Mattingly to Cano: Swing Away

Thanks to our friends at AOL’s Sports Bloggers Live, this afternoon we had a chance to speak, briefly, with none other than Don Mattingly, erstwhile Yankee captain, should-be Hall of Famer, and current Bomber hitting coach. Our query to Donnie Baseball: is there any concern about super-rookie Robinson Cano’s plate discipline, and what steps if any are being taken to work with him on that front. The answers: No and nothing. Make of it what you will. We all know Donnie was a relatively free swinger who put a premium on “good at bats,” and today he suggested that Cano’s have been getting better over the course of the season, and that in any case he was unlikely to find many walks hitting in front of Sheff and A-Rod. Far be it from us to argue with Donald Arthur Mattingly. Catch the interview here.

11 comments… add one
  • “Super Rookie”?
    Sometimes I need rubber boots on this site to avoid stepping in the knee-high crap YF gives us.

    Brad-SF July 8, 2005, 2:58 am
  • Good to know the hitting coach isn’t doing, well, anything resembling coaching.

    SF July 8, 2005, 8:17 am
  • “Should-be Hall of Famer?”
    He had four great years. Four. I’m sure, for those who were watching him early in his career, they assumed they were watching a future Hall of Famer. But after 1988, I’m not sure he was even an all star anymore.

    Josh July 8, 2005, 12:40 pm
  • Using the James criteria, it seems to us he belongs. If Kirby Pucket is a hall of famer, Don Mattingly is a hall of famer.

    YF July 8, 2005, 1:34 pm
  • He did not just have 4 good years. What you meant to say is that for 4 years he was the best player in baseball.

    Battingly July 8, 2005, 3:20 pm
  • Mattingly, like so many other players, belong in the
    “Hall Of Really Good”, but many of them belong nowhere near the real Hall. Don Mattingly is almost certainly one of these guys. Roger Clemens yes. Pedro, yes. Rypken and Palmeiro amost defintitely. Don Mattingly….that’s a stretch. See the difference in these players? Of course YF doesn’t his eyes are blurred. Much like when SF’s chant Jim Rice every year, Mattingly’s chances are better of concentrating on everything he has to learn about being a decent hitting coach, and forget the hall thing.

    Brad-SF July 8, 2005, 3:44 pm
  • I think Mattingly’s refusal to shave his sideburns has hurt his support.
    Let’s see … where to begin? Battingly’s “best player in baseball for 4 years.” I was referring to actual seasons here on Earth, not in the fictional world of Planet Zooba. I hope that clarifies things. If not …
    In 1984, Mattingly’s OPS plus was 156 — i.e., 56 percent better than the AL average. He was also a nifty defender. In 1985, his OPS+ was 156, followed by 161, and 146. Great seasons all, though by 1987, six AL players topped him in OPS — Boggs, Molitor, McGwire, Dwight Evans, George Bell, and Alan Trammel. Boggs’s OPS was 112 points higher than Mattingly’s. (He was top three for 1984 through 1986.)
    For the next two, at ages 27 and 28, he was at 128 and 133. And then he became average. Completely average, according to that stat.
    I’m sure his defense was great, but I have to think those Gold Gloves were at least partly on reputation — in 1994, he won the award despite on playing 97 games there.
    YF is misquoting Bill James. What James said was that there are so many undeserving players in the Hall of Fame, one specifically cannot say, “Because Player X is in the Hall of Fame, my Player should be, too.” If is in the Hall of Fame, then Billy Mueller should be someday.

    Josh-SF July 8, 2005, 4:14 pm
  • Bad link. I was referring to Monte Irving.

    Josh July 8, 2005, 4:16 pm
  • Sorry, Josh, but I didn’t quote James, making it very difficult for me to have misquoted him. What James has done is to develop a series of questions (is he the best player at his position not enshrined…..) that, taken together, provide some insight on whether a player is deserving. Go through the list and, IMHO, Mattingly is.

    YF July 8, 2005, 7:51 pm
  • Corner Infielders Who Are At Least Arguably Better Than Don Mattingly:
    Cecil Cooper
    Hal McRae
    Mark Grace
    Kent Hrbek
    Darrell Evans
    Ron Santo
    Ken Boyer
    Gary Gaetti
    Ron Cey

    Josh July 11, 2005, 12:01 pm
  • Corner Infielders Who Are At Least Arguably Better Than Don Mattingly:
    Cecil Cooper
    Hal McRae
    Mark Grace
    Kent Hrbek
    Darrell Evans
    Ron Santo
    Ken Boyer
    Gary Gaetti
    Ron Cey

    Josh July 11, 2005, 12:01 pm

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