The Brewers finally say good riddance to Ned Yost! Too late though?

Dr. Brett SchmitzCorrespondent ISeptember 15, 2008

First of all I would like to say that I have been a Brewer fan my whole life and since 2001 have really become a true fan in the sense of trying to listen to every game and going to games and such.  This year I think I have followed them closer than ever before and could tell from the start of this season that something just wasn't right with Yost.

It only took 150 games into the season and countless bad calls and bad moves in games for the Brewers to realize that Neddy needed to go. 

I personally thought it was apparent that Ned's job be in question early in the year when Eric Gagne' consistently struggled on the mound and gave up game after game early in the year.  Even when the Brewers had a 3 plus lead going into the ninth and Mota or Torres would pitch excellently in the eigth and maybe pitch 15 or less pitches Yost would, stubbornly and much to the chagrin of the fans, bring in Gange who for 7 times this year has blown a save.  Every time Yost was questioned why he continued to use Gange he would respond with Eric is my closer.  OK.  I get it.  The Brewers paid a lot for roid boy to come to Milwaukee.  I get that if Yost doesn't use him the higher ups will not approve, but Gagne eventually had to pull himself early in the season saying he didn't deserve to be the closer anymore.  The only reason this really went into effect is that Gange hurt his arm and could not physically close anymore, but not before blowing 5 saves.  Once Gagne went out of the closers role it seemed like the Brewers started winning those close games and it seemed that the Brewers were on fire.  Well that's because they were forced into replacing Gange with Torres who, I think, should have had the closing role to begin with.  He always seemed to be lights out when the Brewers would ever face him against the Pirates last year.  Lastly since Gange returned from his injury he has had 2 save opportunities and blown both of them.  Maybe he should get back on the roids.

Second point is Rickie Weeks.  For those of you who don't know the Brewers too well Rickie Weeks is the Brewers main leadoff man and attempts to play second base.  First lets talk about Rickie's offense...or should I say lack of.  Fact Rickie Weeks has one of the lowest batting averages for a lead off hitter in the major leagues at .233 which is the lowest of starting 2nd basemen in the majors.  His strikeout percentage is a horrendous 23.7% which is third worse on the team only to Bill Hall who's strikeout percentage is a scary 30.76% and Mike Cameron who's SO% is a cut making 31.7%.  This is a stat I believe baseball does not follow enough and is simply SO/AB.  Strikeouts are the worse thing you can do as a hitter besides hitting into a double play.  It doesn't advance runners, score runs, or help the team in any way, so I take this stat very seriously.  Ryan Braun easily the Brewers best player has a SO% of 21.8%, but has also hit 35 HR this year.  Corey Hart...easily the Brewers second best player has a Hall of Fame like SO% of 16.8%.   Rickie Weeks who is suppose to get on base and use his speed to steal and get into scoring position has only stolen 19 bases this season which isn't even leading the team.  Once again Corey Hart leads in that department with 23 bases stolen.

Now Rickie's defense or once again lack there of.  14 errors on the season with a fielding % of .976. 

Early in the year the Brewers did not have much choice, but send Rickie down to AAA except that he was a high draft pick once again and the higher ups wouldn't have liked that.  But once they acquired Ray Durham who has a season average of .287 Yost would continue to play Rickie game after game.  In fact out of the 52 games played since Durham joined the team on July 21st Durham has only started 17 of those games.  Yost, known for playing the averages, clearly missed Rickie's and Ray's average.  Also Ray has a .994 fielding percentage.  Kind of mind boggling when you really think about it. 

Finally, since I have to get going, the last thing I want to gripe about came out of this last series in the first game.  The Philies had two outs with a runner on second in the first.  Ryan Howard(the homerun leader in baseball) was up to bat.  Wouldn't you walk him with two outs since you have first open?  Maybe? Maybe pitch carefully to him?  Not give him anything to hit?  Especially with two outs?  Nope.  Not Yost.  Sheets gave him a pitch right down the middle and Ryan Howard took it out for a two run Home Run(401 FT), which really set the tone for the whole series. 

I'm glad to see him go.  I hope that Sveum and Yount can pull the season out of the depths that it is about to slip into and make a playoff run.