Saturday, August 30, 2008

pengoman Interview

pengoman is in his sixth season as manager of the Oakland Acorns. He has one playoff appearance and one winning season during those 5 (going on 6) years. The Acorns this year are 16 games back in the NL West and 12 games back from a wild card spot. While their pitching has been mediocre, the Acorns' biggest problem is their bats, ranking 2nd to last in the bigs with a .688 team OPS.

Q: How do you feel about your team's performance this season?

Actually, I feel better about my team than I have in the past couple of seasons. While my record doesn't show it, I feel that I have made the turn toward youth and depth from top to bottom. The quick fix is to blow up your payroll and sign bad contracts to win now, I had some of that when I started, and have signed a bad contract or two myself. I believe I have cleaned up some of that and am ready to start being more competitive beginning next season.

Q: Who on your team do you feel has been overachieving, and who has been underachieving?

I think All-Star snubs Cleatus Mota and Vic Reynoso have really been my best players thus far. Mota has been rarely touched this year and I am impressed with his SV/SVO and improved K/BB ratio from last season.

As for the underachievers, while the list could be quite long, I would have to say, I was hoping for more out of Sam Hernandez than I have gotten. Hernandez has been a 1 fer 4 kinda guy with only small flashes of power.

Q: What are your team's biggest strengths and weaknesses, and do you plan on making any moves to fix those weaknesses?

I think I am a starting pitcher or two away from being a serious contender for the division, I like a few of the arms I have in AA and AAA. I think that season 11 will be a telling season for me, if this team can't compete for the division and have a winning record with the likes of Jeff Fischer, Brandon Watson, Harry Silva, Willie Duran, and Torey Gordon on the ML roster, I may have to rethink how to play this game.

Any moves that I make would make would be to fill a couple of holes for season 10's roster.

Q: How does the future of the Acorns look? Are you rebuilding or in win-now mode?

I like where this team is headed, I see ourselves being in the top 5 of this year's draft, but I think we can be a .500 team within the next two years.

Q: Who do you pick to win it all this year? Why?

In the NL I just see it being a horse race between Indianapolis and Rochester, for who comes out on top... in the words of Ric Flair, "To Be The Man... You Gotta Beat The Man" and right now the man is danmam and the Lancers.

As for the AL: while Pawtucket and Montgomery are strong and should be the AL reps in the World Series, I think Buffalo is just as good as the others on the road, and has a great record in extra inning games, something I think helps in close, tight games. Those are the type of games you see in the playoffs.

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