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 Post subject: Tribune Review Article on 40 Man Roster
PostPosted: Sun Feb 08, 2009 4:17 pm 
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http://www.pittsburghlive.com/x/pittsbu ... 10731.html

Nice read on the changes made from September of 2007 til now and how 16 of the teams top 30 prospects have come since Neal has been GM...

Quote:
Huntington's shakeup goes much deeper than just the 40-man roster. Of the players ranked among Baseball America's top 30 prospects in the Pirates' system, 16 were acquired after Huntington was hired in September 2007.

"That list doesn't include (Andy) LaRoche, (Brandon) Moss, (Craig) Hansen, (Ross) Ohlendorf or (Jeff) Karstens," Huntington said, referring to guys he got for Bay and Nady. "Arguably, you could go as high as 25 out of 36 of our top young players are our guys."

The players Huntington added via trades do not have much major-league experience. This season will be their proving ground.

That's a major reason the Pirates this offseason signed just two free agents, infielder Ramon Vazquez and outfielder Eric Hinske.

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 Post subject: Re: Tribune Review Article on 40 Man Roster
PostPosted: Sun Feb 08, 2009 4:21 pm 
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16 out of 30? And thats not counting some of the Bay/Nady guys? Thats staggering. Of course, it begs the question; are they good or were the Littlefield guys that bad? :)

Its refreshing to read something like that, tho.


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 Post subject: Re: Tribune Review Article on 40 Man Roster
PostPosted: Mon Feb 09, 2009 10:52 am 
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This is a pretty good way to look at the rebuilding model. The 40-man shows what is coming better than a 25-man. That kind of turnover shows me that a wave is building. Now, how good some of the folks added are... remains to be seen.

But, I look at rebuilding as a couple of steps in acquisition. The first being what I call the Sid Bream move. I means acquiring fair to middling talent like Sid from toxic waste. These kinds of guys can play better, competative baseball and lay the ground for the "Van Slyke" trades that put you over the top.

ZM

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 Post subject: Re: Tribune Review Article on 40 Man Roster
PostPosted: Mon Feb 09, 2009 11:07 am 
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If you compare the list of guys added to the list of guys removed, you can see we are headed in the right direction.


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 Post subject: Re: Tribune Review Article on 40 Man Roster
PostPosted: Mon Feb 09, 2009 12:40 pm 
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Ian Smuth wrote:
The problem is that a monkey throwing his partner's feces against a wall could have improved this team. That simple fact does not make the current braintrust competant. We needed a better facility in Latin America? Really? Only a really smart team president could have figured that one out. We needed to draft the best player available? Really? Only a really smart gm could have figured that one out. I'm not bitching about everything Opie and Conndoggie have done, but to consider them a success because they are an improvement over the worst team president/gm combo in history is just over the top.

I still have no reason to think the money will ever be there should we need it. I still believe much has to go right for us to ever "need it" before the next crop of prospects hits free agency. Thus I am not getting my hopes up for 2009. Or 2010. Or 2011. Or 2012. Or any year I continue to not see the financial commitment necessary to compete at the major league leavel.


omgardd,

How many names are you going to make today to prove you're a troll? If you dont like the other opinions on the board you're more than welcome to go somewhere else

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 Post subject: Re: Tribune Review Article on 40 Man Roster
PostPosted: Mon Feb 09, 2009 12:45 pm 
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 Post subject: Re: Tribune Review Article on 40 Man Roster
PostPosted: Mon Feb 09, 2009 1:29 pm 
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The problem with lauding the new regime based solely on their improvement of the team from the previous one is twofold: First, as Ian Smuth already touches upon, there was truly nowhere to go but up when compared to a minor league system completely barren of talent. Secondly, and perhaps more importantly, the Pirates have accumulated this new influx of talent by trading their most significant pieces of value, and garnering returns that haven't exactly been overwhelming to this point, especially considering the age of several of the "prospects" that were acquired. Although the aggressive draft strategy was a breath of fresh air, as well as the initial foray into the Latin American market, you are placing an awful lot of emphasis on talent evaluation of teenagers and collegians when that is your sole basis for the acquisition of young talent. And with the lack of any proven commodities left to deal, I don't see any other way to produce the next influx of young talent.


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 Post subject: Re: Tribune Review Article on 40 Man Roster
PostPosted: Mon Feb 09, 2009 1:37 pm 
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Punter,

Two problems with your scenario. 1). It can always get worse. Always. For instance, a new GM could come in and overpay for a bunch of UFA's to try and win right now, and continue to ignore draft and development.

2). You seem to assume that drafting and development won't work, because DL did it poorly beforehand. That remains to be seen. If only Tabata and the young pitcher make an impact in the majors from that trade, the Pirates win. If one other, LaRoche or Moss, say, perform to MLB levels, you really win and have your "Sid Bream" talent to move for better players to put you over the top.

oh, and a 3rd point... Your type of posting will get respectful response. Others should take note.

ZM

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 Post subject: Re: Tribune Review Article on 40 Man Roster
PostPosted: Mon Feb 09, 2009 1:55 pm 
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ZelieMike wrote:
Punter,

Two problems with your scenario. 1). It can always get worse. Always. For instance, a new GM could come in and overpay for a bunch of UFA's to try and win right now, and continue to ignore draft and development.

2). You seem to assume that drafting and development won't work, because DL did it poorly beforehand. That remains to be seen. If only Tabata and the young pitcher make an impact in the majors from that trade, the Pirates win. If one other, LaRoche or Moss, say, perform to MLB levels, you really win and have your "Sid Bream" talent to move for better players to put you over the top.

oh, and a 3rd point... Your type of posting will get respectful response. Others should take note.

ZM


ZM, I'm not assuming that drafting and development won't work, I am merely suggesting that without a better strategy or philosophy in terms of trades, signing FAs (including minor league FAs), Rule V and other means of acquiring younger talent leaves you very little room for error. And I just haven't been impressed with almost every aspect of the new regime beyond the draft and increased inroads into the Latin American talent pool, both in terms of the actual results (which are still difficult to measure at this stage) and especially the philosophy (acquiring safer "major league ready" talent as opposed to younger, higher ceiling talent).

Which one of the pitchers from the Yankees deal are you calling "young", all of them are in the neighborhood of twenty-six years old, which was one of my main problems with the deal from the outset.


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 Post subject: Re: Tribune Review Article on 40 Man Roster
PostPosted: Mon Feb 09, 2009 2:04 pm 
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I'm talking about the young kid from the Dodgers. From the Yankee trade, I think Ohlendorf has a chance, but that is all. I don't know squat about McCutcheon.

You bring up a couple of points. 1) Minor league FA... yes, and done. 2) Rule V, including minor league Rule V. Yes, and done. In fact, the Pirates did something remarkable this year when they jumped ahead of the curve and plucked minor league Rule V guys from Lain American academies. Completely caught the Yanks, Sox and Dodgers on their hind feet.

Further, the kinds of criticism's I'm reading are the same types that the Indians put up with early on. Almost to a tee. That tells me NH is sticking to his model brought over from Hart/Shapiro/Antonetti.

ZM

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 Post subject: Re: Tribune Review Article on 40 Man Roster
PostPosted: Mon Feb 09, 2009 2:16 pm 
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Ian Smuth wrote:

What was the reasoning behing the signing of Vazquez to a two year deal for a team that is rebuilding?


You're not going to win any agreement with me hoping to complain about signing a competant backup infielder vis a vis a Rule V who has never playing the MLB before. Vazquez is insurance at 3b in case LaRoche fails, Walker fails, and Alverez is not ready. That is all. You are not contradicting the reasoning behind your Dunn arguements.

Quote:
I do agree with your happiness on the minor league side of the rule five. Kyle Stark did his homework and caught everyone napping. Kudos for that. But overall, I see more of a half hearted attempt at a rebuild rather than a full blown one, and far too many things are going to have to work out just right for it to ever work in this way. And these are the Pirates we're talking about here.


Go back to the original title and look at the overhaul of the 40-man, and tell me that is half hearted.

ZM

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 Post subject: Re: Tribune Review Article on 40 Man Roster
PostPosted: Mon Feb 09, 2009 2:18 pm 
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Ian Smuth wrote:

ZM,

What was the reasoning behing the signing of Vazquez to a two year deal for a team that is rebuilding? In my opinion, this was a time that the Pirates could have taken a second player in the rule five draft that not only could have played in the same super infield utility role, but could have done it cheaper and could have actually been a part of potentially winning teams for the Pirates in 2011 and beyond. Unlike Vazquez.

I do agree with your happiness on the minor league side of the rule five. Kyle Stark did his homework and caught everyone napping. Kudos for that. But overall, I see more of a half hearted attempt at a rebuild rather than a full blown one, and far too many things are going to have to work out just right for it to ever work in this way. And these are the Pirates we're talking about here.



Vazquez is here incase Freddy or Jack is hurt or traded to fill in at 2nd and SS for the short term or if LaRoche at 3rd fails...They weren't banking on Vazquez carrying the team to 82 wins

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I say keep the $50 and ban him anyway...

For those jumping ship, we'll keep the bandwagon warm for you...


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 Post subject: Re: Tribune Review Article on 40 Man Roster
PostPosted: Mon Feb 09, 2009 2:37 pm 
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Well, we're back to where we were last year, eh nad69dan?

Folks criticizing and predicting organiztional failure based on signing utility infielders.

That completes my say on the point.

ZM

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 Post subject: Re: Tribune Review Article on 40 Man Roster
PostPosted: Mon Feb 09, 2009 2:40 pm 
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ZelieMike wrote:
Well, we're back to where we were last year, eh nad69dan?

Folks criticizing and predicting organiztional failure based on signing utility infielders.

That completes my say on the point.

ZM


They'll eat their words when Vazquez makes that backhanded play at 3rd in the NLCS that saves the game for Capps and the Pirates and put them in the World Series against Baltimore

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I say keep the $50 and ban him anyway...

For those jumping ship, we'll keep the bandwagon warm for you...


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 Post subject: Re: Tribune Review Article on 40 Man Roster
PostPosted: Mon Feb 09, 2009 2:43 pm 
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Ian --- I find the name 'coondoggie' offensive. You and your opinions are welcome but degrading terminolgy with racial overtones to it are something we should think about.

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 Post subject: Re: Tribune Review Article on 40 Man Roster
PostPosted: Mon Feb 09, 2009 7:59 pm 
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Ian Smuth wrote:
So for a team that sucks, veteranosity trumps potential upside? The team is supposed to be rebuilding. Vazquez is a band aid on a terrible team. What good will he be? They may only lose 110 games this year instead of 113? I'm sorry. But I would much rather take a chance on a rule five guy and the outside chance he can become another Dan Uggla than throw away $4 mil to a 31 year old who has no chance of being here for competitive Pirates teams.

In order to get a Dan Uggla from Rule V, you have to afford such a pick the playing time that Uggla got in Florida. I don't see an open position for any such player except in the bullpen. That's probably why Don Veal got picked.

Quote:
And because the team has gotten an overhaul does not mean said overhaul was done in the proper way for a team in rebuilding mode.

True, but in this case I see little evidence saying that it was improper.

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 Post subject: Re: Tribune Review Article on 40 Man Roster
PostPosted: Tue Feb 10, 2009 6:26 pm 
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I am not a fan of NHs annual habit of signing bench players to million dollar deals just to have vets in backup roles. I didnt like it last year, and I like it less this year.

Since we are going to lose the vast majority of our games this year while we try to rebuild, I consider this fascination with bench guys and relievers a huge waste of money and focus. If you compare the amount of money spent on the draft (which I was generally happy with) with what would have been spent on normal slot amounts, NH put an extra 2 million into draft prospects. He proceeded to spend that alone on one lousy backup guy who means nothing to our rebuilding plan. Clearly NH should have spent the Vasquez money on the 8 or so top draft picks he didnt sign.

I read on OBN that we had the highest number of unsigned picks in the top 25 rounds of every team. Thats inexcusable. I still think NH did a good job by going after a few higher than slot guys. But what he did well on one hand, he took away from with the other. So while I will still remain happy with the draft, it could have been so much better if money and focuse was spend there instead of on veteran backups.


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