Monday, July 10, 2006

The Only Place DL Deserves to be...

In a cage with all the homeless they rounded up to keep away from the all-star game over the next couple of days. Will baseball's economic system finally be called out for the bullshit that it is with the all-star game in the city that is home to the worst team in baseball? I was listening to Mike and Mike this morning on the drive in and they both pointed to the successes that have happened in Oakland, Minnesota, and Florida (the 2nd time) to say how baseballs system isn't that broken (althought only one of those teams actaully won the WS or did anything in the payoffs really). I'm pretty sure the system is broken when some teams have payrolls hovering around 200 million and the Rats are spending around 46 million. I don't understand how this can be looked at as being "fair". I mean every other major sport has what we like to call a "salary cap" at this point for the obvious reason of keeping the playing field level and there won't be absurd bidding wars for players services.

Why is baseball so ass backward to not realize that they are alienating, I'd say 60 % of their cities by allowing this to happen. How are the Rats suppose to compete in this climate when other teams can simply out bid us for all of our players? I have no clue personally. I'm not trying to say its not DL's fault for us not being decent, but even if you squeezed every penny bone dry you aren't going to get enough juice to get Pittsburgh a pennate. I mean get real, look at the payrolls, and tell me why you think the AL is much better than the NL...

The system is so fucked that it really makes me want to just stop paying attention to a game that has a 5 team race every year. It's ridiculous. It's pretty much the equivalent of taking the 5 highest paid payers on the Steelers, putting them on a NY team, replace our holes with rookies / scrubs, then try to maintain our dominance... It would just never happen, that's why this spring I was on the edge of my seat when the NFL and their players union were hammering out a new CBA. If the NFL didn't have a cap, the 'Lers would be fucked. But I digress, I don't think this is going to change anytime soon so... Wait... Wait a second... That's another 5 years of losing baseball on the horizon! whoo hooo!


Bern1 said...

You can't help but wonder about the trades that were NOT made, such as several proposals that were reported in the media since David Littlefield became general manager. We'll never know for sure how discussions went, but it's interesting to play the "what if" game.

To wit …

Last off-season, there were reports that the Texas Rangers and Pirates were in discussions regarding former All-Star, Hank Blaylock -- left-handed power-hitting 3B who hits for a high average. Supposedly Littlefield declined the deal because the Rangers wanted Oliver Perez in return. (?!) Think the Rangers would still make that deal?

Then, of course, there was this deal that the Phillies supposedly offered: Ryan Howard for Kip Wells. Enough said, except to recall how Jim Tracy and Jim Colborn said they convinced Littlefield they could resuscitate Wells' career, much like they (supposedly) did with Greg Gagne.

Also, last off-season, the Toronto Blue Jays were reported to have offered slugging RF Alex Rios (you may have heard of him; he's in Pittsburgh today, on the American League All-Star Team) for Paul Maholm. While Maholm has shown flashes and may indeed have some upside, Rios would more than fill the hole in right field that is Jeromy Burnitz. And you wouldn't miss the young lefthander, if Littlefield had held out for another young lefthander, also on the AL squad: Scott Kazmir. You may remember that name from the Kris Benson trade talks. New York newspapers reported that the Mets were eager to get Benson (who wanted to go to New York, anyway, to work with Mets' pitching coach Rick Petersen), and were offering Ty Wigginton. The Pirates (justifiably) asked for David Wright. The Mets (more than justifiably) refused. The other names reported in New York media as candidates to go to the Pirates were Scott Kazmir and Matt Petersen. Littlefield accepted Wiggington and Peterson, along with Jose Bautista (whom he had lost in the Rule 5 draft) for Benson and a minor league second baseman (Jeff Keppinger) who is now at the Mets' AAA affiliate. The Mets even got Anna Benson as a "bonus."

But what if Littlefield had insisted on Kazmir instead of, say, Wiggington? The Mets traded Kasmir, anyway (on the same day, no less), to Tampa Bay for another pitcher, who is not as good as Benson. By obtaining Kazmir, Maholm becomes expendable and gets dealt to the Blue Jays last off-season. Then, you have Alex Rios in right field tonight in a Pirates uniform, not a Blue Jays uniform. And you've saved the $7.5 million dollars that you no longer needed to spend on Burnitz.

Let's continue.

Three other players on this year's All-Star teams are former Pirates: Gary Matthews, Bronson Arroyo and Jason Schmidt. Granted, Matthews and Arroyo showed little, while here, to make one project them as future All-Stars. But isn't that just possibly an indictment of the Pirates' continuing failure on the player development side? What if they'd kept them, and what if they'd actually blossomed into the players they are today?

And what about Jason Schmidt, who was the first player dealt by Littlefield (an ominous portent of things to come)? What if the Pirates somehow had been able to keep him? Not likely, but here's something more realistic ... What if Littlefield hadn't traded Chris Young?

And, what if Littlefield had not traded Duaner Sanchez for, I believe, Matt Herges (who was released the following spring training).

Here's what if …

The Pirates starting lineup:

Gary Matthews (CF)*
Freddy Sanchez (2B)*
Jason Bay (LF)*
Ryan Howard (1B)*
Alex Rios (RF)*
Hank Blaylock (3B)*
Jack Wilson (SS)
Ronny Paulino/Ryan Doumit (C)

* denotes All-Star (Blaylock is a former All-Star)

Starting Rotation (select from):

Jason Schmidt*
Bronson Arroyo*
Scott Kazmir*
Chris Young
Ian Snell
Zach Duke

Bullpen (select from)

Duaner Sanchez
Roberto Hernandez
Salomon Torres
John Grabow
Matt Capps
Mike Gonzalez

Bench (select from)

Jose Castillo (2B/3B)
Chris Duffy (OF)
Nate McLouth (OF)
Jose Bautista (OF/3B)
Craig Wilson (OF/1B)

Never mind the other debacles thoroughly covered elsewhere (Aramis Ramirez, Chris Shelton, etc., the ridiculous free agent signings, etc., etc., ad nauseum). This is intended as a speculation primarily focused on some trades that were openly discussed in public forums, but never made.

C_Reg said...

damn dude, thats a mouth awful, damn good writing tho and very thought provoking.

bern1 said...

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