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Sunday, August 29, 2010

Nyjer (Again)

When Nyjer Morgan got called out for missing the plate last night, I was, uh, indisposed. My wife relayed the news to me when I got back in, leaving out the part about him seemingly missing the plate on purpose so he could plow into the Cardinals' catcher.

Having seen it several times now, I have no doubt that's exactly what happened. I applaud Jim Riggleman for yanking him today, though part of me wishes he'd put Nyjer in long enough for Adam Wainwright to blast him but good and THEN yank him.

As Mark Zuckerman at Nats Insider and Dave Nichols at Nats News Network wrote, Nyjer was having a pissy fit because he was dropped from first to eighth in the order. Great quote from Riggleman about Nyjer maybe thinking that was Rigs back there in the catcher's gear. He takes his frustrations out on the opposing catcher. How nice.

Two things, Nyjer: 1. Grow up. 2. How's batting eighth compared to batting nowhere, which is where you are today?

And I'm wonder if maybe that's where he ought to stay.

Nyjer won a lot of us over last year, and I fell as hard as anybody. I was so in love. He brought much needed speed to the offense and defense along with an infectious personality that had the whole world smiling.

It might not have been a complete mirage. He has been playing better since the all-star break and he's still really fast. But, and this is important, he also plays brain dead way too much (we either didn't see that last year or chose not to see it) and that infectious personality turns into spoiled brat when he's not happy.

As an old football coach friend says, he's nowhere near good enough to be an asshole.

I'm quite fine with Willingham, Bernadina and Morse as next season's outfield. I'm fine with SeptemberCallup, Bernadina and Morse as the rest of this year's outfield (though I suspect Morse is next year's 1B when the brass blows it with Dunn).

Bernadina may not be quite as fast as Morgan but where else is Morgan better? Bernadina will hit just as well and knock it out of there 10-15 times if he plays a full season. You want a little more pop in your corners, so maybe that's not Bernadina. Heck, he may not even be the ideal answer in CF. But if the debate is Bernadina or Morgan, given what we've seen this season, is there really any debate?

Does Morgan fit in as any part of the team? It's been years since the A's used what's his name as their regular pinch runner. You can't waste a roster spot for that nonsense and, besides, who trusts Nyjer on the bases anymore? You can't have him as your fourth outfielder because you need your fourth outfielder to pinch hit here and there and have a shot at knocking it out of there. Morgan would have to hit it twice to get it out of the park.

Riggleman says he doesn't want to disrespect the game by playing callups too much in September and he doesn't want to rip off the paying public by playing a Triple A team for major-league ticket prices. Let me reassure you, Jim, that if I do come to the park anymore this year, I won't demand a refund if Nyjer is on the bench and some AAA (or AA or A or Rookie League) callup is in the outfield in his sted.

You could even put Bryce Harper out there and I'd be fine.

The Nats Nation seems to be getting over Nyjer like our nation got past that disco phase many years ago. Good job sitting him today. Consider making it permanent.


George Templeton said...

Is Bernadina winning his way back into your good graces, because he is starting to with me

MikeHarris said...

He was never out of my good graces - it just took a while for him to grow on me. Which he's done, along with Jayso, uh, Michael Morse.

Anonymous said...

Zimmerman bobblehead.

Pudge bobblehead.

Nyjer bobblehead.

One of these things is not like the other.

Also, I now have a Nyjer bobblehead and a Jose Guillen bobblehead, but I'm afraid to put them in the same room because something might happen. If they ever give out a Cowboy Joe West bobblehead, I may have to buy a new house.

Anonymous said...

Still thinking they have to consider Willingham for first and Bernadina permanently in left if Dunn leaves. Bernadina does seem to play best there. With Willingham's knee and back and his lack of speed and athleticism (he used to be a catcher) I suspect he is not the model Rizzo envisions in his outfield.

I strongly suspect that Rizzo will once again make a play and trade for BJ Upton who better defines the CF position. And because he is having an off year at the plate and some other issues he may come a bit more cheaply. Who knows perhaps Morgan could be a part of that exchange?

I think Morse will either end up as a bench player again or in right field.

Anonymous said...

Drew Magary is Double Down. Pass it on.