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About Jon
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1) using profanity or any euphemisms for profanity
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5) discussing politics
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Dodgers Let Little Go Because Yankees Failed in Postseason
2007-10-30 15:14
by Jon Weisman
Note: The Dodger Thoughts blog has moved to the Los Angeles Times.

That's what it comes down to, right?

According to Tony Jackson of the Daily News, the Dodgers have called a 4 p.m. press conference where "they are expected to announce the firing of manager Grady Little after two seasons at the helm."

Whether this is the right move or not, let alone a righteous move or not, it really makes you wonder what the Dodgers' plan was had Torre not become available. And it reinforces the fact that the failings of the Dodgers in 2007 had more to do with the general manager than the manager. Because while Little could have done a better job, Ned Colletti could have done a much better job.

Dodger Thoughts, March 12, 2003:

I'm very happy these days - I have a wonderful wife and a wonderful baby, and you won't catch me regretting the choices I made that allowed those things to happen. But I do have frustrations, and those frustrations, I've come to realize, are played out each time the Dodgers do something. Anything. I'm not just talking about the 162 games; I'm talking about the offseason trades and the decisions to replace the dirt warning track with rubber and the removal of the sandwich station on the Club level of Dodger Stadium. I was raised in an easier time, where things were more often right than wrong, and I haven't shed my addiction to that time. I want things with the Dodgers to be right. That, essentially, is the genesis of this website - to deal with that want.

I think what it is, is that when I was younger, the games were more fun. They were carefree. Now, they do seem to mean more to me. They carry this weight. And now, it's been so long since the Dodgers have been a winner, I can't imagine anymore what it will be like to celebrate that. I hope I enjoy the glory, if it ever comes, as much as I've suffered the pain. I think maybe I will.

If I could withdraw my nearly lifelong investment in the Dodgers, I think I would. They almost seem to be begging me to. But I can't. I'm in for a penny and a pound. Every time I thought of pulling out today, I thought of Russell Martin. As long as there are guys like him, guys that thrill me while wearing the Dodger uniform, I don't know that I can leave.

I believe they call this a dysfunctional relationship.

Update: It's now being called a Little resignation, but I think we can file this under "a rose by any other name ..."

Update 2: Tim Brown of Yahoo! claims that Little and Colletti had a falling out at the end of the 2007 season that set all this in motion. (Commenter CajunDodger provided the quick link.)

Update 3: Who's safe among the kids?

In my opinion, Martin, James Loney and Chad Billingsley are safe in their positions as starters. I think Matt Kemp is also, despite the negative press he got, because he just has so much talent.

Update 4: "Two years of special probation?" Doesn't that sound like the job description for Dodger manager? Instead, it's the punishment ex-Dodger Jose Offerman got for his summer bat-attack, according to The Associated Press.

Update 5: Did I mention lately that winning breeds chemistry?

Comments (269)
Show/Hide Comments 1-50
2007-10-30 15:29:32
1.   Linkmeister
If this is accurate, then McCourt has officially become George Steinbrenner West.

I always laughed at those Yankees soap operas: "Not my team," I said. "My Dodgers would never be that stupid."

2007-10-30 15:29:52
2.   fanerman
1 Except without the World Series.
2007-10-30 15:30:36
3.   regfairfield
You were well prepared for that Jon. I hope everyone who wanted Grady gone doesn't expect anything to change.
2007-10-30 15:31:42
4.   RELX
Reposted and redited from previous thread, now closed:

So much for the hot stove taking awhile to heat up.

So, the McCourts have owned the team for four seasons, and in that time, have had three general managers and it looks like three managers. The average tenure is not even two seasons. As 1. mentioned, this is becoming like the Steinbrenner Yankees of the 1970s and 1980s, except that I don't see Frank McCourt becoming a TV character, ala Steinbrenner on Seinfeld.

BTW--Seinfeld Trivia Question (this is probably an easy one)--who did the voice of Steinbrenner on Seinfeld?

2007-10-30 15:32:09
5.   LogikReader
The answer is simple: CYE's own Larry David
2007-10-30 15:33:37
6.   regfairfield
Hopefully someone (preferably a Yankees fan) can add to this:

Joe Torre Pro's: Able to handle several conflicting egos in the dugout.

Cons: Irrational alliances on bad players (Luis Sojo, Miguel Cairo, Andy Phillips, I'm sure there are others)

Bullpen management so inept he needs well publicized orders from the front office to not ruin a promising young player.

2007-10-30 15:34:19
7.   CajunDodger
http://tinyurl.com/ynsdcs

According to this link, this was all between Colletti and Little.

2007-10-30 15:34:25
8.   RELX
5. You are correct--and your prize ...you are the new Dodger manager! Count to three-1,2,3-I am sorry, you have been fired as the new Dodger manager.
2007-10-30 15:34:51
9.   Bob Timmermann
I believe they call this a dysfunctional relationship.

I believe it's called Stockholm Syndrome.

2007-10-30 15:35:17
10.   Greg Brock
Okay, Joe Torre. Cool. Fine. Whatever.

Now sign good baseball players and stop overspending for bad baseball players. Redefine your priorities in player evaluation, and build around your young hitters. Shore up the starting rotation.

Sheesh.

2007-10-30 15:36:30
11.   Andrew Shimmin
Maybe Colletti was testing Grittle when he signed Hillenbrand. Like asking your girlfriend if she'd be up for a threesome, and then dumping her if she says yes.

I wonder if McCourt knew this was coming when he said they'd both be back for 2008. This would seem to strengthen Flanders, since it's evidence that not even a stay of execution from the guy at the top of the pyramid can save anybody who runs afoul of him. But was that the plan, or something McCourt was surprised to learn?

2007-10-30 15:36:31
12.   overkill94
6 Will the fact that he actually has a pretty good bullpen at his disposal erase the bullpen management con? In the first half of last year he had Rivera and Proctor who were even semi-reliable. Vizcaino and Farnsworth were laughable and no one else in the bullpen was even expected to be average.
2007-10-30 15:37:02
13.   Greg Brock
Bill Plaschke is on ESPN, displaying his usual ignorance of park factors.

You can hit homers at Dodger Stadium you dolt.

2007-10-30 15:37:10
14.   D4P
7
A season-ending disagreement between Little and general manager Ned Colletti resulted in three weeks of uneasy silence between the two

Colletti met with Little and his coaching staff in the manager's office on Sept. 30...Colletti opened the meeting by blaming himself for personnel decisions that might have left the team thin in the starting rotation and everyday lineup, then put equal responsibility for the 82-80 record on Little and his staff. Little, according to the source, "didn't take it well."

2007-10-30 15:37:46
15.   El Lay Dave
7 Tony Jackson also reporting it as a resignation:
http://blogs.dailynews.com/dodgers/

Correction: Grady is RESIGNING, not being fired

Just got a call from Camille Johnston setting me straight on that. Should make for an interesting conference call, especially given that Grady will actually be on it.

2007-10-30 15:38:27
16.   regfairfield
6 It's been my understanding that Torre finds one or two guys in the pen that he likes and runs them into the ground. If this isn't true, it would make me really happy to hear otherwise.

11 Wait, you're supposed to dump her at that point?

2007-10-30 15:38:56
17.   ToyCannon
Once upon a time I was a big fan of Joe Torre. After watching him manage in this century I can't for the life of me remember why. Like Grady's he's a good man so he has that going for him.

I don't feel sorry for Grady, he made his bed, I have no problem with him being fired.
While enjoying Frank McCourts money during 2008 he can wonder if things would have been different if he'd played the 8 best players on this team every night instead of pandering to contracts and whatnot. In the end it got him nothing by toeing the line.

Thinking that Joe Torre is the answer is the problem

2007-10-30 15:39:00
18.   fanerman
I feel rather uneasy.
2007-10-30 15:39:50
19.   imperabo
Torre is a good PR move for a PR GM and a PR owner. If only they weren't also running a baseball team.
2007-10-30 15:40:40
20.   wireroom
I feel pretty unexcited right now for the Dodgers. I felt this way once. That day was in 1998 when I was watching the local news and saw that Mike Piazza had been traded for Gary Sheffield. This just seems classless to me.
2007-10-30 15:42:30
21.   fanerman
11 Recent events suggest that there never has been a plan.
2007-10-30 15:42:36
22.   Bob Timmermann
20
I wept for the loss of Todd Zeile at that time.

I wanted to be edgy.

2007-10-30 15:42:49
23.   LogikReader
This is only the beginning... I can't wait to see how many placeholders, middle nothings, whatever you'd like to call them, get signed to block our under 26 youngsters.

I'll grant you, it's good entertainment value, just for the wrong reasons.

2007-10-30 15:43:02
24.   Daniel Zappala
Now sign good baseball players and stop overspending for bad baseball players. Redefine your priorities in player evaluation, and build around your young hitters. Shore up the starting rotation.

Here's what I don't get. How can things be so patently obvious to this crowd, yet people who get paid millions of dollars to run a team don't understand simple truths?

2007-10-30 15:44:21
25.   regfairfield
24 Because we live in our Mom's basements/garages and don't understand how baseball really works.
2007-10-30 15:46:06
26.   fanerman
16 I'm pretty sure that's a typo and he meant "dump her if she says no."
2007-10-30 15:46:07
27.   Greg Brock
11 Dumping her if she says yes...

Wait, what?

2007-10-30 15:46:09
28.   dzzrtRatt
This post, which I was trying to write amid many interruptions, got shut out of the last thread, but it still seems relevant. It was in response to D4P saying Little deserved less blame than Colletti for 2007.

248 Yes, but Colletti can improve. He can adjust. He can start listening to the right people. He seems to have the other skills of a GM, he just isn't a great player evaluator. He is, however, surrounded by excellent player evaluators. And, if he took a crash course from some of the people on DT, he could become a better GM in a matter of weeks. His job involves a lot of things, but one of them is dealing with an intellectual framework and a body of knowledge. Like any professional, he can expand his intellectual horizons.

In Little's case, it is going to be difficult to change his essential nature. It is more important that he be a leader of men and a good in-game decision-maker. He can't learn to be a different person than he is. I think he's a B- decision maker and a D+ leader. On a team like the Dodgers, a mix of a-hole veterans like Kent and Lowe and "entitled" prospects (scare quotes to indicate ironic detachment from this media-created image), we do need a stronger, more decisive leader.

I like Little. I don't like it that he's being made to look bad during this process. I don't think it's his "fault" exactly; he's not a stubborn idiot like Jim Tracy. But a change could help the Dodgers.

2007-10-30 15:47:05
29.   Disabled List
14 Interesting that Colletti would fall on his own sword like that, although I notice he never said anything like that in public.

I'm still not 100% convinced that McCourt's fingerprints aren't all over this. I'm not gonna weep for Grady, but just like Dan Evans and Paul DePodesta before him, he got righteously hosed.

2007-10-30 15:47:26
30.   ssjames
14 The most interesting thing to me is the question what exactly it was that Colletti was blaming Little for. That must be the key question, because it would show what Colletti's true beliefs are.

I am very afraid, because I think Colletti is more entrenched for the McCourts than we think. I am also afraid that Colletti thinks that we played the kids too much, and God that just makes my stomach turn. I really am starting to think this offseason will be a blood bath for DT readers. I hope I am wrong.

2007-10-30 15:47:57
31.   wireroom
I actually did live in my moms garage for a about 6 months when I was 20. It was cool, like me and my friends could drink beer and not be bothered. Great time in my life. Nothing wrong with it.
2007-10-30 15:47:58
32.   ToyCannon
24
That was killer garbage by Gammons. No one and I mean NO ONE was a bigger backer of Pedroia then BP. I guess the stroke killed a few to many braincells.
2007-10-30 15:49:46
33.   regfairfield
The thing is, I don't think being a GM is easy. I would be a terrible one, for example. If we had the team I wanted coming into this season, you would all hate me.

However, almost every move Ned makes makes me think I can do better. Does this mean he's one of the worst GMs in baseball, that he's one of the few that doesn't understand how runs are created. I hope not.

2007-10-30 15:50:32
34.   D4P
30
The "obvious" answer would appear to be that Ned blames Grittle for the clubhouse falling apart and all the animosity between old and young players, with this stuff being to blame for the disappointing record.

Rather than the other way around, of course.

2007-10-30 15:50:41
35.   Bob Timmermann
Gammons didn't have a stroke. He had a cerebral aneurysm that ruptured.

It's an entirely different all together.

2007-10-30 15:50:41
36.   trainwreck
Ned: "Grady, you just did not get enough at bats for Juan Pierre."
2007-10-30 15:50:59
37.   MJW101
What was the exact disagreement between Ned and Grady that resulted in 3 weeks of silence? Anyone have the scoop?
2007-10-30 15:51:19
38.   dodgers24
Only way to get this franchise back on the right track is to get a proven winner. Torre is the answer. Not sure Colletti is the GM answer, maybe Brian Cashman in a year or maybe Logan White our farm director. Bad decisions tend to stop you in your tracks. Questionable moves on MLB Baseball to agree to award the franchise too the McCourts. Now us fans are just stuck picking up the pieces and see what the PR people can come up with next. Bye Graddy have a good rest, as you were all season with your boy Ned. Losing 14 out of the last 15 was a little league thing to do. Both of them should have been fired. If I didn't work for 14 out of 15 days on my job, I would have been fired......

38 year old Dodger Fan,
born with Blue Blood,
Tommy we miss you

2007-10-30 15:52:22
39.   Daniel Zappala
33 Oh, I'd be a lousy GM too. But I would think the easy part would be at least starting from correct foundational principles.
2007-10-30 15:52:38
40.   Gr-ool
28 "I like Little. I don't like it that he's being made to look bad during this process. I don't think it's his "fault" exactly; he's not a stubborn idiot like Jim Tracy. But a change could help the Dodgers."

I like Little too, and you hit nail on Tracy. Just hope you're right. I'm trying to see the positive.

2007-10-30 15:52:57
41.   Icaros
So, if the Dodgers miss the playoffs next year, Colletti gets canned, right? That would be an unprecedented two years of no postseason in a row for the McCourt Regime.
2007-10-30 15:53:25
42.   scareduck
You realize that the Torre deal hasn't been finalized yet.

This could lead to an unintentional managerial search should the Dodgers fail to come to an agreement with Torre.

2007-10-30 15:53:28
43.   dzzrtRatt
The Tim Brown/Yahoo! piece is required reading. http://tinyurl.com/ynsdcs

It's amazing and rather impressive PR-craft how little of this surfaced in the media until the last few days. I guess it helps a team when the local media is staffed by opinionated clowns rather than actual reporters. That guy in Westchester County, NY, ran rings around the LA Times in covering LA's team.

It sounds like a lot of bad timing hit Grady Little.

It also explains what was a mystery. How come the Dodgers seemed to get interested in Girardi only after Torre got sacked, when he's been available for a year. Answer: They didn't just get interested in him, they were interested in him since September. They just managed to keep it quiet and/or were playing Bud's "don't disrupt the post-season" dictat.

2007-10-30 15:53:29
44.   Disabled List
Dylan Hernandez is now reporting that the Dodgers have reached an agreement with Torre.

They're working out the deals of the coaching staff, which would include Mattingly.

2007-10-30 15:54:48
45.   scareduck
38 - you mean, proven winners like Shea Hillenbrand, Jason Schmidt, Nomar Garciaparra, and Randy Wolf?
2007-10-30 15:56:04
46.   Disabled List
http://tinyurl.com/2lo86c

Sources said that the Dodgers and the former Yankees manager have agreed to the terms of his contract, and what remains to be done is to agree on issues about the coaching staff and his input on player personnel moves. Torre wants to choose his own coaches, among them Don Mattingly, and is negotiating the amount of money to be spent on them. The deal could be completed in the next day.

2007-10-30 15:56:07
47.   bhsportsguy
I thought Ned was pretty complimentary in public about how this season wasn't easy and how good a job Grady has done.

Possibly, Grady has a chip on his shoulder when it comes to any criticism from the top, he certainly had his issues in Boston.

If we are to believe Tim Brown's story, it seems that Grady made the mistake of taking things personally and then lack of communication and enthusiam with Ned led to the break up.

2007-10-30 15:57:08
48.   ToyCannon
LA Sports scene a disaster in Actober
1. Dodgers hire fired 67 year old manager
2. Kobe/Lakers soon to be parting ways after Phil Jackson takes pot shots at Kobe's lack of desire
3. USC Rose Bowl hopes get drowned by the Ducks
4. UCLA gets clobbered in Spokane
5. Clippers picked dead last in the Pacific Division by most pundits

Can we get this month over with already?
2007-10-30 15:57:55
49.   ToyCannon
35
Either way it was a lousy comment from someone I used to like quite a bit.
2007-10-30 15:58:21
50.   Bluebleeder87
If this is accurate, then McCourt has officially become George Steinbrenner West.

Yup, that's exactly what I was thinking. But to be fair it was probably NedCo who is pulling these odd strings no?

Show/Hide Comments 51-100
2007-10-30 15:59:20
51.   Bluebleeder87
I'm sorry for this but were can we hear this!!?
2007-10-30 16:00:57
52.   xaphor
6. Galaxy miss the playoffs.
2007-10-30 16:01:15
53.   ssjames
51 ESPN 710 either on the radio or the internet.
2007-10-30 16:01:40
54.   Andrew Shimmin
51- http://sports.espn.go.com/espnradio/player?station=la
2007-10-30 16:02:55
55.   Greg Brock
48 Thank God there's only one October.

Or so I hear.

2007-10-30 16:03:14
56.   fanerman
I think before firing him, Darth Flanders should have first learned that any mistakes Grady made are fairly insignificant compared to the mistakes he made.
2007-10-30 16:03:53
57.   Ken Arneson
50 Well, if McCourt is George Steinbrenner West, then considering the owner, the Dodgers have hired the perfect manager.

It's easy to find fault with Torre for tactical details like his bullpen management, but his handling/manipulation of both his meddlesome upper management and the muckraking press around him for the last 12 years has been absolutely masterful.

2007-10-30 16:04:04
58.   Andrew Shimmin
Terrific people skills on our GM, getting into an intractable fracas with the manager over who should bear how much blame for a crummy year.
2007-10-30 16:04:48
59.   trainwreck
There is only one word to describe this conference call...

AWKWARD.

2007-10-30 16:05:23
60.   fanerman
Can you provide updates and commentary?
2007-10-30 16:07:03
61.   ssjames
Grady and Ned both say that this is totally Grady's call, and that if he wanted Grady would be allowed to continue coaching the Dodgers.
2007-10-30 16:07:20
62.   trainwreck
TJ is going hard after Ned and Ned won't answer anything. Just saying he has talked to people and that he will get into stuff at a later time.

Ned did say he talked to Girardi.

They both said Grady would have the job if he wanted it.

2007-10-30 16:07:20
63.   Bluebleeder87
I just found it, it's on ESPN 710 Radio.
2007-10-30 16:07:25
64.   Greg Brock
This entire exchange sounds very above board and honest.

Oppo.

2007-10-30 16:07:31
65.   Andrew Shimmin
Shut up Mason!
2007-10-30 16:08:20
66.   dzzrtRatt
George Steinbrenner West? Hmm. I think McCourt's got a ways to go before he deserves that. Take a look sometime at the Yankees' managerial history from 1974-1996.

There is nothing very unique in this sport about a bad team changing management a lot. I think baseball managers live by the "it's better to be lucky than good" adage.

What teams haven't replaced their manager in the past three years at least once? The Braves, Rockies, Red Sox, White Sox and Twins come to mind. I think Bob Melvin is the longest-serving manager in the NL West -- three years, maybe four. The Bosox went through a bunch of managers before Francona.

Two seasons are enough to know if a manager isn't working out. GMs need a longer time frame.

Just think what stability can get you. Clint Hurdle, for one. Ozzie Guillen.

2007-10-30 16:08:34
67.   trainwreck
LOL, someone has a radio station on and the guys making fun of the Dodgers saying the Dodgers are gonna bring back Jose Lima and Luis Gonzalez.
2007-10-30 16:08:41
68.   Greg Brock
And another radio station interferes! Hilarity.

That is so indicative of...something.

2007-10-30 16:09:15
69.   bhsportsguy
48 1. Last time a LA team hired a coach with championship credentials, it worked out okay; 2. Kobe will be wearing no. 24 for the Lakers at least until the trade deadline; 3. The end was coming sooner or later; 4. That end migh be happening sooner; 5. With all the injuries, lottery pick time.
2007-10-30 16:09:32
70.   Bluebleeder87
Ned ain't biting with the questions.
2007-10-30 16:09:33
71.   Andrew Shimmin
I hope there'll be a podcast, somewhere, when it's over. This is ridiculous.
2007-10-30 16:10:07
72.   fanerman
What kind of questions?
2007-10-30 16:10:36
73.   trainwreck
The Dodgers have no clue how to run a conference call. There were phones ringing the whole time and then a radio station feed got in.
2007-10-30 16:11:41
74.   fanerman
73 So, conference calls are another thing the Dodgers don't know how to run?
2007-10-30 16:13:01
75.   kngoworld
Seemed more of a problem on 710's fault, not so much the dodgers conference call.
2007-10-30 16:13:04
76.   Bluebleeder87
72

Mainly Joe Torre & Girardi questions.

2007-10-30 16:13:18
77.   xaphor
73 Was there someone standing by the door?
2007-10-30 16:13:23
78.   trainwreck
74
Our franchise is such an embarrassment. Mason and Ireland are laughing so hard right now.
2007-10-30 16:13:26
79.   bhsportsguy
From personal experience, conference calls are unpredictable things especially when you have lots of people dialing in.
2007-10-30 16:13:36
80.   Greg Brock
A professional organization, ladies and gentlemen.
2007-10-30 16:13:48
81.   bryanf
Anyone know if this conference call will be archived online somewhere? I'd love to hear it.
2007-10-30 16:14:00
82.   Icaros
Not just conference calls. Who remembers that annoying door that kept locking and unlocking during our McCourt session at DT Day?
2007-10-30 16:14:10
83.   Greg Brock
77 Awesome. Inside jokes!
2007-10-30 16:14:19
84.   bhsportsguy
78 This is nothing, nothing compared to their takes on Karl Dorrell.

Not that makes you or me feel any better.

2007-10-30 16:14:23
85.   Bluebleeder87
for my taste I would of preferred Girardi but I guess Joe Torre will be the new Dodger skipper.
2007-10-30 16:14:32
86.   Jon Weisman
"Office" rumors at Screen Jam.
2007-10-30 16:14:38
87.   trainwreck
75
I was watching it on ESPNews.
2007-10-30 16:15:17
88.   bhsportsguy
82 How can you blame them for motion detector, I think sometimes we tend to take out frustration on the silliest things.
2007-10-30 16:16:28
89.   Steve in Rochester
The call got screwed up on ESPNNews TV coverage as well, so unless 4-letter Corporate screwed it up, I think it was our beloved Dodgers that messed up the call.

of course.

TJ asked the questions we all wanted to hear before the call got cutoff. I really wish KLAC would have left him & co. on instead of getting Dan Patrick. I listen to local programming in Rochester, NY now instead of LA radio.

2007-10-30 16:17:20
90.   scareduck
Seanez, Sweeney, and Wells all file for free agency:

http://www.beloblog.com/Pe_Blogs/baseball/dodgers/2007/10/free_agency.html

2007-10-30 16:17:42
91.   Icaros
88

Dude, I'm joking. Drop the PR gloves for one day.

2007-10-30 16:18:10
92.   LogikReader
I must say, this offseason is off to a much faster start than I anticipated.
2007-10-30 16:18:18
93.   bryanf
82 LOL. McCourt said that day that he would look into it. I wonder if it got fixed. I'm guessing no.
2007-10-30 16:21:32
94.   oldfan60
Headline on Fox Sports "Little resigns as Dodger Manager".
Next headline I expect to see: "Jimmy Hoffa committed suicide".
2007-10-30 16:21:41
95.   trainwreck
We are so clown shoes.
2007-10-30 16:23:30
96.   Linkmeister
66 Oh, I remember those. I'm just thinking of the seeming inability of the Dodgers' ownership to give its managers time for their vision to prove itself (or not). First DePo, now Little.
2007-10-30 16:24:35
97.   Greg Brock
95 The Gang that Couldn't Shoot Straight.

On any number of levels.

2007-10-30 16:27:40
98.   regfairfield
95 How much vision can a manager have? He doesn't control who is on his roster (except to a minor extent) he just manages what is given to him. I don't agree with canning Grady, but I don't think it has nearly as much effect on the Dodgers long term plans as Ned.
2007-10-30 16:29:09
99.   MikeB
Grady's on his way back to the Braves - just a hunch.
2007-10-30 16:30:31
100.   trainwreck
98
I was just making fun of how big a joke the conference call was.

1) They had no idea how to run one.
2) The fact they kept saying this was all on Grady.

Show/Hide Comments 101-150
2007-10-30 16:31:07
101.   Marty
At times like this, I think of Strother Martin in Butch Cassidy:

Morons. I've got morons on my team!

2007-10-30 16:31:12
102.   Linkmeister
98 Maybe it's my own personal history that's affecting how I feel here. At one point at a former job I trained 8 different controllers in what things happened and how they were handled. In two years.

That soured me on owners forever.

2007-10-30 16:32:09
103.   still bevens
Yeah to me it sounded like some press conference from Soviet Russia.
2007-10-30 16:32:50
104.   KG16
Um, quick question: what is Torre like without the benefit of the DH? I mean strategically, game to game, because I honestly don't remember him before his stint with the Yankees.

Also, is it time to start a collection here among DTers to buy the Dodgers? I've got a couple hundred bucks, who else is in?

2007-10-30 16:32:50
105.   Ken Noe
So it all came down to Paris and Nicole being huffy with each other? Geez, I'd fire Ned too, just on principle.
2007-10-30 16:33:08
106.   Jon Weisman
101 - [Spit]
2007-10-30 16:34:05
107.   Greg Brock
101 Marty wins.

BTW, all of this is perfectly cromulent if they sign Alex Rodriguez.

2007-10-30 16:34:30
108.   Prescott Pete
I listened to three Yankee conference calls today on WFAN -- zero production problems.
2007-10-30 16:35:54
109.   alnyden
1) This is all BS, Grady didn't resign.
2) Grady has no personal skills. He should not have overreacted to Ned and disappeared for 3 weeks. Pathetic. No wonder the clubhouse fell apart.
3) Grady is not that bright.
4) A-Rod is a real possibility.
5) Dodger management is a mess. They should be embarrassed that it all came down this way. It just proves there will be no stability in the Dodger's future. That said, I'm not sad to see Grady go.
2007-10-30 16:36:26
110.   fanerman
107 Adding A-Rod would certainly embiggen the Dodgers pennant chances.
2007-10-30 16:36:46
111.   trainwreck
107
That is what the LA Times is apparently speculating as well as Mason and Ireland. The Dodgers are going after A-Rod and they think this will help.

By the way, this is the first time I have listened to Mason and Ireland and they are quite the jerks to people who call in.

2007-10-30 16:38:05
112.   jasonungar07
When I was younger I wanted to be a GM of a baseball team. Then I realized I had a brain.
2007-10-30 16:41:09
113.   Dark Horse
I'm not really sure how this conference call, awkward as it was, was supposed to go differently. Grady handled it with as much dignity as he could summon. Was Colletti supposed to say, "Yes, we're talking to Joe Torre?" His verbal contortions seemed simply the best that could be done under the circumstances. Honestly.

I don't think this is a big deal, unto itself. I liked Grady, personally, but his line-ups were whacked and his passivity in terms of the clubhouse dynamic problematic at the very best. This doesn't solve our real problem--which isn't even Colletti, it's megalomaniac ownership with no baseball vision at all--but it's a step forward. And if that megalomaniac ownership really does believe this is about signing A-Rod, needless to say that's a symptom I'd be willing to live with.

2007-10-30 16:41:31
114.   s choir
My two cents:

Cent one: I blame Jeff Kent for everything that has gone wrong for the Dodgers over the past 4 years.

Cent two: All signs point to A-Rod signing with the Dodgers. The radio deal with KABC was the key; the Dodgers basically got equity in the venture. The conventional wisdom is that a team cannot afford A-Rod unless it owns its own TV network. However, with the Dodgers holding a stake in its radio deal's performance, and especially in a city where everyone is in their cars all the time, the Dodgers will reap a fortune from A-Rod.

2007-10-30 16:41:38
115.   jasonungar07
Baseball is about big ideas. If you want to sell a can of Coke, you don't just show a can of damn Coke. You show a baby picking flowers on the moon. And then people are like, woah, I'm thirsty. You know? It's not rocket science.
2007-10-30 16:41:40
116.   Greg Brock
111 Things that will lure A-Rod to Los Angeles:

1) Biggest Contract
2) See Above

2007-10-30 16:41:50
117.   kngoworld
112 I think 95% of the people who regular on this blog would take any Professional MLB GM job offered to them.
2007-10-30 16:42:55
118.   bhsportsguy
Sorry, its been a rough few days with this and what is going on in UCLA land, pretty much rip everything (except UCLA basketball), but with Kobe, Dodgers, USC and UCLA football, these are not happy times in LA.

But great times for sportstalk and message boards and places like DT.

2007-10-30 16:44:08
119.   bhsportsguy
117 Would i take the job, one that I am totally unqualified for, sure.

But then don't call me Steve Lavin.

2007-10-30 16:44:54
120.   fanerman
117 I think I'd have to make sure it had a 401k first before I took it.
2007-10-30 16:46:58
121.   dzzrtRatt
It's getting pretty Italian up there in Dodger-land. I hope Logan Blanco and Kim Ngetti will fit in.
2007-10-30 16:47:21
122.   bearlurker
111 Does Arod like Torre, who batted him 8th in the playoffs last year? We better not sign Rivera.
2007-10-30 16:47:36
123.   Steve in Rochester
114

That is really inciteful and something I hadn't thought of...

2007-10-30 16:48:07
124.   MC Safety
Wow. I could have sworn right towards the end of the season Ned claimed Grady would be managing 08. Did Coletti go to the JD Drew school of innocent white lies?
2007-10-30 16:48:18
125.   jasonungar07
Just an "office" quote kngoworld!! Same with 115...sorry for not explaining....
2007-10-30 16:48:31
126.   bhsportsguy
Also this note on the Dodgers.com story, Although there are indications the Dodgers want Torre, under Major League guidelines the club is mandated to conduct a search that includes interviews with minority candidates.
2007-10-30 16:49:16
127.   Steve in Rochester
wow, I just spelled insightful "inciteful". I'm going to crawl into a hole now.
2007-10-30 16:49:44
128.   trainwreck
122
Apparently, their relationship was really good last year after they smoothed everything over.

Boras is going to be on Mason and Ireland in 20 minutes.

2007-10-30 16:50:46
129.   fanerman
Wow. Joe Girardi has a degree in Industrial Engineering. I have a minor in that.
2007-10-30 16:50:46
130.   TellMeTheScoreRickMonday
Jon, if winning breeds chemistry, what does "mercurial and backstabbing ownership" bring?

I'm guessing it's not quality team members. Or World Series titles. Or May Flowers.

2007-10-30 16:50:54
131.   Gen3Blue
The list above about what youngsters are safe is not long enough. However, like Jon I have always felt powerless to stop being a D's fan for any reason, and I am still in that position. But I remember two decades when I was a Boston Bruins fan with more intensity than I was a Dodger's fan. And the Bruins did so much wrong, that while I find it hard to believe, I know nothing about them now (The Bruins). I sure hope it can't happen again.
2007-10-30 16:51:05
132.   TellMeTheScoreRickMonday
Jon, if winning breeds chemistry, what does "mercurial and backstabbing ownership" bring?

I'm guessing it's not quality team members. Or World Series titles. Or May Flowers.

2007-10-30 16:51:49
133.   trainwreck
126
Are Italians still considered minorities lol?
2007-10-30 16:52:31
134.   bearlurker
126 What minority candidates did the Bankees consider prior to hiring Girardi?
2007-10-30 16:52:35
135.   bhsportsguy
BTW - of all the possibilites that I thought could happen, if you had asked me on September 30th to rank the possibility of this one, I would have put right under parking prices going back down to $10.00 and right above trading Russell Martin and Clayton Kershaw.
2007-10-30 16:52:53
136.   bhsportsguy
134 Tony Pena.
2007-10-30 16:53:53
137.   Gold Star for Robot Boy
127 - And I thought you were saying that previous comment could start a riot.
2007-10-30 16:53:56
138.   El Lay Dave
114 Except that radio is a chump-change business compared to television. A revenue source helps, but a stake in the radio earnings is a lot different than a stake in the television earnings.
2007-10-30 16:54:10
139.   Greg Brock
136 Well that's an easy end around. Interview Pena for the job, while he's on the same plane to LA as Joe Torre.

Problem solved.

2007-10-30 16:55:26
140.   fanerman
139 , So was 107 a Simpsons reference?
2007-10-30 16:55:53
141.   trainwreck
Just interview Mariano Duncan since he may be the only coach that is retained, since he also has Yankee ties.
2007-10-30 16:56:29
142.   Steve in Rochester
138 True, but part ownership in radio interests could only be the first step into Dodger media ownership which could help lure A-Rod.
2007-10-30 17:00:21
143.   ssjames
142 Also Dodgers on Demand is obviously planned to be the first step on the road to an eventual local television network.
2007-10-30 17:01:01
144.   Gen3Blue
Although Torre's record outside of the Yankee high paroll teams is dismal, I have some hope he has learned something and would like to try and prove it without A-Rod.
2007-10-30 17:01:19
145.   Steve in Rochester
143 True, I always forget about Ds on Demand because I can't see it in NY-state.
2007-10-30 17:02:00
146.   misterjohnny
excuse me while I do a happy dance

now then, I don't think Torre is the answer to the Dodgers woes, unless he can make Juan Pierre and his contract disappear.

However, if they fail in 2008, the fault will clearly point to Colletti.

2007-10-30 17:02:05
147.   Steve in Rochester
144 I don't want him to have to do it without A-Rod.
2007-10-30 17:02:27
148.   El Lay Dave
Ned and Joe on the cell phones
Bound to win a prize
They've been negotiatin' all week long
Well, I've got no chance you see
but they need a minority
Mariano Duncan is my name
and here's my interview
Here's my interview
2007-10-30 17:03:39
149.   Jim Hitchcock
it really makes you wonder what the Dodgers' plan was had Torre not become available.

Excuse me for being out of the loop, but am I missing something here? Is Torre coming to Los Angeleez?

2007-10-30 17:04:36
150.   bhsportsguy
This reminds of when the Detroit Lions wanted to hire Mooch, everyone knew they wanted to hire him but the NFL wanted to open up the process. Joe Torre will not want to have go through all this, so the Dodgers may have to try and get some special permission to bypass that requirement
Show/Hide Comments 151-200
2007-10-30 17:05:07
151.   El Lay Dave
142 143 As others pointed out in earlier threads, Fox did not include the Dodgers' television rights in the sale to the McCourts. Fox holds them for another five years is what I think was stated.
2007-10-30 17:05:22
152.   El Lay Dave
142 143 As others pointed out in earlier threads, Fox did not include the Dodgers' television rights in the sale to the McCourts. Fox holds them for another five years is what I think was stated.
2007-10-30 17:08:35
153.   s choir
138 Radio may be chump change elsewhere, but not in LA. This is the most lucrative radio market in the country. Advertising revenues on LA radio surpassed $1 billion in 2003, and have been growing at a faster rate than any other radio market in the country.
2007-10-30 17:08:59
154.   MikeB
Would Torre be interested in bringing Leo Mazzone to L.A.?
2007-10-30 17:09:15
155.   ssjames
151 Yes but that does not mean that deals cannot be struck to either a) undo that agreement or b) set up something in place to take over immediately following the completion of that agreement, with potential money upfront as part of the deal.
2007-10-30 17:09:22
156.   El Lay Dave
150 Perhaps there are escape hatches available when a team is hiring someone with so much managerial experience. Or do they have to interview an equivalently experienced minority? What's Frank Robinson up to?
2007-10-30 17:09:25
157.   Jim Hitchcock
149 Whoops, never mind. The story is on the front page of the Times.
2007-10-30 17:09:42
158.   still bevens
152 Which is why i think McCourt will go hard after A-Rod. He will draw people to the games, we can break 4 million in attendance, and his possible chase of the HR record doesn't hurt either.
2007-10-30 17:10:58
159.   bhsportsguy
156 You had to go there.

Bob, calm down.

2007-10-30 17:11:21
160.   Bob Timmermann
If Dodgers on Demand is a precursor to a Dodgers network, then they are going to need far more compelling programming than a bunch of pointless interviews hosted by Geoff Wicher.
2007-10-30 17:12:05
161.   El Lay Dave
155 What would Fox's incentive be to change anything with the deal they have? Does McCourt have the assets to offer "money upfront" - weren't there concerns that he was overleveraged just to acquire the Dodgers as it was?
2007-10-30 17:12:08
162.   Bob Timmermann
156
Frank has Dodger roots!
2007-10-30 17:14:09
163.   bhsportsguy
162 Wow, you are lot calmer than I thought.

160 But I loved that interview with Kim Ng.

2007-10-30 17:14:24
164.   El Lay Dave
153 Who knew? Most radio commercials I hear are just above the level of e-mail spam.

Doesn't LA also have a huge number of radio stations? And isn't a large amount of that market Spanish-language? Which Dodger radio contract is the more lucrative?

2007-10-30 17:14:55
165.   trainwreck
Speaking of things that Bob does not like, I just noticed on Chad Billingsley's blog that his favorite team is Notre Dame.
2007-10-30 17:14:57
166.   ssjames
161 I am not saying it would be easy, but with some creativity I am sure it could be done. Either part of the network could be owned by someone other than McCourt who would infuse the cash.

There is far more money in such a network than there is in just showing the games. The fact alone means that with creative minds a deal could be struck.

2007-10-30 17:15:06
167.   Bob Timmermann
RIP, Robert Goulet.
2007-10-30 17:16:16
168.   Bob Timmermann
165
I gave up hating Notre Dame.

I only mostly dislike them. I will hate them more if they beat Navy Saturday. Notre Dame is favored!

2007-10-30 17:16:19
169.   El Lay Dave
159 I couldn't resist.

162 Air roots maybe? And those roots should give him some first-hand knowledge about older, underperforming veterans.

2007-10-30 17:18:10
170.   D4P
I gave up hating Notre Dame

http://tinyurl.com/2qqqaf

2007-10-30 17:18:10
171.   Marty
167 Goulet was a Dodger fan. Today must have been the last straw.
2007-10-30 17:18:22
172.   trainwreck
167
This is a sad day.
2007-10-30 17:19:09
173.   bhsportsguy
R.I.P. Robert Goulet.

Goulet: Hi. You from the casino?
Bart: I'm from a casino.
Goulet: Good enough. Let's go.
------
Goulet: Are you sure this is the casino? I think I should call my manager.
Nelson: Your manager says for you to shut up!
Goulet: Vera said that? Hmph.

2007-10-30 17:19:12
174.   El Lay Dave
167 May his heart lie peaceful and calm when he's laid to his rest.
2007-10-30 17:20:00
175.   trainwreck
173
I was debating whether to put the Vera quote.
2007-10-30 17:20:14
176.   regfairfield
167 Didn't see that coming.
2007-10-30 17:20:52
177.   Greg Brock
167 RIP, Goulet.
2007-10-30 17:21:35
178.   bhsportsguy
175 I would have beaten Bob but I had to get that quote.

I figure that there is a whole generation whose only reference to figures like Bob Goulet (I think Johnny Carson called him Bob) is being drawn on the Simpsons.

2007-10-30 17:22:16
179.   bhsportsguy
176 Actually, its been reported for about a week or two that he was seriously ill and in need of a transplant.
2007-10-30 17:22:43
180.   trainwreck
178
That and Will Ferrell sketches.
2007-10-30 17:23:09
181.   regfairfield
179 I'm not up to date on my Bob Goulet news.
2007-10-30 17:23:50
182.   bhsportsguy
180 Look for Jay Bilas doing a report from Pauley Pavillion, maybe tonight.
2007-10-30 17:24:02
183.   MikeB
All this constant turmoil and non-stop criticism from the media and the fan blogs must be wearing on the family McCourt. Is this what they envisioned when they moved to LA? When do they begin to regret the choices they have made? What weight do they feel as they stumble from pillar to post?
2007-10-30 17:24:35
184.   bhsportsguy
Satan is on the radio. Nothing will be learned from it.
2007-10-30 17:24:41
185.   Bluebleeder87
Boras is on 710 ESPN right now.
2007-10-30 17:25:21
186.   bhsportsguy
184 Did I break at least 2 rules with that comment?
2007-10-30 17:27:04
187.   El Lay Dave
183 McCourt wanted to buy the Red Sox - isn't the potential criticism there supposed to be a hundred times worse than what we here in La-La Land are able to dish out?
2007-10-30 17:28:26
188.   silverwidow
My Yankee fan friend told me that Joe isn't afraid to bench veterans. Hopefully this puts Pierre in the hotseat, finally.
2007-10-30 17:34:48
189.   Andrew Shimmin
A-rod generates forty to fifty million dollars a year for the team he's on, all by himself. He pays his own contract.

Colletti can't afford not to sign him!

2007-10-30 17:35:50
190.   Andrew Shimmin
I guess Rivera isn't a Boras client.
2007-10-30 17:36:12
191.   bob digi
I've been a fan for a few years, and there have been quite a lot of discouraging days. This seems like another one. Griddle gave me headaches, so I'm not too upset that he won't be managing. But the classless way this went down is embarrassing. I guess we'll know more later, but is this Colletti passing the buck or the McCourt's insecurities at work again?
2007-10-30 17:36:27
192.   Bob Timmermann
I don't see what the link in 170 has to do with Notre Dame.
2007-10-30 17:37:30
193.   Bob Timmermann
191
Grady Little was Grittle.

My blog is the Griddle.

2007-10-30 17:37:31
194.   s choir
164 In 2000, KXTA was the most lucrative LA sports radio station. It brought in over $20m in revenues, most of that attributable to the Dodgers. LA radio revenues have been growing by around 15% each year since then and show signs of getting even bigger. Radio also doesn't have the same problems as network TV; while you could potentially have unlimited choices on TV, radio is limited to about 50 stations per market.

You can do the math. Getting a deal with KABC that allows the Dodgers to share in the revenues was a huge financial coup for the organization.

2007-10-30 17:37:33
195.   Andrew Shimmin
192- Is it SFW?
2007-10-30 17:37:48
196.   D4P
I wonder if ARod will sign with any team who hasn't written in stone who His closer, catcher, rightfielder, statured pitcher, etc. will be in 2008.

I'm guessing he'll wait until after spring training to sign so he knows who His players will be.

2007-10-30 17:37:52
197.   fgasparini
188 Your Yankee fan friend told you wrong. Get ready for a lot more Juan Pierre.
2007-10-30 17:39:04
198.   D4P
192
Try this, the more explicit (SFW) version.

http://tinyurl.com/3adbbp

2007-10-30 17:41:31
199.   fanerman
197 That's not physically possible. Or is it?
2007-10-30 17:42:51
200.   bhsportsguy
196 A-Rod has to sign early enough to help start earning back all that new revenue he will bring in.
Show/Hide Comments 201-250
2007-10-30 17:43:09
201.   Bob Timmermann
Several hours after the fact, I realized that in Jon's post about the memo to human resources for the Dodgers, that the best perk the Dodgers can offer to any manager is the fact that you will know you will have Columbus Day off every year.
2007-10-30 17:43:52
202.   fgasparini
199 Torre will find a way. That's his managerial magic!
2007-10-30 17:44:22
203.   bhsportsguy
201 Don't forget, ice cream if your team is in first place.
2007-10-30 17:46:10
204.   bob digi
191 My bad. Grittle gave me headaches (I have a doosy of one right now even as he exits my life). I enjoy the Griddle and it does not give me headaches.
2007-10-30 17:46:25
205.   Greg Brock
I admire Boras and his ability to say the most ludicrous stuff with a totally serious tone.
2007-10-30 17:46:57
206.   trainwreck
And you get to work with Alyssa Milano.
2007-10-30 17:49:52
207.   3upn3down
JW, I think you were a little quick to jump to conclusions about how this parting of ways came to be.

In light of the conf call, I'd say the yankees post season performance had nothing to do with this development.

Given the power your voice has here, I'd hope you will approach the remainder of the off season developments with an open mind, and not assume anyone is out to break down the amazing foundation the team has built.

I liked your thoughts on the last A-rod post last week, and hope the dodgers' decisions this offseason are prudent and calculated, as is your opinion on steps as they unfold.

It looks as if this could be a busy offseason for the dodgers if nothing else.

2007-10-30 17:52:19
208.   RIYank
To be fair, Torre can, under certain circumstances, be persuaded to play youngsters over rookies. Melky took over while Damon was hurt, and when Damon returned Joe left the Melkman in CF. And once Joba Chamberlain pitched a few innings, even Joe realized that Kyle Farnsworth was no longer the set-up man.

It's just that it takes the equivalent of a few whacks over the head with a Louisville before he gets it.

2007-10-30 17:52:34
209.   ToyCannon
The man played Tony Womack, he'll probably fall in love with Juan Pierre. He left Bernie Williams and his sad sack arm in CF long after he was a viable centerfielder. Then they signed Johnny Damon. The Yankee's had the patent on sad sack CF arms.

Hopefully Long can work the same magic on Abreu that he worked on Cano.

2007-10-30 17:54:29
210.   sporky
From D. Leung... Dodgers declined options for Martinez and Lieberthal

http://tinyurl.com/2b29hw

2007-10-30 17:55:37
211.   trainwreck
This is a the biggest amount of attention a horizontal move can make.

So much turmoil, but absolutely nothing has changed. We still have to wait awhile to see what happens with our roster.

2007-10-30 17:55:44
212.   ToyCannon
http://www.truebluela.com/poll_vote/1190302786_eQHzQYrZ

Our poll was run about a month ago. Seems Giradi had some support. Shockingly I didn't have Torre on the list.

2007-10-30 17:55:55
213.   fanerman
Juan Pierre was 5th in the MLB in total at bats with 720 something. 1st place had 770 something. If Joe Torre sits JP for one day (non-injury related), he'll at least have that going for him.
2007-10-30 17:56:51
214.   trainwreck
210
It is Chad Moeller's time to shine.
2007-10-30 17:56:57
215.   D4P
210
RIP: Lucille II era
2007-10-30 17:58:02
216.   D4P
Top candidates to replace Lucille:

1. Neifi!
2. Royce Clayton

2007-10-30 18:00:07
217.   Dodgers49
126. Although there are indications the Dodgers want Torre, under Major League guidelines the club is mandated to conduct a search that includes interviews with minority candidates.

I was just wondering how they were going to handle this (especially after learning they also had an understanding with Joe Girardi before he signed with the Yankees). The Yankees could have just promoted Mattingly (like when the Angels replaced Stoneman) but when they added Girardi (who was not currently on the Yankees staff) to the mix they covered themselves by also adding Tony Pena (although everyone knew it was between Girardi and Mattingly and that Pena had no chance). It'll be interesting to see what Bud's reaction will be if the Dodgers go straight to Torre.

2007-10-30 18:00:46
218.   trainwreck
216
Totally wrong. Now that we got Joe Torre, Miguel Cairo is going to be a star for us.
2007-10-30 18:01:44
219.   Andrew Shimmin
207- An alternate explanation is that the conference call (of which I heard a good two minutes--did anybody find a way of listening to the whole thing, yet?) was a fraud, not to be taken seriously. I don't know if my mind is sufficiently open, but I don't for one second buy that Grittle decided this morning that he wanted to spend more time with his grandkids. That doesn't ring true to me. Does it to you?
2007-10-30 18:02:30
220.   ToyCannon
Luis Soto or Julio Franco are available.
2007-10-30 18:02:42
221.   Bluebleeder87
I'm still confused about A-Rod, should we be FOR our AGAINST signing A-Rod? I really feel he can get us over the WS hump if we sign him. Our starting pitching is pretty solid:

Penny
Lowe
Bills
Schmidt
Loaiza

& young pitching waiting in the wings. What will happen with Nomar though...

2007-10-30 18:04:07
222.   Marty
Neifi! and Clayton are Cincy bound I'm thinking.
2007-10-30 18:04:25
223.   ToyCannon
219
His hog maybe but his grandkids? If they are like most grandkids they will forget who he is when they hit 12 and remember again only to see them pass away.
2007-10-30 18:04:45
224.   Bluebleeder87
219

it sounds more like he was politely asked to resign.

2007-10-30 18:07:46
225.   bhsportsguy
219 I know we live in a cynical world but why would Grady take less money (assuming, a buyout does make sense if he resigning, if you fire him, he gets all the money).

Grady might not be wired to manage, he did it in Boston and got criticized (in probably the second toughest Baseball market) and then he came here and had what he called, his toughest year ever.

I think that is just as likely a story as anyone else wants to come up with re the alternative.

2007-10-30 18:08:05
226.   yankz
208 I think that proves that he'll do it only when it's painfully obvious that it's the right choice.
2007-10-30 18:08:35
227.   sporky
214 They can't seriously go with Chad Moeller, can they? Oy.
2007-10-30 18:09:10
228.   Andrew Shimmin
When the coaches were told they were welcome to go find other jobs, Grittle was done. Right? That seemed weird, at the time, but it makes perfect sense, now. That's when the decision was made. If Colletti hadn't talked to Grits in three weeks, that means it wasn't his decision.
2007-10-30 18:09:54
229.   yankz
Also, and this is just my gut, but I don't think signing Joe helps LA in the Arod sweepstakes at all. I know the relationship was icy after 06, and I wonder how forgiving a great guy like Arod is. I always felt the "Our relationship has improved" was just something to tell the press.
2007-10-30 18:10:08
230.   D4P
Dodgers backup catcher : Maytag repair man
2007-10-30 18:10:18
231.   RIYank
221 I dunno. On the one hand, he's the best player in baseball. On the other hand... no, actually, it's both hands. No rings.

Do you want his ringlessness on your team? He will quite literally drain grit from your grittiest players. (I don't know who they are, but their grit will not be safe.) And he is so ringless that even adding Torre will actually lower your total ringage.

So, your call.

2007-10-30 18:11:34
232.   Disabled List
221 Nobody should be confused about whether or not to sign A-Rod. He is the best offensive player in the game, period. He will have a huge positive impact on a team that's already on the cusp of being a perennial playoff contender. The only thing to ponder is what effect his salary will have down the road, when some of our young stars like Martin and Billingsley are ready for their 8-figure contracts.

Mark Kreidler has an interesting piece on the Dodgers and A-Rod. He also makes the salient point that, in addition to being totally classless in their treatment of Little, the Dodgers were left to pick up the Yankees scraps: they were the 2nd choice of Torre, Girardi and Mattingly, who all preferred to be in NY.

http://sports.espn.go.com/mlb/columns/story?id=3087385

2007-10-30 18:11:37
233.   sporky
Sigh. If the new manager can't resist the veterany goodness on the team, I guess I'll have to strategically place banana peels here and there.
2007-10-30 18:12:20
234.   Andrew Shimmin
225- It made him too sad, that people had been mean about him a month ago? Remember what you thought of people calling Colletti a crybaby, last year, over his Drew-opting-out-fit? What would it make Grady Little if your theory is right?
2007-10-30 18:15:03
235.   Jon Weisman
207 - I think we may find that this was in the works since season's end, per Tim Brown, but I'm not convinced from the call today that Little wouldn't still be here if the Dodgers hadn't had their attention diverted by Girardi or Torre.

But we'll see.

2007-10-30 18:18:56
236.   Johnny Nucleo
Late to the thread, but: to all the people who wanted Little fired because he was a "terrible" manager, congratulations. You got your wish. I can't wait until about June when people start vociferously complaining about his replacement.
If people thought Grady didn't like playing the kids, you're going to LOVE Joe Torre (sarcasm)
2007-10-30 18:19:46
237.   bhsportsguy
234 It would make Grady a person who values his mental well being rather than his professional ambition.

Frankly I don't remember what I said I last year about Ned, unless it was something like he cannot take things personally, holding grudges is unprofessional in his line of work.

But for Grady, if he just doesn't want to manage, then get out. Go ride your new (or semi-new) motorcycle and play with your grand kids.

Until Grady comes out and disavows what he said today, I'll believe him because frankly, if he wanted to burn the bridge, he would have enough people with torches to help him out.

2007-10-30 18:21:41
238.   Andrew Shimmin
Was Phil Spector innocent?
2007-10-30 18:22:37
239.   bhsportsguy
235 If Ned was left with a manager who did not know if he wanted to manage the team, than he probably did have to make some calls (many UCLA fans hope that Dan Guerrero is making those types of calls right now).

Had the Girardi story not broken like it did last week, I think Jon is right, that Grady could have come to some conclusion and the team would have waited him out.

2007-10-30 18:26:20
240.   Marty
Doesn't Little lose out on his salary next year by resigning?
2007-10-30 18:26:23
241.   Sam DC
I am a little confused about what strategy/philosophy leads you to offer a job to (i) Joe Girardi and then (ii) Joe Torre.
2007-10-30 18:26:25
242.   bhsportsguy
238 He wasn't convicted, in the law game, its about winning. In fact, professional sports has nothing on winning like the law game.

I have worked over 20 years in this game, justice and truth have strange ways of getting together.

But that is the society we live in.

2007-10-30 18:30:36
243.   MSarg29
Peter Abraham of the Journal News is reporting on his blog that the Dodgers and Torre have agreed to a 3yr deal for $15 million.

http://yankees.lohudblogs.com/

2007-10-30 18:31:07
244.   dsfan
The latest drama recalls the prescient quote from former Dodgers exec Daley that the McCourts treat people terribly and will never be good stewards of the franchise until they get much better in this area.

Anyone care to rate Colletti's people skills? My first guess would be a 3, but I suspect two categories would be needed. My guess is he is extremely good at dealing with the McCourts, no small feat, but warrants a low number for pretty much everybody else.

2007-10-30 18:31:44
245.   Andrew Shimmin
The parallel I was trying to draw was: Did he shoot her, or did she drive over to his house and shoot herself with his gun, for no particular reason?
2007-10-30 18:32:47
246.   Humma Kavula
241 There is no strategy. There is no philosophy. There is no plan.

I have a friend who argues that you don't need a plan. You start the season with the team you have, not the team you want. I think that's how Ned is operating.

I -- and I would guess most here -- think that's hogwash, and it makes it difficult for me to care about the team.

Thank Heaven for Number Seven (and number 27 and number 55 and number 51 and all my other favorite numbers).

2007-10-30 18:35:04
247.   Andrew Shimmin
If Little walks away without a check, I'll have to rethink the ground I've staked out. I suspect he won't.
2007-10-30 18:35:59
248.   Andrew Shimmin
Wow! Humma Kavula is friends with Donald Rumsfeld.
2007-10-30 18:40:11
249.   bhsportsguy
245 And my point, if you want to speculate and say that he was forced out in some master plan by the McCourts fine, but since Grady has now spoken on the record, he would have a hard time backing off his resignation scenario at this time.

I think its clear that Ned thought there might be an issue with who would be managing the team next season at least as early as last week so he made some inquiries, those inquiries got released in broad terms to the press, perhaps to influence the Yankees to move fast.

But until Grady and Ned spoke today, nothing firm was known. If Mattingly had been hired, Girardi would have been waiting anyway so there would no real rush if Girardi was interesed in coming to L.A.

My experiences is that stories don't wrap up cleanly, there are gaps in logic and continuity that go unexplained.

I think this is one of those times.

2007-10-30 18:41:51
250.   scareduck
247 - interesting point. Little should have made them fire him. It's a no-lose situation for him.
Show/Hide Comments 251-300
2007-10-30 18:41:53
251.   still bevens
227 Moeller was designated for assignment to the minor leagues rather than become a free agent. Theres no way he starts for us in '08. They probably want to find a guy who will get paid less than 1m to play in 8 games next year.
2007-10-30 18:42:27
252.   bhsportsguy
247 Gurnick said he will get something from his guaranteed 2008 $750K salary. But if he had been fired, he would have gotten it all, unless he breached his contract in some way.

And I don't think playing Juan Pierre would qualify for that.

2007-10-30 18:43:25
253.   Samhain
The Dodgers can do a pro forma managerial interview with Assistant G.M. Ng who is close to Torre and will play along. MLB minority interview rules will be satisfied: she's a two-fer, of course.

If Torre turns them down--still possible--then the McCourts look like total morons for their ham-fisted timing on this. But they would then conduct a real search and satisfy the minority search rules...

I am someone who told friends Grady should have been let go last June--impossible then as I knew it since we were flirting with baseball's best record at the time--because I thought he was a poor manager. Poor in his handling his players in general and poor his judgment of whom to play: I am very pleased Little is out.

I think the vitriol toward Colletti is mostly undeserved, he had one decent off-season and one awful decision the second: signing Pierre. Signing Schmidt was a calculated risk because of his injury the preceeding season. Nomar was a reasonable decision and was only disasterous because Grady wouldn't bench him. Gonzo gave them a good near-half season; Wolf nearly so.

(Little wouldn't bench Gonzo soon enough either. Torre or anyone else hired will be a lot stronger willed, I believe, and do what needs to be done when the veterans bitch. Grady should have told Nomar and Gonzo they were sitting because they were hurting the team. Instead Grady--always non-confrontational to a very serious fault-- didn't explain at all, and that I think is really what set Kent off about the vets being disrespected...)

But so far Ned has not blown up the youth movement, just retarded its full blossoming a season. THIS off-season is Colletti's true test.

As far as the McCourts' "bad" front office decisions, while they have been tactless. I have agreed with each managerial firing, and thought our previous G.M. St. Paulie-Boy also needed to go when he did.

2007-10-30 18:47:00
254.   Bob Timmermann
246
So is Naomi part of a plan? ;-)
2007-10-30 18:47:14
255.   Andrew Shimmin
there are gaps in logic and continuity that go unexplained.

There are gaps that won't get explained--I agree with that. It's not because there was no logic, or continuity. There was. Things happen for reasons. Unless Canuck isn't the only Calvinist on the block, we can all agree to that, right?

So, the question is, while acknowledging that nobody has perfect knowledge of what happened: is it more likely that Grady Little very recently decided he'd rather not have a job or that Colletti decided he wanted somebody else to have Little's job, but that he had to arrange the dumping in such a way as to not make a liar of McCourt?

I'm not arguing that my theory is empirically, obviously correct. But it looks more likely. Maybe there'll be a story next week that Little has prostate cancer, or that his wife is leaving him, or some other huge personal trouble that would make a decision to prefer unemployment more explicable. I don't think talk radio listeners calling him names is a believable reason.

2007-10-30 18:48:45
256.   bhsportsguy
Nate Silver has his top 3 A-Rod contenders:
3. Giants
2. Dodgers
1. Angels

Only Arte has said anything public about signing a player like A-Rod, to which he said no to a player who would demand that type of salary.

2007-10-30 18:49:18
257.   scareduck
253 - Nomar was a reasonable decision and was only disasterous because Grady wouldn't bench him.

Absolutely not. Nomar had a wretched second half in 2006, and his subsequent collapse was wholly predictable.

2007-10-30 18:50:16
258.   Shaun P
Over at Bronx Banter, "we" (in the collective sense) came up with a joke metric that explained how Joe Torre assigns playing time: BFOG+.

Just what is BFOG+, you ask?

It stands for Belly Full of Guts Plus - that is, adjusted for veteran grittiness and rings won. (I don't remember the exact calculation, but veteran grittiness counts more than rings.)

Draw your own conclusions from there, but if Pete Abe 243 is right - get ready for a lot more Scott Proctor. His name is carved in gold in the biggest spots on Torre's Wheel of Guts - that's how Joe determines who comes in from the bullpen every night.

You guys will love Torre, seriously. But, you might simultaneously hate his guts, too. Good luck.

2007-10-30 18:54:23
259.   bhsportsguy
255 No, I don't think namecalling or even all that hassles at the end of the year were the reason.

But occasionally people do walk away, I think if Grady gets some type of special assistant to the assistant in the player development area of the team, than maybe your theory makes more sense but we won't know that for some time.

2007-10-30 18:55:43
260.   Jon Weisman
nput
2007-10-30 18:55:52
261.   bhsportsguy
255 BTW - I'm more of a Hobbes supporter. I love tigers.
2007-10-30 18:57:30
262.   Greg Brock
258 Not for nuthin' but your bullpen kinda sucked outside Rivera and Proctor. Ours, not so much.

He'll have Meloan, Broxton, Saito, Beimel, and whomever else the Dodgers retain. A wee bit better than the Yankees had.

2007-10-30 18:58:21
263.   Greg Brock
258 Speaking pre-Joba, of course.
2007-10-30 19:04:21
264.   Shaun P
262 Oh, I don't disagree with you at all.

The problem is, even when the Yanks had a great bullpen (late 90s), Torre push-buttoned it the whole way, and only used "his guys", the "guys he trusted". If you weren't trusted, it didn't matter how good you were. You didn't pitch.

If you were trusted, you were pitched until your arm fell off (Karsay, Quantrill, Tom Gordon) or you pissed Torre off (Tanyon Sturtze). Again, ability was irrelevant. Tanyon Sturtze turned 8 great performances in one month into two years of pitching the 7th inning, no matter how much he sucked.

To put it another way - there was a very good reason for the Joba rules.

If, say, Broxton blows a few games early in the year, it might take him all season to get Torre's trust back. Just fair warning.

2007-10-30 19:12:20
265.   dzzrtRatt
219 , etc.

It's all about the optics. The kabuki dance. This is a polite parting of the ways. Grittle at least pondered quitting based on his spat with Colletti after the season ended. Maybe in the end he decided to bestow one more season on us, but by that time Colletti was free to think anew on the managerial spot. After leaving Little to twist for days in public, they owed him at least the right to say it was his decision and put any spin on it he wanted.

If you get fired and your boss says so, that is a severe judgment. The Dodgers realized they didn't want to do that. After all, it reflects on Colletti and McCourt too. If Little's such a bum, why did they hire him?

I agree, a team that could go from Girardi to Torre in a day is a team that doesn't know where it's going...so any road will get them there, as the expression goes.

2007-10-30 19:26:22
266.   Chiron Brown
The minority interview requirement is not a problem. The Dodgers will do what alot of teams do, hire their only candidate and pay a fine. It's sort of like EPA laws.
2007-10-30 20:16:55
267.   scareduck
265 - so you're saying that Grady's exit is actually a rule 6 violation on his part.
2007-10-30 20:17:36
268.   scareduck
By the way, Jon -- the Red side of the force is still taking season ticket orders.
2007-10-30 20:36:56
269.   Daniel Zappala
All this talk about minority candidates ... once upon a time, Italians were a minority. One of the reasons the laws regarding immigration quotas were put into place were because of the massive amount of Italian immigrants and fears they would overwhelm the rest of America. At 67 years old, I suspect Joe Torre grew up as a minority in this country.

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