Rick Knapp out as Tigers pitching coach

The last time the Tigers gave up more than 51 runs in a five-game stretch, the year was 1996, and Detroit’s pitching staff was on its way to a 6.38 ERA for the season, an incredible number to consider nowadays.

This team wasn’t headed anywhere near that. This team has Justin Verlander, Max Scherzer, Joaquin Benoit and Jose Valverde. If it’s right, it has the chance to be the best pitching staff in the division. As it was, it had a 4.89 ERA aside from Verlander.

Rick Knapp, rightly or wrongly, took the blame for that. And when Jim Leyland called the performances this week “unacceptable,” it turned out to be a forewarning of what came down Sunday.

“Was there any signs? Well, the 15 runs last night, that was a big sign,” Knapp told MLB Network Radio Sunday evening. “And the 16 runs against the Mets, that was a bad sign. You know, it’s one of those deals where you feel like, if I had to be in their situation and maybe in their pressured shoes, that I might consider to make a change if I was the owner or the manager or the general manager. I can’t answer that.

“I came at it every day like it was Day 1, you know? There’s no difference. I put the hours in. I put the time in. I mean, there’s only so much waking hours that you have to put in. Wasn’t meant to be. That’s just the way it is.”

In the end, it’s hard not to see Knapp at least somewhat as a fall guy in a situation where it’s difficult to hone the blame on one particular person. His replacement as pitching coach, Jeff Jones, worked alongside Knapp with a lot of the pitchers in what has been described as a very good relationship. Together, they assembled a lot of the scouting reports, and a lot of the individual work.

The struggles of Max Scherzer and Rick Porcello, in particular, had to be frustrating. When Scherzer looked as lost mechanically on Saturday as he has been at any point since being sent down to Triple-A Toledo last year, it had to hurt. A year ago, Scherzer said he knew the mechanical change he needed to make, but just had to do it in a different setting. That doesn’t sound as obvious right now.

Porcello said the other day that he had become too predictable and needed to mix things up, and tried to do that Sunday in an outing that yielded three wild pitches and three hit batters, but also seven quality innings in what looked like a bizarre pitching performance.

It’s hard to see a dramatic change in message coming out of the coaching change. The main change might be the message sent by the coaching change itself, the reminder that this team and this regime is under pressure to win this year, and take a division that clearly looks like it’s there for the taking.

Leyland couldn’t remember making an in-season coaching change at any other point in his major league career. That might say a lot.

The ebb and flow of the season, the highs and lows, the pressures of trying and having to win, I think that what ended up happening, quite frankly, I think Max probably was underperforming and Rick Porcello was underperforming,” Knapp told MLB Network Radio. “That’s not to say that we hadn’t made strides or we weren’t moving towards a big second half. But in their eyes, I wasn’t the guy to lead them to the next level or where they want to be.”

That seemed to be the message coming out of the clubhouse. But there’s this comparison: When Knapp’s predecessor, Chuck Hernandez, was let go at the end of 2008, Leyland basically said he had the pay the price for the struggles. On Sunday, he said he and team president Dave Dombrowski were in agreement on Knapp.

“We just felt like it just wasn’t working,” Leyland said. “It was a joint decision between Dave and myself. We both agreed on the decision. We felt like it just wasn’t working, and that pretty much sums it up.”

Knapp, to his credit, didn’t burn any bridges. In the end, he just sounded exhausted, because the work he put in to try to work with the pithcers got him there.

“I’m proud of the stuff that we accomplished here,” Knapp said. “Justin has been an all-star all three years. He has a no-hitter. Last year, Galarraga had a no-hitter taken away from him. I mean, I feel like I don’t know what else I could’ve done other than made those guys good. Frankly, that’s the nature of the beast. You know, you get all the blame and I deflect all the credit. I wish the guys the best and I’m disappointed that it ended this way and frankly, I’m a little shell-shocked at the moment and I’m going to try to regroup here. Hopefully it’ll lead to bigger and better things. Who knows?”

65 Comments

Well, he’s the fall guy alright. Sounds like he never saw it coming. Neither did I. Saturday night I felt like slapping Scherzer’s face He has an arrogant smirk about him. Maybe I’m wrong, but maybe he needs another trip to Toledo. He’s not the coach I would have fired.

Okay then. First off, Jason, glad to see you’re making the west coast trip. It’s always better for us if you’re there and maybe it will be cooler out there.
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I thought there were three main points in the above report. The first was In the end, it’s hard not to see Knapp at least somewhat as a fall guy in a situation where it’s difficult to hone the blame on one particular person. This is very true, very true. We’ve lost, at various times this season, from lack of offense, lack of defense, poor game management, and also lack of pitching.
Then we have It’s hard to see a dramatic change in message coming out of the coaching change. The main change might be the message sent by the coaching change itself, the reminder that this team and this regime is under pressure to win this year, and take a division that clearly looks like it’s there for the taking. This is the one thing that sets this season apart from previous ones. There is definitely pressure this time around, much more than before. I think we’re seeing the repercussions of how the 2009 season ended from fan reaction now. That was a seismic event for how the current regime plays out. Anyone who thinks the fans are overreacting need look no further than October of 2009.
The third point is Leyland couldn’t remember making an in-season coaching change at any other point in his major league career. That might say a lot. I think that says a WHOLE lot.
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My opinion is that the Tigers won’t win a divisional shootout with several teams hovering around 85 wins. I don’t think they have that in them, and is why I’ve been fairly adamant about our fate in 2011. I hope I’m very wrong, but I feel they need to begin playing much stronger baseball than they have so far, a half game out of first notwithstanding.

Well I can’t say I didn’t see this or something coming. This pitching staff wth a few notable exceptions has been aweful for a better part of the season. While I am not as into always blaming the coaches and managers, in this case I think you have to. I don’t like to see him lose his job, but you can’t get rid of all the pitchers ether. This last month has been unacceptable. And look its amazing the Yankees pitching staff kept the mets hitters down!

Then which rotation have you been watching the better part of the season? I think you mean bull pen – because we had the best May i’ve ever seen. You don’t remember before june 17th (when the rockies started this pitching debacle)?

This article might be more believable if I hadn’t just read the one you wrote about the All Star selections. In that article you wrote that the Tigers had won the 2006 World Series. I’m sure this would come as a great suprise to the Cardinals.

Hernandez was allowed to remain 3 years . Evey pitcher but Verlander ended in DL.But Knapp is gone after a two week stumble.Tigers rotation seemed the best in MLB three weeks ago.
When will Maclendon go? Sizemore figured how to bat i n a week away from him. Granderson is among MLB leaders in hrs and most of them against the lefties he was unable to hit.
Lamont sent Magglio into DL and caused one lost after another and remains there.
But Knapp is not a crony

Hernandez didn’t have a staff. good pt. on knapp being the only fall guy since not in the mafia tho

While he is at that, release raburn and Inge

just give them their money and tell them to have a nice time spending it? PSSSSH! Raburn would prolly just go to another team and start hitting – and I fear brandon might OD on pain pills. just an opinion.

Come on, what is the real story. What do the players say about Knapp? What do they say about the SOC, Lamont, and McLendon? And, who is the bench coach? Oh yeah, and DD wants to keep his job also. Let’s see what is happening on this blog September 2nd. Go Tigers! –Dave P.S. Happy Independence Day!

When it comes to a 2 wk long rotation – failure, who the heck else would you fire? You can fire the players without spite’n yourself – remember that.

I mentioned Kuroda the other day–apparently the Tigers have inquired.
Here are some starters that may be available (according to Tim Dierkes at MLBTR):
“Potentially Available Starting Pitchers
By Tim Dierkes [June 1, 2011 at 12:23pm CST]
There could be as many as a dozen sellers when the trade deadline approaches in late July. Almost everyone else will be seeking starting pitching; let’s take a look at who might be available.

•Jeremy Guthrie, Orioles: On May 29th, Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe wrote, “The Baltimore people insist Guthrie is going nowhere, that he’s very much a part of the team’s plans. But not many are buying it.” The 32-year-old righty earns $5.75MM this year and is under team control for 2012.
•John Danks, White Sox: Danks had a rough month of May, and his SIERA sits at 4.62. Given his track record I think the Sox will keep him in the rotation and wait for him to turn things around. He’s under team control through ’12 and should earn a good buck next year. It’d make sense for GM Kenny Williams to listen, but Danks would be tough to move with Edwin Jackson and Mark Buehrle up for free agency after the season.
•Edwin Jackson, White Sox: EJax has been his inconsistent self this year, posting some strong efforts but also allowing 10.5 hits per nine innings. If he’s sent to the bullpen, some team might have a chance to buy low.
•Jeff Francis, Royals: Francis has been healthy and has performed acceptably for the Royals this year. He’ll earn only $4MM if he hits all his incentives, so the price is right for any contender. The Royals may also deem Kyle Davies and Bruce Chen expendable, if they get healthy.
•Carl Pavano, Twins: Pavano earns $8MM this year and $8.5MM in 2012. His declining strikeout rate makes you wonder if he’s more of a 5.00 ERA than a 4.00 guy, but I still think he’d generate mild trade interest.
•Francisco Liriano, Twins: Liriano is appealing for his ace upside, and he expects to return next week from a DL stint for shoulder inflammation. Liriano is more than a rental, and he’ll be a wild card if the Twins make him available.
•Kevin Slowey, Twins: Slowey is rehabbing an abdomen strain, after which he’ll return to Triple-A and to starting. The flyballing right-hander sounds like he wouldn’t mind a trade, and with his stock down he might not require much.
•Mike Pelfrey, Mets: Pelfrey is looking like Pavano with worse control. Though he’s under team control through 2013, his salary is already close to $4MM and he could get pricey in arbitration.
•R.A. Dickey, Mets: The knuckleballer can be controlled affordably through 2013, and the Mets probably prefer to retain him. But he is showing that last year was not a fluke and he would draw trade interest.
•Chris Capuano, Mets: Capuano has been solid, though I’m not sure how much of their rotation the Mets want to dismantle. Capuano may be the most expendable since he’s a free agent after the season. He’d be a nice fit for a team with a big ballpark.
•Livan Hernandez, Nationals: Hernandez continues to get it done with his 84 mile per hour fastball. He’s earning a base salary of only $1MM on an extension signed last August. I imagine he’d prefer to stay and the Nats won’t be especially motivated to move him.
•Jason Marquis, Nationals: Marquis is earning $7.5MM and is more likely to go. He seems recovered from last year’s elbow injury, but he’s yet another low-strikeout mid-4.00 ERA innings guy.
•Paul Maholm, Pirates: Maholm seems likely to be moved. He’s making a modest $5.75MM and would be owed another $750K if his $9.75MM club option for 2012 is declined. He’s useful, but with a 3.18 ERA he’s pitching over his head.
•Kevin Correia, Pirates: Correia’s ERA is deceiving as well, as his strikeout rate is a career low 3.8 per nine. He’s shown his best control too, however. Correia is owed a modest $3MM next year.
•Ryan Dempster, Cubs: Dempster posted a strong May after a brutal April. He’s a horse, and unlike many pitchers listed here he’s a strikeout pitcher. However, he can block any trade. Dempster earns a hefty $13.5MM this year and has a player option at $14MM for ’12. If the Cubs kick in some money, Dempster approves a trade, and the option situation is resolved, he’d be a nice pickup.
•Carlos Zambrano, Cubs: At about $18MM this year and next, the Cubs would have to contribute some serious cash to move their former ace. Plus, he has a full no-trade clause. Z has shown career-best control this year, but groundballs are down and he appears to be a mid-4.00s ERA guy now.
•Brett Myers, Astros: Myers earns $7MM this year, $11MM in ’12, and has a $10MM club option with a $3MM buyout for ’13. Groundballs are down and home runs are up, and Myers is looking like a well-paid innings guy.
•Wandy Rodriguez, Astros: Wandy would be one of the more appealing pitchers on this list, but he’s on the DL for elbow soreness. He’s well-compensated and can be controlled through 2014. If he comes back strong the Astros might be well-served to escape his contract if possible.
•Aaron Harang, Padres: Harang’s groundball rate is up a touch, and for once his ERA (3.88) is in line with his peripheral stats. His trade value is limited, but at least he’s only making $3.5MM plus a $500K buyout.
•Hiroki Kuroda, Dodgers: Kuroda has a full no-trade clause, which was perhaps his reward for only requiring a one-year deal. He’d probably prefer to stay near L.A. He’s gone from very good last year to just useful so far this year. He’s earning $12MM, so teams looking to add mid-rotation arms will probably look elsewhere.
•Jon Garland, Dodgers: His groundball rate down, Garland is probably worse than his 4.31 ERA suggests. He has an $8MM option for 2012 that vests at 190 innings, but it appears he’ll fall short.
•Ted Lilly, Dodgers: Lilly’s strikeout rate is down a bit, though last night’s effort was encouraging. The homer-prone southpaw remains useful, but he’s well-paid through 2013.
•Derek Lowe, Braves: I can’t quite see the Braves cashing in on Lowe this summer, though he’s been solid this year with added strikeouts and his typical groundball tendencies. At $15MM this year and next, there are more appealing trade targets anyway.
•Erik Bedard, Mariners: Bedard has been healthy and effective this year. He has a $1MM base salary and $6.35MM in performance bonuses. A healthy Bedard would be one of the top available starters, but the Mariners are only a half game back in the AL West.

I stand by my point: Unless you get Porcello and Scherzer going right, trades don’t matter. Hiroki Kuroda doesn’t wear a cape.

One follow-up point here, because I have a feeling it’s going to come up. If people ask why the Tigers wouldn’t go outside the organization for a pitching coach, you have to consider the situation. First, it’s a midseason change, and unless you’re talking about a real veteran pitching coach, it’s hard for someone to establish a new system at midseason. Second, this coaching staff, this manager and this front office is all in a contract year, all the way to the scouts. That’s a hard situation to convince a veteran coach to join.

I agree with that. Any thoughts on AJ Sager or maybe Jon Matlack? They’re both within the organization and it would at least be a bit of a change. I have nothing against Jeff Jones but handing it over to him doesn’t seem to accomplish much, other than sending a message of some kind. As you noted.

Bring in Kenny Rogers as the Pitching Coach! He’ll finally get the guys on the mound FIELDING.

Everything rises and falls on leadership. The replacements need to start farther up the chain. I’d like to say that if I watch one more inning start with a runner on and no outs end with a pop-up and a double play I’ll quit watching…but I really like this team. It should be considered managerial suicide to fail to advance a runner with every out. With every out…the runner moves…or you lose. Regardless of your pitching staff. Want to win a lot more? Force the opposing defense to play against something that’s not so absolutely predictable. Rick Knapp? Really?

All the best to Rick Knapp and Jeff Jones. I can’t see this as a significant change either. I mean Jones was out tin the bullpen with the relievers and certainly would have had some impact on them in that role.
Knapp seemed like a good guy but he sure was no Johnny Sain.
To the matters at hand. I would still go out and get a solid starter, never mind waiting for Porcello nad Scherzer to perform. The chances of both of them fixing themselves is not good. You can only help by finding some insurance. Furbush is a longshot and you can’t count on him in a contending sense.
We are not going to find anyone wearing a cape parachuted in here, via trade or promotion. But we still need more. We need consistent and dependable mid rotation starting.

I am a bit afraid we will start seeing Raburn in LF now that he made a game-saving catch there. Ryan is capable of making plays like that but he is more likely to run a bad route or muff something catchable.
Concerns should be raised about the latest Carlos Guillen situation. He is an injury waiting to happen.
Raburn cannot handle the 2B job adequately, as much as I like Ramon, he can’t hit enough to justify a regular role there either.
This is a position that DD has to be very aware of for next season and if Guillen is toast, this season.

Lets Leave some of this to the players. Knapp was in a position to perform magic with a pitching staff that consists of 1 all world, 1 on the verge, 1 very young, 1 reliever stuck starting, and 1 NL pitcher well past his prime. The fact the starting rotation was one of the best in baseball until interleague play should not be grounds for removal from the park. Jeff Jones has been in a similar situation with all AA and AAA guys all year. The work from both of them on Benoit has taken a all world reliever and made him run of the mill at best. I think Knapp was quite decent dealing with control issues but “you cant polish a turd”. Tigers cheaped out putting Coke at starter and getting 1 good start out of 6 Brad Penny. Illitch opened the pocketbook for DD he dropped the ball on pitching(and signing the 2nd Baseman to a 2 yr deal).

I am not sure what Phil Coke you were watching until his last 2 starts he had a sub 4 era, the only one of the starters except JV. His win loss record had more to d with lack of run support and blown holds from the pen. Kinda lik Scherzers win record hasmore to do with his massive run support. The pen is getting a ton of grief on here but the starters have also been very inconsistent the last month or so. They should all be embarressed by wasting talent we have al seen glimses of they got their coach fired.

Phil Coke was sub 3 until his last few starts and was getting 2.3 Runs support per game but the defense behind him was flailing. While Maxie has been getting 9+ runs support per game. Until Interleague play our starters were near MLB leaders in Quality starts with the majority of wins coming from bullpen failures. The once fired and rehired bullpen guy Jones has been promoted to pitching coach. Honestly Coke has not shown the chops to overcome adversity in his last 3 starts to warrant staying a starter. 3 innings then the wheels fall off, I like him out of the pen immensely. The DD/ JL era have never played toward player accountability for their own failures. Hernandez was a terrible PC I saw no true fault in Knapp. I hope DD has sense enough to cover his own a$$ and $hitcan the whole Pittsburgh crew when the nosedive begins.

Wow i hate bashing our boys but I just wanted to tell everyone about my day yesterday. I started the day in Detroit watching Porcello come inside and hit multiple players. I’m not for plunking but it worked, you leave that fear of God in the batter that keeps him honest at the plate. I refuse to pontificate our second baseman / LF for a 1 out of a 1000 play in Left. OUR boys scrapped and fought their way to 6-3 win. I then came home for a few minutes and shuffled to 5/3 field to watch my hometown Mudhens. Carlos struggled with AAA pitching then sat down with mysterious soreness. Fu Te Ni started and kept the Indians pretty much in check. AAA all star selection Sweet Willie Rhymes played in LF and is still hitting over 300 for the hens. Hens Win 7-1 and then i got post game fireworks then Toledo City fireworks. Exhausting day but i got to watch the Tigers and their AAA affiliate win along with a load of pyrotechnics.

Now ranting time, Honestly why doesn’t Rhymes get the stay at 2nd in the bigs. He has the the stick, moxie, wheels, and glove to make a difference for the big league club. All media has Carlos returning after the ASB but his arm and rehab play has not shown any improvement. Is Carlos an improvement over the current 2B guy? A million times yes because he has better plate discipline and can switch hit but shouldn’t we look toward the future at 2nd base. Rhymes has nothing else to prove in AAA and has proven he can hit well over 300 in the BIGS (see last year).

Contrary to DD and most of media’s belief our weaknesses are not only arms but defense and hitting in the infield. We need one more reliable glove/ stick in the infield or we will all watch the second half heartbreak we are all more than used to.

Love the Tiggers and hate em at the same time,

Gabe

How much are you paying Carlos and how much Rhymes? Gotta give Carlos a shot – Rhymes already got his. I’m of the opinion Rhymes will be the tigers 2B next year for 80+ games.

Sounds like a good day, Gabe. I think JL answers your question about Rhymes (and Santiago) when he says he likes guys that drive in runs. I always wonder who is on base to drive in when JL says that, but there you go. We’ve got a manager who came from the steroid era and is still stuck there.
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The question of “is it the players or the coaches” is like the “chicken or the egg” thing. Each case has to be taken on an individual basis and I don’t think there is any one correct answer. It does make for good discussion, however.

The lineup is already known and only has 7 players on it

Rick Knapp got much of the credit for developing much of the Twins arms in the minor league. He did a great job of taking a staff that Hernandez had let get out of hand and refocusing it. However some of the losses this year come from Leyland’s inability to recongnize that it was time to go get a pitcher and not instructing some intentional walks. I realize Sparky was called “Captain Hook” because of his short leash with pitchers, but Leyland is just the opposite. Guys get too much rope and have hung themselves with it. This time the rope got Rick Knapp too!

Firing Rick Knapp will not “fix” anything. He is clearly being sacrificed. Yes the staff got blistered recently but to blame Knapp for that is mistaken. Coke was always a square peg as a starter. Porcello and Scherzer have been around enough and are both smart enough to self correct to a greater degree. The arms in the pen were put there by DD and JL. Truthfully, they were a time bomb right out of the gate of spring training. C’mon, Weinhardt, Thomas, Villarael, Gonzalez, Schlereth and then to go after a mediocre guy like Purcey. That is not Rick Knapp’s fault. Those are poor personnel decisions and poor personnel.

Guillen not playing today.
Oliver threw a 4 hitter but walked 6 guys.
Ruffin came in to bail Schlereth out in the 8th. He’ll be here after Oliveros bombs.

damn schlereth is bad.

What it comes down to is that thbis pitching staff has the 3rd worst era in the AL you can’t fire all the pitchers so Knapp had to go and to be honest I think it was appropriate, I eally don’t have a problem with it at all.

Furbush hopefully has learned a few big league lessons in his 1st 3 iIP as a starter.
Like don’t throw pipe shots on a 2-0 count and learn to actually hold runners on and pay attention to them at all times..
That 3d inning probably really shook him up a bit.

Tough break in the 5th—Furbush was looking like he might get out of that. And now with the renewed pitching philosopy JL yanks him as though he thought he was wearing #11

Charlie throew strikes and that is a good thing. I don’t think he is as deceptive as we have been lead to believe, but if he throws strikes that is half the battle.

I don’t understand why he’s taking him out. What’s his pitch count. How many pitches. I swear to God, Leland is gonna make sure we lose.

Game changing catch. Damn!

Well thats a start. Now get rid of the next two problems. Leyland and whatever the third base coach names is ought to be the next ones to go. If they get rid of those two the Tigers are going to end up fourth in there division

Should be if they dont get rid of those two. Sorry

This Oliveros does not impress me at all. They are hitting the ball very well off of him. He’s got nothing special as far as I am concerned.
That catch robbing Miggy might deflate the effort here I’m afraid.
Though this team has shown it won’t quit. If there is one thing I’ll give JL credit for, it’s that.

Well, here we go with Peralta getting it started. Maybe Alex can do something and then what? I hope it’s not same-oh, same-oh.

The trifecta of a black hole: Raburn, Inge, Jackson.

The same. Batting Raburn and Inge back-to-back means you will never get connsecutive hits.

Yet another wasted opportunity tonight not over but I am sure we will see another slip in the standings. Another lightish hitting offense tonight seems to have 0 problems scoring runs, and another heavy hitting tigers offense cowering.

Yeah, AJ is struggling again. Not hitting anything hard really at all.
It is true though, when he is getting on and hitting (especially in the gaps) it energizes the offense.
What an outfield the Angels have—three center fielders in there and 2 Gold Glovers surrounding the young guy. Awesome.

Can’t see the ball.

Not sure if there is something wrong with him, but Avila doesn’t look like the Avila we usually see.

How many times do we have to watch a lead off double get stranded ? Three big bats, three three toed sloths… they are awesome when they are crushing the ball…physically impossible to manufacture runs with. 2 for 11 w/risp? We need offensive diversity, get Rhymes back! Kelly Jackson Inge Santiago and Rhymes are fast and can put the ball down. With the defensive diversity they bring, there’s no excuse for 2 for 11.

Totally anemic.

I think listening to Rod gush over Tori Hunter and Wells for the next few days will put me over the edge. He just can’t help himself.
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Victor hasn’t been as clutch as he has been this year. This team is a joke, from top to bottom

Lost in the pitching /Knapp kafuffle is the hitting. The Tigrs have not been scoring a lot of runs. We certainly do not do a real good job of stomping on opposing starters. Maybe McLendon is the next scapegoat?

Predictable start to a West Coast road trip. We should really complain about the scheduling. There is no way we should have to play National League teams nor should we be forced to play on the road.
We’ll be a .500 team by the All Star break.

We have no “swag”.

They just ran 15 minutes of commercials between the last out and the start of the postgame show. I’d never timed that before. 15 minutes? How many viewers even stay tuned in that long?
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Angels performed surgery on the Tigers tonight, microsurgery. I half expect them to send us a bill. So JL pulled my man Furbush after 65 pitches. He doesn’t see Charlie as a starter and can’t wait to pull the plug. Did the same with Coke. Should we just call these bullpen starts then?
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DD has about lost all his credibility. Calling this group he’s foisted on us a good team? Every club we play looks better than ours. I’m going to borrow one of your terms, Dan, and call DD a flim flam man. By the way, the Angels style of ball is what we should have been doing in Detroit ever since we moved to that national park they call Comerica. The word dysfunctional keeps coming to mind.

Okay, just listened to Jim and he indicated that everything is “fine” so we can quit worrying. That’s a relief, right?

It’s just peachy Jimbo.

Rich I believe I heard that Furbush isn’t stretche out so they only wanted him to throw about 60 or so pitches.

The number I heard was 75-80.

Oh okay, I misheard probably!

Where is Carlos (Hush-Hush) Guillen? Is he with the team on its trip? Is he broken again?
Inquiring minds want to know.

I just got back from my beach trip. Man, can those major league teams hit. Well, at least everyone except the Tigers. I am finished defending anyone on this team, including Inge. But in my humble opinion, even with all the questionable moves, JL makes in a game, professional hitters should be able to overcome them. A lineup that cannot get runners home from second base, especially with no outs or even one out, not just once, but three times is not going to win anything. Too many times this year, Cabrera RISP’s have come when we we way ahead or way behind, and not when we really needed it. Too many double plays from the middle of the order. The sad conclusion is that our team is made up of DH’s who are slower than molasses, or bottom of the order guys who can’t hit their weight. Am giving up on my team? Not in my lifetime! Am I going crazy watching my team “play”? You better believe it. We have to retool toward speed and athleticism, with the potential pitching staff that we have. And Ferbush certainly was more relaxed as a starter than Coke. Again, I just wish that Maggs would gracefully bow out, without management having to part company with him.
Greg

Any word about B(r)ad Thomas? We shipp’n him out or he comin up?

We had a leadoff double from Avila last night. The next hitter was Raburn when it could have been Santiago. If it’s the latter, Alex probably gets to third with one out. I don’t even know where Ramon would have hit in the lineup (probably 9th) but I’m just throwing this out there as an example of the folly of using a lineup full of “run producers.” We’ve got guys who have played on different levels for 20 years that never learned to bunt or hit behind a runner. They won’t learn it now. I’d prefer plugging some varied skill sets into the lineup. If we don’t have any players like that, get some. And play them.

Saturday, after arriving at the park early, I went down to the field and watched the Giants take bp. Every single one of them would practice hitting and then bunting. Every single one of them.

Yeah, and we fired the pitching coach. I am with you Greg, I do not give up until the you know who sings. Cabby sure did hit the ball hard with 2 on and nobody out. But guess what? We did not score any runs. How about 1 at a time and then they add up to 5 don’t they SOC? –Dave

Lineup already posted, 8 players on it

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