Dave's Diamond Blog: Is a message being sent to CY?
Is it totally unreasonable to suggest that some sort of mind game to push Young is being staged here? After all, this is a front office that entertained offers for Justin Upton last year and a manager who waited until the end of spring to formally anoint Joe Saunders a part of his starting rotation. Young hit .193 in the second half of the season and .216 away from home. Despite his status as a superior defensive centerfielder in a ballpark that demands such a skill, is the perceived threat of competition their way of pushing him to be better? Likely this idea is more media blahblahblah than anything else, but while you could certainly accuse the previous regime for their delicate coddling of their players, one cannot say the same about Gibson or Kevin Towers.
• Two respected national baseball writers chimed in with their "top stories of the spring columns". Both Jeff Passan of Yahoo! and Tom Verducci of SI think Albert Pujols' new address is topic number one. Passan thinks Bryce Harper is #2 while Verducci thinks it's trying to identify this year's turnaround team in the mold of the D-backs a year ago. I want to do a little homework before I pick that turnaround team though I admit to being intrigued by the Rockies. Anyway, my #2 story this spring is Yu Darvish of the Rangers; he has the potential to be a game- changer. Passan has him 9th.
• The next couple of weeks are going to be really interesting for former D-backs manager Bob Melvin. Evaluating the $36 million dollar international man of mystery Yoenis Cespedes, managing the player who virtually single-handedly crushed the D-backs hopes of a 2008 division title in Manny Ramirez and putting up with all of the stories of Oscar night with his boss Billy Beane, Brad and Angie. Here's hoping that whoever plays BoMel in the sequel Moneyball 2: Mannyball is a little more suave and savvy than Phillip Seymour Hoffman.