Wednesday, June 10, 2009
Foxy, we hardly knew ye
Reacting to the news that Jake Fox is going down and Aaron Miles is coming (back) up, The Friendly Blogfines' Matt Clapp has some questions ...
Interesting decision. Fox will surely be back up by June 23rd to serve as a designated hitter in some of the games at American League parks. I really liked his bat off the bench though, and would've preferred to send down Scales. I love Andres Blanco's glove at the middle infield positions and he's hitting enough to have a spot on this roster, so I'm glad they kept him. However, do the Cubs really need three of these similar players now in Miles, Scales, and Blanco? It will be interesting to see which one isn't on the 25-man roster when Ryan Freel returns soon from a left hamstring injury. Just for the record, when Miles hit .290 for the Cardinals, his OPS+ was 76, which coincidentally is almost dead on his lifetime figure. Essentially -- and I write this, as always, with the appropriate respect for someone who could post even a 76 OPS+ against the best pitchers in the world -- but essentially Miles isn't good enough to play regularly in the majors.
Miles has been a major disappointment, although reports are [his] shoulder's been an issue since Spring Training, so we'll see if some time off makes a difference there. He needs to start hitting at least something like the guy who batted .290 and.317 in the previous two seasons with the Cardinals, or he doesn't deserve a roster spot over any of these guys.
That said, the Cubs do need a second baseman. Clapp is right, though: there's no good reason to keep Miles and Blanco and Scales on the roster at once. I don't know how much input Lou Piniella's got in these situations, but I can't figure why he'd want to be left with only two reasonable bats -- Micah Hoffpauir and Reed Johnson -- on the bench. And that's when Milton Bradley is healthy enough to play.