Tuesday, August 03, 2004

Three Weeks, Three Questions (Up The Middle Edition) 

A day late, but oh well...

Three Weeks

The Week That Was

After a slightly hope-inducing 4-game split at Houston, the D-Backs imploded at Colorado, getting swept. They were outscored (dropping high/low scores) 6.4 to 2.8. Urgh.

The Two Weeks That Will Be

The D-Backs host Florida and Atlanta for 3 games apiece, get Monday off, then travel to Montreal and Shea Stadium for 3 games apiece against the Expos and the Mets.

Every time I think that it's been a hard year to be a Diamondbacks fan, I think about being an Expos fan. I clicked on the "tickets" icon on the D-Backs schedule at their website to make sure next Tuesday's game against the Expos was actually in Montreal and decided to see what the "Best Available" seats for a pair of tickets were for the game. Section 102, right behind home plate, Row TT, which appeared to be no more than a few rows from the front. Oh, and they were $40 CDN apiece ($35 for children), or maybe $28 American. I admit that this is a game with little inherent interest if you're an Expos fan, but still, that's ridiculous... Actually, I take that back. I think Randy's up in the rotation that night. That should be of not insignificant interest to a long-time Expos fan.

Three Questions -- Up The Middle

1. Who's Our Catcher? Well, that was a big thumb to the eye(s) of Juan Brito, Robbie Hammock, and Craig Ansmann. Koyie Hill, whom Rob from 6-4-2 was less than impressed by, a AAA catcher who'd played exactly 3 games at the Major League level, was designated as the D-Backs starting catcher upon his arrival. I would've like to have seen Ansmann up here for a few games, too... perhaps in September.
2. Who's Our Second Baseman? OK, it's not like I like Roberto Alomar this year. But the clear advantage Hairston had over Alomar at the beginning of the year has nearly disappeared. Hairston's VORP is 7.4, just a shade over Alomar's 4.8, and in nearly twice as many plate opportunities. Indeed, Hairston has 3 Win Shares to Alomar's 2, but Hairston's Win Shares Above Average is -3, while Alomar's got a WSAA of 0. I'm not saying that Alomar should be starting; clearly, we need to find out whether Hairston can learn to play in the bigs. But next spring should set up a battle between Hairston and Matt Kata much more interesting than we would've expected in early June.
3. Who's Our Center Fielder? So, Terrero was expected to move to left with Gonzo's surgery. But with Finley traded, does Terrero move to center? Does Bautista or McCracken (I doubt either of them, but you never know)?

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