Tell me again, why all the Kennedy venom?

by on September 25, 2008 · 8 comments

Put aside for a minute the fact that he wants to be traded (or for that matter, thinks he’s a tradeable commodity at this point).

Adam Kennedy had another ho-hum two-for-four last night with one run batted in.  The effort raised his season batting average to .271.

Sure, he’s not hitting for power, as his .347 slugging percentage pretty clearly indicates.  Sure, his on-base percentage is low, at .314 on the year.

These numbers are not that wildly different than his career line of .275/.327/.387.  He’s hit for more power over his career, mostly doubles and triples while playing for the Angels.  Yet, despite “being in the doghouse” for the better part of two seasons, Kennedy is performing at a level that suggests he’s aging a bit, but putting up what I would call expected numbers.

Clearly, I wouldn’t call a .656 OPS with average defense the answer that Cardinal fans have been looking for at second base.  However, is it Kennedy’s fault that he is playing the way his career numbers indicate we should have expected?

Rather, blame Walt Jocketty for extending him on a three-year contract.  Blame the horrendous 2007, shortened by injury, that definitely got him off on the wrong foot in St Louis.

Maybe even blame the manager for not getting the guy more at-bats this season, so as to get him into a bit more of a rhythm?  Kennedy has had one bad month this season (May), and one mediocre one (September).  The others have been, again, right up his alley career-wise.  He’s been over .300 batting in each of April, June, and August.

I dunno, maybe I’m just too beat up from watching the struggles this month to spew any more venom toward this team.  Maybe I’ve gone soft on Kennedy based upon the assumption that he’s not likely to be with the Cardinals next season, whether by trade or outright release.  Maybe it’s just that tiny little piece of my heart that I still hold out for Kennedy because of his role in the Jim Edmonds trade all those years ago.

Now, I’m not saying that Kennedy is the answer at second, or that he should be so bombastic with his trade requests and feuds with Tony LaRussa.  But I understand…

Writing about the Cardinals and other loosely associated topics since 2008, I've grown tired of the April run-out only to disappoint Cardinal fans everywhere by mid-May. I do not believe in surrendering free outs.
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PHE September 25, 2008

AK goes 1-of-2 with a walk today in a substitute role, with 2 runs scored.

Is he trying to improve his trade value?

Sarah-bug September 26, 2008

Who knows what Kennedy’s up to. At first I thought maybe he was trying to stick it to Tony, but it’s probably too late in the season for that.

If he is trying to impress the scouts, at least then maybe we’ll get more than his skin is worth, at any rate.

PHE September 26, 2008

You know, I was on the ‘Kennedy sucks’ bandwagon all season myself, until I really looked at the stats.

He’s really, truly been no worse than his career numbers indicate.

Blame Walt on this one. Maybe we can ship him to the Reds for Brandon Phillips? 😉

StLCards September 26, 2008

Maybe our expectations were just too high? The injury pretty much killed his first year and I don’t think he ever got comfortable that he was the starting 2nd baseman this year. He would be an ok player if the talent around him was better. When he played for LAA he did his part, but then again he wasn’t expected to produce at anything above an 8th place batter. With that spot already taken this year, I guess he really never had a shot!

PHE September 26, 2008

Heh, too right Kirk.

Part of the problem may also be that everyone surely wanted the Cards to sign someone else to play second base, and instead they got Kennedy.

Can he man the position adequately? Sure. Can he hit .270-.280 with little to no power, on the cheap? You bet.

Can he satisfy a fan-base long tormented by the Mike Gallegos of the world? Not likely.

Sarah-bug September 26, 2008

I remember being a little startled by the Kennedy signing, not so much that it was him, but that it was him for three years and $10 million. It gave me the feeling that he was going to (or rather was EXPECTED to) come in and put an end to all our second base woes. Maybe Walt was setting the bar a little too high.

You’re right that he hasn’t been that bad, but he hasn’t been a knock-out either. And now he’s leaving and we have to start all over.

I’d be in favor of keeping Lopez around if he could play 2B every day, but he hasn’t been impressive as a utility player. I’d rather see someone else brought in if that’s the role Tony sees him in.

PHE September 26, 2008

I’m not ready to set Kennedy’s ship a-sail just yet. I wouldn’t be surprised if he were outright released before the Cards could find a taker in trade (unless he was a throw-in on a larger deal).

I’m ready to jump on the Lopez bandwagon as next year’s starting 2B – but you’re right about “Tony’s opinion.” If LaRussa is going to continue to try and make him an outfielder, I’d just as soon he catch on with the next club. Lopez should be an infielder or nothing with this club.

PHE September 26, 2008

Ok, more seriously now…what the world is going on with this guy?

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