Neyer Doesn't Agree with Benching Jack Wilson

ESPN’s Rob Neyer found Dejan’s article on the splinter in Jack Wilson’s behind. Interestingly enough, on his Insider blog—subscription required—Neyer implies that Wilson shouldn’t have been benched:

[Jose] Castillo’s no better with the bat than Wilson. [Brian] Bixler’s not been considered a strong defender, and his minor-league OBP entering this season was .356, so he’s not exactly a future superstar.
Which isn’t to say the Pirates can’t do better than Jack Wilson. They can, and should. … The problem with benching him, though, is that if the Pirates want to trade him, this doesn’t help.

All valid arguments. But I’m not quite sure Rob understands why Jack’s sitting down.
“Wilson’s been benched because he made three or four mistakes against the Yankees in a game last weekend,” claims the columnist. Funny—that sounds eerily similar to the player’s take on the situation.
But doesn’t Dejan’s headline say it all? “Wilson feels ‘one day’ led to benching.” On this one, I defer to Travis and Brad in the comments.
“Maybe Jack doesn’t think his batting stats for the last month or so count,” or, “Maybe Jack doesn’t think his batting stats for his entire career except 2004 count.”
Jack Wilson’s miserable performance on Saturday was the tip of an iceberg large enough to sink the Titanic. Yes, ultimately, he’s been relegated to reserve status because he stunk his last time out. But if Jason Bay goes 0 for 4 tonight with a couple of errors, Tracy won’t sit him down. Why? Because Bay contributes on a regular basis.
It’s safe to say that Jack’s done little to nothing for the Pirates since 2004. Personally, I think we should’ve moved on long ago—I felt this past off-season was a prime time to trade our shortstop—and I’m in support of Tracy’s decision.
Yes, benching Wilson takes away from his value. But let’s be honest: Was he all that valuable to begin with?

Author: Randy Linville

Randy is currently living and thriving in suburban Dayton, OH with his wife and two kids. He was raised in Cincinnati, OH and attended Anderson High School. He went to Miami University (Ohio) and received a degree in Paper Science Engineering from MU. He is a devout Christian and a pop culture buff. He coaches his son’s baseball and basketball teams and his daughters softball and basketball teams. Randy has been a Pirates fan since the late 1970s and has fond memories of the 1979 World Series team. He began blogging for Most Valuable Network in 5/2004 after stumbling across a help-wanted sign for a Pirates blogger. He wrote for Pittsburgh Lumber Co. until the site merged with Pirates Prospects in 2/2011.

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