THE San Francisco Giants Blog

Is He Busted?

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on August 12, 2018

San Dawg and other Buster apologists, you might want to avert your eyes from today’s post…

What he said:

djloo27 said, on August 11, 2018 at 8:46 pm (Edit)

Fun fact:
Buster has not homered this summer.
I have him at 157 PAs.

What I said:

Flavor said, on August 11, 2018 at 8:48 pm (Edit)

he’s ridiculous. Tomorrow I’m gonna look up his second halfs over the last few years. Without looking I bet he doesn’t have 10 home runs in the second halfs of the last 3 seasons (including this one)

And of course I was right. He has 5 (FIVE) bombs in the second halves of the last 3 seasons. In order to get to 10 you need to add the 2015 second half too when he had 5. That is 10 bombs in the second half of 4 straight seasons and that is pathetic and absurd. If that isn’t a direct sign of this guy’s decline I don’t know what is.

It is stupid to keep playing him at catcher. It’s only gonna get worse from here.

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138 Responses

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  1. sandog said, on August 12, 2018 at 7:52 am

    Catcher is one of the positions where you can afford to play someone who doesn’t hit for power. And he’s damn good at the position. Playing Buster anywhere else is foolish. Plus its not like he’s going to start launching balls into the upper deck just because he is playing a new position. I think the damage done to him from all these years playing catcher is probably irreversible for the most part.
    I think Buster picks his spots where he tries to hit homers. The great majority of the time he is going for line drives.

    • Flavor said, on August 12, 2018 at 8:10 am

      apparently the spots he picks are all in the first half of the season. Hey now. Anyway, you make some good points I wrote today’s thread in a way that, hopefully, would inspire some passionate responses.

    • zumiee said, on August 12, 2018 at 8:12 am

      Yeah, his on-base percentage this season is .370. Just keep batting him second in the lineup and call it good. Maybe the power comes back someday; but if not, it looks like he’ll still get on base a lot.
      I’ve never bought into “Buster clogs up the bases when he’s on-base because he’s slow.” I don’t think that is a sabermetrically justifiable conclusion.

  2. unca_chuck said, on August 12, 2018 at 8:48 am

    So you think he magically grows 20 homers playing first? We’d have the weakest 1st baseman in the league. Fuck that. Belt is the only guy we have that is even close to providing power. Where are all the guys we got to hit hone runs? in 20 more games, Cutch is 1 behind him, and in 30 more games Longo is 2. Gorkys is the outlier. 0 to 13 is odd.. no one saw that. If Belt could only stay on the field he’d be our only 20 HR guy…..

  3. unca_chuck said, on August 12, 2018 at 8:51 am

    No to 2nd as well. Part of their problem is honky speed. He clogs the base paths. He should be 6th. Hopefully driving people in.

    • djloo27 said, on August 12, 2018 at 8:59 am

      He’s not really clogging them, because nobody behind him hits very much…

      • gianthead said, on August 12, 2018 at 9:22 am

        Can’t the Braves use a catcher next year???

      • willedav said, on August 12, 2018 at 9:28 am

        Ah there we have the real issue. Put better hitters with more power around him in the LU. This is same argument that bashes Belt. Neither of these 2 are the problem; they are valuable players.

        Hey Yelich Stanton Cain Ozuna Martinez all these guys were available last off season. Giants wind up with A Jax.

  4. djloo27 said, on August 12, 2018 at 8:56 am

    I wonder how Buster feels about the damage to his body (especially his head) after all the punishment. Not everybody can be a freak like Yadier. He’s still a young man with young children and his whole life ahead of him. I’m sure after the season we’ll hear how bad the hip is and I also suspect there will be some revelation about the health of Pence. As for now, I agree with SanDog – and there’s really not much choice…

  5. dirtnrocksnomo said, on August 12, 2018 at 9:00 am

    Bochy finally giving up the Posey batting clean up dream has been one of the good things about this year-for me at least. Moving him out from behind the plate isn’t going to improve his power numbers and he absolutely clogs the bases when he can’t go from first to third or second to home due to his sloth like speed. At this point the club is basically stuck with him behind the plate which isn’t a problem because he’s an excellent catcher and still a good hitter. What happened to the power adjustment Posey made last year? Whatever. Maybe he could try pulling the ball more at home instead of going the other way and hitting into the defense.

  6. PaulinAsia Banh Bao said, on August 12, 2018 at 9:07 am

    Back in Boston in the late ’80s, Jim Rice slowly but surely lost his power and became a line drive singles hitter the last 2 or 3 years of his career, from what I remember. And actually still a pretty good singles hitter at that, but it was the power decline that pissed people off anyway. Buster’s a good catcher, he has become who he has become, let him stay there until he can’t or doesn’t want to do it anymore. Agree that Belt should also stay at 1B, he’s one of the best in baseball at that position, and certainly one of the most rested…..

  7. Flavor said, on August 12, 2018 at 9:08 am

    i wouldn’t expect 20 bombs from him if he moved to 1B but how about…uh….one in the second half? Or two? Bottom line is that his body might recover a bit physically if he only played first base. But who knows, if that hip is degenerative he’s probably fucked no matter what.
    Loo brought up a good point: Buster is a smart, thoughtful guy with his entire life in front of him. Does he really want to risk more concussions and a lesser quality of life later on? For who? For what?

    • djloo27 said, on August 12, 2018 at 9:22 am

      Like the lines from Wall Street:
      How much is enough?
      How many yachts can you water ski behind?

      • gianthead said, on August 12, 2018 at 9:24 am

        Lots…:)

  8. gianthead said, on August 12, 2018 at 9:21 am

    Has Pence hit one since your throw down flav? I went with Pence as likely hitting more home runs the rest of the way….

  9. zumiee said, on August 12, 2018 at 9:21 am

    “He clogs the base paths.”

    I would love to see the “clogging evidence.” Stats that show guys behind him are losing extra bases. I’m not saying it never happens. But it’s rarer than people think, and his high on-base percentage makes up for it, over the long haul.
    Even when Posey was hitting 20+ HRs, he was never an ideal #4 hitter. You’d like someone there that really scares and intimidates a pitcher.

  10. djloo27 said, on August 12, 2018 at 9:26 am

    Buster’s become more like the old school type #2 hitter.
    One of the best ever and a personal favorite was Cubs’ Glenn Beckert:

    https://www.baseball-reference.com/players/b/beckegl01.shtml

    • willedav said, on August 12, 2018 at 9:33 am

      yeah cool player. Liked those Cubs teams with him and Kessinger at the top Billy Williams Santo Banks Hundley.

      Something I read on F/G about Dozier of LA now said he’d become extreme pull hitter who hits lot of flyballs, a good formula for bombs. Does this sound like anyone at all on Giants? And both corners are the sweet spots of the yard for homeruns.

  11. chipower9 said, on August 12, 2018 at 9:29 am

    Live music last night, so I missed that clusterfuck that was pawned-off as a baseball game (no cell service, so I could not even follow on LameDay)…a true blessing. So, they go from scoring 13 fucking runs Saturday night, with EVERY starter (including Holland) getting a knock, to cannot score a fucking run in nine frames. Same shit. Different day.

    The Posey situation has been well covered, and I agree with SanD’s synopsis. I say continue the current with Posey behind the dish most games, and playing first (or DH when we are in a junior circuit park) until J. Bart is ready for prime time. Also, I hope like hell they resign Hundley. He is a good backup catcher at this point.

    Let’s see if young Rodriguez can help salvage a split.

  12. djloo27 said, on August 12, 2018 at 9:42 am

    Same team next 2 years, with a few tweaks and some new version of Cutch plugged into the OF?
    None of the 6 long-term, big money contracts expire till after the 2020 season…

    • Bozo said, on August 12, 2018 at 9:47 am

      I’m seeing it that way too.

    • chipower9 said, on August 12, 2018 at 10:45 am

      Good call, Loo. Meanwhile, Charles Johnson and crew rake on kazzilions and kazillions of $$$.

  13. Irish Kevin said, on August 12, 2018 at 10:08 am

    These types of articles are starting to pop up

    http://amp.sacbee.com/sports/mlb/san-francisco-giants/article216413010.html?__twitter_impression=true

    • Irish Kevin said, on August 12, 2018 at 10:09 am

      Should the Giants trade Bum or worse let him go into free agency

  14. James said, on August 12, 2018 at 10:18 am

    I know the pitching has been better than expected with the injuries etc., but it’s still not very good and needs attention, too. The likelihood of Rodriguez and Holland both repeating this year’s success in 2019 is not high. If SF were scoring runs at a league avg pace or even slightly above, they’d still be a 500 team on any given year, assuming the same team pitching performance. For all of SF’s bad luck in 2018, they’ve been fortunate to play a few games better than the run differential.

    • unca_chuck said, on August 12, 2018 at 3:42 pm

      If you can’t trust the stats, then what are we going in here? Hunch?

  15. dirtnrocksnomo said, on August 12, 2018 at 10:29 am

    After however many years of Baer slutting for media attention you know he’s already laying plans to retire Posey’s number and for all the talk of it being his decision I wonder how much the club’s HOF assumptions influence keeping him behind the dish.

    I tend to agree with DJ that it’ll be the same club for the next 2 years. The only way out from under Posey’s deal and get something back is to package him with Bumgarner and the FO doesn’t have the guts to make such a move.

  16. alleykat69 said, on August 12, 2018 at 10:32 am

    You know it’s so wierd with Belt, he’s had alot of injuries not committed by him, broken hand , concussions what 4? maybe more from college?But now appectiomy, throw in a hamstring, this guy will never in his career play a full season anymore in my book.”Cant help the club from the tub” as the saying goes..

    • Flavor said, on August 12, 2018 at 10:46 am

      exactly. I don’t fault Belt for those injuries but some guys just have bad luck and he seems to be one of those guys.

  17. Flavor said, on August 12, 2018 at 10:40 am

    Kerry Crowley on KNBR right now, just said the Giants need to go 30-14 to get to 88 wins. It is OVER

    • James said, on August 12, 2018 at 10:44 am

      They simply do not have the players to go on a run like that.

  18. Bozo said, on August 12, 2018 at 10:45 am

    More reasons why the Giants haven’t been wheeling and dealing?

    Full no-trade contracts:
    Posey ,
    Melancon (not likely but he can opt out at the end of this year),
    Pence, and
    Crawford

    Limited no-trade contracts:
    Smardzija – Can select 8 teams to be traded to,
    Pablo – can block 3 teams,
    Belt – can block 10 clubs

  19. chipower9 said, on August 12, 2018 at 10:47 am

    1. Andrew McCutchen (R) RF
    2. Austin Slater (R) 1B
    3. Evan Longoria (R) 3B
    4. Brandon Crawford (L) SS
    5. Gorkys Hernandez (R) LF
    6. Joe Panik (L) 2B
    7. Steven Duggar (L) CF
    8. Nick Hundley (R) C
    9. Dereck Rodriguez (R) P

    Was Buster butt-hurt from the Flap thread/comments today, and is hence, sitting this one out?

    • Flavor said, on August 12, 2018 at 11:22 am

      more than half that line up wasn’t expected to play meaningful games this year. Maybe as *fill in* guys, maybe. I look at that LU and I’m like “What the fuck happened?”

    • snarkk said, on August 12, 2018 at 12:00 pm

      This is a pretty crappy lineup.
      Not because its composed improperly, but because of the available player quality on the 25 to compose it.
      This team has become consistently banal, boring and last year, terrible in addition.
      The star has become again the ballpark.
      This is the old Cubization, as I’ve said before, in spades.
      The only quick way to possibly change this is to trade Bum for a handful of real prospects that don’t exist in the system.
      Otherwise, there are no easy outs to this. The Giants front office has handcuffed itself to big contracts for declining talent. They can’t compete in a power dependent game.
      Look for more of the same banality the next few years until/unless somehow the minor league system starts generating real positional talent…

  20. James said, on August 12, 2018 at 11:31 am

    Per WillieD’s 9:28, the 3 central position players in Bozo’s list are still useful, above average contributors. Not adding more talent to complement them has had a big role in creating the 79 win team we’re now looking at. The continued gambling on long-term pitching contracts, to the extent it artificially limits team spending, has been the bigger problem. Which brings up the question: what in general is the right strategic approach to a pitching staff today? SF would have been better off spending on greater position player talent, and deliberately assembling the entire staff in line with the current trend away from the 7+ inning starter.

  21. YogiBarrister (@Yogi47951368) said, on August 12, 2018 at 11:37 am

    The Giants have 99 problems and Buster’s HR total ain’t one of them. In fact, his drop off from 38% Caught Stealing to 29% is more of a concern.
    Human nature is fickle. When the team is struggling, Giants fans always seem to want to change the few things that are functioning properly: the front office, AT&T Park, Belt at first, and the likely Hall of Famer, master pitch framer, 300 hitter we have behind the plate.
    There are three more years left on Posey’s contract, plus a team option in ’22. The most compelling reasons for moving him I’ve seen on this thread are well founded concerns about his health. You can’t disregard them, nor should he.
    However, if you want the best team on the field today and next year, you don’t move your two best hitters, who are also, very good defenders.

    • djloo27 said, on August 12, 2018 at 11:52 am

      I have a theory that sometimes people only complain because they have a forum in which to do it…

    • Lurker John said, on August 12, 2018 at 3:25 pm

      I disagree. Buster’s HR total is absolutely one of your “99 problems.”

  22. snarkk said, on August 12, 2018 at 12:02 pm

    Mac the Oaf back onto the minor league DL.
    Continuing concussion issues.
    Looks like he’s done for the year…

  23. Flavor said, on August 12, 2018 at 1:04 pm

    James– interesting point raised about how to build a pitching staff in todays game. I think what the A’s are doing is interest. It’s obvious they tried to find a bunch of guys who can go through the LU twice and then start bringing in the bullpen. Bullpen arms are cheaper than SP’s and for a team like Oakland that’s important and probably a necessary way to build a staff.
    You can’t really argue with their results so far this year.

    • chipower9 said, on August 12, 2018 at 1:11 pm

      It is a trend across much of MLB. Wave of the future. Giant’s brass should take note…

    • YogiBarrister (@Yogi47951368) said, on August 12, 2018 at 1:39 pm

      It’s a strategy that only works for AL teams, another reason why they have an advantage in interleague games.

      • Macdog said, on August 12, 2018 at 2:26 pm

        The NL is 121-102 vs. the AL this season.

      • YogiBarrister (@Yogi47951368) said, on August 12, 2018 at 3:17 pm

        If the NL holds their lead, it will be the first time since 2003 they’ve had a better W-L record

  24. snarkk said, on August 12, 2018 at 1:16 pm

    Crowley the beat guy for the Merc says today that the division title looks like it will require 88 wins, based on Dbacks and LA’s current course and speed. Giants would need to go 38-14 or some such to get that many wins. Ain’t gonna happen. This team needs to focus on getting MLB reps for minor leaguers to see where they are for next season…

  25. zumiee said, on August 12, 2018 at 1:23 pm

    Williamson….and Parker. Forever linked. Each will spend the rest of their lives wondering why they chased a flyball so hard they got seriously injured. Two flyballs that weren’t worth it, ultimately. Their brief time in The Show.
    And a Rush lyric, of course:
    “Living in the limelight
    The universal dream
    For those who wish to seem
    Those who wish to be”

  26. zumiee said, on August 12, 2018 at 1:30 pm

    Regarding the Giants front office….for a while the Giants were playing chess while a lot of other teams were playing checkers; but the problem now is that the Giants are still playing chess and some other teams are now playing three-dimensional chess.

  27. willedav said, on August 12, 2018 at 1:43 pm

    Gorks hit that well but to deep CF. He pulls that and hits it that hard he’s got a chance to get it out. The potential bomb hitters—Cutch Longo Craw especially—hit way too many ground balls to IF.
    The Pirates bombs this series have all gone out to LF from RH hitters.

  28. djloo27 said, on August 12, 2018 at 1:47 pm

    Just to digress for a second, would it kill Mays to where a fuckin’ SF cap?
    Is it just stubbornness or some 60 year old resentment that he can’t let go of?
    Isn’t San Francisco his home?

    • zumiee said, on August 12, 2018 at 1:54 pm

      The Giants beat writers will never ask.

    • Bozo said, on August 12, 2018 at 1:55 pm

      Don’t know. Maybe he just likes the Spring Training “G” hat better. I know I wear mine a lot. Mine is more breathable than my SF hat.

    • James said, on August 12, 2018 at 2:09 pm

      I like that you notice this stuff . . . He does at least wear an SF logo jacket. He won his only WS in NYC.

  29. Bozo said, on August 12, 2018 at 1:49 pm

    Hundley with a triple, that’s worth the price of admission right there.

  30. snarkk said, on August 12, 2018 at 1:52 pm

    McCutchen is paid to drive in runners in situations like that.
    The guy can’t even get the bat on the ball with a man on third and one down.
    Typical for this dude and the team all season, in fact, the last several seasons.
    A good team gets that run in as a routine matter.
    I don’t see the point of McCutchen on this squad any longer.
    He’s here for another 6 weeks, then done. Get rid of him 6 weeks early and get something in return…

  31. willedav said, on August 12, 2018 at 2:04 pm

    Hope Slater winds up somewhere btw Terry Whitfield and Ken Henderson as a hitter. 20+ doubles 10+ HRs .280+ BA. Maybe power comes along as he gets more comfortable at plate and pulls ball more often.

  32. James said, on August 12, 2018 at 2:05 pm

    They gambled on Cutch repeating his 2017, Longoria returning to his 2016, Pence not being completely washed up, Bum and Cueto leading the staff. Not totally unreasonable, but with that many players at 30+, they were going to have to be 3 in 5 lucky once again. You could argue it was as much a lack of respect for the odds (or maybe failed intuition) as anything else.

  33. YogiBarrister (@Yogi47951368) said, on August 12, 2018 at 2:06 pm

    What would have had the greatest positive impact on the Giants W-L record?
    If Bumgarner, Belt and Cueto hadn’t gotten injured or if McCutchen, Longoria, and Samardzija had played up to their capabilities?

    • Flavor said, on August 12, 2018 at 2:28 pm

      probably all those things needed to happen for them to hit 88 wins

  34. Bozo said, on August 12, 2018 at 2:08 pm

    Taking the lead.

  35. Bozo said, on August 12, 2018 at 2:09 pm

    Heads up by the Gorky

  36. Bozo said, on August 12, 2018 at 2:12 pm

    Yes.

    • Bozo said, on August 12, 2018 at 2:12 pm

      Gorkys taking the extra base paid off.

  37. snarkk said, on August 12, 2018 at 2:13 pm

    Wow, Giants get a few runs for DRod…

    • Bozo said, on August 12, 2018 at 2:34 pm

      You prefer they didn’t score?

      • zumiee said, on August 12, 2018 at 2:40 pm

        I think Snarkk meant Rodriguez usually gets Cained.

  38. alleykat69 said, on August 12, 2018 at 2:17 pm

    Hundley’s a guy you have to keep around imo, Not only a solid backup, he gets key hits like today.Posey’s skips to many games with his hip/bell ring etc..
    Plus you can’t count on Bart yet to make the jump to the bugs next year and the Giants have no other catcher worth a shot in the minors..

  39. alleykat69 said, on August 12, 2018 at 2:22 pm

    Damm 112 years old!! That lady Lucy Rocks!!
    Speaking of which didn’t the Giants have a starting outfield once averaging over 112??

    • zumiee said, on August 12, 2018 at 2:26 pm

      On opening day this season. 🙂

  40. snarkk said, on August 12, 2018 at 2:34 pm

    In a game where the stolen base is of quickly decreasing value, so is Posey’s arm. He’s turned into a singles and doubles guy. So, ok, he’s a good framer, but at $20+ million /year for 3 more, his deal looks increasingly anchor like…

  41. YogiBarrister (@Yogi47951368) said, on August 12, 2018 at 2:40 pm

    The best baseball related thing that happened to me last year was befriending former Yankee player, Larry Gowell.
    If you take into consideration Babe Ruth’s pitching career, he, not John Paciorek is the Sultan of Small Sample Sizes. A 1.29 ERA and a 3000 OPS. The ball he laced down the left field line off Jim Lonborg at the end of the 1972 season is on display at Cooperstown, along with one his roommate, Ron Blomberg hit the following year.
    Anyway, Larry’s grandson is Babe Ruth or Othani of the national travel leagues. Heading into his freshman year of high school, dude’s 6’2″, 220 pounds, his father is a highly regarded college baseball coach.

  42. snarkk said, on August 12, 2018 at 2:42 pm

    Dbacks pounded Reds today with 5 jacks.
    Giants are outside looking in at today’s MLB baseball…

    • zumiee said, on August 12, 2018 at 2:57 pm

      On paper, Longoria and McCutchen seemed like an impact.

  43. willedav said, on August 12, 2018 at 2:56 pm

    Gorks was gonna be out at 2b if guy had caught the ball.. That’s his 5th steal all year vs.2 CS. Giants and running game just don’t mix. Hanson got gunned down last time I saw him too.
    Gorks steal pays off as Panik bloops one in and Giants get more insurance. Imo Bochy is doing about as much as he can with what he has.
    Everyone rags on the roster…how many games is he expected to win with it?

  44. alleykat69 said, on August 12, 2018 at 2:57 pm

    Say Snarkk,
    What ended up being your best disterilly on your trip? And your #1 rated sippin whiskey?

  45. zumiee said, on August 12, 2018 at 3:04 pm

    Dodgers walked three in the 9th and lost.

    • Macdog said, on August 12, 2018 at 3:17 pm

      Two of the walks were intentional — Ooops!

  46. zumiee said, on August 12, 2018 at 3:09 pm

    D-Rod is the best story about the Giants this season.

    • Macdog said, on August 12, 2018 at 3:13 pm

      He might be their best player right now.

  47. unca_chuck said, on August 12, 2018 at 3:19 pm

    D -Rod gonna get hosed again.

  48. willedav said, on August 12, 2018 at 3:19 pm

    As far as Posey and value and money, let’s not forget that 2012 when hit 24 bombs 103 rbis and .957 OPS and was MVP of the freaking league, the Giants paid him $600K. And of course made extra millions with all the playoff games in front of a full house.
    2014 which finished the 3 in 5, he hit .311 24/89 he was making $12.5 mil. so for those first 5 years during which Giants won 3 WS SF got incredible value for what he was paid.

    He is still a good hitter and very good C and I could not care less what he gets paid–whatever it is the Giants and their billionaire principal owner can afford it. If you’d rather have Y Grandal because he hits HRs so be it.
    But Y Grandal will NEVER EVER get even 1 ring as a Dodger let alone help lead his team to 3 of them.

    • zumiee said, on August 12, 2018 at 3:24 pm

      Well said.

  49. Lurker John said, on August 12, 2018 at 3:30 pm

    Watson has been struggling lately.

    • Macdog said, on August 12, 2018 at 3:34 pm

      For whatever reason, he’s been especially bad vs. the Pirates, both this series and the earlier one in Pittsburgh.

  50. unca_chuck said, on August 12, 2018 at 3:31 pm

    Jesus. Give it away.

  51. unca_chuck said, on August 12, 2018 at 3:33 pm

    Nice play by Cutch there. If he runs to the track he might catch it. His defense is awful.

  52. YogiBarrister (@Yogi47951368) said, on August 12, 2018 at 3:33 pm

    Oh for fuck’s sake! Who does Dereck Rodriguez have to blow to get a save around here?

  53. unca_chuck said, on August 12, 2018 at 3:35 pm

    Willie, i have no problem with Posey.. As long as he’s catching. All this talk of moving him to first is wrong.. They’d be better off waiting for the DH with him.

  54. zumiee said, on August 12, 2018 at 3:38 pm

    Bum vs. Kershaw tomorrow. I guess it had to happen.

  55. zumiee said, on August 12, 2018 at 3:40 pm

    Man, Panik’s OPS is in the .640s.

  56. djloo27 said, on August 12, 2018 at 3:46 pm

    • willedav said, on August 12, 2018 at 3:52 pm

      ha ha. Smith looked great vs. Bell and Cervelli. Kid and Hundley got it done today. Gotta love insurance runs too.

    • Flavor said, on August 12, 2018 at 7:49 pm

      this sick fuck makes me lol every time I see him

  57. Bozo said, on August 12, 2018 at 3:46 pm

    Ta-da.

  58. Macdog said, on August 12, 2018 at 3:46 pm

    Alright, Dereck gets a well-deserved win.

    • zumiee said, on August 12, 2018 at 3:48 pm

  59. snarkk said, on August 12, 2018 at 3:47 pm

    Kat, I went to 3 distilleries.
    Buffalo Trace, Wild Turkey, and Woodford Reserve.
    All very different vibes and tour types.

    Buffalo Trace was the biggest, and makes the most varieties of the three. Had kind of an industrial feel. They said they are investing $1.2 billion into capital improvements over the next 10 years, including 4 new huge barrel warehouses. Bourbon market is exploding. Did not get to see their actual distillery house, just barrel houses and a bottling line. Incredibly, this line was a by-hand bottling line for their Blanton’s Single Barrel. People put in the horse-art plug, the wax top, and the labels — all by hand on the special type bottle. All in a really small bottling shed that smells like a fog of bourbon when you go in there. By-hand bottling line looked like something out of the 30’s or earlier. The tour and tasting was free.

    Wild Turkey was very high tech distillery, with a dozen or more huge steel fermentation vats of 30K gallons each in a building as long as a football field, it’s owned by a big conglomerate. Very high tech tourist center, and really nice all glass tasting room. Friendly folks there. Got to meet and chit chat with the old master distiller Jimmy Russel (in his 80’s) and son Eddie who has taken over as de facto master distiller. Jimmy signed some small books the younger snarkette bought in the gift shop. Kind of like Willie Mays sitting on a chair in the Dugout Store. Tour and tasting was $11 per adult.

    Woodford has a very small fermentation house with only three 23K gallon fermentation vessels, and has only 3 smaller copper distillation vessels in the same building. There was fermentation going on in the open vessels, so that was cool to see the sour mash bubbling away, got to taste some. Smelled and tasted like sour bananas. Also a high tech tourist center /restaurant / and tasting room which was very busy, and quite touristy. Very upscale, definitely a money maker for them. Tour and tasting was $15 per adult.

    The best bourbon for sippin’ I’d say was the “Eagle Rare” at Buffalo Trace, a 10 year old. They only tasted that and the regular flagship Buffalo Trace 8 year old at the end of the tour. Wished they had tasted Blanton’s Single Barrel, but no dice. Also, tasted some of their vodka, and the white Dog (un-aged bourbon right out of the distillation process) which had a quite interesting taste — essentially this is the proverbial white lightning.

    Wild Turkey tasted 4 bourbons, none the 101 flagship, which was nice. I liked the Russel’s Reserve the best of that tasting, and the best bourbon IMO of all 3 of the distilleries’ tour tastes. Very smooth, great flavor, a hint of sweetness.

    Woodford only tasted its flagship Woodford Reserve and the Woodford Reserve Double Oaked, which is pretty much all the bourbons they do; they do a couple of ryes, which were not tasted. I liked the flagship just fine.

    All in, had a great time at the tours, learned a lot. Even Mrs. snarkk and the younger snarkette had good things to say about the tours. I wanted to also check out Makers Mark and Four Roses, both in the general area, but did not have the time. Oh well, maybe next visit…

    • James said, on August 12, 2018 at 3:57 pm

      Thanks for a great summary! The Russel’s is good stuff.

      Recently got to try Few Bourbon for the first time at a friend’s. Really nice. He made an excellent Black Manhattan with it, sans any ice, just a bit of lemon peel.

    • djloo27 said, on August 12, 2018 at 4:08 pm

      Great response, Snarkk.
      If you’re bored, feel free to do the same for the horse farms…

    • snarkk said, on August 12, 2018 at 4:13 pm

      I would also say that if you want fantastic Bar-B-Q, go to the Blue Door in Lexington. Hole in the wall place. It is highly rated on Trip Advisor, and for once, that panned out. Awesome brisket, pulled pork and a heavenly smoked Kielbasa. Pulled chicken was pretty good. Ribs were sold out when I got there, and I was pissed, because those had to be awesome. Sides were just fine, too, including a vinegary collard greens. Smoked with local white oak. If this place were nearby me, I’d weigh 300 pounds. Can’t recommend this barbecue highly enough. Some of the best I’ve had, and I had quite a bit while I lived in Texas for 3+ years, and in Oakland while at Cal…

      • djloo27 said, on August 12, 2018 at 4:17 pm

        The effort and detail you put in your responses might even exceed that of my door closing dummy…

      • snarkk said, on August 12, 2018 at 4:27 pm

        High praise, indeed…

  60. Lurker John said, on August 12, 2018 at 3:47 pm

    Rodriquez has been robbed of two wins I can think of by magical collapsing bullpen, but not this time. They tried, but no cigar. 6-1 now with another pretty dominant performance.

  61. unca_chuck said, on August 12, 2018 at 3:53 pm

    We got 6 left vs the Dogs, and 6 vs the Sherpas. 3 vs AZ. 15 games to make up ground against the guys in front of us. If we had only won those fucking Astro games.. . . .

    Say we go 15-0 . . . hahah! Fuck, I don’t know. I’ve given up 3 different times and still they linger around the fringes of the race. The Dogs are squirrelly as fuck all of a sudden without Jansen. AZ could always falter. Colo? 6 games vs them can do a lot..

    Kick the dogs and hey, we could be 2 behind them in the loss column.

  62. unca_chuck said, on August 12, 2018 at 3:54 pm

    D-Rod sneaking in to the ROY race
    ..

    • zumiee said, on August 12, 2018 at 4:04 pm

      He would have to beat 2 or 3 guys on the East coast, but it could be done. It’s just that challenge of East coast bias.

      • James said, on August 12, 2018 at 4:42 pm

        He’s got the Pudge pedigree working in his favor.

      • zumiee said, on August 12, 2018 at 4:51 pm

        Ah, good point.

    • snarkk said, on August 12, 2018 at 4:28 pm

      Gotta love this kid DRod.
      And he cost — nada.
      If not already, the scout that picked up on him should get a raise…

      • zumiee said, on August 12, 2018 at 4:48 pm

        Unless it’s the scout that recommended drafting Beede, then forget it.

      • Bozo said, on August 12, 2018 at 5:31 pm

        Apparently he called Pablo up before deciding.

  63. djloo27 said, on August 12, 2018 at 4:04 pm

  64. alleykat69 said, on August 12, 2018 at 4:51 pm

    Hey thanks for the most excellent summary of the distilleries you visited Snarkk, you hit up some nice ones!
    Yes I love Buffalo Trace but yeah the Eagle Rare is their signature whiskey I’ve only tried a few times but now want to get a fifth!
    I believe it’s 90 proof, that you can tell right off over others, but not overbearing,and has very little oak taste,but more with toffee,orange,and especially cocoa flavor your nose picks up along with the back of your throat! Highest recommend to stalk the shelf with one!
    I give it a solid 5 out of 5 🥃🥃🥃🥃🥃

  65. unca_chuck said, on August 12, 2018 at 5:08 pm

    Friend of mine in Colo turned me on to Russell reserve limited batch or something like that. It I thought was better than Woodford.. I’ve never liked Buffalo Trace. Like you said, it tases metallic.

    • Bozo said, on August 12, 2018 at 5:44 pm

      I do like Buffalo Trace, but I’m partial to the Rye based bourbons and given the proof, I think Buffalo Trace is pretty damn smooth. The distillery also makes Pappy Van Winkle, which I wouldn’t mind tasting one day.

      • snarkk said, on August 12, 2018 at 6:09 pm

        The distilleries all have their different recipes or “mash bills” that combine corn, rye and barley. The percentages are usually in that order, decreasing, with 51% the minimum of corn to legally qualify as bourbon. I think most bourbons are around 70%, give or take, corn. All the tour guides said the rye is added as a spicing agent, and the barley mostly as an adjunct to add sugars to pump up the alcohol, with a bit of rounding flavor. The higher the rye %, the more peppery or spicy the finish. You can really tell that if you compare a bourbon to a rye whiskey, which has to be 51% rye. Rye whiskey is more forward and has a bite generally (Bulleit has a good one), whereas the bourbon has a rounder mouth feel and a more mellow burn…

      • Bozo said, on August 12, 2018 at 7:43 pm

        I do like to use Bulleit rye when I’m making a Sazerac, even though the Sazerac Company owns the Buffalo Trace Distillery and makes their own Rye.
        Sounds like a wonderful visit to some very heavy weight Distilleries.

    • Bozo said, on August 12, 2018 at 5:59 pm

      But I’ve also never tasted the Russell Reserve so I look forward to that.

      • snarkk said, on August 12, 2018 at 7:03 pm

        You’ll like it Bozo. That’s some good S…

      • unca_chuck said, on August 13, 2018 at 8:36 am

        Yup. Russell is my latest find as well. Have a bottle of Jefferson’s Ocean. After I had a glass I found out is was 112 proof. Damn. Good though.

  66. Flavor said, on August 12, 2018 at 7:17 pm

    Snarkk your detailed responses about your trip will put you in the running for a Flappy this year. That’s right, it’s time we create an awards ceremony. Come on, who’s with me??~?~~!?!??!?! Eh,this feels like something Twinner be be best at heading up.

    • djloo27 said, on August 12, 2018 at 7:25 pm

      The Old BOYKIN Awards were a lot of fun. Twin did all the work on his own. I’d say he did it for 3 years.
      Could be a big job…

      • Flavor said, on August 12, 2018 at 7:42 pm

        maybe I’ll just spend my time going back in the archives and finding a few of those. Easier and probably better. But no joke Snarkk, you’re a whisker away from winning a Flappy for “Most Detailed Response To a Question About your Trip”.

  67. Flavor said, on August 12, 2018 at 7:44 pm

    i’m vaguely remembering the Boykins. Didn’t Twin just use that as a legal way to bust on people without me zapping his post? lol

    • djloo27 said, on August 12, 2018 at 8:59 pm

      I think he only did it on the Splash.
      There were a bunch of categories like at the Academy Awards…

  68. zumiee said, on August 12, 2018 at 8:02 pm

    Soto of the Nats is a very strong Rookie of the Year candidate. His cockiness is hard to take, though. He’s 19 years old and he does things like stare down pitchers.

    • willedav said, on August 12, 2018 at 8:17 pm

      unreal ending to that game.

      • zumiee said, on August 12, 2018 at 8:22 pm

        Yep. The Nats remain the Nats. They cannot seem to escape their Nats-ness.

      • zumiee said, on August 12, 2018 at 8:24 pm

        Marichal’s generation wonders why shut-outs are handed over to relievers now.

      • zumiee said, on August 12, 2018 at 8:32 pm

        Magical ending for the Cubs. The kind of ending that makes a team think they have destiny on their side in a season.

  69. zumiee said, on August 12, 2018 at 8:16 pm

    FanGraphs has just about given up on the Giants chances this season.
    “According to FanGraphs.com, the Giants entered play Sunday with a 0.4 chance of winning the division and 1.0 percent chance of winning a Wild Card spot. FanGraphs has put four NL clubs at zero percent already — including the Reds and Mets — and the Giants are in position to be the next to get there. No other team took the field Sunday between 0 and 14 percent.”

    • djloo27 said, on August 12, 2018 at 9:02 pm

      If an 0.4 chance translates to 250-1, I would take that on anyone at 6 games out…

  70. zumiee said, on August 12, 2018 at 9:30 pm

    I have a feeling Pence gets a start tomorrow night vs. Kershaw. Bochy will be looking for somebody to run into one. Bochy’s not going to count on the Giants stringing hits together. Nor should he.

  71. willedav said, on August 12, 2018 at 9:43 pm

    Nats/Cubs…I’d really only pull for one of them as last resort to take out LA. Should make a list of who has done that over the last 4 (?) how many years Dodgers have won the division and been denied ultimate prize, one of those 3 things Flav has situated nicely at the top to the right.

    At work I can check in here read only. It takes a while to download and funny enough the last thing to show up is the masterpiece and the light. Always makes me do a lqtm.

  72. snarkk said, on August 12, 2018 at 9:52 pm

    Thanks for the kudos on the bourbon tour descriptions.
    I know I’ve got an interested crowd here on the Flap, and some guys with experienced palates, spirits-wise, so to say. Travel expands the mind, and I enjoy writing about it. This college tour week really opened up my brain to what is going on today with young people. They’ve got a helluva lot going on now compared to when I was thinking about college years ago, when the Giants still sucked rocks during the late Stoneham years. I almost wish I were back at that age again, the possibilities seem endless. Ohio State was a damn revelation. I thought I would hate it, but I did not. Quite the opposite. The place is a city. The sports are all at top level. The various departments range from good to top notch. But, though big in scope, the specific things you can do if you apply yourself are mind boggling there. The two young men who we talked to the most, an engineering 5th year who was our tour guide, and a guy double majoring in history and French, were just damn top notch. Well spoken, articulate, engaging, and genuinely proud of their school. The engineering kid played in the band, so he waxed on about playing on Saturday afternoons in front of 105,000 people in the Horshshoe, and the games against Michigan. He said he will never forget those experiences and is glad he had the chance. Totally believed him. Both were great reps for their school. Seriously, kids like that I would not be averse to the younger snarkkette having as a boyfriend in college. Yeah, the boyfriend selection opportunities in college has crossed my mind big time as part of this college selection business…

    • djloo27 said, on August 12, 2018 at 10:19 pm

      I’d like to see what this engineering kid can do with 500 popsicle sticks and a bottle of Elmer’s glue…

      • snarkk said, on August 12, 2018 at 11:00 pm

        Probably a lot. Mechanical engineer with an astrophysics minor.
        I was ready to tell the kid to run for Congress…


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