Monday, April 10, 2006

Baseball after the first weekend

Just a few quick thoughts about our favorite nines:

  • The Brewers are off to a fine start, but reality is about to hit, in the form of a visit to St. Louis. It's evident that the Brew Crew has some talent this year and they may hang around for a while, but the continued development of Rickie Weeks and especially Prince Fielder are going to be absolutely crucial. The Brewer brain trust made three smart acquisitions in the off season, bringing back set up man Dan Kolb, utility man par excellence Jeff Cirillo, and fragile but professional 3rd baseman Corey Koskie. Koskie adds balance to the lineup and when he breaks down in July, Cirillo will be ready to take charge. If there's enough pitching, the Brew Crew could be making a run in September. But the Cards and Cubs are lurking....
  • As for the Twins, oy. We haven't seen much in the first six games that would indicate they are ready to contend. Tony Batista and Rondell White are okay, and Luis Castillo is a vast improvement over potted plant Luis Rivas at 2nd base, but it sure doesn't look like they have enough clutch hitting or pitching, especially with the strength of the competition. A lot of the wise guys picked the Twins for 3rd this year, behind the Whities and the Indians. 4th may be a better guess, especially if the Tigers continue to get good pitching.
  • Meanwhile, in the season that really matters, Shoreview Area Youth Baseball is about to start. My son is a Phillie this year. We'll chronicle his exploits in this space as well.

1 comment:

Stinger said...

I look at the Brewers as a team that, while they will hang around this year, will probably make their move towards the top in 2007. There are some solid veterans, but this is a young team overall with a lot of upside. But, there are some issues. Watching them this weekend, Weeks still has trouble defensively, and Fielder has some too. Weeks dropped a ball on a pretty routine throw from J.J. Hardy for a force at 2nd against Arizona. They may not get out of St. Louis with a win. It is really hard to ask most teams to win a series in St. Louis. This week is darn near impossible. But, I hope they get one Wednesday night, when I will be in attendance at the new Busch Stadium. That is going to be a great time, pretty much either way. But a Brewers win would make it just a bit better for me.

Incidentally, if Koskie goes down, I would look for Bill Hall to start at 3rd ahead of Cirillo. Hall would have started this year had it not been for the acquisition of Koskie.

I will have to watch some more Twins games before saying all that much about them (MLB Extra Innings free preview was this past week, so I watched the Brewers primiarily instead). But, I know they are off to a poor start. Opening at home against Oakland isn't going to help matters that much either.

As for the Phillies up in Shoreview, here's hoping for a great season. I am hoping your son is Jimmy Rollins-like, or even Mike Schmidt-like in his play this season.

There Mark, I commented on your blog. Happy now?