Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Making Sure the Melk Stays Cool

Melky Cabrera had a helluva All-Star Game, as befits a man having a helluva season.
The man once dubbed "Leche" by then-teammate Derek Jeter, Cabrera was labeled a "six-tool player" by another former teammate, Alex Rodriguez.
Any fan of the game knows what a five-tool player is: a guy who hits for power, average, can run, can field and can throw with the best of them.
A six-tool player, said Rodriguez, according to the All-Star announcers, can play in New York.
Alas, Melky didn't fare quite so well in New York. His best season in Gotham, far as batting average is concerned, saw him hit a respectable .280 in 2006. Best RBI year? Seventy three rib-eye steaks a year later.
Jump ahead to his time in Kansas City last year, and San Francisco this year, where he is on pace to obliterate those marks.
A-Rod could've expanded the geography of the sixth tool; if you can succeed in New York, conventional wisdom says you can succeed in Boston, and vice versa.
Says Paul Konerko of new mate Kevin Youkilis in today's NY Times:
 “I think we knew that eventually, whether it took a couple of weeks, he would do his thing because he’s a good player and he’s always been really good. He’s won the World Series, and if you can play in Boston and play in New York, you can play anywhere.” 
Youk would probably be considered a five-tool player: hits for power and average, fields and throws well, and can succeed in Boston.
Speed? Not so much.       

[image: BleacherReport.com]