Nick Cafardo brings the intensity on Sundays. Sitting in Peter Gammons’ distinguished chair, Cafardo drops insights. Here are a few of the most glimmering moments (this week only!).

Don Mattingly may lose his job as manager of the Dodgers, but he gained respect around baseball for saying you just can’t “throw an All-Star team out there” and expect to win.

You see, Mattingly knows this from experience. He was a coach on numerous Yankees teams that had plenty of All-Stars, and made the playoffs.

No correlation between having all of those wildly good players and making the playoffs year in and year out? An follow Cafardo’s logic here: Mattingly says a team of All-Stars won’t necessarily win, he coached such teams in New York, those teams made the playoffs. So, you countered your own point?

And seriously, who are the All-Stars on this Dodger team also in the prime of their career? Kershaw? Check. Kemp? Check, in theory… AGon, check. That’s it, right? Ethier is overrated, Crawford, Beckett, Hanley Ramierez appear to be on the downside of their careers. Just because the team has expensive, famous names does not mean that it has current All-Star level players.

The Dodgers couldn’t even make the playoffs last season after making the deal, which they claimed wasn’t meant for just last season.

If the trade was not solely for last season, then it should not be judged solely on last season. That said, it is still a mistake of a trade.

Victorino wasn’t as productive as Ethier, but he was tougher. Sometimes you need that type rather than a superstar.

Neither Victorino, nor Ethier have ever been a superstar. I’d take a superstar, every day, over either of them. So would you.

Mattingly “telling the truth…” Thanks to daveblume VIA FLickr

Now past the Dodgers opening, which concludes with saying that Mattingly “will go out having told the truth,” whatever that means.

On to these nuggets:

Pedro Ciriaco, who performed so well when he was playing every day at third base, has had problems with consistency both at the plate and in the field.

Can you perform “so well” when also having consistency in the plate AND the field? He has an 88 OPS+ with the Red Sox. He has made 4 errors at 3b THIS YEAR! When did he perform “so well?”

It appears as if Ciriaco needs to play every day to get a rhythm going, because he’s lost it after Bobby Valentine played him every day in Middlebrooks’s absence last year.


No seriously, does this make sense to you?

There are so many coaches who work long hours year after year to make players better.

Are there one who work short hours every couple of years so as to make players worse?

Evan Longoria would be having an MVP season if not for Miguel Cabrera.

Be amazed as Cafardo hands out the MVP in May!

Major League Baseball recorded more ejections in April than in recent years. Umpires or managers seem to be getting hot under the collar more often.

If I were a journalist, I would research this a touch. When are the ejections made? It is strike zone? Has MLB mandated the heave-ho automatically over certain behavior? Are umpires worse?

Nope. Somebody, though *nobody* knows, is hot under the collar.

No 52-inch screens anywhere for umpires to review calls.

Verb much? Apparently not…

Looks like David Ortiz may sit in all interleague games.

One day later, Memorial Day, reporters are all sure that Ortiz will get a start at 1st in Philly. Nice work, then.

Now, we don’t know this for sure, but if he’s similar philosophically to his father, it doesn’t appear the way the Astros are currently run, with an overdependence on statistics, is in line with a Ryan-run team. Astros general manager Jeff Luhnow had success with a stats-oriented approach in St. Louis.

Earth to Nick: every team in Major League Baseball is dependent on the stats you accuse Luhnow being “overdependent” on, that the new owner of Astros commissioned, and were [shock!] successful in St. Louis.

You think the owner didn’t run the organizational theory by the chip off the old block during the interview process?

Elliot Johnson/Chris Getz, 2B, Royals — The combination just isn’t getting it done, which has Kansas City scouts on the lookout for help.

Of course, Johnny Giavotella, in their own AAA may be an answer. If not, they can have Ciriaco!

Despite a World Series title under his belt, talk shows seem filled with anti-Manuel sentiment. GM Ruben Amaro Jr. also is under fire.

This is the dopey-est duo in baseball. Like Frick and Frack of the Majors. There should be sentiment and fire. Want proof? Ryan Howard (who has not had an OBP(!) over .300 since 2011) still has $108million left due to him AFTER this season – on a deal that was panned at the time it was signed! Though, I did love Ryan’s work as a guest star in the final season of The Office.

The Red Sox’ record for Ultra Quality Starts is held by Babe Ruth with 26 in 1917 (leader of MLB this year is Buchholz, which is nice).

Credit to Stones 55 VIA FLickr

Utterly shocking that the Red Sox have only won two World Series since then, if that is the case.