Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Am I reading too much into this?.....

But in yesterday's game against the Cubs I started thinking about something that caught my eye and got the gears turning in my head (FINALLY!).

Mark Teahen started the game at second base and made all of the routine plays (including one that wasn't so routine when Mike Jacobs deflected a diving stab at a liner to Teahen, who was in perfect position to field it and throw the runner out at first). Then, late in the game Willie Bloomquist came off the bench ... to play left field.

Maybe I shouldn't read much into this, but I thought it was a little funny that this close to Opening Day Willie Bloomquist is suddenly playing the super-sub role while Teahen plays the entire game at second. Look, Teahen came into this spring as a long shot, but has been a pleasant surprise with his bat AND defense for the Royals. He has made great strides from his horrid first game at second to now.

In no way will he ever win a Gold Glove at second. He may never be above-average, but if he keeps hitting the way he has, turns the double play, and makes the routine plays, well, routine - it looks like he'll win the job.


Royals Nation said...

Has the club publicly stated that Teahen looks better at second base? Any further anecdotal evidence/scouting evaluation? He looked putrid when I saw him, but I'm not a scout, and perhaps he's improved. I still think it was a faulty decision for him to abandon his club to go play in the WBC.

If he indeed looks better, I wouldn't be opposed to the idea of him starting. However, we know those 80+ games for Bloomquist are an inevitable propensity (where's the *Roll Eyes* emoticon?). Defense when Hoch/Banny are on the mound should be emphasized yet further, and that might spell no Callaspo.

If Teahen reverts to his 2008 form, then it will deem the decision to retain him stupid, especially on that salary. Especially when we had a much cheaper option available in Callaspo.

Oh, well. We'll see what happens.

Anonymous said...

The only way he keeps the job is by mashing. If he gets cold he sits down. He'll likely give up more runs than he'll generate.

Not his fault though...hasn't played the position since college.

Levi "Tug" Payton said...

Royals Nation, to answer your question a number of Royals officials have publicly stated to reporters that Teahen is improving at second. Of course, when you start from the bottom of the barrel you have no where to go but up.
Teahen still looks rough and ragged out there (he'll never look like a natural) but those who have watched him closely this spring agree he is getting much closer to being able to hold his own out there.
Trey Hillman says he likes Teahen's progress, Frank White endorsed him and Dayton Moore says he's seen some encouraging signs. Still, he's been playing the position for only a couple of months now, but he continues to rake this spring. We'll see.