Cup of Coffee, 1 July 2015: Half Shot

My Dad always says on the Fourth of July that the summer is "half shot". That's ridiculous, of course, school's been out for less than a month and it doesn't start for more than two months. But, I can tell you that as of today, 2015 is half shot. And what a long half year it was (leap second added last night).

51 thoughts on “Cup of Coffee, 1 July 2015: Half Shot”

  1. As I get older, I always find that time goes faster and faster. However, this spring, time slowed way down. As I mentioned in a recent Father Knows Best, we had our foster child for 47 days (yes, we counted). Last week she transitioned to her (potential) future adoptive family. The time with her was an incredible challenge, but I believe we've come out on the other side having finished well. Despite the challenge, we could see that in just that short time, she had progressed through some of her issues very well. So while I think she wasn't the best fit for our family, and vice versa, I do feel that her time with us was very beneficial.

    My wife and I remark that it was a very long 47 days. Now that it's done, I have a feeling the rest of this summer is going to fly by even faster.

    1. Congrats on making it through to the other side. My parents had a foster child for a time before they had me or my sister, and while we never met her, we know her story and still talk about her sometimes, hoping things turned out well for her.

    2. I have a set of cousins who started as foster children and were later adopted by the foster family, my mom's youngest brother and his wife (and their first two children). In spite of my aunt & uncle's best efforts, the adoptees suffered greatly from the residuals of their biological mother's substance abuse while the boys were in utero, and the long road travelled - 19 years worth - has been challenging. Both are finally getting things turned around, but I can't begin to imagine where they would have ended up (likely incarcerated ... perhaps dead) had they not found themselves in the family they ended up with.
      I was impressed when reading about your family's generosity. I still am.

      1. Working firsthand now with the necessary placement of children into foster care, I can't say how grateful we all should be for families willing to take in children in need. It is nothing short of amazing.

        1. when I hear of middle- and working-class families* willing to do that job, I'm always amazed and appreciative. Foster kids really need a break and a hand up. I've thought about it, but it is a huge commitment.

          *No intent to slight poorer families genuinely willing to help. I just hear too many (perhaps apocryphal) stories about folks doing it for the money rather than to help a kid.

  2. I've been struggling to find a good work life balance (to use current catchphrase) for the last year due in large part to my organization's failure to properly train, and then subsequently discipline for bad behavior, my immediate supervisor. Work has caused me an enormous amount of personal stress as the upper administration waffles on what to do. They've effectively left me in the lurch telling me one week to prepare to assume the duties and then pulling the rug out from under me the next week. This cycle has caused moral to plummet in my department leading to shitty exchanges between me and my colleagues. I've been holding them together until last week when finally the shit hit the fan. I've just come out of a two hour meeting where the feelings needed to be felt, assurances made, and I got to tell my supervisor's supervisor that I won't be party to the roller coaster anymore. Things are definitely better, and the mediating was necessary, but Jesus how hard is it for folks to just do their g-d jobs?

    I need to strike a much better balance to survive.

  3. I wonder if this is going to be mundane (Hicks back) or not (Sano).

    1. I have no idea what Vargas did to get the organization mad at him, but if you throw out April he's hitting .287.302/.447. If the Twins don't want him, I wish they'd send him to a team that does. It's going to do him no good, and may actually do him harm, to waste his time destroying AA pitching.

      1. I know Hunter is playing better than expected, but he is really taking at bats from Arcia or Vargas.

        The goal should be to be as good as possible in 2016 or 2017.

        As Jeff A has said, we know what they can do in the minors. It is time to find out what they can do at this level.

          1. My point is (and always has been) that they shouldn't have signed a 39 year old outfielder. It is hurting the team over the long run.

            I know what Arcia has done as well as you. I don't mind disagreement but at least understand the initial point.

          1. while I think I agree with Rhu on the basic substance of his comment, Hunter HAS played 11 games at DH this year, tied with Mauer for second-most after Vargas.

      2. I didn't understand why they demoted him the first time, but since his return, he's been terrible, batting .235/.235/.373 with 17 Ks and 0 BBs in 17 games. Doesn't include his 1-for-3 with a single today with another K, so 18 Ks and no walks in 18 games. I think the Twins decided they needed offense, so they called up Sano and figured between Mauer, Plouffe and Sano, 1b, 3b and DH will be covered most days so Vargas wasn't going to get regular playing time up here, so he should go down and get regular at-bats in the minors and start getting his bat going.

    2. Sano not in tonight's lineup.

      1. I'm less upset about Vargas going down if it's for Sano, although it still makes no sense to send him to AA, and I still think that if they don't want Vargas they should find someone who does.

        1. A slow 1b/DH that has a 76 OPS+ is not going to bring much in return. He did well last year in SSS, but the scouts might believe that they have found some holes that pitchers are exploiting now. At least if he goes back to mashing in the minors, he'll get his stock rising again. Hopefully, it won't take them long to move him to AAA, but Kepler will probably be the next one moved up, most likely when Hicks is recalled.

          1. A slow 1b/DH that has a 76 OPS+ is not going to bring much in return.

            If one assumes that his 156 at-bats this season represent the level of play he'll attain going forward, that would be true. If one assumed that, though, one would be awfully quick to give up on a twenty-four year old slugger who's hit at every minor league level and who posted much better numbers in 215 major league at-bats last year.

              1. Brito's numbers are not really comparable to Vargas'. Brito did not get past AA until he was twenty-five, older than Vargas is now. I would also submit, though, that there's no real evidence that Brito couldn't have hit in the big leagues if he'd been given the chance.

  4. I have the Pirates' feed on, and lo and behold I'm greated by Robbie Incmikowski.

  5. I see from the AP that KLub has re-signed with Cleveland for a 5-year max deal.

  6. Oh man, the ending of the Japan-England game was just brutal. I feel super bad for that particular player.

    (Vague in case people have it TiVo'd)

    1. actually, I didn't see it, haven't had it spoiled, and no TiVo. does anyone know a way to watch the game from the beginning? i'm afraid to research in case I see the score.

    1. Interesting that DiPoto lost a power struggle rumored to be over Scioscia's refusal to use advanced stats more while the Twins fired a similar manager in Gardy to bring in a more stats-minded manager. Molitor isn't exactly a stat-head, but he certainly is much more open to more advanced stats than his predecessor. Though, I do have to give Gardy credit for using defensive shifts more in his final season or two with the Twins.

      1. Though, I do have to give Gardy credit for using defensive shifts more in his final season or two with the Twins.

        Because Molitor was in the dugout in charge of it, I'm guessing

    1. I watched it in real time at work. We were all pretty devastated for him, but for his part, he smiled through it and looked happy just to get so close.

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