Baseball Toaster was unplugged on February 4, 2009.
According to Bob Klapisch, George Steinbrenner is interested in bringing the legendary Braves pitching coach Leo Mazzone to the Bronx next season.
1. Cox decides to retire after the Braves win it all/come close (yet again).
2. Mazzone is tired of Atlanta and wants a change of scenary, but to a place with a team that he knows will keep on winning (or die trying, dammit).
Honestly, what's keeping him in Atlanta after all these years? (Besides his contract and loyalty to Cox.) Smoltz is the only pitcher who's been with the Braves for more than the last 3 years - so its probably not the players. As for the "streak" (cough, 1994, cough), its going to end sometime, maybe even this year. From Mazzone's perspective, it might be better to get out while the streak is alive than after its dead.
And never underestimate the desire of someone who's very, very good - like Mazzone - to want a new challenge, mostly to prove they really ARE that good. Right now, whenever someone mentions how good Mazzone is, they usually mention Cox and sometimes Schuerholtz too. Maybe Mazzone wants to show he can do it without those guys.
Not that he needs to - based on his current resume, he should be the first pitching coach elected to the Hall of Fame, IMHO.
Seriously though, it's not even worth speculating on. Torre and Mel are with us until they decide they don't want to be. Mel may bow to pressure and opt out after this year, but there's no way anyone has insight on any potential replacements.
On Kaat....I think he's super bright. I completely agree with his repeated stance on pitch counts and I think baseball would be far better if it nurtured young pitchers to throw 130 pitches on a regular basis.
It doesn't mean that you have to push them that far on a start by start basis, but they'd be more able to go deeper into games and you wouldn't have to quake in your boots about cast off middle relievers every other game.
Likewise, 4 days rest seems to be a good way to go with pitchers. You can keep 5 starters, but one of them should be a guy who does long relief and gets the occasional spot start. In the past, when guys used to actually win 20 games, 4 days rest sufficed. I know there's a philosophy between teams, agents, and players where long outings and less rest means shorter careers and less overall money in the span of your playing days. I think it's overstated.
I really just wanted an excuse to type "molly-coddling".
Meanwhile, Schilling blows another save.
Schilling does pick up the win though.
Considering a brutal year of health problems and the horrific Steroids issue, his comeback is quite stunning. Maybe it won't last, but what he has accomplished is a real tribute to his determination and ability.
P.S. I guess 2 runs in 6 innings is considered good these days, but I am still disappointed in RJ.
At least he has Gordon in now.....we need to win this one.
Actually, I was the one saying he should've went instead of Franklin the other night.
Can't we trade Womack and a prospect for a top guy? Just one freakin' guy who can pitch 3 innings of lights out baseball. Imagine how many games that would be worth to us at this point. We would have won the middle game in Texas and the game tonight. How many others would we have won this year?
If you don't have the guys in the starting rotation to give you a solid 7 innings avery night, you need scary mother fudgers coming out of the pen.....
And Womack (the worst player in MLB) and an average prospect for a stud pitcher? Gee.. I bet there's a line waiting for that.
A frustrating loss. We need RJ and Moose to go more then 6. I guess ARod was right about needing 6 runs (or more).
Gordon gave up a granny. It sucks. We blew our lead, and even worse the Red Sox came back to win their game.
Once Gordon is up, why not put him in the game before the bases are loaded?
My only question is, does this mean that Proctor will now be COMPLETELY buried?
1. The Yankees did NOT have a large lead. The game was a 3 run lead, which counts as a save situation.
2. This is the 1st game of a 4 game series with Randy Johnson on the mound against Bartolo Colon. THIS was the game to go Sturtze, Gordon, Rivera. You have plenty of opportunity in Leiter or Brown's starts to use Proctor, Rodriguez, Groom, and Graman.
3. If you care enough to use Gordon with the bases loaded and Vlad Guerrero at the plate, why not give him the inning to start, or bring him in before the go ahead comes to the plate in the form of last season's MVP?
I suppose the real question is what I asked earlier. Why does a $200+ million team have a bunch of worthless AAA guys and a 90 year old Buddy Groom spotting middle relief? With shaky starting pitching that hasn't showed all year that it can last through 7 innings, why don't we have a guy like the old Ramiro Mendoza on the roster? Can't we find a guy who will pitch 3 innings of turbo strikes? Even if he gets hit, he'd be glaring down batters and pumping heat in the strike zone with an occasional change thrown in for good measure.....
Even if we did have a stud who will pitch 3 good innings in relief, he can't go out there every night, just like TanGorMo can't go out there every night. There are gonna be nights when Torre has to try to piece together a win with his secondary relief crew, and some nights are going to wind up like last night. Gordon gave up the slam, so it's not like Joe left in the scrub to lose the game. This was our #2 guy. Sh*t happens, sometimes out of Joe's control. That's baseball.
Another frustrating loss. Let's hope we can bounce back like we did aainst Boston and Texas with a win tonight.
I understand your point about our top guys inability to pitch every night, but I think you are missing the crux of my criticism.
I have stated my objection to Torre's strategy in the 2nd Texas game and last night, because they are the all important Randy Johnson/Mussina nights. You are virtually guaranteed a couple of shaky performances in the Kevin Brown and mystery starter games, and as such you can afford to gamble a bit with unproven middle relief.
When our top pitchers are on the mound we have to win. Period. Look what has happened as a result to Torre's middle relied choices. We lost 2 games in the standings. The other games, when he opted to use the top 3 we won by more than 3 runs. Aaron Small's game was a 4 run affair where we hit 6 home runs.
In a few weeks, and maybe after a trade, we can reevaluate the situation. For now, we have fought too hard to be back near 1st place to lose games for RJ and Mussina.
Bases loaded, less than 2 outs, the fans in a froth, and the MVP of the 2004 season at the plate. Perhaps the most dangerous player in baseball not named Bonds (or maybe Pujols).
This is a guy who could hit a frozen, rolling baseball, covered in motor oil, out of the old Yankee Stadium to straight away center. At that point it's over.
On the bright side, Giambi continues to scorch and A-Rod owns Colon again.
I agree with your points about needing to win Johnson's and Musina's starts. Part of the problem is that both left after six innings. Our bullpen needs a break, or no manager on the planet will be able to get much out of it. The way RJ was cruising last night, I was sitting on the couch thinking "good - we'll get a complete game tonight and give the guys in the pen a break.". That was wishfull thinking, as it turned out (sigh).
Sure, bases loaded and one out with Vlad at the plate is just about as bad as it gets, but Vlad has been on a 4-for-40-something slide coming to that at bat. Either he was due, or he was struggling.
Now we know. He was due. That was really the only hard hit ball of the inning. Geez.
If so, F-Rod is the next best option.
Graman is supposed to be the new three inning guy.
That is called poor bullpen management, which is the hallmark of Torre's career.
Is it any wonder he was tired last night?
If he was going to be used, it should have been before the bases became loaded.
The irony of your comment is overwhelming.
Comment status: comments have been closed. Baseball Toaster is now out of business.