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View Full Version : Injuries, Depth, and Money.........


joeynach
08-05-2004, 10:26 AM
It is very interesting to look at our two chicago baseball teams and disect what happened with them and what is going on. The whitesox coming in went the cheap route signing no one and letting many guys go. Instead of going for it in a weak division we held to our 58 mil payroll and went oafter guys like Politte and Jackson and in house AAA guys like borchard and Gload who could play for peanuts. The cubs increased payroll and signed numerous guys this offseason and continued to beef up there rotation and lineup with proven guys like lee, walker, hawkins, maddux, and dempster.

But when you would think the cubs would be a powerhouse team 30 games over and the sox a mere .500 team the opposite happened. The sox started off very strong out of the gate with guys like Schoenweis, Uribe, Harris, and Cotts who make squat playing outstanding ball propelling us to 1st. Meanwhile the cubs stuggled with injuries to there veterans the entire 1st half and found some of there high hopes in Lee, Patterson and others come out flat. But the cubs never dropped away. They replaced injuries to Sosa, Wood, and Grudz with Hollandsworth, Walker, and Rusch. They had much depth and were able to tread water so to speak until there studs got back

The sox then bitten by the injury bug had no depth beneath the overachieving core it had. Losing your two best players is hard, but replacing them with Hollandsworth and Walker would have been better than Gload/Borchard/Perez. So as we fade away to the .500 team we all thought we would be in the winter we are left to ponder the reporcusions of our low budget again. As we see the cubs now charging up the standings (wildcard) fully healthy again we ask oursleves how come we look like night compared to day when injuried. Managment again this and payroll too low to field a real winner that. But then what about Minny there payroll is lower than ours and they had injures too this year. The marlins won the whole thing last year with one of the lowest payrolls in the league, and they even lost there #1 pitcher for 2 months. So then why would this team comprise itself to be a team that cant win without depth, high profile players, and veterans who cost a lot of $$ when they never spend or have that kind of money to being with???

34rancher
08-05-2004, 10:36 AM
It is very interesting to look at our two chicago baseball teams and disect what happened with them and what is going on. The whitesox coming in went the cheap route signing no one and letting many guys go. Instead of going for it in a weak division we held to our 58 mil payroll and went oafter guys like Politte and Jackson and in house AAA guys like borchard and Gload who could play for peanuts. The cubs increased payroll and signed numerous guys this offseason and continued to beef up there rotation and lineup with proven guys like lee, walker, hawkins, maddux, and dempster.

But when you would think the cubs would be a powerhouse team 30 games over and the sox a mere .500 team the opposite happened. The sox started off very strong out of the gate with guys like Schoenweis, Uribe, Harris, and Cotts who make squat playing outstanding ball propelling us to 1st. Meanwhile the cubs stuggled with injuries to there veterans the entire 1st half and found some of there high hopes in Lee, Patterson and others come out flat. But the cubs never dropped away. They replaced injuries to Sosa, Wood, and Grudz with Hollandsworth, Walker, and Rusch. They had much depth and were able to tread water so to speak until there studs got back

The sox then bitten by the injury bug had no depth beneath the overachieving core it had. Losing your two best players is hard, but replacing them with Hollandsworth and Walker would have been better than Gload/Borchard/Perez. So as we fade away to the .500 team we all thought we would be in the winter we are left to ponder the reporcusions of our low budget again. As we see the cubs now charging up the standings (wildcard) fully healthy again we ask oursleves how come we look like night compared to day when injuried. Managment again this and payroll too low to field a real winner that. But then what about Minny there payroll is lower than ours and they had injures too this year. The marlins won the whole thing last year with one of the lowest payrolls in the league, and they even lost there #1 pitcher for 2 months. So then why would this team comprise itself to be a team that cant win without depth, high profile players, and veterans who cost a lot of $$ when they never spend or have that kind of money to being with???

actually, the marlins when the year ended had one of the top 10 payrolls. Common myth, much like Babe Ruth being the all-time strikeout leader, when he is not even in the top 70.

KingXerxes
08-05-2004, 10:38 AM
Depth is a luxury that very few teams can seemingly afford these days.

That being said, the White Sox absolutely need to get some roster depth through out the organization - and given economic constraints, it looks like the only way that may happen is through the minor league system. That's why it's a little discouraging to always see prospects unloaded to grab a player.

I'll be the first to admit that a prospect is an unproven commodity, and a team is usually far better off unloading "potential" for a proven major leaguer, but even this has its limits.

A good example is Carl Everett. Love him or hate him, the White Sox have traded for him twice in the past two seasons. I can't remember whom they have given up (collectively) in these two trades - but basically you've traded four or five prospects to get the guy for two half seasons, and this guy is not the second coming of Babe Ruth.

Management needs to either come to the conclusion that they're going to mortage the future to try and win (See Arizona) or that they're going to bite the bullet for a few years in the hopes of rebounding with home grown talent (See Cleveland). Right now they seem to be trying some sort of hybrid game plan that I don't quite understand.

joeynach
08-05-2004, 11:15 AM
Depth is a luxury that very few teams can seemingly afford these days.

That being said, the White Sox absolutely need to get some roster depth through out the organization - and given economic constraints, it looks like the only way that may happen is through the minor league system. That's why it's a little discouraging to always see prospects unloaded to grab a player.

I'll be the first to admit that a prospect is an unproven commodity, and a team is usually far better off unloading "potential" for a proven major leaguer, but even this has its limits.

A good example is Carl Everett. Love him or hate him, the White Sox have traded for him twice in the past two seasons. I can't remember whom they have given up (collectively) in these two trades - but basically you've traded four or five prospects to get the guy for two half seasons, and this guy is not the second coming of Babe Ruth.

Management needs to either come to the conclusion that they're going to mortage the future to try and win (See Arizona) or that they're going to bite the bullet for a few years in the hopes of rebounding with home grown talent (See Cleveland). Right now they seem to be trying some sort of hybrid game plan that I don't quite understand.
You have to have money to do the arizona thing and you have to have a lot of prospects to do the cleveland thing. The sox dont have either so they have no choice. However who the hell of heard of these prospects that have been so good on the twins. I never heard about Lew Ford and Justin Morenue until they came in this year. I mean if they really were highly touted prospects we would have heard of them right, after all we all know about prospects from other teams that are supposed to be good. We know about guzman on the cubs, reyes on the mets, proctor on the yanks, sizemore on the tribe, and others. Yet no name AAA guys from the twins continously blossom into these great players, what gives. That luck is bound to run out.

KingXerxes
08-05-2004, 11:21 AM
You have to have money to do the arizona thing and you have to have a lot of prospects to do the cleveland thing. The sox dont have either so they have no choice. However who the hell of heard of these prospects that have been so good on the twins. I never heard about Lew Ford and Justin Morenue until they came in this year. I mean if they really were highly touted prospects we would have heard of them right, after all we all know about prospects from other teams that are supposed to be good. We know about guzman on the cubs, reyes on the mets, proctor on the yanks, sizemore on the tribe, and others. Yet no name AAA guys from the twins continously blossom into these great players, what gives. That luck is bound to run out.
That's not luck - by any definition. That's depth.

When you have a larger population of would be major leaguers, it stands to reason that you will get a few more major leaguers from that population. Minnesota has shown from the mid 1980's on, that they know what they're doing organizationally. To call that luck is to just sound bitter.

joeynach
08-05-2004, 11:27 AM
That's not luck - by any definition. That's depth.

When you have a larger population of would be major leaguers, it stands to reason that you will get a few more major leaguers from that population. Minnesota has shown from the mid 1980's on, that they know what they're doing organizationally. To call that luck is to just sound bitter.
Some people that call a nobody that become a someboady luck. Chris Moneymaker was a nobody to poker, a rookie no name who barely go into the WSOP. Once in he went on a tear and won the whole thing. Luck right? In the 2005 WSOP he came back and wasn't lucky, get worked and elimanted from the get go. Thats what i meant when i said luck. At some point they are bound to miss one of there callups, at one point torii hunter will go down and they kid they call up will flop and go boarchard on us instead of Lou Ford on us.

WinTwins
08-05-2004, 11:33 AM
However who the hell of heard of these prospects that have been so good on the twins. I never heard about Lew Ford and Justin Morenue until they came in this year....Yet no name AAA guys from the twins continously blossom into these great players, what gives. That luck is bound to run out.
Actually, Morneau has been VERY highly regarded in many places, going back to last year. You're correct about Ford though, in that nobody projected him to be much more than a fourth outfielder. The Twins are still teeming with AAA-AA prospects however, so I don't think they've come close to tapping out that resource. OF Jason Kubel, SPs JD Durbin and Scott Baker are all close to being MLB-ready and the Twins just recalled Guzman's replacement Jason Bartlett, along with RP Jesse Crain. These are all big-time future contributors. This is why the Twins have been able to withstand the Sox in recent years--their depth has helped them avoid major catastrophe, and the Sox have trudged along with Gload/Perez/Borchard, etc. And because of the depth, they haven't needed to resort to making any panic trades, so all the pieces reamain in place for the future as well.

I'm not recommending copying the Twins, but as far as minor-league depth is concerned, I don't see how it could hurt the Sox, even if it means taking a year or two off from division competition like the Indians.

KingXerxes
08-05-2004, 11:41 AM
Some people that call a nobody that become a someboady luck. Chris Moneymaker was a nobody to poker, a rookie no name who barely go into the WSOP. Once in he went on a tear and won the whole thing. Luck right? In the 2005 WSOP he came back and wasn't lucky, get worked and elimanted from the get go. Thats what i meant when i said luck. At some point they are bound to miss one of there callups, at one point torii hunter will go down and they kid they call up will flop and go boarchard on us instead of Lou Ford on us.
If Minnesota was plucking guys out of the stands and suiting them up to play second base - and succeeding, then your "luck" hypothesis would make much more sense. But that's not what is happening.

Countless numbers of very good major league players were not expected to succeed at the top level when they were in the minor leagues. I remember seeing a scouting report on Mark McGwire when he was in AA for Oakland and it read that he could be expected to hit 10 - 15 homers per year. When a lot of these kids are young, these scouts and analysts are taking wild guesses as to who will be a good player and who won't make it. When a guy is 18 - 22 years old, it's still really a crapshoot as to whether or not he'll be any good. There are exceptions certainly - but that's why they're called exceptions.

Has Minnesota had some highly touted flops? Sure, David McCarty comes to mind immediately, and I'm sure there have been others. The Twins have a knack, however, of consistently being able to bring up solid (if not great) major league talent - much more so than most teams.

Lip Man 1
08-05-2004, 12:16 PM
I was talking about this issue with Dan Helpingstein on Tuesday (i.e. hybrid).

The problem is you have a G.M. with a football player's 'go for it,' attitude wanting to win yesterday, win today and win tomorrow.

Absolutely nothing wrong with that and a refreshing change from Ron Schueler.

However the problem is that ownership does not have that attitude for whatever reason, whether justified or not.

So basically you are trying to mix oil and water and it just doesn't work. Kenny Williams' attitude fits on a team like the Yankees, Braves, Cardinals or Red Sox.

Either ownership needs to get a G.M. who knows and knows how to build and develop a great minor league system (a la Roland Hemond and Larry Himes in Sox history) or ownership needs to give Williams' the budget to cut it loose.

This team has had an average seasonal record of 83-79 since the White Flag Trade. That's spinning your wheels folks and it's getting really old.

Lip