coming from the .07 correlation of regular season wins to playoff ones. Get into the playoffs and you have just as good a shot as anyone to win the WS. The Blue Jays, Orioles, and Rays also had some of their worst seasons during the early 2000s and they had no where near the payroll as the Red Sox.
And where is the "guarantee" in twinsnorth49's quote. Seems like you are twisting his words...
There are reasonable posters on TD and then there are unreasonable ones. Guess where you belong?
I've read the Binary thread, and although I always respect John's takes on baseball, I disagreed with him and others in it. 85 wins doesn't get you $#!^, either getting to or winning in the playoffs the past 10 seasons.
Going back to the point of the thread, Epstein certainly has his work cut out for him with the Cubs. But if Cubs ownership is willing to accelerate the process with more payroll for gambles like Baker, Theo may return the Cubs to respectability sooner rather than later.
I find it comical that people would try and compare the 03-11 Red Sox with the Twins. The Twins had a far harder time making the post season, despite playing the Yankees 12 fewer times a year. Ryan was hamstrung by payroll for both the ML roster but also in the draft. Bad contracts were significant problems that he couldn't outspend. Chicago and Detroit had massive payroll advantages over us.
The Cubs must think he'll have some trade value by midseason, otherwise I don't really get it from their end. 5.5 guaranteed is excessive. The lack of option years is troubling. If this is the deal the Twins gave Baker, I'd hoped we'd be pretty upset.
Cubs signed RHP Scott Baker to a one-year, $5.5 million contract.
Patrick Mooney of CSNChicago.com passed along the contract details and adds that Baker could make an additional $1.5 million with incentives. It's a nice buy-low opportunity for Theo Epstein and company, as Baker is coming off Tommy John surgery and has enjoyed success in the past. The 31-year-old right-hander should be ready around the early part of the 2013 season if he can avoid setbacks. He could be an excellent trade chip for the Cubbies if he bounces back.
Money doesn't buy championships, granted, but it sure helps to put a competitive team on the field that gives you a pretty good chance. GM's build/buy teams that can make the playoffs, whatever happens after that has very little to do with them or any other single factor.
gunnarthor- Come for the Baker signing discussion, stay for the Theo Epstein debate! We're not going to see eye to eye on Epstein, I think. You made some good points, as have others, about payroll and existing talent in Boston. But I still see a guy who GM'ed two World Series wins while still ten years younger or more than most rookie GM's. Pretty exceptional in my book, and I don't even like the Red Sox except when they're beating the Yankees or the Black Sox.
Back to Baker, sorry to see him go, but that seems spendy for such a high risk guy who figures to not even be ready until well into the season. But Epstein is probably getting more payroll to achieve faster results than Ryan will in Minnesota. As far as Baker the pitcher, I hope he can succeed enough in Chicago and elsewhere that he gives Twins fans reason to engage in yet another round of What Might Have Been.
On the other hand, Lohse has done well for himself in StL, and I still don't miss that guy....
in ever assuming that at least one team wouldn't offer Baker gobs of money? The Twins need to start almost from scratch. Tying up more than $1million on a chronically injured pitcher would have been crazy.
I do not think Baker signing with the Cubs was about the Twins or winning chances. It was about the money and the ability to market himself next year. Twins may have to move faster and spend more than they want to improve for next year. Other clubs seem to be doing this.
I think it was a huge mistake for this team to release Nathan, Liriano and now Baker. We got virtually nothing for these guys. Wouldn't it make sense to sign them to three year contracts instead of declining their option (or trading Liriano at his lowest trade value point). Then trade them if you don't think they are showing enough value to deserve what you are paying them. At least we either get value out of them or trade for value. We are DESPERATE for pitching and Ryan is too cheap to get front line starters. We now need 1, 2, 4 & 5 starters (assuming Diamond is a 3). Big mistake letting these three go in my opinion. Ryan will never sign or trade for 4 starters. Baker could come back as a #2 but count on him as #4 or #5 for this year, Liriano could be a #4 or 5 and Nathan could be the closer if he wasn't already gone to TX. Perkins is a good set up guy but he is not a closer. Too many home runs in critical situations. Ryan could then get a #1 and a #2 starter and he is done. Bottom line: TR needs to step up and sign Greinke to a long term deal. Over pay for him but tell every other free agent player that the Twins are serious about building a starting rotation that can win plus a team that could go worst to first. I am tired of hearing about the payroll. We built them the stadium and their part of the deal is to build a winner. It was not to build the best team on a budget, it is the best team period. The Pohlad's have plenty of money and I have never heard them say (in public anyway) that there is a limit on what Ryan can spend. He puts that on himself.