Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Whoa.

So, um ... apparently Doug Melvin has pulled a Milton in Office Space: on the heels of the 13-6 dismantling by the last-place Padres, Doug has decided to burn the whole fuckin' thing to the ground. Castro: fired. Hardy: optioned to Nashville. Hall: DFA'ed.

I just don't see any logic in these moves, especially Hardy. How does sending J.J. down improve the team in the short run, or help us in the long run? Technically, we're still in the Wild Card hunt ... and now we're running a rookie shortstop out there? And Melvin's effectively killed J.J.'s value on the off-season trade market.

As for Hall: no one's sorry to see him go, of course, but: why now? Why, two weeks after he accepted a demotion to AAA to work on his swing, and the night after he hits his first homer in forever, is he getting gassed?

Somebody help me figure this out.

31 comments:

Master Reid said...

Wow, I'm glad I checked before I posted my, very similar post of the same name.

EMoney said...

I had to comment before I even finished reading the entire post. Still in the wild card hunt? Please tell me you're joking! Aside from Yo, Prince, and Braun, this team is a f*ing disaster. Personally I'm amazed that they hung in the race this long as I believe I predicted they would finish 10-12 games under 0.500. Completely agree with these moves as I did with Ned Yost's late season firing last season.

Rubie Q said...

So this is a white flag, then?

EMoney said...

Ok, now that I've read your post in its entirety I'll help you out Rub (per your request).

1. Sending JJ Hardy down doesn't ruin his trade value, his .220 avg and 8 second 40 yard dash does.

2. Even worse than Hardy, Hall is hitting a scorching 0.200ish. And this isn't just an '09 slump. He hit for sh*t last year too. We have to pay him regardless of where he is, so it's in the club's best interest to have someone up that can contribute more than well....his 1 homerun in the last 2 months.

Even if the call-ups are as INEFFECTIVE as JJ and Hall, the management team will at least get to see what these guys can do at the major league level and identify things that they need to work on. Further, the players will at the very least have major league seasoning to take back to the minors(if that's the case, probably not for Escobar).

Softball's Tony Gwynn said...

I don't think this is a white flag at all. Its an attempt to shake things up. JJ by all accounts is a great teammate and sending him down says to everyone it don't matter how popular you are (especially with 14 year old girls) if you aren't producing you can be swapped out. Escobar is the future at SS for the Crew and hopefully his numbers will be better than JJ's which improves the team. Rubie-Haven't you been saying all along they should bring up Gamel and Escobar? For billy we all knew it would come to this. Maybe he'll accept the assignment bc no one will sign/trade for his ass now anyway. Accept the assignment, stay in the minors, collect your $14 million and maybe turn things around. Castro - your pitching staff sucks and has gotten worse over the course of the year. Can't fire all the players so pitching coach is first to go. thanks for your 18 years in Milwaukee, maybe I can buy your house in Franklin?

EMoney said...

No it's not waving a white flag, it's a kick in the ass like last year's firing of Yost with 2 weeks to play was. And I think that worked out pretty well for Melvin.

Rubie Q said...

A kick in the ass to who? The hitters? Why do they need to be kicked in the ass when the pitchers are giving up 10+ runs a game?

Rubie Q said...

Yes, SBTG, I did say -- more than two weeks ago, if memory serves -- that Escobar and Gamel needed to come up and start playing every day. The fact that Gamel isn't coming back tells me that DM doesn't see this as a white flag, especially since we've been trading for relievers like mad.

And since it's not a white flag, it makes no sense to me; we've cut off our nose to spite our face. How does sending J.J. Hardy down, and bringing up a rookie, make you a better team right now?

Master Reid said...

I actually take this as an attempt to salvage JJ's value. If he can go down, work on his hitting away from the spotlight, then come back in 2 1/2 weeks a hitter that at least somewhat resembles JJ of the last 2 years, the Brewers will have something to point to as they try and sell the fact that this shitty year is the exception.

EMoney said...

I think it's a kick in the ass to the whole team. It's probably aimed more at the pitching staff, but as a whole the message is that everyone is accountable.

Sending JJ down doesn't necessarily make us better, but I don't think that we can do much worse with anyone else. With JJ we are in 3rd/4th place in the central and have like 5-6 teams to hurdle for the wild card. Maybe Escobar comes in, hits .300, steals a bunch of bases, and adds a little bit of spark to this team. If he comes in and hits a paltry .220, then its a wash. We really don't have anything to lose at this point.

Rubie Q said...

Or: any team we try to trade him to in the off-season will low ball us and say: "You can't think that much of him. You sent him down in August, after all."

Master Reid said...

Yeah, that's entirely possible. But it's not like they could lowball us anymore than they would have if he just stayed here and hit .219. It's only going to be for 2 weeks, he'll be back September 1st. I really don't think his potential value could go down any further than where it was already at.

OR: Maybe this is your attempt to showcase Escobar for some kind of offseason deal? I doubt it, but stranger things have happened.

EMoney said...

Rub - You make it sound like JJ's trade value was sky high at this point. You have seen his '09 numbers right? I think any trade partners can point to that in an attempt to low ball as well.

Reid is right. He might be able to turn things around and resurrect his approach at the plate in the minors. AAA could give him some much needed confidence.

Rubie Q said...

Of course his value wasn't sky high after the season he's put together so far. But: I think he's a good shortstop who has some pop at an offense-poor position. That type of player can command something in a trade.

And, say he puts up big numbers in AAA. Who gives a flip? It's triple-freaking AAA. He's not going to get a chance to play all that much in the majors again this year; I highly doubt we'd call Escobar up to have him sit the bench.

Master Reid said...

Lost in all this, you gotta kind of feel bad for Bill Castro. He spent 16 years in the Brewer bullpen, before finally getting the pitching coach gig. But once he finally gets the pitching coach job, he's handed a rotation full of #5 starters, and they predictably pitch like shit. Then he becomes the fall guy, and gets the axe. I'm not saying that I disagree with the move, but it just sucks to see a guy that's been with the organization this long get the axe for circumstances that may have been out of his control.

Rubie Q said...

I agree that there's not much Castro could've done with this rotation -- but his Ray Rhodes-esque blank stare while the world burned around him didn't do him any favors. He looked completely overmatched.

Master Reid said...

And as far as Hardy goes, he's going to do more to improve his value by actually hitting in Triple A vs. sitting in the show. The more I look at this, the more I get the feeling that Escobar was coming up regardless.

EMoney said...

Reid, why do you always have to go in that direction? Gotta feel bad for Bill, gotta feel bad for Ned. Come on man. Bill's gonna collect his full year's salary and then jump on somewhere else. He'll be fine.

And honestly, IMO, Melvin can't keep this up much longer either. Yes, Castro is the fall guy but Doug put together that lovely rotation. He could very well be the next to go. If this continues for 1 more season, I predict he is gone.

EMoney said...

Where's D3 while all of this is going on? Did he make a run for the border before his big day?

Rubie Q said...

Melvin can always fire Macha at the end of the year. K-Mach only signed a two-year deal, after all, so he'd be a lame duck next year.

Master Reid said...

Come on dude, really? A guy has been here for 17 years and then gets the axe because he can't perform miracles with that shit rotation. What's wrong with saying that I feel bad for the guy? Not only that, but it was Castro that took the Sutton 08 jersey into the clubhouse to get signed by all the big names. So he scores extra marks with me. I'm not saying he was effective as pitching coach, or that he didn't deserve the axe, or that we all haven't seen this one coming for about 2 months now.

And, I like the move of making Bosio the new pitching coach. By all accounts he's been doing a bang up job in the minors for a few years now, for several organizations. So, maybe he'll be able to work some of the magic that everyone was hoping Castro would. But I'm not holding my breath.

EMoney said...

AHA! So it's personal with you Master Race I mean Master Reid.

Regardless of whether or not Doug would give Macha the axe after next season, it's Attanasio who would ultimately decide Melvin's fate. Knowing how successful of a businessman that Mark A. is and after seeing how quickly he agreed to part with Ned last season, I could easily see him firing Melvin

Sheets' Va Jay Jay said...

All of these moves have Attanasio written all over it. He didn't like what he saw and said, "Screw it!"

My first thought was that this will totally ruin our chance deal Hardy in the offseason, but I'm not sure. We'll at least be able to get some young pitching or something for him. These guys that have been in the big leagues for a while hate playing in AAA. This should be a big signal flare that he needs to work on stuff. With those bus rides and smaller per diem's, I'm sure he'll work extra hard.

I do feel bad for Castro. I had the chance to talk with him several times and he really does know his stuff. I don't know how much control he actually had over the pitching staff since Macha is a self-proclaimed pitching head coach. I'm sure most mound visits from Castro included the phrase, "Macha thinks you should..."

Hall should accept his designation. Unless he's been secretly talking to a team, I don't think his prospects look good.

I kind of wonder why Gamel isn't up. I know that would be more of a white flag, but can't we throw him in right and let him work on that a bit. I have a feeling he is more of a corner outfield or first baseman than he is a third baseman. Who knows though. It is pretty tough to be thrown into the fire at the major league level.

So many questions to answer. Even more to ask.

Devil's Threesome said...

I go away to a couple of meetings and then the most commented upon story in Q@theB history unfolds.

Here's my take:
Castro - good guy, tough break, but Rubes is right, he looked like Ray Rhodes from day one. The first time I saw him take a mound visit I got a sinking feeling.

Hardy - perplexing move to me. Maybe JJ asked for it? Ok, he probably didn't ask for it, but I don't think it was negatively impact his trade value. He's done enough damage over the past 5 months already.

Hall - the timing was weird on this. Why now? Lends more credence to the kick 'em in the ass crowd.

Melvin has to be in some hot water at this point

Rubie Q said...

J.J. was interviewed before he left for Nashville, said he could've used a few days off, wasn't entirely surprised by the demotion.

Softball's Tony Gwynn said...

you can't throw Gamel in right field in the middle of the season. if its something you want him to do tell him in AAA and work on it there or do like Braun and tell him to work on it in the offseason and then work on it more in spring. you can't just throw him in the fire like that. it would be like throwing Kenosha Mustache into left center or shortstop on Mondays, makes no f-in sense from a defense prospective just to get his bat in the line-up.

Rubie Q said...

If you're going to call Gamel up, put him at third and leave him there until he shows you he can't cut it at that position.

FPMKE said...

Wow, I'm a little busy so I totally missed this until the Badger-lady sent me an e-mail. By then you were on comment 21 and I was hungry so I chose to steer clear.

I'm excited to see Escobar. I'm thinking it's all a PR move to put people back in the seats... "hey, look, we did something. Come see it".

On a seperate note, can someone please post a story about Pitino? $3,000 for an abortion after banging a chick in a booth?! I'm running out the door to make a dinner downtown and just don't have the time but that's too good to not be covered.

Rubie Q said...

"$3,000 For An Abortion After Banging A Chick In A Booth" is actually the name of the next Reel Big Fish album.

Sheets' Va Jay Jay said...

Ha. That wouldn't surprise me. I believe the album artwork involves his white douchebag suit.

White But Still Hip said...

Gentlemen, I think this move was genius. If we keep J.J. in AAA, he doesn't meet the 6 season requirement for free agency in 2010, but rather in 2011. The brewers (or whatever team we trade him to) control hardy for an extra season. Melvin already said he wasn't moving Hardy down for this reason, but eff that. He's smart, he Escobar is the future, and that Hardy is our best bet at a young stud pitcher while keeping Prince and Braun. Well played, Mr. Melvin. Well played. Also: Fuck you, Billy "baseball" Hall. Fuck your bitching about not playing everyday while hitting below 250 and fuck your strikeout-to-walk ration.