Adam Everett leads the majors with 10 sacrifice bunts. That’s from the #2 hole, which means that Mr. Williams is shortening the innings in which his best bats come up. With slugging and on-base percentages in the threes (OBP low-threes), there’s no reason to keep Everett up there, except for the stubborn belief that he’s “changed.” This concludes this week’s Jimy Williams bash.
Moving from the mundane to the sublime, Roger Clemens is doing something that has very little in the way of precedent. Perhaps it’s an obvious point, but most 41-year-old pitchers don’t perform at this level. Heck, most 41-year-old pitchers aren’t pitchers. The closest parallels are Cy Young, who posted a 1.26 ERA (LERA of 2.39) in 299 innings for the 1908 Red Sox, Ted Lyons’ wonderful “Sunday Pitcher” performance of 1942, Warren Spahn’s last hurrah in 1963, and, most appropriately, Nolan Ryan, who struck out 301 batters in 1989 at the age of 42. None of them had quite the year the Rocket has had to this point… There’s a moment in “Bonnie and Clyde” where Clyde says: “Hi! We’re Bunny and Claude. We steal carrots.” Houston version: “Hi! We’re the Houston Astros. We blow saves.” GRADE: B-
Three days after first getting the news of it, the death of Doug Pappas seems
no more real than it did on Friday. I know that denial is a stage of grief,
but it’s easy to get stuck there when you find your friend quoted in the
paper, as Doug was in yesterday’s Denver Post, the words from an
interview conducted well before his passing.
That Doug would be sharing knowledge even after his death is appropriate. The
man is gone, and we’re all less for that loss, but what remains, what will
remain, is his amazing work. From his efforts as part of the Society for American
Baseball Research to his writing for Baseball Prospectus to his nascent
Weblog, Doug spent much of his life sharing knowledge with others. Without fanfare, every day Doug made the world a little smarter, a little better, and
did so for nothing more than the fact that he enjoyed it.
We have a Nick Johnson sighting! So often, even the slightest Johnson news seems almost too cruel with a legion of people that drafted him high (myself included) hoping against hope that they’ll see some return–not to mention the team that traded for him in real life. Johnson is finally making progress, but again, I’m not going to say that he couldn’t blink wrong and end up starting the rehab process again. Still, a 3-5 day with a homer is a major positive. If all goes well this week, he could make his Montreal debut near Memorial Day.
Jose Reyes is also making progress in extended spring training. (Jeez, if both Reyes and Johnson make it back in June, what will I write about?) Reyes has had good results in back-to-back extended spring training games, hitting and running well. There’s still some room for improvement, but it appears that the changes made in his rehab program are paying off. If all goes well, Reyes will likely make a quick rehab stop in the minors and could be back in the Mets lineup by the first week of June.
Randy Johnson describes what it’s like to be perfect. Jason Schmidt and Tom Glavine describe what it’s like to come close. Bud Selig thinks the Expos will find a new home soon. Reggie Jackson is honored by a few of his peers. And Kevin McClatchy wants to build the Pirates into a winner through a fruitful farm system. All this and many more quips from around the league in your Monday edition of The Week In Quotes.