Push for the Wildcard

First – the facts. Rox 1 1/2 game up on the Brewers, 4 up on the Cardinals, 6 up on the Marlins. Let’s focus on these teams.

Rockies remaining schedule (28 games) – 2 DBacks, 3 Giants, 4 @ Dodgers, 4 @ DBacks, 3 Padres, 2 @ Giants, 4 @ Padres, 3 Marlins, 3 Dodgers

Brewers remaining schedule – 2 Nats, 3 @ Reds, 3 @ Cubs, 3 Pirates, 3 @ Marlins, 3 @ Pirates, 4 cubs, 3 Reds, 3 @ StL.

Cardinals remaining schedule – 2 @ Giants, 4 @ Padres, 3 Pirates, 3 Reds, 3 @ Cubs, 3 @ Reds, 3 @ Pirates, 4 Cubs, 3 @ Brewers.

Marlins remaining schedule – 2 Phillies, 3 Nats, 4 @ Braves, 3 @ Phillies, 3 Brewers, 3 Mets, 3 @ DBacks, 3 @ Rockies, 4 Braves.

 

Note that I’m not listing the DBacks. They’ve moved into a different zip code. They made a good move picking up JD Martinez. Couple that with AJ Pollock coming back from an extended injury absence, and they’ve essentially added 2 really good players to an already solid team. They also have a fresh Robbie Ray back from his scary looking head injury.

 

On the surface, the Rockies finishing schedule looks the toughest to me. But I’m wondering about the Dodgers mindset in September? They’ll be gentle with Kershaw. Looks as though they’ll rest Corey Seager at least the upcoming week due to a sore elbow. That’s the “good” news. The bad news is – can our really good run over the Giants in 2017 continue?

 

Our trusted friend Ag has been waiting for the expanded roster for a solid 2 months. Now the expanded rosters are here. I agree with Ag, we need to (and can) use this to our advantage.  Of course our real need is a consistent offensive spark from someone not named Arenado or Blackmon.

 

SDCarp

 

 

29 Comments

    • roxnsox

      September 2, 2017

      To riff on the last two RWO headlines: Going Anywhere (Nowhere)? And Push for (Dribbling Away) the Wild Card. I was sitting right up close last night (Friday), and the players looked generally leaden in their limbs and aspect. Sloppy. The pitchers made the fielders go to sleep with their pace and execution. Exactly the opposite of what I would hope and expect after the recent performances AND a day off at home. Those D-backs are good. One of the few bright spots was Cargo with 2 doubles – who’d a thunk?

      And, thanks a lot, Nationals. Are you and the Dodgers coasting a bit while our pursuers come blazing up behind?

      Reply
      • sdcarp

        September 2, 2017

        RnS – I really do think we’re about to see some Dodger coasting this last month. Now, take that with a grain of salt please. The Dodgers are so deep that they’ll still field a team that’s plenty good. But I see liberal rest for Justin Turner and Corey Seager, and very controlled efforts from Kershaw and Darvish. They’ll be all about getting healthy no rested for the playoffs. So we might catch them at a (relatively) good time.

        Reply
        • roxnsox

          September 2, 2017

          Carp, you mean catch them at a good time to get some wins for ourselves, I assume. OK, duh…

          Reply
          • sdcarp

            September 3, 2017

            Yes RnS. IMO, they won’t be as invincible this next month.

            Reply
      • roxnsox

        September 2, 2017

        The deepest possible fly balls to the wall (that didn’t quite make it out) certainly hurt as well. Credit where due: Charlie caught at least one of those off the opponent as well. And Daniel Descalso with a 3-run blast to seal it? Oh sheesh. Always kinda liked him…just one of those things…

        Reply
      • roxnsox

        September 2, 2017

        More credit: two of the best DPs I ever saw to keep the game close early. More blame: why can’t they hit with men on third (and/or second)?! This has been a LONGTIME problem! Why did they get one lousy run out of bases loaded, nobody out? OK, I’m done with my fractured summary from last night and my frustration. A month remains. Let’s go 🙂

        Reply
    • Agbayani

      September 3, 2017

      Carp, good points – after the trading season, I still think the Dbacks grabbed the biggest steal. JD Martinez acquired for really nothing; a couple C grade prospects who may never see the big leagues. JD has had a major impact on that batting order, particularly as Owings (who had a great first half) has been out. I do like the expanded roster, but Jeff and Bud: more please! They used Rosscup perfectly – one lefty hitter, one K, take a shower – but they need to start thinking of these September games as “once or twice through the order” for their starters, then a parade of 7 relievers. They also need to be doing the same thing offensively, but they need to still grab a bat or two even if not post-season eligible. Lucroy … meh. I still would’ve preferred handing the job to Murphy and hoping he catches fire like he did last year.

      Reply
      • roxnsox

        September 3, 2017

        Desmond’s a big Meh for me. Maybe the sample size is still too small, but….

        Reply
      • sdcarp

        September 3, 2017

        Agree 100% regarding JD Martinez….for two reasons. First, he’s a good player. 2nd, they kept him away from us (he was a perfect fit). Of course I don’t know if we pursued Martinez (or not). But if we make the trade for Martinez instead of the DBacks, our positions may we’ll be reversed now.

        Reply
    • sdcarp

      September 4, 2017

      Here’s the thing – it’s really easy to come on to sites like this and criticize X, Y, and Z. It’s easy to suggest personnel changes 1,2, and 3. I do it all the time (especially the personnel changes). And of course some these criticisms/change suggestions are correct. Some aren’t.

      But bottom line, right now, I think at least 50% of this team’s problem is that they are truly in an unexplainable baseball funk. I really liked Bud’s lineup changes yesterday. Hopefully he’ll keep doing that. It feels like someone off the bench (or one of the callups) getting freakishly hot is what will be the spark to get us restarted.

      Reply
    • sdcarp

      September 4, 2017

      Ian Desmond starting at SS, and re-arranging all the Clubhouse furniture. I like it (both)!

      Billy Hamilton beating the Brewers on a walk-off HR (that left the Park). I like it.

      AL Wildcard Standings (fun stuff – and we just don’t talk about it much):
      NYY –
      Min –
      Halos – (-1.5)
      Orioles – (-1.5)
      Mariners – (-2.5)
      Rangers – (-3)
      Royals – (-3)
      Rays – (-4) (Chris Archer is hurting – not good)

      Reply
    • Agbayani

      September 4, 2017

      OK, Rox 3=2 lead, top of the 6th. Lefty Span (already a HR) at bat. NO WAY BETTIS SHOULD BE OUT THERE!!! This is September expanded roster/try to squeeze out a wildcard baseball. Clint Hurdle, you wouldn’t have let this happen. Bud, you’ve got Rosscup, Dunn, Rusin, McGee — 4 lefties in the pen! And Bettis stays on to face lefty Panik. You’re killin’ me!

      Reply
    • Agbayani

      September 4, 2017

      Too late now with the tying run scoring, but .. Span is hitting .211 against lefties, 521 OPS … Bud would’ve been better off activating himself to pitch to Span than letting Bettis pitch to him.

      Reply
    • Agbayani

      September 4, 2017

      Cargo: 8th inning, tie game, leading off. Drew Goodman: “any way you can get on.” Melancon on the mound. Public knowledge that his arm is shot! Swing and miss at Ball One changeup in the dirt. Swing and hit dribbler at Ball Two changeup. Nice work, Cargo!

      Reply
      • sdcarp

        September 4, 2017

        We’re lucky we weren’t able to sign Melancon.

        You’re correct, ugly game. But the irony (to me) is that I love how we won it. We need more of a “get on base via any means” mindset and less of a “swing for the fences” mindset moving forward.

        Paul Goldschmidt returning to Phoenix for MRI on right elbow. Jake Arrieta hurting. Chris Archer hurting. Corey Seager hurting (although I think his situation is truly minor). Nick Ahmed to have surgery….out for the year.

        Reply
        • sdcarp

          September 4, 2017

          Add two Cardinals to the injury list – Matt Carpenter and the emerging Tommy Pham. Both have sore shoulders.

          Reply
    • sdcarp

      September 4, 2017

      Ag – you “should” get your expanded roster extravaganza tomorrow. I see that Chatwood is scheduled to start. He’ll have a very short leash.

      Reply
    • Agbayani

      September 4, 2017

      Carp, the Brewers beat us at our own patented (2007/2009) expanded roster pitching strategy yesterday. Brent Suter, coming off the DL: 3 IP. 4 relievers: max 1 time through the order each. Beat the Nats, holding them to 2 runs. I hope to see the same from Chatty and the bullpen. Today: Cargo blew it on that at bat vs. Melancon, but had the sense to keep the bat on his shoulder for the bottom on the 9th walk-off BB later. Kind of sad that that’s the most memorable Cargo moment of the year so far, but I’ll take it ….

      Reply
      • sdcarp

        September 5, 2017

        Mike Scoscia used 12 pitchers yesterday. I believe it was a Major League record.

        Some fascinating games in general yesterday. Pirates beat the snot out of the Cubs. Robbie Ray sort of owns the Dodgers.

        Reply
    • Agbayani

      September 4, 2017

      And Desmond at SS! I’ve been calling for that since June. It was pure stubbornness not to do it earlier since with the way Story is going and the depth in the OF (including Tapia if they bring him back soon) makes that our best lineup. Better late than never.

      Reply
      • sdcarp

        September 5, 2017

        The whole double switch, pitcher in for Reynolds, Desmond to 1st, Story to SS for defense worked nicely. I can certainly see the attraction of Zobrist/Chris Taylor/Chris Owings/Ian Desmond type of players.

        Reply
    • rockymountainhigh

      September 5, 2017

      Hello from the Cayman islands! I pray Chatty gives us 3 shutout innings. Ball 2 and deep counts on every batter tonight.

      Broken record talking – we have to score 5 plus runs tonight and every game.

      Reply
    • Agbayani

      September 5, 2017

      Cayman Islands, RMH? A CAT 5 hurricane moving west and you’re thinking about Chatty going 3 shutout innings? (He did!). Fortunately if looks like you’ll likely be on the very fringe of the action. Stay safe, and I hope it isn’t a cruise that takes you to Miami later this week ….

      Reply
      • rockymountainhigh

        September 5, 2017

        I’ve been watching the Irma track. Totally missing Cayman as of now. 🙂

        No not on the cruise. Supposed to fly home via Houston Saturday.

        Wednesday night, calm and clear. About 2 mph wind. Local forecast says sunny and hot thru Saturday. My sis and bro who were supposed to join us backed out 2 hours before flight due to Irma fears. (Too close for comfort for my sister.)

        Reply
    • rockymountainhigh

      September 5, 2017

      I like carp’s suggestion that Senza is perfect for bullpen. Gimme 9 batters, 9 outs.

      Reply
    • sdcarp

      September 5, 2017

      Baseball is a difficult game.

      Marlins have lost 8 of 9. In 8 losses have gone 3 for 57 w/RISP.

      Brewers on verge of once again losing to the Reds,

      For the schedule watchers/analyzers, there’s an intangible that is frequently not considered. Virtually every team is loaded with Divisional play from now thru the end of the season. Keep in mind these teams are playing each other +/- 20 times a regular season. They know everything about each other. The pitchers have no secrets. The hitter have no secrets. Even seldom used RPers have faced the hitters multiple times. There are old rivalries. Records sort of get thrown out the window in this scenario. Don’t be shocked if the Reds and Pirates wreak havoc on the Brewers and Cardinals. Likewise….take nothing for granted against the Giants and Padres.

      Reply
    • sdcarp

      September 5, 2017

      My first bold (or you could also say flat out stupid) personnel recommendation for 2018 is if the Rox can’t get a bonafide Closer at a reasonable price, let Senzatela Close in 2018 and beyond. I’d rather spend our money on a Lucroy extension and an impact bat.

      Reply
    • Agbayani

      September 5, 2017

      RMH, fortune follows the bold! Have fun. On the baseball front: 9-5-17, the day Bud Black stopped worrying and learned to love the expanded roster. Way to empty the bench, Bud! Rosscup for the LOOGY out. Tauchman as a pinch runner, scoring the insurance run. Loving it. Now he just needs to get over his “Holland is my closer until his arm falls off” thing … Carp: please no Lucroy extension. Coors Field hasn’t really brought that bat of old back, so I’m thinking nothing will. Give my man Tommy Murphy a shot!

      Reply

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