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  • Writer's picturePaul Semendinger

Perspectives: I LOVE BASEBALL

by Paul Semendinger

April 9, 2024

***

We have had a ton of content to get posted, so there is no Tuesday Discussion this week.


I wish every day could be like Sunday was. In my baseball word, all came up roses. The Yankees were 8-2 after ten games. And this ol' guy is 1-0 after one game.


  • Sunday was the Opening Day game for my 35+ baseball league. I got the start. It's always a joy to get out there on the mound for the first time in a season. I love baseball and I love playing. Being a pitcher is a joy that I can't quite describe. Most of the players in the league are young, much younger than me, but I was able, for yesterday at least, to better them. I went 6 innings, allowed only three hits, walked none, struck out one and allowed no runs. We won in 7 innings 10-0. It was a great start.

  • The best part about this team is my teammate, a certain Ethan Semendinger. Ethan went 2-for-3, driving in one run and scoring another. In the inning where he sat the bench, he warmed me up as my catcher. I love pitching to him. Years ago, he caught me in the actual games, but the league rule is that you need to be 35 to catch and Ethan isn't even close. Each team can play three players in a game who are under 35. Ethan, at 25, plays, but he isn't allowed to catch any longer. (When our team was bad, and we'd lose all the time, no one cared if my catcher was a kid. WE won the championship last year. They care now. It's all good.)

  • Giancarlo Stanton is trying to prove me wrong. He leads the Yankees in homers. He hit a huge grand slam on Sunday. I don't think, in the end, he'll prove me wrong. He's hot right now...that's bound to happen, but he's out performing what I thought he could do even for a small sample. I hope he does prove me wrong. But, while I believe he can damage pitchers who make mistakes, more often than not, we're going to see him flailing and striking out often. Again, I hope I'm wrong. From the beginning of the off-season, I suggested that he'd be fine as the number seven hitter, but I don't want him in the middle of the lineup. I believe he'll hurt the team more than he helps, even with how well he's done for the last few days.

  • A person made a comment yesterday that I must be sad because I said Stanton is done and he has had some big hits. Let me be clear on this, again... I have written here for more than 6 years. I have reported on the Yankees as I have seen them. I've been correct a ton, much more than I've been wrong. BUT when I state that a player isn't doing well, I am not happy about noting that. I'm simply pointing out what I see. That's what I do. I run a site and I put my name to the articles I write. I also stand behind what I have said. I don't hide behind a fake name. I am me. I hope Giancarlo Stanton goes on to hit .400 this year - and next as well. Of course I do. Ultimately, I want the Yankees to win. Period. End of discussion. When I predict that a player will do poorly and he does, I'm not happy. I'd rather be wrong. With Stanton, I believe time will show that I won't be wrong. He'll get some big hits, but more often than not, he won't be a productive player. I'm not happy about that because I wish it were otherwise.

  • Juan Soto is a bit of an adventure in right field. That is clear. But, in a close game, I want him in the game because I want his bat if his spot in the lineup comes up again. I wouldn't remove a hitter as good as Soto for a defensive replacement. I think more often than not that move will hurt the team more than it helps.

  • Alex Verdugo is a good fielding left fielder. I've been impressed. I wish he'd hit. With the few hits yesterday, maybe he'll get going. I don't think his chains or lack of chains has anything to do with his performance.

  • The Yankees' pitching is VERY concerning. The starters are not giving length and the bullpen is an adventure. This could all blow-up very quickly. If I were Brian Cashman, I'd be dialing numbers looking for pitching. It's needed.

  • Anthony Volpe looks like a completely different player than last year. I think we'll see him as the lead-off hitter before long. I didn't think I'd be okay with that so soon, but I am - sort of. You know, if it ain't broke, don't fix it. Maybe, Volpe is better suited for the number six spot in the lineup. He won't be in front of Soto and Judge so he'll be able to run more.

  • Austin Wells looks pretty good behind the plate. I'd like him to look pretty good as a hitter too.

  • Oswaldo Cabrera is making Jon Berti an afterthought. I'm fine with that. At this point, D.J. LeMahieu should also be.

  • Ethan made a very interesting observation regarding home plate umpire Angel Hernandez on Sunday. Hernandez seemed to let the situation determine his calls. If a close pitch was called a strike, more often than not, in the same at bat, the next close pitch would be called a ball. This also seemed to happen in reverse. It wasn't every time, but once he noticed it, it happened a lot, at least when we were taking notice.

  • Our good friend Phil Cashier is going to miss a few weeks of getting the Game Threads posted. I'll mostly take care of that responsibility in his absence, but it won't be the same as Phil's great work. He'll be back soon.

  • Let's Go Yankees!

4 Comments


Jeff Korell
Jeff Korell
Apr 09

I agree that Stanton won't keep up the pace he is at right now and will eventually return to being an easy out in the lineup. But so will the others in the lineup after they get hot for awhile. Every player goes through streaks when pitchers can't seem to get them out, and other streaks when they can't seem to hit. It will continue to happen to Stanton, but it will also happen to Aaron Judge, Anthony Rizzo, and yes, even to the great Juan Soto. That's why in the 162 games in the season, no one actually hits a home run every game because if they did, they would have an astronomical single season home run tota…

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sfs1944
Apr 09

Paul Volpe Soto and Cabrera are three Yanks producing . Stanton has been coming on of late Finally Nestor pitched an 8 inning masterpiece even if against the Marlins who are off to a horrific start. What still concerns me is the starting pitching and Judge who except for a couple of bombs looks lost at the plate Eventually Soto Volpe and Cabrera will cool off and hopefully others will get going Go Yanks

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fuster
Apr 09

that Stanton is hot right now


is quite right


because the team needs him NOW.


later on, I believe that the team will have less of a need for his services.


Judge will heat up and LeMahieu and Dominguez will return


but, for the nonce, Stanton's hot bat is a windfall


even if his bat cools, he still serves as a scarecrow, a vague but threatening figure

that is of some small utility while the others are off the field.


when they return, Stanton can go off-duty.


as for Volpe's performance, it simply

seems

too good to be true


I'm finding it absurd that Volpe's offense is of equal or greater value than Soto's.


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Robert Malchman
Robert Malchman
Apr 09
Replying to

Volpe's on pace for a 17.7 WAR season; his OPS+ is 234. That bum Soto only projects to 11.8, and his OPS+ is a mere 194.

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