Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Nurse the Hate: Hate Caution




Just when I was ready to hear about a “horrible accident” that had befallen Barry Zito so the Giants could get out of that contract (This just in! Streetcar crushes Giants hurler!), they send him to the bullpen. I was hoping they’d cut him loose completely in full on freakout mode. The joys of April baseball are in pressing the panic button as early as possible in a “sky is falling” manner. Most times this is completely unwarranted. For instance, I’ll bet Carlos Beltran will start hitting for the Mets. In some cases, a full on freakout may be completely justified. I present to you Travis Hafner…

From 2004-2006 Hafner was a beast. He hit 41, 42, and 31 home runs while averaging over 100 RBIs and batting over .300. The Indians signed him to a fat contract extension, and the guy immediately went into the shitter. Take a look at these numbers…

Hafner hit .338 (27-for-80) last April with five homers and 16 RBI. Since then he's hitting .243 (147-for-604). Those numbers include Hafner's horrific performance in the postseason last year when he hit .186 (8-for-43) with two homers and four RBI. Dude looked like he had never swung a bat before…
Now take a look at this, here’s Hafner's monthly batting averages: last May (.228), June (.218), July (.250), August (.253), September (.316) and October (.186). This April he’s hitting .219.

Despite these awful numbers, Hafner assures everyone he’s never felt better physically. That’s not good news. Scouts are saying he’s lost bat speed. Anyone even casually watching can see that he’s killing them in the middle of the lineup. The best part? He can’t play defense, so you’re paying him a kazillion dollars to go out there and exclusively hit like Chirs Magruder.

With the Indians window of opportunity to win the whole enchilada effectively closing this season with the expected exit of CC Sabathia, isn’t it time to see if Barry Bonds wants to pad his career stats for a year in the Progressive Field bandbox? Throw him in as a DH, and let him blast 35 home runs. Why even put him in the locker room? Just give him one of the empty luxury suites and let him shuffle down to take his cuts every couple innings.

It’s not like the Indians have an issue with Roids. Paul Byrd is still a swell guy and in the rotation despite testing positive (and admitting it). Their have been plenty of steroid guys through the doors here…Juan Gonzalez, Albert Bell, Jim Thome, David Seguii, and that spindly reliever that ratted everyone out in Arizona immediately come to mind.

C’mon, let’s do it! Let’s press the panic button! It’ll be great!

4 Comments:

At April 30, 2008 at 11:58:00 PM EDT , Blogger BABE said...

Boy, didn't take you long to completely run out of subject matter. *yawn*

 
At May 2, 2008 at 1:25:00 PM EDT , Blogger Uncle said...

Greg, I always enjoy your blog and thought this was a great subject. Cincinnati also has a long list of players who went from red hot to ice cold

Keep it up and have a great time in Europe

 
At May 2, 2008 at 3:27:00 PM EDT , Blogger Ken Miller said...

And don't forget the onely current Indian ever suspended for testing positive for a banned substance: Tribe closer Rafael Betancourt.

 
At May 3, 2008 at 12:48:00 PM EDT , Blogger Greg Miller said...

Hey Babe, I have sixty something posts...Get off my ass why don't cha! This Travis Hafner situation is gruesome. As a season ticket holder, it is only slightly more important than that pesky global warming!

 

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