This week only I am switching with BenFred. I have today, he will take your questions and comments on Friday. Come on down!
Two big things: One, O'Reilly will be a big addition to the first unit, in particular with his ability to win draws. Expect more offensive zone possession time. Two, there will be two viable units instead of one, thanks to all the new forwards. That will help immensely as well. But the coaching staff still needs to fit the pieces together and coax quick puck and player movement from the group.
It's a thought, although his wildness in that role has been disconcerting. There will lots of discussion with Carlos after this season about how best to prepare for next season and for what role. In part due to injuries, this season has been a big step back for him. He is capable of so much better.
Small thing, but in a tribute to Monty Python and the Holy Grail and to protest student apathy at the games, we bought a ticket for a shrub and took it to all the games -- placing it in the front row at Hearnes. We thought we were so funny back then . . .
One, it might well be Mikolas if Shildt prefers the veteran. Of course, it also depends on who he has to use down the stretch. Same for the Brewers. But I'd the Cardinals would have the starter edge and the Brewers would have the bullpen edge. And we could see a LOT of relievers in the play-in game, regardless of which teams make it. Single elimination lead to ultra aggressive strategy.
And a 90 mph fastball would have been a great fastball back in the day. Now the game is full of power pitchers reaching back and letting it fly. Hard to do that for three hours.
If Allen craps out, I would expect the Blues to get another veteran in goal to work with Husso. It would take some amazing work by Husso to get that assignment for a team spending to the salary cap. It could happen, but we're talking about a guy still looking to play his first real NHL game. What's left of Donaldson figures to hit the market, but has become a reclamation project. Maybe the Cards take that flyer, but I don't see the team investing much in it . I can't see the Cards moving Fowler and his contract before Opening Day. Who wants him? And it would take a lot to get DeWitt just to eat the last three years of that deal. O"Neill needs more time in the minors to see if he can make more contact. Martinez is a better option, despite his limited range. And, yes, Flaherty could be the Opening Day guy unless Mikolas closes out impressively.
Yes, Odom was lucky to escape the Purdue game with a victory. But the season is not over. The Tigers are 3-0 and they are finally making real headway in the local recruiting market. The Georgia and Alabama games will likely get ugly fast, but Mizzou could still reach a middling bowl game if it can beat the teams it should beat on the remaining schedule. I'm nowhere near ready to call for coaching search.
There were a few hard throwers, but not seven or eight guys throwing high 90s on every team. And a lot of old-time pitchers washed out and you never heard about it. They didn't have big, long-term money and clubs just pitched them until their arms gave out. Remember, baseball had a LOT more minor league teams and franchises just burned through hurlers. It's a myth that old-time pitchers were more durable.
He knows how of his teammates lacked his power and his durability.
I see Posey and Molina as different cases. Posey has been a bigger offensive player, of course, but Molina is the superior defensive player and handler of pitchers with more longevity behind the plate. I don't see as them as an either/or cases.
With Gomber, he really fell off this month (10 runs and 15 hits allowed in nine innings) after very strong August. So I don't know where his game is at as far as match-ups go. As for Sanchez, he has certainly has had his ups and downs, but he has been fairly steady overall this season.
Yeah, I scratched my head when the goal was set at 90 victories and trying to get in. I mentioned that as a low bar to set given the resources the franchise has. Like BenFred, I was glad to hear the skipper committed to hitting a higher target. Question is, will the management give Shildt what he needs to win titles.
I thought that was a tough call to go against the home team, but the one angle did show the ball loose at the last second, then hitting the ground while loose. I wouldn't be thrilled if I was a Purdue fan, but it was a understandable call.
After what happened with Atlanta back in the day, I hesitate to set a won-loss mark necessary to reach that play-in game. Crazy stuff happens at the end. Best case scenario has the Dodgers beating down the Rockies in this series and to make it easier. I like the ESPN percentages that are updated daily. That gives you can idea of how the odds change day to day.
Indeed. The original stuffed Antler was named Curtis, I believed. Got kidnapped and rescued back in the day. Good times!
He is an excellent prospect pressed into action earlier than expected in a role that wasn't expected. So it's a bit early to write him off as a failure.
Thomas 95 percent, Kyrou 30 percent, Schmaltz 80 percent. That could change. I see Thomas as the No. 4 center and Schmaltz as a spare D-man who would have to clear waivers to go down to San Antonio. He is near-term injury protection as Gunnarsson works his way back. At some point somebody gets traded. As for Kyrou, he is eligible to play minor league hockey this season (unlike Thomas) and the team wants him working in offensive situations. If he made the Blues, it would likely be on the fourth line unless at least one veteran winger got hurt. So starting in the AHL and then rising to the NHL as needed this season would make a lot of sense for him.
That's a point a lot of people made after that game. This shows the value in having different types of pitchers -- left, right, power pitchers guys with curveballs and/or change ups. Heck, a knuckleballer thrown in would really be nice but they hardless exist. If batters see guy after guy bringing it 98 miles per hour, they zero in. If they see lots of different speeds, that can keep them out of sorts.