That is the change that they must be asked to make. Hence, my question.
Which is why they should try not to make it worse.
Easier, sure. Ethical, no. Accountable, absolutely not. You can find that stuff elsewhere.
He was a part of it. The metrics were improving before he arrived. The real jump was Gyorko at third.
Great question. Not sure how you would organize the fans behind that choice. Jersey sales? Marketing response? It seems like the team gets to control the "narrative" threads here by choosing who appears on billboards, on tickets, in commercials, in sales and bobbleheads and everything like.
I suppose it's also a trick question.
In reality, neither does. Production should.
I think this is an interesting tug-of-war going on in the game right now, and the Cardinals are in the swirls of it. We're seeing players get to the majors younger and younger (and, yes, as a result cheaper and cheaper), and what that means is that they are getting fewer and fewer at-bats or innings or games in the field in the minors. I have talked to several scouts about this, and whether or not this is the reason we've seen such an erosion of the fundamentals. Throwing to the right base? Well, how often as an outfielder who arrives in the majors at 20 really done that? Oh, he was a first baseman or a shortstop until last year? Well, then it's even fewer. You can see examples of this all over the game. Players leaning more on their athleticism and their "gut" without any real experience to inform that gut or guide that athleticism. Baserunning? Yeah, well, it takes practice, and it takes game-speed practice, and if you want to get game-speed practice it's got to come in games, and if those games are coming at the majors then you're going to see mistakes.
Which brings us back to the manager and the coaches. In a past chat, I've compared how the Mizzou football and basketball programs of the past for the difference between a development program and a play program. I get the sense some time that the Cardinals want to straddle that fence. They hired Matheny, in part, because of his willingness to grow and nurture young players, and yet they still talk about how the majors isn't a place for development. Sorry. No. The majors is now the place for development. And the coaching staff must reflect that. It's no longer enough to scout and maintain and prepare. Coaches and managers must actively have ongoing education and development for players so that they don't see a plateau as soon as they arrive in the majors. That's the modern game. And the best teams are the ones who can take young, learning players and sharpen them quickly.
He did, if not in word then in deed. Colby Rasmus had been marginalized, and the Cardinals realized they had a diminishing asset on their hands if teams called and their manager wouldn't play him. He had a strong relationship with ownership and front office. Lots of mutual respect.
The lack of crisp, familiar, Cardinals-signature play. That frustrates him.
The front office is constantly visiting the minor-league affiliates and they have access to all the games via their computers and cameras at the sites. They are always watching or visiting.
I'm not sure that's possible. With the fans, do you mean? I wasn't really aware that he had one for the fans, not that they could really latch onto.
They usually do, if for no other reason to gauge interest, if there is any. Waivers aren't nearly as dramatic as Twitter makes them out to be.
It's losing. Moreover, it's losing in a way they don't recognize. I think I've gone off on this description in past chats, so I'll try to keep it to a minimum today. The Cardinals have, for the better part of two seasons now, not played a brand of baseball they recognize. There has been a drift in fundamentals, an erosion of run prevention that has proved costly and left a lot of them looking around and seeing a team they don't recognize, or rather results they don't recognize. That's not appealing to anyone, and it leads to a heightened level of frustration beyond just the wins-losses because they are irritated by how they're losing. That is abundantly clear. So, it's not the personalities in the clubhouse. It's the personality of the team on the field.
Sorry you feel that way. We'll try to do better next week.
Good look at the splits. I got the sense from what I've seen that he's been more aggressive with strikes. Now that could mean that he's using secondary pitches in a way he wasn't before. A lot of times that's simply a guy going to the FSL and knowing that it's hard for a hitter to do damage there. I'll give you an example: A hitter is going to hit a fly ball there in the FSL, not a home run, and thus the pitcher can go to a different area (elevate?) than he would in the Midwest League or Texas League. That's a rather freeing experience for a player when he knows the kind of pitch that gets hammered in one league could be an out in that new league. But I'll continue to ask around. Could also be a shift on the rubber. Allows him to get access to another part of the plate. That happens as well.