Chat with Joe Morgan
Welcome to SportsNation! On Tuesday, Hall of Famer and ESPN baseball analyst Joe Morgan will drop by to take your questions!
An analyst for ESPN's Sunday Night Baseball, Morgan was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1990. He won back-to-back MVP awards with the Reds in 1975 and 1976 along with two World Series rings.
Send your questions now and join Morgan Tuesday at 11 a.m. ET!
Buzzmaster (11:01 AM)
We're getting Joe right now!
Joe Morgan (11:02 AM)
I really enjoyed the induction ceremony this year in Cooperstown. Rickey Henderson did a fabulous job on his speech and so did Jim Rice. Joe Gordon's daughter did a great job for his family as well.
Joe, is there any way the Rays can be successful this year if they continue to struggle against left-handed pitching?
Joe Morgan (11:04 AM)
I think the Rays problem more than left-handed pitching is they're short picthing. They traded Edwin Jackson and Sonanstine was sent to the minor leagues. That's their big problem. I'm more about starting pitching than a lot of other things. They thought they had a lot of starting pitching and it turns out they don't have as much as they had. Last year, it seems guys had career years and not their normal years.
Matt (New Jersey)
Hey Joe. When you became a professional, how did that affect you as a fan of the game? I've always wondered how much it would affect your favorite team growing up and how much players pay attention to the rest of the league. Thanks
Joe Morgan (11:05 AM)
What happens when you get to the major leagues, you are a player first for the team you're on and a fan second. I never lost the aspect of being a fan, but being a player came first. Now I'm a fan first and an announcer second.
What is it like being inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame
Joe Morgan (11:06 AM)
My induction will always be different because mine was the first one that was rained out on Sunday. We had to stay over and do it on Monday in the gymnasium. A lot of people that were there to see it had to leave on Sunday to get home. I am very lucky that my father, mother, brother and sisters were there to share the moment with me. It was great.
will the red sox trade for a big bat or a trade away some of the pitchers for a 3rd man starter
Joe Morgan (11:07 AM)
Well, the Red Sox are the only team in my opinion that I thought had an abundance of starters. But John Smoltz has not pitched as well as I thought as he would Tim Wakefield is on the DL. So they're not as strong as I thought they would be. They can't trade one to get a bat. A big bat...there aren't that many out there to be traded. They could get a bat, but not a big bat.
Dirk (KY )
Do you think that the tigers need another starting pitcher and will Dave go get one?
Joe Morgan (11:09 AM)
Well, everybody needs starting pitching. The Yankees need another starter. Everyone needs pitching. It's now becoming obvious to other people what I've been saying for the last few years, that starting pitching wins championships. If you have a team where your starters can just make your bullpen get 6 outs a game, you're in good shape. But if you make your bullpen get 12 to 15 outs, every game, you're in trouble.
Steve (Blacksburg, VA)
Can the Rangers continue to challenge the Angels in the AL West til the end?
Joe Morgan (11:10 AM)
I think the Angels are the best team because of the way they have played the game over the years. Texas, Ron Washington has done a great job of getting his team playing the fundamentals. They're starting to play that way. They're not just waiting for the home run. But I think the experience of the Angels and the heat and the weather in Texas gives the Angels the advantage. But that's not to say that the Angels will win.
SteveFitz (Cicero, Il)
Cubs seemt o be back. Great pitching, the pen looks better and the hitting is coming in its own. It will be a dog fight with the Cards all the way. Do you think with the Cusb playing better, the Cards playing well, that the wild card can also come out of the NL central. I'd love to see the Cubs and Cards make the postseason.
Joe Morgan (11:11 AM)
That definitely could happen. The Cubs are playing better. But they're streaky this year. They are playing better, but they've played poorly. Dempster is coming off the DL. They need Lily back from the DL. Harden is pitching well. The Cubs are definitely a team that's going to be in the mix.
Joe Morgan (11:12 AM)
But I do believe the wild card will probably come from the Central division. I thought the Giants were going to roll because of their starting pitching, but their offense has been inconsistent. That's been the key to the Cubs playing well, Aramis Ramirez is back and their hitting is coming around.
With the Braves pitching like they have all year if this team gets in the playoffs they have got to be the favorites seeing they own the Phillies and Cards?
Joe Morgan (11:13 AM)
I've said all along that the Phillies are the best team. Their starting pitching is not as good as it was last year. But Cole Hamels can come out and be an ace again. Blanton is getting better. Moyer is doint what he does. But I'm not convinced that the Braves have the offense to beat the Cardinals and Phillies.
Joe! Are the Mets done? Can they still find a way to get consistent offense without guys like Gary Sheffield in the lineup?
Joe Morgan (11:14 AM)
No. Not without Sheffield, Beltran, Reyes are they going to hold up. You can't just keep running AAA players out there and hope to contend. Not against teams like the Phillies who have really good big league players out there. So, no, I don't think they can hold up.
I would like to know what Joe Morgan thinks about Pete Rose and if he should be in the Hall of Fame.
Joe Morgan (11:16 AM)
It is tricky. As everone knows, I've supported Pete's reinstatement into baseball. I will say this, I don't think he should be allowed to manage again. I'm not even as concerned about the hall of fame. I would just like, as a guy I lockered next to and played the game the way it was supposed to be played, for him to be reinstated into the game so that he would not be an outcast for the rest of his life.
Is the back end of the Yankees rotation strong enough to pull out the rest of the season? Is a trade for a starting pitcher imminent? Who do you think has the right roster to win the division because the Rays can be streaky too.
Joe Morgan (11:18 AM)
That's what I was talking about earlier, even the Yankees need is starting pitching. The one thing the Yankees have going for them is that new stadium. They have a group of flyball hitter. That rightfield porch and the ballpark itself helps the those flyball hitters. And they have strikeout pitchers. So when they're at home, they have an advantage in the style they play. But on the road, they're not as consistent. I still think they can win the division, but I think they need another starting pitcher to be considered teh best team in the AL.
Doc Halladay (Toronto (for now))
Joe,Hey! Do you know if I will be staying put in Canada, or will it be Philly? LA? (I have my bags packed, and am ready to roll, my friend.)
Joe Morgan (11:20 AM)
I don't see how he can stay in Toronto after the way Riccardi has handled this. I think he's handled it very poorly by making it public that the guy is available. He's basically saying that we need to get rid of him to get other players. Halladay has pitched well. He's your star. He should be staying. They overpaid for Vernon Wells, Alex Rios, BJ Ryan. all those mistakes have taken away the money they could have used to sign Halladay. So you're taking away your best player to make up for mistakes on your other players. You can't go back to Halladay and say, I was kidding; we're not trading you, now go out and pitch well for us for 2 years.
Joe Morgan (11:21 AM)
But by making it a public affair and having Halladay think about it every day is a disservice to him after everything he's done for the ballclub.
Do you think Kenny Williams will make a move, possibly a big one, before the deadline?
Joe Morgan (11:22 AM)
I'm sure he wants to. Everybody says you can just go get a big bat or go get a big pitcher. It's not easy when everyone knows what you need and you're under the gun as far as time. You can get midlevel players, but you can't get star players that easily.
What are your thoughts on doing the autograph show and do you collect any memorabilia or autographs?
Joe Morgan (11:24 AM)
I didn't really collect autographs as a player. I remember the first autograph I ever got was from Felipe Alou who was a Giant at the time. I got it for my aunt. I collected a lot of cards, but a lot of them ended up in my bike. Card shows are fine, because it allows the fans to see the player in person and get the autograph there instead of on eBay or something. I don't do many, because at this time in my life I don't want to do them, but I do some early in my career. Now, I'm more laid back.
Are the Astros still in the Central race or should the fans be more focused on the Wild Card?
Joe Morgan (11:24 AM)
I think they're definitely in the race. They, for some reason continues the last few years to be a second half team. I don't know what it is, they just play well in the second half.
Brian (New York, NY)
Are Happ and Drabek as valuable as the Phillies are claiming?
Joe Morgan (11:27 AM)
I do not know a lot about them, but I have always felt that you build your minor league system to help your major league club, whether it's to come up and play or be traded. Prospects, that's what they are. There have been a lot of guys that have can't-miss tags and have missed. I've always felt that a great major league player is better than a great minor league prospect. The same thing applies to this kid Strausberg. If you read between the lines of what Tony Gwynn said about him, he was cautious in his evaluation to me. You just never know what will happen when someone starts facing major league hitters.
Thomas (Belleville, Il.)
Mr. Morgan,Was acquiring Holliday a good thing for the Cards?
Joe Morgan (11:28 AM)
I think it was a great acquisition. It was a psychological lift for the Cardinals, who have struggled offensively when people pitch around Pujols. They added DeRosa and Holliday. But now that they've added the offense, their pitching has struggled.
Ann (York, PA)
What player(s) has positively surprised you so far this yr.?
Joe Morgan (11:29 AM)
One would be one of my favorite players in Miguel Tejada. Houston seemed to think he was on the downside of his career and he's had a great year to help them stay in the pennant race. Another would be Jason Marquis. I've always like him and he's done a great job for Colorado. There have been bigger stars that have done well as well, but those are two guys that have surprised me a little bit by how well they've played.
Joe Morgan (11:30 AM)
Great questions. Looking forward to talking to you next week. Hopefully we'll continue to have great pennant races.