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Postby LBJackal » Tue Apr 19, 2005 8:22 pm

Phatferd wrote:
GotowarMissAgnes wrote:
Phatferd wrote:I respect your hardwork in putting together that list, however, I never do lists because they don't mean crap.

You can judge all you want position for position, but you can't get an accurate synopsis of teams that way. I'll use 2 teams to make this example easier. I'll use Oak and Ana since they seem to be the focus.

Say you take Catcher and Kendall over Molina. Then you have RF with Vlad over Swisher. By comparing them position for position its even right now because its 1 position to 1. The flaw in this is the gap between Vlad and Swisher is A LOT bigger than Kendall and Molina. These comparisons never work and are not an accurate way to compare teams.

Any comparison is dumb because you have to let the season play out to see what unfolds. When the Angels won in 2002, I believe there were something like 10-20 or close to start the season. My point being, don't take much from the early season outcomes. The Angels have played poorly as has most of the AL West. The A's taking this series won't mean much in September. Of course Oakland showed good things in winning the series and should be, however, if we judge the rest of the season from the first dozen games, then we will all set ourselves up for embarassment.


While in general your point is correct (lists fail to capture the true difference between players), in this example, your assumption that Kendall+Swisher < Vlad+ Molina is wrong.

Over the last 3 years Kendall has averaged 40 runs over a replacement catcher. Molina has averaged 9 runs better. So, that's a +30 for the A's

Vlad has averaged about 70 runs over a replacement OF. Swisher, based on his past performance is projected to be about 30-35 runs better than a replacement OF, which is about a 35-40 run advantage for the A's.

That leaves it a slight (4-9) run advantage for the Angels, (which isn't really significant), but this also overstates it, because Kendall has been more durable than the average catcher. Since the Angels usually replace Bengie with his even more horrific bro, it actually makes the score more in favor of the A's.

So, on balance, it really comes out to be no difference. Kendall+Swisher = Vlad + the Molinas


Seriously take your statistics and do all you want I don't care and I will never accept the whole theory of PECOTA and all that crap.

If you think that Vlad and Molina are only slightly better than Kendall and Swisher then you need to put down the mouse and watch a game.

Swisher's numbers are based on minor league numbers, so don't even try to defend that. Swisher has shown his great prowress so far with his 220 BA.


Not that I disagree with Agnes... but people will never take sabermetrics seriously if things like this are said, even if they're true. People are too satisfied with traditional thinking.
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Postby Phatferd » Tue Apr 19, 2005 8:31 pm

LBJackal wrote:
Phatferd wrote:
GotowarMissAgnes wrote:
Phatferd wrote:I respect your hardwork in putting together that list, however, I never do lists because they don't mean crap.

You can judge all you want position for position, but you can't get an accurate synopsis of teams that way. I'll use 2 teams to make this example easier. I'll use Oak and Ana since they seem to be the focus.

Say you take Catcher and Kendall over Molina. Then you have RF with Vlad over Swisher. By comparing them position for position its even right now because its 1 position to 1. The flaw in this is the gap between Vlad and Swisher is A LOT bigger than Kendall and Molina. These comparisons never work and are not an accurate way to compare teams.

Any comparison is dumb because you have to let the season play out to see what unfolds. When the Angels won in 2002, I believe there were something like 10-20 or close to start the season. My point being, don't take much from the early season outcomes. The Angels have played poorly as has most of the AL West. The A's taking this series won't mean much in September. Of course Oakland showed good things in winning the series and should be, however, if we judge the rest of the season from the first dozen games, then we will all set ourselves up for embarassment.


While in general your point is correct (lists fail to capture the true difference between players), in this example, your assumption that Kendall+Swisher < Vlad+ Molina is wrong.

Over the last 3 years Kendall has averaged 40 runs over a replacement catcher. Molina has averaged 9 runs better. So, that's a +30 for the A's

Vlad has averaged about 70 runs over a replacement OF. Swisher, based on his past performance is projected to be about 30-35 runs better than a replacement OF, which is about a 35-40 run advantage for the A's.

That leaves it a slight (4-9) run advantage for the Angels, (which isn't really significant), but this also overstates it, because Kendall has been more durable than the average catcher. Since the Angels usually replace Bengie with his even more horrific bro, it actually makes the score more in favor of the A's.

So, on balance, it really comes out to be no difference. Kendall+Swisher = Vlad + the Molinas


Seriously take your statistics and do all you want I don't care and I will never accept the whole theory of PECOTA and all that crap.

If you think that Vlad and Molina are only slightly better than Kendall and Swisher then you need to put down the mouse and watch a game.

Swisher's numbers are based on minor league numbers, so don't even try to defend that. Swisher has shown his great prowress so far with his 220 BA.


Not that I disagree with Agnes... but people will never take sabermetrics seriously if things like this are said, even if they're true. People are too satisfied with traditional thinking.


I am very anti tradition in normal aspects of life, however, in baseball I am a traditionalist. I just don't see how this is working in real baseball. People are putting up a mirage.

The A's have been successful in the regular season, and have stayed competitive in a LARGE market (they just don't get the fans to come). What I find funny is the Braves have pretty much done this same thing the A's have for a longer time and have won a WS and been to a handful of WS and people praise the A's more.

Most A's fans and supporters of their philosophy always state that they do well in the regular seson and that the playoffs are a crap shoot so you can't judge a team based on this. That is the biggest bunch of crap.

First of all if any team is built for the playoffs their teams were with the big 3 aces. Second, the Yankees, Braves, and Red Sox have found a way to CONSISTANTLY win in the playoffs every year. It isn't such a crapshoot for them is it?
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Postby LBJackal » Tue Apr 19, 2005 8:39 pm

The Braves and Red Sox have consistently won in the playoffs? In the Red Sox last 7 trips to the playoffs they've made it past the first round once. In the Braves' last 5 trips to the playoffs they havn't won a single series.

I really don't know what you're getting at here... playoffs are definately luck, especially the short 5 gamers that Oakland has been losing in. And they almost always make it to the 5th game, even against the Yankees.
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Postby fantasyfiend » Tue Apr 19, 2005 9:24 pm

Im tired of people completely neglecting Payroll figures.

What makes the A's 5 year run so spectacular isnt just the simple fact that they've won the 2nd most games (2nd to only the yankees) over the last 5 yrs combined....but with the amount of resources they had to win it with.

If we completely neglected resources (which is what you are doing when you start comparing teams like the Braves) then why dont we just point to the front offices of major markets and call their GM gods every year.

The A's have been as far as one out away on multiple occasions to get past the first round. Over the course of a longer sample of games, talent will always prevail. In a 5 game series luck plays a much larger rolle than the actual ability of the players. A botched ball, blooped single, wild pitch...etc greatly effects the outcome. In baseball much of the game alone is already luck (alot of variables that talent cannot control) play a large factor from game to game.....over a 162 game season the talent will prevail and luck will only play a marginal rolle. But in a 5 game series you need to be "hot" as a team, but mostly lucky. Therefore teams like Arizona, or Florida--if hot--have as much a chance to win it all as anybody.

What the A's front office is doing with its limited resources is trying to build a perennial 95 winner (using win shares). Basically the main goal every year is to build a team that gets you to the first round (without any major rebuilding years) and eventually your team will get hot and win one in October.

Now considering the teams $40M payroll (which is about the price of Randy Johnson & Alex Rodriguez alone) the A's have been able to put themselves in that position 4 out of 5 years--with a 3rd of the payroll of the other 3 mid to major market teams in the AL West.

Beane's pundits and detractors seem to ignore some of these obstacles when comparing them to the likes of the Braves (who can afford to shop the FA market, keep studs during the end of their arbitration years, and resign homegrown stars)

The A's 4 playoffs teams from 2000-2003 experienced alot of turn over from year to year. More than 50% of the roster was changed during that 4 year run, they had no choice. One superstar left after another, and one major sports media outlet followed like sheep doubting the team the following year...only for them to squash the division again...and again...and again. If it wasnt for unusual injuries to studs on the pitching staff and positional players like Chavez & Dye, last season would've been no different.
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Postby Phatferd » Tue Apr 19, 2005 9:43 pm

LBJackal wrote:The Braves and Red Sox have consistently won in the playoffs? In the Red Sox last 7 trips to the playoffs they've made it past the first round once. In the Braves' last 5 trips to the playoffs they havn't won a single series.

I really don't know what you're getting at here... playoffs are definately luck, especially the short 5 gamers that Oakland has been losing in. And they almost always make it to the 5th game, even against the Yankees.


If you are going to make a claim then you may want to get your facts straight. Boston has been past the 1st round in their last 3 appearances in the playoffs. Also, the Braves last 5 series they made it out of the Division Series to the NLCS once, so that is also wrong. My point was that from the early 90s to the late 90s the Braves did more than the As have done on a more consistent basis. However, if you want to take your argument for the Braves as a recent team, they made it to a 5th game in 3 of their last 4 and the 5th time they won the series, but you wouldnt know that because they havent won a series in their last 7?

C'mon, if you love stats, then do a little research.

How are the playoffs luck if teams like NYY and Blue Jays have won mulitple years in a row? Really lucky? I don't think so.
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Postby LBJackal » Tue Apr 19, 2005 10:00 pm

Phatferd wrote:
LBJackal wrote:The Braves and Red Sox have consistently won in the playoffs? In the Red Sox last 7 trips to the playoffs they've made it past the first round once. In the Braves' last 5 trips to the playoffs they havn't won a single series.

I really don't know what you're getting at here... playoffs are definately luck, especially the short 5 gamers that Oakland has been losing in. And they almost always make it to the 5th game, even against the Yankees.


If you are going to make a claim then you may want to get your facts straight. Boston has been past the 1st round in their last 3 appearances in the playoffs. Also, the Braves last 5 series they made it out of the Division Series to the NLCS once, so that is also wrong. My point was that from the early 90s to the late 90s the Braves did more than the As have done on a more consistent basis. However, if you want to take your argument for the Braves as a recent team, they made it to a 5th game in 3 of their last 4 and the 5th time they won the series, but you wouldnt know that because they havent won a series in their last 7?

C'mon, if you love stats, then do a little research.

How are the playoffs luck if teams like NYY and Blue Jays have won mulitple years in a row? Really lucky? I don't think so.


Baseball Reference shows teams as only winning their Division if they don't win the LCS. They don't show LDS wins in the team pages, they only show LCS or WS wins. My mistake, sorry.

But regardless, playoff wins are luck, especially 5 games series. Just because teams have won back-to-back (When the Jays did it there were only 2 rounds in the playoffs and both were 7 game series) doesn't mean it doesn't take luck. Why have the Yanks lost to wildcard teams in 3 of the past 4 seasons? Why has Florida won 2 WS despite having never finished in 1st place? Throw in 5 game series that we have nowadays and it's definately a huge amount of luck that goes into it. You can't argue against the #2 team over the past 5 seasons and say they weren't good enough. Pick a different team other than Oakland to be your example, because it isn't going to work if you keeping harping on them.
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Postby Phatferd » Tue Apr 19, 2005 10:10 pm

LBJackal wrote:
Phatferd wrote:
LBJackal wrote:The Braves and Red Sox have consistently won in the playoffs? In the Red Sox last 7 trips to the playoffs they've made it past the first round once. In the Braves' last 5 trips to the playoffs they havn't won a single series.

I really don't know what you're getting at here... playoffs are definately luck, especially the short 5 gamers that Oakland has been losing in. And they almost always make it to the 5th game, even against the Yankees.


If you are going to make a claim then you may want to get your facts straight. Boston has been past the 1st round in their last 3 appearances in the playoffs. Also, the Braves last 5 series they made it out of the Division Series to the NLCS once, so that is also wrong. My point was that from the early 90s to the late 90s the Braves did more than the As have done on a more consistent basis. However, if you want to take your argument for the Braves as a recent team, they made it to a 5th game in 3 of their last 4 and the 5th time they won the series, but you wouldnt know that because they havent won a series in their last 7?

C'mon, if you love stats, then do a little research.

How are the playoffs luck if teams like NYY and Blue Jays have won mulitple years in a row? Really lucky? I don't think so.


Baseball Reference shows teams as only winning their Division if they don't win the LCS. They don't show LDS wins in the team pages, they only show LCS or WS wins. My mistake, sorry.

But regardless, playoff wins are luck, especially 5 games series. Just because teams have won back-to-back (When the Jays did it there were only 2 rounds in the playoffs and both were 7 game series) doesn't mean it doesn't take luck. Why have the Yanks lost to wildcard teams in 3 of the past 4 seasons? Why has Florida won 2 WS despite having never finished in 1st place? Throw in 5 game series that we have nowadays and it's definately a huge amount of luck that goes into it. You can't argue against the #2 team over the past 5 seasons and say they weren't good enough. Pick a different team other than Oakland to be your example, because it isn't going to work if you keeping harping on them.


I will admit luck happens in every aspect of life, however, in baseball I think it is very small.

Why have teams like the Marlins won 2 WS without winning a division? Maybe its because their teams were built for the playoffs with dominant pitching? Maybe its because they really were the best team, but didn't get everything working until later in the year?

Teams like the Yankees (mid 90s-early 2000s), Red Sox (since around 2000), Braves (early to late 90s) must have found a lot of "luck" and I mean a lot of it then. I think that many A's fans (I am picking on Oak, cause they are the topic of the thread) paint as pretty of a picture as possible out of a situation that isn't quite there. If A's fans are happy with winning 90-95 games every year then more power to them, but I would be disapointed after a while as a fan if they never won it all after all of that.

I would trade in 1 WS title for 5 years of not making the playoffs.

BTW, I got my research on the playoff history from Baseballreference.com also.
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Postby LBJackal » Tue Apr 19, 2005 10:21 pm

I'm sure they'd rather win a WS then only have the second best record in baseball over a 5 year span, but it didn't turn out that way. They've run into the Yankees a couple times, and had a worse team than them. But I'm sure the A's fans are happy with the team because they aren't finishing in last place every year like the D'Rays or Brewers. Not many teams with that low a payroll can be this good for 5 straight years. And it's not like they've sucked in the palyoffs, they've made it to the final game of every palyoff series in the past 5 years.
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Postby fantasyfiend » Tue Apr 19, 2005 10:28 pm

Phatferd...quit while your ahead..seriously

You "think" luck doesnt exist in the playoffs but cant give any substantive backing or reasoning to that comment.

You cite the Red Sox from 2000 on...yet you fail to mention that they've had the 2nd highest payroll, and have only 1 world series (last season) to show for it.

You cite the Yankees of the late 90's which have absolutely zero relevance with the Marlins, the Red Sox and your argument in general.

Luck doesnt play a 100% factor in a 7 game playoff series...it plays a substantial rolle though. Big payroll teams can afford to WAAAY over pay the market and reduce that luck (only slightly--ala the yankees over the last decade) The A's do NOT have that luxury.

The Marlins, Diamondbacks, Angels, Padres were built for the world series? lmfao, c'mon there isnt 4 better recent examples of flukier teams that were able to get hot(altogether) at the right time and reel off a famous October win streak. The Angels brought that '02 world series team almost fully intact and failed miserably the following year.

I to would trade in 5 division titles for 1 world series. But as a fan who understands the probability of winning in baseball....i'd much rather be looking at my team on TV every october(knowing there's a chance we can make a run at a title), and not scraping the bottom of the division with no outside chance of getting into the playoffs as early as 4 months into the season.
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Postby Phatferd » Tue Apr 19, 2005 11:53 pm

fantasyfiend wrote:Phatferd...quit while your ahead..seriously

You "think" luck doesnt exist in the playoffs but cant give any substantive backing or reasoning to that comment.

You cite the Red Sox from 2000 on...yet you fail to mention that they've had the 2nd highest payroll, and have only 1 world series (last season) to show for it.

You cite the Yankees of the late 90's which have absolutely zero relevance with the Marlins, the Red Sox and your argument in general.

Luck doesnt play a 100% factor in a 7 game playoff series...it plays a substantial rolle though. Big payroll teams can afford to WAAAY over pay the market and reduce that luck (only slightly--ala the yankees over the last decade) The A's do NOT have that luxury.

The Marlins, Diamondbacks, Angels, Padres were built for the world series? lmfao, c'mon there isnt 4 better recent examples of flukier teams that were able to get hot(altogether) at the right time and reel off a famous October win streak. The Angels brought that '02 world series team almost fully intact and failed miserably the following year.

I to would trade in 5 division titles for 1 world series. But as a fan who understands the probability of winning in baseball....i'd much rather be looking at my team on TV every october(knowing there's a chance we can make a run at a title), and not scraping the bottom of the division with no outside chance of getting into the playoffs as early as 4 months into the season.


Haha evidence? Show me evidence of luck coming into account? You can't it is not a tangible thing. Its pretty convienent for A's fans to point to something that isn't measurable (luck) to back their claim up.

The Red Sox did have the 2nd highest payroll in baseball, no duh. The Braves didn't during that span. Also, quit blaming your payroll, it is your owners choice and you as a fan to an extent. That stadium is in Oakland/Bay Area with 60,000 + seats and you can only fill it with about 20,000.

If their fans were loyal and actually came out to the park, you wouldn't have to rely on your bargain shopping anymore. You could and should have a payroll close to that of the Giants.

I didn't bring up the Marlins, LB did and I responded to him. Also, since you bring them up, they have no relevance to the Red Sox (I never made that claim, so keep putting words in my mouth) they do have relevence to the A's though. Their payrolls are similar and they built most of their WS team (2004) from their farm system, much like Oakland has done, but they somehow found a way to win it.

If you want to talk relevence, lets talk 2002 Angels. Their payroll was around 60 million, which isn't anything special and came from the AL West and managed to win without overpaying wayyyyy too much to win, like you claim the Red Sox and Yankees have. They also had one of the worst pitching staffs to ever win a series, they won with players like Scott Spiezio, Adam Kennedy, David Eckstein, Molina, Salmon and Erstad (who A's fans love to say is one of the worst PECOTA players). Why did they win? Luck? How about they played better team baseball than almost anyone in the last decade. They had a great team chemistry. They made productive outs by hitting a ball to the right side with a runner on 2nd better than anyone. They took the extra base on every occasion that they could.

The point is teams in a very similar payroll structure have won it all and the A's have yet to win anything in the playoffs. I know you will just come back with all this luck crap, but after a while it gets old.

Are you serious about the Diamondbacks being lucky? Schilling, Johnson? You have to be joking.

Another point, the A's don't like to steal bases, they don't want to waste any outs. Look at the past couple of Champions, they stole bases, maybe not the Red Sox, but they wouldn't have won it all if it weren't for a SB by Roberts.

Can you enlighten me and prove to me examples of luck?
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