Jeremy Heit's Blog
Saturday, August 30, 2003
Today, I figured I bring you some things I noticed while flipping through ESPN's stats pages...

-Right now, there are 8 players with the last name Perez in Major League Baseball. Six of them are position players, 2 of them are pitchers. The pitchers, Odalis and Oliver Perez, have given up 47 HR, while the hitters have hit 29.

-Barry Bonds is the only qualified player in baseball with more walks than hits (119 to 111). Jason Giambi is close, with 114 hits and 113 walks. Of course, Jason has struck out 110 times while Bonds has only struck out 49 times.

-While on the topic on Bonds and Giambi, they also have the lowest G/F ratios in the league. Giambi at .56 and Bonds at .63. I'm not sure if that's good or bad because the next person is Tony Batista at .64.

-Marcus Giles has two more homeruns than Brian Giles on the season. If you told me that in March, whether or not you told me Brian would miss some time to injury, I would have said your nuts.

-Preston Wilson actually has more RBI's (126) than K's (122).

-While on the topic of strikeouts, Jose Hernandez has been on-base (BB+H) 146 times. He's struck out 153 times. Also, he's gotten out by grounding out the same number of times as he has by striking out.

-The two Zambrano's, Victor and Carlos, have combined to walk 169 hitters this season.

-Also, on the topic of pitchers walking people, two of the Cy Young candidates, Hideo Nomo and Russ Ortiz, walk many people. Russ is tied for 3rd with 87 and Nomo is 2nd with 90.

And by the way, the wild card hopes of the Mets are gone. The loss last night really hurt their chances....

Friday, August 29, 2003
This is going to be a fun September... look at the Wild Card Standings. Five teams tied for the top. 8 teams within 1.5 games. One has to win the NL Central. Colorado is only 6.5 back and Pittsburgh is only 8 back. I mean, the Mets could win it. They are 10.5 back with 7 games against Philly, 7 against Montreal, 6 against Florida, 3 against the Cubs, plus 3 each against Atlanta and Pittsburgh. OK, I dreaming on that one, so lets go Expos!

Then, while flipping around the standings to find KC tied with the White Sox again with two games in hand, I saw Seattle was two back of Oakland. Man, they didn't even need September to fully collapse...

And while I'm on Seattle, I found an interesting note about one of their players and my favorite player of all-time... John Olerud. I always remember John from my first memory of baseball, the 1993 World Series. I loved him then. The way he played defense, the way he hit. I loved the way he would be patient at the plate and be willing to take walks. I always appreciated that, even before I became a semi-stathead. Then, when he became a Met, he became my favorite player ever. There was something extra special about him to me.

Anyway, let me get to my original point before I spend 10 paragraphs on how great John Olerud is. He is struggling this year in Seattle. He's still getting on-base decently at a .374 clip, but he's only slugging .392. But he plays in Safeco, so that could be bringing down his stats, right? Guess again... Look at this...

Home: .281/.389/.457 (.846 OPS)
Road: .256/.357/.326 (.683 OPS)

He's hit 8 homeruns at home and 1 on the road and the AB's are even at 221 at home to 215 on the road. So, this is really a problem, because while he might be hitting fairly well at home, its strange that he's not hitting well anywhere else. He might be starting to downturn as a doubles and power hitter, but can still be useful because he gets on-base so well and he is a great defensive player. And its not like he did this in his first two years either...

Home: .285/.382/.495 (.877 OPS)
Road: .319/.420/.451 (.871 OPS)

Home: .275/.384/.443 (.827 OPS)
Road: .325/.422/.536 (.958 OPS)

In 2001, he was fairly even, though he slugged a little better at home. In 2002, he hit a lot better on the road while still hitting good at home.

I didn't think John's power would drop of like this, but it has. He is still a valuable first baseman, but may not be one of the better ones in the league anymore, unless he is just having a very bad year (his career SLG is .472).

And just as an intersting note... he has batted .309/.427/.509 in Shea and .270/.374/.448 in Safeco over his career.

Thursday, August 28, 2003
I don't have a lot of time again today (some things I didn't know about), so I'll continue linking you to some of the better articles of the day. This time, go over to Eisenberg Sports and check out his article on OBP vs. SLG, how valuable OBP really is, and his comparision of Bobby Arbeu and Richie Sexson.

I also think I want to do my bio this weekend. It's been about two months and I've enjoyed writing, having people who enjoy reading my site daily and finding what I have to say interesting. I just think its probably about time that I actually tell you a little bit about who I am. If you have any things you would like to know or any suggestions of what I should talk about about myself, just send me an e-mail. Or if you want to, you can tell me its a stupid idea. Your choice.

A couple of quick notes...

-Heilman shouldn't be given a rotation spot next year the way he's pitched. He should have to earn it in spring training. I'm just afraid he's going to get one no matter how he looks this spring.

-Braves fans shouldn't go nuts over Smoltz on the DL yet. If he needs some rest, he might as well get it now. The Braves are all but assured a playoff spot and the closer isn't that important for them at this point in the season. If he needs the rest, now is a perfect time... that's if all he needs is rest. If its more, then there could be a problem.

-The Expos! How did they get to 1 back in the Wild Card? How was I not paying more attention to this earlier than last night? And I thought they had finally gone away for this season... Go Expos!

I'll be back tomorrow with much more time...

Wednesday, August 27, 2003
Yesterday, I talked about the Brian Giles trade. Unfortunately, with the time constraints I have on me lately, I didn't have time to type much. If you want more in depth coverage, go read Aaron Gleeman or Geoff at Ducksnorts (A Padre blog)

If you remember to a little over a month ago, I answered an e-mail from David Bloom about a variety of Mets topics. Well, David Bloom has sent another e-mail, this time dealing with the pitching staff...

"What do you think the Mets rotation will look like next year? Why is Griffiths still at AAA? Is he in the Mets plans?"

The rotation question. I love it...

The problem is the contracts. Glavine isn't going anywhere for a while. Even though Leiter is going into his last year, no one is going to take him as a 9 mil guy. Seo has given himself another shot next year. The Mets are too sold on Heliman not to let him in the rotation next year. That leaves us Trachsel. Jim Duquette loves Trachsel, because "he knows how to pitch in NY". I'm actually OK with that statement, because if you have ever watched Kenny Rogers here, you know what Jim means. He's going into the last year of his contract. He's fairly cheap and might be dealt during the offseason, but I don't count on it. If the Mets are out of it next year when the trade deadline approaches, I'm hoping Jim does the right thing and deals him. Signing him to another deal at his age would not make sense.

But what does that mean? The rotation, barring a Traschel trade, if the same as it is now. Glavine, Leiter, Trachsel, Seo, and Heilman. And, you know what, I'm OK with that going into the season (meaning Trachsel better be traded at the deadline if they are out of it). I don't think the Mets should go after any of the free agents (Millwood, Colon, and Ponson). I think Ponson will ask for too much money. Giving around or over 10 million to Millwood makes no sense for this team. And Colon... I don't like him and I'm not sold on him at all, especially since someone will overpay him.

Now, to Griffiths. I like Griffiths, but the way it is right now, there is no spot for him on the team (especially the way Art uses the pen). I think he could be a good starter in this league (meaning maybe a 3, but certainly a good back of the rotation starter). Look at his numbers...

2.75 ERA, 89 H, 74 K, 24 BB, 5 HR in 108 IP

Those are good at AAA. The only problem is he does have 5 WP and 9 HBP. I'm not sure exactly how he has the 9 HBP with the 24 BB, but I still think he could be at the back of the rotation. So, if Trachsel gets dealt, I'd like to see Griffiths get a shot. If not, shove him into the bullpen next year, but make sure he gets some work.

Then, after 2004 season, when Seo has 2 years to prove himself, Heilman has a year and a half, and Trachsel and Leiter come off the books, you can make some moves to sign some good young free agents pitching plus probbaly a veteran (and then maybe give Griffiths a shot if he hasn't had one already).

Tuesday, August 26, 2003
First of all, you must read this interview with J.P. Riccardi done by Batter's Box, a very very good Blue Jays blog. J.P. is one of the best GM's in the game and has some very interesting things to say.

Secondly, I'll see what I can do about an afternoon post tomorrow, but I'm sure I will have one on Thursday. Also, starting Friday until at least Tuesday (I hope) I'll be able to get some morning posts in.

Now, the big baseball news yesterday (at least in my opinion) was that Brian Giles got traded to the Padres for Oliver Perez, Jason Bay, and another minor leaguer...

1. If I knew that you could get Giles without Kendall, I would have been clamoring for the Mets to go after him.
2. I still don't understand how the Pirates do this. If you don't think Giles is good, read my column on why he's the most underrated hitter in the game.
3. I don't understand how this trade is not getting more talk for the Padres and their future. The lineup is going to be very good and you know how highly I think of Giles. (Read here about how much of an effect this trade can have, even though Kendall isn't part of it...)

Now, Oliver Perez has great stuff and can strike out tons of people. He's young and still learning to control the ball and get it over the plate. He also has a tendency to give up the long ball. I don't think he's going to be as great as most people think he is.

Jason Bay... former player in the Mets system (involved in the Steve Reed deal last year if I'm not mistaken...) who hits over .300 and has 30/30 ability. He has over a .400 OBP and over a .550 SLG at AAA. He looks like a fairly good player.

The Pirates look like they got some pretty good stuff back in this deal, but Brian Giles is a hitter you can build an offense around. They have some good young pitching in their farm system and some up with the major league club and Giles is an established hitter. I think they should have really tried to sign him during the offseason and if, by next year, they couldn't sign him, trade him at the deadline next year. They could have built this team around Giles and all the Pirates seem to do is trade players away, get younger, and keep regressing. At some point, you have to hold on to some good players.

Sunday, August 24, 2003
Last night a strange sound was heard in and around Giants Stadium. You heard laughing, but at the same time heard about the same amount of people yelling, "Oh, sh*t!". That could be because of only one thing... Chad Pennington's injury. Now, I'm one of those people who yelled sh*t, but I did it especially loud. Why? Because at the beginning of last year, I said to anyone who asked me about the Jets (I really wish I had the blog for this prediction), that with Vinny as the starting QB this team isn't making the playoffs and is 6-10 and 8-8 would be a miracle. I also said that with Pennington as the QB, this team is a playoff team. I guess I was right... which of course means I have absolutely no faith in Vinny Testaverde this year. And now reports say Chad is out at least 12 weeks and could be done for the season. I'm not expecting anything at all from this team... except of course a big celebration when Vinny gets his 40,000th passing yard (he needs 442 yards). By the way look at the list of guys who have thrown for 40,000 yards...

1. Dan Marino
2. John Elway
3. Warren Moon
4. Fran Tarkenton
5. Dan Fouts
6. Brett Favre
7. Joe Montana
8. Johnny Unitas

And Vinny Testaverde... Vinny just doesn't fit in this list... he really has been around forever. And by the way, the next guy to reach 40,000 yards will probably be Drew Bledsoe. He's only about 6,000 yards away. Even he fits in on that list more than Vinny, more in a Warren Moon kind of way (because Drew has thrown the ball a lot of his career, like Moon in the run and shoot offense...)

Anyway, expect a lot of unhappy reports about the Jets this season and a lot of complaining about Vinny... Sorta like the Mets and Glavine (until he started pitching well), Alomar, and Cedeno for most of this year... and don't even mention the Rangers yet...

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