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How about some criticism of Beane?

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Postby DK » Tue Dec 28, 2004 3:22 pm

wrveres wrote:Hatteberg was a first round pick way back in 1991. After 5 seasons in a somewhat succesful catcher platoon with Boston, Beane signed Hatteberg as a FA and moved him to 1B. How is that "discovered out of nowhere"? What is so great about Hatteberg anyways? Honestly?

Bradford was a closer in the minors and had a 1.09WHIP over 5 minor league seasons. I highly doubt he was "discovered out of nowhere". Besides, Bradford was traded to the A's for Miguel Olivo. Which player would you of rather had now, Olivio or Bradford? Heck, If he had kept Olivio, he wouldn't have needed Jason Kendall, and he might have then been able to keep a Mulder and/or Hudson.


Hatteberg, the year before Beane signed him, he had a ruptured nerve in his arm (or something serious wrong with it, I can't remember exactly). No other team wanted him. Beane wanted him because he took pitches, didn't strike out, and could be had dirt cheap (for a baseball player, anyway). Hatteberg had to move to first because he couldn't throw from a catcher's position anymore.

What's good about Hatteberg is that he's got undervalued talents (such as taking pitches) and doesn't have the overvalued talents (such as Gold Glove ability and speed), and therefore the A's could get him for less money than wanted.

Bradford was a very successful minor league pitcher with an odd delivery. I'm sure you've seen Bradford pitch, he pitched essentially the same way in the minors. When he was with the White Sox, his minor league numbers were dominant, but they didn't give him a chance in the majors in spite of that. They viewed Bradford as a trickster who would be easily figured out. Also, since Bradford's personality is much different than that of a "normal" major leaguer, the White Sox saw him as somebody who would never make it in the Majors.

Beane saw that, and was able to snatch Bradford for next to nothing from the Sox. He also picked Ray Durham for Jon Adkins, a reliever who's got a 95 fastball but not much else.

Olivo is a .233 hitter with an even worse .286 on-base percentage. He's barely decent in fantasy, and even worse in real major league baseball. I'd take most anyone over Olivo.
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Postby ramble2 » Wed Dec 29, 2004 3:51 pm

thomasps3 wrote:Really funny thing that is quite often overlooked....Beane turned down Boston's GM position when the current ownership took over. So the thing that really gets me is that he prefers to be idol-worshipped for being in a small-market, and also, he wants his horn tooted for him as much as possible. I'm sure he loves any and all articles written about him....


Nobody but Beane really knows why he turned down the Boston job. He stated two reasons at the time. You can choose to take him at his word, or not believe him. The first was nicely quoted above by Jivedude - family. I don't think anyone can hold that against him.

The other reason Beane gave for not going to Boston was that he wanted to see through what he had started with the A's. Contrary to the primary assumption of this thread, there are plenty of Beane critics. wrveres is a good example - people who claim that Beane is riding on the coattails of the A's that were already in the system. By staying with the A's, he's taking a chance. If they continue to stay competitive, his legacy is established. If they falter, well, the critics will have their day.

Is that ego? A desire to be worshipped? I don't know. Personally, I can understand. It's about committing to something, taking risks, striving for excellence and the possibility of pulling off a great accomplishment. There is a great deal of professional satisfaction in doing something like that, satisfaction that money doesn't buy.
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Postby ramble2 » Wed Dec 29, 2004 4:18 pm

CubsFan7724 wrote:
RugbyD wrote:WS Championships don't say squat about a GM. Playoffs are won on the front line, not in the front office. The fact is that so far he's done far more with far less than most. If Swisher or Blanton or someone fizzles there will be plenty of people saying 'I told you so', which is pure ignorance. Nobody bats 1.000, let alone .500. He steps into a poker game with $10 to everyone else's $20, $50, or $100 and walks out with a higher percentage gain than everyone else. That is what a GM should be judged by.
So what if hes competitive with a smaller payroll? All that is is economics. Fans don't want mildly competitive, they want championships and it probably won't happen in Oakland as long as they cut stars loose and try to go with bargain bin players. Hey, Beane's a good businessman. Good for him. Guess what, fans don't care about the bottom line. They want championships. I'm glad in Chicago they are willing to spend money to try and get to a championship, because its been friggin long enough. Beane is a good general manager, but he isn't the god among men that people make him out to be.


I'm not sure where to even start here.

Look, to win a championship you have to first make the playoffs. Beane has stated repeatedly that his goal as a GM is to construct a team that can consistently make it to the playoffs, and he's succeeded in 4 of the last 5 years. Last year we missed the playoffs by what, 1 game? That is not "mildly competitive" as you derisively describe it. Who else has matched that?

Every year since losing Giambi people keep picking the A's to falter. Every year the A's are playing meaningful games well into September. What about this year? Many don't think the A's will play .500 ball. I wouldn't be so fast to write them off, though I admit that this could be a rebuilding year. Of course that's the price you pay for being a small market team - you have to start rebuilding much earlier than other teams. What Beane's done (hopefully) is to speed up that rebuilding process so that by 2006 the A's will once again be making a playoff run.

When all is said and done, I wouldn't be surprised if the A's win more games this decade than any other team. Okay, I'd be a little surprised if they win more than the Yankees or Red Sox .... :-D

As to your comment that winning on a small payroll is just economics, well, what the heck do you think running a baseball team is about nowadays, if not economics?! Baseball IS economics.
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Postby Lofunzo » Wed Dec 29, 2004 5:54 pm

1 thing that gets overlooked in all of this is that I would think that everyone here would agree that Beane is a good-very good GM. IMHO, that is indisputable. The problem that I have is where people tend to worship him as a God when all that his system has gotten him is 1 or 2 extra home games a season. :-? Last time I checked, that's only 1 or 2 more home games than the Pirates, Brewers, Royals, etc. If/when his system wins a title or 2, then I will begin to see what the hype is all about.
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Postby Budworth22 » Wed Dec 29, 2004 5:59 pm

some early sportsbooks currently have the A's at 71 wins for the O/U. I will not pound this over-Yet. When they raise the limit's I'm all over it.
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Postby Lofunzo » Wed Dec 29, 2004 6:01 pm

Budworth22 wrote:some early sportsbooks currently have the A's at 71 wins for the O/U. I will not pound this over-Yet. When they raise the limit's I'm all over it.
Bud


Agreed. That's just idiotic. I give them respect much like I give the Braves their due (but to a lesser extent for the A's). Until someone knocks them off, the Braves are clearly the class of the NL East. :-?
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Postby xmbush » Wed Dec 29, 2004 6:06 pm

Quote from lofunzo:
________________________________________________________
If/when his system wins a title or 2, then I will begin to see what the hype is all about.
________________________________________________________

Is that the same system that the 2004 World Champion Redsox used? Admittedly, they had more money.... but their organizational views are pretty similar.

There are currently 4 "Moneyball teams" so to speak...

-The Dodgers (made the play-offs last year)
-The A's (1 game out of the play-offs)
-The Blue Jays (rebuilding.... and stuck behind the super-spenders)
-The Redsox (World Champs)

so, half of the teams that follow Beane's "system" made the play-offs... and another one just missed... (admittedly this is a small sample size).
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Postby Lofunzo » Wed Dec 29, 2004 6:09 pm

xmbush wrote:Quote from lofunzo:
________________________________________________________
If/when his system wins a title or 2, then I will begin to see what the hype is all about.
________________________________________________________

Is that the same system that the 2004 World Champion Redsox used? Admittedly, they had more money.... but their organizational views are pretty similar.

There are currently 4 "Moneyball teams" so to speak...

-The Dodgers (made the play-offs last year)
-The A's (1 game out of the play-offs)
-The Blue Jays (rebuilding.... and stuck behind the super-spenders)
-The Redsox (World Champs)

so, half of the teams that follow Beane's "system" made the play-offs... and another one just missed... (admittedly this is a small sample size).


Absolutely not. Are you gonna tell me that if the Yankees all of a sudden go out and get guys with a high OBP that they are also a Moneyball team?? I don't think so. Just because a team has a GM that has at some time been affiliated with Beane does not make them a Moneyball team.
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Postby xmbush » Wed Dec 29, 2004 6:17 pm

Whoa man, it wasn't a personal shot at all.... just an observation.

Admittedly, and I say this as a Sox fan.... The rules of baseball stink. The Sox have ventured into the territory of being able to buy what they want (ie. Schilling and Foulke last year).

However.... if you look at what the "Money Ball" philosophy is... Valuing assets that are under valued...High OBP.... etc.... the Redsox DO in fact fit the mold.

The difference between the Sox and the A's is that the Sox take the savings on their undervalued players and OVER-pay for the stars to put them over the top (the afore mentioned Schilling and Foulke).

The difference between that and the Yankees is that the Sox don't overpay EVERYWHERE....
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Postby Lofunzo » Wed Dec 29, 2004 6:26 pm

xmbush wrote:Whoa man, it wasn't a personal shot at all.... just an observation.

Admittedly, and I say this as a Sox fan.... The rules of baseball stink. The Sox have ventured into the territory of being able to buy what they want (ie. Schilling and Foulke last year).

However.... if you look at what the "Money Ball" philosophy is... Valuing assets that are under valued...High OBP.... etc.... the Redsox DO in fact fit the mold.

The difference between the Sox and the A's is that the Sox take the savings on their undervalued players and OVER-pay for the stars to put them over the top (the afore mentioned Schilling and Foulke).

The difference between that and the Yankees is that the Sox don't overpay EVERYWHERE....


I apologize if I sounded like I was attacking you because I wasn't. I was merely pointing out that you cannot compare the A's to the team with the #2 payroll in baseball. The Sox and Yanks are similar in that they can afford to take chances on players that other teams can't but the Yanks just do it more.
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