– Mark Teahen is on the DL
– Lillibridge’s infield experience has been a lot of big errors, he should not be playing the infield
– He’s very fast, and his UZR is probably catapulted by a couple really nice Fuld-esque diving plays in RF this season that come to mind
– All his homeruns have come on fastballs right down the middle.
I hate Lillibridge, he’s been absolutely horrible until this season and I’ve always wanted him to be released. Based on his previous body of work, I still haven’t seen enough this year to believe that he’s figured it out.
All of that being said, I HOPE he’s somehow figured it out, because Juan Pierre has no business on a baseball field anymore. If he continues to hit well, it would be great to let Pierre walk after this season and use Lillibridge, but it’s more likely that Lilli gets exposed with regular playing time.
Coupla things: they’ve found out that Lillibridge is more of an outfielder than an infielder. Third base is Morel’s job unless they absolutely need to put a bat there–Teahen showed he is an awful thirdbaseman, so that platoon will not work.
The Pierre platoon would make more sense, but Pierre has actually hit pretty well in May (his fielding and baserunning have been atrocious).
Finally, Lillibridge is a little guy, but at least one local commentator claims, pound-for-pound, he’s the strongest guy on the club. Ozzie criticized him a lot the last couple years for always swinging for the fences, and sent him down for that reason. Looks like they don’t mind, now that there are results.
All that said, if he becomes an everyday player, he’ll be exposed . . .
But then you miss the amazing catch phrases, like his newest one for Konerko: “And that’s how you get a 16,000 s.f. house in Scottsdale!” Said it twice last night (after Paulie’s RBI single and 2R HR).
But the book is not closed on Morel, right? I mean, he has little enough upside that they may not stick with him when they have Teahen, right? I don’t see that third base situation as settled in any way.
They didn’t expect Morel to hit much, but he’s done worse than thought, and when everyone else but Konerko had such a horrible start, Morel’s hold on the position was thrown into question. He’s started to hit more, though, as has the team, so Morel may be set now (unless Ken Williams decides this is the one spot he can manage to upgrade).
Teahen has been terrible at the position, though. He’s not a third-baseman at all. All you need to know is that they handed him the position last year, along with an unnecessary, overgenerous extension, and yet still took the spot away this year for a light-hitting prospect.
I couldn’t agree more. He had 300 PA in his career and 3 HR until this year. He is the flavor of the month based on 77 PA in 2011. Why should I believe this is the real Lillibridge and not the guy who used to make me change the channel every time he came up to bat? I hope he’s becoming a dependable reserve and I can’t wait for Juan Pierre to be gone but I think a full time gig will expose him.
Lillibridge isn’t swinging for the fences like he used to, he’s gets ahold of the ball once and awhile but he has really improved his intelligence at the plate. He is not as good as he looks right now, but last year he started showing some big improvement, so this isn’t all that surprising. He is also most likely at his physical peak right now.
Comment by Steve from Rockford — June 3, 2011 @ 11:48 am
Yes, the speed will help him in center. He has good range overall; both top speed and acceleration. My point wasn’t that he can’t play OF, in fact, I’d call him above average. I just wanted to say that I think the +30 UZR is way high, likely affected by a few outstanding plays over a very small sample. He’s good, not elite.
His range would help him in the infield too, but he has shown no sign of being able to handle the glove there whatsoever. Certainly, he could improve with practice, but he’s looked very bad so far and I wouldn’t put him there if it could be avoided.
Homeruns are indeed homeruns regardless of the pitch, but I think he’s getting meatballs because he’s been bad historically. Now that he;s shown he can hammer fastballs, I think he;s going to start seeing some tougher pitches as pitchers no longer think they can just blow it by him.
Let me be clear: I hope he’s figured it out. I’m rooting for him no matter how many boneheaded plays he’s made in the past. I just think it’s way early to call him the next Zobrist. Platooner with Pierre? Perhaps, although Ozzie would never do it. Platooner with Teahen? That would imply he’d play the infield, and I think that’s less of a good idea.