So everybody who is cool is allegedly using performance-enhancing drugs. Lance Armstrong admitted it to Oprah, Ray Lewis is reported to have used some to amazingly come back ten weeks after tearing a tricep muscle, and now Alex Rodriguez and other baseball players are reportedly connected to a Miami clinic that dispensed PEDs. Question is - does anyone care at this point?
The sports of competitive cycling was already tarnished before Lance made his admission, and frankly, people by and large don't care about competitive cycling anyway. The good work Lance Armstrong has done in the name of cancer research is tarnished, but really his PED use has little connection to his charity work other than it allowed him to be a really famous guy that parlayed his fame into good work.
Ray Lewis is going to play his last NFL game this Sunday, and there seems to be a pretty cavalier attitude towards NFL players using PEDs in general. They're considered gladiators who are abusing their bodies anyway and will very likely die first from long-term effects of concussions rather than any effects from PEDs. Besides, the health effects of deer antler spray are not shown to be negative and likely have no effect at all, and are more funny than ominous. And besides, its not like any home run records are being broken.
Alex Rodriguez has already been proven to be the worst person ever to play the game of baseball, so to find out reports he has been connected to PEDs for the second time only adds fuel to the fire. At this point, fans of baseball may be reaching a level of numbness to PED reports, and with home run totals down and a testing system in place, the public seems less concerned.
Should we be concerned?
The technology always seems to be one step ahead of enforcement. However, that is not necessarily an excuse for inaction. Criminals in society are always finding new ways to defraud the public, but that does not mean investigators should just give up and make fraud from Nigerian princes legal.
Some argue PEDs have negative health effects and allowing them pressures every athlete into thinking they must risk their long-term health to succeed. Of course, we already ask athletes to risk long-term health when they slam their bodies into the field or each other, or pitch through injuries, or face 90 mph fastballs whizzing past their skulls. And some argue that legalizing PEDs allows them to be better monitored for safer health effects.
However if we allow PEDs, do sports become a game for the wealthy and well-connected? The price for deer antler spray will surely skyrocket after Ray Lewis' endorsement. Allowing PEDs may simply provide a game in which those with the best science and best resources succeed, not those with the most natural talent. Its hard to imagine anyone following a sport where team resources depend more than individual ability.
Its a complicated issue that luckily, as Royals fans, we don't have to directly take on head on. Anyone that has seen our team play over the last two decades would know that no performance has been enhanced at all.
1. You are made Commissioner of Baseball with complete authority over the union. What, if anything, do you do about PED use?
2. The Museum of Modern Art has collected 14 video games and dubbed them "art." What are the top five video games of all time?
3. I just watched "Silver Linings Playbook" which incorporates the city of Philadelphia prominently. What is your favorite movie that uses the city it is set in as almost a character in the plot?
4. Who do you like in the Super Bowl? I believe the participants are the Philadelphia Centaurs against the Green Bay Mermen.
Friday seems such a good time for a digression, doesn't it? The Astros haven't done anything interesting lately. February just started up. You're probably just whiling away the hours at work before making a sprint down I-10 to get to all those fun New Orleans Super Bowl parties.
Allow me some time and space to make a point about baseball, baseball commentary and then, this site. Promise I'll at least be brief and you may actually get to see some funny things.
Comedy has always fascinated me. One of my favorite books growing up was SeinLanguage by Jerry Seinfeld. It was a collection of his best material from stand-up routines, but it just killed me. I must have read it 15 times in high school (it's a short book, not trying to brag).
I try to search out all sorts of comedy. Stand-up. Indie movies. YouTube projects like The Guild or Legend of Neil. Sometimes, I don't get it, but most times, the laugh is worth the wait. Movies like The Hangover sit right next to Blazing Saddles in my DVD collection, funny for entirely different reasons. The kind of humor doesn't matter as much as whether the joke lands.
That's what always made the Abbot and Costello "Who's On First?" routine so great, because it never gets old. The cadence, the way they both sell it in different ways. It's brilliant.
One of the worst things you can do to comedy, though, is to explain it. If you have to tell someone why it's funny, or undo the timing of a great punchline...well, you're probably a writer for Two Broke Girls. Good comedy is not improved by explanation, it's often ruined by it.
That's what was so fascinating about watching Jerry Seinfeld and Bob Costas sit down on MLB Network a while back and talk about this very routine. Hearing a very accomplished comedian break down all the things that made it great was really entertaining and a learning experience for me, but it didn't make the clip any funnier. Lou Costello's foot stomping still gets me, even as Seinfeld made me realize just how long the timing of that bit had to be refined before it became so good.
At the same time, getting someone like Seinfeld, an expert in his field, to talk about a very famous piece of stand-up comedy/vaudeville is one thing. Having me explain all the reasons why Chris Farley's first Matt Foley sketch makes me ROFL LMAO is less so.
Seriously, watch that thing. Stinkin' hilarious without me talking about the genius of Farley's physical comedy married to his natural ebullience and the great dialogue. I just showed this clip to my 20-year old cousin, who doesn't have the nostalgia of watching it when it was still fresh, and she cracked up.
I think about that when we talk about baseball, sometimes. Commenters or emailers or baseball fans or even sportswriters will talk about baseball and be dismissive of stats, of complicated analysis like we do on this site. Baseball is a simple game, right? Hit the ball, throw the ball, catch the ball, all that? Why do you want to talk it to death.
In fact, maybe baseball is just like comedy. Maybe talking about it too much ruins the pureness of the game. If you can't enjoy it by just sitting and watching some of the best athletes in the world go toe to toe, as a man tries to hit a round ball hurtling at him at 90+ MPH with a conical bat and hope it goes just where he plans, well, then, you might as well be a blogger.
But, I think there's value in thinking about baseball while also enjoying it for its essence. Watching a baseball game will always be magical on some level for those who love it, just like watching that Who's On First bit never gets old. Listening to someone who has studied the game and has some insight into it only enhances the experience, deepens the understanding. So what if the knowledge comes from statistics or first-hand experience?
Analyzing baseball works best when you're using that analysis to tell a story. There has to be a point, or you're just throwing numbers out at random. I don't know too many people who write that way, and I'm sure no one on this site or anywhere else in the Astros blogosphere does. But, you can't get the message across unless your words carry it past the stat barrier.
Comedy lies in this weird place, where it's funny for a lot of different reasons. Sometimes, it just can't be duplicated. I could get up on a stage for a talent show and act out that whole Farley skit (had a friend who did just that in college), and it'd still be funny. I could recite Monty Python's Holy Grail and crack up anyone who like those British antics.
But, could I get away with anything like the Word Association sketch from SNL's early days? I mean, I still can't believe THEY got away with it.
Such a simple premise, played so well by Richard Pryor and Chevy Chase. Words tossed around with so much context behind then that there doesn't need to be much other setup. Just watch the reactions, the tension build and Pryor seethe at the end before breaking it up by exaggerating his facial expressions.
That whole sketch derives its humor from language. If the Internet is still a thing in 100 years, will people find it funny, or will the slang they both use have fallen out of favor enough that you have to look up meanings, like in those Shakespearian plays where people get called hobby horses.
Louis C.K. does some equally great bits about words on his second standup album. He revels in them and gets about 10 minutes of material out of how words are used, then he masterfully returns to them at various points in his set like most excellent writers return to a theme.
Language has power if we use it right. Writing can help us understand things, it can delight us, it can weave a story around any topic. Language can elevate baseball above the visual game and make it much, much more.
Jayson Stark linked to this study the other day, that talks about how the brain is stimulated by writing. There are ways they've found to enhance writing by using a few steps. You'll notice in reading through these that most good writers already do them.
- Create scenes. The combination of characters in action, dialogue and evocative settings lies at the heart of what novelist John Gardner called "the vivid continuous dream" that captivates readers.
- Dig for details, the more specific the better. If you want to get a reader’s mind to visualize what they’re reading, a "cherry-red ’67 Mustang convertible" does a much better job than "a car." "The recording of such details is not mere embroidery in prose," Tom Wolfe wrote in "The New Journalism." "It lies as close to the center of the power of realism as any other device in literature."
- Choose vivid action verbs. "Michaela grabbed her umbrella and dashed into the rain" triggers the motor cortex. Strong verbs are not just words on the page. They represent action in the reader’s mind.
- Avoid passive verb forms. "The body was found" is not only a flabby word choice that robs the verb of energy and fails to ignite the brain. It usually signifies weak reporting. "A seven-year-old newsboy found the body" heightens the senses.
- Cultivate a "a nose for story." Consider the power of the scented details in this sentence by Anne Hull of The Washington Post: "Apartment 27 smelled like years of sweat and Lemon Pledge and perfect bacon." The brain’s olfactory bulb not only lets us smell. It also triggers memories in the hippocampus. "Hit a tripwire of smell," Diane Ackerman writes in "A Natural History of the Senses," "and memories explode all at once. A complex vision leaps out of the undergrowth."
Creating scenes. Digging for details. Doing good writing, instead of just informing readers of facts.
Analyzing baseball through numbers alone is boring. Ever looked at a Baseball Reference or FanGraphs page and immediately been swept away by the majesty of the game? Well, yeah, a few of you have, I'm sure, but when you were doing it, you were probably imagining a picture in your head. Staring in awe at the number of home runs Lou Gehrig hit or how many straight games he played.
If I were looking for a mission statement for TCB, it's somewhere right in there. Just like comedy, we can crush the fun out of baseball if we get bogged down in the details. But, if we use the gifts our enormously talented writers have, we can spin a tale of baseball out of so many different moments. We can share your triumphs when the team we all follow so closely does well. We can commiserate when that team lets us down.
This site is about community, and as such, we should strive to use the power of that language to paint vivid pictures of this team, this season, this game. We should be creative, even as we're being analytical. We should be serious, even as we're writing about comedy. We should always, always, always try to make following the Astros here an enjoyable experience for all of you.
Not every article will be able to do any or all of those things. Heck, I've written some pretty dreary Three Things just in the last month, I'm sure, that didn't fit any of those categories. But, that doesn't change the mission. If we're going to write about baseball, we need to strive to do it well.
2003 Fleer Double Headers ‘Keystone Combinations’ Featuring Pee Wee Reese & Joe Morgan When I saw this card I immediately scooped it up just based on the looks alone… The card was printed in 2003 by Fleer and is a … Continue reading →
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This should have gone out three days ago, but I got long-winded and distracted by shiny Three Things...surprise, surprise.
At any rate, thanks to Kelly George, the Astros social media guru, we wanted to let everyone know that those Social Media Nights, which started in September of 2010 and have continued through the past two seasons, are still on for 2013. What's being offered this time around?
Batting Practice Access
Social Media Night T-shirt
Exclusive pre-game fan reception in the FIVESEVEN Grille (cash bar provided )
Field Box II Seating (choose your seat online, first come, first served)
Exclusive pre-game fan reception with Astros mascot Orbit
Exclusive pre-game fan reception with Astros staff or team member
PLUS, be entered to win the chance to attend the Astros post-game press conference and be our fan correspondent for the night!
Some of those details may change, but the biggest changes you may note from years past are location, seating and cost. Instead of being on the patio, the meetup with the player and Orbit will be in the FIVESEVEN Grille, instead of being on the patio. On the plus side, the seats will also not be on the patio and will instead be in the Field Box II.
Also, there's the new price at $30, which is cheaper than the last few years (I'm pretty sure). The first two dates for the Social Media Nights are on:
4/19 - Astros vs CLE Thurs 7:10pm
5/9 - Astros vs LAA Thurs 7:10pm
There will be more dates, but those haven't been scheduled yet. You can buy tickets to both scheduled events once single-game tickets go on sale (don't think it's happened yet).
So, yay to Social Media Nights! Anyone attended these in the past feel like weighing in on the changes in the comments?
As I do every morning, when I wake up, I open up Tweetdeck on my phone and check out all the tweets from the morning. As I was going through the tweets, one from Peter Gammons caught my eyes. Before signing Lyle Oberbay, Boston had an NL team offer toget them Chris Coghlan from Miami [...]
Lately I have been spending a lot of time with the FanGraphs leader boards, excel, and SQL Pro. I've been interested in f-strike% (first pitch strike percentage) and wanted to see if it was a repeatable skill or not. The project started off as fairly basic: I grabbed f-strike percentage numbers from all starting pitchers with at least 120 innings pitched a season from 2002-2012. I then got the year n and year n+1 data and ran a linear regression. The linear regression returned an r^2 of .4075 and an r of .63, which lines up almost exactly with work that Bill Petti did.
I wasn't satisfied though, so I decided to see how year n f-strike% predicted year n+1 BB%. The regression gave a r^2 = .32372, and r = -.56. I thought since I was looking at one pitcher "skill", I would look at a few more pitcher "skills". Still, I didn't have the data that I exactly wanted, so I moved on to another idea of mine.
I went into FanGraphs' custom leader boards and exported f-strike%, strikes, total pitches, and innings pitched. I divided strikes by total pitches to get strike percentage. Then imported the data into my database, and got all eligible pitchers who pitched greater than or equal to 120 innings in year n, and year n+1. My final number was n = 797.
I subtracted f-strike% from strike%, because I figured that the metric would show that throwing first pitch strikes is a skill, otherwise it would be possible that a certain pitcher just throws a lot of strikes in general.
I then ran F-Strike%-Strike% during year n, and during year n+1 against each other.
The r^2 tells us that only 19% of the variation of F-Strike%-Strike% in year n+1 can be explained by year n. This isn't that strong. The correlation coefficient was .44 though, so that means there is some type of positive relationship there.
Al Leiter had the worst F%-S% in year n, posting a -11.39% mark. During that 2004 season, Leiter showed awful command. He walked 13% of batters, but he always had a notoriously high walk rate. He retired with a 11% walk rate. The following year he actually threw more first pitch strikes, even though he walked 1.5% more batters. Scott Baker actually had a lower walk rate in 2007 than he did in 2008. The same can be said for Lilly's 2009-2010 seasons, and Gil Meche's 2004-2005 seasons. In 2010 Lilly's walk rate was higher than 2009, yet he did a better job at throwing strikes.
On the other hand, these are the top five pitchers who had best positive F-Strike%-Strike%. Radke, Lohse and Mussina hardly walked anyone in their career. Lackey has walked batters slightly above average in his career though.
I don't know if you noticed but two of those pitchers are former Minnesota Twins pitchers. When I saw that I began to wonder if there were more former Twins pitchers on the list. It's no secret that the Twins love pitchers who have good command, so I was interested to see what I'd find.
As it turns out, former Twins pitchers made up 11 of the top 100. 10 of those appeared on their list as a Twin, while Lohse appeared as a Cardinal. The Angels also had 10 pitchers on the top 100. Is it possible both of these teams know something that we don't? As I continue to look at F-Strike% hopefully I find out.
While the numbers that were returned were decent, I wanted to look at this on a league wide level, so I took the league average F-Strike%-Strike%, and ran that with the individual numbers.
When looking at the individual F-Strike%-Strike%, and the league average F-Strike%-Strike% we get a somewhat strong relationship. We got a .26 r^2, which equates to a .51 r.
When I first started this project I was hoping to get a little more insight as to whether F-Strike% can tell us more about a pitcher. Turns I didn't find much at all really, which was admittedly a tad disappointing. I'm going to a little more researcy though. Next I'm going to see if certain pitches can tell us why one pitcher has a higher f-strike%-strike% than other pitchers. Again, I'm not sure what I'll find but we'll found out together.
All info was taken from FanGraphs, and manipulated in SQL.
Follow Alex on Twitter: @AKienholzBtB
Although everyone seems to agree that Kansas City Royals starting pitcher Ervin Santana had a rough season pitching last season for the Los Angeles Angels, most people don't realize how unique of a season Santana had last year. Among pitchers who threw enough innings to qualify for the ERA title, Santana's 2012 effort is tied for the third-worst season a pitcher has thrown in the last 20 seasons.
It's difficult to post a negative fWAR value if you qualify for the ERA title. There is value in throwing innings, so you would expect someone who manages to throw at least 162 innings to perform better than a replacement level pitcher, since most pitchers cannot throw that many innings in a season.
You would also expect a team to stop starting a pitcher who is performing so poorly, so he would stop damaging the team. Jonathan Sanchez managed to compile -.7 WAR in only 64.2 innings pitched last season, which is unbelievably awful. The Colorado Rockies shut Sanchez down last season, which is what most teams do when they have a veteran starting pitcher pitching below replacement level.
In some ways, it's impressive that Santana still picked up the ball every fifth day even though he pitched so poorly. According to Fangraphs, only 15 pitchers in the last 20 season have posted a negative WAR value while managing to qualify for the ERA title.
Of course, the Royals are expecting Santana to recover from his 2012 performance and perform much better in 2013. Whether they should expect Santana to pitch that well is a different question. I imagine the Kansas City front office and Santana optimists/apologists would point to his relatively high innings pitched total as some sort of proof that he still has value. The Royals have stated they want their starters to throw 1,000 innings, and Santana would have been fourth on the team in innings for Kansas City last year
ZiPS predicts that Santana will throw enough innings next season to qualify for the ERA title next year, but the projection system has Santana at .6 WAR in 2013. Kansas City is paying Santana $12 million next season, so .6 WAR is not really an acceptable performance.
In all likelihood, Santana will not be worth the money the Royals are paying him in 2013, but if Santana could at least hover around league average as a pitcher next year, I imagine most Kansas City fans would declare the trade a success for Dayton Moore. I decided to look at the other 14 pitchers who posted negative WAR as qualified starters to see if any of them bounced back like the Royals are hoping Santana will.
Most of the high-inning starters who posted negative WAR values did not recover the following season. Only 3 of the other 14 pitchers managed to post a WAR above 1.0 the following season. So even though this group of starters managed to throw a large amount of innings despite the fact that they pitched terribly, it did not indicate that they were more likely to recover from a terrible season than a pitcher who threw less innings.
Still, there are few examples to cling to if you want to hold out hope for Santana in 2013. Todd Van Poppel followed his disastrous 1994 campaign with 1.8 WAR for the Oakland Athletics in 1995. Van Poppel only threw 138.1 innings for Oakland in 95, and he was still 23 years old during his "bounce-back" season. Santana is 30 years old, so it's impossible to blame his 2012 struggles on being an inexperienced pitcher.
Jason Marquis pitched horribly for the St. Louis Cardinals in 2006, posting a -.7 WAR despite throwing 194.2 innings. Marquis went to the Cardinals' rival in 2007, and recovered nicely with 1.7 WAR and 191.2 innings pitched for the Chicago Cubs. Marquis had two more strong seasons in 2008 and 2009, including a career high 4.0 WAR for the Rockies in 09. Santana would not be worth $12 million in value to the Royals at 1.7 WAR, but he would not kill the team with that number either.
If you want to hold out hope that Santana can pitch above-average in 2013, you basically have to pray that he is Bronson Arroyo. Arroyo managed to compile -1.3 WAR in 2011, which is the worst WAR value among all qualified starters in the past 20 season. Similar to Santana, Arroyo suffered from a huge spike in his HR/9, allowing an unfathomable 2.08 home runs per nine innings. Arroyo surrendered 46 home runs in 2011, which is more home runs than a Royal has ever hit in a single season.
Arroyo managed to get his home run numbers under control in 2012 with a 1.16 HR/9, which is much more in line with his career numbers. The difference between Santana and Arroyo, however, is the parks that they pitch in. Arroyo pitches in a bandbox known as Great American Ball Park, which was the second friendliest home run friendly park in 2012. Santana pitched half of his innings in Angel Stadium, which was the sixth hardest park to hit a homer in 2012. Kauffman Stadium was essentially league average at suppressing home runs in 2012. So Santana is moving to a more home-run friendly park while attempting to lower his home run numbers back to an acceptable level.
So while all of us Royals fans want Santana to recover and pitch well in 2013, the safe bet is that he will fail to reach 1.0 wins above replacement next season. Even if Santana is healthy for the entire season (ahem) pitchers who pitch as poorly as he did normally fail to bounce back, regardless if they threw a lot of innings.
As we finally reach the month of February, the Miami Marlins are fast approaching spring training, the official preview to what is sure to be a very difficult 2013 season. Fans of the Marlins have every right to be concerned that the 2013 squad will be one of the worst the franchise has ever fielded; after all, only three major players from the 2012 roster remain in Giancarlo Stanton, Logan Morrison, and Ricky Nolasco. Expecting anything more than a dismal season from the Marlins this year is likely wishful thinking, as the team is all but set for a rebuilding campaign while it awaits for minor league reinforcements.
But when you are an official member of the Marlins' front office, you cannot so easily give in to this narrative. Simply admitting defeat to a local radio station would be bad for public relations, and public relations are already pretty bad for this Marlins team (more on that later). So despite the questionable ability to defend the Marlins' offseason moves as they pertain to 2013, official Marlins members have to at least remain somewhat positive about this season.
That goes for everyone, from the bottom of the rung to the very top, including vice president of baseball operations Larry Beinfest. Beinfest gave an assessment of the Marlins' roster while on the Marlins Insider radio show on 790 The Ticket this past Saturday, and he tried to spin it into the most positive light possible.
"Our expectation is, we're going to play good baseball," president of baseball operations Larry Beinfest said on Saturday on the "Marlins Insider" radio show.
Like I said, it is hard for anyone involved with the team and employed by Jeffrey Loria not to try and spin this upcoming season as anything but a benefit. After all, as Jigokusabre mentioned yesterday, Loria's ego may be as good a reason as any to keep the discussion as positive as possible despite what maybe the worst Marlins season since 1998.
But is this positive outlook borne of anything true, or just wishful thinking or blatant lying by the organization in order to keep up a good facade? Well, let us dissect some of the things that Beinfest mentioned, beginning with what he believes is the key to the 2013 team.
"If our pitching produces the way we think it can, right from the outset, I think we're going to be OK," he said. "But we're going to go as our pitching goes."
Notice that this statement, in and of itself, does not specify anything in specific. Last year, you could not avoid a Marlins official quoting that the team would compete for a playoff spot and for the World Series. Those comments form Marlins officials represented the ceiling of what the Marlins could do as a team, and they were meant to hype and prop up the fan base in order to get them to come watch the team. It cannot be a good sign for the real 2013 Marlins when the "hype and prop up" preseason comments from team officials predict them to "be OK" this year.
Nevertheless, Beinfest goes back to the old well of the "Marlins way" of doing things, specifically via pitching. As he claims, if the Marlins' brand new starting rotation, with three pitchers who were acquired in the last six months, can "produce the way [they] think it can," the Marlins will play better than expected. This does not specify at what level the team thinks the pitchers can play, meaning it is more or less a vague statement that amounts to nothing more than "if our pitchers pitch well, we will do well."
But is that true? The Marlins' rotation is certainly in a better position than its starting position players. Jacob Turner performed well enough last season that, even if he regresses a little on his walks allowed and his runners stranded, he has a chance to be a decent third starter this season. Nathan Eovaldi is at or around the level of a fourth or fifth starter with upside right now as well. Henderson Alvarez is young, has a 56 percent career ground ball rate, and posted a 4.42 xFIP and 4.52 SIERA when we normalized for his home run rates. With the move to Marlins Park, his home rates should stabilize.
However, the problem with that is that none of these three pitchers is likely to become much better than mid-level starters in baseball. Turner has the best chance, as he was the most highly touted of the three pitchers from their minor league days, but even he has a relatively low ceiling after years of being considered an elite pitching prospect. After consistently showing a decreased fastball velocity, a lot of minor league evaluators dropped their expectations of Turner in the last two years. Eovaldi seems to lack control and swing-and-miss stuff, while Alvarez similarly had troubles striking out hitters, even in the minors.
This is a problem for 2013 because, even if these players matched their ceilings right now, they would not make a significant dent in the Marlins' win total this season. If Turner, Eovaldi, and Alvarez each turned in 3.5-win seasons in 2013, they would probably yield the Marlins six additional wins. With that likelihood essentially impossible, it is best Marlins fans expect slow and steady progression from these three youngsters (Alvarez is the oldest at age 23 in 2013).
After Beinfest hyped the Marlins' pitching staff, he toned down the likelihood of a good season by admitting the club was a work in progress.
"We have so many new faces that we need to really take a breath, get our new manager and new coaching staff in place, and watch these guys every day," Beinfest said. "Things are continually on the go. There are going to be roster changes along the way, whether it's players coming from the outside or players graduating from the inside. This is a work in progress."
This part is completely true, but given where the Marlins are at on the win curve, I certainly would not get used to seeing all of these faces consistently. In 1998, by the 50th game of the season, the Marlins boasted a regular lineup featuring the likes of Greg Zaun, Derrek Lee, Todd Zeile, Edgar Renteria, Cliff Floyd, and Todd Dunwoody, among others. Of the eight starting position players that day, only two were playing prominent roles on the team by 2000, and only one was a member of the 2003 World Series team. It is very likely that a number of these players simply will not be members of the next winning Marlins club, if only because attrition in the majors is so prevalent. The chances that the Marlins struck a winning or even useful piece in a majority of the 2013 starting lineup is very low.
Finally, Beinfest admits that, despite his positive outlook, the team must be realistic with what it has.
"I think we need to be realistic about where we're at," Beinfest said. "I'm not sure we even know exactly where we're at until we get on the field."
"We're going to be keeping an eye on them almost as much as what's going on in the big leagues, so that we can figure out the timetable for all this good young talent to come together as one..."
This is more of what most Marlins fans are expecting for 2013. This season will be an honest evaluation of the few pieces the Marlins have who are major league ready as of right now. Guys like Turner, Eovaldi, Alvarez, Rob Brantly, and Adeiny Hechavarria are prime focuses for this year, if only because the development of any or all of these guys will be crucial for the future success of this team. The likelihood of Stanton, Morrison, or Nolasco being around beyond 2014 is very low. The team's other players are not critical to the future of the Marlins. All eyes are on these four players as potential future pieces for the Marlins.
These four names may go down as the most important in the 2013 year for the Fish. In February, we here at Fish Stripes will begin looking forward to the 2013 year, and one of the things I plan on doing is putting on the optimistic hat for just a little while before the negativity of the season begins to bog us down. For each critical Marlin in 2013, we are going to examine a best- and worst-case scenario before spring training begins and we officially start previewing the honest projections for the 2013 season. In just a little while, we can start dreaming a little about the players we now have to see just what the bright side is on those four important Marlins.
An open letter to my Emmaus brothers. How does our self-professed Christian faith differ from being a UN diplomat? The spiritual veil is much more easily pierced than diplomatic immunity. Waving a Christian card when personal behavior runs contrary to … Continue reading →
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The Phillies have added three key offensive players this off-season. Two of them are bad defensive players who don’t walkRead the Rest...
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