FIRE JOE MORGAN: Half-Hearted JoeChat


Where Bad Sports Journalism Came To Die

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Thursday, June 05, 2008


Half-Hearted JoeChat

Eh. There's a JoeChat. It's not supergreat. Whatever.

Kevin (Omaha): Who do you think is the best rookie in the AL, and do you think moving Joba Chamberlain to the rotation will impact AL ROY?

Joe Morgan: Right now, I think players like Ellsbury, Carlos Gomez, Evan Longoria, Adam Jones, and Joba are having positive impacts on their clubs, but it's only June.

The encouraging thing here is that he knows all of those names. The negative thing is that the claim he is making is so weak it barely qualifies as a sentence. "I think (six awesome young payers) are having positive impacts on their teams. Wait -- that sounds too risky. Let's add a qualifier."

I don't think Joba moving to the rotation impacts the other guys. It'd be hard for him as a starter starting this late to win the ROY award. It'll only impact his team and help them with the rotation which needs a lot of help. But it's too early to say someone is going to be rookie of the year or not.

Too early. Sorry. Can't say. No answers here. Nothing to see. Move along, people.

howard (jersey city, nj): Hi Joe! As an ex-Red you must be excited about Jay Bruce. Do you think he can keep up this pace and how hard is it for a rookie to develop the consistancy needed to be a superstar? Thanks!

There's no great answer to this. I just want to announce that "consistancy" (sic) is now the official JoeBait of FJM.

rob (Houston): Are the Rays for real? Can they actually win the AL East?

Joe Morgan: Anyone in this position at this time, like the Rays or Marlins, can win.

The Marlins are +4 runs scored/runs allowed. The Phillies are + 63. All things being equal, there is a very very very small chance that the Marlins can overtake the Phillies (usual caveats about injuries, trades, SSS, etc.). The Rays are +22, but they've played 9 more home games than away games so far, and the +22 is only good for 3rd in the East (and the Yankees aren't #1 or #2). You'd bet on the Marlins, I guess, of the two of them, but it doesn't look good for either one.


The Opposite of Joe Morgan

They have proven they can play well and their confidence level has grown where they definitely think they are the best team. They should definitely have confidence in their ability to win. They're a young team, so they do have an advantage in that they will stay fresh longer, but they also have to deal with the pressure of a pennant race, where older guys have been through it before. This series against the Red Sox should tell them a lot about where they are.

I just...I don't know. I'm having one of those crises. Is this just fish in a barrel, poking fun at a guy this predictable? There's not one actual ounce of analysis in this analysis. It's like how Friendly's has to call their milkshake-y product a "Fribble" because there's no actual milk in it. (At least, that was the urban legend in my town growing up.)

Jason (DC): Good morning Joe, whats wrong with my Detroit Tigers? it seems to me like they may have gone too far with acquiring slow-footed sluggers, at the expense of younger, speedier guys who could run the bases better, putting pressure on the defense and causing mistakes. If Sheffield can come back healthy, how do you like their chances? seems too early to count them out, since none of the other teams in the AL Central look like they have the consistency to pull away from the pack.

Detroit: 276 runs scored, 4th in AL (and 1 behind third place Minnesota).
Detroit: 302 runs allowed, third most in AL (and only 2 behind Seattle). Only Texas is really a worse staff than Detroit. So...let's talk about pitching!

Joe Morgan: Everything you say is true, but hindsight is always 20/20. When they put this team together, it looked to be a revisiting of the '27 Yankees. They have not hit well as a team,

4th/3rd most runs in the AL after losing several key players to injuries early on and having a bunch of guys get off to slow starts. Pitching. Pitching is the problem.

despite some good individual performances. They got shut out for the NINTH time last week.

4.74 team ERA. Pitching.

There's a lot going on there. They have enough speed where guys can score from second and go first to third.

Four main starters have WHIPs over 1.40. Verlander's K rate is down to just over 5 per 9 IP. Nate Robertson's ERA is over 6.00 in 72 innings. Pitching.

Speed is not their biggest problem,

Pitching is. Say it.

though it does help you. Make no mistake, it is not too late

...To get some pitching help?

They are still in striking distance of Chicago. It's a long season and they need to get their act together. They could put together a 15 game winning streak.

Not one mention of pitching. Anywhere. Not one.

John (Atlanta): What pitch from which pitcher was the nastiest you saw during your career?

Joe Morgan: I think Sandy Koufax had the best overall stuff. Bob Gibson had the toughest low fastball. Koufax's was more belt-high and above. I still to this day think the fastball, thrown properly, is the toughest pitch to hit. But there were a lot of guys I'd faced with great stuff.

Joe Morgan: The pitch that probably bothered me the most was a guy like Kent Tekulve, who threw a great underhand sinker. That's just from a personal standpoint.

Years from now, when all scientists and researchers on Earth or its 4 Colonies (Mars, Betelgeuse, Blargon 7, and Papelbonia) are required by Galactic Law to spend a full year analyzing Joe Morgan's writing, this answer may turn out to be a key to unlocking just what the hell is going on in his brain. The question is: which pitch from a specific pitcher was the nastiest that you, Joe, saw in your career. He says some stuff about Koufax and Gibson...fine. Then he says: the pitch that bothered me the most was Kent Tekulve's underhand sinker. An excellent answer -- much more interesting that "Bob Gibson's fastball." But then he adds: "That's just from a personal standpoint." As if, like, apologizing that he has decided to answer the question from a "personal standpoint." When the question was aimed at getting his "personal standpoint."


Elias in Iowa: How ya doin' Joe? What do you think about the Cardinals rotation? Can they continue this (minus Wainwrights start last night) for the rest of the season? Do you think Mark Mulder will ever be the same again?

Joe Morgan: Anytime you've kept up a performance into June, you're capable of doing it the rest of the way. The Cardinals have overachieved a bit, but they are very confident now, and I think they will continue to pitch well. It's difficult to say if Mulder will recover. Arm injuries are always uncertain, so you're never 100 percent committed to a pitch--the best you can ever get is 90 to 95 percent because you're worried about overextending. I don't know that he'll be the same, but he is a smart pitcher and I think he can still win ballgames if he gets back.

It's not really about intelligence, man. It's about his shoulder. And he recently said that he'd rather retire than have another operation. He threw 11 innings last year, gave up 22 hits, and shut it down. He hasn't pitched this year and there doesn't seem to be a timetable for him to do so. Come on, Joe. Know something. (And by the way, while you're at it, go ahead and give Billy Beane another round of applause for getting Calero, Barton and Haren for Mulder. And everybody said he was crazy.)

Joe Morgan: Looking forward to talking to you all again next week!

I guess.

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