Chat with Joe Morgan
Josh Miggler (Las Vegas)
Hey Joe! How on earth did the Twins win the Central again? They have no true "ace" in the rotation (unlike the sox, who have at least 2) and no bigtime power (unlike the sox and the big hurt) How did they manage to pull this off?
Joe Morgan (10:56 AM)
Well they play very well together as a team. Every guy in that lineup compliments the next. I was wrong -- I picked the white sox to beat kansas city and I forgot about the Twins. But, here they are!
Josh Meyer (Palmer) IA
Any chance of the Twins knocking out the Yankees?
Joe Morgan (10:57 AM)
There is always a chance. Anytime you get into the playoffs in a short series, anybody can win. Starting on the road at Yankee Stadium is certainly different than starting your playoff journey anywhere else, but the Twins are as well prepared as ever. In the past, Minnesota was just happy to be there, this year they are looking to win the whole thing.
There seems to be something missing from the Phillies, a chemistry or some intangible, and I think that is why they lost out on the playoffs. Do you agree? How do you create that in a locker room?
Joe Morgan (10:59 AM)
Well, if you look at the Phillies, they scored more runs than their opposition and they still couldn't make the cut, so there was certainly something amiss. I hate to say it was "chemisitry" because I think that word gets thrown around so much ... and I'm not ever sure what it means anymore. But, I do believe that they did lack a comradery or some sense that the ONLY thing that is important to each and every one of those guys is winning ballgames -- not statistics or individual hits, not ERA. Everybody just has to be in it to win baseball games and I don't think the Phillies had that mindset.
With the A's pitching and their offense finally clicking, and the Red Sox hitters still killing the baseball, who do you think has the upper hand going into this great matchup
Joe Morgan (11:00 AM)
Well, the As are going to have to hit to win, their pitchers certainly will be able to dominate the Red Sox. I'm not sure the Athletics rotation is as strong as it was last year, they certainly will not be able to shut that lineup down. I really think Boston has the edge there.
tony concord, CA
Joe, what is up with the Mariners....they just cannot seem to EVER get it done...Are the A's REALLY a better team??
Joe Morgan (11:02 AM)
That's a very good question Tony, when I saw the Ms in June and July, they looked like the best team in baseball, everything was working well for them. When I saw them in late August things were starting to go downhill for them, and now, they only have one guy (Ichiro) hitting over .300. I'm shocked, they just cannot finish, I don't know what it is, they certainly have the talent. I wish I had the answers. Nobody knows.
Nemo (swimming to SF)
What are your thoughts on how far my collegues (Marlins) have come this season? How do we match up vs. SF and any chance to make some noise in the playoffs?
Joe Morgan (11:04 AM)
I picked the Marlins to pick the Wild Card way back in June. They have speed, a lot of differnt ways to win, they just looked like the better team in that race. They have done very very well. They definitely have a chance against anybody -- that's just the way it is in the playoffs. We'll see what happens. They could certainly make some noise.
Ken (Washington D.C)
Despite the yankees having a better record, do you feel that the redsox are a superior team? Thier lineup is dangerous 1-9, the starting pitching has been strong, and they have one of the best home records in baseball.
Joe Morgan (11:06 AM)
No, I don't feel that the Sox are a superior team only because you never know what you will get when you have to go to the bullpen -- that will be a key factor against Oakland and the Yankees. That pen certainly doesn't exhude confidence. WHo knows what will happen when you bring one of those guys into a game. Also, the Sox have certainly not dominated the Yankees in head to head competition. Until you beat them consistently, you can't say you're the superior team. It will certainly be a solid matchup.
With 3 games to go who's going to win the NL Central? Should the Cubs win..do you think they have enough offence to beat the Braves?
Joe Morgan (11:08 AM)
If I had a crystal ball, I'd tell you Paulsen. I think Pittsburgh is a little tougher team than Milwaukee and that's who Houston is playing, so we'll see. IF you have the arms that the Cubs have, you will do well in a short series. They could beat anybody -- BUT it is never easy to beat a very good, very experienced Braves teams. If anybody were to knock off Atlanta, I'd say it would be the Cubs.
Michael, Miami, FL
You mentioned in your column that NL Manager of the Year Race was between Alou, Baker, and Cox - you failed to mention Jack McKeon - taking over a team no one thought would finish .500 and guiding them to a possible wild-card berth, how could he not win it?
Joe Morgan (11:10 AM)
Give McKeon credit but he hasn't done what these other three guys have, Michael. He took over a team with out any pressure, nobody expected him to win -- these other three guys are expected to produce, the stakes were high. Jack McKeon has done a very good job in Florida, make no mistake about that , but watch how the writers vote, there will be no contest, he is just not in their league.
Joe, Obviously nothing would be greater to a true baseball fan than a Cubs - Red Sox World Series. How realistic is this great matchup and if so, what do you think is the more intriguing pitching matchup, Wood v. Pedro, or Prior v. Pedro?
Joe Morgan (11:12 AM)
Tony, only people in Boston and Chicago want it to be a Sox-Cubs World Series ... but you're right, it certainly wood be an intriguing matchup between two storied ball clubs, each with a lot of history. Either of those pitching duels would be very exciting. It's early to be talking about that, though. I still think this is a wait and see situation, sure these two teams having it out probably would be good for baseball, but they have a long way to go.
Matt (St Paul, MN via Athens, OH)
What is the state of baseball in Cincinnati? With a below-sub par major league team and a lack of difference makers in the farm system, how long do you think it will take to be competitive again, let alone successful? Thank Joe!
Joe Morgan (11:14 AM)
I have no idea how long it will take -- it depends on who they hire as their GM. If they hire Omar Minaya who is with the Expos, I don't think it will take too long, he could do a lot of good over in Cincinnati.
Mike, Asheville, NC
Joe, Always enjoyed you as a player and now as an announcer! Seems to me Larry Bowa's personality is disruptive to the chemistry of the Phillies. Do you think he will be fired now that they did not make the playoffs? Also will Millwood re-sign? Thanks!
Joe Morgan (11:17 AM)
I have gone to PHilly two or three times in the last month, each time I was their I tried to figure out whether Bowa put too much pressure on his players. He doesn't think so, most of his players don't either. Volatile managers work well with certain teams, but you who knows, I can't get a good pulse read on how he effects these guys without talking to everybody. I've know Larry a long time, he's always been a very volatile individual. I'm not close enough to the situation to really know if he is good or bad for that organization, but I can say that before he was a part of that club, the Phillies were not as competative as they are now.
Joe, having played at Fenway park in the world series, do you believe that is is one of the tougher places to play a road game?
Joe Morgan (11:19 AM)
No, Yankee Stadium is certainly the toughest place to play a road game in the playoffs. When you are in the Bronx -- it gets rowdy. We've all seen it before. In Boston, the fans are great basball fans. Yankee fans are a different breed during the playoffs, nobody wants to go in there in away jerseys.
Carlos Delgado has had a great year for a mediocre team. How do you sum up his chances for AL MVP? How about those 4 homers?!
Joe Morgan (11:21 AM)
Well, he won't win the MVP, but those four homers are fantastic, I've played with a couple guys who hit three homeruns in a game -- but FOUR -- that just doesn't happen. That is such an incredible feat.
Will (New York NY )
Hi Joe the only Cardinals fan in NYC . Real quick -- what happend to the the red birds?
Joe Morgan (11:22 AM)
Well, a lot of it was injuries, a lot of guys missed a lot of games. JD Drew, Jim Edmonds and their pitching staff all suffered -- they were never able to get it all straightedned out ... pull it together. That led to their downfall. They have a lot of work for next season.
Joe Morgan (11:23 AM)
OK, everybody, I'm looking forward to a very exciting playoff season ... and my Hawaii trip which is 62 days away!! Good talking to everybody, thanks for your questions! See you next time!