Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Jerry Crasnick's "Sources" are Usually Idiots

Does he choose these miserable quotes intentionally? His "Starting 9" columns in and of themselves have been getting better over the last couple of years (probably because he stopped choosing topics like "best bunters" and "best players under 5'6"), but man, the people he quotes to reinforce his choices continue to sound like a bunch of tards. This installment of the column is about guys who are having underappreciatedly awesome seasons. I agree with most of the picks, but check out what some knowledgeable "baseball people" had to say about them.

Re: Ben Zobrist

Some people in Tampa have noticed that when Zobrist completes his swing from the left side, he has a follow-through similar to Ted Williams'. We kid you not.

Wow. First of all, why is Jerry channeling the first person plural douchebaggery of Will Leitch? Second of all- comparing the swing of a Hall of Famer to that of [player X] is just about the most useless, subjective, anecdotal way to hype up [player X]. Don't do it. Ever.

Re: Russell Branyan

"After Russell was out there for seven to 10 days this spring, Don told me, 'This guy has a good swing. How the heck does he strike out so much?'" Zduriencik said.

The "Don" quoted there is Mariners manager Don Wakamatsu. As in, a guy who gets paid good money to make decisions about baseball players. And somehow he can't seem to figure out (or allegedly can't seem to figure out) why this player has struck out in more than 40% of his career at bats. Hmmm. Here are a couple suggestions: 1) He's a big guy so he probably has a very long swing, and 2) he probably swings at a lot of terrible pitches, and 3) he might not have a very good eye. But don't mind me, I'm just camped down here in my mother's basement, avoiding girls and sunlight and lobbing steroid accusations at Raul Ibanez.

"He's sustained it for this length of time, and I believe it's going to continue. I don't see anything fluke-ish about it."

Referring to his great season so far? You don't see anything fluke-ish about a guy with a career .237 BA in more than 2500 PAs hitting .308 over the course of a couple months, at age 33? Interesting. Enjoy the ride, M's fans.

Re: Jason Bartlett

The Tampa Bay chapter of the Baseball Writers Association named Bartlett the team's MVP last season after he posted a .690 OPS, so that gives you an idea what he means defensively to the Rays.

What. A. Bunch. Of. Dickheads.

"He's my favorite player on that club because he does something different every day to beat you," an NL scout said.

Interesting. If I were a scout, my favorite Ray would be Evan Longoria, because he's fucking awesome at everything. But I guess Bartlett is OK too.

Re: Marco Scutaro

"He's another example of how the real baseball players have caught up with the cheaters as they've detoxified," an NL scout said, only half in jest.

I hope he was saying it fully in jest, because if he was saying it even 1% seriously, he should be stripped of his job and shot into deep space. Scutaro is slugging .429 this year- and he's never cleared .400 for a full season in his career before.

Ryan Madson, speaking re: Ryan Madson

"When you have success like that, you come to believe in yourself," Madson said. "I can't give enough credit to pitching in the playoffs and World Series and the confidence it gave me. I feel more in control, more calm and focused out there now."

Kind of sounds like he's making a sales pitch for an anti-depressant.

Re: Mark Reynolds

"I give him a lot of credit," Arizona GM Josh Byrnes said. "Everybody focuses on the strikeouts, but he plays good defense,

By any measure, from ones as simple as errors (34 last year) or fielding percentage (just a hair over .900) to ones as complex as total fielding runs above average (-7.0), Reynolds is a complete butcher in the field.

he runs the bases

You cannot play a non-pitching position for a baseball team without doing this.

and he's one of our toughest players.

Watch out, Eckstein. It's great that you're playing for the Padres now, but there's a new gritty grinder in the NL West.

He does a lot of things to help us win."

Please don't include his defense or his ability to run the bases amongst those things.


Fred Trigger said...

"I'm just camped down here in my mother's basement, avoiding girls and sunlight and lobbing steroid accusations at Raul Ibanez."

Dont forget, selling mattresses online, as well.

Chris W said...

Sorry Fred, it's "dreaming of one day selling mattresses online"

Fred Trigger said...

damn! Foiled again!

Just promise me, Larry, that once you become a lawyer, you wont be the scumbag to leak private shit to the public.

Larry B said...

Consider it promised. I do, after all, hope to study law one day.

Elliot said...

Also don't mention that Reynolds has struck out more than anyone in the NL up to this point--including Ryan Howard. That's pretty damn hard to do.

Also, Zobrist is OPSing 1.098, so it's not like he's not having a good year. However, I agree comparing his swing to Ted Williams is a stretch at best.

At any rate, writing about how players are performing with a little less than 100 games left is pretty pointless. But, I guess deadlines are deadlines.

Has Raúl Ibáñez stopped taking steroids yet?

Fred Trigger said...

Good luck studying law out of your moms basement, you rapscallion (that is so spelled wrong, I think. Whatevs, I'm just a dumb boston fan.....NO ONE DENIES THIS!!!!)

slwg said...

Just to be completely accurate, he was not "comparing the swing of a Hall of Famer" to Zobrist, he was conparing only the follow through of the swing to a Hall of Famer. Wow, not many people are students of follow throughs. This guy must be one dedicated fan.

Jeff said...

I overheard a scout's brother saying that Alberto Callaspo releases the bat just like Ty Cobb.

Tonus said...

That is one heck of a backhanded compliment. "He finishes his swing the way Ted Williams did." Why not go all the way and add "the only difference is in the results."

Some people have noticed that when Pau Gasol goes strong to the basket, he grunts just like Serena Williams. We kid you not.

Tonus said...

PS- too bad Jerry didn't use Harold Reynolds as a source.