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Posts posted by Frobby

  1. I know people can interpret things many different ways, but I think this summarizes the situation pretty darn well. I find it hard to believe we were considered to have "low-balled" Vlad when we had the highest bid out there and were clearly willing to go higher to get a deal done.

    The previous year, Jim Thome received a 6 year, $84 mm deal. Before Vlad even hit the market, he turned down 5 years, $75 mm to stay with the Expos. With that background, anybody could see that Vlad wasn't coming here for 5 years, $65 mm. I realize that markets change, but I stand by my position that the initial offer to Vlad simply wasn't smart, and was a lowball offer regardless of what competition the O's perceived was out there.

  2. Not a big fan of this thread at all. Teams start with lower offers ALL THE TIME - and it is really ignorant to claim otherwise.

    Even in the Os recent history, we started off low with Mora and Huff and received a reduced asking price. The Vlad example is twisted ridiculously - "tell us what it takes to sign you in orange and black" (???) - when does that happen in early negotations. Didn't Jason Schmidt ask us to stop bidding on him? Pretty much the same with Richie Sexson ... What good would that question have done in those situations? And with 30 teams out there, do you really think we would identify a "must-have" free agent and not have a few other teams say the same question with their team colors to the same guy?

    The posts in this thread imply that recent LT deals with players like Sizemore and Bonderman took place over a five minute period while waiting in line at Starbucks with no resistance whatsoever from management - or imply that our FO should show little resistance in such cases.

    Frobby and Drungo post the best stuff out there, IMO, but this thread is a head-scratcher to me.

    I am not saying we have lowballed every player we've ever gone after. I don't feel we lowballed Derek Lee, or Carlos Lee for that matter. I don't feel we lowballed Richie Sexson. We certainly didn't lowball Paul Konerko.

    But the players we have lowballed, as identified in my original post, were stupid guys to lowball. And I understand you don't want to make an initial offer that is the highest you are willing to go, but when you make an offer that significantly and obviously undervalues the player compared to his peers, you insult him and that's not a good way to negotiate.

    Now I will give one caveat here -- I was reacting to what Peace21 posted about Bedard and we don't have any specifics on him. But, the version he gave is pretty darned plausible given the Orioles' past tactics.

  3. If the Bedard's story is true then here's the hope:

    McPhail being the new Sheriff in town gives us a chance to mend fence and extend him. There is plenty of time to try and make this happen.

    If it becomes clear that even with McPhail we can't extend Bedard, then you trade him but to give up on him now would be stupid.

    I know some will say that his value may never be higher but this is one you have to chance for the time being. Chances are his value wil still be high next year if we can't extend him.

    I agree with you. The story about Bedard doesn't change my opinion. You listen to offers for Bedard, but unless someone knocks you socks off, stay the course for now.

    Remember what Oakland wanted for Hudson before the 2005 season? Bedard, Maine and Penn. That's the kind of talent we'd need to think about trading Bedard.

  4. Yeah' date=' that's how I remember it. The offer on the table to Guerrero was very much market-value at the time. Going higher would have just been bidding against ourselves, since no one else was even involved during most of the process.[/quote']

    The initial offer was, as I recall, 5 years, $65 mm. In my opinion that was insultingly low. It was fewer years and fewer dollars per year than what Jim Thome had received the year before, even though Vlad was younger and better than Thome. It was far, far less than Vlad was worth.

    Those who defend that offer do so for one of two reasons. First, they say that we were the only bidder. Well, tough. You simply don't make an initial offer that so obviously undervalues the player, no matter how little competition there is, unless you want to create competition by putting something on the table that isn't really even a converstation-starter. All it does is get the negotiation off on the wrong foot. And the O's have made this mistake time and time again.

    The second defense is that Vlad wouldn't have signed here anyway. First of all, I already acknowledged in my initial post that

    I'm not saying the O's would have retained/acquired all of these guys if they hadn't started off with a ridiculous lowball offer

    Vlad may be an example of that. But, we'll never know. If he was inclined to go to a team with a large Spanish-speaking community, getting a lowball offer sure wasn't going to help change his mind.

  5. 2000: Lowballed Mussina and lost him after the season

    2003: Lowballed Guerrero and lost him

    2004: Lowballed Delgado and lost him

    2005: Lowballed Ryan and lost him after the season

    2007: Lowballed Bedard and....

    Talk about not learning your lesson! I'm not saying the O's would have retained/acquired all of these guys if they hadn't started off with a ridiculous lowball offer, but we sure know what the results of their tactics have been.

    We'll throw 3/$19 mm at friggin' Danys Baez but we lowball the best pitcher this organization has developed in 15 years. Sheesh!

    Here's an idea: lowball the mediocre players and pay the stars what they're worth!

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  6. Oh here it is - Short version

    During the offseason the Orioles approached Bedard and his agent with a long term deal. I dont have the specifics of the deal, but apparently it was a lowball offer. Duquette was bascially the puppet in the whole thing because Bedards people countered and Duq had to check with Angelos to see if it worked. It took so much time, Bedard said F it and said to the his agent that he will play out his contract and and any long term deal they offered he will shoot it down. It has to be REALLY good for him to consider he said. He isnt happy with how the negotiations went.

    This aggravates me no end. This lowball stuff has killed the Orioles over the last 4 years, and it's just plain stupid business. They have to fix this and sign Bedard. If they can't, then trade him this offseason.

    By the way, is there a long version? If so I would like to hear it.

  7. What is holding me back is simple.

    He needs to end the year well and pitch well next year.

    It boggles my mind that ANYONE would put the tag of #2 starter on a 28 y/o with mediocre success and a very strong half season in the majors.

    That is just incredible to me.

    You can like what he brings to the table and you can have your opinions on him...But to say that he is/will be a no doubt about it 2/3 starter is ridiculous.

    I haven't seen any of the big Guthrie supporters even remotely talk about how they need to see him do it more to annoit him. He has just be given the title and it is absurd.

    He has been very good...Much better than i thought he could be based on his age and career up until now.

    However, he needs to keep it up.

    If you want to say he is pitching like a 1/2 starter RIGHT NOW...Fine...I can go with that.

    But i am talking about projection.

    BTW, you are right, i should be showing his ERA as a starter, since i am doing the same thing with his BABIP.

    I think this is all fair enough. I think you've moderated your position a good bit since May. Personally, I'm optimistic that Guthrie can be a no. 2 starter over the next several years, but I'm sure not going to portray that as a certainty. I agree with you that, considering Guthrie's track record before this year, he needs to prove he can do this (or something like it) two years in a row. There have been an awful lot of pitchers who came through Baltimore who had one good season they couldn't repeat.

  8. I think its kind of naive to think that the defenders play better behind Guthrie than they do for other pitchers. Guthrie has both been incredibly good this season and gotten a bit lucky on top of that. It doesn't have to be an either or situation.

    I endorse this position. However, I do think it's possible that (1) defenders might play a bit better behind pitchers who work fast and throw strikes, and (2) regardless of that, two pitchers on the same team can get significantly different levels of defensive support, just as they can get different levels of offensive support.

    Regardless of those factors, Guthrie has been outstanding, no two ways about it.

  9. Hallas (I think) brought up the most salient point in this thread - can Guthrie maintain his "stuff" over a full season as a starter? Recently, Guthrie's velocity has decreased more than a few mph ticks, and not coincidentally, that has coincided with getting hit up a bit. Now maybe Guthrie is just going through a little dead arm period, over which he will be vulnerable b/c his only plus pitch is the fastball. Perhaps the loss in velocity is just Guthrie settling into his natural speed. Or worse, it is an indication that Guthrie's arm will slowly break down over the course of a full season.

    Guthrie pitched a fair number of innings in college and the minors.

    2002: 157

    2003: 159.1

    2004: 161.1

    2005: 142.1

    2006: 142.2

    He's at 118.2 right now. He should be fine through August, but in September they may need to ease up on him.

  10. From watching Guthrie, his downside (to me) is that he really doesn't have a plus pitch besides his fastball. His change-up and his slider are good pitches, and he has good control over them, but they aren't out pitches like Bedard's ridiculous curve.

    I think he's at least a solid #2 if he can stay healthy and if he can maintain that fastball command and velocity. His fastball tails away from lefties a good 3 or 4 inches in addition to that mid-90s velocity. And he gets great marks for his intelligence, which undoubtedly helps him make the most out of his abilities.

    This is a pretty good assessment of Guthrie. To say that he doesn't have a second out pitch like Bedard's curve is hardly a ciriticism, since Bedard's curve is probably the best in baseball right now. I think he's probably been a bit lucky, but to some degree he makes his own luck. What I mean by that is that he's fast worker with good control, which keeps the defense on their toes and allows the fielders to know which way to shade based on the expected location of the pitch. I think the league will adjsut to him, but he's a smart guy and will adjust back. He's a keeper.

  11. Yea he did...But just as 7 IP/5 ER start can look a lot better than the numbers show, a 6 IP/2 ER start can look worse than the numbers show.

    I can agree with this. However, Guthrie's two starts that immediately preceded his one blowout were both games where he pitched much better than his final line indicated. Overall I would say that any worries I had that Guthrie was beginning to fray have been assuaged. That was an excellent outing yesterday.

  12. Olson doesn't break down "the physisc of his mechanics and baseball in general". He may be an incredibly smart guy, but his good curveball is due to a good coach, lots of practice, and a natural gift. Not because he understands (or even knows) exactly how much spin to put on the ball in order to have a nasty hook.

    Did you ever read the excellent biography of Sandy Koufax? He spent a lot of time contemplating the physics of throwing a baseball.

    But I agree, thinking about it isn't as important as being able to do it. My favorite comment along these lines was when Hank Aaron came to bat as a young player and he had the label of the bat facing towards the pitcher. The catcher told him he was supposed to be able to read the label. Aaron relied, "I didn't come up here to read."

  13. Yea, the #1 thing he has to improve on is the flyball rate...I don't doubt or question that for 1 second.

    However, isn't there something to be said with him getting better with age and of course, Mazzone?

    I don't even know who LA's pitching coach is, but I'd have to say he has done a pretty good job. They've been 3rd in ERA three years running and in the top 6 for 7 years in a row.

  14. I am not saying this to get anyone upset....but if his Mom is Christian he isn't a Jew.

    Judaism goes through the mother. If his Mom wasn't Jewish, he isn't either.

    So he may be a great player, but he's never going to be the best Jewish player out there unless he converts first.

    Depends what denomination you are. If you are orthodox, then you won't recognize a child as Jewish if his mother was Christian. Some other denominations have relaxed this rule.

  15. For the record: Tejada for Santana and Aybar was a pretty close call at the time, though I wouldn't have done it. But I think that's a much worse trade for us now, even though Tejada has one less year to play.

  16. Yes it is...While you can find examples, i am sure it is still more players than not decline as they get into their 30s.

    That is true. But what you said was:

    And i can't believe you think Miggy is going to bounce back to an 850ish hitter at this point.

    As if it was uttelry ridiculous that this could happen. It's not ridiculous at all. If I had to give odds on Miggy having an .850 OPS in 2008, I'd peg the odds at 33%.

  17. You do know that slugging % is part of OPS, right?

    You also know that his slugging is on a decline the last 4 seasons, right?

    You are also aware that many players get into their 30s and decline, right?

    You are aware that Derek Jeter's OPS at ages 32 and 33 have been higher than they were at ages 28-31, right? That he declined significantly 4 straight years and then reversed course?

    Look, if you want to talk about probabilities, and argue that Tejada probably won't see .850 again, that's fine. But the way you put it, it's just a completely foregone conclusion, and that's just wrong.

  18. I have no doubt it was a very impressive performance. But it's still a week's worth of games. Not only that, but a week's worth of games that most players are excluded from.

    We will just have to agree to disagree here. To me, Brock would have been a Hall of Famer regardless of his WS performances, but the Series show he put on is certainly a very big cherry on top of his sundae.

  19. If we get stuck with Miggy the last few years of his contract and we never do anything and all we end up with is one draft pick, i will say we made a mistake not making this trade.

    We are a long way from that. But the bigger mistake was to sign Miggy and not follow it up with another Grade A bat at a power position.

  20. I think that place is called the room dedicated to the World Series. I don't put a lot of weight on performance over 50 or 100 at bats, no matter what time of year it is. Brian Roberts has more plate appearances every month than Lou Brock did in his entire postseason career. I give Brock credit for those 87 at bats, but not that much credit.

    Marquis Grissom had a pretty nice career and once appeared in three consecutive World Series where he hit .360, .444, and .360. He's not anything like a Hall of Famer. Amos Otis was a spectacular fielder, had a higher career OPS+ than Brock, and hit almost .500 with nearly a 1.000 OPS in his only World Series. Not a Hall of Famer.

    I think I made it pretty clear that a couple of World Series by itself doesn't put a guy in the Hall of Fame. But it can be a major factor, and I don't think there is anything wrong with that.

    It may just be that the 1967-68 World Series were played when I was 10-11 years old and that they were all day games that I watched on TV. But Brock's performance in those 2 series were, in my mind, among the greatest ever. Batting average and OPS don't begin to tell the whole story here, though of course they were part of it. Brock just ran wild (14 SB's in 14 games) and drove the Red Sox and Tigers absolutely nuts. It's been 40 years and still indelibly etched in my memory, and I'm not even a Cardinals fan.

    Off on another tangent: it pains me that my 11 year old son won't have memories like this 40 years from now, due to MLB's acquiescence to the TV networks and playing all the games late at night.

  21. Okay. He's a sportscaster, not a blogger. That doesn't really change anything, IMO. Unless we hear from Bedard himself, it's still complete speculation.

    Well, here is what Bedard himself had to say:

    In a perfect world, Bedard would like to be talking of a long-term contract with the only organization he has ever played for.

    "If the numbers made sense - sure," said Bedard. "I like where I am. But to this point, there's been no offer (of a long-term deal)."

    By the way, as a public service, check out this website, which I found while looking for Bedard quotes on this subject. I expect major rep points for this!

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  22. I searched on all players with 2000+ PAs from 1960-1980. In OBP Lou Brock is 163rd. Getting on base is the #1 priority for a leadoff hitter, and Lou Brock was 163rd in his era.

    During Brock's career there were dozens of players who stole a lot of bases and got on base much more frequently. Ron Leflore, Bobby Bonds, Roy White, Don Buford, Bill North, Joe Morgan, Rod Carew. Hank Aaron had an OBP 50 points higher and stole 220 bases during the decline phase (I should really say 2nd half, because he was still a very high quality player) of his career. Of course he rarely led off, but that's part of the problem with this argument. What's a leadoff hitter? Almost always a player who gets on base, is fast, but doesn't have enough power to be a #3 or #4 hitter. Pete Rose was every bit Brock's equal as a leadoff hitter. He didn't steal bases as often, but he sure got on base a lot more often. Playing at almost the same times in the same league Rose scored 100 runs 10 times to Brock's six.

    Joe Morgan was a far, far better leadoff hitter than Brock. Of course Morgan only lead off in 469 games because his power was more valuable lower in the order. He had an OBP 60 points higher, stole bases at an 81% clip (vs. 75 for Brock), and played in a much tougher hitter's environment.

    I will gladly concede you Joe Morgan, Pete Rose and Rod Carew. Needless to say, 2 of those were first ballot HOFers and the other would have been if he didn't break baseball's cardinal rule and then lie about it for 2 decades.

    The others are guys who had a few good years, then fizzled. As you know, with only a very few exceptions, the Hall is largely about being excellent over a career of 15+ years. So I won't argue about whether Ron LeFlore or Bill North had a couple of seasons where they arguably were as good as Brock.

    One other thing: there is a place in the Hall for players who were very good and also did something very memorable in the World Series. Brock's back-to-back Series performances rank among the best EVER. But I guess you had to be there.

  23. You probably would have believed that. You'd be wrong, but I wouldn't hold it against you. The 60s were a strange time in baseball. Little guys who hit like Chris Gomez but with 50 steals were thought of as great and are still fondly recalled today, while guys with twice their careers like Ron Santo and Bill Freehan are largely forgotten.

    Ask 100 people who was better, Maury Wills or Ron Santo. I'd bet it comes out pretty even. In reality Santo was nearly as valuable as Frank Thomas, while Wills was similar to Brady Anderson.

    I disagree with both the generalities and the specifics of your post. Ron Santo may be underrated, but there are very few fans from that era who would not realize tha the was a much better player than Maury Wills. Santo in his prime was probably a better overall player than Brooks Robinson. He was a 9-time all-star (Wills was a 5-time all-star).

    Put it this way: in the period Brock played (1960-1979), who was a better leadoff hitter? In my opinion, he's first by a mile.

    Moreover, winning matters. His teams won, and he was a big reason why.

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