to RC.
  • Boston is now 6.5 games back and in last

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