Friday, June 8, 2012
The second play, maybe not. It's a classic "chopper to Chipper" scenario that takes a really awkward bounce on the final hop, kicking way off at an angle toward the 3B line. Prado, who was fielding the ball with his glove until it spun off sideways barehands it instead and laser beams the throw to first. That is somewhat the sort of play that Chipper has excelled at defensively his entire career, but Chipper is far more adept at barehanding the slow roller off the grass and making that throw. I'm not sure he makes the reaction grab while changing direction on the fly.
Again, none of which is to say the Braves should even think about continuing with Constanza in LF and Prado at 3B, because Chipper's bat over Constanza's is far more valuable than the plus defense you get at both positions with Chipper on the bench. But it's worth noting that defensively, Martin Prado is far more valuable at the hot corner than the Hall of Famer he will replace* there next year.
*Juan Francisco has quickly played himself out of any consideration for that slot going forward. Expect the Braves to look for a new left fielder in 2013 with the money they're saving from Chipper's retirement, Derek Lowe's contract finally ending, and Jair Jurrjens' mysterious disappearance from the face of Planet Earth.
This is a link to the highlights of last night's 8-2 Braves win over the Marlins. The sixth video in the sequence is titled "Simmons turns two."
From Opening Day until his demotion last week, former Braves SS Tyler Pastornicky accrued an abysmal -11 bRAR (runs above/below replacement, via Baseball-Reference.com.) Since that demotion, and the call-up of Andrelton Simmons that went with it, Simmons has already accrued a bRAR of 3.
This is another link, this time to FanGraphs.com's stats reports for Braves pitching, sorted by ground ball percentages.
Simmons has been touted as a defensive wizard since becoming a full time position player. His performance to date is in line with expectations and scouting reports. (His early bat has been an unexpected plus.) In the next few months, expect the guys at the top of that list to benefit significantly from going from a terrible defensive SS to a true defensive asset in that hole. Note that in addition to infamous sinker-baller Tim Hudson, all three of the shut-down relievers in the pen - Kimbrel, Venters and O'Flaherty - induce grounders when they're not striking batters out.
Note also that the other two pitchers who induce ground balls at a 50/50 clip or higher are Randall Delgado and Kris Medlen (currently stretching out as a starter in AAA.) Compare to the last guy on the list, Mike Minor, who is decidedly not a ground ball pitcher. In the battle for the final rotation spot, Delgado and Minor are "pitching for the slot," and in addition to simply out performing Minor to date, Delgado should benefit dramatically from having Simmons making plays behind him on the infield, while Minor will continue to rely on his outfielders to chase down fly balls when they can.
Welcome back to Gwinnett, Mike.
Thursday, April 5, 2012
Sunday, February 26, 2012
2. Brutality is its own reward. (circa 1997)
3. Truth is mercurial. (It is literally like mercury. Extremely hard to grasp, tending to flee from the attempt, and causing rank insanity if you ever do manage to pin it down.) (circa 2000)
4. A man who reads poetry can't be trusted with your daughter(1). A man who doesn't read poetry can't be trusted at all.
(1) Wife, spouse, partner, significant other, lover, and quite likely your dog.
Thursday, February 23, 2012
Tape hiss and the modern man
Cold war and card catalogs
To come and join us if they can
The simple fact of the matter is this; I hate modernity. At heart, I am a pre-modern man with a post-modern education. The upper edges of my monkey brain are trained to ignore modernity as a barbaric throw-back to medieval stupidity. My reptile brain asks, without fail, of every situation presented to it, "What would Achilles do?" All of the strum und drang between and betwixt is a sad attempt to balance these two primal, functional impulses in some way. So there you have it. My brain is a teeter-totter desperately seeking to balance the yin of Homer with the Yang of Delueze and Guittari, on the fulcrum of the Enlightenment.
Thursday, December 29, 2011
- Spend most of October and November track listing the EOY compilation CD.
- Begin distribution of said EOY CD at Snake Whacking Day (typically the first weekend of December.)
- Have at least one conversation with Paul that includes the phrase "you didn't review any of these for us this year."
- Receive Paul's annual "hey guys, if you have a end of year list type thing, send it over to us before Dec 31 and we'll post it" email.
- Spend the next two weeks thinking about, but failing to compile an end of year list type thing.
- Disappear for Christmas.
- Return from Christmas and throw together a draft-quality end of year list type thing and email it to Paul and Tracy.
- Think to myself "I should write up some of these, a blurb or something at least, and send it over too."
- Fail to do so.
- Get sucked into the Primer Lounge's annual "best music of the year" voting, which requires that I put random list type thing into an ordered ballot of at least 10 releases.
Perhaps at some point I'll even write up some blurb about why I like these things more than most. Or not. I'm really lazy sometimes.
1. Say Hi, “Um, Uh Oh”
2. Ghost Heart, “The Tunnel”
3. Bird of Youth, “Defender”
4. Frank Turner, “England Keep My Bones”
5. White Wives, “Happeners”
6. The Generationals, “Actor-Caster”
7. Manchester Orchestra, “Simple Math”
8. The Rural Alberta Advantage, “Departing”
9. Ravishers, “Ravishers”
10. Jolie Holland, “Pint of Blood”
Honorable Mentions: Fucked Up, “David Comes To Life”; Elbow, “Build a Rocket Boys!”; True Loves, “Hooray For Earth”; The Wombats, “This Modern Glitch”; Larry and His Flask, “All That We Know”; Damion Suomi & The Minor Prophets, “Go And Sell Your Things”; Ha Ha Tonka, “Death of a Decade”; The Dodos, “No Color”
Tuesday, October 18, 2011
It doesn't look like Mac really needs me to tell him to keep fighting or whatnot. I'm pretty sure he knows as much as all that already. So I'll confine it to this.