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About Jon
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1) using profanity or any euphemisms for profanity
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2005 in Review
2005-10-20 07:09
by Jon Weisman

Here it is – a review of the 71-91 Dodgers. Watch your step. (Explanations for the various acronyms appear at the bottom.)

Dioner Navarro 199.72996.264989.7
Jason Phillips 434.65073.230862.3
Paul Bako 47.66281.2501111.2
Mike Rose 46.58656.20568-0.7
Navarro emerged as the clear choice here, with the only question being what will happen once Russell Martin reaches the majors. Phillips turned 29 as he finished his second consecutive poor season. On the theory that an organization should have three catchers ready to play, Bako might be worth resigning, though it might already make sense for Navarro and Martin to play 81 games apiece in the majors. If people believe Bako would be a good tutor, I'm willing to listen - but isn't that what coaches are for? Tampa Bay claimed Rose claimed on waivers after he failed to emerge as a reliable backup in Los Angeles, offensively or defensively.

First basePAOPSOPS+EQARF (9.64)Rate2VORP
Olmedo Saenz 352.804113.2769.088316.7
Hee-Seop Choi 368.789110.27410.299514.0
Brian Myrow 25.61068.2396.7476-0.1
In the end, the offensive numbers of Saenz and Choi almost matched – with Choi the more reliable defensive player (by statistic as well as by observation, if you ever saw Saenz around the bag). Saenz turned 35 in October and would be smart to move to the American League. One presumes that Choi will get his shot under a Paul DePodesta-hired manager, unless DePodesta has some major tricks up his sleeve. Myrow is 29 and a fringe pinch-hitter candidate at best, even if the Dodgers don't acquire another left-handed hitting bat.

Second BasePAOPSOPS+EQARF (4.98)Rate2VORP
Jeff Kent 637.889136.3065.279560.5
Simply a fantastic season for Kent, his best since 2002. He turns 38 in Spring Training and a decline seems inevitable unless, ironically, he mirrors Barry Bonds' late-30s improvement. In any case, his bat is of tremendous value at second base, especially if the Dodgers remain without power at third.

ShortstopPAOPSOPS+EQARF (4.51)Rate2VORP
Oscar Robles 399.70088.2444.281017.1
Cesar Izturis 478.62468.2224.611080.7
Both these guys had better seasons than Alex Cora, but that's about all you can say that's both good and relevant. Robles is steady in the field and not hopeless at the plate, but unless he's a No. 8 hitter, you're stretching him. Izturis probably deserves a mulligan for being hurt - his EQA in 2004 was .253 – and could conceivably provide a midseason infusion when he returns from surgery.

Third BasePAOPSOPS+EQARF (2.77)Rate2VORP
Antonio Perez 287.758104.2742.909615.7
Willy Aybar 105.901143.3252.648911.4
Mike Edwards 258.63971.2272.3887-2.2
Jose Valentin 184.59162.2313.0491-4.5
Norihiro Nakamura 41.350-6-.0393.00115-5.1
Perez emulated Choi's 2004 finish, going 15 for 77 (.194) with three extra-base hits (including the one against Pedro Martinez) and seven walks in limited playing time after August 1. He will have to work to have Jose Offerman's career and not Wilton Guerrero's, and has been supplanted by Aybar among the powerless Dodger third-base candidates.

Were it not for the fact that he had one at-bat in August. Aybar might have been one of the top September callups in Dodger history. His OPS was not batting-average dependent – he drew more walks than Edwards and Jason Repko in fewer than half the plate appearances. Anecdotally, his extra-base this came from doubles down the line and not deep balls in the gaps, so it remains to be seen whether there's any power there.

Edwards had no business taking innings from Perez – Edwards had some nice hits here and there, but it's not as if he looked good in the field at all. Valentin had more walks than hits. By virtue of his glove, Nakamura probably deserved more than 16 percent of Edwards' at-bats, but unlike with Scott Erickson, DePodesta decided to land this flyer before the crash got too big.

Left FieldPAOPSOPS+EQARF (1.94)Rate2VORP
Ricky Ledee 266.778107.2751.34 8712.3
Jayson Werth 395.71191.2622.271038.7
Chin-Feng Chen 8.50035.1631.64101-0.5
Jason Grabowski 124.49533.1731.6990-8.5
Ledee satisfies one's needs for a reserve outfielder, but the Dodgers need to do better in the starting lineup. Werth doubled his doubles but halved his homers from 2004 to 2005. Thanks to his speed, he's about a league average offensive player – but at a position that demands above-average offense. Right now, he rates as a No. 7 hitter in the lineup. Chen finally got his first major-league hit, but his minor-league stats were his worst since 2001, perhaps out of boredom and frustration. Grabowski seems like a nice guy. He's a potential 20-home run hitter the way Rob Deer was a 30-home-run hitter. But there's too much dead space between those home runs.

Center FieldPAOPSOPS+EQARF (2.51)Rate2VORP
Milton Bradley316.835121.2902.6810923.7
Jason Repko 301.66576.2372.531080.1
Jose Cruz, Jr. (ARI)245.783101.2681.91867.3
On the field, Bradley has been a fine center fielder. He's more of a streak hitter than people seem to realize – he had one month of .517 OPS mixed in with two months of .900 or better. His anger doesn't hurt the Dodgers. He is sincere in his commitment to the community. His physical and personal issues keep his salary down. He has only played more than 101 games once in his career. If the Dodgers take a stand against him based on the domestic violence issues that surround him – and to be clear, the 911 tapes neither convicted nor exonerated him – they have to be willing to take that stand against quality players for crimes such as drunk driving. Long a supporter of Bradley before reconsidering amid the domestic violence reports, I am coming back to the idea of checking to see whether another one-year deal like that of 2005 is viable – but in all likelihood, this will be a place where DePodesta does invite his owner's and/or his future manager's direct input. If Bradley somehow does return, a move to a corner outfield spot is possible.

A comparison between Repko and Werth illustrates the difference between mediocre and completely replaceable. As Grabowski proved in 2004, one month with four or five home runs does not a major-leaguer make. Repko does have a future as a bench player, but ideally a new Dodger acquisition would push him back to the minors at least on Opening Day. Cruz mainly played center field before joining the Dodgers this year – it was apparently his defense that got him in trouble there. The Arizona stats remind us not to get carried away with his nice late-season Dodger run, but also show the damage that can harm all a player's numbers when he plays through pain.

Right FieldPAOPSOPS+EQARF (2.10)Rate2VORP
J.D. Drew 311.932148.3232.0310431.0
Jose Cruz, Jr. (LA)179.923145.3142.5310817.6
Cody Ross 26.3926.0922.41118-2.8
Remember way back when people considered Drew a disappointment even when he was playing. Ludicrous. The guy is an expert with the bat, and if the problem is that he is selective at the plate, go cry to Ted Williams. Drew remains a better defensive outfielder than Shawn Green, but keep an eye out for slippage. (Drew's left wrist, broken on a hit-by-pitch in July, will not need surgery, according to Allison Ann Otto of the Press-Enterprise.) It's a testament to how amazing Cruz was in Los Angeles that he matched Drew's OPS – even with the Drew-like slow start. Cruz is older than Drew and almost as beaten up – his Dodger future mainly depends on how popular he is to other teams, though he would seem to want to return. Ross is not this bad, but that doesn't mean he would even leapfrog Repko.

Starting PitchingIPH/9BB/9SO/9HR/9VORPERARA+
Brad Penny175.39.502.106.260.8731.23.901.10
Jeff Weaver224.08.841.736.311.4128.54.220.98
Derek Lowe222.
Odalis Perez108.79.032.326. has the 2005 Dodger Stadium park factor at 96, favoring pitchers just as it has in the past. So once again, we must review pitching statistics guardedly. All four principal starters had fine control, but none could avoid getting hit. Because he kept the ball in the park – at least until the final month or so – Penny emerges as the Dodgers' only above-average starter. His value is mainly "where would they be without him?" – because he is barely above-average overall and his strikeout numbers are borderline for an elite pitcher. Weaver, it bears noting, was below average even with his second-half resurgence. He allowed homers at an ungodly rate – strange because his career HR/9 is 1.0. Though Tracy often left Weaver in games inexplicably long, Weaver did allow 29 of his homers in the first 90 pitches. Lowe had to work at the end to make his numbers respectable. Perez had a remarkably unremarkable season. Not anyone's idea of a strikeout pitcher unless his arm gets a second wind, we'll have to find out if he's able to pitch smart.

This is a staff of pitchers that will give you six innings a game but put great pressure on your offense. Re-signing Weaver at market rates is pointless – his innings should be replaced with a cheap veteran. Better to pay $2 million for five decent innings than $10 million for six.

Derek Thompson18.
Elmer Dessens65.78.632.605.070.8210.53.561.07
D.J. Houlton129.010.123.636.281.471.15.160.80
Wilson Alvarez24.011.622.626.002.62-0.25.620.78
Scott Erickson55.310.084.072.441.95-
Jonathan Broxton13.78.567.9014.490.00-2.65.930.61
Edwin Jackson28.79.735.344.080.63-
Thompson would probably have gotten a second look in August or September if he hadn't re-injured himself – he was wild but showed promise. He is now a free agent but would likely return to the organization. Dessens continues to cement a reputation as someone who is good when not overused. Hard to imagine he could command much more than his $1.3 million mutual team-player option for 2006 on the open market – or find a better pitching environment – so he may well return. Houlton works with the point with Weaver above. Weaver is probably the better pitcher, but not by an enormous amount – wouldn't it make more sense to put Houlton in the rotation at about $400,000 and spend $9 million somewhere demonstrably better? Why did Alvarez retire with a year left on his contract, but not Darren Dreifort? Because Alvarez was hurt enough to be ineffective but not hurt enough to be out for the season. And perhaps because Dreifort, like the Angels' Tim Salmon, will try one more comeback so that he can go out, as Alvarez did, on his own terms.

Erickson lost out in his quest to notch more home runs than strikeouts allowed. Broxton pitched in relief in the majors in 2005, but he started much of his minor-league career and could be considered a dark horse for the 2006 rotation, which desperately needs someone of his strikeout abilities (though his walk numbers are bizarrely high). And Jackson, well, I'm not ready to give up despite his tough times. But for all the publicity his mental approach has gotten, it's not clear that his problems are not physical.

Relief PitchingIPH/9BB/9SO/9HR/9VORPERARA+
Eric Gagne13.36.752.0314.851.354.22.701.63
Duaner Sanchez82.08.233.957.790.8814.23.731.11
Giovanni Carrara75.77.734.526.660.7111.33.931.05
Franquelis Osoria29.78.492.434.550.914.13.941.03
Kelly Wunsch23.77.615.328.370.762.54.560.96
Steve Schmoll46.
Yhency Brazoban72.78.673.967.561.36-1.65.330.77
Hong-Chih Kuo5.38.448.4416.881.69-0.76.750.65
Buddy Carlyle14.010.292.578.362.57-4.48.360.53
Let's hope they got the medical stuff right with Gagne. Sanchez increased his strikeout rate 61 percent from 2004 to 2005 – it'd be nice to know why. Carrara, frankly, surprises me to have numbers this strong. A 1.62 ERA in September helped. Turning 38 in 2006, he's not likely to be an asset. Osoria appears a dangerous pitcher to fall in love with – his strikeout numbers are so low. But he allowed only three homers in 55 innings in Las Vegas, and had a groundout/flyout ratio of 3.29 with the Dodgers. Wunsch, now a free agent, is a pitcher who does well against lefties, and it's not entirely clear that the Dodgers have enough of those. He could make a difference in a tight game. If the Dodgers can find 11 pitchers better than him, great – we'll see how the offseason goes. Schmoll won a lot of hearts in April but was very inconsistent. He should have to earn his spot again next year. Brazoban, as disappointing as he was, seems a better bet. Kuo has Dreifort's ability but will have to prove he doesn't have Dreifort's medical future. Carlyle is the 2005 Dodger pitching version of Cody Ross: a borderline player with a chance to contribute, who just didn't.

Current Lineup
Aybar, 3B
Choi, 1B
Bradley, RF
Drew, CF
Kent, 2B
Navarro, C
Cruz, LF (free agent)
Robles, SS

Current Rotation

Logical Priorities
1. A 155-game, .875-OPS outfielder.
2. A 220-inning, 3.25-ERA pitcher.
3. A backup (or frontup) plan on the left side of the infield in case Aybar-Robles can't cut it.

PA: plate appearances
OPS: on-base percentage plus slugging percentage
OPS+: OPS relative to the league average, accounting for park factors, with 100 being average
EQA: According to Baseball Prospectus, EQA is "a measure of total offensive value per out, with corrections for league offensive level, home park, and team pitching. EQA considers batting as well as baserunning, but not the value of a position player's defense." The average is .260.
RF: Range factor on defense, with league average at the given position in parentheses.
Rate 2: According to Baseball Prospectus, "a way to look at the fielder's rate of production. … A player with a rate of 110 is 10 runs above average per 100 games. … Rate2 incorporates adjustments for league difficulty and normalizes defensive statistics over time."
VORP: Value Over Replacement Player, or the number of runs contributed (for pitchers, prevented) beyond what a replacement-level player at the same position would if given the same percentage of appearances.
IP: innings pitched
H/9: hits allowed per nine innings
BB/9: walks allowed per nine innings
SO/9: strikeouts per nine innings
HR/9: home runs allowed per nine innings
ERA: earned run average
RA+: Runs (earned and unearned) allowed relative to a league average of 1.00, taking park factors into account.

Statistics courtesy of Baseball-Reference, Baseball Prospectus and

Comments (406)
Show/Hide Comments 1-50
2005-10-20 07:58:09
1.   Steve
Olmedo Saenz sucks. He has a slow bat, a hole in his swing, and can't find his own #)#&%&#() at first base, much less field his position. Or something like that. I forget the mantra now.
2005-10-20 08:02:49
2.   Xeifrank
Nice write up Jon. Just wondering where we will find that .875 OPS outfielder and 220 inning 3.25 starting pitcher. Looks like Matsui will stay in NY and Giles is probably a long shot to sign with DePodesta. Do you think Billingsley gets a shot at the rotation in spring training?
vr, Xei
2005-10-20 08:12:35
3.   dzzrtRatt
No wonder 2005 was such a grisly year. Outside of Jeff Kent, Duaner Sanchez, and the arrivals of Navarro and Aybar, basically nothing of any importance went right. The story of the season was the pitching was a deep disappointment, and two of our only three sources of offense played only half of the time. Amid the starvation diet of hits and homers, Jim Tracy's choice to sit Choi seems not just stupid but self-destructive. We missed Gagne, too, but he's not a factor if the starting pitching is this bad and the hitting this weak.
2005-10-20 08:13:18
4.   Jon Weisman
2 - I don't know where the Dodgers get them. As far as Billingsley, I have to think the rotation will be wide open in March, unless DePo works some magic. I do presume there will be the annual Alvarez/Lima/Erickson wish-upon-a-star candidate.
2005-10-20 08:17:23
5.   FirstMohican
Somehow I think I might get blasted for this one... but it might be easier to trade for Ramirez instead of trying to outbid NY's rumored 35M/3yr deal for Matsui.

I would guess that the Dodgers would have to offer much more than the Yanks to pry him away, so add another year an 12M to that contract and you're paying Matsui almost 50M for 4 years. I'd be down so long as he didn't pull a Fred McGriff.

Just give me Giles.

2005-10-20 08:24:46
6.   Sam DC
Great writeup Jon, but pretty tough reading before lunch. Starting pitching is just frightening, and so darn tricky to fix, a fact brought home as I watched Roy "drafted after 700 hundred other guys" mow down the Cardinals again last night.
2005-10-20 08:25:24
7.   Sam DC
Well, the meaning was clear, but I see a dropped an "Oswalt" before mow in 6.
2005-10-20 08:27:52
8.   Eric Enders
700 hundred other guys... and you thought Piazza was impressive!

Jon, great job. My only comment right now is: How did Drew and Cruz post the same OPS in the same ballpark and end up with different OPS+ numbers?

2005-10-20 08:31:46
9.   FirstMohican
8 - I think it says Cruz matched Drew's OPS while Cruz was in LA. The OPS+'s in the tables are for the entire year.
2005-10-20 08:49:50
10.   Eric Enders
All due respect, that is incorrect.
2005-10-20 08:52:25
11.   underdog
Nicely done, Jon! Puts it all in the right perspective.

Much more than this garbage on the Dodgers "strange managerial search" on ( which is full of mistakes and strikes entirely the wrong tone.

But anyway... back to the team... I agree with the needs. The manager to be will have some say in who stays and who they need, I presume, too.

I'm still not convinced Houlton's any more than a "hold your breath and hope for 5" kind of pitcher, but you're right that overpaying for Weaver won't make much sense (although he is an innings eater). But can they rely on him. They need one frontline dangerous pitcher, a potential Oswalt out there somewhere? Maybe one of their kids can come through as such in a year or 2... But they have money to spend this time and I'd guess a one big FA signing (and maybe only one given the thin pool), and one trade is what we'll see.

Seems like Navarro and Bako to start, Martin to come up later, at C. And hopefully the Jason Phillips experiment is over.

Thanks again.


2005-10-20 08:53:20
12.   blue22
The needed hitter would seem to be much easier than the pitcher. Those that could be available via trade include:

Sexy/risky/expensive/tough to pry loose:
Jenkins or Lee MIL
Dunn CIN
ManRam BOS
ARod or Sheff NYY
Abreu or Burrell PHI

Avail, though probably not a fit:
Wells TOR
Hunter MIN
Delgado FLA

Less sexy, more attainable:
Wilkerson or Guillen WAS
Mench TEX
Nixon BOS

2005-10-20 08:57:17
13.   Dr Love
1. A 155-game, .875-OPS outfielder.

Possible options:

Austin Kearns - The Reds have their heads up their asses and don't know what to do with him; could be had in a trade. However he doesn't fit the health requirment.

Reggie Sanders - A free agent, I don't know if the Cards want him back/he wants to return.

Matt Lawton - Not quite the hitter the Dodgers need, but he's an option nonetheless.

2. A 220-inning, 3.25-ERA pitcher.

This is gonna be the hardest to find of course.

Kevin Millwood - Going to want a ton of money.

AJ Burnett - Too expensive, too injury prone.

Jarrod Washburn - Would be a nice coup to sign him away from the Angels, but bidding might be too high.

Paul Byrd - The smartest move perhaps. He's not going to command a lot of money, and he's realtively healthy.

Matt Morris - Could wind up being one the outside in big contract musical chairs, ala Millwood last year. He's dropped off the past two years, but he gives you innings.

3. A backup (or frontup) plan on the left side of the infield in case Aybar-Robles can't cut it.

Bill Mueller - Is a free agent and the Red Sox don't need to bring him back. The only option out there for 3B that would be a starter.

Wes Helms wouldn't be a bad backup/platoon option. Joe Randa is out there too, but I don't see him as a realistic option.

2005-10-20 08:58:17
14.   FirstMohican
10 - Didn't realize that Cruz appeared in two of the tables w/ his numbers split. Excuse me.
2005-10-20 08:58:49
15.   Eric Enders
Other than his usual bimonthly trade request, does anybody have any reason to believe that Boston will actually trade Ramirez? Trading him for anyone other than a Beltran or an A-Rod would send Red Sox Nation the message that "we do not plan to compete in 2006." A message which would go over even worse in Boston than it would in L.A....
2005-10-20 08:59:13
16.   SMY
Manny would rule. The press would hate him, though.
2005-10-20 09:00:45
17.   Eric Enders
So would I. But hey, we'd win more games, so I'd keep my complaining to a minumum.
2005-10-20 09:04:39
18.   FirstMohican
15 - If trades don't require that salaries match (like NBA) you could reason that if pitching was your weakness last year, then the $M's you saved by trading Manny allows you to spend on pitching.

Besides, didn't they place him on waivers 2 years ago?

2005-10-20 09:06:26
19.   blue22
15 - I'd be surprised if anything besides a Manny for Beltran trade happened, and I think that is a distinct possibility.

One other possibility could be Soriano for Manny though.

2005-10-20 09:07:53
20.   Eric Enders
"If trades don't require that salaries match (like NBA) you could reason that if pitching was your weakness last year, then the $M's you saved by trading Manny allows you to spend on pitching."

Yeah, but what pitching? The BEST-case scenario for Boston would be replacing Manny with A.J. Burnett, which would result in the Sox moving from second place to third, or perhaps fourth.

2005-10-20 09:09:43
21.   SMY
I don't see a Manny-Soriano trade -- plus I think he would veto going to Texas.

I have no doubt the Red Sox will explore Manny trades, but I also don't think they'll just give him away without getting good value in return.

2005-10-20 09:09:58
22.   Jon Weisman
8 et al - Typo on Drew's OPS - it should be .932. Thanks for catching it.
2005-10-20 09:12:57
23.   FirstMohican
20 - Not necessarily true considering you could get Burnett and a solid bat or two to cover some of the offensive dropoff from the Manny departure with the money that you've saved.

20M w/ 11 going to Burnett/Millwood and 9 going to ______.

It's harder for me to assume that the BoSox would be worse off w/o Manny.

2005-10-20 09:16:56
24.   blue22
23 - Unless Manny goes for Beltran, the BoSox will have to send a ton of cash along with him. Texas included $9M per year to move ARod.

How much of his $19M would Boston have to cover? $7M?

Plus Papi is due for an extension/big-time raise.

2005-10-20 09:18:25
25.   Curtis Lowe
What would it take to trade for Millwod and Hunter?
2005-10-20 09:20:37
26.   blue22
Millwood is a FA. He'll probably be looking for a 3-yr deal, in the $8-10M range.

Hunter wouldn't require much. He's getting on in years, is expensive, and is coming off a major injury.

2005-10-20 09:20:50
27.   Dr Love
What would it take to trade for Millwod and Hunter?

Kevin Millwood is a free agent.

2005-10-20 09:21:54
28.   Curtis Lowe
27- Thanks I dont know how I missed that but that could be a good thing.
2005-10-20 09:22:46
29.   Curtis Lowe
28-Not that I missed him being a FA but him actualy being a FA.
2005-10-20 09:25:03
30.   FirstMohican
24 - Unless Manny goes for Beltran, the BoSox will have to send a ton of cash along with him.

Probably, not necessarily - and I'm sure GMs explore every possibility.

Texas included $9M per year to move ARod.

Because NYY had no prospects. Dodgers do.

2005-10-20 09:25:21
31.   blue22
29 - Hindsight 20/20 and all that, but last year would've been the year to sign him, when he was on the cheap with something to prove (Matt Morris too).

Now you have to pay full market value for him, and I still see him as an injury question mark.

2005-10-20 09:26:53
32.   FirstMohican
30 - Wow I realized my response made absolutely no sense w/ regards to Texas sending 9M per year... Time to take a DT break.
2005-10-20 09:27:17
33.   dzzrtRatt
My assessment would be, to contend in 2006, we need additional good pitching more than hitting, if only because with Drew returning, possibly Bradley returning for one year, Kent still productive, Choi unleashed, and perhaps some return to form for Werth, we can be a decent hitting team. Our pitching, however, is unacceptable. We need to sign at least one of the few FA pitchers out there, Burnett, Millwood or Morris, and trade for another.

If we can't accomplish that, then I'd tell DePo to reverse course, trade Kent for some OF and pitching prospects, trade Navarro for more of the same (his trade value must be off the charts), trade Perez just to get him outta my face, and tell the fans, it's a rebuilding year, watch our kids grow. Penny, Drew and Gagne might get frustrated, but it will pay off in the years to come, and they might enjoy being part of the rebound. Or, if it looks like they're going to bolt, trade them at deadline time for some more 2007 pieces.

We won't have to worry about Plaschke or Keisser anymore; their heads will simply explode.

Of course, I'm hopeful that a sell-off won't be needed. But be prepared for DePo to have to overpay (in dollars, not prospects) for the pieces we need if we're going to compete in '06.

2005-10-20 09:27:18
34.   SMY
I don't think Boston would want prospects. Maybe, though.

Dodgers reportedly interested in giving Nomar a one year deal. That's probably a good risk.

2005-10-20 09:31:56
35.   Eric Enders
I do think that's a very good idea, signing Nomar to a one-year deal. It's a risk, but if he's healthy it could turn out to be a terrific signing.

Nomar is nowhere near as good a hitter as the general public thinks he is, but he's still probably a better option than anything else.

And if he breaks, we have Aybar.

2005-10-20 09:36:02
36.   blue22
33 - Given the uncertainty of Bradley, both from a production, health, and roster standpoint, I'd feel a heck of a lot better to add a thumper in Left.

And if Bradley is let go, Cruz/Werth/Ledee should be able to cover his production to a certain extent, but a thumper is absolutely required in that situation.

2005-10-20 09:36:11
37.   Curtis Lowe
If Aybar has a Power breakout then we can call him A-Bomb.
2005-10-20 09:36:27
38.   fanerman
I wouldn't mind Giles and Nomar this offseason.
I pray that Gagne will teach Jackson how to strike somebody out and Billingsley will be ready by midseason. Is Ted Lilly a free agent?
2005-10-20 09:37:43
39.   SMY
Nomar could play SS or 3B. And I have a hard time seeing him do better than the $8 million he got last year. What's not to like?

Plus there's the whole California native/McCourt Red Sox fetish angle. Makes too much sense not to happen.

2005-10-20 09:38:43
40.   Eric Enders
Agree with 36 -- we need a big bopper much, much more than we need pitching. I trust Jayson Werth's production like I trust the guy selling Rolexes in Times Square.
2005-10-20 09:41:45
41.   Eric Enders
"What's not to like?"

-Nomar has a good season.
-Dodgers make playoffs, Nomar becomes L.A.'s darling. You thought the fans liked Lima?
-Plaschke et al take DePo to the rack to resign Nomar.
-McCourt caves, orders DePo to give Nomar a long-term deal.

Other than that admittedly remote possiblilty, I can't really see a downside.

2005-10-20 09:48:45
42.   Dr Love
I totally forgot about Nomar. He would be a nice addition at 3B or SS--I wouldn't have a problem with Izturis being unseated.

I'd love Giles but I don't know if he's a realistic option for the Dodgers. I hope he is.

2005-10-20 10:00:07
43.   Jon Weisman
A .772 OPS in 62 games in Wrigley? I hope there's a discount for Nomar in the coming season.
2005-10-20 10:00:24
44.   molokai
FYI-Joel Guzman is playing 3b in the Dominican league this season.

Nice writeup Jon.

2005-10-20 10:04:18
45.   scanderbeg
43: .772? ouch. I would guess he could be signable around $5-6M. Didn't he say that he wanted to stay with Chicago, though? I know he's from Southern California...
2005-10-20 10:06:28
46.   scanderbeg
I would be more in favor of a Ted Lilly signing than a Nomar signing.
2005-10-20 10:08:44
47.   dzzrtRatt
36,40 Obviously, we need a lot, a big bopper and a bunch of pitching. That's why I'm starting to teeter over into the trade-Kent camp. I figure we might not have a shot at contending under any circumstances--too many holes to fill. But: This might be a great off-season to be a seller.

2005 could be the fourth year in a row that a Wild Card team becomes world champs. That fact is not being lost on teams like the Reds, Jays, Indians, Twins, Tigers, A's, Mariners, Rangers, Brewers... All these teams are buyers now, along with the Yankees, Bosox, Cardinals, Padres and Angels, who don't want to slip.

To be able to dangle Jeff Kent, Dioner Navarro, Milt Bradley, Jason Werth, Odalis Perez or Eric Gagne as trade bait into this kind of market, the Dodgers might be able to stock up and make the 2007-and-beyond era period really interesting.

To try to do the reverse, and build our not-quite-solid enough core into a contender might be too much of a stretch. We could overpay like mad, and still fall well short of meeting all the Dodgers' needs.

2005-10-20 10:08:58
48.   scareduck
36, 40 - are you kidding? The team's starting pitching was its worst feature!

Jon: disagree somewhat on Drew. He's sabermetrically correct, but his two-out and RISP hitting approaches were simply terrible this year. That is, there was a reason to be unhappy with his performance; it wasn't just something manufactured. That said, past performance is likely to be caused by (a) the jitters which seem to happen to lots of free agents in the first year of a big contract, and/or (b) small sample size (55 AB produced .218/.370/.364 in RISP situations this year). He will get better.

2005-10-20 10:14:07
49.   Eric Enders
Kent for Manny? Boston is in desperate need of a 2B.

1. Aybar/Perez platoon, 2B
2. Bradley, CF
3. Drew, RF
4. Ramirez, LF
5. Garciaparra, 3B
6. Choi, 1B
7. Navarro, C
8. Robles/Izturis, SS

With Lowe, Ramirez, and Nomar on the team, I'm sure McCourt would be pleased.

2005-10-20 10:16:58
50.   Curtis Lowe
47- Why dangle Gagne or navarro in a trade? Gagne's trade value wont be at its highest now that he's just coming off surgery and What would we do without navarro? You say Russel Martin but Martin has never seen Major League pitching he could flop then where would we be? back at mid-04 without a catcher.
Show/Hide Comments 51-100
2005-10-20 10:17:17
51.   Jon Weisman
48 - Right, we've been down this debate before. And sure, we can all wish he had driven in more runs - the danger is when people turn that into Drew failing in his role.

Drew was very close to being completely successful. In only 55 AB, just four more hits would raise that batting average to .291, which everyone would find acceptable, I think.

Beyond that, it seems likely, even on the small sample size, that teams pitched around Drew with RISP. Should Drew chase pitches out of the strike zone? Is that likely to be very helpful?

2005-10-20 10:17:30
52.   molokai
Could be at least 5 teams in the running for Nomar because they all view him as a cheap one year free agent with a big upside. Because of the interest he may end up not being so cheap. As a 3b with a OPS < 800 and a huge injury risk is he really that much of an upgrade over Aybar?
2005-10-20 10:22:44
53.   SMY
Sure, there's a price point where Nomar's not a good risk, but if the price is reasonable I'd rather try that than have Robles and Aybar be the left side of the infield. Besides, we'd still have those guys anyway if Nomar didn't work out.
2005-10-20 10:25:16
54.   regfairfield
52 I have no problem over paying to sign Nomar to a one year contract. It's doubtful that we'll be able to fill up the 23 million dollars or so we have available to get free agents. Consequently, signing Nomar to a one year contract really doesn't hurt our future plans in the least bit. If he gets hurt, swing the job to Aybar or Perez. Considering option two at the position is Bill Mueller, I can't see us losing much.

As it stands, he provides good production at two positions the Dodgers need help: short and third. He can play short until Izturis comes back, and then hand the job over in the mid season.

2005-10-20 10:28:45
55.   dzzrtRatt
Stupid question: How does payroll work? Let's say the Dodgers can't find good uses for that $23 million or whatever DePo's got now, and he risks Plaschke's wrath and plays kids. Can he just bank it, and use in '07 and '08, run a $115 million payroll in those years if we see an expensive but essential missing piece out there?

I know in government and publicly traded businesses, you don't tend to do that.

2005-10-20 10:36:19
56.   bigcpa
49 You just beat me to it on Kent for Manny- that lineup rules. Ramirez has 10-and-5 veto rights so would he accept it? The Mets still seem like the likley partner since they can offer Cameron, Victor Diaz and/or Milledge to fill the OF hole.
2005-10-20 10:38:34
57.   capdodger
55 DePo probably takes it to Vegas and puts it all on Black. :)
2005-10-20 10:39:29
58.   SMY
I just read that thing mentioned in post 11. Wow. What exactly is and where do they find their writers?
2005-10-20 10:40:05
59.   Curtis Lowe
58- Whats it about?
2005-10-20 10:43:59
60.   molokai
Would you rather pay Manny or Arod 20 Million? With Texas paying 6 million of Arod deal in 2006 they come out about the same give or take a million:)
Arod's deal courtesy of
- + will make 22M in 2001, 2002, 2003 and 2004 and then 26M in both 2005 and 2006 and then 27M in 2007, 2008, 2009 and 2010
- + Bonuses he can receive for awards: 1st MVP: 500K 2nd: 1M 3rd+: 1.5M; MVP Voting 2-5: 200K MVP Voting 6-10: 100K; All-Star selection: 100K; Top Vote Getter in All-Star: 100K; Media Awards/All-Star Selections: 100K; WS MVP-200K; LCS MVP-150K; DS MVP-150K; Gold Glove-100K; Silver Slugger-100K
- + - + bonuses he has earned: 100K for 2005 All-Star selection
- + he can void deal after 2007, 2008 or 2009
- + he has a guaranteed salary increase for 2009 and 2010 by the higher of the following: 5M or 1M greater than average annual value of the position player w/ highest annual average salary
- + 5M of 2001 salary is deferred and 4M each year of 2002, 2005, 2006, and 2007 salaries deferred - + 3M of 2003, 2004, 2008, 2009 and 2010 salaries deferred at 1.75% interest and paid each June 15 between 2016-25
- + the 36M in deferred money became an assignment bonus after trade to the NYY from TEX, which is paid: 5M + interest in 2016, 4M + interest in 2017 and 3M + interest in both 2018 and 2019, then 4M + interest in 2020, 2021 and 2022, and then finally 3M + interest in 2023, 2024, and 2025
- + Texas pays a total of 67M of his salaries from 2004 to 10: 3M in 2004, 6M in both 2005 and 2006, 7M in 2007, 8M in 2008, 7M in 2009 and 6M in 2010

Manny's deal:
Manny Ramirez: 8-year worth 160M- will make 18.067M in 2005, 19M in 06, 18M in 07 and 20M in 08- deal includes 2009 and 2010 Team Options worth 20M- + 3M of 2001 salary deferred and 4M of 2002 thru 2008-

2005-10-20 10:44:50
61.   Steve
ummmm...I hate to bring this up, but is Davey Lopes black?
2005-10-20 10:45:40
62.   Curtis Lowe
60- I almost threw up reading that.
2005-10-20 10:46:28
63.   KLV
I had a thought this morning (dangerous, I know): Is there any way in the world we could pry Marcus Giles away from the Braves? It would be tough. Atlanta balked at trading him for Tim Hudson last year, although Giles did have a slightly disappointing year this year in that his average dipped a bit and power spike from 2003 did not resurface. Plus, he is one year closer to free agency now.

If we could get him from the Braves--trade Kent, trade from our surplus of pitching prospects, whatever, I'd be willing to give up solid talent to get him, he's only 27 or 28--it would put us in a great position to sign his brother Brian Giles.

2005-10-20 10:47:12
64.   Marty
That article is very strange. Davey Lopes is black? Depo is loath to spend on fre agents? Tell Drew, Kent and Lowe that.
2005-10-20 10:48:39
65.   SMY
61, 64 -- I had the same thought. There's so many weird things in there.
2005-10-20 10:49:18
66.   sanchez101
Baseball America has a article on Andy Laroche, they dont say a whole lot of good about him; they claim he needs to become more consistent and continue to work work hard. Im not sure that cant said about any minor leaguer. Apparently Greg Miller had a minor set-back. He came to the AFL with his old (2003) over the top pitching slot, and had some shoulder soreness. Logan White doesnt seem to worried and even intimated that Miller would compete for a role in the Dodger bullpen in '06.
2005-10-20 10:49:35
67.   gvette
Last time I checked, Nomar was 32; hadn't played a full season since 2003 because of injuries; the Cubs were talking about putting him in LF rather than SS or 3B;and his clubhouse presence in Boston was still viewed as toxic.

Other than that,he'll probably provide power at 3B for the 75 games that he'd be able to play.

2005-10-20 10:49:46
68.   Curtis Lowe
63-Why not just sign Nomar for 1 yr sign millwood for whatever hes worth then pick up Hunter somehow. Save some money for mideason wheeling and dealing.
2005-10-20 10:52:02
69.   Dr Love
Pendleton's rapid retreat from the pending interview does not seem too important since it seemed as if he was the obligatory African-American candidate insisted upon by the owner's main man Bud Selig.

If you are really looking for a Black manager, you would give Davey Lopes a call but he's still waiting by the phone.

Jerry Royster is black. What a stupid article.

2005-10-20 10:52:33
70.   Bob Timmermann
Davey Lopes' ethnicity seems to change a lot depending upon when you ask him.

He's definitely got a Portuguese name.

That's about all you can say definitively.

2005-10-20 10:53:40
71.   Eric Enders
I wonder if the byline on that article is a joke... Abe Yager covered the Dodgers for the Brooklyn Eagle for many years and was also an official scorer at Ebbets Field.

But I'm sure he's been dead a long time.

Anyway, I skipped that link the first time around, but after looking at it now... holy cow. He's like Plaschke except without any writing ability whatsoever.


Factual errors in bold:

"The Dodger's search for a new manager has taken a number of unusual twists and according to General Manager Paul DePodesta, perhaps a dozen or more candidates are still waiting in the wings. The latest candidate, Atlanta's Terry Pendleton, declined an offer to interview, saying he didn't want to leave his native Georgia. Yet he did interview for the Tampa Bay job. Well, that is closer to Atlanta.

So the Dodgers had a manager with a full year left on his contract leave the club to manage Pittsburgh (Pittsburgh?) and a candidate who would rather interview for the Tampa Bay (Tampa Bay?) job than for the Dodger position, once the premier post in the National League.

Which brings one to ask, why would anyone want to take he rudder of a ship that is careening wildly across the National League West without a sail, a compass or a map?

The club dumped Jim Tracy who had been as successful as anyone could possibly be, considering the conditions he had to work under. He apparently would not used the players he was ordered to use (Hee-Seop Choi, Antonio Perez) because of their obvious weaknesses -- Choi didn't hit and Perez could not catch the ball.

Of course, a general manager should be able to build an organization that feels comfortable to him, but the Dodgers have changed GMs as easily as Brittany Spears changes husbands, with the resulting "this is my people" changing right along with them.

So tell me, why would you want to manage a club in such disarray, knowing when (not if) things went south, you would be hung out to dry like Tracy was?

So our five basic candidates are 55-year-old Bobby Valentine, championed by Tom Lasorda in a campaign that has lasted for more than a few years; unknown qualities like Giants bench Ron Wotus and minor leaguer Torey Lovullo; and former major league rejects Terry Collins and Jerry Royster*,*

Pendleton's rapid retreat from the pending interview does not seem too important since it seemed as if he was the obligatory African-American candidate insisted upon by the owner's main man Bud Selig.

If you are really looking for a Black manager, you would give Davey Lopes a call but he's still waiting by the phone.

Dodger fans are salivating in anticipation of Kirk Gibson or perhaps Orel Hershiser -- very darkhorses at best -- taking over the stumbling team. But you can not comprehend either of those strong-minded men signing on to be only a guy in the dugout who plays the lineup sent down from the front office.

Don't mistake what was just said: Both Gibby and Bulldog would be superb in the skippers seat. But, as any good manager must be, each is his own man and would be hard-put to be merely a liaison to the executive suite.

And of course, there is the problem of the team itself.

To improve, the club must spend some money on free agents, an action that the general manager and/or the owner seems loath to do, despite their protestations, or make a trade for the needed parts."

2005-10-20 10:53:50
72.   Marty
Besides, Ivy League types are keeping Lopes out of the managerial ranks.
2005-10-20 10:53:54
73.   rageon
There's just too many things to respond to individually, so I'll just do it all in bullet-point form:

- Manny. Boston would probably let a team take him for nothing in return if it meant getting rid of all, or at least nearly all, of his contract. If Drew is worth $11M, isn't Manny worth $18-20? And Manny is durable, which is a must for any potential OF. Honestly, if taking Manny's contract was all we did this offseason, I'd be happy, because I think it would make us contenders.

- I'd be happy with Cruz or Werth at an OF corner if we had at least durable big-time hitter at another spot, which we don't. Cruz must be a free agent, right? I'm not sure a researve OF is worht $4.5M/year, but given Bradley and Drew's healthy history, it might not be a bad idea. I would probably offer him arbitration though. Certainly those two would be the top 4th/5th OF combination in baseball.

- Matsui will get a lot of money, probably 4/50 or so. It might be worth it. He's a great hitter and 100% durable. Besides, as we've all seen with Nomo, a popular Japanese player brings in a lot of money himself, which offsets a lot of the contract cost. I think Ichiro is probably a $20M+ player because of this. So I wouldn't complain if we overpayed for Matsui.

- Giles doesn't excite me. Not exactly a spotless health history with him. Pass.

- Nomar has been rumored to like LA for a while now. We basically need a 1 year solution on the left side of the infield, and he looks to be in line for another 1 year deal, so it seems like a decent fit to me.

- I've already said this before, but if getting Dunn takes a ton of prospects, that's fine with me. IF we can get him without giving up Billingsley and Guzman, do it. LaRoche's stock, in my opinion, if never going to be higher. Throw him and a pitcher at Cinci and see if they bite.

- I think DePo has to seriously consider that we will end up having to trade for a OF that can hit, because I don't see any of the free agents as likely.

2005-10-20 10:55:26
74.   molokai
How are you saving money when Tory Hunter will make 10.75 mill in 2006, Millwood would cost 10 mill a year and Nomar at least 5-8 million?
2005-10-20 10:55:49
75.   Eric Enders
According to everything I've ever seen from Lopes, he says he's of entirely European descent. Asking him if he's black or Hispanic is a good way to get your head bitten off.

Of course, asking him the time is also a good way to get your head bitten off.

2005-10-20 10:56:03
76.   sanchez101
Just read the article, i wonder what grade little abe yeager got? Really, is anyone even proofreading this stuff;

"Dodger fans are salivating in anticipation of Kirk Gibson or perhaps Orel Hershiser -- very darkhorses at best -- taking over the stumbling team"

If youve ever heard Louis Black's old standup special on Comdedy Central, he talks about stupid statments and how they are the real cause of anyuerisms; he's talking about statements like "very darkhorses at best". wow

2005-10-20 10:57:04
77.   Eric Enders
Can we please put a moratorium on all light-hitting Twins outfielders? Torii Hunter is a slightly better option than Jacque Jones, which is sort of like saying Celine Dion is a slightly better singer than Michael Bolton.
2005-10-20 10:58:28
78.   Marty
And Abe guarantees that Gibson and Orel will be great managers, as long as they don't have to listen to their GM.
2005-10-20 10:59:28
79.   regfairfield
68 Millwood is on my "don't touch with a ten foot pole" list. (Which, sadly, almost every aviable pitcher is on.) His strikeout, walk, and home run ratios have been pretty constant for the last four years, yet his ERA dropped by two runs this year.

This scares me.

2005-10-20 10:59:46
80.   Marty
77 Only if we can put a moratorium on references to Celine Dion and Michael Bolton? :)
2005-10-20 10:59:58
81.   Dr Love
I'll be honest with you, I love his music, I do, I'm a Michael Bolton fan. For my money, it doesn't get any better than when he sings "When a Man Loves a Woman".
2005-10-20 11:00:02
82.   rageon
I got about a paragraph into the link and gave up. It's really not even worthy of acknowledgement.

I keep reading that we might contact Kirk Gibson. I guess I always assumed it was because he would be Trammell's choice for a hitting coach and DePo wanted to make sure they would be on the same page. The fact that Gibson keeps coming up tells me that Trammell is among the favorites to get the job. Though I could be wrong.

2005-10-20 11:00:11
83.   Xeifrank
The Dodgers may have trouble spending that $23 million on free agents, so a large chunk of it may have to go to contracts picked up in trades. vr, Xei
2005-10-20 11:01:35
84.   molokai
I'd take a flyer on Jason Kubel:)
2005-10-20 11:02:44
85.   Curtis Lowe
Why is 23mil all to spend? From most estiamtes Ive seen its from 28 to 33 mil.
2005-10-20 11:03:19
86.   Mark
Torii Hunter is godlike. He would become the face of the Dodgers, were he to join the squad. He is a joy to watch play the game, and he is almost completely unlike Bradley. He would definitely be the Dodgers Marketing Department's wet dream.
2005-10-20 11:03:38
87.   Curtis Lowe
Hunter isnt a must on my list, I thought he'd be cheaper that 10 mil. In that case sign nomar millwood and fight hard for Matsui.
2005-10-20 11:04:20
88.   Wayne Wei-siang Hsieh
I for one am more-or-less persuaded by Jon's idea that we should give Milton another chance on a one-year deal. However, I wouldn't blame McCourt for burning his bridges there.

Of the potential LF solutions, I think Manny is the best one, assuming that we can really give up very little in return in exchange for taking on most if not all of his salary. If we have that kind of money to spend, then I definitely think we should use it.

As for starters, with the free agent market so thin, I'd be willing to go into April with what we have now and a few bargain veterans, hoping that either a has-been or a prospect pans out. If not, we can always make a move at mid-season--none of the current first-rank options like Burnett or Millwood looks terribly desirable.


2005-10-20 11:04:33
89.   SMY
If I could choose between Manny and Dunn, I'd choose Manny. Unfortunately I don't think the Dodgers will get to make that choice.

Abe and I have the same last name. That makes me sad.

2005-10-20 11:04:43
90.   bigcpa
2005 Fun Fact:

Astros Runs/Game: 4.25
Dodgers Runs/Game: 4.23

Astros record when scoring exactly 3 runs: 12-10

Dodgers record when scoring exactly 3 runs: 3-19 (last year 10-9)

2005-10-20 11:05:59
91.   Bob Timmermann
2005 fun fact possible explanation:

Number of pitchers on Dodgers comparable to Clemens, Pettite, Oswalt, and Lidge: 1 and only for a few weeks.

2005-10-20 11:06:36
92.   rageon
86 I'm hoping that was sarcasm. Surely you can't mean the same Torii Hunter who is about to force himself out of Minnesota? The same one who when asked about it replied, "it's just business"?
2005-10-20 11:06:42
93.   Eric Enders
He is a joy to watch play the game, and he is almost completely unlike Bradley. He would definitely be the Dodgers Marketing Department's wet dream.

While that's probably true, I doubt the purposes of the Dodgers Marketing Department would be suited by signing a bad player to a big contract, thereby increasing the likelihood of a losing season.

2005-10-20 11:07:29
94.   regfairfield
86 Except he's worse than Bradley at everything but chemistry. Most good defensive metrics have Torii Hunter as a very overrated outfielder.
2005-10-20 11:18:17
95.   Steve
Not a very fun fact, indeed.
2005-10-20 11:20:13
96.   Bob Timmermann
Wasn't there an injunction placed against the use of the word "indeed" yesterday?

Or was it a TRO? Did a higher court lift it? Did it go all the way up to the Supreme Court because of its extreme Federal significance?

2005-10-20 11:21:47
97.   sanchez101
The main reason im happy about Depodesta sitting in the GM chair is that he would never think of acquiring a player like Torii Hunter.
2005-10-20 11:23:29
98.   gvette
Torii Hunter=Devon White.
2005-10-20 11:25:09
99.   Curtis Lowe
Alright I think I got that noone likes Torii hunter here.
2005-10-20 11:27:01
100.   Eric Enders
I like him okay. I just don't think he's a good baseball player.
Show/Hide Comments 101-150
2005-10-20 11:28:29
101.   Bob Timmermann
Torii Hunter could be in charge of robbing Barry Bonds of home runs hit over the center field fence.

Ultimately, that won't pay off much.

Everybody knows the Twins most valuable outfielder is Shannon Stewart. He would have been the AL MVP twice over in Jayson Stark's world.

2005-10-20 11:29:18
102.   KLV
The ONLY team Hunter would make sense for is a team like the Yankees that is just desperate for a CF. The Dodgers have an overabundance of guys who can play CF. We need a bat.
2005-10-20 11:30:22
103.   Eric Enders
If we got Shannon Stewart and kept Jeff Kent, Milton Bradley, and J.D. Drew, we'd have a pretty good start at an all-two-first-names team.

Nomar would certainly throw a wrench in that plan, though.

2005-10-20 11:32:59
104.   Curtis Lowe
103- thats almost as funny as the all jason outfield.
2005-10-20 11:33:00
105.   bigcpa
I went to college with a guy named Wunsch.
2005-10-20 11:33:21
106.   Sam DC
103 Shame to have lost Jim Tracy, though. Maybe Kirk Gibson could stretch himself and fill the gap.
2005-10-20 11:33:37
107.   Sushirabbit
And Oswalt is going to go for alot more dollars, now. Man I wish we could get him in the rotation. I'd stand with the lineup we have if we could just get better pitching. Granted, I'd love to have Oswalt, Milwood (or Byrd) and Manny, but I don't think that it's a huge gamble on the offense that was injury riddled. I still think Valentine has value on the bench. There's alot of time for trading left, too.

It's fun to speculate, but won't the manager come first?

2005-10-20 11:34:09
108.   Curtis Lowe
103- Would Hee Sop Choi have 3 first names?
2005-10-20 11:36:24
109.   Bob Timmermann
Hee-Seop Choi really just has one first name "Hee-Seop". But that's how he chose to transliterate it.

He could also go by Hee Seop or Heeseop. There isn't a standard.

So sayeth my Korean boss, who just runs both names together in her case.

2005-10-20 11:36:44
110.   Eric Enders
Only your surname can count as a second first name. Billy Bob Blezkowski, for example, doesn't count.
2005-10-20 11:38:42
111.   Dr Love
If we got Shannon Stewart and kept Jeff Kent, Milton Bradley, and J.D. Drew, we'd have a pretty good start at an all-two-first-names team.

Especially if Russell Martin makes the team, as well as Mike Rose and Edwin Jackson as call ups.

2005-10-20 11:38:55
112.   Curtis Lowe
I knew a guy named Choi takihyro in high school.
2005-10-20 11:43:21
113.   sanchez101
Ive heard Furcal and Garciappara's name mentioned here. I like the idea of bringing in a shortstop that can hit. I love watching Izturis play, but he's useless offensively unless he's hitting .330 and he's not the most durable guy. On a powerhouse team like the Yankees or Red Sox, he could be a usefull regular, but the Dodgers dont have a couple 35hr-100rbi hitters, they need offensive contribution from every position and izturis just isnt going to cut it even when he comes back from TJ surgury.

I would like to throw Julio Lugo's name into the ring if we are talking about replacements at SS. Quietly he had a better offensive season than Furcal and is much more durable than Nomar. Defensively, the metrics claim hes as good as Izturis (above average), but not as good as Furcal, who easily deserves the Gold Glove this year. He's currently the property of Tampa Bay, which is why his performance went under the radar and currently has one team option ($4.95m) year on his contract left before free agency. Now, even though he's been trending upwards the past couple years, its unlikely that he'll match 2005 offensive numbers, but he should come close with something like 285/340/400, huge compared to Izturis or Robles.

I think he adds some speed to the roster and is a good stolen base %'s. Im not saying he's the best option, but considering the risks with the other options (performance-robles, price-furcal, durability-nomar) I think that for the right trade (I'm assuming TB would pick-up his option, but this is TB we're talking bout), he would be nice option. opinions?

2005-10-20 11:43:43
114.   Sushirabbit
Just have to say, that I'm rooting for the Astro's at this point because Garner went to my High School. I can't remember if he came and gave a talk there, or at UT, but I liked him because he was quick with all our witty (at the time, these were baseball players) cutups, laughed easy, and still laser beamed onto fundamental mistakes and knew all kinds of stuff.

It's funny. Somtimes he seems dumb from the way he is covered in the media, but he most certainly wasn't to me back then. Of course, this would have been in the '80s. And all I need to do for prespective is look at a picture of myself. :-)

2005-10-20 11:48:33
115.   Eric Enders
"I would like to throw Julio Lugo's name"

Speaking of Marketing Department Wet Dreams

Presenting the Domestic Violence all-stars!

Leading off and playing shortsop, Julio Lugo!
Batting second and playing center field, Milton Bradley!
The starting pitcher, warming up in the bullpen, Scott Erickson!

In Lugo's case the charge is not in dispute, either. As I recall, he slammed his wife's head into her car hood in front of witnesses.

2005-10-20 11:49:22
116.   Bob Timmermann
Ozzie Guillen could be smart, but as far as I can tell, he's unintelligble in two languages.

However, Venezuelan Spanish is really hard for me to pick up. There was a Venezuelan woman I worked with here and when she would go into Spanish, I felt like I was getting hit by a torrent of words. And I think Guillen is probably from a much different economic class than the woman I worked with.

2005-10-20 11:51:36
117.   rageon
As much as I want a big-hitting SS/3B, I don't think we can tie ourselves up with any non-elite players at either position. Our farm system has zero good outfielders and tons of good infielders. So unless we trade some of Guzman/LaRoche/Aybar/Young I doubt that we'll need to get any infielders for more than a 1 year solution.
2005-10-20 11:52:49
118.   LAT
Wotus said before he was interviewed. "The Dodgers are like the Giants in that they are built to win now. Their focus is to win the division. The Dodgers are a premier organization."

This is from the previous thread. I understand Wotus has a thin line to walk, but isn't this exactly wrong. The Giants and their AARP line-up are built to win now. We have more of a "still in diapers" line-up which although may contend in an awful division, is still two years away.

2005-10-20 11:57:34
119.   rageon

It really bothers me that I can't come up with a good acronym based on the POTUS/FLOTUS used for the president and first lady. There just aren't enough words that start with 'W', I guess. So for that reason alone, he's got a strike against him in my book.

2005-10-20 11:58:52
120.   Penarol1916
Is it petty of me to want the Astros to sweep the White Sox so that none of my idiot neighbors sets off fireworks to wake up sons and keep them up until after midnight, like they did after the ALCS?
2005-10-20 12:04:12
121.   rageon
120 No less petty than me cheering for the Astros simply because I spent the past 5 months trying to convince the only White Sox fan I know that the team isn't for real. Whoops.
2005-10-20 12:06:17
122.   regfairfield
I think my preseason prediction for the White Sox was "the best team in a bad division. However, since they are the anti-Braves, they'll find a way to screw things up."
2005-10-20 12:06:57
123.   Marty
I'm rooting for the Astros in honor of J.R. Richards and because they are the national league. But, if the Sox win, I'll be happy for a close friend who grew up as a Sox fan in the '50s
2005-10-20 12:15:25
124.   underdog
Delayed response here, in kind, but wanted to say I'm sorry in retrospect that you folks read that "piece" I linked too earlier. I really should have added even more disclaimers - besides the Davey Lopes thing - like, don't read while eating, or after eating, or at all, really, because you will just get extremely queasy, and irked, etc. It does seem a practical joke, that's the only possible explanation for something so beyond-poorly written. I've read a few other Scout pieces on Yahoo, that were not just poorly edited, they seemed not edited at all.

Which, as a web content editor myself, causes me to furrow my brow so much I'm temporarily blinded.

I wouldn't be at all surprised to see the CF-desperate Yanks make a move for Hunter, too. We should stay out of those stakes. Bradley or whoever, and Drew, and then we just need one more real solid LF and we're okay, I think.

Uh, can we get Beltre back (along with Wallach?) Maybe Wallach can play 3rd if needed.

Oh, never mind.

2005-10-20 12:18:13
125.   Sushirabbit
Just to add to this whole line up thing. Think about anybody remotely better than those that were (or were not) getting on-base for Kent. Maybe Xei could run some of his simulations!
2005-10-20 12:24:13
126.   Improbable88
120 - yes

119 - Has anybody explored the Lotus Flower direction for good ol' Ron?

Wittle Wonnie Wotus Fwower?


2005-10-20 12:26:03
127.   Eric Enders
Who would Weaver... ah, never mind.
2005-10-20 12:28:07
128.   Improbable88
127 - heh heh
2005-10-20 12:32:02
129.   SMY
124 -- Out of curiosity, I went to The front page looks pretty clean, and it says they are associated with and MSN. I sent them an e-mail telling them to hire some fact checkers and copyeditors, because that article was out of control. I know it won't make a difference, but it made me feel better.

Also, when I went to Vero Beach this year I picked up this Dodger newspaper -- I forget the name, but the articles in it were equally awful in terms of content and style. It wouldn't shock me a bit if was just publishing their content.

2005-10-20 12:42:20
130.   Eric Enders
The famous (infamous?) Tot Holmes is, I believe, associated with

My dad actually has a subscription to their site and reads their Dodger articles, which he sends me sometimes. They're horribly, horribly written and edited, but they also have by far the best coverage of Dodger minor leaguers out there -- far more extensive than even Baseball America.

For example, a few weeks ago they had an article listing all the Dodger players who were sent to Fall Instructional League and the specific aspect of the game that each player was supposed to work on.

They also have lots of feature articles on minor league players, so if you want to know everything there is to know about, say, Trayvon Robinson or Sergio Pedroza, that's the place to go.

None of this, of course, mitigates the poor excuse for journalism that is the Yeager article. Nor does it excuse their consistently sloppy writing and editing. But the site is not useless.

2005-10-20 12:50:39
131.   scareduck
Is it petty of me to want the Astros to sweep the White Sox so that none of my idiot neighbors sets off fireworks to wake up sons and keep them up until after midnight, like they did after the ALCS?

No more so than me wanting the Sox to lose because Guillen practices Santeria. Blecch.

2005-10-20 12:52:32
132.   SMY
Yeah, well, still. Presumably is a commercial enterprise, you'd think they'd put a bit of work into cleaning things up a bit. Especially if it's going to reach a wide audience via Yahoo or whatever.
2005-10-20 12:59:07
133.   Eric Enders
"No more so than me wanting the Sox to lose because Guillen practices Santeria."

Hey, I like this game. Do I get to root against Phil Garner because he's a Southern Baptist?

2005-10-20 12:59:14
134.   Improbable88
131 - That's like saying, I root against Shawn Green because he practices Judaism! Blegh!

I don't know if petty if the right word for it though.

2005-10-20 12:59:29
135.   King of the Hobos
That was the first time the name Abe Yeager was used to write an article on Tot Holmes and Bill Shelley do most of it. It's a good site for reading about the minors, pretty much everything Eric said
2005-10-20 13:08:18
136.   molokai
FYI - Ray Miller is now available as pitching coach with Mazzone taking over in Baltimore.
He made a terrible manager but has always been well-respected as a pitching coach.
2005-10-20 13:13:18
137.   dzzrtRatt
119 Wizard of the United States? As one might have if Harry Potter was non-fiction.

Or, if you're Henry Kissinger: Weltanschaung of the United States?

And wasn't W's father once regarded as the Wimp of the United States?

50 I'm not dying to trade Dioner Navarro. He's one of the few bright spots to emerge in 2005. But, gotta admit, his market value could not be higher right now. If you see '06 as a rebuilding year, you might be surprised what Navarro could get you. A young catcher, low priced, somewhat proven? There are not many of those. And, if we're contending in '06, a lot of these (can I say this?) wet dream players you guys are wishing for, could be pried loose in return for a Navarro.

2005-10-20 13:17:23
138.   DXMachina
70 Davey Lopes' ethnicity seems to change a lot depending upon when you ask him.

Davey Lopes is the "son of an Irish mother and Cape Verdean father," according to this article from the Providence Journal (you may need to register to read it, or use bugmenot).

2005-10-20 13:25:25
139.   crazy dumbsaint
"By Abe Yeager
Guest Editorial"

Guest editorial? Who IS he and why is he worthy of a guest editorial? Maybe "Abe Yeager" is the internet version of "Alan Smithee."

2005-10-20 13:34:17
140.   underdog
139. and co. I was thinking the same thing! It's gotta be a nom de plume, or nom de net, or nom de dumb, or whatever. I'd take my name off that thing, too.

What Eric E said is true, it's why I've read them in the past - they do give a lot of coverage to minor leaguers (more than we probably need, but still), so it has value. Still, their editing is quite lazy. Maybe a few less minor leaguers covered (do we need to know all about the backup catcher in Ogden?) for a bit more care?

I always loved the irony of "An Alan Smithee Film/Burn, Hollywood, Burn" becoming an Alan Smithee film because the real director, like the one in the movie, took his name off the film.

2005-10-20 13:38:02
141.   dzzrtRatt
Abe Yeager was the name of a character portrayed by Stuart Margolin on an episode of "The Virginian" in 1968.

The only other reference on Google to an Abe Yeager is on a site some family has set up to highlight the doings of their toddler. This toddler, who lives in Washington, D.C., has a little friend named Abe Yeager. Perhaps he wrote the column.

2005-10-20 13:41:24
142.   joekings
138 - This article, fourth sentence down, claims he's African American. It's a mystery wrapped in an enigma.

2005-10-20 13:42:53
143.   Steve
141 - That's Angel, right?
2005-10-20 13:48:16
144.   Marty
Angel In Rockford Files? Same guy.
2005-10-20 13:49:54
145.   Jon Weisman
143 - You bet.

During the Rockford Files era, Margolin was in this movie based on the Harry Kemelman novel - they filmed a lot of it on my street.

2005-10-20 13:55:10
146.   Marty
Margolin was in another little-seen TV series with Garner called "Nichols". I remember liking it, but don't remember much else.
2005-10-20 14:02:25
147.   dzzrtRatt
Wasn't he also in about every other episode of "Love American Style"? I haven't looked at IMDB, I'm just going on memory. Sometimes he was a guy who was an "uptight" square, and other times he was sort of a hippie.
2005-10-20 14:03:24
148.   Marty
147 Great, now I've got the Love American Style song in my head.
2005-10-20 14:09:07
149.   dzzrtRatt
I checked. I was right. He was in about five episodes.

Now I'll drive Marty completely insane. He was also in:

"That Girl"
"The Monkees"

Now you're in theme song hell.

2005-10-20 14:09:54
150.   Curtis Lowe
148-Good thing I have no Idea what song that is.The only song stuck in my head is the its a beautiful day for a ball game song, whats really sad is I dont know all the lyrics.
Show/Hide Comments 151-200
2005-10-20 14:18:44
151.   Marty
It's a beautiful day for a ballgame
For a ballgame today
The fans are out to buy a ticket or two
From Walla Walla Washington to Kalamazoo

It's a beautiful day for a home run
Or even a triple's OK
We're gonna cheer and boo
And raise a hullabaloo
At the ballgame today!

2005-10-20 14:20:18
152.   Curtis Lowe
151- Thanks for clearing all that up for me, but I think I liked my random gibberish version better.
2005-10-20 14:26:09
153.   Steve
Rockford Files. First Season. Dec. 6. I think it's a holiday.
2005-10-20 14:31:20
154.   tomA
No big mystery about Davey Lopes' ethnicity. Lopes is from East Providence, which has a large Cape Verdean community. My friend, who's from Providence and is of Cape Verdean descent considers herself African-American. But most Cape Verdeans are descended from both Portugese and Africans.

2005-10-20 14:41:28
155.   gvette
And WHAT exactly is so bad about the theme from "The Monkees"?

Besides, nothing can possibly be as bad as the theme from "The Love Boat", which undoubtedly Margolin also guested on.

2005-10-20 14:46:48
156.   Marty
Favorite TV Themes:

Peter Gunn
Get Smart
Branded (!)

2005-10-20 14:48:59
157.   Jon Weisman
156 - Rockford Files
Hill Street Blues
2005-10-20 14:50:51
158.   Bob Timmermann

Love, American Style,
Truer than the Red, White and Blue.
Love, American Style,
That's me and you.

And on a star spangled night my love, (My love come to me).
You can rest you head on my shoulder.
Out by the dawn's early light, my love
I will defend your right to try.

Love, American Style,
That's me and you.

2005-10-20 14:53:35
159.   gvette
Hawaii Five 0
Mission Impossible
2005-10-20 14:56:06
160.   tomA
What's Happenin?
2005-10-20 14:57:30
161.   Bob Timmermann
The Prisoner - Opening Theme
The Virginian (Ennio Morricone version)
Maverick (original version)
Ghost and Mrs. Muir
2005-10-20 14:57:44
162.   tomA
and Welcome Back Kotter
2005-10-20 15:00:05
163.   LetsGoDodgers
161 - Sanford and Son, with Welcome Back Kotter a distant second
2005-10-20 15:00:33
164.   dzzrtRatt
Gilligan's Island, the original "and the rest" version.

Marty mentioned "Branded." He's a genius. My brothers and I watched that show primarily because of the theme song:

Something something something something
What do you do if you're branded,
And you know you're a man!

2005-10-20 15:00:38
165.   Bob Timmermann
I would also add:

Here Come the Brides
Kolchak: The Night Stalker (Darren McGavin version, not the new one)

2005-10-20 15:01:18
166.   Bob Timmermann
All but one man died.
There at Bitter Creek.
And they say he ran away.

Branded, scorned as the one who ran.
What do you do when you're branded, and you know you're a man.

Wherever you go, for the rest of your life
You must prove, you're a man.

Full song (the above is the abbreviated TV version):

All but one man died,
There at Bitter Creek,
And they say he ran away ...

Marked with a coward's shame.
What do you do when you're branded,
Well, you fight for your name?

He was innocent,
Not a charge was true,
But the world will never know ...

Scorned as the one who ran.
What do you do when you're branded,
And you know you're a man?

And wherever you go
for the rest of your life
You must prove ...
You're a man!

2005-10-20 15:03:35
167.   LetsGoDodgers
"What's Happening?"
2005-10-20 15:03:47
168.   Marty
Least Favorite:
Three's Company (by a wide margin)
Love American Style
L.A. Law
Mr. Ed
2005-10-20 15:04:13
169.   gvette
164/166 Branded- All time best opening shot for a show, with Chuck Connors'Cavalry uniform ripped off, and his sword broken in two!!
2005-10-20 15:08:10
170.   Marty
164 169 My brother and I watched it for the same reason! We were always dumbfounded that the show generally sucked otherwise. This was also right after the huge success of the Rifleman, which made it even more frustrating.
2005-10-20 15:08:27
171.   das411
It's official, the inmates are running the asylum here :)

Nate, Hobos, where are you guys? I've gotta nominate "Guts", "Ren & Stimpy" and "Rocko's Modern Life" here, speak out against all these oldies!

2005-10-20 15:10:20
172.   Marty
It's official, the inmates are running the asylum here

Pretty much the definition of Blog :)

2005-10-20 15:22:45
173.   dzzrtRatt
171 Well, not really. Chuck Connors, star of "Branded," played for the Dodgers. He had one at-bat for them. This is all highly relevant as we consider who should be on the bench for '06, and what kind of legacy they have to live up to.
2005-10-20 15:24:26
174.   Bob Timmermann
Chuck Connors hangs out near my mom nowadays.
2005-10-20 15:25:03
175.   Steve
Fire Stuart Townsend!
2005-10-20 15:29:49
176.   Bob Timmermann
I'm giving the new "Night Stalker" a chance. I'm not used to seeing a show with that name with good production values.

I miss Simon Oakland yelling at Darren McGavin.

Simon Oakland should have gotten a special Academy Award for "Psycho" as "Best Actor to have to stand up and do all the plot exposition at the end of the movie so we could figure out what we just saw."

2005-10-20 15:29:59
177.   das411
Oh well, some actual baseball news. Your 2005 World Series umpires are:

2005-10-20 15:32:42
178.   dzzrtRatt
Connors lifetime OPS-- .582. One game for Brooklyn, 66 games for the Cubs.

I finally watched the weird remake of Psycho, word for word. Robert Forrester gave the Simon Oakland monologue.

2005-10-20 15:38:29
179.   Xeifrank
I see we've moved on to television theme songs. I will come back in a few hours. :)
vr, Xei
2005-10-20 15:39:15
180.   Bob Timmermann
Earlier this week on the Game Show Network, they were showing a 1959 rerun of "What's My Line?". Chuck Connors was one of the panelists and Branch Rickey was one of the contestants (but not the mystery guest). Rickey's occupation was "President of the Continental Baseball League". Rickey said the third league was a certainty.

Connors couldn't pick out Rickey's voice (they were blindfolded), but he did acknowledge that Rickey signed him. Bennett Cerf guessed right. I think Rickey got $40. Knowing Rickey, he was sure to keep the $40.

On Connor's grave at San Fernando Mission Cemetery, there is a picture of him as "The Rifleman" along with logos for the Cubs, Dodgers, and Celtics.

2005-10-20 15:39:17
181.   Steve
176 -- uggh. Don't.
2005-10-20 15:40:29
182.   Bob Timmermann
Cowboy Joe West is the crew chief! Woo hoo! Enders is going to be one angry dude.
2005-10-20 15:41:36
183.   Marty
Lee Marvin making Simon Oakland bark in "Emporer of the North" is pretty good too.
2005-10-20 15:43:49
184.   gvette
177-- Other great Simon Oakland moment was as Steve McQueen's boss in Bullitt.

178-- More Chuck Connors trivia; besides his brief MLB career,time with the PCL Angels,and brief NBA career, Connors acted as unofficial go-between when Drysdale/Koufax ended their spring '66 holdout.

A sports auction house just held an auction of memorabilia from Connors' estate. Among the items available were a couple of his Winchesters from the Rifleman.

2005-10-20 15:46:51
185.   regfairfield
How many umpires are nicknamed "Cowboy"?

Didn't Cowboy Bob Davidson call the game where Dodgers fans threw all those baseballs on the field?

2005-10-20 15:51:40
186.   Bob Timmermann
All I know is that Vin always says "Cowboy Joe West".

I don't know if he's able to say "Joe West" without saying "Cowboy" before it.

2005-10-20 15:53:49
187.   Xeifrank
So when the W.S. moves to Houston, does Carl Everett sit? vr, Xei
2005-10-20 15:56:31
188.   regfairfield
187 Well, you can't sit the A.L. MVP, Scott Podsednik, if that's what you're thinking.
2005-10-20 16:05:15
189.   Sam DC
Theme Song . . . (take cover, Xei!)

Barney Miller (can't believe noone said it yet)
Rockford Files
Laverne and Shirley

(Scrubs is good too -- impressive to squeeze the theme into 15 seconds or whatever it is)

2005-10-20 16:06:45
190.   Bob Timmermann
Yes, no DH in Houston. Everett would likely be the only respectable pinch hitter for the White Sox.

Those backups on the Sox are really bad: Willie Harris, Pablo Ozuna, Timo Perez, Chris Widger....

2005-10-20 16:08:53
191.   Jon Weisman
189 - If you get the Scrubs DVD, you can hear the longer version over and over.

I actually like the theme for the U.S. version of The Office - a show that I love, by the way. Sorry, I know it sounds impossible or heretical, but I do think it's funnier than the original.

2005-10-20 16:08:58
192.   Sam DC
By the way, I'm not proud to put Laverne and Shirley up there, just honest.
2005-10-20 16:09:52
193.   regfairfield
This is the same team that had Chris Widger playing third and Jermaine Dye playing short.
2005-10-20 16:13:43
194.   Bob Timmermann

Well, it wasnt as if the White Sox had many other options in that situation. It was extra innings and Crede got ejected. That's sort of like criticizing the 1989 Dodgers for playing Eddie Murray at third.

2005-10-20 16:16:52
195.   Steve
Simon Oakland was in Tony Rome, the Sinatra movie I watched last night
2005-10-20 16:23:00
196.   regfairfield
194 It wasn't an entirely serious critism, but isn't Jermaine Dye pretty much one of the worst people you could put at short?
2005-10-20 16:23:35
197.   jasonungar05
Goodbye grey skies, hello blue,
'cause nothing can hold me when I hold you.
feels so right it can't be wrong,
rockin' and rollin all week long......


Makin' their way,
The only way they know how,
That's just a little bit more than the law will allow.

2005-10-20 16:25:21
198.   gvette
190-- Who needs a bench when you have the ghosts of Shoeless Joe Jackson, Buck Weaver, Bill Veeck and Nellie Fox on your side, along with millions of blue collar, Cub hating, "beer and a shot swilling", Southside fans supporting you.
2005-10-20 16:26:25
199.   Uncle Miltie
Logical Priorities
1. A 155-game, .875-OPS outfielder.
First guy that came to mind was Pat Burrell. The guy is an absolute A-hole (yes, unfortunately I've met him), but I'd take him. Maybe a swap of Perez for Burrell?
Other options (that have been discussed here)
Bobby Abreu- definitely, he'd be my number 1 choice
Adam Dunn- can definitely hit, but is a terrible defender and would cost a ton in terms of prospects
Griffey- NO! Huge contract, old, injury prone
Giles- also old, will command $10+ million in free agents. The Dodgers should might avoid FA for the most part.
Sheffield- was this a joke? He also can't play 155 games in the outfield.
Jenkins- no, because of health issues
Matsui- yes, will command a lot of money, but he would be worth it because he's durable and marketable
Manny- at $20 million? No. at $12 million? Probably not because the Red Sox would demand top prospects (Billingsley, Guzman, etc). He's also 34 years old and DH material.

Center Fielders
Vernon Wells- I like him, but he'd cost a lot in terms of prospects. Truly a great defender. I'd rather have him than...
Torii Hunter- I also like him, but he's overrated and overpaid. I wouldn't give up much for him considering his large salary.
Brad Wilkerson- yes, especially if Jim Bowden is still their GM. Offer Repko and Antonio Perez (joke).

2. A 220-inning, 3.25-ERA pitcher.
There aren't many guys like this
Livan- IP? Check ERA? Nope
Zito- IP? Check ERA? In the NL, probably around 3.5
Greg Maddux- IP? Check ERA? No, but large salary and age
Esteban Loaiza- IP? Close ERA? Not in Dodger Stadium
Tom Glavine- IP? Close ERA? Close, but large salary and age
Jake Westbrook- IP? Close ERA? No, but very durable and my top target
Jason Johnson- IP? Close ERA? Definitely not, but will eat innings- pretty underrated pitcher
Mike Maroth- IP? Close ERA? No, very mediocre pitcher- a decent #5
Paul Byrd- IP? No, but 200+ ERA? In Dodger Stadium, maybe. Will be looking for a big payday at 34.
Kevin Millwood- IP? Not this year, but usually ERA? Yea…but there is the Boras factor. Stay away.

3. A backup (or frontup) plan on the left side of the infield in case Aybar-Robles can't cut it.
Kaz Matsui or Nomar would be fine at SS. The Mets might release Matsui, so he could come cheaply.

2005-10-20 16:31:56
200.   regfairfield
199 Kaz "I'm worse than Miguel Cairo" Matsui?
Show/Hide Comments 201-250
2005-10-20 16:33:32
201.   FirstMohican
200 - Kaz "I'm worse than _____ _____" Matsui?
2005-10-20 16:33:51
202.   Steve
Self-immolation becomes an option again.
2005-10-20 16:39:07
203.   Borchard504
Abosolutely perfect read on Milton Bradley, Jon. I'd love to have him back.
2005-10-20 16:40:01
204.   dzzrtRatt
198 Only 15 members of the White Sox got any playing time at all in the LCS. Could that be a record of some kind?

They used 20 players in the division series.

2005-10-20 16:42:12
205.   Icaros
196 If I remember correctly, he played short when I faced him in Senior Babe Ruth.
2005-10-20 16:47:37
206.   Bob Timmermann

Actually that was a 9-inning game upon further review. Crede was ejected for not making an effort to get out of the way of a pitch (by Hunter Wendlestedt no less!), Guillen didn't have many options.

Crede was actually starting at shortstop in that game as Uribe was out. And Willie Harris was at second as Taguchi and Ozuna were injured. The only guy healthy on the bench who wasn't a pitcher was Timo Perez and he's a lefty. Guillen's choices to play shortstop were either Rowand or Dye and I think Dye said that he had played shortstop in high school and Guillen figured that was good enough.

It was only for one inning and no balls were at Dye and Oakland won 2-1.

2005-10-20 16:52:42
207.   King of the Hobos
206 I was actually watching that game by luck. I was rooting for the A's, but was angry when they failed to hit a ball at Dye. Crede and Widger actually played decentlyat 3B and SS respectively.
2005-10-20 16:53:46
208.   Curtis Lowe
191- I completly agree.
2005-10-20 16:56:19
209.   das411
Bleep bleep!!

2005-10-20 16:56:26
210.   Bob Timmermann
The 1970 Orioles used just 14 players in the ALCS, but that was just a 3-game series.

In the 1963 World Series sweep of the Yankees, the Dodgers used just 13 players. Four pitchers: Koufax, Podres, Drysdale and Perranoski. Nine position players: T. Davis, W. Davis, Fairly, Gilliam, Howard, Roseboro, Skowron, Tracewski, Wills.

Howard didn't start Game 3. Fairly started in that one and came in for defense in the other 3.

2005-10-20 16:58:36
211.   King of the Hobos
The Dodgers actually did fairly well today in Phoenix, a bit of a rarity lately

Laroche 2-4, 2B, BB, K
Kemp 2-4
Abreu 1-4, 2B, K

2005-10-20 17:11:42
212.   blue22
.875 OPSing OFers who play 150+ games may be a hard thing to come by. Given the choice, I'll take a productive Geoff Jenkins over a durable Jacque Jones.

I think the Dodger OF depth allows for a little leeway when it comes to injury.

2005-10-20 17:22:39
213.   Xeifrank
Xeifrank's WS Predictions. Keep in mind that I have never incorretly predicted the results of a White Sox or Astro WS.

G1: Chicago
G2: Chicago
G3: Houston
G4: Chicgo
G5: Houston
G6: Chicago
Chicago wins series 4-2.
vr, Xei

2005-10-20 17:25:46
214.   Xeifrank
212. When was the last time J.Jones OPSed anywhere near .875? I think we already have plenty of Jacques Jones' on the team. I like Jenkins' offensive production, thought that K number is pretty darn high.
vr, Xei
2005-10-20 17:27:54
215.   regfairfield
As someone who has had Jenkins on his fantasy team the last two years, he will make you hate him until about mid-July.
2005-10-20 17:30:26
216.   sanchez101
for all the talk about improving the outfield, i think its most likely the opening day outfield is cruz-bradley-drew. Cruz isnt an huge plus, but he is an average or better player overall for his position. Really, he's Depodesta kind of player; low batting average, good secondary skills and defense. He only played in 115 games this season, but played in 150+ the in 03 and 04 and 05. He's an 800 OPS player, who will cost at most $5 million. Is an 850 OPS player worth twice as much? If that extra money is reinvested into pitching, im all for it.
2005-10-20 17:31:58
217.   LAT
Theme songs:

Good ones:
Five O
Hate to admit it: Brady Bunch

Worst one:
Love, exciting and new,
Come aboard.
We're expecting you.
Love, life's sweetest reward.
Let it flow,
it floats back to you.

The Love Boat
soon will be making another run.
The Love Boat promises something for everyone.
Set a course for adventure,
Your mind on a new romance.

Love won't hurt anymore
It's an open smile on a friendly shore.

It's Looooove!
Welcome aboard - It's Looooove!

2005-10-20 17:36:16
218.   King of the Hobos
Believe it or not, I'm walking on air. I never thought I could feel so free...
2005-10-20 17:51:49
219.   gcrl
my $0.02

sanford and son
magnum pi
family guy

2005-10-20 17:59:37
220.   King of the Hobos

Manny doesn't want to go to the Mets now. He's decided Anaheim is the best choice...

2005-10-20 18:18:45
221.   alex 7
USA Today columnist Bob Nightengale: "1. Get a center fielder: The Yankees would love to get the Twins' Gold Glove center fielder, Torii Hunter... Milton Bradley of the Dodgers has also been mentioned in the Yankees' inner circles. If they don't nab Bradley, they might take Angels center fielder Steve Finley and the $7 million on his contract."
2005-10-20 18:19:23
222.   gvette
220 Should be fun to see Stoneman's reaction when the Red Sox start with a demand for superprospects (Jered)Weaver,Wood, Kendrick, among others for Manny.
2005-10-20 18:29:18
223.   Steve
217 -- blasphemy
2005-10-20 18:32:08
224.   das411
Um...Bob, maybe that repenting is closer than we think:

2005-10-20 18:32:44
225.   Bob Timmermann
If the Yankees want Steve Finley, I think Bill Stoneman will pay for the moving expenses.

Isn't Steve Finley even worse than Bernie Williams now?

2005-10-20 18:40:20
226.   alex 7
Bradley, LaRoche, A. Perez, O. Perez, Kent...

We do have some pieces to work with right?

Since we're dreaming:

Bradley, O. Perez, LaRoche, A. Perez, and a pitching prospect for Arod.

Kent packaged for an OF bat like Burrell, Dunn, etc.

ARod at short, Aybar at 3B, and Robles/Izturis at 2B.

2005-10-20 18:40:47
227.   DXMachina
184-- Even more Chuck Connors trivia: Like Craig Biggio, he went to Seton Hall (as did I), and he also played professional basketball for the Boston Celtics.
2005-10-20 19:57:35
228.   LAT
We often talk here about why Depo and the McCourts can't catch a PR break or why the PR people they hire are so ineffective. (Yes, you Sitrick). Today, I got my Sports Illustrated. On the cover is a smiling Ron Artest with Larry Bird. The caption reads "You May Not Love Ron Artest but Larry Bird Does." On the inside is a whole section on how Bird sees so much of himself in Artest because he "plays to win" "has the desire to win" and "his intensity." Somewhere out there a PR genius is worth his weight in gold today. Whoever the genius is, took Artest, the most hated man in sports since John Rocker, and paired him with legendary icon. An icon no one would dare criticize and is thought to only extend himself to those he truly respects. Artest is given instant creditability through his association with Bird. We think to ourselves, "if Larry sees the good maybe Artest isn't so bad, maybe he's just misunderstood or it was one bad incident." Meanwhile, Bird has said nothing but used a few meaningless buzz words like "win", "intensity" and "desire." The illusion is so perfectly orchestrated.

Bradley's transgressions are slight compared to Artest. If Artest's image can be rehabilitated, surely Bradley's can be with less effort. And who is the perfect person to play Larry Bird? I'm not sure. Its not Tommy cause no one really listens to him. The perfect person if he would do it (which he wouldn't) is Koufax. In fact, McCourt's image would be upgraded if he could get Koufax to hang around and go to bat for him publicly. Garvey might have been able to do it but, he spokesmodels for so many products, I think most will figure he is just shilling again. But if I were Frank and I wanted to upgrade my image this seems like an effective way to go about it. Likewise, if the Dodgers want to keep Bradly and minimize the backlash, this approach would work. In any event the Dodgers should find out who the Pacers PR person is and call him/her pronto.

2005-10-20 20:00:27
229.   dzzrtRatt
Bradley and Kent to the Yankees for Cano and Pavano? Then Lowe and Perez to the Sox for Manny?

Before barfing on Pavano, note this pattern. A hot free agent pitcher signs with NY, and fails for one reason or another, at least in Steinbrenner's eyes. He then is shunted off to another team, where he realizes his true potential. Contreras and Vazquez. And Weaver, actually.

2005-10-20 20:31:39
230.   bill cox
Theres a holdup in the Bronx
Brooklyn's broken out in fights
There's a traffic jam in Harlem
That's backed up to Jackson Heights
There's a woman's lost a child
Khrushchev's due at Idlewild

Car 54 where are you?

John Sebastian's theme from Welcome Back Kotter was great."Those were the Days" from "All in the Family" was good.

2005-10-20 20:37:16
231.   LAT
I forgot to add one of the good ones:

They're creepy and they're kooky,
Mysterious and spooky,
They're all together ooky,
The Addams Family.

And one of the best:

Come and listen to a story about a man named Jed
A poor mountaineer, barely kept his family fed,
Then one day he was shootin at some food,
And up through the ground came a bubblin' crude.

2005-10-20 20:55:03
232.   popup
#228, LAT, I would be thrilled if McCourt brought Sandy back to the Dodgers in a meaningful role. I doubt that he would want the travel involved in being a pitching coach, but if he was willing to do it, I can't think of a better person to be in charge of the Dodger pitching staff. Sandy has worked with a few pitchers after his retirement, and from everything I have heard he is an outstanding instructor.

Name Orel as the manager, Sandy the pitching coach, Kirk Gibson and Manny Mota on the coaching lines, and McCourt could fire his PR staff yet again, not because they are incompetent, but because they would not be needed.

Stan from Tacoma

2005-10-20 21:30:26
233.   MikeB
The free agent market is thin. Trading for someone in the off-season could prove expensive in terms of players given up, and contract $ taken on.
The other NL West teams aren't going to get significantly better than the Dodgers. They face the same thin free agent market, and trading obstacles - only more so.

San Diego and SF carry a huge debt load on their new stadiums. Arizona has severe financial constraints too. Colorado has some good young players, but their organization has yet prove it can build a team that will win consistently in thin air.

Consider - No one in the NL West division has more resources, or a better farm system than the Dodgers. No team can afford to improve themselves as much as the Dodgers. But, any team must still be smart and spend $$$ wisely. No sense becoming another Philly, or Baltimore or, an aging, bloated roster like NYY?

What if DePo just stands pat for the first third or so of the '06 season? After two months of games, many teams will start to realize it ain't their year, and that trimming payroll is more important than winning. It may prove to be the best time for DePodesta to acquire the difference makers we need in the lineup - a big bat, maybe two. And a stud pitcher or two. Christmas in July.

So, I would not be surprised if the Dodgers go into Spring training looking much the same as when the '05 season ended. They may make a move or two between now and February. But, it will probably be a safe one, a low-ball incentive laden contract to a suspect veteran (Garciaparra?), or a "you take my problem and I'll take yours trade" (Bradley for ???).

I'm willing to wait and see. Like some others, I think the big move this winter is the choice of manager. Lets hope Depo gets the right guy.

2005-10-20 21:52:29
234.   Peanuts in My Shoes
New boy in the neighborhood
Lives downstairs and it is understood.
He's there just to take good care of me,
Like he's one of the family.

Charles in Charge
Of our days and our nights
Charles in Charge
Of our wrongs and our rights

And I sing, I want,
I want Charge in Charge of me.

Charles in Charge
Of our days and our nights
Charles in Charge
Of our wrongs and our rights

And I sing, I want,
I want Charge in Charge of me.

2005-10-20 21:53:34
235.   Curtis Lowe
233- I agree with your reasoning but can you really see a GM of a team that just finished 71-91 going into the next season without any big moves?
2005-10-20 22:03:43
236.   dzzrtRatt
233 Most of what you say makes a lot of sense, but not this: "After two months of games, many teams will start to realize it ain't their year, and that trimming payroll is more important than winning."

The reality is, with three divisions and the wild card, only a few teams are really out of it after two or even three months--and those are most often the teams that were out of it in Spring Training. And even when things look bleak, the Houston Astros are the new patron saints of 'anything's possible,' coming back from 15-30 to get into the Series. Some people on this board figured in June that Roy Oswalt could be obtained; or Kevin Millwood. But after this season, what GM would dump an Oswalt or a Milwood mid-year if there was a mathematical chance they could come back? Heck, the Dodgers weren't out of the running til the last 30 days or so. This 71-win team saw itself as a buyer, not a seller!

It's a new era and new strategies are called for. The White Sox are one model--not one player of their starting 9 you could really call a star, just a lot of solid pieces, some of which they got in trades; backed up by a pitching rotation of all #2 starters. The Astros are another: Three #1 starters, and a lineup that's half in diapers and half over the hill but with a few teeth left.

2005-10-20 22:08:19
237.   bokonon42
How many points to a standard deviation in OPS+? Same number for ERA+, etc.?

Since nobody mentioned it, I'll just assume I'm wrong, but Night Court's theme was pretty great. Better than the show, most nights.

2005-10-20 22:11:00
238.   Bob Timmermann
The amazing thing about the White Sox is that they have an awful bench. And Williams did little to fix it.

However, it's not like the Astros have a lot to offer aside from the starting lineup and that isn't much.

2005-10-20 22:18:20
239.   LAT
I could be wrong about this, but it seems like the Sox were very fortunate as far as injuries go. Doesn't seem like thay had very many at all. The only meaningful one I can think of is, ironically, the Big Hurt. It must be the Dodgers got the Sox's share.
2005-10-20 22:23:40
240.   Bob Timmermann
Crede broke a finger in late August and Podsednik had a bad leg for most of the second half. There were some injuries to backups and relievers. When Hernandez got injured, the White Sox had Brandon McCarthy available to plug in.

They also had to tweak their bullpen a bit. Shingo Takatsu was the closer for a while and he was a disaster. And he ended up on the Mets.

2005-10-20 22:31:41
241.   King of the Hobos
I don't think I'd call Buerhle a #2 starter.

I wouldn't really want to model my team after the White Sox. They signed a lot of low cost guys that performed great. Sure they had steals in Iguchi, Dye, Pierzynski, Politte, Hermanson, and El Duque, but who predicted that every one of them would be this good? Many of them had career years, Garland and Contreras had never been that good, the Sox would not have won if they had played as they had every season before this. And after Matsui the Lesser, not too many people saw Iguchi being nearly s good as he was. For all the steals and bargains Williams got, there's a Scott Erickson waiting to be unleashed.

The White Sox won because of career years, very few injuries outside of Thomas, and few "Scott Ericksons." I don't sense a White Sox dynasty, or this success repeated. And this has nothing to do with Ozzie or Smartball. I just see them as the '01 Mariners, a team that overachieved and is destined to fall because their luck runs out

2005-10-20 22:32:39
242.   fanerman
Somebody up (I don't remember) said that Giles was an injury risk. In his last 7 seasons, he's averaged 151 games a year. In 2003 he only played in 134 games, but in the years surrounding that, he played 160, 153, 159, and 158 games.
2005-10-20 22:36:50
243.   das411
236 - Dzz, I think you can argue that both teams have followed a similar approach of building around a young nucleus and, as those players develop, gradually phasing in younger talent and paying for exceptional production in only a couple specific areas.

Astros: Remnants of the 1997-2000 core are still there (Bagwell, Biggio, Berkman) but younger talent (Ensberg, Lane, Lidge, now Taveras and Burke) have been added and $ has been spent for premium talent (Clemens, Pettitte).

ChiSox: More of a stretch, but the old Thomas + Konerko + Magglio + Lee mashers have all been phased out for younger (Crede, Uribe, Rowand, Buehrle, Garland) players and they have really only overpaid to fill a couple of positions (DH, front-end starters).

While they may be a couple of years apart in their old/new cycles, it looks from here like both teams have taken a pretty similar approach overall: fill holes long-term with young, cheap players and address any glaring needs with one-two year rentals. If they don't pan out, you win 80-85 and go home 2 weeks ago; one or two career years and you can end up in the Series.

Looking at it this way then, how far are the Dodgers from "shocking" everybody the way the Sox did this year? Add a Nomar, go with the 4 OFers you have, upgrade the back end of the rotation, and you could be a lot closer to 2004's results than 2005's.

With that being said, I have to point out my bias in writing this. Without our GM trading "prospects" for "win-now veterans" my Phils would still have Estrada, Silva, Eaton, and payroll space to work with, and I would honestly like to see a patient GM build for long-term success AND not blow the entire thing up too early to contend in one season.

Just remember, as reasonable as 4 yrs / $50mil for Matsui or Giles might look now, how will it look in 3 seasons when you are saddled with a huge contract and have no room to maneuver mid-season? The Sox (C Lee) and Astros (Beltran, Kent) have both shown that top-heavy talent is not always worth paying for; dare I say that almost sounds...moneyball?

238 - Bob, would you say the Chisox bench has been Ozzie-proofed pretty well then? :)

2005-10-20 22:38:07
244.   dzzrtRatt
241 I agree. I gave them zero credit until, oh, about three weeks ago. But this seems like the model for all the winning teams of the past few years. Be solid, not spectacular; consistent from 1-9 and through the rotation. And be lucky; get career years out of your players and stay healthy. I agree, the Sox will probably sink back into the pack next season.

I think the Astros should be favored, although everywhere I look people are picking Chicago. Clemens, Oswalt and Pettitte are like a wall you can't get over. They've already mowed down two teams with better lineups than Chicago's.

2005-10-20 22:41:35
245.   Bob Timmermann
Still the Astros were shut out over 10% of the time. That can't be a good thing.
2005-10-20 22:45:36
246.   das411
241 - Wow Hobos, way to say the same thing as me in a fraction of the space. And to insult the team whose 2001 AL West Champion t-shirt I am, freakishly enough, wearing RIGHT NOW.

And as for "who predicted that every one of them would be this good?", Contreras + Duque, Pierzynski, even Crazy Carl all seem to have flourished with the...uhoh, here it is...chemistry in Ozzie Guillen's clubhouse...

240 - And Bob, they have let Foulke and Koch walk the last few years instead of getting locked into a big (cough, Gagne, cough) contract. Kenny Williams did a pretty good job of stockpiling depth (Hermanson, Cotts, Marte, Jenks, Politte) there, no?

2005-10-20 22:45:54
247.   King of the Hobos
At least the Astros may have some sense to be patient. Then when the pitcher's tired, or the bullpen is in, Berkman or Ensberg (or Burke now apparently) can win it for you. Of course, if they use the Angels hitting strategy, it will be a short series
2005-10-20 22:54:04
248.   Bob Timmermann
The White Sox and Foulke had a falling out I thought. Koch was terrible and acquired in a trade for Foulke. And then Koch begat Wilson Valdez who ended up in Seattle. And then San Diego.
2005-10-20 22:57:52
249.   molokai
241 Career years? Maybe for the pitchers but all the hitters other then Konerko were way under their previous career year.

1st - Konerko - it was his best year with a vorp of 56 compared to his previous high of 48 but he's no flash in the pan with 3 years of a vorp over 40.
2nd - 1st year doesn't count, he was pretty good in Japan
SS - He was much better in 2004 when he had a vorp of 32 compared to 12 this year.
3b - Crappy year, crappy player but still he has had a vorp as high as 23 but in 2005 it was only 13.
C - AJ - Not even close. In 2003 his vorp was 41 and this year 17.
Dye - All his years with KC were better then this year. His vorp in 1999/2000 was 40/64. In 2005 it was 35. Not even close to his career year.
Rowand - way way down from 2004 when his vorp was 50. This year a very pedestrian 22.
Podboy- had a vorp of 48 in 2003. Only 13 in 2005.

DH - best hitter was gone all year.

It is very possible that next year the CWS pitching will come down to earth but the hitters could just as easily hit closer to 2004 then 2005 which might cancel things out.

2005-10-20 22:59:14
250.   das411
247 - How many walks did the Chicago starters issue in either series? OBP tends to take a hit when facing quality pitchers; all the plate discipline in the world won't help you if the Sox pitchers bring their best stuff. What I find frightening is that the White Sox have swept a high OBP, all-offense team in Boston, and basically swept a pitching-heavy, scrappy, run-manufacturing team in the LAAoANA. Neither hitting strategy has been able to stop the Sox.

That said, Houston has gotten some near-superhuman pitching in the last two weeks. This will be much like 2002, two "surprise" teams that are very, very evenly matched. I would not at all be surprised to see this one go 7; the last thing I expect is a short series.

Show/Hide Comments 251-300
2005-10-20 23:06:19
251.   King of the Hobos
249 Career years was meant more for the pitching, starters and relief, than the hitting. Many of them played above their career average, whether they reached a career year or not. And despite how well they played, they were all very healthy (ok, not Podsednik). None of them were below career average, which is huge
2005-10-20 23:09:36
252.   King of the Hobos
250 I wasn't referring to walks per se. Just taking pitches. None of the Chicago pitchers had very high pitch counts. Taking 10 more pitches in one game can be huge, the starting pitcher will be slightly more tired and prone to mistake, and the bullpen can be hard to predict. I'll admit that the Sox pitching deserves a lot of credit, but the Angels did nothing to help
2005-10-21 07:05:01
253.   Steve
Bill Plaschke knows when Bob Toledo's been sleeping. He knows when he's awake.
2005-10-21 07:14:25
254.   Dr Love
I have no idea how to make a link here, but the Boston Globe is reporting that David Wells has requested a trade to a West Coast team. He's going to be 43, he's having knee surgery this winter, but he's only making $2.5M in 2006. Thoughts?
2005-10-21 07:33:06
255.   SMY
I wonder if Wells has the same incentives in his contract for 2006 that he had this year. Given the market, I'd probably take that chance -- he pitched decently this year, and was good for the Padres in 2004.
2005-10-21 07:40:43
256.   regfairfield
I have absolutely no problem with obtaining Wells at that price.
2005-10-21 07:40:53
257.   Dr Love
I wonder if Wells has the same incentives in his contract for 2006 that he had this year.

His incentive is the same this year as last year--$5M, he made it this year by starting in 30 games.

Given the market, I'd probably take that chance -- he pitched decently this year, and was good for the Padres in 2004.

Agreed. As a 4th starter or so, he'd be an upgrade, his strikeout rate wasn't better than the 4 starters listed in Jon's article, but his walk rate, VORP, RA+, and ERA+ were. And going back to the NL, you figure he'd do a little better, at the very least it would help offset whatever decline he may have. I think it's a play DePo should make if the price is right.

2005-10-21 07:48:31
258.   SMY
I wonder how much competition they'd face from the Padres to get him back. Quite a bit, I'd think.
2005-10-21 09:00:32
259.   dzzrtRatt
Should the Dodgers have any interest in taking Troy Glaus off the Snakes' hands? They don't seem to want him anymore. Some issue with his "work habits," a euphemism, but for what I don't know. All I know is, he hits 30-40 home runs, and while he's fragile, we've got Aybar and Robles to spell him. I liked him a lot when he was in Anaheim.
2005-10-21 09:32:01
260.   gvette
259-- If the D'Backs pick up part of his salary, the Dodgers should take him in a heartbeat, then in a couple of years if Guzman actually is the real thing and plays 3B, dump Glaus to an AL team as a DH.

233-- If DePo stands pat through the offseason and the first third of the'06 season he won't survive the rest of his contract.

As was said in 236, the premise that help can be gotten at the trading deadline doesn't hold when there are only a couple of sellers, and every other team is in the Wild Card hunt. Look what happened this year.

Are there any realistic in house candidates to replace Weaver? Only longshots. Whatever else he is, Weaver eats innings, and won 14 for a team that lost 91. Same with the outfield. Werth took a giant step back this year, Cruz is mediocre, you hope Drew can play 120 games next year, and Bradley probably won't even be there.

How much interest will(should) there be in a team that loses 91, makes no changes,loses its starter with the most wins, and will run Repko, and Edwards out for another 200 at bats?

The best favor that DePo can do for his new manager is to get better players.

2005-10-21 09:37:53
261.   Curtis Lowe
260- Well said.
2005-10-21 10:46:24
262.   rageon is reporting that Hershiser will be interviewing with LA next week.
2005-10-21 10:52:52
263.   Curtis Lowe
262- Exxxccellent.
2005-10-21 11:00:13
264.   Curtis Lowe
262- Where? Im not seeing it.
2005-10-21 11:02:04
265.   alex 7
Hershiser has come off as being almost jumpy at the chance to manage. Due to either that or his intelligence (or both), I have a feeling Bulldog will be willing to implement Depo's plan on the field. Hershiser would be very hands-on with the pitchers (since players/lineup/strategy will be partially handled by Depo) and allow a solid hitting coach to do his thing.

Really, it's a no-lose situation for a Dodgers manager. Win, and what a career boost. Lose, and Depo will likely be the blame guy.

Orel seems intelligent enough to know his boundaries as a teacher and to stay out of the way of others who are better than him at certain aspects (Depo at personnel, hitting coach at hitting, etc)

2005-10-21 11:05:49
266.   rageon
264 Go to the Dodgers' page and it's the first story in the list, under "Dodgers Update."
2005-10-21 11:10:57
267.   rageon
It's interesting to me that Orel seems willing to leave Texas for LA even if it's not to manage. I think the possibility remains that he ends up in that position with LA, assuming the new manager is cool with it. However, I'm not sure if he has any specific ties to any of the current candidates that would lead me to believe that.

It's just my own hunch, but my completely un-educated guess is that we end up Trammell, Gibson as hitting coach, and Orel as pitching coach.

2005-10-21 11:12:23
268.   Curtis Lowe
266- I had to clear my cache for soem reason, thanks.
2005-10-21 11:18:53
269.   Curtis Lowe
267- If Depo is as smart as some people say he his then he should go with that managerial line up.
2005-10-21 11:21:31
270.   Curtis Lowe
Has there ever been a coaching staff with that many former greats on it?
2005-10-21 11:24:20
271.   Jacob L
Orel would be interesting as a manager just to see how he handled pitching changes. He went from being an elite pitcher to being merely good because of overuse and injury. The flip side is, he's got a ring to show for it. My gut feeling is, he'd be a good guy to have in charge when our good, young arms start matriculating to the majors, but who knows? Anything from his Texas experience to indicate how he might manage?
2005-10-21 11:25:56
272.   rageon
270 I'm not sure I'd consider Gibson a "great." If you take away one swing, his entire career really isn't all that impressive. Orel was amazing for a few seasons, but broke down. Maddux, Pedro, Johnson, and Clemens basically did what Orel did, but for 3 times the length. Trammell, well he should be in the hall of fame, he's definetly a "great" in my book.
2005-10-21 11:27:02
273.   Bob Timmermann
I suppose Gibson's MVP award in 1988 just makes him another Zoilo Versalles.
2005-10-21 11:27:25
274.   regfairfield
269 Why, we have no clue about how they'd perform on a sabermetric team.

Judging by the number of at bats Nook Logan got, I don't have much confidence in Trammel.

2005-10-21 11:29:48
275.   rageon
271 Well, if you apply the Billy Beane Theorem to him, perhaps Orel more than anyone would be aware of what brought down his ability and therefore be careful to keep it from happening to others.

Pitcher Abuse Points are a VERY crude way to look at things, but if you want to, Texas had a pretty low score this season:

2005-10-21 11:35:17
276.   Curtis Lowe
272- It was Just game 1 that Gibson came through, He came trhough for Detroit in 83 as well as in the LCS against the Mets. He got the Dodgers through the LCS, so yeah in 1983 and 1988 he was great.I dont have time right now since Im at work but I'll make a list of reasons why the Combo of Trammell Gibson and Orel is the best combo for the future of the Dodgers.
2005-10-21 11:35:30
277.   King of the Hobos
Where has Hershiser hinted he'd be willing to be pitching coach for the Dodgers? From everything I can tell, he wants to be a manager or get a front office position, otherwise he will return to Texas. I could have easily missed a quote otherwise though

Also, Gibson wasn't particularly happy about being hitting coach this year. I believe he prefered bench coach for whatever reason. Again, I could be wrong

2005-10-21 11:35:41
278.   Curtis Lowe
276-Wasnt just game 1.
2005-10-21 11:36:55
279.   King of the Hobos
Odalis pitched for Escogido last night, and gave up more runs (5) than outs (4). Not exactly imprssive, especially if DePo plans to shop him
2005-10-21 11:42:15
280.   alex 7
How much value do people put in whatever Escogido does for a pitcher? For all anyone knows, the stadium could be a sandbox, his fielders could be terrible, and he might be working on improving his change-up more than anything else.

Not that any of those are true, just curious if anyone really cares enough about the results in the league to either push or pull away from a trade.

2005-10-21 11:45:58
281.   King of the Hobos
280 I think they'd care only because he was injured, and this is the most he will pitch after it for sake of how well he's recovered. I wasn't saying they'd look at this as more statistically accurate than 2004
2005-10-21 11:48:27
282.   dzzrtRatt
277 Maybe the lineup would be Collins as manager, and Hershiser replacing him as director of minor leagues.
2005-10-21 11:55:15
283.   alex 7
I see. I guess he would be difficult to trade right now. Spring-time might be the better time. Perhaps if the Dodgers are impressed enough by some of their young arms in spring training, or a Lima-type free agent they bring in, or convert Broxton/Sanchez to a 5th starter, it then becomes easier to ship Perez.
2005-10-21 11:56:43
284.   MikeB
"If DePo stands pat through the offseason and the first third of the'06 season he won't survive the rest of his contract."

I am not suggesting Depo should stand pat - and I stated that I wouldn't be surprised if he made some moves - but I don't expect him to do something foolhardy - just to add ballplayers for the sake of adding them.

Many on this site besides myself have noted the scarcity of quality FA's available this off-season to fill the most glaring gaps in the Dodger lineup - which would appear to be a big bat or two for the OF, and/or at 3B, and a quality starter or two, especially if Weaver is allowed to leave.

"...the premise that help can be gotten at the trading deadline doesn't hold when there are only a couple of sellers, and every other team is in the Wild Card hunt. Look what happened this year."

Not every season should be expected to be exactly the same as the previous. Just because the trading deadline in 2005 was "remarkably" unremarkable, does not mean it will be that way again. Its like saying there will never be a 50 HR season again because no one reached that mark this year.

"The best favor that DePo can do for his new manager is to get better players."

I agree with this statement 100%. I just don't believe DePo should make FA signings or trades just to appease the press or the fans. If he thinks he must, he might as well quit now so the Dodgers can bring back Kevin Malone (God forbid).

2005-10-21 12:03:36
285.   Curtis Lowe
284-Andruw Jones hit 51.
2005-10-21 12:05:24
286.   MikeB
285. Curtis - I stand corrected. I should have taken the time to come up with a better example.
2005-10-21 12:13:33
287.   Penarol1916
284. But doesn't address the point that so few teams have been willing sellers lately, added to the fact that many middle-market teams are looking at 2006 as a year when they have payroll flexibility to, if not add a quality free agent in the offseason, take on payroll in a midseason trade.
I think the point that was being made was that it is foolhardy to build your strategy on it being a sellers market at the trading deadline when there are no indications to believe that this year will be any different from last year.
What would be your reasoning behind basing your entire offseason strategy on 2006 trading deadline attitudes being the opposite of 2005 trading deadline attitudes?
2005-10-21 12:15:33
288.   Curtis Lowe
286-Like 52 homeruns. j/k. I agree with what your saying in 284 but I think 260's response was to a comment you made yesterday where it sounded like you felt the team will be fine without anything happening this off season except hiring a mngr and pitching coach.
2005-10-21 12:37:59
289.   rageon
277 I don't have the exact quote right now, but I'm pretty sure the LA Times ran a story with a recent by him about how much he would like to go back to LA, even if it was for the same job he had in Texas. I'll have to look and see if I can find it.

I do remember Gibson not wanting to be hitting coach, but I suppose it doesn't really diminish my theory that contacting Gibson is a hint that Trammell could be the choice. Just switch want I said to Trammell managing and Gibson as bench coach.

2005-10-21 12:38:57
290.   Peanuts in My Shoes
Sorry if I'm on the late-freight on this from the NY Post:

"Cashman's name was linked to the Dodgers yesterday, as Paul DePodesta is rumored to be on shaky ground. However, if Dodgers owner Frank McCourt was planning to fire DePodesta, why has he allowed the GM to lead the search for a manager that he's expected to hire shortly?"

2005-10-21 12:39:33
291.   Peanuts in My Shoes
Could this be why McCourt is now "involved"?
2005-10-21 12:42:13
292.   rageon
277 OK, here's what I found. I guess he didn't mention being pitching coach in LA, I probably just assumed that he would prefer LA to Texas if he was going to be a pitching coach. Regardless, I think Orel ends up in LA eventually in some capacity. Maybe not this offseason, but eventually.

Hershiser said he would be interested in either the managerial opening or becoming part of the front-office team.

"Just as I was excited in the Oakland job, I'm even more excited about the Dodger job," Hershiser said. "I have a special affinity for the Dodgers. I'm also excited about remaining the Texas Ranger pitching coach and finishing the job we started."

2005-10-21 12:43:47
293.   King of the Hobos
290 Sounds like someone wanted to make something up because he noticed the Dodgers didn't do so well
2005-10-21 12:48:08
294.   rageon
DePo is going to be the GM of the Dodgers at least through the 2006 season, period. I would guess a lot longer than that. McCourt isn't dumb, and I highly doubt he's going to hire another GM simply because a couple reports from the Times don't like the current. I'm sure McCourt realizes what a lot of us do, that DePodesta is extremely intelligent, and has the potential to lead LA to long run of success.
2005-10-21 12:51:52
295.   Peanuts in My Shoes
I'm glad you have faith in McCourt to do the right thing by DePo. I guess I get kind of nervous considering some of the other staffing decisions he's made. Here's to a long, successful term for DePo.
2005-10-21 12:56:17
296.   rageon
295 Clearing out the existing staff worries me at times, but then again, I suppose he's the owner and wants to work with people he is comfortable with, rather than people who were in place, but were hired by other people. Like DePo and Tracy; Tracy might be a talented manager, but the two shouldn't be working together.
2005-10-21 12:56:48
297.   Curtis Lowe
If Orel gets the Head Coach job, does he put himself in during a 20 inning game?
2005-10-21 12:59:02
298.   dzzrtRatt
290 A very NY-centric rumor, with no source. They're very provincial out there.
2005-10-21 13:10:12
299.   Curtis Lowe
Does Gibson pinch hit, in a 20 inning game?
2005-10-21 13:12:55
300.   Eric Enders
So is it now time for all of us to go re-read the Hershiser section of "Men At Work?"

I think I'll start tonight.

Show/Hide Comments 301-350
2005-10-21 13:29:13
301.   Jon Weisman
300 - When was that written, 1989 or 1990? I know my attitudes about baseball, and I'm sure many of yours, have changed since then.
2005-10-21 13:33:02
302.   alex 7
re: 294

And Depo can keep the team competitive without going bonkers on the player salaries. Don't forget that as a reason McCourt hired and will keep Depo around.

2005-10-21 13:38:31
303.   Eric Enders
It was January 1990, although I probably didn't get around to reading it until 1994 or so.

Actually, my views on baseball, while I'm sure they've changed somewhat since then, probably aren't all that different. I was converted to sabermetrics by the Bill James Historical Abstract when I was about 9 or 10.

2005-10-21 13:38:35
304.   fawnkyj
Hey kingofthehobos,
How are you keeping up with the Dominican winter leagues?
2005-10-21 13:38:56
305.   gvette
300-- Actually, in honor of the Chi Sox, I'm going to start re-reading "8 Men Out".
2005-10-21 13:46:38
306.   Bob Timmermann
I'm going to dress up as Hal Chase for Halloween!
2005-10-21 13:46:41
307.   King of the Hobos
304 Decently enough. Not a whole lot has happened though
2005-10-21 13:48:37
308.   Marty
I'm trying to convince my White Sox fan friend to take up tobacco chewing in honor of Nellie Fox, his boyhood hero.
2005-10-21 13:52:54
309.   gvette
Bob, maybe you can try showing up for work not wearing sleeves, like Ted Kluszewski
2005-10-21 13:54:27
310.   Eric Enders
I know someone who once dressed up for Halloween as the headless body of Ted Williams.
2005-10-21 13:59:39
311.   molokai
Bill James changed my whole perspective on baseball. I could have, and have read his abstracts over and over. Since I'm older then you I didn't get the faith until I was 25 or so. Would have been interesting to have read him at nine. Maybe I wouldn't have been such a hacker in my limited baseball career.
2005-10-21 14:02:22
312.   Marty
For Dominican players the saying had always been "you can't 'walk' off the island". Is that still true by and large, or are plate discipline skills being recognized down there?
2005-10-21 14:03:32
313.   Eric Enders
Actually, my sole offensive skill as a Little Leaguer was drawing walks. I was short and the pitchers had bad control. My plate appearances would probably break down like:

10% hits
35% outs
55% walks

I have no idea whether that has anything to do with the fact that I started reading James around the same time, although I would tend to doubt it.

2005-10-21 14:06:23
314.   Bob Timmermann
The Ted Kluszewski costume would be greatly diminished by my incredibly lack of muscle tone in my arms.

Can't I dress up as Kent Tekulve?

2005-10-21 14:10:20
315.   Eric Enders
Only if I can go as Gagne.

Except I just shaved my goatee.

2005-10-21 14:12:37
316.   Curtis Lowe
Does anyone know whats up with Nakamura? If he finds himself this winter he could be a possibility at third.
2005-10-21 14:12:43
317.   Jon Weisman
303 - I started imbibing Bill James in about 1981 - but I have learned a lot since then. Sabermetrics had advanced considerably in 25 or 15 years. So I just wouldn't assume something Hershiser said about baseball in 1990 holds up today. Although my recollection is that Will's interview with Hershiser focuses on pitching anyway.
2005-10-21 14:21:58
318.   rageon
313 Sounds very similiar to my own little league experiences. The coaches used to say "a walk is as good as a hit," but I think it was just a way of making the short kids feel good about themselves. Well, except for the coach who would bench anyone who took strike three. Yeah, quite a bit of hacking going on with that team.
2005-10-21 14:27:59
319.   alex 7
I don't think you can walk off the island yet.
Also, drawing walks is a tricky skill in that it requires a very good umpire behind the plate. It only takes getting rung up a few times on pitches 2 inches off the corner to make one start swinging away at that pitch.
2005-10-21 14:30:14
320.   Terry A
318 I was an all-field, no-hit shortstop. So where's my $3 mil?

317 I have a Hershiser autobiography that was co-written by Jerry B. Jenkins (who should be drawn & quartered for co-authoring the "Left Behind" Christian novel series). It was called "Out of the Blue" or something, and all I remember from it was that he/they devoted nearly a full chapter to the importance of wearing a cup.

2005-10-21 14:31:46
321.   Curtis Lowe
320- Only 1 chapter?
2005-10-21 14:33:46
322.   King of the Hobos
312 There has been 6 games so far. There has been 43 walks, for just over 3.5 per team per game. Joel Guzman has 2 of those walks. Willy Aybar has none of them
2005-10-21 14:39:48
323.   regfairfield
So long as we're talking about Little League prowess, I was the league equivelant of Barry Bonds in my last year, putting up a .625 average and around a .750 OPS, .900 slug.

And then I gave it up to run cross country.

2005-10-21 14:40:15
324.   regfairfield
323 That should be .750 on base.
2005-10-21 14:40:28
325.   dzzrtRatt
311, et. al. This "How old were you when Bill James got to you" talk reminds me of the scene in "Sideways" when Miles and the Virginia Madsen character each tell what was the bottle of wine that turned them into aficionados.

I'm getting all verklempt here!

2005-10-21 14:43:51
326.   scanderbeg
I was not really familiar with Moneyball really at all until this year. I saw the Dodgers living out its philosophies in the first two weeks and I began to believe. It seemed like every inning there was at least on runner on base. All the players were commenting about it as well. It can work if it is employed correctly. That is a big reason why I supported letting Jim Tracy go. A manager must believe in the system that the team was created to use.
2005-10-21 14:50:51
327.   Blaine
Orel has also authored another book in 2001 with Robert Wolgemuth entitled
"Between the Lines: Nine Principles to Live By."

I bought this at a book store a little while back and may read it during Christmas break at APU.

Here are the nine principles:

1. Believe your coaches
2. Anything can happen
3. Sell out to the process
4. Excellence matters
5. Balance is key
6. Ability to lighten up
7. Love your family
8. Live with gratitude
9. See the signs

From taking a quick browse it appears that Orel's faith really affects his life principles in a great way.

I think it would be a great hire to have a man with high character and commitment to strong values coaching the Dodgers.

2005-10-21 14:56:59
328.   rageon
323 No Barry Bonds here. Hmmm, is there a major league equivelant for a some-field, no-throw, barely-hit catcher, playing only because he's the only one willing to wear the gear when it's 90 degrees and humid? Maybe Jason Kendall, 2005.
2005-10-21 14:59:13
329.   Eric Enders
Anybody have any thoughts on Orel v. Milton?
2005-10-21 15:01:00
330.   FirstMohican
327 - I think during the interview, as Orel is listing his 9 principals, DePo might yell "you're hired" right after he hears "3. Sell out to the process."

(Can't wait for the lecture on how DePo doesn't want a manager who only obeys orders.)

2005-10-21 15:01:00
331.   Eric Enders
I don't think there's ever been an MLB equivalent to my little league self. Short, left-handed third baseman with a poor BA, great OBP, and no power whatsoever.
2005-10-21 15:01:48
332.   FirstMohican
329 - They're both men of faith... Although, I don't see Orel singing in a Baptist choir.
2005-10-21 15:02:09
333.   Eric Enders
Word geek alert

Orel has nine principles.
DePo, however, might have nine principals if he gets around to interviewing Gibson and somebody else.

2005-10-21 15:02:12
334.   Marty
I was in Arcadia little league and they had major and minor divisions. I was one of those kids who never got picked for the major league, so I dominated the minor league with about a .750 average. Not making the majors was one of my first lessons that life wasn't fair.
2005-10-21 15:05:32
335.   Eric L
315 I was thinking about doing the Gagne thing this year, but I decided to shave my goatee about 6 weeks ago.

I was tired of the goatee and tired of getting the "Hey Gagne" thing at the stadium all the time.

2005-10-21 15:06:01
336.   MikeB
287 & 288
I should have been clearer in stating my strong preference for Depo to make "intelligent and prudent" roster moves during this off-season. I am a Dodger fan, and I do want to see some roster improvements. I am very much in agreement that we need to improve the roster. But, I'm just not convinced that this off-season will provide the right kinds of opportunities.

I admit I don't have any hard evidence that the 2006 in-season trade market will be better (or worse) than last season's. I can only add that DePodesta has proven that he is not afraid to make in-season deals, as in 2004. That approach may prove to be the better alternative this season in terms of getting better value. This is all pure speculation on my part, and I admit to that as well.

2005-10-21 15:06:25
337.   FirstMohican
335 - Well maybe you should stop flexing your right biceps after every save.
2005-10-21 15:08:41
338.   willhite
I have a hunch that if DePo can even tolerate Orel, McCourt will make it very clear that he should be the next mgr. Recent statements make it sound like McCourt will have a fairly strong influence on the hire.

The character issue that Orel will bring to the table along with the Dodger hero thing will just be too good to pass up, considering the hit they've been taking PR-wise.

On top of that, I have a hunch that Orel and DePo might do very well together.

Orel-Milton - could be the best mgr that Milton could ever hope for. I think that they would do extremely well together, although I don't know if the powers that be are willing to give it a try.

2005-10-21 15:08:49
339.   molokai
Indulge my long post. I was intrigued by what Alex7 said about getting ARod and so this is my plan for the future of the Dodgers based on Arod being the centerpiece.

Molokai Depodesta for a day.
1. Trade Gagne/Kent to the Mets for Beltran.-Fill two big needs of the Mets. They can simply move Cameron to CF and have an outfield of Floyd/Cameron/Diaz until Milledge is ready. Then they just need a 1st baseman. Gagne is as good as gone after 2006 so I'd trade him now. I think his value is still high because everyone knows the surgery was minor and that he'll be ready to start the season.

2. Trade Beltran/DeWitt to the Yankee's for Arod. Let the Yankee's sign Nomar to play 3b alongside Jeter. This keeps the trinity intact and gives them what they really need, an exceptional CF. An outfield of Sheffield/Beltran/Matsui would help the pitchers sleep at night. Were trading Gagne/Kent two great players who will not be part of the future after 2006 and a solid prospect for Arod. The Arod contract is steep but it is the same price as Kent/Gagne and for an old 2nd baseman and a great but replaceable closer you're getting one of the top 3 players in baseball. Arod has always said he'd like to play for the Dodgers and if he is unhappy in NY, he might be willing to come here. I'd much rather be paying Arod 20 Million then Gagne 10 million.

3. Trade Izzy to the Braves for Marte - The Braves need a cheap replacement for Furcal. They have no in house replacement other then Betemit and most scouts seem to think 3b will become his position. Marte was the number one prospect on many lists headed into 2005. He did what he normally does which is above average at everthing but not great at any one thing. He is blocked in Atlanta and Atlanta needs a SS. Izzy still has a lot of value around the league even though not much at DT.

4. Sign Jose Cruz- Insurance/Insurance/Insurance

5. Teach Werth how to play 1st base as insurance if Choi completely fails against LHP.

6. Trade Marte and Orenduff to the Pirates for Oliver Perez. In 2004 this OP was the best young pitcher in baseball not named Ben Sheets or Jake Peavy. He took a big fall in 2005 but this is the kind of player you have to take a chance on. The Pirates have lots of young pitching but they have no 3b. I'd rather trade Laroche and keep Marte but I want to keep the screams to a minimum here at DT where they guard their prospects like mother hens.

7. Resign Saenz for around 1.50

8. Some posters want to trade for the old warhorse David Wells. The problem is that he could earn upto 9 million without really being very effective. He has a very complicated contract. His base is only 2.5 mill but he gets 1.50 bonus every year so the real base is 4.0 mill. He can earn upto 5 mill, so if he has a solid year he can earn 9 mill which is what he earned in 2005. Because of the contract I will pass on David Wells and expect Houlton to do about the same for 1/10 the cost.

9. Trade Milton/Loney to Montreal for Brad Wilkerson. Frank Robinson does not like Brad and he might be intrigued by MB talent. Bowden is not afraid of problem players as he took on Jose Guillen. Wilkerson had a crappy year in 2005. Some of that was park effects and some was injury. I'm gambling that it was his Konerko 2003 season and that he will right himself for the Dodgers.

10. Resign Jose Valentin to backup 2nd/SS/3b/OF. He can't be as bad as we saw and the injury must have really been a problem. I like a player who can play all those positions and as long as we know he's a utility player I'd like him on the team.

11. Trade Jason Philips/Jason Repko to Seattle for Snelling

12. Release Grabowski - For Steve

2006 Starting Lineup
LF – Wilkerson 250/375/450
3b - Aybar 250/350/425
RF - JD Drew 280/400/500
SS – Arod 300/400/550
LF - Jose Cruz 250/350/450
1st – Choi 250/375/475
2nd – A Perez 275/335/400
C – Navarro 275/350/390

Bench - Robles/Werth/Ledee/Martin//J Valentin / Saenz

We will be weak at 3b/2nd until our boys get ready to rumble. I would expect by midseason that either LaRoche or Guzman will be ready to handle 3b with whoever is succeeding the most between Aybar and Perez taking 2nd. From that point on I think we will have a strong infield.
D Young should start out in AAA playing LF. He historically has started slow every season so get his early at bats out of the way in AAA while he's learning LF. If injuries strike he would be the 1st person recalled. Think of Victor Diaz of the Mets. He started out as a 2nd baseman in the Dodger organization. Everyone knew he couldn't play 2nd base and they finally moved him to the outfield. He put up an 800 OPS in his 1st taste of extended play. I'm expecting the same thing from D Young once he's moved to the OF. Not that I'm satisfied with an OPS of 800 from a corner outfielder but were talking 1st year with expected improvement. Snelling from Seattle could be a sleeper. He is a great talent who can't stay healthy. He might end up being a great 4th outfielder or he might never be healthy enough to help. The trade is a gamble but were only talking Jason 1 and Jason 2.
The team has some flexibility. If Choi fails to impress then Wilkerson can play 1st with Ledee/Werth being a possible platoon or D Young or Snelling could just take the spot. I'm expecting D Young to be a much better hitter then Ledee/Werth but I'm biased toward him. AROD in the NL is such a great weapon because the NL has no top of the line SS. When Drew gets hurt Wilkerson can also play CF and so can Werth or Cruz. I'm expecting Werth to rebound with more power once his wrist has had a year to heal. He'll still strike out a ton but if the power comes back he becomes a worthwhile player again.

If Oliver Perez can pitch anywhere close to his 2004 level we will have our ace. I think we can start the season with a staff of :
Penny / Lowe / Oliver P / Odalis P / Houlton
Sanchez / Brazoban / Broxton / Osario / Kuo / Wunsch

I calculate the salary of the 25 member team to be around 70 Million. That is assuming that we sign Wilkerson to a 5 mill deal and Cruz to a 4 mill deal and Oliver Perez for 1 Mill.

If the pitching really does blow again we will have better chips to trade with all of our prospects moving up the ranks and being more desirable as they edge closer to the majors. As 2006 progresses, Billingsly / Hochevar / E Jackson could be ready to help out or other then Billingsly become solid trade chips. I really think Broxton can step into Gagne's shoes and while he won't fill them, he will be good enough that the idea of paying Gagne the 5/60 million that Boras will want, will seem ludicrous. This is not a great team but as the youngsters develop it could become one. If Sanchez or Broxton or Kuo do not hold up under pressure we might be able to turn to Orlando Rodriguez or Greg Miller or have to trade something for relief help. It is a gamble to trade Gagne but I just don't think he will sign a long term contract with the Dodgers that makes sense for a closer. I'm also sure that we have seen his peak years. JMO

2005-10-21 15:10:05
340.   Eric L
335 Nah, it was more because of the goatee and glasses (and probably having similar builds). Plus you know, people would trick me and say "Hey Eric" and I would turn around with my name being Eric and all.

I did like the "how is your arm doing?" question this season. Being left handed and all, I told them my throwing arm was just fine.

2005-10-21 15:10:41
341.   Eric Enders
I stole this from BTF, but a sombrero to the sky for whoever can guess what these players all have in common besides never being in your kitchen:

David Ortiz, Boston
Troy Glaus, Anaheim
Barry Bonds, San Francisco
Andruw Jones, Atlanta
Fred McGriff, Atlanta
Ed Sprague, Toronto
Eric Davis, Cincinnati
Bill Bathe, San Francisco
Jose Canseco, Oakland
Mickey Hatcher, Los Angeles Dodgers
Jim Dwyer, Baltimore Orioles
Bob Watson, New York Yankees
Amos Otis, Kansas City Royals
Doug DeCinces, Baltimore Orioles
Jim Mason, New York Yankees
Gene Tenace, Oakland A's
Don Buford, Baltimore Orioles
Mickey Lolich, Detroit Tigers
Jose Santiago, Boston Red Sox
Brooks Robinson, Baltimore Orioles
Don Mincher, Minnesota Twins
Roger Maris, New York Yankees
Elston Howard, New York Yankees
Dusty Rhodes, New York Giants
George Selkirk, New York Yankees
Mel Ott, New York Giants
George Watkins, St. Louis Cardinals
Joe Harris, Washington Senators

Congrats in advance, Bob. And another figurative sombrero for whoever comes in second...

2005-10-21 15:11:30
342.   Eric L

I'm guessing homeruns in their first WS ABs?

2005-10-21 15:14:11
343.   Steve
339 -- That's really for all of us.
2005-10-21 15:15:02
344.   King of the Hobos
I never played Little league so to speak, but I did play city T-Ball when I was 6. I was the worst player on the team, discouraged enough that I played basketball for the entirety of my youth. However, my love for math (and stats) allowed me to focus on watching more baseball than other sports. If not for Bill James, and Moneyball, I'd likely have gieven up on watching/playing sports altogether.

As for my professional equivalent, maybe a bat rack? I served the same general purpose

2005-10-21 15:16:13
345.   Eric Enders
2005-10-21 15:24:49
346.   Mark
I was a banjo-hitting left-fielder/pitcher in Little League. This may or may not explain my extreme disdain for Izturis, Werth, and Weaver.
2005-10-21 15:25:27
347.   molokai
I think I've seen about 1/2 of those.
2005-10-21 15:31:00
348.   willhite
339 -
Interesting reading. Imagine DePo doing all of that this year after all of the changes he's already made.

You've got two left fielders. I assume you meant to put Cruz in right, although I'm not sure I wouldn't rather keep Milton and Loney. I don't have your faith in Wilkerson's ability to come back to where he was.

I wouldn't resign Valentin under any circumstances. I love his attitude but can't assume that he'll be any better this year, and I'm sure for the money it would take, we could get something better.

If you can guarantee that Duaner will remember how to throw his change, I'll take a chance on trading Gagne. I agree that he's gone after next year anyway.

Now to make things really interesting, figure out a way to put ManRam in left without giving up the whole farm system.

2005-10-21 15:39:16
349.   dzzrtRatt
I lived in one of those baby-boom neighborhoods where Little League was unnecessary. You could get 18 guys together to play baseball, and the owner of this one house that had a big front yard would let us play there. If we were short a few kids, we'd close left field.

Upside: No parents, different team every time.

Downside: No unis, no one to teach any skills except peers.

Kids in my neighborhood played Little League, but not many of them. You had to try out, and be very good to make it. What we did was more fun.

Our football set-up was even better. No pads, no helmets, tackle football. Usually it was muddy. I'd come home covered with dirt and blood. Luckily, no one broke their neck or lost an eyeball.

2005-10-21 15:43:28
350.   Bob Timmermann
I never played organized youth baseball in my life. Growing up in Granada Hills, it was way too competitive. It's sort of like high school football in Texas intense.

I did play some CYO basketball. But I wasn't very good, so the coach had me keep stats for him during the game. It was a win-win situation for the team as the coach was playing to my strengths and keeping me from hurting the team by getting on the court and actually doing something.

Show/Hide Comments 351-400
2005-10-21 15:44:28
351.   molokai
Didn't play football in high school as I hated practice but still would get a group of friends together up until I was around 25 and we'd play tackle. That all ended when we broke a friends ankle and realized that we'd screwed him because now he couldn't work anymore. Man I miss those games.
2005-10-21 15:51:08
352.   Romyrick
I've flipped thru the Bill James baseball abstract a few times and there didn't seem to be any useful information into the "why" aspect of evaluation, it from what i've seen is just a bunch of odd ball stats so i've ignored it.

Can someone tell me if its more than that? and if it is which ones are good?

2005-10-21 15:51:29
353.   Marty
I played 2 years of football in high school. I started at guard on offense and tackle on defense. I hated the practices too. Football was what I was best at, but I didn't have that intense love of hitting you need, and I don't like pain. So I decided to give it up and chase girls.
2005-10-21 15:53:01
354.   King of the Hobos
Bob's youth sports career sounds very similar to me...

Unlike other sports, I could play basketball ok. I couldn't shoot that well, but I was big so I rebounded, and was supposedly considered a really good defender (that could have just been numerous people lying to me, i wouldn't doubt it). Then I stopped growing, and got slower. The growth charts did nothing to help, it told me I was going to be 6 inches taller than I currently am (I stalled at age 14). With my lack of height went my ability to play sports...

2005-10-21 15:57:02
355.   molokai
I could play baseball all day just fielding or hitting, didn't have to play a game, but the only time I wanted to play football is if it was a game. I also chased girls but much like Grabowski in the outfield rarely caught anything.
2005-10-21 16:07:31
356.   King of the Hobos
The Braves have acquired Felix Hernandez...'s brother, Moises, as compensation for losing Mazzone
2005-10-21 16:35:06
357.   fawnkyj
Hey king, do you have a site that you can give me that keeps up with the winter leagues in the dominincan?
2005-10-21 16:48:00
358.   Jon Weisman
Does anyone know why Mazzone wanted to leave Atlanta?
2005-10-21 16:48:44
359.   King of the Hobos

It's technically Licey's (Brazoban's team) site. If you click on "Estadisticas LIDOM" you'll get stats for all the teams. Supposedly they have boxscores, but if you go to the page it hasn't been updated to the current season

I don't speak Spanish, but I can navigate the site fine. The only other team that has a halfway decent site is Cibao (Sanchez and Beltran Perez's team). The league doesn't have a site (it did, but not anymore). As far as I know, Brazoban plays for Licey, Beltran Perez and Sanchez play for Cibao (Gigantes), Guzman and Aybar play for Estrellas, and Odalis plays for Escogido. There could be more

2005-10-21 16:50:43
360.   King of the Hobos
358 My best guess is Perlozzo. They were childhood friends, and Perlozzo was Mazzone's best man. Maybe he just doesn't want to be the only person with double z's on his team
2005-10-21 16:50:55
361.   Steve
Dan Kolb
2005-10-21 16:53:28
362.   dzzrtRatt
360 is correct. The Yankees got into it after they got wind of Mazzone wanting to move to the Orioles and rejoin his old buddy Perlozzo. One reporter I heard speculated that the Yanks knew Mazzone would turn them down; their only goal in talking to him was to raise his price so he'd cost the Orioles more.
2005-10-21 16:55:02
363.   King of the Hobos
359 Going back, other teams have good sites too, just weren't updated last time I checked (they are now). Here's a site with a bunch of links, maybe half actually work:

2005-10-21 16:58:01
364.   Steve
For me, it would have been Dan Kolb
2005-10-21 17:12:55
365.   King of the Hobos
Does anyone know what the Baja League is? I got it off that baseball links site I posted. Seems like a winter/fall independent league that expects to have "former professionals along with undrafted college graduates." If it has any success, I could see Americans prefer it over the Latin American winter leagues, assuming they're allowed to play there (would they be?).

2005-10-21 17:20:40
366.   Bob Timmermann
For entertainment purposes only:

The White Sox, at the site I checked, have opened as -130 World Series favorites. The Astros are +110.

So, the Arnold Rothstein of 2005 would need to be doing some very heavy lifting to get those lines to change enough to make a difference.

2005-10-21 18:05:33
367.   fawnkyj
Thanks King.
2005-10-21 18:24:09
368.   MikeB
352. Regarding Bill James ....

Courtesy of The Baseball Archive

A Bill James Primer
Extracted from The Bill James Baseball Abstract 1988
Ballantine Books, New York
Copyright 1988 by Bill James

"What I wanted to write about... is a very basic question. Of all the studies I have done over the last 12 years, what have I learned? What is the relevance of sabermetric knowledge to the decision making process of a team? If I were employed by a major-league team, what are the basic things that I know from the research I have done which would be of use to me in helping that team?"

1. Minor league batting statistics will predict major league batting performance with essentially the same reliability as previous major league statistics.
2. Talent in baseball is not normally distributed. It is a pyramid. For every player who is 10 percent above the average player, there are probably twenty players who are 10 pecent below average.
3. What a player hits in one ballpark may be radically different from what he would hit in another.
4. Ballplayers, as a group, reach their peak value much earlier and decline much more rapidly than people believe.
5. Players taken in the June draft coming out of college (or with at least two years of college) perform dramatically better than players drafted out of high school.
6. The chance of getting a good player with a high draft pick is substantial enough that it is clearly a disastrous strategy to give up a first round draft choice to sign a mediocre free agent. (see note #1)
7. A power pitcher has a dramatically higher expectation for future wins than does a finesse picther of the same age and ability.
8. Single season won-lost records have almost no value as an indicator of a pitcher's contribution to a team.
9. The largest variable determining how many runs a team will score is how many times they get their leadoff man on base.
10. A great deal of what is perceived as being pitching is in fact defense.
11. True shortage of talent almost never occurs at the left end of the defensive spectrum. (see note #2)
12. Rightward shifts along the defensive spectrum almost never work. (see note #2)
13. Our idea of what makes a team good on artificial turf is not supported by any research.
14. When a team improves sharply one season they will almost always decline in the next.
15. The platoon differential is real and virtually universal


1. Major league teams still must surrender choices in the amateur draft in exchange for signing free agents.
2. The defensive spectrum looks like this:

[ - - 1B - LF - RF - 3B - CF - 2B - SS - C - - ]
with the basic premise being that positions at the right end of
the spectrum are more difficult than the positions at the left
end of the spectrum. Players can generally move from right
to left along the specturm successfully during their careers.

2005-10-21 18:35:35
369.   natepurcell
6.I'd rather trade Laroche and keep Marte but I want to keep the screams to a minimum here at DT where they guard their prospects like mother hens.

i would keep marte over laroche.

2005-10-21 18:49:23
370.   Sam DC
I've been reading this site too long. I read a reference to Virginia Madsen and Sideways and think, "yeah, that's the one that shows how gas prices have gone up so much."
2005-10-21 20:45:00
371.   King of the Hobos
DT seems to have stopped for the evening...(warning: a long post centered completely around a fringe "prospect")

Nonetheless, Eric Hull yet again had an impressive night in the AFL. Pitched 5 innings, K'd 6, allowed 4 hits, but had a pick off and a CS, against the extremely tough Surprise line up. In 11 innings, he has yet to give up a walk, and has a tiny AFL ERA of 2.08

Outside his 8 inning Vegas stay, when he lost any control he may have, Hull has been very impressive this year, especially with the 3 true outcomes. Let's compare

Hull 2005
AA- 117 IP, 3.38 ERA, 27 G, 18 GS, 9 HR, 44 BB, 117 K
AAA- 8 IP, 7.88 ERA, 2 G, 2 GS, 0 HR, 8 BB, 7 K
AFL- 13 IP, 2.08 ERA, 3 G, 3 GS, 0 HR, 0 BB, 9 K

Total- 138 IP, 3.52 ERA, 32 G, 23 G, 9 HR, 52 BB, 135 K

Houlton 2004
AA- 159 IP, 2.94 ERA, 28 G, 28 GS, 14 HR, 47 BB, 159 K

Now, I'm not advocating Hull as a potential rotation candidate, or even a bullpen candidate. But at 25, he's not incredibly old, four months younger than Houlton. His rates are all similar to Houlton's 2004 campaign, especially if you remove Vegas. He's a candidate for the Rule V, how important is he? He's old, and while rotoworld called him a prospect, he isn't. Would you trade him? Keep him? Put him on the 40 man? Release him?

2005-10-21 20:50:35
372.   Xeifrank
Air show featuring the Blue Angels this saturday and sunday in Vta County. Overcast skies could be a problem though.

Little league, Senior league and Big league, I played either 2B, SS or pitcher. Did throw one no-hitter as a 14 year old, but did manage to allow one run due to walks and wild pitches. Luckily I learned how to throw a nasty curve ball at a young age. I would just aim it at a right handed batters head, they'd always bail out as the ball broke over the plate for a strike. Started switch hitting at age 16, had more power hitting left handed but always had a better batting average batting right handed (natural side). Never hit a home run until I was 18, and it was an inside the park job at Ventura High School as the ball rolled up an embankment over the right fielders head. Baseball and soccer were probably my best youth sports, with tennis and basketball a close 3rd.

Love the trivia reference earlier in the thread about what do these people have in common besides never being in your kitchen. :) vr, Xei
ps: White Sox in 6

2005-10-21 21:04:45
373.   dzzrtRatt
368 What does "leftward" and "rightward" refer to in Bill James' commandments 11 and 12? The side of the infield? Handedness?
2005-10-21 21:13:05
374.   dzzrtRatt
373 D'oh!
2005-10-21 21:13:48
375.   King of the Hobos
273 It refers to movement on the spectrum, the spectrum being:

[ - - 1B - LF - RF - 3B - CF - 2B - SS - C - - ]

It's saying that there's little rightward movement. 1Bs don't become CFs, LFs don't become SS, etc. Also, the left side is far less likely to have a shortage. Able LFs and 1Bs are more common than SS's

2005-10-21 21:14:39
376.   King of the Hobos
374 I should have reloaded before posting... If anyone doesn't understand, then there you go
2005-10-21 21:15:38
377.   dzzrtRatt
Right, now I see. I kept thinking note 2 referred to #2 on his list.

So that 'corner outfielder' we need should be easy to secure....

2005-10-21 21:29:24
378.   Eric L
370 That's so funny.. I watched Sideways with my friend (girlfriend, whatever) and she said "Was there a 1 in front of gas prices right there?"
2005-10-21 21:51:38
379.   dzzrtRatt
When I first learned to drive, gasoline prices were still in two digits to the left of the decimal point. I think my first tank cost me about 29 cents a gallon. Then OPEC woke up, and before you could say King Faisal, it was 65 cents a gallon and the entire country fell apart from the strain of paying that.
2005-10-21 21:59:30
380.   sanchez101
371. To me the most glaring difference Hull and Houlton is the fact that Houlton allowed less walks in more innings, and that he was pitching in the hitter friendly Texas League, whereas Hull spent almost all his time in the Southern League. The fact that Hull is listed as 5'11'' and doesnt have back-end reliever stuff, I wouldnt protect him because i dont think you need to. Houlton was a long shot to stay on the roster all year, I doubt the should any team actually pick Hull in the rule 5 draft, that he wouldnt stick through the entire season.
2005-10-21 22:01:14
381.   sanchez101
378. in santa barbara, that must be wrong unless that movie was made 2 years ago.
2005-10-21 22:07:49
382.   Xeifrank
381. Sideways was one of the few recent movies I've watched (Rented it). It was kind of nice to see some of the local scenery in the movie (the drive through Ventura county). Wasn't crazy about the movie, but must admit I actually watched the whole thing (so it must've been pretty good). I like watching unique movies, which come along in Hollywood about once every 3 or 4 years. Hollywood has way too many cookie cutter movies, thus my disdain for movies and movie chat. Back to reading my chinese history book, so I know what the heck I saw on my trip. vr, Xei
2005-10-21 22:14:00
383.   trainwreck
That is because it was in Buellton not Santa Barbara or Goleta where gas is ridiculous.
2005-10-21 22:22:52
384.   Xeifrank
383. Haven't driven thru there in a while, but I'd ass-u-me that gas prices even in Buelton are still well above the average. I always thought it strange but whenever I go down to my bros place in Huntington Beach the gas prices are always quite a bit lower. Is it because of the big refinery in Carson?? vr, Xei
2005-10-21 22:39:51
385.   Bob Timmermann
Distance to a refinery means little in the grand scheme of things. In Southern California, the price of gas is greatly dependent upon how expensive the land the gas station is on and the amount of rent the gas station owner has to pay.
2005-10-22 02:33:39
386.   bokonon42
I've got Bob beat; I've never played a game of baseball. Closest I ever got was five on five (batting team supplies the pitcher) softball. There weren't very many kids in my neighborhood, and I wan't allowed to play little league.

Unrelated: you've got to love a forum where two people will defend Santeria, and none will defend the Left Behind Series.

2005-10-22 06:02:28
387.   Eric Enders
"Hollywood has way too many cookie cutter movies, thus my disdain for movies"

I share your disdain for the dumbed-down Hollywood garbage, X, but there are other kinds of movies besides Hollywood ones...

2005-10-22 07:57:07
388.   Bob Timmermann
Unrelated: you've got to love a forum where two people will defend Santeria, and none will defend the Left Behind Series.

Last night, I was covering a football game involving Temple City High, aka The Rams.

As I walked along the sideline, there were two oversized ram heads for the mascots to wear. But just seeing these disembodied animal heads made me think of one thing: Ozzie Guillen must have been here.

2005-10-22 08:43:57
389.   Marty
When I first drove, gas was about 70 cents. When I quit smoking, cigarettes were 55 cents a pack in machines.
2005-10-22 10:11:25
390.   underdog
Y'all will be as relieved as I to know that Bobby Valentine likely won't be a candidate for Dodgers manager.

Valentine says he's content in Japan:

2005-10-22 10:32:24
391.   Bob Timmermann
Valentine's Chiba Lotte Marines won Game 1 of the Japan Series, 10-1, in a game shortened to 7 innings by fog.
2005-10-22 10:33:13
392.   Bob Timmermann
And they weren't kidding about the fog:

2005-10-22 10:41:52
393.   MikeB
So if Hersheiser gets the job, how will our local media handle it? Will they throw rose petals at Orel and Paul. Or will they trash the Bulldog for joining the 'dark side' of the Force?
2005-10-22 10:44:48
394.   MikeB
392. Looks a lot like El Segundo.
2005-10-22 10:51:51
395.   Bob Timmermann
Manager Hershiser would be seen as a foolish soldier trying to go in and fight the influence of the evil DePodesta.

Or else it will be DePodesta being portrayed as coming to his senses.

2005-10-22 10:59:18
396.   King of the Hobos
Brazoban had his season debut for Licey last night, struck out 2 in an inning of work. He struggled with them last year, his stats looked similar to this season (I don't have the exact stats on hand).
2005-10-22 10:59:30
397.   Bob Timmermann

Chiba's team is called the Marines because the park is very, very, very close to the ocean. The mascot is a sea gull. Which really looks like a duck, but it's a gull.

2005-10-22 13:36:34
398.   LAT
368 1. Minor league batting statistics will predict major league batting performance with essentially the same reliability as previous major league statistics.

I wonder if this is true for winter league ball as well. I assmune not because players are used diffrently in the winter leagues then they are in a fulll minor league season. But it would be nice to know if OP, Yhancy, or Loony's winter is indictive of their forthcoming season.

2005-10-22 13:38:47
399.   LAT
399. Duh. Never mind. I just realized it said "batting average" not overall performance. I think its fair to say Yhancy and OP's batting performance will be bad in both winter ball and the regular season.
2005-10-22 13:57:36
400.   dzzrtRatt
393 I'm sure Plaschke's got both columns already written. One will be an open letter to Orel, warning him about DePodesta:

"Be prepared for your GM to capriciously tear the heart and soul out of your team halfway through a pennant race.

"Be prepared to watch your GM pout if his flavor of the month pet project doesn't get enough starts."

The other will be written like a message in a bottle.

"Bulldog, don't forget to bring your heart.

"And soul.

"And spine.

"You'll need them.

"We need them."
What is most curious to me is why Orel is coming into the picture now, after the First Five came and went. Was DePodesta unwilling to compete with Beane for Hershiser? Was he skeptical, until a call from Beane told him, "here's your man?" (I find it hard to believe we'd want anyone who finished second in a competition to Ken Macha, but maybe that's not how it went down.) Or is this just a nod to Dodger history, not to be taken too seriously?

If Orel becomes manager, the identity of the "bench coach" becomes all important.

Show/Hide Comments 401-450
2005-10-22 14:11:16
401.   Bob Timmermann
"Would the spreadsheet of the geek using Clearasil allowed a guy nicknamd "Bulldog" pitch so much during the 1988 playoffs?


The spreadsheets would have told the Dodgers manager to use a different pitcher.

A different pitcher indeed."

2005-10-22 14:27:50
402.   Adam M
400 - What a lot of this boils down to is, how much managing can a GM do, and how much does DePo even want to do so? The problem with Tracy and DePo wasn't that DePo was trying to manage from the owner's suite, it was that Tracy was trying to GM from the dugout. Somebody as talented as Choi, you have to give them more of a shot; stuff like using Phillips at first or using Choi exclusively as a PH was just a cockamamie stunt to piss on The Trade. There was no justification for it. In the end, I don't think DePo needs the vulcan mind-meld with the next manager, he just needs someone he can work with who won't behave like a petulant child.
2005-10-22 14:57:01
403.   dzzrtRatt
402 "...he just needs someone he can work with who won't behave like a petulant child."

So utterly true...indeed.

This is why I cannot fathom how Tracy got another shot at managing. He owes his suck-ups in the press big time. Because this kind of insubordinate, childishly self-destructive behavior would worry me if I was a GM, no matter what I thought of Tracy's baseball acumen.

I know Billy Martin used to do things like this. He benched Reggie Jackson frequently during Jackson's first season in NY, just to spite George. Martin was considered emotionally unstable; but, as a mitigating factor, he had an exceptional talent as a manager. Tracy's talent is hard to detect, and his emotional problems have thus far gone undiagnosed, thanks to a fawning media.

2005-10-22 15:50:38
404.   MikeB
402. "The problem with Tracy and DePo wasn't that DePo was trying to manage from the owner's suite, it was that Tracy was trying to GM from the dugout."

For what it's worth - that is the most succinct and dead-on summary of the Tracy/Depodesta issue I've read anywhere.

2005-10-22 16:09:45
405.   Adam M
403 - For all his faults, there will always be a market for guys like Tracy, because he can make good in-game decisions (along with the bad ones), people generally enjoy playing for him, and he seems to have a skill at developing young players. Cincy & Florida passed on him, but in the case of Pittsburgh, what better choice did they have? Tracy just played favorites way too much, and utterly gacked on getting along with DePodesta, which are not deal-breakers on other teams in other situations.
2005-10-24 06:43:56
406.   thomcat
Reply to #1- Steve, your Saenz mantra, sounds very familiar, much like the ones they chant on the Fan Forum @ the, such as "There's a hole in Olmedo's swing, where all his wiffer's go...." or the Fats Wallers take-off "He can't field the First Sack, 'cause his
Feet's Too Big!"...... but instead of chanting for Saenz, they chant all their critical mantras soley for Hee Seop ! LOL

They have recently added this little jingle to their mantra collection.....
"Sure he hits a few lousy homers.....that can make the Dodger crowd roar.....but have you noticed that all his taters are solo....'cause he just can't jack-em under pressure....if he eyes one base-runner, who'll surely want to climb aboard."


Note: I'm a Choi fan....and only report with a pinch of sarcastic humor, the attitudes of some Dodger fans, who don't think much of his swing....holes or no holes....

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