WTSWTM: Spring training edition

Today is a flashback to that popular parlor game “What They Said, What They Meant” where we take some real quotes from mlb.com or chron.com (Spit!! Spit!!) and then translate them into real English.

Former Astros World Series Manager Phil Garner on WS Winning Manager and good friend A.J. Hinch

  • What he said. “We used to talk about swinging down on the ball, which is not actually what you did.  It was more of a level swing, and now it looks like they’re talking about swinging up on the ball. He was filling me in on how the new philosophies work. It’s all exciting to really talk ball and what’s going on. He’s really enjoyable.”
  • What he meant. “I’m more old school than Art Howe‘s twisted image in Moneyball. I’m glad A.J. won it all. I would go nuts with nerds e-mailing me spin rates in between innings. Retirement feels great.”

Hinch on Garner

  • What he said. “He really took me under his wing. He’s somebody I respect in the game, and he’s introduced me to a lot of great people that have turned into incredible friends. Just a great bond.”
  • What he meant. “I know he won the World Series as a player, but If I had one wish, it would be if Phil could have won it all in 2005. He took that team and this city farther than they ever had been and there is not a nicer person who could have taken them to the promised land.”

Anthony Gose on Anthony Gose

  • What he said. “I just idolize Anthony Gose. Ain’t no sense in tryin’ be nobody else on the mound. You’ve got to go out there and be yourself.”
  • What he meant. “I love me. Why doesn’t anyone else?”

Hinch on Gose’s first and last Astro appearance, walking the 3 batters he faced

  • What he said. “We know he has arm strength. He was throwing hard, even harder than he was in the bullpen [sessions] and in his live BP. But I think we saw the raw part of him transitioning to pitching. It’s tough. I mean, he has a great arm and flashes some pretty good stuff, but obviously struggled with command today.”
  • What he meant. “Well, at least he has someone who really loves him…”

Verlander on being named the Opening Day Starter

  • What he said. “It’s an honor, especially on this team with the pedigrees that we have.  Obviously, I wasn’t expecting it or hadn’t really even thought about it, to be honest with you. It’s always an honor to have your name called.”
  • What he meant. “Absolutely it is an honor. But, ‘I wasn’t expecting it’? Sure and my wife looks like the girl next door.”

Keuchel on Verlander being named the Opening Day Starter

  • What he said. “I’ll gladly let him go Game 1 and try to replicate the success he’s going to have and move forward from there.  I’ll get to see the Opening Day festivities and enjoy J.V. throwing a gem.”
  • What he meant. “I would love to follow his 6 shutout innings during a win with my 7 shutout innings during a win. Not that I’m competitive….”

Hinch on the contest between J.D. Davis, Tyler White and A.J. Reed to fill in for Yuli Gurriel

  • What he said. “He (Davis) is helping his case (with a .455 BA in ST).  The question for him is how comfortable he can get at first base and left field to make himself more versatile. Whitey moves around the field a little bit; Reed can get a little bit hot with the home runs lately. I think that race is going to come down to the final decision. They’re all making their case known.”
  • What he meant. “It’s the last spot on the roster, of course it will come down to the final decision. Talk about expressing the obvious. Did you see my giant wink when I said that?”

Hinch on Kyle Tucker and his .400 average and 4 HRs

  • What he said. “He continues to get to pitches and put some good swings on it. Man, this guy can really hit. He’s got great balance in the batter’s box. Obviously, when he gets a pitch to hit, he doesn’t miss too many of them. It’s an impressive showing.”
  • What he meant. “Can you imagine floating back to 2013? This kid might have been the best or second best hitter on that team. Today we can let him work on a few things and bring him up at the right time for him and us.”

Keuchel on his first outing (1.2 IP, 4 hits, 1 BB, 2 Runs and 43 pitches)

  • What he said. “That’s one of the things that I was very happy about, was the couple of times I was looking back at second base after the pitch and I saw a few mph on the scoreboard and it was above what I’m usually at my first start.  That’s encouraging.”
  • What he meant. “Though the scoreboard, shows bigger numbers when all the other starters pitch…..”

Under the radar prospect “Super” Jack Mayfield on playing next to Jose Altuve

  • What he said. “It was awesome.  I was excited for it, and being out there and throwing it around the horn with him is a great experience. I definitely think it’s helping me slow the game down. When you get out there, it gets quick, especially at this level. All these big-name guys coming up and you’ve got to slow it down.”
  • What he meant. “You’ve got to be kidding! I’m playing next to the frigging MVP of the American League. I’m standing here surrounded by the heroes of last year’s World Series! I watched all those games. I stayed up until 1 or 2 AM or whatever it was. Pinch me! I can die happy now!”

Hinch on Nolan Ryan helping out at Spring Training

  • What he said. “With Nolan, across the board — young, old, Latin, American — everyone knows [that] you don’t find that kind of presence very often. We utilize it. [Ryan] can capture the room talking pitching and is a great storyteller, obviously. He’s the definition of a living legend.”
  • What he meant. “Hey Super Jack – get a load of this!”

Bonus Quote: Hinch on Tony Sipp

  • What he said. “The way Tony Sipp has thrown the ball so far in camp is encouraging, which doesn’t necessarily lock everything up.  At full health, if he’s throwing the ball well and shows the signs he can help the bullpen, it’s a pretty tough team to make when you think of a couple of starters [Peacock and McHugh] making the ‘pen.”
  • Your turn. what do you think he meant?

97 comments on “WTSWTM: Spring training edition

  1. And Evan Grant, sports writer for the Dallas Morning News, has written the denouement for the “Anthony Gose Experiment.”

    Silent Anthony Gose is back in the Rangers camp. Gose is not a fan of discussing things with people carrying notepads.


  2. Five players in the Astros’ starting line-up today bring in BAs of over .300:

    – Springer – .375
    – Altuve -.364
    – Reed – .324
    – Davis – .367
    – Marisnick – .310

    The two guys from the starting nine coming in with the lowest BAs are:

    – Carlos Correa – .222
    – Tim Federowicz – .222

    Let’s see where they all are when the day ends!


  3. Great outing for the pitching staff.

    Springer goes hitless and ends down .14 points at .364
    Altuve goes hitless and ends down .29 points at .333
    Reed gets one hit and ends even at .324
    Davis gets two hits and ends up .27 points at .394
    Marisnick goes hitless and ends down .29 points at .281
    Correa gets two hits and ends up .45 points at .267
    Federowicz gets one hit and ends up .16 points at .238

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Spring Training 2018 is more than halfway over. Here are a few of my thoughts at this point:

    Most pleasant surprises this far: Kyle Tucker, J.D. Davis, Jack Mayfield, David Paulino, McCurry, Ryne Birk, and Cionel Perez

    Biggest disappointments this far: Yuli Gurriel’s injury; Hector Rondon’s ineffectiveness, Brian McCann’s total lack of hitting

    Biggest question marks: Max Stassi, Tony Sipp, Derek Fisher, Tyler White, and Colin McHugh

    Good as expected: Jose Altuve; Verlander; Cole, Morton, McCullers, Peacock

    Bad as expected: Gose, Boshers, to a lesser extent Guduan

    To soon to tell [not enough play]: Keuchel, Harris, Smith

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I can’t watch the astros so I can’t really comment on how they look or how they are playing. It’s pretty frustrating that the World Champions won’t even bother to televise their games.
    I can read stat sheets, though and the Astros have more wins than any other team and their starting pitchers have the lowest ERA and their fielders lead in committing errors.


  6. Man the video of Danry Vasquez hitting the lady on the stairwell in Corpus is very disturbing. I can see why the Astros immediately released him. Can’t see how he was not put in prison by the DA though.


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