Pet Peeves: the Everyone Else Edition

Things that don't bother me as much as they seem to bother everyone else:

 

1. Rich Aurilia starting in the place of Travis Ishikawa against lefties.


Maybe a large chunk of my semi-prospect-lovin'-heart is blackened and dead. The blood just isn't pumping like it used to. The medical term: Niekrosis. It's a horrible, sad condition, and it isn't Ishikawa's fault. But I'm wary about those semi-prospects. And danged if it isn't all sorts of rational to want a right-handed complement to Ishikawa, even if Ishikawa might not end up as a strict platoon player. Aurilia hit .321/.377/.526 against lefties last year, and other than an all-around wretched 2007, he's been a consistent hitter against southpaws. Ishikawa has one walk and 13 strikeouts in 44 at-bats so far. I can't defend that.

I'd guess the Giants have a 20% chance at winning the division. Your numbers may differ. I'd give Ishikawa a 10% chance of ever becoming a major league starter. Ergo post prompter hoc emptor pluribus: I'd rather mess with Ishikawa's development than mess with the 2009 Giants' chances of winning individual games.

2. ESPN's fixation on the Yankees and Red Sox.


My secret: I don't watch a lot of ESPN other than their live baseball games. And ever since they put Rob Neyer and others behind the pay wall, I don't go to ESPN.com. So when I get a chance to watch a Sunday night Yankees/Red Sox game, I'm pretty stoked. Justin Masterson has a funky, whip-arm delivery. He good. Both teams have interesting hitters up and down the lineup; both teams have pitching staffs worth following. I missed the ESPN.com feature article on Dustin Pedroia's matchbook collection, so I'm not really feeling the overkill.

3. Juan Uribe


Dude's a utility infielder. He's being used sparingly. Doesn't anyone remember Jose Vizcaino? That's what most utility infielders are like. They do something that impresses someone somewhere, but they usually combine atrocious plate discipline with zero power. Uribe's kind of like that, except he's hit 20 or more homers in three seasons. That kind of counts as a skill, even if he's taking the Pedro Feliz plate discipline correspondence course. Look around the league: there aren't too many teams with a better backup shortstop. That's not a can of aerosol pride to spray around the room as you dance, mind you. It's just that when he doesn't do well in a given at-bat, it's like, yeah, he's a backup shortstop.

4. A.J. Pierzynski


Look, we all know th...man, I can't even joke about this one without boils appearing all over my person. But the first three are legit. So here's your chance to break free of the gravitational pull of Planet Groupthink. Are you fine with Nate Schierholtz's disappearance? Don't mind Bochy's bullpen use? Here's your chance to let it out.

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