In fairness, one of us was going to write it that day. It could have been any of the three of us here at that time, and as a group we all agreed that it would be strongest coming from a columnist, not one of the beat writers. I would have been just as eager/happy to cover the topic -- and I would hope that I would have done as well, though that is in the eye of the beholder. And maybe I would have stumbled. Don't confuse the decision to have one voice speak on the matter in the paper to that being the only voice willing. We just thought it was best to handle the topic fairly and with one strong voice, not a chorus. There will be other times when the rest of us can cover a topic, whether that's the topic or there's something else that arrives.
a) I felt a strong pushback. I'm not sure what more you'd like to see, in public or in print.
b) His teammates were supportive. They respected his comments, his standing with his family.
Also, come to think of it, I had my say in this chat. Didn't need to also put it in print.
Absolutely. Benjamin Hochman is burnishing a column on this topic for Tuesday's paper.
Sierra turns an E3 into a two-base error. So there's that.
Excuse me, I mean NOOOOOOOO!.
Great question. It's going to be fascinating. We're going to see some GMs put starting pitchers on the DL right around the time of interleague play and likely massage their roster with the extra player they need for the appropriate league, and then oh! hey! look who is back in time for that next start -- the pitcher. We're going to see the 10-day DL be used around those two-game series that are bookended by off days. That will allow them to backdate a starter's DL time, and then get through the series, have that count four days of it, and the oh! hey! look who is back a few days later to make a start. This is going to be a way for teams to control innings for young pitchers without costing them a roster spot. You watch. MLB is going to have to be extra vigilant to see how the GMs work-around it.
He is playing closer to second base, and that has worked to increase his range to that side. He was better going to his right last year, and Oquendo and Ozzie Smith showed him how to cheat left to make him better going to either side. What we've seen from him is a truer arm. For sure. He can extend through the throw and that's giving him more control, more accuracy, and more zip. That also means he has more time. Last year, Diaz was shading himself and playing the ball in such a way to hide the weakness of his arm. (Remember he had a hand injury that led to weaknesses in his forearm.) That's not the case this spring. He has arm health and arm strength and he can play without having to hide it.
He's expected back in Jupiter today.
It's time to talk to the athletes. Stay tuned for video.
To be determined. Not all of the evidence has been entered into the argument. Some of it appears to depend on the WBC. What is clear is they are going to choose between the two, and once Martinez makes that last appearance of his in the WBC then they'll engineer it from there. Either he or Wainwright could easily be on turn for that opener.
I'll ask the media types around me.
J.J. Bailey, KMOV.com: The manager will choose Wainwright.
Benjamin Hochman, Post-Dispatch: Matheny will go with Wainwright. Hochman would go with Martinez.
(Yes, he said that in third person.)
Chris Hrabe, KMOX: Jose Martinez?
I get the sense that people want some Reality TV-like throw down, some made-for-anecdote argument that hasn't leaked out yet and thus explains what happened last year. There may have been a few moments like that, but not that got out -- and certainly not as we were reporting on it. It was more ... simmering than seething. There were players like Mike Leake, Randal Grichuk, and Kolten Wong who wondered where they fit in the clubhouse structure -- and where they stood with the manager. There players like Stephen Piscotty and Michael Wacha who were asked to be more leadership oriented -- and yet they felt like they had enough work to do just to get on the roster or into a starting role. There was the established players like Holliday, Carpenter, Molina, and Wainwright who had there way of doing things -- the success to prove it -- and yet, in there words, had to adjust to some new personalities who just had other ways to go about getting to the same destination. They were a team in transition, and not everyone was on the same page. And I'll add this: There were some areas where there was an absence of trust. Some players couldn't trust that they would be in the lineup the next day. Jose Oquendo's absence meant some players didn't have the confidante who had been there everyday with them, and that brought another dimension to it. There were personalities, that didn't mesh sure, and approaches that didn't mesh, yes, but it was just off, not poisonous.
It's Fryer. It was always Fryer. It will be Fryer. That was obvious when they signed him.
See it all the time. Daniel Descalso did it. Jason Heyward did it with the Cardinals in less time than a few months. Jon Jay did it. Twice. Matt Holliday did it last offseason. Matt Carpenter did it a few offseasons ago. Stephen Piscotty famously did it over the course of an offseason and then needed a few months into the season at Class AAA to feel comfortable with it. Yes, you're right: They have the time. They do this for a living, and they don't have to put on their flair and report for their shift Chotchkie's. Their swing is their job, day in day out, off season, in season, and also they are elite athletes. Muscle memory and fast twitch is what sets them apart. They make adjustments are quicker to have them set.
Alcantara. He can't reach his ceiling -- and he is 6-foot-4.
More chances to interview people. Cuts are happening at this point. So bear with the time. We'll report them in a few minutes. And maybe get a video interview here.
Lance Lynn throwing tomorrow on the back fields. Tyler Lyons set for live BP on Thursday. Marco Gonzales will only throw live BP from here till end of spring training.