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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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11) commenting under the obvious influence
12) claiming your opinion isn't allowed when it's just being disagreed with

A Little Surprise for Manager
2005-12-06 15:59
by Jon Weisman
Note: The Dodger Thoughts blog has moved to the Los Angeles Times.

Once again, the readers of the tea leaves have come up dry. The new Dodger manager is not Jim Fregosi, it's Grady Little, according to MLB.com.

Here's a little background from Ken Gurnick. Key points: Little was a catcher and a cotton farmer ...

His resume includes two seasons as bench coach of Cleveland under Charlie Manuel from 2000-2001, three seasons as the Red Sox bench coach under Jimy Williams from 1997-99, the 1996 season as bullpen coach of the San Diego Padres, and 16 years as a Minor League manager (10 of those seasons in the Atlanta organization).

After being drafted in the 12th round by Atlanta out of high school and a six-year playing career as a Minor League catcher, Little began his coaching career in 1974 in the Yankees system. He was out of baseball from 1975-79 as a cotton farmer in Texas, returning to Minor League ball in 1980 with the Orioles' rookie team and managing in that system through 1984. He spent one season managing in the Toronto system before moving to the Braves farm system.

Eight of Little's Minor League teams were in the postseason, four of them winning league titles. Little, who was born in Abilene, Tex., and lives in Pinehurst, N.C., is married with one child and two grandchildren. His younger brother, Bryan, played five seasons in the Major Leagues with the Expos, White Sox and Yankees.

Tim Brown of the Times adds his initial report.

Little brings two characteristics similar to those of Jim Tracy: popular with many players, and someone who became famous for staying with his starting pitching too long. Brown reprints these interesting quotes from the aftermath of his Little's firing (which came about from his decision not to replace a tiring Pedro Martinez in a critical American League Championship Series game).

Shortly before being let go, the folksy Little told the Boston Globe: "Right now I'm disappointed that evidently some people are judging me on the results of one decision I made — not the decision, but the results of the decision. Less than 24 hours before, those same people were hugging and kissing me. If that's the way they operate, I'm not sure I want to be part of it.

"I know that wherever I go, I'll do the best I can. I know what we did there. I'm sorry the results of one decision caused so much pain, and it sure helped sell a lot of papers. I feel bad for it. But gol'dang, I can't turn back the clock and make another decision, not knowing whether the results of that decision are good or not."

I don't have an opinion yet on Little. He is a flawed winner, a redeemable loser. This sentiment - "I feel bad for it" - is something we never heard from Tracy in 2005.

Clearly, the people in Boston are having the reaction that many had when Tracy was hired in Pittsburgh. That's discouraging. (David Pinto at Baseball Musings thinks the Dodgers made the best choice among their finalists, but jokes: "He's also a manager that got fired over not using statistical information supplied to him by a young, Ivy League GM, so the L.A. Press should just love Grady.")

But I don't really know what to expect. I'll just wait for more information to come. I sure do hope it's not a repeat of 2005 - a manager whose ability to handle adversity is more reputation then reality.

Update: Rob McMillin relays the news at 6-4-2 (provided by Repoz at Baseball Think Factory) that just today, Tommy Lasorda endorsed Fregosi for the job. Having similarly whiffed before on his managerial whims, Lasorda is now on his return boat to Elba.

Update 2: The sense I am getting as I surf the Internet is that Little might make the right lineup, might play for the big inning and not be a slave to manufacturing runs, but is unreliable as an in-game tactician, both in timing bullpen switches and pinch-hitters. This is just the buzz I'm picking up.

Though it might make no difference, I can't imagine the hiring of Little impedes the future of Milton Bradley
and Hee Seop Choi as Dodgers. Take that however you like: as a plus or a minus.

Comments (310)
Show/Hide Comments 1-50
2005-12-06 16:04:17
1.   underdog
I'm pretty happy with this, actually, or at least happy in comparison to how I'd feel if it was Fregosi.

Here's the Times on it:
http://tinyurl.com/98t43

2005-12-06 16:07:15
2.   Rob M
I posted this in the last thread but I'll repost here. Little scares me. That blunder with Pedro was biblical. Not just the context, but the magnitude of stupidity. I've rarely seen someone choke that bad.
2005-12-06 16:11:13
3.   bhsportsguy
I posted this in this last thread too and someone may have already found this when Little came up as a potential candidate.

From a July 2004 Boston Globe article:

"Little, an old-school manager not overly enamored with the statistical nuances of the Sox organization (though he used them at management's urging), is gaining popularity because of his style. One of his best friends is Jack McKeon, who has won a championship with the Marlins and has Florida in position to make the postseason once again."

Not sure what "old school" means but I guess we will find out in about an hour.

2005-12-06 16:12:55
4.   DodgerJoe
It seems that all anyone knows about Little is the Pedro mistake.

Hey...he did make it to the post-season.

I can give or take the choice...I am not thrilled, but I am not upset

2005-12-06 16:12:58
5.   dzzrtRatt
I don't know what to think about Grady Little as Dodger manager, and probably won't have an opinion until they start playing ball again.

What strikes me about him is, man, the guy has to be resilient. He went from being a manager in an ALCS to the "catchers' coach" for the Chicago Cubs. Now that's not exactly being a single-A manager for an unaffiliated team, but...basically he was responsible for two or three people. On the defensive side of the ball only. And not game-calling (that would be the pitching coach's job). It's like Kevin Spacey in "American Beauty" -- a job with the "least amount of responsibility possible." This was not a probable path to resurrection, but given his mega-goat status, it's probably all he could get with a major league team. How hard he must've been rooting for the '04 Sox. It wouldn't change what happened, but it isolated the damage. Bill Buckner had to wear his goat horns for 18 years.

Now Little's being given another chance--as manager for a storied franchise that has fallen on the hardest times it has seen in decades, and for its sins is now owned by a certified poophead. If he can turn things around for the Dodgers and for himself...what a story. Who says there are no second acts in American lives?

2005-12-06 16:13:23
6.   Gold Star for Robot Boy
My Hindenberg crack from the last thread aside, I'm OK with this hiring. Although Little didn't seem to grasp Theo Epstein's notion of a non-traditional bullpen, that shouldn't be a problem in LA thanks to Gagne.
2005-12-06 16:14:43
7.   Joe
That was quick:

http://firegradylittle.blogspot.com/

2005-12-06 16:14:59
8.   Vishal
[2] hopefully it will be a tale of redemption, in the end.
2005-12-06 16:15:20
9.   King of the Hobos
We seem to be posting in italics. Can I assume we all have this problem?
2005-12-06 16:15:39
10.   Vishal
[7] steve is back!! :)
2005-12-06 16:16:06
11.   Vishal
[9] yeah. jon didn't close the tag from the end of the post.
2005-12-06 16:16:26
12.   underdog
It was a horrible mistake, no doubt. But I'm pretty sure he's a human being, and thus not infallible. Also, it's likely (or I'm assuming anyway) he learned from that famous blunder. He didn't make many others, and was extremely well-liked by the players. Even after that blunder. As that article alludes, the players were upset he was canned. That should also tell you something.

As opposed to Jim Tracy, who nevvvver made mistakes. ;-) Or Tom Lasorda for that matter...

2005-12-06 16:17:06
13.   dzzrtRatt
9 Either that, or it's very windy.
2005-12-06 16:17:19
14.   King of the Hobos
The Giants acquired Steve Kline for LaTroy Hawkins
2005-12-06 16:20:03
15.   King of the Hobos
Does Little use rhetorical questions? I'm not sure the people who cover the Dodgers will be able to adjust to asking the manager questions rather than let Tracy ask himself questions
2005-12-06 16:21:08
16.   Rob M
Jim Tracy was well liked too.

And Little didn't admit the decision was wrong, only that it didn't work out.

2005-12-06 16:21:24
17.   Joe
9 -- That's funny!
2005-12-06 16:21:27
18.   scareduck
7 - it'll be taken down in a week.
2005-12-06 16:21:54
19.   Vishal
from the last thread, if the pirates are looking for first basemen because jim tracy isn't a fan of brad eldred... then, well, at least he's consistent.
2005-12-06 16:22:53
20.   Vishal
[18] that steve is such a tease.
2005-12-06 16:26:50
21.   scareduck
"cottom"?
2005-12-06 16:26:58
22.   scareduck
"cottom"?
2005-12-06 16:27:14
23.   carmiguel
Little is a clone of Jim Tracy (popular with players, questions about his decision-making process, especially pitchers). The difference is that Little has record of getting into the post-season.

Seriously, did any of the other candidates capture anyone's imagination? I'm sure someone had already considered setting up these blogs: "FireJimFregosi," "ExileJoelSkinner," "CanMannyActa," and "DeposeJohnMacLaren."

2005-12-06 16:30:15
24.   Kurt
Having a Red Sox fan for a wife, I saw more of Little than I would have cared to. The Pedro error was not out of character for him, he rides the starter as long as he can (part of that due to a pen that was not trustworthy, if I remember correctly). It was a case of a generally well managed team that had some game-threatening errors once a week or so.

I hope lessons were learned and there is redemption.

2005-12-06 16:33:47
25.   DaveP
I'll take Little over Fregosi any day of the week.

quick google search on his management style reveals the following from the Midwest League:

http://www.mwlguide.com/managers/littleg.html
"On the whole, Grady Little's a conventional manager. His baserunning strategies are very conservative; his teams never gamble on the basepaths. "

The link also provides stats for his teams such as how often they sacrificed.

2005-12-06 16:34:44
26.   Jon Weisman
21 - Isn't that how it sounds when you're from the South?
2005-12-06 16:36:49
27.   natepurcell
if grady is a conservative manager concerning base running, doesnt that contradict ned's idea of adding more speed to the dodger team?

anyways, i am pretty impartial to little right now. dont hate him, dont love him.

2005-12-06 16:36:59
28.   Jacob L
Being also a quasi Red Sox fan by marriage, I'm cautiously optimistic here. The main thing is that former Red Sox managers are never as bad as Red Sox fans think they are.
2005-12-06 16:42:28
29.   GoBears
Blue Jays just re-upped Ricciardi for 3 more years. So clearly he had the blessing of ownership for his recent expensive moves.

Grady Little does not excite me. Has nothing to do with Pedro - more that bit about his ignoring the statistical analysis that Epstein would send to him.

My first thought was "Choi is a goner," but (1) there's no reason to think that Little will inherit Tracy's grudge, and (2) I really don't see why old school "I know what I see" types would dislike Choi. Yeah, he's big and clunky, but he soft hands, and hits the bejeezus out of the ball. Loudest outs I've ever seen (heard?). If Tracy's grudge was because of the Lo Duca trade, or because a couple bad defensive plays trump his offensive abilities, then I'd say there's reason to expect that Little will give Hee a chance. Time to do your best David Ortiz impression, #5!

2005-12-06 16:44:29
30.   dzzrtRatt
Here's a question I never thought I would ask voluntarily: What does Peter Gammons think of it?
2005-12-06 16:44:42
31.   Adam
This isn't a bad choice. Nothing spectacular, but it seems pretty safe to me. Almost intentionally safe, because very few people will be able to significantly criticize it. The only disturbing thing is the fetish that McCourt seems to have for former Red Sox.

However, I have to say, that after the disarray involving the Tracy and Depo firings I was pretty pessimistic. But, so far, I think Colleti (and McCourt to a certain degree) has handled himself pretty well. I'm not yet sure what to make of his moves, and I don't yet have any idea what the grand plan is. But, objectively, his decisions haven't been any crazier than what Depo did (compare Furcal signing to Lowe signing for instance), and I think most of us didn't understand Depo's plan even after two years. So, I guess, now I'm slightly optimistic? And, I'm actually a little excited again for the start of the baseball season. We'll just have to see how the rest of the winter goes, but at least there aren't obvious signs for despair.

2005-12-06 16:44:42
32.   natepurcell
little saw Ortiz develop into a powerhouse right before his eyes. Hopefully, he sees the same potential in choi...
2005-12-06 16:45:14
33.   jasonungar05
But gol'dang....

Now that's old school.

2005-12-06 16:58:29
34.   caseybarker
I think Grady will not overuse our pitchers. We have a better bullpen in 2006 than the Sox have had--especially when Gagne's back.
2005-12-06 16:59:42
35.   Bob Timmermann
The caption on the photo that the LA Times is using for Little:

"Boston Red Sox manager Grady Little tosses a ball in the dugout as rain delays the beginning of the game against the Pittsburgh Pirates Tuesday, June 3, 2003 in Pittsburgh. The teams are commemorating the 1903 World Series that featured Boston against the Pirates by wearing 1903 vintage uniforms. Little's jacket is not a 1903 style jacket."

I was wondering where there were photos of Little in a plain white cap. It almost looked like a baseball card shot of a player traded in the offseason.

2005-12-06 17:00:56
36.   Andrew Shimmin
Little presser is on ESPNNews, now. Looks like they started early.
2005-12-06 17:01:33
37.   Andrew Shimmin
ESPNEWS, actually. my bad.
2005-12-06 17:02:55
38.   Bob Timmermann
Branding, Andrew, branding!
2005-12-06 17:05:51
39.   Jon Weisman
36 - It's at Dodgers.com, too.
2005-12-06 17:06:37
40.   Andrew Shimmin
I guess five minutes was enough. Oh! FSNW2 is carrying it, too. Tommy is on stage.
2005-12-06 17:06:50
41.   CT Bum
I'll agree that of the possible choices, Grady was the best option.

Living in CT, and rooting for the Sox as my 2nd team, I've seen quite a bit of him. I agree that he stuck with his starters too much in Boston, but I think that was due to necessity, more than design.

In fact, the Pedro decision, in and of itself, isn't what got him canned. It was this quote...

"Less than 24 hours before, those same people were hugging and kissing me. If that's the way they operate, I'm not sure I want to be part of it."

THAT'S what got him his ticket out of Beantown. Sure, people questioned his decision to leave in Pedro, but when he basically said he might not want to stick around...that cooked his goose.

Given Ned's 1st 2 moves, I'm much more optimistic about him than I was the day he was hired.

2005-12-06 17:07:17
42.   Ken Arneson
Colletti just said that the Dodgers need an OF, a 1B, a 3B, a lefty in the pen, and a starting pitcher.

Choi is so out of there.

2005-12-06 17:07:56
43.   Andrew Shimmin
He'll be number 06. Any speculation on what dark nefarious thing that might mean?
2005-12-06 17:08:46
44.   Marty
any talk on what the contract terms are?
2005-12-06 17:10:26
45.   Jon Weisman
43 - That next year is 2006.

42 - Um, bummer. But how is he going to fill all those spots, I wonder.

2005-12-06 17:10:32
46.   Bob Timmermann
Little is really going to wear 06 like Benito Santiago used to wear 09?

I don't know if Little can uphold the tradition of Brent Mayne.

2005-12-06 17:11:28
47.   King of the Hobos
We need a 1B? Is Kent refusing to play 1B? Dec 20 could be a sad day for our 2 favorite 1Bs
2005-12-06 17:12:37
48.   Andrew Shimmin
Too bad none of the Journalistic Giants in the crowd think it's worth asking about Choi. Instead we get questions about Colletti's Italianness? And whether Little is sufficiently sorry for letting Pedro lose one game.
2005-12-06 17:14:33
49.   Jacob L
42 If we need a 1b and a 3b, then either Kent or Izturis is out of there as well.

I'm starting to really get sold on the idea of trading Kent.

2005-12-06 17:16:02
50.   808Bears
I still cling to the hope that Colletti just threw that 'need a 1B' out there to placate the media. We're the only people to take notice that he said that, but if for some reason, he DIDN'T say that we need a new 1B, the MSM would be all over that in a heart (and soul) beat. Annoint Choi the starter now, and there's five months to attack him, but let him earn back his job in the spring, and the play will speak for itself.
Show/Hide Comments 51-100
2005-12-06 17:16:18
51.   LAT
Look at the bright side: Grady presumably learned his leson about over-using a pitcher.

If he didn't learn his lesson after the All-Time-Leaving-The-Pitcher-In-Too-Long fiasco, we have bigger probelms than leaving a pitcher in too long.

2005-12-06 17:16:24
52.   RELX
Lasorda was on Mike and the Mad Dog, the afternoon drive show on WFAN in NYC, today. Besides the fact that he is an imbecile, he said he wanted Fregosi to be the manager--guess someone is a bit out of the loop these days?
2005-12-06 17:16:34
53.   King of the Hobos
Scout.com's top 54 prospects so far:

47 James McDonald
48 Brian Myrow
49 Danny Muegge
50 Miguel Ramirez
51 Ryan Carter
52 Casey Hoorelbeke
53 Trayvon Robinson
54 Ramon Troncoso

2005-12-06 17:17:00
54.   Andrew Shimmin
45- Could be. Or it could be a secret signal to me. I suggested signing Juan Encarnacion to a 7 year, $50 million dollar contract. Little is saying 6 years $50 million. Still a bargain. Anybody know who to get posting permission at Rotoworld? I have a hot tip. . .
2005-12-06 17:19:16
55.   zappala
47 Choi has a twin?
2005-12-06 17:20:46
56.   Jon Weisman
52 - See my post up top.
2005-12-06 17:22:49
57.   RELX
I have a question--why are people on this site so ga-ga over Choi? I ask this seriously. While I agree that Tracy used him badly, especially in the second half of the season when the team was out of it, does anyone really think he has the potential to be that good? I have seen him play throughout his career, and have never been impresed. While I don't think he is terrible, I don't think he will ever be better than an average player, as his game as alot of holes in it. The fact is that two other organizations have given up on him, plus, when he came to the Dodgers in 2004 he basically could not hit a lick during the pressure of a pennant race, which is not a good sign.

I ask these questions about Choi with all seriousness--why is there such an attachment to him on this site?

2005-12-06 17:24:17
58.   Jacob L
Here we go . . .
2005-12-06 17:24:54
59.   RELX
56. Sorry Jon--missed it somehow
2005-12-06 17:25:09
60.   King of the Hobos
55 If he does, he's older, American, and plays 3B for the Brewers

"Our" included Tracy, whose favorite 1B, Phillips, could be in jeopardy on that date

2005-12-06 17:25:53
61.   Bob Timmermann
Choi is our avatar.
2005-12-06 17:28:18
62.   Icaros
Without Choi, the sun does not rise.
2005-12-06 17:29:38
63.   King of the Hobos
Olerud has decided to retire. If Choi is truly available, then the Red Sox could get him to replace Olerud and platoon him with Youkilis. There will be plenty of walks in that situation
2005-12-06 17:31:28
64.   Andrew Shimmin
57- Hee Seop Choi 2005 OPS+ 110. He's already better than average. Also, when you get traded for Derek Lee? That's not being giving up on. When you get traded for JUAN ENCARNACION (and others) that's not being giving up on. Hee Seop Choi is good. He just is. He's not great, and he almost certainly won't ever be. But he is good. And good is good.
2005-12-06 17:33:17
65.   gregsmokler
I didn't see if anyone had posted this yet but grady little has some old school hollywood ties: he was the baseball consultant/trainer for director ron shelton on the classic film Bull Durham.

i don't know if he was the actual bulls manager or some other connection to the production...

2005-12-06 17:33:44
66.   dzzrtRatt
57 Eh? I can't hear you. Come closer, sonny. Speak right into grandpa's ear...

BONK!

2005-12-06 17:34:07
67.   KLV
One of the ironies of the Pedro incident in the ALCS is that Posada's big hit was a BLOOP. Pedro actually pitched him well and Posada did not get good wood on the ball, he just got extraordinarily lucky.

I'm fine with hiring Grady Little. He apparently is skilled in clubhouse management, which is something we'll likely need in 2006. And he shows a capacity to admit mistakes and learn, which I never saw from Jim Tracy. I'd be downright ecstatic if the Little and the Dodgers now go out and get a solid, tactically-minded bench coach.

2005-12-06 17:34:38
68.   Linkmeister
57I can't speak for anyone else, but Choi never seemed to get a fair shot. The guy hits, what, 8 home runs in a week and then sits for the next week or two? It never made sense that he wouldn't keep playing. Particularly when his replacements included Jason Phillips, a catcher by training.
2005-12-06 17:36:29
69.   Jon Weisman
57 - Calling up response #C2116 from the files.

It's not that I think Choi is the second coming. It's that he is too easily dismissed. He does have value, and that value is usually ignored in the rush to pick on him.

For all of Choi's flaws, he hit 30 HR in his last 650 at-bats and is still a young, improving player. If the Dodgers can find someone better, great. But the problem is people saying that the Dodgers have no one at first base. It's simply not the case. Especially with Kent playing second base, Choi is a nice place to start.

2005-12-06 17:36:35
70.   SiGeg
57 Part of it is that people think he's actually pretty good, maybe even with the potential to be very good.

Part of it is that people like him (doesn't complain, a bit goofy, good work ethic, likes eel, etc.)

Part of it is that people like rooting for him because he's been so badly treated and disrespected. (As in your post, there always seems to be so much attention to his shortcomings, as if his having shortcomings is somehow remarkable for a good baseball player.)

Part of it is that people think that because he seems so underrated by the baseball masses, that he'll be replaced by someone worse then he is and/or the resources that might go to replacing him would be MORE usefully spent on a bigger need.

While his fans would be disappointed if he weren't playing 1B for the Dodgers next year, I don't think they would complain too loudly if he was replaced by someone obviously better than He(e Seop) is.

2005-12-06 17:38:29
71.   Jon Weisman
64 - Yeah, that's the other big thing, a point that we've tried to make again and again. The talk that the Cubs and Marlins gave up on him, when they acquired very coveted players for him (Lee, Mota, Lo Duca), is very, very tired.
2005-12-06 17:38:59
72.   dzzrtRatt
The ongoing comeuppance of Tommy Lasorda, the karmic-Sicilian punishment being meted out for his role in backstabbing his fellow countryman Paul DePodesta; this has been one of the joys of the post-season. I will recall it fondly while giving thanks to the Lord before carving my family's Christmas goose.
2005-12-06 17:39:47
73.   Strike4
Hmmm, first a Boston owner, then a Boston pitcher and now a Boston manager. Portentous for Wells, Mueller or Garciapara, or maybe Manny. Colletti claims to be shopping for all these positions.
2005-12-06 17:42:18
74.   RELX
Why did the Cubs, Marlins and possibly Dodgers get rid of him if he is a good player? Again, I ask this with all seriousness. I mean, if he's a good guy, could hit 25-30 HR's a year, walks alot, plays no worse than average defense, then why do teams sour on him?
2005-12-06 17:42:55
75.   Vishal
oh no, not the choi argument again. even though choi is my favorite dodger at this point, i am finally sick of this discussion. nobody ever gets convinced of anything.
2005-12-06 17:43:09
76.   Jacob L
72 Put another way, we're in for a lot of snickering from Red Sox fans. Already underway at Sons of Sam Horn. I can handle that. Like I said earlier, Red Sox fans can sometimes, shall we say, overstate their case?

On the other hand, if we'd hired Fregosi (Tommy's choice) or Terry Collins for that matter, the reaction from Angels fans is probably not something I'd enjoy.

2005-12-06 17:43:43
77.   GoBears
Lasorda is now on his return boat to Elba.

Laughed out loud at that one, Jon. Good stuff.

The sense I am getting as I surf the Internet is that Little might make the right lineup, might play for the big inning and not be a slave to manufacturing runs, but is unreliable as an in-game tactician, both in timing bullpen switches and pinch-hitters.

As others have said, and Gammons just repeated on ESPNews, the Dodger bullpen MIGHT be good enough to be idiot-proof. It was during 2003 and 2004, which is part of the reason that Tracy never left pitchers in too long in those years, and we didn't know he had no clue when forced to ad lib. If we're lucky, we won't even hit many circumstances in which Little has to show whether or not he's learned his lesson from the Pedro incident. When the 7th rolls around, autopilot.

I'm with 808Bears in 50 in my denial-tinged interpretation of Colletti's musings on the first base situation. If nothing else, I hope he addresses the other spots first, then runs out of time or money, and has to settle for HSC at 1b, only to have HSC break out and surprise everyone but us.

And no, I'm not going to start the re-education of the Choi-skeptics, but just a reminder of Jon's two favorite points, re: 57.

First, no one here thinks Choi is a superstar. But many do think that he's likely an above average first baseman, both offensively and defensively, and needs the PA to prove who is right.

Second, getting traded for Derrick Lee is far from having your team give up on you. If anything, it's a compliment. As for the Lo Duca/Mota/JuanCarn for Penny/Choi trade, I still think the Dodgers won big on that one, in part because Choi's net present value as a hitter trumps Lo Duca's. But others disagree.

2005-12-06 17:44:19
78.   Andrew Shimmin
Conspiracy theory: I think Tommy is getting on record as being wrong to prove that he isn't McCourt's puppet master. I think he's screwing up on purpose.
2005-12-06 17:44:56
79.   Icaros
nobody ever gets convinced of anything.

I would consider putting that statement on your headstone.

2005-12-06 17:45:32
80.   GoBears
By the way, I've copyrighted "JuanCarn." Be sure to cite me. I expect to retire on the royalties.
2005-12-06 17:45:54
81.   natepurcell
you're missing the poinit relx.

the cubs didnt sour on him. they traded him for derek lee. with that logic, did the marlins sour on derek lee because they traded him/gave up on him?

the marlins traded him for lo duca, which at the time, was a valued commodity. its not giving up on someone when you trade them for something you value more.

2005-12-06 17:46:27
82.   bigcpa
I'm splitting hairs but Ned said he wants an OF'er and "some help at 1b and 3b." Could be interpreted as a platoon partner for Choi, not necessarily a replacement.
2005-12-06 17:46:42
83.   imperabo
Of course, the very best reason to root for Choi is thinking about the reaction of Simers and Plashke if he were to hit 40 homers for the Dodgers. Wouldn't that make any amount of suffering we've endured worth while? Could a world championship be any sweeter?
2005-12-06 17:53:32
84.   Jon Weisman
74 - Did the Red Sox "give up" on Babe Ruth? Did Edmonton "give up" on Wayne Gretzky.

I use these extremes to point out the fallacy of drawing the conclusion you're drawing. It's all circumstancial.

Teams have different timetables. Choi was younger than the guys he was traded for. Choi was more about potential than Lee or Lo Duca. And of course teams have different issues regarding salary. There are many reasons teams trade a player besides souring.

2005-12-06 17:54:12
85.   RELX
Maybe sour was a bad choice of words--but, the fact remains that teams seem to want to move him a year or two after getting him. I mean, the Cubs traded him for another 1B. I would have no problem if the Dodgers gave him a chance to play everyday, it is just that sometimes on this site it seems as if everyone is overly concerned with how the team's moves or non-moves will affect Choi, as if he is one of the team's stars.
2005-12-06 17:55:07
86.   Jon Weisman
82 - "some help at 1b and 3b."

If that's what he said, that isn't splitting hairs - that makes a big difference. Even if he's here in April, I expect Choi to sit against lefties. It's just the way of the world.

2005-12-06 17:55:11
87.   Telemachos
As someone who's become a big Choi fan, I'd happily root for him anywhere he does. I certainly hope he succeeds as a Dodger, and that if he gets traded/released he doesn't end up with someone hideous like the Giants, but I'll always root for him as a player.

(Same goes for DePo, obviously, in the GM realm).

2005-12-06 17:57:36
88.   Jon Weisman
85 - I will acknowlege that Choi has made himself into something of a folk hero for me. He's a significant story for me. But of course, this is the home of the official "Obscure but Memorable Dodger" contest.

Just because I root for someone, just because I think someone should be treated and judged more fairly, doesn't mean I think he's a star.

2005-12-06 17:57:51
89.   Vishal
[85] why does it matter if he is one of the team's stars? maybe choi is a symbol of some deeper principles. or maybe people just like choi.
2005-12-06 17:58:42
90.   Andrew Shimmin
85- Okay. If the Cubs offer Flanders DLee for Choi, I'll give up on him, too. You win.
2005-12-06 17:59:32
91.   Linkmeister
"the Cubs traded him for another 1B"

Yeah, and what did their acquisition do this year? They saw something in Lee that made them think it worthwhile to give up another 1B to get him. It's not that they dumped Choi, they upgraded.

2005-12-06 17:59:48
92.   Vishal
and anyway, if bill plaschke gets to pen a sonnet for alex cora in the LAT, then we can clamor for hee seop choi till the cows come home.
2005-12-06 18:00:10
93.   Rob M
Frankly, Choi is hugely popular with a lot of Dodger fans. The whole stadium chants his name every time he comes up.
2005-12-06 18:01:01
94.   D4P
The Choi Luck Club is out in full force tonight.
2005-12-06 18:02:14
95.   GoBears
85 You're still interpreting a trade as a signal of distaste. That's wrong, unless you also think that the team that takes Choi is always being suckered. As for Choi being a star? No. But I for one think he could be. Not a HoF type, of course, or a perennial league-leader, but an All-Star game or two is not out of the question. Power and patience. If only he got the chance. The disappointment is that the Dodgers (and the Cubs before them, but not Florida when he was there) are not just hurting Choi by not playing him, they're hurting the team by giving his PAs to inferior hitters.
2005-12-06 18:03:36
96.   Jacob L
Keep digging.

Seriously, though, I think SiGreg said it best. There's a twin fear that we're going to end up with JT Snow in the name of "upgrading" at first, and that Choi's going to have the big breakout that all his numbers indicate is coming in some other city.

Also, why continually ask why the Cubs or Marlins would trade him if you're not interested in hearing anybody's answer. For god's sakes, the Cubs got the guy who damn near just won the mvp. The Marlins pried loose our "heart and soul." I'll try another one. Maybe, just maybe, the Marlins (leave the Cubs out of this) don't know what they're doing.

2005-12-06 18:03:36
97.   Jacob L
Keep digging.

Seriously, though, I think SiGreg said it best. There's a twin fear that we're going to end up with JT Snow in the name of "upgrading" at first, and that Choi's going to have the big breakout that all his numbers indicate is coming in some other city.

Also, why continually ask why the Cubs or Marlins would trade him if you're not interested in hearing anybody's answer. For god's sakes, the Cubs got the guy who damn near just won the mvp. The Marlins pried loose our "heart and soul." I'll try another one. Maybe, just maybe, the Marlins (leave the Cubs out of this) don't know what they're doing.

2005-12-06 18:03:47
98.   D4P
If only Choi had a Sabre-minded GM who could stand up for Him and drop the hammer down on the field manager if said field manager mishandles the Big Heesy.
2005-12-06 18:05:13
99.   Bob Timmermann
Hee Seop Choi may have the largest ratio of words written about him to playing time of any major leaguer.

The previous recordholder in this area was Roberto Petagine.

But Choi is now the leader in the clubhouse.

Choi to the world!
Little has come!
Let L.A receive a ring!
Let every heart prepare a room
And Colletti and Little sing
And Colletti and Little sing
And Colletti, Colletti and Little sing.

2005-12-06 18:07:23
100.   Vishal
hahah, bob, between your baseball carol and the "choi luck club", my whole mood has turned around, so thanks guys. now i gotta stop procrastinating.
Show/Hide Comments 101-150
2005-12-06 18:08:01
101.   D4P
99
Let L.A receive a ring!

Leave the Angels out of this.

2005-12-06 18:08:52
102.   Linkmeister
99 Oy.
2005-12-06 18:12:28
103.   Rob M
the Little thread at BTF is making my tummy hurt.
2005-12-06 18:14:09
104.   Bob Timmermann
If the Dodgers had hired a former Mets manager, your stomach, head and several parts of your endocrine system would hurt.
2005-12-06 18:14:42
105.   Linkmeister
BTF, Rob? Where's that?
2005-12-06 18:15:07
106.   D4P
100
I'm procrastinating on my dissertation proposal. How bout you?
2005-12-06 18:15:13
107.   LAT
RELX, I am one of the few here who do not care about Choi one way or the other and here is my take. The simple answer is that he is really regarded as an undervalued player. However, as this last season dragged on and the LAT ripped him and Tracy refused to give him a fair chance, he became a DT cult hero. Like most folk hero's his prominence grew larger tan life, mostly as a running joke. In the end, most here recognize that Choi is a "nice" player with upside that has, through no fault of his own, become more controversial than is warranted. While there are those who live and die with Choi, i.e the first thing they wonder when hearing the news of a new manager or shortstop is how will it effect Choi, most really have it in perspective. However, "nobody ever gets convinced of anything." With respect to Choi, truer words were never spoken/written.
2005-12-06 18:18:07
108.   Rob M
http://tinyurl.com/8us7c

btf thread

without giving the Sox fans too much credit, I really don't like this hire. I don't like poor game management. It's endlessly infuriating. I saw too much of it last year.

2005-12-06 18:18:13
109.   dzzrtRatt
Part of the thing about Choi, to me, is the nagging mystery of it all. The stats quoted here to justify his place in the lineup are not hidden from the view of managers, nor from the media. Yet he's treated like a kind of baseball joke--a Marv Throneberry for the 21st Century. Why? Especially in LA, where the other team gets by with Darin Erstad, who couldn't carry Choi's bat. It seems irrational, and finding the root of irrationality is a timeless pursuit.
2005-12-06 18:25:20
110.   Bob Timmermann
109

Sigh,

Erstad is gritty. And he's a gamer. And he's got what it takes to win.

Hee-Seop Choi was the product of some nerdy Harvard alum's spreadsheet.

Didn't you get the memo?

2005-12-06 18:25:56
111.   Eric L
I'm trying to figure out the "strike-em-out, throw-em-out" thing that the BTF Sox fans are complaining about. It looks like Grady's teams really didn't run that much for it to be that big of a deal.
2005-12-06 18:26:06
112.   Linkmeister
Well, reading that thread, I'd say they're indulging in a little schadenfreude over there. Giants fans haven't started chanting "1988" at the Dodgers yet.
2005-12-06 18:27:01
113.   rageon
Of the potential managers rumored since DePo was fired, I'd probably say that Little was the one I was most comfortable with. The fact that people use a single "mistake" against him isn't fair. If Pedro gets out of the inning, Little would be considered a genius and would still be managing the Red Sox. What is so wrong about the whole thing is the the results, rather than the decision, are what people criticize. At the time, I personally thought that Pedro should have come out of the game, but I generally tend to favor taking starters out of the game earlier than most people do. But for everyone who said he shoudl come out, there's probably someone who figures that Pedro at 75% is better than anything they had in the bullpen, so they might as well stick with the future hall of famer.

At least Little doesn't seem "old school" enough to make me want to bang my head against a wall, the way Tracy did.

And Choi, well, if Choi was a free agent, I don't think many people here would be rushing out to lock him up to a long term contract. But he's not a free agent, he's still cheap. And decent players who are cheap are very valuable. Playing a guy like Choi at first allows a team to sign players like Furcal at premium positions.

2005-12-06 18:27:30
114.   Eric L
Should add to post in 111 that the Sox were also relatively successful (71% in '02 and 74% in '03).
2005-12-06 18:27:51
115.   D4P
It also seems as if Choi has come to symbolize "Moneyball" and "Sabremetrics" and "Depo's computerized decision-making." Detractors point to Him as an example of the failure of Depo's philosophy, and supporters look to him as an example of success.

And, if we're honest, we'll admit that the 2005 Dodger roster simply wasn't very likeable. Defend their talent all you want, but it's hard to enjoy rooting for guys like Kent, Bradley, etc. The team was a combination of jerks, ne'er do wells, minor leaguers, and boring stiffs. Choi was one of the few players that was actually fun to root for.

2005-12-06 18:28:32
116.   zappala
Choi actually had the 6th most ABs of all Dodger players last year. He had 78 starts at first base. Much of the emotion about Choi comes from the way he was used and the 18 starts Phillips got at 1B despite much worse numbers.
2005-12-06 18:29:52
117.   Rob M
I just don't like the idea of a guy that can't manage a pitching staff. What job is more important for a manager, really? What is critical to wins and losses than making solid pitching changes. You can lose games so easily with a slow hook, or bringing in Carrara in a critical situation if Broxton is rested and has a hot hand. We'll see, I suppose. I don't have confidence in him.
2005-12-06 18:29:58
118.   Linkmeister
115 At least after Gagne went down.
2005-12-06 18:30:35
119.   D4P
116
Was it only 18? The number 18 has never seemed so small.
2005-12-06 18:31:46
120.   Steelyeri
106- I'm procrastinating on a paper that is due about half an hour from now. So I guess I won't be able to stay and celebrate the signing of our new manager. Time is money, baby!
2005-12-06 18:32:51
121.   zappala
On another subject, is Aybar likely to maintain a high OBP? He was at .448 last year. OK, maybe he won't be THAT high, but why not have him play 2nd if Kent is going to play first?
2005-12-06 18:33:38
122.   natepurcell
i am in the process of trying to write a paper too. the good news, its not due until 12PM tomorrow, so i have some more time to keep procrastinating.
2005-12-06 18:34:09
123.   Uncle Miltie
I really don't care either way for this hiring, not until I see Little more. I am very pleased that Fregosi wasn't hired, though.

Some of the other rumors I've heard today have not been good...
Soriano to Dodgers for 2 top prospect? NO!
Corey Patterson for Milton Bradley? Double NO!

Grady Little makes Jim Tracy sound like a good speaker...
I can see why they nicknamed him Grady Gump in Boston

2005-12-06 18:35:06
124.   Rob M
113 NO!!!!! It's not the "results" - that's Grady's line. EVERYONE thougth Pedro should have come out of that game. He was done. It was plain as day. It was shocking to see it unfold. It was brutal, horrific.

Doesn't anybody remember? Really, am I crazy? Pedro had no endurance that year, all year. And Embree, Timlin, Foulke were all dominant in October. It was the easiest decision in the world, blundered.

2005-12-06 18:35:08
125.   coachjpark
Was leaving Pedro in there really such a bad decision? If I remember correctly, it's not like Posada hit the cover off the ball... more like a dying quail...
2005-12-06 18:35:14
126.   GoBears
Choi actually had the 6th most ABs of all Dodger players last year. He had 78 starts at first base.

Look at those two sentences next to each other. 78 starts is less than half a season. That that comes out to #6 in tersm of ABs shows just how devastated the team was by injury. Choi was never hurt. And yet he started only 78 times when everyone else was. The only other starters who weren't injured for major chunks of the season were Kent and Phillips. Two of the guys who played some 1b, to add insult to injury (as it were).

2005-12-06 18:35:50
127.   zappala
119 Yes. I was suprised it was that low myself, but it was such a dumb thing to do that it seemed a lot more frequent.
2005-12-06 18:36:02
128.   Javier Gutierrez
What actual 1B is out there can outproduce a strict platoon of Choi and a RH batter? Only the elite 1B, and Im sure they cant just be had with the snap of Colletti's fingers
2005-12-06 18:37:20
129.   zappala
Incidentally, the Mets started him at first base 29 times in 2004 and a whopping 82 times in 2003.
2005-12-06 18:39:22
130.   D4P
128
Especially when that RH batter is a Professional Hitter.

129
Yikes.

2005-12-06 18:44:19
131.   rageon
Over on AN, they are saying that the A's are supposedly close to signing Frank Thomas and may possibly trade for Wells. Just thought I'd throw that out there.
2005-12-06 18:45:25
132.   natepurcell
frank thomas would be a good fit for the A's. they need a right handed power hitter and if big frank can be that when healthy. DHing might help him avoid some injuries too.
2005-12-06 18:45:29
133.   dzzrtRatt
Always look at the bright side of life!

Here are a couple of pro-Little comments left on David Pinto's site:

"Grady did a wonderful job with the Red Sox. Forget about the spin that says he shoulda yanked Pedro; his was a team without a closer and he kept the ball in the hands of a hall of famer who gave up a bloop hit to tie (not win) game 7. He also, in the same playoffs, brought them back from down 2-0 and facing elimination in the series against Oakland. Look at the disarray the Hose were in when Little arrived; Jimy Williams had been gassed, replaced by Joe Kerrigan; the club was in disarray; he never got a closer after he moved Derek Lowe to the rotation (where he became a 20 game winner) but still came within a single 11th inning knuckleball that didn't move of the World Series (and it says a lot that the club had only a knuckleballer to trust in that situation -- knuckleballers aren't shutout pitchers. But Grady is stupid for not going to that patchquilt bullpen earlier?? What would YOU rather have -- a weakening Pedro orAlan Embree?)"

"If the biggest criticism against a manager is that he left the most dominant pitcher in the history of baseball, who's got a wicked need to prove himself and earn respect, in a do-or-die game 7, with a 3-run lead, for one more inning than the general public thinks he should have... he's doing pretty well in my opinion."

2005-12-06 18:45:36
134.   Rob M
Maybe someone can post a game account of that game 7. I remember that it was someone surprising that Pedro came out for that last inning. And he got crushed by Jeter and Matsui, at least. It didn't all come apart with one batter. It was a slow death.
2005-12-06 18:46:20
135.   bigcpa
125 Right but that was after Matsui hit the cover off the ball for double, just as he had earlier in the game off Pedro.
2005-12-06 18:46:26
136.   dzzrtRatt
131 Skip ahead 20 comments.

Billy Beane is an idiot!

2005-12-06 18:47:19
137.   scareduck
115 - so, the lesson we learn is that the next first baseman should have three syllables in his name?
2005-12-06 18:47:29
138.   caseybarker
130-

"Professional Hitter"? Double yikes, Tim McCarver.

2005-12-06 18:47:46
139.   Rob M
An ESPN insider should find the Bill Simmons column from that game. He's a partisan, but he's a smart observer.
2005-12-06 18:48:01
140.   overkill94
129 To be fair, he was actually good in 2003.

For those who say Hee Seop has been given up on twice, one needs to go no further than Derrek Lee to get a perfect parallel.

In 1997 - traded from the Padres to the Marlins with two other prospects (he was the centerpiece) for KEVIN BROWN.

In 2003 - traded for Hee Seop

Looks like 2 teams gave up on him too. Sometimes guys just need the right opportunity to finally make their mark. Lee had over 700 at-bats of crappiness and was pretty much assumed to be a bust before breaking out when he was 25. Choi has had a little over 900 at-bats and is only 26. It's like the soul of the tortured slugger is being passed on to Choi.

2005-12-06 18:48:20
141.   D4P
136
You forgot "Burn in hell Beane!"
2005-12-06 18:48:40
142.   zappala
Here's what seems odd about Choi's numbers:

Month AB OPS
Apr 54 818
May 71 774
Jun 73 773
Jul 47 807
Aug 35 971
Sep 37 661
Total 320 789

I don't see any reasoning there to start benching him in July and then ignoring him in August and September. His numbers were pretty consistent. And Phillips OPSed 650 for the year. This is what irks the pro-Choi crowd.

2005-12-06 18:49:12
143.   bigcpa
The last 7 hitters Pedro faced went 5-for-7 as I recall.
2005-12-06 18:49:39
144.   caseybarker
I think Choi's use could also depend on who's pitching for the Dodger's. He looked pretty bad on some groundballs last year.
2005-12-06 18:51:37
145.   LAT
Must we speak of Jason Phillips. Even in the off-season, that goggle-wearing, Burger King flipping, snail-slow-slug of a catcher who can't throw anyone out pisses me off! Jason, trade in your goggles for a swashbuckling eye-patch and off to Pittsburgh with you.
2005-12-06 18:52:45
146.   bigcpa
7th inning
Matsui GO
Posada Line out
Giambi HR
Wilson infield 1b
Garcia single to RF
Soriano K

8th inning
Johnson popped to SS
Jeter 2b to RF
Williams 1b to CF
Matsui 2b to RF
Posada 2b to RF

Embree replaced Martinez

So make that 7-for-9.

2005-12-06 18:53:11
147.   Bob Timmermann
From Retrosheet.com, Game 7 of the 2003 ALCS, October 16, 2003

YANKEES 7TH: Matsui grounded out (second to first); Posada lined
to center; Giambi homered; Wilson singled to first; Garcia
singled to right [Wilson to second]; Soriano struck out; 1 R, 3
H, 0 E, 2 LOB. Red Sox 4, Yankees 2.

RED SOX 8TH: Ramirez grounded out (third to first); WELLS
REPLACED NELSON (PITCHING); Ortiz homered; Millar grounded out
(shortstop to first); Nixon popped to shortstop; 1 R, 1 H, 0 E,
0 LOB. Red Sox 5, Yankees 2.

YANKEES 8TH: Johnson popped to shortstop; Jeter doubled to
right; Williams singled to center [Jeter scored]; Matsui doubled
[Williams to third]; Posada doubled to center [Williams scored,
Matsui scored]; EMBREE REPLACED MARTINEZ (PITCHING); Giambi
flied to center; TIMLIN REPLACED EMBREE (PITCHING); SIERRA
BATTED FOR WILSON; Sierra was walked intentionally; BOONE RAN
FOR SIERRA; Garcia walked [Posada to third, Boone to second];
Soriano forced Garcia (second to shortstop); 3 R, 4 H, 0 E, 3
LOB. Red Sox 5, Yankees 5.

2005-12-06 18:54:00
148.   D4P
145
Agreed. If we're going to talk about J-Phil, let's at least focus on the time he got beaned on his way to 1B by that throw from right field. I loved how he got up all PO'd and ready to fight, only to realize there was nothing he could do about it and that he looked like an idiot.
2005-12-06 18:54:34
149.   Rob M
143 Exactly. He was totally cooked, and was left in there to fritter away a 4-1 lead, with a GOOD bullpen ready to come in. Those guys had been very solid in the pen for the last month or two.
2005-12-06 18:54:43
150.   SiGeg
96 (and for that matter, 97 too)
"Seriously, though, I think SiGreg said it best."

Thanks...but now I'm worried you know my secret identity... : )

Show/Hide Comments 151-200
2005-12-06 18:55:33
151.   natepurcell
from espn insider...

Dec 6 - The Dodgers are close to acquiring second baseman Alfonso Soriano from the Rangers for right-handed pitching prospect Jonathan Broxton, reports ESPN's Peter Gammons

:( :(

2005-12-06 18:57:27
152.   Steve
151 -- I suppose we can take heart that they were already going to ruin his career by turning him into a relief pitcher.
2005-12-06 18:57:40
153.   D4P
151
Nate - You're testing Jon's patience.
2005-12-06 18:57:50
154.   LAT
151. No. No. No.
2005-12-06 18:57:59
155.   dsfan
The Little hire is a good one.

I don't think he botched the ALCS game, but if he did, he should learn from it.

And if that's the worst thing he did, at least his team got that far. I would think the LAD would be happy to get to a LCS for the first time since 1988.

Little worked with elite prospects for many years as a manager in Atlanta's system. That's a big plus. Many major league managers haven't spend that much time with young talent.

Little was a bullpen coach for Bruce Bochy, one of the best at protecting pitchers.

Managing in Boston, especially when he did, was about as tough as it gets and he gets credit for a chunk of the franchise's success.

There he was exposed to a lot of sophisticated stats. Did he embrace them? Not often, but maybe he learned a few things. The Red Sox are among the smarter franchises. All in all, a great experience for Little.

In his recent gigs as a scout, Little was able to recharge his batteries and stay up to speed on major leage personnel.

He's a low-ego, secure man whose Red Sox players and Braves prospects respected him. Great dry sense of humor, too.

I also like Colletti's integrity of process. He was thorough, diligent. He probably wanted to hire Fregosi but kept searching. My guess is the more he got to know Little, the more he was impressed and that Little vaulted past Fregosi.

2005-12-06 18:58:25
156.   natepurcell
broxtons the type of pitcher that would be able to succeed in arlington.

strikeout pitcher with ground ball tendacies and doesnt allow homeruns.

2005-12-06 18:59:20
157.   Steve
Save Broxton for the Phillies, not for garbage like Soriano. Geez.
2005-12-06 19:00:47
158.   dsfan
142

Choi's sluggin percentage post June 14: .365.

2005-12-06 19:02:56
159.   King of the Hobos
Not Broxton, please not Broxton...

Why would White let Colletti do that? And what will we do with Soriano, 2B isn't exactly on Colletti's press conference to-do list. I'm hoping this isn't serious

2005-12-06 19:03:17
160.   natepurcell
broxton= our future closer when gagne bolts after next year.

i guess, its going to be Guame over time.

2005-12-06 19:04:18
161.   natepurcell
to add, i think duaner can be a good closer. he certainly showed it towards the end of last year that he can actually now harness his stuff and has a feel for pitching.
2005-12-06 19:04:50
162.   Wayne Wei-siang Hsieh
With all due respect to Jon, in light of Ned's comments on our hole at 1B and his desire for speed, and the constant stream of media talk about position changes, I think this new Gammons rumor of Broxton for Soriano is reasonably credible.

And like Nate, I'm unhappy with such a trade, although I think Soriano is under-rated around here.

WWSH

2005-12-06 19:04:57
163.   dzzrtRatt
Is the idea that Soriano would play RF? Because it seems like we're pretty full up with second basemen.
2005-12-06 19:05:04
164.   natepurcell
anyways, im trying to be optimistic, not freaking out yet.
2005-12-06 19:05:34
165.   Wayne Wei-siang Hsieh
Then again, Gammons has a pretty spotty track record on this sort of thing.

WWSH

2005-12-06 19:05:35
166.   zappala
158 That's odd, I get a post-All Star split of 372/.442/.814 OBP/SLG/OPS, which is even better than pre-All Star.
2005-12-06 19:06:39
167.   Wayne Wei-siang Hsieh
Soriano in LF makes some sense, I think. And it allows for us to hold out hope for Choi.

WWSH

2005-12-06 19:06:47
168.   LAT
That can't be true. It makes no sense. If you assume, Furcal is SS, that would give us three 2B: Kent, Izzy and Soriano (doesn't even include Perez). This isn't a spot that needs upgrading.
2005-12-06 19:06:51
169.   dzzrtRatt
Of course, to correct myself, there is no "idea." There is no trade. We can't speculate on motive if we don't even know if an act has been committed.
2005-12-06 19:07:09
170.   Steve
What was Izturis' on-base and slugging percentage after June 14, since we're discounting everything that happened before June 14? Or shall we just chalk this up as another hypocritical excursion into I Don't Like Choi Land?
2005-12-06 19:07:46
171.   regfairfield
166 I did the math already. Choi went 5 for 36 in June after his home run binge. It's a correct, albeit cherry picked, figure.
2005-12-06 19:07:53
172.   King of the Hobos
I hadn't noticed this was Gammons. His knowledge of the Dodgers is nonexistant, and there's a good chance this is a guess. I can breathe a sigh of relief, for now
2005-12-06 19:08:20
173.   dsfan
Derrek Lee/Choi analogy not a great one.

Lee is a far, far better athlete and was much more liked by the veteran baseball men who employed him..

The SDP traded him (at age 22) only because they believed Brown would get them a ballpark. Brown did, leading them to a WS.

The Marlins loved Lee. Shoot, he helped them win a World Series. They dealt him strictly because his productivity made him too expensive.

The Marlins did not like Choi half as much as they did Lee. Nor were the Cubs high on Choi. It appears the Dodgers are less than enamored as well. Time will tell there, I suppose.

I'm pretty neutral on Choi while believing him subpar defensively and a liability against LHP.

But that's not my point. D. Lee was far more well-regarded by the baseball veterans who employed him than was Choi. And few, if any baseball scouts or execs would say Choi's upside matches what Lee has consistently achieved.

2005-12-06 19:09:37
174.   rageon
First of all, LAT is right in 168, it makes NO sense at all. So I highly doubt the trade is legit.

That said, Broxton is a reliever. Relievers are cheap, plentiful, and easy to find. Given that teams seem to be drastically overestimating the worth of relievers right now, we might as well take advantage of that.

2005-12-06 19:10:35
175.   dsfan
Izturis took an .818 OPS into June 2, a few days before his hamstring injury.
2005-12-06 19:10:46
176.   bigcpa
Werth 2004
.262/.338/.486 (.281 EQA)

Soriano
.268/.309/.512 (.272 EQA)

and the .272 EQA includes a spiffy 30sb against 2 cs.

2005-12-06 19:10:56
177.   natepurcell
when broxton was starting in AA, he posted better numbers than billingsley...
2005-12-06 19:11:08
178.   King of the Hobos
Gammons is also reporting Benson to the Royals for Affeldt and Macdougal

As for rotoworld, their opinion on Broxton-Soriano: That would be a considerably smaller price tag than expected and more in line with what Soriano is worth

2005-12-06 19:11:20
179.   Vishal
[158] according to yahoo, ESPN, and mlb.com, that's either wrong or a bald-faced lie:

CHOI
June: .507 SLG in 73 AB
July: .426 SLG in 47 AB
Aug: .543 SLG in 35 AB
Sep: .351 SLG in 37 AB
Oct: .000 SLG in 3 AB

2005-12-06 19:11:58
180.   dsfan
Scouts say Soriano would be a good CF but he's long insisted he won't move off 2B.

He's subpar 2B

2005-12-06 19:12:42
181.   fawnkyj
Broxton for Soriano? I don't know about that one, I like Broxton a bunch and he just looks like a bad-@$$ up on the hill. Id rather trade Brazoaban for Soriano.
2005-12-06 19:14:08
182.   dsfan
Broxton usually showed poor fastball command as a rookie.

His minor league radar listings, like a lot of them, were overstated.

He's pretty raw with interesting upside but far from a sure thing.

Could be another Andrew Brown.

Pity him if he goes to Arlington. Routine flyballs go for home runs there.

2005-12-06 19:14:17
183.   regfairfield
179 Again, you should change June into a .160 slug in 36 or so at bats. It's massively cherry picked to intentionally avoid a hot streak, but it's true.
2005-12-06 19:14:50
184.   natepurcell
brazoban and aybar! get it done ned!
2005-12-06 19:14:58
185.   regfairfield
I think this might be what Jon was refering to about trades.
2005-12-06 19:15:38
186.   Wayne Wei-siang Hsieh
Re: 176

But there is no real assurance that Werth's 2004 season reflects his actual performance level.

Soriano as a 2B would be disappointing, especially if we give up Broxton. More than disappointing--downright foolish. However, Soriano as a LF would actually fill a real hole, albeit one in my view that isn't worth Broxton. However, if Ned really wants the division for 2006, this might be the only way to get a legitimate corner OF bat.

WWSH

2005-12-06 19:15:44
187.   Vishal
[183] no, he said "after june 14th". he didn't say "between june 14th and june 30th"
2005-12-06 19:16:06
188.   Steve
175 -- Avoiding the hypocrisy doesn't change what it is.
2005-12-06 19:16:11
189.   dsfan
Vishal,

I went over this with Reg two weeks ago.

Choi's slugging percentage post June 14 was .365.

2005-12-06 19:16:44
190.   scareduck
162 - underrated? Have you looked at his splits outside that launchpad they have in Arlington?
2005-12-06 19:16:51
191.   natepurcell
oh come on dsfan, your analysis of broxton is not accurate to say the least.
2005-12-06 19:17:34
192.   scareduck
174 - not if you are the Texas Rangers.
2005-12-06 19:19:22
193.   Steve
What was Cesar Izturis' post-June 14th slugging percentage? Why don't you try keeping what's left of your credibility?
2005-12-06 19:19:26
194.   regfairfield
187 Right, in June, you have to take away all the good Choi did, and add that in with the rest of the year. The math does work.

Why am I on this side of the argument?

2005-12-06 19:22:56
195.   Bob Timmermann
Let's see what my options are tonight:

1) Arguing about Choi
2) Sticking head into gas oven
3) Attempting to kill myself by playing recording of Russ Hodges' call of Bobby Thomson's home run over and over
4) Asking friend to hit me in the head with a 2 X 4 repeatedly
5) Driving my car into a brick wall repeatedly

ANYTHING BUT #1!

2005-12-06 19:23:55
196.   bigcpa
Even if Ned acquires Soriano to play LF, you have to figure he's got him slotted for 2b in 2007. Plus he's due $9M-ish in arb so we'd be in the $90's before signing Mueller and/or new starting pitcher.
2005-12-06 19:25:33
197.   natepurcell
isnt soriano a free agent after this year?
2005-12-06 19:25:51
198.   Wayne Wei-siang Hsieh
Re: 190

As has been pointed out around here, Soriano hit very well in Yankee Stadium, where he actually had his best offensive years. He'll be 30 next year, so he's starting to approach his decline years, but I don't think he's totally removed from what he did in 2002/3.

WWSH

2005-12-06 19:26:06
199.   Steve
And we await the computation of Cesar Izturis' post-June 14th slugging percentage. Someone should throw in OBP. But make it as selective as possible. Maybe even July 17th. I think he had a couple of hits on the 16th.
2005-12-06 19:27:51
200.   Vishal
[189] well what was his slugging percentage before before june 14?
Show/Hide Comments 201-250
2005-12-06 19:28:25
201.   scareduck
191 - speak no evil around Nate, he'll tell you every Dodger pitching prospect is the next Sandy Koufax. Broxton gave up nine walks in his first seven and two-thirds innings of work with the Dodgers, and 12 in 13.2. That's a guy who's struggling to find the plate -- when he isn't getting shelled (1.83 WHIP). Yes, yes, I know, small sample size. Fair enough. But command is a problem in what we've seen, and his major league work is not impressive.
2005-12-06 19:28:45
202.   bigcpa
197 Should have qualified that, but I bet Ned would try to extend him should Kent retire.
2005-12-06 19:29:33
203.   dsfan
nate,

what about my broxton analysis is inaccurate?

just because you say so?

broxton generally showed supbar fastball command as a rookie. he missed his spots consistently. you can say the sample size was irrelevant, but that's what he displayed.

his minor league radar gun listings, like a lot of them, were overblown. his fastball speed often was down 2-4 from the press accounts of his readings in AA. that's not unusual, by the way.

andrew brown got a lot of publicity for his radar-humming fastball. last i checked, he was still in cleveland's farm system (LAD traded him at a good time).

lots of guys like broxton become busts.

broxton's upside is interesting. texas needs to develop pitchers. good free agents won't go there unless it's Park money. texas is notoriousluy infatuated with radar gun smoke, too.

but he's far from a sure thing.

as for his starting potential, many scouts who saw him as an amateur said he was just as likely to become a major league reliever.

no harm in that, but there were doubts about his starting projectables. his ability to change speeds is in major question, too.

2005-12-06 19:30:12
204.   Jesse
Soriano outside Texas playing 2B starts to look a lot like a very expensive Izturis on roids... or Juan Encarnacion.
2005-12-06 19:30:15
205.   overkill94
190 Have you seen his road splits from 2003? Over .917 OPS. I spelled it out in the last thread, but having a favorable home park can sometimes be a curse.

Count me as one person who would be in favor of the trade, although it would make more sense if Soriano played LF based on the rest of the roster and his defense. How often can you get a guy who has gone 30/30 three times in his career for one non-sure thing minor leaguer? I think a lot of you are overvaluing our minor leagues a little too much.

2005-12-06 19:30:16
206.   regfairfield
200.540
2005-12-06 19:30:50
207.   natepurcell
his major league work consists of 13.2innings pitch. ridiculous to judge a prospect on that.

but of course, ignore the 22Ks and his AA season while being young for the league.

2005-12-06 19:32:51
208.   zappala
Tonight's Choi discussion (hey, maybe we need a sponsor) was about why he was benched in the second half of the year, and I didn't see a pattern. Someone pointed out that he had a low slugging percentage for the last half of June. I find it hard to believe that Tracy, a non-stats guy, computed his June 14->30th SLG and used that to bench him, ignoring his first half of June and his good July. I find it hard to believe ANY manager would make a decision like that based on a two-week slump. I suspect it was something else (baseball "instincts"?) but regardless it was a decision that turned me against Tracy.
2005-12-06 19:34:03
209.   natepurcell
am i really having this argument? people are writing off broxton because of bad control in 13.2 innings?

but ignoring the fact that
1- he is 21 yrs old
2- made the jump from AA to the majors
3- had a 14.49 krate

2005-12-06 19:34:28
210.   overkill94
205 Don't need that "over" in the second sentence, must be some sort of weird pseudo-self-promotion :)

For once I agree with dsfan though, broxton is no sure thing and could only end up being a reliever in the majors. I like him, but it's not like we're giving up Billingsley here. Plus, we'll have plenty of pitching prospects left without Broxton.

2005-12-06 19:34:57
211.   dsfan
If Soriano's willing to play the OF, it's a good trade. So far, he's refused.
2005-12-06 19:35:28
212.   zappala
Bob, We had 14" inches of snow today ... I've got nothing better to do!
2005-12-06 19:35:49
213.   natepurcell
an andrew brown to broxton comparison is in accurate just for the fact that andrew brown was constantly injured and never posted the numbers broxton has in his minor league career.
2005-12-06 19:37:46
214.   Wayne Wei-siang Hsieh
Re: 203

But wasn't Brown already damaged goods when we acquired him from Atlanta in the Sheffield trade? I seem to recall him having come off surgery. There are also all these questions surrounding his work ethic and conditioning, which I don't hear about Broxton.

Regardless, I still think that even if one sees Broxton as very unproven, we shouldn't be exchanging him for a one-year rental of a pretty good MLB hitter who costs 9 mil/yr.

WWSH

2005-12-06 19:37:59
215.   Vishal
[208] i was right, and apparently so was dsfan. even though choi slugged well in august, for example, his slump in the last two weeks of june dragged down his average for the whole 2nd half. so "after june 14th" i guess it was .365

but if you say "after july 1st", it would be something closer to .500

2005-12-06 19:38:36
216.   Vishal
btw, what a useless discussion.
2005-12-06 19:39:12
217.   MartinBillingsley31
I'd like to start seeing some stat comparisons of our prospects compared to superstars (or close to superstars) of today when they were in the minors at the same level.

Like a billingsley AA comparison to a randy johnson AA.

Or a broxton AA compared to a mariano rivera AA

2005-12-06 19:39:46
218.   natepurcell
if you replace soriano with bobby abreu, i wont have any complaints. thats said, its soriano, i will have my problems if this trade is made.
2005-12-06 19:40:22
219.   Wayne Wei-siang Hsieh
Re: 217

Canuck loves to do those comparisons, which seem to generally bode well for our chances.

WWSH

2005-12-06 19:41:05
220.   natepurcell
its funny u bring up randy johnson.

RJ when he was in AA, pitched for the jacksonville suns as well. He holds the suns single season K record.

but uhh... his control was absolutely horrible in AA.

2005-12-06 19:41:35
221.   scareduck
205 - Soriano is declining offensively and defensively. His Rate2 this year was the worst of his career. He's a hacker with no plate discipline and has always been thus; guys like this turn into pumpkins with staggering speed.
2005-12-06 19:42:18
222.   Jesse
again, if we want soriano, we just trade for the cheaper version in encarnacion. I wouldn't trading a pedal from nacy bea's organ for Soriano, his Arlington inflated power, his .309 obp, his big money contract, and his inevitable decline!
2005-12-06 19:42:31
223.   natepurcell
billingsley's season was like 3rd best in suns history in terms of strikeouts.
2005-12-06 19:42:38
224.   regfairfield
217 As a one shot comparision, Randy Johnson was still in college at Broxton's age.
2005-12-06 19:44:03
225.   MartinBillingsley31
I guess those kinda comparisons don't work.
2005-12-06 19:45:45
226.   regfairfield
Rivera at 21: 0.17 ERA at rookie ball.
2005-12-06 19:46:03
227.   overkill94
I'm all for looking back and seeing what people thought about things before they happened, not just having the ole 20/20 hindsight.

For every transaction this winter (or during the year even), is it possible to have a separate thread with only people's opinions? Having stipulations would be nice, too. For example, neither Soriano nor Broxton are injury-prone at this point, so if either gets hurt it can be taken as bad luck (pitchers are less reliable than hitters though). We could also have some sort of agreed benchmarks that would put the trade into the good or bad category.

Okay, I've just made my idea way too complicated, forget about it.

2005-12-06 19:47:55
228.   Rob M
Why is Broxton unlikely to make a good ML starter? He's only 21. I would think he has plenty of time to add a pitch and refine his skills. And he looks like a guy that could have a nice easy delivery and still sit at 95+.

I hate it when good pitchers get ghettoized in the pen. I'm curious about Duaner as a starter as well.

2005-12-06 19:48:05
229.   Bob Timmermann
208 212

Time to get out the 2 X 4.

2005-12-06 19:48:15
230.   Uncle Miltie
Ned don't trade Broxton, especially not for Soriano! I thought Ned cared about defense...Soriano is so bad defensively, that even with his above average offense; he's not very valuable. I wouldn't worry about Soriano's home/road splits though. He has proven that he can hit with the Yankees. Going to Texas might have been a bad thing for him, as he tries even more to hit home runs than he used to.
2005-12-06 19:49:56
231.   dzzrtRatt
211 "Hey, Milt. How ya doing?"

"Great Alfonso. So I hear you might be coming to Dodger Stadium. Welcome. Hey you might be able to use my locker. I think they've fixed the hole I smashed in the door by now."

"So, Milt, I wanted to ask you. When I get to LA, I was planning on telling Colletti that I refuse to play the outfield."

"Good idea. Be a man. Gotta stand up for yourself."

"Yeah, in fact, the only position I'm willing to play is second base."

"S-s-s-second b-b-b-b-base? B-b-but that's where J-j-j-j-j..."

"Yeah, how do you think he'll take it? I was going to tell him the first day of spring training. Second base is mine, man."

"B-b-b-b-b-b-b..."

(A loud clunk, then silence)

"Milt? Milt?"

"Hello, this is the LAPD. Mr. Bradley has fainted. We're taking him to the hospital. He's white as a sheet, like he's scared out of his wits. Who are you?"

"Uh...I'm the Dodgers new outfielder!"

2005-12-06 19:50:32
232.   caseybarker
...And Koufax couldn't hit the broad side of a barn for the first 4 years.
2005-12-06 19:52:38
233.   Steve
And an anxious world waits...
2005-12-06 19:54:41
234.   Uncle Miltie
Can the trade be nixed if Soriano doesn't report?
2005-12-06 19:56:37
235.   Bob Timmermann
You're asking if I a trade that hasn't taken place can be voided if a player doesn't want to report?
2005-12-06 19:57:41
236.   Uncle Miltie
Nate will kidnap Soriano...
2005-12-06 19:58:08
237.   MartinBillingsley31
So do we know ned's philosophy yet?

I mean you can't really know by the rumors because they are just rumors.

Is there any credible evidence anywhere about his philosophy.

I'm still waiting for more trades and signings to get a feel about his philosophy, but i'm getting impatient.

All we have is furcal, which could mean he wanted more power at ss over izturis, or it could mean he wanted more speed at ss, or it could mean he doesn't really value obp since furcal's career obp is 348 (which isn't bad).

2005-12-06 19:58:38
238.   overkill94
For every Koufax there's 10 flameouts, I'm tired of hearing the best-case scenarios about pitchers.

FWIW, Broxton was considered the 89th best prospect in the minors at the halfway point of this year. Good, but not untouchable if you ask me.

2005-12-06 19:58:44
239.   Bob Timmermann
So do we know ned's philosophy yet?

I saw him reading Hegel last week.

2005-12-06 19:59:29
240.   natepurcell
to add. i dont think every dodger pitching prospect is going to be amazing.

i dont think orenduff is going to be anythiing special. i dont think tiffany is going to be anything special.

i do think broxton has lidge potential. And i still believe in jackson. And miller has the most talent out of anyone our pitchers.

ill reserve judgement for the pitchers below High A though.

2005-12-06 20:05:08
241.   Uncle Miltie
So do we know ned's philosophy yet?
In an interview with Baseball Prospectus, Ned said that he looks at talent and athleticism. With Colletti, it's potential over production. Next year's team?
C Navarro
1B Kent
2B Soriano- speed/power
SS Furcal- speed/good power for a SS
3B Mueller
LF Werth- speed/power
CF Patterson- speed/power
RF Drew- speed/power
2005-12-06 20:05:30
242.   scareduck
239 - working at the LAPL has its advantages, eh?
2005-12-06 20:06:25
243.   natepurcell
so we are going to have 4 guys striking out over 100 times if they play a full season?

is that too many Ks?

2005-12-06 20:06:40
244.   overkill94
240 Just curious, but what makes you think Orenduff and Tiffany won't amount to much? From watching them? From certain stats? From scouts' opinions? I've never really seen any of them play so I just go from stats and varied resources' opinions.
2005-12-06 20:07:06
245.   Rob M
I'm not opposed to trading Broxton, or any of our prospects for that matter. I just want something good in return. I'd love to include Broxton in a package for Abreu. I'd trade a lot for Dunn (Billingsley, Broxton and Choi?) I just don't want Soriano. For all the reasons stated.

I can say this for Soriano, he was a mainstay on some championship Roto teams for me.

2005-12-06 20:07:30
246.   MartinBillingsley31
241
Potential over production?

Isn't that the same as tools over stats, or old fashioned over sabermetrics?

2005-12-06 20:08:20
247.   Gold Star for Robot Boy
FWIW, from the beginning of the season through June 14, Choi hit 261/331/540/872 in 161 ABs (56 games).
2005-12-06 20:10:04
248.   YLT
Can someone put together a thorough analysis of Soriano's numbers? I've always thought of him as terribly overrated, but I've never really taken a detailed look at his home/road splits, yearly trends, etc.

Aside from what one thinks of Broxton, is Soriano the type of player we want?

I can only hope that Gammons was just speculating with the Kent to first thing.

2005-12-06 20:10:30
249.   bigcpa
In 2002 Soriano had 733 plate appearances and took ball four 23 times. Despite devouring 508 outs, he hit .300 with 51 doubles, 39 hr, and 41 sb. Quite a specimen.
2005-12-06 20:10:50
250.   natepurcell
Tiffanys homerun rate was eric milton like. And that is in a pitchers league of the FSL. He also lacks stamina, tiring out at the end of the year last year. Although that could be contributed to muscle loss when he got that cancerous mole removed from his lower back in may.

Orenduff is a solid pitching prospect, but his cieling is roughly of a #3 pitcher. his only plus pitch is his slider and for a polished college pitcher, his command in AA or high A didnt impress me. His change up still needs work and he is relatively hittable against lefties because he doesnt have a 2 seamer to neutralize them.

although next year, if tiffany can improve his homerun rate, gain better stamina, and orenduff can gain better command and develop his change up more, then they could concievable raise their stock.

Show/Hide Comments 251-300
2005-12-06 20:11:41
251.   alex 7
I'll try to post this under "Broxton" and not "rumored trades".

Anytime a 22-year old comes up and K's 22 guys in 13 innings at the Major League Level, he becomes much more than some minor league website writer's 89th best prospect. Walks by rookie pitchers are to be expected. That strikeout ratio is not. The kid has some serious pitching talent and seems like the perfect candidate for a Dodgers rotation short on guys who can make hitters swing and miss.

Erratic but talented strikeout artist (possibly) traded for talented peaked second baseman. Second time is a charm right?

2005-12-06 20:11:55
252.   D4P
I wouldn't be the least bit surprised if the Dodgers ended up giving up more than Broxton in exchange for Soriano.
2005-12-06 20:11:59
253.   Gold Star for Robot Boy
243 - Worry not. Strikeouts themselves are not fatal to an offense.
2005-12-06 20:12:46
254.   natepurcell
dont make me go on, i dont like talking bad about dodger farmhands!
2005-12-06 20:13:56
255.   Gold Star for Robot Boy
It's probably best for us Dodgers fans to think of Soriano as Juan Samuel Sr. It's the same package of power and speed combined with terrible strike zone judgement and a lousy glove.
2005-12-06 20:13:57
256.   natepurcell
Worry not. Strikeouts themselves are not fatal to an offense.

lack of mean on base is right? how would sorianos and pattersons lack of OBP skills hurt/help the offense?

2005-12-06 20:15:53
257.   MartinBillingsley31
Hey Uncle Miltie

Can you be more specific about what you said about talent and althleticism and potential over production.

2005-12-06 20:16:54
258.   Gold Star for Robot Boy
256 - Can you rephrase the questions?
2005-12-06 20:17:07
259.   Steve
Is the calculator broken? Can it not do 2 to the negative 12?
2005-12-06 20:18:24
260.   Vishal
patterson couldn't hit the broad side of a barn with his bat.
2005-12-06 20:18:44
261.   natepurcell
mean= men.

the low OBPs of soriano, patterson and werth if his wrist doesnt heal, could concievably hurt our offense right?

2005-12-06 20:18:58
262.   Uncle Miltie
Things I like about Soriano:
-good basestealer
-power
-doesn't hit into double players
Things I don't like about Soriano:
-strikeouts
-doesn't walk
-horrible defender
-his approach at the plate
-his career numbers with RISP (.256/.297/.444 .741) Normally, I don't care for the RISP stat, but gets himself out with guys on base. He's like Adrian Beltre from a couple years ago, though breaking ball low and away isn't his only hole

McCourt wants him because he's a "name player" and he'll sell a bunch of jerseys.

2005-12-06 20:19:10
263.   Jesse
249

that was an mf'n lucky 2002. i hate soriano. hate. him.

2005-12-06 20:19:13
264.   Andrew Shimmin
204, 222- YES! YES! My Encarnacion rumors are gaining traction.
2005-12-06 20:20:10
265.   imperabo
Furcal, Soriano, and Patterson would give the the Dodgers a shot at a great fantasy team. Not so good in reality though (except for Furcal). Funny that Depo was the one accused of building a fantasy team by the media.
2005-12-06 20:20:28
266.   Gold Star for Robot Boy
261 - Yes, low OBPs from those men would hurt an offense.
But that has nothing to do with strikeouts. Many players have fine OBPs while whiffing a lot.
2005-12-06 20:21:09
267.   sanchez101
i had to laugh when i saw the criticism of Broxton based on 13 IP. well, he must be a bust, he couldnt command his fastball. My guess is that to strike out Albert Pujols or Troy Glaus or Shawn Green, you probably have to command your fastball. And as long as we're talking about gleening stats from an extrememly small sample size, he had a BABIP of .419. My guess is that it will improve a bit.
2005-12-06 20:23:13
268.   Uncle Miltie
257-
BP: The Giants have fared much better against lefty pitchers (.281/.360/.482) this year than against righties (.256/.328/.401). Does the team take platoon splits into account when putting together the roster every year?

Colletti: Not really. We concentrated more on being more athletic. Having played Anaheim in the World Series, seeing them go first to third and other things like that, we wanted to bring some of that to our own team, run more, steal bases. It hasn't worked out as far as stolen bases go with Cruz not running as much and Durham being hurt. But we'd also stressed increasing our versatility and depth, and we feel with Neifi (Perez), (Pedro) Feliz, Galarraga, Jeffrey Hammonds and some other players, we've done that.

BP: What role does statistical research play in the Giants front office?

Colletti: It's part of what we take into consideration, along with scouting reports, and how someone uses their ability. How a player approaches the game, how he approaches life, far outweighs what the stat line looks like. When you see a minor league pitcher called up, you trust your development people and your scouts. How the pitcher's numbers were accumulated isn't as important as talent, makeup, how he pitches in certain situations.

2005-12-06 20:24:32
269.   Andrew Shimmin
267- Face it: Broxton is washed up. Time to give up on him and beg Texas for Soriano. Maybe if we agree to include Izturis. . .
2005-12-06 20:24:40
270.   Jesse
i hear kaz matsui's on the block, ned. he can platoon with crappy soriano and izturis.
2005-12-06 20:25:10
271.   Steve
This is odd:

http://msn.foxsports.com/mlb/story/5143766

"The Associated Press has contributed to this report."

But it appears that the Associated Press contributed everything to that report but "Grady Little has been named manager of the Dodgers, FOXsports.com has learned."

Well, yeah. Haven't we all.

2005-12-06 20:25:33
272.   Fearing Blue
The three teams being tossed around in trade rumors are the Cubs, Rangers, and the Dodgers. So, how about this three-team proposal, which would seem to help all three:

To the Cubs:
Alfonso Soriano
Milton Bradley

To the Rangers:
Jerome Williams
Jonathan Broxton
Todd Walker

To the Dodgers:
Corey Patterson
Kevin Mench

I'd rather have Mench than Soriano considering our outfield needs, but I think the Cubs would rather have Soriano. Someone may need to toss in another prospect to the Rangers, but it seems feasible, right?

Considering that at second base we now have Kent, Perez, Aybar, and Robles, I would also hope we do not trade for Soriano.

2005-12-06 20:26:23
273.   D4P
268
That, coupled with Colletti's comments the other day to the effect that he is moving the team away from an emphasis on power to an emphasis on speed and athleticism, give us some insight into his "philosophy."
2005-12-06 20:27:55
274.   D4P
272
How about the Dodgers keep Bradley and Broxton instead?
2005-12-06 20:28:19
275.   Gold Star for Robot Boy
272 - If Corey Patterson comes anywhere near Chavez Ravine, it's a bad trade for the Dodgers.
2005-12-06 20:28:19
276.   trainwreck
Im gone studying for a few hours and come back to Grady Little and apparently we are getting Soriano and CORREY PATTERSON (whyyyyy)? W
2005-12-06 20:28:33
277.   natepurcell
can we give them odalis instead of broxton?
2005-12-06 20:32:02
278.   overkill94
Although I am guilty of it myself, I think people on here sometimes get too enamored with certain stats instead of looking at the team as a whole. For example, people keep throwing around Furcal's sub-800 OPS, but does a lead-off hitter really need to hit for power? Soriano's poor plate discipline is a problem, but does that mean he can't be a good run-producer in the 5 spot?

Let's look at our opening day projected line-up assuming the soriano trade goes through and mueller is in fact signed (not sure how to account for Bradley, traded for Patterson I guess?):

1. Furcal - pretty good OBP, lots of speed, very good leadoff hitter
2. Mueller - great OBP, good contact/BA hitter, ideal #2 hitter
3. Drew - great OBP, good run producer, ideal #3 hitter
4. Kent - decent eye, perfect run producer, ideal #4 hitter
5. Soriano - crappy eye, great power, good speed, great #5 hitter
6. Cruz - decent eye, decent power, decent #6 hitter
7. Patterson - crappy eye, decent power, lots of speed, average #7 hitter
8. Navarro - decent eye, not much power, decent BA, better than most #8 hitters

Color me heretical, but that looks like a very balanced and formidable line-up. Two good on-base guys at the top, two run-producers who can still get on base afterward, a masher to knock in what's left, and good players at the end to round it out.

I know I (sadly) left out Choi, but I think it's fairly clear that he's not in the team's plans this year. Choi instead of Patterson in the #7 (or 6) spot would make for a better line-up with soriano playing LF and Bradley traded for pitching, but I'm not the GM :)

2005-12-06 20:32:34
279.   Jesse
ned colletti= hell on earth.
2005-12-06 20:32:57
280.   D4P
Somewhere in the LA metro area, Jon Weisman is crying in his Kool-Aid over the demise of his award-winning blog into mediocrity.
2005-12-06 20:33:45
281.   MartinBillingsley31
It sounds like ned is old fashioned, one who likes speed defense guys who supposively have the urge to win (an intangible), a guy who totally fits this discription is repko.

Am i in the ballpark?

2005-12-06 20:34:26
282.   natepurcell
i actually agree with you overkill.

if you replace patterson with choi, somehow get soriano to move to left field and trade milton for a decent pitcher, that is a pretty well rounded line up.

2005-12-06 20:35:30
283.   natepurcell
just to think, if we had signed giles, this all could probably be avoided...
2005-12-06 20:35:39
284.   sanchez101
279. what has he done to earn that title
2005-12-06 20:35:54
285.   King of the Hobos
Not long after meeting with the Marlins today, Cubs GM Jim Hendry confirmed he made two undisclosed trade proposals to teams. -Rotoworld

One could be the Dodgers about Bradley, especially as reports say the Cubs are now the favorites for Bradley. No Zambrano though (big surprise). "Carlos Zambrano and Mark Prior are not going to be traded by the Chicago Cubs," Hendry said.

2005-12-06 20:37:07
286.   MartinBillingsley31
283
Shoulda offered the moon for giles, 16 million 3 years
2005-12-06 20:37:49
287.   Gold Star for Robot Boy
Who was the worst defensive second baseman in Dodgers history?
(I know everyone's first answer is "Steve Sax," but I don't want to count him. Know why? Because he had the yips, to borrow from golf, and once those faded (post-1983) he was a decent fielder.)
2005-12-06 20:40:10
288.   sanchez101
282. id rather have a good lineup than a well rounded lineup
2005-12-06 20:41:41
289.   D4P
287
Who was the worst ______ second baseman in Dodgers history?

The answer is always Delino DeShields.

2005-12-06 20:41:56
290.   KLV
Has there been any confirmation regarding a Soriano trade or are we basing all this on the Rotoworld account of what Peter Gammons said?
2005-12-06 20:42:02
291.   Uncle Miltie
284- agree, I'm not ready to complain about Colletti until these deals are actually completed. I said yesterday that the rumored Bradley deal would have been a poor trade for the Dodgers, but that it was a rumor until proven to be official. Same goes for the Soriano deal. Maybe the Cubs will jump in and offer a better package (please!)
2005-12-06 20:43:26
292.   natepurcell
Has there been any confirmation regarding a Soriano trade or are we basing all this on the Rotoworld account of what Peter Gammons said?

just a rumor, reported by gammons and usatoday

2005-12-06 20:43:32
293.   Gold Star for Robot Boy
286 - Giles didn't want the moon. He wanted to stay in San Diego.
2005-12-06 20:43:41
294.   overkill94
286 I find it hard to fault Ned for the Giles thing. It seems that he really wanted to go to San Diego all along and even though he was offered much less money he jumped at their first semi-respectable offer. If we gave Giles 16 mil a year with no one else being close I think most people would think Ned was crazy.

That being said, I agree, everything would have been better with Giles in the mix.

2005-12-06 20:44:31
295.   Jon Weisman
Updates about Weaver, Saenz, 1B and other things in quickie post up top.
2005-12-06 20:44:57
296.   caseybarker
260-
Furcal's probably hit a couple barns in his car. Ha-ha-ha...
2005-12-06 20:45:30
297.   Rob M
278 Doesn't that lineup get better with Choi and Bradley? I don't see how Soriano and Patterson's speed make up for their lack of strike zone discipline. Especially since Choi and Bradley both excell at that. Don't runs scored corellate with OPS? What are the projected OPS for Patterson, Soriano, Bradley and Choi?
2005-12-06 20:45:38
298.   Andrew Shimmin
I wish there was a way to trade Broxton for Juan Encarnacion.
2005-12-06 20:48:35
299.   overkill94
288 I hate to sound like a non-stathead, but just having good players in a line-up doesn't always yield the best results. I'll just leave it at that.
2005-12-06 20:53:59
300.   Gold Star for Robot Boy
299 - "The race may not always be to the swift nor the battle to the strong, but that's how you bet." (Damon Runyon)
Show/Hide Comments 301-350
2005-12-06 20:54:11
301.   caseybarker
278-

You're right. We definitely needed someone who would drive in runs with doubles last year. Enough of the three hits, zero runs crap.

2005-12-06 20:58:04
302.   Andrew Shimmin
299- Agreed. And the difference between player quality and results is called luck. The problem is when people who think of Izturis, or Repko, or LoDuca, or whoever else as lucky charms reverse engineer some alternate explanation for liking the guy.
2005-12-06 21:02:23
303.   Andrew Shimmin
Hee Seop Choi=bad juju
Juan Encarnacion=catching seven leprechauns
2005-12-06 21:04:02
304.   overkill94
301 I have no idea what you're talking about
2005-12-06 21:19:50
305.   trainwreck
My brain hurts from all the reading about silent era european film movements, so is there a rumor of Patterson for Bradley or something?
2005-12-06 21:45:08
306.   das411
263 - Dude, I went to an O's-Yanks game in Camden Yards in Sept 02 while Soriano was sitting on 39 and 41. My first and probably only chance to see somebody hit 40-40 (and yes, I do go to Phillies games regularly); the Orioles had their usual crappy pitching, the Yankee machine had no trouble piling up the runs...

Soriano: 0-5 with 3 Ks.

Ok, thread closed.

2005-12-06 21:53:26
307.   caseybarker
I'm talking about the way the Dodgers could get three guys on base without scoring very frequently last year. High OBP but no runs scored.
2005-12-07 00:56:30
308.   bhsportsguy
Now Plashke loves Ned and Grady. OT remember Ned & Stacy, an early Fox sitcom with Thomas Haden Church (Wings and Sideways) and a very young Debra Messing (Will & Grace).
2005-12-07 06:45:33
309.   Penarol1916
308. That was a very good show.
2005-12-07 13:55:07
310.   possumbait
My impression of Little is informed by two years of watching him manage the Red Sox.

In 2002, I couldn't understand how that team didn't do better. Its offense good enough, and its starting pitching was outstanding. Its bullpen was troublesome, such that Embree and Howry were acquired to help get the game to U. Urbina. I remember that Embree was quite good that year, and at one point I was annoyed that he was used in a mop up game one night, and unavailable the next in a close one. At this stage, I truly began to formulate a theory on Little, that he didn't have a good understanding on building success cycles with his bullpen. A willy nilly judgement, easy to be made from my armchair where I don't have to define 'success cycle' meaningfully, but there it is.

I should also add that there was a frustrating tendency for hitters to seemingly mail it in when trailing a game after the 7th. I never had confidence that there was a plan aside from just taking swings.

At the end of 2002, I was frankly in a 'blow it up' mood. The team had lost its composure in 2001, and in 2002 when everything ran very smoothly in comparison, but still short of any playoff, I felt I was reading the writing on the wall.

Then Theo Epstein came in. In his early tenure, he patched a number of positional holes, and made the one error of vocalizing an idea that maybe your best bullpen guy might come into 7th or 8th inning. In trying to break out of the model of a 9th inning 'closer,' the reporting was wrongly that of instituting a 'closer by committee.' This was not helped by a lack of decent pitching out of the bullpent through April and May.

Then the Red Sox got Kim. Then the Red Sox got Williamson. There was a mistake here and there, but by August, with Timlin and Embree both pitching well, it could be argued that for the first time Little had the guns in the bullpen. The Sox, during this time, sewed up the WC by a nearly unbelievable stretch against the teeth of the AL West.

The episode with Pedro Martinez is the most immediately accessible instance of Little's tenure in Boston, but the Oakland series before that was quite telling. Early in that series, Little lost all confidence in BH Kim. Later in that series (4th game), he had stopgap starter John Burkett keeping the Sox in the game through the fifth inning. At something like 80+ pitches, and getting barely by as it was on guile, it was self-evident to most attentive fans that Burkett was done, and deserved a pat on the back. Except he showed up in the 6th, and coughed up the lead. In the last game, Derek Lowe performed heroically in two AB's to stave off a late Oakland effort to save the game and the the DS. Where did he come from?

As for Martinez, I can only relate this in the way of anecdote: I was driving home through the 6th and 7th innings of that game. I heard David Ortiz's HR, and thought that just might seal it. I saw how Martinez came out in the 7th for some reason, because he (like Burkett in the ALDS game 4) was beginning to get smacked the inning before. I stopped in the parking lot of my building just as Little came out of the dugout when Martinez couldn't seem to get an out. (Side note: A weird feature of Martinez those innings was that he seemed to get 0-2 on most batters, but couldn't put them away. Recollection may betray me, but I actually think Martinez lost Soriano on a 0-2 count). When I got up to my apartment, I found my wife looking at the television, incredulously, and Pedro Martinez still in the game.

It may well be that Martinez still had stuff. The Posada hit that tied the game was a flare. It may well be that Kim was spent. It may well be that the fan refrain of 'Timlin in the 8th, Williamson in the 9th' that had copied a successful usage pattern through the playoffs was luck. But going back the previous year, to 2002, I strongly believe I saw a pattern, one which I will now state this way: Somehow or another, Grady Little was going to find the one pitcher who would put a game in jeopardy in the late innings. It may have been the guy who started and who was left in too long. It may have been the guy he brought in after a previous reliever logged two easy outs. Somehow or another, Grady Little seemed to have no appreciation for picking the right guy to ride.

Now, Boston has seen its share of controversial managers, and a comment might be made that the controversy isn't really the responsibility of the managers. But I disagree: I think the managing has been bad. Jimy Williams was serviceable for two years, then couldn't stay on the page with his GM, and seemed inadequate to handling complicated clubhouse personalities. Kennedy before him played the clubhouse, the press, and the team front office off eachother in some sort of self-inflating show.

I have seen bad managers, and I think there are three important criteria for their peformance: 1) They are in line with the GM and the front office; 2) They can manage the success cycle involved with bullpen usage; 3) Their style of management is timely for a team.

Little may have been subject to events that he really did not control with regard to the bullpen. In so far as I believe he made numerous, consistent, and fundamental errors with the pen, he may have evolved...nobody is an ape. He certainly looks to be on the same page with the front office sensibility in Los Angeles. I can't comment on whether laid back is what the players need in the clubhouse or not. He may do well.

I just don't think he will.

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