Nerd of Batman, sports, logic, objectivity, Star Trek, personal enlightenment, Lincoln, the Rays, psychology, mic dropping. Kind've in that order.
I'm the ALL-IN guy because I seem to recall more of those attempts failing than actually attaining their goals.
In the case of this year's Tigers - because of the career and contract points of their core - I've made myself that ALL-IN guy.
That's why I think it's Papelbon or bust for their bullpen woes.
Sure, they can get a bit kinky in the short term, perhaps by patching together the 7th and then going Smyly, Benoit in the 8th and 9th. Or if you want MORE exotic, I offer, but don't necessarily support, Alvarez starts (heh, a 24 year old free agent, no one wanted), Porcello gets to try his hand harnessing mid 90s in the 7th, then Benoit remains in his thrive-worthy 8th inning role, and Smyly closes.
***Forgot the Rondon component of this. Yes, this is from last night***
Just offer the Phillies their choice of Castellanos or Garcia, make them pay some of his exorbitant salary and know that you've got a proven playoff closer in your grasp.
But, if not Papelbon, then who? I prefer a closer who's saved games successfully before, or presently, but if the Tigers choose, in my opinion, the riskier, albeit cheaper route of acquiring a guy with bullpen success and 'stuff' but not necessarily closing experience, let me offer soon-to-be free agent Jesse Crain of the White Sox.
But, damn, if the Tigers go this route, and it doesn't work out...then you're back to exotic.
If a Papelbon-type is acquired, then you ride with him all the way, and you remain in confidence even if things got a bit shaky for a couple outings.
If you consume the Kool-Aid I pass around when I throw WAR stats out, Crain has a rather remarkable one of 2.4, which is tied for 7th among ALL American League hurlers.
I like to think I see the broadest picture possible.
Lose the battle to win the war.
Rest the strain now, so there's no tear down the road.
I acknowledge that professional athletes are some of the most ruthlessly competitive people you'll ever come across (like Jon Voight's character said in Transformers 'losing for these guys isn't really an option), but even with MLB having an extra wild card in the game - making single games slightly more important than before - I can't justify not grooving fastballs (like the one Cal Ripken got in Seattle in his final All Star Game) to end an extra innings game that's dragging on for days.
Not in June anyway.
Yea, yea, I know you can't win a division in the beginning and mid months of a season, but you CAN lose it.
If was managing the A's or Yankees last night (or Jays, Rangers, Mets or Marlins from the weekend) once we've hit the 13th inning I'm probably having a chat with my team and telling them if they score in that half inning, we're throwing batting practice to end this deadlock.
We'll pick up that one game elsewhere in the season, but I can't keep blowing through the bullpen putting upcoming games at risk. Baseball obviously isn't as physical and as tiresome as some other sports that were to go multiple overtimes, but I don't care how athletic you are, it's like how driving all day wears you the f%ck out. Standing in the field those extra innings, a DH just sitting and sitting and sitting. It's astonishing how doing NOTHING can be so fatiguing. Fatigue leads to injuries. Injuries cost wins. At least conventional wisdom would say so.
The Jays won in 18 on Saturday and didn't go into any more of a nosedive than they've been in all year. The Marlins and Mets are terrible so it's hard to guage the effects of their 18 inning affair.
There was an SI article earlier this spring that helped bring to this belief that there's just no reason before whatever you define as 'late' in the season to be playing 14, 15, 18(!) inning games. If I find it, I'll certainly share.
The A's - my preseason pick to win the AL West - started hot, cooled, then have recently stormed past the Rangers in the division. They've won 108 games in a calendar year. Last night's win over the Yankees could catapult the A's, a fiery young team, onto another rampant winning streak. Or they could've lost their best offensive player, Josh Donaldson, for a few days with a strain. A strain is what Twitter said ailed Donaldson late last night.
Perhaps I'm just being a curmudgeon. The A's and Yankees actually didn't devastate their 'pens, but only because Hiroki Kuroda and Jarrod Parker each went a splendid 8 innings.
Donaldson is probably OK, and no season destroying losing streaks are likely to ensue for either of these teams, but 18 innings is way too much baseball.
Vernon Wells, Kevin Youkilis and Travis Hafner were a combined 0 for 23 with 9 K's
The A's Adam Rosales entered the game 'late' as a PH/2B and scored himself a golden sombrero in his four at bats.
Both teams threw exactly 255 pitches. 510 together.
.Some people truly obsess over their hatred of Chris Brown. Which I don't get. I'm conscious that his incident with Rihanna is something that some will never forgive, and it's an important cause for many against domestic abuse, but boy some just always seek an opportunity to scorn a guy. I think with CB, leave him alone, he's got the rope to himself.
On the contrary, some people can 1000% compartmentalize his abuse incident AND mentally muzzle his subsequent behavior, which could never be defined as contrite or endearing.
I don't get those people either.
I really have no strong opinion on Chris Brown. Make a good song, fine I'll listen. Act like a jerk at some awards show or have some cocksure appearance in your seat at NBA game, I'll simply just ignore you.
But...kinda cool to see Andre Drummond abuse (in a basketball sense) CB in the lane. Posterization coming to you soon!