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View Full Version : A's trade Joe Blanton to Phillies



OnBaseMachine
07-17-2008, 06:49 PM
Per ESPN

Blanton for three minor leagues...no idea who they are yet.

dougdirt
07-17-2008, 06:54 PM
Per ESPN

Blanton for three minor leagues...no idea who they are yet.

I bet they aren't even close to Cueto/Votto/anyone else. Krivdawg :thumbup:

OnBaseMachine
07-17-2008, 06:55 PM
I bet they aren't even close to Cueto/Votto/anyone else. Krivdawg :thumbup:

That's a guarantee. The Phillies don't have anything close to a Cueto in their farm system.

Joseph
07-17-2008, 07:03 PM
Probably kills the Arroyo deal I'd think :)

Will M
07-17-2008, 07:04 PM
Probably kills the Arroyo deal I'd think :)

Thats what I thought. Since we don't know what they would have given up for Arroyo I don't know if this is good news or not.

OnBaseMachine
07-17-2008, 07:07 PM
The prospects are 2B Adrian Cardenas, LHP Josh Outman and OF Matt Spencer.

Cardenas is a very good prospect, he's only 20-years old and is hitting .309/.374/.444 in High-A. Outman is a solid lefty prospect who has a 3.20 ERA and 37 BB/66 K ratio 70.1 innings in Double-A. Spencer is just a throw in. That's a pretty good return for Blanton. I'd take Arroyo over Blanton...

SteelSD
07-17-2008, 07:11 PM
<edit> OBM beat me to it!

Not sure I like this one so much. Cardenas is a solid IF prospect and Outman has consistently had command issues, despite a fine HR/9 rate (0.46). It seems the Phillies have been using him primarily out of the pen this season at AA.

Stewie
07-17-2008, 07:55 PM
Sigh.

I guess it could have been worse?

dougdirt
07-17-2008, 07:56 PM
Sigh.

I guess it could have been worse?

Yeah, we could have traded Cueto and Votto for him in the spring.

BuckeyeRedleg
07-17-2008, 07:58 PM
Why would Beane be selling? The adjusted standings (pythag) show that he should catch the Angels or at least contend for the WC.

dougdirt
07-17-2008, 08:00 PM
Why would Beane be selling? The adjusted standings (pythag) show that he should catch the Angels or at least contend for the WC.

Because he saw a chance to flip someone at maybe their highest value they will have while still with the team?

VR
07-17-2008, 08:12 PM
Why would Beane be selling? The adjusted standings (pythag) show that he should catch the Angels or at least contend for the WC.

I'd guess he got rid of Blanton because he wanted to make a run at the playoffs. Blanton has proven himself to be mediocre at the very best....and after hiding his flaws long enough at the Oakland Coliseum...Beane nearly pulled of a trade that would make Kent Bottenfield blush.

that was the best non-trade this century for the Reds

Stewie
07-17-2008, 08:14 PM
Yeah, we could have traded Cueto and Votto for him in the spring.

Well, yes, from the Reds' standpoint that would have been quite bad. Sorry, I was referring to the Phillies' standpoint. Although, given the track record of their front office, though, nothing is a surprise.

I guess once Harden and Sabathia went off the market, Gillick just decided he needed to make a move, and went hard after Blanton. If they dealt Golson instead of Cardenas, this deal wouldn't be that horrible. Of course, no way Beane would want anything to do with Golson.

redsmetz
07-17-2008, 08:48 PM
Any chance the A's could be interested in acquiring a pitcher of their own? Like Arroyo? The contract's set for a few years and isn't onerous, IMO. Just a thought.

jojo
07-17-2008, 08:54 PM
I guess there isn't much chance Ellis will return to Oakland.

klw
07-17-2008, 09:22 PM
Cardenas was BA's midseason top ranked Phillies prospect.

http://www.baseballamerica.com/today/prospects/ask-ba/2008/266517.html

One of the other guys was ranked as the 4th highest Phillies prospect by BA coming into the year per the ESPN ticker. Seems to be an awfully steep price to pay for a guy not having a good year in a pitcher's park.

KoryMac5
07-17-2008, 09:33 PM
Cardenas was BA's midseason top ranked Phillies prospect.

http://www.baseballamerica.com/today/prospects/ask-ba/2008/266517.html

One of the other guys was ranked as the 4th highest Phillies prospect by BA coming into the year per the ESPN ticker. Seems to be an awfully steep price to pay for a guy not having a good year in a pitcher's park.

I think Blanton will be very Milton like in that ballpark.

flyer85
07-17-2008, 10:21 PM
Blanton was the A's 5th starter. No big loss for them.

RedsManRick
07-17-2008, 10:48 PM
Once Harden was gone, there was no reason to pretend like they were going for it. A's have one of the best systems in baseball now. Blanton is more valuable to the Phillies than the A's. It's that simple.

Jpup
07-17-2008, 11:05 PM
Once Harden was gone, there was no reason to pretend like they were going for it. A's have one of the best systems in baseball now. Blanton is more valuable to the Phillies than the A's. It's that simple.

That's what I said a week ago, but many seemed to disagree. The A's were not going for it before Harden was traded and this just cements that IMO. The Phillies got a bad guy for their ballpark, but I suppose they did not give up much. I don't like this trade for Philly, although I don't see it helping Oakland in the near term.

*BaseClogger*
07-17-2008, 11:11 PM
That's what I said a week ago, but many seemed to disagree. The A's were not going for it before Harden was traded and this just cements that IMO. The Phillies got a bad guy for their ballpark, but I suppose they did not give up much. I don't like this trade for Philly, although I don't see it helping Oakland in the near term.

Didn't give up much? I believe someone posted earlier in this thread that BA had one of the guys given up as the Phillie's top prospect...

Jpup
07-17-2008, 11:14 PM
Didn't give up much? I believe someone posted earlier in this thread that BA had one of the guys given up as the Phillie's top prospect...

no way. They are highly ranked in Philly's system, but their system isn't much. None of them are more then B prospects. Sickels rates Spencer a C.

Joseph
07-17-2008, 11:26 PM
This was a bottom of the rotation guy for a bunch of maybes. Not a trade where either side got much.

*BaseClogger*
07-17-2008, 11:30 PM
no way. They are highly ranked in Philly's system, but their system isn't much. None of them are more then B prospects. Sickels rates Spencer a C.

Spencer was the weakest player in the trade. Two B's and a C prospect for Blanton is a steal IMO...

Jpup
07-17-2008, 11:30 PM
This was a bottom of the rotation guy for a bunch of maybes. Not a trade where either side got much.

exactly right. If I were trading with the Phils, I would want Jason Donald. Marson is having a good year, I will give him that. He could turn into something, he's only 22 and hitting pretty well at AA despite very little power.

*BaseClogger*
07-17-2008, 11:30 PM
BTW, I thought Carrasco was their best prospect... :confused:

Jpup
07-17-2008, 11:31 PM
Spencer was the weakest player in the trade. Two B's and a C prospect for Blanton is a steal IMO...

eh, you are probably right. I think Beane won his first trade of the year.

*BaseClogger*
07-17-2008, 11:32 PM
eh, you are probably right. I think Beane won his first trade of the year.

If you ain't counting the Haren trade... ;)

(it was in December)

Falls City Beer
07-17-2008, 11:33 PM
What about the Harden trade?

Jpup
07-17-2008, 11:34 PM
If you ain't counting the Haren trade... ;)

(it was in December)

He didn't win the Haren trade. Haren is probably one of the 10 best in baseball. Oakland was just being cheap, as usual.

Jpup
07-17-2008, 11:35 PM
What about the Harden trade?

too soon to say, but they sure didn't get much for him. I think the Blanton return may be better.

*BaseClogger*
07-17-2008, 11:39 PM
He didn't win the Haren trade. Haren is probably one of the 10 best in baseball. Oakland was just being cheap, as usual.

The A's got two members of their rotation with ERA's under 3.50, and three other top notch prospects... yeah, six years from each of those players is a victory in a trade when all you give up is three years of Haren and a prospect...

Jpup
07-17-2008, 11:41 PM
The A's got two members of their rotation with ERA's under 3.50, and three other top notch prospects... yeah, six years from each of those players is a victory in a trade when all you give up is three years of Haren and a prospect...

3 years of Haren is worth a lot more than Oakland got IMO. I just can't imagine why anyone would trade the guy if they were serious about winning. It also appears that Oakland is hoping for that pie in the sky that never comes. As far as the 2 guys they received, 1/2 a season is a little early to judge on those arms.

SteelSD
07-17-2008, 11:43 PM
Well, yes, from the Reds' standpoint that would have been quite bad. Sorry, I was referring to the Phillies' standpoint. Although, given the track record of their front office, though, nothing is a surprise.

I guess once Harden and Sabathia went off the market, Gillick just decided he needed to make a move, and went hard after Blanton. If they dealt Golson instead of Cardenas, this deal wouldn't be that horrible. Of course, no way Beane would want anything to do with Golson.

Stewie, I don't see this as a bad deal for the Phillies. Blanton's K rate is down a bit this year, but here are the defense-independent numbers:

DIPS: 4.24
FIP: 4.11
xFIP: 4.45

When those three metrics pretty much agree, that's a good thing. What the Phillies received is a guy who projects to be near NL average and who eats Innings. The Phils are currently tied for 11th in Defensive Efficiency rating (which bodes well for Blanton) and they have the fourth best offensive team in baseball through the ASB. Blanton projects to be a guy who can actually help and the cost seems very fair considering that the best prospect involved is sitting in high-A ball.

hebroncougar
07-18-2008, 09:17 AM
I heard Mel Antonin say the dumbest thing today on Baseball this Morning on XM. He said, well Joe Blanton will be a better pitcher in Philly because he'll pitch to the park there. I've never heard of a pitcher being able to "change" the way he pitches when going from a pitchers heaven to a bandbox. Did anyone else hear that?

SteelSD
07-18-2008, 09:51 AM
I heard Mel Antonin say the dumbest thing today on Baseball this Morning on XM. He said, well Joe Blanton will be a better pitcher in Philly because he'll pitch to the park there. I've never heard of a pitcher being able to "change" the way he pitches when going from a pitchers heaven to a bandbox. Did anyone else hear that?

Didn't hear it, but folks can say weird things when deals go down. While I'd certainly question any logic resembling the idea of "better" due to pitching in Philly versus Oakland, maybe Antonin was reflecting on the idea that Blanton's ground ball and low-HR rate tendencies fit well while pitching in front of a pretty good defense in a smallish park?

hebroncougar
07-18-2008, 09:55 AM
Didn't hear it, but folks can say weird things when deals go down. While I'd certainly question any logic resembling the idea of "better" due to pitching in Philly versus Oakland, maybe Antonin was reflecting on the idea that Blanton's ground ball and low-HR rate tendencies fit well while pitching in front of a pretty good defense in a smallish park?


I don't think Mark Patrick knew what to say when Antonin said that.

Spring~Fields
07-19-2008, 09:52 AM
Athletics, Looking to Future, Again Shed Part of Past

By JACK CURRY
Published: July 18, 2008
Billy Beane does not want the Oakland Athletics to be competitive for just one year. He wants the A’s to be great for a decade. To do that, Beane, the team’s general manager, said he must make bold decisions. Even if those decisions involve trading two starting pitchers during a playoff push.

The A’s shipped Joe Blanton to the Philadelphia Phillies for three minor leaguers Thursday, a trade that was not as surprising as the one Beane made nine days earlier. That was when he traded Rich Harden to the Chicago Cubs in a six-player deal, even though the A’s were six games behind the first-place Los Angeles Angels in the American League West. Oakland is still six games out of first and is now four and a half games out of the wild-card hunt.

While the A’s were a better team in the present with Harden, Beane said he was peeking ahead to the future. So Beane traded Harden, who was 5-1 with a 2.34 earned run average, and reliever Chad Gaudin for pitcher Sean Gallagher, outfielder Matt Murton and two minor leaguers. Even if that seemed questionable, Beane said he would rather make a trade too early than too late.

“The rebuilding process is something I find exhilarating,” Beane said by telephone before the Blanton deal was completed. “We’re not interested in being a one-year wonder.”
With Blanton, who was a disappointing 5-12 with a 4.96 E.R.A. this year and has been the subject of trade talk for months, Beane might have waited too long to unload him. The A’s acquired three minor leaguers for Blanton: second baseman Adrian Cardenas, pitcher Josh Outman and outfielder Matthew Spencer.

As the $46 million A’s open a three-game series against the $209 million Yankees at Yankee Stadium on Friday, they have a better record than the team whose payroll quadruples theirs. The surprisingly pitching-strong A’s are 51-44; the Yanks are 50-45.
Still, Beane acknowledged that he was not simply thinking about 2008 and, although he would never say it publicly, he probably questions whether his offensively challenged team can sneak into the playoffs. Beane wants to mold the A’s into the consistent power they were while winning four division titles and one wild-card berth from 2000 to 2006.
“I want to be great for a long time,” Beane said. “Not have a nice, little month and make it interesting.”

With those sorts of comments and his trades, Beane hinted at how he feels this season could be more of a renovation period. Even after trading Dan Haren to the Arizona Diamondbacks last December, Oakland leads the major leagues with a 3.39 E.R.A. Justin Duchscherer, who starts Sunday, is 10-5 with a 1.82 E.R.A. But the A’s are last in the A.L. with a .249 batting average. Beane said he put no limitations or expectations on the A’s.

As brilliant as Harden can be, he has been on the disabled list six times since 2005 and appeared in seven games in 2007 and nine in 2006. Beane praised Harden but said the A’s could not sustain him getting another long-term injury. Harden has a $7 million option for 2009. Meanwhile, Gallagher, the most attractive player from the Cubs, is five and a half years from free agency.

“If we have assets, ultimately, we have to turn them into more assets,” Beane said. “This is the way we have to run the business. For us, as a small-market team, the turnover is a lot greater.”

Speaking by cellphone from a dog park in Alamo, Calif., where his border collie, Taggert, was dashing about, Beane speculated about what could happen if he was not aggressive. Oakland was 76-86 last year.

“The problem with a small-market team is when you get to the bottom, you hit with a thud,” Beane said. “And, when you get there, it might take you four or five years to get out.”

That is why Beane keeps revamping the A’s. Since last November, Beane has traded pitchers Haren and Connor Robertson to the Diamondbacks, outfielder Nick Swisher to the Chicago White Sox, outfielder Mark Kotsay to the Atlanta Braves, infielder Marco Scutaro to the Toronto Blue Jays, Harden and Gaudin to the Cubs and, finally, Blanton to the Phillies. In return, the A’s have obtained 20 players, including 11 pitchers.

Some of them are already helping in the majors. Pitchers Dana Eveland (7-6, 3.49) and Greg Smith (5-7, 3.43) and outfielder Carlos Gonz&#225;lez (.293 average) were part of the Haren deal, and outfielder Ryan Sweeney (.301) came from the White Sox. Gio Gonzalez, who is 7-6 with a 4.34 E.R.A. in Class AAA, could be recalled to replace Blanton.

“For us to acquire these young players, which are so valuable, we had to trade players,” Beane said.

After finishing a game out of last a year ago, the A’s slashed their payroll by more than $30 million. Oakland’s strategy is to reinvest some of that money into player development and international scouting. Two weeks ago, the A’s signed Michael Inoa, a 6-foot-7 pitcher from the Dominican Republic, to a $4.25 million bonus.

Beane usually travels with the team to New York, but he said one of the reasons he stayed behind was because of the trading deadline July 31. Closer Huston Street would be attractive to several teams. As Beane has repeatedly shown, he could be very busy the rest of the month.


http://www.nytimes.com/2008/07/18/sports/baseball/18athletics.html?_r=1&ref=sports&oref=slogin

Will the Reds be following the master in his footsteps ?

Or will they continue to try to do it the old-fashioned way, time and money, an area where the competition is way ahead of them on. ?

PuffyPig
07-19-2008, 10:28 AM
3 years of Haren is worth a lot more than Oakland got IMO. I just can't imagine why anyone would trade the guy if they were serious about winning. It also appears that Oakland is hoping for that pie in the sky that never comes. As far as the 2 guys they received, 1/2 a season is a little early to judge on those arms.

Funny, the fact that 1/2 a year is too early to judge the A's return hasn't stopped you from saying the A's didn't get enough.

At least be consistent.

So far, the trade looks good from both sides.

Jpup
07-19-2008, 11:29 AM
Funny, the fact that 1/2 a year is too early to judge the A's return hasn't stopped you from saying the A's didn't get enough.

At least be consistent.

So far, the trade looks good from both sides.

Dan Haren has already proven what he can do. Those other guys, not so much. I'm not sure that they didn't get enough as I think it was just stupid for them to trade him. They were never trying to win because when they get a good player and he starts to make some money, they trade him away. That's a good way to take care of your fans.

Stewie
07-19-2008, 11:51 AM
Stewie, I don't see this as a bad deal for the Phillies. Blanton's K rate is down a bit this year, but here are the defense-independent numbers:

DIPS: 4.24
FIP: 4.11
xFIP: 4.45

When those three metrics pretty much agree, that's a good thing. What the Phillies received is a guy who projects to be near NL average and who eats Innings. The Phils are currently tied for 11th in Defensive Efficiency rating (which bodes well for Blanton) and they have the fourth best offensive team in baseball through the ASB. Blanton projects to be a guy who can actually help and the cost seems very fair considering that the best prospect involved is sitting in high-A ball.


Yep, you're right. THe more I look at it, the better it looks for the Phillies. Blanton's groundball tendencies should play well in CBP, and given his contract status, it would have been tough to expect that it would cost anything less than Cardenas and Outman to get him. Sure, Cardenas has potential, but it'll probably be about 3-4 years before he is contributing at the big league level. Given the dearth of prospects in the Phillies system, losing one of their top guys like Cardenas, and another mid-range guy like Outman (who I still think the Phillies did a bit of a disservice to his trade value by moving him to the bullpen so quickly this year) looks worse than it really should. This is hardly a Kazmir for Zambrano deal.

RedsManRick
07-19-2008, 01:11 PM
The Reds want to have their cake and eat it too. Beane is decisive in a way I've never seen the Reds be -- save the "The Trade"...

Spring~Fields
07-19-2008, 01:51 PM
Sorted by three year increments, hypothetical organizational plans, result comparisons
* blue - winning seasons
* red - games behind immediate competition
* red - below .500 seasons



W L GB WP RS RA W L GB WP RS RA
1990 Oak 103 59 - .636 733 570 Cinci 91 71 - .562 693 597
1991 Oak 84 78 11.0 .519 760 776 Cinci 74 88 20.0 .457 689 691
1992 Oak 96 66 - .593 745 672 Cinci 90 72 8.0 .556 660 609

1993 Oak 68 94 26.0 .420 715 846 Cinci 73 89 31.0 .451 722 785
1994 Oak 51 63 1.0 .447 549 589 Cinci 66 48 - .579 609 490
1995 Oak 67 77 11.5 .465 730 761 Cinci 85 59 - .590 747 623

1996 Oak 78 84 12.0 .481 861 900 Cinci 81 81 7.0 .500 778 773
1997 Oak 65 97 25.0 .401 764 946 Cinci 76 86 8.0 .469 651 764
1998 Oak 74 88 14.0 .457 804 866 Cinci 77 85 25.0 .475 750 760

1999 Oak 87 75 8.0 .537 893 846 Cinci 96 67 1.5 .589 865 711
2000 Oak 91 70 - .565 947 813 Cinci 85 77 10.0 .525 825 765
2001 Oak 102 60 14.0 .630 884 645 Cinci 66 96 27.0 .407 735 850

2002 Oak 103 59 - .636 800 654 Cinci 78 84 19.0 .481 709 774
2003 Oak 96 66 - .593 768 643 Cinci 69 93 19.0 .426 694 886
2004 Oak 91 71 1.0 .562 793 742 Cinci 76 86 29.0 .469 750 907

2005 Oak 88 74 7.0 .543 772 658 Cinci 73 89 27.0 .451 820 889
2006 Oak 93 69 - .574 771 727 Cinci 80 82 3.5 .494 749 801
2007 Oak 76 86 18.0 .469 741 758 Cinci 72 90 13.0 .444 783 853

2008 Oak 51 45 7.0 .531 411 352 Cinci 47 51 11.0 .480 429 480


Last 19 Seasons
Oakland 12 /19 0.632 winning seasons pct
Oakland 7 / 19 0.368 losing seasons pct

Cincinnati 6 / 19 0.316 winning seasons pct
Cincinnati 13 / 19 0.684 losing seasons pct

Last 10 Seasons
Oakland 9 /10 0.900 winning seasons pct
Oakland 1 / 10 0.100 losing seasons pct

Cincinnati 2 / 10 0.200 winning seasons pct
Cincinnati 8 / 10 0.800 losing seasons pct

flyer85
07-19-2008, 03:06 PM
don't think this trade even hurts the A's now if they replace Blanton with Gonzalez.

Patrick Bateman
07-19-2008, 03:55 PM
Dan Haren has already proven what he can do. Those other guys, not so much. I'm not sure that they didn't get enough as I think it was just stupid for them to trade him. They were never trying to win because when they get a good player and he starts to make some money, they trade him away. That's a good way to take care of your fans.

Except that they win, pretty consistently under Beane's regime. Excepting the odd year, they contend with a low bottom payroll. He must be doing something right with this method.

REDREAD
07-21-2008, 10:06 AM
Athletics, Looking to Future, Again Shed Part of Past

By JACK CURRY
Published: July 18, 2008
Billy Beane does not want the Oakland Athletics to be competitive for just one year. He wants the Aís to be great for a decade. To do that, Beane, the teamís general manager, said he must make bold decisions. Even if those decisions involve trading two starting pitchers during a playoff push.


The A's will never be great for a decade though. As soon as these new wave of prospects get pricey, he'll dump them for more prospects. Really, what Oakland is trying to do is get a group of youngster that will hopefully all mature together and give him an inexpensive team that can make a run for a year or two. Then he'll tear it down again. Prior to last offseason, Beane already had a decent core of young productive players and he tore it down..


I think Philly did pretty good in this deal. Doesn't appear that they gave up much of substance. Much like the Lohse deal last year, Malony was a B prospect but he's really no big loss and it's not as if he's going to ever be an impact player. Likewise, I doubt the any of the players going to Oakland are going to be missed. Big market teams like Philly and Chicago can give up guys like this without missing a beat. Likewise, the A's did ok if one of these guys makes it to the bigs and is somewhat productive, since apparently they were dumping Blanton anyhow.

Seems to me that this trade indicates that the Reds could've picked up Blanton for a couple of B prospects and it wouldn't have taken Cueto or Bruce. Not that it's a huge deal either way.

Falls City Beer
07-21-2008, 10:10 AM
Except that they win, pretty consistently under Beane's regime. Excepting the odd year, they contend with a low bottom payroll. He must be doing something right with this method.

I thought the A's payrolls the last decade or so were always above average. (Not that that really takes away from what they do, but...)

flyer85
07-21-2008, 10:33 AM
A's were

29th in 2001
28th in 2002
26th in 2003
16th in 2004
28th in 2005
21st in 2006
16th in 2007
28th in 2008

jojo
07-21-2008, 10:47 AM
The A's will never be great for a decade though. As soon as these new wave of prospects get pricey, he'll dump them for more prospects. Really, what Oakland is trying to do is get a group of youngster that will hopefully all mature together and give him an inexpensive team that can make a run for a year or two. Then he'll tear it down again. Prior to last offseason, Beane already had a decent core of young productive players and he tore it down..

That really doesn't accurately characterize what Beane did or why he did it.

He looked at his roster and those of his competitors, evaluated his true talent levels and theirs then made a rational decision concerning whether his current team could reasonably be expected to overcome the teams that needed to be leap frogged.

He decided that his team could not reasonably be expected to accomplish what it needed to accomplish.

Despite a low payroll, he traded off players who were still cheaply controlled to shape his club into something he thought will be better able to compete.

It's hard to observe that and see support for a "cycle of tear down/rebuild" that is tied to escalating payroll. Rather, Beane focused solely on whether his team can make the playoffs. In other words, I'd argue that he acted like the GM we all wish ran our favorite teams (even if we don't agree with his methods)

flyer85
07-21-2008, 10:50 AM
There are only 2 type of teams ... those that make the playoffs and those that don't. Smart organizations understand that.

PuffyPig
07-21-2008, 11:00 AM
I'm not sure that they didn't get enough .....

Well, you said so.

"3 years of Haren is worth alot more than Oakland got, IMO".

Be consistent.

paulrichjr
07-21-2008, 11:52 AM
The Reds want to have their cake and eat it too. Beane is decisive in a way I've never seen the Reds be -- save the "The Trade"...

I would add the Hamilton/Volquez deal to that list. WayneK made some bold moves I will give him that.

cincinnati chili
07-21-2008, 12:32 PM
don't think this trade even hurts the A's now if they replace Blanton with Gonzalez.

and assuming Gonzalez doesn't pass his July/August audition, the A's can insert Trevor Cahill in the rotation, after he is named MVP of the U.S. Olympic team this August... just a wild guess, but he's good.

One other point about this thread. People have called Adrian Cardenas a B prospect. Perhaps. But who did the Reds have in their farm system that Billy Beane would have liked better?

Homer Bailey? - doubt it. He's shown no dominance in the minor leagues.
Darryl Thompson? - perhaps.

Anybody else? I doubt it.

The A's are a results driven organization. Cardenas as a 20-year old in the Florida state league (where the average age is 23) had a .374 on base percentage, 21 extra base hits in 259 at bats, was 16-for-16 in stolen bases, and a .982 fielding percentage at second base (I don't know his range ratings). Plus he's a lefty middle infield bat, which is always coveted.

So if he's a B prospect, then the Reds' system is pretty much devoid of A and B prospects, other than guys who have already reached the majors.

jojo
07-21-2008, 12:38 PM
and assuming Gonzalez doesn't pass his July/August audition, the A's can insert Trevor Cahill in the rotation, after he is named MVP of the U.S. Olympic team this August... just a wild guess, but he's good.

One other point about this thread. People have called Adrian Cardenas a B prospect. Perhaps. But who did the Reds have in their farm system that Billy Beane would have liked better?

Homer Bailey? - doubt it. He's shown no dominance in the minor leagues.
Darryl Thompson? - perhaps.

Anybody else? I doubt it.

The A's are a results driven organization. Cardenas as a 20-year old in the Florida state league (where the average age is 23) had a .374 on base percentage, 21 extra base hits in 259 at bats, was 16-for-16 in stolen bases, and a .982 fielding percentage at second base (I don't know his range ratings). Plus he's a lefty middle infield bat, which is always coveted.

So if he's a B prospect, then the Reds' system is pretty much devoid of A and B prospects, other than guys who have already reached the majors.

I think he's a B prospect basically because it's not really all the certain what position he'll end up playing (though his bat doesn't cause arguments). But ya, like you're suggesting, I think he's a bona fide prospect that every team would like to add to their system.

REDREAD
07-21-2008, 01:40 PM
That really doesn't accurately characterize what Beane did or why he did it.

He's a good GM, that's for sure.

My point is that it's misleading for him to say that his goal is to contend for a decade. That's clearly not his goal. He's so focused on trading guys too early rather than too late that he will never contend for an extended period of time.
In order to contend, you sometimes have to hold on to guys until they pass their peak value a bit.

Even this year, the A's could've had a decent shot at the wildcard if they kept Harden. The most certainly could have had a great shot if they didn't make some of the moves they made this past winter.

I can almost guarantee that in 3-4 years, Beane is going to be flipping a lot of the recent acquisions he got in the past 8 months for more prospects. That's not the formula to contend for a decade. It's a formula to be competitive every 3-4 years, which is certainly better than the REds have done, I agree with your point on that.






He looked at his roster and those of his competitors, evaluated his true talent levels and theirs then made a rational decision concerning whether his current team could reasonably be expected to overcome the teams that needed to be leap frogged.

He decided that his team could not reasonably be expected to accomplish what it needed to accomplish.

Despite a low payroll, he traded off players who were still cheaply controlled to shape his club into something he thought will be better able to compete.

It's hard to observe that and see support for a "cycle of tear down/rebuild" that is tied to escalating payroll. Rather, Beane focused solely on whether his team can make the playoffs. In other words, I'd argue that he acted like the GM we all wish ran our favorite teams (even if we don't agree with his methods)[/QUOTE]

RedsManRick
07-21-2008, 01:55 PM
He's a good GM, that's for sure.

My point is that it's misleading for him to say that his goal is to contend for a decade. That's clearly not his goal. He's so focused on trading guys too early rather than too late that he will never contend for an extended period of time.
In order to contend, you sometimes have to hold on to guys until they pass their peak value a bit.

But Beane didn't trade away Giambi. He didn't trade away Zito. It's not like he's unwilling to let guys play out their pre-FA periods. He's just not going do it unless the situation is right.



Even this year, the A's could've had a decent shot at the wildcard if they kept Harden. The most certainly could have had a great shot if they didn't make some of the moves they made this past winter.

I can almost guarantee that in 3-4 years, Beane is going to be flipping a lot of the recent acquisions he got in the past 8 months for more prospects. That's not the formula to contend for a decade. It's a formula to be competitive every 3-4 years, which is certainly better than the REds have done, I agree with your point on that.

The key statement here was bolded. Perhaps a "decent shot at the wildcard" simply isn't how Beane wants this team to peak. Is a shot at the wildcard worth risking getting nothing in return for Harden and even less in return for Blanton?

Regarding Haren, the A's are currently getting more production on the MLB level than they gave up, and that's not touching the guys still in the minors. Ryan Sweeney has outhit Nick Swisher and Gio Gonzalez should get a cup of coffee. In total, they've gotten more MLB production from the guys they received than the guys who they traded away have produced.






He looked at his roster and those of his competitors, evaluated his true talent levels and theirs then made a rational decision concerning whether his current team could reasonably be expected to overcome the teams that needed to be leap frogged.

He decided that his team could not reasonably be expected to accomplish what it needed to accomplish.

Despite a low payroll, he traded off players who were still cheaply controlled to shape his club into something he thought will be better able to compete.

It's hard to observe that and see support for a "cycle of tear down/rebuild" that is tied to escalating payroll. Rather, Beane focused solely on whether his team can make the playoffs. In other words, I'd argue that he acted like the GM we all wish ran our favorite teams (even if we don't agree with his methods)

I think the key point here is that Beane didn't stop rebuilding once he got enough talent to merely be competitive. He realized that in order to really give his team the best shot at both making the playoffs and winning once there, he needed even more talent than he already had. The A's short term success was predicated on way too much risk. You're right, Beane traded away good, cheap players -- but that's how he got so much value in return. His calculus said that he wasn't going to be able to sufficiently supplement the Harden, Haren, Swisher core by trading away minor leaguers or poor major leaguers and even if he could it would just set him up for a big down cycle in a few years.

What Beane is trying to do is bring the talent level in the organization high enough so that he can minimize the cycle, if not eliminate in entirely. When all of your talent is concentrated either on the major league team or in the minors, you are due for a big boom/bust cycle. The A's system was pretty barren 18 months ago. He could've tried to ride out the peak and prayed that it was enough to win with. But that's not how Beane wants to do it. Beane wants to have enough talent in the majors to win, not just maybe compete, and enough in the minor leagues to immediately replace those players when they price themselves out of the market. That way talent in the system already can replace the winning core and the expensive winning core can be flipped for replacements for the replacements. He's not there yet, but he's he making progress.

nate
07-21-2008, 02:02 PM
He's a good GM, that's for sure.

My point is that it's misleading for him to say that his goal is to contend for a decade. That's clearly not his goal.

That you don't agree with his methodology doesn't mean he's misleading anyone.


He's so focused on trading guys too early rather than too late that he will never contend for an extended period of time. In order to contend, you sometimes have to hold on to guys until they pass their peak value a bit.

Why do you "have to" do this? If your team and organization is good enough to absorb losses of potential high ticket guys, you can contend for a long time. For example, the A's have a glut of depth at 2nd base, yet there's talk about extending Mark Ellis at age 31 hitting 236/.331/.381.


Even this year, the A's could've had a decent shot at the wildcard if they kept Harden. The most certainly could have had a great shot if they didn't make some of the moves they made this past winter.

They still might although it's going to be tough to get the WC in the AL West.


I can almost guarantee that in 3-4 years, Beane is going to be flipping a lot of the recent acquisions he got in the past 8 months for more prospects. That's not the formula to contend for a decade.

Why not? What if the players are worth more to someone else than the A's and he can add to his club by trading them?

flyer85
07-21-2008, 02:07 PM
They still might although it's going to be tough to get the WC in the AL West.Harden will not be missed by the As, he's good but he is not the missing ingredient. To truly make a playoff run they need to add a big bat, no matter what they decided to do with the oft-injured Harden.

*BaseClogger*
07-21-2008, 02:38 PM
Harden will not be missed by the As, he's good but he is not the missing ingredient. To truly make a playoff run they need to add a big bat, no matter what they decided to do with the oft-injured Harden.

Dunn? ;)

cincinnati chili
07-21-2008, 02:39 PM
I wonder if Beane is going to sign more guys into their free agency years if the team moves to Fremont as planned. In other words, Beane might have the luxury of taking more risks if the club has more guaranteed revenue.

flyer85
07-21-2008, 03:11 PM
Dunn? ;)I mentioned a few weeks I would not be shocked if the A's made a play for Dunn.

cincinnati chili
07-21-2008, 04:50 PM
I mentioned a few weeks I would not be shocked if the A's made a play for Dunn.

I would die laughing if the Reds traded Dunn for Jack Cust and a couple prospects. In essence, the Reds would get a guy with even less contact and worse defense, but who's more removed from free agency. All the people who hate done would hate Cust even more.

Stuff like that amuses me.

dougdirt
07-21-2008, 04:58 PM
I would die laughing if the Reds traded Dunn for Jack Cust and a couple prospects. In essence, the Reds would get a guy with even less contact and worse defense, but who's more removed from free agency. All the people who hate done would hate Cust even more.

Stuff like that amuses me.

And yet, both players are very productive guys. I would rather have Cust though just because of the huge money difference that could hopefully be used to fill some of the other holes this team has.

flyer85
07-21-2008, 05:13 PM
And yet, both players are very productive guys. I would rather have Cust though just because of the huge money difference that could hopefully be used to fill some of the other holes this team has.you would take a worse defender, less power and more Ks. Hmmm. It is hard to envision how the Reds could allocate the money in the short term free agent market to make up for the loss in production.

The Reds need to trade Dunn if they can acquire some decent talent ... I seriously doubt allocating the extra dollars acquiring short term free agents will do anything to make up for the loss in production. To do that they need to do it through trading, not free agency. Cordero is the poster boy for how money gets allocated in the free agent market. Basically you overpay by multitudes to get production.

cincinnati chili
07-21-2008, 07:36 PM
And yet, both players are very productive guys. I would rather have Cust though just because of the huge money difference that could hopefully be used to fill some of the other holes this team has.

I like both guys too, but I have a lot more trust in Dunn having a productive season year after year. We know that Dunn, even to his worst critics, has been very durable and has avoided injury. Dunn has also been around the block a little more, and thus, we know he's in no danger of being "exposed" to the point where his .400 obp is in danger.

I'd want some assurances that this organization would spend the savings between the players on productive player(s). I'd want assurances that Dusty wouldn't try to turn Cust into something that he's not.

This is something the A's might actually go for if they pull within a couple games of the wild card (they're only five away now), because unlike the Reds (and most teams), the A's have confidence that they'll be able to draft two good players next year if they lose Dunn in free agency. Also, they might have a shot at keeping him, if Dunn feels like he's in an organization that values him and where he can DH when necessary (next year, when Frank Thomas is gone).

REDREAD
07-22-2008, 10:26 AM
But Beane didn't trade away Giambi. He didn't trade away Zito. It's not like he's unwilling to let guys play out their pre-FA periods. He's just not going do it unless the situation is right.


My only point (and this is for Nate as well) is that he's not setting them up to contend for a decade.

He's setting them up to contend in a few years, because he decided to punt this year. That's reasonable. I agree with your point that perhaps a decent shot at the wildcard isn't good enough. Maybe it's better to trade a decent shot a the wildcard for 2008 for a better shot at the playoffs in 2010.

Of course, the risk is that in 2010, they have a smaller chance of making the playoffs than they did this year. Therefore, they need to talent shuffle again.

Even if Beane is consistently increasing the talent base of his team, he's not guaranteed to be in a better position to make the playoffs in the future. An example is the NL Central in 2006. The Reds had a shot of making the playoffs that year. If they made the right moves, they could've squeaked in.
Now put that 2006 team in the 2008 NL Central race and they have no chance, simply because the top of the division is much better.

Anyhow, it's not just Beane. Many teams make rebuilding more palatable to the fans by promising them that a sacrifice now will be part of building a juggernaut for the future.. another Yankees or Braves like dynasty.

When we look at reality, the A's will never be consistent contenders for a decade. This isn't a slam on Beane, but this past offseason proves it. If he's not comfortable with his odds of making the playoffs, he'll burn the team down. What are the odds that he's comfortable with his odds of making the playoffs for 10 straight years.. Maybe it was a bit harsh to call Beane misleading, but what he said isn't going to happen.

Chip R
07-22-2008, 10:51 AM
He's setting them up to contend in a few years, because he decided to punt this year. That's reasonable. I agree with your point that perhaps a decent shot at the wildcard isn't good enough. Maybe it's better to trade a decent shot a the wildcard for 2008 for a better shot at the playoffs in 2010.

Even if Beane is consistently increasing the talent base of his team, he's not guaranteed to be in a better position to make the playoffs in the future. An example is the NL Central in 2006. The Reds had a shot of making the playoffs that year. If they made the right moves, they could've squeaked in.

When we look at reality, the A's will never be consistent contenders for a decade. This isn't a slam on Beane, but this past offseason proves it. If he's not comfortable with his odds of making the playoffs, he'll burn the team down. What are the odds that he's comfortable with his odds of making the playoffs for 10 straight years.. Maybe it was a bit harsh to call Beane misleading, but what he said isn't going to happen.


I tend to agree with you. I understand what Beane's doing and why he's doing it but he's been in charge for about 15 years there and all they have to show for it is getting into the ALCS. Of course that's more than you can say about the Reds but this is about Beane and the A's.

They are really no different than the Florida Marlins except the Marlins have had more success. Perhaps not as much sustained success as the A's but winning the World Series twice is pretty darn good.

I would think this approach is difficult on A's fans. They get to know and like a player and then he's gone. I'm not saying he has to sign every fan favorite to a 7 year contract but I think the fans would like some kind of continuity. But I don't think Beane cares about what the fans think. Perhaps he shouldn't. A GM doesn't need to take a poll to trade a player but it does need to be taken into consideration.

I think a lot of fans like his approach because it's the way they would do things. It works if you have as good of talent coming in as you do leaving. Some fans wish the Reds could just tear things down like the Marlins and, to a lesser extent, the A's. But you have to be able to draft and develop players successfully in order for that to work. The A's and Marlins have shown they can do that. The Reds, not so much.

RedsManRick
07-22-2008, 10:53 AM
My only point (and this is for Nate as well) is that he's not setting them up to contend for a decade.

He's setting them up to contend in a few years, because he decided to punt this year. That's reasonable. I agree with your point that perhaps a decent shot at the wildcard isn't good enough. Maybe it's better to trade a decent shot a the wildcard for 2008 for a better shot at the playoffs in 2010.

I disagree. He is setting himself up to compete for a decade. He isn't setting himself up to compete for a decade with this group of players. However, he's building up the talent level in the organization such that when this group of players



Of course, the risk is that in 2010, they have a smaller chance of making the playoffs than they did this year. Therefore, they need to talent shuffle again.

Even if Beane is consistently increasing the talent base of his team, he's not guaranteed to be in a better position to make the playoffs in the future. An example is the NL Central in 2006. The Reds had a shot of making the playoffs that year. If they made the right moves, they could've squeaked in.
Now put that 2006 team in the 2008 NL Central race and they have no chance, simply because the top of the division is much better.

A fair point, of course. However, what can the A's do about it. Are you recommending that they buy up and make a run this year, future be damned? Are you proposing they trying to have their cake (make a run this year) and eat it too (build for the future). Beane's entire philosophy is centered around never doing something half-way. You can argue that he should've pushed for it this year, but Beane didn't think it was worth the risk.



Anyhow, it's not just Beane. Many teams make rebuilding more palatable to the fans by promising them that a sacrifice now will be part of building a juggernaut for the future.. another Yankees or Braves like dynasty.

When we look at reality, the A's will never be consistent contenders for a decade. This isn't a slam on Beane, but this past offseason proves it. If he's not comfortable with his odds of making the playoffs, he'll burn the team down. What are the odds that he's comfortable with his odds of making the playoffs for 10 straight years.. Maybe it was a bit harsh to call Beane misleading, but what he said isn't going to happen.

They won't? Based on what? The odds that any team, regardless of resources or management will make the playoffs 10 years running is very small. The Braves and Yankees of recent vintage are the rare exception. No GM can control his league context. All he can do is put the best team on the field and roll the dice. In any given year, things may not break your way. But well run organizations bounce back quickly and talent teams win more often than not. Let's look at Beane's track record:



Year Wins Playoffs/GB
97 65 25.0
98 74 14.0
99 87 7.0
00 91 Y
01 102 Y
02 103 Y
03 96 Y
04 91 1.0
05 88 5.0
06 93 Y
07 76 18.0

Allow for a 3 year building phase after he took over, and Beane's A's have made the playoffs in 5/8 years and been in the hunt 2 of the 3 years where they missed out. That's competitive 7/8 years, and 8/9 if you count 2008. Not a bad job for a guy operating with a smaller budget than 80&#37; of his competitors.

Beane I think realizes that with the way luck works, it's rarely worth it to set yourself up for years of struggle for the benefit of a single season. He wants to continue the winning tradition he's established and decided that he needed to raise the overall level of talent in the organization to do that.

The Reds have been "winning now" for the last decade, with quick fixes, reclamation projects, and deadline additions for failed playoff runs. Where has it gotten them? Nobody can guarantee a playoff appearance, but Beane has been able to compete nearly every single year on a shoestring budget. I think he's earned the benefit of the doubt.

Joseph
07-22-2008, 10:55 AM
They are really no different than the Florida Marlins except the Marlins have had more success. Perhaps not as much sustained success as the A's but winning the World Series twice is pretty darn good.


Thats a good comparison Chip. The difference in the two is that the Marlins have higher peaks, and lower valleys while the A's have less volatility in their graph.

Chip R
07-22-2008, 10:57 AM
Thats a good comparison Chip. The difference in the two is that the Marlins have higher peaks, and lower valleys while the A's have less volatility in their graph.


I agree although the Marlins have been very good the last couple of three years.

lollipopcurve
07-22-2008, 11:00 AM
Let's look at Beane's track record:

And take a look at what he's brought to the trade markets -- top-shelf long-proven major league arms:

Hudson, Mulder, Harden, Haren and Blanton. Pretty amazing that he's dealt them all.

RedsManRick
07-22-2008, 11:19 AM
And take a look at what he's brought to the trade markets -- top-shelf long-proven major league arms:

Hudson, Mulder, Harden, Haren and Blanton. Pretty amazing that he's dealt them all.

And he did it while keeping the A's competitive. How many people were suggesting that the A's would crash once the Big 3 were gone?

Too many baseball teams have a reverse grass-is-greener mentality, where they hold on to good talent until it's no long of any value. Of course, that's fine if the team is realizing the value of that talent as part of a competitive ballclub. But how many mediocre teams just sit on good players for too long, neither winning with them nor turning them around for a return that can help them win in the future? With very rare exception at the top of the pyramid, talent is fungible. If you have good scouting/evaluation and make intelligent risks, you can trade away very good players as part of maintaining your competitiveness -- even pitchers.

Chip R
07-22-2008, 11:36 AM
And remained competitive.

And that's true. The A's remind me of a top 20 college basketball team who get into the NCAA tournament year after year but only rarely advance into the Sweet 16 much less the Final Four. Is that success? Sure. It's better than not making the tournament at all but sooner or later the natives are going to get restless and want someone that can take them to the next level. I don't know if that will happen to Beane. The A's fans may not be as demanding as other fans are. Perhaps they are perfectly happy with contending and making the playoffs 2 out of 3 years. Perhaps the owners are happy too. They aren't paying 4-5 guys over $10M a year and they are competitive year after year.



With very rare exception at the top of the pyramid, talent is fungible. If you have good scouting/evaluation and make intelligent risks, you can trade away very good players as part of maintaining your competitiveness -- even pitchers.


That is true. But that system has to be in place before you do this in order for it to work. Otherwise you're the Philly Athletics from the 1930s on.

lollipopcurve
07-22-2008, 11:40 AM
And he did it while keeping the A's competitive. How many people were suggesting that the A's would crash once the Big 3 were gone?

I was one of them. And I gave Beane lots of credit in managing the transition to Haren/Harden/Blanton et al. But did anyone here really think Beane wasn't tearing it all down this offseason? The fact that the As are competitive this year may be an accident.

RedsManRick
07-22-2008, 11:43 AM
And that's true. The A's remind me of a top 20 college basketball team who get into the NCAA tournament year after year but only rarely advance into the Sweet 16 much less the Final Four. Is that success? Sure. It's better than not making the tournament at all but sooner or later the natives are going to get restless and want someone that can take them to the next level. I don't know if that will happen to Beane. The A's fans may not be as demanding as other fans are. Perhaps they are perfectly happy with contending and making the playoffs 2 out of 3 years. Perhaps the owners are happy too. They aren't paying 4-5 guys over $10M a year and they are competitive year after year.

Well, Beane would argue, and I would tend to agree, that once you get to the playoffs, it's a crap shoot. You have to figure that with even odds, only 2/8 playoff teams make the World Series every year and only 1/8 actually win it. The Big 3 teams were World Series champ caliber -- they just didn't win it. The Cardinals won a WS with a mediocre team. In so few games, that happens.

Like with college basketball, you can demand winning the championship all you want. But once you get to the latter stages of the big dance, luck plays such an enormous role as to overshadow any potential differences between the top few teams.



That is true. But that system has to be in place before you do this in order for it to work. Otherwise you're the Philly Athletics from the 1930s on.

Exactly. Hence why Beane is continuing to add talent this year instead of making a run. It's not about selling for the sake it, but rather building up such a talent base that you can trade away your expensive talent and replace it immediately from within while remaining competitive.



I was one of them. And I gave Beane lots of credit in managing the transition to Haren/Harden/Blanton et al. But did anyone here really think Beane wasn't tearing it all down this offseason? The fact that the As are competitive this year may be an accident.

I'm with you. Beane didn't think they'd compete this year. He was smart enough not to get caught up in the tide of competing this year at the expense of the opportunity cost of being able to get future value from a healthy Harden. Where would the Reds be today if Krivksy was similarly prudent in 2006?

Chip R
07-22-2008, 12:02 PM
Well, Beane would argue, and I would tend to agree, that once you get to the playoffs, it's a crap shoot. You have to figure that with even odds, only 2/8 playoff teams make the World Series every year and only 1/8 actually win it. The Big 3 teams were World Series champ caliber -- they just didn't win it. The Cardinals won a WS with a mediocre team. In so few games, that happens.


I tend to disagree. If it's a crapshoot they should have got to the Series by now. Just throwing up your hands and saying you're unlucky because you have only made it to one ALCS seems like excuse making to me. Almost sounds Cubsish. If it's just luck or the law of averages, it should come around in their favor every once in a while. You could say it takes even less luck to get to the Workd Series than in the NBA or the NHL where it's easier to get into the playoffs but since you have to win 3 series instead of 2, the chances of losing increases.

RedsManRick
07-22-2008, 12:18 PM
I tend to disagree. If it's a crapshoot they should have got to the Series by now. Just throwing up your hands and saying you're unlucky because you have only made it to one ALCS seems like excuse making to me. Almost sounds Cubsish. If it's just luck or the law of averages, it should come around in their favor every once in a while. You could say it takes even less luck to get to the Workd Series than in the NBA or the NHL where it's easier to get into the playoffs but since you have to win 3 series instead of 2, the chances of losing increases.

Yes in no. They've made the playoffs 5 times. If you figure they've got a 75&#37; chance of not making the world series each time they make the playoffs, that's a 24% of not making the World Series at least once in 5 attempts. So in a way you're right, they should have made it by now. But to then conclude that because they haven't that something besides randomness is at play is not a fair conclusion.

Sure, the odds say you're more likely than not to make the Series if you make the playoffs 5 times. But not making it is completely reasonable too. That's hardly definitive evidence that there's something deficient about the A's.

A crapshoot doesn't mean alternating heads and tails. If I give you a coin to flip and you flip tails back to back, should I infer you have some inherent quality that is preventing you from flipping heads? I'm guessing you'd say no. But the odds of getting back to back tails is 25%, nearly identical to the odds of a team not making in World Series in 5 playoff appearances. Why should we conclude any differently?

Now, if they were to make 10 playoff appearances and still fail to make the WS, then you're in the 5% chance of happening by luck range and you're maybe on to something. Otherwise, it's unreasonable to conclude that their lack of WS appearances is due to some critical failure of team construction.

I know it goes against our nature to accept a lack of an explanation. But this is one of those cases where we just can't say anything with any sort of certainty. Maybe the A's formula really does hamper their ability to win in the playoffs. But their track record to date is way too little evidence to come to that conclusion.

Spring~Fields
07-22-2008, 12:51 PM
The A's will never be great for a decade though. As soon as these new wave of prospects get pricey, he'll dump them for more prospects. Really, what Oakland is trying to do is get a group of youngster that will hopefully all mature together and give him an inexpensive team that can make a run for a year or two. Then he'll tear it down again. Prior to last offseason, Beane already had a decent core of young productive players and he tore it down..


I think Philly did pretty good in this deal. Doesn't appear that they gave up much of substance. Much like the Lohse deal last year, Malony was a B prospect but he's really no big loss and it's not as if he's going to ever be an impact player. Likewise, I doubt the any of the players going to Oakland are going to be missed. Big market teams like Philly and Chicago can give up guys like this without missing a beat. Likewise, the A's did ok if one of these guys makes it to the bigs and is somewhat productive, since apparently they were dumping Blanton anyhow.

Seems to me that this trade indicates that the Reds could've picked up Blanton for a couple of B prospects and it wouldn't have taken Cueto or Bruce. Not that it's a huge deal either way.

Both of these teams are moving forward.

The very experienced Reds Chief Executive Officer and his leading general, on the other hand seem to be stuck in review mode. ;)

REDREAD
07-22-2008, 05:33 PM
I disagree. He is setting himself up to compete for a decade. He isn't setting himself up to compete for a decade with this group of players. However, he's building up the talent level in the organization such that when this group of players

He did keep a good core together and make a run for a few years.. Giambi, Hudson, etc.. But since he decided to tear that group down, he's been pretty much just going for it one year or two and then tearing it down again. In other words, trading Hudson, Mulder, etc was supposed to set them up to contend for a decade, but now he's trading away the guys he got in those trades for a brighter future.

I'm not saying the A's should be able to contend for a decade. That's probably impossible for a team with their payroll. I'm just saying that he's so worried about trading a guy too late, that he will never build a team that will contend for more than a year or two. Always looking to the future more than the present. Not necessarily bad, but if he ever gets a team he feels is strong enough to "Go for it", he'll tear it down in a year or two, because that' s just the way he operates..








A fair point, of course. However, what can the A's do about it. Are you recommending that they buy up and make a run this year, future be damned?


Nope. I don't think it's possible for a team like the Reds or A's to contend for a full decade in modern baseball. It's difficult enough for the Yankeees/Red Sox to do it. It's impossible for a financially constrained team. They've got to pick their spots. That's why (IMO) maybe it's smarter for a team like the 2008 A's or 2006 Reds to go for it when the opportunity is there, because no one knows when the next chance will happen. In our case, if the Cubs keep adding 1-3 quality FAs per year (Fukodome, Soriano, etc), we are going to have a real tough time ever winning the division, no matter how smart our GM is or how fertile the farm system is.







Are you proposing they trying to have their cake (make a run this year) and eat it too (build for the future). Beane's entire philosophy is centered around never doing something half-way. You can argue that he should've pushed for it this year, but Beane didn't think it was worth the risk.


But inaction has its risk too. Seattle is willing to spend a lot of money. In 3-4 years, they might have a smart person running the team. The Angels will probably always be tough.

Likewise, in 2006, the Reds maybe couldn't have forseeen Chicago's rise to power, but they could see Milwaukee getting a lot of talent ready, and acknowledged that the Cards are always tough.. 2006 may have been the Reds best chance to make the playoffs for the next 10 years. Granted, it was a marginal contending team based on the original roster, but it made sense to go for it then..







They won't? Based on what? The odds that any team, regardless of resources or management will make the playoffs 10 years running is very small.


My point exactly. It's foolhardy to even think you can build a team to contend for a decade on the A's budget. But that's what Beane said his plan was. I simply said it was misleading for him to say that to the fans to get them to swallow seeing established talent leave.





The Braves and Yankees of recent vintage are the rare exception. No GM can control his league context. All he can do is put the best team on the field and roll the dice.


Again, my point exactly. Beane could've chosen to put his best team on the field in 2008, but decided to rebuild instead. Sure, he got good talent in return (as a whole). Some of those guys are contributing now. But let's be honest, those were not moves intended to help them contend now..

Again, overall I agree with you that he does a good job.. My comment is that he claims to be building a team to contend for a decade, when he's really not. Sure, he's doing the best he can to reshape them into a winner as fast as possible. I don't know if it will work or not (I am not an expert on the players he got), but if I had to bet, I'd say the A's will be competitive again long before the Reds will.. I will say it again, Beane is one of the best GMs out there. I am not slamming him by any means.

REDREAD
07-22-2008, 05:40 PM
Well, Beane would argue, and I would tend to agree, that once you get to the playoffs, it's a crap shoot.

I disagree with this. I think that certain teams are more favored in the playoffs. For example, the Braves having Neagle as their #4 starter helped get them into the playoffs, but did little to help them once in the playoffs.
The Braves usually had weak bullpens, which were even more exposed in a best of 7 series.. After seeing Craig McMichael for several days in a row, he seemed to become more hittable.

I have followed the A's less, but those Giambi teams seemed to be slow poor defenders that relied on walks and HRs to score runs. That type of offense doesn't play as well when you reach the playoffs. All in my opinion, of course.

In summary, I think some teams which win a lot during the regular season aren't necessarily designed well for a short playoff series.

cincinnati chili
07-22-2008, 05:48 PM
Someone can probably pull out this old baseball prospectus article. IIRC, they calculated that the best team loses a best-of five and best of seven series something like 35-40 percent of the time.

Given that, in most years, the best team does not win the world series.

Thus, Billy Beane is correct when he says that there's a lot of luck involved.

RedsManRick
07-22-2008, 06:35 PM
Again, overall I agree with you that he does a good job.. My comment is that he claims to be building a team to contend for a decade, when he's really not. Sure, he's doing the best he can to reshape them into a winner as fast as possible. I don't know if it will work or not (I am not an expert on the players he got), but if I had to bet, I'd say the A's will be competitive again long before the Reds will.. I will say it again, Beane is one of the best GMs out there. I am not slamming him by any means.

I guess where Beane confuses me is in the "decade" part of the quote. I think a more accurate description would be putting the A's in a position to compete every single year. That's not to say that they will make the playoffs every year. But it is to say that the playoffs will be a reasonable expectation.

An analogy, it's not that Beane has built a big enough gas tank to allow the car to drive 100 miles a day for the next 10 days. Rather, he's built a renewable energy source in to the car so that on any given day, it's likely to be able to go 100 miles. Maybe he really did mean the former, but I think he meant the latter.

One of the advantages of the Yankees, Sox, Braves, etc. was that if, in any given year, something went wrong, they had the resources to allow them to course correct. The A's don't have such flexibility to buy short term solutions to unexpected problems. There will be years when things don't work, players get injured, underperform, or fail to develop. In those cases, they might be able to squeak out a competitive season, but only by putting the future at risk. I see 2008 as one of those years for the A's.

lollipopcurve
07-22-2008, 07:39 PM
There will be years when things don't work, players get injured, underperform, or fail to develop. In those cases, they might be able to squeak out a competitive season, but only by putting the future at risk. I see 2008 as one of those years for the A's.

I don't see it that way. I think his players have overperformed (Eveland, Duchscherer, Greg Smith, to name 3), thrusting the team unexpectedly into a division race Beane thought they'd be excused from. Beane tried to engineer an off year by trading his best assets, but his players have flipped the switch on him.

RedsManRick
07-22-2008, 08:32 PM
I don't see it that way. I think his players have overperformed (Eveland, Duchscherer, Greg Smith, to name 3), thrusting the team unexpectedly into a division race Beane thought they'd be excused from. Beane tried to engineer an off year by trading his best assets, but his players have flipped the switch on him.

Regarding 2008 specifically, I agree 100%. The As were not supposed to be competitive in 2008. The entire philosophy I've been describing is what I think Beane intends to do moving forward.

VR
07-22-2008, 10:10 PM
Blanton tonight....6IP, 5ER, 8H, 3bb, 1K

Perhaps Phillies have never heard of Oakland Coliseum.

Falls City Beer
07-22-2008, 10:50 PM
Not for nothing, but *anybody* should be able to contend in the AL West.

Raisor
07-22-2008, 10:54 PM
Not for nothing, but *anybody* should be able to contend in the AL West.

Except an Edgar Martinez-less Mariners.

No Edgar, No Peace (of the division)!

jojo
07-22-2008, 11:14 PM
Not for nothing, but *anybody* should be able to contend in the AL West.

Ya, the Reds would only be like 13 games out if they had the luxury of playing in the AL west. :cool:

Falls City Beer
07-23-2008, 09:41 AM
Ya, the Reds would only be like 13 games out if they had the luxury of playing in the AL west. :cool:

When you have four teams in your division to begin with, and two of them happen to be the Mariners and Rangers, again, there's no reason you shouldn't be able to compete in that division with some regularity.

jojo
07-23-2008, 10:03 AM
When you have four teams in your division to begin with, and two of them happen to be the Mariners and Rangers, again, there's no reason you shouldn't be able to compete in that division with some regularity.

The Reds wouldn't have been able to compete in that division during the last decade.

Falls City Beer
07-23-2008, 10:04 AM
The Reds wouldn't have been able to compete in that division during the last decade.

Yeah, I guess I should stipulate that the Reds don't count as "anybody." They couldn't compete at Duck Pond.

NJReds
07-23-2008, 10:07 AM
Yeah, I guess I should stipulate that the Reds don't count as "anybody." They couldn't compete at Duck Pond.

They could compete in the NL West.

KronoRed
07-23-2008, 02:18 PM
They could compete in the NL West.

Maybe, or they would play down to their competition and be in a fight with the Giants.