Friday, October 28, 2005

October 28th, 2005

The Year in Review, Part II

Continuing our Year in Review, today we come to those stories worth updating with current history:

Carl Everett (June 3rd): One of the classic theological quesitons is why bad things happen to good people. The reverse question, of course, is equally baffling. Carl Everett everyone might not regard Carl Everett as a bad person--although I'd bet the majority do--but although he suffered a brief peroid playing with in front of sparse crowds the world over for the Expos, Carl has now made a rather substantial amount of money playing baseball, and even won a World Series. So why do good things happen to bad people. Your guess is as good as mine

Roger Clemens (June 13th): Whatever mistakes I made, I sure look smart on this one. Clemens led the league in ERA this year by more than half a run over his teammate Andy Pettitte and had the thirteenth best ERA+ since 1900. The debate about Clemens may increasingly be less if he is the greatest pitcher of the past forty or so years and more if he is the greatest pitcher ever.

Yadier Molina (July 13th): So, having watched all three Molinas in the playoffs, I can safely say that why Yadier is no speedster--he'll never be mistaken for Ichiro! going down the line to first base--he is easier the fastest Molina. Now, that may just be an age thing, he's just 22 while Bengie and Jose are 30 and 29 respectively, but they've been slow for as long as I can remember. So I must remove Yadier from the list of Molinas worth going to the ballpark to see run, he's just plain old ordinary slow, not the molasas-in-January pace of his brothers.

Shawn Wooten (July 24th): Shawn Wooten appeared in just one game this season--with the Red Sox--having just one at-bat (he made out) and playing two innings behind the plate. Corey Lidle finished 13-11 with a dead-on league average ERA for the Phillies. Even with those however, it was a still a damn fine year for the one-time teammates of
South Hills High School. After a slow start, Jason Giambi recovered to finished with an OPS+ above 150 and the quartet's previously least noted member, Aaron Small, was a savior for the Yankees finishing the year 10-0 with a 3.20 ERA. The performance of the "South Hills Four" has varied fairly erratically over the years, so who knows what next year will bring but for 2005, it was the Yankees, Giambi and Small as Kings of the Mountain.

Alex Rodriguez (August 17th) and Pedro Martinez (August 19th): Two of the all-time greats, both tackled by my able guest writers, rebounded in 2005 from seasons in 2004 which although excellent by many measures were below their standards. After a forgettable--the whole Championship thing aside--2004 Pedro Martinez signed with the Mets and rebounded to post the National League's fourth best ERA and lead the Amazins in virtually every meaningful pitching statistic. After a rough adjustment to New York, Alex Rodriguez returned to MVP form (he'd have my vote) in 2005, and while the media has harped on his playoff shortcomings, evidently forgetting he virtually carried the Yankees as recently as the 2004 ALDS, if the Yankees continue to get seasons out of A-Rod like his 2005, he will be worth every penny of the contract.

Orlando Hernandez (October 11th): And finally wrapping up with another member of the World Series champions and one--unlike Everett--I was glad to see get a(nother) ring. The World Series gave Hernandez another chance to lower his postseason ERA, and he did so, pitching a scoreless inning the marathon Game Three. So light up, Duque and celebrate, you deserve it.

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