Yeah, Jake, you can’t comment anymore until you get a bit more schooled on the game in general. I mean, a guy sports an OPS of 1.200 and has the track record of a good average hitting slugger and you’re worried about a 20% strikeout rate? He’s blowing his career walk rate out of the water, which could admittedly come back to earth, but still. Would you rather he grounded out an extra few times instead of striking out and risk double plays and injury hustling down the line instead? Just sayin.
AN OPS over 1 is not just OK for his position, it’s great for any position. But we’ve seen great looking years before, only to fizzle at the end. I want to see him finish the year the way he starts. If he can do that, the Twins can win in the playoffs.
Anyone who thinks a post that ends with:
“I think his stats are more of a reflection of the rest of the league being crappy all through history than him being good.”
is serious really needs to get their sarcasm detector checked.
The amazing thing is how little press Morneau gets outside the AL Central. Really, outside the Twin Cities. He’s overshadowed by Mauer, but also by the four other excellent AL first basemen who all (other than Cabrera) play in bigger markets. Nonetheless, none of those other four guys are former MVP’s. I don’t recall a slugger, leading his league in batting average and on-base percentage a quarter of the way through the season and on pace for 45 homeruns, getting so little attention. He’s hitting the crap out of the ball, but all we hear about is how hot Miguel and Youkilis are. Maybe I’m just missing it on Baseball Tonight or something.
At the start of the season I was worried for Morneau because he had a look on his face that said, ‘I hope I don’t hurt my back again.’
That look is gone now, replaced by one of pure joy. I hope Morneau plants 40 in the seats this year and bats .350. But I also hope the Twins play Harris and Cuddy at first base enough to keep Morneau from wearing himself out. Same with Joe – gotta give him enough time off to keep the body from breaking down. It’s a long season.
MCA’s point is a very good one. I think that a lot of Twins fans would be stunned how little people know about him. Sure, the fantasy baseball crowd follows him, just like they know who Pablo Sandoval (on the Giants) is. But when he won the ’06 MVP, the pissed off Jeter backers weren’t mad because of the numbers or b/c Morneau was a 1st baseman, etc.–they were upset b/c Jeter lost the MVP to a guy they’d never HEARD of.
His profile is similar to the way Jason Bay was viewed when he played for the Pirates. No, I don’t think MLB systematically shuts down coverage of Canadians. But if you swapped teams with Morneau and Youkilis or Pedroia, is there any question that Morneau would have a MUCH bigger profile and nobody would even know who the heck Youkilis or Pedroia were? Part of that is the lack of postseason success, but ESPN really does treat 28 of its teams like boring flyover territory.
Morneau’s approach seems perfect right now. He’s taking the walk 20% of the time as teams pitch around him. He’s taking monstrous rips at balls early in the count to get some extra basers. And he is pretty good defending the plate with two strikes as he can contact, and sometimes even get hits, on balls out of the strike zone.
Perfect approach and great results so far. We need Cuddy to start producing behind him. Cuddy’s weak start has cost us games because that dude always has runners on base when he hits.
I don’t understand why people are so surprised by Justin’s performance. It’s his turn right. I mean Morneau and Mauer are suppose to take turns winning the MVP for the next eight to ten years. Sure A-Rod and Pedroia kind of got in the way, but I heard M and M came up with this plan playing The Show in Mauer’s basement. Anyway, I guess my point is, given this plan no one should be surprised.