Minnesota Twins News & Rumors Forum
Page 1 of 4 123 ... LastLast
Results 1 to 20 of 66

Thread: Moneyball II: Oakland Strikes Back

  1. #1
    Owner MVP Brock Beauchamp's Avatar
    Posts
    8,105
    Twitter
    @rocketpig76
    Like
    48
    Liked 1,585 Times in 823 Posts
    Blog Entries
    6

    Moneyball II: Oakland Strikes Back

    http://www.nbcsports.com/baseball/mlb/oakland-way

    A pretty interesting article on the return of Oakland to dominance. One snippet that I believe Twins fans should keep in mind:

    But here's the point: That A's try not to believe in fuzzy concepts like the Quad-A player. True, some great Class AAA hitters failed multiple times in the Major Leagues. But the A's think many more were simply written off too soon. "Billy has us ask one question all the time," Zaidi says. "In this case: If Josh Donaldson were on another team, would he be the sort of player we would really want to trade for? The answer was yes."
    I see too many write off a player before he gets a legitimate shot at succeeding in the majors. Patience with prospects is a virtue. We've seen the failings of multiple Twins prospects who later shined in the majors: Trevor Plouffe, Brian Dozier, Carlos Gomez, etc.

    A good thing to keep in mind when talking about the likes of Aaron Hicks and Chris Parmelee. Oakland has become the best team in baseball by not succumbing to knee-jerk reactions. We should all encourage the Twins to do the same.

  2. These 2 users like Brock Beauchamp's post and want to buy him/her a steak dinner:

    ChiTownTwinsFan (06-07-2014), nathanaakre (06-09-2014)

  3. #2
    Senior Member MVP
    Posts
    5,713
    Like
    1,159
    Liked 564 Times in 369 Posts
    The also don't sign crappy SP to save money, they signed an expensive Cuban, they deal for guys closer to the majors when dealing good players, they aren't afraid to bring guys up from the minors berfore they spend a year at every level, they sign medium priced guys at obvious positions of need, they don't throw away the 25th spot on the roster, they don't bring back old RP when they have guys in their system that are ready, they don't play SS in the OF, they are basically the anti-Twins, imo.
    Lighten up Francis....

  4. These 6 users like mike wants wins's post and want to buy him/her a steak dinner:

    benji21 (06-07-2014), dgwills (06-08-2014), notoriousgod71 (06-07-2014), Steve Lein (06-10-2014), tarheeltwinsfan (06-09-2014), whydidnt (06-03-2014)

  5. #3
    Senior Member All-Star
    Posts
    1,781
    Like
    232
    Liked 473 Times in 231 Posts
    Great read.
    Chris Hermann solves everything. hat tip to jokin

  6. #4
    Senior Member All-Star
    Posts
    1,284
    Like
    252
    Liked 288 Times in 150 Posts
    Quote Originally Posted by mike wants wins View Post
    The also don't sign crappy SP to save money, they signed an expensive Cuban, they deal for guys closer to the majors when dealing good players, they aren't afraid to bring guys up from the minors berfore they spend a year at every level, they sign medium priced guys at obvious positions of need, they don't throw away the 25th spot on the roster, they don't bring back old RP when they have guys in their system that are ready, they don't play SS in the OF, they are basically the anti-Twins, imo.
    The A's current 25-man roster includes three catchers and Jeff Francis, new addition, 33 yrs old. Last 3 yrs ERA+ average is 79. Plus they grabbed Little Nicky. So maybe not the complete anti-Twins, but they definitely do some things differently, and really well.

  7. This user likes big dog's post and wants to buy him/her a steak dinner:

    nathanaakre (06-09-2014)

  8. #5
    Senior Member MVP
    Posts
    5,713
    Like
    1,159
    Liked 564 Times in 369 Posts
    lots of money quotes in there, backing up my note:

    "The A's went through a five-year struggle from 2007-2011, but perhaps the most important point is that none of those teams lost 90 games. The A's never stopped trying to win. They struggled with injuries and they made some mistakes, but Billy Beane refused to let the A's collapse for the high draft picks or to save what little money they could"

    "No team uses its bench quite as much as the Oakland A's"

    It talks about how they SENT DONALDSON DOWN, not how they kept him in OAK to struggle.....

    "Everybody around baseball knows that players peak from ages 25 to 31 or so. The A's live by the rule. The A's are giving 86 percent of their plate appearances to players in that age group --"

    "Everybody around baseball knows that teams are probably hurting themselves by going with strict bullpen roles that are followed to the exclusion of logic. And yet, what team is probably most versatile in the way they use their bullpen? Right. The Oakland A's."
    Lighten up Francis....

  9. This user likes mike wants wins's post and wants to buy him/her a steak dinner:

    benji21 (06-07-2014)

  10. #6
    Senior Member All-Star
    Posts
    3,599
    Like
    64
    Liked 378 Times in 232 Posts
    Quote Originally Posted by Brock Beauchamp View Post

    A good thing to keep in mind when talking about the likes of Aaron Hicks and Chris Parmelee. Oakland has become the best team in baseball by not succumbing to knee-jerk reactions. We should all encourage the Twins to do the same.
    I'm sure Parmelee will get plenty of chances to shine sitting on the bench in favor of Jason Kubel.

    I'm all for emulating the best aspects of teams like the A's. The problem is that the A's are very good at identifying, drafting and developing young pitching to fill the top and/or middle of the rotation. Perhaps adhering more to the A's philosophy would help the Twins, but there's probably a strong chance it's less about philosophy and more about baseball accumen. The A's just may have the personell to find these pitchers and the Twins perhaps do not. Hard to overcome that if personell change is not an option.
    Last edited by nicksaviking; 06-03-2014 at 08:32 AM.

  11. #7
    Owner MVP Brock Beauchamp's Avatar
    Posts
    8,105
    Twitter
    @rocketpig76
    Like
    48
    Liked 1,585 Times in 823 Posts
    Blog Entries
    6
    Quote Originally Posted by mike wants wins View Post
    The also don't sign crappy SP to save money, they signed an expensive Cuban, they deal for guys closer to the majors when dealing good players, they aren't afraid to bring guys up from the minors berfore they spend a year at every level, they sign medium priced guys at obvious positions of need, they don't throw away the 25th spot on the roster, they don't bring back old RP when they have guys in their system that are ready, they don't play SS in the OF, they are basically the anti-Twins, imo.
    I think it's a bit more complicated than that. From 2007-2010, the A's lost 86, 86, 87, 81, and 88 games. As we're seeing with Tampa, it's *really* hard for even the smartest teams to sustain more than 5-6 winning seasons on a tight budget. Baseball is a cyclical game even for the big budget teams.

    Did I like the Twins picking up the likes of Kevin Correia two years ago? Absolutely not. But in the grand scheme of things, it probably didn't impact the team's record much from 2011-2013. It would have taken piles of money to make those teams competitive, as they were pretty terrible from front to back with little/no help from prospects to improve.

    In short, the Twins do some things wrong but really, it seems that they do a lot more right, at least when Ryan is at the helm. This team is semi-competitive after a three year slump and only looks to improve as the season progresses.

  12. This user likes Brock Beauchamp's post and wants to buy him/her a steak dinner:

    nathanaakre (06-09-2014)

  13. #8
    Owner MVP Brock Beauchamp's Avatar
    Posts
    8,105
    Twitter
    @rocketpig76
    Like
    48
    Liked 1,585 Times in 823 Posts
    Blog Entries
    6
    Quote Originally Posted by nicksaviking View Post
    The problem is that the A's are very good at either identifying, drafting and developing young pitching to fill the top and/or middle of the rotation. Perhaps adhering more to the A's philosophy would help the Twins, but there's probably a strong chance it's less about philosophy and more about baseball accumen. The A's just may have the personell to find these pitchers and the Twins perhaps do not. Hard to overcome that if personell change is not an option.
    It's pretty hard to make that argument right now, as the Twins have quite the assortment of pitchers at almost every level of the game. I'd put May, Meyer, Berrios, Thorpe, and Stewart up against almost any team's minor league system.

    Have the Twins failed in the past to acquire quality arms? Absolutely, but something has changed in recent years and they've targeted power arms who look to be difference-makers in MLB.

  14. These 3 users like Brock Beauchamp's post and want to buy him/her a steak dinner:

    benji21 (06-07-2014), nathanaakre (06-09-2014), tarheeltwinsfan (06-09-2014)

  15. #9
    Senior Member MVP
    Posts
    5,713
    Like
    1,159
    Liked 564 Times in 369 Posts
    Except, Brock......it isn't. The A's actively move players around their system. They send under performers down. They platoon. They use their entire bench (not always well). They went and signed an expensive Intl FA. All of those things are things the Twins could do, and not spend more money, and not change what they claim they want to do.
    Lighten up Francis....

  16. #10
    Owner MVP Brock Beauchamp's Avatar
    Posts
    8,105
    Twitter
    @rocketpig76
    Like
    48
    Liked 1,585 Times in 823 Posts
    Blog Entries
    6
    Quote Originally Posted by mike wants wins View Post
    Except, Brock......it isn't. The A's actively move players around their system. They send under performers down. They platoon. They use their entire bench (not always well). They went and signed an expensive Intl FA. All of those things are things the Twins could do, and not spend more money, and not change what they claim they want to do.
    Excepting the international free agents point, I don't disagree with anything here. The Twins could certainly do some things better and I find their refusal to platoon effectively, carry two catchers that both play, and demote players who need it incredibly aggravating.

    But in the grand scheme of things, those are smaller points to the large point of "acquire and field above average players", which they have stockpiled for the past few years. Ryan has done a fantastic job of acquiring and drafting solid talent in the minors, which will ultimately lead to far more wins than an effective platoon (though the two things are certainly not at odds with one another).

    As for international free agents, I do not understand the griping over how the Twins have spent in recent years. It looks like they absolutely stole Lewis Thorpe just two years ago. The guy looks to be a beast of a pitcher - remember that he is over one year younger than Kohl Stewart.

  17. These 2 users like Brock Beauchamp's post and want to buy him/her a steak dinner:

    nathanaakre (06-09-2014), tarheeltwinsfan (06-09-2014)

  18. #11
    Senior Member All-Star
    Posts
    3,599
    Like
    64
    Liked 378 Times in 232 Posts
    Quote Originally Posted by Brock Beauchamp View Post
    It's pretty hard to make that argument right now, as the Twins have quite the assortment of pitchers at almost every level of the game. I'd put May, Meyer, Berrios, Thorpe, and Stewart up against almost any team's minor league system.

    Have the Twins failed in the past to acquire quality arms? Absolutely, but something has changed in recent years and they've targeted power arms who look to be difference-makers in MLB.
    No disagreement, I'll give the staff a chance to let the next wave prove them right.

    One thing that is concerning though, while I like that they have traded for what looks to be two quality power arms in Meyer and May, they still have been pretty terrible in identifying and developing their own. It's not surprising that Boer, Boyd, Summers, Bashore, Melotakis etc haven't panned out yet, what is surprising is that none of them could miss bats and/or maintain the velocity that was expected of them. That aspect of their game should have been somewhat predictable even if overall success was a long shot.

    Hopefully Berrios, Thorpe and Stewart also prove them a changed team in that regard.
    Last edited by nicksaviking; 06-03-2014 at 09:02 AM.

  19. #12
    Senior Member All-Star JB_Iowa's Avatar
    Posts
    3,314
    Like
    1,300
    Liked 1,278 Times in 740 Posts
    Lots of thought provoking assertions from Posnanski, as always. A few things that caught my eye:

    ..[P]erhaps the most significant point of Moneyball II -- the A's do not take anything for .granted. They do not go into the season believing that ANYBODY will get 600 plate appearances or make 35 starts or will have as good a year as last year. Billy Beane makes it clear: They will not make decisions based on what they hope will happen. Optimism is not a strategy.

    Over the last few years, it seems as though this has been one of the Twins' biggest flaws, e.g. going into the last 2 seasons without true plans for CF. Yes, there were injuries and yes, we all hoped Aaron Hicks would thrive but it really does seem like it was based on optimism. Same thing with the rotation before this off-season .... really seemed to be built on a wing and a prayer.

    Everybody around baseball knows that players peak from ages 25 to 31 or so. The A's live by the rule. The A's are giving 86 percent of their plate appearances to players in that age group

    Contrast that with what the Twins did this off-season in adding Kubel, Suzuki and Bartlett. Admittedly, it worked with Suzuki but it is also a position of more scarcity (and we really don't know what would happen with Pinto getting a larger percentage of PT). It makes the Kubel and Bartlett decisions seem even more bizarre. I have much less problem with the Twins giving chances to players who haven't yet reached 25 because it means that they may be better able to take advantage of their peak seasons in a year or two.

    Zaidi talks about how manager Bob Melvin is the best in the business at using the entire roster while managing to keep the team together mentally and emotionally. That is trickier than it sounds.

    When we talk about Josmil Pinto languishing on the bench, I wonder about Gardenhire's roster use but I do think that in the past keeping the team running on all cylinders was one of Gardenhire's strengths. I'm just not sure he's as willing/able to do that when he has a number of relative unknowns on the team.

    The stadium crumbles in real time, attendance is bottom five as usual, and there's little to no money to spend on salaries. Status quo.

    I also wonder if Oakland gets a new stadium and bigger budget (a la Target Field) if they will lose their way temporarily. (Same question I have about Tampa). I have always felt that part of the Twins' problem was that they took their eye of the ball as they approached the opening of TF. Their corporate focus seemed to be much more on the fan experience than on the product on the field. Part of that was probably Bill Smith but a bigger part of it was probably group think.

  20. #13
    Owner MVP Brock Beauchamp's Avatar
    Posts
    8,105
    Twitter
    @rocketpig76
    Like
    48
    Liked 1,585 Times in 823 Posts
    Blog Entries
    6
    Quote Originally Posted by nicksaviking View Post
    It's not surprising that Boer, Boyd Summers, Bashore, Melotakis etc haven't pan out, what is surprising is that none of them could miss bats and/or maintain the velocity that was expected of them.
    Yep. There was a time when the Twins simply did not do a good enough job acquiring arms. That led to the 2011 collapse more than anything (and was compounded by Smith trading away the one good arm they did have). Couple that with bad luck on the injury front in Liriano and Baker and you have a recipe for disaster, which is exactly what we saw in 2011.

  21. #14
    Senior Member All-Star Willihammer's Avatar
    Posts
    2,778
    Like
    664
    Liked 384 Times in 214 Posts
    Blog Entries
    10
    Quote Originally Posted by Brock Beauchamp View Post
    A good thing to keep in mind when talking about the likes of Aaron Hicks and Chris Parmelee.
    I'm not saying Parmelee's career's over, but Parmelee was put on waivers, and the A's passed on him.

  22. #15
    Senior Member Big-Leaguer Monkeypaws's Avatar
    Posts
    591
    Like
    76
    Liked 112 Times in 67 Posts
    Sounds like they'd be all over Nola.

  23. #16
    Owner MVP Brock Beauchamp's Avatar
    Posts
    8,105
    Twitter
    @rocketpig76
    Like
    48
    Liked 1,585 Times in 823 Posts
    Blog Entries
    6
    Quote Originally Posted by Willihammer View Post
    I'm not saying Parmelee's career's over, but Parmelee was put on waivers, and the A's passed on him.
    The A's do not have the time nor roster space to take on every work in progress. Them passing over Parmelee doesn't mean he'll never be an effective hitter (for the record, I'm not much of a Parmelee fan at this point).

    Besides, a large point of that article points out how the A's aren't necessarily smarter than everyone else in baseball, they simply do a better job of "doing" and choosing their battles.

  24. #17
    Senior Member All-Star Willihammer's Avatar
    Posts
    2,778
    Like
    664
    Liked 384 Times in 214 Posts
    Blog Entries
    10
    Nobody's in favor of jettisoning guys with option years (Dozier, Hicks). The guys out of option years - Worley, Parmelee, Escobar, Deduno, Plouffe - call them works in progress if you want. What's the attrition rate on these sort of talents? Certainly its higher than say, free agents.

    The A's can use their 40 man roster as currency to hoard these types of players. To their credit, they've done a decent job recognizing the guys who might pan out (but they haven't been perfect either - see how Sogard and Reddick are doing?)

    The Twins aren't in the A's position. They shouldn't be wasting many spots on these sort of players. Most will bust. When you carry a lot of them, you will probably have a lousy product.

  25. #18
    Senior Member MVP
    Posts
    5,713
    Like
    1,159
    Liked 564 Times in 369 Posts
    Brock, my issue with the Twins approach to Int'l FA is that they sign 16-18 year olds only....they can afford to sign legit AAA/MLB FAs from Cuba, on top of signing the Thorpes for a few million, and they don't. I have only a small issue to their approach re: how they manage the signings at the low level, I have a big issue with passing on guys that cost actual money, and are close to ready (or ready) right away. I hope that clears up any misunderstanding.....

    (you know, like Puig, or Abreu, or Tanaka {they had no chance on this one}, or Cespedes, or.....).

    Oakland, for their lack of money, did that.
    Lighten up Francis....

  26. These 2 users like mike wants wins's post and want to buy him/her a steak dinner:

    benji21 (06-07-2014), big dog (06-03-2014)

  27. #19
    Senior Member Triple-A
    Posts
    400
    Like
    68
    Liked 68 Times in 47 Posts
    Quote Originally Posted by Brock Beauchamp View Post
    I think it's a bit more complicated than that. From 2007-2010, the A's lost 86, 86, 87, 81, and 88 games. As we're seeing with Tampa, it's *really* hard for even the smartest teams to sustain more than 5-6 winning seasons on a tight budget. Baseball is a cyclical game even for the big budget teams.



    Did I like the Twins picking up the likes of Kevin Correia two years ago? Absolutely not. But in the grand scheme of things, it probably didn't impact the team's record much from 2011-2013. It would have taken piles of money to make those teams competitive, as they were pretty terrible from front to back with little/no help from prospects to improve.

    In short, the Twins do some things wrong but really, it seems that they do a lot more right, at least when Ryan is at the helm. This team is semi-competitive after a three year slump and only looks to improve as the season progresses.
    I see quite a bit of TR in that article but the A's take things to a whole other level with Platoon splits, statistical analysis, and overall philosophy.

    The more interesting thing to me about the article is that many of the things the A's do have been discussed here at TD as solutions. Granted not all of us agree but Platoon's and better bench management have been discussed here multiple times. Giving up on or not giving up on players has been discussed as well as age and its impact on performance. I am sure I could go on and on.

    The one fatal flaw with Money ball though is it hasn't produced a WS champion. Overall they might have the best team record wise but is that enough? It seems you still need a couple of ace pitchers and special bat or two to get you there. Maybe the A's have that team this year but I doubt it.

  28. #20
    Owner MVP Seth Stohs's Avatar
    Posts
    6,499
    Twitter
    @sethtweets
    Like
    67
    Liked 372 Times in 197 Posts
    Blog Entries
    515
    Quote Originally Posted by nicksaviking View Post
    One thing that is concerning though, while I like that they have traded for what looks to be two quality power arms in Meyer and May, they still have been pretty terrible in identifying and developing their own. It's not surprising that Boer, Boyd, Summers, Bashore, Melotakis etc haven't panned out yet, what is surprising is that none of them could miss bats and/or maintain the velocity that was expected of them. That aspect of their game should have been somewhat predictable even if overall success was a long shot.

    Hopefully Berrios, Thorpe and Stewart also prove them a changed team in that regard.
    To be fair, they're all relievers, and either injury or the fact that they have been starting effected their performance.

    Bashore was left-handed and throwing 97 at Indiana. Sounds like a pretty good pick in the supplemental first round. He got hurt. What do you do?

    Boer has a chance. Boyd is still very young.

    Summers was just moved back to the bullpen at AA. He was tremendous as a starter last year in Ft. Myers. As a reliever, the velocity should bump up and so should the strikeout rate.

    Ditto for Melotakis, who is now in the bullpen for the Miracle. As a reliever, he'll throw harder, and the slider will be sharper. He still could move fast now that he's been moved.

    Berrios, Thorpe and Stewart are starters. Hopefully they can continue to start as they move up. But, those three are in a different category than the first ones you mentioned.

Page 1 of 4 123 ... LastLast

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
©2014 TwinsCentric, LLC. All Rights Reserved.
Interested in advertising with Twins Daily? Click here.