Monday, July 9, 2012

Rox Talk - Week 14

The Week That Was
A 3-4 week against the Cardinals and Nationals. The Rox currently stand at 33-52.  Thirteen games behind the Dodgers for the division lead in last place. Currently 18-25 at home and 15-27 on the road, the Rox have been outscored by its opponents 479-413 (expected wins is 37 versus historical wins at 40). On pace for 63 wins with 787 runs scored and 913 runs against. Playoff indicator (Runs Scored/Runs Against ratio) is 0.86 (1.16 indicates high playoff potential).

Well there is your first half.  Third worst winning percentage in 20 years.  Welcome to the Year of the Fan!  President Monfort sent a message to season ticket holders and he plainly says, "this is not the start that we had hoped for."  He goes on to say that he thinks, "Our commitment to winning has been questioned."  You think Mr Monfort?  What was your first clue?  Two years ago we supposedly had a team built to win its first division title and Rox failed.  Last year they were supposed to be competitive and maybe sneak into the playoffs and Rox failed.  Meanwhile last year they also threw away their best pitcher ever so they could take in a bunch of young pitchers to overcome years of poor drafts.  Furthermore this year, you threw out the mantra that the team needed "quality" people so Rox brought in a lot of aging veterans with the ideal that "spirit" was going to will this team to win.  So three years after greatest team run with two play off berths in three years, our Rox find themselves in last place with supposedly a core that should lead us to our next playoff run.  So Monfort indicates "we know where our weaknesses lie and have challenged everyone in the organization to get this fixed!"  Nice pep talk Dick, but I want more than words, I want more than Ra Ra.  Frankly my loyalty is waning.  I don't see what your rosy view sees.  Sure we have a quality and relatively young stars in CarGo and Tulo.  It's a great pair to build a team around but we've been down this road before with wasting of Helton and Walker's careers because we had no mound presence.  Pitching wins Dick.  Forget bats, those will be easy to find, get arms, quick because your young stars will start aging pretty quickly!

Second Half
Rox have 77 games to prove my loyalty for next year (and my checkbook).  What it seems to me is that a lot of the division team leaders this year had positive second halves to their second half last year.

LA Dodgers (.509 all year, 2011) 41-28 in second half (.540 this year)
Pittsburgh  (.444 all year, 2011) 25-47 although they were 47-43 at the break (.565 this year)
Washington (.497 all year, 2011) 34-35 (.590 this year)
Chicago White Sox (.488 all year, 2011) 35-35 (.553 this year)

So while above is not entirely conclusive (thanks Pirates) it would suggest that playing at least 0.500 ball the rest of the way might be a way to show that we theoretically could be competitive next season.  So what would be a respectable finish? If Rox went 39-38, they would finish 72-90.  Not a great year but not a 100 losses.

I surely hope that Monfort it looking at his weaknesses and decides where he wants to be in 2013.  I believe the following should be done:

1) Rosario get at least 60 starts.
2) Colvin plays everyday.
3) Helton sits a whole lot more
4) Good bye Giambi, Hernandez, Scutaro, and Guthrie (maybe even Cuddyer)
5) Bring up every minor league player available and who was planned to possibly be in the league next year. No time like the present to get these guys at bats.
6) Keep up the 4 man rotation, can't hurt and maybe salvage some of these young arms
7) Go in a new direction with management...we need some new blood.  Nothing personal with O'Dowd but he has had his chances and as not been effective.  Change can be good
8) We might potentially have the first draft pick next year so bringing in fresh set of eyes.  Look at one number one drafts did for the Nats.

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