#1 machine. Where was that in Calgary? von carrie201918 22.04.2019 08:27

TSN Baseball Insider Steve Phillips answers three questions each week. This week, topics cover the struggles of Edwin Encarnacion, Brett Lawrie or Colby Rasmus, if the Jays reputation is damaged following a report that players were willing to defer their salaries in order to sign Ervin Santana and Cincinnati Reds speedster Billy Hamilton. 1. While its early in the season, should the Jays be worried yet about the struggles of Edwin Encarnacion, Brett Lawrie or Colby Rasmus? If not, at what point should a club worry about a slow start? What does a slow start mean? Does it mean a bad season? Will the player turn things around? How can a manager help the player get going? Every team is asking themselves these questions about some number of their players. It may be a pitcher or a hitter. No team has all of their players playing well. Baseball just doesnt work that way. So what should the Jays do with Encarnacion (.162) , Rasmus (.176) and Lawrie (.108)? How concerned should they be that this is a bad start to a bad season versus just an early season slump? The answer is the same yet different for each of the players. It is the same for each of them in that it is too early to completely panic or pull the plug on their roles. Usually somewhere around a hundred at bats is a good time to make a judgment on a player. It allows for slumps and hot streaks and adjustments to be made to overcome problems. During the course of the season every player will have a 30 at bat window in which they will hit .170. When the season starts in that window it just feels worse because it is not hidden by the 15 for 30 streak that will likely happen. That being said, the level of concern is different for each player based upon the back of his baseball card. I believe that over the course of a season a player will likely ride the peaks and valleys and end up with stats that reflect what they typically have been as a player. Of course young players with potential are expected to improve in their early years and the stats should reflect some upward growth. In the same vein, aging players nearing the end of their careers should show some decline in their stats. . I generally use a players last three years to determine my expectations for the upcoming season. Certainly there can and will be anomalous years where a players performance may spike or decline unexpectedly. Generally speaking, though, players are what they are and over the course of the season they define themselves. Edwin Encarnacion entered the season in the prime of his career. My expectations for him were to hit .275 with 35 homers and 105 RBI. Those numbers are consistent with what he has done over the past several years. The fact he is off to a slow start means very little to me. I have confidence in his ability to overcome a slump because he has done it over and over again in his career. It is the nature of the game. The good news is that the Jays are 5-5 and havent gotten anything from him yet. Colby Rasmus at 27 years old is a slightly different story than Encarnacion. He is at an age now where he is about establishing what he is as a player. I expected him to hit about .270 with 25 homers and 75 RBI this season. He can still certain attain those numbers but his slow start is a bit concerning. In 2013, Rasmus grew a bit as a hitter as he improved his average despite still striking out too much. He has shown that at times, though, a difficulty to get out of a slump. His slow start has the potential to snowball and lead to a down season. He needs to get turned around quickly so it doesnt foster the negative thoughts that can compound the problem. Brett Lawrie is just 24 years old and is still figuring out what he is as a player. He started his big league career with a bang. After playing in only 43 games in 2011, it was thought that he had the power and speed combination that could put up 25 homers and 25 stolen bases. The 2012 and 2013 seasons were disappointing to say the least as very little growth has been seen. This is a critical year for Lawrie. His slow start is most concerning because if his numbers decline again he will no longer be a functional everyday player. So it is too early to panic but the level of concern for each of the players is different. If the Jays are going to win this year, they will need all three of them to live up to expectations. 2. Last week, FOX Sports Ken Rosenthal reported that some Toronto Blue Jays players were willing to defer their salaries in order to sign free agent pitcher Ervin Santana in March. Does this news do any damage to the Jays reputation in MLB circles, and as a former GM how would you feel about this if you were Alex Anthopoulos? This should only be deemed as good news for the Jays and their fans. The Jays players are willing to invest in winning. Wow!!!! Now, it does mean that ownership has given Anthopolous a strict budget and told him find a way to make it work with what you have. There isnt more money to upgrade the team. He knows he needs to upgrade his starting pitching to be true contender in the AL East so it is time to get creative. I would have done what Anthopolous did too. The fact that other teams now know the Jays may be able to come up with about $14M through deferring compensation is a good thing. It makes the Jays a player for any pitching that could be season-changing. The only risk that Anthopolous runs in going to the players for money is that if he doesnt land a player with the money his team could lose hope and heart. When a player takes ownership in the result of a personnel decision by deferring compensation he wants to see and feel the result of that. Ervin Santana looked great in his first start with the Braves. How good would it have been if he pitched that way for the Jays? The disappointment of losing out on targeted players is tough enough when you are GM. But you are prepared for when it happens. You can cope with the sense of loss. Players dont have those experiences to fall back upon and it can cause them frustration, disappointment and distraction. Overall this offer has gained the Jays respect around the game. They just cant let it turn into overwhelming disappointment in the clubhouse. 3) Cincinnati Reds speedster Billy Hamilton scored on a sacrifice fly on Wednesday against the St. Louis Cardinals that only cleared the infield by no more than 25 feet. While hes struggled to get on-base early in the year, how difficult is it for the opposition to deal with that type of speed? Billy Hamilton is a blazer. I used to have a scout who would have said about Hamilton that "he is so fast; he can outrun a shortwave radio." I am not exactly sure what he meant but it is clear that if anyone can outrun a shortwave radio it is Hamilton. He can fly. Speed is the most useful tool in the major leagues because it helps on offense and defense. On offense, speed like Hamiltons puts pressure on the defense. The infield has to play shallower since they have less time to make the throw to first on a ground ball to retire him. This allows more ground balls to get through the infield as the fielders have less reaction time. Hamilton is nearly impossible to double up on a grounder so there will be times that he will drive in runs and extend innings with productive outs. His speed will prove to be a distraction for every pitcher when he is on base. This will shift the focus off of the hitter causing more mistake pitches to be thrown. Plus, where Hamilton does not have great power, many of his singles will be turned into doubles with a stolen base. He should score more runs than a similar hitting player with far less speed. Outfielders will at times rush throws on fly balls and hits leading to more errors on the defense. Defensively Hamiltons speed will allow him to cover more ground and get to more balls in the outfield. His speed will allow him to compensate for mistakes on reading the ball off the bat and getting a bad jump. This young man has a chance to be a dynamic player. He has a chance to be one of the most exciting players in the game. But as they say, "You cant steal first base." If is to truly impact the game as his tools would allow he is going to have to hit and walk his way to at least a .330 on base percentage. If he can do that, then look out! -- I had the privilege to call the Mets vs Braves game this past Tuesday in Atlanta on the radio. It just so happened that it was the Braves home opener and it coincided with the 40th Anniversary of the Hank Aaron passing Babe Ruths record 714 home runs. It was a moving ceremony. Braves fans love Aaron. He is such a humble, classy, distinguished man. It was an absolute honor to be there and pay tribute to him. There are moments that I feel so genuinely blessed that I get to make a living doing this. I remember April 8, 1974 quite well. I was in my house in Detroit, Michigan with my dad and my brother, Terry, watching the game on TV. I remember watching the ball sail over the wall and jumping up and down celebrating. I remember watching Aaron run the bases and it hit me that he wasnt smiling. He just circled the bases as fans ran around him on the field. I didnt know why. Years later I went to the Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, NY and saw on display numerous letters that had been sent to Aaron during the chase for the record that were full of hate and racial comments. I had no idea what he was enduring. It made me sick. It made me feel sorry for him. I came to find out that Aaron was very isolated during the chase. He had to stay in a different hotel than his teammates. As much as I was hoping for him to break the record, there were many racists who didnt want it to happen. He played through hatred and threats, always believing in himself. But he was robbed of the enjoyment of the achievement. What a shame. Aaron ended his career with 755 home runs. Barry Bonds hit his 756th homer on August 7, 2007. Bonds received hate as well during his chase but it was less about race and more about cheating. Bonds had been linked to BALCO, a laboratory with ties to PEDs. Bonds celebrated with arms to the sky when he hit the ball. He circled the base with a smile and extreme pride. Quite a contrast to the humility of Aaron. In fact, Aaron even had a taped message for Bonds and the fans: "I would like to offer my congratulations to Barry Bonds on becoming baseballs career home run leader. It is a great accomplishment which requires skill, longevity and determination. Throughout the past century, the home run has held a special place in baseball and I have been privileged to hold this record for 33 of those years. I move over now and offer my best wishes to Barry and his family on this historical achievement."My hope today, as it was on that April evening in 1974, is that the achievement of this record will inspire others to chase their own dreams." Hank Aaron is the home run king in my opinion. Yes, Barry Bonds did hit more (762) but his use of PEDs added to his number in some way. I cant completely quantify the impact of the drugs but it was more than the seven home run difference between him and Aaron. Many still believe that Ruth was the best home run hitter ever because he had a better homer per at bat rate. Ruth homered once every 11.76 at bats compared to once every 16.38 at bats for Aaron. There is major flaw in the way people look at Ruth. His performance was enhanced like Bonds performance was enhanced. No he didnt take steroids. Ruth didnt play against all of the elite players at the time. Remember segregation at the time did not allow the black players to play in the major league with the white players. Babe Ruth didnt face the same caliber of pitching that Aaron did. Therefore Ruths performance was enhanced. Hank Aaron is my all-time home run king. He is also one of the greatest all-time role models of perseverance, humility and class. I love my job. Steven Adams Jersey . As they are wont to do, the Spurs made things real easy. The Spurs signed Parker to a multi-year contract extension on Friday, ensuring that the six-time All-Star point guard will be in the fold whether Duncan and Ginobili are able to continue their careers or not. Oklahoma City Thunder Jerseys .28 mph. Logano will start on the front row next to Penske Ford teammate Brad Keselowski, who came in second Friday at 193.099. The Penske drivers swept the top two spots for the second straight race, reversing their qualifying finish in Phoenix a week ago. http://www.authenticthunderauthority.com...er-jersey-c-21/. -- James Harden scored 31 points, including 25 in the second half, and the Houston Rockets dug out of a double-digit, first-half hole to beat the Orlando Magic 101-89 on Wednesday night. Patrick Patterson Jersey . Left-handed reliever Boone Logan agreed to a $16.5 million, three-year contract on Friday, a person familiar with the negotiations told The Associated Press. Custom Oklahoma City Thunder Jerseys .500 ball against teams with winning records, so they needed a huge lift from somebody Tuesday night in a matchup of division leaders.*** EASTERN CONFERENCE ATLANTIC DIVISION SEMI-FINALS (1) Boston Bruins (54-19-9, 117 points) vs. (4) Detroit Red Wings (39-28-15, 93 points) The Bruins and the Red Wings last met in the playoffs in 1957, so simply from a hockey purists standpoint, this series will be worth the price of admission. The Bruins have been dominant this year, and the Wings decimated by injury. Rational analysis would suggest the Bruins have an easy run here. But were not relying on rationale. Random: The Bruins won the 57 series in 5 games, so in their last one series against the Wings, the Bruins are undefeated. Hockey logic suggests that trend would continue. Additionally, Daniel Alfredsson has yet to lose a playoff series as a Red Wing.Coin Toss: BruinsI-Ching: "Success through smallness. Perseverance brings good fortune to the wanderer." This suggests the smaller more creative Wings will beat the big, bad Bruins.Utter Nonsense: The Bruins have sandpaper and grit, which are synonyms and essentially mean that they have players who dont mind fighting and bending the rules. Sandpaper and grit are very popular among NHL managers and coaches. Mostly, they like saying, "sandpaper and grit." Likewise, the hockey media has taken to referencing sandpaper and grit. They like players with sandpaper and grit. Players lacking sandpaper and grit are not the makings of a champion. Whoever invented the Corsi and Fenwick stats needs to develop a quantifiable Sandpaper Quotient, or the term must be banned from the sport. Prediction: Im a Montrealer, and as such morally and physically incapable of favouring anything Boston-related. Wings in 7. ~ (2) Tampa Bay Lightning (46-27-9, 101 points) vs. (3) Montreal Canadiens (46-28-8, 100 points) Montreal is the only Canadian team in the playoffs, and each of the past 6 times that has occurred theyve won the Cup. The Bolts are entering their first playoffs without a French Canadian star player and an injured team MVP in goaltender Ben Bishop. The big question in this series is: Will there be enough Canadian snowbirds in Tampa to give the Habs a home ice advantage on the road? Random: No team has ever won the Stanley Cup after one of its forwards was charged with cocaine possession the week before the playoffs. The Habs are undefeated in the playoffs in years that Pauline Marois PQ government has been defeated in a provincial election.Coin Toss: Habs.I-Ching: "Biting through has success. It is favorable to let justice be administered." Neither team is particularly truculent, but with the return of Brandon Prust to the Habs lineup and George Parros in the press box at the ready, I-Ching likes the Canadiens.Utter Nonsense: Bolts head coach Jon Cooper is a lawyer. No NHL head coach who is a lawyer by trade has ever lost to the Habs in the first round of a playoff series. Prediction: Price gets hot and carries the Habs to Round 2. Habs in 6. ~ METROPOLITAN DIVISION SEMI-FINALS (1) Pittsburgh Penguins (51-24-7, 109 points) vs. (4) Columbus Blue Jackets (43-32-7, 93 points) Tomas Vokun was added to the Pens roster over the weekend, suggesting that the organization has little faith in starting goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury. One would have to believe that if the Penguins dont make a deep run this year, head coach Dan Bylsma would be looking for another job. The Jackets are just happy to have been invited to the dance, are playing with house money, and (insert third cliché here.) An upset, or long series, would seemingly rely on Ryan Johansens coming out party as the games next dominant power forward and Sergei Bobrovskys return to Vezina excellence. Random: The price of a cappuccino in Columbus is 10.59% less than in Pittsburgh. You have to respect that kind of sabermetrics when considering the outcome of a series.Coin Toss: Penguins.I-Ching: "Decrease combined with sincerity brings about supreme good fortune without blame." I-Ching mustve meant "the crease" not decrease. Eastern online divination suggests Bobrovsky outplays Fleury, with the latter again to be blamed for the Pens misfortunes in the second season.Utter Nonsense: No one thought that in a sport dominated by misogynistic locker room sentiment, a team nicknamed the BJs would be a bad idea? Prediction: Bob returns to form, and Ohio hockey goes to Round 2 for the first time ever. Jackets in 7. ~ (2) New York Rangers (45-31-6, 96 points) vs. (3) Philadelphia Flyers (42-30-10) Broadway versus Broad Street. This series promises to be one of the most entertaining, as these decades-old rivals meet in Round 1. Ultimately, in the series (as with most really) comes down to goaltending. The Rangers will be relying desperately on the play of Henrik Lundqvist, who has looked mortal this year. The Flyers, as always, have goaltending issues, and could probably start the ghost of Pelle Lindbergh and still have a better chance than the suspect duo of Steve Mason and Ray Emery. The series will most certainly miss John Tortorella. Hes the Jim Schoenfeld of his generation. Random: Martin St-Louis has never lost a playoff series while with the Rangers. Craig Berube is undefeated in the post-season as a head coach. What? How can one reconcile these two contradictory yet indisputable facts?Coin Toss: Rangers.I-Ching: "The Taming Power of the Great. Perseverance furthers. Not eating at home brings good fortune. It furthers one to cross the great water." Well, looks like I-Ching sees these teams crossing the Hudson a few times before its over, ultimately going 7 games, with the road team the victor. Flyers go to Round 2.Utter Nonsense: Lundqvist once played Guns n Roses "Sweet Child O Mine" on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon. No goalie that has performed a GnR tune on NBC has ever lost to the Flyers in a 7 game series. Prediction: Hard to argue with I-Ching here. Flyers in 7. ~ WESTERN CONFERENCE CENTRAL DIVISION SEMI-FINALS (1) Colorado Avalanche (52-22-8, 112 points) vs. (4) Minnesota Wild (43-27-12, 98 points) Colorado is the surprise one seed in the West, finishing strong under first-year head coach Patrick Roy. Roy was at home in the playoffs as a player, winning four Cups and three Conn Smythe Trophies, more than any other player. His team seems to have appropriated his temperament and passion, a scaryy notion for opponents.dddddddddddd Minnesota is the team that money bought, still trying to reap the rewards of signing Zach Parise and Ryan Suter two summers ago. Their goaltending currently relies on Ilya Bryzgalov having one last good run in the tank. Hell be back on the lecture circuit soon. Random: Dany Heatley, acquired by the Wild in the off-season, is having his worst season as a pro, with some suggesting his time in the league could be done. This is wonderful news for fans in Ottawa and Edmonton, who took Heatleys shunning of their communities quite hard a few years ago. What does this have to do with this matchup? Nothing really. Thats why this is the "Random" section. I explained this in the introduction. Did you even read the introduction? Coin Toss: Avs.I-Ching: "The movement of heaven is full of power. Thus the superior man makes himself strong and untiring. Changing Lines: Changing yang at the bottom means hidden dragon. Do not act." The movement of heaven suggests the Avs are on a roll not to be stopped, and the superior man is obviously Roy (just ask him). I-Ching sees this series coming down to the third and fourth lines, giving the Avs depth the advantage. Utter Nonsense: The best burger Ive ever had in my life was at the Crowne Royal hotel in Denver. Ive never been to Minnesota, but I doubt their burgers measure up. However, Betty Whites character Rose Nylund from The Golden Girls is from Minnesota, suggesting this series may go longer than I believe. Prediction: Roy in the playoffs is good for the game. Avs in 5. ~ (2) St. Louis Blues (52-23-7, 111 points) vs. (3) Chicago Blackhawks (46-21-5, 107 points) I suppose this series is the one that many are most looking forward to, but my reaction to the matchup is: Meh. St. Louis, under Ken Hitchcock, plays the kind of hockey that ruins hockey: An over-coached, systems based, reduce chances game that makes Jacques Lemaires teams look like the 80s Oilers. Ryan Miller, playing for a contract, will be something to watch, however. Chicago is a little banged up, having rested Jonathan Toews and Patrick Kane down the stretch. No team has repeated as champions since the late 90s Red Wings, suggesting the Hawks may be in for more of a challenge than they might expect. Including the Olympics, many of the Hawks best players have played a lot of hockey in the past 16 months. Random: At the beginning of the season, Hitchcock ordered that the Blues no longer celebrate by fist bumping along the length of the bench as most teams do. In the regular season, this was an exercise in team before player, the collective over the individual. But in the post-season, when emotions arent just running high, but rather an intangible asset, how will this micromanaging affect the Blues players?Coin Toss: Blues.I-Ching: "The Well. The town may be changed, but the well cannot be changed. It neither decreases nor increases. They come and go and draw from the well. If one gets down almost to the water and the rope does not go all the way, or the jug breaks, it brings misfortune."Ya, I dont know what that means. Utter Nonsense: Ryan Miller is married to actress Noureen DeWulf, who appeared in Ghosts of Girlfriends Past with Matthew McConaughey. McConaughey won an Oscar this year for his role in Dallas Buyers Club, and was critically lauded for his performance in HBOs True Detective. These facts suggest DeWulfs husband will win a Stanley Cup. Prediction: Hitchcock is part of the destruction of up-tempo hockey. I cant pick the Blues. Hawks in 6. ~ PACIFIC DIVISION SEMI-FINALS (1) Anaheim Ducks (54-20-8, 116 points) vs. (4) Dallas Stars (40-31-11, 91 points) Anaheim, since replacing Randy Carlyle with Bruce Boudreau as head coach, plays the kind of hockey we all want to see: Offensive, creative, and relying more on the players than a system. We need more Boudreaus. Any team that boasts Corey Perry, Ryan Getzlaf, and Teemu Selanne, has the ability to challenge for the Cup. Dallas. Well, Dallas has Tim Thomas, the strangest right wing quote machine, back in the playoffs after a year spent away from the game, building bomb shelters and reading Ayn Rand. But, the team squeaked into the playoffs, and despite the rise of Tyler Seguin and Jamie Benn, seems a few years from being the dominant force that GM Jim Nill is intent on building. Random: If you dont like Selanne, you dont like hockey. It would be great for the game if the Ducks made a bit of a run. Coin Toss: Ducks.I-Ching: "Contemplation. The ablution has been made, but not yet the offering. Full of trust they look up to him."See, even Internet I-Ching likes Teemu. Utter Nonsense: Boudreau had a minor role in Slap Shot. No head coach of a California-based NHL team who has appeared in a Paul Newman film has ever lost a playoff series against a Texas-based team if that series began on a weekday. Prediction: Teemu plays like hes 23, and takes the Stars out quick so he can rest like hes 43. Ducks in 4. ~ (2) San Jose Sharks (51-22-9, 111 points) vs. (3) Los Angeles Kings (46-28-8, 100 points) This is perhaps the most compelling series of the first round. The forever playoff-challenged Sharks against the surprising recent champion Kings. San Jose just cant seem to ever find that playoff gear. If they dont go to the conference finals this year, it could be time for a rebuild. Even more surprising is the fact that somehow the curmudgeonly Kings coach Darryl Sutter has become an entertaining quote machine. Where was that in Calgary? Sutter has this team playing well, and if goaltender Jonathan Quick can regain his 11 form, the Kings could go deep. Random: See what I did above? Did you see that? This is exactly what I was railing against in the introduction. What kind of nonsense is that, "if goaltender Jonathan Quick can regain his 11 form, the Kings could go deep"? Of course if their goalie gets hot they could go deep. If any of a number of things happen, any team could go deep. I cant believe people get paid for this.Coin Toss: Kings.I-Ching: "Dispersion. Success. The king approaches his temple." Goodbye San Jose. Utter Nonsense: Brent Burns wears awesome suits. Sharks should win on that fact alone. Prediction: No self-respecting hockey team should wear teal. Kings in 7. ' ' '

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