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 Post subject: Re: Jordy Mercer re-visited
PostPosted: Sat May 04, 2013 9:18 am 
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Always love seeing a young guy get called up and then jacking a big HR.


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 Post subject: Re: Jordy Mercer re-visited
PostPosted: Sat May 04, 2013 10:29 am 
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Mercer's gotta play. Huntington needs to force Hurdle to give him a real shot at SS when Walker returns.


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 Post subject: Re: Jordy Mercer re-visited
PostPosted: Sat May 04, 2013 11:29 am 
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I don't see how any argument could be made at this point to keep Barmes on the field over a young infielder who had a hot bat in the minors, and just hit the game winner in his first MLB game this season. The defensive argument is the only one that could be made, and again, what has Barmes done defensively this season? Mercer might not have his range, but he can't be worse as an overall package at SS.


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 Post subject: Re: Jordy Mercer re-visited
PostPosted: Sat May 04, 2013 12:30 pm 
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Leway512 wrote:
what has Barmes done defensively this season?


Well, the same excellent job as last year. His UZR/150 in 2012 was 11.3 and this year it is 11.4 thus far. The problem is that his +11 runs fielding isn'r enough to make up for his current -35 run pace he will compile batting. He has to hit .230 and wRC+ above 65 to be valuable. He is currently wRC+ at 19, 81% worse than an average MLB hitter.

There is little reason to not give Jordy a shot while Barmes is struggling so much. If Jordy can wRC+ around 80 and play league average D he would certainly post a higher WAR. Last year in only 104 innings he had league average range, a low error rate, and below average double play rate, however the sample size is very small.

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 Post subject: Re: Jordy Mercer re-visited
PostPosted: Sat May 04, 2013 12:45 pm 
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doug frobel wrote:
Barmes will never sniff .220 again.

Not sure where this assertion comes from since he hit .229 last season, .257 in the second half.


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 Post subject: Re: Jordy Mercer re-visited
PostPosted: Sat May 04, 2013 1:12 pm 
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Sorry to break the bad news to everyone, but heard radio show this morning and Hurdle said that Barmes is the starting SS and McDonald is the backup, and regardless of what Mercer does, he will go back to AAA when Walker is healthy so he can play every day.

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 Post subject: Re: Jordy Mercer re-visited
PostPosted: Sat May 04, 2013 1:19 pm 
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Animal wrote:
Sorry to break the bad news to everyone, but heard radio show this morning and Hurdle said that Barmes is the starting SS and McDonald is the backup, and regardless of what Mercer does, he will go back to AAA when Walker is healthy so he can play every day.

How in the @#$% can he justify that?

"No matter how God-awful Barmes and McDonald are, and no matter how well Mercer does, Mercer goes back to Indianapolis."

What the #@$%Q#$@#$%!$#$T@#$%$&@$%@#$???????????


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 Post subject: Re: Jordy Mercer re-visited
PostPosted: Sat May 04, 2013 3:56 pm 
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NH needs to call Hurdle into his office.


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 Post subject: Re: Jordy Mercer re-visited
PostPosted: Sat May 04, 2013 4:15 pm 
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RTJR wrote:
NH needs to call Hurdle into his office.


I got the impression that NH was on board with that from what I heard. In fact, it sounded like if/when D'Arnaud is healthy, he will be ahead of Mercer too!

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 Post subject: Re: Jordy Mercer re-visited
PostPosted: Sun May 05, 2013 3:49 am 
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d'Arnaud? Really?? Mercer must really be in the doghouse...


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 Post subject: Re: Jordy Mercer re-visited
PostPosted: Sun May 05, 2013 10:53 am 
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RTJR wrote:
d'Arnaud? Really?? Mercer must really be in the doghouse...


Yeah, I don't understand it either.

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 Post subject: Re: Jordy Mercer re-visited
PostPosted: Sun May 05, 2013 11:31 am 
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Bucfan wrote:

"No matter how God-awful Barmes and McDonald are, and no matter how well Mercer does, Mercer goes back to Indianapolis."


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 Post subject: Re: Jordy Mercer re-visited
PostPosted: Sun May 05, 2013 3:37 pm 
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It looks like their attitude on Mercer may have finally shifted. Tom Singer tweeted a quote from Huntington today -- “Mercer a legitimate option for us at shortstop next season.”

While this is obviously good news, the fact that it's "next season" and not the current when Mercer is 26 and has nothing left to prove in AAA while the current big league options are abysmal, negative WAR is still absolutely appalling. While I disagree with riding out Barmes until his contract is up this year, I can understand that position due to the value of his glove. The McDonald signing however is still one of the stupidest I can ever remember since I've been following this team. Valuing defense seems to have taken prevalence over commons sense when it comes to the middle infield.


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 Post subject: Re: Jordy Mercer re-visited
PostPosted: Sun May 05, 2013 4:03 pm 
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Animal wrote:
In fact, it sounded like if/when D'Arnaud is healthy, he will be ahead of Mercer too!


There was a time when I think d'Arnaud was atop their shortstop depth chart, but I'd be willing to bet those days are over now. Aside from the injuries, he took huge steps backwards the last two years when he didn't hit well at all in AAA (meanwhile, that was when Mercer took a serious step forward). Along with not hitting, he had huge platoon splits and displayed very bad plate discipline. His premature promotion to the big leagues reflected that, as not only was he lost at the plate but committed 9 errors in playing a short time. Granted, this is a team who prefers John McDonald to Jordy Mecer, so anything is possible. But with the exception of basestealing abilities, d'Arnaud is inferior to Mercer in every way.


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 Post subject: Re: Jordy Mercer re-visited
PostPosted: Sun May 05, 2013 8:16 pm 
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TheShark wrote:
It looks like their attitude on Mercer may have finally shifted. Tom Singer tweeted a quote from Huntington today -- “Mercer a legitimate option for us at shortstop next season.”


Yay, I guess?

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 Post subject: Re: Jordy Mercer re-visited
PostPosted: Mon May 06, 2013 9:57 am 
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Hurdle should of been canned in the offseason. Between his bullpen management and his penchant for dry humping old over the hill players he clearly shows he is a 'good guy' but piss poor 'manager'. Not to mention the two late season collapses he has overseen. If this team heads south at all and we go back below .500 prior to the all star break i would fire Hurdle and make a risky move and make Jay Bell the interim manager through seasons end. At least he is a good baseball man that has seen a lot and has been involved with MLB for quite a long time.


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 Post subject: Re: Jordy Mercer re-visited
PostPosted: Mon May 06, 2013 10:07 am 
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RTJR wrote:
NH needs to call Hurdle into his office.


That's what I'm saying. Huntington needs to FORCE Hurdle to play Mercer at SS.


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 Post subject: Re: Jordy Mercer re-visited
PostPosted: Mon May 06, 2013 4:45 pm 
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Mister Pittsburgh wrote:
Hurdle should of been canned in the offseason. Between his bullpen management and his penchant for dry humping old over the hill players he clearly shows he is a 'good guy' but piss poor 'manager'. Not to mention the two late season collapses he has overseen. If this team heads south at all and we go back below .500 prior to the all star break i would fire Hurdle and make a risky move and make Jay Bell the interim manager through seasons end. At least he is a good baseball man that has seen a lot and has been involved with MLB for quite a long time.



Seriously?
Canned?
Bullpen management?
Piss Poor Manger?
Seriously?

I have to disagree with you. While I don't like holding back the closer or 8th inning guy like he does, his bullpen handling has been pretty dang good. Since he has been here, we have had one of the top bullpens in the league, and that is with a lot of extra work too. He doesn't overwork the guys and won't pitch them several days in a row no matter what.

Not sure why he is so loyal to Barmes, but he had no problem getting rid of McLouth, Sutton (even after a little success here), Bedard, OVerbay, Beimel.... Sometimes it took a while but all of these "veteran" guys were released in past two years under Hurdle's watch. I think that most managers tend to overvalue vets sometimes over younger guys.

You say that Jay Bell is a "good baseball man that has seen a lot and has been involved with MLB for quite a long time". I don't disagree, but Clint Hurdle is not?

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 Post subject: Re: Jordy Mercer re-visited
PostPosted: Mon May 06, 2013 5:40 pm 
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It would take a very long post to address all of those points on a statistical basis but here are a couple thoughts ...

Clint Hurdle is not a good game manager. Giving him credit for getting good results out of his bullpen is more of a reflection of Huntington bringing those bullpen pieces, which he has always done well, than Hurdle making wise strategic decisions. Especially given how modern bullpens are treated as hierarchies these days where almost everyone has their specific role, i.e. Hanrahan/Grilli as closers, Melancon was the set-up man as soon as he was acquired, Gomez as the long-man, etc. This is one area where even John Russell got good results. The preference to veterans thing, I don't know whether the real culprit there is Huntington or Hurdle himself, if not both. I didn't mind some of them, like two you mentioned in McLouth and Sutton. I did however mind ones like Barajas, Overbay and currently McDonald and Inge. Regardless of the acquisitions, where I do fault Hurdle is with playing time i.e. the Mercer fiasco last year, preference to Barmes and Barajas, etc.

Obviously, trying to make finite judgements on a team of professional athletes performance and how they correlate to the manager at the helm is always a more or less subjective view. It's obviously easy in baseball rather than other sports to criticize a manager's tactical managing and decision-making because their influence is so evident with making line-ups, allotting playing time, hitting strategies like small ball and bunting/sacrifice decisions, etc. Bottom line is after seeing going on 3 seasons now, I do not think Hurdle's managing generally helps the Pirates chance of winning. More often than not it's the latter. The small ball approach is a big reason for that. Fundamentals are out of wack when it comes to baserunning on both sides. The too much playing time for the veterans that actually did stay over a full season. Now, as far as his reputation as a good guy and motivator, that might actually translate to something more than useless. It might mean that he has gained the player's respect due to his likeability and thus like playing for him as opposed to a Russell or Tracy, but we'll never know. But as a fan I am more judging him on what I see of his managerial tendencies which are easily identifiable.

This is the make or break year. The Pirates are at the very least an average team this year which Hurdle has to work with. While it's ultimately the players fault, as Mister Pittsburgh mentioned, he does have the back-to-back second half collapses looming over a resume that already has a fair share of marks on it. Another collapse or under .500 record in general and I don't think you'd find many people at all arguing that he should be retained. The team has entered a state now where it might transcend the usual "even a HOF manager couldn't win with this talent!" argument and with a third straight collapse Hurdle needs to take the fall regardless.


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 Post subject: Re: Jordy Mercer re-visited
PostPosted: Mon May 06, 2013 5:48 pm 
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Huntington sets the roster, not Hurdle.

At this point I would at least let McDonald go when Walker comes back and keep Mercer as an option. We need Mercer's offense more than McDonald's glove. Besides, its too confusing having 2 JMac's on the team.

I'm all for giving Mercer a shot as the starting shortstop. And now would be a good time, because July will be here before you know it.


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