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#15 : February 19, 2008, 02:49:06 PM

what? the last statement about Garza and Lester made zero sense. First of all, the fact that Boston overvalues one of their prospects does not mean he is equal to Johan Santana in the eyes of ML scouts around the league. You do realize Boston once turned down Batrolo Colon for Casey Fossum back when Colon was a cy young and Fossum was a prospect in Boston, right? 2) Minnesota didnt want Lester straight up for Santana, so your assertion that Boston along with many scouts thought Lester was too valuable to give up for Santana is not the truth. They also wanted Jacoby Ellsbury, who was the real prize of that deal in Minnys eyes.

Lester is a nice prospect, but not the level of Garza. Lester may be closer to Niemann in reality, which isnt abad thing. I like Niemann a lot

Kazmir walks more guys, but the fact remains he has a lower career ERA than Beckett. So who cares if he walks mroe guys if he is giving up less runs? Also, why would Beckett go in cruise control down the stretch run of a pennant race? I wouldnt exactly call a 3.10 ERA in the 2nd half "cruise control" especially consideirng his 2nd half numbers were better than his 1st half numbers!


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#16 : February 19, 2008, 03:28:37 PM

Since when? This is from baseball almanac


ER: Earned Runs. The number of earned runs (those which scored without the aid of an error, a catcher's interference call, or a passed ball) allowed by the pitcher.


You are right...I was reading bad info.



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#17 : February 19, 2008, 02:59:06 PM

we are splitting hairs here, even if I give Beckett the edge over Kazmir it isnt by a lot. probably about the same difference between Shields and Dice K. My point is, Boston and New York do not have better SP than Tampa and if Tampa's bullpen can pull it together and be close to as good as either of those bullpens we are talking about some interesting matchups this year

That, I agree with.





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#18 : February 19, 2008, 03:04:21 PM

Since when? This is from baseball almanac


ER: Earned Runs. The number of earned runs (those which scored without the aid of an error, a catcher's interference call, or a passed ball) allowed by the pitcher.



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#19 : February 19, 2008, 03:29:40 PM

So you agree Kazmir = Beckett right? ; )

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#20 : February 19, 2008, 03:30:54 PM

So you agree Kazmir = Beckett right? ; )

No sir....:)

Why don't you take a poll of those scouts you know and see who they would want right now.







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#21 : February 19, 2008, 03:38:07 PM

no doubt it would be Beckett. I would take Beckett over Kazmir if I had to win one game. WOuld it make you happier if I woudlve said Kazmir and Beckett are relatively equal? Kazmir is consistenly great the past 3 years and his2nd half of 2007 cant really be matched by anyone. Beckett probably had the 2nd best 2nd half in baseball last year, but Kazmir's ERA was nearly 1 whole run lower.

Kazmir is right there with Beckett, and the handful of top flight pitchers in the ML

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#22 : February 19, 2008, 03:48:52 PM

no doubt it would be Beckett. I would take Beckett over Kazmir if I had to win one game. WOuld it make you happier if I woudlve said Kazmir and Beckett are relatively equal? Kazmir is consistenly great the past 3 years and his2nd half of 2007 cant really be matched by anyone. Beckett probably had the 2nd best 2nd half in baseball last year, but Kazmir's ERA was nearly 1 whole run lower.

Kazmir is right there with Beckett, and the handful of top flight pitchers in the ML

Ronde, you can think Kaz is better than Beckett, my man.  It's all up to interpretation.  I was just debating with you.  I agree that they both are in the top 10.  I just think Beckett is probably top 3.  Since he quit challenging EVERYBODY with his fastball and fastball alone, Beckett has been completely dominate.  Kaz has a lot to learn about pitching, but the guy definitely has all of the tools to be where Beckett is in a few years, if not sooner.

It should be fun watching all of the Rays pitchers develop.





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#23 : February 19, 2008, 04:19:27 PM

Kaz has a lot to learn about pitching yet his ERA in his last 15 starts is 2.39, along with a 1.14 whip. explain that for me


In my book, I would have my top 5 starters like this...

1) Santana
2) Beckett
3) Peavy
4) Webb
5) Sabathia
6) Kazmir/Bedard


I think 2-6 are very close to eachotehr and Santana is out ahead of the pack

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#24 : February 19, 2008, 04:25:26 PM

Good list.  Throw in Cole Hamels, Dan Haren, and Justin Verlander, and you have my Top Ten as well.



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#25 : February 20, 2008, 12:30:15 AM

Goooo Rays, 67-95 is not out of the question for this year!!  :D




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#26 : February 20, 2008, 05:11:08 AM

don't feed the troll. Don't allow this thread to get hijacked, it might be hard considering the initial post was so vague...

Quote
If you're new to the game this thread is all about the Rays, post news, rumors, opinions, ect. , the latter as long as it's not a pointless 'RAYS SUCK, LOL' BS that some around here will likely do.

if chrispy is going to be a dream crusher again this year than no one shall respodn to him. He is the worst kinf of sports fan, the kind that pick on the lousy hometown teams and then buy season tickets when they are good.



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#27 : March 24, 2008, 04:59:39 PM

Well, the long wait is over Longoria got sent down to AAA today.


http://blogs.tampabay.com/rays/2008/03/longoria-sent-d.html



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#28 : February 25, 2008, 11:10:47 PM

http://joeposnanski.com/JoeBlog/2008/02/20/crazy-preseason-prediction-3/

3. The Tampa Bay Rays will contend for a playoff spot into late August, early September.

I’m, no doubt, writing this off emotion. Here’s what happened: I was looking through the Baseball Weekly Spring Training previews while eating my tuna melt at JB’s in the greater Surprise area. You may wonder what the tuna sandwich has to do with anything … I’ll tell you: It was delicious. Maybe it’s just because I was starving, you know, after my horrible U.S. Air non-eating experiences. But I have to tell you, it was a good tuna melt, you know, the bread was warm and toasted just right, the tuna was not too dry and not too mayonnaisey (yes, that’s a word), they didn’t flood the thing with cheese which is always a major tuna melt error. Delicious. JB’s didn’t pay me for this endorsement.

Yes. Delicious. Yum.

Oh, wait, I’m sorry, where was I? Oh yeah, so I’m reading Baseball Weekly, and it has those fun charts that show you who is competing for jobs at each position. And I come across … the Toronto Blue Jays. I’ve long been a quasi Blue Jays fan; I think when you’re 10 years old (as I was in 1977) and expansion happens, you just subconsciously pick your favorite expansion team. I chose the Blue Jays over the Mariners in part because I didn’t know what a Mariner was. Also we went as a family to Toronto either that year or the next, and we went to some really cool museum of technology that was the first place where I saw the pool table where no matter where you hit the cue ball, it will bounce back and hit other ball. That had a large impact on me. Also, later, I liked Jesse Barfield.

In any case, I started casually looking at this year’s Toronto’s team. I noticed that they’re picked to finish third again, and I nodded, my gut feeling has long been that you can pencil the Blue Jays into third place until the year 2084. Then I looked at the team and I realized, much to my surprise, that I CANNOT STAND the way this team is put together. I mean, I really, really, really despise the philosophy behind this team. Frank Thomas? David Eckstein? Reed Johnson? Lyle Overbay? A.J. Burnett? Let me just say: Ugh. And I don’t know what to make of Vernon Wells now — I was always a fan but he was brutal last season. I don’t know what to make of Scott Rolen now — he’s got injuries, and he has that 89 OPS+ last year. B.J. Ryan’s coming off the injury. Really, you take away Halladay and Alex Rios, I’m not sure they have another championship caliber guy* on this team.

*I want to take a few words here to explain my philosophy on “championship caliber guy” because we’ve been talking about it here at spring training (and also I don’t want people to think I dislike Dusty McGowan or Aaron Hill or whoever else , I like McGowan and Hill quite a bit).

To me, when you look at a team, it’s fun to go around and ask, “Is this person a championship caliber guy?” Meaning — well, let’s take Kansas City’s David DeJesus as an example because he was the one we were discussing down here in Surprise. The question is: Can you win a championship with David DeJesus?

There are, best I can tell, four answers here.

1. Yes.
2. No.
3. It depends on his role.
4. It depends on what he has around him.

Simple enough. The first answer is, “Yes, you can win with DeJesus,” the second is, “No you can’t.” The third and fourth are qualifications you often hear. For instance, with DeJesus, you might say, “Yes, you can win with him, but not if he’s playing center,” or, “You could win with him if he platoons and gets about 400 at-bats,” or “You could win with him if both your corner outfielders hit 35 home runs,” or whatever.

Well, my idea of a true championship caliber guy is … no qualifications. No exceptions. No excuses. Is Albert Pujols a championship caliber player? Yes. Is Angel Berroa? No. To me, last year’s Red Sox team had eight championship caliber players in key roles — Manny, Papi, Lowell, Varitek, Drew, Beckett, Schilling and Papelbon. That’s an enormous number. Maybe my next post will go through each team and list off how many CCG’s are on that team. In Boston, after those eight, lots of guys — Matsuzaka, Pedroia, Youkilis, Wakefield, several relievers — played at championship level. But there’s a difference with that. I don’t know if that makes any sense at all. But I’m moving on now.

I don’t want you get to the idea that I’m burying the Blue Jays. I think it’s certainly possible that those veteran guys like Rolen, Thomas, Eckstein will have good years, Burnett too, and the Blue Jays will have a nice year (and finish third). I’m just saying that I don’t like the makeup of the team. It’s not the kind of team that I would like to root for as a fan.

On the opposite page of the Blue Jays (in every way) was the Tampa Bay Angel Rays. And let me just tell you … I LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE this team. I mean, Baseball Weekly picked them to finish last (again) and to finish 30th in baseball (again) and so on. I don’t see it. I looked at the players, and here’s what I see.

In left: Carl Crawford is a major stud, one of my favorite players in the game.

In center: B.J. Upton, who put up a 136 OPS+ last year, banged 24 homers, stole 22 bases, and is only 23 years old.

At third: Evan Longoria. I was talking to another scout down here (what do you think I do at spring training — I pretty much talk to scouts 24 hours a day) and he said that Longoria is the best prospect in baseball, bar none. Better than Cameron Maybin. Better than Jacoby Ellsbury. The best … a guy he says can be BETTER than David Wright. Sure, it’s scout talk but … that’s three potential franchise players in the lineup.

At first: Carlos Pena. Make it four. Here are the first basemen in baseball history who have had a .400 OBP, a .625 slugging, 45+ homers, 120+ RBIs in a season and 100+ walks.

– Lou Gehrig (4 times)
– Jimmie Foxx (2 times)
– Mark McGwire (2 times)
– Carlos Pena
– Willie McCovey
– Hank Greenberg
– Ryan Howard

This is only to get the point across that Pena had a remarkable 2007 season. Some think he will go backward– and maybe he will. I don’t know, though. He’s in pretty good company. He’s not quite 30. He may have figured it out.

No. 1 pitcher: Scott Kazmir. Just awesome. Twenty three and led the AL in strikeouts. The Koufax comparison’s looking better and better.

No. 2 pitcher: James Shields. And here, as Bill James said, is Drysdale to Kazmir’s Koufax. He’s a big right-hander who strikes people out and throws inside and seems fearless. And he’s 26.

To me, that’s six big-time players — that’s as good a young core as anywhere in baseball, isn’t it? And then you throw in starter Matt Garza … I’m not as much in love with him as some people are, but there are those who see him as a dominant starter. Throw in Rocco Baldelli, who can’t stay healthy but is still only 26 and not so long ago people were saying he was better than Crawford. Throw in pitcher David Price, last year’s No. 1 pick who had the jaw-dropping slider and could be in the big leagues this year. I mean, heck, I don’t know, I just think there’s an awful lot to get excited about with this team.

Baseball Weekly might be right about the Rays still being the worst team in baseball. As mentioned, I’m usually wrong. But if given the choice, I would MUCH rather be a Rays fan than a Jays fan right now. And I just think this team will get rolling, a little bit like the Brewers did. Of course, the Rays have that crazy Yankees-Red Sox division, which means they will probably have another dreadful September. But I’m on record. August 25th, there’s pennant fever in the I-4 Corridor. You heard it here first. And last.

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#29 : February 25, 2008, 11:27:14 PM

if chrispy is going to be a dream crusher again this year than no one shall respodn to him. He is the worst kinf of sports fan, the kind that pick on the lousy hometown teams and then buy season tickets when they are good.

Ehhhh wrong; seeing as I have sat through MANY losing Bucs and Lightning seasons, and oh of course - many D-Rays games which is every year for them.

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