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The Art of Michael Bedard

April 20GMs, scouts, players and people all around baseball were asked for some surprises in the first three weeks. Here are some answers:From a player on the umpiring: Players? How about the umpires. The 'new' strike zone is gone, it's now inconsistently called by a few umps, and not called at all by others. I thought there were tools and stuff to enforce this change? If so, no one's using them because it's worse now than it has been. Not bigger, maybe a bit smaller, but not even close to consistent from umpire to umpire. As a pitcher I'd prefer big, but it's not a problem if it's not. I'd hate small but could adjust, but overall I think every single player will tell you either way, just be consistent, which ain't happening. And the throwing inside rule giving umpires discretion to eject and warn needs to go. They don't like it, and they don't know when and how to enforce it. The number of general managers, players and managers who agree with this player is staggering. The umpiring has been horribly inconsistent, says one GM. One day it's a high strike zone, the next day low, and sometime that changes from inning to inning. Nick Neugebauer, Brewers. How come we haven't heard much about him? asks a player. If there are better young arms than him, including (Josh) Beckett, I can't wait to see them; he's impressive. Shea Hillenbrand's learned plate discipline. He lasted until his 52nd plate appearance before putting a first pitch in play; according to the Elias Sports Bureau, the only other player to get past 40 plate appearances without doing so were Todd Zeile of the Rockies and David Eckstein of the Angels. Going into the weekend, Hillenbrand had swung at 17 percent first-pitch strikes after swinging at 58 percent of first-pitch strikes last season.Alex Gonzalez, Cubs. Corey Patterson has made tremendous improvement with (hitting coach) Jeff Pentland since the middle of spring training, but Alex Gonzalez has been Pentland's best student since Sammy Sosa. He always had a good swing, but couldn't get it. But now he's taking the ball the other way, being patient (.433 on-base percentage, after .304 the previous five seasons) and has really hit the ball well. The OPS over .900 speaks for itself, after a .691 average the previous five years. Brian Lawrence's sinker/slider/command (improved even from last year), offers one executive. Lawrence is leading the majors with a 3.05 GB/FB ratio. Miguel Tejada's poor approach of late. I never realized how much Jason Giambi must have meant to him. Royals LHP Jeremy Affeldt. Could be good, writes one scout. He flashes a plus fastball with fringy command right now but has a big-league curveball with impressive depth and bite. One scout's observations about two guys who swing at high fastballs with regularity: Mike Sweeney swings and misses once every 10 pitches when he goes after a pitch above the zone. Greg Vaughn swings and misses once every 2.75 pitches when he goes after a pitch above the zone. And Sweeney swings at those pitches more often than Vaughn does, according to our numbers. Dan Reichert. His sinker continues to be the best as far as movement that I've seen. His slider has some of the sharpest tilt in the league as well. Command continues to be the issue. He would be dominant if he could find it. From an Eastern League scout: Erik Bedard (Orioles) is the real deal. All he needs is experience. His changeup needs work, but the batters will let him know that. J.R. House (Pirates) continues to struggle with the bat. I thought he was pressing and in-between last year, but now I think his bat and body simply aren't that live and strong, not enough to carry his glove and make him an impact hitter. Ramon Santiago (Tigers) is extremely overrated. He's smooth, but he's so small. I don't think he'll ever hit enough to be a regular and his arm is not good enough for shortstop. Seth Greisinger (Tigers) looked very good. Very sharp. He's not overpowering, but he's totally in command of what he's doing and should be a good fourth or fifth starter now. From one AL executive: Mike Cameron's walk/power/defense combo. He's on the brink of being a superstar. Michael Barrett. He's finally relaxed and set behind the plate, says one scout. He's got tools and he's got tremendous character, like a Scott Rolen. He's now playing the way they thought he would. Back to plate discipline: 309 on-base percentage last year to .443.From an AL scout: How bad the White Sox bullpen in front of Keith Foulke is, but how much better their starters are than I thought. Mark Buehrle is as good as there is, (Todd) Ritchie is solid and Jon Garland threw very well Monday. I wonder about Jon Rauch -- 88-90 with minimal slider and change. He beat Cleveland, but the Indians had a lot of good swings. From another scout: One thing that strikes me about the American League as I go through it, is how much worse the bad teams are than the good teams. I've scouted some of the really bad teams against some of the better teams and I wonder how these teams even come close to winning games against them. I haven't even seen the Devil Rays yet, and they may be the worst of them all. And the thing that really stands out when comparing these teams for me is the bullpens. I would have trouble naming you guys that throw in middle-to-setup roles in Tampa's, Detroit's, Baltimore's, and K.C.'s bullpens that would even make a good team as the 12th guy. I think K.C. is better than those teams but, their bullpen is just as bad as all those teams. The bullpen comes in and it's a fireworks show for the other team. Minnesota destroyed Detroit as soon as the first reliever came in. And this from a Minnesota team that has struggled to get a starting pitcher into the fifth inning. I just watched Texas cough up two games late to Seattle and Anaheim and K.C. imploded against Cleveland and then against Minnesota two nights later. To which one GM said, with disappointment, Watching the Tampa-Detroit game Thursday afternoon made me wish there were an ACC or SEC tournament game on. Adds a scout: From my perspective, the playoff-caliber teams that don't sweep the bad teams in the league are in serious trouble, because I can't see how Baltimore/Detroit et al, will have a chance to do any better than 3-16 or 4-15 against their top-division teams. If by chance Detroit could take 7 or 8 games from Chicago, Minnesota or Cleveland, that club will be in big trouble come September. Tampa Bay started a lineup that had Jason Tyner in left, Randy Winn in center and Bobby Smith at DH.David Eckstein. He's more than a utility guy (that is what I had thought in the past) Probably not a SS but a definite championship player in every sense of the word. I love everything about how this guy plays the game and what he brings to his team (and the game) in passion, energy, effort and professionalism. A joy to watch and a pain to play against. Aaron Sele. I think he is in decline. Still a pro and a smart pitcher but the decline in his stuff barely allows him to compete at this level. The Twins bullpen. I love their bullpen -- better than I thought. J.C. Romero is one of the best young arms around -- easy 92-93 with a dominant changeup as an out pitch. A team in the true sense, with multiple ways to win and they play hard for nine innings every day. Jacque Jones is a better hitter than I ever realized. Hunter, Guzman, and Koskie are legitimate star players. They miss Rivas more than people know -- a dynamic of their game, especially on turf, is not there until he returns. D'Angelo Jimenez. He can hit, and he gets a lot of pitches in the leadoff spot, says a GM. He a had 10-pitch leadoff at-bat against Kevin Brown last weekend. Sunny Kim's four plus pitches vs. the Yankees last Friday. Ask Grady Little. He says Kim is fearless. Bobby Abreu's name not appearing once anywhere despite the fact that he has a .511 on-base percentage this morning and continues to be one of the best players in the game. Colby Lewis' curveball. He will be back. Soon.Jorge Julio. The next big closer, predicts one scout. He throw 98 with two other pitches and makeup. A star in the making. Billy Koch, says a scout on the West Coast. He threw the hardest slider ever registered on the gun at Anaheim Stadium -- 93. And he tied the park's radar gun record for the hardest fastball registered. Remember, when Koch signed with Toronto, he suggested he wear uniforn number 102 because that's how hard he threw. Melvin Mora. A leadoff on-base percentage of .533 into the weekend?And Peter Bergeron leading the NL in leadoff OB% at .387 despite his lowly batting average. Of players with 50 or more at-bats, Jason Tyner is the worst, at .233.Leaders and trailersSome leaderboards you might not have noticed, going into the weeked:OPSNL Leaders TrailersBonds, SF 1.770 Kendall, Pitts .446Edmonds, StL 1.394 E. Young, Milw .462Sosa, Chi 1.254 Cedeno, NY .513Barrett, Mont 1.187 Ordonez, NY .519Berkman, Hous 1.162 Frucal, Atl .525Rolen, Phi 1.094Lowell, Fla 1.073Bagwell, Hous 1.058Piazza, NY 1.053Nevin, SD 1.052greek news,greek soccer,basketball,greek artists,gallery,photojournalism,photography,action,latest events,athensNeilson metal mouldingsRauschenberg, Robert PrintsLeroy Neiman GOLF CHAMPIONS art prints 24.996d 37mDelivery Cost: Free - Department: Books 4.99From thehut - BooksMore Available Copies:Used from our Authorized SellersStart / A / Art Business News / July 01, 2003 / Ruffling feathers: artist Michael Bedard uses animation and humor to satirize his perception of the world.(Artist profile: Michael Bedard)Ruffling feathers: artist Michael Bedard uses animation and humor to satirize his perception of the world.(Artist profile: Michael Bedard)Diane KeatonÜber eBay | Anmelden | Grundsätze | Sicherheitsportal | Bewertungsportal | Foren & Cafés | eBay NewsOrder Tracking & ReturnsTrack your recent orders.Return an item from a recent order.Cause HelpAdd a cause to our site.Review our services for non-profits.About Us :: Help :: Account :: CartPrivacy & Terms :: 2000-2004 Wellspent, LLC0-01588702201843261719Track-Link - ForumsEntertainmentTelevisionsDVD & VideoCameras & CamcordersAudio & Hi-FiGamingWith advanced search you can find specific art prints the convenient way.Living togetherMichael Bedard51x65 cms.38.00 eurosParker Posey 29.99Duck SoupArt Print28x24CELEB QUIK BROWSER Select A CelebrityWEEKLY SPOTLIGHTS------------------Tim AllenDan AykroydJamie Lee CurtisColin FarrellAngelina JolieVal KilmerMOST POPULAR------------------Ben AffleckChristina AguileraGillian AndersonPamela AndersonAnnette BeningHalle BerrySandra BullockTim BurtonJames CameronJackie ChanSean ConneryRussell CroweTom CruiseLeonardo DiCaprioRobert De NiroJohnny DeppCameron DiazKirsten DunstCarmen ElectraRupert EverettDavid FincherHarrison FordJodi FosterBrendan FraserSarah Michelle GellarMel GibsonCuba Gooding Jr.Selma HayekJennifer Love HewittAnthony HopkinsAngelina JolieAshley JuddNicole KidmanMartin LawrenceHeath LedgerBruce LeeJet LiJennifer LopezGeorge LucasEwan McGregorMarilyn MonroeJulianne MooreEddie MurphyMike MyersEdward Norton, Jr.Al PacinoGwyneth PaltrowMichelle PfeifferBrad PittNatalie PortmanJulia RobertsArnold SchwarzeneggerWill SmithBritney SpearsSteven SpielbergSylvester StalloneJulia StilesCharlize TheronJohn TravoltaDenzel WashingtonOlivia WilliamsBruce WillisKate WinsletJohn WooMichelle YeohIN all articles free articles only this publication Arts & Entertainment Arts & Entertainment Automotive Business & Finance Computers & Technology Health & Fitness Home & Garden News & Society Reference & Education SportsPower Crawler Search Engine



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