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Flight #24
04-23-2006, 10:40 PM
Caught this summary of "medium to high salaried acquisitions" by the great Billy Beane over time. Not an overwhelming list by any means.

2000
Player Salary VORP
Appier 5.6M 32.5
Olivares 4.0 -7.4

2001
Damon 7.1 -2.4

2002
Dye 11.7 9.3
Justice 7.0 11.5

2003
Dye 11.7 -21.0
Foulke 6.0 37.0

2004
Dye 11.7 12.0
Kotsay 5.5 36.8

2005
Dotel 4.8 3.8
Durazo 4.7 -1.1
Kendall 10.6 10.5
Kotsay 6.5 15.4

2006
Kendall 11.5 awful
Kotsay 7.0 decent if healthy
Loiaza 6.0 maybe ok?
Payton 4.0 eh

It's also interesting because the metric used to evaluate him is a stathead favorite - apparently they DO eat their own kind!

So out of 17 acquisitions, he's had 3 good years from guys he's paid big money to (Appier, Foulke, Kotsay). The rest - ranging from horrid to OK. Certainly not what you'd expect from the gold standard of GMs and the guy who's leading the world in simulated championships!

DSpivack
04-24-2006, 02:44 PM
Caught this summary of "medium to high salaried acquisitions" by the great Billy Beane over time. Not an overwhelming list by any means.


It's also interesting because the metric used to evaluate him is a stathead favorite - apparently they DO eat their own kind!

So out of 17 acquisitions, he's had 3 good years from guys he's paid big money to (Appier, Foulke, Kotsay). The rest - ranging from horrid to OK. Certainly not what you'd expect from the gold standard of GMs and the guy who's leading the world in simulated championships!

Hah, he sucks at his own game.

scottjanssens
04-24-2006, 03:30 PM
BB's method is not intended to get the best players, but to get the best players that they can afford. With a medium payroll, it's hardly surprising that there are no superstar signings.

BB's goal is to remain competive within his budget. He's done a pretty good job of that. The A's have had winning seasons every year since '99 while remaining in the lower half to lower third of payrolls in the league. He's also made the playoffs more often than the Sox since then. Sure the Sox won it all, but they did it with more money, and a lot more money to keep the team together. This season the Sox are outspending the A's by about $35-40 million. The list of BB-signed players would be different if he had a payroll in the top half or third of baseball.

Fuller_Schettman
04-24-2006, 03:45 PM
But really, what difference does it make if you win 79 games or 89 games if you are not playing baseball in October. Or going 1-and-out when you do.

Didn't KW and BB have similar budgets in 2005, after you back out the Big Hurt?

maurice
04-24-2006, 03:59 PM
What, no mention of the great Terrence Long?

ondafarm
04-24-2006, 04:01 PM
BB's method is not intended to get the best players, but to get the best players that they can afford. With a medium payroll, it's hardly surprising that there are no superstar signings.

BB's goal is to remain competive within his budget. He's done a pretty good job of that. The A's have had winning seasons every year since '99 while remaining in the lower half to lower third of payrolls in the league. He's also made the playoffs more often than the Sox since then. Sure the Sox won it all, but they did it with more money, and a lot more money to keep the team together. This season the Sox are outspending the A's by about $35-40 million. The list of BB-signed players would be different if he had a payroll in the top half or third of baseball.

The A's have been in the playoffs because they've had a great crop of starting pitchers coming out of their farm system. Great pitching with a rosterful of good value players should get you into the playoffs.

Dan Mega
04-24-2006, 04:35 PM
BP bases, and creates, all their stats and formulas based of what Billy Beane does when it comes to MLB wheeling and dealing. Unless it stops, BB won't ever look like a bad GM.

He is doing pretty good with what he has, though. The AL west isn't the easiest of divisions to play in.

However, in the playoffs he has done nothing. Every time his A's get beaten in the playoffs, BP says that the other team was lucky.

soxtalker
04-24-2006, 07:26 PM
The A's have been in the playoffs because they've had a great crop of starting pitchers coming out of their farm system. Great pitching with a rosterful of good value players should get you into the playoffs.

OK. But that is probably part of his strategy. He uses his farm system differently than KW. If you have to focus on low-cost players, one of the ways you do this is by making sure that you draft/acquire good players in the minors -- and don't trade them away.

chidonez
04-24-2006, 07:52 PM
BB's method is not intended to get the best players, but to get the best players that they can afford. With a medium payroll, it's hardly surprising that there are no superstar signings.

The best thing about Moneyball is the emphasis on using now well-known principles from finance (e.g., you can't beat the market all the time, but you can look for arbitrage opportunities where you can recognize an inefficiency). The catch is, just like a hedge fund trader, you can't recognize real opportunity in the market without superior data. Moneyball has been ridiculed enough at this point, but I still stand by the basic premise. The challenge for GM's at this point is to harvest better data, either through the scouting system or from statistics. I'm not an expert, but I'm guessing that at this point every team is getting more or less the same data, and the same quality of analysis from their sabermatricians. Therefore, there is no real advantage. We've got an efficient market again, folks!

I'd also recommend Liars' Poker, by the same author. He does a good job of writing popular books about basic business principles, and they're a fun read.

Daver
04-24-2006, 08:12 PM
Billy Beane doesn't even use the draft and his farm system to his advantage if you really get right down to it. Terry Ryan in Minnesota knows how to build a team and a system through the draft, and has proven it. Billy Beane does one thing really well, he sells himself, and his philosphy well to the media, one of these days the media will catch up with the fact that as a GM he has yet to win a playoff series.

Here's to you Billy Beane, for proving popularity overshadows mediocraty, if you convince the experts that it is not your fault.


This Buds for you.

NonetheLoaiza
04-24-2006, 08:19 PM
Terry Ryan in Minnesota knows how to build a team and a system through the draft, and has proven it.
Don't forget about Schuelerholz down in ATL.

Tragg
04-24-2006, 08:24 PM
Don't forget about Schuelerholz down in ATL. He's won, what, 14 straight divisions, a couple of pennants, a world series, NUMEROUS playoff series (versus ZERO) and isn't nearly the self-promoter. Scheulerholz is the far more accomplished GM.

This is all perfunctory anyway.....BP has already declared the As to be baseball's best team, they will win 103 games (21 better than us) and, per Sheehan, pitchers 6-10 on the As could fill out the rotation for 1/2 of the teams in ML baseball (that's why they signed a stud like Loiza, of course).

Liars Poker is a fun read; but, really, a lot of what he talks about that was done is illegal, but no one went to jail, so I think he hyperbolized (people in the oil industry went to jail for that similar sort of stuff in the 1980s). He also wrote a nice piece on his high school baseball coach in New Orleans; it was published in the NY Times Mag, I think.

It's hard for me to make any sense out of the chart because I don't know if 11.7, 7, -21 are good, bad or indifferent.

chidonez
04-24-2006, 08:25 PM
Billy Beane does one thing really well, he sells himself, and his philosphy well to the media, one of these days the media will catch up with the fact that as a GM he has yet to win a playoff series.

I never got that impression. Lewis has acknowledged that it was he who built up the Beane persona, much to Billy's chagrine. Unless you take Joe Morgan's side, and who could, I'll give BB the benefit of the doubt (it's all in the epilogue of the most recent edition of Moneyball). The author has written a bunch of books that sensationalize its characters, including the author's own. He's in the business of selling books, afterall. And until I have more evidence, I'm convinced that things got out of control due to the author's ambition. Note: BB didn't get a dime from the book, and I'm not sure how he would profit from the popularity. In fact, he turned down an offer from the BoSox at one point.

FarWestChicago
04-24-2006, 08:33 PM
I never got that impression. Lewis has acknowledged that it was he who built up the Beane persona, much to Billy's chagrine. Unless you take Joe Morgan's side, and who could, I'll give BB the benefit of the doubt (it's all in the epilogue of the most recent edition of Moneyball). The author has written a bunch of books that sensationalize its characters, including the author's own. He's in the business of selling books, afterall. And until I have more evidence, I'm convinced that things got out of control due to the author's ambition. Note: BB didn't get a dime from the book, and I'm not sure how he would profit from the popularity. In fact, he turned down an offer from the BoSox at one point.You never lived in the Bay Area. Beane is quite the egomaniac. I've always felt he turned down the Wrong Sox offer because he didn't want to lose his "payroll" excuse for his playoff failures.

Daver
04-24-2006, 08:52 PM
In fact, he turned down an offer from the BoSox at one point.

Only a fool with no resume would take a job in Boston, where the scrutiny is magnified 10X, there was no way BB and his ego would put himself in that position.

maurice
04-25-2006, 12:51 PM
uses his farm system differently than KW...by making sure that you [B]draft/acquire good players in the minors -- and don't trade them away.

Well, the Sox 25-man roster currently has 8 guys who meet this description: Anderson, Buehrle, Cotts, Crede, Garland, Jenks, Logan, and McCarthy. With the exception of Logan, all of them are key contributors. The A's have about 12, depending on what you consider a "player in the minors." That's not a huge difference, IMO.

Current A's players who don't meet this description include Bradley, Calero, Halsey, Haren, Kendall, Kennedy, Kotsay, Loaiza, Melhuse, Payton, Thomas, and Witasik.

If I had more time, it would be interesting to see how other teams (particularly Minnesota and Atlanta) compare.

soxinem1
04-25-2006, 02:31 PM
Don't forget about Schuelerholz down in ATL.


Before he was GM of ATL he was an excellent one for KC, and they have never been the same since he left. Not only were most of his teams annual contenders, he took one of the few that was not, a team tainted by drug scandal in 1983, made it into a Division winner in 84, and brought them their first World Series crown in 1985. He drafts well, has an eye for players (esp. pitchers) in the amateur draft, minor leagues (of other teams especially), and majors. Not many GM's can claim all that.

KC should do what they can to get him back, I'll bet he would turn them around within three years.

I would take Schuerholz in a second over Beane.

scottjanssens
04-25-2006, 02:37 PM
No one here said Beane was the best GM. Just that he's done well with his limited resources.

Tragg
04-25-2006, 11:53 PM
The list of BB-signed players would be different if he had a payroll in the top half or third of baseball. The Sox won a WS with a 70mill ish budget and $8 million of that played 1 month. With a limited budget, Beane is spending, what, 10 million on a punch and judy hitter named Jason Kendall (Scott Podsednik hitter, without the speed), but wouldn't spend $4 million on Jermaine Dye. You could probably AGGREGATE the production of all of the prospects that Ken Williams has traded away and it wouldn't equal the production of Cotts, whom Beane traded away. (exaggeration but certainly no single player is close to Cotts).

It's not that he's a bad GM...he isn't. It's just that he isn't worthy of coronation, of being called the leader of the new wave of GMs. And his progeny haven't exactly distinguished themselves either.

Flight #24
04-26-2006, 09:07 AM
The Sox won a WS with a 70mill ish budget and $8 million of that played 1 month. With a limited budget, Beane is spending, what, 10 million on a punch and judy hitter named Jason Kendall (Scott Podsednik hitter, without the speed), but wouldn't spend $4 million on Jermaine Dye. You could probably AGGREGATE the production of all of the prospects that Ken Williams has traded away and it wouldn't equal the production of Cotts, whom Beane traded away. (exaggeration but certainly no single player is close to Cotts).

It's not that he's a bad GM...he isn't. It's just that he isn't worthy of coronation, of being called the leader of the new wave of GMs. And his progeny haven't exactly distinguished themselves either.

Exactly. His reputation is supposedly based on 2 things:
1) His definition of offensive stats, which supposedly give him a leg up on identifying "true" good hitters, but which in reality have produced little when it comes to meaningful results against good competition (i.e. the playoffs).

2) His selection of pitchers, which again, in reality, is based primarily on having top 5-10 draft picks.

Actually, to be 100% correct, his reputation is based on 2 things: Being deified in a book, and having pseudo-scientific groups like BP reiterate his godliness based on simulated results.

scottjanssens
04-26-2006, 09:49 AM
The Sox won a WS with a 70mill ish budget and $8 million of that played 1 month. With a limited budget, Beane is spending, what, 10 million on a punch and judy hitter named Jason Kendall (Scott Podsednik hitter, without the speed), but wouldn't spend $4 million on Jermaine Dye. You could probably AGGREGATE the production of all of the prospects that Ken Williams has traded away and it wouldn't equal the production of Cotts, whom Beane traded away. (exaggeration but certainly no single player is close to Cotts).

It's not that he's a bad GM...he isn't. It's just that he isn't worthy of coronation, of being called the leader of the new wave of GMs. And his progeny haven't exactly distinguished themselves either.

And now the Sox payroll tops $100 million and they've completely revamped the team because they didn't think they could do it again with the same team. I happen to agree with that assessment. Unlike the moronic media, I don't think that was a gutsy move by Williams; just a smart one.

While the ultimate goal is to win the World Series, another goal is to keep a winning team on the field. Beane has done that exceedingly well. They only negative thing that can be said about Beane's accomplishments is that he hasn't won the World Series. You can say that about a lot of GMs. If that's the sole criteria of a GMs ability, then most GMs suck.

Beane gets flack from fans who dislike BP and sabermetrics in general. It's interesting how they don't mention sabermetrics mad Theo Epstein who uses stats extensively even though he has an astronomical budget. Well they can't, he won the World Series. They also seem ignorant or forget that just about every MLB team has a sabermetrician on payroll. Including the White Sox.

Show me someone who's annoyed about Beane being given too much credit and I'll show you someone who pays too much attention to the media.

Flight #24
04-26-2006, 10:04 AM
Beane gets flack from fans who dislike BP and sabermetrics in general. It's interesting how they don't mention sabermetrics mad Theo Epstein who uses stats extensively even though he has an astronomical budget. Well they can't, he won the World Series. They also seem ignorant or forget that just about every MLB team has a sabermetrician on payroll. Including the White Sox.


Actually, Epstein uses stats but also uses other/more traditional methods as well. And in any case, as you note: His title was driven more by budget than the impact his stats analysis had. Manny Ramirez & Curt Schilling are budgetary acquisitions, not sabermetric ones.

It's also not about hating sabermetrics. It's about maintaining some semblance of balance. BP will tell you teams are bad but lucky because their stats can't measure the impact of certain guys. That's just plain wrong.

When it comes to Beane, he's a solid, not great GM. Above average, in a group of guys, below the likes of Terry Ryan, John Schuerholz, Kenny Williams. He's masterful at managing his publicity though, which is what keeps him at or near the top of the GM list anytime the best GMs are discussed.

maurice
04-26-2006, 10:44 AM
As noted, the Red Sox won by paying huge salaries to star players who were coveted by all MLB teams, not just some sub-set of stat-head GMs. After their big-money pitchers got dinged up or changed teams, the Red Sox were swept out of the first round of the playoffs by a Sox team with about half their total payroll.

The Sox won a WS with a 70mill ish budget and $8 million of that played 1 month.

Don't forget that another $6+ mil. was devoted to Shingo Takatsu, Timo Perez & Ben Davis. After Takatsu & Davis were set aside, KW replaced them with new big money acquisitions: Jenks and Widger.

spiffie
04-26-2006, 10:52 AM
For all those who think BP does nothing but slobber at the feet of Beane, their new book has a chapter about why Beane fails in the playoffs, and attempts to find what actually does help teams win in the playoffs. It's an interesting read in that it shows how few of the traits that we always say are the keys to winning in the playoffs are actually traits of World Series winners. It does find a couple of things that seem to be in common though amongst teams that do well in the playoffs, and shows that Beane's teams over the last 20 years have only once been in the top quarter of teams that are "built for the playoffs" and in a couple of cases ranks in the worst playoff teams of the last 20 or so years.

In the end it is a fairly logical conclusion saying lots of different things work in the playoffs, and that over a 5 game series lots of things can happen with such a small sample size to look at. This is a perspective that normally we're quite willing to accept (no one here seriously called the Royals better than us after they beat us 2 out of 3 this season after all) but because it's Beane and Beane is, admittedly, an *******, it's proof that everything he did was meaningless and his teams really sucked and blah blah blah.

BP and the stat geeks get a bad rap because they try to use their numbers for things that right now they simply cannot be used for. So I avoid that sort of thing from them. But their analysis of past events to try and pull trends and information from history is interesting and enlightening in a lot of cases.

scottjanssens
04-26-2006, 11:17 AM
Actually, Epstein uses stats but also uses other/more traditional methods as well. And in any case, as you note: His title was driven more by budget than the impact his stats analysis had. Manny Ramirez & Curt Schilling are budgetary acquisitions, not sabermetric ones.

Agreed. But that's the point, Beane does pretty well without the budget.

It's also not about hating sabermetrics. It's about maintaining some semblance of balance. BP will tell you teams are bad but lucky because their stats can't measure the impact of certain guys. That's just plain wrong.

My comments are mostly aimed at those who reflexively hate Beane and don't recognize where he's coming from. Obviously, you're not in that camp.

As for the whole "luck" thing... BP gets slammed when they say things like that, but when Konerko and Kenny Williams say the Sox were the beneficiaries of a fair amount of luck last season, it's ok :smile:. I think the biggest miscommunication is that when BP says something is lucky, they don't mean it in a derogatory way. But then again, there's some folks here with persecution complexes that manage to find insults in compliments.

When it comes to Beane, he's a solid, not great GM. Above average, in a group of guys, below the likes of Terry Ryan, John Schuerholz, Kenny Williams. He's masterful at managing his publicity though, which is what keeps him at or near the top of the GM list anytime the best GMs are discussed.

I don't think it's possible to say one GM is better than another with any authority. Would Williams have won last season with a payroll in the lower half? Would Beane have won any time since he took over if he'd had a payroll in the top third?

My main point, is that there's a lot of folks here who say Beane sucks and look for any evidence to support that thesis. My reply is: for a guy who sucks, he sure does win a lot.

maurice
04-26-2006, 11:30 AM
"Luck" obviously exists in baseball. The problem is that it's overemphasized by folks who believe that essentially every relevant aspect of baseball currently is quantifiable and, thus, that anything contrary to the stats = luck. (It's also overemphasized by idiot announcers like Buck, when they claim that all of the breaks favor one team.)

The most obvious example of this nonsense is the oft-repeated knee-jerk claim that any team outperforming their Pythagorean W/L is just really lucky. That could be true with respect to a particular team, but there is a very good chance that the team actually is relying on relevant skills that are not accurately measured by total runs scored / allowed.

This nonsense also rears its ugly head in discussions of player evaluation, most notoriously by Lewis in Moneyball. To use stats appropriately, you have to acknowledge that they are a limited tool and do not accurately measure some extremely relevant aspects of the game, especially when you're talking about 18-year-old prospects.

Flight #24
04-26-2006, 11:35 AM
Agreed. But that's the point, Beane does pretty well without the budget.

...

As for the whole "luck" thing... BP gets slammed when they say things like that, but when Konerko and Kenny Williams say the Sox were the beneficiaries of a fair amount of luck last season, it's ok :smile:. I think the biggest miscommunication is that when BP says something is lucky, they don't mean it in a derogatory way. But then again, there's some folks here with persecution complexes that manage to find insults in compliments.



Beane does win, but so do a bunch of other GMs that's the point.

On luck, it's not that they call the Sox lucky. They did get some luck, as do all teams. Konerko & Kenny refer to being relatively injury free in the pitching staff, having some bounces/breaks go their way, etc as their evidence of luck, but don't say that absent those they wouldn't have won or been as good of a team. BP says "Our statistics show that they are really a .500 team. That they are not actually a .500 team means that they are lucky." It's the arrogance that pisses people off. "Any deviation from our model must be due to luck".

scottjanssens
04-26-2006, 11:58 AM
"Luck" obviously exists in baseball. The problem is that it's overemphasized by folks who believe that essentially every relevant aspect of baseball currently is quantifiable and, thus, that anything contrary to the stats = luck. (It's also overemphasized by idiot announcers like Buck, when they claim that all of the breaks favor one team.)
I don't think BP overemphasizes luck. BP has spent quite a bit of time examining how the Sox fared so well last season. They aren't doing that because they think the Sox simply got lucky.

At any rate, my point was it's silly for people to get bent out of shape when BP mentions luck or "regression to the mean", and not make a peep when the Sox GM himself says it.

The most obvious example of this nonsense is the oft-repeated knee-jerk claim that any team outperforming their Pythagorean W/L is just really lucky. That could be true with respect to a particular team, but there is a very good chance that the team actually is relying on relevant skills that are not accurately measured by total runs scored / allowed.
Pythagorean wins is a decent indicator (as opposed to predictor as it's sometimes misused or misinterpreted) that's surprisingly accurate. It takes something anomalous to trip it up significantly. Something like say, the White Sox pitching staff last season.

The point of Pythagorean wins is it shows you who's performing above or below expectations. One should use that information to find explanations for the anomaly. It's true that some folks at BP tend to trust Pythagorean wins too quickly before looking for the cause of any anomalies. But that reflects badly upon them, not necessarily the tool. Those at BP who actually looked at the bigger stats picture of the Sox looked right away to the pitching. Sure, people misuse Pythagorean wins, but then lots of people misuse ERA.

This nonsense also rears its ugly head in discussions of player evaluation, most notoriously by Lewis in Moneyball. To use stats appropriately, you have to acknowledge that they are a limited tool and do not accurately measure some extremely relevant aspects of the game, especially when you're talking about 18-year-old prospects.
No argument here. And no argument from most people interested in stats. I'm not a fan of PECOTA, but I feel I should point out that PECOTA agrees with this statement as it doesn't project actual values but probabilities.

scottjanssens
04-26-2006, 11:59 AM
BP says "Our statistics show that they are really a .500 team. That they are not actually a .500 team means that they are lucky." It's the arrogance that pisses people off. "Any deviation from our model must be due to luck".

BP doesn't say that. BP is misinterpreted as saying that.

scottjanssens
04-26-2006, 12:00 PM
And when Konerko and Williams said the Sox were lucky, they meant it specifically in that luck played a role in winning so many 1-run games.

scottjanssens
04-26-2006, 12:03 PM
Beane does win, but so do a bunch of other GMs that's the point.

Actually the point is those other GMs have higher payrolls.

Flight #24
04-26-2006, 12:21 PM
Actually the point is those other GMs have higher payrolls.Not all: Minnesota, Houston, and even Florida have been reasonably successful with similar payroll budgets.

scottjanssens
04-26-2006, 12:23 PM
Not all: Minnesota, Houston, and even Florida have been reasonably successful with similar payroll budgets.

Sure, but with the exception of Florida not as successful as Oakland. And even with two world championships I'm not sure you'd want to be in Florida's shoes right now.

Flight #24
04-26-2006, 12:24 PM
BP doesn't say that. BP is misinterpreted as saying that.

I'm paraphrasing here, but I know I specifically read a comment that said "If you believe in 3d-order winning percentages, and by now we think you do, the White Sox aren't for real", as well as things like "their early wins are in the bank, but they're still a .500 team, which means they'll play .500 from here on out".

BP is pretty clear that they believe their rankings/stats are indicators of the true value of teams, even going as far as to say "it's not our fault MLB's tiebreakers give the division to the Sox, we still say they only have an 88% chance of making the postseason".

Flight #24
04-26-2006, 12:25 PM
Sure, but with the exception of Florida not as successful as Oakland. And even with two world championships I'm not sure you'd want to be in Florida's shoes right now.

That's due to 100% non-baseball factors, like grandstanding to get a new stadium. And even with that, I think being in Florida's shoes in a year or 2 won't be that bad given the young talent they've acquired.

maurice
04-26-2006, 12:32 PM
I don't think BP overemphasizes luck. BP has spent quite a bit of time examining how the Sox fared so well last season.

The problem is that most of their purported explanations were utter nonsense. Sometimes, they paired correct assertions with nonsensical ones. See the 100 previous threads on this exact topic. Perry in particular made some extremely silly claims.

Pythagorean wins is a decent indicator (as opposed to predictor as it's sometimes misused or misinterpreted) that's surprisingly accurate.

IMO, it's fine as an extremely rough but easy to calculate estimate of a team's strength, kinda like a team version of OPS. It gives you a pretty good estimate when you don't have time to look deeper.

Dadawg_77
04-26-2006, 12:44 PM
Exactly. His reputation is supposedly based on 2 things:
1) His definition of offensive stats, which supposedly give him a leg up on identifying "true" good hitters, but which in reality have produced little when it comes to meaningful results against good competition (i.e. the playoffs).

2) His selection of pitchers, which again, in reality, is based primarily on having top 5-10 draft picks.

Actually, to be 100% correct, his reputation is based on 2 things: Being deified in a book, and having pseudo-scientific groups like BP reiterate his godliness based on simulated results.

Actually if you look at what the A's are doing now, it isn't about offensive stats but defensive ones. With a young pitching staff developing and the market under valuing defense contributions, the A's are focused on defensively strong team. I believe the A's ended up with the second best defence last year after our White Sox.

scottjanssens
04-26-2006, 12:51 PM
That's due to 100% non-baseball factors, like grandstanding to get a new stadium. And even with that, I think being in Florida's shoes in a year or 2 won't be that bad given the young talent they've acquired.

"Won't be that bad"? Dollars to doughnuts they'll still finish under .500. The A's haven't been there since '98. It's not that other teams haven't had decent seasons with moderate payrolls. It's that other teams haven't had as many consecutive good seasons while remaining in the bottom half to third of payrolls.

scottjanssens
04-26-2006, 12:59 PM
Actually if you look at what the A's are doing now, it isn't about offensive stats but defensive ones. With a young pitching staff developing and the market under valuing defense contributions, the A's are focused on defensively strong team. I believe the A's ended up with the second best defence last year after our White Sox.

The point of "Moneyball" is to find something that will give you an edge and is also currently undervalued. Seems to me defense fits that bill so it's not surprising to see the A's move in that direction. It's pretty much what Williams did when Ozzie said we need a team built around pitching and defense. Now pitching has always been valued, but not always around the same thing. Ozzie wasn't looking for pitchers with massive strikeout numbers or necessarily great ERAs. He wanted pitchers who would give him a lot of quality innings.

Of course when other teams follow this lead the demand for Sox-type player will increase along with the earnings potential of those players. That means low payroll teams (those interested in competing, you can go back to sleep now Kansas City) will have to look elsewhere for an edge.

Flight #24
04-26-2006, 01:20 PM
"Won't be that bad"? Dollars to doughnuts they'll still finish under .500. The A's haven't been there since '98. It's not that other teams haven't had decent seasons with moderate payrolls. It's that other teams haven't had as many consecutive good seasons while remaining in the bottom half to third of payrolls.

Minnesota has been pretty good for a fairly extended time with a low payroll. Other teams have had individual worse years, but have also had far superior good years, like for example title-winning ones. I'll take a GM who's generally good/contending, occasionally bad and occasionally wins over one who's always contending but never actually get it done. Or to take it back to this specific discussion, I'd at least consider the former GM to be in the same ballpark as the latter - so again, Beane's among a group of GMs.

In fact, who's to say that it's not better to take some lumps for a year or 2, rebuild with higher draft picks, and then contend again? In the end, over an extended period of time, titles need to be considered fairly importantly when evaluating GMs, IMO. Not as the only factor, but as a strong one.

Dadawg_77
04-26-2006, 01:41 PM
Minnesota has been pretty good for a fairly extended time with a low payroll. Other teams have had individual worse years, but have also had far superior good years, like for example title-winning ones. I'll take a GM who's generally good/contending, occasionally bad and occasionally wins over one who's always contending but never actually get it done. Or to take it back to this specific discussion, I'd at least consider the former GM to be in the same ballpark as the latter - so again, Beane's among a group of GMs.

In fact, who's to say that it's not better to take some lumps for a year or 2, rebuild with higher draft picks, and then contend again? In the end, over an extended period of time, titles need to be considered fairly importantly when evaluating GMs, IMO. Not as the only factor, but as a strong one.

So Cashman is the best GM in the League?

When was the Twins last title? *Edit* 15 years does clouds the memory. The A's were in the World Series the previous three before the Twins won in 91. However really still not relevant since Andy McFail was GM of that 91 team.

scottjanssens
04-26-2006, 02:07 PM
Minnesota has been pretty good for a fairly extended time with a low payroll. Other teams have had individual worse years, but have also had far superior good years, like for example title-winning ones. I'll take a GM who's generally good/contending, occasionally bad and occasionally wins over one who's always contending but never actually get it done. Or to take it back to this specific discussion, I'd at least consider the former GM to be in the same ballpark as the latter - so again, Beane's among a group of GMs.

In fact, who's to say that it's not better to take some lumps for a year or 2, rebuild with higher draft picks, and then contend again? In the end, over an extended period of time, titles need to be considered fairly importantly when evaluating GMs, IMO. Not as the only factor, but as a strong one.
I'm not disagreeing with you entirely although I think you're optomistic with a time frame of two years for rebuilding mostly through the draft.

Outside of outspending everyone it's unusual for a team to maintain a winning team for any length of time. Yes, the Twins have done a decent job with moderate payrolls, but not nearly as well as the A's, IMO. The Twins also benefitted from a mediocre division for most of this decade and still didn't post the wins that the A's did.

It's far more normal for teams' fortunes to ebb and flow, or have "windows of opportunity" if you will. The Sox have had five in my lifetime and only won a championship last season. These windows vary in duration. The Sox had a long window from the early to mid 90s. They had a short window in 2000.

I think a better measure of a GM is how many windows he creates as well as how long he keeps them open. Now it's easy for some like Cashman or Epstein (and even Williams this season with the #4 payroll) to create a window. Beane, and others, have created sizable windows with low payrolls. I'm not saying Beane is the only one who's done this, although I think he's among the better at doing it. It's just that Beane is the one who get's singled out here. I wonder how good Cashman or Schuerholz would be with the A's payroll.

Now I'm just going to play some Devil's advocate:

Why isn't Schuerholz railed against here like Beane is? He has an even longer track record of contenders that failed. Sure he won it once, but only once in 14 (or is it 15 now) post season appearances? Schuerholz even has a payroll in the top third. Why does he get off easy? Is it the one championship that makes him immune? Doesn't your argument go against that?

It seems clear to me that those who say Beane is a lousy GM only say or think so because they disagree with his methodology, not with his results.

Flight #24
04-26-2006, 02:56 PM
I'm not disagreeing with you entirely although I think you're optomistic with a time frame of two years for rebuilding mostly through the draft.

Outside of outspending everyone it's unusual for a team to maintain a winning team for any length of time. Yes, the Twins have done a decent job with moderate payrolls, but not nearly as well as the A's, IMO. The Twins also benefitted from a mediocre division for most of this decade and still didn't post the wins that the A's did.

It's far more normal for teams' fortunes to ebb and flow, or have "windows of opportunity" if you will. The Sox have had five in my lifetime and only won a championship last season. These windows vary in duration. The Sox had a long window from the early to mid 90s. They had a short window in 2000.

I think a better measure of a GM is how many windows he creates as well as how long he keeps them open. Now it's easy for some like Cashman or Epstein (and even Williams this season with the #4 payroll) to create a window. Beane, and others, have created sizable windows with low payrolls. I'm not saying Beane is the only one who's done this, although I think he's among the better at doing it. It's just that Beane is the one who get's singled out here. I wonder how good Cashman or Schuerholz would be with the A's payroll.

Now I'm just going to play some Devil's advocate:

Why isn't Schuerholz railed against here like Beane is? He has an even longer track record of contenders that failed. Sure he won it once, but only once in 14 (or is it 15 now) post season appearances? Schuerholz even has a payroll in the top third. Why does he get off easy? Is it the one championship that makes him immune? Doesn't your argument go against that?

It seems clear to me that those who say Beane is a lousy GM only say or think so because they disagree with his methodology, not with his results.

2 points:
1) Yes, you need to look at the window, payroll, etc. But "sealing the deal" has to factor in as well. That factor is frequently ignored because of the incorrect mantra IMO that "winning in the playoffs is luck, getting there consistently is more meaningful". Cashman obviously has other factors that work in his favor making it hard to do a straight comparison, but his titles have to be at least part of his evaluation.

2) You're probably not directing this at me, but the point is that Schuerholz has accomplished a hell of a lot more than Beane over a far longer period of time, but rarely is the first GM to roll off a list of the top ones, whereas Beane is almost always that first name. That makes Beane overrated or Schuerholz underrated. And that's why you hear people saying BB sucks - they mean he's overrated, or that they think he sucks because they dislike him because he's overrated.

Dadawg_77
04-26-2006, 03:52 PM
[quote=Flight #24]2 points:
1) Yes, you need to look at the window, payroll, etc. But "sealing the deal" has to factor in as well. That factor is frequently ignored because of the incorrect mantra IMO that "winning in the playoffs is luck, getting there consistently is more meaningful". Cashman obviously has other factors that work in his favor making it hard to do a straight comparison, but his titles have to be at least part of his evaluation.
[quote]

So Kenny would have been a lesser of a GM is AJ doesn't steal first and Sox end up losing Game 2? And Billy Beane is an average GM because Jeremy Giambi didn't slide.

A GM's job is to put together a team which can contend for the title. There is little a GM can do to help his team succeed in the playoffs. That is up to players and coaches who were good enough to get there.

Flight #24
04-26-2006, 04:14 PM
So Kenny would have been a lesser of a GM is AJ doesn't steal first and Sox end up losing Game 2? And Billy Beane is an average GM because Jeremy Giambi didn't slide.

A GM's job is to put together a team which can contend for the title. There is little a GM can do to help his team succeed in the playoffs. That is up to players and coaches who were good enough to get there.

Like it or not, the production of the players reflects on the GM. So yes, the fact that Kenny had in AJ a guy who was heady enough to take advantage of that reflects more positively on him than if AJ had not been heady enough to do that. It's not an order of magnitude thing, but it HAS to be a factor, just like if he acquires a 50HR hitter who goes on to hit 20HR, that's a factor (or if he acquires a mediocre pitcher who ends up being a Cy Young caliber guy).

That's not to say Kenny goes from being great to sucking if the Sox don't win, but all else equal, a GM who put together a champion > a GM who put together a first round exit.

maurice
04-26-2006, 05:11 PM
So Kenny would have been a lesser of a GM is AJ doesn't steal first and Sox end up losing Game 2?

Thread hijack:
Please don't tell me that you're arguing that the Sox would not have won the WS without Paul's error.

Dadawg_77
04-26-2006, 05:36 PM
Thread hijack:
Please don't tell me that you're arguing that the Sox would not have won the WS without Paul's error.

I don't believe they would have won the ALCS if they lost game two. The error greatly helped the Sox cuase. And they would have been slight favorites to win the game if the inning had ended on that play.

FedEx227
04-26-2006, 05:45 PM
I don't believe they would have won the ALCS if they lost game two. The error greatly helped the Sox cuase. And they would have been slight favorites to win the game if the inning had ended on that play.

The error also didn't hinder the Angels chances... the game was tied. People seem to forget that. Saying AJ's error helped the Sox cause is an improbable statement because the fact is it didn't. The game was tied.

PaleHoseGeorge
04-26-2006, 05:51 PM
I don't believe they would have won the ALCS if they lost game two. The error greatly helped the Sox cuase. And they would have been slight favorites to win the game if the inning had ended on that play.

Yep, it was Paul's error that had Buehrle finish off the complete game victory followed by Garland's, Garcia's, and Contreras's, too.

Gosh, I never realized how much Josh Paul sucked until just now.

:versatile
"We were carving up Sox pitching until my error!"

Dadawg_77
04-26-2006, 05:59 PM
The error also didn't hinder the Angels chances... the game was tied. People seem to forget that. Saying AJ's error helped the Sox cause is an improbable statement because the fact is it didn't. The game was tied.

Getting a guy on base helps the cause. AJ got on base. You can't score to break a tie without a player reaching base, can you? Also it wasn't AJ's error.

Dadawg_77
04-26-2006, 06:05 PM
Yep, it was Paul's error that had Buehrle finish off the complete game victory followed by Garland's, Garcia's, and Contreras's, too.

Gosh, I never realized how much Josh Paul sucked until just now.

:versatile
"We were carving up Sox pitching until my error!"


Ha, so you don't think there is a chance the ALCS plays out differently if the Sox were down 0-2 with no momentum instead of tied 1-1 with the momentum heading to Cali? Not really sure if each game is independent event or something carries over from one game to the next. The Sox still could have won the ALCS being down 0-2 but the odds would be heavily against them.

I am not question the legitimacy of the victory just saying it helps when the ball bounces your way. And to judge GM by the outcome of one play is silly.

PaleHoseGeorge
04-26-2006, 06:10 PM
Ha, so you don't think there is a chance the ALCS plays out differently if the Sox were down 0-2 with no momentum instead of tied 1-1 with the momentum heading to Cali?
MLB playoffs aren't NFL playoffs. You need to beat your opponent four times to advance.

A fumble can decide a football game and a playoff. A boneheaded error can decide a baseball game, too, but not a series. Or perhaps the entire Sox bullpen taking off the entire ALCS besides .2 inning isn't proof enough for you?

Dadawg_77
04-26-2006, 06:24 PM
MLB playoffs aren't NFL playoffs. You need to beat your opponent four times to advance.

A fumble can decide a football game and a playoff. A boneheaded error can decide a baseball game, too, but not a series. Or perhaps the entire Sox bullpen taking off the entire ALCS besides .2 inning isn't proof enough for you?

If the Sox were down 0-2, I think Garland comes out after the sixth when he gave up the HR. You managed game three differently if you tied or down 0-2, series wise. Not saying the play and Crede's hit won the series, but it put the Sox in much better postion to win the series then had the Sox lost game two.

fquaye149
04-26-2006, 06:25 PM
In the end it is a fairly logical conclusion saying lots of different things work in the playoffs, and that over a 5 game series lots of things can happen with such a small sample size to look at. This is a perspective that normally we're quite willing to accept (no one here seriously called the Royals better than us after they beat us 2 out of 3 this season after all) but because it's Beane and Beane is, admittedly, an *******, it's proof that everything he did was meaningless and his teams really sucked and blah blah blah.


This is silly. There's a difference between a relatively low-importance April game against a non-contender and an October game that could mean elimination.

If we played the team KC has now in a 5 game playoff series, I'm confident we would win 3 out of 5 ninety-nine times out of one hundred.

Surely you can see the difference between a 3 game series against a team that will finish last played in April and an October playoff series. If you can't, I'd be more than happy to ennumerate the differences. (I'll give you a hint: starting pitching matchups and the use of the bullpen would be a good place to start)

PaleHoseGeorge
04-26-2006, 06:25 PM
If the Sox were down 0-2, I think Garland comes out after the sixth when he gave up the HR.

I think you're speculating.

In fact I KNOW you're speculating.

Garland, Garcia, and Contreras all pitched complete games. Learn to deal with success, okay?

santo=dorf
04-26-2006, 06:35 PM
I don't believe they would have won the ALCS if they lost game two. The error greatly helped the Sox cuase. And they would have been slight favorites to win the game if the inning had ended on that play.
How do you figure the Sox would've only been "slight" favorites after that inning?

fquaye149
04-26-2006, 06:36 PM
If the Sox were down 0-2, I think Garland comes out after the sixth when he gave up the HR. You managed game three differently if you tied or down 0-2, series wise. Not saying the play and Crede's hit won the series, but it put the Sox in much better postion to win the series then had the Sox lost game two.
Wow - for a stathead, you believe in intangibles an awful lot. I might have to report you to firejoemorgan.

Nevertheless, you're ASSUMING a lot of things. You're ASSUMING that

a.) the Angels would have beat a HOME TEAM with a better stocked bullpen in an extra innings playoff game (notice I'm saying BETTER STOCKED...not better bullpen)

b.) that SCIOSCIA wouldn't have managed looser playing with a two game lead

c.) that those last two games at USCF would be meaningless.

I think the only REAL result if the White Sox lost that game (and that's ASSUMING a. would have happened just because the Angels got out of that inning) is that we would have had a bunch of Mariotti's writing doom and gloom columns about the 1983 ALCS.

And keep in mind: the Angels had TWO OUTS when AJ got on. They only had to do one of two things: keep Ozuna from stealing second pretty much standing up, or keep Crede from banging a ball off the wall. They did neither. Or are we going to blame Bartman for the 2003 NLCS?

We're not Cub fans are we?

FarWestChicago
04-26-2006, 08:00 PM
And keep in mind: the Angels had TWO OUTS when AJ got on. They only had to do one of two things: keep Ozuna from stealing second pretty much standing up, or keep Crede from banging a ball off the wall. They did neither. Or are we going to blame Bartman for the 2003 NLCS?

We're not Cub fans are we?They aren't Flubs trolls, they are A's trolls, FOBB's.

FarWestChicago
04-26-2006, 08:01 PM
I think you're speculating.

In fact I KNOW you're speculating.

Garland, Garcia, and Contreras all pitched complete games. Learn to deal with success, okay?Dawg can't deal with the fact KW asshanded his hero. He's in a state of cognitive dissonace. :redneck

Dadawg_77
04-26-2006, 08:20 PM
How do you figure the Sox would've only been "slight" favorites after that inning?

http://www.tangotiger.net/welist.html Assume the 10 inning equals the 9th. Tie game in what could be the last inning is a coin flip. I would adjust it to give the home team a slight advantage because they get last raps. Both teams had the bottom of the order up, but the Sox were closer to turning over.

Dadawg_77
04-26-2006, 08:22 PM
Dawg can't deal with the fact KW asshanded his hero. He's in a state of cognitive dissonace. :redneck

Beane isn't my hero. And trust me, you can go back to last year postings, I said I thought the Sox wouldn't do anything but would glady eat crow.

gosox41
04-26-2006, 08:27 PM
The Sox won a WS with a 70mill ish budget and $8 million of that played 1 month. With a limited budget, Beane is spending, what, 10 million on a punch and judy hitter named Jason Kendall (Scott Podsednik hitter, without the speed), but wouldn't spend $4 million on Jermaine Dye. You could probably AGGREGATE the production of all of the prospects that Ken Williams has traded away and it wouldn't equal the production of Cotts, whom Beane traded away. (exaggeration but certainly no single player is close to Cotts).

It's not that he's a bad GM...he isn't. It's just that he isn't worthy of coronation, of being called the leader of the new wave of GMs. And his progeny haven't exactly distinguished themselves either.

FWIW, Pitt. is eating some of Kendall's salary.

Also, how was he going to get Dye for $4 mill?


Bob

FarWestChicago
04-26-2006, 08:28 PM
Beane isn't my hero. And trust me, you can go back to last year postings, I said I thought the Sox wouldn't do anything but would glady eat crow.OK, then eat the crow. :redneck

Dadawg_77
04-26-2006, 08:40 PM
Wow - for a stathead, you believe in intangibles an awful lot. I might have to report you to firejoemorgan.

Nevertheless, you're ASSUMING a lot of things. You're ASSUMING that

a.) the Angels would have beat a HOME TEAM with a better stocked bullpen in an extra innings playoff game (notice I'm saying BETTER STOCKED...not better bullpen)

b.) that SCIOSCIA wouldn't have managed looser playing with a two game lead

c.) that those last two games at USCF would be meaningless.

I think the only REAL result if the White Sox lost that game (and that's ASSUMING a. would have happened just because the Angels got out of that inning) is that we would have had a bunch of Mariotti's writing doom and gloom columns about the 1983 ALCS.

And keep in mind: the Angels had TWO OUTS when AJ got on. They only had to do one of two things: keep Ozuna from stealing second pretty much standing up, or keep Crede from banging a ball off the wall. They did neither. Or are we going to blame Bartman for the 2003 NLCS?

We're not Cub fans are we?

I never said the Sox would have lost that game if it went extras, just that they could of and the odds are against a team who goes down 0-2. 50 teams have lost the first two games of the World Series, and only 11 have come back to win. I couldn't find number on LCS.

According the link above, AJ's steal rose the probaility of the Sox winning by 3%. Which is double what Bartman's ball caused for the Marlins.

Dadawg_77
04-26-2006, 08:46 PM
FWIW, Pitt. is eating some of Kendall's salary.

Also, how was he going to get Dye for $4 mill?


Bob

Because the poster assumed Dye would take the same amount to play for the A's. This ignores how MLB free agent system works. For the A's to resign Dye, they probally would have need to offer him arbitration, and since the rules of arbitration only allow a 20% reduction in a players salary. Thus the A's would have had to pay him $9.3 million since Dye 2004 salary was $11.6 million. So Dye would be a fool to take four million from the A's. And given Dye's performance in 2003 and 04, the A's would have been foolish to give him 9 Million.

FarWestChicago
04-26-2006, 09:17 PM
So Dye would be a fool to take four million from the A's. And given Dye's performance in 2003 and 04, the A's would have been foolish to give him 9 Million.:KW

And I'm laughing in your face again, Dawg.

fquaye149
04-26-2006, 10:00 PM
:KW

And I'm laughing in your face again, Dawg.

here's what really gets me about da dawg...in years past he's said he's not an A's fan, he just wished the White Sox had Beane so they could be a successful team. Now the White Sox have won a world series without Beane as our GM...and he still is singing the praises, etc....

Dadawg_77
04-27-2006, 09:49 AM
here's what really gets me about da dawg...in years past he's said he's not an A's fan, he just wished the White Sox had Beane so they could be a successful team. Now the White Sox have won a world series without Beane as our GM...and he still is singing the praises, etc....

Well I still think Beane is one of the better GMs out there. However with the Sox winning it all and revenue streams up, the Sox are not a mid-market or small market team anymore thus it changes what the Sox can and do. And I am not sure Beane would be the right fit for a big market club.

What I found somewhat funny were people picking out every little misstep Beane and avoiding ones other GMs made. For example Terry Ryan, who probally and thankfully so, made the biggest mistake out of all the GM's mention in the thread. And this isn't hindsight, I would have told you it was a mistake when it happen.

And why is Kenny laughing in my face? Dye wasn't worth 9 Million a year last year. Kenny paid 4 Million which is about what his production was worth. I was refuting what one poster said that the A's could have resigned Dye at $4 Million which rules of the baseball talent market would not have allowed. I don't think I said nor implied it was a bad move on Kenny's part. In fact it was a good move on his part to shore up RF.

spiffie
04-27-2006, 10:01 AM
This is silly. There's a difference between a relatively low-importance April game against a non-contender and an October game that could mean elimination.

If we played the team KC has now in a 5 game playoff series, I'm confident we would win 3 out of 5 ninety-nine times out of one hundred.
And I am confident that there is no matchup in baseball, a sport where the very best teams win 60-65% of their games at best, that would even come close to that level of domination over a 5 game series. The game is just way too damn unpredictable and hinges on so many small things.

For instance, last year's ALDS, White Sox - Red Sox. A clear victory for the White Sox as they sweep Boston. In a series where 1 very out of the ordinary play and 1 extremely close judgment call could have turned everything around. A less charitable ump says Damon checked his swing in Game 3 and who knows how that goes. To use your idea of something going on 100 times, how many times does Tony Graffanino let that ball go through his legs in Game 2 out of 100 tries? According to the rest of his career, probably not once. But on that night at that moment it did. 2 tiny things that were anomalies from the usual or very tight judgment calls that could have very easily made the series 2-1 Boston going into Game 4.

I say that not to downplay the Sox winning the ALDS. We did and I lost my voice for a couple days after Duque got Damon out in Game 3. But in a 5 game series weird things can happen without the necessary time needed to truly even it out. And no matter how good your starter is or your bullpen is, all it takes is one bad game to render it all meaningless. Last night we saw Mark Buehrle, a guy who I think is one of the top 3-4 pitchers in all of baseball, just not quite have it. Jarrod Washburn shut down an offense that is awesome.

I want to see the ALDS go to a best of 7 format. I hate seeing an entire season hinging on such a small series.

And before anyone makes the requisite FOBB mention, I ****ing despise Oakland and have hated them since the 80's. And unlike some folks I am happy that the best GM in baseball, Jim Hendry, I mean Kenny Williams is running the team I support.

Fungo
04-27-2006, 10:19 AM
FWIW, Pitt. is eating some of Kendall's salary.

Also, how was he going to get Dye for $4 mill?


Bob

Bob,

Where ya' been?

fquaye149
04-27-2006, 11:40 AM
And I am confident that there is no matchup in baseball, a sport where the very best teams win 60-65% of their games at best, that would even come close to that level of domination over a 5 game series. The game is just way too damn unpredictable and hinges on so many small things.

For instance, last year's ALDS, White Sox - Red Sox. A clear victory for the White Sox as they sweep Boston. In a series where 1 very out of the ordinary play and 1 extremely close judgment call could have turned everything around. A less charitable ump says Damon checked his swing in Game 3 and who knows how that goes. To use your idea of something going on 100 times, how many times does Tony Graffanino let that ball go through his legs in Game 2 out of 100 tries? According to the rest of his career, probably not once. But on that night at that moment it did. 2 tiny things that were anomalies from the usual or very tight judgment calls that could have very easily made the series 2-1 Boston going into Game 4.

I say that not to downplay the Sox winning the ALDS. We did and I lost my voice for a couple days after Duque got Damon out in Game 3. But in a 5 game series weird things can happen without the necessary time needed to truly even it out. And no matter how good your starter is or your bullpen is, all it takes is one bad game to render it all meaningless. Last night we saw Mark Buehrle, a guy who I think is one of the top 3-4 pitchers in all of baseball, just not quite have it. Jarrod Washburn shut down an offense that is awesome.

I want to see the ALDS go to a best of 7 format. I hate seeing an entire season hinging on such a small series.

And before anyone makes the requisite FOBB mention, I ****ing despise Oakland and have hated them since the 80's. And unlike some folks I am happy that the best GM in baseball, Jim Hendry, I mean Kenny Williams is running the team I support.

That's all well and good, but that's not what you said earlier. The difference between the White Sox and Boston wasn't all that pronounced. However, when you're trotting out Matt Clement, David Wells, and Tim Wakefield as your playoff starters you're not always going to HAVE to rely on freak plays and judgment calls. I would guess, completely out of thin air, that the White Sox would probably win more than 50 times out of 100, but that's not the point. When teams are overmatched, like the Royals are by the White Sox, then you can point to the fact that it's APRIL and not OCTOBER and that the Royals WOULD NOT beat the White Sox without some horribly freak occurrences.

But how does that relate to the A's? Simply put - Playoff series DO matter, and they do reflect which team is better, to a certain extent. Yes, it would be foolish to say that the White Sox were unequivocably better than the Red Sox in 2005 b/c of that ALDS. However, it is safe to say they were the best team in baseball because they consistently won playoff series easily in 2005. Likewise, it wouldn't be fair to say that the A's weren't playoff worthy simply because they lost, say, to the Yankees in '01, but when they find it impossible to win playoff series after playoff series you have to say, well that is a little more than a fluke, and ask WHY they're not winning.

I think Billy Beane has taken a lot of steps to correct that, and that the A's are more than playoff worthy this year if their lineup and pitching hold up. I actually have respect for Beane for this - it seems that EVENTUALLY he realized that the teams he assembled in the early '00's were GREAT for making the playoffs, LOUSY for winning in the playoffs...something that BP and other FOBB's have yet to acknowledge.

spiffie
04-27-2006, 12:03 PM
That's all well and good, but that's not what you said earlier. The difference between the White Sox and Boston wasn't all that pronounced. However, when you're trotting out Matt Clement, David Wells, and Tim Wakefield as your playoff starters you're not always going to HAVE to rely on freak plays and judgment calls. I would guess, completely out of thin air, that the White Sox would probably win more than 50 times out of 100, but that's not the point. When teams are overmatched, like the Royals are by the White Sox, then you can point to the fact that it's APRIL and not OCTOBER and that the Royals WOULD NOT beat the White Sox without some horribly freak occurrences.

But how does that relate to the A's? Simply put - Playoff series DO matter, and they do reflect which team is better, to a certain extent. Yes, it would be foolish to say that the White Sox were unequivocably better than the Red Sox in 2005 b/c of that ALDS. However, it is safe to say they were the best team in baseball because they consistently won playoff series easily in 2005. Likewise, it wouldn't be fair to say that the A's weren't playoff worthy simply because they lost, say, to the Yankees in '01, but when they find it impossible to win playoff series after playoff series you have to say, well that is a little more than a fluke, and ask WHY they're not winning.
Agreed about the Royals. However even in that scenario what are the odds of the Royals winning a series Maybe 15-20 times out of 100? Now think about the playoffs. Can you honestly ever say that a team in the ALDS should be more than a 60-40 favorite over another playoff team? Even with the starting pitching you mentioned the series was close. Wells was shutting us down until we got a break. Wakefield and the pen for the Red Sox made that game damn close. I tend to think, as you said, that we would win more than we would lose in a best of 5 scenario to Boston last year. But I wouldn't want to bet my arm on us taking more than 55 of those series.

I think Billy Beane has taken a lot of steps to correct that, and that the A's are more than playoff worthy this year if their lineup and pitching hold up. I actually have respect for Beane for this - it seems that EVENTUALLY he realized that the teams he assembled in the early '00's were GREAT for making the playoffs, LOUSY for winning in the playoffs...something that BP and other FOBB's have yet to acknowledge.
Here's the thing. You talk about a team being assembled lousy for the playoffs. But there is hardly anything at all that can be proven to be a consistent factor for winning in the playoffs. There are things we all like to say, but in most cases there are far too many exceptions to any axiom someone would like to put forward. But all that notwithstanding, BP, in their own book where they do find a couple of things that can be borne out statistically, point out that the first few A's teams to make the playoffs were poor in those things.

I guess I just have one question for you with all of this. If the Sox this year lose in the ALDS 3 games to 2 (GOD FORBID!), will it be because they were poorly constructed for the post-season? Or simply because they lost one more than they won to another very good team?

FedEx227
04-27-2006, 12:08 PM
I never said the Sox would have lost that game if it went extras, just that they could of and the odds are against a team who goes down 0-2. 50 teams have lost the first two games of the World Series, and only 11 have come back to win. I couldn't find number on LCS.
You say the Sox would have lost the game... but the odds are against teams down 0-2. You still haven't brought up any TRUE tangible evidence that the Angels would have without a doubt won the game, and until you do the Paul error is a moot point, all it did was prolong the game.

Plus our bullpen was full at that point, while the Angels had used two of their best three relievers Donnelley and Shields... but statheads don't have equation for that.

Flight #24
04-27-2006, 12:10 PM
And why is Kenny laughing in my face? Dye wasn't worth 9 Million a year last year. Kenny paid 4 Million which is about what his production was worth. I was refuting what one poster said that the A's could have resigned Dye at $4 Million which rules of the baseball talent market would not have allowed. I don't think I said nor implied it was a bad move on Kenny's part. In fact it was a good move on his part to shore up RF.

Billy Beane on 9/30/04 to Jermaine Dye: "Hey JD, we'd like to resign you, how about a $4-5M/yr, 3-yr deal?"

Jermaine Dye (assuming that he liked his time in Oakland): "Hmmm... I doubt I'll get a lot more than that, and I like it here. OK"

It wasn't a "offer arbitration or let him go" scenario, at least not until Beane made it so.

Dadawg_77
04-27-2006, 12:19 PM
Billy Beane on 9/30/04 to Jermaine Dye: "Hey JD, we'd like to resign you, how about a $4-5M/yr, 3-yr deal?"

Jermaine Dye (assuming that he liked his time in Oakland): "Hmmm... I doubt I'll get a lot more than that, and I like it here. OK"

It wasn't a "offer arbitration or let him go" scenario, at least not until Beane made it so.

Wow, do you really think Dye or any Major Leaguer would take that deal in Sept, without any attempt to judge what the market would pay for that player services? I really don't see a player, unless he really doesn't want to move, taking a pay cut before mid December.

fquaye149
04-27-2006, 12:32 PM
But there is hardly anything at all that can be proven to be a consistent factor for winning in the playoffs.

I guess I just have one question for you with all of this. If the Sox this year lose in the ALDS 3 games to 2 (GOD FORBID!), will it be because they were poorly constructed for the post-season? Or simply because they lost one more than they won to another very good team?

two things: first of all, I think, at the expense of leaning on "common knowledge", you can point to certain traits of a successful playoff teams: good power hitting, fast baserunners at the top of the order, but above all else: dominating #1 and #2 pitchers, a strong closer, and good team defense.

The A's of the early '00's only once had good power hitting in the middle of their order (circa Giambi/Tejada/Chavez) and did not often have stolen base threats at the top of their order (not that it would matter with Howe and Macha managing). Further, their closers have never been dominating, their defense rarely much better than slightly above average, and although Zito was very often dominating, I've never seen Mulder or Hudson as a shutdown pitcher in the mold of Johnson/Schilling, or for that matter Buehrle/Contreras.

As to your question about the '06 White Sox should they falter in the playoffs, I'd invite you to reread my post. I never claimed that, for instance, the '01 A's were a poor playoff team b/c they lost to the Yankees...I claimed that the repetition of playoff failure seems to suggest that the mold from which Beane fashioned the A's of the 00's was a flawed one: very effective at winning over the long haul of a season, but unlikely to dominate a team in a short series the way successful playoff teams are generally built to do.

Dadawg_77
04-27-2006, 12:52 PM
You say the Sox would have lost the game... but the odds are against teams down 0-2. You still haven't brought up any TRUE tangible evidence that the Angels would have without a doubt won the game, and until you do the Paul error is a moot point, all it did was prolong the game.

Plus our bullpen was full at that point, while the Angels had used two of their best three relievers Donnelley and Shields... but statheads don't have equation for that.

Tie game in extra innings is a basically a 50/50 prop. Yes, our pen was stock but that still doesn't mean they couldn't give up a run. I don't believe our pen was perfect through out the playoffs. Did I miss that fact somewhere? I don't have to provide any proof that the Angels would have won the game without a doubt because that not my point. In fact you are dealing with absolutes by stating the Sox would have won the game, no matter the outcome of the 9th inning. If the Sox don't score the Angels still have a good shot 40% or more at winning the game. And if the Angels win Game 2, it would have been difficult to win 4 out 5 games vs one of the best teams in baseball.

I don't think I have said the Angels would have won, but could have won.

DaveIsHere
04-27-2006, 12:55 PM
Tie game in extra innings is a basically a 50/50 prop. Yes, our pen was stock but that still doesn't mean they couldn't give up a run. I don't believe our pen was perfect through out the playoffs. Did I miss that fact somewhere? I don't have to provide any proof that the Angels would have won the game without a doubt because that not my point. In fact you are dealing with absolutes by stating the Sox would have won the game, no matter the outcome of the 9th inning. If the Sox don't score the Angels still have a good shot 40% or more at winning the game. And if the Angels win Game 2, it would have been difficult to win 4 out 5 games vs one of the best teams in baseball.

I don't think I have said the Angels would have won, but could have won.

Homefish is that you?:?:

fquaye149
04-27-2006, 01:14 PM
Tie game in extra innings is a basically a 50/50 prop. Yes, our pen was stock but that still doesn't mean they couldn't give up a run. I don't believe our pen was perfect through out the playoffs. Did I miss that fact somewhere? I don't have to provide any proof that the Angels would have won the game without a doubt because that not my point. In fact you are dealing with absolutes by stating the Sox would have won the game, no matter the outcome of the 9th inning. If the Sox don't score the Angels still have a good shot 40% or more at winning the game. And if the Angels win Game 2, it would have been difficult to win 4 out 5 games vs one of the best teams in baseball.

I don't think I have said the Angels would have won, but could have won.

Their winning that game was a lot less likely than the Sox losing that series, even down 2 games to none.

What's that you say? I didn't include enough meaningless percentages?...

SoxSpeed22
04-27-2006, 01:23 PM
Here's a better question, 'Why are we still taking about this?' That was last year.

FarWestChicago
04-27-2006, 07:09 PM
Here's a better question, 'Why are we still taking about this?' That was last year.Dawg has always felt he was a better GM than KW and nothing, including a World Series ring, is going to change his mind.

:KW

And I'm still laughing in your face, Dawg.

:fobbgod:

Sorry, Dawg. I gotta go with Kenny on this one.

Palehose13
04-27-2006, 07:16 PM
Wow, do you really think Dye or any Major Leaguer would take that deal in Sept, without any attempt to judge what the market would pay for that player services? I really don't see a player, unless he really doesn't want to move, taking a pay cut before mid December.

I'm not so sure. JD seems to be a guy wiht a lot of character. Remembe that he only had a handshake deal with KW and then another club called and offered more money, but he stuck with his word that he gave to KW. IMO, a guy like that may realize what his fair market value is and if he really liked Oakland, stayed there for it. But then again, maybe I am giving JD too much credit...

Flight #24
04-28-2006, 10:13 AM
Wow, do you really think Dye or any Major Leaguer would take that deal in Sept, without any attempt to judge what the market would pay for that player services? I really don't see a player, unless he really doesn't want to move, taking a pay cut before mid December.

I think Dye knew before the end of the year that he wasn't getting $7-9M. He also seems like a guy who isn't necessarily chasing the last dollar, so I do think that assuming he was happy in Oak, he'd have taken something like the deal he got from KW.

DMarte708
04-28-2006, 11:01 AM
Williams playoff series victories: 3
Beane's playoff series victories: 0

Sorry Beane supporters. Only one of these two have proven themself a winner when it counts.

Dadawg_77
04-28-2006, 11:07 AM
I'm not so sure. JD seems to be a guy wiht a lot of character. Remembe that he only had a handshake deal with KW and then another club called and offered more money, but he stuck with his word that he gave to KW. IMO, a guy like that may realize what his fair market value is and if he really liked Oakland, stayed there for it. But then again, maybe I am giving JD too much credit...

Well there is difference between honoring a commitment you aren't legally required to and seeking what is available.

Flight, I have no insight into consul Dye's agent gave him. However, I would believe given the way baseball works, Dye's agent would have said to wait and see what the market offers. Since If the A's were willing to pay Dye four million, he should be able to at least obtain that amount on the open market with an opportunity to exceed it. Thus unless Dye was compelled to play in Oakland, there is no upside to taking the hypothetical Oakland offer. Plus players are very reluctant to take a pay cut from their current team because the MLBPA fears the effect this would have on players as a whole. They fear heading back to the system where teams would arbitrarily cut a player's salary.

Flight #24
04-28-2006, 11:44 AM
Well there is difference between honoring a commitment you aren't legally required to and seeking what is available.

Flight, I have no insight into consul Dye's agent gave him. However, I would believe given the way baseball works, Dye's agent would have said to wait and see what the market offers. Since If the A's were willing to pay Dye four million, he should be able to at least obtain that amount on the open market with an opportunity to exceed it. Thus unless Dye was compelled to play in Oakland, there is no upside to taking the hypothetical Oakland offer. Plus players are very reluctant to take a pay cut from their current team because the MLBPA fears the effect this would have on players as a whole. They fear heading back to the system where teams would arbitrarily cut a player's salary.

It's all speculation, but based on the facts we've seen that Dye took a deal like that, that no one was speculating that he'd getsignificantly more prior to the FA period, and that he's acknowledged turning down more money after coming to a handshake agreement, it seems likely to me that if he wanted to stay in Oakland, and he was offered a chance to at a decent salary (like what he accepted), he'd have taken it rather than looking to see if he coul get a mil or so more elsewhere. I also do not think that ANY FAs hit the market before having some inkling of what's out there for them. Some may choose to gamble that they can find that pot of gold and get more, but I fully believe that their agents have asked around and gauged what they're likely to be able to get.

But as I said it's all speculation. I just think it's incorrect to say that Oakland could not have signed him at a lower salary. It happens frequently, especially for older guys coming off of large contracts, and even more so for guys who've underperformed their contracts because of injuries, etc.