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Olivo hurt

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    Demi-God... In Training.

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The problem with the "Felix loves Olivo" narrative is that it doesn't explain why Olivo is in the DH spot when he isn't catching.

HOLY CRAP! and EA! sighting!!!
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Sandy - Raleigh

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Y'know ... when I first heard they sent Wells down and kept Liddi, my first thought was to shake my head. I don't like the decision. I just didn't get an opportunity to voice my opinion on the choice to keep Liddi up before his golden sombrero night against Haren.

So, here's my thinking.

1) Wells has *already* managed to maintain a 115 OPS+ in the majors for 400 PAs, (okay, 393 ... sue me). He's shown an ability to do this even while only getting part-time play. While his 3:1 K/BB ratio isn't great ... it's at a level where he *can* stick around and not be a detriment. While the splits are too tiny to be certain of anything ... as a STARTER, his career line (in 344 PAs) is: .264/.332/.476 (.808). That is correct. Wells ... in a starting role ... has an .800 OPS. His career numbers are pulled down because he "only" hits .604 as a sub. (And frankly, hitting .600 as a sub ain't bad, when your veteran starting (when the season began) CA, 1B, SS, and LF can't manage that as full-timers).

2) Liddi ... while showing decent numbers so far in the majors, (.248/.311/.463 -- .773) over his 132 PAs between '11 and '12 ... is running a K/BB of almost 5:1. That is unsustainable. Liddi, in Tacoma last year, whiffed 170 times in 138 games. My take on Liddi is that he is in basically the same boat that Peguero was last year. He has a lot of talent ... but he is NOT adjusting. His 'development' (which I believe is a misnomer), is that at each successive level, his K-rate has gotten worse. He did add more power ... and the club is obviously chasing the dream that he'll be a 40-HR monster, (which Wells will never be). But, *at this point in time*, between the two of them ... I think Liddi would benefit more by a return to AAA.

3) Liddi played ZERO games in the OF in the minors. So, having fixed the chronically bad defense Seattle suffered from before Z arrived, are they really just going to let Liddi play a lot in the OF and hope he gets it? Now, maybe Liddi has buy in to the move ... (what rookie wouldn't, if it would keep him in the Show?) ... but pros don't like being embarrassed ... especially if a bad night shows up on ESPN. The defensive issue is *HIGH* risk in my opinion, (since Seager has a stranglehold on the 3B job). If you want him to play SS ... then Liddi should be getting reps in AAA ... not in the Bigs. If Liddi is the guy (compared to Wells), that you think will be around and be a star some day ... then he's the guy you need to invest DEVELOPMENT into *NOW* ... not next year. This is better accomplished if he's playing every day ... not being deployed as a 4th OF and occasional 3B sub.

4) Of course, I could be wrong. Maybe Liddi can work out his strikeout issues at the elite level playing 1/2 the time. It's possible. Maybe the coaches have seen something in his development that suggests the breeze may abate sometime soon. But, the biggest detriment in all of this (aside from ignoring the defensive concerns and issues), is that Wedge now has an EXCUSE to play Figgins more in the OF. Instead of Wells becoming the late inning defensive replacement ... Figgins inherits that role.

In the end, I see Liddi following a path similar to Peguero last season. He'll manage enough power for awhile to survive ... but once he's booked, he'll stop seeing the pitches that he can drive out of the park, and smack hard into the wall of you-can't-get-away-with-that-approach-here-meat. If there is an upside to this it is that Liddi "fails quickly", and actually understands and appreciates that his talent alone will not be enough to survive. I think Peguero might well be benefiting from his 7:1 K/BB ratio from his trip to the majors last season as we speak.

Is it possible that Seattle has grown savvy enough to intentionally let a prospect "flail" in the majors, so they can send him down and get a new attitude from him? I have my doubts. While I see a scenario where this works out in the long run ... I think in the short term it's going to end up being a painful combo of Liddi getting booked and flaming out ... and Figgins winning the "more PT" lottery.

When you couple the undeniable reality that Olivo is going to be taking PT away from "somebody" ... the immediate impact of the Olivo for Wells swap is likely detrimental to the club's winning percentage this year on multiple levels. But hey ... at least Olivo and Figgins are working hard to improve Seattle's draft position.
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The purpose of government is to set the minimum standard of behavior for a society, backed up with the power and authority to police and punish those who fail to meet those minimum standards. The purpose of Religion is to encourage people to exceed those standards voluntarily.

Age 25 - RH - (2B/UT) - (as of 8/19/2014)
Stefen Romero - mnrs - 1547-PA; 85-2B; 60-HR; 271-RBI; 36-SB; 21-CS; 96-BB; 250-K; .311/.361/.523 -- .884
MAJORS - 180-PA; 6-2B; 2-3B; 3-HR; 11-RBI; 0-SB; 3-CS; 4-BB; 46-K; .196/.236/.310 -- .545

Age 23 - LH - (LF) - (as of 8/19/2014)
Dario Pizzano - 2014 - 451-PA; 30-2B; 11-HR; 71-RBI; 1-SB; 1-CS; 64-BB; 49-K; .245/.357/.445 -- .802 (A+/AA)
Dario Pizzano - mnrs - 1232-PA; 88-2B; 23-HR; 170-RBI; 12-SB; 5-CS; 155-BB; 134-K; .296/.389/.469 -- .858

Age 23 - RH - (CF) - (as of 8/19/2014)
Jabari Henry - 2014 - 473-PA; 24-2B; 28-HR; 92-RBI; 6-SB; 8-CS; 63-BB; 99-K; .294/.400/.585 -- .986 (A+)
Jabari Henry - mnrs - 1156-PA; 62-2B; 47-HR; 191-RBI; 20-SB; 17-CS; 155-BB; 219-K; .276/.381/.508 -- .888

Age 24 - RH - (OF) - (as of 8/19/2014)
Jabari Blash - 2014 - 299-PA; 14-2B; 0-3B; 17-HR; 57-RBI; 6-SB; 2-CS; 39-BB; 81-K; .228/.351/.492 -- .843 (AA/AAA)
Jabari Blash - mnrs - 1740-PA; 80-2B; 13-3B; 76-HR; 257-RBI; 50-SB; 24-CS; 238-BB; 480-K; .254/.371/.484 -- .855


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Nice review of the situation, hard to disagree with. Peguero and Liddi are however the opposite side of the same coin, two guys who can be used - and abused - just as a 1-cent bet. Are they embarassed and humiliated ? Nobody cares because they're from nowhere costing nothing, nobody from the management can be accused if they fail because out of position or hurried to the show. It's important for them to protect the Figgins deal, the Olivo deal, the Cliff Lee deal, the Doug Fister deal, their top draft pick... in other words protect their own butts is "the name of the game". Then once in a life can happen that any Pegueros or Liddis becomes a sudden star and that will be because the management had great scouting eye of course and everybody is going to forget all the other bad deals. That's ridicolous and miserable but it's the same worldwide in any sports and blind fans are ready to forgive everything just to be allowed to dream a little.

Edited by Marco, 25 May 2012 - 05:51 AM.

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I don't know why Wedge didn't consider Liddi instead of Wells, but he must have a reason. Sandy makes perfect sense, but for some reason Wedge sees it differently. Maybe Wedge has second thoughts after last night's game. Don't worry, he can still change his mind in a couple of weeks or so, if Liddi's K's continue. Liddi did misplay a ball in LF that was due to inexperience at the position, but Wedge doesn't seem to believe he needs more time at Tacoma to work on defense.

Wedge did say that Jaso will continue to get starts at the catcher position along with Montero, but Olivo will get more starts at DH when the team faces a tough LH pitcher. There are still many changes yet to be made on the 2012 Mariners team, and it won't be long before those changes begin to accelerate in frequency.
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