Chat with Rob Neyer
Welcome to The Show! On Tuesday, ESPN.com MLB Insider Rob Neyer will drop by to chat some baseball.
Neyer's book, "Rob Neyer's Big Book of Baseball Legends," can be ordered now!
Send your questions now and join Neyer on Tuesday at noon ET!
Rob Neyer (12:05 PM)
I'm not answering a single question until you buy at least one of my books. It's so easy, thanks to the InterWeb! (Okay, maybe I'll answer a few...)
RobBest defensive 3B last 20 years?
Rob Neyer (12:07 PM)
I'd have to do some research ... at their best, Scott Rolen and Adrian Beltre have been outstanding. Pedro Feliz ... I'm know I'm missing some guys from the '90s, and I'm sure there will be other ideas out there.
Worst. Derby. Ever. Can they please implement a pitch count instead of an out count? That was just painful watching them take pitch after pitch after pitch after pitch and then....line drive caught by the 8 year old.
Rob Neyer (12:08 PM)
Pitches, no. Strikes, yes. There oughtta be an umpire back there, just like on the *original* Home Run Derby.
Your predictions failed hard. Why should we listen to you?
Rob Neyer (12:10 PM)
I will never tell anyone to listen to me. But I'm not sure if I got a whole lot dumber between 2008 and 2009. Trust me: a lot of smart people are having lousy years.
Eddie (Hoboken, NJ)
Rob, I own the Blunders Book which was created from the mind of a genius! Namely Rob Neyer, so can I ask a question? Do you think the Yankees stand pat this year or will there be a "sexy" acquisition? How much payroll can 1 team have?
Rob Neyer (12:12 PM)
The Yankees can have whatever payroll they like, but I don't see a lot of space on their roster for another "sexy" player. Particularly with Gardner and Cabrera playing so well in center field.
Tom (Bay Area)
Rob, bought a book. To what do you attribute Chavez's gold gloves is six consecutive years I believe?
Rob Neyer (12:15 PM)
He was pretty great. As was Steve Buechele, way back when (thanks for the suggestion, whoever sent him in). Robin Ventura won a bunch of Gold Gloves, though I don't remember if he deserved them.
Don (NY, NY)
Is the Players Association given access to each club's annual income statement? If so, why can't some of that info (Revenues, margins, transfer payments ....) be disseminated to the public so the fans have an idea whether their teams are more committed to winning or generating profits.
Rob Neyer (12:18 PM)
I believe the union has access to all the books, but is bound to keep that information in confidence.
Rob, I hope he is clean but the Pujols hype the last few days has been truly over the top. Hasn't the media learned their lesson already by putting Sosa, McGwire, Bonds and ARod on that same pedestal? Thanks
Rob Neyer (12:23 PM)
It does seem a bit much, doesn't it? I'd rather just let the guys play the game, and we'll see what happens. But then I've always liked the game more than the guys anyway.
Cheese (San Mateo)
I know that everyone loves Dan Haren and his amazing stats, but come on should he really have started over Timmy? Timmy has 10 wins leads in strikeouts and has the second best ERA. Oh wait he is also the reigning Cy Young. Oh yeah and the Giants are leading the Wildcard race and are only 7 games behind the "World Beater" Dodgers who everyone said would run away with the division. I would say the kid has earned it. This whol Haren is more derserving doesnt seem to hold water to me
Rob Neyer (12:25 PM)
I think I had Lincecum starting, but Haren is having a truly brilliant season, as good as anyone's in the majors. I think one could make a better argument for Greinke instead of Halladay.
How can a guy sit next to John Schuerholz for so many years and not learn something? It must feel like Allard never left.
Rob Neyer (12:27 PM)
Allard Baird never really had the mien of a general manager. Dayton Moore does have the mien; he just doesn't know what to do with it. The root problem is the owner, who keeps hiring the wrong guys for the job.
You stated at the beginning that you would only answer questions from people that have bought your book. Which one do you most strongly suggest for someone to look into?
Rob Neyer (12:31 PM)
I have a tough time choosing among my little babies, Eric. My favorite is the book about pitchers that I did with Bill James. Most people seem to prefer the Lineups book, but that's now six years old. I suppose that if you don't care much about pitchers, I'll recommend the Blunders book. And thanks for asking.
Craig (Miamisburg, OH)
Rob, it's interesting to see that 1986 game where Davey Johnson used Orosco and McDowell for 5 innings, but that also means he let two RPs get 4 PAs in a tie game! How do you justify that?
Rob Neyer (12:32 PM)
(referring to this morning's blog post ...) It was a 14-inning game, Craig, and I'm fairly sure that Johnson's bench was dry (at least one player had been ejected).
Thoughts on the move by Lou Pinella to put Sean Marshall in LF for a batter? Brilliant in my opinion.
Rob Neyer (12:35 PM)
Again, I did write about that this morning, but I didn't editorialize ... It's not exactly rocket science, and as a move it's almost impossible to analyze because there are so many variables. It does usually seem to "work," though.
Stan (Houston, TX)
Rob, do you think the Rangers should make a deal for a starting pitcher before the deadline or just let the young kids pitch (Hunter, Holland, maybe promote Feliz)? They have the opportunity to win this year, but the team is young overall and built to win more in 2010 or 2011.
Rob Neyer (12:39 PM)
I don't think they should seriously raid their farm system, but they should do anything short of that. You have to grab for the brass ring when it's in front of you.
Do you think Cleveland will pull the trigger if they are offered a package for Cliff Lee or Victor Martinez?
Rob Neyer (12:40 PM)
Of course it depends on the package. Any general manager should consider any offer (however briefly).
Feejus (Kender, UT)
Schilling said that Buchholz starting Friday to give the rotation, in Theo's words, "an extra day's rest" doesn't pass the smell test, esp that without the Buchholz start, Lester, Wake and Beckett still get 11-12 days rest each (and the All Star throws by Beckett and Wake would basically equal a side session). So is this an audition or is the Boston front office so bored they are looking for new ways to try to outsmart themselves?
Rob Neyer (12:42 PM)
I suppose it's possible that the Sox are showcasing Buchholz ... but isn't that a two-edged sword? What if he gets hammered, or can't throw strikes? It does happen sometimes, even to the best of them. I'll take the Sox at their word on this one.
Rob, I seem to remember Chuck Tanner sending Kent "Teke" Tekulve out to leftfield for a batter in the ninth...and with two outs the batter flied out to good 'ol Teke to end the game! Luckily, with Teke's shaded glasses the sun was no problem.
Rob Neyer (12:44 PM)
Good one, Mike! Tekulve did indeed play LF for one batter in a 1979 game. That's the only such incident I'm aware of, in the 1970s. I'd love to see a complete list, but not sure how to make one (aside from asking one of my smart friends to write a little program).
I believe since April 25th the Angels are the best team in baseball. About a .625 clip. Let's give some credit.
Rob Neyer (12:47 PM)
You got it, buddy.
warclub (strongsville, oh)
Rob: I think in 1968, Alvin Dark put Sam McDowell in at 2B to avoid Frank Howard and then brought him back in to pitch
Rob Neyer (12:49 PM)
McDowell's non-pitching appearance(s) came in 1970, but you're right about Alvin Dark being the manager. Thanks! After the chat I'm going to work on my list.
Paul H. (Chelmsford, MA)
Rob, didn't Lasorda put Fernando in RF once back in the 80's?
Rob Neyer (12:51 PM)
Yes, I'm pretty sure Lasorda did it, just couldn't remember last night (when writing about this) which pitcher(s) to check. But Fernando was considered a fine athlete, and it may well have been him. Will check later. Thanks.
I'm sure you heard the stat that 7 of the 8 home run derby participants last year saw their homer-rate decrease in the 2nd half. Do you think it actually has an effect on an MLB players swing? Or just a combination of small sample size plus many hitters see this rate decrease as they tire with a long season.
Rob Neyer (12:53 PM)
None of those, really. This is the same thing as an MVP not playing as well the next season, or a Cy Young winner, etc. To win a major award -- or to be invited to the HR Derby -- you probably had to play a little bit over your head. There's nothing wrong with that, but usually you're going to regress a little bit afterward.
Do you think Billy Beane has lost his touch as a GM? The A's suck out loud.
Rob Neyer (12:54 PM)
I'm not ready to go there yet. Three years ago they won 93 games. But this is the third straight rebuilding/transition year, and at some point you'd like to see a .500 record (at least).
This years All Star Game without the Panda seems empty.... but hey, at least Manuel has 57 first basemen....
Rob Neyer (12:55 PM)
Manuel was allowed to mangle the NL roster, and I wish a pox upon his house. Tonight, at least.
Speaking of the Angels, Brandon Wood is finally there. Does he stay this time or will Scioscia continue to hate him for no good reason?
Rob Neyer (12:59 PM)
Wood will have to hit, or he'll get sent right back to Utah. That's just what Scioscia does. And we do have to acknowledge that what Scioscia does has generally worked pretty well. I mean, in all fairness.
Kyle (San Diego)
So Volquez is hurt, Cueto is who knows...can we finally agree Dusty Baker is terrible for young pitchers?
Rob Neyer (1:03 PM)
I thought he'd learned his lesson in Chicago, will have to look at their actual usage. I'm naturally inclined toward charity, though...Thanks for all the great questions, and if you just didn't get enough -- you know who you are -- I'll be chatting during the last three innings of the All-Star Game tonight. Until then don't forget: "Change ain't lookin' for friends. Change calls the tune we dance to."