Chat with Rob Neyer
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Rob Neyer (12:03 PM)
You know how this works, right? You ask questions, with all due respect. And I answer them, from my high horse. Ready?
Joe Mauer will finish the year with ____ home runs.
Rob Neyer (12:04 PM)
What to do with Clay Buchholz, who nearly threw a perfect game yesterday? Brad Penny is pitching well, and John Smoltz is on a rehab assignment, but they have to find a place for Buchholz, right?
Rob Neyer (12:06 PM)
One would think, but if Penny continues to win it's not at all clear how they find a spot for him. Especially with most of the relievers pitching quite well, too.
Is there a worse player in baseball than Aaron Miles? Giving him a 2-year deal may have the worst move of Jim Hendry's career.
Rob Neyer (12:09 PM)
Umm, yeah. Guy has one good year as a part-timer and Hendry gives him $5 million. What a country, eh?
If picking one player to build a team around, do you pick Mauer now?
Rob Neyer (12:10 PM)
Well, he's pretty close to the top of the list, but that would have been almost exactly as true two months ago (well, maybe three; before Mauer's injury).
Is there any info on the severity of Capps injury?
Rob Neyer (12:12 PM)
X-rays negative, more later this afternoon after he's been seen by his doctor.
Really Rob? when johnny damon finishes the season with 25 homers at yankee stadium, will you be ready to admit that sometimes small sample sizes aren't as small as others?
Rob Neyer (12:14 PM)
Sure. It'd have to be more than just Damon. But sure.
Chad (Las Vegas)
How much, if any, effect does the ownership situation in Chicago have to do with their woes?
Rob Neyer (12:15 PM)
I'm not there, of course. But Jim Hendry's been able to make moves, seemingly unfettered. And I can't imagine the players caring one way or the other. They're just not playing well.
Travis C. (Lake Highlands)
Enough of the blue state bias, let's have a Texas question! Do you think the Rangers will be in the market for an arm at the trade deadline, despite the money problems of Tom Hicks?
Rob Neyer (12:16 PM)
Well, right now they've got six starters they like, but of course that could change. And yeah, I think if they're still in first place (or close) they'll be aggressive.
National League Lover, Milwaukee
Rob, in your claim that the AL is better than the NL, how do you make that claim? Do championships count or are you going on interleague play, DH, etc?
Rob Neyer (12:19 PM)
The evidence is overwhelming, my friend. You could look it up.
David (Spring Lake, MI)
Tigers pitching currently leads the AL in ERA (3.87) & BAA (.247). Can we expect this to continue?
Rob Neyer (12:21 PM)
Will they lead the league in ERA? Probably not. Will they be good? Yeah. Especially if Jackson's for real.
Andy (New York)
Sonia Sotomayor kinda, sorta saved baseball from itself in 1995. Does that get an in-chat shout-out?
Rob Neyer (12:23 PM)
Sure. Good for her. And us (we hope).
Steve (Blacksburg, VA)
Do you think Nelson Cruz is for real? It seems as if he has gotten away fom his bad habit of chasing breaking balls out of the zone, and making pitchers come to him.
Rob Neyer (12:24 PM)
He's not doing anything now that he didn't do in the minors for years. It's just a shame it took this long for him to get a real shot.
Rob - what would YOU do about the Ortiz situation - if you were manager?
Rob Neyer (12:26 PM)
It's not the manager's decision; it's a front-office decision. If I were running the front office, I would try to find an injury that justifies a DL stint.
Bawb (Fairview, UT)
Speaking of Nelson Cruz and a shame of not getting a real shot, do you think the Angels are doing a Brandon Wood a misjustice by not letting him show his skills at the big league level?
Rob Neyer (12:29 PM)
I do. Wood's now been crushing Triple-A pitching for 130 games and it's not clear what another 130 is going to accomplish.
Rob- If you were to trade one, would you trade Penny for a decent return, or Buchholz for a much larger return?
Rob Neyer (12:31 PM)
Allowing for the capricious nature of young pitchers, Buchholz has a real shot at a Cy Young Award someday, and it would kill the Sox if he won it for someone else.
Tom-chicago [via mobile]
Hey Rob,after watching Alexei Ramirez get four hits last night and two homers last series,is he back?
Rob Neyer (12:32 PM)
I don't think he'll ever be great, but he was bound to come around at some point this season. Now, about Chris Getz...
Cam (Peoria, AZ)
What in the world do the Braves do with Jeff Francoeur?
Rob Neyer (12:34 PM)
Trade. Release. Demote. Platoon. The only thing they really can't do is continue to play him every day. Anything else would help the club.
Too bad Verlander and Greinke couldn't face off today.
Rob Neyer (12:35 PM)
Hey, Edwin Jackson's ERA is a full run lower than Verlander's. So I'll be watching that one anyway.
Hey Rob, What are your thoughts on Mark Teixera's shattered bat home run this weekend? Have you ever seen anything like that before?
Rob Neyer (12:37 PM)
He's definitely not the first to do it ... Surely some enterprising young fellow has culled the archives to find other examples, right? I have a vague memory of Bo Jackson...
Best trade of the offseason has to be Matt Joyce for Edwin Jackson right? Trading a guy who's currently in the minors for a 25 year old starting pitcher who's 4th in the AL in ERA is a steal.
Rob Neyer (12:38 PM)
Uh, yeah. Funny thing? At the time, I thought the Rays got the better of that one. I should donate my next paycheck to charity...
Dan (Denver) [via mobile]
Is the disparity between the AL and NL overblown now? Nobody would argue the AL East is the best division, but certainly the Central and West appear stronger in the NL. I think after interleague play is completed, the NL will be vindicated this year.
Rob Neyer (12:44 PM)
But aside from one weekend, the NL's been playing itself. So how can you judge its strength based on that? Trust me, Dan: the AL will win the competition this year. Again.
Matt (Yardley, PA)
Ruiz had a nice series in the Bronx this weekend. You are a big man to admit your mistake.
Rob Neyer (12:47 PM)
I would rather be a smart man, and not made the mistake in the first place.
Mike (Boston, MA)
Agreed, they should find a way to DL Ortiz. If they do, who takes his place as DH?
Rob Neyer (12:48 PM)
Well, that's the rub, isn't it? Because the Sox don't have anyone on hand who's suited to that job. Perhaps a trade is in order?
Nora (St. Louis)
How about if you donate your paycheck to all of us NL fans if you are wrong and the NL is vindicated this year?
Rob Neyer (12:50 PM)
Okay. Except I'm afraid my hand would cramp up, writing all those checks for three cents.
Bawb (Fairview, UT)
As strange as this sounds, I remember Sid Bream doing it against the Rockies in 1993 (shattered bat home run that is, in fact it was an opposite field home run to left field.)
Rob Neyer (12:50 PM)
Ha! I'll bet we could come up with a nice list of we really tried.
Matt (Yardley, PA)
It just came to my attention yesterday that the Rangers have a new pitching philosophy of sorts, patterned after the abilities of perhaps the most uniquely gifted player in the history of the game. Is this wise? Why would Nolan Ryan think that what worked for him would work for anyone else?
Rob Neyer (12:52 PM)
That "philosophy" hasn't been articulated particularly well, and most of the Rangers' ERA improvement this season is due to their radically improved infield defense. So let's hold off for a while.
Eric, Des Moines IA
Do you think the Twins will try and hold on to Cuddyer now that he is producing offensively, or is this a good time to try and shop him around?
Rob Neyer (12:53 PM)
It's too early to give up on the season, and Cuddyer is pretty obviously one of the Twins' three best outfielders.
Johnny (Scranton, PA)
Can you see Brett Gardner getting any better or is what we are seeing now the best he will ever be?
Rob Neyer (12:54 PM)
He's young enough to improve, but this is basically who he is: decent on-base, no slug, excellent defense. He's good enough play, but not every day.
What if the Sox call up Anderson, move Youk to third and DH Lowell? Or trade for Nick Johnson for that matter...
Rob Neyer (12:56 PM)
Anderson's off to a lousy start, last I checked. In Double-A, no less. Trading for Nick Johnson isn't the worst idea in the world.
Rob, why does it seem like the media generally thinks that even if NYS is a hitter's park, that it is necessarily a bad thing?
Rob Neyer (12:58 PM)
Yeah, I'm not sure I get all the indignation and hand-wringing. The Yankees can afford to put together whatever sort of roster it takes to win there, right?
On a scale of 1 to 10, how awesome is Raul Ibanez??
Rob Neyer (12:59 PM)
11 (h/t: Chris Guest)
Why did Jim Hendry feel it was needed to mess with a team that won 97 games last year?
Rob Neyer (1:02 PM)
Hendry's moves were ... well, a bit odd. Though it's hard to blame him for Milton Bradley's sub-700 OPS. Thanks for all the Q's today, and until next time don't forget: "First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win."
Andruw Jones did it a few years back
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