Monday, March 26, 2007

The Final Countdown!

I've said it before and I'll keep saying it until "Sweet Lou", makes the change. The Riot belongs in the leadoff spot, not Soriano.

Through Sunday, and with just a week 'till opening day, the numbers are becoming more and more evident that what's in the best interest of the team is to have Soriano moved down in the order. I've detailed numerous times apart from this spring performances, why it's in the Cubs best interests so I'll just give you the facts on their performances this spring and let you make up your own mind.

Soriano
57AB, 16H, 2DB, 1TR, 3HR, 4RBI, 15K, 3BB, 3SB, 1CS, 281BA, 328OBP

The Riot
56AB, 21H, 5DB, 3TR, 0HR, 5RBI, 5K, 5BB, 5SB, 0CS, 375BA, 435OBP

Pretty amazing? Well considering Soriano's career OBP is below 330, it's not a big shocker.

With all the pontificating about the importance of being selective at the plate going on with the new hitting coach Perry, and the big man Piniella, you have to ask yourself WTF?

If all this talk about how glorious it would be to see all these fastballs hitting in the 2 hole between Soriano and Lee makes any sense. How much would our swing happy Soriano benefit from having one of the better OBP hitters with speed on in front of him, with Lee immediately following?

We're not splitting the atom here kids, this is as obvious as the Cubs 99 year drought since a World Championship.

Is this really what we want to see 150 times from our leadoff man?

6 comments:

Anonymous said...

Clute--

You make some sense, and honestly I agree with you.

However, haven't you heard that lineup order doesn't really matter that much??

I don't think Piniella's plans are that far out of whack, with maybe the exception of Soriano leading off.

Remember this: Soriano REALLY WANTS to lead off and is most comfortable hitting there. Maybe moving him would result in discontent and less production.

Anonymous said...

Oh and keep up the good analysis, Clute.

I'm glad your blog isn't totally littered with garbage and off topic stuff. And your thoughts at least make sense.

CCD said...

I agree with you on this Clute. At this point I just wanna see Lou give Theriot an everyday job. I think the kids time has come. He's 27 and done everything this franchise has asked him to do. Give him the secondbase job and leadoff role and let him play his way out of the role.

Keep up the screams. Somebody has to be listening.

Anonymous said...

Hey Guys--

You're dreaming if you think Theriot is starting ahead of DeRosa any time soon. DeRosa was promised the starting 2B job, and that won't change for a least a couple months.

The one thing Soriano was promised was the leadoff spot. They weren't sure where he'd play in the outfield, but promised to play him in one spot. Soriano signed to be the leadoff man, so I expect they'll let him leadoff for a few months (at least).

Right now, I'd rather see Theriot and DeRosa playing the two middle infield spots, but that's not going to happen when Izturis has the SS job to lose (at least for a few months).

I'd also rather see Soriano hitting lower with Theriot/Murton higher up, but that won't happen at least for a few months all for the same reasons...

CLUTE said...

Anonymous-

So if I understand you right, it will take a COUPLE OF MONTHS for Piniella to realize the team's falling out of the race and has to do what he knew he was supposed to do in the first place? Well if that happens, he's not the manager he says, or I think he is.

He's been preaching players earn playing time since he got here and I for one, don't want to see another instance where the manager makes exceptions for the star player. WE had enough of that with the Sosa/Baker fiasco.

For a $130+ million, Soriano should play catcher and bat 8th. if Piniella tells him to. This whole thing about Soriano signing with the Cubs because he was promised to hit leadoff is bullshiy anyway. Soriano has already gone on record as saying he is willing to play and hiy anywhere Piniella thinks he'll do the best job for the team.

It's Piniella the one I'm starting to become suspect of, not Soriano.

The only true power bat I ever saw effectively hit leadoff was Dick Allen. Speed doesn't make a leadoff hitter, OBP does.

And as far as DeRosa goes, he brings more defensive versatility as a super sub than The Riot does, and DeRosa is a turtle on the base paths compared with The Riot.

Anonymous said...

Clute,

I agree with you, but I really think what I said is true. The Cubs can't pull a "bait and switch" on these new free agents, not yet anyway.

I think Theriot should start nearly everyday, but I'm not sold on Izturis at SS and Soriano leading off.

No matter how much Lou says he's in the "earn it" business, there's obviously a lot of money committed and promises have been made.

Lou was around for these signings...he probably agreed to have DeRosa start at 2b and Soriano lead off...He may feel they deserve shots at these jobs. He could change things right before the season starts, but these players would almost have to sign off on it. The Cubs probably don't want to piss off free agents before they even play a regular season game...that wouldn't look good to future free agents who are thinking of signing here.

I'd like to think playing well is directly proportional to playing time, but that's not realistic with millions of $$ floating around. Even Lou will humor some guys (players and Jim Hendry), at least for a couple of months.