"It's better to remain silent and be thought a fool than to speak and remove all doubt."
I'm not a man of many words. Read my posts, and you'll see what I mean.
Some people are Optimists (They see the glass 1/2 full).
Others are Pessimists (They see the glass 1/2 empty).
Me, I'm a Realist. 1/2 empty IS 1/2 full.
But at what point were we discussing how good deals were "at the time they were made"? It's pretty obvious that we can look back at that deal as one of the best ever, no? And thus, Jocketty should be getting some serious credit for. In fact, he should be getting even more credit for the fact that he was ahead of the curve, and was able to get Pujols for such a bargain.
As far as the "magic running out", I don't see it esp. with the amount of talent they have in the minors. In fact, I would blame part of the reason on averaging 88 wins on the fact that the minor league talent was depleted for a time. They've built that back up and you're going to see young players like Oscar Taveras, Kolten Wong, Shelby Miller, Carlos Martinez, Trevor Rosenthal, etc take the field. The Cardinals are becoming a younger team (especially around 2014). They also are getting a lot of money off the books in the next couple of years plus will be signing a TV deal in 2017ish that will probably be worth 4-5 times as much as they're getting now. What they will not be able to cover with young talent in the system they can make up for it in free agent signings. It's the formula that they've used to success in the past and will continue to use success. The bottom line is that the Cardinals aren't going away anytime soon.
Should any GM get credit for drafting anyone? I would say yes, because he put the decision makers in place. Likewise if the farm stinks, the GM shouldn't be able to blame the farm director or whoever is running the draft.
A Reds' scout saw Brandon Phillips in a spring training game and called Wayne Kriv (Red's GM at the time), very enthusiastic about Brandon's swing.. this compelled Wayne to trade for BP. I would still give Wayne Kriv credit for that, although if one reallly wanted to split hairs, the lion share of the credit goes to the scout.
I guess I subscribe to the model that the GM is ultimately responsible for everything. I bet you could drop Walt or the current Cardinals GM into any team and that team would be better in 3 years (barring an impossible ownership).
Honestly, I kind of chuckle when people claim that Walt really isn't that responsible for the two playoff appearances we've had, just because Bruce/Ceuto/Votto/etc weren't signed/drafted under his watch.
It would've been REALLY easy to screw up and trade the wrong guys. (Plenty of calls to trade Cueto, Phillips and Votto "while we can still get value for them" on this forum) He also gets credit for finding a way to keep them all under contract. Even withthe second wildcard, it's tough to make the playoffs. Any GM that can get his team to the playoffs did a great job, regardless of what he inherited.
Thank you Walt and Bob for bringing winning baseball back to Cincy
Nov. 13, 2007: One of the greatest days in Reds history: John Allen gets the boot!