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We can learn a lot from Oakland

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But it is almost impossible to do both, because there will always be some place that comes up short.

Right. It's very hard to do. You need to careful about where your weaknesses are. Which is the one thing that Schuerholz goofed about, and he never learned.

The playoffs are all luck.

No, that's not true.

Does luck matter? Sure it does (see 1969 and 1971).

But it's not "all luck", it's also how you construct the team.

Being built for the long-haul vs. the short-haul require slightly different things.

It's very hard to get it right.

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Between 1999 and 2007, Oakland was 238-172 against the AL East (.581), and 256-220 against the AL West (.538).

So yeah, I would call that "played very well". Of course, I actually looked it up, too.

BAM! Thanks for doing the research for me, I did it a long time ago and knew they had played well against the East, but didn't have the numbers.

So yes, Bigbird, other than the year you conveniently picked, the A's have played very well against the East, even better than they've played against the West.:mwahaha:

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Right. It's very hard to do. You need to careful about where your weaknesses are. Which is the one thing that Schuerholz goofed about, and he never learned.

No, that's not true.

Does luck matter? Sure it does (see 1969 and 1971).

But it's not "all luck", it's also how you construct the team.

Being built for the long-haul vs. the short-haul require slightly different things.

It's very hard to get it right.

But it's still luck. Like I pointed out, you can have great starters, a great bullpen, a great offense, and a great defense, but if one or two things go wrong then suddenly you are down a game or two when you only have five or seven chances to get the wins you need.

Just look at 2002. They had the second-best pitching staff, including the fourth-best bullpen, in the league. Yet they lost in the division series. I would argue that a team with Zito, Hudson and Mulder, and a quality bullpen, is pretty good for a short series.

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Why can't both things be true? Beane is a good GM AND they benefit from playing in the West? I agree that Oakland would be much less likely to have as many play-off appearances in the last 15 years if they had played in the AL East. I'm not sure how anybody can argue that to be honest. That doesn't mean that Beane isn't a damn good GM.

Well the numbers that BTerp showed is obviously a good start.

I think a lot of people forget just how good the AL West has been top to bottom this decade. Probably a better winning % than the East.

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It's certainly not all luck, but the best team often doesn't win, the hot team that gets some breaks along with unusually good performances from unexpected sources is typically the winner. Sometimes that just happens to be the best team.

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It's certainly not all luck, but the best team often doesn't win, the hot team that gets some breaks along with unusually good performances from unexpected sources is typically the winner. Sometimes that just happens to be the best team.

Depends on what you mean by "best team".

ATL had some great teams, but they just were constructed 100% for the long season.

I do not believe it was just "bad luck" that they made the postseason so many times, but somehow got only 1 ring.

So, I think asking which team is the "best team" is a somewhat loaded question. Best at what?

Anyway, I don't see what this really has to do with Billy Beane.

Yes, he's a smart guy, and no, we should not strive to be like OAK.

Once OAK moves near San Jose, then maybe we'll find out what Beane can do with resources.

Like I said, I think it's probable that he'll do fine, maybe even great, but I also think it's far from certain.

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Exactly, if playing in the AL East the A's would be nothing than a mid standing team, nothing more. They would be totally out talented in our division.

OAK was probably the best team in the AL back in 2003...but our boys Byrnes and Tejada both got thrown out at home plate in the same inning for no reason in a playoff game vs BOS in Fenway and the A's never recovered. It was probably the wierdest, most nonchalant meltdownsI've ever seen. Still, OAK was the better team.

It's really hard to qualify the success they've had considering their payroll limitations.

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Depends on what you mean by "best team".

ATL had some great teams, but they just were constructed 100% for the long season.

I do not believe it was just "bad luck" that they made the postseason so many times, but somehow got only 1 ring.

So, I think asking which team is the "best team" is a somewhat loaded question. Best at what?

They definately had some bad luck along the way. I'll always be greatful to the man who should have been the NLCS MVP in 1997 - Eric Gregg - for being such a fantastic contributor to the Marlins success and allowing me the opportunity to attend my first WS.

I do agree somewhat with what you are saying, the Braves always seemingly had a glaring bullpen weakness which hurt them in the post season but I don't think the A's had similar glaring weaknesses in how they were built.

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Depends on what you mean by "best team".

ATL had some great teams, but they just were constructed 100% for the long season.

I do not believe it was just "bad luck" that they made the postseason so many times, but somehow got only 1 ring.

So, I think asking which team is the "best team" is a somewhat loaded question. Best at what?

Anyway, I don't see what this really has to do with Billy Beane.

Yes, he's a smart guy, and no, we should not strive to be like OAK.

Once OAK moves near San Jose, then maybe we'll find out what Beane can do with resources.

Like I said, I think it's probable that he'll do fine, maybe even great, but I also think it's far from certain.

I mean best overall team, some years there isn't an obvious choice, others there is.

I didn't say it was just bad luck, said luck plays a factor. I think the biggest factor is simply who is healthy and hot at the right time, which is obviously the postseason. Other factors besides luck include how the team is constructed, random guys unexpectedly stepping it up, star players being hot or cold, managerial decisions, errors, etc.

The GM does not control most of that.

Who should we strive to be like?

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Depends on what you mean by "best team".

ATL had some great teams, but they just were constructed 100% for the long season.

I do not believe it was just "bad luck" that they made the postseason so many times, but somehow got only 1 ring.

So, I think asking which team is the "best team" is a somewhat loaded question. Best at what?

Anyway, I don't see what this really has to do with Billy Beane.

Yes, he's a smart guy, and no, we should not strive to be like OAK.

Once OAK moves near San Jose, then maybe we'll find out what Beane can do with resources.

Like I said, I think it's probable that he'll do fine, maybe even great, but I also think it's far from certain.

It's an interesting age-old argument. I've seen some good articles written about it, from viewpoints. I'm ambivalent about it, personally.

But BTerp states so matter of factly that it's luck, so it MUST be. :rolleyes:

Edit: In regards to Beane, while he doesn't have the huge payroll, is there a GM who has as much freedom as he does? I mean, he can literally do whatever he wants with a set budget. Most GM's get so much interference and fear for their lives so much. The peace of mind Beane has unquestionably needs to be taken in consideration before giving him such a generous handicap.

Edited by TommyD4207

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Who should we strive to be like?

Well, the way things work changes, so it's a moving target, but in basic strokes:

* Hoffberger's O's

* Schuerholz's Braves, minus the design flaws

* pre-ARod MFY's, minus some of the FA insanity

* Red Sox now, minus the bandwagoners ;-)

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Well, the way things work changes, so it's a moving target, but in basic strokes:

* Hoffberger's O's

* Schuerholz's Braves, minus the design flaws

* pre-ARod MFY's, minus some of the FA insanity

* Red Sox now, minus the bandwagoners ;-)

Too far back to really consider.

Braves would be good, what exactly are the design flaws youy speak of? Of course they had a ton of great young talent that sparked that run.

Pre 90's Yanks would be good, but don't have the money to spend like they did.

We can't spend as much as the Red Sox do now.

Why can't you throw in Beane's A's with some adjustments, since you are making adjustments anway?

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Depends on what you mean by "best team".

ATL had some great teams, but they just were constructed 100% for the long season.

I do not believe it was just "bad luck" that they made the postseason so many times, but somehow got only 1 ring.

So, I think asking which team is the "best team" is a somewhat loaded question. Best at what?

Your argument against the Braves is just jaw-dropping.

Best at what?

How about best at winning baseball games.

What's a truer measure of that: 162 games, or 7 (or 5) games?

You think a team such as the Braves can have genuine flaws that go unexposed for 6 months, but suddenly rear up their ugly head in one week? That's downright laughable.

And how, exactly, is a team built around 3 first-ballot HOF starting pitchers somehow not built for the short term? If not with dominant pitching, how does one go about building for the short term?

The bottom line is that what works in the regular season is exactly the same as what works in the postseason. There's nothing inherently different or mystical about October baseball. Nothing. It's the same game, played by the same rules, on the same fields, and by the same players.

What is true, however, is that sample sizes are small, creating a situation where luck, momentum, and who's hot and cold have a greater influence over the final outcome, such that the best team doesn't always come out on top.

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Exactly, if playing in the AL East the A's would be nothing than a mid standing team, nothing more. They would be totally out talented in our division.

I find it interesting that you always talk about talent and how hard it is to compete in the AL East, yet you won't keep things status quo on our team, while getting rid of those who have little to no value.

How do you think we bridge that talent gap if you keep everyone that results in a sub 500 team??

BTW, with the pitching Oakland had, they would have done well in any division and any league.

As for the playoffs, let's not forget that I believe they never had the big 3 healthy for any of the playoffs they were in...This goes with the luck. The Jeter play...That goes with luck.

People say we should emulate Atlanta...They only won once...Perhaps we should emulate the Marlins, since they won twice?

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Let's see......MacPhails business plan resulted in a World Championship.... the Oakland plan hasn't.... Thanks for proving my point.

You seem much more sold om MacPhail than you were in the past (I recall you being skeptical since you were quite high on Duquette.) Has this past offseason's dealings changed your opinion? Or is it a combination of the dealings and what you're hearing about the internal workings that have you changing your tune?

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