Monday, August 22, 2005

Some Good Local Baseball News...

The Rangers didn't lose tonight!

(Oh yeah, that's because they didn't play.)

This season is pretty much in the tank (losing 12 of 13 on the recent roadtrip guaranteed that, I'm afraid), but those of us who are die-hard supporters will slog on (I have lots and lots of ticket vouchers left, so I'll be at plenty of games in September) and hope for a better year next year. Hey, it worked for the Red Sox last year, so miracles can happen.

But it begs the question: What's the best thing that can be done to "fix" the Rangers? I heard a talk-show host on TV last night say that the only solution was to get rid of Buck Showalter and GM John Hart, and bring back Doug Melvin (the GM during the playoff years of the mid-late '90s).

I'm skeptical of the fire-Buck idea; he seems to do the best with what he's been given. Hart? I've never warmed to him; maybe that's where the change needs to take place. Fellow Rangers fans--chime in with your thoughts. Everyone else--well, there'll be a fresh post tomorrow.

He pioneered the electronic keyboard, and music hasn't been the same ever synth: R.I.P. Robert Moog. He developed the first commercial modular synthesizer, and can thus be credited/blamed (depending on your personal taste , of course) for everything from electronica to Switched-On Bach. I also thought it was fascinating that he put himself through college by building and selling theremins (c'mon, everybody say wooo-OOOO-oooo). But no matter your opinion of electronic music, Moog definitely broke new ground.

7 comments:

Eric Grubbs said...

re: Dr. Moog
I recently watched Moog, a documentary on Dr. Moog and his inventions. Pretty cool stuff even though I'm not the biggest fan of synthesized music.

Gary P. said...

Buck's neurotic desire to control everything in the clubhouse and be seen as the most important person therein is Reason #1 that Alex Rodriguez now plies his trade in Da Bronx. Before the start of the 2007 season, Showalter will either be let go or the triumvirate of Teixeira, Blalock, and Young will be broken up in favor of players who know their roles and shut their mouths. (Bonus points from Tim Hick$ if said players received in trade will play for the major league minimum.)

Buck also gets most of the credit for the presence of dreck like Rod Barajas, Greg Colbrunn, Robert Ellis, Jason Conti, Ken Huckaby, Andy Fox, and Nick Bierbrodt littering the Rangers roster at some point after playing for Showalter in Arizona. You'd think Buck would do a better job of remembering how awful all these players are and not make his job that much harder in Texas by continuing to play these guys....

Kev said...

I never thought Barajas was all that bad....way better than those other guys last year, IMHO. And, much as I liked A-Rod when he was here, I soured on him a bit after he left and made that "24 kids" remark...

So, Gary, if you were Tom Hicks, with whom would you replace Buck next year?

Gary P. said...

In the two years Barajas has been the Rangers C, his on-base percentages have been .276 and .310. In a park that boosts offense as much as The Ballpark in Arlington, those would be terrible numbers for a #2 catcher. C Gerald Laird is hitting .302/.371/.546 in AAA, but he's in Buck's Doghouse since he didn't play Winter Ball last year to rehab his thumb injury from 2004. Opening Day starter Ryan Drese has a falling out with Buck's Boy Barajas, and it's Drese who is released instead of Barajas. He's a complete waste of money and a spot on the 40-man roster as his continued presence is doing nothing more than costing Laird major league service time.

Coincidentally (or is it?), Tim Cowlinshaw has a column in today's Dallas Morning News: Players Have Had Their Fill of Showalter. If Buck really has lost the clubhouse to that extent, he needs to go after this season.... or they can go find cheap equivalents for Blalock, Teixeira, and Young. Good luck.

If I were running the club, I'd try to talk Davey Johnson out of retirement to run the club. Teams with talent tend to do well by replacing high-stress managers with "player's managers." There aren't many who are more high-stress than Showalter, nor are there many who carry more of a "player's manager" rep than Johnson. He's got 14 years of experience, managed a World Series winner (1986 Mets), won 5 division titles, and had only 2 out of 14 seasons where his club didn't finish 1st or 2nd. He has a rep for not kowtowing to ownership either, which is about the only reason I can think of that he hasn't had a job since 2000... unless it's just his personal choice.

Kev said...

I don't know, for some reason I've just never been impressed by Laird. And we all know plenty of players with great minor league numbers that don't get reproduced in the majors.

So we might just have to agree to disagree here and see who ends up closer to what actually happens. But that's the great thing about well-used blog comments--differing ideas and intelligent, polite discourse. That's one reason I stay out of politics on here...

Gary P. said...

But that's the great thing about well-used blog comments--differing ideas and intelligent, polite discourse.

Screw you.





;-)

Kev said...

Gary--LOL.