Saturday, April 17, 2010

Good luck to Brad Coon

To make room for the recently demoted Terry Evans, the Salt Lake Bees released outfielder Brad Coon. With Reggie Willits, Terry Evans, and Peter Bourjos in the system, I'm sure the Angels didn't feel there was place for Coon in their organization. But Brad Coon is talented baseball player that plays the game with great intensity and I will miss seeing him play for the Salt Lake Bees.

During his two full seasons with the Bees, Coon was a valuable player. He was solid in the lead off spot, posting a .384 on base percentage. He stole 42 bases and scored 152 runs for the Bees. He did a good job of patrolling the spacious outfield at Salt Lake's Spring Mobile Ballpark and he displayed a strong throwing arm. It is unfortunate that Coon has never had a chance to play in the Major Leagues. I wish Brad Coon the best of luck and I hope he signs with an organization that will give him an opportunity to make it to the Major Leagues.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

What was Charlie Manual Thinking!?!?

I just finished watching the Phillies v Nationals game and I have no clue what Charlie Manual was thinking in the top of the 9th inning. Entering the final frame, the Nationals were ahead 5-4 and the Phillies had their top bullpen arm Ryan Madson pitching. The Nationals Ian Desmond lead off with a base hit and promptly stole second base. After Cristian Guzman struck out, Desmond advanced to third on Adam Dunn's ground out. There were two outs, Desmond on third, and Josh Willingham at the plate. If Madson gets Willingham the Phillies have a chance to battle back in the bottom of the inning. Unfortunately for the Phillies, Madson walked Willingham and the Nationals were in position to do some damage.

Willy Tavares was sent into the game to pinch run for Willingham. With Ivan Rodriguez at the plate, Tavares stole second base. With runners on 2nd and 3rd, a proven Major League hitter at the plate, and Nationals closer Matt Capps in the on deck circle, the obvious move for Manual is to walk Rodriguez and pitch to Capps. Capps would have been an easy out and the Phillies would have come to bat in the bottom of the 9th needing only one run to tie. But Manual allowed Madson to pitch to Rodriguez and I-Rod hit a solid single into left field driving in Desmond and Tavares. The score was then 7-4 and the Nationals had a comfortable lead. Madson struck out Capps to end the inning but the damage was done.

Why didn't Manual walk Ivan Rodriguez? The only hitter the Nationals had left on their bench was Adam Kennedy and there is no reason to believe that Nats manager Jim Riggleman would have taken his closer out of the game. Charlie Manual has been a successful manager the past two seasons but he didn't handle the 8th inning well in the game today. He didn't make an obvious move and it cost the Phillies a chance to win the game.

Friday, April 9, 2010

Jason Giambi's Defense

The season is only three games old and the Colorado Rockies are 1-2. In the two games the Rockies have lost they have jumped out to early leads only to have the Brewers battle back and win the games. Three games does not make a season and the Rockies are still the best team in the National League West, but I did see one red flag in the Milwaukee series. Jason Giambi's defense at first base.

It is painfully obvious that Giambi is a below average first baseman. In the 6th inning of Wednesday's game, Jody Gerut hit a double down the first base line that broke a 4-4 tie and plated the winning run for the Brewers. Giambi did not react quickly when the ball was hit and when he finally moved toward the line it was too late to make the play. I realize it is only one play in the third game of the season, but I don't think I am going too far out on a limb when I say Giambi is going to be a defensive liability for the Rockies. Hopefully the Rockies will be able to over come Giambi's weak glove in the games he starts.

Video of Gerut's double

Jason Giambi's defensive statistics

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Rounding Third and Heading Home is Back!

With the 2010 season now in full swing, it is time to begin posting entries to Rounding Third and Heading Home. I hope you enjoy reading my views of Major League Baseball and my favorite teams. The topic for today is the Kansas City Royals.

Even though the season is only two games old, it is clear the Kansas City Royals are still an organization going in the wrong direction. The Royals opening day lineup featured Zach Greinke, Billy Butler, David DeJesus, Jason Kendall, Scott Podsednik, Rick Ankiel, Willie Bloomquist, Chris Getz, Yuniesky Betancourt, and Jose Guillen. Billy Butler has the potential to be a very good Major League hitter, Zach Greinke is a Cy Young award winner, and David DeJesus is solid, but the rest of the lineup is nothing more than average to below average players that offer no hope for the future and have very little trade value. Royals GM Dayton Moore has assemble a team that is the worst of both worlds; a team that is guaranteed to lose 90+ games while at the same offering no hope the team will be a contender in the future.