Thursday, October 28, 2010


***THE GAME***
I said yesterday I would watch some of the 1st game of the Series because I wanted to see Lee & Lincecum. If I wanted to see pitching like that, I would have watched a rerun of a couple of Yankee games. Lincecum was okay, but certainly not overpowering. Lee just didn't have it. The Giants ranked 17th in the majors in runs scored, but Lee made them look like all-stars.

Something really has to be done about the designated hitter rule. You can use the DH in AL parks, but not in NL parks. This kind of puts both teams at a disadvantage, depending on where the game is played. The sports analysts always seem to make a big deal out of the fact that the NL team doesn't have a a bona fide DH on their roster, but I never hear too much about the fact that the AL team has to put someone in the field who really can't play there anymore, or weaken a lineup that put them in the Series in the first place. Last night Vlad Guerrero played right field like he was wearing swim fins and welding gloves.
Besides giving a team the ability to score more runs, I've always liked the DH because it kept players like Guerrero and Matsui in baseball longer. It also helped starting pitchers stay in the game longer, because you didn't have to pinch-hit for them when the team had a rally going.

As long as we're in a criticizing mood, let's talk about the "double-switch." I never understood this NL penchant for moving players around like this. You start the game with, I assume, your 8 best position players. Your team falls behind and your pitcher seems to have lost it, so you change pitchers and replace a position player that you have already inferred is inferior to the man he replaced. If you don't want your pitcher to hit, pinch hit for him. Keep your 'best' players in the game. Use your "inferior" player for just one at bat instead of two or more, plus gambling that he won't hurt you in the field. Yes, I've heard all the arguments for eliminating the DH, none of them carrying much weight.
1) It keeps a reliever in the game longer. No it doesn't. Check the box scores, relievers only last one inning or less, just like in the AL.
2) You get bench players in the game more often, keeping them sharp. Yeah, that's what any manager wants to do: give .220 hitters more at bats. If "being sharp" was all it took to hit better, they probably would have been starting in the first place.
3) It keeps your lineup from having any weak spots. Right, except for the .220 hitter you put in the game. Plus, why not wait till you see what the situation is when the pitcher is scheduled to hit? If there are men on base, and you need to sacrifice, put in a bunter to pinch hit. If there's no one on, put in a power hitter instead.
I can't win any argument about this (even if I think I have), so let's just put down as an American League bias.


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