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Tag:Dan Haren
Posted on: July 13, 2009 2:17 pm
 

Tim Lincecum Named All Star Starter

The Diamondbacks have let down Haren once again this season.  Due to the consistency in which they have blown games or not provided run support Dan Haren has an unimpressive record of 9-5.  It was not enough to compete with Tim Lincecum’s 10-2. 

 

Haren, as expected, was not named as the starter for the 2009 All Star game, but rather Tim Lincecum from the NL Wild Card leading Giants.  Tim Lincecum is a great pitcher, in fact probably the second best pitcher in baseball behind Haren, but he would not have got the nod had Haren been on a lot of other teams.

 

Lincecum has great stats this season; they just aren’t as good as Haren’s.  Dan Haren leads MLB, not just the NL, in ERA, WHIP, and K/BB ratio (among starters).  His batting average against is .189, Lincecum’s is .215, and he leads Lincecum in every other major statistic besides wins and strikeouts.     

 

Whether it was due to the wins, the teams overall records, or just the fact that the Giants are a more popular team than the Diamondbacks remains to be seen.  It was probably a combination of all those things.  Hopefully these same things are less of a factor when it comes to the Cy Young voting. 

Posted on: July 1, 2009 12:17 pm
 

Diamondbacks Mid-Season Report Card

Catcher
Miguel Montero is currently hitting .255 and is getting better defensively.  Chris Snyder is currently injured but was having an average season as well.

Grade C


First Base

The biggest problem with this position is that they do not have a first baseman.  They have used four different players at this position this season, Chad Tracy, Mark Reynolds, Tony Clark, and Josh Whitesell.  Only Reynolds has been able to hit with any success and only Whitesell has been able to field with any proficiency.  In addition, neither Tracy nor Reynolds are true first basemen, they are stop gaps moved from third base when the need arises. 

 

Grade F

 

Second Base

Felipe Lopez is a decent hitter, hitting .303, but he is a terrible second baseman.  He is out of position a lot of the time and shows no hustle at all.  Once you see him play everyday it is very obvious why he is nothing more than a journeyman playing on his fifth team in 8 years.

 

Grade C

 

Third Base

 

Mark Reynolds has been having a great season and is among the league’s top hitters in power number categories.  His replacements, however, have not shared his success. Ryan Roberts is batting .257 and Augie Ojeda is batting .234.  Reynolds has trouble fielding some routine plays, but has also made some incredible plays at other times.  Unfortunately for the Diamondbacks he is the best fielding player at that position with a fielding percentage of .945.  In fairness to the other two, Roberts and Ojeda have both been used all over the infield this season, but Roberts has a 3B fielding percentage of .920 and Ojeda a dismal .880.

 

Grade B+

 

Shortstop

 

Because of the expectations going into the season this has been one of the more disappointing positions for the Diamondbacks.  Stephen Drew was thought to be in the top five to ten shortstops at the beginning of the year.  He was injured for some time and is currently is hitting .251 on the season with a respectable fielding percentage of .980.  He has improved his batting average every month, and hit .292 for June.  If he continues to play like he did in June shortstop will be one of the bright spots on this team.

 

Grade B

 

Left Field

 

This position is most likely the weakest spot on the team.  The projected starter at the beginning of the season, Conor Jackson, is not much for power but hits consistently around .300.  He has been out most of the season with Valley Fever and was hitting only .182 while he was playing.  The next player for this position is Eric Byrnes, batting .216, making bizarre errors and diving after unreachable balls, and fielding only .964.  He was recently put on the DL for a broken hand.  The final player at this position is Gerardo Parra, a AA call up.  He started out very hot when he was first called up, but has since cooled off, which was expected. 

 

Grade D-

 

Center Field

 

While there have been several players to play this position the large majority of starts have been made by Chris Young.  Young is batting an abysmal .194 with no pop in his swing this year.  He has looked completely lost at times and although an above average fielder there have been fly balls hit at the warning track where it appears that he is afraid of running into the wall to make a crucial out.

 

Grade F

 

Right Field

 

Justin Upton is coming into his own.  He’s the best hitter on the team with a .320 average and an OPS of .975, but still makes simple mistakes in the field and at times has shown his age. 

 

 

Grade A

 

 

Starting Pitching

 

Dan Haren is the best pitcher in the National League and fellow starters Doug Davis and Max Scherzer have both had good seasons as well with sub 4.00 ERAs.  Jon Garland and the fill in the blank fifth starter have both struggled.  Losing Brandon Webb on Opening Day definitely put an unexpected burden on this piece of the team and they have won only 2 of the starts in his place in the rotation.

 

 

Grade B

 

Bullpen

 

Every pitcher in the bullpen has struggled at times this season, possibly with the exception of Clay Zavada, a AA call up.  Every pitcher has been personally responsible for losing a game for the Diamondbacks this season regardless of whether or not they actually have a loss on their record.  They have been embarrassing and inconsistent and none of them have lived up to any expectations the team or the fans may have had at the beginning of the season.

 

Grade F

 

Overall Grades

 

Offense

Two players batting over .300, team average ranks 27 in MLB and OPS ranks 21. 

 

Overall Grade D

 

Defense

Most errors in the majors.

 

Overall grade F

 

Pitching

Team ERA is ranked 22 in MLB.

 

Grade D

 

Overall Team Grade

Third worst winning percentage in all of baseball.

 

F

Posted on: June 17, 2009 11:54 am
 

The Guts to Pull the Plug?

Anyone out there who doesn’t think the Diamondbacks should start trying to move players immediately needs to sit down and actually watch this team.  More often than not they are not good, and more often than not they are not really in the game.  Last night they had only one more hit than error in a 5-0 loss to the Royals.

 

There are things that certain players do that give you hope for the future.  If they get a few more pieces and they can get Brandon Webb back to his old self there is no reason they will not be able to compete next year.  This year however is a lost cause.  They are 11 games under .500, 16 games behind in the division, 8 games back in the wild card race with only the Nationals behind them, and have the second worst record in all of baseball.  

 

There are 97 games left, so it’s easy to say that there is a lot of baseball still to be played.  To reach .500 on the season they need to play .556 baseball for the next three and a half months. Currently only 5 teams in baseball have winning percentages over .556.  Is it very realistic to say that the Diamondbacks will be able to be one of the top five teams in baseball the rest of the season?

 

It is time to stop being so myopic about this team.  This season they just aren’t going to do it.  It doesn’t mean that we stop watching them for the rest of the year, it doesn’t mean that we can’t find good things within the team despite their record.  Mark Reynolds was just named co NL MVP for last week.  Max Scherzer is one of the more exciting pitchers to watch and he’s just getting started.  Dan Haren has been utterly dominant almost every fifth day for the team. 

 

The team as whole does not work and Josh Byrnes needs to start making the changes necessary to get the team ready to compete next season.  No one on the team, in the front office, sitting in the stands, or watching on their couch at home wants to see a sequel to the 2009 season anytime soon.       

Posted on: June 8, 2009 12:38 pm
 

Chad Qualls BS...blown save and bull @#$%

Dan Haren came to pitch.  Seven innings, four hits, one run.  This type of outstanding performance should surprise no one, he has done this all season though you wouldn’t know it from the four wins he has to his name.  The offense came to hit.  Six runs through nine innings, and again getting timely hitting.  And the bullpen came to do what they do.  Give up five runs in one inning and give up a game tying home run to a pinch hitter who has a career 33 home runs in 4286 at bats. 

 

I will say this for the Diamondbacks relievers; they certainly learned how to take turns when they were younger.  This time the honor of blowing a lead was given to Juan Gutierrez who had only surrendered 3 hits in his last 4.2 innings of work, and closer Chad Qualls, who has been fairly reliable for the most part this season. To add insult to Dan Haren’s injury, the incorrigible bullpen that was incapable of getting three outs without giving up five runs, then proceeded to get an additional 27 outs without giving up one run.

 

This game was without a doubt the hollowest victory of the season.  Josh Byrnes needs to fix the bullpen right now.  They need to either get a different bullpen coach, get new players, or move Max Scherzer to the bullpen once Brandon Webb comes back.  There is absolutely no sense in playing the remainder of the season with the current group of relievers.  As evidenced yesterday, you can have a starter who is completely dominant and an offense that provides you with enough runs to win any game but it all means nothing when you have a facet of the team that can undo eight innings of solid, quality baseball in the course of fifteen minutes.   

 

The bullpen has proved themselves game after game that they cannot be counted on in any situation.  Management has to make a move immediately, as these are the players that hold the fate of the game in their hand.  Any slim hopes the team has of possibly getting the wild card are completely void if the bullpen is not corrected.

 
 
 
 
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