[翻譯]Little Defense in Joe's Lineup

當Joe Torre在9/27晚間終於在本季第一次排出那似乎只有在明星賽或是遊戲中才會出現的夢幻打線時





以下就是New York Post球評Joel Sherman的看法...

Little Defense in Joe's Lineup


Published : September 28, 2006_New York Post

Joe Torre managed his seventh All-Star team last night, writing out a lineup card that would hold its own, or even outstrip, anything the fans would vote in for mid-July.

Joe Torre在昨晚第七次成為明星隊教練, 排出了讓人瞠目結舌的先發打線, 每個球員都無疑是球迷在明星賽球員票選時會投下一票的一時之選

You could see just how seductive it all must be to Torre, assembling an order in which the ninth-place hitter, Robinson Cano, might win the AL batting title. For the first time this season, Torre had all of his weapons, forming what Orioles pitching coach Leo Mazzone called "by far the best lineup in Major League Baseball."

你可以想見這樣的打線對Torre來說有多麼誘人, 就連可能贏得美聯打擊王的Cano都只能名列第九棒, 這也是Torre在本季首次得以將他手上所有的王牌一次打出, 這也造就了金鶯隊投手教練Leo Mazzone所謂的"大聯盟史上最佳打線"

This updated Murderers' Row performed with devastating might. Before an out was recorded in the fourth inning, every member of the lineup had either scored a run or knocked one in. By the time the eighth inning began, every starter except DH Jason Giambi was out of the game, the crushing work done in what would be an 18-hit, five-homer, 16-5 rout of Baltimore.

這個新版的Murderers' Row 徹底地展現了破壞力, 在比賽進行到第四局, 攻擊的洋基尚未有任何出局數之前, 這個打線中的所有球員就已經全都有得分或是打點的紀錄了, 在八局開始前, 除了擔任指定打擊的Jason Giambi 之外, 其他的先發球員都已經被替換下場, 而洋基的狂轟濫炸最終也以18支安打, 5支全壘打, 16-5的比分作收

This is essentially what had been anticipated in the days since Bobby Abreu was obtained, and Cano, Hideki Matsui, Gary Sheffield and now Giambi returned from injury to join Johnny Damon, Derek Jeter, Alex Rodriguez and Jorge Posada. What Torre can construct is a 1-through-9 wrecking machine full of lefty-righty balance, power, patience and even speed. It is something out of a Fantasy League and almost certainly comprises the nine men Torre will use when the AL Division Series arrives next week. 

當洋基在季中引進 Bobby Abreu , 而傷兵名單中的Cano, Hideki Matsui, Gary Sheffield以及Giambi都陸續歸隊加入原先打線中的Johnny Damon, Derek Jeter, Alex Rodriguez和Jorge Posada時, 洋基昨晚展現的攻擊火力其實早在人們預期之中, 現在Torre可以建構一支左右打比例完美, 擁有力量, 精準選球甚至還具有速度的打線, 這個Torre即將拿來應付ALDS的先發打線, 看來簡直就像是直接從Fantasy League中複製出來的夢幻陣容

Again, you can see the seduction in it all. Yet even after witnessing the bashing possibilities, I think Torre is making a mistake. Where he can, Torre should emphasize defense. That would be at first base and left field by going with Andy Phillips and Melky Cabrera. Here are three reasons why: 

無疑地, 這樣的打線對任何人來說都是極具誘惑的, 不過就算在見識了他們的強大破壞力之後, 我依舊認為Torre做了個錯誤的決定, 我認為Torre應該盡其所能去強化球隊的守備能力, 而在這樣的前提之下,  他應該要選擇Andy Phillips和Melky Cabrera作為先發一壘手及左外野手, 我提出此建議的理由如下 :

1. The Yanks should be able to score plenty with a lineup that is seven deep in stars, and Cabrera is, at the least, a tough at-bat.

1. 就算只放7個明星球員在先發打線中, 也足以讓洋基打下夠多的分數了, 更何況Cabrera 在打擊區上表現出來的強悍比起其他明星球員也不遑多讓

2. Torre announced Chien-Ming Wang will start Game 1 and, if necessary, Game 5. Of the 82 pitchers who currently qualify for the ERA title, none strikes out fewer per nine innings than Wang. In other words, the ball is in play against him and defense is vital. Wang induces the most grounders in the AL, and putting a novice such as Sheffield at first or clumsy Giambi is a detriment. 

2. Torre已經宣佈季後賽弟一戰的先發投手將是王建民, 如果有必要的話, 王建民還將扛起第五戰的先發任務, 在有足夠投球局數而得以角逐防禦率王座的82個投手中, 王建民的K/9數字是最低的, 這也就是說, 投手本身以及其他隊友的守備表現將是至關重要的, 此外, 王建民製造的滾地球數目是全美聯最高的, 而無論是Sheffield或是守備能力不佳的Giambi 擔任先發一壘手, 對洋基來講都將是一大利空

The other two main starters, Mike Mussina and Randy Johnson, are finicky veterans who tend to let errors impact their concentration and effectiveness.

另外兩位主力先發, Mike Mussina和Randy Johnson, 這兩位追求完美的老將似乎也都無可避免地會因為隊友的守備失誤而影響了他們投球的專注力及績效

3. In this scenario, if the Yanks lead from the beginning of a postseason game, they always have their best defense on the field. But, if they trail, Torre could be extremely aggressive from the fifth inning on pinch-hitting for either Phillips or Cabrera. If, for example, Giambi was the DH, Torre would have available a lefty (Matsui), a righty (Sheffield) and a switch-hitter (Bernie Williams), and the manager could cherry-pick matchups. These hitters may only get one at-bat, but it would almost guarantee it in a huge spot. 

3. 假設洋基真的排出如我所建議的先發陣容(讓Andy Phillips和Melky Cabrera擔任先發), 那麼在球隊領先的狀態下, 他們將可以保有最佳守備陣容在場上以鞏固領先優勢, 而若是球隊處於落後, Torre也可以在五局過後藉由指派代打代替Andy Phillips或是Melky Cabrera, 而採用更具攻擊性的策略, 這時如果Giambi是擔任先發的指定打擊, 那麼Torre就可以從左打的松井, 右打的Sheffield, 以及左右開攻的Bernie Williams當中, 就當時狀況做出最佳選擇

Will Torre go this way? Probably not. He said, "It is going to be a busy week trying to figure it out." But he mostly sounds as if he already has. He said Sheffield looks comfortable at first base, though last night he still appeared to be what he is, a veteran learning a new spot. Torre also said Matsui, though inferior to Cabrera, is still a capable left fielder. 

Torre會選擇這樣做嗎 ? 我想應該是不會, 他曾經表示"這個禮拜我們將會忙碌於決定先發打線", 不過他的語氣聽起來更像是他早就已經做出決定了, 縱使Sheffield在昨晚的守備表現仍然讓人可以輕易地看出他是個正在適應新守備位置的老將, 但Torre還是認為Sheffield在場上相當自在, 至於松井, 即便他的守備能力比不上Cabrera, Torre仍然堅持松井足以為洋基鎮守左外野大關

On the surface, the decision seems to come down to starting the best offense possible to try to overwhelm opponents vs. emphasizing defense throughout the game. But the key might be subtler. Torre's instincts lean toward favoring veterans and averting the disharmony that could emerge should he sit Sheffield or the potential international incident should he not start Matsui.

表面上看來, 他似乎只是需要在"排出足以轟垮對手的夢幻攻擊陣容"及"強化球隊守備能力"上做出決定, 但事實上卻複雜的多, Torre的直覺讓他傾向使用老將, 並且避免因為讓Sheffield坐板凳而造成的內部不合, 以及可能隨著不讓松井先發的決定而引發的國際事件

Anyway, Torre always can react by editing as he goes along, like he did last year when he recognized the need for better defense in center field and started Bubba Crosby over Williams. 

無論如何, Torre都還是可以在接下來的比賽中隨時做出對球隊有利的調整, 就像他去年在意識到洋基需要更堅強的中外野守備時, 選擇讓Bubba Crosby取代了Williams一樣

But mainly Torre will hope the postseason goes like last night, with his offense bludgeoning a foe so much that defense hardly matters. He will hope that fielding realities do not deter his Fantasy lineup.

Torre只能期待季後賽的狀況就像昨晚(9/27)的比賽一樣, 當你的攻擊火力強大到足以徹底擊垮對手時, 守備看起來似乎也不是那麼重要了, 希望守備能力的考量不會妨礙他排出那來自Fantasy League的夢幻打線