Newest Brewer, Nyjer Morgan, is a hockey prodigy. How do I know that? He told us……like a just a few weeks ago…….is anyone reading this site anymore? Plus, I have watched every Brewers game this season and that guy is not afraid to lose a few teeth, eh? Take for example his blasting of former teammate Ryan Doumit at home plate last night. Or just 6 days ago when he straight board checked Briann McCann during a play at the plate (see below).
I grew up in Wisconsin and went to college in Minnesota, so I know a hockey check when I see one…..and Nyjer Morgan is checking every catcher he can find. Morgan only weighs 175 pounds and he laid McCann and Doumit flat on their backs in the same week. Look at McCann’s face, he looks like he just gut punched in the crotch by an elephant. Both collisions not only knocked the catcher over, but knocked the baseballs out of their grasp. I have seen Prince Fielder blast catchers before, but they always seem to hold on to the ball. What is it that Morgan is doing differently?
It has to be the hockey training. Look at these pictures side-by-side:
Now, when you look at these what jumps out at you? There are two key things that I can see:
1) Look at the elbows – In both pictures of Morgan (and the one below), his elbows are the main point of impact with the catcher. Look at how the hockey player has his elbows flared out when making his hit. That forearm/elbow goes straight into the catchers shoulder/ribcage region. Morgan is doing the same thing, just without pads for himself.
2) The point of attack is the upper body – Morgan is not shying away from going at the thickest part of his opponent. His legs act as a spring to catapult him straight into the chest/shoulder of the catcher. Hockey players use their knees to gain leverage up against the boards, Morgan does the exact same thing.
Morgan has found a way to use his strong hockey background to make himself one of the most feared locomotives coming down the tracks from 3rd base to home plate. Hockey players always play with no fear and I think that Morgan’s mentality fits that profile. Very few baseball players play that way any more. How exciting is it to watch a play at th plate to begin with, then add the smallest guy on the field demolishing the catcher on the play……….awesome.
Nyjer probably could have played in the NHL, but after one season at the Major Junior level he focused his efforts on baseball. In fact he left home at 16 to play minor league hockey, and never graduated High School (now has a GED). This guy had spent almost his whole life thinking he was a hockey player. How could we expect him to not pick fights and try to lay a hit on someone at every available opportunity? The kid is Canadian at heart!!!!
This article was mostly so I could use these pictures of Morgan mashing on people. Pretty fun stuff. There will be more on NyMo in the coming days. I have one of our staff writers hard at work on a piece to introduce us all to Morgan’s alter ego, Tony Plush. The same Tony Plush who tweeted about the collision pictured above, right after it happened. So stay tuned for that.
In “Jeff Suppan Sucks” news, The Onion wrote a terrific articleabout Suppan’s new job. If you share a general spite for Suppan, this article will make you laugh until milk shoots out your nose…….which will be weird because you aren’t drinking milk.
With the Brewers 6-0 win over the Pirates last night, they move into sole possession of 2nd place in the NL Central. The Reds lost las night, so the Brewers are only 1.5 games behind them for the division lead.
Prince Fielder has 14 RBI’s in the last 6 days, which is second on the All-Time Brewers list. Fielder was right behind who else, but Robin Yount. Yount had 15 RBI’s during a 6 game stretch back in September of 1987.
One final thing I want to touch on. The Kansis City Royals blog, Kings of Kauffman, put up a hilarious article today. If you like the Major League movies, then this is a must read. Great work Gage!
Tonight’s game has Randy Wolf up on the hill against Paul Maholm. Neither of these pitcher’s has a win under their belt, but Maholm’s ERA is 5 points lower than Randy’s. This one could get ugly folks, but if we send Randy all of our positive mojo maybe he can give up just enough runs that we still win in the end. Weirder things have happened………