Friday, March 02, 2007

Spring Training...Bah Humbug!!!

This is probably an unpopular opinion, but unless you're sitting in the bleachers under the Florida/Arizona sun with a beer and some peanuts, spring training baseball sucks.

The games themselves are horrible. The stars/starters don’t play past the fourth inning. Most of the game is played by scrubs and minor leaguers. Some people say they like this because they get to see rookies and other players that get little regular season run. These people are Fuqua-esque retards because they obviously haven't heard of the minor and independent leagues, where players like this live for most of the year. The pitchers are, for the most part, working on their "stuff" and aren’t out there to win baseball games (and rightly so…) The list goes on and on. The result is what you should expect from exhibition baseball – an imitation of major league baseball that is at best, moderately entertaining.

I also hate spring training and the games because people (like me…) think that what happens in these games matters. I had some time to scour some blogs today, and based on 3 spring games, 1 against a college team, people are already making assumptions/speculations based on the results. Some of the things I’ve read:

  • Karim Garcia might be better than we all thought, I guess because he had a couple of hits versus Cleveland and Detroit garbage-chuckers.
  • Greg Dobbs, basically, is freakin’ awesome and has pretty much won a bench spot.
  • The Phils stole a couple of bases so Davey Lopes is great and this will obviously continue. How could it not?
  • Jimmy Rollins took a lead-off walk, which he will now do conisistently.
  • A few people have questioned the focus on fundamentals because some errors were made against Detroit. I can’t even begin to comprehend this logic.
  • And lots of comments like, “Player X looked good” or “Player Y pitched well,” etcetera, etcetera. This one really bothers me because people aren’t actually watching the games. They are just looking at box scores and making assumptions, not understanding that stats tell about 10% of the story in spring training.

If you are basing opinions on players based on spring training games, especially in the first week, think of this as an intervention. I know, it happened to me. I found myself looking at spring training box scores today, analyzing and scruitnizing, trying to draw some sort of conclusion from a Pittsburgh vs. Manatee Community College game. I realized I needed help. Don't let yourself fall that far....

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Bernie Williams Has An Uncle, And He Talks:
From Jayson Stark on ESPN.com: “Bernie Williams' uncle told the New York Daily News that Williams turned down a $5 million offer from the Phillies. Uh, not quite. According to an official of one club that looked into Williams, the Phillies' offer was closer to $2 million. But Williams wanted more money and playing time. So that was that.” Well, no crap. If Williams is going to sit on the bench, I’m sure he’d rather do it in NY and have a chance at coat-tailing another WS title. Williams to Philadelphia never did make much sense…

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Donut Eater Still On The Block
From mlbtraderumors.com: "Phillies GM Pat Gillick swung by the Blue Jays' camp yesterday to talk some baseball with J.P. Ricciardi. The Globe and Mail's Jeff Blair writes that the Phils like Alex Rios and Dustin McGowan and are trying to trade Jon Lieber." This would seeminly clear way for a Rowand for reliever trade, leaving the Phils with a 5 man rotation, another reliever, and a Burrell/Victorino/Rios outfield. However, I doubt we could get Rios straight up for Lieber and given the paucity of the minor league system...

In a not-entirely unrelated note, the first link after typing "donut eater" into google.com is Lieber's baseball-reference.com bio, although neither of the words "donut eater" appear on the page. Link based merely on association. I love it.

Corey

14 comments:

BenJah said...

i sure hope the rios thing is real...that would be sweet!!!

victorino
rios
howard
burrell
utley
rollins
helms
c
p

Corey said...

yeah, that would be skeet-worthy...

Bob D said...

LOL! donut eater in Google first hit is Leiber. That is awesome.

As for a trade watch Gillick wait till near the end of spring. I'm sure he wants the SP's to show theyre healthly.

Skeeter said...

skeet-worthy... nice

chuckm said...

I dont read too much into ST, but I am definatly stoked to see Hamels go against the Yankees on Sunday (it will be televised).

Corey said...

hamels v. yanks is cool, but for maybe 2-3 innings, then you have to watch jim crowell pitch to bubba crosby. ugh.

i can't wrap my head around this donut eater + google search scenario. i need to ask someone who knows computers how a phrase used on a another site, when searched points to a page where the phrase isn't used, but the reference for the phrase is the main focus. that is some twilight zone shit right there.

awwwww, skeet skeet skeet skeet.

GM-Carson said...

Actually Corey, Jim Crowell won't be able to pitch to Bubba Crosby on Sunday unless the Phils picked up a B game with the Reds that I didn't know about.

I too, obviously, fall victim to reading into spring stats way too much. I don't think the stats are totally meaningless, but they don't have as much merit as we think they would...thanks for the intervention.

GM-Carson said...

One of our WSBGM's Phantasy League GM's fell through, and we're looking for a replacement. That means we have 1 opening. If you are interested, please email us at weshouldbegms@hotmail.com and I will give you the information needed to join this pretigious league.

GM-Carson said...

It's not too often that I recommend a link to read, but I came across this piece this morning and found it hilarious and worthwhile- http://bugsandcranks.com/the-clubhouse/the-2007-all-non-roster-invitee-team/

Corey said...

Phillies roster

Jim Crowell is an non-roster invitee for the Phils, and a perfect example of guys i don't want to see pitch.

GM-Carson said...

Corey- I know Jim Crowell is a non-roster invitee. I was just razzing you about the fact that Bubba Crosby is no longer a Yankee but a Red instead.

Wikipedia is a fun site to go to and get information. For example, I came across this nugget of joy while check out Ol' Fuqua- Manuel has survived a heart attack, quadruple bypass surgery, and cancer. During his time with the Indians he worked in the dugout with a colostomy bag beneath his jacket.

*I always knew he was full of shit!

Corey said...

oh. my bad. i didn't know bubba crosby was such a hot commodity...

i think a fuqua-colostomy tribute may be in order in the future. this is a reference that cannot be forgotten.

on a good note, i get to go home soon and go to bed. nice.

skeet. skeet.

Corey said...

do a write in poll, what is your definition of "Fuquostomy"....

chuckm said...

Damn, Dobbs continues to tear it up. Of course, Mike Lowell parks one. If the Red Sox could have Lowell pretend every opponent is the Phillies, he would end up being MVP.