Another original Alexander owner joins us today as we sit down with misterfresh, long-time manager of the Kansas City Fresh. The Fresh have never suffered a losing season, yet they've made the playoffs only 3 times in their 8-year history. They currently sit tied with 3 other teams, a game behind the last AL wild card spot.
Q: How are you feeling about your team's performance so far this year?
A: The honest answer is "disappointed". I returned just about everyone from a team that won 89 games last year, plus I added guys like Reid Glynn, Ray Tomko, and Carl Blalock (since traded away). I expected this team to have a shot at 95 wins. As is, I'm figuring that the last wild card spot won't be that competitive in the playoffs anyways and I am looking to future seasons (thus the trading of Wally Crespo).
Q: Who on your team do you feel is overperforming, and who is underperforming?
The list of underperformers is long: Louis Russell, Stan Dalesandro, Reid Glynn, Herbert Parrish, Edwin Lee, Vince Michalak... I've been pleasantly surprised with Leo Sparks and Trever Watkins.
Q: What are your team's biggest strengths and weaknesses? Have you or do you plan on making any moves to alleviate those weaknesses?
The major league team is pretty average all in all. The weakness I am most interested in correcting is minor league pitching depth. I expect to address it in the off-season and potentially in the draft next year.
Q: What does the long-term future of the Fresh look like? Is it bright, or are you only in win-now mode?
I'm in whatever the opposite of win-now mode is. I would expect that there is a fair chance that this may be the first losing season. As for the future, I'm going to have to find more pitching somewhere, but the future lineup looks extremely bright with the likes of Cole Gilbert, Morgan Reynolds, Flash Davis, Chuck Helling, Jimmy Grimsley, and Howie Hill scattered throughout the system.
Q: How do you see the playoff race in the AL shaping up, and why?
I think Wally Crespo improves the Honolulu franchise considerably, but I still think it comes down to Montgomery or Pawtucket. And from there it is a matter of philosophies... hitting or pitching? I'll take Buffalo, Charleston, and Colorado Springs to round out the playoffs.
Q: Who is your pick to win it all this year? Why?
I'm picking Montgomery. I just don't see how anyone can hope to stop Yogi Lemon or Karim Martin. Should Montgomery faulter, I'm going with Rochester... really went out on a limb there.