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This is A Mess (Mega RANT Thread)


eddie83

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Some of this stuff is ridiculous. No GM would have sold Chris Davis coming off an MVP type year (after a good year), 2 more years of team control, reasonable cost, a winning record and the foundation of a team that would help win the division the following year. That's simply bizarre and ludicrous criticism by people who either have an agenda or who have been playing too much Fantasy League baseball.

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Some of this stuff is ridiculous. No GM would have sold Chris Davis coming off an MVP type year (after a good year), 2 more years of team control, reasonable cost, a winning record and the foundation of a team that would help win the division the following year. That's simply bizarre and ridiculous criticism by people who have an agenda or who have been playing too much Fantasy League baseball.

Maybe it's the hangover from 1998-2011, but there are fans here who seem to think that positive performances by Orioles are illusory. So the appropriate response to someone doing well is not to throw them into the "part of next year's winning team" bucket, but instead to place them in the "better trade him before he inevitably tanks" bucket.

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I guess I just don't see a "mess", even going into next year. We have Joseph, a capable catcher behind the plate, a hole at 1B, set at 2B, SS, 3B and CF. Many options for LF and RF. Tillman, Ubaldo, Miggy and Gausman for the rotation and many candidates for the last rotation spot and the bullpen with money to spend.

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Some of this stuff is ridiculous. No GM would have sold Chris Davis coming off an MVP type year (after a good year), 2 more years of team control, reasonable cost, a winning record and the foundation of a team that would help win the division the following year. That's simply bizarre and ludicrous criticism by people who either have an agenda or who have been playing too much Fantasy League baseball.

I have never understood that line of thinking either. I don't get why you blow your core up so you might get prospects that can help you down the road when you are competitive. When teams like Oakland and Tampa do this it is out of financial necessity.

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I guess I just don't see a "mess"' date=' even going into next year. We have Joseph, a capable catcher behind the plate, a hole at 1B, set at 2B, SS, 3B and CF. Many options for LF and RF. Tillman, Ubaldo, Miggy and Gausman for the rotation and many candidates for the last rotation spot and the bullpen with money to spend.[/quote']

By mess I mean the current issues in the OF and lack of roster flexibility. OF was a concern going into the season and on July 9th it still is. We have had to juggle our roster and at times go with a 6 man pen to keep all our options. I understand why they are doing this but if we had a legit solution in one of the corner spots we wouldn't have to have such roster issues.

As far as the future I am not sold the Joseph is anything more than a part time player like he is now. We have no internal 1b solution and on general no position player prospects on the verge of helping us. We do as you mentioned have a strong core of talent but my concern is no matter how smart DD is it is difficult to find a Paredes or Pearce type every season. Some of the "options", we have don't inspire much confidence from me.

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The Orioles goal was to have a competitive team that had a chance to make the playoffs. 10 games ago it looked like they were ready to "overachieve" again. They still have a competitive team with a chance for the playoffs. I had this team pegged in the mid 80's in the win column before the year. Many agreed. Very few of us had them pegged for 90 and above. Why is this, all of a sudden, a mess?

They won 96 games last year. To a lot of fans that meant the 2015 Oriole had a baseline of 96 wins. Significantly less that that constitutes a mess.

Nevermind the plexiglass principle or the fact that a 96-win team is probably overachieving or the fact that the budget was constrained by arb increases and blah blah.

Many said that Norris was due to regress. That non move stands out the most.

It's one thing to say Norris was likely to regress to his career marks, or his career FIP/xFIP. I'm good with that. If anyone is claiming that he was due for a 6.00 or 7.00 ERA they're making stuff up.

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I think Duquette executed a reasonable plan that has been hung up at times by underperforming players. It happens. You're not going to win 95 games every year with a set, mid-range budget and a minor league system that's been less than stellar.

But having said that, let's wait until September to indict the plan and the execution.

This is my point of view as well. And, it's always dangerous to judge a team when it is going through a slump. Ten days ago, Duquette's plan was looking pretty damned good. It may look good again in a few weeks. Or not, we will see.

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I have never understood that line of thinking either. I don't get why you blow your core up so you might get prospects that can help you down the road when you are competitive. When teams like Oakland and Tampa do this it is out of financial necessity.

1. You aren't limited to trading for prospects.

2. Even if you trade for prospects you can trade for prospects that are major league ready.

3. If there are moves Baltimore cannot/should not make because they are budgetary constrained, that would otherwise be making the team better, then Baltimore should be similarly aware that they need to squeeze out excess value on players. Drungo is a super smart dude, but his claim above is a strawman -- you don't have to think Davis is a failure to want to trade him. You only have to believe that the value you are getting back is going to exceed his production, and there was plenty of reason to believe that to be the case (NOT a guarantee that would be the case, but reasons nonetheless and folks that pointed to those reasons at the time).

Finally, and I think this is most important, to my eye we are going on two straight seasons of doing little to improve the organization outside of the 25 man roster (and some season-specific depth on the 40 man). Part of the reason you move a guy like Davis is to supplement your acquisition efforts. Baltimore doesn't like to roll the dice with more expensive international signings. Baltimore has recently sacrificed picks in the draft to sign free agents. Baltimore has recently traded from the moderate depth in the system to get season-specific pieces to help the 25 man. All of that is eating through the minor league system and limiting and *appears* to be setting the Orioles up for a situation where they do not possess the in-house depth to keep the 25 man cheap and cost controlled for the future.

True, the Orioles have money to spend this off-season. But keep in mind free agency is the most expensive route to team building, and the players tend to have their production weighted to the front of the contract span. So even if Baltimore picks up three solid players and those players perform, 1) it could result in additional loss of picks for next year's draft, 2) the Orioles will be paying free agent prices for the production (which tends to be least efficient), and 3) the organization runs the risk of holding onto less productive players for these new free agent prices for the next 3-4 years.

It's really important, in my opinion, for the organization to break the plate spinning cycle or, at a minimum, start putting serious efforts into building back up the organizational talent. Otherwise, while it may not be a ten losing season disaster again, you could very well get yourself stuck in a perpetual 76 to 85 win span.

I am not a fan that believes it's catastrophe or championship, but I'm also not interested in watching the Blue Jays circa 1994-2014. Under this management I am troubled very little in-season, but am still searching for signs that there is an actual plan to eventually be a great organization. Right now I feel like the crosshairs are set on "don't be a disaster", which is okay...but realistic playoff odds then come down to Duquette being able to constantly piece together competitive clubs with AAAA wizardry. Maybe he is indeed so good that he can do this in perpetuity -- no one questions the intellect. I just wish I saw evidence that intellect was also putting together a plan for keeping the talent pipeline flowing through the Baltimore dev system.

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This is my point of view as well. And, it's always dangerous to judge a team when it is going through a slump. Ten days ago, Duquette's plan was looking pretty damned good. It may look good again in a few weeks. Or not, we will see.

In mid-May we had long, contentious threads where people were essentially saying that Duquette tanked the season, or just didn't care about the O's because he wanted to be in Toronto. Then the team had a great June and all of a sudden the talk of The End of the Orioles significantly backed off.

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Drungo is a super smart dude, but his claim above is a strawman -- you don't have to think Davis is a failure to want to trade him. You only have to believe that the value you are getting back is going to exceed his production, and there was plenty of reason to believe that to be the case (NOT a guarantee that would be the case, but reasons nonetheless and folks that pointed to those reasons at the time).

I'm always skeptical of trades based on information asymmetries in today's environment. And that's what you're asking for - a team to value Davis far more than the team that actually has him and can observe him every day does. You're suggesting that some teams much more strongly believed that Davis would repeat his big year than even most of the Hangout did, and would pay substantially for that. There were a few folks here who'd penciled Davis in for a 1.000 OPS until 2025, but I think the consensus was more like he'd go back to a bit above his career marks. I have to think that was the MLB consensus, too, or something like that. There aren't many/any dumb GMs any more. I find it hard to believe you're going to consistently get great value by trading players at their peaks because some GMs don't understand that peaks almost never last.

But then again, I thought Seattle was completely insane to offer the Cruz contract, so what do I know?

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I will say this. Duquette missed on a lot of his mid range moves. Many said that Norris was due to regress. That non move stands out the most. I was okay with De Aza. Seems like a bad move. Of course, now he's doing for the Red Sox what we hoped he'd be doing for us. So, was that a bad move? Timing is everything.

The offense has been very inconsistent but the consistent thing about our season has been the two holes in the rotation caused by Tillman and Norris. All of the other stuff is small potatoes.

On the bright side, the Orioles don't have many long term commitments. They will have some flexibility to make changes if they decide to. On the negative side, very little of that change will come from within our minor league system.

Even if Norris had a risk of regression, I liked the plan of going with six starter candidates for five spots. Norris turned out to be the one who regressed, but it could have been any of them, and there certainly was no guarantee that Jimenez was going to bounce back.

As you say, the biggest problem here is that we have two starters who not only regressed, but have been far worse than we had any reason to expect. Norris and Tillman have been far worse than Ubaldo was last year.

As to the offense, the big picture is that we are still 5th in runs/game. Sure, it has been less consistent than we would like, but that is part of baseball.

As to your point about the change not coming from our MiL system next year, I don't fully agree. Norfolk has a staff full of guys who are performing well, and if a couple pan out at the major league level, that's all we need there. It certainly seems we will need to acquire a bat or two to replace the guys we are losing, but we should have the money to do it.

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I'm always skeptical of trades based on information asymmetries in today's environment. And that's what you're asking for - a team to value Davis far more than the team that actually has him and can observe him every day does. You're suggesting that some teams much more strongly believed that Davis would repeat his big year than even most of the Hangout did, and would pay substantially for that. There were a few folks here who'd penciled Davis in for a 1.000 OPS until 2025, but I think the consensus was more like he'd go back to a bit above his career marks. I have to think that was the MLB consensus, too, or something like that. There aren't many/any dumb GMs any more. I find it hard to believe you're going to consistently get great value by trading players at their peaks because some GMs don't understand that peaks almost never last.

But then again, I thought Seattle was completely insane to offer the Cruz contract, so what do I know?

They had to step up from their original offer that no one was competing against.

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I'm always skeptical of trades based on information asymmetries in today's environment. And that's what you're asking for - a team to value Davis far more than the team that actually has him and can observe him every day does. You're suggesting that some teams much more strongly believed that Davis would repeat his big year than even most of the Hangout did, and would pay substantially for that. There were a few folks here who'd penciled Davis in for a 1.000 OPS until 2025, but I think the consensus was more like he'd go back to a bit above his career marks. I have to think that was the MLB consensus, too, or something like that. There aren't many/any dumb GMs any more. I find it hard to believe you're going to consistently get great value by trading players at their peaks because some GMs don't understand that peaks almost never last.

But then again, I thought Seattle was completely insane to offer the Cruz contract, so what do I know?

Teams make decisions based on different factors. The Dodgers have no need to roll the dice on Davis' breakout being the new norm, but clubs that are more financially restrained absolutely did.

GMs don't have to have varying intellect in order to reach different conclusions about players. Through that lens, we'd be seeing a sport with very little movement at all on the trade front. You build relationships and get to know the other decision makers in the sport so that 1) when you want to move someone you know the likely candidates that would be interested, and 2) when you have a need you know the candidates who are likely to have a lower price tag on the piece you are looking to buy.

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Yeah, could I see Davies, Wright, or Wilson being the 5th starter and someone like Drake and Givens being in the bullpen. Absolutely. We just don't have a Steve Matz, Noah Syndergaard, or Joc Pederson coming up. Role players, bullpen pieces, and back of the rotation starters.

And hurt guys, lots of hurt guys.

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As to your point about the change not coming from our MiL system next year, I don't fully agree. Norfolk has a staff full of guys who are performing well, and if a couple pan out at the major league level, that's all we need there. It certainly seems we will need to acquire a bat or two to replace the guys we are losing, but we should have the money to do it.

That's certainly an optimistic viewpoint and the front office is going to be fully vindicated if the collection that they have in Norfolk/Bowie end up providing the production needed over the next couple of seasons.

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