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Manny's defense at SS


Frobby

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Manny is an outstanding ss, I can tell that with my eyes. Where does he want to play? Are we going to make an all out effort to sign him? If so, it's time to make that commitment, even if hardy at ss makes us slightly better

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It is a loaded word, and it's a good question.

I think that talent, when used in regard to athletics, is a general reference to physical ability.

That is why a player is sometimes referred to as "Great, even though he has modest talent" and/or "Great, even though not as talented as (fill in the blank player.)"

Again, this is speaking in terms of athletics/sports. In other area of life/professions in which mental and emotional strengths and weaknesses are taken into account, then it would be different.

Baseball is ninety percent mental and the other half is physical. Yogi Berra :P
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It is a loaded word, and it's a good question.

I think that talent, when used in regard to athletics, is a general reference to physical ability.

That is why a player is sometimes referred to as "Great, even though he has modest talent" and/or "Great, even though not as talented as (fill in the blank player.)"

Again, this is speaking in terms of athletics/sports. In other area of life/professions in which mental and emotional strengths and weaknesses are taken into account, then it would be different.

Well, I could argue that Jim Palmer's ability to remember every pitch he ever threw and the outcome is an innate talent that gave him an advantage on the field over the average pitcher who can't remember what he ate for breakfast. Most people just don't have that ability no matter how hard they might try. But, it's all how one wants to define it. I agree with you that in sports, people are usually talking about raw physical ability.

But also, people make assumptions about what is natural ability versus what is the product of hard work, and they are not always correct. I remember that in Roger Kahn's The Boys of Summer, he described a player on the Dodgers who had this beautiful effortless swing that produced a lot of power. Years later, he visited that player, who took him to his basement, where he used to swing a sledgehammer 1,000 times a night in the winter. So much for effortless!

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It's all in how you want to define it. Let's say that three years from now, Manny has learned how to concentrate on the field 100% of the time, and also has learned through experience how to best make certain plays. Is he more talented than he was before?

By the same token, let's say that due to age Hardy is a half-step slower now than when he first joined the Orioles. Is he less talented than he was?

On the other hand, if Manny doesn't work out next winter, and is a half-step slower because of it, is he less talented than before?

Is Manny more talented than he was in 2012, because he's fully developed and is stronger? Or is talent measured by innate potential?

People can get really hung up on definitional stuff like this. All I know is, I do not think Manny is yet quite as good as shortstop as Hardy is and has been. But he has the potential to be a very good SS (I'd say he is already very good and will get better with experience), and eventually Hardy will decline to the point where Manny is better. Hopefully that point is still two years away. In the meantime, I love having Hardy at SS and Manny at 3B.

I think Manny will be a very good SS but he won't win a platinum glove at that position.
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Well, I could argue that Jim Palmer's ability to remember every pitch he ever threw and the outcome is an innate talent that gave him an advantage on the field over the average pitcher who can't remember what he ate for breakfast. Most people just don't have that ability no matter how hard they might try. But, it's all how one wants to define it. I agree with you that in sports, people are usually talking about raw physical ability.

But also, people make assumptions about what is natural ability versus what is the product of hard work, and they are not always correct. I remember that in Roger Kahn's The Boys of Summer, he described a player on the Dodgers who had this beautiful effortless swing that produced a lot of power. Years later, he visited that player, who took him to his basement, where he used to swing a sledgehammer 1,000 times a night in the winter. So much for effortless!

That's a good story, and I agree about the assumptions that people often make (without having all of the information.)

The broadcasters were not necessarily wrong in describing that player's swing as "effortless." If he was indeed swinging a sledgehammer 1,000 times a day in the wintertime, then he would have so much upper-body strength that his swing would subsequently become effortless ...... they just didn't fill in the blanks as to WHY his swing was so effortless.

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Manny made a rather foolish error tonight when he fielded a ball up the middle on the OF grass, slipped while getting ready to throw, double-clutched but threw anyway. Davis couldn't handle the hop and the leadoff hitter ended up on 2B. No way Hardy makes that mistake.

General observation -- Manny plays a very deep SS, often taking grounders on the OF grass when almost any other SS would take it on the dirt. I guess it gives him more time to react and his arm is strong enough to throw from there, but it also creates issues with footing and the potential for odd hops on balls that hit the lip or the grass.

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Manny made a rather foolish error tonight when he fielded a ball up the middle on the OF grass, slipped while getting ready to throw, double-clutched but threw anyway. Davis couldn't handle the hop and the leadoff hitter ended up on 2B. No way Hardy makes that mistake.

General observation -- Manny plays a very deep SS, often taking grounders on the OF grass when almost any other SS would take it on the dirt. I guess it gives him more time to react and his arm is strong enough to throw from there, but it also creates issues with footing and the potential for odd hops on balls that hit the lip or the grass.

Manny has a lot to learn at the position. The next ball have been a DP and we might have gotten out of the inning without giving up runs.
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Manny made a rather foolish error tonight when he fielded a ball up the middle on the OF grass, slipped while getting ready to throw, double-clutched but threw anyway. Davis couldn't handle the hop and the leadoff hitter ended up on 2B. No way Hardy makes that mistake.

General observation -- Manny plays a very deep SS, often taking grounders on the OF grass when almost any other SS would take it on the dirt. I guess it gives him more time to react and his arm is strong enough to throw from there, but it also creates issues with footing and the potential for odd hops on balls that hit the lip or the grass.

He also got very deep on a fly ball, of which, the COF could have handled.

As much as I love Cal as my all-time fav SS, he wouldn't have been able to get that deep.

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Manny has a lot to learn at the position. The next ball have been a DP and we might have gotten out of the inning without giving up runs.

Yes, you go for it with two outs, but with nobody out you do not want to put the tying run in scoring position. Can't fault Manny for slipping on a tough play, but he needs to eat that one. But, these things happen when you are playing the position for the first time in 4 years.

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