moochman wrote:I don't mean to pick apart at bits and pieces but the overall 1B hitting has been better this season, Pena hasn't been there all half.
As noted before, I was referring to the time that Pena was there which was a large portion of the first half.
moochman wrote:My hind-sight bias was in full gear before the season started. I couldn't see any reason the Higginson was a major league player. It's a falicy that players can't work on the D during the season, Shelton could have improved his D while in Detroit as well as Toledo. Would've been a good PH and DH against lefties before we discovered that Pena sucks in the first half.
Yet, again we covered that situation before. I agree that outfielder sucks, but the contract situation left by Randy Smith was a lose-lose situation for all those involved except for Mr. .077 Batting Average. Strangely enough, him getting hurt was probably the best outcome for the Tigers. I'm almost certain that an injury like his causes insurance to kick in and pay most, if not all of his salary for the time he's hurt. As far as Shelton opening the season in Toledo, I still believe putting him in a situation to play everyday was the best to do for the time being.
moochman wrote:Vague terms like "in some way" are filler. You could say that in some way the Red Sox were worse last year than the year before. It means little, but what was presented was the notion that the Tigers had a better team than this year. I may have misread it, no matter. The point of my reply is that we have to stop looking at the Tigers in reflection of 2003. Any team looks better than 119 losers do. It's okay that we demand more from this team. They have a lot of major league talent and are not getting the production that they should, IMO.
Forgive me for not writing professional quality as I try to throw my thoughts down in a public forum in a matter of minutes. I'll probably have more unintentional vague phrases after this post. I think you understood my ultimate point however, that despite the starting pitching and middle relief being effective, this team had numerous issues to deal with, that justify this team not having the talent to be a wild card threat as the early part of the season wore on, not at all factoring in Shelton/Polanco/Ordonez who all settled in later in the first half.
And even though you think a manager doesn't make a difference, I disagree. As an example: Tram is still hitting the RBI leader, who is on a small hit streak, 7th-8th
What!!!! On a team that has struggled to score runs, he hits his most consistant RBI guy at the bottom of the order???? You don't think that Monroe would put up better numbers hitting 3rd or 5th? It's little manipulations of the line-up that reward hot streaks and send messages to wake up lazy bats. Tram has no heart for it. I honestly wonder if he still remembers being a player so much that he defers to veterans too much.
I don't believe a manager makes zero difference, but as I said before, I believe the players performances much moreso than basketball or football, determine the peformance of a team. This is a league of mediocre managers. There are few in my opinion who stand out among all others, a bunch who are about good enough to get the job done, and a few who really aren't that good. I personally still place Trammell into the middle group. We can win with him, and he can only get better. To me his biggest weakness was having absolutely no professional managing experience prior to being hired, minor leagues included. That is a rarity for a guy to have none when getting a major league job. I think he's done ok (better than I initially expected), and on a whole I like the direction this team is going and I think the 2nd half will be the biggest indicator of where this team is at. Let me just say that few teams short of the divisional leaders in front of the Tigers in the standings impress me very much.
By the way, I'm glad you are finally starting to come around on Monroe after ripping him apart earlier in this thread. I like him too, although I probably also would have continue to hit him 6th the majority of the year as well. He's been wildly inconsistent this year hitting in the .260-.270 range for the majority of it. He's peaked at a time when our lineup is going really well, so he will probably continue to hit 8th in a generally stacked lineup for quite a while. He will hit 7th when Dmitri or Rondell sit out. Having him hit that low in the lineup is actually a good sign as it shows our lineup is finally coming together. I've heard rumors he may also be trade bait, too which is somewhat understandable.