Friday, May 18, 2007

In Which Bill Shaikin Makes Me Upset

Oh, Bill. You can do better than this:

Yet, if you base the early returns on the standings, the investments are paying off. The Angels are in first place with Matthews, the Dodgers are in first place with Pierre, and isn't that the point?

"To some people," Pierre said.

The fact that the Dodgers are in first place has nothing -- nothing! -- to do with Juan Pierre. He has been thoroughly awful at the plate and in the field. The Dodgers are in first place -- and Colletti deserves credit for this -- for building a very deep rotation of starting pitchers and a bullpen that has, so far, been about as good as could be.

What's more, the Dodgers are in the top-third in baseball in OBP. That's smart. Juan's not contributing, of course, but when you have patient guys like LaRoche, Martin, and even Betemit getting on, that's a good thing. The Dodgers' offense is failing due to a lack of power. At the plate, they're thoroughly average.

Shaikin -- and Pierre -- are wrong if they think that being in first place is all that matters. In fact, it doesn't matter one bit who's in first place on May 18 if that team collpses down the stretch.

I haven't looked into it, but I wonder how likely the Dodgers' pitching success is to continue. If that answer is "only sorta likely" or worse, the offense will need to step up. With Pierre sucking four outs from the Dodgers' 27 just about every day, he is simply not contributing to the effort to make sure that my favorite team STAYS in first place. He should be benched in favor of Matt Kemp.

Let's do better, Bill.


71and91 said...

Dodgers keep rolling.
Trolls keep trolling.

Go fuck yourself.

jimbilly4 said...

Clearly I am going to regret this...

93 and 69: Depodesta's 2004 Dodger record

479 and 330: The Oakland A's with Depodesta as assistant GM.

986 and 756: Lifetime record of all teams while Depodesta has been associated with them. Includes Indians, A's, Dodgers, and Padres (starting June 30, 2006). I should also point out that the only losing record in that entire time period was the 2005 71 and 91 team.

Does this prove Depodesta was a good GM? No. As a GM he was 164-160, for an average season of 82-80, nothing to get excited about. One side can argue his 2004 was just riding out the previous GM or that he killed the very end of the year with the LoDuca trade. The other side can argue his 2005 was a result of a freakish number of injuries and clash of styles with a manager (Tracy) that he
did not hire.

The bottom line is that we really don't know if Depodesta was any good. Two years, one good and one bad, is not nearly enough time to determine that. Part of me suspects he was not the best at the wheeling and dealing and calling on the phone -- a major part of the GM job (one aspect that his mentor Billy Beane is apparently great at). You can have the best strategy in the world, but if you can't make deals you can only go so far.

Having said all that, these numbers are meaningless because this is not a debate of whether Depodesta is a good manager. This is a debate whether Pierre is a good player. A great team can have a bad player. Every team has bad players and many win just fine with them. The concern is that because of his massive contract, Pierre is blocking the possibility of good or even great players to start for our team, which would make it better. Players like Matt Kemp or James Loney. Or maybe next year, when Pierre will still have 4 years left on his contract, when we could try and get Andruw Jones.

Of course you could just chant something and then curse at me. The more you do it, the more it really makes me think you are smart.

71and91 said...

JimBilly continues to hate.
But I'm not takin da bait.

71-91. Get over it. He's gone.

jimbilly4 said...

"Figgins sees Matthews every day. He speaks with Pierre, his best friend in baseball, almost every day. He gives Matthews the edge in power. Pierre the edge in speed."

The edge in power? How about: Matthews can hit for power, Pierre can not. While he has not stole as many bases as Pierre, Matthews has a better percentage.

An interesting comparison, as both teams signed center fielders that were controversal, but for very different reasons. Matthews' 2006 numbers seemed suspiciously unsustainable, as most players don't add 50 points to their BA at age 31. But with his defense it might be considered a reasonable gamble. So far he has delivered.

Juan Pierre's 2006 numbers are anemic, so in hiring him Colletti must be hoping he would return to 2004 form. His defense may charitably have been described as good range, bad arm. There are less charitable descriptions I have heard from many Cubs fans. So far he hasn't even lived up to his 2006 numbers.

So Matthews has been a strong contributor to the Angels success, while Pierre not so much for the Dodgers.

jimbilly4 said...

Get over it. From the guy whose name is 71and91. One of us is hopelessly obsessed with Depodesta, that is for sure.

Humma Kavula said...

See, 71and91, you say that you're not taking the bait, but then you come here and post.

You are welcome to post anything you like, of course. I would like the record to reflect that all opinions are welcome here.

My opinion is that though you say you're not taking the bait, you are -- by evidence of the post -- in fact taking the bait.

I look forward to your explanation of this hopeless contradiction.