Thursday, June 01, 2006


After listening to this afternoon's game while working on a major editing project, I thought about something George Will said on last week's Baseball Prospectus Radio. He said that, when he was writing Men at Work: The Craft of Baseball, the one thing that he found both surprising and impressive was that he never once heard anyone who had played the game of baseball brag in the way that, say, Terrell Owens brags. Will thinks that this is because baseball is so difficult, and failure in baseball is so much more common than success, that the game tends to enforce a certain humility on those who play it, including its most successful performers.

If that's true of ballplayers, it also ought to be true of bloggers and others who write about the game as if they have it all figured out. Just when you think you know all there is to know, something happens like this Brewers series. Before this series, I was certain that the Brewers and Pirates were polar opposites: a team with a promising future run by smart guys who made smart decisions...and us. I know that this was only four games, and bad teams sweep good teams all the time, but still...

As a Pirates fan first and blogger second, though, I'm happy to sacrifice my certainty about what ails the Pirates for victories as sweet as this one.


Anonymous bucdaddy said...

Enjoy the moment.

11:19 PM  
Blogger az said...

What makes you uncertain now? Over the last 7 days, Burnitz has 12 AB. We were all pretty certain that less would be more, or certainly less is better when it comes to JBurn. Maybe you were wrong about Castillo, but his OPS is way out of whack with his career numbers and even out of whack with the most optimistic of projections for him.

The fact is, they've been playing to an unsustainable level of offense, and they've gotten good pitching. This has enabled Tracy to stay the hell out of the way. The problems are still there, their symptoms just haven't presented in a while.

9:46 AM  
Blogger Billy said...

You're probably right, AZ, and I recognize that I took this same bait last season before the interleague trip.

It's not impossible, though, that Castillo can make a major improvement this year--he is, after all--still only 24, and those improvements do happen with young players. That, along with the emergence of Sanchez and the consistency of Bay is at least potentially sustainable, and it's also not inconceivable that the young pitchers will continue to improve throughout the year as they gain experience.

9:04 AM  

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