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 Post subject: My Christmas Wish Is...
PostPosted: Sat Dec 13, 2008 8:15 pm 
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...miraculously, out of nowhere, a team comes forward and begs the Pirates to trade them Adam LaRoche...AND his brother!!!

We would save 400 strikeouts a year!!

One can only dream and wish.


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 Post subject: Re: My Christmas Wish Is...
PostPosted: Sat Dec 13, 2008 8:53 pm 
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VanSlick wrote:
...miraculously, out of nowhere, a team comes forward and begs the Pirates to trade them Adam LaRoche...AND his brother!!!

We would save 400 strikeouts a year!!

One can only dream and wish.

The Pirates were 12th in the league in offensive strikeouts and 9th in the league in runs scored. The Cubs struck out almost 150 more times than the Bucs, and yet the Cubs led the league in runs. The Marlins lead the league with 1371 offensive strikeouts, and yet they scored over 40 more runs than the Pirates. Have a look for yourself. http://www.baseball-reference.com/leagues/NL_2008.shtml

Strikeouts are not this team's problem; getting on base is. Andy LaRoche has shown throughout his professional history that he excels at getting on base, his short season with the Pirates notwithstanding. I see no reason to kick this guy to the curb merely because he had a bad 200 plate appearances with the Bucs in 2008.

If you are pushing for the Pirates to trade Andy LaRoche, then you are pushing them to continue losing.

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 Post subject: Re: My Christmas Wish Is...
PostPosted: Sun Dec 14, 2008 1:20 am 
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I can't count how many times I saw him and his brother strike out with runners on base. It almost seemed constant.


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 Post subject: Re: My Christmas Wish Is...
PostPosted: Sun Dec 14, 2008 2:10 am 
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VanSlick wrote:
I can't count how many times I saw him and his brother strike out with runners on base. It almost seemed constant.

That's why we have statistical databases. They are much better at keeping count than any observer.

Andy LaRoche had 114 plate appearances with men on. He struck out in 17 of those plate appearances. He also drew a walk in 15 of those instances.

Guess who struck out more often with men on? You guessed it: Jason Bay. He struck out 61 times in 319 plate appearances. He also walked in 44 of those instances.

This is why observation can be deceiving. Andy LaRoche's problems were not due to striking out a lot. They were due to him not hitting the ball where they ain't.

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"For every complex problem there is an answer that is clear, simple, and wrong."
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 Post subject: Re: My Christmas Wish Is...
PostPosted: Sun Dec 14, 2008 2:30 pm 
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How about Adam?

What good is a player that only plays for half a season? He has been a major bust, in my opinion.


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 Post subject: Re: My Christmas Wish Is...
PostPosted: Sun Dec 14, 2008 3:34 pm 
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VanSlick wrote:
How about Adam?

What good is a player that only plays for half a season? He has been a major bust, in my opinion.

I could see that if you had high hopes for him at the beginning. However, he's essentially been the same guy in Pittsburgh as he was in Atlanta. Plus, your concern about him not hitting as well in the first half of the season as the second half is a bit misplaced, as there are not many players that can be consistent from one half of the season to the next.

Take Nate McLouth, for example:
Code:
2008
Nate McLouth    BA    OBP   SLG   OPS
1st Half       .281  .357  .542  .899
2nd Half       .270  .355  .426  .781
And compare to LaRoche:
Code:
2008
Adam LaRoche    BA    OBP   SLG   OPS
1st Half       .251  .330  .434  .764
2nd Half       .304  .361  .613  .975

Notice the similarity? Certainly the difference is more pronounced in LaRoche's case, but using your parlance, McLouth "only plays for half a season" as well; it just happens to be the first half. Yet, I don't see you complaining about McLouth being "a major bust."

I will grant you that a lot more is expected from a first baseman than from a center fielder, and Adam LaRoche is an average to below-average first baseman as a hitter. But that fact has nothing to do with the swings in his performance from one half of a season to the next.

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"For every complex problem there is an answer that is clear, simple, and wrong."
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 Post subject: Re: My Christmas Wish Is...
PostPosted: Sun Dec 14, 2008 7:39 pm 
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Think of LaRoche's stats if he would hit for the 1st half.

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 Post subject: Re: My Christmas Wish Is...
PostPosted: Mon Dec 15, 2008 11:29 pm 
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Wilton makes some solid points here. His analysis mirrors what I have noted.

First, with respect to Andy Laroche, he has not had a chance to play in the majors. His wrist problems in spring training followed him through most of the year. I am interested in seeing him hit when he has a genuine chance to start at third for 140 games. I believe, based on his minor league hitting performance, that he will hit for a decent to good average, walk a ton, hit for power, get on base and produce runs. His defense is more of a concern ...

Adam appears to be a known quantity. He is not going to hit in the first half. I accept that. He will have a terrible April. I accept that and will remind Pirate fans that he is not trying to make outs. He just does not hit in April - and to a lesser extent, hit much in May or June.

But his performance in July-October is tremendous. He hits very, very well those months. I would prefer that he hit more consistently, and his first half/second half splits are mind-boggling, but we take the good with the bad with every player.

And by the way, Adam's defense is pretty darn good. If he could hit .225/.300/.400 in April, then his season totals would be tremendous.

As for the K rate - Adam's is not bad for a first baseman, and Andy had a low K rate in the minors.


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 Post subject: Re: My Christmas Wish Is...
PostPosted: Tue Dec 16, 2008 12:50 am 
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...my Xmas list....

1. Jack Wilson to Dodgers for Chin-lung Hu (SS) and Delwyn Young (2B/OF)
2. Freddy Sanchez and John Grabow to Twins for Delmon Young (RF) and a Single A pitching prospect
3. Opening Day Lineup
1. Andrew McCutchen, CF
2. Nate McLouth, LF
3. Delmon Young, RF
4. Ryan Doumit, C
5. Adam LaRoche, 1B
6. Andy LaRoche, 3B
7. Delwyn Young, 2B
8. Chin-lung Hu, SS


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 Post subject: Re: My Christmas Wish Is...
PostPosted: Tue Dec 16, 2008 2:37 am 
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Geez, Eric...that's not even a good line-up, let alone a Christmas wish list. You must be pretty easy to buy for.


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 Post subject: Re: My Christmas Wish Is...
PostPosted: Tue Dec 16, 2008 2:05 pm 
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bradf wrote:
Geez, Eric...that's not even a good line-up, let alone a Christmas wish list. You must be pretty easy to buy for.


I have some old Fruit Cake in my closet from last Christmas I need to get rid of...

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I say keep the $50 and ban him anyway...

For those jumping ship, we'll keep the bandwagon warm for you...


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 Post subject: Re: My Christmas Wish Is...
PostPosted: Tue Dec 16, 2008 3:08 pm 
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You should never say closet fruit cake in the same sentence. You will offend someone.


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 Post subject: Re: My Christmas Wish Is...
PostPosted: Tue Dec 16, 2008 3:11 pm 
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bradf wrote:
You should never say closet fruit cake in the same sentence. You will offend someone.



oops...I need to hire someone to proof read my posts

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I say keep the $50 and ban him anyway...

For those jumping ship, we'll keep the bandwagon warm for you...


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