Originally Posted by BCubb2003
Perhaps we should wait until we have actual results, like a winning season, but maybe it's good to track this as we go. Walt Jocketty has had about the same amount of time or less than Wayne Krivsky and Dan O'Brien had, yet seems to have the organization in much better shape. What did he do differently? If you wanted to replicate a GM who's successful in a short amount of time for a struggling small-market team, what could you take from Jocketty's strategy so far?
Here's the differences, IMO. The amount of impact is debatable.
Jocketty stresses defense. Wayne and DanO pretty much ignored it.
Walt fills in holes with better quality veterans. Ramon Hernandez is better than Paul Bako. Sure, WilyT was a whiff, but other than that, his veteran acquisions have been much more solid.
Wayne would've never traded for Rolen. Whether you agree or disagree with that trade, that is a key difference. I love that move, but we will have to wait and see the impact on the season.
IMO, Walt has a better eye for bullpen arms, although Wayne finally got it right in his last year after spending lots of resources and wasting a lot of time on experiments.
Walt seems more concerned overall with the quality of position players and balance of the team. Wayne really bought into "90% of the game is pitching".
Again, that doesn't necessarily mean Walt is right or better, but its' a key difference.
Walt has had one horrible FA signing (WilyT, but he was able to do damage control by unloading him on the A's).. In contrast, Wayne had several disaster moves, and was not able to perform damage control. Rumor was that Dusty really pushed for Stanton to get released.
Walt is spending more money and resources on the farm than either Wayne or DanO. Maybe that's not fair that Cast trusts Walt with more money, but the reality is that he's getting premier Latin prospects that we have never had a chance with before. He's getting it done. The future looks much brighter.
So while Walt has not pulled off the specacular "WOW" trade yet, he's really only made one mistake (Wily).. A lot of solid moves which incrementally improved the team. These moves resulted in a 5 game improvement in the W-L record last year (despite more injuries). The run differential backs up the fact that it was a legit improvement on the team.
I think it's reasonable (with good health) to expect another 5 game improvement this year.