Thursday, September 30, 2004


Don't rent the U-hauls just yet

It's a sad day in Exposworld. The thought of no more Youppi hits one like a hammer, or more appropriately, like a Vlad Guerrero swing. It makes one do crazy things, such as try to figure out why this couldn't happen.

There have been press conferences and talk on SportsCenter and in newspapers, it must be fated right ? Well...

Here is my view. From the very beginning of the moving saga MLB wanted the team to be in DC. They may have flirted with other girls at the dance, but DC has the largest population, the wealthiest population, the history, and the cache of being the nation's capitol. The question really never was Vegas vs DC, or Portland or Norfolk or Billings. These were back-up plans in case, I don't know, Washington DC was lifted up into space by aliens. The battle was only between Northern Virginia and DC. In their minds, DC vs DC. They would rather officially be in DC, but if NoVA made them a sweetheart deal, MLB would "suck it up" and move there.

A funny thing happened on the way to the Forum with Mark-Linn Baker, though. Virginia could not support the certain bond requirements that were deemed necessary to build the park (boring stuff about "moral obligation" and bond ratings, basically all you need to know is the sweetheart deal became an impossibility) . It became all DC, all the time. But things weren't happening in the manner that they wanted. The government was iffy on financing the stadium, Angelos wasn't being cooperative in any manner. I believe they finally got fed up waiting and agreed to move the team to Washington with the hopes that everything would work out in the end. Stupid and short-sighted? Sure, but tell me when MLB hasn't been with the Expos

There are four conditions that need to be met for the Expos to move smoothly
1) Owners have to be found
2) A stadium has to be funded and the land purchased
3) Any Expos lawsuits have to be dealt with
4) Angelos has to be dealt with so he won't sue

#1 is the easiest for MLB. There are always rich people that want into the sports business. Rich boys and their rich toys. Even if there wasn't, or they couldn't get the price they wanted for the team, MLB could own it until it found the right buyer. I don't think they want to (because they'd actually have to support the DC team - unlike the Expos) but they aren't going to let a little thing like "no owners" stand in their way of moving the team.

#4 is harder but all it is is money. Eventually the MLB will throw enough money at Angelos to shut him up. It's not a question of "if", just of "how much".

#3 could be trickier. If the case against Loria does not get dismissed (which it shouldn't, Loria is one shady bastard) then the MLB/Loria will have to take the same approach to the plaintiffs as to Angelos. However, Angelos just wants financial security so money will work for him. There is no question here. The plaintiffs could want something entirely different and just paying them off may not be as successful a solution. Of course, a few million is a siren song to the vast majority of people. I'd expect this to eventually go away (costing MLB a pretty penny in the process)

#2 is the hardest part. The governing body of DC seems to have very strong opposition to using public funding to pay for the stadium. Always have. But MLB has increased the pressure. Now instead of going the "You approve and maybe we'll build there" route, we've gone to a new level. The "We're moving here. All you have to do is sign here and it's yours" path. It's much more enticing, but it's far from the position of power sports leagues usually have. The opposition has numerous studies over the past 15 years proving that sports venues do not help the local economy as much as it costs. That hasn't stopped any stadium yet, but it's getting closer (see No VA) and eventually it will. Will DC be where the public draws the line in the sand?

Also there is some issue with the land they want to use for the part - considering its owned by 20+ Private parties and the goal is to have it seized for public use - a situation with it's own set of massive legal problems.

It's not clear to me that this will go down smoothly - I think it's very likely that the Expos play in RFK next year with no guarantees of a new park and hence no owners - just to increase the pressure on the DC government. Then it could begin looking for a new sweetheart deal somewhere else - making DC just a stop over on this crazy train the Expos are riding.

Wednesday, September 29, 2004


One day, Billings. One day.

It looks like the move to DC is done. Disappointing? Sure. What strikes me as the most wrong is that they decided to move the Expos before selling the team. If they had sold it and the new owner said "Hmmm, I don't like French, and I don't like hockey. Let's move to D.C." it would have at least been his decision. But now whoever buys it is forced to be in DC for a while. Remember that baseball failed in D.C. twice where as it was more or less put to sleep in Montreal, like a healthy dog that noone wants.

What a mess this was. With the Lurie sale and all that took place - I think it really could have been one of those take to Congress complaints, except that it's Canada and they can't complain. Hey, does baseball have an anti-trust exemption in Canada too? Anyone know this? I'm sure if they complained they'd just pull Toronto away as well, but then maybe it could lead to a sports league war and eventually a hockey league with Edmonton, Quebec City, and Winnipeg back in it. Sweet.

Minaya is leaving too. Eh. The Expos were such a strange situation that it was hard to tell if he was good or not. I wouldn't want to go to the Mets but you can't blame Omar for wanting job security with a new owner coming in on this team. I wish him well.

In baseball news, the Expos offense has been put inside a magic box, spun around, then opened to reveal no offense. They managed 3 hits last night wasting another acceptable outing from Ohka, et al. And by "they" I mean Juan Rivera. The Greater Kim is on the mound tonight and has been pitching well lately. Let's not get swept, ok?

Tuesday, September 28, 2004



With a DC move now appearing imminent the team is sliding into home. Too bad the catcher is there waiting with the ball.

Patterson pitched well enough and the bullpen, which has been pretty average the past month, performed fine, but for the third straight game not enough offense. Here are some slumping Expos (at least last 3 games)

Wilkerson 0-8
Batista 3-22
Rivera 4-23
Church 0-9
Schneider 3-15
Chavez 3-23

For Batista, Rivera, Schneider, and Chavez - pretty much starters - that's about 5-6 games worth of 13-83 or .157 batting. Toss in the below .200 pitcher's spot in the order and that's an anemic half of a line-up.

Monday, September 27, 2004


Stealing Signs in the Minor Leagues

The Expos aren't only going through Major League changes, but minor league changes as well, changes that could clue us in that the DC move is pretty close to done.

The Expos "High-A" affiliate is now the Potomac Cannons in the Carolina League. How does one get to Potomac? Take a boat, because it's a river. But it's a river located in...wait for it...Northern Virginia! So just another sign that the Expos in DC is going to happen, whether anyone actually wants them there or not.

History note: The Army of the Potomac was the Union's Army in this area in the Civil War. The Confederacy's army was The Army of Northern Virginia. The Union tended to name things after waterways, the Confederacy after towns. So you have multiple battle names. Bull Run = Manassas. Sharpsburg=Antietam. You learn something new everyday at exposbaseball DOT blogspot DOT com

This move left the Expos former "High-A" team (Brevard County) without a team. Begin the music as the major league mascots walks around a circle of chairs.

Expos move from Brevard County (FL) to Potomac
Reds move from Potomac to Sarasota
Red Sox move from Sarasota to Wilmington (DE)
Royals move from Wilmington (DE) to High Desert (Adelanto CA)
Brewers move from High Desert (Adelanto CA) to Brevard County (FL)

You can't tell your minor league affiliations without a scorecard.

Much more simple was the Expos Triple A change. Nolan Ryan's group bought the Edmonton Trappers and moved them to Round Rock, Texas (outside of Austin). The Astros, killing grandmothers carrying kittens who get in the way of making up to Nolan Ryan after letting him go to the Rangers, changed affiliation to this team. The Expos took over Houston's affiliation (New Orleans Zephyrs)

Go Zephyrs! Go Cannons!


A few walks, wasted

Tough weekend for the 'Spos as the pitchers showed up but the batters went to DC early to scout out some new homes and learn about the area (Where are the good schools? Are they all in Denver? Where does Tony Kornheiser live?) Well that's not exactly true - on Friday they smacked the ball around pretty well - so they must have taken early Sat morning flights.

Kim, Downs and Livan, all pitched at least into the 8th inning, all gave up 2 runs or less, and the Expos end up with only one victory (the alluded to 8-1 pasting of the Phils). In the Saturday/Sunday combo only one hitter had a multiple hit game (Sledge) and only one other hitter had a multiple hit "combo" (Izturis).

This is a shame, considering how the biggest problem the Expos have had in the second half has been starting pitching.

No real info to speak of which will happen if you aren't in, and never have been in, a pennant race this year. Robinson hopes to be back next year. I can see it going either way. The guy is not a noticably bad coach and may actually be a good coach (though I think he may suffer from a little of the "veterans-only" Dusty Baker mentality). He has a name with baseball fans (though not nearly as strong as it should be given how great a player he was and all he's done for baseball since then. More than his Mays, Aaron, Mantle contemporaries). But new ownership tends to want their own guys in there. While I won't cry if he's not the coach of the Expos next year, I do hope he gets a chance to coach somewhere next year.

Friday, September 24, 2004


What if Wilkerson threw a party and nobody came?

What a disappointing couple of games. Chances of crawling out of last place are severely diminished now. At least they can add to the fire Larry Bowa fire and maybe help the Phillies drop below .500.

Glavine (who will reach 300 by the way) shut down all the Expos except for Wilkerson who hit two bombs to tie Batista for the team lead. Wilkerson though if probably the second most important position player on the team behind Vidro. You want a prime example of why the normal stats of batting average, HR, and RBI are overrated?

Wilkerson .256 31HR 62RBI
Batista .245 31HR 107RBI

Batista is probably the favorite here. But looking beyond that

Wilkerson .500Slugging .370 OBP
Batista .462Slugging .275 OBP

Wilkerson hits with as much power and gets on base far more often. The lack of RBI is completely because he bats first. And he's a genuine good guy

Thursday, September 23, 2004


District of Carroll

Looks like the Expos will be in DC/No. Va next year

Shame. I'd rather they be in Norfolk (well actually I'd really rather they'd be in Montreal (well actually I'd really really rather they be in Billings ))


Hyde Offense

Ah! The Expos just lost the most important game in the history of sport! Mets pull 2 games ahead! Toronto ties the Expos for the Kings of Canada! It's completely unsettling.

Jeckyll Patterson showed up last night. 1 BB 7 K in 6 innings. A bit to many hits (7) but that seems to hardly matter when he manages to keep the free passes down. Unfortunately the Expos had a 1st half offensive flashback - 6 hits and 2 runs. (1 of course being a Batista HR - I haven't watched an Expos game in a while but I imagine Batista just swinging as hard as he can at every pitch, knocking some out of the park, missing and spinning around wildly like a cartoon on the others).

Since I'm taking a break from the infield/outfield discussions, let me tell you - it must be nice to be Brian Schneider. He's a completely average player. Nothing special, but not awful either. You'd probably like to replace him with a bit more offense but as far as I can tell he is getting no real pressure for his job. He gets all the time in the world to develop. And I guess since catchers are so scarce a .260 15 HR catcher can pretty much hold on to his job. Kids, if you want to play ball either learn to catch or learn to pitch left-handed. It's like being the red-headed wacky friend on a sitcom. It's always in demand

Wednesday, September 22, 2004


Step Right Up and Beat the Mets

The Expos need a win from "Jeckyll and Hyde" Patterson tonight. Why?

1) A win tonight could put the Expos in a tie with the Mets for 4th place in the NL East.
2) The Blue Jays are just a game behind and could retake the Kings of Canada crown.
3) They are 32-31 since the break. They need a win to help solidify their post All-Star game +.500 record.

This is the most important game EVER.

There are a bunch of teams with 63-64 wins. The Expos most probably will finish somewhere between 22nd and 27th in the league. Let's make it 22.

The Rock (Tim Raines not Duane Johnson) is back as a coach. If the Andre "Hawk" Dawson could come back not only would the Expos have the corner on 80's Montreal nostalgia, but they could have a monopoly on four-letter baseball nicknames ending in "K"


Livan Large!

Ha! I got a million of them. How about "Livan Dead Girl"? What? No White Zombie / Montreal Expos fans out there reading this blog?

Livan continued his strict adherence to the rules of Livan (great/ok/Braves) and was great against the weak NY Mets. Not as dominating in Ks as he can be but a good performance.

As for the lineup...things are getting interesting. As you probably were deafened by the buzz over the weekend, it is true; Alex Gonzalez did in fact get traded to the Padres. A sweet deal for the Expos regardless of what it got them in return. I think maybe they got cholera, but still sweet deal. He wasn't producing here, he wasn't staying here, so now, you don't even have to think about it. This should have opened up a spot for Harris BUT the rules have changed, things have gotten weird.

In the infield, it's impossible right now to keep Batista out of the lineup. I've said before - it's hard to keep him out anyway, being the only real power threat in the middle of the lineup. But when he's actually pounding the ball at a + .500 OBP with 7 HR in the last 10 games you've got to stay with that. (though the .052 OBP with 0 HR he was weighing the team down with the 10 games before this is why you got to cut him free at the end of the year 30HR/100 RBI regardless).

But that should be ok. We can still have our 2b - Harris, SS- Izturis like I want right? Unfortunately not. Izturis is slumping bad (not unexpected for a rookie in your first long stint in the majors, especially a rookie often "protected" by the pitcher) and Jamey Carroll is hot. So F-Rob is trying to split time between all these players. He actually gave half-games to both Harris and Izturis while Carroll switched positions. I don't go along with this. I think it's real important to get constant at bats 3-5 a game. I'd rather see two starting games, two off, than 1-2 at bats every game. The real issue here is Jamey Carroll, while an Ecksteinien fan favorite, is 30 years old. The younger players should be getting the at bats.

In the outfield things are just as convoluted. Rivera has played his way into a everyday starting gig. There is no denying this. He was always thought to have talent and maybe it's finally coming through. So instead of three outfield positions to work with we got two. But F-Rob really likes what he sees in Sledge even saying he thinks he'll be an everyday player next year. So that means one outfield position to try out three guys (Endy, Church, and Val). I'm afraid neither Church nor Val will get enough playing time to prove themselves. (Endy has had much of the year to impress)

Monday, September 20, 2004


I went home

Hence the lack of posts. In the meantime the Expos haven't played all that well (3-3, I think) but they did sweep the Wed double header of the Marlins, which in my mind knocked the Marlins officially out of the WC race.

In other probable news: A quick scan of the box score seemed to indicate Church, Val, and Harris acquitting themelves quite nicely during double header starts. Then immediately got reduced back to PH status. But I'm in a better mood now, so no yelling. Just a statement of facts.

I'll be back tomorrow with game recaps

Wednesday, September 15, 2004


Expos ignored again

Check out ESPN where Tomo Ohka pitches both ends of Montreal's double header today. Why is this historic feat going unrecognized? I tell you why. Expos bias. It's rampant.

But seriously folks, today Jeckyll and Hyde Patterson starts game 1. This is the Expos last chance to truly impact the Wild Card race so play some good ball.

Sledge is day-to-day which means Church or Val will have to start one of the games. You'd expect B-Har to be in a game, too. Let's see what happens when these kids get 4 at bats.

Tuesday, September 14, 2004


Another loss

Let's get this straight. The Expos are not a good team. They are a team constructed with a shoe string budget and no real direction thanks to MLB. It should be obvious to anyone that they are not playing to win right now. There is no benefit to finishing the season if they won all the remaining games. It simply does not matter. They can't even reach .500.

With this in mind it should be obvious that this time should be used to evaluate minor league talent, to see who, if anyone will be useful next year. Since August 21st, the Expos have called up 4 position players and only 1, Macier Izturis, is getting signifcant playing time. But even he is getting this time at a position he will most likely not be playing next year. This is simply unacceptable.

I know they'd like to evaluate Endy Chavez, Termell Sledge, and Juan Rivera more, as they are as much prospects as anyone that was called up. But they have played 130+ games, conclusions can be drawn. Their conitnued everyday play basically tells me they have no interest in seeing whether Ryan Church or Val Pascucci will be productive major leaguers. This is a crowded area but something can be worked out here so everyone could be playing at least half the games.

The lack of playing time for Brendan Harris is even more perplexing because he is not getting crowded out by other "young" talent. He is not playing so Tony Batista and Alex Gonzalez can get at bats. This is utterly ridiculous. Neither of these players should be on the team next year which almost guarantees Harris will be playing next year or at least seriously looked at as a starter, so why not do it now?

I'm not sure if this is Frank's decision or Omar's edict, but either way it does not fill me with hope for next year.


RTB - Expos Marlins

from now on I'll just update this post

bottom first. A-Gonz almost gets the "Spos in big trouble. with Pierre at second, a groubder is hit to Batista. He catches Pierre off second but as Macier runs him to third, A-gonz stands around instead of backing up second. Yeah, you want this guy playing. Luckily Pierre kept running like a fool and got doubled up on a line drive.

Bottom Third - real ugly real fast. Downs was being hit hard and had no room for error. Unfortunately Alex Gonzalez happened. First the Marlins A-Gonz hit a HR to tie it up then The Expos A-Gonz booted the pitchers ground ball. A passed ball and hits all over the place and suddenly it's 6-1. I blame A-Gonz.

Bottom Sixth - Chipping Away. In the 4th Rivera doubled and scored on a double by somebody that I've been bashing all day. In the 6th Sledge walked, then after Rivera got out was replaced by Church (I don't know why F-Rob waited till after Rivera got out). Church scored on a Schneider double. Jack McKeon tried to argue fan interference, in part I think to give a show to the fans. That's just the kind of guy he is. Guy I'm bashing struck out to strand Schneider. 6-3.

Interesting fact 988 and 44. What are these numbers? The first is the number of at bats for Batista and Chavez combined the second is the number of walks.

Top Seventh - BAT-ista! Oh I don't love the guy, but as I said before there is a reason he's in the lineup. He'll swing hard at everything and some of those hits will go over the fence in key moments. This time it was a 3-run shot with 2 out to tie the game up 6-6! You just kind of had a feeling this would happen. Church....just gets under one following him.

Cubs fans at the game are cheering as loud as they can for the Expos. With so few people in the stands you can really hear them.

Bottom Seventh - Easy Come... Ayala who had been averaging just over 1 walk per 9 innings, gives up two in the same one, sandwiched around a couple hits and followed by a sac fly and there you go. 8-6, bad guys. You can't give up free passes. You just can't. If they hit you, they hit you but walks are the worst.

Top we go. Last chance

...I figured if someone could get on Wilkerson might be able to drive one out. Izzy and Einar Diaz, the man with the name that just screams "old catcher" couldn't do it. Though now we've got a Wilky walk and an Endy hit. Batista up - two on, two out again....

Batista walks, now Church is up and thankfully Robinson has gotten him a lot of at bats so he's ready for this....oh wait.


real time blog -p1

I'll be blogging this game as it goes. Sledge just knocked in Batista (I was a little late getting to the radio) 1-0 Spos. Rivera up. He goes down


That was disappointing in many ways

Sun-Woo Kim (who now officially must be the Greater Kim, since Byung is not even being brought back up to the majors by the Sawx) pitches a gem. Then it gets ugly. 4 errors in a half inning? I think it's safe to say that's not good team play. I'd like to blame pitchers but I can't when they have that behind them to deal with.

Macier playing unnaturally at 2nd base, so Alex Gonzalez can what? I mean really, there no pressing reason to play this guy. Batista, I at least understand as he's becoming a Rob Deer like character, always threatening long ball, usually walking back to the dugout. For a team lacking in power as the 'Spos you can sort of justify that bat. But A-Gonz?

And Chavez/Sledge playing all the time over the call-ups? Do we need to see how many ways Chavez can hit a single? How do you expect Church or Val to get on track playing 1 out of every 4 games? How can you expect B-Har to do well if he's limited to a pinch hitter every other game?

This is very frustrating to me. You make call-ups and only Izzy is playing with any regularity. I thought September in Montreal would be all about the youth. Seeing what they got in order to try to be respectable next year. Instead it's been a retread of the same lousy offense they had all year. What is that going to do for the organization? Sorry.

Monday, September 13, 2004


Fish with Big Shoulders

Tonight - The Montreal @ Florida in Chicago. Crazy man.

On a side note - doesn't anyone notice that Ivan just keeps going West and West and West? I swear it's going to be minutes from ramming into Houston and the projected path will still have it hitting the panhandle of Florida.

Maybe Ivan is just following the Marlins. They lost Pudge. They need a new Ivan)


Cleaning out the Spos

An Atlanta sweep. Considering how horrible Montreal has played Atlanta this year, this shouldn't be all that surprising. We almost won two of the games (well really one - I never felt in the first game) but you know, horseshoes and handgrenades.

Game 1 -
Jeckyll Patterson shows up and pitches a good enough game, but the offense is offensive. No timely hits and the team falls 4-3

Game 2 -
Livan shakes off the strange great performance last time against the Braves and goes out and proves once again the old adage : Livan has three types of starts, great against bad teams, acceptable against good teams, and horrible against the Braves. I think I read he's 0-10 in his last 13 starts against this team. That's owning somebody. Oh yeah offense is still offensive.

Game 3 - Expos show heart - coming back from well down to tie it, 3 runs in the ninth off of Smoltz, but not good enough. Bullpen not firing this game as almost every reliever gave up a run.

F-Rob didn't start Harris, Church (admittedly struggling) or Izzy for the last two games. The future Frank. Stop living in the now.

Day and Biddle - out for the year. not crying about it.

Thursday, September 09, 2004


"Scattered", Smothered and Covered

"Scattered" the Cubbies hits :

Cubbies 5 hits + 1 walk = 0 runs
Expos 6 hits + 1 walk = 5 runs

It's called timely hitting, or luck. Up until the 8th neither team had more than one baserunner in an inning. The Expos got a double, sac, and sac fly to score the only run so far. Then two singles, two errors, and a blast got the Expos 5 runs and put the game out of reach.

Smothered : The Cubbies playoff lead. The Expos were bound to spoil someone's season, what with their .500 play and there constant exposure to playoff teams. Taking 2 out of 3 from the Cubs (3 out of 4 overall) has created a logjam on top of the Wild Card lead. Will they knock out Florida in the next few weeks?

Covered: The Expos young-uns, by me. B-Har had his first at bats as an Expos and got a hit. Macier is continuing to impress. Scott Downs pitched a gem. Could this be the surprise team of 2005? Maybe... if they get an MVP bat and a CY Young Arm. Pedro back in Montreal? Larry Walker? Ha! At least they'll be attractive to any buyer with the low payroll.

Wednesday, September 08, 2004


Kings of Canada...and Pain

Or is it Premiers? Czars? Tsars? Archdukes? Last night's win once again propelled the 'spos to the top of the CLB (Canadian League Baseball - logo is a stylized silhouette of Darrin Fletcher) Standings. I figured it would be a good time to reacquaint ourselves with the Expos against the World standings.

When we last looked at the overall standings (August 23rd for all you that don't have Exposbaseball DOT blogspot DOT com memorized.) The Expos were looking at catching the Colorado Rockies.

Little has changed below the Expos. But above the Expos everyone has come down a little. It is not inconcievable for the Expos to look at a 24th place finish. Sure that doesn't sound like much but it is out of the lower 25% (or if you prefer quartile). You can also say you were in the first couple dozen teams. Sounds nice, doesn't it?

NY Mets 60-77 .438
Milwaukee 60-77 .438
Colorado 60-77 .438
Tampa Bay 59-77 .434
Montreal 58-80 .420
Toronto 57-81 .413
Seattle 51-86 .372
Kansas City 49-88 .358
Arizona 42-96 .304

So go 'Spos! Get us a run and into the mid, rather than lower 20s.


Doing it and doing it and doing it at an acceptable level

The Cubs announcers over the weekend commented on how the Expos were one of those teams getting beat up by the contenders. Ha! HA! Take that, for not paying attention to the actual outcomes of the games.

Last night was another extra innings thriller. It was even one of those both teams score in the same extra inning games, which I love. The 'spos came out on top. Why? Tucker and Cordero and some timely hitting.

Harris is finally up. Hopefully we'll get to see the potential 2005 starting 3B in the field soon.

Tuesday, September 07, 2004


A tough road ahead

The Expos has been beaten up by some good teams recently - generally losing 2 games for every one they win in this stretch versus playoff teams. They lost 2 of 3 to Atlanta, with Downs performing below par (but not horrible) and Patterson performing horrible. Then Armas got knocked around by the Cubbies yestreday. In the three losses they got outscored 25-2. Not good.

The pain doesn't end there. With something like 10 games in 10 days still left in this gauntlet. For a team already complaining about being tired and injured that is not a faovrable schedule.

Any good news from this week? Livan did pitch strong against the Braves. His first good outing against them for the year. Batista is slumping so perhaps, just maybe, we'll get a look at Harris in this last month.

Friday, September 03, 2004


Fantastic Four (Five) update

You want to know why the Expos are over .500 in the second half? Well I'd say it was their bullpen (I'd be wrong but I'd still say it) Here is an update on the 2nd half stats of the Fantastic Four plus newcomer Joey Eischen

Ayala__ 31.2 IP 1.09 WHIP 3 HR 07.5 K/9IP
Cordero 21.0 IP 1.52 WHIP 4 HR 11.6 K/9IP
Horgan_ 20.0 IP 1.30 WHIP 0 HR 05.9 K/9IP
Tucker_ 25.0 IP 1.32 WHIP 1 HR 05.8 K/9IP
Eischen 12.1 IP 1.23 WHIP 1 HR 08.2 K/9IP

109 IP WHIP 1.28 9 HR 7.65 K/9IP 1.76 ERA

That's some good pitching

(the real reason they are much better in the second half is that the hitting has gone from BY FAR worst in the NL and the Majors - to middle of the pack in the NL. BUt I'm not going to give a lot of credit for a team not batting horribly anymore)

Thursday, September 02, 2004


MVP in both leagues but in the dugout...

Something has been bothering me about the Expos but I didn't want to voice it until I had a good example. Well last night provided me one.

Basically I'm not sure F-Rob is a good coach. I don't think he's a bad one, but I just can't tell if he is the type that will elevate a team. Most people would say he deserves a shot with the team once it moves, just for sticking it out in such a bad situation, as it is for the Expos right now. I would say that a new owner should be more concerned with getting out a winning team ASAP, then giving a former baseball player, who I'm sure is fine in terms of status of living, a reward for what? Not quitting? Taking a bullet for MLB? I'm not saying I wouldn't keep him on. F-Rob brings a lot to the table on the non-managerial side. I'm just saying if Lou Pinella suddenly remembers he makes his home off Hudson and not Tampa Bay, I wouldn't dismiss him. (Too many hurricanes down there anyway Lou)

Oh? You want to know the play that made me bring this up? Ok last night (great game for the 'Spos pitching and when Kerry Wood is on - there is not much you can do hitting wise) it's tied 0-0 in the bottom of the 8th. With one out, super rookie SS Macier Izturis triples down the right field line. The next batter is the pitcher and all you need is a good groundball or flyball (i.e. contact) to drive in the speedy Izturis. Who do you pinch hit to face Righthanded Fireballer Kerry Wood?

Player AB K
1 23 10
2 163 14
3 105 8
4 17 6

I would rank them 2/3, 1/4. Looks like both 1 and 4 are overmatched rookies. While either 2 or 3 would be part-timers with pretty good contact. No real idea on how to rank the individual groups of two. Now what if I gave you the info that only #4 was a lefty and #3 was your only back-up catcher? You'd probably do as I did and rank them 2, 3, 4, 1 (or mayber 2,4,3,1 if you really value your back-up catcher). You can probably guess where I'm going with this.

Robinson bats #4 (Val Pascucci) who promptly strikes out. The rest sit on the bench. It is quite likely that F-Rob REALLY values his back-up C (#3 Einar Diaz), and that he though new call-up Pascucci may have a better shot than #4 Ryan Church, who has been struggling recently and ahs been sick. But why not bat #2, fan favorite Jamey Carroll? To punctuate the error he even comes in, in the 11th and doubles and scores.

So let's recap given a scoreless game in the bottom of the eighth with a strikeout righthander on the mound and all you need is good contact to score the go ahead run from third, F-Rob puts in a newly called up righthanded rookie batter who strikes out at a greater rate than anyone on the team that doesn't pitch for a living (but not all of them) . I call that questionable.

B-Har should be up on the 6th once the Trappers season is over, but we'll see. A lot of people are coming off the DL and the Expos need arms more than bats.

Wednesday, September 01, 2004


Livan on the Edge...god I suck

That's right. Lame pun in the title of my post. It's like I'm an actual real-life internet type person!

Livan was gold last night. Probably to make up for the last time when he was rocked against a non Brave team. This evens it out to coexist with my GREAT - GOOD - BRAVES theory.

Wilkerson hits another out and Boras just knocked his asking price up another cool mill.

Macier hit his first HR off prior really turning on, what looked like to me, an inside fastball. Congrats.

Tonight Armas goes out for his usual 2.1 innings of work. Why will we go out early tonight?

- Pregame fight with fan who calls him Jr.

- Fever contracted from rare mee-mee fly found only in puerto rican jungles.

- Youppi runs him over with a 4 wheeler for outing him.

- Late coming back in game after napping with F-Rob between innings

- Decision made on where team will be next year. Dies of shock on mound hearing news.

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