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About Jon
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The DePo Era
2005-12-12 10:18
by Jon Weisman

Just as Paul DePodesta was fired as Dodger general manager, I was wrapping up my chapter on "The DePo Era" for The Hardball Times Baseball Annual 2006. The book itself is a terrific compilation of statistics and essays, and believe me, it is an honor for people like myself, Alex Belth of Bronx Banter, Aaron Gleeman, Dave Studeman and Steve Treder of The Hardball Times, and Matt Welch to appear in the same pages as Bill James and Rob Neyer.

For obvious reasons, I can't print my entire chapter here, but here is a 200-word excerpt from the 5,000-word piece:

Stripped of the emotional backstory, DePodesta was almost conventional. Like most general managers, DePodesta alternated between intense activity and dormancy. He made obvious moves and risky ones. He made bad moves and good ones.

And yes, they were mostly good. In reviewing every player transaction that DePodesta executed with the Dodgers, the cumulative effect is stunning. According to The Hardball Times' Win Shares Above Bench statistics (which represent all contributions a player makes toward his team's wins, compared to those an average bench player would have made), players that DePodesta traded or gave up rights to accumulated 12.2 WSAB after their departure. Players that DePodesta acquired accumulated 69.0 WSAB. Even while enduring more player injuries in 2005 than any other team in the majors, DePodesta multiplied many times over the offense and pitching production of the players he replaced.

Of course, there remains one huge statistic against DePodesta. Despite these improvements, the Dodgers went 71-91 in 2005, their second-worst record in 46 seasons in Los Angeles. It's hard enough to sell Win Shares to an unenthusiastic public—is it even worth the effort when the team victories don't correspond?

As is often the way with writing, I started "The DePo Era" worried about filling the space I was given - and ended up giving the editors too much. So here are some charts that didn't make the publication, charts that track every DePodesta transaction. The Win Shares Above Bench-After Transaction figures cover the period for each player from the date of the transaction through the end of the 2005 season.

DePodesta Transaction Summary
Before 2004 Season
3/6/2004Jose Flores^-0.1-0.1
3/29/2004Jason Grabowski^-1.3-1.3
3/30/2004Jason Frasor6.1Jayson Werth8.82.7
4/1/2004Steve Colyer-1.3Cody Ross-1.00.3
4/3/2004Jason Romano0.4Antonio Perez4.84.4
4/3/2004Jolbert Cabrera1.0Aaron Looper0.0-1.0
Ryan Ketchner0.0
4/4/2004Franklin Gutierrez0.0Milton Bradley10.610.6
Andrew Brown0.0
WSAB-AT = Win Shares Above Bench Player - After Transaction
^traded for cash considerations

During 2004 Season
4/25/2004Rick White0.8Trey Dyson0.0-0.8
5/15/2004Tanyon Sturtze-0.1Brian Myrow0.00.1
6/2/2004Giovannni Carrara7.77.7
7/30/2004Paul LoDuca4.0Brad Penny5.7-4.9
Juan Encarnacion4.9Hee-Seop Choi-0.5
Guillermo Mota1.2Bill Murphy0.0
7/31/2004Koyie Hill0.3Steve Finley4.31.7
Reggie Abercrombie0.0Brent Mayne-2.3
Bill Murphy0.0
7/31/2004Tom Martin-0.9Matt Merricks0.00.9
7/31/2004Dave Roberts6.2Henri Stanley0.0-6.2
8/10/2004Elvin Nina0.0Mike Venafro-0.4-0.4
8/18/2004Scott Stewart^-0.5-0.5
Jereme Milons0.0Elmer Dessens2.32.3
9/1/2004Masao Kida**-0.40.4
WSAB-AT = Win Shares Above Bench Player - After Transaction
*signed as a free agent
**let go as a free agent or on waivers
^traded for cash considerations

Between 2004 and 2005 Seasons
11/8/2004Tony Schrager*0.00.0
11/16/2004Mike Rose*-1.0-1.0
11/16/2004Mike Edwards*-3.0-3.0
11/16/2004Buddy Carlyle*-2.0-2.0
12/7/2004Ricky Ledee*2.02.0
12/9/2004Jeff Kent*18.018.0
12/10/2004Steve Finley**-2.02.0
12/11/2004Kelly Wunsch*0.00.0
12/13/2004D.J. Houlton***-2.0-2.0
12/13/2004Jose Hernandez**-3.03.0
12/16/2004Adrian Beltre**3.0-3.0
12/20/2004Wilson Alvarez*-1.0-1.0
12/20/2004Jose Valentin*-1.0-1.0
12/21/2004Olmedo Saenz*6.96.9
12/22/2004J.D. Drew*7.07.0
12/25/2004Jose Lima**-8.08.0
1/7/2005Odalis Perez*0.00.0
1/11/2005Derek Lowe*5.05.0
1/11/2005Shawn Green6.0Dioner Navarro0.0-6.0
William Juarez0.0
Dan Muegge0.0
Beltran Perez0.0
1/13/2005Paul Bako*0.00.0
1/18/2005Brian Falkenborg**-1.01.0
1/18/2005Alex Cora**-1.01.0
1/25/2005Scott Erickson*-2.0-2.0
1/27/2005Hideo Nomo**-4.04.0
2/3/2005Norihiro Nakamura-2.0-2.0
3/20/2005Kazuhisa Ishii-2.0Jason Phillips0.02.0
3/30/2005Dave Ross^2.0-2.0
WSAB-AT = Win Shares Above Bench Player - After Transaction
*signed as a free agent
**let go as a free agent or on waivers
***selected in the Rule 5 draft
^traded for cash considerations

During 2005 Season
5/8/2005Oscar Robles^1.01.0
8/9/2005Tony Schrager0.0Jose Cruz, Jr.5.05.0
WSAB-AT = Win Shares Above Bench Player - After Transaction
^traded for cash considerations

Remember - this is the stuff that didn't make the book, so I hope that some of you get a glance at the chapter in print.

Comments (233)
Show/Hide Comments 1-50
2005-12-12 10:38:22
If a deal has a negative Net WSAB, and you do not take into consideration money or the future (or heart and soul, haha), does that make the deal "bad" in retrospect?
2005-12-12 10:48:30
2.   Jon Weisman
1 - I guess. I'm not entirely sure I understand your question. The charts are what they are - I don't mean for them to be considered in a vacuum.

But basically, a deal that yields negative WSAB is probably a bad deal unless there is a mitigating factor. For example, a salary dump of an above-average player is a bad deal if you just look at what that player did - however, you'd also want to consider what the team did with the saved salary.

2005-12-12 10:54:25
3.   JJoeScott
Hmmmm ... so the net Win Shares of the 2004 deadline deals is (minus-)6.2, or the sum of the Dave Roberts trade.

After which they lost 3.5 games in the standings to the Giants.


2005-12-12 11:04:11
4.   dsfan
I give Depodesta a B/B-plus for his trades.

I give him a D-plus/C-minus for his major contractual negotiations.

Overall, I give Depodesta a C/C-plus, a pretty good grade for a rookie GM working for terrible bosses.

He's no Theo Epstein, that's for sure, but nor is he another Kevin Malone.

2005-12-12 11:05:28
5.   Jon Weisman
3- Again, keep in mind that the stats include win shares through the end of 2005.
2005-12-12 11:06:32
6.   Jon Weisman
4 - "I give him a D-plus/C-minus for his major contractual negotiations."

Why so low, considering how well he did with free agents?

2005-12-12 11:08:00
7.   Jon Weisman
4/6 - Or do you just not like the guys he picked? That, I can see as debatable - although he certainly seemed to know who not to sign. But it wasn't like he overbid on anyone by a wide margin.
2005-12-12 11:16:56
8.   dzzrtRatt
This analysis appears to confirm that DePo gave up too much in the Marlin trade, inasmuch as it presents Choi as slightly below "Bench," while Encarnacion and LoDuca both contributed, more than offsetting Penny's contributions.

Am I reading it right? Why do you suppose it shows this?

Obviously, the overall DePo story is a good one, but this trade is going to be his legacy and his trademark for a long time to come, and it looks less than impressive under this particular microscope.

By the way, I was never a critic of this trade; it always made perfect sense to me.

2005-12-12 11:21:19
9.   Jon Weisman
8 - I think in the long run, the players DePo got in the trade will have more production than those he gave up. But because of Penny's injury (not to mention Choi's disappearance) in 2004, the Dodgers are working from a deficit on that one.

In other words, a healthy Penny would have dominated that trade.

The political cost of that trade for DePo was considerable. In a sense, it wasn't the last straw, but it was a big first straw. It gave life to the anti-DePo movement within the organization.

2005-12-12 11:23:49
10.   FirstMohican
8 - It didn't help DePos cause that Encarnacion had a career year in '05. It also didn't help that Penny had a somewhat mediocre year.
2005-12-12 11:23:55
11.   Vishal
why do acquisitions only count in the seasons they were acquired? that is, why don't penny's 2005 contributions count, for example?

and also, to clarify, win shares is a cumulative stat, not a rate stat, right? so more playing time translates into more win shares?

2005-12-12 11:26:26
12.   Jon Weisman
11 - They do count. I keep saying that the stats are through the end of 2005.
2005-12-12 11:27:42
13.   Bob Timmermann
So Jason Phillips helped the Dodgers purely be being NOT Kazuhisa Ishii?
2005-12-12 11:31:35
14.   FirstMohican
Off topic, I apologize: I'm considering getting tickets to the WBC. Does anyone have any advice on where to sit and where not to sit in Angels Stad. and Petco Park?
2005-12-12 11:32:00
15.   regfairfield
How can Choi have negative win shares above bench? I can't believe that Choi has been so bad that Henri Stanley contributed more to the team in his abscence. I assume Stanley has zero win shares, and that a bench player would have more than zero, so how can he not have a net negative result?
2005-12-12 11:32:04
16.   Jon Weisman
13 - Just as one or several helped by not being Jose Lima.
2005-12-12 11:34:15
17.   regfairfield
14 My expirence at Angels Stadium either involves way out in the corner on the upper deck. (Don't bother, the bleachers are better and cheaper), or in the Diamond Club. (Go, go waiter service.)
2005-12-12 11:35:03
18.   Jon Weisman
15 - A bench player who never plays in a major league game will have the same Win Shares as Stanley.

As for Choi, the position played is taken into account. Given his horrible 2004 with the Dodgers, plus production that was barely above-average for a first baseman in 2005, that's how it plays out.

Choi's WSAB with the Dodgers for 2004 alone was -1.5.

2005-12-12 11:35:32
19.   Vishal
[12] ah, ok. thanks for clarifying.
2005-12-12 11:41:08
20.   regfairfield
18 Ah, so it's compared against the amount of win shares that a bench player who played the same number of games would make.
2005-12-12 11:43:09
21.   Bob Timmermann
At PETCO, you have to be careful that you don't have a seat that doesn't give you a good view of RF. Hence, aim for the LF side of the park.
2005-12-12 11:44:20
22.   underdog
Getting Jose Cruz Jr for Tony "Who?" Schrager looks like a particularly shrewd deal right now. (I could regret saying this if Schrager becomes an all-star some day but...)

Just the sheer number of people he gave up who are completely forgotten already, like Jerome Millons (unless I'm mistaken) and Elvin Nina... Getting a good prospect like Ketchner for Jolbert Cabrera, etc...

Anyway, thanks Jon, obviously a lot of work went into that.


2005-12-12 11:46:01
23.   bhsportsguy
I still believe the biggest problem Depo had, well 4 problems, the bias against his age; perceived arrogance; non-schmoozing of local media and most importantly, never fully explaining why he did certain things. Should he have to explain his decisions to the public, not really but when there is such skeptism and lack of goodwill, it never hurts to be a little political.
2005-12-12 12:03:44
24.   jasonungar05
The biggest propblem IMO is that he failed to resign Beltre.

(Not that I disagree due to the money he was asking for. Not that I disagree that it was a McCourt call, but i think thats what really caused the press to turn on him)

2005-12-12 12:05:08
25.   Jon Weisman
23 - I can't argue with the schmoozing part, but the fact is that DePodesta rigorously explained what he was doing, time and time again, never more so than with the Lo Duca deal. It was to get a starting pitcher that would take the Dodgers beyond the first round of the playoffs. The media (and many fans) just weren't buying the explanations.
2005-12-12 12:10:56
26.   molokai
Jon I enjoyed your chapter in the Hardball times. Yours is the only chapter I've read so far but looking forward to the rest of the book. Thanks for the additional information up top.
Depo was to classy to explain to the media that he traded LaDuca because he was on the wrong age of 30 for a catcher and would get expensive very quickly. He only accentuated the positive reasons for his trades/moves and never said anything negative about the players he moved. I liked that very much about him. It does seem obvious that he was oblivious to the need to cater to the media. He felt winning and losing would answer his critics but when you have that approach you can't have a season like the 2005 Dodgers had. He miscalculated the damage a 71 win season would have and should have made a more aggressive approach to stay in the pennant race. It seems he was to busy looking to the future and ignoring the present, and it cost him his job. It might have cost us some prospects but I'd rather have Depo and a 81 win season then a gazillion prospects. JMO
2005-12-12 12:11:22
27.   dsfan

Here's why I give Depo a C-minus/D-plus for his major contractual negotiations:

He committed a GM felony when he allowed Scott Boras to string him along. Boras dictated the timetable on Beltre and when that played out Boras mauled Depo in the Drew deal.

Certainly JD Drew has premium talents, but his medical red flags/makeup questions were so severe that guaranteeing him $55 million amounts to wishful thinking and potential roster suicide. Surgical patellar tendinitis doesn't go away, especially in a 29-year-old OF. And Drew had other known surgical risks that played out with his shoulder and wrist (not the wrist that was hit by Burnett). Another red flag: The STLC and Braves, two smart clubs and former employers, doubted Drew's competitive makeup.

Drew is capable of a very good year in 2006, but I expect this to go down as a highly inefficient contract. Sure was in '05. Maybe they get lucky and he opts out, but even that opt-out clause favors Boras. Should've been mutual.

The O. Perez deal is egregious because the LAD knew about Perez's many physical and makeup problems yet still rewarded him with a bloated contract.

Better to find some pitching bargains like Kevin Towers did with Pedro Astacio and Jim Bowden did with Loaiza (who wanted to join the LAD but was turned down by Depo).

Criticsm of the Lowe deal gets overcooked. It's a so-so deal, although I think Boras extracted about $4 million more than LAD needed to get him.

Time will tell on the Penny contract. The reason John Boles quit the LAD is that he knew about Penny's shoulder red flags but Depo didn't bother to ask him about Penny, whose shoulder immediately became a big problem. Failed integrity of process there, very un-Theo like.

When the Dessens deal got done, I thought it was an overpay. Still do.

By more than doubling Houston's offer to Kent, Depo got Kent and it paid off. Good job there.

Interesting footnote: Prior to that deal, Depo offered Nomar $27 million to play 2B, according to Gammons. As you know, Nomar again broke down. If Gammons is right, that was a foolish offer and like the Drew deal didn't properly evaluate the medicals.

On another contractual note, I believe Depo should've offered Steve Finley arbitration and gotten the draft picks. Tough call, I know.

I also believe Arizona was willing to do the Green deal without getting $10 million. They would've taken less.

The medicals on Gagne weren't so hot either when Depo gave him that deal, but Boras had Depo by the gonads there, given Gagne's contributions to the LAD.

Final Footnote: One thing I LIKE about the LAD telling Paul Friggin Bako to take a hike over that $50,000 is that they're broadcasting an ability to stick to their bid. Depo broacasted an inability to do so in his deals for Lowe, Drew, Perez and Dessens and the reported offer to Nomar.

This isn't a dismissal of Depo. He was a young GM. A smart employer would've helped him better deal with Boras. Overall, I give him a C-plus.

2005-12-12 12:13:46
28.   Fallout
Trading Ishii for Phillips was an excellent trade. It filled a big hole in the needs the team because of The Trade and a lack of planning. DePo was fortunate that a catcher
was available for Ishii.

On the other hand, although Ishii's performance fell off, he was valuable to the Dodgers when they had him. Toward the end of his Dodger career how many times did they use him as a last resort because they had no one else? How many times did the team win when he was used in an emergency?

Besides, Ishii was important for revenues. Whenever he was used, the concession sales must have soared because of his slow arduous outings.

2005-12-12 12:21:47
29.   Vishal
[27] i'd like to know a little more concrete stuff about "the medicals". when offering contracts, is there a general dollar-to-medical ratio that one should go by, as a rule of thumb? do "the medicals" offer some good predictive value, or do you just use hindsight after the season and say "oh, well that player got hurt and he has gotten hurt before, so you should've seen it coming". are there instances in which players who have been hurt are able to recover and don't show any more propensity to get hurt? is there some information in these players' "medicals" that can help one differentiate these players from those that are injury-prone? is it all a crap shoot? should one avoid players with any injury history altogether? if this is going to be used as a criticism, i'd like to know some criteria to use as a yardstick.
2005-12-12 12:23:17
30.   mountainmover
I was neutral with DePodesta in the beginning, but as time elapsed, I felt that he was not the GM we needed. His trades and acquisitions were very good for the most part (although his foot-dragging and poor communication could have impeded a few).

I was (still am) a proponent of the LoDuca/Penny trade. Mere statistics cannot quantify DePodesta's reign as Dodger GM, the same as Abraham Lincoln's election wins cannot quantify him. It seems to me that most great leaders have something in common that cannot be measured. For the lack of a better word, I'll call it "panache." Colletti has it, DePodesta didn't. There's no doubt that Colletti is intellectually inferior to DePodesta, and while having panache does not guarantee success, I believe that a successful GM has to have a certain degree of it.

How do you define panache in a person? I define "panache" much like Justice Potter Stewart defined pornography: "I know it when I see it!"

2005-12-12 12:24:40
31.   Paul B
I'd like to second Molokai's plug of Jon's article-- it's good stuff. The Annual seems like a good read (though I found the review of the NL West a bit heavy-handed...yeah, everyone knows that it was a bad division already). Jon's bit on Depo was the first thing I read (of course) and it was excellent (of course). Looking forward to further perusal...
2005-12-12 12:28:27
32.   molokai
Will Carrol at BP has a database of historical baseball injuries and a program that at the beginning of each year will spit out a color based on the probablity of that player being healthy. Red is stay away, yellow is beware and I think green is good to go.

In the Bill James handbook a writer by the name of Sig Mejdal has taken a stab at it the last two years using a database put together using the baseball encyclopedia for the data.

2005-12-12 12:34:50
33.   Jon Weisman
Of course, there's more good Jon Weisman stuff in "The Best of Dodger Thoughts."
2005-12-12 12:35:43
34.   Jeff Baehr
23 - It's hard for me to believe that we've heard the entire story concerning the firing of Depodesta. The data points simply fail to add up. Only several weeks prior to his dismissal, McCourt fully endorsed Depo in speech and action(Tracy was let go). McCourt is not a stupid person and, I believe, understands the merits of an empiricist approach to baseball. Although its too early to tell, Colletti seems to differ from DePo only in being slightly more social and slightly less statistically inclined although he has retained Depo's infrastructure and staff. McCourt, no doubt, understood why the Dodgers failed to perform in 2005(freakish injuries) and also saw the promise of 2006. McCourt must also know that the players Depo acquired out performed those that he has gave up. Was the pressure from the LA fan base and mainstream media simply too much for McCourt to shoulder? I don't believe so although I don't have an alternative explanation.
2005-12-12 12:36:59
35.   molokai
On 3/8/05 Carrol gave the following grades to Dodger players:
Reds - Werth, O Perez, Penny, E Jackson
Drew and Milton were both yellows.
2005-12-12 13:02:17
36.   OCDodger
I was just wondering whether a similar list has been made regarding Dan Evans' moves. I've often argued to anti-Depo friends that at least he was better than Evans. At the same time, however, I tend to think that you would have a pretty good general manager if you could combine the best qualities of both -- the offseason moves of an Evans with the in-season moves of DePodesta, a shrewd deal-maker who actually has a soul, someone intelligent who gives up a prospect from time to time, etc..
2005-12-12 13:03:32
37.   scareduck
27 - without saying I agree with all of your criticisms, I do give points for them being well-thought-out. A few comments along the way:

He committed a GM felony when he allowed Scott Boras to string him along. Boras dictated the timetable on Beltre and when that played out Boras mauled Depo in the Drew deal.

I think that's a very important point, and it's one that's been overlooked a bit. That problem led to not only the Odalis Perez signing, which you mention later, but to the even more disastrous Derek Lowe signing. By picking up free agents at the Scott Boras Store late in the season, DePodesta assured himself of paying above market rates for essentially leftovers and castoffs.

Despite all that, I would say I disagree as to whether the Drew contract was a bad one. At the time -- and to some degree, still -- the problems Drew has had aren't related to his patellar tendinitis, which supposedly has been fixed surgically.

Time will tell on the Penny contract. The reason John Boles quit the LAD is that he knew about Penny's shoulder red flags but Depo didn't bother to ask him about Penny, whose shoulder immediately became a big problem. Failed integrity of process there, very un-Theo like.

It wasn't his shoulder at all, but a nerve in his elbow. There has been speculation that the two may be related, but so far nobody -- to my knowledge -- had been able to connect the dots.

On another contractual note, I believe Depo should've offered Steve Finley arbitration and gotten the draft picks. Tough call, I know.

True, but I think the team was wiser to stay away from him. 40+ outfielders don't stay healthy.

2005-12-12 13:05:17
38.   natepurcell
why would jackson be tagged as reds?

hes had one injury in his career (at the time that list was made) and it was just a forearm strain. is it just because hes a young pitcher?

2005-12-12 13:08:15
39.   dsfan
Carroll was derilect in his duties when he failed to give Drew a red, but even a yellow coupled with the competive makeup question made in an awfully risky bet at $55 million guaranteed plus the out clause that favored Boras. Carroll was also kind to Milton when he gave him a yellow. The Indians, you can be certain, would've given Milton a red (strictly on physical grounds,not the immaturity issues). Molokai has done a great job of chronicling Bradley's many physical problems, which no doubt will place him in the "red flag" section in 2006. He'll be joined there by Werth, Drew, Ledee, Alomar, Gagne, Perez, perhaps Penny and Cruz.
I suspect Carroll gave Nomar a red last year. Depo, according to Gammons, had offered Nomar a 3 yr/$27 million guarantee before signing Kent. Scary.

As for quantifying the "medicals," clubs are getting better at it and Carroll makes for interesting reading, although his ego appears to outsize his work.

Durability often gets under-appreciated. Let's set aside the whole complex debate on how to protect and preserve and develop pitchers. For position players alone, the season is a meat grinder.
Baseball is incompatible with the body's connective tissues -- ligaments, cartilage and tendons. And the whole steroid/HGH dynamics makes it even tougher to project health. Simply there aren't enough good, durable players for the 30 teams.

Shortly after he got the job, Colletti said durabiliity in a player is very important to him. Seems a wise statement. Possibly it factored into the still-risky move to give Furcal $39 million guaranteed and no doubt is one reason he's courting Jacque Jones.

2005-12-12 13:18:28
40.   scareduck
34 - my pet explanation has DePodesta essentially firing Jim Tracy at the end of the season. When DePodesta's short list for manager makes the Times and it includes

- Torey Lovullo, a minor league manager whom nobody outside the Indians organization had ever heard of
- Jim Fregosi, who had lost a pair of teams, most recently including the Angels

McCourt goes ballistic and reads DePo the riot act. DePo, rightfully believing the choice should be his to make, sees what's coming up, goes on vacation, and lets Frank fire him in the papers, perhaps getting some snickers on the realization that it makes the organization look incredibly incompetant.

2005-12-12 13:20:30
41.   Marty
Jon, I haven't received my copy of your book yet. I'm not worried, but was wondering if others have received it.
2005-12-12 13:22:24
42.   Marty
40 Fregosi wasn't on Depo's list was he? I thought Ned was the only one interested in him.
2005-12-12 13:23:19
43.   Marty
Nevermind, I'm sure you meant Collins, not Fregosi.
2005-12-12 13:27:56
44.   scareduck
42 - sorry, you're right, I was thinking of Terry Collins. Both ex-Angels managers, though.
2005-12-12 13:28:24
45.   scareduck
41 - I've gotten my copy already.
2005-12-12 13:29:46
46.   df3
It seems pretty clear that the people DePo brought in have performed better than the people he let go. But much of the value he added on the field came through free agency, so his overpayment in cash might be distorting the picture. To make this argument convincing, however, you either need some inside knowledge of what these guys would have accepted, or you need some alternative. Who on the free agent market was mistakenly passed up?
2005-12-12 13:30:18
47.   dsfan

I didn't like the price for Drew when the deal got done. This isn't the classic hindsight second guess, but of course, you and I never discussed it last year so you have no reason to believe that's how I sized it up. Part of my view was informed by information gleaned from the Cardinals and Braves, who previous employed Drew.

As for J.D.'s knee, surgery for Drew's patellar problem was a short-term fix. Tendinitis is still in the cards for JD.

Go back to last winter. The knee was such a concern that Drew, shortly after getting the $55million, even risked Milton's wrath by immediately lobbying for the CF job so he wouldn't have to stop suddenly in the RF corner. That was a telling remark. For a 29 year old OF, stoppping and starting shouldn't be a concern. With Drew it was.

My recollection, which could be dead wrong, is that Depo admitted in September that Drew's medicals indeed had raised concerns about the other wrist and the shoulder, the ones that required surgery after the season.

So you have a surgical knee and concerns about a shoulder and a wrist going into the negotiations, plus the makeup questions that infuriated the previous employers, and you still guarantee him $55 million and give Boras the out clause?

If Chuck Lamar or Bowden had done something so risky, they'd get lambasted and ridiculed.

I'm not saying the LAD should've kept Steve Finley. Contrary to what a certain LAT columnist has said many times, that was a smart move by Depo.

At the time, I thought Depo could've offered Finley arbitration to get the draft picks knowing that Finley would go elsewhere for a multi-year deal. Tough call there and a very minor point.

I guess the one good thing about all of Drew's injuries last year is that he played so seldom that his legs should be fresh this year. He was spared the inevitable degradation in the surgical knee. Ideally for the LAD, Drew has a great bounceback year and then decides he'd rather leave. Maybe Omar Minaya or Ricciardi will give him $35 million over the final three years, then everyone can say, Gee, Depo's deal wasn't so bad after all.

2005-12-12 13:34:50
48.   bhsportsguy
25, 34
The true story is that Tommy saw his chance to get his boys Bowden and Valentine to Chavez Ravine and for whatever reason, divine intervention (no inteview for Bowden) and 4MM a year for Bobby V., it never happened.

At least Ned appears to have the national and local media in his corner and despite the inaccurate image portrayed (Does Bonds' injury give SF a total pass while the Dodgers lose Gagne, Izzy and their starting OF and people call it a embarassment for the franchise) of last year, most observers do believe that with some tinkering, the Dodgers can compete in 2006.

2005-12-12 13:36:41
49.   scareduck
47 - My recollection, which could be dead wrong, is that Depo admitted in September that Drew's medicals indeed had raised concerns about the other wrist and the shoulder, the ones that required surgery after the season.

What happened was that the Times finally reported on it:

I also wonder about Drew's makeup, especially in light of what you mention, the fact that the Cards and Braves decided to take a pass. What might that mean for younger brother Stephen? Already, Baseball America used it against him in considering the top prospects from the AFL in comparison to the Angels Brandon Wood.

2005-12-12 13:43:24
50.   Jeff Baehr
40 - I agree with you assuming DePo's intention was to put McCourt in a position where he'd have to fire him. However, I don't believe that is the case. I Believe DePo enjoyed being the general manager of one of the preeminent teams in baseball. It just seems difficult to swallow that the rift between McCourt and DePo was a result of the managerial search and that discourse was no longer an option. Could it be that DePo challenged McCourt's authority and arrogantly assumed he could get away with it?
Show/Hide Comments 51-100
2005-12-12 13:45:59
51.   King of the Hobos
The bearded one is officially a Giant. Terms haven't been disclosed, but around $27 mil for 3 years and an option 4th.

Also, as Bob points out in his 100th installment of the Griddle, Vicente Padilla is a Ranger

2005-12-12 13:51:02
52.   Fallout
I thought that getting Drew was a makeup for not signing Beltre and the declining available free agents to fill a hole in the lineup forced DePo to take a chance on him.
2005-12-12 13:51:39
53.   Vishal
[50] could it be that mccourt is a capricious control freak who has a habit of reflexively firing people at the drop of a hat?
2005-12-12 13:53:37
54.   natepurcell
who was padilla traded for?
2005-12-12 13:55:09
55.   King of the Hobos
54 Everyone's favorite player, PTBNL
2005-12-12 13:55:44
56.   regfairfield
52 Or maybe he saw a guy with a career .400 on base, .510 slug, and excellent defense, and said, I'd rather have that than a guy who had one ridiculously good season and a bunch of medicore to bad ones.
2005-12-12 13:56:12
57.   Vishal
[35] while mr. carroll's rating are a step, and are better than nothing, i think their predictive value, for one, is not established.

secondly, it's hard to simply avoid every single player with a red or yellow flag, so how do you factor the ratings into a contract? how many dollars should you shave off your max offer for a particular rating? i think these issues are far from clear.

2005-12-12 14:00:43
58.   Jeff Baehr
48 – I thinks it's become clear that Tommy wields absolutely no influence within the organization. Was Orel ever a real candidate of just an excuse? In hindsight it appears he wasn't given serious consideration for any position with the organization. Beyond the infamous dinner, he has gone on record saying that McCourt and co. never called him back. In terms of Bowden and Bobby V., beyond rumors, has there been any substitutive claim that either was ever seriously considered? The real hastily arranged candidates appeared to be Hartm Ng, and Gillack. Were those Tommy guys? Lets also remember that Tommy is now busy running around as a 'ambassador of baseball' not assisting the new Colletti administration.

53 – I think it's wrong to assume that McCourt acts without reason. I believe the dodgers are much more profitable than under the prior regime even considering the positive shift in economics for baseball as a whole.

Maybe im just searching for a rational explanation where none exists…

2005-12-12 14:01:41
59.   regfairfield
Looking at that injury article, it seemed to be very much a looking at the now situation.

If the player was currently hurt (didn't O.P. miss most of Spring Training?) they got a red. If they had a history of being hurt, or were being injected into a starting role for the first time, they got a yellow, otherwise, they got a green.

2005-12-12 14:05:09
60.   JMK
Jon wrote recently how you can make bad decisions and still end up with good results and you can make good decisions and end up with bad results. Even if Depo's decisions ended up badly (and I don't think they did) one could look at every one of his transactions and see the rational behind them, and they were often backed up by empirical data. If you focus on the process rather than the outcome your odds for success increases but does not guarantee success. For example, he recognized that Dodger stadium hurts players whose production depends on singles/doubles/triples so he signed guys like Drew and Valentin whose offensive value lies in walks and homeruns. He theorized that groundball pitchers who limited homeruns would do better at Dodger Stadium, so he signed Lowe. Transactions like Drew obviously haven't worked out so far but it was refreshing to understand the rational that often went behind many of his decisions.

In addition, it's easy to criticize free agent signings because almost every player signed is gonna be overpayed. It seems to me that the if you want to acquire a free agent you're gonna have to overpay. Drew may have been a bad signing but who would you rather have signed last year? Would you rather have Beltre and his contract on the Dodgers right now? Not me. How bout Magglio Ordonez' contract? or Beltran's? or Finley's? I'm not even sure I would even want Delgado's contract or Sexson's contract on the Dodgers even though they had decent seasons last year.

2005-12-12 14:05:21
61.   dzzrtRatt
My alternative history of DePodesta is this:

-- As Jon says, he explained plenty about his trades, and was always a gent about the players he let go.

-- McCourt was perfectly happy to let DePo be the lightening rod for post-Beltre and LoDuca recriminations.

-- When DePodesta got the okay to fire Tracy, he believed that proved he was on solid ground with McCourt. At that moment, I believe he, in fact, was.

-- DePodesta's "vacation" was his sister's wedding in Italy, not really a skippable event. Folks in DePo's age group are all into these "destination weddings" now--the farther, more expensive and more exotic the better. He's lucky it wasn't on Mars. I'm lucky I'm not 28-34 now.

-- Between Tracy's firing and DePodesta's firing, McCourt and his wife started to realize that despite their best efforts, most of LA either hated them or was at best indifferent. They were about to make some decisions that had the potential to make them even less popular, like raising ticket prices. They were being mocked as know-nothings dabbling in baseball, which is not the image they want. McCourt is entirely sincere when he talks about "restoring a winning tradition," in just the same way my son is completely sincere in promising me he'll get an A on his next geometry test. When my son gets a D instead, he starts looking for alibis. So did McCourt. His alibi was Mr. Lightening Rod, Paul DePodesta.

And guess what? That son of glitch McCourt might get away with it. He stumbled into a pretty good mainstream baseball man in Colletti. He won't be net +34.9 on above bench replacement (one of my favorite episodes of Home Improvement by the way), but he doesn't really have to be. DePo did a lot of the heavy lifting already--primarily taking the heat for not trading these great prospects when all LA baseball media was howling for him to do so.

Many things Colletti had nothing to do with will redound to his success d'estime. But "it's all good"--DePodesta's reputation will inch back up, and until it does, he's got a lot of money coming in every two weeks.

2005-12-12 14:09:22
62.   scareduck
61 - McCourt is entirely sincere when he talks about "restoring a winning tradition," in just the same way my son is completely sincere in promising me he'll get an A on his next geometry test.

That is absolutely brilliant, and almost certainly true.

2005-12-12 14:11:59
63.   Vishal
[58] i'm not trying to suggest that mccourt is totally mindless; rather that his threshold for dismissal is lower than most people.
2005-12-12 14:17:16
64.   King of the Hobos
The Red Sox new GM is 63 yrs old. Or combined anyways. Assistant GM Jed Hoyer, 32, and director of player development Ben Cherington, 31, will officially become co-GM
2005-12-12 14:23:39
65.   Bob Timmermann
McCourt is entirely sincere when he talks about "restoring a winning tradition," in just the same way my son is completely sincere in promising me he'll get an A on his next geometry test.

I got an A on every geometry test I ever took. Should I run the Dodgers?

2005-12-12 14:25:36
66.   Jon Weisman
61 - I'm fairly certain this post can be accepted as canon.

65 - I was great at math (until calculus) and still stunk at geometry.

2005-12-12 14:27:02
67.   dzzrtRatt
65 Maybe so. And if you want to start a geometry blog for my kids like my son, you might find a lot of takers.
2005-12-12 14:32:24
68.   scareduck
65 - too bad. I am normally pretty dismissive of the "teachers as heroes" meme that seems to have infected public discourse over the last coupla decades, but I have seen firsthand what a big difference a good teacher can make. My pre-calculus class at Orange Coast was one of those moments where the lights all came on at once, and had a profound effect on my choice of majors and careers. I absolutely lived in fear of math prior to that.
2005-12-12 14:33:14
69.   Jon Weisman
67 -

And so we return again to ...

2005-12-12 14:34:24
70.   scareduck
actually my 68 was about 66. Jon, does this mean you're no longer of the opinion that DePo got the boot because of the managerial search?
2005-12-12 14:36:05
71.   Bob Timmermann
I took my geometry class back in 1980-81 in 10th grade. One of my classmates was future USC and 49ers lineman Jeff Bregel, a pioneer in anabolic steroid use. He really messed himself up. Jeff Bregel was also on my brother's junior high bowling team. He was a big guy. I think he just picked up the ball and threw it down the alley and hit the pins on the fly.
2005-12-12 14:39:19
72.   Jeff Baehr
I suppose im under the opinion he was thrown out for outright defiance of McCourt which was born out of arrogance, rather than strategic thinking.
2005-12-12 14:40:28
73.   dsfan
Colletti needs to find starting pitching but risks gross overpays if he deals with Boras in this market.

Can LAD find a good value without risking huge dollars?

Towers did it last year with Astacio. Bowden found one in Loaiza (turned down by Depo). Beane is adept at finding them. Contreras gave Kenny Williams nice returns.

Dodger Stadium should be a selling point, and the potential is there for a strong defense.

Anyone out there you like for low dollars?

Here's one: B. Kim as a low-risk candidate for a No. 5 spot.

2005-12-12 14:41:12
74.   Vishal
[66] you mean, a firing canon?
2005-12-12 14:42:11
75.   Colorado Blue
61 - I would like to add another twist to the DePo Conspiracy: what about Ng, Smith, and White having a role. They have been complete team players without so much a peep about DePo getting canned. None of them have left and there is no indication of any strife there. They have fallen off the radar since Ned was hired and they just may like it like that. Suppose they had issues with DePo and took it to Frank and Jamie. Given the total lack of info on the situation it may be plausible. Tommy's perceived influence on the subject may just have been coincidental. JACT.
2005-12-12 14:44:42
76.   Curtis Lowe
73- I would think that Kent and B.Kim's history would not bode well for team chemistry.
2005-12-12 14:46:47
77.   regfairfield
73 I think we can assume Towers lucked out a little with Astacio. He was terrible in the first half with Texas, struck out about five per nine in San Diego and walked almost the same amount. The only thing he did was avoid the home run (1 every fifteen innings) likely because of Petco.
2005-12-12 14:51:30
78.   the OZ
"Tracyball" is sweeping Steel City, USA!!!

2005-12-12 14:54:24
79.   Jon Weisman
70 - I don't see them as mutually exclusive. The anti-Collins take on the managerial search, fed by Lasorda, gave McCourt the ammunition he needed to execute his panic move.

As for 68, I had plenty of good teachers. Like I said, except for geometry and calculus, I was great at math. I'm not complaining. I think my best teachers were in history and English, but that's where my interests were anyway. Chicken, meet egg.

2005-12-12 14:57:15
80.   the OZ
Excepts from 78 -

"Signs of Jim Tracy's influence on shaping the team in his mold have been evident with many of management's recent comments, and even some of the moves executed this past week at the winter meetings.

Consider that, no matter what subject is raised with Tracy in conversation, he somehow ends up talking about the importance of Chris Duffy, the Pirates' projected leadoff man, hitting the ball on the ground much more than in the air.

"Have you seen this kid run from home to first? Is there anyone faster?" Tracy asked again this week. "Well, that doesn't matter if you pop up."

I feel like I'm beginning in Pittsburgh with a little bit of a track record that there has been some success realized over the past five years. There was a method to the madness in L.A., and you'd be hard pressed to convince me that it doesn't work."

2005-12-12 14:57:41
81.   Jon Weisman
78 - "as they called it in Los Angeles"


2005-12-12 14:58:42
82.   dsfan
B. Kim is still young, little if any history of arm ailments, I believe, and would be getting out of Denver.

Sure, there are things not to like. That's why he'll cost a billion less than Millwood/Weaver/Washburn.

As for Astacio, sure, there was some luck there for Towers. But getting him away from Texas/Denver to Petco seemed a good idea. LAD have a pitchers park, too, maybe not as much as Petco, but still a selling point.

2005-12-12 15:00:32
83.   the OZ
81 - Yeah. That article is pure gold.

Gold, Jerry! Gold!

2005-12-12 15:00:45
84.   Monterey Chris
Our new manager dismissed the problem of last year's team chemistry by saying that if he loses 91 games he will have bad chemistry with his wife.
2005-12-12 15:02:13
85.   dsfan
I don't see any Depo conspirarcy.

Owners can be mercurial, often are.

The Packers fired Ray Rhodes after one year. Lots of examples of quick terminations. Not sure it's fair to suggest Ng/Smith/White staged a covert mutiny of sorts.

2005-12-12 15:06:20
86.   Curtis Lowe
Would B.Kim and Kent be friends? They did'nt seem to friendly when Kent semi charged the mound last season. Kent was either saying "You want a piece of me " or "You complete me", would either situation be fruitful in the clubhouse?
2005-12-12 15:09:26
87.   scareduck
77 - exactly so. I think it's fair to say he was the Padres' Jose Lima.

81 - and I'm sure that in LA bunting was a very effective strategy, too.

2005-12-12 15:13:12
88.   OCDodger
Two words for Jim Tracy: "Paul Hackett."

USC football fans will know what I'm talking about. Rather than molding his "system" around the players he has, Tracy will scour the Majors in search of every last slap-hitting second baseman that he can find to plug into his "system."

Here's a hope that Grady Little takes the opposite approach.

2005-12-12 15:14:49
89.   Eric Enders
Roy Smith was hired specifically because he was a DePo ally and a Beane guy. I'm not sure he's the best candidate for back-stabber.
2005-12-12 15:15:31
90.   dzzrtRatt
The dreaded Arm Angles return. Hee Seop Choi, watch out! Jim Tracy's got some different ones he thought up, just for you! Like the between your legs arm angle! The over the shoulder arm angle! The bounce it off the pitcher's head arm angle! The Venus De Milo no-arm arm angle! You just can't beat Tracyball, you can only hope to contain it!
2005-12-12 15:15:38
91.   trainwreck
I have been a Dodger fan since I can remember and since I am from and grew up in the East Bay, I am also an A's fan. When I heard DePo's name mentioned as a candidate for GM, I wished and even literally dreamt of having him as our GM. When he was named our GM I was ecstatic. I kept waking up every morning hoping to read on ESPNews bottom line that DePo was our GM and one morning it finally happened. The sabremetric approach that I came to believe in wholeheartedly even if I was no expert about it (I still lack the knowledge, which is why I love reading posts like this by John who understand the numbers more than I do). I loved and still do love to believe in something that majority of baseball fans think is garbage (even some so called stats-oriented people like my fellow A's fans who still will argue with me about how much I trust stats). I saw DePo as the man that would lead us to NL West dominance for years. In all honesty, no matter what DePo did I believed he knew so much more than I could possibly know that it was a good move. I know dumb, blind faith is not the smart way to go, but I did not care. I questioned some of DePo's moves (I understood why he signed ODP, but I did not really like it, I wanted Tracy fired days ago and I wanted DePo to try to control the lineup a little more because I thought they were ridiculously bad), but I tried to understand and find reasoning for why he made the moves he did (I can remember reading as much as I could on Derek Lowe). Looking back at it, DePo made a lot of the right moves and I am happy I believed in him and am disgusted he did not get the chance to turn us into what he wanted. I wrote this because I wanted to thank DePo for what he made me believe and I know just want to move on and try not to bring up him all the time and instead just concentrate on the present and hope for the best with Flanders. I have to move on and stop being angry about what happened.
2005-12-12 15:16:55
92.   King of the Hobos
I got all A's in geometry, I think (I was in the 8th grade, does that give me an excuse if I got a B that I don't remember?). I've never gotten below an A in a math class, although my final tonight in Calc II could end that (well, I have like a 95%, but you never know...). I really should study rather than then read DT, but I just can't.

I too am interested in BK. A lot more than any other pitcher on the marlet (unless Millwood will come at 1 year, $7 mil like he did last year for the Indians, I'd even guaruntee all $7 mil, rather than just $3 mil)

2005-12-12 15:17:00
93.   jasonungar05
gosh you guys, I couldn't get past this.

"Tracy prefers to have a divergent relief corps that shows opponents different pitches, styles and arm angles"

2005-12-12 15:18:18
94.   jasonungar05
damn, 90 beat me to it as I was editing. How funny.
2005-12-12 15:18:31
95.   Steve
Jim Tracy is making up every single word of this.
2005-12-12 15:20:36
96.   Colorado Blue
85 - Not sure it's fair to suggest Ng/Smith/White staged a covert mutiny of sorts.

I said no such thing... I said that it is possible one or more had issues with DePo and brought them to Frank's attention. Please! I like how my suggestion is all of a sudden a "covert mutiny".

I know the tendency on this board would be to dismiss this out-of-hand, but lacking any definitive reason other than Frank's a moron who listens to Tommy and Camille does not make it plausible.

2005-12-12 15:22:56
97.   Colorado Blue
96 - "...not plausible."
2005-12-12 15:23:47
98.   blue22
"Consider that Tracy places a premium on defense, then take note that just about every new piece acquired or discussed is a glove man."

player/career rate2
Sean Casey/95
Hee Seop Choi/99

2005-12-12 15:24:47
99.   Steve
98 -- Try Mike Edwards.
2005-12-12 15:26:20
100.   Bob Timmermann
The word "Tracyball" does not turn up in a database search of the LA Times, Daily News, and OC Register.


"Tracy ball" appears once in the Daily News in a March 30, 2001 article by Brian Dohn.

"For six weeks at Dodgertown, Tracy preached hitting the ball behind runners, hitting cutoff men, sacrificing an at-bat for the good of the team, working deep into counts, making routine plays in the field and every other aspect that seems right out of Little League. It was a call for T-ball, as in Tracy-ball."

Show/Hide Comments 101-150
2005-12-12 15:29:59
101.   trainwreck
I would have been more than pleased to take Padillas from the Phillies for basically nothing. The guy is very inconsistent, but he has great stuff and has been very successful in his career at times. I would like to see him in a pitcher's park and I think he would do a lot better than ODP or Houlton. The guy seems to have motivational problems and Billy Koch disease (how about I throw another fastball they can not hit that...EVER) at times and maybe Little could have been actually helpful in this situation as his players seem to love him and so maybe that would motivate them to try harder and listen. If he fails oh well, we use someone else. But if he succeeds with have a possible All-Star pitcher.

By the way, when is Grady going to start filling out his staff?

2005-12-12 15:31:00
102.   Jon Weisman
And you guys thought Bob was leaving us for Griddler pastures.
2005-12-12 15:41:05
103.   Bob Timmermann
Tracyball won't turn up much on google either. Just some ESPN board postings and some email messages by someone named "Tracy Ball"
2005-12-12 15:42:58
104.   RELX
Let's start "GradyBall" before it's too late!
2005-12-12 15:43:07
105.   dzzrtRatt
Working deep into the count? When did that ever happen? We gave way too many pitchers way too many innings off last season.
2005-12-12 15:44:56
106.   Marty
That article was priceless. I'm really worried though that Little is just a Tracy in disguise.
2005-12-12 15:49:18
107.   Steve
105 -- There is a Tracy-World, but none of us happen to live on it.
2005-12-12 15:52:52
108.   bigcpa
>>> Consider that Tracy is no fan of players who strike out too often

Ladies and Gents, your top 10 list of players Tracy is not a fan of:

P Wilson
Jason Bay!

just missing the cut Messrs. Abreu, Chavez, Cabrera, Ortiz, Teixeira and Hafner.

2005-12-12 15:53:25
109.   Jon Weisman
107 - LOL.
2005-12-12 15:55:13
110.   Steve
108 -- But &#(&%$#^&%## Jason Repko we're going to hold a #%()#&%()&# parade for.
2005-12-12 15:56:26
111.   King of the Hobos
108 How did Choi manage to miss the cut?
2005-12-12 15:59:17
112.   blue22
99 - No Mike Edwards (as a 1B at least), but there are these gems:

Jason Phillips/92 (as a 1B)
Jason Grabowski/100! (in 6 career games at 1st)

2005-12-12 15:59:51
113.   bigcpa
Can Choi PLEASE demolish Pittsburgh this year- even off the bench?? Of course they've got all those stinking lefties.
2005-12-12 16:06:58
114.   dzzrtRatt
Colletti can win my support forever, and it's staring him right in the face:

To the Pirates: Scrappy Jason Repko and bunt bonanza Mike Edwards

To the Dodgers: That strikeout slut Jason Bay

How could Littlefield and Tracy say no?

2005-12-12 16:09:29
115.   bhsportsguy
Per Insider report

"Although he will turn 38 in spring training, Snow and his six Gold Gloves still represent a major upgrade both offensively and defensively over Hee-Seop Choi. Snow batted .275 with four home runs and 40 RBI last season, and committed just three errors in 874 total chances."

Let's see Choi hit .253/.336/.453 with an OPS .080 pts higher than Snow. And he had just 2 errors in 762 total chances.

Yes, he does not have the gold gloves or style of J.T. Snow but I would not use the term major improvement especially considering J.T.'s injury history and 11 year age difference. Never lets facts get in the way of the story.

2005-12-12 16:10:36
116.   bhsportsguy
115 - Choi also hit 15 homers with 42 RBI, as if anyone here did not know that.
2005-12-12 16:11:20
117.   King of the Hobos
The DBacks have signed Damion Easley to a one year contract

The Padres have re-signed Dave Roberts to a one year contract (he's finally on his last arbitration year)

Looks like the NL West just became a lot tougher.

2005-12-12 16:15:36
118.   GoBears
115 Yeah, I beat that drum yesterday. Colletti has yet to do anything seriously wrong, in my opinion. But signing Snow, which would both mean that Choi is gone AND that we'd then have JT Freakin' Snow (!) would put Colletti up high on my list, right after, well, JT Snow.
2005-12-12 16:17:24
119.   Vishal
[115] that sounds like it was cribbed from tony jackson's piece this morning.

so now we have a potential combination of ignorance, fabrication, AND plagiarism at work here.

"sports journalism" is turning into an oxymoron.

2005-12-12 16:20:02
120.   blue22
118 - Snow over Choi is a downgrade, but I'm much more interested to see what Ned does with Milton, the back end of the rotation, and third base. I think that the opportunity for improvement is much greater at those postitions.

And, of course, with the way the rumor mill has worked around Colletti, I won't believe this Snow talk until pen gets to paper.

2005-12-12 16:27:42
121.   caseybarker

I almost split my side. Choi hit more homers during that week in July (or was it June?). Taller = better range?

2005-12-12 16:27:47
122.   jasonungar05
I hate to stick up for the guy, but Snow is not the worst thing in the world. Yes I wish Choi would just get his chance, but if he isn't:

Snow vs righties: 13 year career

.280 avg
457 slug
.826 ops

2005-12-12 16:28:07
123.   Jon Weisman
119 - No, ESPN sourced it to Jackson.
2005-12-12 16:33:46
124.   Vishal
[123] well, that's marginally better i suppose. it's still shoddy, though.
2005-12-12 16:35:15
125.   Jon Weisman
124 - I don't get your comment. I link to things all the time. It's not ESPN's fault that 115 didn't mention the credit.

Unless you mean Jackson's conclusion in his Choi-Snow comparison. That I didn't like.

2005-12-12 16:38:19
126.   Bob Timmermann
ESPN calls it "Rumor Central" and they always have a source. It doesn't purport to be the most fact-filled part of their site.

That's reserved for Page 2!

2005-12-12 16:39:42
127.   Vishal
yeah, i meant the conclusion, as well the fact that it was thoughtlessly parroted as if just because tony jackson said it, it must be true. is nobody capable of critical thought?
2005-12-12 16:40:39
128.   blue22
122 - I agree. We're talking about a platoon split, and both Choi and Snow are pretty mediocre against righties. Choi had a .795 OPS against RHP last year, ranking behind such notables as Daryle Ward, Tino Martinez, and Dave Roberts. Snow had a .725 OPS against RHP, but has a .847 number over that last 3 years (including his 2004 outlier).

Find an upgrade at 3B. Get some answers for the rotation. Make a decision on Milton Bradley. Ultimately, I think these will make more of a difference than Choi vs. Snow.

2005-12-12 16:40:43
129.   bhsportsguy
I did credit because that is where I got it, sorry for the confusion, I put in the editorial Choi comment, if that appeared somewhere else, I apologize.
2005-12-12 16:46:47
130.   GoBears
Hopefully, this isn't too much quoting, as it is itself merely a compilation of citations, but apropos of 126, I just wandered over to's (free) Rumor Mill. Only four entries. The first is a pure waste of bandwidth (in that it says nothing), and the other three can't be read as anything other than pure speculation:

Team by Team
Arizona Diamondbacks Updated:12/12/2005
The Diamondbacks have had at least a half dozen offers for pitcher Javier Vazquez, but none has been tempting enough to seriously consider, says the Arizona Republic.

Baltimore Orioles Updated:12/12/2005
The Orioles say they want to keep SS Miguel Tejada while the Mets and Red Sox explore ways of prying him loose, but now the Chicago Cubs might get in the action too using P Carlos Zambrano as primary bait, says the Chicago Tribune. [What action?]

Boston Red Sox Updated:12/12/2005
Despite rumors to the contrary, Red Sox CEO Larry Lucchino says the team has not approached agents for Roger Clemens to bring the pitcher back to Boston, says the Boston Herald. [Translation: Lucchino denies stuff we made up.]

Texas Rangers Updated:12/12/2005
While the Astros would be interested [or, should, we think] in acquiring an outfielder such as Kevin Mench or Brad Wilkerson, of the Texas Rangers, there's reason to believe the club might have something much bigger planned, perhaps attempting to go after Baltimore's Miguel Tejada or Philadelphia's Bobby Abreu, says the Houston Chronicle.

All worthless junk. And yet, somehow, I'm disappointed that there are only 4 items, and none involve the Dodgers. I think I need help.

2005-12-12 16:48:15
131.   MartinBillingsley31
The more and more i think about it, keeping bradley and signing nomar for 3b makes so much sense.
Starting pitching is something that alot of people disagree with me about, i say sign 2 of weaver,washburn millwood, but at least 1 of them.
I also think that we should just let cruz be the 3rd outfielder.
All of this keeps all of our prospects too.
Anyone close to superstar status that we trade for (example abreu) we will have to give up billingsley and others.
2005-12-12 16:54:25
132.   blue22
131 - Millwood is looking for 4/$44M. Pass.

Weaver I'd take back on a 1 year, arbi deal. He'll probably get a multi-year from someone though.

2005-12-12 16:54:45
133.   Vishal
so, does billingsley get to compete for a rotation spot out of spring training?
2005-12-12 16:55:53
134.   willhite
131 -

Signing 2 of those 3 would probably cost around $20 million per year for a minimum of four years. Where do you plan to get the money?

I have an idea. McCourt can start selling off the new seats.

2005-12-12 16:59:22
135.   MartinBillingsley31
Thats why i don't believe in payroll caps. If the signings make sense you do it.
We need to sign at least 1 of them for sure, and then also sign nomar, keep bradley and make cruz our 3rd outfielder and we are done.
2005-12-12 17:03:53
136.   willhite
135 -

You may not believe in payroll caps but I have a hunch McCourt does. As far as putting Normar on third, I'm all for that if it keeps David Bell away from Dodger Stadium.

2005-12-12 17:06:31
137.   Jon Weisman
133 - Does he get to compete? Certainly.
2005-12-12 17:08:37
138.   GoBears
135 Ha! Nice that you don't believe that someone else should have a budget constraint.
2005-12-12 17:09:11
139.   willhite
137 -

I think they would like to tell him that he has the 5th slot to lose but they're afraid he might pull an Edwin Jackson.

2005-12-12 17:11:30
140.   GoBears
I just talked to a colleague who is a die-hard Phillies Phan. He was willing to swap Abreu for Gagne. I think his agreement qualifies this as a bona fide rumor. Someone call Rotoworld, or the LA Times, or ESPN, or, or, or, or....
2005-12-12 17:18:03
141.   DodgerJoe
135,136 - I am not so sure about Nomar. He will break down at some point.

Meuller is probably off to Pitt. What about Randa?

2005-12-12 17:20:45
142.   MartinBillingsley31
No randa, we have better players allready.
2005-12-12 17:22:33
143.   blue22
141 - He will break down at some point.

That's why Aybar is around, or even LaRoche.

I look at Randa and see 162 games of mediocrity, similar to Jacque Jones.

2005-12-12 17:26:46
144.   MartinBillingsley31
I really don't think nomar will break down.
Also according to the side of this board we have a 80 million payroll right now.
+6 or 7 million for nomar
+4 or 5 million for bradley
+10 or 11 million for weaver or washburn or millwood
Total 100-103 million

+10-11 million for the 2nd starting pitcher that i would like = 110-114 million.

If i'm off on what any of you expect nomar,bradley,weaver,washburn,millwood would get forgive me, but i'm pretty close.

2005-12-12 17:28:26
145.   blue22
Total 100-103 million

I just don't think we'll get there, let alone $110M. I could see us breaking $90M, maybe $95M?

2005-12-12 17:28:55
146.   MartinBillingsley31
Adding to 144, if nomar breaks down we have laroche.
2005-12-12 17:32:23
147.   oldbear
Is Colletti seriously courting a 38yr old 1st basemen that has zero power?

Ughhh....Granted the press knows very little about what the Dodgers are going to do, but I'll breathe easier when JT Snow, Jacque Jones, Doug McKientwicz, are taking up space on other teams.

I hope the Sandy Alomar move isnt a precursor of things to come.

2005-12-12 17:34:04
148.   MartinBillingsley31
This is what I GET SO SICK OF, what's the difference between 90-95 million vs 100-103 million, as small 5-13 million.



Its the difference between having a weaver/washburn/millwood vs a houlton or jackson and its the difference between having depth and not having depth like last season.

2005-12-12 17:38:12
149.   Vishal
[148] imagine if you were rooting for a smaller market team. that'd be almost 20% of your budget.
2005-12-12 17:38:15
150.   oldbear
144. Milton Bradley will probably get less than 4.5 mils in arbitration.

I'd stay away from Washburn and Weaver. They arent difference makers for the amount of money they'll cost.

Millwood I could see taking a shot on.

Honestly though if we do have a lot of cash to work with (and I dont think we do), but if we did I'd just assume trade prospects for Adam Dunn and long-term him. I dont see any difference makers i'd pay top dollar for that are available other than Dunn.

Show/Hide Comments 151-200
2005-12-12 17:43:32
151.   sanchez101
Dunn is available?
2005-12-12 17:44:31
152.   GoBears
148 I don't know what planet you're from, MB31, but here on Earth, that's a lot of money. Even for owners of baseball teams. Unless maybe your name is Steinbrenner.
2005-12-12 17:45:16
153.   D4P
Unless maybe your name is Steinbrenner.

Or you're a university professor...

2005-12-12 17:46:14
154.   MartinBillingsley31
Sorry about the capital letters by the way, it just pisses me off that an extra 9 million give or take a few is the difference between having depth and not having depth, and the difference between having a solid player vs an unproven allways struggling player (jackson houlton) in a key role like the starting rotation.

Ask yourself this, do you want a AAAA pitcher to step in when there are a couple pitching injuries or do you want houlton,jackson,billingsley to step in when there are a couple pitching injuries.

2005-12-12 17:47:34
155.   GoBears
Joe Sheehan = funny dude. Here's a brief exerpt from his AL wrapup of the Winter Meetings. Those over the age of 35 should get this:

'...Maybe the Royals aren't contraction bait at this point, but they sure look like it...It's absolutely hilarious that they lost two of their minor-league free-agent signings, Victor Santos and Seth Etherton, in the Rule 5 draft. Watching the Royals is really like watching the last season of "Moonlighting," where Allyce Beasley and Curtis Armstrong got more storyines than Cybill Shepherd and Bruce Willis, and you kept watching, first out of loyalty, then sympathy, then horror.'

And then it was over.

2005-12-12 18:01:52
156.   GoBears
153 Yeah, we make the big bucks. Don't tell anyone though - it's a secret that we perpetuate by dressing like bums and getting bad haircuts.
2005-12-12 18:02:45
157.   oldbear
151. Pretty sure he still is. The Reds cant afford Dunn and Griffey together in the OF. And the Reds will need to get something for Dunn before he leaves them.

Although, perhaps the Reds getting rid of Sean Casey's salary, alleviated some of these concerns.

If the Dodgers offer Billingsley to the Reds for Dunn, I think we get him.

2005-12-12 18:03:46
158.   D4P
I'll keep the secret myself if and when I make it that far.
2005-12-12 18:03:57
159.   GoBears
Ask yourself this, do you want a AAAA pitcher to step in when there are a couple pitching injuries or do you want houlton, jackson, billingsley to step in when there are a couple pitching injuries.

Uh, since none of the above has yet shown much or anything at the major league level, aren't they, right now, basically AAAA pitchers?

So you're asking us to ask ourselves if we'd rather have X or X? Mmm, I'll take X.

2005-12-12 18:05:37
160.   GoBears
157 I figured this was the plan. Dump Casey, the worst current value for the money, and move Dunn to 1b. Outfield logjam solved. It was just doomed to fail because nobody would be willing to pay Casey's salary. Oh wait.
2005-12-12 18:06:13
161.   bigcpa
Of this year's FA list, Nomar is one guy that screams upside. His 2003 line of .301/.345/.524 would bring $12-13M per in today's market. If he signs for $7M per, that smells like the deal of the offseason. Plus I understand he has a house in Manhattan Bch which should help our cause in recruiting the guy.
2005-12-12 18:13:36
162.   GoBears
Nomar is one guy that screams upside

Whereas 'N-o-m-a-r' is one name that screams backward. Sorry, couldn't be helped.

Plus we could all talk about Mia Hamm a lot more often.

2005-12-12 18:16:15
163.   Jon Weisman
Someone just purchased a large (for me) quantity of "The Best of Dodger Thoughts." I'm not able to identify the purchaser, so let me just send a heartfelt thanks.
2005-12-12 18:23:23
164.   sanchez101
157. with casey gone i think dunn is slated for 1B, while Kearns, Pena, and Griffey play the outfield. i havent heard any rumor concerning Dunn, i dont think they are quite as stupid as they seem at times.
2005-12-12 18:28:18
165.   molokai
As much as I think Nomar has the most upside I just don't trust him physically anymore to make a committment unless it is a huge incentive laden contract. If he's willing to do that then I go for it because we have Aybar and Laroche ready to step in if he gets hurt.
Choi/Kent/Furcal/Nomar could be a lethal infield.
2005-12-12 18:28:24
166.   bigcpa
Imagine this starting pitcher "upgrade":

Pitcher X - age 32, 191ip, 205h, 20hr, 117/37 k/bb, 4.48 era, 19.6 VORP

Pitcher Y - age 31, 193ip, 209h, 22hr, 114/57 k/bb, 4.11 era, 18.9 VORP

Pitcher Y is Matt Morris. Any guesses on the ex-Giant herein called Pitcher X?

2005-12-12 18:30:12
167.   molokai
It was probably Depo spending some of McCourts money in appreciation of your support:)
2005-12-12 18:31:27
168.   molokai
I thought it was Tomko but just wanted to verify with BP.
2005-12-12 18:38:13
169.   molokai
Over at John Sickels is conducting a poll of who has the best minor league system. After 248 votes the Dodgers are barely ahead of the Angels. Together they have garnered 144 of the 248 votes. Baseball should be fun here in the southland as we watch Kendrick/Wood/Mathis/Morales/Kotchman/Santana and BIllingsly/Guzman/LaRoche/Broxton/Kemp emerge onto the major leagues. I don't ever recall a time where both teams were so loaded at the same time.
2005-12-12 18:40:24
170.   bigcpa
168 Yes $9M/year for Tomko numbers. That's what scares me about these middle tier starters. Maybe we should just sign Tomko?
2005-12-12 18:52:44
171.   Kevin Maxwell
Colletti was interviewed on AM710 this afternoon. He remains very protective of the talent in the minors.

For me, he is a refreshing change over Tracey and Depo. He doesn't filibuster nonsensically, and he doesn't hedge or posture so that he doesn't offend players. When asked what the likelihood of MB being on the team opening day, he responded "I don't know, there are still a lot of decisions that need to be made between now and then."

2005-12-12 18:53:21
172.   D4P
Anyone have VORP figures handy for the Dodgers' pitching staff?
2005-12-12 18:58:28
173.   bigcpa
172 Here you go:
2005-12-12 19:08:01
174.   D4P
So, Bombko would be a significant upgrade over anyone else on the staff as a 4th start, but for significantly more money.
2005-12-12 19:15:37
175.   Sam DC
Marty -- my best of book came.

I'll say, when I made the order (compelled by the Lulu upselling system to order two copies, mind you), I rationalized it as support for the site, and basically figured that the book itself would be a little old-newsy. (And since I hardly have time to keep up on the site itself these days, I wasn't bursting with need to get more Dodger to read.) But now I realize I was seriously mistaken. It's wonderful having this collection of Jon's great pieces to flip back through. It's great reading in its own right, and also for folks who've dottered on the site for some time, has a very joyful familiarity. Sure, the stuff's there on archives, but it's just not the same as wandering through the book and running across an old friend that you probably wouldn't have even remembered was in there.

Thanks, Jon, for pulling this together.

(To be clear, I think this would be a great gift for a baseball fan, a Dodger fan, or a writing fan, even if s/he hadn't spent time on the site.)

2005-12-12 19:21:55
176.   bigcpa
174 Hey it turns out Tomko was even VORP-ier than Schmidt in comparable innings. I think I convinced myself. Let's give him 2 yrs/$9M.
2005-12-12 19:25:08
177.   D4P
Sounds reasonable to me.
2005-12-12 19:33:21
178.   Kevin Maxwell
Jon, congratulations on the book and thank you again, it's great.
2005-12-12 19:46:46
179.   natepurcell
two years of bombko isnt a bad deal. Get ready for tons of homeruns given up!!

If the Dodgers offer Billingsley to the Reds for Dunn, I think we get him.

well of course. billingsley is from defiance ohio, which is basically reds country and it would be a idea from a red's marketing standpoint if they can get a literal homegrown ace back in a trade.

that said, bills is not going anywhere, sorry old bear.

2005-12-12 19:49:47
180.   natepurcell
oh and molokai mentioned that is having a poll of who has the best farm system. so far, out of 287 votes, the dodgers lead it with 30%. the angels are next with 26%.

and no, i didnt vote 85 times :)

2005-12-12 20:04:47
181.   blue22
I thought the Lakers were supposed to go 1-5 on this road trip?

What a shot by Kobe too.

2005-12-12 20:07:45
182.   D4P
If I remember correctly, Kobe was 9-13 at the half, which would mean that he shot 6-20 in the second half.
2005-12-12 20:08:57
183.   D4P
Another Laker tidbit: they are now 4-5 at home, 7-5 on the road.
2005-12-12 20:33:09
184.   Uncle Miltie
183- that's pretty amazing. Kobe must play better when he's away from his wife.
2005-12-12 20:39:04
185.   D4P
Maybe she wears him out with her physical demands. On the road, it's nothing but basketball. Right?
2005-12-12 20:42:01
186.   Brendan
what's Tomko's numbers excluding appearances against the dodgers?
2005-12-12 20:50:17
187.   Xeifrank
FWIW, Kobe's wife is with child again.
vr, Xei
2005-12-12 21:25:03
188.   underdog
Trade Billingsley to get Dunn? No thanks. Dunn's nice and all, but the Dodgers are rightly being protective of their top pitching talent. I really think pitching wins out over hitting when it comes right down to it (see: 1988 Dodgers, for example) and hope they don't trade Billingsley for anyone, even if it is Dunn.

And living up here in SF I saw more of Tomko then some of you did and although he's got a good fastball sometimes, I'd rather never see him again, certainly not in a Dodgers uniform. God... please... Ned, resist temptation. I'd rather us start Billingsley and Jackson then sign Tomko. By a lot.

2005-12-12 21:50:16
189.   underdog
Man, Arrested Development was so wrong tonight, so wonderfully wrong and hilariously depraved.
2005-12-12 21:51:12
190.   das411
Am I imagining things or was Mike Vick a good 2 or 3 steps slower tonight (before that hit) than usual?

Also, I am very impressed that that kid was able to sleep through all of those fireworks. Although at this point I could probably do the same...

2005-12-12 21:53:21
191.   capdodger
187 So he's [Kobe] having to make runs to the AM/PM for cravings when he's at home? No wonder he plays better on the road.
2005-12-12 21:55:19
192.   das411
...are these the kind of things we need to go over to Bob's house to talk about now?
2005-12-12 21:59:37
193.   molokai
That was an excellent road trip by the Lakers. Winning in Dallas and then coming home was big, they may have salvaged their season.
2005-12-12 22:00:27
194.   trainwreck
So what are we going to do for pitching? I have already given up on the hitting aside from signing Reggie Sanders or someone like that.
2005-12-12 22:02:26
195.   trainwreck
Best thing about tonight was that Kwame was effective. Kwame just needs to be effective, not a superstar or anything as of now. Also Kobe shot a lot, but did not take as many bad shots. I do not have a problem if he shoots the ball a lot as long as they are not turn aorund jumpers with two guys in his face and that other junk he tries at times.
2005-12-12 22:39:43
196.   King of the Hobos
Mike Edwards can claim he was 4th in the NL for a statisitic. I'm sure he's quite proud, he has the 4th highest PH batting average in the NL

I hadn't realized that Choi led the team in PH appearances. Robles had the same number of hits, in 23 fewer ABs.

2005-12-13 04:54:38
197.   Andrew Shimmin
Marty- Did you have it sent to the office? I can imagine Plaschke sitting in the mailroom waiting to intercept it. I am the Lord thy Plaschke; thou shalt have no other sportswriters before me!
2005-12-13 07:03:03
198.   TheDictator
153 - I would like to know what professors you know that make you think that 9 million is not a lot of money to them. I would like a job where they work.


2005-12-13 07:32:15
199.   Vishal
[198] i think the insinuation was that in academics, where everything is abstract, large numbers don't have as much tangible significance. economists, for example, deal with billions of dollars flowing through their models. that happens in government, too. another $80 billion dollars for iraq? sure, go right ahead. it's not their money anyway.

same goes for us; what's another 9 million when you're talking a budget of $90-100 million? it's just 10%, no big deal. spend it! but to frank mccourt, $9 million, while it may mean less to him than to an average joe like you or me, is still $9 million, so he can't just toss it around willy-nilly. he's got a budget for a reason. and he's trying to make a profit.

2005-12-13 07:46:47
200.   D4P
I was being facetious.
Show/Hide Comments 201-250
2005-12-13 07:57:54
201.   Marty
My book was waiting for me on my doorstep last night, so everyone can stop looking :)

It's beautiful, and as I told Jon in an email, it will have a special place on my bookshelf after I'm through reading it.

2005-12-13 07:58:49
202.   Sam DC
202 You have tall bookshelves.
2005-12-13 08:00:16
203.   Marty
I actually do have one shelf that can handle large books.
2005-12-13 08:02:04
204.   Vishal
[200] haha i liked my explanation better :P
2005-12-13 08:10:28
205.   D4P
Yeah, that was creative. I was just trying to draw GoBears out into revealing more about his experiences as a professor, as I might be heading into that line of work myself.
2005-12-13 08:30:42
206.   molokai
Great column over at Catfish Stew today.
2005-12-13 08:31:17
207.   blue22
FWIW, yesterday Ned reiterated to the talking heads on 710 that the Dodgers main areas of need are 1B, 3B, and a power hitting OF. To my knowledge, no mention of pitching.

Regardless of what they feel about Choi, didn't Saenz re-upping do something about 1B? It shouldn't be as much of a need as last week, right?

2005-12-13 09:09:22
208.   bearlurker
That would seem to suggest again that Bradley is gone, wouldn't it? Right now we have Drew, Bradley and Cruz, all of whom have power.

Keeping my fingers crossed that Ned doesn't give away Bradley.

2005-12-13 09:16:46
209.   blue22
208 - I'd like to see Ned play the Cubs and Pirates against each other, with the first one giving up Matt Murton or Mike Gonzalez declared the winner.
2005-12-13 10:30:02
210.   norcalblue
171-No quarrel with your description of Tracy as a "nonsensical filibusterer". I couldn't disagree more with putting that tag on Depo however.

Someone on this board yesterday (I believe it was molokai) provided a really accurate descrpition of Depo's press comments in pointing out that Depo was always up front with the press about the positive reasons behind moves. He avoided (as Ned does in the radio quote you cite), criticizing players publicly....whether those players were coming or going. Just as Ned will never rip MB (whether he keeps or deals him), Depo was not about to explain all of the negatives related to Loduca (most of which have been accepted as conventional wisdom) but that were ignored by the mainstream press at the time of the Marlins deal. The same can be said about his comments (are lack thereof) related to Green, Encarnacion, Finley and Lima when they were let go.

Depo can be fairly criticized for many things, but these obervations that he was less than candid with the media are cheap shots. In short, I think your praise of Ned here reflects a real double-standard that I am hearing quite frequently in many different venues.

2005-12-13 11:35:13
211.   Javier Gutierrez
210. Thank you for stating for what has been a complete head scratcher for me.
2005-12-13 11:55:11
212.   Bob Timmermann
Jon's book would not qualify for "folio" status at a library. It's pretty close.
2005-12-13 12:44:14
213.   bearlurker
I think that's what Ned is trying to do. I'd rather keep MB but if we're going to lose him, Murton or Gonzalez would be nice pickups.
2005-12-13 14:06:35
214.   D4P
Milton traded to the As.

2005-12-13 14:11:23
215.   blue22
I saw Antonio Perez mentioned on the A's board as being involved. Haven't seen it anywhere else though.
2005-12-13 14:17:35
216.   Vishal
yeah, they say it's bradley and antonio perez for andre ethier. hrmm. i'm glad bradley's still on a team i like, at least.
2005-12-13 14:17:53
217.   underdog
Whoa nelly.

I wonder who the top prospects are? I'd hope and assume OF, otherwise pitching...

I sort of still want to root for Bradley to succeed (and since he won't be in the NL it'll be easier to do so), without wanting him to do too well, to make the Dodgers look bad. We especially need OF depth now, though.

Does this mean Jacque Jones is coming?

2005-12-13 14:18:33
218.   GoBears
Well, assuming Rosenthal has it right, that's that. I'd be upset if we let Perez go too, unless the return includes a top OF prospect.

We need an OF bat and a 3rd baseman. It had better be only step 1 in a multistep process if all we succeeded in doing was trading away a talented OFer and a talented 3rd baseman.

We can't really assess until Colletti is done, I guess.

2005-12-13 14:21:34
219.   GoBears
218 BTW, before anyone jumps up and down, but "talented" in 218, I didn't mean "all-star" or future-HOFer. Just talented enough to play every day at this level and help the team.
2005-12-13 14:22:28
220.   Vishal
andre ethier stats:

2005-12-13 14:26:09
221.   underdog
220 Oooohhh.. is that who we think it is? I'll be happier about this if that's true - since it appears the A's didn't give up a major league pitcher of any sort. (Again, we'll wait til we know for sure.)

And looking over the A's prospects, pitching in the minors isn't their strong suit (all their best are already on the major league roster!)

2005-12-13 14:26:39
222.   underdog
And I hope we didn't give up Perez, too - that's way too much (again, depending on what we get back, of course).
2005-12-13 14:35:18
223.   D4P
To what extent does trading Milton guarantee the signing of Jacque Jones or others of his ilk?
2005-12-13 14:42:47
224.   Ben H
MLB is reporting the trade now as Perez and Bradley for Ethier.

(sorry, tinyurl is down for me)

2005-12-13 14:46:26
225.   regfairfield now reporting this. Seems to be offical.
2005-12-13 14:48:11
226.   regfairfield
I should add that I am sad.
2005-12-13 14:48:42
227.   regfairfield
I should add that I am sad. Does anyone know what kind of league the Texas league is?
2005-12-13 14:49:55
228.   King of the Hobos
Ethier is a very good prospect, but he's fairly old. He probably needs some time in AAA, but he's close to the majors. I'm guessing Colletti views his AFL as significant (.366/.495/.598, but the best part, 21 BBs to 10 Ks! He led the AFL in walks), and there's a chance Colletti could view him as our new LF. I'm a big Ethier fan (as is nate I believe), but I think Bradley AND Perez is a little much for him. Maybe if we got a pitcher too. It's too bad Perez is gone, but he really didn't have a position on the team so he's not the biggest loss. Maybe Colletti has a corresponding move up his sleeve?
2005-12-13 14:52:47
229.   underdog
Corresponding move is sort of what I was implying earlier, yeah - don't necessarily think it means signing Jones, no, and maybe if it is Ethier, maybe he does get a shot at starting in the OF next year... but I just get the feeling there's another move to happen.
2005-12-13 14:57:46
230.   regfairfield
Ethier ZIPS: .265/.324/.390. Anyone know anything about his defense.
2005-12-13 15:06:20
231.   bhsportsguy
From Baseball America:
ANDRE ETHIER, of, Midland Rockhounds (Athletics)
Age: 23 Ht: 6-3 Wt: 195 B-T: L-L Drafted/Signed: Athletics '03 (2)

The Athletics may have ended up with two of the better hitters from the 2003 draft in Barton, a first-rounder acquired from the Cardinals, and Ethier, a second-rounder. Ethier broke out in 2005, winning the league's player-of-the-year award while finishing first in runs and third in batting.

Observers praised his quiet approach at the plate, where he's short to the ball and hits to all fields, earning comparisons to Shawn Green and Garret Anderson. "He never gets fooled, is never out in front, never gets jammed," one scout said.

Scouts expect the muscular Ethier to be good for at least 15-20 home runs a year, and possibly 20-30. He's an above-average defensive outfielder and gets good reads on balls. He has enough arm for right field, but managers were divided over left or right as his best long-term position.

"If he stays with the line-drive approach, he will be a great big leaguer," Midland manager Von Hayes said. "He gets into trouble when he starts trying to hit home runs."

From me, in over 550 plate appearances, he batted .319 with an .882 OPS, 18 HRs, was the number 6 rated prospect in the league (ahead of Kendry Morales) and he just finished out of the top 20 in the prospect packed Arizona Fall League (Author noted in chat that he had him 22nd)

2005-12-13 15:06:57
232.   Jon Weisman
New post up top.
2005-12-13 15:08:57
233.   King of the Hobos
230 ZIPS looks pretty accurate.

Ethier won the Arizona Fall League's Dernell Stenson Sportsmanship Award, given to the player who is judged to disply the best attitude and character -Rotowire

I wonder if that intrigued Colletti. He was on the same AFL team as Laroche, Loney, and Kemp, maybe they became buddies and Colletti was being nice? Ethier was mentioned in one of Laroche's player journals, but Laroche just said he gave them a win one night

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