Goatriders of the Apocalypse

2009 Player Previews - Micah Hoffpauir

Micah Hoffpauir

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Did you know that if you ignore all the at bats in which Micah Hoffpauir made an out last year, he's a 1.000 hitter at the Major League level? For that reason alone, he should get consideration to start first base.

No, seriously, that's the argument some bloggers are making. If you ignore his 0-for games this spring, then Hoffpauir is considerably outperforming the slow-starting Derrek Lee, and therefore should be the starting first baseman on opening day.

Me, I have a better idea. Micah Hoffpauir should be used as a pinch-hitting backup outfielder and first baseman. He could - and should! - give the Cubs an immensely valuable left-handed bat from the bench. He may - and likely will be! - the bench presence that Daryle Ward was supposed to be last year.

In other words, Micah Hoffpauir as a backup will be one of the most valuable Cubs on the 2009 team. But as a starter, sorry, I have doubts that he'd be able to outperform Derrek Lee.

So let's look at The Hoff. He's really quite the impressive story. After 7 years in the Cubs minor league system, most of which were unimpressive, Hoffpauir tore the cover off the ball in 2008. In 290 minor league at bats, he batted a ridiculous .362 with 25 homers and 100 RBI. His OPS was an astonishing 1.145. He was then promoted to the big leagues for the first time at the age of 28, and he proceeded to capture the imagination and hope of Cub fans everywhere.

Since his success last year, The Hoff has seen a swelling of fan support. People wanted to trade Derrek Lee so Hoff could start first base. They wanted him to get a shot at starting in right field before Milton Bradley signed. Somebody even suggested that the Cubs release Lee outright - thereby eating a hefty salary - and let Hoff start. All of this brings us back full circle to the jabrone Cubs blogger who wants us to ignore certain stats in order to conveniently prove his ridiculous point.

I think that we should be happy for Hoffpauir. He's quite the story. And if he can play well in a minor role in '09, his story will be an even better one.  But I remain unconvinced that Lee is finished as an All Star first baseman, much as I remain doubtful that Hoffpauir could be an effective starter at the Major League level.

But for those of you in the Micah Hoffpauir fan club, I'll throw you a bone. If, on June 1st, Derrek Lee is struggling and Micah Hoffpauir is killing major league hitting, then Lou Piniella should revisit his options. Until then, I hope we can be happy for an already impressive success story -- the elevation of Micah Hoffpauir from minor league obscurity to becoming the top bench player on the best team in the National League.

Good Point and The reason I

Good Point and The reason I used the F bomb was because that A hole was getting all mean about my point I just like to through my opinion out there maybe the hoff wont be n e thing i mean i did think Felix was going to be good after all the hype and Patterson and look what happened to them and maybe the reason I think the hoff has a good shot is because look what happened to soto I just think That Lee is Over-rated and That 2005 season he had was a fluke if i ever seen one I hope im wrong about Lee going down hill but i just dont c him rebounding and doing better than the last two seasons

OK..

I bet DLEE DOESNT EVEN HIT BA OF 300 this year and i bet he has more errors than last and I bet he hits into more double plays like last year which is almost impossible unless lou is smart and puts him down into the order....and worse case scenario the HOFF doesnt work out throw lee back there f**k DLEE he does not matter to us with The HOFF and the rest of our team well its about 5%

Just one question for you

...and a comment. The comment is this: watch the vulgarity. You've been signed up to read this site for better than a month ... have you not noticed that we don't use the f-bomb?

Okay, so here's the actual question (meaning I've actually asked you two in this response)

If Micah Hoffpauir is such an awesome offensive force, and if the Cubs indeed are planning to use him sparingly as a backup - obviously a mistake on their part, since he's so much better than Derrek Lee - then why don't the Cubs trade him? I'm sure that, since he's such an amazing player, there HAVE to be a number of teams out there who'd trade top prospects for such a tremendous offensive force.

Or maybe there aren't any teams out there that would be willing to trade anything of significance for Hoffpauir because no team in baseball sees in him the potential to be even an average starting first baseman in the Major Leagues. Maybe your obsession with Hoffpauir is really quite unwarranted. Maybe you should think about that.

Well actually

What you bet is of no consequence to me or anything that happens on a baseball field Nancy. So buy a Peter Pan, I mean Micah Hoffpauir, jersey and frame a picture of him and put it next to your bed - thats the closest Hoff will get to any wood or long balls in 2009. Your crush on Hoffpauir is cute, you should give him a call sometime, he shouldn't need much rest sitting on the bench the entire season.

HC - we missed you, but you

HC - we missed you, but you come back to bait somebody into a flame war? Why?

Naw

How could you not miss Harry? But really I've been here for the last 3 months, I just haven't posted any threads of my own. I pretty much tried to take a step back and not piss people off and get into wars-of-words and such, and it seemed like that was the consensus opinion held by all at the time. It seemed as though many people here didn't really want the Readers to be writing as much as I was so I simply backed off. I didn't come back on here to simply ignite a back-and-forth with anyone. I responded to a ridiculous comment with a ridiculous response. When I say anything on this site I guess I assume that we're all adults here and this really is just good fun and that what is said is simply words.

Hoffpauir could be the next Ted Williams, I simply don't hold that opinion - it doesn't mean I'm right, but I can still say what I think. A lot of folks seem to be quite enamored with Hoff, which is fine, but along with it almost always seems to come this notion that Derrek Lee is a horrible player. A Hoff player post turned into a DLee bashing, which is why I responded. There are knocks on DLee, but at times it can start to border on absurd. That's all. Its good that you missed me though, I graduate next week so I can start as your BlogCaster from Opening Day.

Well, consider my own

Well, consider my own response to be of the same tone as "McLovin! Why?!" from the end of Superbad.

As I have learned, there will always be people who always say ridiculous things - myself included - but we must dispell their ridiculousness with the cold hard reality of LOGIC and FACT.

Eh, who'm I kidding. Go be you! Just be careful - if you elicit a response that's a stream of vulgarities, then you know you've gone too far!

i actually disagree Dlee Was

i actually disagree Dlee Was so called a gold glove when he actually made more errors last year then any other season and based off his stats last year i doubt he is going to rebound it almost seems like he is going to worse now the HOFF hes a different story I mean Kurt U even said how good he was last year...IN Conclusion Trade Lee for a solid middle reliever let the shark develop as a starter in 3A start HOFF and Let him Develop this year into a Major Leaguer maybe he wont have great numbers but i guarentee he will have if not the same lee has but better and by next year will be one of the most dangerous hitters in the big leagues and for his feilding his hitting will make up for it.

HAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA

That makes sense. Lets base your entire theory on last year alone, but ignore Lee's previous 10+ years in the league. Brilliant. The only way that logic could be any more skewed is if you wanted to start Micah Hoffpauir at 1B in his place, oh you do awesome. Queen Mary Hoffpauir has proven nothing, done nothing to deserve a chance, and if anyone should be traded it should be him. He's tore up AAA pitching and spring training pitchers, wow, I know I'm ready to get the bronze out and start working out the fine details of his HOF plaque. At best he deserves a warm spot on the bench next to Uncle Lou, and at worst I would trade him for a 5 gallon bucket of BBQ sunflower seeds.

Micah Hoffpauir, "will be one of the most dangerous hitters in the big leagues" - oh my god after reading garbage like that my eyes are now bleeding, I think I just had a brain aneurism, and I may have shit my pants to boot. Its one thing to be a fan of Michael Jackson but its another thing altogether to transform your house into NeverLand Ranch. Sorry to burst your bubble chief, but Santa & the Easter Bunny aren't real and Peter Pan Hoffpauir's chances of living up to your expectations check in at ABSOLUTE ZERO.

IMO...

This is all in personal opinion but I'm not entirely ready to give up on D-Lee after 1 year of average play for a career minor leaguer who had one good season with a tiny sample size (73 AB) and who hit two home runs, both of which were in one game against the Mets' bullpen (we all know how good they were last season...) Especially because D-Lee has that ever so amazing NO TRADE CLAUSE!!! that all of us seam to forget about. If the Hoff continues to mash and Lee continues to suck then fine, replace the man, but i think we need a little more proof. not to mention that in those 73 ABs he struck out 24 freakin times! thats getting into Mark Reynolds-Adam Dunn range. im just not convinced.

Lee > The Hoff

I'm with you on this. Hoff certainly had a great 2008 and he's Hoff to a good start against his fellow minor leaguers in spring training. However, that doesn't make him a better option than Derrek Lee. DLee doesn't have the same power that he used to but he's still a solid player, a much better fielder, and he's not afraid to throw punches with 6'10'' dudes.

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