Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Conversation with Alphonso

ALPHONSO: Doesn't sound like a year or to ago when we drafted Ian and Joba....I remember you telling me that if we could sign Joba, we'd have a really good draft. Oh well.

DUQUE: It's hard to get excited about this draft, because of what's been happening -- or not happening -- in our system.

Phil Hughes might turn out to be a colossal bust. Same with Ian Kennedy. I fully anticipated the chance that one might go sour. I never figured they both would.

Alan Horne is just now throwing again at Scranton. In other words, he's starting over.

Throughout our system, we really don't have anybody who is rising head and shoulders above the rest. In fact, if someone were to ask, who is the best prospect in our system right now -- the answer would probably be, nobody.

I suppose it would be Jesus Montero, who's done really well at Charleston. But it's so far down in Single A, and it's a guy who spends half his time DHing. I'm so tired of hearing the Yanks talk about how proud they are to have drafted Brackman. By the time he throws any pitches at all, he'll be an old prospect.

I'm starting to think about what we might get for a red-hot Johnny Damon (3rd in the league in hitting), if Tampa Bay showed interest. Who would give us something for Jason Giambi (who is also hitting quite well and playing 1B well enough for NL standards.) What could we get for them? And Melky. If Austin Jackson is the future, why not trade Melky?

We're a game ahead of .500. That means we'll lose tonight, right?

ALPHONSO: No one is going to trade for Damon or Jason, hot or cold. That is pure fantasy.

DUQUE: You are wrong. Right now, nobody would do it. At the trading deadline, that's another matter. I can imagine several young teams that could be really hot for a power 1B or a lead-off CF. Let's face it: They only have to pay a half-year of Giambi's salary, and Damon is having a rebirth. Abreu, too. Even Mussina (who is about to implode, by the way.) I think we could get something for any of those guys, if we play our cards.

ALPHONSO: I am beginning to think Darrrell Rasner is the best young pitcher we have and, by the way, we picked him of the Washington National's scrap heap.

DUQUE: You might be right. Nobody has come through the pike at all. Hopefully, Cox and Melancon will revive our bullpen by late August, even if it is too late for this year's race.

ALPHONSO: Phil Hughes broke ribs doing what, exactly? At his age, I could have fallen off a building and not gotten hurt. He is Carl Pavano without the babes. And he is not what they claimed either ( 91 mph FB vs 95 mph hype ).

DUQUE: This is what happens with all young pitchers. We have to track through it. Look at Scott Kasmir. He missed most of two years ago.

We cannot spend all winter making pronouncements of how important it is to hold on to young arms, then spend all summer ripping them because they're not Cy Young. Remember Ray Halladay's first year with Toronto? Out. Chien-Ming Wang missed half a year when he came up. They're hurt? They're young. Deal with it. In four years, Hughes will still be younger than Rasner is now.

ALPHONSO: Ian was, in my book, always hugely over-rated. He has no out pitch. He is like Mussina only in that he has to hit corners and mix 4 pitches to have a prayer....but Mussina is about 5 generations better in every respect. I wouldn't be surprised to see Ian be a .500 pitcher at Scranton, when he recovers from who knows what?

DUQUE: Again, give him time. We both agreed that the Santanna deal would have been a mistake. Yeah, the guy has been awful thus far. Both of them. What will really suck is if we pull a Doug Drabek. And you know exactly what I'm referring to.

ALPHONSO: A control and command injury ? A " lack of ability " injury ?

DUQUE: Call it whatever. Injuries happen.

ALPHONSO: Maybe the " accident waiting to happen " ( Karstens ) will return. He could be a mediocre middle relief guy.

DUQUE: I have no great hope for Karstens. Every time he's shown something, he either gets lit up or hurt.

ALPHONSO: But if neither Cox nor Melancon arrive soon, we may conclude that there is nothing helpful anywhere in Yankeedom.

DUQUE: This is very true.

ALPHONSO: I mean, Dan Geise????? Billy Traber???? Even the Mets knew that he sucked, and they drafted him ahead of Brandon Webb.

DUQUE: Geise should not be overlooked. He's pitched well. Traber retired the side with three strikeouts the other night. But you're right... longshots.

ALPHONSO: Tabata is a .230 hitter at AA, and has a reputation for being fat and lazy. AJ is not performing anywhere near how Melky did at AA level. So I don't see him as " the future" either. Not yet, anyway.

DUQUE: He's 19 at Double A. He got off to a terrible start, and his average has been improving. But again, you're right about the attitude stuff.

ALPHONSO: Jesus is being groomed to be a DH? Give me a break.

DUQUE: Yes. And this is one of the central issues that people in the organization should be discussing. They have another kid down there, high ceiling prospect. They need to get one of them to Staten Island, catching all the time. This is the problem with drafting a bunch of catchers high (which is what they did last year): You don't have anywhere to play them.

ALPHONSO: And, yes, we will lose again tonight. Darrell will give us 6-7 innings and 1-2 runs, but our offense is pathetic.

DUQUE: It is pathetic. I don't know why, but it is.

ALPHONSO: No one can hit when we have a chance to break open a game. Not even Derek.

DUQUE: We need A-Rod to get hot and carry this team for a few games.

ALPHONSO: It is really depressing.

DUQUE: Damn straight.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

"Ray" Halladay?