GiantsFan14 wrote: thedude wrote:
They don't have to tank, they're awful.
They are built to lose, that's the whole point.
I highly doubt they are playing worse players over better players just to lose or that they specifically avoided bringing better players to the team so that they could lose more.
If there is no possible way to come close to making the playoffs, it makes sense to lose as much as possible to secure a higher draft pick and a more money to spend in the draft pool. It makes very little difference in terms of revenue if you win 70 games or win 55 games. On the other hand, 55 wins gives you the first pick in the draft and $11.6 million to spend on the draft (how much the Astros have for this draft, it will be more for the team with the worst record in 2013). 70 wins might give you the 10th or 11th pick in the draft and around $7 million to spend on all your picks combined. In the current draft structure, when picks cannot hold for insane bonuses only big markets can afford, tanking for draft picks makes lots of sense. It makes even more sense since very few star players are electing to go to free agency, and they are instead signing long term deals early in their careers.
In 2012, the difference between being able to choose between Mark Appel and Jonathan Gray (both advanced college arms with true number one potential) and choosing between Colin Moran (a first baseman with questionable powerside) and Trey Ball is noticalable. The 2012 draft is not even a draft that is considered strong (in fact it is considered rather weak). If there was a Steven Strasburg or a Bryce Harper entering the draft, the incentive to tank might be extremely tempting for teams.
"I do not think baseball of today is any better than it was 30 years ago... I still think Radbourne is the greatest of the pitchers." John Sullivan 1914-Old athletes never change.