Baseball Toaster Bronx Banter
Ain't it the Truth
2006-11-22 07:08
by Alex Belth

According to Tim Marchman in the New York Sun:

The selection, announced yesterday, of Minnesota first baseman Justin Morneau as the American League's Most Valuable Player is dumb and indefensible, good evidence of why no one takes baseball writers seriously.

It's hard to be outraged when you have little faith in the voting process.

2006-11-22 07:26:58
1.   kylepetterson
1st comment = i am awesome

"It's hard to be outraged when you have little faith in the voting process."

That says it all.

2006-11-22 07:30:32
2.   jakewoods
Why only let a writer in each city to vote?

Why not open it to columnists and baseball people like heyman, olney, law, verducci, curry, etc?

The beat writers only watch their teams games.

the cowley guy didnt even know boston got swept in a 5 gamer at fenway in august!

2006-11-22 07:37:14
3.   kylepetterson
2 I'm not exactly sure that would help.
2006-11-22 07:42:03
4.   Schteeve
It's so dumb, let's talk about something else.

So I keep reading/hearing that the Yankees number two Christmas List item is a righty 1b man, so that Giambino can DH. I've heard Mean-kay-vitch's name mentioned as well as Rich Aurilia and J.T. Snow. Maybe I'm dumb but don't we already have Andy Phillips and Craig Wilson, and couldn't those two approximate the production that we'd get from any of the players from column A?

I don't get it. Help me out here.

2006-11-22 07:47:02
5.   Zack
Wilson is a FA who seems destined not to play here, which is too bad...I think most of us feel he an do better than he did in his stay last season. Phillips, at least to me, is as good a choice as Mxyztplk. Aurilia isn't a bad choice, but he's a type A free agent, which is just insane...
2006-11-22 07:47:29
6.   Raf
5It's so obvious; Minkie was on the 2004 Woild Champeen Red Sox, so he knows what it takes to win...

But, yeah, I'm sure the "name" may have something to do with it. I'd rather the Wilson/Phillips platoon meself.

2006-11-22 07:57:30
7.   kylepetterson
I know it's the "norm" to have a big bat at first base, but with as many bats as we already have, I would think we could afford to have a Phillips type hold down the bag.
2006-11-22 07:59:49
8.   Yankee Fan In Boston
4 5 6 wilson could also theoretically back up posada as well. if aurilia would cost a draft pick, he shouldn't be considered. is mientkiewicz a type A? if not, i'd be fine with him at 1B for a year. if the available guys are all so middle of the road offensively, defense should be the priority when choosing here. wang and sanchez'z sinkers lead to a lot of grounders after all... i am statistically illiterate when it comes to the new-fangled defensive numbers, so i am not the guy to determine who that would be.
2006-11-22 08:03:02
9.   Bama Yankee
2 Maybe they should let the players vote for the MVP.

4 I've been wondering the same thing myself. It's funny how people were singing the praises of Craig Wilson when we got him last year ("he mashes lefties") and now it seems like he is off the radar. Of course, as most people know, I would love to see Andy get another shot since he is a fellow Crimson Tide alum but he also is a very economical option and we already have him on the roster.

2006-11-22 08:06:39
10.   mehmattski
I mean, there's also Aaron Guiel, although he's a lefty. If Cash is just planning on getting a righty to platoon with Guiel, I'd be okay with that. I haven't been very excited about any names discussed for that position... Aurilia's old and unlikely to return to 2004 hittng levels... Hillenbrand never walks and his defense at first base is just as suspect as Giambi's, according to the stats... Dougie the Baseball Stealer is a solid defensive option, but he can't hit, at all (and he's a lefty)... J.T. Snow should have retired two years ago...

Even my top choice, Daryle Ward, had a career OPS of .770 and his defenive stats are around the Mientkiewicz level.

I wonder if Cliff is still as confident that Andy Phillips can hit enough in the Yankees lineup, given time. He showed flashes of ability to hit homers and gappers, but his playing time hit nil in September. I know I wasn't overly impressed with his defense, and the numbers agree...

So I'm all for bringing fresh blood into the position, if it's cheap. But if it's Aurilia or someone else who costs a 1st round draft choice... no thanks.

2006-11-22 08:08:58
11.   manila boy
Why not throw Russ Johnson into the 1B mix? He's right-handed, has major league experience, hit well in Columbus (though he's an FA now), and can play 2B and 3B too.
2006-11-22 08:11:54
12.   manila boy
And how much of Andy Phillips' struggles to hit were a result of his bum knee? He just had it operated on. I'd be okay with giving him another shot.
2006-11-22 08:19:10
13.   Bama Yankee
10 Good points, mehmattski. Although didn't someone quote a stat recently where Andy ranked fairly high defensively (could just be wishful thinking on my part).

BTW, I was pulling for your boys from Duke last night. I hated to see them lose, but I think they will be alright as the season goes on.

2006-11-22 08:21:57
14.   Bama Yankee
12 I hope your are correct about Andy's knee being the reason for his dropoff last year. Although I am afraid that it had more to do with his lack of patience at the plate (something that maybe he could work on for next season).
2006-11-22 08:23:50
15.   Peter
10 I'm all for a Guiel/somebody platoon at 1B. I see he's currently on the 40-man roster, but not the 25, so I wonder what the Yankees' intentions are with him.

12 IIRC, Andy also had a lot personal distractions re: his wife's health plauging him during the time he was playing regularly.

2006-11-22 08:25:24
16.   JL25and3
For years I've been wanting the Yankees to improve their bench, in terms of both quality and versatility. I love the idea of Craig Wilson - 1b, corner outfield, third catcher - but he really showed squat in his two months in NY. He does have a history of mashing lefties, so if they could find a way to keep him, I wouldn't mind. But I'd be awfully surprised if they did.

That all goes double for Andy Phillips, except for the history of minor success. I like the versatility, but he really blew his big chance last year.

Aurilia is the one I like best - if the Reds don't offer him arbitration. If they do, forget it.

2006-11-22 08:28:31
17.   C2Coke
2 Then there will be so much less to talk about in or about baseball.
2006-11-22 08:32:05
18.   RIYank
13 David Pinto's "Probabilistic Model of Range" had Andy right with Mxsknowvitch. I can't get to the page now because Baseball Musings is (apparently) down.

What model gives Phillips bad defensive numbers, mehmattski?

2006-11-22 08:33:14
19.   JL25and3
Definitely not Mxyzptlk. I don't care how good his glove is.
2006-11-22 08:35:53
20.   Bama Yankee
18 Thanks RIYank, how could I forget something like "Probabilistic Model of Range"? ;-)
2006-11-22 08:38:03
21.   Yankee Fan In Boston
2 what if the players nominate one player from their team, and then the writers can vote from those players?

this would combine two very flawed systems into one flawed system that might somehow award a somewhat more worthy player tha the current system.

or put all of the players' baseball cards on a dartboard...

2006-11-22 08:43:02
22.   mehmattski
13 It was a good basketball game last night, very exciting for a November game. Duke is so young that it's fun to watch them again. The last two seasons we were expected to win every game and it frustrated me every time we struggled. Kind of like what happens on this board during regular season games against the Orioles :-)

Anyway, I think the wishful thinking was mine in terms of defensive stats and Andy Phillips. His Zone Rating is .870, which would have put him second in the American League (behind Chris Shelton) had he logged enough innings to qualify. His Defensive Runs Above Replacement last season was -1, and his fielding percentage was .988 (8 errors in 600 innings), both of which are not great but those statistics are also flawed. But this is one example of when stats disagree with what I see on the field... I remember a lot of dropped balls, a lot of miscommunications around the bag.

That said, I wouldn't be opposed to giving him a chance again... but like I said above, with some viable competition. There's plenty of hot stove left.

2006-11-22 08:49:02
23.   RIYank
20 I just think of it as "David Pinto's thing".
Baseball Musings is the only other baseball blog I read every day.
2006-11-22 09:00:03
24.   Bama Yankee
22 That was an exciting game. That reverse slam on the alley-oop was great. After a dismal 6-6 record in football this year, most Bama fans are actually looking forward to b-ball this year. Most people have us ranked in the top 10 and our point guard is a preseason All American. Our problem is that even though some people have us ranked as high as 6th in the nation, we are third in the SEC (behind Florida and LSU).
2006-11-22 09:47:24
25.   basejunkieball
The Morneau as MVP was not only a slap in the face to the other candidates, but to his Twins teammates as well. He is the 3rd most valuable player on his own team and is somehow simultaneously the most valuable player in the American League. I read an interesting article on a site called Protrade that seems to take a similar tone to the blogs ive seen on this site thus far. Im still in shock.

2006-11-22 09:49:30
26.   Mike in DC
Interesting bit in Buster Olney's column today. Maybe the person not identified in Ca$hman...

But some executives are spooked by the salaries being thrown around the last 10 days, and have determined that they will hide in the bunker and wait until the biggest dollars are spent, and then look for the bargains. "It makes more sense for us to maybe sign three veterans on the cheap than to give one of these mid-level pitchers a $30 million to $40 million contract," says another high-ranking executive. "I don't blame the Cubs for paying [Alfonso Soriano]; that's what they feel they need to do. But I'm not doing that kind of stuff. It would hurt us long-term."

2006-11-22 10:11:59
27.   dianagramr
Top 10 reasons Morneau got the award ...

2006-11-22 10:24:58
28.   jakewoods
they arent bringing wilson back

he showed nothing in 3 months during a pennant race

im worried about the rotation than whos batting 9th and playing 1st

2006-11-22 10:57:02
29.   Jimmy Clark
Actually for years the players did vote a "Player of the Year" and a "Pitcher of the Year" in polls conducted by the Sporting News. They inevitably went for big slow sluggers with high HR/RBI counts (George Foster over Joe Morgan in 1976) and pitchers with most wins (Ron Bryant over Tom Seaver in 1973). No one paid muc attention to it and TSN stopped doing them 15 years ago.
2006-11-22 11:04:08
30.   JeremyM
My God, now Garey Matthews Jr. is getting 10 million a year for 5 years? This market is ridiculous.
2006-11-22 11:26:00
31.   Raf
30 "It isn't the high price of stars that is expensive, it's the high price of mediocrity." - Bill Veeck

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