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About Jon
Thank You For Not ...

1) using profanity or any euphemisms for profanity
2) personally attacking other commenters
3) baiting other commenters
4) arguing for the sake of arguing
5) discussing politics
6) using hyperbole when something less will suffice
7) using sarcasm in a way that can be misinterpreted negatively
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9) typing "no-hitter" or "perfect game" to describe either in progress
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11) commenting under the obvious influence
12) claiming your opinion isn't allowed when it's just being disagreed with

Shoppers' Review
2005-06-28 10:10
by Jon Weisman
Note: The Dodger Thoughts blog has moved to the Los Angeles Times.

I'd like to call attention to some of the great work that Dodger Thoughts reader Doug Fearing has been volunteering in the comments.

Most recently, Fearing has taken to evaluating the 2004-05 free agent signings using their salaries measured against their 2005 WARP - another Baseball Prospectus statistic, defined as "the number of wins this player contributed, above what a replacement level hitter, fielder, and pitcher would have done, with adjustments only for within the season."

Here is Fearing's list of which signings have been the best bargains so far. The research is his, the comments are mine:

Hitters
NameDOBPosTeamYearsMillionsAvg.OPSGamesWARPWARP Cost
Vizquel04/24/67SSSFN3$11.05$3.680.749702.80$0.60
Polanco11/10/752BPHI1$4.60$4.600.794433.50$0.62
Burnitz04/15/69RFCHN1$5.00$5.000.805743.10$0.74
Castilla07/04/673BWAS2$6.20$3.100.720701.90$0.76
Kent03/07/682BLAD2$17.00$8.500.876734.50$0.87
Womack09/25/692BNYY2$4.00$2.000.540660.90$1.03
Alou07/03/66RFSFN2$13.25$6.630.931592.70$1.12
Varitek04/11/72CBOS4$41.00$10.250.953633.90$1.20
Dye01/28/74RFCHA2$10.15$5.080.825691.90$1.22
Drew11/20/75RFLAD5$55.00$11.000.875663.70$1.38
Cabrera11/02/74SSLAA4$31.00$7.750.648712.40$1.48
Delgado06/25/721BFLA4$52.00$13.000.979723.90$1.48
Hidalgo06/28/75RFTEX1$5.00$5.000.708631.40$1.61
Glaus08/03/763BARI4$41.00$10.250.884702.20$2.21
Beltre04/07/793BSEA5$64.00$12.800.683682.20$2.66
Finley03/12/65CFLAA2$14.00$7.000.695651.20$2.66
Sexson12/29/741BSEA4$50.00$12.500.853702.10$2.72
Valentin11/12/693BLAD1$3.50$3.500.722240.40$4.05
Beltran04/24/77CFNYM7$119.00$17.000.744681.90$4.14
Renteria08/07/75SSBOS4$40.00$10.000.723691.00$4.57
Koskie06/28/733BTOR3$17.00$5.670.743380.50$5.32
Guzman03/21/78SSWAS4$16.80$4.200.52273-0.40-
Ordonez01/28/74RFDET5$75.00$15.000.0913-0.20-
Garciaparra07/23/73SSCHN1$8.25$8.250.40414-0.20-
Gonzalez11/16/69LFCLE1$0.60$0.600.00010.00-
Hitters 74$704.40$192.35 142247.30$1.87
Dodgers8$75.50$23.001638.6$1.24
Others66$628.90$169.35125938.7$2.00

Jeff Kent has been the most productive free agent position player, and has therefore made himself into a relative bargain. J.D. Drew is in the middle. Omar Vizquel has been the top bargain, though he is also the oldest player signed to a three-year deal, so look out for a drop. No. 2 bargain Placido Polanco has already been traded, to Detroit. Note that Carlos Beltran has been a bigger disappointment than Adrian Beltre - not only in value, but in production (based in part on Beltre playing a more difficult position to fill).


Pitchers
NameDOBPosTeamYearsMillionsAvg.ERAIPWARPWARP Cost
Loaiza12/31/71SPWAS1$2.50$2.503.6394.32.4$0.48
Wickman02/06/69RPCLE1$2.75$2.752.7929.02.3$0.54
Wells05/20/63SPBOS1$2.50$2.505.0077.31.4$0.82
Morris08/09/74SPSTL1$2.50$2.503.3882.71.4$0.83
Byrd12/03/70SPLAA1$5.00$5.003.87100.02.2$1.04
Clement08/12/74SPBOS3$25.50$8.503.33102.73.3$1.18
Benson11/07/74SPNYM3$22.50$7.503.6968.32.3$1.51
Clemens08/04/62SPHOU1$18.00$18.001.51101.05.4$1.50
Millwood12/24/74SPCLE1$7.00$7.003.3470.02.0$1.58
Martinez10/25/71SPNYM4$53.00$13.252.72109.03.7$1.66
Radke10/27/72SPMIN2$18.00$9.004.08103.72.1$1.93
Lowe06/01/73SPLAD4$36.00$9.003.66110.72.0$2.08
Ortiz06/05/74SPARI4$23.00$5.755.8878.01.2$2.28
Hernandez10/11/69SPCHA2$8.00$4.004.8862.70.8$2.28
Kline08/22/72SPBAL2$5.50$2.754.8228.00.4$3.18
Percival08/09/69RPDET2$12.00$6.003.9820.30.8$3.33
Lieber04/02/70SPPHI3$21.00$7.004.93100.30.8$4.10
Perez06/11/77SPLAD3$24.00$8.004.5048.00.8$4.63
Pavano01/08/76SPNYY4$40.00$10.004.6994.00.9$5.14
Benitez11/03/72RPSFN3$21.50$7.175.799.30.1$32.74
Wilson03/28/73SPCIN2$8.20$4.107.7746.3-0.5-
Wright12/29/75SPNYY3$18.00$6.009.1519.7-0.5-
Lima09/30/72SPKAN1$2.50$2.507.8180.7-0.7-
Milton08/04/75SPCIN3$25.50$8.507.7087.7-0.8-
Pitchers 55$404.45$159.27 1723.6433.80$2.16
LAD7$60.00$17.00158.672.8$2.81
Others48$344.45$142.271564.9731$2.11
Total 129$1,108.85$351.62 81.1$1.99

On the pitching, even though the contracts tend to be more modest, the WARP costs get higher more rapidly than with the hitters. Just about everyone had to overpay for pitching. Esteban Loaiza is this year's prize, while for the same price, Jose Lima is this year's dud. Derek Lowe is in the middle, while Odalis Perez is near the bottom. Matt Clement, prized by many of us in Los Angeles but apparently unwilling to play on the West Coast, has been the best multi-year signing. And isn't it amazing about Roger Clemens?


Teams
TeamYearsMillionsAvg.WARPWARP Cost
STL1$2.50$2.501.40$0.83
CLE3$10.35$10.354.30$1.08
WAS7$25.50$9.803.90$1.16
PHI4$25.60$11.604.30$1.27
SFN8$45.80$17.485.60$1.43
FLA4$52.00$13.003.90$1.48
BOS12$109.00$31.259.60$1.49
HOU1$18.00$18.005.40$1.50
CHA4$18.15$9.082.70$1.54
LAA7$50.00$19.755.80$1.56
TEX1$5.00$5.001.40$1.61
LAD15$135.50$40.0011.40$1.62
MIN2$18.00$9.002.10$1.93
CHN2$13.25$13.252.90$2.09
NYM14$194.50$37.757.90$2.21
ARI8$64.00$16.003.40$2.24
SEA9$114.00$25.304.30$2.69
BAL2$5.50$2.750.40$3.18
TOR3$17.00$5.670.50$5.32
NYY9$62.00$18.001.30$6.41
DET7$87.00$21.000.60$15.56
KAN1$2.50$2.50-0.70-
CIN5$33.70$12.60-1.30-
TBY0$0.00$0.000.00-
OAK0$0.00$0.000.00-
ATL0$0.00$0.000.00-
MIL0$0.00$0.000.00-
PIT0$0.00$0.000.00-
SDN0$0.00$0.000.00-
COL0$0.00$0.000.00-
Non - LAD114$973.35$311.6269.7$2.05

Next to the Mets, the Dodgers put the most money on the table toward free agents. They've gotten by far the most production from their free agents, and are 12th in efficiency. Note that surprise playoff contender Washington has gotten great value - but right behind them is San Francisco, which needed to get a little more in-house production, say, from left field. San Diego, leading the National League West, didn't play the game at all.

Comments (253)
Show/Hide Comments 1-50
2005-06-28 10:29:17
1.   Suffering Bruin
I miss posting every day. I miss posting every hour. I miss posting.

What I get from the charts (and thank you, Mr. Fearing) is that things are not that bad. Like the post you had earlier, Jon, we can't base DePodesta's performance on just half a season. We can wail and gnash our teeth about the micro --why are they keeping this guy in the game, what about playing this guy--but the macro game looks very, very promising.

2005-06-28 10:38:26
2.   Colorado Blue
Great work, Fearing (and to Jon for highlighting it). This really illuminates that DePo has done a decent job of personnel management. It's too bad that he'll get roasted in the press if the Dodgers finish with a wimper. I believe that Dodgers current situation is mainly due to the overwhelming amount of injuries and DL time that is being filled by players with little to no Major League experience. Ok, the SP was suspect for a stretch, but I really feel that pitching staff has come around.
2005-06-28 10:41:41
3.   Steve
Is Erickson included in this?
2005-06-28 10:44:20
4.   Jon Weisman
3 - No. Doug could explain his choices better, but I suspect he ignored non-roster invitees.
2005-06-28 10:48:31
5.   jasonungar05
Well he hasn't pitched much, so yeah erickson is included. I think he has pitched 3 innings in June.

I thought I heard Vin say last night that our pitching staff is third best in NL since the end of May. Thats probbably why! j/k

My feeling is one of hope: Here is why:

Time will tell if the Padres will regret their recent failure to bury the rival Los Angeles Dodgers in three June games that San Diego led by at least two runs.

The first-place Padres would lead the defending National League West champions by 11½ games had they held onto those games. But by rallying yet again last night, Los Angeles moved to 5½ games behind San Diego, the only team the Dodgers have beaten in their past 14 contests.

2005-06-28 10:48:53
6.   Steve
Doesn't Erickson have negative WARP? I can't imagine why it would be useful if he didn't.
2005-06-28 10:49:17
7.   jasonungar05
oops, thought you were saying this about erickson

#2 ok, the SP was suspect for a stretch, but I really feel that pitching staff has come around.

2005-06-28 10:53:30
8.   Colorado Blue
7 - LOL. I think that's part of the reason they are coming around: 3 innings in June for Erickson.
2005-06-28 10:55:35
9.   Fearing Blue
#3: I only looked at the Top 50 free agents as listed by ESPN. So, non-roster types, and even Wilson Alvarez, are not included in the list.

#6: Erickson does indeed have a negative WARP. At a -4.6, he is lowest on the pitching staff.

2005-06-28 10:56:40
10.   Steve
Erickson's WARP is -4.6? Really?
2005-06-28 11:01:27
11.   dzzrtRatt
The chart makes DePo's off-season strategy far more comprehensible. Good hitting was gettable at a better price than Boras's price for Beltre. Kent is the steal of the off-season, and Drew was a good bargain compared with, say, Delgado, Beltran, Sexson or Glaus. However, the pitching market was in a bubble, so DePo made decisions that will cost us, but couldn't really be avoided if the Dodgers wanted to compete in 2005.

Public opinion plays into this. If DePo had signed Vinny Castilla, he would've been blasted even more than the Valentin signing, but obviously Castilla was a better choice. Ditto with pitchers like Paul Byrd or David Wells. "Paul Byrd? He's throwing in the towel for that cheap bastid McCourt!" But Byrd would've been a better choice than Lowe or Perez.

2005-06-28 11:01:35
12.   jasonungar05
fearing blue..thanks man, this is alot of work!

Jon, your site rules. It's making it's way slowly into becoming my home page.

The only time I read other dodger stuff is after being here or linking from here!

To me this site is like Vinny. We know he wants the dodgers to win, but isn't biased about how he calls what he sees. Same here.

2005-06-28 11:05:01
13.   Steve
Kent's positive WARP is +4.5. Seems like Erickson (as much as he deserves all our hatred) hasn't had that much opportunity to be as bad as Jeff Kent is good. If that makes sense.
2005-06-28 11:07:09
14.   Fearing Blue
#13: Doh. I confused myself. Erickson's VORP is -4.6. His WARP is currently sitting at 0.0. It seems the bar for a replacement pitcher is quite low.
2005-06-28 11:11:23
15.   Steve
OK, so Erickson doesn't make any difference to your ranking anyway, since he doesn't get paid anything.
2005-06-28 11:11:40
16.   Fearing Blue
#11: Drew's relative value was one of the things that surprised me the most. I had previously been in the camp that thought Drew was at least significantly overpaid. After looking at what the other free agent sluggers are making, even ones with significant injury risks, it's hard not to like the Drew signing. The only hitter with a 4+ year contract who has been a better value to-date is Jason Varitek.
2005-06-28 11:14:15
17.   bokonon42
BP's free side has Erickson WARPing an even 0.

http://www.baseballprospectus.com/dt/ericksc01.shtml

2005-06-28 11:15:33
18.   Jon Weisman
12 - your last paragraph is a tremendous compliment. Thanks.
2005-06-28 11:16:11
19.   Chris H
I'm pretty sure that WARP can't go negative.
2005-06-28 11:16:17
20.   bokonon42
15- He makes a difference on the efficiency side. Add an extra half million to the price of what WARP they got; the price per win goes up.
2005-06-28 11:16:31
21.   Steve
Corey Koskie sucks, which is interesting.
2005-06-28 11:18:45
22.   Fearing Blue
#15: Yes. That was one of the reasons I stuck with the top 50 free agents; the obviously bigger reason was simplicity. Alvarez and Dessens would drop the Dodgers pitching ranking a bit since they have not contributed much (0.3 and 0.2 WARP respectively) for a total of $3.8 million in salary. Ledee, even with his injury, has been a decent signing, contributing .7 WARP for $1.25 million. Along with Erickson, I think that rounds out all the Dodgers free agent signings.
2005-06-28 11:20:28
23.   Fearing Blue
#19: It's rare, but it can go negative. Poor Christian Guzman is one of the few examples (-0.40 WARP), especially for someone with regular playing time.
2005-06-28 11:26:04
24.   jasonungar05
Your welcome, Jon.

Not only is this fun and hilarious at times but it is also very informative. It's great to share the passion with others. It's great to discover that after 25+ years of being a Dodger fan that I can learn so much more from everyone who posts here. We talk past, future and present on Dodger baseball and I just can't get enough of it!

Go blue.

2005-06-28 11:30:57
25.   Steve
Dear Dodger Thoughts,

I knew you were all just a bunch of DePodesta Trekkies. WARP, indeed.

Sincerely,

Bill Plaschke

2005-06-28 11:35:25
26.   the OZ
WARP value is useful, but value probably shouldn't be the primary metric to evaluate whether a signing was good or bad.

For example, if I bought a used Suzuki Samurai for $1500, it could be a great value because I paid so little. However, it's still just a Samurai (no offense meant to any owners of said automobile). I could also buy a used BMW 3-series for $15000 and the value wouldn't be as good, but it's the far superior vehicle and a solid deal in its own right.

That said, I look at the fact that the Dodgers added more WARP than anyone else as the most important factor here. The total WARP added, while still retaining good overall value, is the thing to admire.

2005-06-28 11:36:39
27.   Sushirabbit
I second #12.

Engage. Straight on till morning... etc etc

2005-06-28 11:39:59
28.   Jon Weisman
Oz - fair enough. In fact, the premise of the whole piece wasn't to determine the best signing, but the best bargain (to date).
2005-06-28 11:45:03
29.   Jon Weisman
While Cesar hangs onto his All-Star Idol lead, Hee Seop Choi has moved into fifth in the All-Star voting. Hee is only 97,000 votes out of third place. Only 1,413,000 votes out of first place.
2005-06-28 11:46:33
30.   Dodgerkid
If we're so efficient, why do we still suck?
2005-06-28 11:46:43
31.   Fearing Blue
#26: That's a great point. Not only do you have to get a good value on your WARP :), you need to get a lot of it in order to win.

A team of replacement players corresponds to about a .350 winning percentage (57 wins). To be a good team, you probably need to add about 40 to that number. Taking into account injuries, I would think a team should plan for around 60 WARP. At $2 million per, that's not affordable for most teams (Red Sox and Yankees being the obvious exceptions).

Additionally, my belief is that WARP value drops over the life of a contract, since most players are signed on the wrong side of their peak. So, even if you can buy a championship for today, it's probably going to hurt you in the long run (see the New York Yankees).

2005-06-28 11:47:26
32.   Jon Weisman
I suppose that was a rhetorical question, but 1) other teams were more efficient and 2) efficiency is only part of the picture.
2005-06-28 11:48:54
33.   Dodgerkid
I'm asking quite seriously. Is it because of injury? Or because though our players perform well for what they are paid, they still don't perform well enough?
2005-06-28 11:51:45
34.   Jon Weisman
Yes. Those are pretty much the reasons.

There are bargains ... and then there's Albert Pujols.

2005-06-28 11:53:45
35.   Fearing Blue
#30: My gut answer to that question is that we were pretty lousy last year in terms of actual ability. The combination of a few fluky career seasons (Odalis Perez, Jeff Weaver, Jose Hernandez, Alex Cora, Adrian Beltre, Steve Finley, ...) and some luck (32 - 16 in one run games) got us into the playoffs. So, even though we have improved this year, which is very likely in terms of true ability, it's not enough to make up for last year's bubble bursting.
2005-06-28 11:55:42
36.   Fearing Blue
#35: That and injuries. I think Will Carroll recently pointed out that the Dodgers and the Giants have lost more salary to the DL than any other teams. Our current rate of value lost / day is higher than any of the other "contenders" in the NL West.
2005-06-28 12:00:48
37.   Im So Blue
Off topic, but there's a great article about Vinny (by Steve Bisheff of the OC Register):

http://www.ocregister.com/ocr/2005/06/28/sections/sports/sports/article_576888.php

2005-06-28 12:02:05
38.   Colorado Blue
It seems to me even on this site there is a cloud of mystery as to why we "suck"... although our pitching has been suspect enough to induce a slump in winning, it seems clear that the overriding problem is INJURIES!
2005-06-28 12:11:30
39.   Fearing Blue
#38: Injuries do play a large role. The Dodgers have lost a total of about 10 WARP to injuries. Obviously, if we were to add that all to the Win column, we'd be a very good team, but everyone loses time to injuries, and some teams, like the Dodgers, should expect to lose more than others. The Diamondbacks, who have been the healthiest of the NL West teams, have lost 3 WARP to injuries. The Padres have lost 5 WARP and the Giants have lost 9 WARP. I'd say that injuries have only cost the Dodgers about 3 or 4 wins over what DePodesta should have expected coming into the season.
2005-06-28 12:17:03
40.   Sam DC
Continuing my modest service of regularly providing you with cherry-picked snippets from the Wash Post beat writers' weekly online chats -- a wonderful regular feature of the paper by the way -- I bring you another episode of the Closer Follies.

Washington, D.C.: Lee Mazzilli is awful on game day. Let's see the bases are loaded with my starter in trouble. I know, I'll have a 22 year old rookie warmup by himself. One walk, one wild pitch, and the game is tied, and there is no one ready to fill in. Let's not even mention the failure to bunt in the right situations. Hargrove would have this team 5-10 games higher in the win column.

Jorge Arangure Jr.: I think you might be a little harsh on this one. I can understand your hesitation to bring in Ray in that situation, but it's the sixth inning. You can't treat that inning as if it were the eighth or ninth. You can't bring in your most reliable reliever that inning because then you have to use Ray in the eighth if the Yankees rally again.

Leaving aside the absurdity that business about bunting and Mike Hargrove, the last sentence of this chat is such a perfect example of what Jon was railing about a month ago on this closer business. I mean, it just crumples under the weight of its own illogic. You have to use the rookie because you can't bring in your most reliable reliever -- when the bases are loaded and you're up by one -- because what if you do and then the other team rallies again and then you have to use the rookie? I'm pretty sure that if the goal is to avoid using the rookie in a tight spot, bringing him with the bases loaded up by one is not the best way to achieve it.

Link to chat: http://tinyurl.com/8fwtw

2005-06-28 12:27:02
41.   Linkmeister
More O/T: On this date in baseball history (from my local paper):

1907 - Twelve Washington runners stole on catcher Branch Rickey, and the Senators defeated the NY Yankees 16-5.

Good thing he went into the front office, huh?

2005-06-28 12:30:57
42.   bokonon42
34- Well, yeah, there's that. Pujols would be between Sexon and Valentin, on the above list, with a 2.8 mil/WARP. But he's also half a point WARPier than Kent.
2005-06-28 12:36:05
43.   bokonon42
I'm a moron. I missed a column and was using next years salary. If he's only making 11 million this year (ignoring incentives, right?), then it's 2.2 mil/WARP. A little worse than average, but better than Glaus, Beltre, and Finley.
2005-06-28 12:37:34
44.   Langhorne
All this is fine but what about H&SARP?

But seriously folks, I think injuries are a big factor because they become compounded the more there are at one time. And I think injuries to less important parts of the team, Ledee for instance, become much bigger when other players are injured as well. The more pieces that are missing, the lower the margin for error. And the more unproven players you bring in to fill the holes the higher the possibility for error (figuratively and literally).

2005-06-28 12:41:38
45.   Landonkk
#30:
In my humble opinion, the reason for our 'suckiness' is twofold. Undoubtedly you would have to blame injuries as the first and foremost problem. Anytime you have less than half of your expected opening day roster take the field for an extended amount of time, you are going to suffer. The second problem, which is more difficult to show, is our lack of syncing our good hitting and our good pitching. This is not something that is necessarily controllable and is more a product of good old fashion luck. Without having stats or fancy tables to show what I am talking about (I'm sure someone could easily throw one together), our great hitting in May was undermined by our slump in pitching. Our reasonable pitching in June has not been outweighed by our struggles at the plate. Both slumps can certainly be linked to the barrage of injuries, but Lowe, Penny, Weaver and our pen struggled when Izzy, Saenz and others were hot and now as Weaver, Penny, and our pen come around, Izzy is .080-something in June, Seanz has come back to earth, and our rookie replacements are playing like rookie replacements.

I know that baseball is a game of streaks. Hot and cold, good and bad. But I don't ever recall watching a team that has had such a Dr. Jekyll / Mr. Hide persona. Even in a micro-perspective, player performances have been glaringly streaky. Kent starts blazing hot, cools off in June and is now back. Choi – ice cold, blazing hot, and back to frigid. Izzy is the epitome of this – a .349 hitter going 6 for his last 74 – overnight. Does it seem this way to anybody else, or am I just more aware of it than I have been before?

2005-06-28 12:42:06
46.   bokonon42
Whereas Our Loving Savior would be in his rightful place at the very top with .269 mil/WARP. You know, so long as none of the other arb. ineligible players were considered.
2005-06-28 12:47:01
47.   bokonon42
44- That's a really intriguing point, I think. DL synergy. It instintively makes sense.
2005-06-28 12:53:33
48.   Steve
40 -- I like how every time Sam treats us to a dumb sportswriter from WaPo, it's a different dumb sportswriter. They must grow on trees on the East Coast. Don Graham must keep dozens of them in a cryogenic chamber and bring them out as needed.

Not only that, but it is an example of the pathological aversion all beat writers apparently have toward anything resembling "scrutiny" of the manager of the team they allegedly "cover."

Or it could just be that he didn't understand the question.

2005-06-28 12:59:55
49.   Fearing Blue
#45: It has definitely seemed that way, especially over the last couple months. Nonetheless, statistically, it seems our recent bad luck has been balanced out by our good luck earlier on. Our current record of 35 - 40 is only off of our Baseball Prospectus Third Order adjusted record of 35.4 - 40.6. Essentially, BP uses the cumulative statistics in pitching and hitting to determine an expected Win / Loss record. In this case, it's very much in line, which suggests our luck has pretty much balanced out.
2005-06-28 13:18:37
50.   Fearing Blue
Hey wait. After winning last night, our record is actually 36 - 40. Sweet!
Show/Hide Comments 51-100
2005-06-28 13:23:15
51.   DougS
IIRC, Bill James once wrote that the difference between a 1st place and a last place team in any given year isn't really that great, and sometimes blind, dumb luck can be a decisive factor. So yes, add me to the 'bad luck and injuries' crowd. Remember, Vin loves to quote that Robert Burns line about how "The best laid plans of mice and men gang aft aglee," and one could say that of DePo this year.
2005-06-28 13:29:44
52.   Suffering Bruin
51 - One could say that and I think one should say that. But I don't think that will get said by anyone in the MSM.
2005-06-28 13:30:01
53.   Jim Hitchcock
First off, what Jason #12 said, because he said it so well.

And thanks, FB, for all the hard work. Don't know what drives you (the need to understand???), but it's appreciated.

2005-06-28 13:30:09
54.   frienetic
Shawn Estes has been left off the list of pitchers and has been perhaps one of the best free agent signings. Signed by the Diamondbacks for just one year for 2.5 Million he has a WARP of 3.1. Perhaps his WARP cost puts him just in front of Loiza though the ERA is a little worse. He has been one of the team's biggest surprises and is a big reason as to why the team sits where they are.
2005-06-28 13:32:54
55.   bigcpa
I know this accounts for defense but how can this be:

Glaus .884 OPS, 2.2 WARP
Beltre .683 OPS, 2.2 WARP

2005-06-28 13:35:12
56.   LAT
#44 raises perhaps the most critical point. Multiple injuries hurt on an exponential basis. Having one player out 50 days or even two player 25 days is not as damning as having 5 players out for 10 days.

On a different subject. Has anyone (other that Tracy or Dodger PR weenie) provided a meaningful explanation for how Drew could not PH with the game on the line on Sun. but can play all day Mon. in the outfield and go 2-2 with 2BBs. Did he find a faith healer in the interim? Don't get me wrong, I am grateful for yesterday's performance but it really makes me question the guy's heart. Jeff Kent he ain't.

2005-06-28 13:35:34
57.   Jon Weisman
55 - Very good question. 1) Defense? 2) Ballpark? 3) Alphabetical order?
2005-06-28 13:38:15
58.   Jon Weisman
56 - I know why this gets greeted with skepticism, but I don't know why it gets greeted with such skepticism. Haven't you ever felt significantly better a day later? Sometimes you don't need a faith healer, but just 24 more hours.

Players come back from missing an entire game to playing an entire game the next day all the time. Drew is being unfairly singled out because of his reputation.

2005-06-28 13:39:17
59.   Jon Weisman
Honestly, is there any legitimate reason to think Drew wouldn't want to go up for one at-bat Sunday with a chance to win the game?
2005-06-28 13:40:12
60.   fanerman91
Perhaps I'm being reactionary to all our injury issues (not just now, but our tendency to rush people to play), but I'm inclined to give Drew all the time he needs instead of trying to be some macho man who ends up spending half a season or more on the DL over something that should take a few weeks to heal.
2005-06-28 13:42:07
61.   Jon Weisman
60 - I agree.
2005-06-28 13:42:26
62.   Jon Weisman
Wow - I almost commented for the cycle for the first time.
2005-06-28 13:43:19
63.   Steve Saxs Sweaty Jockstrap
56-Good point. I'm glad we have J.D. on our team but at the same time the guy is a weenie.

At that point in Sunday's game he could have told J.T. he could pinch hit with the game on the line. Do you think J.T. would have said, " No,I want Mikey Edwards hitting in this situation."

J.D. has little heart and complains like a little girl. Granted he is still an On Base machine.

Remember this is the guy who twisted his ankle jogging in from the outfield after an inning and went on the 15 day DL.(St. Louis)

2005-06-28 13:46:16
64.   Suffering Bruin
59 - Because he has no heart?

That's the only argument and it is, of course, silly. Fanerman has it right, I think. Drew's performance last night was proof that the extra day was exactly what was needed. I think Drew knows his own body very well and I, for one, trust him.

Lost in the Ripken hero worship was that the guy would go through horrific slumps without taking himself out of the lineup. I think Ripken, however admirable he was as a player and man, actually cost his team wins.

Slimers has joined the JD-has-no-heart argument. That's not the kind of company anyone should want to keep.

2005-06-28 13:46:53
65.   jasonungar05
yah, if Drew needs 15 days off to go .305/ .436/ .570/ 1.006 then he can have it.

Now, get to work!

2005-06-28 13:47:24
66.   Suffering Bruin
62 - I did that once. It's a good feeling... ah, memories.
2005-06-28 13:48:22
67.   jasonungar05
64. Suffering Bruin

or lost in the Ripken hero worship is Shawn Green 2003

2005-06-28 13:50:53
68.   Icaros
Good point. I'm glad we have J.D. on our team but at the same time the guy is a weenie.

Have you met him?

At that point in Sunday's game he could have told J.T. he could pinch hit with the game on the line. Do you think J.T. would have said, " No,I want Mikey Edwards hitting in this situation."

Wouldn't surprise me with JT.

J.D. has little heart and complains like a little girl. Granted he is still an On Base machine.

Haven't heard him complain once this year. He hasn't even been on the DL.

Remember this is the guy who twisted his ankle jogging in from the outfield after an inning and went on the 15 day DL.(St. Louis)

People sprain ankles doing all kinds of things, including jogging. I don't see how this makes him a weenie.

2005-06-28 13:52:15
69.   Suffering Bruin
I sprained my ankle once tying my shoes. I don't like talking about it.
2005-06-28 13:53:38
70.   Sam DC
Well, last one from the Wash Post menagerie, only because it's pretty on-point. Over the weekend, Tom Boswell wrote a glowing article about Nationals rookie outfielder Ryan Church. But halfway through, the thing veered into this long discussion about whether or not Church has the heart to play hurt, and more to the point will he be able to prove that to to the tough vet Nats (and of course, to the toughest, vettest Nat of them all, Frank Robinson). I'm not going to excerpt because the discussion (which includes a not-tongue-in-cheek reference to Church proving he belongs in "the lodge") is too long. Here's the link, though. http://tinyurl.com/8ltz8.

Sheesh -- this kid is a rookie on a first place team, having exceeded all expectations so that some folks are talking about rookie of the year, and he just saved a game (or whatever) by crashing blind into the outfield wall, and this dogs him. I don't know Church, but it seems pretty unfair to assert that he doesn't want to play based simply on this sort of guesswork.
2005-06-28 13:55:23
71.   GoBears
64-65
I agree with these posts. I can't stand the armchair warriors who belittle guys who don't "play despite injuries." I understand it more from young fans, who don't know how quickly and frequently the aches and pains set in once you pass 30. But heck, we've just had an example, in Eric Gagne, of the dangers of coming back too soon. I also wonder if maybe Izturis is hurt. Playing while injured is only good for the team if you're better at less than full speed than your replacement AND if you don't make the problem worse by not resting. Beltre last year was a good example of that. But to just call someone a sissy for not playing hurt is stupid.

Oh, and yes, I do think it's entirely possible that Tracy would rather have Edwards bat than Drew. Tracy is certifiable, and Edwards DOES have a higher batting average, if JT needs a justification.

2005-06-28 13:55:33
72.   the OZ
It's off-topic, but worth mentioning that Andy LaRoche has been the best hitter for JAX since his callup -

.370 .431 .804, with 5 HRs, 5 2B, and 5 BB in 46 ABs.

I was curious how he'd respond to the increased competition, and so far he's making opposing pitchers look as silly as the Hi-A players he just left in the dust.

2005-06-28 13:55:53
73.   Icaros
69 - And I wouldn't call you a weenie for that, either.
2005-06-28 13:56:35
74.   Steve Saxs Sweaty Jockstrap
68-Actually I have met him, at photo day last month. He seemed like a good guy. He didn't say much, but smiled for the camera's.

My point is this. There are championship caliber players who are will to take one for the team. Sunday's game was very important.
It's hard for me to fathom that he couldn't go up to the plate for 1 pinch hit.

Even in the back of his mind he knew he wasn't completely healthy, he had a better chance at producing than Mike Edwards.

2005-06-28 13:58:03
75.   LAT
#60 I agree. If Drew needs the time to heal then he should take the time. I am not suggesting that he should be a Mr. Macho. But to go from being completely unavailable, for even one AB with game on the line to playing an entire game in the outfield (the part which I imagine hurts his knee most) with 4 ABs, including running out two hits, in the span of one day is curious to me.

#58 Jon, there are days I feel like crap and can't come to the office. There are days I feel like semi-crap and come in to finish one project and go home. There are days I feel a little crappy and just work thorough it. I don't know that I have ever been laid up where I can't come in one day and the next show up for 8 hours and be at full strength. You were an example of this two weeks ago. Gradually as you began to feel better you posted more often and more in depth. Its just human nature. What Drew did, IMO, defies that notion. There was nothing gradual about it and it makes me wonder if he is willing to play at anything less than 90-100%.

2005-06-28 14:03:31
76.   Steve Saxs Sweaty Jockstrap
75-I agree completely.

I apologize if anyone was offended when I called J.D. a weenie.

But you do what it takes to help your ballclub win games.

2005-06-28 14:03:50
77.   Suffering Bruin
74 - I take your point but consider this.

Drew comes in to pinch hit. He gets fooled on a pitch and tweaks the knee. Or, if you rather, he gets a long double and slides in to second base. Big cheers from crowd but he comes up gimpy.

Do you think he'll get saluted for taking one for the team? Au contraire: he'll get lambasted by the Plaschkers for being brittle.

Beltre played last year on a bad wheel because playing wasn't going to make it worse. There is the risk that by compensating for the injury, he would screw up his game and perhaps injure something else i.e. Gagne. Obviously, that didn't happen.

JD Drew didn't play because he was hurt and there was risk of making the injury worse. That's fine with me.

2005-06-28 14:04:04
78.   GoBears
Even in the back of his mind he knew he wasn't completely healthy, he had a better chance at producing than Mike Edwards.

We don't know this. He probably had a better chance of hitting a HR, because Edwards has no power, but even healthy, Edwards DOES have a better average, so Edwards probably had the better shot at a basehit. But Drew was not healthy, and if they thought that running the bases, or even swinging would make the knee worse, then holding him out was smarter.

I blame Kirk Gibson for this. That HR made fans think that health was merely a matter of machismo. He didn't play much for the rest of the series, tho did he?

2005-06-28 14:04:30
79.   Icaros
74 - Maybe he could have pinch hit, maybe not. But guess what, as important as every game seems right now, it wasn't the game of the season.

We shouldn't risk losing him longer for an interleague game in June.

Would Kirk Gibson have limped to the plate to face Eckersley in 1988 for a regular season game before the all-star break? I doubt it.

2005-06-28 14:09:00
80.   Marty
Wow, Bowden wanted to get Encarnacion in a trade.
2005-06-28 14:09:40
81.   Jon Weisman
Well, comparing an office to a ballgame is a stretch, but all I can tell you is that there have absolutely been times when I felt too crappy to work one day and felt fine the next.

Beyond that - say your knee is at 50 percent. It is not going to be able to withstand as much trauma as a knee that's at 100 percent. The trauma could send you back to 0. Whereas if you wait a day, you'll be much stronger. And yes, hitting causes trauma.

Furthermore, you assume J.D. was at 100 percent Monday. Why? Who's to say he wasn't playing hurt Monday?

The guy has hardly missed any time this year. He's getting the same biased treatment Milton Bradley gets if he so much as glares at someone.

2005-06-28 14:12:31
82.   Suffering Bruin
80 - the two were made for each other. Encarnacion is a tools guy, played on a championship team, looks good in the uniform. If Bowden could have 25 Juan's, he would.
2005-06-28 14:13:15
83.   Sushirabbit
Just the travel would put me on the DL. I'd still take it with being able to play pro-ball, but travel like that just sucks the life out of me. So far I haven't seen anything that leads me to question Drew's motivation. If anything, he's made some good plays and seems to get along with everybody. Even if he's a wuss for one game, wouldn't you rather have someone that saves 5 or 6 for every one that he MIGHT not help in?
2005-06-28 14:14:01
84.   bokonon42
Just because he had a good day, doesn't mean he was 100%. He probably isn't. And anyway, while he was more likely than Edwards to come through on Sunday, it was still much more likely that he wouldn't have.
2005-06-28 14:14:10
85.   Marty
J.D. was quoted as saying the knee pain was still there. The swelling had gone down enough so he could swing, but it still hurt. So that tells me he was still too banged up on Sunday. It also tells me he is willing to play hurt, but not stupid enough to go out there when he shouldn't.
2005-06-28 14:15:12
86.   Steve Saxs Sweaty Jockstrap
78- Read post 75. He sums it up completely.

To go from unavailable to pinch hit, to playing an game over a span of less than 24 hours is questionable.

Saying Mike Edwards has a better average than J.D. doesn't make much sense. HE HAS A BETTER CHANCE AT GETTING A BASE HIT BECAUSE HE HAS A HIGHER AVERAGE THAN DREW? That is mind boggling.

Edwards has a few less at-bats than Drew to say the least.

The best chance for the club to win was J.D. pinch hitting, no matter what his capacity was.

2005-06-28 14:16:32
87.   bokonon42
Oh, for the love of Choi. I figured with Bob gone, I'd have a better chance of making a point without getting beaten to it. Thanks for stealing my thunder Jon.
2005-06-28 14:18:16
88.   Suffering Bruin
81 - We really should get a feel for the talking points on how to cover these guys. Let's take a a few, shall we?

Drew - gimpy, no heart or leadership skills
Kent - grumpy, stand-offish, unfriendly
Weaver - flaky
Choi - flawed
Bradley - time bomb

Who did I miss?

2005-06-28 14:19:47
89.   bokonon42
86- Even stipulating to Drew being the best chance, you have to acknowledge that the probability of his winning the game was small. If you think it was worth whatever the increase in likelihood that he'd be more seriously hurt, so be it. But it's a risky proposition, with only a small chance at the upside you're hoping for.
2005-06-28 14:20:33
90.   Jon Weisman
"To go from unavailable to pinch hit, to playing an game over a span of less than 24 hours is questionable."

This happens all the time (putting aside that it was more than 24 hours). All the time.

2005-06-28 14:20:43
91.   Marty
I also tend to cut players with knee injuries more slack. A personal prejudice of mine. I have two bad knees and am often in pain just walking. I can't imagine playing baseball with a bad knee, even at a young age.
2005-06-28 14:21:11
92.   bokonon42
88- SINNER! Choi is perfect. By definition. I hope you enjoy Steve's company, because eternity is a very long time.
2005-06-28 14:22:53
93.   Suffering Bruin
The best chance for the club to win was J.D. pinch hitting, no matter what his capacity was.

You might literally be right. But if Drew's capacity to play included the risk of worsening his injury then it would be penny-wise, pound-foolish to play him.

2005-06-28 14:24:00
94.   Steve Saxs Sweaty Jockstrap
89- So suddenly within less than 24 hours he didn't increase the likelihood of becoming more seriously hurt.

And played an entire game. Without visibly favoring the knee at all?

2005-06-28 14:24:26
95.   stubbs
If Drew played Monday, he should have swung the bat on Sunday, just to gain the rest of the ballclubs respect. That sort of stuff goes a long way.
2005-06-28 14:26:35
96.   Steve Saxs Sweaty Jockstrap
95-Thank You.
2005-06-28 14:26:41
97.   Suffering Bruin
92 - Now, now, I was only highlighting the Talking Points of the media with regard to covering the Dodgers. I certainly didn't say they were my opinions. But, since you asked...

Drew - smart, SABR saavy, knows when to play
Kent - tough, veteran slugger, knows game
Weaver - flaky
Bradley - learned from his mistakes
Choi - My personal hero baffles commentary with his commitment to the game, to living right and being that beacon of light that all other players must aspire to.

The latter opinion may not last if the OBP doesn't pick up.

2005-06-28 14:27:28
98.   bokonon42
94- Everytime he takes the field, no, every time he so much as breathes, he's taking a chance of becoming injured. As are we all. But of course an extra day to heal decreases the chance of reinjuring his knee. Not to zero, because there's no such thing as zero. But lower is better than higher.
2005-06-28 14:27:35
99.   bigcpa
I'm still trying to grasp the WARP data. I came up with this from BP:

Kent 4.9
Drew 4.1
Bradley 3.3
Izturis 2.1
A Perez 1.5
Saenz 1.4
Choi 1.3
Phillips 0.7
Ledee 0.7
Valentin 0.4
= 20.4

We've played 76 games. My understanding of replacement level should be .350 win pct or 26 wins. .600 ball would be 46 wins. So if we're only looking for 20 WARP then the entire pitching staff must have negative WARP. If we're ranked 11th in NL ERA in a pitchers park maybe that's the case.

Fearing Blue- any way you can post the pitching WARP's and translate the total to our 36 wins?

2005-06-28 14:27:56
100.   Marty
97. I would change Weaver from flaky to high
Show/Hide Comments 101-150
2005-06-28 14:28:28
101.   Rick A
Drew made it sound pretty simple yesterday in the LAT:

"I talked to three doctors and the training staff, and they've got a game plan to keep me from being out a long time," Drew said. "It's a matter of trusting what those guys think."

Now, will you guys let this go?

2005-06-28 14:28:32
102.   Suffering Bruin
101 - LOL. I wish I thought of it.
2005-06-28 14:29:05
103.   Suffering Bruin
102 - I meant 100. Sorry...
2005-06-28 14:29:34
104.   bokonon42
97- Redemption is a beautiful thing. You are an excellent witness to the awesome power of Choi.
2005-06-28 14:31:07
105.   Suffering Bruin
104 - I could always quote anonymous sources for more evidence of his heroic feats.

Believe me, I'm still taking grief from friends over that one.

2005-06-28 14:32:01
106.   Steve
Why are we assuming that this is Drew's decision to make?
2005-06-28 14:33:38
107.   Jon Weisman
The Izturis chat on Dodgers.com has started. All softball questions so far.
2005-06-28 14:33:47
108.   Suffering Bruin
106 - Because of Kirk Gibson.
2005-06-28 14:34:11
109.   Marty
Way off topic, but check out earth.google.com. It's a free application (windows only, sorry) Google has just released . It allows you to fly around the earth using satellite imagery. Type in a city name and watch yourself go to that location as it hones in on the city center. Pretty cool.
2005-06-28 14:35:00
110.   bokonon42
99- Is that how WARP works? It's a component-ization of a team's actual record? Doesn't that make it worthless for comparing between teams? Or maybe not worthless, but flawed, to borrow a term.
2005-06-28 14:36:52
111.   Xeifrank
Anyone going to be watching the NBA draft tonight? Or are we all just Big Jim Tracy fans? :)
vr, Xei
2005-06-28 14:37:43
112.   LAT
#81 I still think its strange that a guy goes from not being available for a single AB (assuming its true) to playing a full game and playing it well. I am not picking up on LaRussa's comments or Simmers. My post simply asked whether someone had provided a credible explanation.

BTW, if is was less than 90-100% last night I hope he continues to play that way.

As for MB: Let me first say that I have complete respect for the way he has comported himself this season. He has been a model citizen and I hope the umpires and league officials take note. Having said that, I have to disagree with your statement: He's getting the same biased treatment Milton Bradley gets if he so much as glares at someone. Bradley earned that "bias" with two of the most notable meltdowns in the game last year. He got arrested and did jail time in the off-season for his lack of control. He has an admitted anger management problem. Thus, when he glares at someone and the press takes notice it is not a bias it is justified based on his prior conduct.

2005-06-28 14:38:49
113.   Suffering Bruin
109 - thanks for that.
2005-06-28 14:39:21
114.   Steve
101 -- Exactly.

Aren't there doctors and GMs and (yes, God forbid) managers who have a say in this?

Or, perhaps, we should have a situation where a star heroically refuses to listen to all those namby-pambies (Denny Crane!) with the clipboards and the X-Rays, comes back too early, screws up his mechanics, shreds some important ligament, and comes uncomfortably close to destroying his career (assuming we're being told the truth about it in the first place).

Not that that would ever happen.

Here's a question for you:

Why does Bill Plaschke, when Eric Gagne goes down, blame the Dodgers for his usage pattern, but when JD Drew goes down, he blames...JD Drew.

If you don't know the answer, then you are, I'm afraid, very stupid.

2005-06-28 14:40:29
115.   Xeifrank
Is winning a baseball game similiar to tossing a coin? Are the results after 70+ games similiar to a series of 70+ coin toss results? To a certain degree it seems to be. Especially when you talk small sample sizes. I guess that's where the phrase "on any given night, any team can beat you" came from. And I guess that is why Billy Beane said success in the playoffs is pretty much a crapshoot.
vr, Xei
2005-06-28 14:40:30
116.   Jon Weisman
The bias is the assumption that we know the explanation of the action. The bias is that people assume that Milton is barely holding back from exploding and that Drew is heartlessly dogging it. The bias is that people aren't willing to believe that in a given instance, Milton could be mildly angry at something, and J.D. could be legitimately hurt.
2005-06-28 14:46:50
117.   Steve
108 -- That wasn't Kirk Gibson's choice either. He made himself available. Somebody had to send him to the plate.

I'm agnostic about whether he actually should have been up in the ninth on Sunday. I can see both sides. What I can't see is blaming Drew until you have laid a foundation for it being Drew's fault.

2005-06-28 14:48:19
118.   Fearing Blue
#99/110: WARP-1 as used by Baseball Prospectus is adjusted to normalize within the season, but not specifically for each team's win total. I come up with a total of 36.2 WARP for the Dodgers (22.4 Hitting / 13.8 Pitching). I'm not exactly sure how this supposed to map to Wins. I thought, as you did, that a replacement player corresponded to a .350 winning percentage. Based on our record it looks more like 1 WARP = 1 Win straight up.
2005-06-28 14:49:50
119.   Steve
If Drew played Monday, he should have swung the bat on Sunday, just to gain the rest of the ballclubs respect.

That's the problem! We need an inspired Jason Grabowski!

2005-06-28 14:52:31
120.   stubbs
119-you really dont see the point with that statement? Have you ever played team sports?
2005-06-28 14:52:50
121.   Sam DC
87 -- "Oh, for the love of Choi." LOLOL.
2005-06-28 14:53:58
122.   Sam DC
Xei -- i've been reading a lot of emails written by military types. Lots of "v/r"s.
2005-06-28 14:57:29
123.   LAT
#116 maybe we just have to agree to disagree(probably the first time I have disagreed with you).

The bias is that people aren't willing to believe that in a given instance, Milton could be mildly angry at something, and J.D. could be legitimately hurt.

I agree that there is not enough credible evidence to support the bias that Drew won't play hurt; however, given his track record, I don't think it is a bias to wonder if MB is going to lose it the next time he becomes agitated. To wonder the same after he has behaved himself for 3-4 years, that would be a bias. But for now, he has earned and to his credit, owned, his reputation.

2005-06-28 14:58:28
124.   Fearing Blue
#115: I think I recall it being something like a bad team (.450) has a 30% chance of beating a good team (.550) in a 7-game playoff, assuming you use the team's winning percentage to estimate its true ability.
2005-06-28 14:59:51
125.   Steve
Jason Repko need only be touched by the magic of JD Drew's presence, and he will blossom into the toolsy star he was destined to be.

I'm confused. I thought you didn't like JD Drew. Now he can raise the Living Dead! Bokonon, I think Choi has a rival and jealous god seeking the love of the clubhouse. Some among us are worshipping the Golden Patella Tendon.

2005-06-28 14:59:55
126.   Fearing Blue
#124: I just re-read my post and I couldn't have qualified my response any more if I tried. Yuck.
2005-06-28 15:01:42
127.   Fearing Blue
Hey Jon, I just sent you the WARP data for all the Dodgers in case anyone is interested. Like I mentioned before, I'm not sure how it's supposed to correspond to our record, but it still seems interesting.
2005-06-28 15:01:55
128.   LAT
#117 Steve, I agree. I raised this issue wondering if there had been a credible explination. I don't know if Tracy even asked Drew to PH on Sunday.
2005-06-28 15:04:06
129.   Icaros
Steve,

Didn't you know that Izturis's horrible BA slide started because Choi didn't dive for a ball a few weeks ago?

Baseball teams are constantly ruled and ruined by the Butterfly Effect.

2005-06-28 15:06:55
130.   Steve
128 -- Well, it's a given that he should have, since Grabowski, Ross and Repko all left the game in tears.

I think the word "credible" brings us to the core of the problem. I think you and I would both agree that whatever the reason was that Drew didn't hit on Sunday, and even if they told the exact, complete, and total truth about it -- neither of us would really believe the Dodger organization. And that is a systemic problem to which I do not have a good answer.

2005-06-28 15:08:00
131.   Steve
129 -- ah...hence Tracy's apparently random managerial decisions! This is all starting to make sense now.
2005-06-28 15:13:52
132.   stubbs
People follow leaders. Like it or not, there are 55 million reasons why the rest of the team will naturally look at a guy like JD Drew and the way he approaches the game, which for the most part has been blasted by many people in the game. This is the first chance he had as a Dodger to lead by example. Steve-you never answered my question about playing team sports. if you have, I assume you understand the context of my statement. Icaros-you are cut from the same cloth as Drew, so would expect an answer such as that.
2005-06-28 15:18:21
133.   Nagman
Mark Grant, Padre TV announcer, quoted Drew as saying that he felt "a stabbing pain every fortieth step". They were mocking him for it. Has anybody else heard this quote? I read a lot about the Dodgers and haven't heard this one anywhere. It's a shame if he is repeating this and it is not true.

BTW, I think Mark Grant is an idiot. His work in the booth is a joke.

2005-06-28 15:20:10
134.   Telemachos
stubbs, are you saying Drew has a low Scrappy Quotient?
2005-06-28 15:20:27
135.   Jon Weisman
It's not the first chance Drew had as a Dodger to lead by example. For example, the way Drew didn't give up and worked his way through his season-opening slump, and came back strong. The way he has never complained about anything - including being asked to bunt, which was beneath him. The way he has always been on his best behavior. He will always dive for a ball. I'm not trying to make him into a hero, but you're so determined to villanize him, it seems necessary to point this out.

If the other Dodgers need J.D. Drew to motivate them - then point the finger at the other Dodgers. They would be the ones lacking heart. Courage, strength - those things come from within.

And further, you assume that every other moment Drew has played, he has been 100 percent. This is the bias I'm talking about. Because of what's been said in the past about him, he gets no fresh start here.

2005-06-28 15:20:33
136.   Steve
I see what you're doing. You're trying to turn Drew into LoDuca! .550 career OPS in that most important of leadership months, September, and all!

Remember, leadership is just one way of saying "I like you!"

I'll just stick with plain old JD "What the hell is his problem? Just get up there and strike out like the rest of those bums" Drew, without piling on the baggage of trying to explain why Grabowski, Ross, Repko, Phillips, Izturis, Choi, Werth, Weaver, and the rest of the Keystone Kops suck because JD Drew isn't Henry V on St. Crispin's Day.

2005-06-28 15:20:36
137.   Icaros
Icaros-you are cut from the same cloth as Drew, so would expect an answer such as that.

Care to explain how you have any idea about the "cloth" I'm "cut from"?

Keep talking smack from behind your computer, kid.

2005-06-28 15:21:20
138.   bokonon42
132- Those fifty-five million reasons are exactly the reason it's a bad idea to play with fire. If you get a hot stock tip, and put all the money from your savings account in it, it's dangerous but might be worth it. If you cash out your 401k and put that in the stock, you're out of your mind. DePo isn't working with a Yankee sized checkbook, fifty-five million dollars worth of a crippled Drew is too big a downside.

There's got to be some happy equilibrium, but it has nothing to do with guts, or grit, or leadership.

2005-06-28 15:22:25
139.   Steve
135 -- Don't forget his magic fairy dust that turns wooden corner outfielders into real live boys.
2005-06-28 15:24:16
140.   LAT
#130 You are right there are bigger problem lurking in the background. 4 responses I would have found credible:

Tracey: "Drew asked to PH and I said no."
Tracey: "I asked Drew to PH and he said no."
Drew: "I asked to PH and Coach said no."
Drew: "Coach asked me to PH and I said no."

I realize this is unlikely but it would be nice.

Anyway, I am prepared to let go of this. I have to focus all my vitriol on a more deserving person: Tom Cruise.

2005-06-28 15:25:24
141.   bokonon42
137-Don't you know he has sources? Secret sources. That mustn't be questioned!
2005-06-28 15:26:49
142.   bokonon42
139- I spit on myself, a little, laughing at that.
2005-06-28 15:27:36
143.   Xeifrank
How many games in the standings are leadership, heart, soul and scrappiness worth?
vr, Xei
2005-06-28 15:28:43
144.   Jon Weisman
I think the other credible responses are:

"Coach knew I couldn't pinch-hit, because we talked about it after my pregame workout."

"I knew I didn't want to risk Drew pinch-hitting, because we talked about it after his pregame workout."

But I'm very happy to let this go, too.

2005-06-28 15:32:12
145.   Fearing Blue
#143: Perhaps we should develop formulas for LORP (Leadership Over Replacement Player) and SORP (Scrappiness Over Replacement Player).

Even without knowing the formula for LORP or SORP, I'm pretty sure I know how to convert them into wins:

Additional Wins = 0 x LORP + 0 x SORP.

2005-06-28 15:32:44
146.   Jim Hitchcock
I have to focus all my vitriol on a more deserving person: Tom Cruise.

Personally, I think mankind would be better served if an energy beam was focused on him. Maybe if we all concentrate real hard...

2005-06-28 15:34:03
147.   Xeifrank
145. You need to then multiply by dirt stains per 9 innings adjusted by park factor of how much dirt each field has. :)
vr, Xei
2005-06-28 15:37:55
148.   stubbs
its quite comical how you guys act like there is no human element in sports. Thats what you get when a bunch of former team managers dicuss winning.

I was out one night and tivo'd the Dodger-Twins game that ended on Choi's home run. The whole team is in a circle celebrating and mr.drew is standing 15 feet away clapping. This is nothing major, just an example of the human element that is usually ignored on this site. Obviously, money increases expectations of a player by the team, teammates and fans. For better or worse the success of the Dodger franchise is tied to a large degree to JD Drew, Brad Penny and Derek Lowe. Those are the guys we have to rely on for better or worse. Jason Phillips stinks the rest of the year or causes a clubhouse stir? He is on the next train to Tampa Bay. JD Drew becomes a clubhouse cancer and we need unload him? Guess what, we are out of luck. When you sign on as a franchise player, the bar is raised.

2005-06-28 15:39:20
149.   Wayne Wei-siang Hsieh
Re: 132

Stubbs, I've never played team sports at a competitive level, but I am a historian of the American Civil War who makes a living studying issues like "leadership" and who is about to start teaching at an institution, the Naval Academy, which is a big believer for good reason in the idea that team sports breed camraderie, trust among fellows, and leadership. Baseball is after all a sort of highly ritualized form of combat, albeit one where no one gets killed, barring freak accidents.

Part of the sport's appeal lies in the human aspects of its adversarial nature, which is a contest of both physical skills and contending wills. Statistics become manifestations of moral worthiness, which is a point Bill James made IIRC a long while ago.

Listen, I can understand the whole JD needs to lead by example argument. I also do think that sabermetric DT readers have become so understandably frustrated with the Plaschkes and Simers of the world that they tend to excessively discount issues like heart and chemistry. See Curt Schilling for example. But there's a very fine line between doing something heroic and doing something stupid.

Others have raised Gagne's example for good reason. When Gagne first sprained his elbow, he talked about how guilty he felt--how he felt he had somehow let the team down. This mentalilty is one of the reasons why he's such a great ballplayer, and it may in fact be indispensable to his role as a high-pressure closer.

That mentality is also incredibly stupid and irrational in the context of an injury, and it probably played a role in his current status on the DL, because the team as a whole didn't have the sense to take the decision out of the hands of Gagne's irrational macho pitch-through-the-pain mentality.

It would have been better for JD to have pinch-hit, but I think we should give the guy the benefit of the doubt, especially since none of us really knows what the heck is going on with his knee. There are 55 million reasons for us not to be jeapordizing his long-term status in a game in June.

Furthermore, part of being a leader is knowing when to not sacrifice long-term prospects for a short-term gain. Reckless courage sometimes can be inspiring, but sometimes the risks are simply unjustified.

WWSH

2005-06-28 15:40:18
150.   Xeifrank
148. Please define "human elements" in sports and in particuliar baseball. If given a "true" definition of "human elements" as you call them, I'd be glad to analyze this and come up with an opinion of how important I think it is. Until then "human elements" and "witchcraft" and "voodoo" are one big conglomerate.
vr, Xei
Show/Hide Comments 151-200
2005-06-28 15:43:29
151.   Howard Fox
I think the real issue Sunday was not whether or not Drew batted...him batting never occurred to me at the time...

I think the real issue is that Tracy batted Kent for Choi...against a righty...

2005-06-28 15:45:26
152.   stubbs
149-I agree with a lot of what you said, however seasons can slip away in June. Also, Drew must be aware that he has a negative image when it comes to this stuff and doing the little could help ie the boss that performs the little guys job.
2005-06-28 15:45:44
153.   Midwest Blue
149- I was going to give my try at explaining intangibles, but I like your version much better.

I especially like the fine line between heroic and stupid.

Bottom line: I think there is a time and place for risking it all and a game in June is not it. Maybe a game in September that means making the playoffs? So I accept the argument that he might have been healthy enough to PH, but at this point in the season it wasn't worth the risk to find out. So how about moving on?

2005-06-28 15:46:49
154.   Steve
its quite comical how you guys act like there is no human element in sports.

That is, of course, not true. Many of us simply do not accept that you are the person to define that human element, or lecture on the effects of JD Drew's personality on the Dodger clubhouse. Many of us do not accept that "Drink Your Own" Plaschke is that person either. Why should we accept the same thing when you say it?

That last is a rhetorical question. Please don't answer it. I don't want your curriculum vitae.

2005-06-28 15:49:10
155.   LAT
#149 Wayne, I may not agree with all of it, but yours was a very well written and thoughtful post.
2005-06-28 15:49:56
156.   Nagman
I am a fan of Drew on the field but I pay special attention now to what goes on in the dugout whenever they show the high fives or whatever reception players are giving or getting as they descend the dugout steps. Drew doesn't seem to go out of his way.

I paid special attention to a short fly ball that Kent caught in short center last night in the ninth, as Drew charged in. As they crossed paths to return to their positions, there was not a glance or any gesturing. Maybe they were muttering to each other, who knows.

As long as he produces, I'm not going to question anything, and as we all know, what goes on in the clubhouse stays there so we have no idea what teammates think of him.

Anyway, observing Drew's interactions with the team is part of my Dodger viewing habit now.

2005-06-28 15:50:23
157.   DougS
Back back back to #101: Yeah, Weaver has that Spicoli look down pat, doesn't he? When the camera lights on him in the dugout between innings, one wonders if he knows what day it is, much less what's going on in the game.
2005-06-28 15:50:43
158.   Steve
Listen, I can understand the whole JD needs to lead by example argument. I also do think that sabermetric DT readers have become so understandably frustrated with the Plaschkes and Simers of the world that they tend to excessively discount issues like heart and chemistry. See Curt Schilling for example. But there's a very fine line between doing something heroic and doing something stupid.

That is a very good way of summarizing the lay of the land.

2005-06-28 15:51:52
159.   fanerman91
I think everybody is blowing this whole thing out of proportion. Nobody really knows how healthy Drew was or how much at risk he was of reinjuring himself, so what's the point of arguing whether it was "worth" it (both in terms of a win and in terms of showing whatever "heart and soul" he may or may not have). Sure he played the next day but I don't know how his knee works. I'll trust the sentiments of those with knee injuries and personal experience that 24 hours can make a big difference with regard to swelling.

I agree with 144. Let's just let this go. Drew has been nothing but a professional since he got here. (sentiments echoed prevously) The bias many seem to inherit with Drew is that because he's taken days off, it's assumed that he's never played at anything below 100%. Nobody here can make that guarantee. Let's just let this go.

2005-06-28 15:52:45
160.   heato
148 -- I am quite pleased that the player with the history of knee problems wasn't jumping up and down in a mob of his teammates.
2005-06-28 15:54:04
161.   brendan glynn
What if Drew was in the middle of being treated and was not or could not be ready to hit in that situation? do we even know he was on the bench? if the call was that he wasn't going to play on Sunday, then maybe he was being treated and that allowed him to play last night but didn't allow him to pitch hit at that moment. He would've had a couple of minutes notice, at best.

Stubbs, SSSJS etc. act like Drew goes down to his HMO to get treatement. he has a world class medical team at his disposal. A knee can go from swollen to not swollen in 24 hours. Or not swollen enough to stop from playing.

2005-06-28 15:54:29
162.   Steve
160 - LOL

When you use the fairy dust, it's best if you stand a certain space away, sort of like using a fire extinguisher.

2005-06-28 15:54:36
163.   Wayne Wei-siang Hsieh
Re: 145

I'm on Drew's side on this issue, and in general, although it's somewhat surprised me at times, I'm definitely in the Moneyball/stathead camp during baseball's current religious wars.

However, I do think that things like grit and chemistry and heart are components of the unmeasurable aspects of the game. Some of it is just dumb luck, perhaps even most of it, but I think that at the margins players with more heart really do succeed more. IMO, sometimes we make our own luck.

And it's not as if there's no measurable evidence of this sort of thing. Haven't statheads now "discovered" that clutch hitting exists?

But part of what interests me about sabermetrics is not so much what it can measure, but that by pushing the boundaries of the measurable, it can tell me what aspects of the game are truly immeasurable. And I think that it's in that sphere of the undefined that we find things like heart and leadership.

With all that being said, I do think baseball at its base is about physical abilities and peculiar skills. I think individuals at times can somehow surpass their abilities through sheer force of will, but these moments are all the more noteworthy, because they're so rare. Schilling last year in the postseason is a good example. And these moments don't come in June.

What upsets me so much about peple Plaschke and Simers is not so much that I discount entirely the value of "heart," but that they use it to such excess that they make it a cliche with no real value. Going on and on about someone like LoDuca, a good player and chap but whose heart-and-soul never seemed to stem his ritual second-half slide, cheapens the real moments when a player rises above his own ability, and the admiration of which is part of the charm of baseball.

WWSH

2005-06-28 15:54:42
164.   LAT
#146. Jim, I can't recall ever boycotting anything in my entire life. But I refuse to ever see a Tom Cruise movie again. In fact, my Firm is having a special screening of War of the Worlds and I am getting flack because I will not go.
2005-06-28 15:55:35
165.   Xeifrank
Everyone has different personalities, who really cares if one of your top paid players isn't a big cheerleader as long as he gives it his all out on the field.
vr, Xei
2005-06-28 15:56:26
166.   heato
148 (again) -- Having watched to Dodgers 1988 Championship video about 1,000 times as a kid, I have a vivid memory of Gibson and Fernando shaking hands with Fernando in the dugout after they beat the Mets for the pennant. People still say that he was a leader.
2005-06-28 15:57:52
167.   Steve Saxs Sweaty Jockstrap
156-Great point. Watching how players in the clubhouse interact is very important.

I get the feeling J.D. has alienated himself with the majority of the clubhouse.

If J.D. wants to become a great player, he must lead by example to earn his teammates trust and respect.

J.D. has all the baseball physical skills necessary, but its his mental approach that I question.

2005-06-28 15:58:39
168.   Xeifrank
163 wrote "I do think that things like grit and chemistry and heart are components of the unmeasurable aspects of the game. Some of it is just dumb luck, perhaps even most of it, but I think that at the margins players with more heart really do succeed more. IMO, sometimes we make our own luck."

"unmeasureable aspects of the game" If something is unmeasureable how do we know if it's good or bad?

Players with more heart really do succeed more? Please define heart as how it relates to baseball skills.

thanks. vr, Xei

2005-06-28 15:59:07
169.   Jon Weisman
Stubbs, we've been talking about the human element this whole time. My comments are full of that aspect. So are those of others. You just seem to choose to ignore them. I feel like I'm critiquing your arguments, and you respond not by critiquing mine - but critiquing how I argue. And inaccurately, I might add.

So yes, I should just let this go. But it's very hard just to sit back and have one's words mischaracterized.

2005-06-28 15:59:33
170.   DougS
From the available evidence I've seen, Drew just seems like an undemonstrative person in general. In interviews, he's very soft-spoken and his expression never modulates. Translate that into his presence on the team, and I suspect you have someone who will lead by doing, rather than patting guys on the butt. And the numbers make clear that he's done all right after a slow start.

As to 'human elements' in team sports, let us all ponder WWSH's words, because they are wise. Pete Reiser raised a lot of pulse rates by crashing into walls chasing down fly balls, but it didn't help his team much in the long run because of the injuries it got him. And those injuries didn't help him much in the long run, either.

2005-06-28 16:00:02
171.   stubbs
158- I understand the frustration as well, I think Plaschke is hack. However, I think that building a winner requires the combination of both aspects, which people here seem unwilling to do. Choi's OPS is 5 pts higher than player x? of course he should be playing over player x, despite that player x plays harder and is a little better in the field.
2005-06-28 16:00:20
172.   Icaros
164 - What if your firm held a Briana Banks film festival, LAT? Would you still boycott?
2005-06-28 16:01:44
173.   Fearing Blue
I'm somewhat lost on the conversion of WARP to Wins problem. Baseball Prospectus does not have any articles discussing how they came up with WARP. I'm convinced that it's not a .350 winning percentage for WARP 0.0. A 0.0 VORP is a .300-.350 winning percentage, and a 0.0 VORP has a positive WARP. Two guys on our team with WARP 0.0 are Scott Erickson and Jason Grabowski, who both have a negative VORP (-4.6 and -2.7). I have no problem believing that a team of Erickson / Grabowski clones would lose almost every game they play (close to .000 winning percentage). Thus, I'm fairly comfortable with 1 WARP = 1 Win, but I'd like to know why. Does anyone know someone who can point me in the right direction?
2005-06-28 16:04:12
174.   Jim Hitchcock
The thing that really got me about Cruise was that he insisted on having Scientology counseling centers at the movie shoots.

I think Briana Banks `counseling centers' would be a lot more fun.

2005-06-28 16:06:21
175.   Telemachos
It probably shouldn't bug me, because I know we all tend to over-analyze things we simply don't know any details about... but it still bugs me.

Somehow, those critical of Drew have determined not only his lack of guts or leadership, but also that he's now alienated his entire clubhouse.

C'mon.

2005-06-28 16:06:25
176.   Icaros
Is it too late to get Briana Banks on the Dodger Thoughts t-shirt?
2005-06-28 16:07:03
177.   DougS
Re: my own comment in 170. Just to be clear, I don't think there's anything wrong with being soft-spoken and undemonstrative. I don't buy into the notion that being rah-rah all the time is the only way to be a good teammate. So I won't buy into the notion that Drew is alienating his teammates, unless you can provide me with solid evidence gleaned from within the Dodgers clubhouse. Watching TV and noticing that Drew doesn't acknowledge his teammates on routine plays is sketchy evidence at best.
2005-06-28 16:07:53
178.   Robert Fiore
This talk about playing through injuries reminds me of Mike Marshall the outfielder, who kept himself out of the lineup for long periods due to lower back trouble. Everybody seemed to assume that this was something he could have toughed his way through, but I've had that myself and I couldn't imagine how you'd play baseball with that -- I had trouble getting to the corner to buy a newspaper.
2005-06-28 16:07:56
179.   Bob Timmermann
What day is it?

Oh, I'm just glad there were no Dodger Thoughts during the time of Mike Marshall patrolling right field for the Dodgers.

2005-06-28 16:09:26
180.   brendan glynn
Imagine a team of 25 Gibson's? They'd kill each other.
2005-06-28 16:10:49
181.   Howard Fox
179-you are right on that account
2005-06-28 16:11:26
182.   brendan glynn
179

Bob, it's tomorrow.

2005-06-28 16:12:08
183.   bokonon42
Maybe statheads pay too little attention to the human element. But the opposite seems like a worse mistake. These are grown men, not little girls. Does anybody think Derek Lowe sneeks off to his secret place to weep if J.D. doesn't pat him on the butt after a really super half inning?
2005-06-28 16:12:18
184.   Telemachos
What is comes down to is a level of trust and understanding between players and managers that an outsider simply won't have a knowledge of.

For example, Kent is "exhausted" (his words) from all his playing time lately, so Tracy gave him the day off on Sunday. But you don't hear a peep about Kent not sucking it up and playing.

2005-06-28 16:12:41
185.   Icaros
175 - C'mon yourself, Telemachos. Don't you know how easy it is to determine the state of complex interpersonal relationships of Dodgers players through a few split-second, audio-less cuts a game?

Remember last week when we learned that, surprisingly, Olmedo Saenz really hates ice cream, which endeared him to J.D. Drew because Drew told MLB.com that he didn't like ice cream, either.

Now, if LA ever wants to trade Saenz, Drew will refuse to play unless he is sent wherever his buddy "Medo" goes.

2005-06-28 16:13:24
186.   Howard Fox
184-that's cause we are all afraid of Kent and don't want to meet him in a dark alley
2005-06-28 16:13:38
187.   Nagman
Looks like JD might be taking the "enigmatic" label from Choi.

I'm in Drew's corner, I just found it interesting amidst all the speculation and "intrigue" about JD, that he and Kent didn't even look at each other after what I thought was not a routine play in which one had to call off the other.

2005-06-28 16:13:53
188.   Jim Hitchcock
178 - I always wondered if General Soreness was a relation of Marshalls...
2005-06-28 16:14:33
189.   Bob Timmermann
I've got Wednesday morning.

My newspaper this morning had the results of Sunday's games. I think it has a really early deadline.

I will be off at the Sapporo Dome tonight to watch the Seibu Lions play the Hokkaido Nippon Ham Fighters.

Except I've learned that the Sapporo Dome is in Sapporo sort of like the Angels are in Los Angeles, so I will need to fight the right train to take me there.

Beautiful weather up here. Sunny and in the 70s. Much nicer up in Hokkaido than the rest of Japan where it's hot and sticky.

2005-06-28 16:14:52
190.   jasonungar05
I belive the best way a player can help the team in terms of chemistry is by simply being themselves. It sounds simple but it's true.

If Drew is really a quiet, shy guy who keeps to himself then the minuet he starts acting like something he is not is when he will loose all respect of his teammates.

I think we all work in enviornments where we have seen this happen in person.

That said, a gritty type player with good numbers (and even better #s with RISP) is needed. Even if Drew becomes Alexander the Great over night.

2005-06-28 16:14:59
191.   Jon Weisman
Bob's here - just in time for the Game Chat thread to open and for him to not post an RDGC! All for the low, low cost of thousands of yen per minute.
2005-06-28 16:15:22
192.   Steve Saxs Sweaty Jockstrap
185-186. LOL
2005-06-28 16:16:04
193.   Bob Timmermann
Maybe the Dodgers can get a veteran middle infielder from somewhere to start a fight with Drew, sort of like the Garner-Marshall bout of 1990.
2005-06-28 16:16:11
194.   Fearing Blue
#171: If player X is better in the field than there is demonstrable value which could easily outweigh the 5 points in OPS. What I think a lot of people have trouble with is the "plays harder", which doesn't have a quantifiable value.

Jason Repko clearly plays hard and leaves his heart on the field every time he's out there, but he's not very good. Should we keep playing him?

If you asked me who I'd rather have between two players with the same quantifiable metrics and price, player A who plays with passion or player B who plays the game in a business-like fashion, I'd take player A. Having people with passion does rub off on others at the margins. But, if I'd have to pay any significant amount more for player A, I'd take player B. I'm certain that DePodesta has nothing against "leaders" or "scrappy" players, but realizes they are dramatically overpriced in the market.

2005-06-28 16:16:31
195.   Wayne Wei-siang Hsieh
Re: 168

I've now noticed that the sensible consensus is that we should just drop the Drew issue, but I do want to say something on the larger question of "heart." Anyhow, this is my last post on this issue, simply because I'm hungry and need to go grab dinner.

Xei, why is it unreasonable to believe that certain individuals are more capable than others of acting in high-pressure situations? That's what I meant by heart.

If we assume that x individual in completely comfortable surroundings would have a 30 percent chance of getting a hit, controlling for ball park effects and defensive issues, why not think that in a World Series game his skills would degrade from the mental strain. We have plenty of empirical evidence in other walks of life that people under stress sometimes don't function as well. Isn't being on national TV stressful? Might that degrade one individuals' skills? Or might it even improve it? Isn't it useful to have someone who doesn't seize up under pressure?

I should of said unquantifiable (is that a word?) rather than unmeasurable. We can't quantify reactions to pressure, simply due to a lack of numerical data. How exactly does one measure "pressure"? We can measure hits, pitches, outs, runs, etc., but that's because those all are bound by the strict set of rules that make baseball what it is and which make those things "countable." Things like "heart" are not so empirically obvious, and they can't be translated into numbers. And then there are sample size problems.

Leadership is simply the application of this sort of thing to groups. Why not think that a young player might react better to pressure, if he can follow the example of a "clutch" player?

There's also the issue of "effort." Why isn't it possible to think that some individuals are just lazy? This is obviously the charge against Drew. Maybe it's right. Maybe it's not. I personally think there's not a huge amount of firm evidence that Drew is a lazy sissy, but that doesn't mean that lazy sissies don't exist.

WWSH

2005-06-28 16:16:59
196.   stubbs
190-you are about to get shredded.
2005-06-28 16:17:16
197.   Bob Timmermann
Sorry folks, time to go.

I'd love to stop and chat, but I figure that since I flew all the way out here, I might as well go see something.

2005-06-28 16:17:52
198.   gvette
#173 Fearing, it's saying something that a team of Erickson/Grabowski clones would be theoretically worse than the '62 Mets. Throw in Venafro and Carlysle, and it would actually be worth watching, for all the wrong reasons.,

#163 WWSH, bet the Annapolis textbooks describe the Imperial Japanese Navy of WWII as scrappy as they were being pushed across the Pacific. Players are all competitive to make it through the minors, even guys like Ismael Valdez and Mike (General Soreness) Marshall. But sliding headfirst into first may be scrappy, but is a surefire way to get called out on a bang/bang play.

#174 Cruise may be crazy but he's not dumb. Supposedly his gross box office and DVD proceeds from the Mission Impossible series have netted him over a $100 million.

Weaver = Spicoli? Maybe if he starts having a pizza delivered to the dugouts during games.

2005-06-28 16:18:10
199.   brendan glynn
Bob, do you Karaoke? If yes, what's your song? You know, the one that brings down the house.
2005-06-28 16:18:53
200.   Marty
Why isn't Bradley "toughing it out"? Why has it taken Perez so long to come back? What's up with Valentin taking so long? Why couldn't that sissy Old Maid have gritted his way to second? What's a little burning sensation anyway Gagne?

My real question is why do some people believe those injury reports, but not J.Ds? When Bradley finally comes off the DL, will we be wondering why it couldn't have happened one day sooner?

Show/Hide Comments 201-250
2005-06-28 16:20:11
201.   Howard Fox
200-well, couldn't it have?
2005-06-28 16:21:47
202.   the OZ
180 -

Do you think that ANY Dodger liked Jose Lima last year?

I bet they all HATED that spaz. I remember watching Shawn Green try to avoid him with that stupid 'peekaboo' handshake that Lima made him to after scoring or hitting a HR or whatever.

2005-06-28 16:22:15
203.   JMK
Jon already made this point but I'll try and put it another way. Let's say that Drew is a pussy about pain and not a single teammate respects or even likes him. If they let his non-leadership or aloofness affect their play they're extremely lame. Is Drew's disposition the reason our staff's ERA is in the bottom 3rd in the league? Is Drew the reason Itzuris has been hitting .100 this month? If so, they're individuals with pretty weak constitutions. There are plenty of different motivations for players - money, love of the game, winning, fear of embarassment...etc. I highly doubt the actions of JD Drew can bum out a teammate enough to not try hard. Drew may or may not be injury prone but right now he's the least of our problems.
2005-06-28 16:22:16
204.   Xeifrank
>> Xei, why is it unreasonable to believe that certain individuals are more capable than others of acting in high-pressure situations? That's what I meant by heart. - WWSH

So heart is defined by being able to perform under pressure? Is there more detail to this definition?
vr, Xei

2005-06-28 16:23:25
205.   Xeifrank
203. Double ditto that post. Very simple logic, but very simple doesn't seem to be doing the trick today. :)
vr, Xei
2005-06-28 16:23:49
206.   Jim Hitchcock
So, what I'm getting here is, should we all be questioning Drew's general aloofness?
2005-06-28 16:24:41
207.   LAT
#172 Icaros you know the answer to that question. Although not sure I want to watch a BB movie with members of my Firm. The real question is what would I do if Tom Curise was in a BB movie? Hell, I could miss that one she has enough other movies out.
2005-06-28 16:24:56
208.   brendan glynn
#202 OZ

I think you meant another number besides my #180 goofy Gibson question.

2005-06-28 16:25:20
209.   Marty
Very good Jim. That is how I'll refer to him from now on :)
2005-06-28 16:26:23
210.   Steve
Is Drew the reason Itzuris has been hitting .100 this month?

When you really like a player, and he sucks, this is all people like Plaschke have left.

2005-06-28 16:26:29
211.   Marty
Ooh. MLB just emailed me that it is my last chance to vote for the all star game. 25 for General Aloofness comin up!
2005-06-28 16:26:29
212.   bokonon42
195- The problem is, there's no way to tell when a hit is the result of a clutch instinct. Whether if Player X who got a hit in Y situation did so because he's clutch, or lucky, or good. And it doesn't happen often enough, clutch-able situations, to have any statistical significance. That's overstating, it may have some, but the margin of error is so large as to be nearly useless.

So it's a perfect never-ending argument. 8^)

2005-06-28 16:27:03
213.   brendan glynn
Barry Bonds seems like the worst teammate in baseball but who wouldn't him on their team?
2005-06-28 16:27:58
214.   Sushirabbit
"He that outlives this day, and comes safe home, Will stand a tip-toe when this day is nam'd"

Heh heh heh. My co-workers think I'm nuts sometimes the way I howl of a sudden with laughter.

Speaking of "intangibles" I do hope Bradley returns soon, because it seemed like he and Kent had this cool competitive thing goin' that was good for both of them. Speaking from my own personal experience, having someone that could be so fiercely competitive with me that it scared other people (but made us laugh) always helped me push harder and enjoy success more, and failures seemed less a deal. From that same perspective, anyone that goes on about heart, drive and will to play seems, well, not to know what it took to get to the MLB level.

I saw a knee in 97 that almost made me puke. It was nasty gross, and having had buristis before I can tell you it is tough to walk, let alone play, and GD prednizone! Yek! But people gave that guy a lot of grief, they were stupid.

I have a great quote on the whole subject that pretty much sums it up for me:

Speaking of McNair coming off the field with a hunk of skin dangling from the thumb of his throwing hand:

"When I first saw him coming off the field, I feared the worst," Titans head coach Jeff Fisher said at the time. "I thought, 'I'm not only going to see skin, but I'm going to see bone and pass out on national TV."

Ha. That's so classic and funny at the same time, I have new respect for the Fisher again. See that guy has perspective.

quoted from: USA Today:

http://tinyurl.com/94znu

sorry it took so long to post this, I was hunting the article, with Fisher's quote. I'm sure that we all gone on to talking about what to get the Cruises for their wedding gifts.

2005-06-28 16:28:01
215.   Marty
213. Everyone but Jeff Kent
2005-06-28 16:28:01
216.   Icaros
LAT,

Would BB be ruined for you if Tom got her to convert to Scientology?

2005-06-28 16:30:38
217.   Steve Saxs Sweaty Jockstrap
200-J.D. Drew gets that treatment from me and a handful of others here(stubbs) because of his REPUTATION. Although it may seem unfair to bash Drew, his history of injuries has followed him.
2005-06-28 16:32:40
218.   Marty
I'm enjoying watching the Cruise train wreck. Scientologists just crack me up.
2005-06-28 16:33:30
219.   stubbs
213-It may or may not be a coincidence that the greatest player possibly of all time statistically, has never won a world series.
2005-06-28 16:34:56
220.   bokonon42
Bill James has backed away from the There's-no-such-thing-as-clutch school, but it struck me that he did it in the way biologists back away from "Darwinism is the perfect explanation of everything". He didn't go over to the clutch side, he just acknowledged that it couldn't be proven false. Another point of his was that all clutch situations are not alike. Different pitchers, different ballparks, different stakes. So the tiny clutch sample is even smaller.
2005-06-28 16:35:44
221.   stubbs
If JD Drew plays 155 games this year then my camp will shut up. Problem is that he has never done that, which makes things like the Sunday PH situation more of an issue than if it was Kent who didnt hit.
2005-06-28 16:35:50
222.   Jon Weisman
Was Babe Ruth a great teammate?
2005-06-28 16:36:14
223.   brendan glynn
215

I was going to add that but didn't.

217

Agreed. but lets observe him ourselves instead of letting sports writers or god forbid La Russa define Drew for us.
it's not like Drew was expected to play 162. So far, so good I say with Drew.

2005-06-28 16:37:01
224.   Marty
Steve, what about Kent's reputation? He's supposed to be a clubhouse cancer, yet I find his behavior to be fine. I see JD lay it out in centerfield quite a few times, so I don't mind him taking an extra day. After all, we are only talking about one pinch hit situation, or are you saying he should have been playing the entire 5 days?
2005-06-28 16:37:49
225.   brendan glynn
222

he was if you like Hot Dogs, Hookers and Whiskey.and not necessairly in that order.

2005-06-28 16:38:43
226.   Steve
I'm confused about what JD Drew's reputation actually is. Drew detractors, please make clear which of the following by letter choice. Choose as many as you believe appropriate:

A) reputation for getting injured
B) reputation for not playing when he should even though he's injured
C) reputation for not being a "leader"
D) reputation for being a moody clubhouse cancer
E) Eating puppies
F) Killing kitties
G) Pushing Old Ladies In Front of Moving Vehicles

In your answer, please explain why these choices are not the same choice put seven different ways.

2005-06-28 16:39:37
227.   Steve
224 -- why is this question being addressed to me?
2005-06-28 16:39:53
228.   LAT
#216. I think so. I used to think Katie Holmes was cute but the Scientology thing is like 100 pounds added to her ass. Actually, I don't mind the Scientology so much. Anyone can believe in whatever they want. Its the lack of tolorance of others and the idea that becasue you have a pretty face and people put you in movies you somehow know something other than how to act.
2005-06-28 16:40:18
229.   Marty
Sorry, Steve :) I meant Steve Sax Sweaty etc..
2005-06-28 16:40:27
230.   brendan glynn
219

or it may be that his team wasn't the best team overall or dusty baker sucks or or or or.....we have no idea.

2005-06-28 16:40:31
231.   Telemachos
219 - Yes, Bonds was the reason Tim Worrell gave up that gopher ball to Spezio.
2005-06-28 16:40:48
232.   Sushirabbit
222, when he was pitching or fielding?
2005-06-28 16:44:05
233.   Steve Saxs Sweaty Jockstrap
221-Exactly.
2005-06-28 16:44:23
234.   brendan glynn
*228. LAT
#216. I think so. I used to think Katie Holmes was cute but the Scientology thing is like 100 pounds added to her ass.*

Added to her ass? Like some giant boil or goiter?

2005-06-28 16:45:44
235.   Sushirabbit
Wayne,
I think at one point in time there were some great studies on Formula One drivers and the ability to perform under stress. I actually had some articles about that a LONG time ago. If you want, I can look for them.

I don't know how this works, here, but anybody that wants can email me at yahoo.com, just put my "nickname" with @yahoo.com.

2005-06-28 16:48:14
236.   Jacob L
This discussion on The Drew Pinch Hitting Affair is about the closest thing I've seen on this site to talk radio in terms of strawmanism, false issue-ocity, and out-of- proportionness.
2005-06-28 16:50:54
237.   LAT
225 BG, you say that like its a bad thing.
2005-06-28 16:51:38
238.   fanerman91
236,
And you put it so eloquently.
2005-06-28 16:53:55
239.   LAT
#234 BG, either. Actually, both.
2005-06-28 16:55:04
240.   brendan glynn
237

I thought I showed my respect for all three by capitalizing them.

2005-06-28 16:56:32
241.   jasonungar05
injuries having nothing to do with standing 15 feet from a celebration or not playing grab ass in the dugout or smiling at Kent after a pop up.
2005-06-28 16:58:39
242.   bokonon42
241- Just so. Now, what do any of the things you mentioned have to do with scoring more runs, or allowing fewer?
2005-06-28 17:04:26
243.   Steve
The Drew Pinch Hitting Affair

Hardy Boys #82

2005-06-28 17:06:17
244.   brendan glynn
239

ok, so not just some eating binge 100 pounds. Got it.

2005-06-28 17:06:52
245.   Jim Hitchcock
Shouldn't that be in the Nancy Drew series, Steve?
2005-06-28 17:08:30
246.   brendan glynn
I think all the 5 O' Clockers took off for home.
2005-06-28 17:10:21
247.   Steve Saxs Sweaty Jockstrap
Great discussion tonight fellas on the whole J.D. Drew affair.

I've enjoyed it plenty. That is what makes this site so great. Dodger Fans coming together to discuss and analyze our team.

Even though our opinions often clash, I respect everyone who takes time out of their day to express themselves here.

Lets Go Dodgers!

2005-06-28 17:13:05
248.   dzzrtRatt
#236, I couldn't agree more. When I got off line a few hours ago, this thread was based on a Fearing Blue chart that demonstrated pretty conclusively that--based on games played to date in '05-- DePo did extremely well getting Kent for the price, and did good getting Drew at his price, compared with the output per dollar of more celebrated rival hitmeisters like Carlos Delgado, Carlos Beltran, Adrian Beltre and Troy Glaus. So how did this deteriorate into a gang-tackle of Drew who, as I understand it, has been playing hurt for weeks, and finally had to sit for a few days to let it calm down...and then went and played last night and combined with Kent and Houlton to win the game. I mean, whatta dog!

Compared with Biff Utopiaman, who hits .400 and only gets paid league minimum, Drew sucks. Otherwise, in the real world, he's an enormous asset.

2005-06-28 17:14:41
249.   Jon Weisman
My joyous moment as Internet Vin didn't last too long, I guess.
2005-06-28 17:15:08
250.   bokonon42
248- What does Biff hit with RISP?
Show/Hide Comments 251-300
2005-06-28 17:17:38
251.   bokonon42
Cuz if he's just some .400 hitting choke artist, I'll pass, thanks.
2005-06-28 17:59:24
252.   brendan glynn
249

HA!!!

2005-06-28 18:24:01
253.   chumsferd
We must lead the league in controversial players:
Choi
Drew (heart)
Kent (fielding)
Bradley (sanity)
Valentin (fielding)
Penny (health)

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