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Chat: Christina Kahrl

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Welcome to Baseball Prospectus' Tuesday August 04, 2009 2:00 PM ET chat session with Christina Kahrl.


With the deals done by the deadline, Christina Kahrl reviews what's been achieved, what's left to do, and answers your questions on those and other subjects.

Christina Kahrl: Howdy gang, onward and upward, let's talk some baseball!

dantroy (davis): Is Verlander being overworked?

Christina Kahrl: Only relative to what's industry-standard today; historically, his workload isn't all that heavy at all, but I think we're all a bit skittish on the subject of pitch counts these days. Add in that Jim Leyland's the man who presided over burning out Alex Fernandez in the cause of a Marlins' pennant chase, and I don't think the concern's unreasonable, but I think it's a bit premature.

Jon (Oregon): Is Jeff Clement finally going to get a shot?

Christina Kahrl: If you can't get an opportunity with the Pirates, what comes next? Japan? Mexico? Albania?

SaberTJ (Cleveland, OH): Whom do I have to injure on the Indians to get Matt LaPorta called up? Sizemore needing rest just isn't worth watching Francisco every night. Can't they just send Gimenez back down? That way they can have Franscisco available for some CF duties?

Christina Kahrl: It's becoming a bit of a quandary, because LaPorta's disappearance into some sort of dead zone in central Ohio, just a stone's throw away from the Tribe's desperately needy lineup, is nothing short of baffling. The Gimenez thing has gone beyond silly, and they still need a left fielder.

lornad11 (Clifton NJ): Do the Mets have the most expensive bullpen ever?

Christina Kahrl: Since you have to count Billy Wagner, yes, there's probably something to that. In for a penny, in for both tons, I guess, because one of the problems they seem to be having is conjuring up low-cost contributors the way that other organizations seems capable of doing easily enough. I still think they ought to regret losing Darren O'Day, for example, and the problems they've had in stocking the Triple-A affiliate with worthwhile filler ballplayers speaks to a stars-and-scrubs approach on too many levels when it comes to how the organization is operated. The Yankees used to not sweat the small stuff, and it hurt them; they're better at it now. The Mets ought to take that lesson to heart.

Dave (Chicago): As the season has progressed, Brett Anderson has taken several steps forward and improved. Trevor Cahill, on the other hand, seems to get hammered start after start. At what point should we be concerned about him?

Christina Kahrl: 2011 or so. At this point, what's left of the A's season is one long exercise in singing, "Tomorrow, tomorrow, there's always tomorrow..." because baseball can never have enough Annies. Dispirited fandom moment aside, though, Cahill had back-to-back bad games following a quality start (although that was against the Twins). There's going to be an adjustment period, especially while he's not fooling all that many people of late. Given the breadth of alternatives, if sheef fatigue becomes an issue, I would anticipate he'll get shut down, having seen what they need to see in terms of Cahill's having a place in the team's future.

karysingh (Beloit, WI): What does the hype around Phil Hughes and Matt Wieters tell us about Strasburg and others in the future?

Christina Kahrl: Couldn't help but get a dry chuckle from your question. "Curb your enthusiasm, lest it jump right over the curb and leave you in a ditch, smacked up against a culvert." We do need to avoid getting totally insane about some prospects, yes. That said, Wieters really is going to be good. Hughes really is good. And Strasburg? I don't think we're talking Brian Bullington here. (Folks will always remember Bullington, which takes the Reds off the hook for taking Chris Gruler with the third overall pick somewhat, I guess. A peek at that draft reflects a lot of massive early-pick disappointments.)

David (DC): So can we get a sneak peek of your Nationals deadline day TA?

Christina Kahrl: They look less like a softball team now that Dunn's at first base, and I'm glad to see Dukes back up.

Kevin (Miami): Are Mike Stanton and Jason Heyward hyped more due to the fact that they are from the US and therefore can be proven to be 19 years-old, unlike prospects from the Caribbean?

Christina Kahrl: I don't really think nationality's that much of a factor in such things, in terms of people turning literal blind eyes to the imports. Michael Ynoa got a ton of coverage, I seem to remember, from us as well as many others, and for good reason.

Rob (Houston): Welcome! Glad the delay wasn't dingo-related.

Christina Kahrl: The dingo's in the pink in terms of health, but there again, if she has a food allergy, she hasn't sat me down and told me about it.

ashitaka (long beach, ca): How is a guy nicknamed Walrus going to cover the vast foul territory at the infield corners in Oakland?

Christina Kahrl: To be fair, Mark McGwire wasn't exactly known for cat-like swiftness. Nor, at the end, was Carney Lansford. That said, I've not seen Wallace play live, and television's a lousy way to judge whether a guy moves around well to cover foul territory.

Tg in orlando (disneyland): Seems to me that the Tigers didn't give up a heck of a lot for Washburn. Am I missing something here?

Christina Kahrl: He's a multi-month rental bound for post-season free agency, and since the Mariners didn't send any cash to help cover the expense of employing him, plus the relatively thin selection of prospects in the Tigers' organization, two live-armed lefties seems reasonable enough.

Christopher (Nashville, TN ): As an O's fan, I'm thrilled with the Sherrill deal. But what were the Dodgers thinking? He's at best a setup guy with major control issues against right-handed hitters. Is that really worth a future major-league third-baseman?

Christina Kahrl: I don't want to underrate Sherrill here; I think he might finally give Joe Torre the Mike Stanton-level lefty to set up in the pen who can also close in a pinch that puts the Dodgers' skipper in his comfort zone with his pen. That said, it's still a great deal for the Orioles, because Bell fills a precise organizational hole exceptionally well.

Eric (Denver): What do you think of A's prospect Chris Carter? Future middle of the order bat or future Jack Cust?

Christina Kahrl: I'm a skeptic until the power comes up a few more notches. As much as it's a good year for a 22-year-old in Double-A, he's having a good-not-great season for a first-base prospect.

Bill (Toronto): Thoughts on the Rolen deal? Also, any chance Overbay or Scutaro get moved before August 31?

Christina Kahrl: I think it might end up being a lose-lose trade, although the pitching the Jays received might improve matters somewhat on their side of things. If they can get a taker on Overbay, that would be a nice turn of events, but we'll see what's possible. The fact that they're just sort of shuffling and reshuffling and marking time has to be as exasperating for them as it is to any interested observer.

cjbuet (madison, wi): Brett Anderson has looked impressive. Has the view on his future upside been raised a tick by his last few starts?

Christina Kahrl: More than that, I think, in that it goes beyond the results of a couple of starts, it goes to what people see him doing. The youth, the improved velocity, the maturation as he goes from a more doughy past as an amateur... sometimes prospects can change the stars for themselves, and go from simply good/worthy to something more than that.

Phil (LA): What does Brandon Wood have to do to get a shot other than get traded?

Christina Kahrl: Well, between Vlad Guerrero and Chone Figgins, you've got two big-name free agents-to-be on the roster, so as frustrating as it is to have to keep on waiting, it makes sense to wait and see if the market leaves them turning to him for 2010.

joseph (boca): thoughts on chris coghlan?

Christina Kahrl: I sort of touched on this today: he's a nice little player, and put him at second base, and you'd have a nice little placeholder. Play him in left, and you cost yourself runs, because he's just not a good enough hitter to carry at the position.

MikeAlan (N.C.): Who will have the better MLB career, Jeff Clement or Daric Barton? Thanks!

Christina Kahrl: Ah, Chagrin '09, an excellent vintage, best served tepid. I'm more optimistic about Clement at this point given the opportunity he has in that organization, but that could be a grass/greener issue for me.

mhixpgh (Pittsburgh): They still have to pick an All Star representative from the Pirates next year, right?

Christina Kahrl: Oh, come now, it won't be *that* hard. Beyond the token pitcher-y possibilities, if Doumit stayed healthy, he'd be worthy of consideration. I'd also expect that Andrew McCutchen will make it to the ASG on his own merits someday.

Eric (SF): How many wins do the Giants finish with?

Christina Kahrl: Our odds reports seem to be in the mid-80s, with vanilla projected standings landing at 85, and PECOTA-informed standings suggesting 86. I think they can find a better swing man or fifth starter type in a minor deal this month, and push that to 88, but the question is whether or not that's enough to run with the Rockies. I think it will be, but that's because a home schedule-heavy second half for Colorado's likely to take that rotation down a few pegs.

Phil (Silver Spring, MD): Christina - at your last chat I asked if the Nats are the worst run team in baseball, to which you replied "it is starting to look like it". Now, such a short time later, I have to ask if the Mets have stolen that title.

Christina Kahrl: The Mets have squandered their opportunities, certainly, and need to be judged harshly for what might be the game's lower-case-'c' cardinal error. But implicit with any stars-and-scrubs roster design is that you can't afford star-level player injuries, and the Mets had the bad fortune to lose three. Maybe that's on the training staff, but I'd defer to Will Carroll on that. Minaya needs to be judged harshly for his failures in filling in the back end of the roster and apparently blowing off the minor league free agent pool, but I really think the Bernazard kerfuffle is overblown at this point. People didn't go this nuts over Bowden and Rijo, for example, and what's involved there is worse, at least in my opinion.

Ari Collins (Boston): But don't you want a home-heavy second half? I know it might chew up your arms a bit, but home field advantage is still pretty huge, innit?

Christina Kahrl: Traditionally, yes, but winning at home hasn't been a stumbling block to Rockies' success. So much of their early success this season is from their having gotten extraordinary work out of Jason Marquis and Jason Hammel; Hammel's lost steam, but Jorge De La Rosa's rattled off six straight quality starts (getting back up off the floor typing that), and Marquis has a six-pack of his own in his last half-dozen starts. If Marquis doesn't wilt, not only will he have people wondering if putting him in the ASG wasn't earned after all, it'll put the Rockies into October.

Mike (Queens): Rank the order of your favorite late night hosts.

Christina Kahrl: Can anyone do better than Space Ghost? I think not.

Oliver (Cincinnati): How can the Reds lose on the Rolen deal? Their system is full of fantastic arms, they have no financial limitations so they don't need cheap, young talent, and plenty of teams have won without a major league left fielder or a starting shortstop. Umm...I hope...

Christina Kahrl: If Scott Rolen's just this guy (non-Zaphod) who hits singles and needs the park to produce his power, that's not all that special, and people might think they've gotten "SCOTT ROLEN, GREEK GOLDEN GOD," when they've gotten the petering-out tail end of a great player's career. He wasn't walking, he wasn't hitting for much pop, and while you can credit his physical skill in adapting to his newfound limitations (a la Carney Lansford or Brook Jacoby), the Reds aren't getting the guy we all remember in a Phillies uni, or the one who showed up at times with the Cardinals. It's a placeholder pickup that I expect figures to disappoint some people's expectations.

krissbeth (jp, ma): Do you ever face any discrimination from the MLB industry or the press? How do you deal with it?

Christina Kahrl: Not a bit as far as I can tell. Baseball's not just a great game, it's been a great industry to be a part of.

mhixpgh (Pittsburgh): Your thoughts on Doug Glanville's OP-ED in the NYTimes?

Christina Kahrl: That he's right to bring up the fact that the outrage outstrips the scope of the present problem. Railing about the tests before the present-day standards is as much a story about the media today than it is about the standards then. If people are genuinely concerned about PEDs, they should be reassured by the fact that baseball's already addressed the issue. If people are concerned about the record book, I hope they invest the time to be equally concerned about the Amphetamines Era, because what's the point of segregating your witch hunts into bad and less-bad? If people are concerned about PED use today, I wonder why they aren't so interested when it comes to the NFL. As I said, this is about outrage, yes, but to no small extent it's about being visibly seen as being visibly, noisily outraged.

Paul D (Toronto): You don't seem to be as high on the pitchers the Jays received as most - any particular reason why?

Christina Kahrl: Oh, believe me, I like them. I guess I've also learned too many times over that getting worked up about arms is a great way to wind up being serially disappointed, and we're not just talking Fruit Loops.

twinkies25 (MN): Who do you think should be the starter at second base for the Twins? I know it's like choosing the lesser of two evils, but I don't really want to see Nick Punto flail away at pitches no where close to the strike zone. Also, why in the world was Delmon Young a #1 Prospect, and who should be playing left field for us?

Christina Kahrl: I would hope they'd just lock in and place their faith in Casilla. Punto's a better utility infielder than a starter, and I'm reluctant to get worked up in Brendan Harris' behalf when he isn't hitting and concerns over his defense up the middle dog him with a certain persistence. Failing a commitment to Casilla, they should have asked the A's for Adam Kennedy. It's never too late to ask after David Eckstein, for that matter, and he'd go over well in the Twin Cities, methinks.

Rob (Alaska): What's your take on the state of the Angels these days? Should they have made a big push for Halladay or are they better than I think? Hard not to see them coming up short in the playoffs again.

Christina Kahrl: I have to agree... at this point it should be obvious that the clock's ticking on their time atop the division. The Rangers could own the West as handily as they did a decade ago, and if there's a lesson to be taken from that team, it's that there's not a lot of point of earning repeated invitations to the dance if you don't know any steps once you're there. The Angels needed to be more aggressive, because while the Mariners will be retooling, they're not patsies, and the Rangers are building to win division titles by the fistful.

xxx (yyy): As a Rangers fan, who is the best object for my mancrush -- Andrus, Holland, or Feliz?

Christina Kahrl: Feliz seems to be the choice here, and not simply because his relatively recent arrival means that he's the one with an element of remaining mystery.

Jim (Chicago): Do you subscribe to the Sheehan edict to put Alexei in CF while moving Gordon to SS? Doesn't that just create a larger hole at 3B? What roster moves do you think make best use of the White Sox' current collection of talent?

Christina Kahrl: I think I was saying that back in, what, December? January? That said, that was before Fields flopped, and when it made more sense. Failing finding another third baseman, the White Sox really are in the lamentable--but temporary--position of having to retain their faith in Podzilla for the balance of the season. A .350 OBP isn't something they can ditch that easily. Come the winter, they can go shopping, see if they decide to add a fix at third or center, push Becks to short *or* second, and/or perhaps Ramirez to center. Keeping in mind that Beckham was also seen as a future second baseman, while their investing faith in Ramirez at shortstop has rewarded them with the knowledge that he can handle short well enough.

Christopher (Nashville, TN): People don't care about steroids in the NFL for the same reason they don't care about it in professional wrestling. That doesn't mean the people who care about it in baseball are not sincere--it just means they hold the game to a higher standard. I've always been amazed that Baseball Prospectus (of all organizations) always looks to divert the issue to witch hunts and hypocrisy instead of taking seriously that a great many baseball fans think steroids hurts the game of baseball that they love. Regardless of whether you agree, why has it always been so hard not to be an asshole about that? (Not you personally, but other BP writers definitely)

Christina Kahrl: The problem is one of tenses. Steroids *hurt* the game. The industry put together a substantive solution. Page turned = progress. At this point, railing about what happened in 2003 or 2004 is very much about the people who want to be seen as upset about what happened then.

What bugs me about this is the definitive blind eye being turned by a generation of writers of a certain age who like to pretend that steroids alone were bad for the game's records book. I'm not buying that, because I also think amphetamines were bad for the game, and segregation was even worse for the game, and thus the record book has no reason to be hallowed as much as simply acknowledged for what it is: the data compiled that records the action on the field, nothing more. Any venting of moral outrage over the past, recent or less so, doesn't change the fact that we've already seen the industry address and adapt to these issues.

Now, if people want to really dig down into this issue and learn about the culture of PED use and abuse at the time in which the industry did not appropriately protect the game from them, I think the only way we're going to get that insight is by being up front in making sure nobody who comes forward is at any risk for having this used against them, whether in Hall of Fame voting, or getting hired within the industry, or whatever. But I think we all know the likelihood of that happening in this environment. So instead, we get posturing and outrage.

Prince Caspian (Narnia): I have friends who are A)Pirates and B)Nationals fans. What do I say to them to keep them from turning their attention to soccer, Redskins training camp, or liveblogging their attemps to read the entire "Twilight" series?

Christina Kahrl: A) is easy, because there's no time like the present to get aboard and care about the Pirates. Not just because of the deals, but because they're not going cheap on player development in general. Compared to the previous 15 years, there might be no better time to invest faith and hope in Pittsburgh than now. B) on the other hand... where's a Howie Spira when you need him to help get the Lerners out of the way? That's going to be a long, tough road to hoe. Stan Kasten and Mike Rizzo have a big mess to clean up, but we'll see if they have the freedom to make it happen.

Greg (Des Moines): Think Canseco is telling the truth when he says a juicer is already in the Hall of Fame?

Christina Kahrl: My little brother was kidding me at the park a couple of months ago: "The thing about the steroids scandal is, Jose Canseco?--complete vindicated." Given how much the worm's turned on the perception front, do we really want to say he's not telling the truth? If there is one already in, that might be the right sort of tonic to those who on the one hand seem to noisily against certain players for the Hall, but then seem to be notably silent about Fred McGriff. And while it's easy to get overly worked up about slippery slopes, if McGriff's in and Rice is in but Keith Hernandez or Tim Raines isn't, is this really just "the Hall of People Who Didn't Use a Few of Our Least Favorite Substances, but Not All of Them, Insofar as We Know."

ekanenh (Capitol City): I think one hoes a "row."

Christina Kahrl: Too true, but chat's a live-fire exercise.

Erich von Manstein (Sevastapol): Isn't Steve Stone the bee's knees? I love the guy. He and Hawk are a lot of fun. Are you a Sox fan now?

Christina Kahrl: Stone's been the best color man in baseball for decades; the way he was treated by WGN after how he'd helped Harry Caray along to the very end remains a disgrace. That we were ever robbed of having him in the booth was just bad news. That said, Hawk Harrelson remains Hawk Harrelson, the best Hawk Harrelson in baseball for decades; no amount of color-commentating goodness can change that, let alone turn me into a Sox fan. ;)

Phil (Louisville): Please, for the love of all things holy...tell me this is the end of the road for the most overrated manager in baseball...Dusty Baker.

Christina Kahrl: And here I was thinking you were talking about Joe Torre, right up until the end.

Charles (Detroit): Would this offseason be a good time for the Reds to trade Brandon Phillips, what with Todd Frazier coming down the line and their whole payroll going to about four players? It seems like they could get something real pretty in return.

Christina Kahrl: It's worth considering, because after Mark DeRosa and Orlando Hudson in the free-agent pool, you've got Placido Polanco. The problem will be Phillips' back-loaded contract and whether the Reds will eat any of it, because otherwise the number of teams willing to trade for a guy due to make $11 million in 2011 are few and far between.

achaik (me): There is a lot of talk about the Rays dealing Carl Crawford in the offseason and plugging in Desmond Jennings for him next season. Shouldn't the answer be keep Crawford, change the Gabe/Gabe platoon in right to all Desmond all the time, and go to war against the Yankees/Sox with the best players they already have at hand?

Christina Kahrl: I'd think so, because it isn't like the Rays have obvious needs beyond (perhaps) a ready-now alternative behind the plate. That said, the Rays are smart enough to check out the market and see what they might be able to get for almost anybody or anything.

BridgeportJoe (36th and Lowe): Gordon Beckham -- great player, or greatest player ever?

Christina Kahrl: Becks coulda been something, if only he hadn'a married Posh Spice. Not Franz Beckenbauer, but sump'n special... Oh, *Gordon*? Yeah, he's pretty good.

hokie94 (Howard OH): I seem to recall JP taking a lot of heat for the Troy Glaus- Scott Rolen trade....that one doesn't look so bad now does it?

Christina Kahrl: I'm not sure it turned out all that well, but as I've said, a lot depends on the pitching. Rolen didn't propel the Jays anywhere in particular, Glaus outplayed him in 2008, and I don't really think Encarnacion takes you anywhere in particular as much as he holds the job for as long as you control the rights to him. It's sort of like getting worked up over Jan Zizka's career: injury-plagued transient success doesn't negate a certain ephemerality.

Dave (Chicago): Last time I asked about Adrian Cardenas and you weren't too high on him. Now you're skeptical about Chris Carter. Are there any position players in the A's minors you are excited about?

Christina Kahrl: From High-A and above, I'm hopeful about Brett Wallace, I like Jemile Weeks and Corey Brown, and I haven't given up on Cunningham or Buck. Josh Horton will be in the shortstop picture at some point, which is worth remembering.

strupp (Madison): The post Nick Johnnson playoff bump for the Marlins is interesting... but does it go down the same degree if/when he gets hurt again?

Christina Kahrl: Only if they go back to Emilio Bonifacio as an everyday player, but at this rate, he's about to become his own entry into a latter-day edition of Mackay's classic, "Extraordinary Popular Delusions and the Madness of Crowds."

Brent (Raleigh): How would you describe Chad Billingsley's body type? He seems to have the face of a guy who weighs 175 lbs, but then he has this huge butt, hips, and legs that makes it appear that he has a size 40 waist. Is it fair to describe him as "pear" shaped? "Russian nesting doll" shaped? What do you think?

Christina Kahrl: Don't look at me, here in Chicago we've got the Human Barrel closing games for the White Sox, and recent struggles aside, he's gotten by more than a bit.

Dennis (California): Who do you think will be better over the next five years: Johnny Cueto or Chris Volstad?

Christina Kahrl: Volstad, but a lot of it has to do with the managers and especially the parks involved.

Marco (San Diego): Christina, Does Garret Jones project more as a tweener, solid regular, or somewhere in between? Thanks.

Christina Kahrl: As much as I'd like for him to be, say, the new Paul Sorrento, a guy who makes it and sticks at first base after getting up to The Show a bit late, I'm going to wait and see where he's at come month's end before jumping on the bandwagon.

buffum (Austin TX): Is Lou Marson highly-regarded enough to be flipped in 2010 when Carlos Santana is ready? I mean, there's no roster on Earth that needs this many catchers. I assume that was part of the thought process, and not that Marson is really going to keep Santana from getting the starting gig when he's ready ... please?

Christina Kahrl: Gads, I hope so. I sort of don't understand how readily it seemed that so many people inside the media or outside of it seemed to overlook that Marson's just not even close to being their best option when it comes to nominating a catcher of the future. It's sort of like preferring Andy Allanson to Sandy Alomar Jr. because he started his career 10-for-20, donchaknow. (A few decades ago, I knew such people.)

paulbellows (Calgary): I still remember when Ron Coomer was the Twins best player so why I am disappointed that they win 83 games every year?

Christina Kahrl: I blame the ghost of Cal Griffith. Maybe the organization has its own line of secret in-house successories, say, plaques that say "Timidly Strive for Complete Adequacy!"

Jake (Aberdeen): What is Nolan Reimold's role on the next Orioles dynasty?

Christina Kahrl: Worst regular in the lineup? That's not entirely fair, given that I like him more than that, but ideally, they figure out what they're going to do at first base and shortstop and give that pitching staff of 2012 a ton of run support.

Scott (NYC): Did the Nationals get a decent return for Nick Johnson?

Christina Kahrl: I'll get into it in more detail when I go back to TA after finishing this chat--speaking of which, let's do a few lightning-round questions to wrap up--but Thompson's a highly-regarded former first-rounder, but he's also something of a disappointment. I don't think he'll be the next Doug Davis, but for two months of Nick Johnson, as fragile as Johnson's been, I don't think you could expect a full horn of plenty.

TGisriel (Baltimore): Is Matusz ready,or should he have logged some time in AAA?

Christina Kahrl: Ready as he needs to be. I don't think he's being rushed all that much; Triple-A is a holding tank, Double-A's the level at which prospects make their bones.

Kevin (Chicago): Do you think Tom Gorzelanny has a chance to succeed with the Cubs?

Christina Kahrl: Yes. All sorts of people can use a change of scenery, and if all they want is for him to succeed in relief, he can do that. The question is, could he return to his former promise as a starter, and there, it'll be interesting to see. Things turned out much better with Ryan Dempster than almost anybody expected, after all.

mhixpgh (Pittsburgh): Almost three hours.....thanks for the lengthy chat! Your best guess at when the Pirates will next have a winning season?

Christina Kahrl: 2012, but it'll be 82 or 83 wins.

FrankieFan (Denver): What is Franklin Morales' ultimate ceiling and role?

Christina Kahrl: Quality starting pitcher.

Dr. Wayne Pitcher (Castro Valley, CA): I'm not sure if my question got left off the pre-chat queue, so I'll ask again (paraphrased): If flags fly forever, why are GMs reluctant to part with prospects in return for a difference-maker? As a Red Sox fan I'm perfectly fine with trading Hanley Ramirez, superstar, for Josh Beckett, star, plus a World Series title. I know people still remember Bagwell for Larry Andersen, but it seems like giving up a top prospect for someone like Roy Halladay would be worth it.

Christina Kahrl: I don't disagree, but I think the market's over-corrected as a result of finance-minded conservatism.

rowenbell (Chicago): 2010 NL Cy Young Ballot: 1) Lincecum 2) Gallardo 3) Lee. Reasonable?

Christina Kahrl: Yes, and let me guess, Rowen, you have all three on your Strat team, right?

Dave (Chicago): Corey Brown or Grant Desme?

Christina Kahrl: Brown.

Charlie (Bethesda): Best Nats starting pitcher in 2010 not named Strasburg, Lannan or Zimmermann?

Christina Kahrl: Hrm... interesting, but why not: Balester.

strupp (Madison): Can the Orioles have a dynasty by finishing 4th in their division each of hte next 5-10 years, or do they have to mix one or two 3rd place finishes in there?

Christina Kahrl: "We put Toronto on the bottom!" "Fire up the parade!"

jbuofm (Peoria): Worse contract- Soriano or Zito?

Christina Kahrl: It's beginning to look like an actually debatable question much earlier than expected, isn't it? I'll take Soriano, if only because I think Zito might at least take his turns and not always be a double entendre as a "rotation anchor."

Goose (Chicago): If MLB could go back in time, which city would not have gotten an MLB franchise? I say Washington, Baltimore is way too close.

Christina Kahrl: Ever, though? Propinquity isn't the issue as much as population density. Milwaukee's on the list if we're talking about the present, Kansas City belongs on the list at various points in big-league history, and the question over whether or not Miami ever really made sense seems to need asking over and over again.

dantroy (davis): Is Omar Minaya still the gm in 2010?

Christina Kahrl: During which months?

joe lefko (nj): please send this memo out to bp staff: "jbuofm (Peoria)" asks about soriano/zito's contracts EVERY single chat. Don't answer him, BP readers are growing very tired of it.

Christina Kahrl: To: BP
From: Christina
IN RE: Everybody got that, folks?

dantroy (davis): Thoughts on Drew Stubbs?

Christina Kahrl: No time like the present. Which I said a week or two ago as well, but we're all still waiting.

strupp (Madison): Wow... just because they've had bad manaagement doesn't mean a city like Milwaukee or KC doesn't deserve a baseball team... Shouldn't the question ALWAYS be how do we expand this league to make it work (Brooklyn and a city to be named later)

Christina Kahrl: I don't disagree. I'd rather have us at 32 (Brooklyn and somewhere) too, but I was just talking about populations, not management teams or franchise histories. That said, for as much prattling about how Denver would be too small to support a team, there is obviously more to it than just that.

mymrbig (New Orleans): Think any big names like Bedard or Beltre get moved in August, or do you think it will be limited to smaller pieces?

Christina Kahrl: I'm anticipating it remains limited; we had an extraordinary deadline, so I doubt something new and huge happens.

Charlie (Bethesda): Interested in your take on this: Steven Goldman basically said that Montero could have a chance to prove himself at the major league level in Sept, and futher in 2010 spring training. If he does it, leave him on the roster. Unless the Yankees are willing to start him 4-5 days a week, isn't this a bad idea for a 20 year old?

Christina Kahrl: Timing is everything: Montero's broken finger (which Will reported this AM in UTK, IIRC) will keep him out until September, and even were he healthy by some point in September, I very seriously doubt the Yankees will bring him up in such a circumstance when there's a division to be won.

Bill (New Mexico): What's the difference between Brett Wallace and Daric Barton?

Christina Kahrl: The base they're parked at next season.

shamah (NYC): AL MVP: Looks like Mauer, but does Jeter get down-ballot consideration?

Christina Kahrl: Perhaps perfunctorily, yes; I'll be interested to see if he gets more support than Teixeira.

Christina Kahrl: And so, it's time to pull the plug on this joint, walkabout with the dingo, and then return to some TA chattery. I cannot thank everyone enough for the time taken to drop by this afternoon, and until the next time, see you 'round.

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