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October 12, 12:00 PM ET
Chat with Rob Neyer

Jerry (Texas)

Posey outplayed Heyward in the series,did he just wrap up the NL ROY?

Rob Neyer
  (12:07 PM)

It doesn't work that way, Jerry. The ballots are submitted before the postseason begins.

Andrew (Philly)

Rules question: the other night, Polanco dropped a popup in foul territory and was charged with an error. The batter never reached base. IF the same play happens in an otherwise perfect game, did the pitcher still throw a perfect game? Or is the pitcher penalized for the error even though zero batters ever reached base?

Rob Neyer
  (12:09 PM)

I always forget, but I believe it's a perfect game as long as nobody actually reaches base.

Brett Davis (Hot Springs, AR)

I've loved your columns about Bobby Cox these last two days. I think it's fair to say that his stubbornness to be a player's manager, which is one reason he was so successful, cost him his final playoff series. Do you feel that Cox simply decided to go out on his terms, one way or another? I get that sense...

Rob Neyer
  (12:10 PM)

I don't believe he made that conscious decision, to be stubborn. I think he was just being himself. Usually it worked. Just not this time.

Caleb VanZee (Fowler, MI)

Who do you think will win the Rangers/Rays game tonight?

Rob Neyer
  (12:11 PM)

My money's on Cliff Lee. Realistically, though, this is a pure pick-'em game.

Devin (Akron, OH)

Rob - Tribe fan here. I realize that Hafner's been a tremendous disappointment since signing the big contract. However, he did post an OPS+ of 137 in around 400 PAs this year. Any chance he can perform at a level commensurate with that large contract? Thanks.

Rob Neyer
  (12:12 PM)

Wow, I didn't realize he finished that well. Strong second half, yeah? Anything's possible, but he seems unlikely to play enough to earn that salary.

Joey (Seattle)

Please finish the next sentence with a quip or meaningful statistic. The Mariners offense was so bad this year...

Rob Neyer
  (12:20 PM)

Old-timers in Seattle were missing Ray Oyler.

Mike (San Diego)

So the ballots are submit before the postseason. Then why the heck do I have to read articles and hear stories about how Roy Halladay may have wrapped up the NL Cy Young after his no hitter? Every year I hear that stuff and think it's totally asanine.

Rob Neyer
  (12:21 PM)

Articles and stories? Really? I would think the great majority of people who write articles and stories know when the ballots are turned in.

Shaun (Cape Breton)

Is there any evidence to support the notion that left handed pitchers tend to peak at an older age?

Rob Neyer
  (12:21 PM)

No. Except for ones named Sandy and Jamie.

Andrew (San Francisco)

Halladay vs. Lincecum on Monday... How does that rate among the best marquee pitching match-ups in recent post-season history?

Rob Neyer
  (12:25 PM)

Recent? Gotta be way up there. I suspect there have been plenty of matchups between future Hall of Famers, if you go back far enough. Probably not many battles between the two most recent Cy Young winners, though.

Past A Diving (Michael Young)

Rangers are catching a lot of flak for not starting Cliff Lee on Sunday -- do you think they should have gone with him on 3 days rest?

Rob Neyer
  (12:26 PM)

I actually think the Rangers know more about Lee's abilities than I do. So I'm sort of deferring to them on this one.

J. (Philadelphia)

Can "Moneyball" really work? It hasn't fared so well for the A's when no one on their roster is juiced up.

Rob Neyer
  (12:27 PM)

Well, applying the precise definition of the term, isn't their ratio of dollars per marginal win still quite good every season?

Jason (Dallas)

Can you comment briefly on Bobby Cox's retirement and legacy? How does he stack up with the other great managers of this era (Torre, LaRussa)?

Rob Neyer
  (12:28 PM)

I would probably go La Russa - Cox - Torre. But if you're really trying to figure this out, you'd need to spend a few weeks (or months) of study.

Jay (Nova Scotia)

Is there any evidence left handed hitters like the ball down and in more than right handed hitters? If so, is there any reason why? Every announcer I've ever listened to eventually makes this statement.

Rob Neyer
  (12:29 PM)

Hey, where are the PITCHf/x experts when we need them?

Jason (Ellicott City, MD)

Who would you start a franchise with?

Rob Neyer
  (12:30 PM)

Willie Bloomquist. He almost got the Reds into the World Series.

J (Milwaukee)

Not too many people are mentioning this, but the Infante had his foot on the bag in the 8th inn when the Giants player was called safe. The Giants took the lead on a two out hit. Two of the three games won by the Giants were by one run and by bad calls at second. Hopefully replay will be here next year. What do you think?

Rob Neyer
  (12:32 PM)

It's true, the things you say. I do not think we'll see an expansion of video review next season, though, unless there's a terribly egregious call in the World Series.

Jason (Atlanta)

Just read your article about Cox leaving Conrad in and I mostly agree, but wasn't the more egregious error in game 3 taking out Kimbrel, who's been fantastic, after a soft hit and a walk? Of all the talk of trusting your players, Bobby's lack of trust in that case cost them the win, IMO.

Rob Neyer
  (12:33 PM)

I tend to be a little more charitable when it comes to relievers, because the platoon effect is pretty powerful. Plus, I sort of assumed that's how Cox has been playing it all season. Certainly seems questionable now.

Mike (San Diego)

My guess is that by "terribly egregious" you mean something closer to Orta safe at first than Posey safe at 2nd...

Rob Neyer
  (12:34 PM)

Yeah, the sort of call that everyone knows is wrong when it happens, even before the replay. Both of those plays at second base in this series were incredibly close.

jay (Rye Brook)

OK, so your snarky answer was funny but the franchise player you woudl start with? Puhols, Votto? A pitcher? Mine woud lbe Cabrera. More Durable than either of those above. Longoria?

Rob Neyer
  (12:36 PM)

Yeah, probably Longoria. If we're talking five or six years. Posey and Heyward are both incredibly talented, too.

Jason (Ellicott City, MD)

I used to like Rob Neyer...until he lost the chat record.

Rob Neyer
  (12:37 PM)

Rob Neyer shall have the record again! (Even if it kills the old fellow.)

Tom (PA)

Since the Rangers wrapped up the division so early would it have been smart to try Cliff Lee on short rest in a meaningless game? I don't get the argument that he can't do it because he never has.

Rob Neyer
  (12:38 PM)

Tom, Lee missed the first two weeks in September because of a back injury. I think the Rangers' No. 1 priority was to get him healthy for October. And asking him to do something he'd never done didn't fit into that program.

Jason (Ellicott City, MD)

Do pitchers throw more curveballs today than in the past? Is that the reason for more arm related injuries?

Rob Neyer
  (12:43 PM)

Are there more arm injuries? I thought it was holding pretty steady. If there are, I would guess it's because pitchers are throwing harder than ever. I can tell you that various pitches have been blamed for arm injuries over the years. Sliders, curveballs, splitters ... you name it.

Rob Neyer
  (12:43 PM)

Are there more arm-related injuries? I thought it was holding pretty steady. If there are, I would guess it's because pitchers are throwing harder than ever. I can tell you that various pitches have been blamed for arm injuries over the years. Sliders, curveballs, splitters ... you name it.

Ryan (DSM)

The Royals system is collecting some highly touted prospects (whether they develop is another matter) do you think we should continue to Trust the Process? How do you rate GMDM?

Rob Neyer
  (12:45 PM)

When Moore got the job, he had the reputation as an expert in player development. He seems to deserve that reputation. He still has to make some good trades and canny free-agent signings if the Royals are going to be truly competitive. Just look at the Rays' roster the last few seasons.

Muzzy (Leicester)

For what it's worth, I'd guess that the increase in arm injuries is more due to the increase in offense, which means it takes more pitches to get through an inning and a game, and pitchers have to be operating at the absolute peak of their ability to be effective. Does that make sense?

Rob Neyer
  (12:45 PM)

Yes.

Jason (Ellicott City, MD)

When will the AP announce King Felix has won the AL CY young? Speaking of the King, how long before he dumps Seattle?

Rob Neyer
  (12:46 PM)

The voting results are announced shortly after the World Series. I do think he'll win, but there's a decent chance he'll have the most first-place votes but *not* win, with a few voters leaving him off their ballots entirely.

Steven (NYC)

What's the single biggest difference between regular season and post-season baseball?

Rob Neyer
  (12:47 PM)

Hmmm. Relative unimportance of benches, and pitching depth? Also, relative importance of luck? With teams so evenly matched?

Bill (Chicago)

Do you have any thoughts on the Will Caroll commentary on Press Coverage regarding the lack of storytelling in the sabermetric community?(http://presscoverage.us/soapbox/the-geek-shall-inherit-on-baseball-bill-james-storytelling-the-simpsons/)

Rob Neyer
  (12:48 PM)

I think I'm just not smart enough to have any idea what Will is talking about. Tomorrow's a new day, though ...

adam (philly)

Pretty sure Cliff Lee pitched on short rest in the playoffs for the phils last year.

Rob Neyer
  (12:51 PM)

He did not. Lee's rest before his five postseason starts last year: 5 4 5 9 4.

Bob (STL)

I think that Will's point is that statistical analysis does not lead to good story-telling and baseball has the best stories of all sports. Although, why can't we have both?

Rob Neyer
  (12:51 PM)

We do. Which is why I don't know what he's talking about.

Brett Davis (Hot Springs, AR)

As a writer who covers the entire game, I would think there has to be a team, an organization, or a player that you have come across that you secretly root for year after year. Since you have mostly given up on the Royals, will you reveal who you love to see succeed?

Rob Neyer
  (12:53 PM)

Wait, who's the writer here ... You mean me? There are actually a bunch of teams I secretly root for ... Except I don't really *care* about any of them. You know what I mean? The last time I was truly upset about a non-Royals baseball game was 2004 when Grady didn't pull Pedro. And that was more about Bill James (and Reason) than the Red Sox.

Jeff (Walnut Creek, CA)

No way Felix deserves Cy Young. Wins DO MATTER! Steve Carlton was on a terrible team and won 27 of their 59 total team wins. David Price has the overall numbers to win it, hands down.

Rob Neyer
  (12:54 PM)

Do you feel better now, Jeff?

Brandon (Syracuse, NY)

Rob, speaking of pitchers' workloads, how come we measure it with number of pitches in a game, but innings over the course of a season (or a career)? We know Roy Halladay throws a lot of innings and throws fewer pitches per inning than most, so wouldn't it be helpful to discuss how many more pitches he throws, compared to say Clayton Kershaw?

Rob Neyer
  (12:54 PM)

Maybe. But maybe innings DO MATTER. Just the act of standing out there on the mound must take some sort of toll, right?

Joe (SD)

Romo didn't give up 3 singles. I know it's a blog post, but you should try to proof read your stuff and make sure you're facts are remotely correct.

Rob Neyer
  (12:55 PM)

I did check that one. Apparently I didn't check it well enough. Thanks for the tip.

Brett Davis (Hot Springs, AR)

That makes perfect sense Rob. It's the same way that I watch the NBA. So at this point, who's your pick to win the World Series?

Rob Neyer
  (12:57 PM)

Who do I think *will* win? The Phillies, I guess. Who do I *want* to win? I'm pulling for the Rays and the Giants, for vastly different reasons.

Danny (Israel)

How unprecedented is Posada's offensive performance for a catcher over 35 yrs old? And how do you view his HOF candidacy? Does his deserve, and will he get in?

Rob Neyer
  (12:59 PM)

It's not unprecedented, but it's quite rare. He's got a pretty good Hall of Fame case, but I'd love to see him rack up another good season or two. It seems a little odd, voting for a guy with around 1600 hits.

Josh (Lincoln, NE)

Because the Giants haven't won in your lifetime?

Rob Neyer
  (1:01 PM)

That, and I love their ballpark and their uniforms and I spend a fair amount of time down there. Just seems like the slipper fits.

Jim (Minnesota)

The Twins will one day be better than the Yankees, right? This can't go on forever, can it? Can it?

Rob Neyer
  (1:02 PM)

Well, they were better in '65. And '91. Anything is possible. Thanks for all the questions. Until next time, don't forget: "It is when power is wedded to chronic fear that it becomes formidable."