Even if you're not really that into baseball statistics, Joe Sheehan's columns at Baseball Prospectus are worth the price of admission all by themselves. In his column today Joe questions Willie Randolph's decision not to pinch hit for Shawn Green:
In the eighth inning last night, the Mets needed a good right-handed bat. Franco, Castro...hey, you pick the dictator...any of them would have been a better choice than Green. It would have meant putting Woodward in the outfield for the duration of the game, but so what? Lastings Milledge would have been the best option, but he wasn't around. If the Mets don't win two games in New York, they're going to have to look back at that decision and wonder what the manager was thinking when he put together his roster.On La Russa's decision to bring in Adam Wainwright to face Jose Valentin:
After Flores retired Green in the fateful eighth inning, La Russa called upon Adam Wainwright to pitch to Jose Valentin. I got a lot of questions about this; Valentin has been so bad from the right side that he actually gave up switch-hitting for a while. He hit .219/.300/.344 against lefties this year, .288/.341/.538 against righties, and I'm pretty sure this was the first time in a decade any manager had replaced a lefty with a righty just for him.And on why the Wainwright move shouldn't have worked out anyway:
The pitch that retired Valentin was another in a long, long line of pitches that were miscalled in critical spots. It was, essentially, the Eric Gregg moment of this series, the pitch that will stand out as an umpire's error in a high-leverage moment. The big curve by Wainwright was outside, and while a nasty pitch, was correctly taken by Valentin, who is a reasonably disciplined hitter.Sheehan is one of the best writers on internet, baseball or otherwise. If you're on the fence about subscribing to BP, just do it.
(Source = Baseball Prospectus).