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recommended reading: bronx banter's alex belth, dh-ing at baseball analysts, writes today about women who love baseball and the men who love them.

cardnilly has posted part 2 of the 2005 bullpen report cards . . . . fungoes also handing out grades to relievers today . . . .

at the diaspora, ryan muses on cardinal rfs past and (maybe) future: larry walker's a a borderline famer and brian giles is a borderline cardinal. . . . looks like diaspora may be right, judging from the newsday report i cited earlier today.

at hardball times, studes has some info on which hitters make the most of their batted (and non-batted) balls -- batted-ball leaderboards, he calls `em. among the findings:

  • since 2002, jim edmonds has produced more runs per outfield fly than any player in baseball except barry bonds. einar diaz has produced the least -- baseball's can-of-corn king.
  • diaz is unproductive no matter where he hits the ball. in addition to his last-place ranking on the flyball chart, he is third from last in runs produced per ground ball, and sixth from last in runs produced per line drive. attention nilly: that's gotta help einar's case in the 2005 WoF race
  • ex-cardinal placido polanco hits line drives with greater frequency -- per plate appearance -- than anybody except mark loretta. grud'k ranks 5th on this list. unfortunately, the entire top 10 (the whole list, really) is tainted by einar diaz's appearance in 9th place . . . . . hmmmm. nearly every player on this list is a low-strikeout/low-walk type of hitter, which tells me the metric doesn't really measure how hard these guys hit the ball, just how often. it'd be more revealing to see the rankings for line drive per ball in play.
  • since 2002, brian giles has gotten more value out of not putting the ball in play (ie, walking or striking out) than anyone in baseball except bonds. albert pujols is #5 on that list, eckstein 9th. . . . . one more indicator that giles would fit well into the cardinal attack.
  • jacque jones sits at the other end of this list -- the fourth least-productive player in baseball via walks/strikeouts (reggie sanders ranks 9th on the chart). jones also has the 7th-lowest line-drive percentage (per plate appearance) in mlb over the period in question. . . . . . maybe not such a good fit for stl.

finally, some speculation about a brewing corey patt'son for kev'n mench swap.