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Ridgway22

Of Rebuilding. Of Tanking?

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Just watched us lose 2-1 in extras to the Red Sox, a temporary, non-fatal dagger plunge to the soul.... tomorrow, it will reveal itself as merely a flesh wound.

I've played, coached and experienced rabid baseball fandom since Little League, and am not programmed by deity for any outcome other than maximum effort to win every single ballgame I'm privileged to participate in. The "tanking" mentality, manifested in this case by keeping intriguing players in the minors that *might* help us win a couple extra games, is foreign and repulsive to my DNA, an affront to the gods that blessed us with the precision of 90 feet , 60 feet 6 inches, and the weighty tablets of unwritten rules as pure to the soul as 3.2 beer is to a Jack Mormon.

However, when sunlight ultimately coerces my unwilling eyes apart, and clears the red wine haze, a stern fact remains: Zero chance we compete this year. In 2023, who will care if we won 74 games or 60 in twenty and nineteen? But the chance to pick #1 vs #4 in 2020 could end up being a difference making rookie of the year candidate batting in the bottom of the 9th during a tie Wild Card game in 2023.

Alas.

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1 hour ago, Ridgway22 said:

Just watched us lose 2-1 in extras to the Red Sox, a temporary, non-fatal dagger plunge to the soul.... tomorrow, it will reveal itself as merely a flesh wound.

I've played, coached and experienced rabid baseball fandom since Little League, and am not programmed by deity for any outcome other than maximum effort to win every single ballgame I'm privileged to participate in. The "tanking" mentality, manifested in this case by keeping intriguing players in the minors that *might* help us win a couple extra games, is foreign and repulsive to my DNA, an affront to the gods that blessed us with the precision of 90 feet , 60 feet 6 inches, and the weighty tablets of unwritten rules as pure to the soul as 3.2 beer is to a Jack Mormon.

However, when sunlight ultimately coerces my unwilling eyes apart, and clears the red wine haze, a stern fact remains: Zero chance we compete this year. In 2023, who will care if we won 74 games or 60 in twenty and nineteen? But the chance to pick #1 vs #4 in 2020 could end up being a difference making rookie of the year candidate batting in the bottom of the 9th during a tie Wild Card game in 2023.

Alas.

Is there really anyone in the MiL we could bring up now who would make that much of a differece?

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That’s my thinking. I want them to play hard and to see some development on the youngest guys, but I don’t necessarily need to see them win many games right now. The difference between the #1 pick and #4 pick next year is a potential long term game changer. Whether Ynoa starts are stays in the bullpen this year, or things like that, makes zero difference. 

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You just have to abandon all expectations. We’re essentially forced to play the season like it’s ST. 3-4 IP from our starters. Wilkerson in CF for the first time. The hope is that some players emerge. 

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This team is not tanking.

Hyde said, he appreciate that this team, with the exception of a couple of blowouts, is always competing.

Losing 2-1 in extras innings on the road, sucks. But, it could always be worse.

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1 minute ago, Cy Bundy said:

A system without players that could help this team win is a system built by men of tremendous haircuts.

 

 

You totally lost me on this one.

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I wish more people would understand this.  It's not about a single game, it's not about a 2 week stretch.  It's not about winning a game, 2 week cold streaks, 2 weeks hot streaks, pitchers going 4 IP, or anything else so trivial.

It's about getting to 2022 with a product that can start to represent something competitive.  It's about draft day and the deadline.  And it's about the Tides, Baysox and Frederick.

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The sad thing is, there's an enormously high chance that each of those #1 picks will either wash out, won't have staying power, or will get hurt before they're able to make a career out of it.

We can't build a baseball team around a strategy of picking up one free possibly good player per year. We need to acquire or develop something like 6 or 7 legitimately good players per year to compete. The 2014 O's didn't win because of the #1 picks we had on our team. They won because of Delmon Young, Chris Tillman, Chris Davis, Adam Jones, and so many others we had picked up in trades or developed into good players. They won because of a critical mass of players with very timely results, many playing above expectations, doing better than their career numbers or having a career year.

Even if each year's #1 prospect turns into a Manny, and we pick each one, I don't think we would be a very good team. Let's say in the 2020 draft we pick a historically good 1B; 2021, a historically good SS; 2022, a historically good CF; 2023, a historically good SP. Let's say they all get to the majors in short order and are ready to break out immediately. OK, so what? If the rest of the team is as bad as they are right now, they have zero chance to compete. Even if they hold a lead for a couple innings, the pen will give it right back up. Our 2B, 3B, LF, RF, C, DH won't ever get on base or hit home runs. Optimistically, we might get to .500 in a season because of the extraordinary performance of four guys.

I think if -- if -- we get that lucky and have four amazing guys in the early to mid 2020s, we should trade them as soon as their high value is established. Basically it would be like trading Manny in the 2016 offseason, or even 2015. Get rid of them, and get a package deal of ML-ready or nearly ML-ready players with high upside in return. We don't need 4 Babe Ruths; we need 30 Chris Tillmans and Adam Joneses. We need players who are pretty good in their prime, but not HOFers. We have neither the farm system nor the budget of teams that could hope to stack up a team of hero after hero like the Dodgers and Yankees, who simply buy their way into a World Series. Our only chance of seeing the postseason is to build a "good enough" club of scrappy, nominally effective players and hope the dice are in our favor in the postseason against the elite clubs.

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15 minutes ago, Redskins Rick said:

This team is not tanking.

Hyde said, he appreciate that this team, with the exception of a couple of blowouts, is always competing.

Losing 2-1 in extras innings on the road, sucks. But, it could always be worse.

Yes, it could happen at home.    Like yesterday.   

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7 minutes ago, Camden_yardbird said:

I wish more people would understand this.  It's not about a single game, it's not about a 2 week stretch.  It's not about winning a game, 2 week cold streaks, 2 weeks hot streaks, pitchers going 4 IP, or anything else so trivial.

It's about getting to 2022 with a product that can start to represent something competitive.  It's about draft day and the deadline.  And it's about the Tides, Baysox and Frederick.

Agree completely. There is no need to poor resources into the big league club this year. Build the foundations first.

I'm completely at peace with the team's performance so far. I'm ready for another top 3 pick -- wouldn't mind another #1 in 2020. Next year's team will probably be in the running for a top 5 pick as well, and I'm perfectly fine with that. The 2021 team is where results should start to matter.

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36 minutes ago, Redskins Rick said:

This team is not tanking.

Hyde said, he appreciate that this team, with the exception of a couple of blowouts, is always competing.

Losing 2-1 in extras innings on the road, sucks. But, it could always be worse.

Sure they are.  They didn't put all of their resources into winning the most games this year.  In fact, they didn't put much of any resources into winning this year.  They assembled a 50- or 60-something win team on purpose.

Tanking has little or nothing to do with whether the players they have on the roster is trying.  All professional players try most of the time.  Even when they're on a team that is probably going to win 57 games.

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