Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Everyone reacts to the Ryan Theriot trade

The continued reaction over the Ryan Theriot trade has started to reach epic proportions.

A majority of Cubs fans (not all) appear to be absolutely giddy over the trade. Based on comments made by the Cardinals management, they fully expect Theriot to be their everyday shortstop. They expect him to get on base. They expect him to steal bases.

What will they get? They will get a shortstop with no range and no arm. They will get a hitter that has an OBP of around .320. They will get a baserunner who gets thrown out 40% of the time when he tries to steal (if he doesn’t get picked off first).

Here are some other things the Cardinals should expect out of this superstar…

He has little or no capability to drive in runners (only 10% of base runners during plate appearances actually score). He doesn’t take pitches (well below the league average in pitch/plate appearance). He doesn’t walk (only 6.4% of the time).

That’s about all that can be said. I get the feeling that the Cardinals fans don’t actually realize that Theriot isn’t some young, up and coming player. He’ll be 31 this coming season. He’s peaked. He is what he is. He won’t improve. He won’t get faster. His range at shortstop won’t expand.

Reaction from Cardinals fans was mixed. Some were absolutely overjoyed by this trade (the stupid Cardinals fans) while others were left scratching their head as they don’t see this as much of an improvement over Brendon Ryan (the slightly smarter, but still stupid, Cardinals fans).

Twitter literally exploded yesterday on the news of Theriot being traded, which tells us about the sorry state of things with the Cubs right now. The only reason this news made such a big impression was because, frankly, we have nothing else to talk about at the moment. As I stated, Cubs fans were, for the most part, giggling with excitement over The Riot wearing a bird on his hat. Many Cardinals fans fully expect Theriot to come back and burn us. It’s possible…but judging be the stats and his age, that probably won’t happen. There was a reason the Cubs were willing to promote Starlin Castro last season.

Theriot does have a wonderful overconfidence about himself…something which will be enjoyable to watch in St. Louis. He has set in his mind that he is the second coming of Pete Rose or something. The problem is that he has poor baseball instincts. Cubs fans should get a kick out of watching Tony LaRussa’s reaction to Theriot getting thrown out trying to steal third base with no outs. I’ll also enjoy the fact the Theriot will probably try to take the Cardinals to arbitration to get a raise from his $2.6 million he got from the Cubs last year.

Theriot also made some wonderful quotes yesterday when he was interviewed by the media (and as we know, he can’t stay away from a microphone)…
First and obviously everyone has seen this now:
“I’m finally on the right side of the Cubs-Cardinals rivalry.”
That’s something I can’t argue with. I think he is too.
“I don’t want to be that utility player. I want to be out there playing. I can’t help a team if I’m sitting on the bench.”
You can’t hurt a team if you are sitting on the bench as well.
“Shortstop’s the most comfortable (position for me to play). It’s what I grew up playing.”
It’s a lot easier to play shortstop when you were growing up. The bases were a lot closer together in Little League.

Expanding on that, I grew up playing 2nd base…that doesn’t mean I played 2nd base when I was an adult. I ended up doing something that I was good at when I grew up (a software engineer).

So there you have it.

Oh, and my dear St. Louis friends, let me introduce you to the TOOTBLAN.