It’s about time.
Finally, after months of waiting for baseball…Spring Training games are here! So…how did we look?
Well…um…it’s definitely Spring Training. Misplayed balls, ill-advised decisions, and wind-assisted antics aside…not TOO bad. Ludwick hit a homer, Mather looks to be swingin’ determined lumber, and we DID score a lot of runs. Of course, it’s just a Spring Training game…the first game at that…so no conclusions can be drawn at this point.
But I do have a few items of concern to watch out for:
1. Did Tyler Greene get the memo? I like this guy – watched him play quite a while in Springfield – but wasn’t he supposed to do something about that “hole-ier than thou” swing of his? He looked an awful lot like the Tyler Greene we saw at the plate in 2009. He has a live bat, but just seems all outta whack when it comes to stability, consistency, and just flat-out knowing when to swing and when not to swing. He looks like he’s lost and off-balance at the plate half the time.
2. No-no to the Knuckleballer. Let’s just ticket Zink for AAA now and forget about it. When I heard we signed a knuckleballer, I thought, “Okay…could be cool. Be nice to have one on our side for a change.” In the words of Nick the Stick via Gooldy, “To hell with that.” Zink couldn’t find the plate with that wind-blown junker. He sure as hell didn’t have any trouble finding bats, though…and nearly a few heads as hitters bailed outta the batter’s box. Plus, after watching Pags today, I don’t like the idea of Yadi throwin’ himself around back there during the season trying to snag those floating conundrums.
3. Didn’t we ditch Joe Thurston? Ruben Gotay’s bone-headed, over-aggressive plays at third (like the throw wide of first after the baserunner had already arrived, had time to pull out a deck of cards, and play solitaire) coupled with his pesky, insignificant success at the plate in a wild and whacky loss, are oddly reminiscent of Joe Thurston’s roster-dragging ability to hang onto the big league squad last season. It would be just our luck if Gotay hit like .475 this Spring and elbowed his way onto the bench. Is he another Joe Thurston? I don’t know…after all, from what I’m seeing on message boards, several Cards fans are poised to crown Lugo as the 2010 Whipping Boy. Let’s hope he doesn’t have to contend with Gotay for the title.
4. At what point do we teach minor leaguers to take charge in the field? All I’m gonna’ say about this is this: I hate…absolutely hate…seeing fly balls hit the ground between two players because they simply haven’t learned to communicate by now. See: Anderson/Hamilton. Oops.
Ah well…it don’t mean much…it’s just one Spring Training game…but what fun would the season be without a little criticism, right? At least there’s this…we have so many promising outfield candidates scheduled for AAA this year, at least we’ll have a few qualified backups to reinforce us in case of injury.
Oh…final thought….”Nick the Stick Cometh”….hmmmmm….discuss.