Dr. D's impressions of Tuesday night's action being:
Before the season we weren't shooting for 32 games started. We were shooting for 27+, and he's on track for that. Spasms in the lower back are undesirable and all that, but unlike Kendall Graveman's season-ending arm surgery.
After 5-6 years of watching Pax through the minor leagues and all, it does seem that he's more of a Ferrari than a Civic. He is a big, loose dude and may have some issues making 75 starts in a row. That said, his next arm injury will be his first one.
Went behind 10-2 on Tuesday and even that didn't stop them. After their miracle 24-7 run, they have pushed their OPS+ to 106 and their ERA+ to 103, still barely good enough to win 90. I know it sounds ironic, but their run differential is +37 -- better than ours, to be sure -- but in the main not a set of statistics that leads you to believe they're going to sustain.
Does that mean the M's are not going to sustain? Right now they could use some offensive punch; they're slumping a bit in the bottom half of the inning.
If you call Dr. D on his shtick about the comparative RD's *so far*, he's simply going to reply that he likes the M's roster much better. He likes:
- James Paxton much better than whoever they call a #1 starter
- Marc-O better than Manea
- Wade LeBlanc better than their #3, probly
- The Mega-Closer better than theirs, though theirs is no slouch either
- Tampa's closer better than their #2 setup guy
- All our All-Star MOTO's better than theirs
But yeah. He'd like to see a .385 OBP hitter imported.
A man for whom ---- > the whole is just less than the sum of the parts. We're not going to take the time to do a video layout, but if you could draw a yellow line where his spine is .... it tilts backward at the worst possible moment, the throughstroke. This makes him "effectively wild" but also leaves him with a lifetime 3.5 walk rate and no pitchability whatsoever.
Last night in his "Johnny Bullpen" start he gave us 3.2 IP with 6 hits and 2 runs -- not terrible, which is the story of his career. A man who sits 94 MPH left handed, touching 96 .... who has a sharp -15 MPH curve ... who has a very functional change ... that should be the young Derek Holland, not a guy bouncing around organizations.
The best news of the night, especially in the lose the battle, win the war department. Here is his velocity chart. They wanted lower body action and extension out front; they got half of it, but who’s quibbling. One way or another they got 95 miles an hour from the first pitch and if it took half a season to get an $8M pitcher for the 7th then NOW we can say with Terry, "How many RP's does one team need." No more than these, with Pazos in the 6th.
That's all asterisked, of course, by that 95 first pitch we've seen a few times now. Eyes slideways, kiddies. I still wish he'd bend the back knee once in a while, but a few more of these 95 first pitches and we've got a real Three Amigos, as Servais calls them.
THE M's LAST TWO WEEKS
Have already been covered by a better man than me. Well, at least as good a man, that's for sure.
So a grounder goes through, the runner advances on another grounder, and finally a "soft" ground ball goes through scoring the 4th run. That's why teams don't go 70-0 in a given pitcher's games. The problem here was with the offense, that scrabbled to tie the game at 1-1, 2-2, etc all night long.
A's are back to 1.5. Okay by me, because pennant races in general are all right by me. :- )
GRATUITOUS OFFSITE SHTICK
If you enjoy the Think Tank, you may wish to check out Dr. D’s fundraising shtick. Or if you know you’re ready to join the Ownership Committee, here’s a direct link to the sponsorship page. Thanks amigos!
And in any case please remember that the more taters, the better :- )