I'm watching the second inning of a meaningless Royals/Mariners game and thinking about Ned Yost. Here's tonight's lineup:
This is, admittedly, not a bad lineup. However, Yuni's out of town to see the birth of his son so I'm sure Yost doesn't actually want to start Aviles. It still has some problems. Namely, Yost fucking loves Jason Kendall a lot. Kendall's currently on pace to start more games at catcher than anyone in a long time, I believe almost 20 years. Problem with this is, Kendall fucking sucks. He hits a whopping .263/.328/.307, good for a 75 OPS+, and can't throw anyone out, allowing 84 SB and catching only 33. Brayan Pena hasn't looked that great in his sample size so far this year but he OPS+ed a round 100 last year and throws out guys at a better clip, not to mention is 8 years younger.
His other problem is his LEADOFF HITTER crisis. Scott Podsednik fit the traditional mold, a contact hitter with a lot of speed, and he honestly wasn't a bad choice (.353 OBP, 71.4 SB%). With Podsednik gone to LA, the leadoff hitter of choice has been Chris Getz, who is also fucking horrible. His .235/.304/.281 line guarantees that Kendall won't be the best hitter on the team, and despite being lauded as a defensive expert his fielding has been absolutely atrocious. Alberto Callaspo was widely agreed as a miserable 2B and he's worlds better than Getz. Tonight Blanco is hitting leadoff, which is actually a decent precedent if he keeps him there.
Probably my biggest issue with him, however, is how he buries young players with promise. Aviles was the everyday 2B for a while but after Podsednik was traded by golly we sure needed some more SPEED in the lineup so Getz is starting. Kendall is the eternal catcher over Pena. Ka'aihue was buried behind a slumping Guillen. Maier took a backseat to Ankiel and since his trade Bloomquist. These are all players that are widely agreed to be part of the Royals' future, and they're getting no playing experience whatsoever in favor of useless old veterans. I'm getting really sick of him.