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Re: White Sox

Postby GotowarMissAgnes » Sun Jan 13, 2008 9:18 am

AussieDodger wrote:This thread is hilarious. :-D

Agnes you are absolutely right , although I think you are slightly under-estimating Quentin. He OBPed more then .420 at every minor league stop he made. 2008 might be the year where it clicks for him , he is definitely not a .298 OBP hitter like 2007.
I also think the White Sox will start Crede over Fields if they can , so that will take one or two wins off. :-t


I think Quentin could be very good, but he needs another year, imo. The average MLB LF hits an .830 OPS, factoring in the Sox park effect. The three projection systems out right now have Carlos between .770 and .810. That sounds about right for me. That would put him 1-2 wins above replacement. The Sox last year were right around replacement level in LF (Pods and Gonzalez stunk, but Mack and Fields were decent).

So, basically, you can play Fields, Crede, and Quentin at 3B?LF and get roughly the same production from any of them. But, one of them is on the bench, so instead of getting 1-2 wins above replacement from all of them, you only get that much from 2 of them, and less from the third. And, the Sox were not that bad at LF and 3B last year, so the net increase over last yearis not the same as by replacing CF and SS, where things were really bad.

Personally, I think KW has done a helluva a job improving the team so far. Sox fans may disagree about whether that was the direction they should have gone. They could end up with too little to win now and too little to win in the future, given that Thome/Konerko/Dye are getting older and they have traded quite a few prospects. But, KW has done well getting younger guys in return. A team that is built on Swisher/Quentin/Fields has a decent base. But, I wonder if the Sox are setting themselves up to be the Blue Jays of the AL Central--always enough to be competitive, never enough to beat the big guns in their division.
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Re: White Sox

Postby GotowarMissAgnes » Sun Jan 13, 2008 9:32 am

05worldserieschamps wrote:
1. You're right. Most of the time I do consider the best case scenario. Look, I never said we were going to win this thing. Its a tough division to win. What I said is that we are a major contender, and barring that things go the way we plan(a la, best case scenario, which isnt really unrealistic by any means), I think we COULD win.



I'm sorry but, by definition best case scenarios ARE unrealistic.


05worldserieschamps wrote:2. I dont think Ive overrated Cabrera, just how bad Uribe is. He is awful, and Orlando Cabrera is a good baseball player. I dont care what you have to say about his OPS, he fits in perfectly with our team. He makes the plays out at short, puts the ball in play, he adds a speed component and can be a very good 2 hole hitter. These intangables are things you cant get from stats. And Uribe added just the opposite effect, being a terrible 8 hole hitter, striking out ALL THE TIME and adding little to no speed to an already slow lineup.


Look, the facts have been presented. When the facts contradict my opinion, I change my opinion, rather than arrogantly claim that I know better. The choice is yours. Making outs, putting the ball in play, adding speed, and batting order ARE NOT intangibles. The contributions that players make through those things are readily quantifiable. They are part of the analysis that's already been done and presented. You insist that you are smarter than the very smart people that put those numbers together. Excuse me if I doubt it.

05worldserieschamps wrote:3. LOL. It must be easy to win an argument when you get to decide what the other person says. What I said: With the addition of Linebrink and the possible bounceback of Macdougal along with some other arms in our 'pen that underperformed last year, that our bullpen could become a strength of our team instead of the weakest part of our game.
What you said I said: "But, do you really think the moves you are making will turn the Sox into the best bullpen in baseball? That's fanboy optimism." ....."It's not likely to be the 10 or 11 that would represent becoming the best bullpen in baseball"

Thats such a joke. I think what I said was entirely accurate. Mike Macdougal had a uncharachteristic down year, as did most of our bullpen. Along with that, add one of the best MRP/SU in the game in Scott Linebrink and you have a pretty good bullpen. Of course, not to mention Bobby Jenks(2.77 era, 40 saves the last 2 seasons, 26 years old) who is pretty overlooked, generally. Thats a pretty good bullpen. Do i think the best in baseball? Of couse not. Probably not even in the top 10. But its certainly isnt the worst in baseball....anymore.

PS: On the note of you saying bullpens are overrated, just look at World Series winners. Aside from maybe the Cardinals(who really just got hot at the right time), the winner has had probably the best bullpen for as long as I can remember. Bullpen is important.


I phrased it as a question, because you DID NOT say it. The question was used to indicate that while the bullpen lost you 11 games last year, it was unlikely to rebound all the way to that level, as we both agree. You might get a few extra wins because you've only made a small improvement, and bullpens aren't nearly as important as other areas. And, in addition, relief pitching is the most inconsistent and difficult area of performance to predict--making it much harder to improve in that area than others.

Playoff teams are almost always above average in nearly every phrase of the game. They have good hitting, good starting pitching, good defense, and good bullpens. But, on that list of things, bullpens are the least important thing. They are overrated not because they are not part of a good team. They are overrated because they are much less important than the other three, and much more difficult to improve because of the inconsistency and unpredictability.
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Re: White Sox

Postby 05worldserieschamps » Sun Jan 13, 2008 11:13 am

AussieDodger wrote:This thread is hilarious. :-D

Agnes you are absolutely right , although I think you are slightly under-estimating Quentin. He OBPed more then .420 at every minor league stop he made. 2008 might be the year where it clicks for him , he is definitely not a .298 OBP hitter like 2007.
I also think the White Sox will start Crede over Fields if they can , so that will take one or two wins off. :-t

05champs , you won't be winning anything with your dodgy 3 man rotation. You must get more pitching.



Funniest post:

bigh0rt wrote:At least start reading and assessing what is presented to you. It's like you're just ignoring it and repeating yourself with diatribe that you could've gotten out of a scout's mouth in 1965.
:-D



I agree. We need more pitching. I said earlier in this thread that we need mor pitching. I think we are still a contener without it, but our chances to win go down A LOT. That being said, Ive heard that it is Kenny Williams' intention to get another pitcher. So I think he will cover us there. Personally, I think he will end up trading Crede for a pitcher. As much as I like Crede and his offense/defense, we can't trade Fields because we have to have some youth somewhere, because its certainly not in the farm system. But, as long as Crede is healthy, he should garner a pretty good pitcher, I'd say at least to the level of Garland.(I think the perfect fit would be Joe Blanton, ive always liked him and hes avaliable.)


Gotowarmissagnes, "its not likely to be the 10 or 11 that would represent becoming the best bullpen in baseball" doesnt look like a question to me. And who cares if it is phrased as a question. Its still impling that I said it. What if I said, "So trading Miguel Tejada makes the Orioles the best offense in baseball now?" Thats completly irrelevant unless you made a statment that they are. All I said is that they would be a strength of our team. Heck, that doesnt even mean they will be in the Top 25 best bullpens if everyone else has a good one too, Im just saying it makes the 'pen a lot better.

And I totally agree that Bullpen, of the three categories, is least important. Totally agree. But that doesnt change the fact that you are still underrating the effect it can have on a team. If you have a great offense and great pitching, and you are winning 7-2 going into the 8th inning and your Bullpen comes in and blows it, then your offense and SP doesnt even matter.

PS- Right, most playoff teams were above average in each aspect, but i said the BEST. Most of the WS winners had the BEST bullpens.
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Re: White Sox

Postby bigh0rt » Sun Jan 13, 2008 12:14 pm

As much as I like Crede and his offense/defense, we can't trade Fields because we have to have some youth somewhere, because its certainly not in the farm system. But, as long as Crede is healthy, he should garner a pretty good pitcher, I'd say at least to the level of Garland.(I think the perfect fit would be Joe Blanton, ive always liked him and hes avaliable.)


Yes because a Crede for Blanton swap sounds congruent with the rest of the moves Billy Beane has done this off-season... X-I

PS- Right, most playoff teams were above average in each aspect, but i said the BEST. Most of the WS winners had the BEST bullpens.

Please present a shred of evidence for, say, the last 10 years that supports this. I have no idea whether it's true or false, but something tells me you don't either, yet this is the second time you've tried to present it as fact. I am going to hypothesize that it is incorrect, however. So please, support your claim the way others have in this thread.
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Re: White Sox

Postby GotowarMissAgnes » Sun Jan 13, 2008 12:52 pm

I don't know over the last 10 years, but the studies that have been done in the past clearly show that a team's rank in terms of SP and hitting has far more power for explaining wins than does fielding or bullpen.

Over the last 7 years the WS winner has ranked between 8th and 9th in offense (based on runs scored, no adjustment for league or park), 9th in starting pitching (based on ERA, again with no adjustments), and 10th in relief pitching (same as SP). During that time, no team with the best bullpen in baseball won the WS and teams with bullpens that ranked 11th, 14th, 18th, and 19th in the league did win.
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Re: White Sox

Postby AussieDodger » Sun Jan 13, 2008 12:52 pm

05worldserieschamps wrote:(I think the perfect fit would be Joe Blanton, ive always liked him and hes avaliable.)


Sorry champ there's no chance we'd take someone with a .305 career OBP. Zilch zero etc. :-t
I think we could bring up nearly anyone from our minor league system and they could hit that.

What KW needs to do is phone Brian Sabean - if there is a sucker out there who doesn't know how to value hitting it is him.
Also the Dodgers ( :-P ) seem to be falling over themselves to make sure Andy LaRoche is not their starting 3B. I'm sure you can find a decent SP from there.

Those are the targets if you want to rip someone off. ;-D
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Re: White Sox

Postby bigh0rt » Sun Jan 13, 2008 12:57 pm

GotowarMissAgnes wrote:During that time, no team with the best bullpen in baseball won the WS and teams with bullpens that ranked 11th, 14th, 18th, and 19th in the league did win.

That's exactly the data I was looking for, but you did the work for him! :-D }:-)
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Re: White Sox

Postby GotowarMissAgnes » Sun Jan 13, 2008 1:14 pm

05worldserieschamps wrote:
I agree. We need more pitching. I said earlier in this thread that we need mor pitching. I think we are still a contener without it, but our chances to win go down A LOT. That being said, Ive heard that it is Kenny Williams' intention to get another pitcher. So I think he will cover us there. Personally, I think he will end up trading Crede for a pitcher. As much as I like Crede and his offense/defense, we can't trade Fields because we have to have some youth somewhere, because its certainly not in the farm system. But, as long as Crede is healthy, he should garner a pretty good pitcher, I'd say at least to the level of Garland.(I think the perfect fit would be Joe Blanton, ive always liked him and hes avaliable.)


Gotowarmissagnes, "its not likely to be the 10 or 11 that would represent becoming the best bullpen in baseball" doesnt look like a question to me. And who cares if it is phrased as a question. Its still impling that I said it. What if I said, "So trading Miguel Tejada makes the Orioles the best offense in baseball now?" Thats completly irrelevant unless you made a statment that they are. All I said is that they would be a strength of our team. Heck, that doesnt even mean they will be in the Top 25 best bullpens if everyone else has a good one too, Im just saying it makes the 'pen a lot better.

And I totally agree that Bullpen, of the three categories, is least important. Totally agree. But that doesnt change the fact that you are still underrating the effect it can have on a team. If you have a great offense and great pitching, and you are winning 7-2 going into the 8th inning and your Bullpen comes in and blows it, then your offense and SP doesnt even matter.

PS- Right, most playoff teams were above average in each aspect, but i said the BEST. Most of the WS winners had the BEST bullpens.


I agree that trading Crede is better than trading Fields, but you aren't going to get much of anything for him right now. He's coming off a horrible year and he was injured. He's on the wrong side of the age line. And, he's not very good to begin with. Blanton's three years younger and 10-20 percent better in terms of value. At best, Crede gets you a #5 pitcher or a decent reliever. That's why the Sox are shopping Konerko. They know he has far more trade value, and that they will have to take their chances on a Crede recovery. Either way, however, if you get rid of one of your productive offensive players for pitching, the net effect could even turn out to be less than zero. You lose offense, but gain pitching.

Finally, rather than getting in a pi$$ing contest about it, why not just come right out and say how much you think the bullpen has improved. We agree that the top end is 10-11 games. I say it's three. What do you say it is? If we go by your comment that they probably wouldn't yet make the top ten bullpens, we are talking making a 60-80 run improvement. Are you claiming that adding Linebrink and improvement by McDougal represents a 7-8 win improvement?

FWIW, I said that bullpen is FOURTH, not third in importance. It ranks below hitting, SP, and fielding. As for your example, if you have lots of 5 run leads because of great hitting and SP, you can get by with a mediocre bullpen. You can trot out all the stupid examples you want, the value of a player or group of players is easily measured using stats. The bullpen is of least importance of the things I listed. And, your comment regarding WS winners is demonstrably false, as I have already shown.
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Re: White Sox

Postby 05worldserieschamps » Sun Jan 13, 2008 3:21 pm

1. I think Boston had the best bullpen in baseball. Do you disagree? In fact, you have said they did. But in fact, the Padres had the best Bullpen ERA last year. However, I would take Papelbon/Okajima over Hoffman/Bell anyday. But, where the difference came in was LRP. LRP are a relatively unimportant factor when looking at bullpens because they have no effect on whether or not you save a game. They usually sweep up 10 point leads/deficits and give up a few irrelavant runs. When you look at the Red Sox, they had guys like Joel Pinero and Julien Tavarez(both 5+ ERAs, over 30 games pitched in) sweeping up games and the Padres had guys like Kevin Cameron(2.79 era) Justin Hampson(2.70 era) and Doug Brocail(3.05 era). The Padres didnt have a single pitcher who appeared in 30 games(as reliever) and had over a 3.50 era. Now, when you look at the back of their bullpen(set up men and closer), they had Hoffman(2.98 era) Heath Bell(2.02 era), which is still really good, obviously, but doesnt equal up to the Red Sox Papelbon/Okajima combo. I would say anyone in this forum would take the Red Sox bullpen holding a 1 run game in the 7th inning over any other bullpen in baseball, and its not really close. But its not statistically best. Im just making the point that when I say Bullpen, Im more refferring to the 3-4 guys in the back of the 'pen that hold games than I am the bullpen as a single unit. My fault for not stating that before.

2. Now look at those WS teams. Last years Bostons, of course. But even in 2006 the Cards. Their 'pen ERA was 4.06 for the year, but Adam Wainwright, their savior after Izzy went down, wasnt shutdown closer then. In the playoffs, they had a better bullpen than they did in the Regular Season. Same way with the White Sox in 2005 when Jenks emerged. They also had Neal Cotts and Cliff Pollite who pitched ridiculous that year. They may not have been the best throughout the year, but were dominant in saving games in the playoffs. 2004, Sox may not have been deep in the 'pen, but had Foulke and Timilin, both pitched very well that year. Its those last 3-4 guys that make the bullpen a more important factor.

3. I dont think the A's would take Crede for Blanton either. Its a good thing I never said that. :-° What i said is that I thought Crede would be the better candidate for us to trade, or at least I think would be so we could keep some important aspects for the future with Fields at 3B. I also think we could get a good pitcher for Crede. Then, what I said, is i personally really like Joe Blanton. I knew he was avaliable and thought it would be great if we could work out a deal for him. That doesnt mean I think we should trade Crede for Blanton.(as nice as it would be.)

4. I have said how much the bullpen has improved. Im not going to come out and say a win total, thats just stupid. But I think our bullpen has gone from the weakest part of our team, to a strength. We hold some of these leads and come out on top. You look at all the stats you want, but I watched a lot of Sox games last year, and I was disgusted by how many times our bullpen would blow leads. Aside from being on the losing side of that particular game, it puts a huge hit on a teams moral having a game won then losing it. And having a bullpen that couldnt hold 2-3 run games wasnt good considering our offense was lucky to get 3-4 runs last season.

5. I think we could get a good pitcher for Crede. He didnt have a bad season last year, he didnt have a season period. Ill agree that he is somewhat a risk, but a team, if they believed he was healthy, would love to have the kind of offense/defense threat he can bring. I dont think we could get a pitcher quite at Blantons level, but at least Garland.(I mean, come on. We traded Garland for a "terrible" player in Orlando Cabrera, and most experts seem to think that was a completely even trade. So it shouldnt be that hard to get a Garland type pitcher back.)

6. On a side, non-argumentive note, I do not think the White Sox should trade Konerko. Aside from being a great offensive player and a player who should rebound nicely from a down year for him, he brings intangables to the White Sox. He is a great leader in the clubhouse and he is a fan favorite. Plus, I think he helps out a winning team a lot, and thats what Kenny Williams is at least trying to do this year.

PS- I love how you have already decided the Sox will be as bad or worst as they were last year and exactly how many games we will win. This is no offense, but I think Kenny Williams knows a tad bit more about this than you do, since he has already put together a team from mostly crap and won one like this already. Something I am going to venture to say you have not done.
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Re: White Sox

Postby GotowarMissAgnes » Sun Jan 13, 2008 10:12 pm

KW said he had a contending team last year. How'd that work out for him? Now that we've established that he's not infallible, maybe you can open your eyes to the possibility that others might know something. For example, the stat crowd predicted very well where the Sox would finish last year. The Chicago media even had big write-ups laughing about how those geeky stat guys knew nothing. Guess who was laughing in October?

Yes, the Angels PWND you bad in the Garland for Cabrera trade, so it is certainly possible, as some have pointed out, that KW could find an even dumber GM to get a good pitcher for Garland. But, seriously, nobody's going to give anything for Crede until he proves his healthy. At the very best, you might be able to trade him near the end of Spring training. But, even then, it's not just the injury. It's just that Crede is not that good.

No one KNOWS what will happen. That makes baseball so great a game. But,what is also great about it is that the stats allow you to make reasonable guesses about the most likely scenario. And, the most likely scenario for the Sox this year is still little better than last year.
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