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Blog Entry

Juan Pierre Or Manny Ramirez?

Posted on: May 22, 2009 8:15 pm
Edited on: May 22, 2009 8:25 pm
 
All over the Dodgers Board I am hearing how they can't wait until Manny comes back and how they hope they can get a solid arm for Juan Pierre.

Well I'm here to open a few eyes to just how well Juan Pierre is doing.

In 84 at bats this year Juan Pierre is batting .405 with 0 homers, 12 RBI's, 19 Runs, and 7 stolen bases. Manny Ramirez in 92 at bats this year is batting .348 with 6 homers, 20 RBI, 22 Runs, and 0 stolen bases. So Manny is a little bit more productive in this category but considering Juan Pierre came into the season with splinters on his back-side from sitting on the bench so long, not to mention the huge chip on his shoulder when he had to come in to "fill manny's shoes", plus he's generally a lead-off hitter or hitting 9th like he did a few times to start for Joe Torre, it makes his play as impressive as it is surprising. It's amazing how Juan Pierre is able to bat just as well as Manny for about half the cost! Baseball is a game of streaks but Juan has been every bit as good as Manny so far with near the same amount of playing time.

Economically it's a smart move to keep Juan and possibly try to deal Manny. Who knows if anyone would even consider it with his use of banned substances, most teams don't want that kind of image in their clubhouse, or that kind of attention but someone has got to be desperate for a hitter. Again, baseball is a game of streaks and perhaps Juan will only be hot for this time and revert to his previous O.K. baseball, but he has really impressed me and I really find it hard to part ways with him. He is a great teammate and never once whined about not getting playing time when he thought he was going to be a starter when he originally signed.

In terms of baserunning and fielding it's a smart move. Juan Pierre has scored a lot of 1st inning, and late game runs with his contact hitting and baserunning, just the other day I saw him draw a walk to lead-off the game, follow that up with a Furcal single and he easily goes 1st to 3rd and eventually scores. That's the kind of lead-off production we've been needing since Furcal has been struggling to start off the season. It's always easy for the O-Dawg to get a hit when he can relax with 0 outs and men on 1st and 3rd. When fielding you never have to worry about Juan dropping routine balls like Manny would ever so often, he might even dish out an amazing play or two on top of it.

I want to praise Orlando Hudson and get off topic for a bit because he still hasn't let up, to start the season I thought he was just benefiting from Manny but since Manny was suspended he is still hitting as great as he was. With how bad Ethier has been playing as of late it's clear that pitchers don't need to throw anything to him, so it seems to me Orlando is a real threat with the bat in his hands, and is still 2nd in the N.L. in hits, keep up the good work O-Dawg.

In terms of image it would be a smart move to keep Pierre. With the steroid label forever imprinted on Manny Ramirez's forehead it's hard not to think of the steroids everytime he gets a hit in the future, maybe some people don't believe his legacy is tainted but to me, the player himself is tainted. Juan Pierre is probably the opposite of a person who uses steroids, he works hard and doesn't focus on hitting the ball hard but hitting the ball to get a hit and help the team win, not just get a paycheck.

If not for any of the reasons above then it would be a good move to try to ship Manny instead of Juan because of Manny's history. He's known to take teams to win it all and he's known as one of the best hitters of all time (or was) so wouldn't it be better to move a big name like Manny to get a big name pitcher instead of trading Juan Pierre for a decent pitcher? Even if Juan Pierre doesn't stay this hot, would we need Manny's bat if we had a more well-rounded pitching staff? Lets not forget the '03 season when Juan helped his team to win the world series with a .305 batting average, 204 hits, 64 stolen bases, and 41 RBI's for anyone who is saying "well we could use Manny for that same history".

I am not saying Juan Pierre will end up being better than Man-Ram by season's end, there's too much baseball left to be played for me to make that particular prediction but keep your mind open to possibility instead of saying you should trade Juan as soon as Manny comes back from suspension. Our team batting average has skyrocketed without Manny, for the first time since we went 13-0 at home to start I'm seeing our team come together as a real team. Maybe Manny's suspension was a blessing in disguise because in my eyes the team seems 2x more confident.

Juan Pierre has earned the right to be a starter, whether it be with the Dodgers or not, but if I had to choose between Juan Pierre and Manny Ramirez at this time , I'd pick Juan Pierre in a heartbeat.

Just a thought.


Comments

Since: Mar 13, 2008
Posted on: May 26, 2009 2:13 pm
 

Juan Pierre Or Manny Ramirez?

Juan Pierre is FINALLY producing at the level the Dodgers expected when they signed him to the 5-year deal that brought him to LA. That's a long time coming. But Juan is playing his game, hit a lot of singles and run like crazy. The really good news is that he's doing a better job of drawing walks, which over the course of his career has not been a strength.

The holes in Pierre's game are his weak arm and lack of power at the plate. His speed gets him to a lot of balls in the outfield, but guys will run on him at will. 

The problem for the Dodgers is that you've got three guys who play the same speed game on offense -- Pierre, Rafael Furcal and Orlando Hudson. O-Dog has the most pop of the group, followed by Furcal, who will hit the excuse-me home run now and then. It's a small ball lineup that can produce, but depends on multiple guys coming through. With Manny Ramirez, you have a guy who puts fear in the opposing pitcher. Other guys get better pitches and you start seeing more extra base hits.

Pierre is making the most of his opportunity and I applaud him for it. But I remain a proponent of trading him while his value is high. Even if they wanted to, I doubt the Dodgers would be able to find a taker given his PED problem. Nobody can know right now whether his production is now going to drop through the floor because he's off the juice.

What has me feeling best is how Xavier Paul and some of the other young players have stepped up when their opportunities have come. The Dodgers biggest need is pitching. If Juan Pierre can get them that, it's a deal you make, even if he's still hitting over .400. You have to give up talent to get talent.   



Since: Aug 11, 2008
Posted on: May 24, 2009 3:09 pm
 

Juan Pierre Or Manny Ramirez?

Boltz, looks like our views are similar.  You have to love the impact that Manny brings to the team.  When other teams put their strategies together to play the Dodgers, their focus is on Manny.  Look at the playoffs last year.  Manny is a great player. 
Now that's saying that I don't like Juan Pierre.  Great clubhouse presence and attitude.  Every team needs a Juan Pierre type player in their locker room.  I wish that brotha could play shortstop.



Since: Aug 18, 2006
Posted on: May 24, 2009 2:27 pm
 

Juan Pierre Or Manny Ramirez?

And stats don't lie. All Manny has on Pierre is power and steroids. Pierre has a ridiculously insane OBP and gives you 200+ hits a year with 40+ SB if you start him. Looking at J.P.s numbers he is a realistic future HOFer with his numbers (Hits (could get over 3000), SB(could finish 3rd all time), and a BA over .300).



Since: Aug 18, 2006
Posted on: May 24, 2009 2:23 pm
 

Juan Pierre Or Manny Ramirez?

Juan Pierre is the leadoff version of Manny Ramirez. He can terrorize a team on any given day. So on a realistic note, if you have another guy that can put up numbers equal to Andre Eithier, then Manny and his contract is expendable. J.P. should never have been benched for Andruw Jones last season. Pierre-Furcal is a hell of a 1-2 leadoff combo.



Since: Mar 15, 2008
Posted on: May 24, 2009 2:08 pm
 

Juan Pierre Or Manny Ramirez?

Great post Boltzfan.



Since: Dec 22, 2008
Posted on: May 24, 2009 1:39 pm
 

Juan Pierre Or Manny Ramirez?

I can understand what the author is saying. Pierre has come in and been almost as productive as Manny while being paid half the price. What the author missed is the effect Manny has on the rest of the lineup. When Manny is in the lineup the Dodgers are more productive not just because Manny produces (which he does) but because pitchers fear Manny and it opens things up for other players. While Pierre is very good his lack of power stops him from instilling the same type of fear in opposing pitchers that Manny does. Just look at Mark Texeira. Until A-rod came back Texeira was doing terrible. Now that a-rod's back, Texeira has pushed his BA up and his runs RBI's and HR's have also increased.



Since: Nov 19, 2006
Posted on: May 24, 2009 11:07 am
 

Juan Pierre Or Manny Ramirez?

Oh and it's impossible to "deal Manny" after they gave him that fat contract and he was suspended. Remember how no other team wanted to touch him in the offseason, why would they trade for him now?



Since: Nov 19, 2006
Posted on: May 24, 2009 11:05 am
 

Juan Pierre Or Manny Ramirez?

Pierre was a bust up until 2 weeks ago, now he's better than Manny for a team's lineup? Give me a break..



Since: Mar 15, 2008
Posted on: May 24, 2009 12:13 am
 

Juan Pierre Or Manny Ramirez?

Thanks for the respect NeverStopThis but I trust that the MLB and The Player's Association are telling the truth since they wouldn't reveal it to the public if it was up to them. I mean C'mon, look at how much money Manny rakes in for them.

The trade will probably never happen and Manny will probably stay with the Dodger's until the end of his contract and perhaps further, depending on his stats. I was just saying what I would have liked to happen, like I said in previous blogs, I just don't have any trust or love for Manny anymore. It's so obvious all he wants is a paycheck and makes it seem like he doesn't care very much if the team wins. He's still going to try his best but I find it hard to believe it's for the team. That's something that's obvious with Pierre. Like you said he was an essential part of the Marlin's 2003 championship and he's really a guy who deserves to start, because of his attitude in the clubhouse and out on the field.

It's too bad that I'll either get to see Pierre every few days coming off the bench or for another team, he has been outstandingly loyal to the Dodgers even after the arrival of Money Manny and has really become one of my favorite players.

Randy Wolf, Chad Bills, Clayton Kershaw, Hiroki Kuroda (when he gets back) all seem solid, if Eric Stults and Jeff Weaver can continue pitching great then we have a potential 6 man rotation which would only benefit us. Martin has risen his average to about .280-.290 so I'd say he has already learned how to play. Derek Lowe wanted to be on the east coast, no matter how much money he would have still left.

Thanks again man, all these guys swear like I'm calling Juan Pierre better, I'm just pointing out how good he's done and I would rather have him on my team then Money Manny. That's all.



Since: May 20, 2009
Posted on: May 24, 2009 12:02 am
 

Juan Pierre Or Manny Ramirez?

You're a class act buddy.


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