Saturday, October 02, 2004


I just want to get to 50 wins.  That's all.  And the D-Backs were so close.  Yes, Jake Peavy just made us look plain awful last night for the second time, but then he gave up a mistake to Shea Hillenbrand and just like that, the 1-0 deficit turned into a 2-1 lead.

And Michael Gosling gave it right back the next inning on a pinch hit homerun.  Final score, 3-2 Padres.

I just want to get to 50 wins.  Did I mention that?  But in any case, praise here for two folks:

1.  Michael Gosling.  Unlike all those other pitchers who've attempted to fill the, well, 3 through 5 slots (especially the #5 slot), Gosling has pitched solidly, and hasn't truly been lit up (even his bad outing wasn't Gonzalez-like bad).  Based on the (limited) stuff he's shown so far, he's got to be pencilled in for a starting spot in 2005.

2.  Shea Hillenbrand.  Yes, he doesn't walk much.  Yes, his fielding isn't much.  Yes, he has exhibited a disturbing tendency to ground out into inning-ending double plays this year.  But no D-Back player has a higher offensive VORP or batting average.  Hitting above .300 is a definite accomplishment.  On top of that, he has not complained (publicly) about the anemic team that is the 2005 Diamondbacks.  Don't get me wrong -- if they sign Richie Sexson, Chad Tracy is definitely the future at 3rd base, and Shea and his arbitration-eligible contract is not worth retaining, but at least he didn't fail this season.

Speaking of Sexson, Bob McManaman has an article in today's Republic about how Sexson is the first of many dominoes for the D-Backs.  It has one of the funniest quotations of the year:

"If Richie's not coming back, I'm not coming back either"

This from a member of the D-Backs pitching staff.  Dude, whoever you are, the D-Backs don't want you.  I mean, the article says that it wasn't Randy Johnson who made the comment, but Randy's the only pitcher that makes sense coming from.  The rest of the staff is either a) too young to have any say in where they go, or b) too interchangeable for the D-Backs to care.  But who do you think it was?  Choate?  Randolph?

Finally, congratulations to Ichiro Suzuki, breaking George Sisler's record for hits.  258 and counting.

Did I say 258? I meant 259. Oh, well -- it'll be 265 by Sunday...
Going by this story, my bet is the comment came from Matt Mantei. "I would like to come back if we're going to compete," he said. "But if we're not going to compete, then no. It's up to them -- the route they take this winter." And what makes you think we want you and your 11.81 ERA back in 2005, Mr. Mantei?

Jim - But It's a DRY Heat...
Ah, thanks.

I'd completely forgotten about Matt Mantei. Or perhaps "repressed" is a better verb.
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