Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Sentinal Sitdown - Rounders31

In season three the Colorado Spruce won the World Series and finished with a record of 104-58. The team that won the World Series that year was an experienced team with aging stars. Before Rounders31 took over the Colorado franchise in year 4 the team was swamped with overpaid, overrated players. As of today the Colorado Bombers under the leadership of Rounders31 are 107-131. The team had a respectable year in season 4 finishing in third place with an 83-79 record. Unfortunately for Colorado they happened to be in the tough AL West and didn’t make the playoffs. This year has clearly been a rebuilding year for the Bombers. As of right now they sit dead last in one of the tougher divisions in the league. They are currently the only team in the AL West to be under 500. The Bombers have some legit talent and some rising stars. Jermaine Good is a switch hitting 24 year old SS who will be a star if he isn’t already. The Bombers also have their future set in the outfield with both Spike DeJean and Ryan Snyder. DeJean 24 and Snyder 25 appear to have the potential to be full time contributors to the Bombers for years to come. DeJean is currently on the 60 Day DL and is lost for the season as he herniated a disk in his neck during spring training. Rounders31 was expecting big things from DeJean who in his 2 full seasons has hit 318. with 71 HR’s and 241 RBI’s. They desperately miss his bat. However the future is still bright as Good and Snyder are having solid seasons. Snyder is hitting 311. with 6 HR’s and 41 RBI’s. Good on the other hand isn’t only having an all star season but an MVP caliber season. Good is hitting 320. with 34 HR’s and 83 RBI’s. That puts him third in the A.L. in HR’s and 19th in batting average. Hitting isn’t the problem in Colorado as they are currently 3rd in the ML in average, 7th in runs scored and 14th in HR’s. Taking into account that the ball flies in Colorado making it a hitter friendly park they still have a lot of hitting talent. However where the team lacks consistency is in the pitching staff. Colorado is 31st in the ML in team ERA, the only team worse is that poor excuse for a team in Pittsburgh. However all that could be changed in no time. Taking into account the young talent in Colorado like Good, DeJean and Snyder and the fact that 44.7 million dollars will be coming off the books in Colorado the future looks brighter than ever. Today we are fortunate to get the chance to interview Rounders 31.

Q. Hey how are you doing today? And how are you enjoying the season so far?
A. Enjoying the first of 2 days away from work so I'm doing great. I'm having a blast this season. Regardless of what my record is I love playing this game.

Q. First question right off the bat, how many poor decisions do you think the G.M. before you made?
A. I'm not one to go out and put another owner down because of what they did or didn't do. There were a couple of moves I porbably wouldn't have done myself, but I wasn't running the team then. That owner ran the team the way he saw fit and I'm sure if I ever give up this team the next owner won't agree with everything I've done.

Q. If there was one poor contract you could have got out of when you first took over who would it have been and why?
A. Honestly, I wasn't upset about any of the contracts that I took over. I mean I was taking over a team that had just won the championship so what was there not to like?

Q. You have some very good young talent on your roster. As pointed out in the article Jermaine Good, Ryan Snyder and Spike DeJean could all be all star’s for years to come in Colorado, how excited are you about their potential?
A. I am extremely excited. I have those 3 to build around plus a couple of other guys in my system that I feel are going to be really good. Its going to be awesome watching these guys develop and get even better.

Q. Colorado is clearly a hitter friendly park. Do you ever take that into account when making any kind of roster moves?
A. I try to take that into account when it comes to my pitching staff. Trying to avoid pitchers that have a high flyball ratio. I feel that most hitters will do fairly well in this park so I'm not as picky when it comes to that part.

Q. Your pitching staff has been disappointing to say the least, 31st in team ERA this year. Any regrets moving Vicente Lopez earlier in the year?
A. Not at all, which you may or may not believe. When I traded Lopez I also thought I a deal in place to move David Lee as well, which didn't pan out. I had made the choice that this was the best time to get prospects for those guys and kind of start over as far as my pitching staff was concerned. Now I realize that I didn't get all prospects in the deal for Lopez, but I did get my future closer (hopefully) and Green which ended up being huge since DeJean went down for the season.

Q. Did you think your staff was going to be your achilles heel this season?
A. I wouldn't say my achillies heel, but I wasn't expecting huge things out of them. I have a couple guys who I thought would be performing better than they are right now. I wasn't going into this season expecting to compete for a playoff spot.

Q. You also brought in another pitcher after the beginning of the season. You dealt Darryl Shea to Florida for Rob Ross. How would you assess Ross’ performance thus far?
A. He would be on the top of my list as far as not getting what I thought I'd be getting out of him right now. He does seem to be getting a little bit better though. Burns, which was the other part of that deal, has played very well for me.

Q. My last question is my most important. At the end of the year you will have 44.7 Million dollars coming off of your budget in expiring contracts, all of which are pitchers. What are you going to do with all of that money?
A. That is the ultimate question for me. No final decisions have been made, but it will most likely go into rebuilding my staff. Depending upon how certain guys in my minors perform this year it may all go towards pitching either via trade or free agency. I'll at least be looking to add one huge superstar if possible.

Q. Sorry this is actually my last official question. Who do you think wins it all this year?
A. I'm going to say that we'll have a repeat winner this year. I think Nashville's pitchers are too good to keep going they way that they are.

Q. Whats your name - Joe
Q. How old are you - 31
Q. Fav ML team - This actually isn't an easy answer for me. I just love baseball so much that I've never really had a favorite. I've had teams that I've liked, but I guess if I had to pick one I'll go with the Cardinals since they are the home team for me.
Q. Fav all time player - Mike Piazza
Q. Do you have a franchise model - Always have fun cause when it comes down to it we're all just playing a game