This Could Be Something

Tonight, I perused Drew.

Drew, over at Ghostrunner, points out, not to freak anyone out, but that JP Arencibia is having a brutal spring at the plate. Not to say I told you so, as it is a small sample size, but I expressed concerns about the kid looking a little lost at the plate after his insane debut when I defended Cito's choice of sticking with John Buck. I created enemies with my views, including the dude who sat in front of Archi and myself on our Jayte. He did a complete 180 attitude, going from "Hey, let's drink and make fun of the Yankees!" to "I hate you both. Never talk to me again."

Now, John Buck had himself a stellar offensive season for a catcher in 2010, so in all likelihood, there is going to be a reduction in offensive production from that position.

The notion that Arencibia doesn't create a good target for the pitcher interests me because it's a little more complex than a target for shooting. A bull's eye, for example, on the catcher's mitt wouldn't be useful because the pitcher might be tempted to aim for it, which is something a pitcher can't do if he wants to throw strikes. Notice when Boston relief pitcher Okajima releases the ball, he's got his head tucked down, chin into his chest. He can do that because when his pitching motion is correct, he should be hitting the glove, even if his eyes are closed. But I've also read that sometimes a pitcher will pick up visually the catcher's target as a timing cue, part of the rhythm of pitching. The target becomes an issue of setting up, as the catcher will change position to receive different pitches, something that becomes more complex and some ways easier in the higher levels.

I perused Drew's post from last summer on the issue of Arencibia's target ability. He used a JD Drew homerun as a time that the kid provided a less than adequate target. There was a comment saying that basically Marcum sucked that night, so any target provided wasn't going to work. I thought "Who was so mean about Shaun Marcum?" and then I realized it was me.

It's still to be seen if this is a thing or not. But according to that sign, he's fine. So fine. I guess that's settled.