Some good reads for a Monday morning.
"Legacy In Limbo", Marcus Hayes, Philadelphia Daily News
Many people I know who even personally know love Marcus Hayes get really frustrated/annoyed/angry at some of his pieces. I find that Hayes is spot-on in a post today in the Daily News that looks at the Legacy of Jimmy Rollins.
Hayes shows how Rollins' normal decline is made more obvious by a few factosr:
Rollins is poised at a critical point.
His decreasing production and his increased salary have eroded his popularity, even though he finds himself a victim of circumstance and poor planning.
Often, as stars begin to fade, replacements dovetail into the franchise's framework and either obscure or delay the fading.
Rollins enjoyed no such relief, no such camouflage from younger players. To make his shortcoming more glaring, his cornerstone peers have declined even faster than he.
To Rollins' credit:
- Brought his team to the National League East crown
- Won an MVP award (something Derek Jeter even hasn't done)
- Is the second all-time in fielding percentage at shortstop, next to Omar Vizquel
- Of course, he helped the Phillies win a World Series
If the Phillies didn't have a whole collection of aging players and Rollins was able to hit seventh and continue his stellar defense, would fans care? Check out Hayes' column.
John Stolnis of The Good Phight Interviews New Phillies Analytics Mind
John Stolnis is one of my favorite Phillies reads. He interviewed the Phillies' new analytics guy, Scott Friedman.
"I can't speak to the decision-making process prior to my arrival but Ruben and everyone immediately folded me into many of the decision-making conversations once I started. Ruben is an inclusive manager and he often asks for my opinion as well as those of everyone else in the Department. Predictably, my opinion typically has more of a sabermetric twist to it."
"It isn't my job to worry about establishing credibility or force-feeding material to my colleagues. The aim of the analytics aspect of my job is to support Ruben and Scott and the Baseball Operations Department as best I can by providing a complementary perspective. Hopefully, the credibility component takes care of itself over time. My interactions with other members of the Department, scouts especially, have been overwhelmingly positive and productive. I've learned quite a bit from my colleagues and will continue to try to do so as long as I'm employed by the Phillies."