Chat with Rob Neyer
Neyer's book, "Rob Neyer's Big Book of Baseball Legends," can be ordered now!
Send in your questions now and join Rob in The Show on Tuesday at noon ET!
Rob Neyer (12:00 PM)
You and me, just the two of us, can change the world. Ready?
Zack (Oceanside, CA)
Hey Mr. Neyer. After Sunday's Rockies/Dodgers game, Russell Martin said that Matt Kemp (who had hit 2 HR that day including a grand slam) has more power than anyone else on the team and maybe more power than anyone else in the league. Obviously this is partly hyperbole but is there some truth to this?!
Rob Neyer (12:02 PM)
Gosh, I don't know ... That Manny guy has some power, too. We do like to project, don't we?
What was the point in getting Street for Holliday? What do the Rockies do with him?
Rob Neyer (12:03 PM)
Street was good down the stretch last season, and he was good enough in March to be anointed closer. So I wouldn't let two weeks in April worry me too terribly much.
Thoughts on Cahill and Anderson so far? If we could only get them some run support..
Rob Neyer (12:05 PM)
Cahill's ERA is impressive but his K/W ratio is a disaster, and if that doesn't get a lot better he'll spend most of the summer in Sacramento. Anderson's been better, but he's got some work to do, too.
There's no way Ryan Howard can keep his average above or around 300 for a whole season, is there?
Rob Neyer (12:07 PM)
Well, he batted .313 when he was 26, so I don't know that he can't hit .290-.300 when he's 29. He'll need a spot of luck, but sure.
With the way the ball flys in the New Yankee Stadium the deficient outfield defense is going be be especially exposed since they will need to play deeper. How do you think this impacts their playoff hopes?
Rob Neyer (12:08 PM)
It's far, far, far too early to draw any conclusions about how the new Stadium is going to play.
Jeff (St. Clair Shores, MI)
Is Porcello's future potential going to be hurt by having him in the Majors this season instead of developing in the minors?
Rob Neyer (12:09 PM)
No, I don't think so. Some 20-year-olds really are ready to pitch in the majors, and there's little to be gained by leaving them in Triple-A.
Safe to say that my Yankees have the worst defensive outfield in the league?
Rob Neyer (12:10 PM)
I don't know who has the worst, but I have a tough time with the notion that an outfield w/three center fielders (or ex-center fielders) is the right answer.
How many will the Nationals win? 75 still a possibility?
Rob Neyer (12:13 PM)
Anything's possible, but at this moment 70 has to be considered a stretch.
Derek (Wash DC)
As a DC native, I would like to know who's to blame for the embarrassment that was the Washington "Natinals" uniforms. Who's more to blame, the company that made them, or the equipment managers that saw the mistakes and still had the team wear them in a televised game
Rob Neyer (12:14 PM)
My guess is that the jerseys arrive and are delivered to the players without any real checking between. My guess is also that it won't happen again. Not soon, anyway.
Should switch hitters bat lefty only in Yankee stadium or other parks where the fences favor the lefties. Has this ever been practiced with switch hitters? It seems that it should at least be "tested."
Rob Neyer (12:18 PM)
You could test it theoretically, but I know what you'd find: for the great majority of switch-hitters, going reverse wouldn't make sense.
Do you see value in traditional scouting (you know, being the numbers guy you are)?
Rob Neyer (12:19 PM)
Sure. It's all pieces in the same big puzzle. The trick is figuring out where all of them fit.
RJ (NY, NY)
What's the deal with Maybin? He's killing me out there...
Rob Neyer (12:21 PM)
Why are you relying on him? He wasn't all that great in Double-A last year. I mean, he was great for his age, but that doesn't mean he's ready to play decently in the majors.
Can you see Greinke winning the AL Cy Young this year?
Rob Neyer (12:24 PM)
If the Royals score some runs he's got a shot at becoming a serious candidate. (How's that for a straight answer?!)
Are we going to see Patrick Schuster drafted immediately, or is he going to go play college baseball for a few years?
Rob Neyer (12:26 PM)
I'm sure he'll be drafted, but that doesn't mean he'll sign. As usual, it'll probably depend on the $$$.
What do you think is wrong with Wang? Arm injury, mechanics, confidence, new Yankee Stadium?
Rob Neyer (12:28 PM)
Here's my WAG ... Wang's foot injury last season led to him changing his delivery somehow, and this has killed his arm strength somehow. I do think he'll get straightened out eventually.
How good is Armando Galarraga, really? A lot of people wrote off his performance last year as a bit of a fluke, but he has seemed even better this year so far. Is he completely for real?
Rob Neyer (12:30 PM)
I think it's only been two starts, and what he did last year -- and not just the ERA -- tells us most of what we want to know. Let's check back in a couple of months.
Do you think a GM has the right to tell his manager how to use their bullpen?
Rob Neyer (12:33 PM)
Not only the right, but often the duty. A manager is, after all, an employee. Of course, ideally you'd want a manager who doesn't need to be told.
Thoughts on the Mariners so far? Pretender or Contender in a weak division?
Rob Neyer (12:33 PM)
Contender if Hernandez and Bedard combine to 60+ starts.
Rob, what do you make of Nelson Cruz's hot start? Is he for real and are the Rangers dark horse contenders for the AL West crown?
Rob Neyer (12:34 PM)
Sure, he's for real. And I suppose everyone's a contender in that division, but I still have the Rangers fourth because of their starting pitchers.
When you're on the radio, you always are saying you crunched the numbers and this is who you got winning, but you never say what numbers your crunched or what metric you used.
Rob Neyer (12:35 PM)
That's because nobody wants to listen to an essay on the radio.
Simon (Chicago) [via mobile]
Your thoughts on Carlos Quentin so far?AL MVP this year?
Rob Neyer (12:35 PM)
I just blogged about Quentin last night; check it out!
Can Phil Hughes possibly live up to the hype that once surrounded him or was that a case of the NY Media Monster building a guy up that probably didn't merit it?
Rob Neyer (12:37 PM)
Nah, he was a legitimately outstanding prospect ... but he *was* a pitcher, and you know what so often happens to outstanding pitching prospects. I do think he'll have some good seasons. Don't know if it'll be w/Yankees, though.
Brian (AL West)
Over/under on AL West champ wins? 84?
Rob Neyer (12:37 PM)
I'll go with the over, but not by much. Somebody will get lucky and win 86 or 87.
How pathetic does it look on TV with all those empty seats close to the field at Yankee Stadium? Jeez, why not give the tickets away to kids if they haven't sold before a certain time? Of course they'd never do that.
Rob Neyer (12:39 PM)
It does look awful and I'll bet you a dollar that something is done before Memorial Day. I saw some great photos this morning, will post a link in the blog tomorrow.
Jake - Seattle [via mobile]
Still go to Mariners games? Can I buy you a cold one tonight?!
Rob Neyer (12:39 PM)
I do, occasionally, and I'll be at the ballpark on Thursday afternoon. Look for me!
Are the halos cursed this season? And if so, shouldn't they at some point be bringing up brandon wood to get ready for 2010? He has something like 1.400 OPS right now in AAA
Rob Neyer (12:42 PM)
While it's not apparent where he would play for the Angels, there seems to be little point in leaving him down there for yet another season. This is looking like Edgar Martinez all over again.
luke GR [via mobile]
Do you really see miguel cabrera getting traded this year?
Rob Neyer (12:43 PM)
Absolutely not. He's the one guy you *don't* trade if you're the Tigers.
Do any metrics back up that Swisher, Gardner, and Damon are horrible outfielders? Or is this just based on opinion?
Rob Neyer (12:43 PM)
Apparently their numbers aren't good, but I don't know how much stock we can put in fielding stats after two weeks. I don't pay attention to batting stats this early, either.
Steve in Syracuse, NY
Chris Davis going to still be a 30 HR guy???...........he has K'd a ton!!
Rob Neyer (12:45 PM)
Well, he's struck out six or seven times more than we might have expected ... Nothing to worry about yet, as he's always going to go through stretches like this. I still like him.
I just saw a report that attendance is down 32.1% in DET through the first two weeks. Does this scream firesale??
Rob Neyer (12:46 PM)
I always wondered if it made sense to build that grand new stadium in the middle of a dying city ... Fire sale, though? Not if they're in the thick of the race, and I believe they will be.
Bill (Bellport, NY)
Any update on your BBWAA status? Have they sent you a membership card or anything? Also, what's with the posts by people other than you in the new blog format? Did you explain that in a blog post that I missed?
Rob Neyer (12:48 PM)
Nope, no membership card. I guess they don't like me after all. :-( As for the non-Neyer posts, I haven't explained that because nobody's explained anything to me. I just work here, happily.
Chris (Dallas, TX)
You might want to let Tripp know that the Tigers have played exactly 5 home games. And they're 4-1 in those games. Winning will bring back the fans.
Rob Neyer (12:49 PM)
Point taken, Chris.
Matt (Gaithersburg, MD)
Last night Jordan Zimmerman debuted for the Nats...Tonight is Brad Bergesen's debut for the Orioles...who has the better line and the better future?
Rob Neyer (12:51 PM)
Zimmerman's got the more impressive pedigree, and looked impressive last night, and also pitches against weaker hitters, generally. So let's stick with him for now.
Ryan (Chicago, IL)
Rob, where were you? Missed the blog...
Rob Neyer (12:52 PM)
I never left, Ryan. We just moved my blog to a different page. Here's the new URL: http://myespn.go.com/blogs/sweetspot (and thanks for asking).
Rob, your writing strikes me more as "writerly" than "sportswriterly" (neologisms FTW!). Have you ever considered writing any fiction and, if so, any hints as to what sort of stories you'd write?
Rob Neyer (12:53 PM)
That's kind of you, but I'm afraid I have neither the imagination nor the ear for fiction. I do appreciate that kind of writing; I just can't do it.
Whats the deal with Holliday? No HRs or SBs throught spring training to now (over 100ABs). More than a location change?
Rob Neyer (12:54 PM)
No homers in spring training? That's odd, but at this point I'm still willing to write everything off to small sample size. There's no objective reason to think he won't hit 20 homers this season.
love your work but we are going to start fining you $500 for every late chat start
Rob Neyer (12:57 PM)
A fine is fair -- though, to be fair to me, I was on time today, and last week -- but I want the fine to be prorated; if Dukes gets fined $500 from his MLB minimum salary, my fine should be substantially less than his.
What about a music critic?
Rob Neyer (12:57 PM)
Nah, I lack the vocabulary. But movies, I could probably fake my way through.
Rob, how about answering a braves question? How bad is McCanns eye injury really? If he does hit the DL, do the Braves have any shot to win the NL East?
Rob Neyer (12:58 PM)
Sure, anything's possible. But if he's out for more than a month or two, you'd have to hate their chances.
About Wood, a little birdie told me he was called up this morning. I don't know if someone was sent down or if Jepsen went on the DL, but we will find out tonight where they play him. DH?
Rob Neyer (12:59 PM)
Lots of rumors after his hot start w/Salt Lake, but nothing on the wire yet. And yeah, he'd seem like the likely fill-in for Vlad as DH, though that's not much of a long-term solution.
Rob, just wondering if you are aware that there is a major league baseball team in Toronto?
Rob Neyer (1:00 PM)
I am, and I've been there to see them play. Great city, lousy "ballpark".
Johnny D (Mansfield, CT)
What do the Red Sox do with Lowrie out, especially if Lugo comes back and struggles? Do they stick with defensive minded Green or do they look elsewhere like Eckstein or Christian Guzman
Rob Neyer (1:02 PM)
I think they make Lugo/Green work, as they're unlikely to find someone better before July anyway. Thanks for all the questions. I'll see you next week, and until then don't forget: "If a million people say a foolish thing, it is still a foolish thing."
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