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Six games out of first as of 6/12/2007


LordMagnus
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The Marlins are six games out of first place after the Mets losing tonight against the Dodgers.

 

Six games may seem like a lot. The Mets, Braves, and Phillies are all ahead of the Fish. Even the Nats are starting to creep up from behind.

 

But when you think about it, its pretty remarkable where this team stands. Six games really is not unobtainable here. Here is the lowdown:

 

1) Starting pitching has struggled. For the most part, the Marlins starting pitching has struggled this year and has yet to put together a run of quality starts. If the starting pitching can piece things together, this team can go on a run.

 

2) Injuries. This team has REALLY been hit hard. Starting guys like Joe Borchard or picking up Todd Linden tells the story here. If the Marlins can get healthy soon, and the returning players contribute like they can, this team can go on a run.

 

3) General inconsistencies. The team seems to play extremely well one night, and seem completely flat the next day. If they can string together some more consistently great games that they are capable of, this team can go on a run.

 

4) New manager. It still feels like at times that Fredi Gonzalez is feeling his way through the group of guys that he has. While I question some of his moves, it was the same with Girardi, and I do think Fredi is better at evaluating talent than Joe is. Gonzalez's growth as a manager will somewhat determine which direction this team goes, although most of it falls on the players.

 

5) Bull pen questions. There are some huge question marks in the bull pen. From the early season Julio disaster to the struggles of Pinto and Tankersly, there's room for improvement. But the bull pen has been somewhat of a pleasant surprise this year because it is very young. Kevin Gregg has really stepped up his game, and I feel confident in the acquisition of Benitez to help out.

 

6) Bad home record. The Marlins have a losing record at home. If they can turn things around there, they already proved they can win on the road (which is HUGE) then they can go on a run.

 

Here's why the Fish are still in it:

 

The NL East! The Mets are not running away with the division. There are four teams within striking distance of first place. This is quite possibly the most competitive that the division has EVER been since the Marlins came into existence. And the reality is that the teams within the division are going to constantly beat on each other throughout the year. Each team is flawed and no one seems poised to go on a tear and take the division.

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Good recap of the season so far. Considering the injuries so far throughout the season the Marlins are not in too bad of a place. Hopefully we can get a few players back from injuries and get back in the groove of things. That being said, does anyone happen to know what our record was last year at this time?

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We are in a good position, and we are getting help from our division rivals; however, we must help ourselves. We need to take 2 out of 3 in this next series and have a winning record in the next road series combined. Losing 2 of 3 the past weekend hurt us. The Mets most likely will choke somewhere down the road anyway. It's the Phils that I am now more worried about right now.

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The division is up for grabs. The phillies are weak in pitching and the mets lately have been too, since they were getting some of their starters to overachieve early in the year.

 

The team I'm most worried about is Atlanta, they have the two solid starters at the head of the rotation and a pretty good lineup especially when chipper gets back.

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We're not in it because of anything we've done, but what the Mets/Phillies/Braves have failed to do.

 

If you're going to tell me that JJ'll come back as the player we saw last year and that we'll have Anibal back and effective around the end of July and that the return of Jacobs means we stop putting the gimmick lineup out there, I like our chances to improve considerably, but I don't think we can catch the Mets unless they continue to beat themselves...that team is just built for the regular season.

 

Now, next year is a whole different story.

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We're not in it because of anything we've done, but what the Mets/Phillies/Braves have failed to do.

 

If you're going to tell me that JJ'll come back as the player we saw last year and that we'll have Anibal back and effective around the end of July and that the return of Jacobs means we stop putting the gimmick lineup out there, I like our chances to improve considerably, but I don't think we can catch the Mets unless they continue to beat themselves...that team is just built for the regular season.

 

Now, next year is a whole different story.

 

 

thats really the truth of it as of the moment. were hanging in there and with all the injuries you would expect our record to be a lot worse then what it is as of the moment. but the other teams are slumping and its really helping us even more. we just need to keep winning ball games

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That's a decent recap. A few comments. I'd stress the importance of the point that you made #1, and that's better starting pitching. I'd add that our home record is somewhat a function of the fact that by the luck of the schedule, our home opponents have had about a .530 record, while away record for opponents is about .470 These things have a way of evening out over the course of the season. I also think that even if our starting pitching improves, we ultimately can not contend this year because of our defense.

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The Marlins record is "Fool's Gold". Just look at what they are putting on the field. We have a catcher playing LF, a shortstop playing CF, an underachieving RF that can only hit Devil Rays pitching, a poor defensive 3B, SS, and 2B, a converted catcher playing 1B when he's healthy and a pair of catchers that have a hard time hitting their weight. The starting pitching other than Sergio Mitre has been poor. I do think most of the bullpen has been much better than anyone thought it would be. Really.....some of you guys think the Marlins are better than the Mets? Amazing.

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The Marlins record is "Fool's Gold". Just look at what they are putting on the field. We have a catcher playing LF, a shortstop playing CF, an underachieving RF that can only hit Devil Rays pitching, a poor defensive 3B, SS, and 2B, a converted catcher playing 1B when he's healthy and a pair of catchers that have a hard time hitting their weight. The starting pitching other than Sergio Mitre has been poor. I do think most of the bullpen has been much better than anyone thought it would be. Really.....some of you guys think the Marlins are better than the Mets? Amazing.

 

 

Part for part, the edge certainly goes to the Mets. On many teams though the sum is actually greater than the parts. What I like about this team is they play with heart. All they need to do is stay in contention over the next two months and you never know, they may become of the greatest team of over achievers in MLB history. I personally am not expecting them to finish with more than 80 wins, but hey you never know.

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Would I be shocked if we finished close to or ahead of the Mets this year? Yes, but I never once thought this year's version would be as good as last year's version.

 

Will the Mets continue to be a 2-8 ballclub? No, but their pitching should likely remain in the bottom half of the league, and not the top half like it was in April and May.

 

I'm not prepared to crown the Phillies or Braves as the team to chase since I think all have serious flaws, too, but for us to be considered "in it" we both need to get over .500 and be closer to 1st place than last place, currently we're 4 games out of last and 6 out of first.

 

A healthy and effective JJ alone could be a 3 or 4 game upgrade over this current rotation, as could a (knock on wood) July return from Anibal.

 

So I think it's unfair to jump down the throats of some who want to start scoreboard watching.

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We are due for a huge winning steak coming up, I'm talking like 18 out of 20 or 22 out of 25. Once we get everyone back and healthy, we are going to roll.

Now that is what a fan is all about-why not-we watch each game thinking we can win-not assuming that we are a band-aided team of players out of position. Heck, if I was totally realistic, then why bother watching. It is all about "you never know".

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We are due for a huge winning steak coming up, I'm talking like 18 out of 20 or 22 out of 25. Once we get everyone back and healthy, we are going to roll.

Now that is what a fan is all about-why not-we watch each game thinking we can win-not assuming that we are a band-aided team of players out of position. Heck, if I was totally realistic, then why bother watching. It is all about "you never know".

 

Just because you are a fan doesn't mean that you have to have Blind Faith. I root for the Marlins every night no matter who is on the field.....but I'm also realistic.

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Just because you are a fan doesn't mean that you have to have Blind Faith. I root for the Marlins every night no matter who is on the field.....but I'm also realistic.

 

No, you are pessimistic. Overwhelmingly so in every single one of your posts.

 

Right now, this is a .500 ball club. If Josh Johnson comes back and pitches like he did last year, that immediately makes us 4-5 wins over 162 games (so like 3-4 starting now). Thats assuming he's replacing a league average pitcher. In reality, he's replacing one of RVH, Obermueller or Kim, who have been significantly below league average. I'd say for the rest of the season, if Johnson can pitch around 3.6 ERA, we can finish with a good 86-87 wins which probably puts us within 2 or 3 games of the eventual division winner. If Dontrelle and Olsen can turn it around, we can realistically make a run at this. If Johnson can pitch like he did, we've got a real shot here.

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Just because you are a fan doesn't mean that you have to have Blind Faith. I root for the Marlins every night no matter who is on the field.....but I'm also realistic.

 

No, you are pessimistic. Overwhelmingly so in every single one of your posts.

 

Right now, this is a .500 ball club. If Josh Johnson comes back and pitches like he did last year, that immediately makes us 4-5 wins over 162 games (so like 3-4 starting now). Thats assuming he's replacing a league average pitcher. In reality, he's replacing one of RVH, Obermueller or Kim, who have been significantly below league average. I'd say for the rest of the season, if Johnson can pitch around 3.6 ERA, we can finish with a good 86-87 wins which probably puts us within 2 or 3 games of the eventual division winner. If Dontrelle and Olsen can turn it around, we can realistically make a run at this. If Johnson can pitch like he did, we've got a real shot here.

 

I think you're underselling the division if you think 90 wins definitely takes it.

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Just because you are a fan doesn't mean that you have to have Blind Faith. I root for the Marlins every night no matter who is on the field.....but I'm also realistic.

 

No, you are pessimistic. Overwhelmingly so in every single one of your posts.

 

Right now, this is a .500 ball club. If Josh Johnson comes back and pitches like he did last year, that immediately makes us 4-5 wins over 162 games (so like 3-4 starting now). Thats assuming he's replacing a league average pitcher. In reality, he's replacing one of RVH, Obermueller or Kim, who have been significantly below league average. I'd say for the rest of the season, if Johnson can pitch around 3.6 ERA, we can finish with a good 86-87 wins which probably puts us within 2 or 3 games of the eventual division winner. If Dontrelle and Olsen can turn it around, we can realistically make a run at this. If Johnson can pitch like he did, we've got a real shot here.

 

I think you're underselling the division if you think 90 wins definitely takes it.

 

The Mets aren't as good as they've played thus far. Their pitching is a house of cards waiting to fall down. The Braves are bat or an arm away from 90+ wins. The Phillies are probably an arm away, assuming said arm can pitch with consistent groundball tendencies otherwise, they'll never make the playoffs. I'm not saying the Marlins are the favorites, but they've got a shot assuming things fall into place and our pitching turns around.

 

I don't think 90 wins definetly takes it, but I can't see any one team winning more than like 92-93 games.

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Just because you are a fan doesn't mean that you have to have Blind Faith. I root for the Marlins every night no matter who is on the field.....but I'm also realistic.

 

No, you are pessimistic. Overwhelmingly so in every single one of your posts.

 

Right now, this is a .500 ball club. If Josh Johnson comes back and pitches like he did last year, that immediately makes us 4-5 wins over 162 games (so like 3-4 starting now). Thats assuming he's replacing a league average pitcher. In reality, he's replacing one of RVH, Obermueller or Kim, who have been significantly below league average. I'd say for the rest of the season, if Johnson can pitch around 3.6 ERA, we can finish with a good 86-87 wins which probably puts us within 2 or 3 games of the eventual division winner. If Dontrelle and Olsen can turn it around, we can realistically make a run at this. If Johnson can pitch like he did, we've got a real shot here.

 

I think you're underselling the division if you think 90 wins definitely takes it.

 

The Mets aren't as good as they've played thus far. Their pitching is a house of cards waiting to fall down. The Braves are bat or an arm away from 90+ wins. The Phillies are probably an arm away, assuming said arm can pitch with consistent groundball tendencies otherwise, they'll never make the playoffs. I'm not saying the Marlins are the favorites, but they've got a shot assuming things fall into place and our pitching turns around.

 

I kind of agree.

 

I agree that the Braves and Phillies are one player away from possibly running away with it.

 

I agree that the Mets essentially went for broke last year and have more than one issue to address, unless Alou and Pedro come back next month and don't miss a beat.

 

But, I don't agree that even these flaws hold the division winner to 87 or 88 wins. I don't think the Mets are 10 games worse than last year, and essentially, that's all that my argument is.

 

92 will most definitely take it, but to talk about a division title, it's taking no fewer than 90. (Barring serious injury, of course).

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