Saturday, July 30, 2005

Paul Baits Hook, Sim Strikes

Selflessness personified.


A Padres post from Paul? Things really ARE bad in Trolleywreckville ;-) Not that they are particularly dandy in Friarland these days.

Phil Nevin and selfless are two words that should never be uttered within 235 seconds of one another. Does not compute, as they say.

The attempted trade of Nevin to Baltimore last week (and subsequent successful trade of him to Texas this evening) is about three things:

1. More ABs for the X Man (of X Man Cometh Fame)

2. Nevin's contract. Hi-dollar low-production and a comprehensive no-trade clause which vests at the conclusion of this season makes him more than unattractive. Despite limited NTC powers (8 teams) SD was unsuccessful in trading him three times in three years due to Nevin-obstinence. Now he is on the verge of global no-trade powers. Why Texas, my second favorite team (which is desperate for pitching) would take on this kind of player and contract boggles, to say the least.

3. Nevin's personality. As a Padres fan, I can think of only one other time when I despised one of our players: the first spring training of Rickey Henderson's career in SD (but like Deion Sanders, I quickly learned that the dude is fantastic as long as he's on your side). Nevin is the quintessential pea-brain, redneck, prima-donna who couches everything in "winning championships" and "doing anything for the team," but whose actions are about Phil, Phil and Phil in that order. The man could not shut his pie-hole. Whether it was complaining about PETCO Park's dimensions, criticizing the minor league staff's handling of pitchers, Ryan Klesko's play, Bruce Bochy's lineups, the labor negotiations, the WTO, Mystic River, etc. Phil never met a topic he wouldn't express opinions on, no matter how ill-informed and inappropriate commentary might have been.

Nevin was never the kind of ballplayer I like: well-rounded with skills in all facets of the game combined with a "shut-up and play ball" mentality. During his tenure in San Diego, Nevin showed that he couldn't adequately man a defensive position and displayed no speed. He was a strikeout machine that never corrected a proclivity for the low and away pitch with runners in scoring position. Consequently, watching off-balance swings in which it appeared as though Nevin were trying to hit a golf ball became the frustrating norm in those situations.

Needless to say, in my opinion, Phil Nevin will not be missed in San Diego. As much as the Friars need more offense, the subtraction of Nevin can mean nothing but better times ahead for the Friars. They traded him for Chan Ho Park. If Park never throws a pitch in San Diego, this is a watershed deal.

Ding dong, the witch is dead.

Now, if they could only do something about Ryan Klesko, the new Public Enemy #1....

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