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infohawk
09-19-2006, 02:58 PM
Alright, I admit it. I am a BP subscriber. I just love analytical looks at baseball. I can't help it, I'm addicted. Still, I don't consider myself a stat "extremist."

With that confession out of the way -- and begging the forgiveness of my fellow WSI friends -- here is an excerpt from a BP article (http://www.baseballprospectus.com/article.php?articleid=5537&PHPSESSID=df944a9d57c35fe2d17f89b8b5a8efe3) posted today:That the 2005 team won a title while the 2006 one will probably miss the playoffs will make the difference between the two seem much greater than it actually is. Actually, the two are of roughly equal quality, above-average baseball teams in very competitive divisions. Last year's team outperformed its indicators by a considerable amount, whereas the 2006 Sox have played just as well as their record indicates. If you want to be pithy about it, you could say that the "luck" they had last year went to the Tigers and Twins in 2006, both of whom are three wins better than indicated. The key point is this: there's just not that much difference between the two White Sox teams, and the front office shouldn't allow the emotion of the moment to dictate policy.
Kenny Williams has been very successful at acquiring major-league contributors, which leads me to believe that the White Sox will be near the top of the AL Central again next season, along with the Indians.
I have to say I agree with this assessment. They had a down year. There needs to be a few changes, but fundamentally this is a very good team. I have said before and I'll say again, the biggest upgrade for this team via trade and/or free agency is middle relief. I believe it's even more important than a new lead-off hitter (although I'm sure we will have a new one). I would really like to see one of the starters traded for a couple of solid arms for the 'pen with an eye toward eventually plugging them into the rotation.

Edit: I'll also add that the article discussed the regression of the starting pitching, particularly the increase in homers given up and more hit balls falling in for hits (suggesting a certain luck factor, in this case, bad luck).

Madvora
09-19-2006, 03:00 PM
which leads me to believe that the White Sox will be near the top of the AL Central again next season, along with the Indians.

The Indians again huh?
I'm never going to forget about the Twins. I'll consider them contenders until they turn into the Royals.

Johnny Mostil
09-19-2006, 03:04 PM
The Indians again huh?
I'm never going to forget about the Twins. I'll consider them contenders until they turn into the Royals.

And what did the article say about the Tigers next year? Add the Indians, and it's a very crowded field . . .

I agree with what I saw of the excerpt infohawk posted . . .

infohawk
09-19-2006, 03:07 PM
The Indians again huh?
I'm never going to forget about the Twins. I'll consider them contenders until they turn into the Royals.
I don't think the author was dismissing the Twins or Tigers. I think he mentioned the Indians because they, like us, are a good team that regressed but will likely bounce back next year.

QCIASOXFAN
09-19-2006, 03:11 PM
There needs to be a few changes, but fundamentally this is a very good team.I agree with everything else except this team being good fundamentally. They have stunk the place up the entire second half of the season in this department and basically the entire year.

Flight #24
09-19-2006, 03:15 PM
IMO, next year's ALC will be a ridiculous free for all with potentially 4 very high quality teams (CLE depending on whether they can get some pitching).

BP ignores, much as they did last year:
- Decreased D
- A less varied offense (i.e. the ability to both mash and execute, which last year's team had)

That said, I agree with the conclusion, and I don't think it takes major changes. Leave BA in CF - he's shown he can hit well enough IMO to be a net asset to the team. Replace Uribe & Pods, ideally with an SS with solid OBP and a combo of Fields/Sweeney. Add 2 veteran long relief arms. That's it and it's all doable.

Madvora
09-19-2006, 03:16 PM
I really don't think you can say anything about a team's chances next year until they are ready to start next year.

No players have changed teams yet. How can anyone make any kind of prediction yet?

MrX
09-19-2006, 04:23 PM
That the 2005 team won a title while the 2006 one will probably miss the playoffs will make the difference between the two seem much greater than it actually is. Actually, the two are of roughly equal quality, above-average baseball teams in very competitive divisions. Last year's team outperformed its indicators by a considerable amount, whereas the 2006 Sox have played just as well as their record indicates. If you want to be pithy about it, you could say that the "luck" they had last year went to the Tigers and Twins in 2006, both of whom are three wins better than indicated. The key point is this: there's just not that much difference between the two White Sox teams, and the front office shouldn't allow the emotion of the moment to dictate policy. I'm waiting for BP to petition the MLB office to strip the team of the title last year because it didn't match up with their "indicators".

Only they could take 2 sets of data, one that agrees with them and one that doesn't, and automatically declare the data that agrees with them to be correct.

Paulwny
09-19-2006, 04:28 PM
I really don't think you can say anything about a team's chances next year until they are ready to start next year.

No players have changed teams yet. How can anyone make any kind of prediction yet?

The 3 constants in life,( death, taxes and yankmees in the play-offs) .

nysox35
09-19-2006, 04:33 PM
The 3 constants in life,( death, taxes and yankmees in the play-offs) .

I thought the three constants are "death, taxes, and you can't stop Chad Johnson." That's what he said before last week's concussion anyway...

mjmcend
09-19-2006, 04:59 PM
I really don't think you can say anything about a team's chances next year until they are ready to start next year.

No players have changed teams yet. How can anyone make any kind of prediction yet?

He was basing his prediction on the track record of Kenny Williams. He thinks he built a solid team the last two years and thinks that he will do it again next year.

Hokiesox
09-19-2006, 05:01 PM
The offseason will be summed up in one word: bullpen.

I'm willing to bet $$ on that.

batmanZoSo
09-19-2006, 05:24 PM
The Indians again huh?
I'm never going to forget about the Twins. I'll consider them contenders until they turn into the Royals.

I don't know what else the Twins need to do to convince everyone that they're true contenders in this division indefinitely. We had them dead in the water in April and May and look where they are now. They're an amazing organization. And I say that despite that I had them missing the playoffs a month ago. The sheer fact that they're able to contend every year with minimal resources and strength from within is a great accomplishment. So I'd agree with you and others should as well...if there's one team we need to set our sights on for next year it's the Twins and that's the team we should be geared to beat (we seem to handle the Tigers head to head, last night notwithstanding and the Indians are jokers). To be honest, every team should be a little more like the Twins, especially those in small markets.

StatHead21
09-19-2006, 06:16 PM
The offseason will be summed up in one word: bullpen.

I'm willing to bet $$ on that.

Theres nothing wrong with Thornton, Mac, Jenks. No bullpen can do good when they have to go 3-4 innings every night.

This offseason will be getting rid of Pods, Uribe and Freddy, and trading Crede for something big. People wont be happy but Crede's value is through the roof right now and Fields is ready.

caulfield12
09-19-2006, 06:35 PM
I don't know what else the Twins need to do to convince everyone that they're true contenders in this division indefinitely. We had them dead in the water in April and May and look where they are now. They're an amazing organization. And I say that despite that I had them missing the playoffs a month ago. The sheer fact that they're able to contend every year with minimal resources and strength from within is a great accomplishment. So I'd agree with you and others should as well...if there's one team we need to set our sights on for next year it's the Twins and that's the team we should be geared to beat (we seem to handle the Tigers head to head, last night notwithstanding and the Indians are jokers). To be honest, every team should be a little more like the Twins, especially those in small markets.


Yes, which is precisely what they did in the 2004 offseason before it all went out the window again with the success of 2005 and the addition of Thome working so well in the first half, combined with the inconsistency and lack of a threat from Pods.

caulfield12
09-19-2006, 06:38 PM
Alright, I admit it. I am a BP subscriber. I just love analytical looks at baseball. I can't help it, I'm addicted. Still, I don't consider myself a stat "extremist."


With that confession out of the way -- and begging the forgiveness of my fellow WSI friends -- here is an excerpt from a BP article (http://www.baseballprospectus.com/article.php?articleid=5537&PHPSESSID=df944a9d57c35fe2d17f89b8b5a8efe3) posted today:That the 2005 team won a title while the 2006 one will probably miss the playoffs will make the difference between the two seem much greater than it actually is. Actually, the two are of roughly equal quality, above-average baseball teams in very competitive divisions. Last year's team outperformed its indicators by a considerable amount, whereas the 2006 Sox have played just as well as their record indicates. If you want to be pithy about it, you could say that the "luck" they had last year went to the Tigers and Twins in 2006, both of whom are three wins better than indicated. The key point is this: there's just not that much difference between the two White Sox teams, and the front office shouldn't allow the emotion of the moment to dictate policy.

Kenny Williams has been very successful at acquiring major-league contributors, which leads me to believe that the White Sox will be near the top of the AL Central again next season, along with the Indians.
I have to say I agree with this assessment. They had a down year. There needs to be a few changes, but fundamentally this is a very good team. I have said before and I'll say again, the biggest upgrade for this team via trade and/or free agency is middle relief. I believe it's even more important than a new lead-off hitter (although I'm sure we will have a new one). I would really like to see one of the starters traded for a couple of solid arms for the 'pen with an eye toward eventually plugging them into the rotation.

Edit: I'll also add that the article discussed the regression of the starting pitching, particularly the increase in homers given up and more hit balls falling in for hits (suggesting a certain luck factor, in this case, bad luck).

Luck, but also shoddier defense from Pods and Mackowiak in particular (vis a vis Rowand/Anderson).

Luck evens out, it's why James Baldwin, who wasn't a strikeout pitcher, returned to "mean" in the 2nd half of 2000 when the groundballs weren't hit at the fielders, along with the fact that he was pitching hurt as well.

This might be the "worst" or most inconsistent 90 win team in recent baseball history, if they do manage to get to that mark.

Lip Man 1
09-19-2006, 06:39 PM
Stat:

Jenks, Thornton and MacDougal (assuming all are healthy which is an unknown right now) can't pitch every day and the starting pitchers aren't going to be able to go seven or eight innings EVERY game for 162 games. (They didn't last year did they?)

You need at LEAST two more solid arms in the bullpen, three would be better.

Lip

caulfield12
09-19-2006, 07:10 PM
Stat:

Jenks, Thornton and MacDougal (assuming all are healthy which is an unknown right now) can't pitch every day and the starting pitchers aren't going to be able to go seven or eight innings EVERY game for 162 games. (They didn't last year did they?)

You need at LEAST two more solid arms in the bullpen, three would be better.

Lip

But how many teams have that, besides the Twins and Tigers? I think we actually think our bullpen is much worse than it really is, because we have to look in the mirror at our competition and no team in the AL West or AL East has a comparable bullpen either, maybe the Angels, but not quite.

Are we calling Riske "not solid"? Obviously, not one of the best, but I wouldn't call him "below average" either. Undoubtedly, it would be great if he was the LAST guy out of the pen, like Vizcaino last year.

It's also doubtful we have anyone in our system better than him (unless Sierra miraculously morphs into Jenks II), so we need to go out and get 2-3 QUALITY arms that aren't out of the bargain bin or Blue Light Special.

And we hope that Cotts rebounds to a "norm" between last year and this season. McCarthy obviously goes into the rotation.

hold2dibber
09-19-2006, 07:30 PM
Seems to me that a potential flaw in the BP analysis is that it treats the entire '06 season as a single whole. The fact is, the Sox were absolutely fantastic for the first three months and pretty damn lousy for the last three months of the season. So while as a whole the season may look decent, the trend is decidly bad. Whether or not that trend is just an aberation and the season as a whole is a better indication of the abilities of this team are unknown. If you look at the season as a whole, maybe you say only a few changes are needed. If you look at the 2nd half trend (and 80 or so games is a pretty decent sample size), maybe you think differently.

caulfield12
09-19-2006, 07:38 PM
Seems to me that a potential flaw in the BP analysis is that it treats the entire '06 season as a single whole. The fact is, the Sox were absolutely fantastic for the first three months and pretty damn lousy for the last three months of the season. So while as a whole the season may look decent, the trend is decidly bad. Whether or not that trend is just an aberation and the season as a whole is a better indication of the abilities of this team are unknown. If you look at the season as a whole, maybe you say only a few changes are needed. If you look at the 2nd half trend (and 80 or so games is a pretty decent sample size), maybe you think differently.

Or, if you compared their stats to that of the Royals (without looking at rosters, just numbers in black and white), "educated" computers would actually project the Royals to compete with us and even have a better record, because the computer doesn't care what someone's SUPPOSED to do, only how they perform in actuality. It's the reason the Twins are overlooked every season and why they continue to confound Sox fans...it's the same reactions Ohio State, Penn State or Michigan fans have when their team loses in football to Iowa. It's not supposed to happen, but you give credit to great talent evaluation, coaching and overall "team atmosphere" and camaraderie.

The flip side of that as an Iowa alum is that they never have quite enough natural talent that even the best coaching staff in the land can overcome that enough to go undefeated or win the national title. Well, the Twins come crumbling down too when they run into the OSU or Michigans....meaning the Yankees, Red Sox, Angels, etc.

DaleJRFan
09-19-2006, 07:43 PM
The Indians again huh?

Not to get off topic (sorry!), but...

The Indians have a really strong core of young talent and need to fill out around that core. Sizemore, Hafner, Martinez, Sabathia, Blake, Lee, Peralta - off of the top of my head... and add in a handful of legitimate prospects that could turn into above average major league players (Sowers, Marte, Choo, Garko) and the Indians should be a good team in the coming years.

I'll never understand the Coco Crisp trade. Not only did they give up Crisp, who kills the AL Central, they also gave up Jason Bard, who is piecing together a Ross Gload quality season for the Padres. And for what? Jason Michaels and Mota in return?? Wow. If they can manage a bullpen in the offseason, they'll do some damage next year.

caulfield12
09-19-2006, 07:45 PM
Michaels has done very well against us this season, but CoCo was even more dangerous. But he's not a CFer, and I imagine KW will at least consider him as one of about 10-15 options he's looking at. Whether he's a leadoff man (I think not), he could fit in if we did get a legit leadoff guy at SS.

And we can always go with Fields/Sweeney as a platoon. I could live with that too...

By the way, it's JOSH BARD.

Daver
09-19-2006, 08:00 PM
And we can always go with Fields/Sweeney as a platoon. I could live with that too...

By the way, it's JOSH BARD.

Josh Fields is a third baseman, not an outfielder.


Oh, and BP can kiss my ass.

caulfield12
09-19-2006, 08:46 PM
Josh Fields is a third baseman, not an outfielder.


Oh, and BP can kiss my ass.

He's and LF/1B/DH until either Crede or he is traded elsewhere.

Daver
09-19-2006, 09:03 PM
He's and LF/1B/DH until either Crede or he is traded elsewhere.

Yeah, and Pablo Ozuna is a capable outfielder.

And BP can still kiss my ass.

goon
09-19-2006, 09:15 PM
Josh Fields is a third baseman, not an outfielder.


Oh, and BP can kiss my ass.


it's going to be a difficult situation in the offseason, however, we do know one thing for sure: the white sox need a lead off man. yet, with josh fields, seemingly ready for the pros and joe crede likely to return, unless a contractual dispute, fields is either going to have to go to a new position OR they might just deal him. i honestly can't see kenny sitting on a player like josh all next year. i don't know too much about fields, but i do know this, the move from 3B to LF maybe easier than a move from 3B to SS IE. the miguel cabrera situation.

so if josh fields is a starter next year, we still need a leadoff man and i know there has been some talk about michael young on the forums and i think that is a possible option if texas is willing to let him go for a reasonable trade. bottom line is most of the position players are coming back, with exception to podsednik (probably) leaving a gap in LF and at the top of the sox lineup. i like uribe at SS, but he might have to be sacraficed in order to bring a leadoff man to the team.


this is a good team, they've struggled this year, the coaching staff has let a lot of people down as well as the players at certain times. there is a lot of talent and heart on this team, if they don't make the playoffs this year, hopefully they comeback ready to go next year.


Post Script: If Anderson doesn't get 155 games in Centerfield next year, i'm going to punch ozzie in the nuts.

caulfield12
09-19-2006, 11:43 PM
Yeah, and Pablo Ozuna is a capable outfielder.

And BP can still kiss my ass.

KW has all offseason to let Fields play LF under Razor's tutelage in Venezuela. I'm sure he will stop by himself to check on things.

They don't have to decide anything right now...simply whether to offer Pods arbitration or not, and I'm sure they will not.

Fields and Sweeney will be fine, as long as we don't have 3 rookie bats in the line-up simultaneously....the Twins have done fine with Tyner, Punto and Bartlett, and none of those guys are obviously superior, as long as our rookies and BA can execute the little things we're lacking this season, I have no qualms. Maybe KW thinks differently and wants a veteran like Roberts or Pierre out there instead.

GoSox2K3
09-20-2006, 09:27 AM
Not to get off topic (sorry!), but...

The Indians have a really strong core of young talent and need to fill out around that core. Sizemore, Hafner, Martinez, Sabathia, Blake, Lee, Peralta - off of the top of my head... and add in a handful of legitimate prospects that could turn into above average major league players (Sowers, Marte, Choo, Garko) and the Indians should be a good team in the coming years.

I'll never understand the Coco Crisp trade. Not only did they give up Crisp, who kills the AL Central, they also gave up Jason Bard, who is piecing together a Ross Gload quality season for the Padres. And for what? Jason Michaels and Mota in return?? Wow. If they can manage a bullpen in the offseason, they'll do some damage next year.

The Indians starting rotation (after Sabathia) isn't so great. The Twins, Tigers and Sox have better starting pitching. Also, the Indians bullpen is even worse than ours.

caulfield12
09-20-2006, 09:36 AM
The Indians starting rotation (after Sabathia) isn't so great. The Twins, Tigers and Sox have better starting pitching. Also, the Indians bullpen is even worse than ours.

Sabathia is one of the best, when he wants to be. Lee has regressed. Westbrook is very good (not sure if he stays, but he's beaten us up this year), then you have Sowers, Carmona, Byrd, Cabrera...

If they get to the point where they have AT LEAST four solid starters, they can be dangerous, but that bullpen has to be fixed, and they need to figure out how to play Garko, Martinez and Hafner with NONE of them catching, lol.

They're not THAT far off...we've learned with K. Rogers (2003 and now 2006) never to count veterans out, heck, he was the only starter to beat us in the post-season last year.