Originally Posted by kittle42
A strong will to personally succeed would be enough for me. A will for team success is even better. You can find many a free agent who has continued to be wonderfully successful after a big contract. Adam Dunn was never considered a headcase. He played on sucky teams, as well.
There are players with stronger wills to win who do well after signing big contracts. I don't know if anyone has figured out who they will be based on their pre-free agency numbers. But if your numbers are solid (I would argue, have argued that Dunn's high strikeouts were a red flag, but many disagree so this discussion assumes Dunn's numbers were solid) on non-contending teams and you fail miserably for multiple seasons after going to a team expected to contend, you run the risk of being accused of not having the will to win.
I don't see where the controversey is. This isn't some archaic concept from a man stuck in the past. This mainstream thought among people who follow and cover sports. As much as I dislike Ken Harrelson, I find myself defending him. The only reason this is being debated here is that he seems to have insulted some sort of sabermetric dogma.