Re: In Defense Of Dan O'Brien
D-Man, I agree IP are valuable. I got sold on the concept back in 1986 after the Cardinals lost Joaquin Andujar, but I think the Reds overpaid with Lidle, who's offered nothing beyond the IP. Had you just wanted IP you could have paid $1M for Jeff Suppan (who's pitched more IP than Lidle every season of their lives).
If the Reds had three good pitchers and $2.75M to blow on Lidle's IP for the cause of keeping the pen stable then I wouldn't have a problem with that. Unfortunately that's not the model they've got. They needed to find a keeper with that money. One of the great sins of the Lidle signing, to me at least, is it put off that search another year.
IMO, Lidle's fish nor fowl in the Koufax/Sutton debate. Lidle's never going to have a great year. In fact, the Dr. Cory & Mr. Lidle act this season has pretty much prevented him from even having great weeks. The ability to toss six really good games a year with 15 stinkbombs and 12 good-to-mediocre offerings thrown in shouldn't impress much of anybody. Almost every pitcher can give you six really good games a year. So I don't see where Lidle's doing anything all that special. For comparison, Ron Villone did it in 1999 and he pitched far better in his "off" starts as well.
And, though I haven't cataloged it, everytime I've looked at team W-L records in games where they've allowed a lot of runs, the winning percentages are frightfully low. I believe it's axiomatic in both the old school and number crunching communities that the easiest way to lose a game is to allow a lot of runs. It's no coincidence that above-.500 teams generally have better-than-average team ERAs and that bottom-quarter ERA clubs (barring a few exceptions with the Rockies, who play in a parallel universe) always have losing records. Certainly no team I can find has been able to pitch as poorly as Lidle for a season and overcome it with spot quality.
Baseball isn't a magic trick ... it doesn't get spoiled if you figure out how it works. - gonelong
I'm witchcrafting everybody.