The thing I find most impressive is his professionalism

DMZ · March 10, 2008 at 1:30 pm · Filed Under Mariners 

In the Times, Baker Romero writes about McLaren and that last roster spot (or two):

“Everyone of these guys has impressed us some way or another.”

McLaren has had a meeting about team needs and how the roster is shaping up. He said he and the coaches broke down each candidate and what he can bring to the team. McLaren also didn’t rule out GM Bill Bavasi searching the waiver wire for a player.

What in the world has Miguel “I can’t believe it’s not Bloomquist” Cairo done to impress anyone? He’s no defensive wiz, he’s hitting .269 with an awesome .269 OBP, he only has one RBI despite leading the team in at-bats… meanwhile, they’re waffling on whether they might carry another bat that can play first in Morse… or carry 12 pitchers?

Really?

Comments

56 Responses to “The thing I find most impressive is his professionalism”

  1. bunk_medal on March 10th, 2008 2:23 pm

    Well, it doesn’t necessarily mean on the baseball field – maybe Cairo makes a great cup of coffee?

  2. smb on March 10th, 2008 2:26 pm

    Veteran grit, clubhouse leadership, that all-important influence on clubhouse chemistry. Yeah, probably coffee.

  3. msb on March 10th, 2008 2:35 pm

    according to Wikipedia, in 2006 “Miguel Cairo has the highest winning percentage of team wins when he plays in a game of any player in the majors this year (for players with over 100 games played).”

  4. scraps on March 10th, 2008 2:39 pm

    Maybe he does a great Peter Lorre impression.

  5. Tek Jansen on March 10th, 2008 3:01 pm

    Actually, I would advocate for Cairo’s inclusion on the roster if he could, indeed, do a great Peter Lorre impression. Yet I suspect that his impressions are no better than his OBP.

    Anyone want to guess as to how many M’s in camp actually know who Lorre was? My guess – zero.

  6. Wsumojo on March 10th, 2008 3:04 pm

    All that Derek Jeter leadership and lack of defense range must have rubbed off on Cairo I guess.

    Just like when we called Ibanez’s next extension date and dollar amount, can we guess who and when what 37 year old DH we’re going to claim off waivers for the last bench OF spot that sends Morse packing?

  7. currcoug on March 10th, 2008 3:08 pm

    Their mentality hasn’t changed…they sign a strikeout machine in Wilkerson, when Reed is a better option, with more speed, superior defense, and cheaper. Morse and/or Balentien are having fine springs and now they want another waiver wire flop?

    Ugh.

  8. Jay R. on March 10th, 2008 3:17 pm

    Same as it ever was. Veteran veteran-ness will be rewarded time and again by this club, regardless of outcome.

    I haven’t been this low during spring training in recent memory. To contrast, I was preternaturally fired up before a recent season for no apparent reason. That was 2001. Not a good portent for 2008.

  9. Mike Snow on March 10th, 2008 3:55 pm

    Note – still Jose Romero actually, filling in so Baker can make up his vacation lost in this winter’s Jones-for-Bedard vigil.

  10. cwel87 on March 10th, 2008 4:27 pm

    It’d be really cool if the M’s made a 180 and had enough of Vidro’s nagging, incessant injuries (Not to mention his amazing slugging percentage at DH) and Ibanez’s horrible defense and went after Kenny Lofton to plug into LF. And that they realized flushing $800,000 worth of bills down the toilet is a better investment than signing Cairo to a major-league deal.

    Taking bets on either one of those scenarios coming to pass…

  11. scraps on March 10th, 2008 4:32 pm

    Wilkerson being a “strikeout machine” is basically irrelevant. He draws walks, and that matters a lot more than his strikeouts. Brad Wilkerson, even in decline, is a better hitter than Reed has ever been. I doubt the difference between them as fielders makes up for that.

  12. Churchill on March 10th, 2008 4:41 pm

    I doubt the difference between them as fielders makes up for that.

    And there isn’t much of a difference defensively anyway. Reed is just better at doing Jim Edmonds impersonations, so he gets style points, I guess.

  13. bat guano on March 10th, 2008 5:01 pm

    If there were any justice in the world, both Morse and Reed would be on the team. Morse would play left against lefties and back up RF, 3rd, 1st and DH, and Reed would be available for defense and to play left when a tough righty is going with Raul switching to 1st and Sexson on the bench. Willie can be Willie (just don’t give him a bat), Burke can back up Joh and Mac can carry 12 pitchers even though he won’t need them and Vidro can DH most of the time even though there are better options. Oh yeah, and Wlad and Clement can put regular hurt on the PCL. There is simply no good reason for Cairo to be here though.

  14. DaveValleDrinkNight on March 10th, 2008 5:32 pm

    Hey guys, it is Tax time. Maybe Cairo found Mac some extra deductions.

  15. tetrad on March 10th, 2008 6:29 pm

    If we lose Mike Morse who do you think will pick him up? Pat Gillick? Or worse yet, Billy Beane?

  16. jlc on March 10th, 2008 6:58 pm

    Hey, Bedard is a professional too. That gives us a professional hitter and a professional pitcher and some other professionalism on the team. How can we lose? Thank God we don’t have a bunch of amateurs playing.

  17. Colm on March 10th, 2008 7:55 pm

    At $300K walking-in-the-door money in the big leagues, who would be an amateur?

  18. jlc on March 10th, 2008 8:16 pm

    At $300K walking-in-the-door money in the big leagues, who would be an amateur?

    Well, you know, guys who really love the game. And who aren’t very good at it.

  19. Slippery Elmer on March 10th, 2008 9:15 pm

    “he only has one RBI despite leading the team in at-bats”

    I guess ol’ Maccy has been reading excerpts from this site wherein it’s been proven beyond a shadow of a doubt that RBI reveal absolutely nothing about a hitter’s abilities, eh?

  20. Kazinski on March 10th, 2008 9:22 pm

    Even Bavasi/McLaren can’t be stupid enough to leave Morse off the roster when he doesn’t have any options left. They only way they would do that is if they could trade him to Japan so he wouldn’t make them look bad. But the fact that he is showing power, as well as average this spring is tying their hands for them. They’ll probably hold it against him, but there isn’t much they can do about it now.

    I think they’ll break camp with 11 pitchers if all their starters are healthy and semi-effective. Unless that is they need 12 spots to keep Dickey, every team needs a knuckleballer. I’d like to see Moyer develop a knuckler so he can keep playing after his fastball drops below 70.

  21. Breadbaker on March 10th, 2008 9:32 pm

    Isn’t the Ms radio contract up for renewal soon? I think they’re keeping him around as an incentive for a big bid from KIRO.

  22. Carson on March 11th, 2008 7:51 am

    Why does this team even bother inviting the youngsters to camp, if they have no intentions on bringing them North, regardless of how well they do?

    Small samples and all, but WHAT does it take to have the Mariners NOT blow money on useless veterans who will be outperformed by free talent wasting away in Tacoma?

    Wlad 28AB – .357/.379/.750
    Morse 24AB – .500/.600/.875
    Jones (ah, screw it..)

    Cairo 26AB – .269/.269/.308
    Norton 22AB – .227/.345/.409
    Ballgame – 19AB – .263/.318/.263 (Wow.. really?)

    What are they so afraid of? Are they afraid Morse will fail and he bats Cairo’s 2007 line of .253/.303/.328? Yeah, Cairo is only going to cost $1m, but why spend $1m when you can spend $300k?

  23. eddie on March 11th, 2008 7:52 am

    Every team needs a young phenom, I’d hate to see Clement and Balentien go another year ripping up the PCL while Cairo and Bloomquist and Vidro hit singles. Morse I bet is hurt by the steroids thing, it’s a little cloud over his head.

    I saw a note that WFB (isn’t that Balantien?) got the biggest cheer at a spring training game — I think that there’s a LOT of people hoping that he’ll make the team and if he’s any good, the excitement level will increase a million times. It’s doubles in the gap versus singles up the middle.

  24. Jay R. on March 11th, 2008 9:14 am

    I saw a note that WFB (isn’t that Balantien?)

    WFB is Willie F*cking Bloomquist.

  25. cwel87 on March 11th, 2008 9:30 am

    So Miguel Cairo hasn’t even gotten a free pass yet?

    That’s exactly what we need. More old, useless players who don’t know plate discipline.

    I know it was only for $1M, but it still may be the worst signing of the offseason.

  26. msb on March 11th, 2008 10:04 am

    Why does this team even bother inviting the youngsters to camp, if they have no intentions on bringing them North, regardless of how well they do?

    because that is what every baseball team does?

  27. currcoug on March 11th, 2008 11:23 am

    Scraps,

    Good grief. You could say the same thing about Sexson then. Do you realize that Wilkerson struck out 107 times, which is 7 more than Richie…in nearly 100 less AB’s? Moreover, Sexson walked 51 times compared to Wilkerson’s 43.

    Church,

    You won’t be saying that when Wilkerson is seen limping after balls in the RF corner of Safeco. Wilkerson has superior power, but the Mariners have become a team of turtles, and Reed’s speed would definitely help offensively and defensively.

    I would like to see Reed and Balentien platoon in RF, with Morse in LF.

    Finally, isn’t anyone else concerned that Wilkerson’s SLG and OPS dropped 127 points and 209 points respectively away from Arlington?

  28. scraps on March 11th, 2008 11:28 am

    currcoug, and I would say the same thing about Sexson. The problem with Sexson isn’t the strikeouts, it’s that he can’t hit anymore. In his prime he was an excellent hitter, and the strikeouts didn’t make him one whit less excellent. Well, maybe a tiny whit. But nothing like what the strikeout-haters imagine.

  29. scraps on March 11th, 2008 11:29 am

    Also, I’m not saying Wilkerson’s a great solution. But he’s better than Jeremy Reed, who should be on the team as a defensive substitute who can hit a tiny bit.

  30. currcoug on March 11th, 2008 11:40 am

    The M’s aren’t interested in Wilkerson walks or strikeouts, they are interested in his alleged power. As I pointed out, however, Wilkerson’s power numbers dropped precipitously outside of Arlington. The minute power increase simply isn’t worth $ 3 million.

    Moreover, Reed had a fine year at Tacoma. Reed has never been fully healthy and he should be on the team this year. By signing Wilkerson, Bavasi effectively blocked Reed.

    M’s “turtles”: Sexson, Vidro, Ibanez, Wilkerson, Burke, and Johjima.

  31. Graham on March 11th, 2008 11:41 am

    Finally, isn’t anyone else concerned that Wilkerson’s SLG and OPS dropped 127 points and 209 points respectively away from Arlington?

    No.

  32. currcoug on March 11th, 2008 11:43 am

    Please explain, and it needs to be more than the fact that Wilks hits left handed in Safeco.

  33. Graham on March 11th, 2008 11:59 am

    Home-away splits barely matter as is, and the sample size is too small to even think about.

  34. currcoug on March 11th, 2008 12:27 pm

    We will have to agree to disagree on that one.

  35. Graham on March 11th, 2008 12:30 pm

    If you want to be wrong, that’s your call.

  36. currcoug on March 11th, 2008 1:15 pm

    I was trying to be polite. Your argument is non-sensical. Home and away splits absolutely matter, especially at Safeco Field.

    Arlington is a hitter’s park, and it is not surprising that Wilkerson’s numbers are better there. What is surprising, however, is that Wilkerson’s home and away numbers in 2007 are drastically different.

    I don’t think 338 AB’s is a small sample size.

  37. galaxieboi on March 11th, 2008 2:43 pm

    If you want to be wrong, that’s your call.

    I was trying to be polite. Your argument is non-sensical.

    Ok, ponies for both you guys. Jeez.

  38. avideo on March 11th, 2008 3:01 pm

    Hey folks! A spring miracle has just happened today. Sexson finally hit a home run!

  39. Jeff Nye on March 11th, 2008 3:27 pm

    If you’re going to tell us that we need to be concerned about the difference in Wilkerson’s home/road splits, it’s incumbent upon you to back that up with evidence.

    Something along the lines of “here’s a guy who had a similar disparity in his home/away splits, and when he moved out of a hitter’s park, here’s what he did the following year”.

    You may very well have a point (I think the home/away splits discussion has happened here before and I think the result was that we could never get enough of a sample size to be able to distinguish from other factors, at least at the individual player level) but you don’t get to show up, make a proclamation like that, and then say anyone who disagrees with you is (sic) “non-sensical”.

  40. joser on March 11th, 2008 3:32 pm

    Hey folks! A spring miracle has just happened today. Sexson finally hit a home run!

    Considering that’s something he’s been trying to do since last August, something about “nuts” and “blind squirrels” is probably appropriate.

  41. galaxieboi on March 11th, 2008 3:48 pm

    A deeper issue with home/road splits is each player’s specific skill set and such. Also, Jeff is probably right about sample size. Especially if we’re talking about only one season or so (in Wilkerson’s case). Concern about Brad’s road performance (or, his performance in general) should be poked with a shorter stick for sure.

  42. currcoug on March 11th, 2008 4:01 pm

    For starters, its a free country, so yes, I do get to come on here and make such a statement. You get to respond.

    Second, stating that home-away stats don’t matter is in fact non-sensical (see, #4).

    Third, as I pointed out, Wilkerson’s away dropoff is not small, it is cataclysmic.

    Fourth? One word, C-I-R-R-L-L-O

  43. galaxieboi on March 11th, 2008 4:35 pm

    Oi, I know I can’t do it’s/its- but ‘Cirrllo’? C’mon at least look it up to spell ‘C-I-R-I-L-L-O’ right.

    If you’re talking about CIRILLO’s splits while at Coors than that’s comething else entirely. Colorado hitters tend to have extreme splits regardless pretty much of who they are. BPro had a chapter all about this a couple years ago I think. Dave and Derek could probably speak to Cirillo’s particular issues better than I.

    Wilkerson only had 338 AB last year. 164 on the road. That is a small sample size. ’04-’06 his splits were pretty close.

  44. Jeff Nye on March 11th, 2008 4:59 pm

    Well, let me rephrase then. If you want anyone to take your opinion SERIOUSLY, you need to back up your assertions.

    From the USSM Orientation link, helpfully provided at the top of the page:

    The burden of proof is on the person who makes the assertion, and the wilder your assertion, the better your evidence should be. If you want to argue that Raul Ibanez is the best defensive left fielder ever, or that clutch hitting exists, or whatever, you need to bring the proof. “You need to disprove my theory” is not an acceptable argument, ever.

    So, show us your evidence. Show us the home/road splits for Cirillo (although as galaxieboi mentions, pre-humidor Coors was arguably one of the most unique hitting environments in the history of baseball, far beyond a normal “hitters park”) that should make us say “oh, yeah, that could happen to Wilkerson too”.

    Also, the word is nonsensical. There is no hyphen.

  45. currcoug on March 11th, 2008 6:44 pm

    Wilkerson’s pathetic 2007 away stats may be a red flag, as I have asserted. You disagree, and we will find out during the upcoming season.

    Resorting to insults over the spelling of player’s names, hyphen placement, and citation of USS Mariner Orientation rules, doesn’t advance your argument.

    Some Mariner observers were queasy about the Cirillo trade, precisely because his away numbers were skewed.

    Perhaps you could enlighten us as to why Wilkerson’s numbers on the road were so awful?

  46. Jeff Nye on March 11th, 2008 8:16 pm

    You still haven’t shown any evidence to support your assertions.

    It’s not up to me to prove you wrong, it’s up to you to prove you right.

    And nobody insulted you.

    Really, it’s okay to say “I don’t have anything to back up what I’m saying, you got me” and walk away.

  47. scraps on March 11th, 2008 8:57 pm

    For starters, its a free country, so yes, I do get to come on here and make such a statement. You get to respond.

    I think it was Joanna Russ who noted that children who discover “everyone’s entitled to their own opinion” at ten graduate to “it’s a free country at thirteen”.

    This is not, whatever you may think, a public square; it is a private space run by a few guys, who host a conversation. You don’t “get to come here” and do whatever you want as though we’re all mouthing off in the street.

    That said, I don’t think home/road splits are ass irrelevant as others here do, and I’ve thought Texeira overrated for that reason. But one season isn’t much to go on. Does Wilkerson have a history of poor hitting on the road? Enough to think Reed, awful as he has always been at the major league level, could be a comparable hitter?

  48. scraps on March 11th, 2008 9:00 pm

    Or even, “it’s a free country” at thirteen.

  49. Graham on March 12th, 2008 2:10 am

    Perhaps you could enlighten us as to why Wilkerson’s numbers on the road were so awful?

    Small sample size. Done.

    Oh, and scraps has a point, consistent splits over the course of several years are something to watch out for, but single season ones? In something like 200 plate appearances? The regression to the mean is so stupidly high that the splits don’t mean anything. If Yuni got traded to, say, Houston, you think they’d be worried about his .354 slugging away from Safeco last year?

  50. currcoug on March 12th, 2008 2:02 pm

    When I am wrong, I have no problem admitting it. If Wilkerson puts up great numbers for the 2008 season, I will be the first to admit that his 2007 splits were of no consequence.

    I was in a foul mood yesterday, so I apologize for being over the top with the freedom of speech thing. I note, however, that the retorts were sophomoric. Moreover, when I tried to “walk away”, Graham was hardly gracious in retorting ( “If you want to be wrong, that’s your call.”).

    In 2000, Cirillo hit .403 at home, while hitting just .239 away. In 2001, Cirillo hit .363 at home, while hitting just .266 away. Those numbers gave some of us pause because Cirillo had been a .300 hitter on the road for Milwaukee.

    It is true that Wilkerson’s 2006 splits in Texas were balanced. That only serves to underscore the dramatic drop-off in 2007, when he also turned 30. It is obvious that I am not going to convince you no matter how many stats I provide.

    Finally, I haven’t made a secret of the fact that I think Bavasi is incompetent, and that signing Wilkerson was yet another costly mistake in a long line of such mistakes.

  51. Graham on March 12th, 2008 2:59 pm

    It is obvious that I am not going to convince you no matter how many stats I provide.

    Stats without meaningful analysis are well, meaningless. If you want to prove that that split is statistically significant, run the numbers rather than providing random anecdotes. Furthermore, Wilkerson’s performance in 2008 is almost entirely irrelevent here as well. This is a matter of small sample size and you trying to draw meaning out of random data.

    I’m hardly going to let you get away with saying ‘let’s agree to disagree’ when your suppositions are based around the incorrect notion that this sample size is big enough to draw real conclusions from. It isn’t, and you’re deluding yourself if you think otherwise. Worry about Wilkerson’s contact ability, worry about age-related decline, but worrying about the equivalent of 2 home runs over 200 at-bats is pointless. Just because your opinion is that it’s a significant result does not make it true, and you expecting me to accept that it’s ok to disagree on this point because everyone’s opinions are apparently equally meritorious is silly.

    This is mathematics.

  52. Jeff Nye on March 12th, 2008 3:13 pm

    To be clear: I’m not a fan of the Wilkerson signing either.

    That being said though, Graham could have been a lot nastier (and I could have been, as well) considering that you:

    -showed up, made a proclamation that home/away splits mattered but that you really didn’t care about providing evidence to support your assertion;

    -stated that any counter-argument was “non-sensical”;

    -complained that you were being insulted, when people mildly jibed about a couple of pretty egregous spelling mistakes;

    -also complained that you were being insulted when I tried to link you to a place where you could be informed about the expectations for comment threads when you’re trying to make a point, particularly a more outlandish one.

    I’m not sure why you would expect, given all of that, that people would want to be polite to you; and yet, people WERE polite, and even endeavored to help you “raise your game”. You treated them shabbily for it.

    In any case, this a thread about Wilkerson, not a thread for complaining about people being mean to you; there’s a link to email the authors if you really feel you’re being treated inappropriately.

  53. galaxieboi on March 12th, 2008 3:24 pm

    I again point to the fact that Cirillo’s ’00 and ’01 seasons were at Coors (and as Jeff mentioned, pre-humidor). Here’s the link to the Rockies splits in 2000. Here it is for 2001. As a team they sucked on the road. Cirillo wasn’t immune.

    If you think the Wilkerson signing was lame, welcome to the club (well, making him a starter is lame). Look at the differences in BABIP last year between home and away. Again, really small sample size. But .216? Ouch. Call it s***** luck for the most part.

  54. currcoug on March 12th, 2008 3:35 pm

    What does spelling, hyphen placements, and word capitalization, have to do with the merits of any discussion here?

    On the other hand, I don’t brood, nor do I carry grudges. Maybe we can find some common ground.

    Why don’t you like the Wilkerson signing?

  55. galaxieboi on March 12th, 2008 4:51 pm

    I think he’s been injured a bit too much the last couple years. Combine that with him being on the wrong side of 30 and it doesn’t bode well for the future.

    However, the M’s only owe him $3M for ’08. They’re not commited to him for 4 years or something outrageous. It really could be worse.

    Here’s his firstinning.com page. And his fangraphs.com page.

  56. currcoug on March 12th, 2008 8:09 pm

    Agreed. Thanks.

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