01 April 2005

Will Carroll Answers, Goin' To See the Sea Dogs...

As I'd mentioned earlier, Will Carrol was set to answer some questions over at Firebrand of the AL. I submitted a couple of questions, both of which Will graciously answered in the session posted yesterday.

Last year David Ortiz sustained a shoulder injury sliding into home- something we’ve since heard he took cortisone shots for, skipped the Dominican League World Series for, and had to temper his offseason training for. Seeing as Ortiz has been had injury issues in his career with Minnesota, and he’s been healthy thus far in Boston, how would you rate his risk of injury for 2005? How serious do you take that shoulder issue to have been? -Tim Rogan

WILL CARROLL: See The Red Sox Team Health Report.

From the extremely interesting Red Sox Team Health Report, on David Ortiz:

DH David Ortiz: If Ortiz can have all the October heroics that he had with a bad shoulder, he's scary good when healthy. I'm not convinced the problem is serious and he worked on a rehab program this off-season.

My next question was about Wade Miller's shoulder:

I’ve read your being very skeptical of both Wade Miller’s recent optimism regarding his health and the notion that he could be back as early as May. What kind of season do you project for him health-wise (and at the same time, productivity-wise) in 2005? How does his shoulder injury compare to Pedro Martinez’s 2001 injury- an injury from which he managed to return the next season (2002) incredibly effectively- and can they be measured with any similarity? - Tim Rogan

WILL CARROLL: They are similar, though we don’t really know exactly what was wrong with Pedro’s shoulders. There’s too much noise. Miller will be handled conservatively and, barring serious injury to one of the main starters, there’s no value in rushing him. Sure, he could pitch in May, but knowing what we know about the situation, that’s not the optimal usage. Thinking of Miller as a mid-season acquisition is the best thing. He’ll fit in the rotation, not be asked to be the savior, but just a fresh, effective back of rotation starter. With those expectations, what’s the downside and what’s the rush?

This is close to what I'd expected regarding Miller. The more unrealistic you make his return date (and by "unrealistic" I can mean "early"), the less you're likely to get out of him. I've said it here before, but I'd even err on waiting a few weeks longer than usual, just for the sake of safety. Hopefully we see a completely healthy Wade Miller in late June- early July that stays effective through the playoffs. Caution seems to be the best option here.

Since no fewer than 9 of SoxProspects' top 24 Red Sox minor leaguers will be spending their days in AA Portland this coming year (Hanley Ramirez, Dustin Pedroia, Brandon Moss, Jon Papelbon, Jon Lester, Manny Delcarmen, Juan Cedeno, David Murphy, Jeremey West, Stefan Bailie), I really had to get some tickets to see them at least once. Erin lives up near Binghamton, home of fellow Eastern Leaguers the Binghamton Mets. So, I got four 5th row on-deck circle seats for an August game when Portland's in town. Erin says it's a fun place to see a game, and I'm dying to check out those guys- Hanley, Pedroia and Moss in particular. Hopefully we luck out and get Lester or Papelbon starting (or knuckleballer Charlie Zink, who will be in the Sea Dogs' rotation). Looking forward to it- the only minor league ball I had near me in CT was the Bridgeport Bluefish of the Independent League, and funny as it was seeing Jose "No Way" Offerman playing there, it's not the same without affiliation.

I'm gonna try to get to some Cyclones games too- that park is beautiful.

No one's arguing that Steve Carell isn't insanely funny- no doubt about that. But the mere idea of a remake of The Office struck a poor chord with me simply because it would result in a re-casting (obviously) with American actors, and in so doing, would be measured against those original, perfect performances.

So yea, Steve Carell is great as the boss in the new Office series, two episodes in. The best part is, he's not trying to imitate Gervais's David Brent- he's a new character. So that's good. And the "Tim" character from the British original (now "Jim") is likable and sweet, but in his own way. They haven't aped too many story lines, and when they do they make it their own. Fortunately as well, when they American-ized the show, they didn't... well, American-ize it. I was convinced they'd load the show down with modern US culture references in order to set it apart, and thankfully they've thus far avoided it.

And so while the show is, in parts, very good (though the "diversity" episode was a bit over-the-top) it has to be held up to the original, and that's a losing battle. For instance, the character originally in the British version- Gareth- is now known as Dwight, played by Rainn Wilson. Where Gareth was cocky but very unsure of himself in private, Dwight is just cocky. Where Gareth (played by Mackenzie Crook) was a bundle of nerves, odd predilections and false bravado that he never wanted to back up, "Dwight" is just a loud, cocky asshole. Standing alone, the new show is good- again, it's only been two episodes- but unfortunately, I can't let it stand alone when I watch it. Steve Carell is someone it would take a brilliant characterization to overshadow- and he picked a role, unfortunately, where that seems to be the case. It would never be easy playing David Brent (here as Michael Scott) after Ricky Gervais.

Anyway, the lady-friend and I are definitely going to see Sin City tonight. Looks really fucking cool- will post about it later. Also, yea, I'm still going to do the DVD commentaries post at some point, and before Sunday I'm going to post my 2005 season predictions with awards guesses, stat projections... yada yada yada.

Before I sign off though, I want to pray to God for a second.

In the name of the Father, Son, and Pedro Martinez...

I am praying to you right now, via my blog Bullshit Memorial Stadium,
That tonight, in the 730 showing of Sin City, that one of the film's
Stars- Jessica Alba- will get naked.
Now, I'll accept a naked heiney, but I'd prefer to see her boobs.
Anything you can do to ensure that happening, I'd appreciate it.
If you don't get that done for me, even if the movie is excellent, you're kind of a douche.
I mean, come on, she plays a stripper.

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