Originally Posted by blandman
Oh...so with competent defense (ie, several new, better players) and a good deep pen (i.e., several new, better players), we'd be able to win ten more ball games and just barely miss 90 losses. Brilliant analysis. You proved my point more than your own with that first part.
Our starting pitching is not better than half of baseball. I'm so tired of people mentioning that over and over trying their damnest to make it true. Sale and Quintana were among the best. Peavy kept the number high until he was traded. Santiago was phenomenal then fell apart without his peripherals taking a dive (meaning the league has seen his garbage enough to catch up). Axelrod had the same thing happen, only much sooner (because he has even worse stuff). And John Danks barely has an arm (and the numbers to prove it). Our minors are derelict. The guys we're showing off are all 5-6 ceiling guys like Santiago. Yeah...it's nice to have some depth at least somewhere, but we're not going to have one of the better rotations in baseball throwing a bunch of those guys out there. Other teams don't have Sale. That's really the big difference. But after him, things get bleak.
If you gave every GM the chance to pick the White Sox roster and system or the Astros, do you really believe there's a GM out there that would take the Sox system? That's completely delusional. They've got a slightly worse mlb roster, but there system is ranked first or second by pretty much anyone (and that's before they get to draft automatic #1 prospect in baseball Carlos Rodon later this year). We, on the other hand, recently celebrated not being last in most publications.
Most teams do produce minor league players. It just feels like it doesn't happen because we aren't doing it.
It wouldn't take much to improve the defense on this team. Get a defensive CF and sign Salty and there's your improvement. Bullpens aren't hard to improve - we were throwing some really bad pitchers out there a lot. You want to hyperbolize it, fine. But it wouldn't be hard. The key to winning a WS is to get 4 elite hitters on this team, or 7 good ones. We may have 1. And we need another elite starter. As for Santiago, we'll see, but comparisons to Axelrod (who always got hit hard) are just daft.
Who said most teams don't produce minor league players. Presuming you meant major leaguers, the question is whether they turn into above average major leaguers.
The point of the Astros isn't that they won't be decent soon (although I still don't see much pitching in that organization outside of a couple of guys)....it's that to get to that point, they turned themselves horrible for 3 seasons. And there's exactly zero evidence that this tactic will land them a playoff berth; in fact no team has won a WS using that approach and exactly 1 has made a WS (2 if you count the 2006 Tigers). Their GM made some nice moves...he got some promising minor leaguers for some mediocre players like Bud Norris and made a great trade to get Lowry.
I'm all for doing that. Heck I would try to trade Alexei and Beckham too. Live with L Garcia for a year (but bat him last, not first, Ventura).