Toy Story by Bob Ryan

We’ve all had toys..toys of all kinds…for several years…sure we all had toys as children ..there were all kinds of toys…here’s a possible list…I’m sure that you could add more…

….the shiny, “hottest” toy that we enjoyed for a long, long  time but finally it wore out

….the shiny, “hottest’ toy that amused us for only a short while

….the good toy that we enjoyed initially that we continued  to enjoy for a long, long time

….the toy we hardly ever used  or hardly ever enjoyed

…the non-descript toy that we used and then used gladly again and again and again

….the “whim” toy that we wanted and then used it and found it not to be enjoyable—maybe too difficult, didn’t do what we had hoped…or whatever

…an inexpensive toy that we barely used and never missed it when it was gone

…a toy that was fun when it worked but often it didn’t work due to various reasons

…the toy that we enjoyed a lot for a fair amount of time, then it broke down and had to be discarded

…the toy that we enjoyed briefly but lost interest or it got broke after a relatively short time

….a toy that we tried that we never enjoyed and “lost” it quickly

…an old toy that we got that entertained us for some  length of time but finally it broke down

….a toy that we received that we didn’t enjoy but our friend did enjoy when we gave it to him/her

 

Well….how is this trip down memory lane apropos in a sports blog…..MLB players….let’s look at the Cardinals specifically ….seem…in an  imaginative way…to be like toys…substitute the word “player” instead of toy..and you see what I mean….I’d like YOU..each of you to send me a current player..or 2 or 3… that fits any of these descriptions….or any other description that you create….I’d like you to post them all on the response section  below my article…if you want to send it via email…I’m going to assume that I can post it without your last name…like ..   bob r ..for me…e.g.  Seth Maness was a toy that we enjoyed briefly but he broke down…I’m really anxious to see YOUR ideas….

 

Quick Trip Around the world of sports….

….just checking on a neutral baseball site….the Cards were ranked as having the 18th best minor league system in the MLB…the top 10 prospects last winter according to this site…probably has changed by now…#1 RHP-Alex Reyes; #2 RHP-Luke Weaver; #3 RHP Jack Flahery; #4 ss-Delvin Perez; #5 OF Harrison Bader; #6 RHP Sandy Alcantara; #7 C-Carson Kelly; #8-Mag Sierra; #9 RP Dakota Hudson #10 INF-Paul DeJong. Reyes suffered arm issues and Alcantara is throwing over 100mph but is having control issues

….I’m rooting for Nashville in the Hockey Finals..but they are in trouble…

….this 10 day DL seems to be a joke…the Dodgers put on/take off so many guys…legally…it’s made a mockery of the rule…..basically LA has a roster of 28-29 guys that are constantly rotated onto the roster

…why doesn’t Tiger …and others like him…just hire a driver for all their traveling needs?

…MLB team fielding stats may not tell the whole story but….the Cards are 27th, Cubs are 26th and Dodgers 25th…maybe that’s why these highly touted teams are struggling…btw the top 5 in fielding stats are #1 KC  #2 Minn    #3  Colorado   #4  Cincy  #5 SF

…MSHSAA Track results for Class 5 (largest schools) shows only 2 StL schools in the top 10 of the STATE championship meet…. Lafayette  was #2 and at #4 was CBC but in Class 4, Rockwood Summit won the track title and Parkway North was #2 while Parkway Central finished at #10 in Class 4.

…how can sending Randall Grichuk to Class A baseball help him “get back”?  If the Coach there is that much better…why isn’t he doing the coaching at the major league level? He’s been swinging at the that low outside slider for 2 years…if he can’t recognize it or can’t change….he’s not a MLB player.. remember he was drafted in 2009, he’s nearing age 26, was traded by Angels with Peter Bourjos for David Freese & Fernando Salas…so it wasn’t like either team was trading away their stars..he may have been a “top” prospect when he was signed but he surely wasn’t that way when the Angels traded him or from what we’ve seen over parts of 4 years…yes…he has terrific exit velocity, can run fast but …but….it seems like his adjustments at the plate are slow to take place and not very lasting.. and…if the Cards had REALLY thought he was worth keeping…they would have locked him up like they did for Piscotty….he’s had 1125 AB in the Majors…remember something that’s been said…it takes 1000 AB in MLB to determine if you belong …and…how good you’ll be…I think we know now about Grichuk.

….along these lines…it appears that the Cards are starting to shuffle the deck with their roster…this .500 team is missing some real ingredients…NO real star, NO true lead-off man(i.e. a man who’s primary function is to get on base), NO real speed,  POOR base running and POOR fielding…I had the “pleasure” of being at the 3 hr 55 min game…the game moved slow, slower and even slower  …it made a Lee Smith’s walk to the mound from the bullpen  look fast.  Over the years, I haven’t been a Manifesto “man” but….this roster has his hands tied…moving out the weakest guys on the team like Broxton isn’t  really not going to change this team….I’m looking above Manifesto….at MO…for the sour construction of this roster.  If the attendance continues to sag….it may back MO into a corner which will require a “major” trade to reignite the fan base….for 1 thing….I’m pleased that Sierra has  come up….his speed is sorely needed at the major league level…yes…he may be a bit overmatched by some pitchers…but…he’s been in the minors 4 years already (signed at 17)…let him continue to grow “up” here… in MLB …and help us win with a new dimension available…speed.

….following up on a story line in the above section….with the Astros holding a massive 12.5 game lead and a 39-16 record …do any of you wonder how the Cards would look with Jeff Luhnow as the GM? The Cards …basically…chose MO over Luhnow n 2011…the Cards won immediately after Luhnow’s departure but they were still Luhnow’s players

SOME STATE BASEBALL NOTES

…it was a happy/sad moment in Class 2 Baseball Championship Game last Tuesday…the Mansfield Lions dominated Canton Tigers 16-3 (happy part)…but the sad part…in a sense …was that the Lions had dedicated their season to their long-time Baseball Coach, Doug Jones. Jones had passed away this winter…he is the winningest coach in the history of MSHSAA…he had 713 wins…30 of 35 seasons at  Mansfield… The current head coach is a former player of Coach Jones..I’m sure that the entire program was happy about winning for Coach Jones… but sad in that it brings back the wonderful memories of a good man who taught the fundaments of baseball and life.

….in Class 5, one of the semis saw 2 STL teams competing for the 3rd time this season(they split)—Vianney vs Ft Zumwalt West. Each team had their ace on the mound so most observers expected a close, low scoring game…and we did.  FZW scored first in the3rd when Patrick Connor tripled to lead off the inning and was driven home on a sac fly. Vianney scored 3 runs in the top of 5th with the big hit being a triple by Thomas Kraus…it was now 3-1 Vianney and it had felt like the Golden Griffins had all the momentum.  In bottom of 5th, Jacob Verschoore blasted a 2 run HR to tie it…and suddenly you could feel MR Momentum switching dugouts. In the bottom of the 6th it again was Patrick Connor who drove home a run to make it 4-3 FZW….and that was the final score in a very exciting game with good pitching, good defense and some key hitting.  The next day FZW faced Jefferson City for the Championship. The Jaguars (FZW) scored a tally in the 2nd inning to make it 1-0. The score remained that way until the bottom of the 7th when the Jays used an inning opening walk, a sacrifice bunt…yes high school kids can do it but not the pros…and he scored on a single by Payton Bodenstab. FZW didn’t score in top of 8th, in the bottom of the 8th it was 2 walks and a single and …the winning run…the run that won the STATE championship for the Jays….it scored on a HBP !  The beauty of High School sports…ya just never know what’s going to happen…

….who does the scheduling for the MLB…the Cards play the Dodgers 7 games in 10 days and now they are finished with them for the entire season….couldn’t we at least see them once before and once after the All-Star game…like Colorado? 

….I don’t know if it’s too much pride, arrogance, ignorance or failure to accept that getting on base helps the team win and THAT is the primary goal but….why is it with these overshifted defenses that batters just don’t bunt down the 3B line….if they keep getting on base…they’ll stop shifting

….I  watch very little of the NBA so these comments so take these thoughts for what their worth … but…I’m rooting for Golden State…I admire their  long-range shooting skills and it’s a somewhat “fresh” face…somehow…I’ve never really warmed up to LeBron…yes…he may be the best player ever but I can’t get the taste out of my mouth of his “announcement” show…it was really self-serving.

…what’s going on with the weather up north…around the Great Lakes area… this summer?….there seems to be something new in the air…something like “w’s”in the airand it appears to be contagious. As I write this on Sat, Minnesota and Milwaukee are in 1st place  

…lengthy debate about Cards not signing the highly touted Cuban Luis Robert…other Cubans have been highly touted..Yasiel Puig is the latest…some “work out”…some don’t…some fans claim its worth $50mil to grab a player who “MAY” be a star…the other side says $50mil is a lot of cash to take that chance…one of the things that amuses me about so many of these talk show hosts is that they want to spend the Cardinals money in every which-way …and in a BIG way…..it’s ALWAYS very easy to spend the money of OTHER people…..

…I wish the the Cardinal announcers would stop whining about the upcoming Cardinal schedule…. yes..they DO have a long, continuous string of games and at this moment they have played the fewest games …of anyone in the NL…without Double Headers  played any longer..which would provide for extra days off…every team DOES have long stretches of games…at least until they are eliminated..

so …suck it up big boys and stop whining…everyone plays the same amount of games eventually.

 

Don’t forget….I want YOUR idea of what Cardinal player fits into any of the toy descriptions…or your own description…if you send it to me via email…I’ll post it without your last name… some of you may think that this blog is MY toy !  Thanks for reading…

Comments

  1. A player I enjoyed, but has just broken and is of no use any more; Jhonny Peralta

    The best player on the team that I enjoyed for years, but sadly is already on the down side of his career; Matt Carpenter

    The player that I never liked, continues to get chances, but will just never make it to the big time; Koltan Wong

  2. There is the toy we wanted…. that we over paid for …in Cecil.
    Siegrest is just about done and that toy is worn out.
    The toy that we really wanted but couldn’t have was Pujlos….probably would have been worth the money as he would put fans in the seats game after game and especially as he nears 600 homers and will close in on the 3,000 hit mark either this year or more likely next. Plus, he would be a leader here.
    Our broken toy of Reyes really hurt – potentially as I think he could have been one of the starters

  3. Rob Stag says:

    The Class 5 final – won on a HBP??? I’ve seen it all but just added a new one! The JC Jays were nationally ranked, a point many StL fans failed to respect. Always seems to an assumption the StL teams just by making it will win it all. Strong final 4 field though.

  4. Chuck G says:

    Wacha was shiny early but is broken down.
    Wong was a shiny toy that I never got “hooked” on
    Gyorko wasn’t anything special toy but has been good

  5. Jake M. says:

    Molina was a good toy gone old
    Wainwright was shiny and still remains good
    Leake didn’t seem to be anything special but has been shiny, at least until now

  6. Peralta was good for one year but he’s done.
    Grichuk was shiny for a short while but he’s gone to the minors.
    Bowman was shiny last year but he pitched too much and now he’s just another guy.
    Rosenthal was a shiny toy, got dirtied up, but is shiny again.

  7. Fr. Brad says:

    A good player I’ve enjoyed and hope to enjoy for a while longer – Molina. He will be the next trip Cardinal fans take to Cooperstown for an induction.
    A player we received but didn’t enjoy but a friend enjoyed was Colby Rasmus, and Albert as well, although I’m glad the Cardinals didn’t pony up the money to keep him.
    David Freese amused us for awhile….
    I’m surprised no one has mentioned Fowler as the whim toy….

  8. Joe Parisi says:

    Adam Wainwright… always enjoyed and continue to;
    Randal Grichuk… had high hopes, but have lost faith;

    Jhonny Peralta… wasn’t s fan when he was acquired… need to “cut bait” now

  9. Jim Pleimann says:

    Dexter Fowler. was an expensive toy that hopefully, hopefully gets a new set of batteries that makes it work better. Yikes!
    Kevin Siegrest wore out his batteries
    Matt Carpenter is a toy that could be swapped to the Goodwill store. Seems like maybe he has seen his better days.
    Waino is the toy you just don’t want to get rid of – oh wait, he just gave up a grand slam. Geex, there are not many good toys is there?
    MO the toymaker better get creative! Ha

    Nashville is not in as much trouble as they were! Surprised?
    I agree that no “star” should be driving. Just not worth it….

  10. ….the toy we hardly ever used or hardly ever enjoyed
    Matt Adams…1 solid season thats it…
    …the non-descript toy that we used and then used gladly again and again and again
    Lance Lynn…debated putting him for the last question…now in his sixth year, his career Fielding independent ERA is under 3.5, been more than 30% above average for a starter for the last three years but he gets no appreciation but has never gotten love…
    ….the “whim” toy that we wanted and then used it and found it not to be enjoyable—maybe too difficult, didn’t do what we had hoped…or whatever
    Dexter Fowler…
    …an inexpensive toy that we barely used and never missed it when it was gone
    Jonny Peralta, Randal Grichuk
    …a toy that was fun when it worked but often it didn’t work due to various reasons
    Wacha Wacha Wacha
    …the toy that we enjoyed a lot for a fair amount of time, then it broke down and had to be discarded
    Every good reliever Mike Matheny has pitched into oblivion….I think you know this list better than I do…also Johnny Peralta
    …the toy that we enjoyed briefly but lost interest or it got broke after a relatively short time
    Alymedas Diaz?
    ….a toy that we tried that we never enjoyed and “lost” it quickly
    How Mike Matheny treats Kolten Wong…
    …an old toy that we got that entertained us for some length of time but finally it broke down
    Adam Wainwright 2018
    ….a toy that we received that we didn’t enjoy but our friend did enjoy when we gave it to him/her
    Jaime Garcia? Joe Kelly?

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