Baseball Toaster Dodger Thoughts
Help
Jon Weisman's outlet
for dealing psychologically
with the Los Angeles Dodgers
and baseball.
Frozen Toast
Search
Google Search
Web
Toaster
Dodger Thoughts
Archives

2009
02  01 

2008
12  11  10  09  08  07 
06  05  04  03  02  01 

2007
12  11  10  09  08  07 
06  05  04  03  02  01 

2006
12  11  10  09  08  07 
06  05  04  03  02  01 

2005
12  11  10  09  08  07 
06  05  04  03  02  01 

2004
12  11  10  09  08  07 
06  05  04  03  02  01 

2003
12  11  10  09  08  07 
06  05  04  03  02  01 

2002
09  08  07 
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
8) making the same point over and over again
9) typing "no-hitter" or "perfect game" to describe either in progress
10) being annoyed by the existence of this list
11) commenting under the obvious influence
12) claiming your opinion isn't allowed when it's just being disagreed with

Garciaparra: Wait for It
2005-12-18 09:08
by Jon Weisman
Note: The Dodger Thoughts blog has moved to the Los Angeles Times.

Nomar Garciaparra is coming, according to multiple reports, for one year at $6 million plus incentives. But until Dodger general manager Ned Colletti or manager Grady Little goes on the record to say that Garciaparra will play first base, hold off on buying into the media expectation that first base is where he'll play. As I wrote overnight in the comments:

It may be true, but after an offseason of one false rumor after another - $75 million payroll, J.T. Snow - maybe a little more skepticism is in order. ...

The "is expected to" is often code for "this is what I suspect (or hope) but I can't get anyone to confirm." I mean, this isn't Watergate we're dealing with here. If no one's saying it out loud, maybe, just maybe, it isn't real.

I like the idea of Garciaparra, and the contract seems reasonable. But even if you think Hee Seop Choi is the worst baseball player on the planet, you might stop and ask whether Garciaparra offers enough at the plate and outside of the training room for a first baseman. For all the grief that J.D. Drew gets, Garciaparra has played more than half a season two times in the past five years, he's older than Drew, and his injuries (Achilles, groin, wrist) have been serious, too.

On the other hand, it is possible that Garciaparra + Choi's trade value > Choi. It's possible. Is there one team out there that believes in Choi and would trade a decent starting pitcher for him?

In any case, if Garciaparra gives the Dodgers their fifth 100-game outfielder to go with Drew, Jose Cruz, Jr., Ricky Ledee and Jayson Werth, not to mention anyone else that might come along, that might do just fine.

Update: A mass e-mail from the Dodgers paraphrases Ken Gurnick's MLB.com article in saying that "Garciaparra will be the No. 5 hitter and first baseman in a dramatically rebuilt infield ..." This still would seem like a premature move without a new outfielder in place, but nonetheless, there it is. Frankly, the easy appropriation of Gurnick's article highlights the part-of, not-part-of blurriness of his relationship to the Dodgers.

It would be like something out of Oz (both the prison show and Dorothy's vacation home), if Choi got traded to Pittsburgh.

Comments (404)
Show/Hide Comments 1-50
2005-12-18 09:25:54
1.   Wayne Wei-siang Hsieh
It'd be really nice in the PR war with the other SoCal team if Nomah, the hometown kid, resurrects his career here. The injuries are of course worrisome, but this could potentially be a great signing.

Hope springs eternal...

WWSH

2005-12-18 09:33:16
2.   Colorado Blue
466 (from previous post) - Vishal; are you sure you meant Kent batting 3rd and Drew 4th? I would switch those two.
2005-12-18 09:34:35
3.   Rich Lederer
I know you are in a "wait and see" mode, but it is becoming more apparent that the Dodgers, in addition to signing Garciaparra, are the frontrunners for Reggie Sanders (LF) and Kenny Lofton (RF). As a result, it appears as if Nomar is indeed being thought of as the team's primary 1B.

If all three signings come to pass, one would also have to believe that Jose Cruz Jr. would not have been asked back under the current regime. He's an excellent 4th OF but having such a luxury when you also have Werth and Repko lurking in the background seems a bit excessive, especially when the team still needs help in its starting rotation.

2005-12-18 09:38:34
4.   dzzrtRatt
Geez, were you guys up all night talking about this?

Someone on the previous thread said this: "I think that signing Nomar was done as much for PR as for baseball reasons."

I completely agree. It doesn't make it a bad signing. But PR is the primary distinction between Nomar and Hee Seop Choi, given that their output is quite close. Nomar's got the track record that Choi hasn't had the chance to assemble. He's got the glitz that goes along with having played for one of the MLB's few "national" teams.

I'd like to think Nomar's going to play LF, but in the final analysis, I don't think his health status allows it. Plus he'll be crowded out by our two new outfielders.

So--what to do? For DePodesta-haters, simply non-tendering Choi would be the most satisfying outcome, the final nail in the coffin of his reputation. "He traded LoDuca for Choi. 18 months later, LoDuca was the starting catcher for the New York Mets. Choi was out begging for a job."

But if we non-tender him, he could wind up on the Giants. They don't seem settled at first base, and Choi's power might be seen as potential protection for Bonds. That's dangerous for Mr. Ned, PR-wise. So my guess is we'll sign him and then listen to offers for him--from teams outside our division.

2005-12-18 09:39:05
5.   Adam
I agree with your call for patience Jon. But, I still think that it's pretty obvious that the writing's on the wall, in terms of Choi. As I said in the last thread, it doesn't make sense to play Nomar in the outfield with his injury history. In addition, the rumors that Colletti is still after Lofton and/or Sanders suggests that Nomar will play first base. Additionally, we all know that Choi is not looked upon highly many "traditional" baseball people. I think there is a real reason to be upset with this signing. Finally, I think this move decreases Choi's value on the trade market. Now teams will know that we are desparate to move him. I can't imagine anyone giving up quality pitching for him now.

As always, I hope I'm wrong.

2005-12-18 09:39:31
6.   Colorado Blue
3 - If all three signings come to pass, one would also have to believe that Jose Cruz Jr. would not have been asked back under the current regime.

Ah, this will be interesting... Cruz, Jr. was resigned before Ned was hired. If Ned signs Sanders and/or Lofton, then there may be some philosophical differences in the Head-Shed after all...

2005-12-18 09:39:57
7.   Wayne Wei-siang Hsieh
Re: 3

If Lofton wants playing time, which I think Jackson's report indicated, I'd think that we'd only snag Sanders. If we only sign Sanders and Cruz is made the right-handed version of Ledee on the bench, then Choi could still be the starting 1B.

WWSH

2005-12-18 09:40:45
8.   Vishal
[2] most people probably would i guess. i don't feel too strongly about it one way or the other. i can see the logic of drew third and kent 4th. in the first lineup i posted, i had choi 2nd though, so i stuck kent 3rd to go lefty-righty-lefty. in the second lineup mueller's a switch hitter, so drew third and kent fourth makes sense too, probably moreso because of drew's OBP.
2005-12-18 09:41:16
9.   dzzrtRatt
3 Yes; unless Drew is on the trading block for a starting pitcher. I don't really think that's what Colletti has in mind, but he might listen if another team had a notion.
2005-12-18 09:41:32
10.   D4P
While I understand Jon's wait-and-see approach with respect to what position Nomah will play and what that means for Hee Seop Choi! Hee Seop Choi! Hee Seop Choi!, I also think that holding out hope for HSC is virtually doomed to result in disappointment. Colletti has never expressed one iota of support for the Big Heesy, and has been non-committal at best toward the prospect of Choi being the starter.

BTW: Whatever happened to Flanders' "Upgrading 1B isn't really a priority, and I'm focusing on the outfield and the pitching staff"?

2005-12-18 09:43:13
11.   Thomas Naccarato
Rich,
It's either that or we're going to have the highest paid bench in baseball...

On one hand, I'm glad they signed Nomah. Given his local roots to me, I couldn't think of having a better guy playing for the home town team, but on the other hand, we are starting to look like the 2001 or 2002 Boston Red Sox, which of course we can thank Frank for that. But I have to and it to him. The spending of money is impressive, and what's the old saying? "Spend it if you have it?"

Absolutely!

But the best news is that other then giving away Antonio Perez and Milton Bradley for close to nothing, we still have some young guys who will be getting some valuable experience for a better Ddoger team for the future. At least we have them for the time being, correct?

2005-12-18 09:43:35
12.   Wayne Wei-siang Hsieh
Why are so many assuming that Lofton will sign with us? It was my impression from Jackson's article that that was really iffy, due to playing time issues. And who's to say that Sanders won't get a better offer from another team to steal him away from us, even assuming we're the front-runner?

WWSH

2005-12-18 09:44:12
13.   Colorado Blue
10 - BTW: Whatever happened to Flanders' "Upgrading 1B isn't really a priority, and I'm focusing on the outfield and the pitching staff"?

Thus the theme of this post... don't believe unsubstantiated MSM sound-bites. I personally believe that if Nomahhhhs groing is main the health concern, then 1st base is the worst position he could play. Have you ever tried split stretching with a sore groin???

2005-12-18 09:45:24
14.   Colorado Blue
13 - groing: the sound one's groin makes when pulled or torn :)
2005-12-18 09:45:38
15.   Wayne Wei-siang Hsieh
I also would like to point out that Ledee and Cruz were not really fantastic players for the Giants org. when Ned was there. I still remember Cruz dropping a routine foul ball with bad consequences in the post-season for 03, and Ledee had a dreadful time there in 04.

WWSH

2005-12-18 09:46:20
16.   Rich Lederer
Re my comment above (#3), you can add Ricky Ledee to the mix of backup OF.

Therefore, IF the Dodgers sign Nomar, Reggie, and Kenny, then you have FOUR backup OF (Ledee, Cruz, Werth, and Repko). Logic would suggest that one or more of these players would be traded, perhaps packaged along with Choi, for a SP.

Given that the goal appears to be to resurrect the 2002 Giants and the 2003 Red Sox, who might this starting pitcher be?

2005-12-18 09:46:29
17.   Blu2
Maybe Flanders was more interested in signing Mia than Nomar....
2005-12-18 09:47:05
18.   Wayne Wei-siang Hsieh
Re: 10

I think Ned wants to wait and see how his other options in the OF work out before he settles on any single course of action. I doubt he's settled in his own mind what exactly he'll do with Choi. That doesn't mean Choi's fate is already doomed as a Dodger.

WWSH

2005-12-18 09:47:34
19.   Colorado Blue
The best thing Frank/Ned/et. al. have done so far has been to not only keep the farm intact, they've added to it and substantially upgraded our outfield prospects... kudos!
2005-12-18 09:48:33
20.   D4P
13
Not to mention that being a 6' righty doesn't make one an ideal candidate for 1B either. Although, perhaps it's only (ghasp!) "conventional wisdom" that a first baseman should be tall and left-handed...
2005-12-18 09:49:24
21.   Wayne Wei-siang Hsieh
Re: 16

It's been discussed before, but Werth will certainly not be ready for the start of ST. When he'll be healthy his iffy--I could see him starting AAA on injury rehab. I think Repko is now out of the mix. I do agree that Ledee and Cruz are DePo regime leftovers that Ned may not want.

WWSH

2005-12-18 09:50:52
22.   Wayne Wei-siang Hsieh
As a natural SS, I also assume Nomah's still got a decent arm, which would be more useful at LF than at 1B.

WWSH

2005-12-18 09:54:44
23.   Wayne Wei-siang Hsieh
>>Lofton met with Arizona Diamondbacks officials on Friday at Chase Field, but he hasn't visited Dodger Stadium unless such a meeting took place Saturday. Lofton is believed to have narrowed his choices to the Dodgers and Diamondbacks and is willing to sign a one-year deal, but his decision is expected to hinge largely on playing time.

Arizona wants Lofton as its everyday center fielder. The Dodgers would use him as their primary center fielder, but the left-handed hitter might have to share time there with switch-hitting Jose Cruz Jr. and right-handed-hitting Jason Repko and Jayson Werth.

Lofton lists Tucson, Ariz., where he played guard for the University of Arizona's Final Four team in 1988, as his primary residence. But he also has a home somewhere in the Southland, a fact that could weigh in the Dodgers' favor.<<

http://www.dailynews.com/sports/ci_3320336

Am I the only one who thinks that this account makes the Snakes the front-runner, not us?

WWSH

2005-12-18 10:00:26
24.   Rich Lederer
If the Dodgers sign all three (Garciaparra, Sanders, and Lofton)...

1. Furcal, SS
2. Lofton, CF
3. Kent, 2B
4. Drew, RF
5. Garciaparra, 1B
6. Sanders, LF
7. Mueller, 3B
8. Navarro, C

Or, if they sign Garciaparra and Sanders only...

1. Furcal, SS
2. Mueller, 3B
3. Kent, 2B
4. Drew, CF
5. Garciaparra, 1B
6. Sanders, LF
7. Cruz, RF
8. Navarro, C

(Kent and Drew could be reversed in both batting orders.)

I think part of the goal is not only to find short-term solutions to build a bridge to the youngsters in 2007 and beyond, but also to rid the team of as many players as possible who were "associated" with DePo (i.e., Choi, Perez, Phillips, Bradley).

Kent, Drew and Lowe could have good seasons, but nobody will give DePo any credit. Instead, the focus of the media will be on the players who were traded and the newcomers who were signed.

Book it!

2005-12-18 10:01:10
25.   SiGeg
18 I think Ned wants to wait and see how his other options in the OF work out before he settles on any single course of action.

I think this is the key point right now. The Nomar signing makes sense for Colletti no matter which position he ends up playing. Even if Colletti really wants him for 1b, it's a huge bonus for him that Nomar could be in the OF if that ends up being best for team (which, right now, it looks like it is).

2005-12-18 10:03:13
26.   Adam
24. Yes, because we all know that the only thing holding the Dodgers back from making a post-season run last year was Depo's computer and Choi clogging up first base. With those two gone, we're basically guaranteed a trip to the series.
2005-12-18 10:03:45
27.   SiGeg
24 I think part of the goal is not only to find short-term solutions to build a bridge to the youngsters in 2007 and beyond, but also to rid the team of as many players as possible who were "associated" with DePo (i.e., Choi, Perez, Phillips, Bradley).

Is Izturis on that list as well? I don't think he fits your profile, but wouldn't those lineups likely put him out of a job?

2005-12-18 10:05:10
28.   Adam
27. After these signings, if Izturis starts on a regular basis (without other injuries necessitating it) I will completely lose hope.
2005-12-18 10:07:50
29.   Rich Lederer
27 Izturis was pre-DePo.
2005-12-18 10:10:30
30.   Benaiah
28 Izturis could be very valuable trade bait. He had a Gold Glove two years ago and was an All-star last year. If Rentaria is worth Andy Marte than maybe Izturis is worth a starter from somebody. Obviously he would have to come back healthy, but I bet someone would pay out the ear for a 26 year old All-star Gold Glove SS.
2005-12-18 10:11:02
31.   Adam
30. I sure hope so.
2005-12-18 10:13:20
32.   SiGeg
Izturis was pre-DePo (which is why I said he doesn't fit the profile -- though he was signed to a contract by DePo). But my point was that he, along with the others listed, would seemingly be pushed out of the Dodgers' plans by the moves. I'm not protesting this. I think it's fine. I just find it interesting as it would be an aspect of Colletti's refashioning of the team that has a very different feel from trading Bradley or abandoing Choi.
2005-12-18 10:21:42
33.   Screwgie
This makes the Meuller signing a bit superfluous. If Colletti really wanted Nomar, why not stick him at third, play Choi/Saenz at first, and spend some money on pitching and the outfield? With Nomar at first, we still need to add an outfielder and a SP. Even with a trade to shore things up, we are still looking at a possible heafty payroll addition that may not be necessary or even possible.

That's why I'm still holding out for Nomar in left.

2005-12-18 10:22:55
34.   Big Game
I'm not sure that Lofton should be an option at this point, outside of CF insurance for Drew. Would singing Lofton create a redundancy at CF?
2005-12-18 10:25:44
35.   D4P
Are LF and 1B the only possible spots for Nomah? Have we ruled out Nomah at 2B and Kent at 1B?
2005-12-18 10:27:32
36.   bearlurker
15--That thought had occurred to me. I hope that Ned isn't basing his analysis of Ledee and Cruz based on what he saw them do for the Giants rather than how they have actually performed.

18--Exactly. If we get Lofton and Sanders for good deals, our lineup is
Lofton
Furcal
Drew
Kent
Nomar
Sanders
Mueller
Navarro

THAT would be the best lineup in the NL, IMO. And Cruz, Ledee, Saenz, Choi? making for a great bench.

But if he doesn't get another OF, a lineup of
Furcal
Mueller
Drew
Kent
Nomar (more on that later Jon)
Choi/Saenz
Cruz
Navarro

MIGHT be the best lineup in the West.

Our uncertainty about Choi is clouding the fact that this was a very good signing by Ned. No downside to speak of and huge upside. Others have posted Nomar's 2nd half stats--I think he had about an 880 OPS.

Jon, nice theme for the day: don't jump to conclusions based on rumors (and Ned hasn't done anything that stupid yet so let's give him the benefit of the doubt).

Jon, re Nomar 5th v. Choi. Why the need to split up the right handers? I think Nomar handles RH better than he does LH anyway. I think that you're correct in that the gap between what Choi and Nomar would do isn't substantial (and Choi may do better). However, I think the perception of the opposing pitcher might make him give Kent something better to hit (no way to quantify this). Also, although I like Choi and hope he gets a chance, he seemed (and I think the numbers back this up) very inconsistent.

2005-12-18 10:29:05
37.   bearlurker
35--I sure hope that Nomar is ruled out at 2b. His problem is range and moving from ss to 2b isn't going to help that. His arm is fine. Plus turning the double play would just about guarantee an injury.
2005-12-18 10:31:16
38.   bearlurker
34--

I don't think so. Lofton in CF, Drew in RF>>Drew in CR, Cruz in RF. Plus all three of those guys will be injured at some point, which is why I like Jon's 5-headed, 100 game each OF of Drew, Nomar, Cruz and two others from Ledee, Werth, Lofton, Sanders.

2005-12-18 10:34:17
39.   bearlurker
27--Gosh, I disagree and sure hope that you're wrong. I think Ned was under orders to get rid of MB, Goggles stinks and Perez was needed to get back Ethier. Ned has embraced Kent, made no effort to get rid of Lowe, re-signed Saenz (Depo liked him, going back to the A's). I think Ned is trying to improve the team and isn't targeting Depo acquisitions for departure.
2005-12-18 10:35:04
40.   LAT
If you love Choi set him free. (Sang by Sting)

Let's face it, he is never going to get a shot with this team. Let him go somewhere and get a fresh start and a fair chance. It would be the best thing for him and perhaps the best way to rehabilitate Depo's reputation. Not to mention lots of people around here might have the last laugh.

2005-12-18 10:35:10
41.   Big Game
38. But Drew wanted CF last year to save wear and tear on his knee...and now with Bradley gone, he's got it.
2005-12-18 10:37:40
42.   molokai
23I agree with you. Lofton is all about playing time and we can't give him what Arizona can. That said he might be looking at the Arizona pitching staff and realize he'd only last a couple of months before he was worn out chasing all the big flies. Maybe the rest he gets when Webb is pitching will help keep him fresh.
2005-12-18 10:40:58
43.   molokai
I hope the clever GM in Texas makes a play for Choi. Anyone who can get Wilkerson/Sledge/Prospect for Soriano gets my attention as someone to watch in the future.
2005-12-18 10:43:45
44.   D4P
43
Wait...wouldn't we want to trade with the GM who gave up Wilkerson/Sledge/Prospect for Soriano?
2005-12-18 10:45:42
45.   SiGeg
40 I agree. I don't want Choi on our bench. Besides the fact that he's shown no apptitude for being a pinch hitter, it would just be a waste. He needs a real chance to show what he can do, and he's getting too old to wait for another year. I'm a Choi fan, but I'd rather he play regularly for another team than sit on the Dodgers.
2005-12-18 10:49:40
46.   jtshoe
Probably not in the realm of possibility, but as mentioned in post 35, 2B might be better for Garciaparra. Furthermore, would it not be fair to say that Kent is overvalued (and there have already been plenty of posts pointing out that Choi is undervalued). Maybe it's Kent that's going for pitching. (And of course, that rules out Zito.)
2005-12-18 10:52:18
47.   Screwgie
No matter what happens with Nomar, I think Choi will still be with the team regardless. Consider the Bradley trade. You know Beane would have prefered Choi over Perez as the throw-in, and if Colletti really was considering non-tendering Choi, it would follow that Choi would have been included in that deal. Since he wasn't, and Saenz was offered a contract, it seems almost safe to guess that Colletti has some plans for Choi.

Granted Colletti could trade Choi, but he won't be released. At least I don't think so....

2005-12-18 10:52:33
48.   RELX
A few things:

1. As I posted yesterday, what makes people think Nomar can play first base? Has he ever played the position in his life? Living in NY, I got to watch Mike Piazza try and play first in 2004, so it is not like you can just stick anyone there. As far as I can tell, Nomar has only played short and third in the big leagues--why is it assumed that he can just pick-up a first basemen's mit and be even adequate at the position? Or even LF for that matter?

2. Players like Lofton, Sanders, Nomar are in all likelihood, 100 game players. If we signed all of them, we would probably have platoon situations in LF and RF, not to mention 1B if Choi returns. The only definitie day in day out starters would be Navarro, Kent, Furcal, Mueller and Drew.

I like the way that Colleti is putting things together--he is signing enough guys to short-term deals, thereby not only ensuring that most of the prospects will get their chance when 2007 rolls around, but also ensuring that we will have at least a decent team this year. I think Colleti has done a good job--in less than two months, he has taken a despondent fan base, and not only made them excited about 2006, but 2007 as well.

2005-12-18 10:54:13
49.   Suffering Bruin
On the other hand, it is possible that Garciaparra + Choi's trade value > Choi. It's possible. Is there one team out there that believes in Choi and would trade a decent starting pitcher for him?

If that happens, I'm starting a new fan club.

2005-12-18 10:58:21
50.   Suffering Bruin
And by the way, as President and CEO of the HSC fan club in my house, I think 40 has it exactly right.
Show/Hide Comments 51-100
2005-12-18 11:01:05
51.   RELX
Another thing--

This is not meant as a knock on DePo, but it looks like Colleti is much better at playing the free agent market than DePo was. Furcal was a total surprise, and even though Nomar has LA roots, we still beat out the Yankees, among other teams, for his services, and only had to sign him to a one-year contract. Compare that to DePo's handling of the Beltre and Drew situations last year.

2005-12-18 11:02:26
52.   D4P
40,45
Yes, I think most of us would rather see Choi start for another team than rot on the bench again for the Dodgers.
2005-12-18 11:04:24
53.   bearlurker
Good point RELX. Depo's trades on the whole were very good, but Boras played him like a drum in the free agent dealings.
2005-12-18 11:04:25
54.   molokai
48
Bill James did something called the "defensive spectrum" which showed where 1st base is on the left side of the spectrum and the thought goes that if you can play SS you can play any position in the majors. Don't tell that to Dunston who was a terrible 2nd baseman.
Here is a great link to a recent interview that Rich Lederer did with Bill James and the subject comes up.
http://tinyurl.com/eyr6d
2005-12-18 11:04:33
55.   Vishal
[50] i think there needs to be an official hee seop choi marching & chowder society. i would sign up for that.
2005-12-18 11:05:40
56.   Blu2
Signing Muller was the mistake. If he intended to sign Nomar, then third was the best place to put him. The Mueller money could have been better spent on a real play every day left or center fielder; we'd have a very adequate coverage at first for $1.5 million. Maybe then we could afford a pitcher.
2005-12-18 11:05:42
57.   molokai
The defensive spectrum is: DH - 1B - LF - RF - 3B - CF - 2B - SS - C
2005-12-18 11:06:46
58.   Adam
51. I totally disagree. I don't see how the Furcal deal is significantly better than the Drew deal. And, Depo signed Jeff Kent. That's far better than anything Colleti has done, so far.
2005-12-18 11:07:49
59.   Screwgie
51
True. But consider this: Depo brought in Kent, Drew, Lowe, Valentin, Ledee, Navarro, and OP last year. Given that we are not privy to any of the wheelings and dealings going on in the backrooms, was Depo really that bad at playing the free agent market, or was that just a media perception? I don't know. Granted Colletti seems adept at making the short term deal, but Kent, Valentin and Ledee can fall into that category as well.
2005-12-18 11:12:37
60.   Joe
57. C is not part of the spectrum
2005-12-18 11:13:08
61.   King of the Hobos
Rosenthal has an article on the infield logjam when Izzy returns. It's not particularly informative, but it has a poll of what position makes the most sense for Nomar? 45% say 1B, 30% 2B, and only 25% think LF. 2207 have voted
2005-12-18 11:15:31
62.   Rich Lederer
57 - That is correct. However, catcher is not a part of the Defensive Spectrum. The theory is that a player should be able to travel leftward on the spectrum, but that it is difficult -- not impossible -- to travel rightward.

Catchers don't fit this description. Think about it, Navarro couldn't play SS or 2B. I'm sure he could play 1B and maybe even LF or RF but probably not the others. James recognized that catching was a demanding position, but he also realized that it was rather unique and, therefore, not a part of the Defensive Spectrum.

2005-12-18 11:15:54
63.   LAT
55. I think there already is a hee seop choi marching & chowder society. The problem is there is also an anti-hee seop choi marching & chowder society and when the two meet it will look like the opening scene in the Gangs of New York.
2005-12-18 11:16:10
64.   Screwgie
61

More proof that democracy just doesn't work. ;)

2005-12-18 11:16:56
65.   RELX
58. The Furcal signing is infinitely better than the Drew signing. If Drew has a great year this year, he opts out and we lose him. If he has a terrible year and goes on the DL and plays 90 games, than we are stuck paying him $11 million a year for the next three years. Plus, we were really bidding against no one when we signed him.

As far as Furcal, I think it is an excellent signing. Though we paid more than market value, we only had to sign him for three years. He's not injury-prone, and is a very good player, both offensively and defensively. The 3-year deal means that he should be playing hard for his next deal the entire time he is in a Dodgers uniform, which is another plus.

I will grant that the Kent signing was a very good move by DePo. But again, was there alot of competition for Kent last year? I don't recall.

My basic point is that for the first time in a long time, the Dodgers are actually out maneuvering other teams in the FA market.

2005-12-18 11:18:09
66.   molokai
True but just several months ago the general media consensus and many posters around here was that the Dodgers were in tatters, that no one would want to play for us, that our budget would only be 75 million at best.
Since then we have convinced Furcal to take us over the Cubs, Mueller to take us over the Pirates(no big deal I know), Nomar to take us over the Yankee's and the up and coming Indians. In Furcal's case the money was the thing but that got the ball rolling.
Plus our budget is now approaching 100 million and I don't think you could have found the most optimistic fan who would have thought we'd have a 100 million budget. NOT one prospect has been dealt. Even without adding one more pitcher we are as we stand the best team in the West with trading chips up the wazoo come July in Izzy and the kids. And not a Snow, Jones, Soriano, or any other lame deal rumored to have a shred of truth. I'm sorry we lose Choi in all this, but I'm excited about this team and the future of this team cause our longest committment was for 3 years and that to a 28 year old.
2005-12-18 11:18:21
67.   King of the Hobos
Rosenthal seems to think, in his notes, that Weaver could accept arbitration because of the various moves. Would Boras even allow that if Weaver wanted to stay here? Weaver's value wouldn't be much lower next year, and he could somehow earn a little more were he to pitch really well
2005-12-18 11:25:13
68.   MartinBillingsley31
I just can't vision nomar at 1b.
Choi/seanz platoon produced last year.
Our holes last year minus the injuries were 3b, lf, ss, ned has filled those holes with mueller nomar and furcal, and cruz fills the hole created by bradley being traded or sanders comes in and cruz goes to the bench.

As far as how ned has done, i'd say pretty good considering the thin market this year and he has signed guys to short term contracts and has yet to trade any top prospects.

I'm not high on furcal nomar mueller, mueller is the only one with a good obp track record but with little power, and nomar is the only one with a good power/slg track record but nothing special obp wise, and furcal has nothing special at all, but nomar is only 1 year and mueller only 2 years.

And if getting furcal means the end of izturis, then i'm all for it.

Hopefully ned does not trade any top prospects, i'm sketchy about this because we still need a starting pitcher. Please just sign millwood and don't trade prospects for pitching.

2005-12-18 11:26:21
69.   bearlurker
56-Do you want to be able to "afford" a starting pitcher given what Washburn and Morris got? In light of the market for starting pitching and the durability of some of our players, I like the strategy of stocking up on low-risk guys on short contracts. Our money is best spent improving our offense.

We then see how the non-roster invitees do, maybe sign a Tomko on the cheap, give Bills a chance and see where we are two months into the season, when we can make a trade for a starter if appropriate. That's traditionally been Billy Beane's strategy.

2005-12-18 11:27:33
70.   Benaiah
66 I agree wholeheartedly. My only concern is that perhaps he has emptied the coffers without addressing the holes in the rotation. That said, perhaps he has a plan for that too (Weaver and a trade?).
2005-12-18 11:27:41
71.   Mark
YES! Party at Nomar's place this weekend!
2005-12-18 11:27:42
72.   RELX
Thinking of Weaver, does anyone think there will come a point when teams will ignore Boras's clients, and having Boras as your agent will actually become a bad thing? I mean, as long as his clients get their money i guess they'll be ok with him, but at some point, i wonder if his ridiculous demands, plus the fact that his clients routinely don't sign until Jan will turn off most teams?
2005-12-18 11:28:55
73.   Screwgie
67

I think Boras would allow Weaver to accept arbitration, if that's what Weaver wanted. Sure Boras is a lech, however I think Boras gets a bad rap with the portrayal of him as some sort of dictator to his clients. I remember when Gagne was pulled from his starter role and made into a closer, Boras raised the issue with the Dodger brass at the time, and Gagne told him to cool it -- that he relished the closer's role and Boras backed down. That's why I don't have any sympathy for Beltre. He took the money over the hometown, not Boras.

2005-12-18 11:29:38
74.   bearlurker
67--I'd be kind of surprised if Weaver accepts arbitration given these contracts being handed out. Weaver accepts and gets about 9-10M on a one year deal. Can't Boras get him Morris money or at least get close, something like 2 years 18M or 3 yrs. 24M?
2005-12-18 11:32:57
75.   bearlurker
72--Yes, I think having Boras will hurt you. Sheff fired Boras, two thirds of the teams won't draft you if Boras is your agent. Ned got the best of Boras with Barry. Boras made ridiculous demands and eventually Barry's only real option was to accept Ned's arbitration offer. With Depo gone, Boras has lost another suitor; e.g., no way Ned does the Drew deal IMO, and Ned called his bluff with Bonds.
2005-12-18 11:33:10
76.   sanchez101
I think that the roster could take Nomar in LF, and Lofton and Sanders. Werth will start the season injured, and Colletti should do everything in his power to make sure Repko starts the season in AAA and if he does find him self on the 25-man roster, its strickly as a 5th outfielder. On opening day the season Nomar, Drew, and Sanders would start with Lofton, Ledee, and Cruz on the bench. Considering the brittleness of Drew, Nomar Sanders and Ledee, and the age of Sanders and Lofton, you really dont have anyone that you can count on for more than 120 games. But there is the depth to makeup for any injuries. The problems are:

1) What do you do with Werth when he comes of the DL?

2) Can you afford both Lofton and Sanders and have enough money left to get another starter?

But I think its a more probable situation than many may think.

2005-12-18 11:35:40
77.   King of the Hobos
69 You mention the one area where Ned hasn't done much. We have 2 NRIs right now. Jon Weber pitched last year and has a great arm, but he's not a pitcher (his inning of work came in an extra inning affair, with Loney in RF and Langill at 1B, Weber was wild and lost the game). Tydus Meadows, like Weber, is an OF.

Billingsley should get an invitation, who else in the minors is worthy? Orenduff? Juarez? Stults? Hull?

2005-12-18 11:44:57
78.   bearlurker
As others have mentioned, it could be Lima time, with Lima being an NRI. Not sure about this, but don't NRI's happen after the non-tender deadline and some of the free agents have been sorted out?

Re minors, don't a bunch of guys get invitations and then get sent to minor league camp after a couple weeks of spring training?

2005-12-18 11:46:02
79.   Benaiah
76 probable? problematic? I agree with you in spirit if not in (semantic) truth.
2005-12-18 11:46:25
80.   bearlurker
76--your post suggests why it is unlikely that we will get both Sanders and Lofton, unless Nomar is definitely at 1b. Neither of those guys are going to take a contract without being assured of a starting position or in Lofton's case at least the better side of a platoon.
2005-12-18 11:50:59
81.   King of the Hobos
78 Depends who you are. The Marlins have at least 11 NRIs already
2005-12-18 11:59:35
82.   Sam DC
So, do we now pass on Damon just to staunch the Los Angeles Red Sox of Los Angeles chattering?
2005-12-18 12:00:36
83.   blue2thebone
76 - Re: Werth's return from the DL...If there's a logjam in the OF, I would think Little would play whoever's healthy & hot at the time.
2005-12-18 12:02:57
84.   bearlurker
Good point. Not sure what Ned's philosophy is re NRIs. Evans was pretty good in this area (I guess not having any money to spend thanks to Malone Evans had nowhere else to focus his time).
2005-12-18 12:04:14
85.   bearlurker
82--Lol. Seriously, we have to pass on Damon, IMO, due to his 4-5 years of demands. Wonder if LA's "offer" to him was a fiction created by Boras to get Boston to bid against itself.
2005-12-18 12:06:03
86.   Vishal
come on. we'd at least be the blue sox.

actually, that kinda has a ring to it.

2005-12-18 12:07:28
87.   Colorado Blue
85 - Yeah, Ned probably called Boras and said I'll give Damon 3 yrs. Boras said no way... meanwhile Boras to the MSM portrays the 2 minute phonecall as the Dodgers being "interested" in Damon's services... whatever.
2005-12-18 12:09:19
88.   Joe
Courtesy of BostonDirtDogs:

http://tinyurl.com/bn8lu

2005-12-18 12:09:39
89.   Colorado Blue
If Ned were to offer Damon anything more than 3 years then I would consider it his first mis-step...
2005-12-18 12:12:39
90.   Vishal
[88] hey wait a sec, that's hee seop's number.
2005-12-18 12:12:40
91.   Louis in SF
The one part of Rosenthal's article that makes the most sense is the fact that Normar would want to play one position and not switch positions during the year. SInce the outfield is the most unsetteled that would seem to make the most sense, neither Lofton or Sanders have made a promise of coming to LA. With Werth starting on the DL, left field would seem to offer Normar the chance to play one position.
2005-12-18 12:13:41
92.   blue2thebone
86 - How about the LA GIANT BLUE SOX...oooh it hurts to type that!
2005-12-18 12:14:27
93.   Joe
Vishal, there actually used to be a team in the NY-Penn League named that: http://tinyurl.com/clv9k
2005-12-18 12:15:09
94.   molokai
62
Thanks for pointing that out. I knew the "C" didn't belong but I didn't want to omit it since it was pasted directly from the baseball abstract.
2005-12-18 12:22:21
95.   Warren
Pardon me if this has been said here previously but...

I don't see a problem with the infield assuming Garciaparra plays first. Izturis is on track to return sometime in July although rumors suggest it might actually be August. Is it such a horrible idea to give him some extended rehab time in Jacksonville or Las Vegas then use him in the utility role to finish out the season? That is of course assuming that Nomar, Kent, Furcal, and Mueller stay healthy.

After this season Kent likely retires or moves on as his deal is only through 2006. Nomar will either be looking at an extension or on his way to team #4. So Izturis comes back in 2007 strong as the everyday second baseman.

I don't get all the hang wringing about Izturis coming back and everyone having to move around. To me this is all very logical and easy to fix.

2005-12-18 12:25:54
96.   molokai
86
I think the "Blue Sox" could get some marketing muscle behind it. I'd wear it. Maybe we can pick up Arroyo for our 4th spot.
2005-12-18 12:26:25
97.   D4P
95
I don't see a problem with the infield assuming Garciaparra plays first.

The problem with the infield assuming Garciaparra plays first is that said infield would not include Choi.

2005-12-18 12:26:52
98.   bearlurker
91--Agreed. I believe that Ned has told Nomar where he will play but Ned just hasn't shared that information. It would be neither fair nor wise to have Nomar learn two new positions (LF and 1b). Given Ned's recognition of OF being a bigger need than 1b, I hope Ned has told Nomar that he's playing LF. Our OF is so thin otherwise. If Ned told Nomar that he's playing 1b, then we're still precariously thin in the OF and Ned must get Lofton and Sanders or we've got too many holes.

I personally think that we will get Lofton or Sanders but not both. I suspect Ned has told or implied to them that whoever accepts first gets the deal.

2005-12-18 12:27:45
99.   blue2thebone
I think Izzys gonna be the odd man out.
2005-12-18 12:29:15
100.   D4P
99
Is he?
Show/Hide Comments 101-150
2005-12-18 12:29:18
101.   Benaiah
95 My hand wringing is over the fact that Izturis comes back at all. He is a bad hitter at any position, so if he isn't playing SS his value goes down even more. Going from Kent to Izturis at 2B would be like trading in your Bentley for an broke down El Camino because its body was in great shape.
2005-12-18 12:30:24
102.   LAT
96. Have you given your Home Depo shirt to Good Will to make room for your Blue Sox shirt?
2005-12-18 12:35:29
103.   King of the Hobos
Even if Ned had no interest in Choi, I can't see any reason not to tender Choi a contract. Even if he really wants Sanders and Lofton, we don't yet have them and probably won't by Tuesday. In case neither of them come here, we have Choi as a back up plan for a realitively cheap contract. Should we get Sanders and Lofton, we could move Choi for something. Other than being forced to pay Choi Alomar-type money, what good reason is there not to tender Choi a contract?
2005-12-18 12:41:46
104.   Marty
My Home Depo shirt has become the one I wear all weekend when I know I won't be leaving the house. Like this weekend.
2005-12-18 12:45:33
105.   molokai
103
If Sean Burroughs can get a 1.5 million deal then Choi should be able to do the same or more in arbitration. So we still have lots of questions. If Nomar is headed for LF then Ned is okay entering 2006 with a Choi/Saenz platoon and Choi will certainly be offered arbitration. If Nomar is headed to 1st base then I could see a scenario where the Dodgers non-tender Choi and it would be best for Choi if they did, so he could pick and choose his next team.
2005-12-18 12:49:23
106.   blue2thebone
If Nomar plays 1B, I would think we should get something decent for Choi in a trade before Tuesday.
2005-12-18 12:56:47
107.   bill cox
Why sign Lofton and Sanders,especially with Nomar signing.Lofton at this point can't have much more than Cruz or Ledee.Sanders on the other hand probably has 20-25 homeruns in him.
Why not play Nomar at first backed by James Loney,trade Choi,make Saenz the primary pinchhitter.If you need another outfielder give Delwyn Young a shot.If Weaver accepts arbitration,Penny,Lowe,Weaver,Perez and either Houlton,Jackson or Billingsley is as good as anyone in the west.
2005-12-18 13:02:50
108.   Warren
101
I don't think its fair to say Izturis is a bad hitter. For the first couple months of last season he was leading the league in hits. We have no idea how long his elbow was bothering him.

I think you can make a case that he shouldn't have been the leadoff man but for a ss/2b with his defensive capabilities I think he is a more than capable 7th or 8th place hitter.

2005-12-18 13:08:47
109.   Warren
At this point I think we're stuck with Cruz and Ledee coming off the bench is fine by me. Despite what Drew thinks he should play rightfield to avoid further injuries. I like either Lofton or Sanders in center and some Cruz/Werth/Repko combo in left.

Initially I liked the idea of Nomar in left but if the reports are correct we've told him he won't have to switch positions twice. That being the case and his injuries the last 3-4 years factored in I think he gets first and Choi is on the trading block.

Billy Beane has to love Choi. He's a 15-pitch-per-at-bat-walk-generating machine. Package him Odalis Perez and a top prospect for Zito.

2005-12-18 13:09:54
110.   Marty
Well, I think Nick Buonaconti can rest easy. Looks like the Colts are going down.
2005-12-18 13:10:24
111.   Louis in SF
I think Lofton will end up in Arizona, leadoff hitter plus college roots. With the Dodgers he wouldn't be a leadoff hitter. Sanders to me seems to be the more likely Dodger. If they do sign Sanders, one has to wonder if they will have the money for a pitcher.

One other reason why I think Nomar is headed to left field, if the Dodgers do want to consider giving Looney some at bats-Coletti says he is untouchable, you would think that they would want to leave some at bats for Looney, and the Choi Saenz platoon would seem to be the best for that opportunity.

2005-12-18 13:11:12
112.   bearlurker
I don't think Beane has much use for Choi. He's already got Dan Johnson for less money and (arguably) more or as much production. He's got Swisher potentially playing some at 1b to make room in the OF.
2005-12-18 13:11:18
113.   D4P
109
Despite what Drew thinks he should play rightfield to avoid further injuries.

Um, didn't Drew want to play CF because he thought it would place less stress on his knees?

2005-12-18 13:26:14
114.   jtshoe
"On the other hand, it is possible that Garciaparra + Choi's trade value > Choi. It's possible. Is there one team out there that believes in Choi and would trade a decent starting pitcher for him?"

Choi to Boston for Wells?

2005-12-18 13:26:19
115.   trainwreck
Don't the Red Sox need a first baseman so Ortiz can DH? Choi/Ortiz combo works on so many levels haha.
2005-12-18 13:26:52
116.   trainwreck
Aww you beat me to it jtshoe
2005-12-18 13:27:16
117.   D4P
115
Big Pappi and Big Choppy...?
2005-12-18 13:30:46
118.   trainwreck
Be fitting the Red Sox pick up another power lefty that was non tendered then thrives in Boston.
2005-12-18 13:46:38
119.   King of the Hobos
Because we all read the Oklahoman, I'm not sure why I'm posting this, but here's an interesting article on Kemp:

http://www.newsok.com/article/1708752/

2005-12-18 13:48:18
120.   greenchris
106 - If Nomar plays 1B, I would think we should get something decent for Choi in a trade before Tuesday.

If we got a minor league prospect for Bradley, I find it hard to believe that we are going to get anything of value for Choi.

2005-12-18 13:53:29
121.   King of the Hobos
But teams could just filibuster until after the non-tender deadline hoping Choi is let go for them to pick up free. Another reason why Ned needs to at least say he'll tender Choi a contract even if he has a Tracy-like hatred for Choi
2005-12-18 14:01:39
122.   greenchris
52. D4P
40,45
Yes, I think most of us would rather see Choi start for another team than rot on the bench again for the Dodgers.

Do you still hope that he starts if he goes on to sign for the Giants?

Me, if he's traded away from the Dodgers, "he's dead to me".

I just don't understand all the love on this board for Choi. LOL!!!

2005-12-18 14:03:47
123.   trainwreck
He's the pride of a whole country (even told to me by my Korean professor). Got to root for a guy like that.
2005-12-18 14:04:34
124.   D4P
122
Me, if he's traded away from the Dodgers, "he's dead to me".

In most cases, that's how I feel. But Choi has a special place in the hearts of many Dodger fans.

2005-12-18 14:07:36
125.   D4P
122
PS: I think I'd find it easier to root for Choi as a Giant than I do Kent as a Dodger.
2005-12-18 14:08:46
126.   overkill94
122 Normally I'm pretty much the same way, but with all the time we've invested projecting how he would play given normal playing time, I think we're all veeery interested in seeing how the story would play out.
2005-12-18 14:18:22
127.   blue2thebone
125 - That's just odd.
2005-12-18 14:22:27
128.   Warren
113
Yes he said that. Which is why I said play him in left despite what he says. I know what his reasoning is but it doesn't make sense. Center is more ground to cover and he doesn't have the knees or speed for it.
2005-12-18 14:24:34
129.   Warren
124
No, Choi has a lot of love from the online fans who seek out non-traditional stats. I'm rooting for the guy but I don't try to pretend he's anything more than an unproven streaky guy. I think the majority of Dodger fans see Nomar as a major upgrade from Choi. Like it or not I think if you are honest you have to agree with that.
2005-12-18 14:25:15
130.   trainwreck
128-
Drew said he can not play left because of the turns he has to make hurt his knee. Yes, that is how much of a gimp he is.
2005-12-18 14:34:17
131.   overkill94
Just to confirm the assume, dodgers.com has the Nomar signing as a done deal with a press conference scheduled for tomorrow.
2005-12-18 14:34:28
132.   overkill94
*assumed
2005-12-18 14:38:06
133.   overkill94
129 OPS is a non-traditional stat? Maybe the stat itself is fairly new, but the ingredients in it are pretty commonplace.
2005-12-18 14:39:28
134.   Dark Horse
129--

I think a lot of fans see him as a major upgrade, where in reality he's more of a minor one. But it's true--too--the passionate Choi supporters resemble the LoDuca brigade more than they'd care to admit. He would be at most a minor loss. He will not go somewhere else and hit 40 home runs. I'd prefer to get something for him in trade (who wouldn't?) but won't be devastated if he's non-tendered. No one should be, except those who value him for sentimental reasons (which are perfectly allowable, so far as I'm concerned.) What matters most, though, is the team seems to be markedly improving itself for next year without mortgaging its future. Once again, and still, so far so good.

2005-12-18 14:41:04
135.   King of the Hobos
129 In his prime, he's a major upgrade. But I think a lot of us can honestly say that someone who hasn't had a higher OPS than Choi since 2003, and has played fewer games than Drew in the last 3 years is not a major upgrade over Choi
2005-12-18 14:41:12
136.   Mr Ned
I wonder if people's attachment to Choi here springs from a combination of his stats (clearly), his mistreatment by Tracy, and his personal likeability.

I met the Big Heesy at a Starbucks in Beverly Hills the day after he was traded to the Dodgers (a Monday off-day after the Sunday night game in San Diego). He was just really nice and pleasant, kind of shy. That's of course not an argument to keep him around, but it's part of his overall appeal to me.

Incidentally, I recall Nomar being dumped by the Sox because he had become a real pain in the butt ("clubhouse cancer", anyone?) in the clubhouse. As for the Big Heesy, a Dodger wife with whom I am acquainted has said Choi is generally very well liked in teh clubhouse.

All this is neither here nor there; just a little human interest, and it points out The Mr Ned may be a little inconsistent in his reasoning.

2005-12-18 14:42:50
137.   Mr Ned
I am not The Mr Ned, just A Mr Ned...
2005-12-18 14:44:14
138.   D4P
136
*it points out The Mr Ned may be a little
inconsistent in his reasoning.*

Yep. (1) Sign a double-DUI guy and (2) keep one of the biggest jerks in the game, then get rid of one of the most popular players on and off the field, all while spouting off about character and makeup.

2005-12-18 14:50:46
139.   CeyHey
What is Choi's projected salary for next year?
2005-12-18 14:53:36
140.   blue2thebone
136 - I agree that Choi appears to be likable, was mistreated by tracy, and has good potential. However, he is still unproven compared to Nomar. I don't see how Mr. Ned is inconsistent in his reasoning.
2005-12-18 14:54:02
141.   King of the Hobos
At least there's some good news. The AP story on Nomar says he could play the outfield. I'm still waiting for some Colletti quotes, but it's nice to see the unbiased report state that he isn't necessarily the starting 1B. He passed his physical...
2005-12-18 14:55:27
142.   coachjpark
I'm a Korean and I have a penchant for Moneyballism which helps explain why I'm such a big Hee Seop Choi fan along with all the other arguments listed here today (Jim Tracy's misuse of him; general likeability, et all).

Also, why trade away such a popular Dodger with such low trade value? HEE SEOP CHOI! HEE SEOP CHOI! HEE SEOP CHOI! Trading LoDuca was akin to selling a stock when it was at or near its historic highs. Trading Choi right now would be akin to selling a growth stock right before it might take off, so I must respectfully rebut the 134 arguments comparing LoDuca to Choi.

I, for one, will be rooting for Korea in the World Baseball Classic and wouldn't mind seeing Hee Seop hit some homers for Korea.....

I think my experience as a Dodger fan this past season mirrored that of some Dodger fans on this message board where I become almost more of a Hee Seop fan than a Dodger fan. With Tracy's clear mishandling of the roster and the Dodgers out of the pennant race, I derived more utility personally rooting for Hee Seop to do well than the likes of Derek Lowe, Jeff Weaver, Mike Edwards, Jeff Kent, Jason Phillips, Jayson Werth and other such productive and not-so productive players alike fighting to get to second place to give Jim Tracy some bragging rights.

Don't know if that makes any sense, but if Choi's not a Dodger next year, I suppose I'll still be a Dodger fan, but I'd be rooting for Choi to well wherever he goes.

PILSUNG KOREA!

2005-12-18 14:58:27
143.   Mr Ned
140 - I think Colletti is doing just fine thus far. He did however trumpet his convictiuon that character and chemistry are most important to him (seemingly contrasting himself with Depodesta). Thus far, signing Furcal and Garciaparra are not entirely consistent with those principles. It's okay by me. I do wonder though, what are the principles on which he makes decisions: specific stats, reputation, star power, general appearance?
2005-12-18 15:01:57
144.   CeyHey
I am sure Little had a lot to do with Nomar coming. He was not the manager when Nomar was traded. I wonder if he thinks that Nomar is a cancer
2005-12-18 15:02:09
145.   grandcosmo
From the AP article,
"New Dodgers GM Ned Colletti said Garciaparra seemed open to changing positions during his meetings late last week."

Seemed open? Wouldn't you want assurances considering you have 2 shortstops and have just signed a third baseman?

2005-12-18 15:04:13
146.   Dark Horse
138--I'm sure Colletti, like most of us, is indeed inconsistent in his reasoning. I'm sure too, like most able politicians, he's willing to sell us (or Plaschke) a bill of goods about how character matters and so on. But I reckon the yardstick here is whether the team in question wins or loses. I for one could care less how many puppies the Big Heesy pets or whether Jeff Kent is an aloof jerk who likes to read motocross mags. I care that the management is attempting to assemble a contending team. I'd prefer that team to be comprised entirely of nice people and model citizens, but I'd love to know of any team in the history of baseball that was, let alone a winning team.

I don't know if Garciaparra is a real or an imagined upgrade (I somehow suspect, a little bit of both) but I do support the signing and would rather have, say, him AND Reggie Sanders than just plain old Choi. I would. And it seems at least partially sentimental to argue otherwise.

2005-12-18 15:08:49
147.   D4P
146
But I reckon the yardstick here is whether the team in question wins or loses.

How does Milton Bradley measure up against this yardstick?

2005-12-18 15:09:43
148.   greenchris
124. D4P
"In most cases, that's how I feel. But Choi has a special place in the hearts of many Dodger fans. "

Yeah, and if he leaves that special place for me...well, I'm sitting on it.

2005-12-18 15:10:13
149.   Kayaker7
I really don't understand people who see Nomar as an upgrade when the whole point of Jon's post yesterday was that he was clearly not. A contention backed up with numbers. Why are such statements being made, after having a whole day to hash out the details. It is like walking outside on a sunny day, wondering what color the sky is.
2005-12-18 15:11:31
150.   Dark Horse
142--Let it not be said I did not enjoy the chant as much as everyone. It was one of the few things in '05 I did enjoy. I would certainly root for Choi to do well elsewhere (as I wouldn't necessarily for, say, Kent) and I thought the LoDuca trade to be more-or-less a sound one. The question is whether you think (or I think) Choi will reach his alleged potential. I tend to doubt it, for reasons that are neither perfectly supported nor unsupported. Plenty of people think otherwise and time only will tell. But I'm afraid I remain a Dodger fan first and tend to root hardest for whoever's wearing the uniform. Sad--and not rational--but such is the way with lifelong passions, generally.
Show/Hide Comments 151-200
2005-12-18 15:13:14
151.   overkill94
If Choi gets non-tendered, who would be the primary 1B if/when Nomar gets injured? Saenz can't handle a full workload, would it be Kent at 1B and Aybar at 2B? Does management think Loney is ready? It would make more sense to add Nomar to the OF mix since there are more formidable back-up plans if/when he gets injured.
2005-12-18 15:14:46
152.   blue2thebone
Unfortunately, sometimes this place seems more like CHOI THOUGHTS instead of DODGER THOUGHTS.
2005-12-18 15:16:32
153.   Kayaker7
152 As opposed to dodgers.com forum being choisucks.com?
2005-12-18 15:16:59
154.   greenchris
151 - There are a lot of "What IF's" with the signing of Nomar.

Want answeres...Press conference scheduled for Monday afternoon

2005-12-18 15:18:02
155.   greenchris
152 - I tend to agree. Other than the people who post on this site, I can honestly say that I don't know another person that thinks highly of Choi as a baseball player.
2005-12-18 15:18:41
156.   coachjpark
150 Indeed, rooting for a team regardless of what multiple owners do to destroy the team certainly isn't rational, but I suppose Frank McCourt is going to profit from the inelastic demand of Dodgers fans -- myself included.

Players come and go, I suppose, but it's just a shame when certain players leave without really haven been given much of a chance...

2005-12-18 15:19:03
157.   Dark Horse
147--In what sense? I mean, Milton Bradley's a good player, but fragile in more than one way and perhaps unlikely ever to become a great one. I liked him, would've preferred to have kept him, and think his loss is one we can probably weather all the same.

149--It's not especially like that. Jon's post indicated numbers from last year and the second-half of '04. Next season hasn't been played yet though so it's more like looking at a forecast and wondering whether the future will agree with it.

2005-12-18 15:19:03
158.   Kayaker7
155 Consider it a backlash against conventional wisdom.
2005-12-18 15:20:26
159.   Jon Weisman
134- The Choi Brigade and the Lo Duca Brigade could hardly be more different. I like both players, and the difference in being a fan of one vs. the other is stark.

From 2001 on, 99 percent of Dodger fans never had an unkind word for Lo Duca other than, "He tails off in the second half." In contrast, the majority of Los Angeles has assumed the worst about Choi his entire career here.

From 2001-2004, Lo Duca fans never had to justify Lo Duca's existence, and from 2004-2005, they had a wide swath of sympathizers. Those who see something of value in Choi are always forced to explain why he even deserves to wear a uniform. Small claims of value are then taken by the anti-Choi crowd as attempts to nominate him into the Hall of Fame.

Choi's defenders are passionate because he needs it. Lo Duca hasn't needed that kind of defense in a long, long time.

2005-12-18 15:20:52
160.   Warren
142
There is nothing at all wrong with rooting for Choi for all the reasons you stated. I have a little more regard for JD Drew because like me he's from Georgia. So I must imagine that being Korean and having Choi is 10x that.

I hope Choi has a great career. And it'd be nice if that was with the Dodgers. But the big guy had plenty of chances last year to snatch the 1B job away from Philips, Saenz, Kent, etc. and he never did. You can blame it on Tracy's lack of consistent playing time if you want but the fact is he got a good many starts at first and was always streaky.

Shawn Green was a great guy, a loyal teammate, a hero for the Jewish community in LA, etc. Yet I think his streaky abilities led to him getting traded. Well that and his salary but didn't we pick up a large chunk of that? :)

2005-12-18 15:22:07
161.   Kayaker7
157 Well, you've said a lot when a guy coming off surgery to repair a groin tendon ripping off the bone and is on the wrong side of 30 is an upgrade over a 27 year old guy who's been much healthier over the same period.
2005-12-18 15:22:12
162.   trainwreck
152, 155

You do not think it's smarter to play both Choi and Nomar? We want to maximize our potential with the players we have and having Nomar play LF and Choi/Saenz playing first, I think is the best way to maximize our talent.

2005-12-18 15:23:24
163.   D4P
155
Other than the people who post on this site, I can honestly say that I don't know another person that thinks highly of Choi as a baseball player.

Depo...?

2005-12-18 15:26:25
164.   trainwreck
Many people at AthleticsNation seem to like him hahaha and of course South Korea.
2005-12-18 15:29:40
165.   fanerman
And plenty of other internet baseball communities also do. People on Hardball Times and Baseball Prospectus.
2005-12-18 15:30:08
166.   King of the Hobos
155 Well, a lot of the Baseball America guys thought he might be the next big thing a few years back
2005-12-18 15:30:29
167.   Jon Weisman
152 - Exhibit A.

Dodgers who have gotten discussed at exhausting length on Dodger Thoughts in 2005:

All of them.

The fact that you single Choi out as unfortunate hints at more of the irrational feelings people have against him, and why people are moved to defend him.

There are better Dodgers, worse Dodgers, nicer Dodgers, meaner Dodgers, older Dodgers, younger Dodgers. All of whom there are fervently different opinions on. Trade Gagne - yes or no. Trade Kent, yes or no. Play Antonio Perez - yes or no. Re-sign Weaver, yes or no.

But god forbid we spend a couple of days talking about Choi - who otherwise hasn't had three words set about him here in the last two months. That qualifies as an unfortunate occurence on Dodger Thoughts.

2005-12-18 15:30:35
168.   Big Game
159.

Not to mention the fact that many LoDuca fans would hate Choi simply because he's the player that was traded for the fan favorite. HSC never really had a chance which, I'll admit, is a huge part of the reason why I root for the guy.

2005-12-18 15:32:24
169.   Brendan
129 Warren
I think the majority of Dodger fans see Nomar as a major upgrade from Choi. Like it or not I think if you are honest you have to agree with that.

we have to agree with what, Warren? That the majority of dodger fans think that or that Nomah is a major upgrade over Choi? if it is the former who cares what the majority of Dodger fans think and who made you their spokesman ?if it is the latter then you are mistaken and it's been proven time and time again on this site. Not trying to start a choi fight again but your statement is a bit obnoxious in many ways.

2005-12-18 15:32:55
170.   Big Game
167.

Also, the Choi discussion is relavent, considering the signing of Nomar to possibly play his position. It certainly hasnt come out of nowhere.

2005-12-18 15:36:42
171.   Steve
Not that there is a lot of thinking going on. Again.
2005-12-18 15:38:26
172.   Mr Ned
I remember always feeling that Billy Ashley never got much of chance to prove himself with the Dodgers. There was a certain Choi-ness about him. Perhaps Choi is not unique and there are many players who become the topic of contentious debates like this. Others, e.g. Karros and LoDuca, get a free pass from the conventional-wisdom-makers.

Franklin Stubbs, anyone? Lee Lacy?

2005-12-18 15:38:32
173.   coachjpark
167 True, except I doubt there's a nicer Dodger than Hee Seop.
2005-12-18 15:38:50
174.   Blu2
160 Yes, we did, $10 million if I remember correctly. And that made as little sense then as it does now: We paid $10 million of his $16 million salary last year. Why wasn't it smart for us to pay the other $6 million and get his production on our sheet? That was preferrable to Edwards, Repko and Cruz. Bad deal.
2005-12-18 15:41:20
175.   Blu2
172 Paul Konerko???
2005-12-18 15:42:10
176.   D4P
174
The argument at the time (which I didn't buy) was essentially that the Dodgers wouldn't have been able to sign Lowe unless they traded Green.
2005-12-18 15:42:28
177.   King of the Hobos
174 Would you have rathered the extra 2-3 wins last year over Navarro's future? And Juarez played a large role in winning the Southern League Championship, if you care about such things
2005-12-18 15:44:24
178.   Mr Ned
175- Right on. The Konerko saga is a (rather specific) cautionary tale about giving up on a young power hitter (who strikes out a lot) in order to preserve space for a proven veteran (Karros).

Coincidentally, Choi beat out Karros for the 1st-base job in Chicago. EK couldn't win them all.

2005-12-18 15:45:41
179.   Bob Timmermann
What controversy was Lee Lacy subject to? Lopes beat him out for the second place job. Lacy developed into a utility man and extra outfielder. He got chances to start for other teams (Baltimore, Pittsurgh) and played for 16 seasons.
2005-12-18 15:46:03
180.   Marty
Back in the '60s I think Frank Howard had the same perception problem that Choi has today. Both are/were very big guys who, when they look bad, look really bad. Howard didn't get much of a break in L.A. but put up a couple monster years in D.C. when he got his chance. I suspect Choi may need to go somewhere else too to really get a shot as a full-time starter.
2005-12-18 15:47:08
181.   Strike4
It's looking like the primary Dodger benefit of the Depo era is the fiscal education of Frank McCourt. The primary learning is that he can't drop payroll to $75M in one year in the Dodger market, as he required Depo to do. McCourt's early vision of a low cost and successful Moneyball team in LA appears to be going, going, gone. The 2006 payroll is nearly $90M now, and there's still pitching to buy. I wonder what Depo would have done with a $100-110M payroll.
2005-12-18 15:47:44
182.   Benaiah
176 What didn't you buy? That 6 million dollars comes in handy? Green has underperformed for years and Depo saved money (that went towards Lowe's huge contract) and further got the guy who is starting at catcher for us this year.
2005-12-18 15:48:58
183.   D4P
181
Is it generally accepted around here that, during the Depo era, McCourt was McCheap rather than Depo was Cheapo?
2005-12-18 15:50:05
184.   D4P
182
I didn't buy that McCourt could not possibly have signed Lowe without the $6 million. Green's performance and the acquisition of Navarro are separate considerations.
2005-12-18 15:50:31
185.   Steve
174 -- Because he didn't produce.
2005-12-18 15:51:49
186.   Bob Timmermann
As Danny Kaye sang,
"Here comes Big Frank Howard, yis sirree! Boy what a swing! STRIKE THREE!"
2005-12-18 15:53:36
187.   Dark Horse
159--All I'm suggesting, Jon, is that the support for Choi is no more "rational" in fact than that for LoDuca. The former certainly could use it--and indeed I think deserves it--more than the latter.
2005-12-18 15:58:25
188.   Nolan
1) I like getting Garciaparra but won't like it as much if he's playing first. As has been demonstrated, a platoon of Choi and Saenz is good, cheap and, on a per dollar basis, very, very valuable.

2) Forget about getting Lofton or Sanders. It's pointless spending. With Garciaparra playing left, Cruz in right, Drew in center and Ledee/Repko/Grabass on the bench, we've got enough outfielders.

3) Any money we've got left shold be put toward some kind, any kind of starting pitcher.

2005-12-18 15:59:34
189.   Bob Timmermann
188

If you're alluding to Grabowski, he's playing in Japan in 2006.

2005-12-18 16:01:58
190.   bill cox
I think we're starting to go from the sublime to the ridiculous in this Choi discussion.He is an intriguing player who definitely has some holes in his game.On a bad team if he got 500 ab's he might hit .260 with 30 homeruns or he might not.I think Loney will zip past him sooner or later anyways.
Here comes the ridiculous,Pseudo Mr.Ed said Billy Ashley and Franklin Stubbs never got a fair shot.Huh? How about Angel Pena or R.J Reynolds or a host of other overhyped prospects.
I say the real Mr.Ed is making bold yet balanced moves to field a competitive team and keep our prospects.Bravo.
2005-12-18 16:03:33
191.   Brendan
183

Can you call two years an era? McCourt is not cheap. the facts do not suppor that. He borrowed money to buy the team so that makes him "cheap" to the LA Times and others.

2005-12-18 16:05:52
192.   Monterey Chris
181,183,

I think DePo was rather clear in his statements last year that he did have $100 million available to him but that he was saving the remainder for the trading deadline. Also, if I remember correctly, our payroll last year was $88 million, not $75 million.

2005-12-18 16:09:26
193.   Mr Ned
190 - Agreed on Coletti's moves thus far.

I would not propose that Ashley and Stubbs didn't get fair shots (Stubbs surely seemed to). Just wondering out loud if this argument has been argued before.

Thanks for reminding me of Angel Pena! He was definitely the next big thing at one time. And RJ Reynolds; I'm sure we all remember THE SQUEEZE!!! As for over-hyped, Greg Brock.

2005-12-18 16:09:47
194.   Steve
This should be re-posted because, (1) it is true and (2) the idea that the "Choi Brigade," whatever that is, should be lumped in with the zealots that make up the God of LoDuca cult, is patently absurd.

Although I think Choi should start at 1B, a 110 OPS+ at a traditional power position for a league average fielder isn't actually all that much to get excited about. I know Choi looks okay in the NL (I think Jon had some figures on this), but just because we don't have as many traditional slugger corner IFs in the league today doesn't mean that 1B isn't still a traditional power position. I think it's fine in our circumstances, especially when you've got a potential HOFer at 2B and a stud at SS, but as a 1B at least, I think it's defensible to say that Choi's raw numbers have not been what one would normally expect out of that position.

I actually think those numbers should be adjusted for misuse by Tracy, and the hope that Choi will improve, but really, the way certain stats were bandied around here on this thread as objective truth to support one position seems a bit much at times. The raw stats only show that Choi has so far been an okay player--his career OPS+ is 107 and his fielding Rate2 is 99. His career EqA is 275, league average being set at 260. Assuming one didn't have a Kent and Furcal in the IF, and that Choi didn't improve (a debatable but possible proposition), Choi would be a below-average 1B. That's all the raw objective numbers say so far.

One is, admittedly, at a loss to respond to brazenly nonsensical statements like "Hee Seop Choi is one of the worst options at first base in the major leagues." It is, therefore, easy to mistake the effort to correct the record to reflect that Hee Seop Choi is a useful, flawed, somewhat average (at least now) first baseman as a deification campaign. But it is not Choi's supporters that mirror the LoDuca Brigade's tactics. It is Choi's detractors, unsurprising when one considers how a Venn diagram of LoDuca supporters and Choi detractors would look.

On the other hand, 190 has just repeated that Choi is "intriguing" with "holes in his game," phrases that have been used by his supporters with a frequency that can now be characterized as "ad nauseum."

2005-12-18 16:09:55
195.   Izzy
162. I thought Depo did post here? haha Choi deserved a chance, and to me, he never got it. Nor has Repko. I define "a chance" as giving a particular position to a player for at least half a season. That being said, I think that most have missed the point with Nomar. We are only paying 6 million for him, and have a good shot at getting alot more than that out of him. At his peak, Nomar is better than Choi. I do see Choi as the ultimate poster boy for Saber minded folks, because they are sure they can "see" something that the chemists cannot or will not. I am neither a chemist or a saber guy. I do believe that if anyone is THAT sure about a baseball statistic, they have too much confidence in statistics. And the ultimate statistic, is how many wins and how many losses you have.
2005-12-18 16:12:32
196.   greenchris
Jon,

The "I Agree" statement had a bit of sarcasm to it in that I have been antagonizing the Choi supporters over the last couple of days, sorry, there was no ill will intended.

I am all for talking about Choi, especially because its rather clear where I stand on the issue (see yesterday's posts). I agreed with that statement because there is clearly two sides with the Choi issue...I am clearly on one side, I don't think Choi is a good baseball player. A lot of people on this site feel differently. I have posted more in the last two days than I have since I started visiting the site nearly two years ago mainly because the Choi issue has been a great debate. Any negative sentiments are due to the fact that I am on one side of the fence with Choi and I tend to see his stats/value in a different light than many of the other people who defend Choi. I'm allowed that right as are the people who see him as valuable.

Bottom line, it's a good thing and you've provided a great place to voice my opinion and allowed for fellow Dodger fans to debate the Choi issue...it's a good thing. Choi Thoughts for the last couple of days...I love debating with all the Choi lovers on this site.

Later

2005-12-18 16:21:46
197.   Winthrop
I don't think Barry Bonds is a good baseball player. I have a right to disagree with you and I don't have to listen to you. Later.

P.S. Babe Ruth was overhyped.

2005-12-18 16:26:22
198.   sanchez101
197. haha, were you around in the 1920's and 1930's, because you do kinda sound like a grumpy old man.
2005-12-18 16:38:43
199.   Blue in SF
What about HEE is Left Field?

Seriously....we now have 4 shortstops on the 25 man.

2005-12-18 16:41:11
200.   Winthrop
If I were Hee, I would make like Konerko and learn to play the outfield in order to increase my value to the team. Ultimately didn't get Konerko very far (except to Cincinnatti), but a good career move for hee.
Show/Hide Comments 201-250
2005-12-18 16:41:46
201.   JJoeScott
Steve makes a fair point in #194. Thanks for reposting that.

I, for one, am excited that we are signing Nomar. Even if '06 is a "transitional year" between veterans and waiting for the youngsters to arrive, it's encouraging to see that we've some quality, .300-hitting veteran players. As opposed to last season when we couldn't acquire a 4th outfielder (or third baseman, or ......)

Furcal, Nomar, Mueller ... If the idea is to win fans back, it feels like it's working.

2005-12-18 16:41:47
202.   Bob Timmermann
What about Hee as a starting pitcher? The last time I checked the Dodgers needed some of those. Because you know if you don't have a starting pitcher, the games take a long time because the ball just sits there on the mound and nobody throws it.
2005-12-18 16:42:42
203.   atg12
190-
Why would you assume that Loney will "zip past" Choi sooner or later? He's never had higher than a .776 OPS in four years of minor league play. Hee Sop has bettered that each of the last two years at the major league level.
2005-12-18 16:45:35
204.   Bob Timmermann
201
Oddly enough, this fan is not going to renew his mini season ticket plan because they have poor selections of games and I also couldn't find any friends to go with me to many of the games.

I'm going to see if the Dodgers offer a "Lonely Angry Man with a Scorebook" mini season ticket plan. I can buy 10 games and be promised to have nobody hit a beach ball near me or tell me that J.T. Snow's father was a senator.

2005-12-18 16:45:54
205.   molokai
159
Right on. Plus I don't think there is a "nicer" Dodger.

Don't dog on Lee Lacy. He's got a few rings that he was an integral part of and he is a very nice guy. He's the only Dodger I've ever sat and talked to at a bar and it was way cool to be a huge fan since I was 15 and then find out the guy was as nice as can be.

2005-12-18 16:48:26
206.   JJoeScott
204 - If that LAMS package gets offered, you can count me in as well!

Jon - Meant to add, nice AD reference in he headline. Come on!

2005-12-18 16:51:52
207.   King of the Hobos
If we resign Weaver, will Gagne be satisfied and convinced we're not the Brewers?
2005-12-18 16:54:13
208.   RMAPasad
I think the majority of Dodger fans see Nomar as a major upgrade from Choi. Like it or not I think if you are honest you have to agree with that. >>>>

Fact that the majority of fans see Nomar as a major upgrade at 1b may be a boost to pre-season ticket sales, which is a factor of sorts. It may be enough to recoup the 5.5 million difference in payroll cost.

But irrespective of fans' opinions, is this is NOT a major upgrade over '05. Nomar in his last good season (2003) hit 28 HR's with a 121 OPS+. The '05 Dodgers got 31 HR's and a 115 OPS+ out of their first basemen. Of course, Choi and Saenz could wilt in '06 in which case Nomar is a real improvement. It's also possible that Nomar's injuries have taken a toll and he's no better than his last 600 PA's (18 HR's and 107 OPS+). Or that Nomar's groin may flair again and Saenz will have to play fulltime despite his tepid 756 OPS v. righthanders. Or that Kent will moved over to become essentially a leag avg 1bmen while Izturis' career 69 OPS+ gets 2b. In which case Nomar has been an expensive DOWNGRADE at 1b.

Nomar doesn't solve 2005's major problem which was left field, with its pathetic 603 OPS. LA has a chance to grab an added 3 wins there with a true hitter, not 1st base. Whether Reggie Sanders, who's the expected solution to LF (if he accepts Dodgers' offer), can overcome health/age decline concerns is also another interesting question.

2005-12-18 16:55:21
209.   Vishal
isn't his first name "hee seop"? calling him as "hee" seems a bit like referring to a guy named james as "jam".
2005-12-18 16:56:48
210.   sanchez101
who care what gagne thinks, i care more about his right elbow

Personally, i think we should be more excited about Nomar, sure he has some durability question marks, but lets not let a downer 2005 season kill our optomism. Nomar was one of the most exciting players in baseball for years, and still has the ability to be a high-average hitter, for the first time im actually really looking forward to 2006.

2005-12-18 16:58:16
211.   Winthrop
His family name is Choi (pronounced "Cheh") and his given names are Hee Seop (pronounced "Hee Supp"). Family name comes first n Korea. Therefore in Korean, he is (phonetically): Cheh Hee Supp.
2005-12-18 16:58:17
212.   Steve
Of course, Choi and Saenz could wilt in '06 in which case Nomar is a real improvement.

Clearly another case of a Choi acolyte jumping overboard. At this rate, his own supporters will have him fit for a slow pitch softball uniform. Physician, heal thyself.

2005-12-18 17:05:50
213.   deburns
Since we are at the 40 man roster limit, how does Nomar's addition relate to the non-tender deadline on Tuesday? Do we DFI Phillips, or take somebody like Myrow off the 40-man?
2005-12-18 17:06:36
214.   willhite
We should certainly know more about the first base situation tomorrow at 5:00 PM. If Ned doesn't answer the question in his opening statement, half of the follow up questions from reporters will deal with that topic. Of course Ned doesn't always give direct answers, so that will take us to Tuesday when we find out if Hee Seop is non-tendered.

If Nomar is crowned the new King of First Base, Hee Seop will have a very hard time finding a place on the team. He is not a very good pinch hitter and he only plays one position.

If we carry 11 pitchers and 2 catchers next year, that will leave 12 other roster positions. Everyone seems to feel we're going to need 6 outfielders because everyone playing outfield is either old, injury prone or both. The outfield gets all that much older if we sign Lofton and/or Sanders.

That would leave 6 infielders. Saenz and Robles would seem to have the advantage since Olmedo can play first and third and Robles can play third, short and second.

If we carry 12 pitchers, that would eliminate another outfielder.

Choi's only hope is that Ned really did sign Nomar to play left field.

2005-12-18 17:08:26
215.   Fearing Blue
Let's say that Garciaparra and Choi are roughly a wash offensively. What about the following for 1B rationale?

Hee Seop Choi: 6'5" 240 lbs. Throws Left-Handed. No serious injury history.

Nomar Garciaparra: 6'0" (with stilts?) 190 lbs. Throws Right-Handed. Prone to back and groin problems.

2005-12-18 17:11:44
216.   D4P
215
Is it only "conventional wisdom" that a first baseman should be tall and left-handed, or are there stats that show that a team is better off with a tall left-hander than a short right-hander?
2005-12-18 17:13:03
217.   molokai
203
Was reviewing Choi's minor league numbers. Other then his 1st stint at AAA in 01 his numbers were so impressive.

2006 Projections avg/ob/slug/ops from BillJames and BaseballHQ
Choi
258/361/462/823
250/342/441/783
Nomar
307/359/506/865
304/345/475/817
Sanders
253/324/479/803
270/330/527/857
Lofton
283/356/391/747
282/344/371/716

2005-12-18 17:14:26
218.   willhite
216 -

How tall was Garvey? Seems to me he was considered a pretty good first baseman (as long as he didn't have to throw the ball).

2005-12-18 17:14:59
219.   King of the Hobos
213 Depends on Weaver I'd guess. If he accepts arbitration, then Myrow or Edwards probably is gone, but the rules might allow us to wait until we have a chance to non-tender Phillips. Just dump all 3 as soon as you can...
2005-12-18 17:15:42
220.   fanerman
214 - Well, Nomar's likely to get injured at some point so then wouldn't Choi have a chance to step in?

215, 216 - Not sure about lefty vs. righty but a taller player fully extended can reach out farther to grab a ball than a shorter player. The time saved is minimal but there are a lot of close calls at 1st base, so I can understand the rationale.

2005-12-18 17:17:03
221.   Fearing Blue
#215: And of course there's following:

Hee Seop Choi: 286 Games Played at 1B
Nomar Garciaparra: 0 Games Played at 1B

I will readily admit that Hee Seop Choi is my favorite Dodger for all the reasons that others have already listed (other than being Korean) and thus I am surely biased. Nonetheless, I don't see how any of the Choi Fan Club is being irrational in our defense of him.

2005-12-18 17:17:29
222.   D4P
220
I'm not questioning the rationale behind having a tall left-hander: I'm just curious if there are any stats to support the rationale.
2005-12-18 17:19:52
223.   Fearing Blue
#220: Being left-handed allows you to extend across the diamond for the ball and still have runner in sight. It's generally considered an advantage, but I haven't seen any statistics on the extent.
2005-12-18 17:19:59
224.   willhite
220 -

My point above was that I don't think Ned will keep Choi around just in case Nomar gets hurt. Not enough room on the roster. If Nomar gets hurt, Olmedo is going to get a lot of time at first again. Just one more reason to make Nomar the left fielder. More replacements available if he goes down.

2005-12-18 17:20:34
225.   Steve
We don't use the word bias around here, FB. We use the word "observational."
2005-12-18 17:21:05
226.   molokai
210
I'm excited. I'd just be more excited if he was playing LF cause that is where my seats are and then I could still enjoy the HSC chant. I'm even more excited about the growing budget. Not a big advocate of over spending to win but the Dodgers should have a 85-100 million budget and it just give me more ammo to throw at the people who keep telling me how cheap McCourt is without any facts to back it up.
2005-12-18 17:23:27
227.   Fearing Blue
#225: Excuse me :). Please interpret that part of my statement as "I've watched more baseball than you, therefore I'm right."
2005-12-18 17:28:36
228.   Vishal
choi is my favorite dodger too. bradley was my second favorite. ah well.
2005-12-18 17:34:08
229.   fanerman
What time is the press conference supposed to be tomorrow?
2005-12-18 17:34:57
230.   Steve
227 -- Come on, stat boy. You haven't watched an actual baseball game since the Jack Clark homerun. However, you are a five-time winner of your strat league.
2005-12-18 17:35:05
231.   fanerman
By the way, I am fairly certain his first name is "Hee Seop" and calling him "Hee" is incorrect unless it is used as a nickname.
2005-12-18 17:39:10
232.   willhite
231 -
See 211 above

229 -
Last I heard, press conference was scheduled for 5:00 PM

2005-12-18 17:41:10
233.   molokai
227
It is strange that HSC is the favorite Dodger for alot of us considering how little he has played since he was acquired. He kind of grew on me because of how he has handled himself. How he learned English and makes his teammates talk to him in English. How he smiles so easily and isn't distant like Kent and Drew. And of course the best batting practice display on the team. That said I have steeled myself for dissapointment on Tuesday. If Nomar is signed to play 1st base I really hope they non-tender him so he can sign with Boston or NYY or Baltimore or Texas or Seattle or TampaBay or Twinkieland.
2005-12-18 17:47:41
234.   willhite
233 -

Even if they don't plan to play him, I think it makes more sense to offer him arbitration and see how things develop in ST. By that time, there may be a few injuries and there would be a spot for him here. If not, they can always find someone who needs a first baseman or DH

2005-12-18 17:49:10
235.   King of the Hobos
232 5 PM usually means 2PM, unless the source is from the west. Unless, of course, you live on the east coast. So is it EST or PST?
2005-12-18 17:51:34
236.   molokai
I agree, I just hate to see him spending his peak years as a backup 1st baseman.
2005-12-18 17:53:51
237.   willhite
235 -

You are the King! It's 5:00 PM Eastern, so 2:00 PM here. Not sure what time that is in Korea.

2005-12-18 17:56:12
238.   JJoeScott
233 - That is strange that he a favorite ... considering the Dodgers have ERIC GAGNE!
2005-12-18 17:56:57
239.   JJoeScott
(I'm sorry for the typos tonight ... I'm holding a 10 month old here and, frankly, might as well just let him type.)
2005-12-18 18:04:15
240.   teemint
I think Jon is right to think that most people are jumping the gun on Nomar at first. While I think it is quite possible, maybe even likely, I actually think the team hasn't even decided yet. I'm not sure if anyone has brought this up yet, but I think that it all depends on whether they are able to sign another outfielder, Sanders or Lofton, or someone else via trade. Because as the team stands, I find it hard to believe they would put Nomar at first and have 2 of Ledee/Cruz/Werth starting. For that reason, I think they sign Choi and see if they can get another outfielder. If they can, Choi will not be hard to trade. Toronto or Boston or someone will take him for a nothing prospect if we really want to get rid of him, and if we don't get another of, Choi/Saenz platoon can put out better numbers than Ledee.
2005-12-18 18:07:04
241.   D4P
240
Choi will not be hard to trade.

That's for sure. Depo was so willing to get rid of Ross that he accepted an embarrassing $75,000 for him. No doubt Flanders would accept less for Choi.

2005-12-18 18:08:17
242.   Sam DC
hey jjoe - also holding a ten month old. (9.5 actually) he's learning what steam looks like shooting out of daddy's ears while I read through this Choi business.

don't know if this is more official than anything else we've seen -- it's certanly not a lineup card -- but just got a dodgers blast email stating that nomar has been acquired to play first base and bat fifth.

2005-12-18 18:11:08
243.   Robert Daeley
According to the dodgers.com email I just got (note second paragraph):

"The Dodgers' pre-holiday shopping spree continued Sunday when they confirmed the signing of five-time All-Star free-agent Nomar Garciaparra, with a Monday afternoon press conference scheduled for a formal announcement.

"Garciaparra will be the No. 5 hitter and first baseman in a dramatically rebuilt infield and will be reunited in Los Angeles with former Red Sox teammates Bill Mueller and Derek Lowe as well as Dodgers skipper Grady Little, who managed Garciaparra in Boston."

2005-12-18 18:12:29
244.   Wayne Wei-siang Hsieh
Re: 240

I don't think we should get our hopes up too much about the press conference tomorrow clarifying things very much. Ned's played his cards close to the vest so far; he may do the same tomorrow. Ledee and Cruz are both DePo signings--the last not even really a DePo signing, because it was the assistants who re-upped Cruz, perhaps out of simple inertia rather than conviction--and neither has a lock on the roster. Ned may just have told Nomar that he might play either position, depending on how things shake out, but that we won't know by ST. My own preferred outcome is that we sign Sanders, put Cruz on the bench, start Choi at 1B, and sign Tomko with what money we have left over. But no one really knows. And as some have pointed out, injuries may give Choi an unexpected opening later in the season.

WWSH

2005-12-18 18:17:25
245.   King of the Hobos
242,242 That's just Gurnick copied into an email. That's no more official than the Gurnick article on dodgers.com
2005-12-18 18:17:27
246.   Jon Weisman
243 - Yeah, just got that.
2005-12-18 18:17:31
247.   Wayne Wei-siang Hsieh
Re: 242

I wouldn't put too much stock in that e-mail; too many things are still in the air. What, for example, happens if neither Sanders nor Lofton signs? I think Jon's right that we shouldn't get worked up, before we get more definitive information.

WWSH

2005-12-18 18:18:43
248.   Wayne Wei-siang Hsieh
We should also all remember the following at the bottom of Gurnick's stories:

"Ken Gurnick is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs."

WWSH

2005-12-18 18:18:53
249.   King of the Hobos
245 That second 242 was suppose to be 243
2005-12-18 18:22:28
250.   molokai
I find it hard to believe that Nomar signed without knowing which position he would be playing.
Show/Hide Comments 251-300
2005-12-18 18:25:09
251.   Wayne Wei-siang Hsieh
Re: 250

Why not? Ned's been cagey in all his statements on this. If he's been definitive in his plans, why hasn't he already said so? And Nomar seems almost desperate to prove his worth again, no matter what. Press reports had him playing everything from RF to LF to 1B. Nomah doesn't seem very picky on where he plays. Where I think he's gotten a guarantee is that he'll be a regular, and that he presumably won't have to change positions mid-season.

WWSH

2005-12-18 18:28:03
252.   gvette
Guess the Dodger press release settles where Nomah will (try to) play this year, until something gets tweaked, sprained, or snapped.

This '06 team is either going to win the Division, or collapse all at once to age and injury. But it beats seeing Mike Edwards out there.

194-- Amazing but true, Steve's analysis of Choi is, for my money, the best of the night.

How did Lee Lacy get dragged into all this? The guy played 16 years, was an excellent pinch hitter, and was starting 2B in '73 until Lopes beat him out about a month into the season. Besides, I have one of his jerseys from '78.

No comparision between Frank Howard and Choi. Howard was a R.O.Y., hit a ton of HR and drove in over 100, couldn't play defense and was traded for one of the best left handers in the American League.

On the other hand, Choi on his worst day is far better than Ashley ever was.

2005-12-18 18:34:32
253.   Fearing Blue
#230: Hey Steve, do Webcasts count?
2005-12-18 18:41:57
254.   molokai
251
Can't be to desperate, were paying him 6 million.
2005-12-18 18:46:53
255.   fanerman
254 - plus incentives.

Any idea how they work anyway? I wouldn't be surprised if they were the "play 140+ games and you'll get most of the incentives" variety.

2005-12-18 18:50:50
256.   Andrew Shimmin
I may be wrong, but I think the comment Steve re-posted, here, was written by WWSH.
2005-12-18 18:50:55
257.   trainwreck
255-
Heard on ESPN that the incentives were like number of at bats, basically what you said.
2005-12-18 18:54:50
258.   Sushirabbit
Maybe I'm a glass-half-full guy, but the Dodgers could possibly be very flush next year for a mid-season trade. Otherwise, you swap-aroo some of these 100-minus-game-guys for the fresh meet in Vegas.

Seems like a large part of this was precipitated by injuries last year, too. I'm looking at NomaH as a sort of backup everything. Also, has it occurred to anyone that Kent is likely not going to play 1b as was bandied about earlier. That could be a good thing. I want a SP. I want a SP.

Also, Nomah makes me think of Piazza (injury) and Piazza definitely did not look good at 1B. I know they are two different guys and all, but, the groin and first base don't seem like a good match.

2005-12-18 18:56:28
259.   bigcpa
It was only 12 days ago that Colletti signed Saenz for 2 years. If Nomar had signed first (to play 1b), would Saenz been in the Dodger plans at all? With Robles and Aybar around we don't need Saenz to play any 3b. If you're choosing between Choi and Saenz for a backup 1b and pinch-hitter, Choi's LH bat, age and upside would make him the obvious choice. Colletti should sign Choi and shop Saenz to an AL team.
2005-12-18 18:56:44
260.   D4P
257
I've always wondered about that type of incentive. If it's the last game of the season, and Nomah is one AB short of making an additional million bucks or so, and the manager knows that, does he let Nomah bat or not? Clearly, the one AB is not likely to be worth the extra $1 million to the team.
2005-12-18 18:58:35
261.   King of the Hobos
Dodger Blues, other than a quip about being the 2003 Red Sox, actually likes the Nomar signing. Isn't it their job to make fun of everything? I'm quite disappointed
2005-12-18 18:59:22
262.   Adam
I understand the calls for patience, but come on guys. It's in the books now. Choi's chance at significant playing time is over (not counting injuries). He will either be released or traded, and his stock is pretty low now, so I can't imagine we'll get much quality back, either. Oh, well.
2005-12-18 19:00:42
263.   Wayne Wei-siang Hsieh
Re: 254

Nomah IIRC turned down a 4 year/48 million dollar contract offer from the BoSox two off-seasons ago, a franchise who's fans worshipped him as the next Ted Williams.

Desperate might not be the best word, but he's no longer in the driver seat when it comes to contracts, if he has any hopes of regaining some of his previous status.

Re: 256

I did write the original post, although I have no problems with the point Steve wanted to make by quoting it.

WWSH

2005-12-18 19:03:23
264.   Wayne Wei-siang Hsieh
Re: 262

Nothing is in the books in December. Nothing. The only definitive thing that can happen this week is for Choi to be non-tendered. Sanders has signed no contract. Lofton has signed no contract. All sorts of things can still happen.

WWSH

2005-12-18 19:03:26
265.   fanerman
262 - The best team we can field still has Choi in it. The Gang of 4 are rational people, or at least they seem so. There will be plenty of time for gloom and doom if they make the announcement that Nomar will be playing 1st base. But the only things Mr. Ned has clearly said are "1st base is not that high a priority" and "I want outfield and starting pitching help."
2005-12-18 19:05:09
266.   Wayne Wei-siang Hsieh
BTW, if Nomah plays 1B and Choi is benched or even non-tendered, I'd still count this off-season overall as a success for Ned. He's made us contenders this season and hasn't traded away a single prospect, while even adding an OF prospect to our only weak area on the farm.

WWSH

2005-12-18 19:15:18
267.   Jon Weisman
PITTSBURGH (AP) - The Pirates, seeking a robust alternative to newly acquired Sean Casey, have traded a player to be named later to the Dodgers for Hee Seop Choi, reuniting the equally syllabic first baseman with his 2005 manager Jim Tracy.

"Ha, ha, ha," said God, adding. "Ha."

2005-12-18 19:19:46
268.   D4P
267
Cute, although Hee Seop would be the bigger "butt" in that joke than would Tracy.
2005-12-18 19:28:20
269.   fanerman
267 - My heart skipped a beat when I read that.
2005-12-18 19:28:38
270.   Andrew Shimmin
I remember when the off season started, the rallying cry was that none of the FAs were worth signing. That the only way to win was not to play. Even if that was hyperbole, I'm still not impressed with Mr. Ned's ability to throw money at FAs. I guess he's only picked (so far) ones who weren't garbage, so that's worth something. But it doesn't make sense, so far, burning $90+ million on an pretty good line-up with a slightly better than garbage rotation. So there's gotta be an overhaul, there, coming. He's gotta trade for that, right? Is Choi/Werth/Cruz worth a decent third/fourth starter? I'd be amazed.
2005-12-18 19:43:01
271.   Ben P
At some point, a smart, fair baseball columnist/beat writer needs to write a thorough piece on the strange career trajectory of Choi. A reporter needs to talk to his current and former managers and teammates, even if it's all on an anonymous basis, and find out what faults they have seen that we haven't in watching him play and looking at his stats. Does he miss signs? Does he not practice hard? Does he make the same mistakes no matter how many times the coaches try to correct them? It's reached a point now where three different clubs have essentially given up on him, and it can't just be that they're all anti-sabermetric neanderthals. There must be a better explanation, and I've yet to hear it.
2005-12-18 19:45:03
272.   Fearing Blue
#270: I absolutely agree that our starting rotation is a huge hole that hasn't been addressed.

On the other hand, I believe that there is a good rationale for what Ned is doing. Average to below-average starting pitchers are signing 3+ year deals for $7+ million / year this offseason. Pitching is the biggest strength of our farm system, so if there was one part of the diamond where it make the most sense for the Dodgers to wait things out it would be the pitching mound. That is, we currently have two unblocked slots in the starting rotation. If we sign another starter to a 3 year deal we can only add one of Houlton, Jackson, Billingsley, Orenduff, Miller to the rotation in the next two years no matter how well they develop.

Additionally, from a winning perspective, an extra run scored is roughly as valuable as an extra run saved. If you can get more for your dollar and with shorter commitments by signing offensive players, I'm all for it.

Steve, you should probably stop reading.

I'm holding out hope that Weaver accepts salary arbitration, which would give us a decent option for the year without blocking the kids in the future.

2005-12-18 19:45:52
273.   jtshoe
271 - I've been wondering the same thing.
2005-12-18 19:50:19
274.   alex 7
ooooh, ooooh, I know the answer, can I take this one Steve?

Ben P, the Cubs traded Hee Seop for Derrick "almost MVP" Lee. That's not really giving up on a guy, just being smart enough to know a good deal. The Marlins then traded him for Paul LoDuca or Juan Encarnacion (with half of Guillermo Mota thrown in), take your pick.

Teams have thought highly enough of him to ask for and receive quality players in return for him.

And the Dodgers have not given up on Choi yet, so there are not two, much less three teams that have given up on him.

2005-12-18 19:51:38
275.   trainwreck
271-
His managers were Dusty Baker, Jack McKeon, and Jim Tracy, not exactly the most open minded thinkers and they tend to think in generalizations.
2005-12-18 19:52:11
276.   Steve
Not mine. WWSH's. It was the kind of superb and reasoned summary that ends the arguments of all but the desperate.
2005-12-18 19:53:37
277.   alex 7
Blue, kinda reminds me of the 90s Indians who won division after division with guys like Dave Burba, Orel Hershiser, and Jack McDowell pitching for them.
2005-12-18 19:57:31
278.   Andrew Shimmin
272- The lineup with our without Choi (my favorite U2 song) looks pretty good, but it's not that good. The marginal gain of getting another SS, is less than that of picking up somebody to fill one rotation slot. Seems like, anyway.
2005-12-18 20:00:27
279.   bill cox
203-zipped past might be a bad choice of words,but I'll stick to my guns that James Loney has much more of an upside than Choi.Comparing the OPS of a 27 year old in the majors with a teenager in the minors is apples and oranges.Loney already is far superior in the field,has a picture swing vs.Choi's big loopy one with holes in it and late in the year in AA and in the AFL began generating more power(not than Choi,but than himself)
Steve, I called Choi "intriguing" because he's a guy who was Ruth in that one interleague series and other times he didn't exist.That's uh...intriguing.
I heard lots of commentary last year how Saenz' best role was as a pinchhitter/occasional fillin and not as a semi everyday player.This seems a good place for him this year barring injuries.So again Choi probably ought to go.
2005-12-18 20:00:37
280.   trainwreck
Jose Contreras anyone? I have no idea what we would have to give up to get him, but I think he would be a solid one year rental.
2005-12-18 20:02:55
281.   Steve
he's a guy who was Ruth in that one interleague series and other times he didn't exist

I don't think I've ever heard a better player summary...of Shawn Green.

2005-12-18 20:03:38
282.   trainwreck
In regards to Loney or any other prospect take over for first for Choi after this season, I have no problem with that really (unless Choi played and was very good). Choi is just the best temporary option at first base if you ask me (we need an outfielder so put Nomar there).
2005-12-18 20:03:48
283.   popup
Anybody but me bothered with how few Dodgers this team will have in 06? Gagne may well be the only homegrown player who will have a significant role next year, and he is coming off an injury. I hope Aybar at least has a utility role.

Stan from Tacoma

2005-12-18 20:06:19
284.   trainwreck
283-
In the coming years that should not be a problem.
2005-12-18 20:12:20
285.   MartinBillingsley31
http://losangeles.dodgers.mlb.com/NASApp/mlb/news/article.jsp?ymd=20051218&content_id=1283661&vkey=news_la&fext=.jsp&c_id=la

Its from dodgers.com

Everywhere i read about nomar it is saying he will play 1b.

Also in this article it says the dodgers are closing in on lofton, and says with the acquisition of nomar, choi and phillips become expendable.

It really looks like choi is gone.

I'd rather have nomar in lf and choi/seanz at 1b.

2005-12-18 20:13:24
286.   trainwreck
without nomar phillips was expendable
2005-12-18 20:17:45
287.   Sam DC
Building for this year through FA and not by trading the farm -- even if that building has been imperfectly done -- has I think both surprised and impressed folks here. And the FAs acquired have not been the scary ones that people feared, so he does well on that score too. Personally, I think that in part Colletti has done well and in part he is reaping the benefit of the soft bigotry of low expectations.

All that said, folks here should take some pride I think in having given Colletti a fair shake and given his moves a fair hearing. Colletti showed up in circumstances where there were a lot of reasons for people to be skeptical/biased against him. But he has in very large part been received on the merits. At this point, he has won over some folks, others are more critical, still others very much so. While someone or other will occasionally take a zing at this community as being closed minded and open to only particular points of view, I think the honest and diverse set of reactions to Colletti over the past month pretty forcefully puts the lie to that line of criticism.

2005-12-18 20:18:49
288.   fanerman
After Nomar, our payroll is now around $90 million. It really makes no sense to go after Lofton when we need another starting pitcher.

The options aren't Nomar or Choi.

It's Nomar and Choi or Nomar and Lofton/Ledee/Sanders. Given the salary, the lack of trade value for Choi, and the need for a starting pitcher, any rational observer would say the former is the better option. If only to spend money on pitching. Right? Right?

2005-12-18 20:19:38
289.   D4P
There's a new article from Rosenthal on FoxSports. I won't post any of the content, as it's speculative. But here it is.

http://msn.foxsports.com/mlb/story/5175756

2005-12-18 20:20:44
290.   MartinBillingsley31
288

Who says mccourt isn't willing to spend as much as ned wants to spend.

2005-12-18 20:21:14
291.   dzzrtRatt
272 Fearing Blue is one of my favorite commenters here, and what he says here makes perfect sense.

I wonder if it has occured to anyone--if the status quo more or less prevails--how similar the '06 Dodgers will be to many of the recent SF Giant teams. They followed a similar formula to what FB describes as the Dodgers for next season: Stack the lineup with experienced, thoroughly professional hitters, and put them behind a pitching staff long on effective relievers but short on experienced, quality starters.

Except, we don't have a Jason Schmidt, who's been carrying the rest of the Giants' motley rotation since his arrival. Ned's betting, however, that a hand of Chad/DJ/Jason/Edwin/Greg has more aces in it than the disappointing crew of Giant pitching prospects that has recently devolved down to one serious stud, Lowrey. Maybe Ned feels he'll be luckier, or maybe he's been convinced that our prospects were simply better prospects.

2005-12-18 20:25:56
292.   dzzrtRatt
289 Rosenthal's piece is accompanied by a poll on what position Nomar should play for LA, first base, second base or left field. Left field's losing big. The poll got a lot of votes, almost 10,000 so far.
2005-12-18 20:26:31
293.   trainwreck
Anyone else think this team has more injury concerns than last year's team. Drew and Werth are both coming off injuries, Izturis I am not even going to count right now, Garciaparra is not the healthiest guy around, Mueller, Kent, and if we sign Lofton and or Sanders, then we have a bunch of older players that can break down. Plus there is Penny and ODP and finally I am still worried about Gagne.
2005-12-18 20:28:38
294.   trainwreck
Kuo is also a big injury concern. Edwin has had a lot of nagging injuries, but I am not all that worried because he is young and apparently is working out with Gagne and working out and having a strong body is the best way to prevent nagging little injuries.
2005-12-18 20:29:25
295.   D4P
BTW: does anyone know if the DT Church of Choi is planning a candlelight Christmas Eve vigil for our dearly departed Hee Seop this year?
2005-12-18 20:31:41
296.   Steve
So Izturis could go too?!

This might be worth it.

2005-12-18 20:34:41
297.   Fallout
291. dzzrtRatt
... Giant pitching prospects that has recently devolved down to one serious stud, Lowrey.

Matt Cain looks pretty good.

2005-12-18 20:36:01
298.   D4P
297
You might even say Cain looks able...
2005-12-18 20:36:42
299.   King of the Hobos
That article seems to hint that Sanders is not really much of a possibility. Really, I don't see how Lofton is that much better than Choi, or why he's even needed with Mueller, but I'm not Ned. Of course, Arizona could up their offer to Lofton and we'll have to reconsider Plan Choi
2005-12-18 20:37:57
300.   trainwreck
297-
They also had Liriano, but he will be pairing up with Santana to create the best left handed combo in baseball... lol that always brings a smile to my face.
Show/Hide Comments 301-350
2005-12-18 20:44:24
301.   King of the Hobos
A poster on dodgers.com has convinced me why Lofton would be such a good signing. He could mentor Repko. I can't wait
2005-12-18 20:48:17
302.   Xeifrank
Does this current payroll suprise anyone? Is McCourt finally opening up his purse strings, or did perhaps McCourt and DePodesta put away something in the piggy bank last year? Perhaps, there was leftover money in the kitty which is allowing Flanders to sign all these ripe free agents?? vr, Xei
2005-12-18 20:48:23
303.   fawnkyj
One reason why Lofton would be a good sign is because we weren't able to get the big 40 homer guy we will have to get the extra bases when we can. Whether that means stretching a single into a double or stealing a base or just moving a runner over for guys like Kent and Nomar to drive in.
2005-12-18 20:48:43
304.   trainwreck
Remember when Lofton was one of the big stars of the game? Now he's a guy that says, who do I sign a one year deal with this year?
2005-12-18 20:48:54
305.   Fallout
298. D4P

He's a killer...

2005-12-18 20:50:15
306.   Sam DC
For what little it's worth, the ESPN.com article on this acknowledges that "Garciaparra could also play the outfield with the Dodgers." Although it too assumes that first is likely.

http://sports.espn.go.com/mlb/news/story?id=2264252

2005-12-18 20:54:07
307.   MartinBillingsley31
The only time i read that nomar could play in the outfield is when izturis is mentioned about coming back and playing 2b.

Anyone who thinks izturis is better than the choi/seanz platoon has lost it.

I too read that post on dodgers.com about lofton mentoring repko, i'm about to puke.

2005-12-18 20:55:26
308.   Fallout
I think that Garciaparra signed a contract knowing where he would be playing. He's not planning on being a Jack of all trades.
2005-12-18 20:55:55
309.   Xeifrank
wow! Tough layup by McGrady to win the game.
vr, Xei
2005-12-18 20:57:18
310.   MartinBillingsley31
308
I wish he would reveal where.
2005-12-18 20:58:05
311.   popup
293, train, I think this is a team destined to break down. Kent has a bad wrist and Drew has a bad shoulder and he is coming off a wrist injury himself. That's the heart of the order unless Nomar can play like he did 5 years ago. I would have preferred to bring the kids up early and spent money on pitching rather than on Furcal, Mueller,and Nomar.

Stan from Tacoma

2005-12-18 21:02:27
312.   King of the Hobos
302 We've only spent $19.9 mil on new players, and maybe paid $10 mil in raises. We lost over $30 mil on Dreifort, Green, Weaver, Valentin and others. We're not much higher than we were last season. people just think we were at $80 mil last year when we were closer to $90-95 mil, and we're only at about $85-90 mil for this next season (Jon still has Penny's salary too high, it's only $5.5 mil, not $7.5 mil, http://tinyurl.com/dlsn8)
2005-12-18 21:05:24
313.   King of the Hobos
312 I think the problem with Penny's contract is the signing bonus. He only gets $1 mil per year, not $3 mil this next season
2005-12-18 21:11:50
314.   Winthrop
The 2006 Dodgers look alot like the 1992 Dodgers: Eddie Murray, Juan Samuel, Kal Daniels, Darryl Strawberry, etc. No home grown Dodger position players (except Scioscia).

Is Mr Ned the next Fred Claire? (Both started as reporters, then PR, then slid into baseball operations.)

2005-12-18 21:12:00
315.   Winthrop
The 2006 Dodgers look alot like the 1992 Dodgers: Eddie Murray, Juan Samuel, Kal Daniels, Darryl Strawberry, etc. No home grown Dodger position players (except Scioscia).

Is Mr Ned the next Fred Claire? (Both started as reporters, then PR, then slid into baseball operations.)

2005-12-18 21:12:49
316.   D4P
305
You can say that again, brother...
2005-12-18 21:12:50
317.   Jon Weisman
312, 313 - I thought his $3 million bonus was all coming this year, but you're right.
2005-12-18 21:13:00
318.   Daniel Zappala
OK, I've been gone all day, but Steve gets major points, not just for his cogent analysis of the "Choi Brigade" but also for his use of "Venn Diagram" in a baseball setting. Gotta love it.
2005-12-18 21:14:46
319.   Fallout
314. Winthrop

The Dodgers haven't traded anyone. If there are not home grown Dodgers it's not because of Ned.

2005-12-18 21:18:53
320.   MartinBillingsley31
Whatever happened to ned saying if laroche or guzman are ready i'll find a spot for them?
2005-12-18 21:20:37
321.   D4P
320
Ah ha! So that's how Flanders plans to address the pitching staff needs...
2005-12-18 21:25:53
322.   MartinBillingsley31
Right now its a comparison of lofton vs choi/seanz platoon.

Because with nomar in the outfield and choi/seanz at 1b we still have 1 outfield spot left for lets say cruz, and the same thing goes for nomar at 1b lofton in the outfield we still have 1 outfield spot open for lets say cruz.

2005-12-18 21:26:55
323.   Steve
Not my analysis. WWSH's analysis.
2005-12-18 21:27:11
324.   Xeifrank
Just ran 1,000 simulated games head to head of DePodesta's Dodger team vs Colleti's Dodger team. Ran one scenario with Nomar at 1B and one with him in the outfield. I'm not saying these results mean anything, but just wanted to report the results. If you are interested in any other possibly worthless studies I have done, I have found out that the most efficient amount of pocket change you should carry with you if you plan to pay cash for your purchase is 58 cents, comprised of 2 quarters, 1 nickel and 3 pennies. Now back to the baseball study... Of course, injuries are not factored in. Sample size was 1000 games.

With Garciaparra in LF, Cruz and Drew in the OF and Choi still at 1B.
Colleti wins: 52.096% of the time

With Garciaparra at 1B, Drew, Cruz and Ledee in the OF and Choi gone.
Colleti wins: 47.723% of the time.

2005-12-18 21:28:02
325.   bearlurker
311--

For the price of Washburn, we just got Nomar and Mueller. I'll take the offense and give our young arms and NRIs a chance; maybe we take a flier on a Tomko.

2005-12-18 21:28:44
326.   Mr Customer
Not that I'm biased or anything, but does it strike anyone as slightly odd to place someone with a history of catastrophic groin injury an first base? I'll cringe every time he digs out a low throw.

Just askin'...

2005-12-18 21:29:28
327.   King of the Hobos
Can I assume that in his lengthy discussion with Drew, Colletti convinced him to be a RF? Because we could have some problems if Ned treats this like the Bradley-Kent situation. Lofton, at his current age, is no comparison to Edmonds, Andruw Jones, or even Bradley
2005-12-18 21:30:35
328.   D4P
326
Yeah, that has been mentioned. That and the fact that Nomah is right-handed and relatively short.
2005-12-18 21:31:32
329.   Fallout
324. Xeifrank

Is your computer a member of the Choi Brigade?

2005-12-18 21:31:43
330.   Xeifrank
327. What are the Rate2 last year of those players you mentioned?
Lofton, Edmonds, AJones, MBradley
vr, Xei
2005-12-18 21:31:49
331.   Blu2
Garciaparra Signs 1-Year Pact With Dodgers
By Tim Brown, Times Staff Writer

Nomar Garciaparra, only a couple of seasons removed from standing with the best shortstops in the game, agreed today to a one-year contract with the Dodgers, according to sources close to negotiations.

A two-time batting champion and five-time All-Star, but severely limited by injuries for three of the past five seasons, Garciaparra, 32, chose his hometown Dodgers over similar offers from the New York Yankees, Cleveland Indians and Houston Astros. The Dodgers will hold a news conference Monday.

ADVERTISEMENT

He probably will play first base for the Dodgers and bat behind cleanup hitter Jeff Kent in an order retooled with the recent additions of free agents Rafael Furcal and Bill Mueller. Garciaparra, who joins former Boston Red Sox teammates Derek Lowe and Mueller, along with Grady Little, his manager for two seasons in Boston, also has agreed to play left field if the Dodgers are unable to upgrade there.

2005-12-18 21:32:42
332.   trainwreck
324-
Not trying to insult you, but are you on meth? haha
2005-12-18 21:34:16
333.   Steve
I'm afraid that Lofton and Sanders were faking it last year, but I'm almost sure that Ledee was too. In the end, I can be convinced to sign virtually anyone to a one-year contract.

And FB, that goes for Mr. Weaver as well. That is why it is a no-brainer to offer him arbitration, and always has been.

2005-12-18 21:35:21
334.   Xeifrank
332. Sorry, I've never used drugs. But I am on Robitussum every 4-6 hours. :) The wait at urgent care this morning was two hours if you can believe that. No thanks. vr, Xei
2005-12-18 21:36:47
335.   trainwreck
334-
Good old Robotussin.
2005-12-18 21:37:03
336.   Fallout
327. King of the Hobos

From what I've seen of Lofton, his defense is inconsistant. Not as bad as Marquis Grissom was his last year and a half with SF though.

2005-12-18 21:40:41
337.   Steve
What can Tampa Bay give us for Choi + ___? I know Travis Lee is a real exciting comer at first base. And don't say Gathright.
2005-12-18 21:44:10
338.   King of the Hobos
Huff? Supposedly, the Rays asked for Verlander and Granderson in exchange for Baez. It appears Friedman/Hunsicker are only slightly better than Lamar with trade negotiations. Notice how Gathright, Huff, Baez, and Lugo are still Rays
2005-12-18 21:47:50
339.   Steve
I wouldn't trade my socks for Baez.
2005-12-18 21:48:34
340.   King of the Hobos
What about a package of Phillips and Repko?
2005-12-18 21:51:52
341.   D4P
340
'Tis the season for White Elephants...
2005-12-18 22:20:38
342.   Steve
How did you know I named my socks Phillips and Repko?
2005-12-18 22:25:38
343.   Sushirabbit
340 almost made me wake up the wife and kid, I was laughing so hard. Travis Lee, I could at least consider.

When are the @#$& coaches going to be announced? I mean it has been long enough.

... the boy woke up anyway, croup or however you spell it. Good night all you smart and funny DT contributors.

2005-12-18 22:33:33
344.   Andrew Shimmin
If Nomar plays first, this year's OF is worse than last year's, right? Even if Mr. Ned, though his wiles, manages to convince Kenny Lofton to take scads of money. Kent is likely to decline, nobody knows how much, so 2B is likely to be weaker. If Weaver accepts arbitration, SP is likely to be stronger. If he doesn't, it's likely weaker. Are SS and 3B better enough to make next year's team better? Just on paper, I mean; it's unlikely that next year's team could be as unlucky as last year's was.
2005-12-18 22:41:37
345.   blue2thebone
Jon,

just returned from Christmas shopping and was surprised to read your post #167. Sorry if I struck a nerve, but I think you may have misinterpreted the spirit of my post #152. I was not referring to Choi as unfortunate, rather I was trying to balance the over-passionate pro-Choi choicers who appear to be almost dogmatic in their support for Choi.

Personally, I am neither pro-Choi nor anti-Choi. As I stated in previous posts, I feel he's got a lot of potential, and some flaws. I guess my point is that it seems that anytime someone says anything negative about Choi, the pro-Choi people come absolutely unglued.

I hope you didn't take that post as a personal attack on this forum. Though I've been reading this forum for several months, I just started posting here yesterday...and that was because someone here said something that struck a nerve with me.

I have great respect for DT and for you as a host/writer/analyst. And I know that the whole roster+ is discussed here, but I don't think my feelings were irrational, as Choi appeared to be the dominant topic at the time of my post. It is the free exchange of feelings that spurs meaningful debate.

Sorry to ruffle your feathers.

2005-12-18 22:43:38
346.   greenchris
Report: Lofton to agree to 1 year deal w/ Dodgers

Link : http://www.azcentral.com/arizonarepublic/sports/articles/1219dbacks1219.html

Guess that pretty much assures Garciaparra is at 1B, and Choi is outta here

2005-12-18 22:48:33
347.   MartinBillingsley31
346
Not necessarily.
nomar lf, lofton cf, drew rf, choi/seanz 1b.

Now if we also sign sanders then choi is obviously gone.

2005-12-18 22:54:37
348.   MartinBillingsley31
345
I agree with you about if anyone says something negative about choi, the pro-choi people absolutely come unglued.

And i'm also neither pro-choi or anti-choi.

I'd just rather have choi/seanz 1b, nomar, cruz, drew in the outfield.

But now it looks like lofton is signing, i'm only allright with lofton if he is a pinch hitter.

2005-12-18 22:54:52
349.   blue2thebone
What about Cruz?
2005-12-18 22:56:07
350.   blue2thebone
349 was a response to 347
Show/Hide Comments 351-400
2005-12-18 22:58:14
351.   blue2thebone
348 - I'm hoping for Nomah in OF too. The Choi/Saenz platoon works for me.
2005-12-18 22:59:08
352.   MartinBillingsley31
349,350
I don't understand the question you are asking about cruz.
Hopefully this will answer your question, I'd much rather have cruz start in the outfield than lofton.
2005-12-18 23:01:42
353.   bigcpa
If we open the year with 11 pitchers and Werth on the DL, the bench could be Ledee, Saenz, Choi, Aybar, Robles, Alomar. Course you'd only have 1 backup OF. At this point I'd rather see the Sanders ab's go to Werth/Ledee.
2005-12-18 23:11:02
354.   blue2thebone
I don't think we need Sanders. We'll end up with an OF logjam to go with the IF logjam, when we need to shore up our SP.

I have confidence in MR. Ned.

2005-12-18 23:12:44
355.   blue2thebone
352 - I was just noticing that Cruz was omitted from consideration in #347.
2005-12-18 23:19:17
356.   capdodger
345 Please forgive we of the First United Church of Choi if we tend to become unglued when someone disparges his Hee-ness. It's just that we tire of being told a 110 OPS+ is below average for a position player or that Hee of the 99 career Rate2 is one of the worst fielding first basemen in the leauge.
2005-12-18 23:20:00
357.   Jon Weisman
345, 348. As the oft-repeated comment of the thread (Steve's recap of WWSH) points out, there are plenty of things wrong with Choi that most people here agree with. It's the people who speak in absolutes about Choi - as with anything - that tend to ruffle feathers.

You don't need to apologize for your earlier post at all, Blue, but I don't think I misunderstood it. I think you're not getting what I'm trying to say, which is that you are holding the Choi conversation to a standard other conversations aren't held to.

The fact, after everything I have written and others have written, that you could write "I guess my point is that it seems that anytime someone says anything negative about Choi, the pro-Choi people come absolutely unglued" tells me this. Choi has been called a below average first baseman in this thread, and few have blinked. There is a hugely wide range of opinion on Choi expressed here. That's simply a fact, and those of you who can't see it might start asking yourselves why.

Let me tell you, I'm just as tired of writing this stuff as you are of reading it. But I've read just about every comment on this site this year, I have perspective, and I am quite confident that while there are a lot of people who are passionate about Choi, they are more than willing to accept to reasonable arguments against him. But some people (not you) aren't satisfied unless they draw an admission that Choi is not a ballplayer of any kind. That simply doesn't stand up to scrutiny.

2005-12-18 23:21:33
358.   Jon Weisman
356 - A 110 OPS+ may not be below average for a position player, but it probably is for a first baseman. Some people make that distinction, some don't.
2005-12-18 23:32:30
359.   blue2thebone
Jon,

Obviously, I'm not as involved in your forum as you are, but from my perspective I seem to read a lot more posts suggesting that Choi is all-star caliber than there are people saying that Hee doesn't belong in the majors.

2005-12-18 23:36:56
360.   Jon Weisman
357 - Let me emphasize that I don't mean at all to discourage you from commenting. It's important for all of us to remember that if an argument seems tired, we all need to listen better. Few repeat the same argument just for kicks.
2005-12-18 23:41:01
361.   Jon Weisman
359 - I'm not sure I agree with that premise, but in any case, that's a whole lot different than saying that "anytime someone says something negative about Choi, the pro-Choi people come absolutely unglued." The latter is not a constructive comment. We don't all have to agree, but we should all try to make the dialogue constructive.
2005-12-18 23:43:34
362.   MartinBillingsley31
Maybe mccourt has learned his lesson about having a specific payroll cap (remember we ended up with guys like myrow edwards repko last season because of the payroll cap) its just that i would like depodesta running things with money than ned. I'm not a fan of defense and speed over obp and slg or ops.
2005-12-18 23:47:03
363.   capdodger
356
I agree that it probably is for a first baseman. I just don't consider being "below average" relative to other first baseman to be a big deal. If a relatively below average first baseman, who is still above "absolute" (OPS+ or whatever measure you wish to use) average, plays on a team with other players who are above the absolute average, than you absolutely have an above average team. If that relatively "below" average firstbaseman still helps the team, and does it more cheaply than a relatively "above" average firstbaseman, I'm for it. The money can be put to better use elsewhere.

I see it as steming the following unanswered (?) question of team construction: Which is better, Barry, a Kent-type or two, and filler, or 9 good to very good players?

2005-12-18 23:54:54
364.   LAT
356. Ask the 9 good to very good players on the White Sox. Meanwhile teams built around one great player get close but wind up with the same amount of rings as Barry has.
2005-12-18 23:59:18
365.   Vishal
[359] i do recall the phrase "all star" used in connection with choi once recently. once. and if i recall correctly, it was also used in conjunction with words like "possibly" and "potential" and "someday", or something to that effect. but personally, even though like i said, choi is one of my favorites, i don't think he'll ever be an all-star. but he doesn't have to be for me to like him, and he doesn't have to be to deserve to be a full-time player, or at least the chance to be one.

anyway, i have seen several people on this site suggesting that choi is terrible or worthless, and i have never seen a single person say that he currently is or is guaranteed in the future to be an all-star level first baseman.

2005-12-19 00:00:24
366.   capdodger
363
Ick...
"stemming from..."
3:00 AM... driving to Boston tomorrow...time to go to bed.

364.. Hence the question mark after unanswered. :)

2005-12-19 00:05:23
367.   Eric L
359 As someone in the pro-Choi camp, I'm pretty sure that the guy isn't going to be an all-star. Then again (tongue in cheek alert), he could end up with a team like Kansas City and be good enough to be their lone all-star.
2005-12-19 00:15:49
368.   Louis in SF
Gary Miller was just interviewed on All Night and said if the Dodgers do not tnder a contract to Choi and Weaver they would be ridding themselves of two large contracts!
2005-12-19 00:20:34
369.   King of the Hobos
368 They could be large eventually. But neither has a contract, so I'm not sure how you rid yourself of nothing. It's a good thing Miller did his homework

Signing Lofton does have one major positive, the St Petersburg Times will finally realize we're not giving up martin and Broxton for Gathright, nor would we give up anything (they mentioned us as suitors for Gathright yet again in tomorrow's paper)

2005-12-19 00:27:39
370.   MartinBillingsley31
I think i've figured out ned, he'd rather have veterans than mediocre prospects/youngsters but would rather have top prospects than veterans.

Veterans = mueller,nomar,lofton
Mediocre prospects/youngsters = aybar,werth,jackson,houlton
Top prospects = laroche,guzman,martin,billingsley

And he probably believes that billingsley is the only top prospect ready.

2005-12-19 00:32:18
371.   MartinBillingsley31
To add to 370.
I'm fine with ned being like that as long as he doesn't sign those veterans to deals that block the top prospects, and so far he hasn't except for mueller for 2 years, but mueller could easily be on the bench next season.
2005-12-19 00:33:10
372.   fanerman
Ugh. Lofton... Ugh. It's not necessarily the end for Choi, but the chances just aren't as good.

Hopefully we have an OF of Nomar, Lofton, and Drew.

2005-12-19 00:36:32
373.   MartinBillingsley31
Ned might be thinking about guzman at 1b next year with the thought of outfielders are a dime a dozen, and that might be why he might have nomar at 1b this season.

Guzman 1b, mueller 2b, furcal ss, laroche 3b next year.

2005-12-19 00:42:00
374.   Joe
372. Seriously, give up hope. Cruz, Ledee, Werth and Repko aren't all going to be on the bench/AAA. The outfield is Cruz/Werth-Lofton-Drew, Nomar is playing first and Choi is out the door (with Izturis possibly with him.)
2005-12-19 00:45:52
375.   fanerman
374 - I'll wait til I hear it from Mr. Ned thank you very much.
2005-12-19 01:13:16
376.   Andrew Shimmin
2005 OPS+ (starting) 1B

1. Derrek Lee-CHC-177
2. Albert Pujols-STL-167
3. Carlos Delgado-FLA-161
4. Mark Teixeira-TEX-146
4. Lance Berkman-HOU-146
6. Todd Helton-COL-144
7. Richie Sexon-SEA-140
8. Nick Johnson-WAS-139
9. Paul Konerko-CHW-136
10. Chris Shelton-DET-131
10. Chad Tracy-ARI-131
12. Ryan Howard-PHI-130
13. Matt Stairs-KCR-118
14. Rafael Palmeiro-BAL-113*
14. Lyle Overbay-MIL-113
16. Dan Johnson-OAK-111
17. Hee Seop Choi-LAD-110
18. Ben Broussard-CLE-107
19. Sean Casey-CIN-104
20. Travis Lee-TBD-101
21. Kevin Millar-BOS-100
21. Eric Hinske-TOR-100
21. Tino Martinez-NYY-100
24. Adam LaRoche-ATL-97
25. Justin Morneau-MIN-94
26. Doug Mientkiewicz-NYM-91
27. Phil Nevin-SDP-90
28. Darin Erstad-LAA-89
29. Daryle Ward-PIT-88
29. J.T. Snow-SFG-88

So, near the middle. I know this isn't good enough, but it's harder to do it right. If I knew how OPS+ actually worked, I'd figure out what Choi's OPS+ as a starter (eliminating his miserable 42 PH ABs) and stack the deck, that way. But I don't, so I can't.

2005-12-19 01:20:54
377.   Andrew Shimmin
Actually, who knows if his PH ABs (negative) balance out his platoon (positive). Either way, his numbers are pre-cooked. And a relatively small sample, against most of the others. Could he break the top 12 (130+)? Maybe not. But he seems like a legitimate Major League 1B, from where I'm sitting. In the temple of Choi. Front pew.
2005-12-19 01:33:25
378.   MartinBillingsley31
http://www.latimes.com/sports/baseball/mlb/la-sp-dodgers19dec19,1,495830.story?coll=la-headlines-sports-majorbaseb

http://www.dailynews.com/dodgers/ci_3322700

Its starting to look like if we sign sanders, nomar plays 1b.

If we don't sign sanders nomar plays lf, and choi/seanz platoon at 1b, but at mid season izturis moves into 2b moving kent to 1b, leaving choi/seanz out of a job other than pinch hitting.

So i don't know what to root for, do i want sanders and no choi/seanz and izturis(izturis i don't care about) or do i want no sanders and have choi/seanz half a season with izturis pushing choi/seanz to the bench or choi traded mid season.

2005-12-19 01:42:19
379.   Andrew Shimmin
Sorry for the clutter, I won't post more. This is the 2005 OPS+ for 1B with at least 200 ABs:

1. Derrek Lee-CHC-177
2. Albert Pujols-STL-167
3. Carlos Delgado-FLA-161
5. Tony Clark-ARI-153
6. Mark Teixeira-TEX-146
6. Lance Berkman-HOU-146
8. Todd Helton-COL-144
9. Richie Sexon-SEA-140
10. Nick Johnson-WAS-139
11. Paul Konerko-CHW-136
11. Mark Sweeney-SDP-136
13. Chris Shelton-DET-131
13. Chad Tracy-ARI-131
15. Ryan Howard-PHI-130
16. Mike Sweeney-KCR-127
17. Matt Stairs-KCR-118
18. Rafael Palmeiro-BAL-113*
18. Lyle Overbay-MIL-113
18. Olmedo Saenz-LAD-113
21. Carlos-Pena-DET-112
22. Dmitri Young-DET-111
22. Dan Johnson-OAK-111
22. Matthew LeCroy-MIN-111
25. Hee Seop Choi-LAD-110
26. Ben Broussard-CLE-107
27. Julio Franco-ATL-105
28. Sean Casey-CIN-104
29. Travis Lee-TBD-101
30. Kevin Millar-BOS-100
30. Eric Hinske-TOR-100
30. Tino Martinez-NYY-100
30. Nick Swisher-OAK-100
34. Adam LaRoche-ATL-97
35. Lance Niekro-SFG-96
36. Justin Morneau-MIN-94
37. Doug Mientkiewicz-NYM-91
38. Phil Nevin-SDP-90
39. Darin Erstad-LAA-89
39. Brad Eldred-PIT-89
41. Daryle Ward-PIT-88
41. J.T. Snow-SFG-88
43. Jim Thome-PHI-83
43. Mike Lamb-HOU-83
45. Scott Hatteberg-OAK-79
46. Jose Vizcaino-HOU-68

2005-12-19 01:48:02
380.   Wayne Wei-siang Hsieh
"We are doing our best to put together the best club we can," Manager Grady Little said. "It looks like we are putting together a pretty good infield."

Garciaparra, who joins former Boston Red Sox teammates Derek Lowe and Mueller, along with Little, his manager for two seasons in Boston, also has agreed to play left field if the Dodgers are unable to upgrade there.

http://tinyurl.com/7cl9c

From the LAT's latest. The article confirms that we are close to signing Lofton, and that Choi is projected to start at 1B, with a comment from Grady that implies as much. However, seeing that Ned also wanted Sanders in addition to Lofton, and because Nomah also had agreed to play LF, I don't think we should give up on Choi playing at 1B quite yet. Presumably Ned saw Cruz as a potential 4OF, otherwise, I don't know why he'd also want to get Reggie. I guess the issue now comes down to whether or not Ned would rather Choi or Cruz get ABs.

WWSH

2005-12-19 01:52:01
381.   Wayne Wei-siang Hsieh
Re: 380

Ack! My post should read "Nomah is projected to start at 1B" NOT "Choi...." Subsconscious working there...

WWSH

2005-12-19 02:17:43
382.   Andrew Shimmin
AVG Dodger (starting)1B OPS+ over the last 20 years: 109.2
Median Dodger (starting)1B OPS+ over the last 20 years: 106.5

AVG Dodger (starting)1B OPS+ since moving to L.A.: 112.4
Median Dodger (starting)1B OPS+ since moving to L.A.: 111

It'll take a while to do the entire MLB (20 years is far enough back, yes? And only counting starters as determined by Baseball-Reference.com since I'm doing it by hand; I may be on vacation, but I do have a life; no, really) but at the end, I hope I'll have earned the right to like Hee Seop Choi.

2005-12-19 02:22:13
383.   oldbear
Furcal
Lofton
Drew
Kent
Nomar
Sanders
Mueller
Navarro

This reminds me of old Giant teams minus Barry Bonds. Vets at near every position, most on the decline.

2005-12-19 02:33:21
384.   trainwreck
And when Navarro is off on some days we have Sandy Alomar and Saenz can play for Nomar sometimes. Now that is a damn ancient lineup.
2005-12-19 02:39:37
385.   GoBears
Thanks, Andrew, for the helpful research. This makes the point that Choi is (so far) a league-average first baseman. That's worthy of a full-time starting job unless someone better comes along for money that makes sense.

And herein lies the liturgy of our Church of Choi. The argument has NEVER been that Choi is an All-Star or a HOFer. The argument has been that, for the past season-plus, Choi has been the best first base option on the team, and that he should play rather than watch Phillips or Saenz or (now) Nomar play 1b. Jon was very careful to point out in the first half of last season that Saenz was actually doing very well, so that sitting Choi in favor of Saenz was defensible, at least against southpaws.

When arguments that Choi should play over lesser players were met with blanket statements about his suckitude, or unsubstantiated (and, as it turned out, patently false) statements about his hitting ability or his fielding ability), his defenders got their backs up and, well, defended him.

Finally, since the guy, despite all the managerial misconduct has ACTUALLY PRODUCED at at least a league-average level, and since he's young and healthy, the smart money was that he'd be even a little better if given a steady chance. Add in the low salary, and it seemed almost deliberately obtuse to claim that he should be benched or even non-tendered.

If Colletti had gone out and spent his Furcal money on Delgado, I don't think anyone would have argued that Choi should start ahead of Delgado. Many would have opined that the money would have been better spent elsewhere, but no one would have objected to watching Delgado get 500 ABs.

But Colletti did not do that. Instead, he got an oft-injured shortstop, who was a very good hitter several years ago, and now we're supposed to believe that he's the best option for first base? He projects to be no better or only a smidge better than Choi offensively, who knows defensively, and for 10 times the money. And still we have no pitchers or left fielders.

I like Choi too, and will root for him if he ends up elsewhere. But I thinks it's fair to say that the "Choi brigade" is not "Choi first, Dodgers second" at all. The arguments are all about what is best for the team. Choi (and for a while last year, Perez) were the two most poorly used resources on the team, idled while inferior players played. This was infuriating for us as DODGER fans.

I guarantee that if Choi is off the team, we will continue to have arguments about who among the remaining players should be playing 1b and LF most nights. Because it's not obvious at all that the answer will be "Nomar and Lofton/Sanders," respectively.

2005-12-19 02:41:40
386.   Andrew Shimmin
I should add that while I'm taking the WWSH challenge, my snottiness isn't directed at him. It's directed at any one who has un-ironically referred to pro-Choi zealots, or other similar construction. I've finished the Cs. Man was Frank Thomas ever good. Too bad I was such an NL snob, back then.
2005-12-19 03:16:05
387.   Sam DC
318 He's just trying to impress Danica McKellar.

Bears really puts it well in 385. I would really urge folks who think the Choi brigade has gone too far on this site to read that comment closely.

2005-12-19 04:35:25
388.   Andrew Shimmin
Turns out, I was wrong. About having a life, I mean.

AVG OPS+ for a starting MLB 1B over the last twenty years: 120.
Median OPS+ for a starting MLB 1B over the last twenty years: 117.

Thanks to baseball-reference.com, Louis Armstrong, and Pall Mall cigarettes. Special thanks to every MLB starting 1B over the last twenty years who OPS+ed under 110: you gave me hope, but your incompetence just wasn't enough to drag down the rest of the group.

2005-12-19 04:48:59
389.   Andrew Shimmin
*spreadsheet available upon request: andrew dot shimmin at gmail dot com.
2005-12-19 06:36:10
390.   Sam DC
Just to continue the (pointless) Kremlinology, the Wash Post blurb on the deal simply says: "Garciaparra most likely will play first base or the outfield with the Dodgers."

http://tinyurl.com/d5y73

2005-12-19 07:07:28
391.   Blu2
Who's in charge of the Good-bye Choi party? I'll be sad but I[ll be there wishing the big guy well. As it stands, Phillips has a better chance of being retained (back-up catcher, first baseman, pinch hitter) than Choi. Flanders has assembled an ex-Giant team for us. I wanted Nomar but at third; then an outfielder, a pitcher, and we're done. I also wanted Kim Ng for GM and a minor league manager to replace the Tracey idiot, so I guess I'm really out of step... It's going to be a while before I can call myself a Dodger Fan again.
2005-12-19 07:51:42
392.   Steve
These have been the goofiest threads I've ever read. Let me summarize:

Anti-Choi: Choi doesn't know how to chew gum and walk at the same time.

Pro-Choi: Yes, he does.

Anti-Choi: I can't believe you think he's some kind of All-Star. He's useless.

Pro-Choi: He's perfectly average.

Anti-Choi: Check these guys out. They think Choi's some kind of superstar.

Pro-Choi: No. He checks in as just about average in every measurement one can possibly think of. Take that for what you will.

Anti-Choi: Well, I have my opinion, and I watch a lot of baseball and Choi sucks. If you all want to think Choi is some kind of All-Star, that's your problem.

2005-12-19 08:00:59
393.   D4P
392
I think Cesar Izturis debunks the myth that being:
1) average and
2) an All-star
are mutually exclusive.
2005-12-19 08:07:27
394.   Steve
393 -- point conceded
2005-12-19 08:26:12
395.   blue22
Nomar at first pretty much puts to rest the mainstream speculation that Izturis has a starting spot at 2nd base waiting for him when he gets back (and Kent to first).

I mean, that's something, isn't it?

2005-12-19 08:32:05
396.   bearlurker
Indeed. Kent/Nomar>Izturis/Kent.
2005-12-19 08:34:20
397.   blue22
396 - Or how about:

(Lofton/RH OF)/Nomar > (Choi/Saenz)/Nomar?

Kent is kind of a constant.

2005-12-19 08:36:26
398.   blue22
397 - Oops...still "living in the past" with Choi ;-)

Lofton/Nomar > Izturis/Nomar

2005-12-19 08:36:45
399.   jasonungar05
ouch

Bad Altitude:

With Drew, Nomar, and a 38-year-old Jeff Kent, the Dodgers could become the first team ever to lose their three, four, and five hitters for the season on back-to-back-to-back check swings.

2005-12-19 08:37:00
400.   JJoeScott
376, 379 - I just wanted to add that the asterisks by Palmeiro's name made me laugh out loud!
Show/Hide Comments 401-450
2005-12-19 08:48:11
401.   Jon Weisman
399 - LOL
2005-12-19 09:10:06
402.   bearlurker
383--I don't think that's a fair comparison. Those teams didn't have anyone as good as Drew (other than Bonds of course) and except for one career year from Aurilia Furcal is clearly superior to him. The Giants also as a policy would sacrifice their draft picks, signing FAs early, so they didn't have to pay them. The Giants--then and now--didn't have a promising farm system, especially as to position players, so there was not as much hope for the future.

Also, those old Giant teams actually played OK when Bonds sat out (as long as Kent was around).

2005-12-19 09:28:02
403.   jasonungar05
Free agent arms that are left.

Brian Anderson 33
Tony Armas 27
Pedro Astacio 36
Kevin Brown 40
Roger Clemens 43
Shawn Estes 32
Gary Glover 29
Kazuhisa Ishii 32
Jason Johnson 32
Byung-Hyun Kim 26
Al Leiter 40
Jose Lima 33
Joe Mays 30
Kevin Millwood 30
Ramon Ortiz 32
Brett Tomko 32
Ismael Valdez 32
Jarrod Washburn 31
Jeff Weaver 29
Jamey Wright 30

2005-12-19 09:33:00
404.   blue horseshoe
Current lineup: furcal, mueller, drew, kent, nomar, navarro, (then pick 2: choi, ledee, cruz jr, werth)

old lineup: izturis, werth, drew, kent, bradley, choi, valentin, navarro

Seems to me we're upgrading with proven guys and signing them to short term deals while the prospects are developing. I like the strategy, especially in this division.

120-thousand people have voted on Nomah's potential if he stays healthy on the ESPN poll.

Comment status: comments have been closed. Baseball Toaster is now out of business.